Mysteries in the Imperial Harem: Chapter 99
Chapter 99: Facial Appearance
Zhuo Qing told Gu Yun in detail the situation during this period and also the result of the check on the body. Both of them discussed a while and was unable to come to a conclusion at that moment of time, thus Gu Yun decided to enter the Palace to take a look at Qing Feng.
As Zhuo Qing had the token from Yan Hong Tian, both of them could enter the Palace smoothly. When they entered Qing Feng Hall, they saw a small baby cradle under a big tree in the middle of the courtyard and beside it, Qing Feng, clad in a simple was at the side half kneeing as she kept her eyes on the small cradle with only Fu Ling accompanying her.
Seeing that they had arrived, Fu Ling bent down as if afraid that she would scare her and said in a very light voice, “Mistress, Lou Furen and Miss Qing are here to see you.”
Gu Yun’s brow tightly knitted together, the Qing Feng now and during the full month banquet were two different persons. Her chin was thin, her eyes were dull, her pale face and her frail body, made her look like she would faint at any moment. With a bitterness piercing her heart, Gu Yun softly called out, “Elder Sister.”
After a long time Qing Feng then turned around and her eyes stopped at Gu Yun’s face for a long time before she seemed to recognise who she was. She then calmly said, “You have returned. Sit then.” The hoarse voice sounded weak, like it was blown away by the win, it seemed that she had immersed herself in endless grief and disregard everyone and everything around her. Gu Yun softly consoled, “A person would not be able to come back to life after death. You must restrain your grief and don’t ruin your health.”
Qing Feng seemed like she did not hear anything and just stared at the child’s little cradle unblinkingly. From time to time, there was a hint of a smile on her face, but that smile was filled with bitterness.
A fire emerge suddenly in Gu Yun’s heart. Who was so vicious that even a baby was not spared?! And to torment a mother to such a state! If it was truly a homicide, she wanted to seek justice for that child.
“Come over here for a while.”
Fu Ling did not understand why Gu Yun called for her but Qing Feng did not stop it so she followed Gu Yun to the other side of the courtyard. When both of them stood still, Gu Yu asked, “Who was the first to discover the child’s death?”
Fu Ling hesitated and replied in a whisper, “It’s this servant.”
“Repeat again what happened on the day of the incident. Think about it clearly and do not miss out any details.”
Fu Ling hesitated for a moment and she slightly turned around to look at the direction of Qing Feng. Gu Yun blocked her line of sight and spoke lowly, “Speak the truth.”
Gu Yun’s voice was not loud but it had a kind of imposing manner that one would not dare to defy. After thinking for a long time, Fu Ling then whispered in reply, “After the full month banquet, the Prince had contracted a cold and was constantly having fever. The Imperial Physician would come every day at Sishi (modern timing: 9 – 11 am) to diagnose and perform treatment. That morning, before Sishi, Imperial Physician Hu and Imperial Physician Wang came…”
“Don’t talk about it anymore. Withdraw.” Fu Ling only said a sentence before Qing Feng scolded her severely. Fu Ling was scared and quickly stepped out.
Qing Feng’s face was livid and no longer had a numb expression. She seemed to be suppressing a certain sentiment so Gu Yun walked up to her and asked, “Why stop her from speaking?”
Turning her head to the other side, Qing Feng did not meet Gu Yun eyes as she softly reply, “Imperial son is gone, I do not wish for this matter to be mentioned again.”
Her obvious evading and avoiding reply made Gu Yun felt more suspicious and Zhuo Qing was also puzzled. She remembered the last time when Qing Feng question her on how her child died, it was certainly not like how it was now. Gu Yun asked tentatively, “Knowing that he did not die due to an illness, you do not intend to pursue the matter?”
Qing Feng abruptly raised her hand and stared at Gu Yun with pain in her eyes and a hoarse voice that sounded miserable as it grips one’s heart, “How do you want to pursue? All the Imperial Physicians said that the Prince died due to the illness, who do I pursue with? Even if his death was not caused by illness, the events in the Inner Palace would not be managed by the Ministry of Justice and at the end it would fall upon Lou Shu Xin and Xin Yue Ning to investigate! He is already dead, what is the use of investigating it so clearly!”
Her weak body could not withstand such a big agitation and she started to cough. She clutched her chest before turning over and said unyieldingly, “The child has been put to rest so you both should not be bothered about this matter. I am tired so you both can leave.”
Zhuo Qing and Gu Yun exchanged a look and they did not provoke her further. They then left Qing Feng Hall together.
Gu Yun sombrely said, “Qing Feng should know that this matter is suspicious and must have gotten a clue but do not want to get us involved.” And she had seen Qing Feng suppressing immensely the cold violence on her face when she was talking to her. This was definitely not a person who would not intend to pursue the matter.
Zhuo Qing apparently could also see it and sighed as she whispered, “This matter is very different from the cases that you previously handled. It is not just a homicide case as it also involve with many political powers. Yan Hong Tian is also not a fool, he already had two sons that died prematurely, why was he still indifferent. There are many checks and balances and the conflicting interests are far more complicated than we would imagine. In short, you must not act rashly.”
Naturally Zhuo Qing understand clearly the implication that Zhuo Qing mentioned and she could not help but scowled, “It’s truly troublesome.”
Zhuo Qing pat Gu Yun’s hand and lowered her voice to speak, “I know that you are a person who can distinguish right from wrong and everything in your heart would be either black or white. But the Inner Palace is a grey place where everything cannot be too clear and cannot be too muddled. The first time when I saw Qing Feng, she is intensely stubborn and now she already slowly understand how to survive in the Palace. This matter is something we cannot not care about but also manage it with great fanfare. Since she is not willing for us to be intervene then we will investigate it in secret and look for opportunity to help her since she would not let it go with her temperament.”
Gu Yun was silent for a long time but she finally nodded, “Alright. Will follow as you say.” She believed in the logic in laws but never understood politics.
After Zhuo Qing and Gu Yun left, Qing Feng stood up from the cradle and sat at the stone stool, where her grieving expression seemed lesser. After a while, she then faced Fu Ling to speak, “In the future if they were to ask you any questions privately, you can just speak truthfully.”
“Yes.” These days Fu Ling’s brows were not relaxed as her Mistress was becoming stranger and more elusive. At times she would be in extreme grief, at times she would be indifferent. If this continued on, what could be done?
Fu Ling had a face of concern which made Qing Feng sighed in her heart. She gently pulled Fu Ling’s hand and softly said, “Fu Ling, I am a little hungry.”
“Ah?” How long has it been for Mistress to take the initiative to say that she was hungry? Fu Ling happily nodded, “Yes. This servant will call for the meal now.”
When Fu Ling just leave, Ru Yi walked in from outside and stood by Qing Feng, “Your Ladyship.”
“How was it?” Qing Feng’s voice was cold and no longer warm like she was speaking to Fu Ling.
Ru Yi glance at the outside of the door before bending down slightly and said some sentence at Qing Feng’s side.
Because of these few short sentences, Qing Feng’s expression changed a lot. She starred back at Ru Yi and shouted, “For real?”
Ru Yi immediately knelt down and spoke quickly, “This servant dare not deceive your Ladyship.” Ru Yi was able to hear her Ladyship clenching her fists as her bones made cracking sounds. Ru Yi kept her head down and did not dare to move a muscle.
After a while, Ru Yi was then able to hear Qing Feng calmly say, “Withdraw.” Ru Yi did dare to stay longer and quickly backed out.
The constantly tightly fisted hands on her chest showed that internally Qing Feng was not as calm as her voice had portrayed to be.
Yan Hong Tian!
Yan Hong Tian, you are really good!
Gu Yun and Zhuo Qing went to see Qing Feng once every three days and she remained the same, staring at the cradle for the entire day and at times she would say a few sentences to them. Gu Yun did not agitate her again but still privately questioned the eunuchs and mamas who were still in Qing Feng Hall. The Imperial Palace was indeed a scary place. It made people cautious and careful of their words. No matter what Gu Yun asked, the answer was almost always that they did not know anything.
This day was another day that Gu Yun and Zhuo Qing would enter the Palace to see Qing Feng and Qing Feng’s spirits seemed good and wanted to talk to them when she saw them entering. But she saw that there was a male following them. That person seemed to be in his thirties, of medium build and looked very ordinary but he was filled with an air of arrogance which made one hard to ignore.
Qing Feng asked with precaution, “Who is her?”
Zhuo Qing and Qing Feng was closer to one another thus Gu Yun indicated her to speak. Zhuo Qing walked to Qing Feng’s side and carefully replied, “He is a physician.”
Qing Feng’s face immediately change and she replied in a cold voice, “I am fine and do not need any physician. Let him leave.”
Zhuo Qing glanced with Gu Yun with a headache and just as two of them were thinking of how to convince Qing Feng, Yue Sheng coldly scoffed, “Each one more stubborn than the other. Getting me to leave is easy but once I leave that face of yours would not have any more hope.”
What does that meant? Qing Feng looked questioning at Zhuo Qing and she softly explained, “We got him here as we wanted to help to heal your face. Even though there is nothing wrong having the scar on the face, but…”
They thought that Qing Feng would definitely flip out but who knew that she swept her anger away and asked seriously, “He can really heal my face?”
Zhuo Qing immediately nodded, “En.”
“Alright. Then treat.”
Qing Feng’s frankness made Zhuo Qing and Gu Yun confused but the flash of distraction in Qing Feng’s eyes did not escape Yue Sheng’s eyes. Interesting! Yue Shen laughed, “The injury on your face is more serious than theirs and you will need to suffer in order for it to be cured.” This woman was actually more ruthless than her sisters, the two deep scars wiped off seventh or eighth tenth of her stunning good looks. To heal her face now was not because of just regaining a beautiful face only.
Qing Feng replied expressionless, “As long as it can be healed, I can bear whatever suffering.”
“Good!” He like this kind of female who would be unscrupulous to achieve their goals. Not only would he heal her face, she would also be one-third more glamorous than how she looked previously!
“Bear what sort of suffering?” A domineering male voice with some chill spoke from outside the courtyard.
“Long live the Emperor.” Yan Hong Tian just stepped into Qing Feng Hall and all the accompanying eunuchs and palace maids were all kneeling on the floor. Qing Feng got up to bow and Gu Yun and Zhuo Qing also uncomfortably followed but Yue Shen continue to stand at the side and seemingly had no intention to greet.
Raising her head slightly, Gu Yun saw that overbearing man and the corner of her lips raised. Bringing in Yue Sheng into the Palace naturally required Yan Hong Tian’s agreement thus Su Ling had went in the morning to speak to him, thus it was nothing strange for Yan Hong Tian to come over and take a look but for to not even change out of the bright yellow court robes, he seemed to be slightly too anxious.
“You can treat her face?” The dark black eyes swept over that ordinary face. This was not a light nor difficult sentence but it had gave an oppressive blow to others.
Yan Hong Tian had always been temperamental which made Zhuo Qing worries rose. With a normal expression on, Yue Sheng replied coldly, “As long as I want to treat, don’t even mention about such a small injury like this, even if the entire face is rotten, I can change a new one for her. But during the three months that I am treating her face, other than me and her close servants, she cannot see anyone. If this cannot be done then there is no need to heal this face.”
His eyes darken as Yan Hong Tian spoke lowly, “Including Zhen?”
Qing Feng’s cold sweat also came out. Accordingly to Yan Hong Tian’s character, he would not let people who go against him live easily and she had experienced it many times since she entered the Palace. Sure enough, Yan Hong Tian laughed coldly, “Alright, Zhen promise you, from today onwards, there would be no one else stepping into Qing Feng Hall. If her face is not healed after three months, Zhen want your life.” After the sentence was completed, Yan Hong Tian left with a huff.
Everyone thought that Yan Hong Tian was annoyed by Yue Shen but Gu Yun found out that before Yan Hong Tian turned to leave, he looked at Qing Feng but Qing Feng quickly looked away and did not meet his eyes. Gu Yun guessed that the black face that Yan Hong Tian had on when he leave was because of Qing Feng.
Yue Sheng watched Yan Hong Tian’s brutal cold back and sneered, “Such strong ferocious energy, no wonder the number of heirs are thin.”
After listening to those words, Qing Feng shivered and her face was much more paler than before.
“Both of you can also leave.” Waving towards Gu Yun and Zhuo Qing, Yue Sheng chased them out of Qing Feng Hall.