In front of the palace, a pair of cocks were cock-fighting, no, bickering.
“Yan Zifang, what are you doing here?” Sheng Chumu became guarded.
“I am waiting for my fiancée.” Yan Zifang’s lips twitched. Sheng Chumu was not the only one that knew that Fu Rou could leave the palace today.
“Hey hey, leader of the pirates, let me remind you again that Fu Rou is not your fiancée. Your childhood betrothal has ended the moment you fell into the river.”
“I fell into the river but I did not die.”
“You should take it as you have died.”
“Then why don’t you take it as you have died after you fell into the ocean after being chased by rebel troops? If I knew, I would not have rescued you and you would have truly died.”
“Not rescue me? If you didn’t rescue me, Yan Zifang, will you...hey! Stay there!”
Yan Zifang did not want to listen to Sheng Chumu any longer because Fu Rou had come out. He retrieved the Pendant of Longevity and handed it over to her quietly.
Fu Rou was stunned. “Yan Zifang…” What should she say?
Sheng Chumu shoved Yan Zifang away and smiled at Fu Rou. “Rou’er, I am here to pick you. He is just taking a stroll.”
Yan Zifang shoved Sheng Chumu away. “Rou’er, now you should know who I am.”
Sheng Chumu protested, “Is Rou’er for you to call?”
Fu Rou looked at Yan Zifang calmly. “Why didn’t you tell me when we met before?”
Yan Zifang opened his mouth, ready to speak.
Sheng Chumu cut him off, “Because he is a shameful pirate. If he acknowledged you, won’t that mean to push you down the fire too?” He patted Yan Zifang’s shoulder and spoke in admiration, “Yan Zifang, you were really like a man when you did that back then. Please continue to be one.”
Yan Zifang kept his gaze on Fu Rou. “After all these years, we finally met. Are you only interested in finding out why I did not tell you my real identity? Aren’t there other things you want to know?”
“No.” Sheng Chumu rushed to answer. Fu Rou, however, did not want others to reply on her behalf. “Yan Zifang, I want to say…”
“Say what?” Yan Zifang and Sheng Chumu asked together.
Fu Rou threw Sheng Chumu a look as she turned to look at Yan Zifang seriously. “I am very thankful to you for saving Sheng Chumu.”
Sheng Chumu burst out a laugh. “Yan Zifang, did you hear that? If you are a man then you should back off generously. There are plenty more fishes in the sea. You are a general, so you won’t need to worry about not having a wife. Rou’er, let’s go. I found a very beautiful lake for us to go to today. We can row a boat and swim and even…”
Yan ZIfang grabbed onto Fu Rou’s hand. Sheng Chumu glared. “If you continue acting like this, I am going to get angry.”
“It is rare for Rou’er to have a day off, let me accompany her.” Yan Zifang was not afraid.
“What gives you the right? Sheng Chumu thought that it was ridiculous.
Yan Zifang took out the Pendant of Longevity. “Based on this betrothal gift.”
“This Pendant of Longevity is like you, it is turning rusty. Can you not use something from ten years ago against someone? Look, this, this and this is all new. Rou’er made all of this for me. This is called feelings. Do you understand?” Sheng Chumu turned around. He showed off all the small trinkets he carried and even took out his fan to boast.
Yan Zifang pulled on the cloak he was wearing. “She also made me this.”
Sheng Chumu sighed, “Rou’er, why did you make him a cloak?”
Yan Zifang proudly smiled. “Because I kissed her.”
Sheng Chumu had a look of disbelief.
“What a coincidence? I kissed her too.” Prince Zhou walked out of the palace and assessed Sheng Chumu and Yan Zifang. He did not expect to have two love rivals.
Sheng Chumu was in utter disbelief. “Who are you?” Yan Zifang did not recognise Prince Zhou.
“I have no reason to lie. She even personally helped me make a set of clothes. It is the set that I am wearing now. This is your handiwork right, Rou’er?”
“Rou’er, you not only helped Yan Zifang make a cloak, you also made clothes for Prince Zhou? No! That is not the main point. The main point is...they really kissed you before?”
“He is Prince Zhou? The Emperor’s son?”
“I…” Three pairs, six eyes were all looking at her. Fu Rou had no words to say.
“Say something! Don’t hesitate, just tell him directly. You don’t want Sheng Chumu, I want him!” A fifth person had appeared!
Sheng Chumu turned back as he cursed in his heart. “Ma Hainiu, how did you chase me all the way here? I have important things to do, don’t come and create trouble.”
“This is not creating trouble, this is called handing over.” Ma Hainiu grinned as she ran over and assessed Fu Rou. “So you are the one that Sheng Chumu always calls his wife? If you are someone’s wife, how can you keep hanging out with other guys? That’s messed up. On behalf of Sheng Chumu, let me teach you a lesson.”
“Rou’er, I have nothing to do with her.” Sheng Chumu was only worried about Fu Rou’s reaction.
“You don’t have to feel guilty for kissing other men, I have also kissed Sheng Chumu before.” Ma Hainiu was extremely frank. “The lake that he said he wants to bring you to is where we went a few days ago to row a boat. He kissed me on the grass and even pulled open my shirt.”
Prince Zhou was delighted. “Shanzhai . Do not look at what is contrary to propriety and do not listen to what is contrary to propriety.”
Yan Zifang took charge of distributing. “Ma Hainiu, Rou’er is mine and Sheng Chumu is yours.”
“Rou’er, I am innocent. This female pirate literally forced herself on me. I clearly did not…” Sheng Chumu turned, only to notice that Rou’er had walked far away. “Rou’er! Rou’er!”
Sheng Chumu was about to chase after her when Yan Zifang grabbed ahold of him.
“I haven’t settled the score with you! How dare you ask my Rou’er to make you a cloak? You even dare to kiss my Rou’er? I’m going to punch you, you ungrateful bastard!” Sheng Chumu punched Yan Zifang in the face.
Yan Zifang did not hesitate to throw him a punch in return.
Prince Zhou watched on happily as he fanned himself. Who knew that as Sheng Chumu and Yan Zifang beat each other up, they did not forget about him and each threw him a punch at the same time. Prince Zhou could not look weak as he joined the fight. It turned into a messy fight between three men.
Meanwhile, Fu Rou returned home alone and ate a reunion meal with her family. She talked about interesting things in the palace and was enjoying herself. After the meal, Fu Yin dragged Fu Rou into the house to chat.
Fu Rou smiled, “What do you have to say that you cannot say in front of everyone and have to hide in here to tell me?”
Fu Yin took out the two bracelets her mother left for her as dowry. “Second Sister, help me put them on.”
Fu Rou helped her put on the bracelets. “Third Madam left these for you when you get married! Has Du Ning asked for marriage?”
Fu Yin flushed. As soon as the list was released, Du Ning came to tell her that he had already informed his parents and very soon a matchmaker would come to visit her. He told her to be prepared to become his wife.
Fu Rou was happy. “That is great. What did he say?”
Fu Yin was embarrassed. “He passed the examination and was chosen by the Emperor to the Imperial Hanlin Academy. Although it is not a high-ranking position, it is similar to what Mother wished before. I can marry an official. Du Ning said that he was going to bring this up to his parents before calling for a matchmaker to meet Father.”
Fu Rou suddenly thought of Third Madam and tears streamed down her face uncontrollably. Fu Yin also started to cry.
Fu Rou wiped her tears along with Fu Yin’s. “Okay, it is a happy event, let’s not cry. I will help you make the most beautiful wedding dress on earth.”
“Second Sister, how could your dress not be nicer than mine when you get married to Brother Chumu?” Fu Yin joked.
“Who said that I was going to marry him?” Fu Rou scrunched up her nose. “He is always creating trouble, even today.”
“What trouble?” Fu Yin was curious.
“Let’s not care about him, let him settle it himself.” Fu Rou recalled the mess that happened in front of the palace today and wanted to laugh. “Come, let me help you comb your hair. This is the most popular hairstyle in the palace right now.”
Fu Yin found it weird. “There is no need. It is already so late.”
Fu Rou acted mysterious. “Later on, Chumu will be bringing a guest.”
Sheng Chumu had mentioned that Fu Tao had followed Lu Yunji to Chang’an and was staying at a camp outside the city. Today, Fu Tao was lucky to also have half a day of leave and will enter the city when it gets dark to stay the night. Fu Rou couldn't wait to see him again.
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This chapter was pretty hilarious. Don't you agree? It's nice how we have some lighter chapters from time to time.