After reading this chapter (total two parts), I believe everyone will love Shen Qiu… HOW CAN ANYONE NOT WANT A BROTHER LIKE HIM?!?!?! Well… I want a brother like that…
Edited by Tnyhy
Chapter 73: Shen Qiu (Part 1)
As Shen Xin withdrew the troops from the front and returned to the Ding capital, a wave of uproar was set off.
The first was naturally to praise Shen Xin’s heroic acts and for emerging victorious in every battle that he was able to take the enemy down in advance. The Emperor would definitely bestow countless of things down and since Shen Xin was an official of the first rank, there was no more promotion but everyone guessed that the rewards will end up on Shen Xin’s Di son, Shen Qiu.
The other matter was that on the day of Shen Xin return to the capital it coincided with Old Shen Furen’s birthday, but unexpectedly the ancestral hall caught fire and the Fifth Young Lady Shen was trapped in there. On that day, everyone in the Shen family treated it lightly and Shen Xin witnessed it himself. One fear that the Shen family would not be peaceful in the future.
These two things were spread wildly in the capital. Some smiled while listening to it but others were like ants on a hot pan, going around anxiously after they heard it.
In a room in the Shen residence Western courtyard, Shen Miao stood up with her clothes draped over her shoulders. Shen Xin and his wife were summoned into the Palace by the Emperor but before they left, they deliberately mobilised the guards in the army to guard the Western courtyard, practically letting the Shen family see clearly that they were defending against them.
Yesterday Shen Xin returned back in a hurry and also went all over the place to look for a physician. Afterwards Shen Miao went to rest and he did not dare to disturb, thus he had yet to speak to Shen Miao.
“Is Young Lady feeling better?” Jing Zhe said worriedly. Her eyes fell onto Shen Miao’s arm that was wrapped with gauze and her eyes turn sour. She said, “If this servant was faster a little yesterday, Young Lady would not have to suffer such an ordeal. And now there will be scars…”
The burn wound was too deep and the physician only said that it will heal, but it was not possible for there not to be a scar. Females cherished their own appearance and would not let there be a scar on their body. Now that Shen Miao had a burn injury, Jing Zhen kept blaming herself endlessly when she thought about it.
“It is nothing.” Shen Miao looked at her and said with a smile, “You did a good job yesterday and did not rush in due to anxiety. On the contrary, If you were to rush in, it would have spoiled my plans.”
Jing Zhe lowered her head. After Shen Miao fainted, Shen Xin couple was enraged and after some thought, she roughly understood what kind of intention Shen Miao had on mind. Because of that, Jing Zhe heart ached more for Shen Miao, most likely the path was exhausted and she was at the end of the road, else she would not hesitate to throw herself into such a danger to show the true faces of the Shen family to Shen Xin couple.
An unmarried female at such a young age should originally be like other families’ young ladies playing the Qin and writing poetry, but every move that Shen Miao took was related to her own life. She had to work out a strategy for what she wanted, as if she was walking on the sharp edge of the blade and carelessness would meant no hope for reprieve.
“Whatever Young Lady says, this servant will do accordingly.” Jing Zhe cried.
Shen Miao was gratified in her heart. Jing Zhe was indeed the most courageous among the four maids and if there were such similar matters in the future, Jing Zhe could be useful but naturally there was a need to slowly nurture Gu Yu and the rest. She was not the unmarried Shen Miao but Empress Shen, mistress of the Six Palaces, thus there was a need for her own confidants as what she would face in the future would be much more dangerous than what was happening now. If she could get used to it, these maids should also learn to get used to it.
During her thoughts, one could hear a hearty laughter suddenly coming from outside, “Younger Sister!”
When Shen Miao turned her head, she saw Shen Qiu walking in. He took off the armour he wore in the battlefield and only put on a green sturdy outfit and looked exceptionally handsome. With a wheat complexion, his two dimples that appeared when he smiled made that handsome and heroic appearance a little somewhat childlike. He walked closer to carefully look at Shen Miao before asking cautiously, “Does Younger Sister feel uncomfortable anywhere?”
Shen Miao suddenly closed her eyes and the memories of her past life came overwhelmingly.
In all fairness, Shen Qiu as an older brother, really did his best. At first no matter how cold she treated Shen Qiu, he would always be warm to her. Afterwards something happened and Shen Qiu had smeared some young lady’s innocence and was forced to marry that young lady as a wife. With that, everything changed. Mistakes were often made in his military work and afterwards he fell down from the horse and broke his leg. Fast-forward, that young lady made Shen Qiu wear a green hat (cuckold). In a fit of anger Shen Qiu killed that adulterer but who knew he was the only Di son of the Minister of Personnel. The Minister submitted an Imperial report and Shen Xin spent most of his fortune to protect Shen Qiu’s life but at the end Shen Qiu was found dead in a winter morning. Someone discovered his corpse in the middle of the pond.
At that time Shen Miao had married to Fu Xiu Yi and it was the critical period of the fight for the heir. When she heard of the grievous news, she rushed back to the residence and what she saw was Shen Qiu’s deformed corpse that was swollen due to the soak.
Even if she was not close to Shen Qiu but after all they both had the same blood flow in them. She was so hurt and sad that she fell into a serious illness, but Fu Xiu Yi sent Shen Xin off to battle at that time.
That cold winter sunshine, that dripping wet body from the pond, Shen Qiu’s pale and deformed face compared to the young face that had a touch of smile in front of her, was like a sharp sword that thrust into her, making her hard to breath.
Shen Miao bend down quickly and clutched her chest as she took big gasps of breath.
“Younger Sister!” Shen Qiu jumped in shocked and propped her up before roaring towards outside, “Go call the physician! Quickly! Younger Sister’s health is indisposed!”
A hand grabbed onto Shen Qiu’s arms. He turned back and saw Shen Miao standing up as she held his arm before saying, “No need, it was only a lack of strength.”
“Younger Sister’s health has yet to recover, it is appropriate to invite the physician to take a look.” Shen Qiu shook his head and said in a concerned tone.
“I am fine.” Shen Miao said to the hesitant Jing Zhe, “All of you withdraw.”
Her tone was firm and calm which made Shen Qiu stunned for a moment.
“Younger Sister, what is the matter with you?” Shen Qiu asked. Once the words came out, he was vexed at himself for using such heavy words. He usually faced brute men in the army and had forgotten to be softer and gentler to young females and thus slow his words and tone down, “Yesterday upon seeing you trapped in the fire, Father and Mother were really frightened. Younger Sister, why were you in the ancestral hall? Were you being locked up?”
However Shen Miao shook her head and smiled as she looked at him, “After a year of not meeting, is Eldest Brother doing well?”
“Ah?” Shen Qiu was simple minded and said in a laughing manner as he scratched his head, “I am still alright. The army is always like this, make a few contributions and wait for His Majesty to bestow some things. Younger Sister can pick what you like from it.” After finishing, he seemed to have thought about something and happily said, “That is right. Father previously hunted a fire rat and skinned it to make a cloak out of it. I will later get the servants to bring it over. That cloak is invulnerable to knives and spears and could evade fire and water. If you had that cloak yesterday then you will not be burnt…”
His voice hardly finished when Shen Qiu froze on the stop. Shen Miao went up and wrapped her hands around Shen Qiu’s arms and rested her head on his chest.
Even if they were real siblings they were after all not little children, so Shen Qiu was somewhat embarrassed for some time even though he was overjoyed. It had been a long time since Shen Miao was so close to him and he felt overwhelmed by the unexpected favour. Just as he was somewhat happy, his heart sank as he thought about Shen Miao’s temperament, she must have suffered big grievances for her to be this unprecedentedly close to him today.
He asked hurriedly, “Younger Sister, is there someone bullying you? If there is someone, you just need to tell me and I will beat him up till he was half dead…”
He spoke indignant at the injustice but Shen Miao wanted to laugh. Mei Furen had an older brother that was very talented and could help Fu Xiu Yi come out with plans for the court. Fu Xiu Yi later favoured Mei Furen greatly and this may not be without her older brother’s credit. Shen Miao was envious about it but at that time Shen Qiu was already dead.
It seemed that she had not felt the feeling of having a supporter for a very very long time. Getting used to fighting alone in life and dividing herself to many people. Perhaps she only lost to Mei Furen because of her lack of support.
Now with someone protecting and caring, it was so beautiful that it almost felt unreal.
She slowly loosened her hands and looked up at Shen Qiu’s concerned eyes.
“Younger Sister…” Shen Qiu was also stumped for words. The young female in front had bright clear eyes and white teeth and when she faced him, there was no longer the previous intolerance and boredom and what replaced was a type of deep feeling. That feeling made him felt a little strange as he looked carefully at the young female in front of him. After a year of not meeting, Shen Miao had gotten much thinner. Her originally somewhat round face was now sharp, making her look much more delicate. Her facial features got clearer and brighter. That naivety and immaturity had vanished without a trace and when he looked at her, there was a slight gratification and an unknown loneliness.
Shen Miao slightly sighed in her heart. Shen Qiu had the naivety of a youth and this kind of naivety was very valuable with his temperament. Sincere and energetic, it was hard to think that such a person will end up drown in a pond. At the beginning people were saying that Shen Qiu committed suicide because of his notorious reputation but now thinking about it, with Shen Qiu’s willpower, how would he had committed suicide just because of others blaming and pointing of fingers. As for the initiator, it was her so called ShenShens who forced Shen Qiu to marry and now it seemed that it was most likely a plot.
“Why Younger Sister keep on staring at me?” Shen Qiu was unable to make heads or tails of it, “Was it that my face is stained with something?” He felt that the current Shen Miao was strange, not the Shen Miao throwing a temper or not the Shen Miao who treated him coldly, as if the person in front was not a young lady at all.
“Why did Eldest Brother not go to the Palace today?” Shen Miao asked softly.
“His Majesty only summoned Father and Mother.” Shen Qiu smiled, “I naturally would not go. Younger Sister, you have yet to tell me what exactly went on with regards to yesterday. Why were you trapped in the ancestral hall’s fire?”
He constantly thought about the matter and was also wholeheartedly concerned about Shen Miao’s injuries, thus he must understand the ins and outs of the entire event.
“Will Eldest Brother believe my words?” Shen Miao smiled gently, “There is no use to speak about it if one do not believe them.”