Chapter 20: Being Flexible With Your Husband (3)
I cocked my head, having not immediately understood what he had just said.
I only saw that the people surrounding me each had a different expression, but all of them were speechless. Only the Tree Climbing Lord who was standing behind us in order to watch the drama suddenly laughed out loud.
I tilted my head backwards, using the corner of my eyes to give him a glance. Tree Climbing Lord saw my appearance and began to laugh even more cheerfully.
Beside him, the Bathroom Lord curled his hand into a fist before he lifted it to his lips and lightly coughed twice. Then, he said in a low voice, “Imperial Physician Song, the Crown Princess hurt her shoulder.”
When he heard what the Bathroom Lord had said, Imperial Physician Song’s eyes suddenly widened. He repeatedly begged for forgiveness, “Crown Princess, please forgive me. Crown Princess, please forgive me. The Imperial Physician Qiu who specializes in surgery took a vacation. This servant temporarily came over to replace him and accidentally said some things out of habit.”
Only now did I roughly understand some things. No wonder he was saying completely irrelevant things. After wasting so much time, he turned out to be a substitute!
The Tree Climbing Lord who attracted other people’s hatred persisted in asking another question, “What branch of medicine does Imperial Physician Song specialize in ?”
Imperial Physician Song lowered his head slightly, looking rather embarrassed as he said, “This servant……specializes in gynecology.”
Immediately, everyone’s mouths were stretched taut as they turned away in a seemingly unintentional manner, so that they were no longer looking at me.
In that moment, I……truly wanted to murder someone.
Qi Sheng left the field to come see me. With a cold expression, he sized me up before he turned to Imperial Physician Song and asked, “Is there something the matter with her shoulder?”
Imperial Physician Song hurriedly turned around to look at me and asked, “Crown Princess, how about you move your arm and see if there’s anything the matter with it?”
What the hell, this was a f*cking royal imperial physician? Even the people selling crude medicine in the Jianghu1 were better than him! While viciously cursing in my heart, I shook my upper arm. Although it hurt a lot, I could still move it. Thus, I very nimbly stood up from the ground and said, “It’s fine, I just sprained it a bit. The bones are fine, everyone can leave now.”
There were palace maids and inner-palace servants who were rushing back to Bao Jin Tower to tell the Empress Dowager, the Empress and the rest the news. The remaining people all scattered as well. Qi Sheng, the Bathroom Lord and the others mounted their horses and returned to the field. The game that had been paused resumed once more.
Imperial Physician Song wiped away his sweat. Before leaving, he once again turned around to look at me before speaking in an absolutely sincere and earnest tone, “Crown Princess, you should really eat some Eight Treasures Motherwort Pellets to adjust your body.”
I lifted my foot, but in the end I resisted the urge and didn’t kick him. I merely flicked off the dust on the surface of my boots and ignored him.
Because I suffered an injury, I withdrew from the competition. So, in high spirits, I climbed up the Bao Jin Tower to accompany a bunch of old and young beauties in watching the competition.
On the field, the competition became even more intense. Qi Sheng galloped back in forth in his yellow clothes, looking rather like an actual prince. However, the Bathroom Lord, dressed from head to toe in green, looked like a sturdy willow facing the wind. Thus, he looked even more at ease and elegant. The two sides were vying against each other, this fact was utterly obvious.
In the midst of the tense scene, I suddenly heard a delicate cry. On the field, someone had fallen off their horse. I felt nosy, so I immediately got up and looked towards that person. However, I didn’t expect that this time, the person who fell off their horse was the pretty and delicate Zhao wangfei, Jiang-shi.
My skin was rough and my flesh was thick, so falling was no problem. But Jiang-shi was like a little, tender scallion, falling down like this wouldn’t do! In my surprise, my first subconscious reaction was to look for Qi Sheng’s figure. However, there were numerous people on the field wearing yellow, so it was truly quite difficult to recognize him at first glance.
While I was being anxious, sure enough, I saw someone wearing yellow swiftly charging over to where Jiang-shi was at. I couldn’t bear to continue watching, so I hurriedly turned my head and covered my eyes with a hand.
Zhao wang’s voice floated over from the distant field, sounding like both a hiss and a howl. “Yingyue! Yingyue! What’s wrong? Don’t scare me, what’s wrong? ……”
Oh, good. Fortunately, it wasn’t Qi Sheng.
My heart had just relaxed and I had put down my hand to look at the field again when I saw Zhao wang hugging Jiang-shi and shaking her shoulders. Jiang-shi looked even more like a weak willow in the wind.
Only, this wind was a bit too strong.
Zhao wang was shaking her in a very unrestrained manner……
Watching this, I felt very shocked……
And then, I also saw Qi Sheng arrive with his horse. He somewhat anxiously dismounted from his horse, and then he took a few large steps to reach Zhao wang and Jiang-shi’s side. In a single, smooth movement, he snatched Jiang-shi from Zhao wang’s embrace. Then, he carried Jiang-shi in a princess carry, before he began walking toward the outside of the field at a quick pace……
Everyone in the Bao Jin Tower suddenly fell silent as they simultaneously turned their heads to look at me.
I stared blankly for two or three seconds, before I had no other choice but to look away, covering my eyes with a hand again.
Qi Sheng ah Qi Sheng, can you be any stupider?
Then, I once again heard the Empress urgently call from her high seat, “Quickly go and take a look, what’s going on today? One by one, people falling off their horses in close succession! That horse had been fine just now, so how could it have been suddenly frightened?”
Hearing the order, an inner-palace servant quickly left.
Under everyone’s attentive gazes, both old and young, I calmly lifted my teacup, took a sip, and then placed it down. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw how the Beauty Shen sitting beside me was still watching me anxiously. I hesitated a bit, before pushing out the teacup I was holding toward her and asking, “Do you want to have two sips?”
Beauty Shen’s face reddened as she immediately shook her head. As if concealing her face, she lifted her own teacup and took a few sips. I reached my hand out, and then under her stupefied gaze, I removed the tea leaf that had stuck to the corner of her mouth. Conveniently, my fingers got to rub her cheek that was as tender as tofu. Then, I showed her the tea leaf in my hand before speaking with a smile, “Beauty Shen, you must be extremely thirsty to drink so anxiously like this.”
Instantly, Beauty Shen’s face turned even more red, ashamed to the point she no longer dared to lift her head.
I pretended that nothing was the matter as I turned my head to look downstairs, but my heart was cheering happily. Sure enough, flirting with beauties was still a delight.
Jiang-shi was too far away, so one couldn’t see clearly from the tower. I could only see a group of people wearing yellow or green clustering around a place. That Imperial Physician Song was holding a medicinal chest as he rushed over and squeezed into the crowd through a crack of space. Then, he knelt down beside Jiang-shi before taking her pulse.
I suddenly really wanted to ask Imperial Physician Song: How is the harmony between Yin and Yang for Zhao wangfei? How is the sex life between the husband and wife going?
Lu Li was present beside me. Her eyelids were slightly drooping and she had a pious expression on her face. Her hands were pressed together as she quietly prayed. I pricked up my ears to listen, but could only hear some words like ‘Buddha, please give me your blessings’. I couldn’t resist, so I turned my head and asked in a low voice, “What are you beseeching Buddha for?”
Lu Li’s eyes widened. After carefully looking around in all directions, she leaned over so her mouth was near my ear and replied, “I’m begging for Buddha’s blessing, so that Jiang-shi’s fall this time is terrible enough to the point she can no longer take care of herself!”
Startled, I lifted my head to look at Lu Li.
However, Lu Li just gave me a proud smile before reverting back to her solemn expression and lowering her head to earnestly pray……
This girl! I, I……I was very speechless.
The inner-palace servant the Empress had ordered to get news had ran back and reported to the Empress and Empress Dowager, “There are no problems regarding Zhao wangfei’s life. However, she broke her arm and her leg……”
When I heard that, I became frightened. What a scare! Both of us fell off our horses, so how could this Jiang-shi be so unlucky? Could it be possible that the reason for this was because she had too little fat on her body?
Then I heard the Empress ask, “Do you know why she fell off her horse?”
The inner-palace servant replied, “The reason has been discovered. It isn’t known when, but someone stealthily placed steel nails under her horse saddle. When Zhao wangfei leaned down to hit the ball, the steel nails pierced the horse, which caused the horse to startle. That was why it made Zhao wangfei fall off.”
My heart tightened again. Doesn’t this mean someone had deliberately harmed Jiang-shi? But, why hadn’t she fallen earlier or fallen later? Why did she just have to fall right after I did?
F*ck, just who was trying to harm me?
The Empress was still questioning the inner-palace servant. Her imposing manner looked rather like Bao Heizi2 when he was listening to a case, “How could someone secretly place steel nails under an Imperial horse’s saddle?”
That inner-palace servant was just about to reply, when the Empress Dowager who had been silent till now suddenly spoke up, “They can’t even take care of their own Masters’ horses. The servants taking care of the horses at Zhao wangfu3 are truly too incapable. What’s the use of keeping them? Just kill them all off. Go out and tell them, first, properly send Jiang-shi back to Zhao wangfu to take care of her injuries. After the competition is over, Zhao wang can follow.”
When the inner-palace servant heard that, he carefully glanced at the Empress before lowering his head and saying, ‘yes’. Then, he turned around and ran out again.
The things I was hearing were making me blank one after another. My brain hadn’t yet wrapped around the situation or understood anything yet, when I once again heard the Empress Dowager who was sitting atop that high seat, the woman who was like the Buddha, kindly call out to me, “Pengpeng ah, sit over here. Let grandmother take a look at you. Just now, did you take a heavy fall? It really scared grandmother to death.”
I was a bit embarrassed. That’s right, Pengpeng was precisely Zhang-shi’s full name. Zheng Pengpeng, the moment one heard it, they would think it was childish. Just listen to Jiang-shi’s name, Jiang Yingyue. Tell me, how can you compare these names?
The Empress Dowager, the ultimate final BOSS, told me to go over, so I naturally didn’t dare to refuse. I could only take advantage of the span of time that it took for me to stand up to take a deep breath. I forcefully pulled the corners of my mouth in the direction of my ears, and then……I stuck out my chest, raised my head, tightened my butt……and started walking toward the Empress Dowager one step at a time.
Even though I was still far away from her, the Empress Dowager had already reached out a hand toward me from her seat high above.
In my heart, I kept mentally telling myself, beauties were truly beauties. Even if they lived to ninety-nine years old, they were still deserving of the title ‘beauty’. People, ah, they must become good at passing through the thickness of time to discover the existence of beauty……the corners of my mouth were once again pulled even wider as I reached out my arm that hadn’t been injured toward her.
The Empress Dowager pulled me to her side to sit down. Lightly smiling, she exclaimed, “This jiqiu originally wasn’t something women should play. When the previous Emperor was still here, I had tried advising him numerous times before to change it. Unfortunately, the previous Emperor had a temper where he would never change something he had previously decided on.”
I really couldn’t cope with a scene like this, so I could only lower my head and continue pretending to be a quail. Contrarily, the Imperial concubine beside us immediately said a few sentences to follow up. The Empress Dowager once again turned to look at me as she gently patted the back of my hand. She spoke in a soft voice, “The Crown Prince’s temper is ninety-percent like the previous Emperor’s. Pengpeng has probably been angry with him numerous times, right?”
I mentally thought, only an idiot would complain to her husband’s grandmother about her husband. No matter what, you would be closer to him than me. Thus, I recalled Beauty Shen’s expression in my heart, and also hung my head down as I began saying in a slow and delicate tone, “His Highness treats me very well.”
The Empress Dowager stared at me with a face full of smiles, before she began praising me to the other beauties surrounding us. “Pengpeng is truly too sensible. Sure enough, the previous Emperor didn’t misjudge her.”
Since the ultimate final BOSS had said so, naturally everyone sitting below us began going along with her words. Immediately, they began praising Zhang-shi as if she was a celestial being. There were people who said Zhang-shi’s personality was docile, there were people who said Zhang-shi was a virtuous woman, there were people who said Zhang-shi’s appearance was dignified and honourable……
Eh? Why wasn’t anyone saying Zhang-shi had nice curves? That was her true strong point!
Since the Empress Dowager had already changed the subject of their conversation, there weren’t many people sitting upstairs that were still paying attention to the game. Before long, they heard a soldier yelling outside, his shouts loud enough to jolt the heavens. Only then, did the women here who had long been discussing about fashion realize that the competition had unexpectedly concluded. The yellow team, under Crown Prince Qi Sheng’s leadership, managed to win against the green team by one ball even though they had lost two ‘generals’.
They were the champions.
- 江湖 (jiāng hú) — a community of martial artists in wuxia stories, sometimes outlaw groups as well.
- Bao Heizi was a famous Chinese judge who was like one of the few non-corrupted judges amidst a sea of corrupted officials. Think of him as like ancient Chinese Detective Conan.
- 王府 (wángfǔ) — a prince’s mansion.