Chapter 201: Descending (Part 1)
“Darn it.” Xie Jing Xing suddenly turned around and instructed Mo Qing and the few, “Escort Furen out of the outer fields. Tie Yi, follow me.”
Shen Miao said, “You are going to the inner fields now?” The uneasy feeling in her heart got heavier that Shen Miao almost had the urge to pull Xie Jing Xing back and prevent him from leaving.
Xie Jing Xing looked at her deeply and there was a seriousness in his eyes for the first time, “There are changes to the plan.”
Shen Miao clenched her hands to fists and looked at him, “I will wait for your return.”
Xie Jing Xing did not speak anymore and turn the horse head before whipping it as Tie Yi followed behind. As the two of them gradually got further away, their figure disappeared from the dust clouds that the horses made.
Shen Miao tightly held the reins as she sat on the horse’s back. At such a time, she no longer had any mood to wonder around in the outer fields by herself. Mo Qing said, “Furen, let’s return.”
Shen Miao nodded her head and Mo Qing, with a group of guards, escorted Shen Miao out. Despite this, Shen Miao’s heart was still thumbing loudly non-stop and she kept on trying to calm herself down. She started to think carefully about every small details of the matter.
There seemed to be serious danger towards today’s matter. Emperor Yong Le’s position in Great Liang’s court was not as stable as one imagined. In it, the Lu family’s army were more critical and there seemed to be rebellious intention and the most important thing was that the Lu family was the Late Emperor’s power.
Could it be that there was something between Emperor Yong Le and the Late Emperor? It seemed as if some Emperor was unwilling to pass the throne to the son. Could it be that Emperor Yong Le’s position was not passed down in official methods and some means were used so the Late Emperor was resentful and would still lay a big net even after dying for so many years, in order to pull him down the horse one day?
Xie Jing Xing and Emperor Yong Le should have made some arrangements for this, but one did not know why Emperor Yong Le went into the inner fields and headed to Hua Feng Peak. There were only two possibilities, first someone in the Imperial army forced Emperor Yong Le and thus Emperor Yong Le was forced to enter the inner fields early. Second was that this was Emperor Yong Le’s own intention and it was a sudden decision and did not discuss it with Xie Jing Xing.
Shen Miao felt that it should be the second one because there were still some officials and other people walking in the outer fields. Even if there were people with evil intentions hiding in the Imperial army, they would not choose to take action here and would definitely let Emperor Yong Le enter the inner fields and take action without anyone around.
But why did Emperor Yong Le enter in advance and what decision made Xie Jing Xing so nervous that a grim look, that Shen Miao had never seen on Xie Jing Xing, appeared on his face?
She walked groggily with the horse and an eagle flying pass gave a long shriek. Her heart suddenly went alive and an incredulous thought entered her mind.
However that thought was quickly rejected by him as she shook her head and secretly pressed her heart.
After leaving the outer field, at first glance, she saw Ji Furen. Ji Furen did not enter the hunting grounds with Ji Daren and was waiting outside. Since Shen Miao did not have any acquaintance in Long Ye, she went up to greet Ji Furen.
“Why did WangFei of First Rank come out so early?” Ji Furen smiled, “One thought that one will play longer inside. There are a lot of foxes in the outer fields and if one is lucky, one will be able to see black foxes. The scarf made from their fur are warm and beautiful.”
Shen Miao smiled gently, “I only followed them it for the fun and bustle and do not know how to hunt.” She then looked at Ji Furen and said, “Furen no need to call me WangFei. Since we are relatives, it is alright to call me Jiao Niang. As such, I can thicken my skin to call Furen YiMu.”
Ji Furen was startled then her smiled got much warmly, “So Jing Xing had told you about it. In this case then I would not do all those headache things and just call Jiao Niang.”
Shen Miao smiled. Luo Xue Yan did not have sisters and only brothers so she only had JiuJiu and no YiMu, thus it was refreshing to now have an additional YiMu. But seeing Ji Furen dignified self, she seemed to be one who knew the situation and her words were straightforward. Shen Miao thought about it and find that it should be as such, else how would one be able to raise Ji Yu Shu with such a personality.
Ji Furen pulled Shen Miao’s hand and leaded another way while speaking, “Today Jing Xing and Xing Zhi entered the hunting grounds so you and I will wait outside. When the sun sets, they would return and at that time both of you can come to the Ji residence for a meal. Speaking of which, after Jing Xing’s return this time, he had not gone to our residence for a meal.”
Shen Miao smiled and complied and instantly thought about Xie jing Xing and started to be somewhat worried before asking, “YiMu, the fight in the inner fields, is it dangerous or not? One fear that it is not easy to hunt a lion.”
Ji Furen signed, “This was the regulation that was established during the founding of the country. After so many years, it was originally abolished but at the end the Late Emperor.” She suddenly stopped and looked at Shen Miao with a smile, “You need not worry. The Imperial army is brought along and even though the beasts are ferocious, those guards are not vegetarians. Moreover both bothers have martial arts skills and are not idlers with no strength to kill a chicken. It is more than enough power to protect themselves.”
When Shen Miao heard it, she also smiled along but in her heart, it seemed that Ji Furen was not aware of matter. If she knew, she would not reveal such a relax expression. That Imperial army was not as safe that they looked on the surface. Ji Furen was not one who could discuss matters with and at this time Shen Miao was somewhat regretful as she should bring Pei Lang along, at least now she could discuss matters. She did not know anyone in Long Ye and knew nothing about Xie Jing Xing’s arrangements, thus it was not good to make other arrangements.
The outer fields was far from the edge of the grove, thus there was would be breeze. Because those who came were nobles, there were a lot of ice that were transported over. Currently it was refreshing and a few young ladies and Furens were sitting there as they drank tea and eat snacks. When they saw their family returning and bringing some hunted prey, they felt happy and went up to show off.
It was really an interesting way of entertainment.
Shen Miao’s heart gradually sank. She looked at the faraway Hua Feng Peak, it was so far away that one could not see it. Everyone here was happy chatting but who knew if it was a scene of fighting and killing? Was the fight with just a lion or was it with a golden dragon of Nine Heavens?
Just as she was thinking, someone walked over. Shen Miao looked up and saw that it was that sharp and silent Ye Furen. Ye Furen walked to Ji Furen’s side and sat down before smiling to Ji Furen, “Why did you not enter?”
“How would I know how to hunt? One is only merely watching.” Ji Furen also smiled along. Even though the Ji family and Ye family did not have much interaction, on surface, one had to do what needs to be done. After Ye Mao Cai’s official rank was not much different from Left Minister Ji and was a little higher. Ji Furen said, “Ye Furen also did not enter?”
“I will not enter.” Ye Furen waved her hands, “My body of bones will not be able to withstand the horse movements at all.” Her gaze landed on Shen Miao, “Why did WangFei of First Rank not enter? Just now one had seen the Prince of First Rank accompanying WangFei to enter. Why not play a while more?”
Shen Miao’s heart thumped. Ye Furen’s words seemed to be probing something. Could it be that she knew of the matters in the inner fields? The Lu and Ye families were special and it was worth noting. She said, “The sun is too big and one feel dizzy in the outer field, thus one return first.” Afterwards she then put on a slight disappointment look, “Moreover I don’t like to see scenes of killing.”
Ji Furen smiled, “Rui WangFei is softhearted but this is of no wonder. Even ordinary females would not be willing to see rabbits being killed.” Seeming afraid that Ye Furen would continue to interrogate Shen Miao, Ji Furen changed the topic on purpose and asked Ye Furen, “Speaking of which, some days back, one heard that Young Master Ye’s illness erupted again, is he better?”
Young Master Ye. Naturally this was referring to the son of the Ye family that the concubine birth to and was raised under Ye Furen’s name as a Di son. When Ye Furen heard it, she said, “Still alright. It is an old illness that would be painful when it rains and there has not been any way out of it.” Her tone of voice was of indifference.
Shen Miao later learned from Ba Jiao that this Young Master Ye was the Di son of the Ye family on surface and the servants all treated him respectfully but behind his back they all felt that he did not have any future. Ye Furen only treat him alright on the surface and did not really care about him.
Shen Miao felt that this Young Master Ye, that she had not met, was a bit pitiful.
Ji Furen then talked to Ye Furen aout some other matters. Most likely it was deliberate, to move Ye Furen’s attention to somewhere else. Afterwards, Ye Furen seemed to be impatient and got up to leave.
Shen Miao and Ji Furen then sat down again to wait.
The sun gradually set and there was no signs of Emperor Yong Le and Xie Jing Xing.
Shen Miao instructed Mo Qing, “Go and inquire if there are any information of them.”
Ji Furen smiled, “One must not be worried, there have been times that because of the patience required for hunting, time would often passed quickly. The routes in Hua Feng Peak are too steep and it would not be easy to move around in the dark thus one would wait to the next day to return.” Even though the words were as such, the slightest anxiety in her eyes was caught by Shen Miao.
Shen Miao did not know if she was too sensitive or if she did not know about some things of Xie Jing Xing, she might be able to really be assured but this time she had a bad feeling about it and knew that Xie Jing Xing was not as calm as he looked on the surface when he left so her heart was tightly hanged up.
The sun set behind the mountain and the skies gradually became dark. The Emperor had yet to return and other than a few young ladies and some female members who returned, the officials were still around the hunting grounds. When Shen Miao asked Ji Furen if this was the first time like this, Ji Furen said, “It is not the case, but usually there would only be a few.”
Some officials had already set up camp and used long cloth to build a tent. Even though the night was not as exposed as the summer days, one fear catching a cold. The Ji family had also built such a tent.
Shen Miao was still walking outside but saw that Lu Wan-er was standing not far away and talking to a middle-aged male. She seemed to be pleading whiningly but that male was unmoved and afterwards Lu Wan-er was pulled up the horse carriage by others and escorted away by a group of guards.
Most likely Lu Wan-er wanted to remain here but that male did not allow it. Just as Shen Miao was about to leave, that male seemed to have felt Shen Miao’s gaze and turned his head sharply and revealed a fierce face. His stature was like a bear and blood thirst filled his aura as if he was very violent. He looked at Shen Miao with a sinister gaze. Bao Jiao said, “This is the master of the Lu family, General Lu Chun Zheng.”
Shen Miao understood. This was Lu Wan-er’s father and the military commander of the Lu family. Immediately her heart felt strange. Both were military commanders but Shen Xin was heroic but one did not look that violent like this person, who seemed to be unable to conceal the murderous intent in his heart. It was just like one was a naturally killing God. Shen Miao previously still felt strange that Lu Furen, Lu Wan-er and even Consort Jing did not seemed to be smart at all so how did the Lu family maintain such a strong famous reputation? Now seeing Lu Chun Zhen, she understood. With such a killing God, no wonder Emperor Yong Le was unable to take action against the Lu family easily.
For Lu Chun Zheng to remain here, one did not know if he was waiting for a result in the Hua Feng Peak or not. Shen Miao was pondering about it and her gaze moved away from Lu Chun Zhen and she left.
The Lu family remained here and Ye Furen also remained here. Ye Mao Cai had returned and was talking to Yu Furen. The Lu and Ye families were all present and if something happened to Emperor Yong Le, would the Lu and Ye families take the opportunity to make a rebellious move?
Looking around, some high ranking officers had already reached the tents and were talking to their Furens. They all treated this hunt as an interesting game and only wait for Emperor Yong Le and Xie Jing Xing to hunt a lion back to use as a sacrifice in the ceremony.
Shen Miao stopped and looked towards the skies. The stars were quiet as the summer breeze brew onto her face. It was indeed refreshing.
But in such a night, was it truly as calm as it was on the surface?