Chapter 22: Imperial Concubine Hui, Chen Zhen
The sounds of retching made people uncomfortable but the female who was in the dark felt pretty good as she chuckled, “You will get used to it slowly.”
She will never get used to it! After taking many deep breaths, she could then forced down the nausea feeling, Qing Feng coldly snorted word for word, “I will not be here for my entire life.” In order to survive, she has already eaten rotten porridge for a few days. But she did not drink the medicine that was sent over daily. She now do not trust anyone at all!
She spoke firmly but the pale face and dark rings of her eyes made what she just spoken sound like a joke. The female ridiculed, “If you don’t die here it is already good. Even if you are able to leave here, what does it matter? Do you expect the Emperor to favour you?”
Favour? Qing Feng sneered out loud, she wish for him to be dead! The female seemingly did not hear Qing Feng’s laughter and fell into her own thoughts as she murmured, “So what if you are favoured for a while… You are of no match for her…”
That helpless and fearful mumbling that she often hear, who is the “she” that she is referring to? With her back leaning against the stone wall, Qing Feng softly questioned, “Who… Is she?”
The female recovered from her thoughts, placed her head on her knees and hugged her arms but did not reply to Qing Feng’s questions. Qing Feng frowned and sighed, “So you are that afraid of her.”
This sentence agitated the female, she looked up angrily and glared at Qing Feng, growling, “I am not afraid of her. I only hate that the Heavens do not have eyes!”
Qing Feng was startled by her sudden growl and wanted to talk more but the female has already curled herself up and retreated back to the dark corner.
Who is this female? And for what reason is she held in prison for that many years? If she is one of the concubines, if her sins are not punishable by death then she should be thrown into the Cold Palace, unless she is a normal palace maid? Unlikely not.
In a self-deprecating smile, why is she asking so many questions? The rays no longer shine through the small little stone window and the darkness swallowed her once again.
In Spring season, the Indian Azalea that was bestowed were blooming brilliantly in Ling Yu Palace. The rows of pink azaleas made the courtyard of the palace pleasant. No matter how beautiful the azaleas were, they cannot be compared with the female in the middle of the courtyard. Dress in a light yellow dress made her snow-like skin look transparent. Her lucid and elegant looks were not extremely beautiful but a slight smile made her look gentle and movingly.
The palace maid, Wu-er, stared at the embroidery that the female was holding for a long time before she cannot help but ask softly, “My Ladyship, why is your embroidered eagle have red eyes?” Her Ladyship’s embroidery skills are superb and this embroidered eagle looks like the real thing and has an overbearing feeling to it. But the pair of red eyes looks very scary. Shouldn’t the eyes of the eagle be black instead?
The female stared intently at the embroidery in her hands and after listening to Wu-er words, she only gave a smile and not reply.
“Because what Zhen-er is embroidering is a black-winged kite.” Behind both of them came a voice with deep laughter. The palace maid face changed slightly and did not turn back but only half knelt to the floor and greeted, “Long live the Emperor!”
The pretty female was apparently calmer and gently place the needle into the brocade before slowly getting up and elegantly greeted, “Chenqie (use by the Emperor women to refer to themselves. Only used when they are in front of the Emperor) greets the Emperor.”
Yan Hong Tian walk up to the stone bench and sat down before picking up the embroidery to look. He then casually replied, “Get up then.”
Wu-er quickly supported her mistress up before quietly retreated to the side. Chen Zhen walked up to Yan Hong Tian’s side when suddenly there a tug at her waist and she was hugged to a sitting position in his arms.
Putting down the embroidery, Yan Hong Tian laughed, “Zhen-er has not been embroidering for a long time. Why is there a sudden interest today?”
Chen Zhen smiled and compliantly replied, “A few days back, the Empress Dowager’s budgerigar spoken again and she was very happy. The Imperial Household gave her another one but who knew that the Empress Dowager became furious. Chenqie thought that the Empress Dowager would prefer some else special.”
After looking at the half embroidered eagle again, Yan Hong Tian broke into smiles, “Zhen-er indeed have a pure heart and spirit.” The black-winged kite is in the hawk family and is definitely ferocious and respectable than the budgerigar. Both Empress Dowager has been silently battling for many years. This gift will definitely be able to win the Empress Dowager’s favour. Moreover, she only sent an embroidery and will not offend his mother. Zhen-er has always been smart and this time was also not an exception.
Chen Zhen gently smiled and did not take credit. At this time, a little eunuch stood by the palace door for a while before speaking in a lowered tone, “Reporting to the Emperor, Steward Gao has came back.”
Yan Hong Tian gently raised his hand and the little eunuch respectfully retreated out.
Chen Zhen secretly saw Yan Hong Tian’s hands was still on her waist, she did not get up but sit on his legs unhurriedly but not leaning into his embrace.
“Paying respects to the Emperor.” Gao Jing stood at the palace doors and did not walk into the courtyard.
While playing with Chen Zhen soft and supple hair, Yan Hong Tian casually asked, “Is everything investigated clearly?”
“Yes. In order for the Qing family Sisters to be sent to Qiong Yue, the ruler of Hao Yue forced the deaths of the Qing family elders. The three ladies were overwhelmed with grief that they attempted suicide during their journey over. Fortunately they were rescued in time but because they self-disfigured, Qing Ling and Qing Feng look very much alike. The Hao Yue officials did not differentiate them apart and sent them incorrectly.”
That pair of full of hatred, stubborn and unyielding eyes flash in his mind and Yan Hong Tian’s hands who was holding the tea, slightly paused before murmuring with a faint laughter, “If so, then it is Zhen who wronged her”
Chen Zhen did not overlook Yan Hong Tian’s interested eyes as she picked up the brewed spring tea from the table to give to Yan Hong Tian and softly sighed, “Emperor, its all the officials responsible fault that the wrong person was sent. She is a female, who lost both her parents, her face disfigured and also have to part from her sisters. She is so pitiful.”
Yan Hong Tian took the tea cup which contain lukewarm tea, with the correct temperature, and looked at the eyes and brows of the woman in his arms, he suddenly smiled, “All right. Since Imperial Concubine Hui has spoken, she will be spared.”
“Gao Jing, discharge her from prison, bestow Shu Yun Palace to stay and confer her as…” Yan Hong Tian paused a moment before the corners of his mouth hook up slightly and smilingly said, “Confer her as Concubine Qing.”
Gao Jing was stunned, it is against the normal rules for Qing Feng to be promoted from a no rank palace maid to that of a Concubine status and he hesitated for a moment before replying, “Yes.”
“Wait.” Gao Jing was about to turn to leave when Yan Hong Tian’s deep pleasant voice sounded again. “From this day forth, Shu Yun Palace will be renamed to Qing Feng Hall.” (Same spelling/sound as Qing Feng’s name but has different meanings. Qing Feng Hall direct translation is Hall of Light Wind. Qing Feng name however, “Qing” surname Green and “Feng” name Maple.)
This time Gao Jing was not only stunned for a moment but his spine also turn stiff. Gently hooking Chen Zhen’s chin, Yan Hong Tian smiled charmingly, “Is Zhen-er satisfied with this?”
With a touch of a dainty, Chen Zhen smile as she replied, “Congratulation to the Emperor for gaining a beauty.” Looking at the quiet and well-behaved female in his arms, Yan Hong Tian’s eyes flashed a look of cool certainty.
Thinking of that pair of stubborn but truthful eyes, Yan Hong Tian’s lips once again raised to an arc. Qing Feng, during the days in the Imperial Prisons, did you learn what is it to be submissive?