Chapter 53.2: Delighted Sorrow

With Lu Yunji and Lu Qi eating prison food for the second time, it made the people in their residence disorganized. They were all wondering if they should run away. Lu Yingying turned a deaf ear as she entered Lu Qi’s study room and saw Fu Yin looking depressed. She was staring blankly at a picture that Lu Qi drew previously.

“Now you are looking sullen. Are you regretting it now? When you killed my cousin, did you think of today? If Lu Hanxing were still alive, he would be running around for Father and Elder Brother, trying to pull relations.” She thought that Fu Yin regretted killing Lu Hanxing.

Although Fu Yin pulled herself back to reality, her gaze was still dull. “I do not regret killing Lu Hanxing. You will not understand my sorrow.”

“I truly did not see how evil you were.” Lu Yingying’s face was frosty. “I also do not want to understand what a murderer thinks. I came to see my future nephew.”

She walked in front of Fu Yin and bent down, she spoke gently to the small bump, “Good nephew, don’t be afraid. You still have me, your aunty. I will make sure you get to see your father and grandfather.”

Fu Yin could not resist asking, “What do you intend to do?”

Lu Yingying ignored her as she stood up to leave. It was just words. After she walked out of the study room and the Lu Residence, she was at a loss of where to start. She knew she could not use the same method of begging the Emperor to forgive them.

 

A resounding laughter filled the air. It made Lu Yingying think that it was really a few houses that were happy while a few were suffering. She followed the sound and looked and felt even more offended. Yan Zifang was drinking with his group. They were eating heartily and laughing. One look and she knew they were celebrating the fall of her household. She continued staring straight at them and eventually caught Yan Zifang’s eye.

Yan Zifang looked coldly at her for a while before walking up to her. “What are you doing here?”

“I am here to save my father and brother.” She wanted to ask if he could help her. 

“I already said that we do not owe each other. Who you want to save has nothing to do with me. You can’t be hoping that I save your father and brother right? That would be a joke. You should know that I was the one that caught Hong Yide.” 

He did not understand her just like how she did not understand him. They should not mix. 

“That’s right, we are strangers with no connection to each other. I was foolish.” Lu Yingying turned to leave. Suddenly, she turned back. “Yan Zifang, no matter how many obstacles one has gone through and how emotionless one has become, there should still be a soft spot in your heart. Previously, I was gullible and thought that I could find that soft spot for you.”

“You are indeed gullible. You only know how to ask me to be kinder but don’t know how to convince your father and brother to do less evil.” Does it mean that kind people should be bullied by the evil ones?

“I believe that everyone is kind and that everyone has a nice side. Even my father and brother are not bad beyond repair. In my eyes, this world is much brighter and more beautiful than the world in your eyes. Yan Zifang, I pity you.” Lu Yingying walked off. 

Yan Zifang was stunned. No one has seen how difficult it was for him to live. Even Fu Rou could not see it. Only her, Lu Yingying, saw through him. He was indeed pitiful.

 

Prince Han tossed and turned slowly as he woke up. He had a splitting headache. As he saw Consort Han embroider next to him, he could not help but relax.

“You are awake? Does your head hurt? Next time when the Crown Prince asks you to drink, you should not just accept them all foolishly. If you can decline, you should decline.” Recently, the Crown Prince had gotten slightly distant from Prince Han and they could not invite him over. However, in the past few days, he kept asking Prince Han out for drinks. Anyone could tell that the Crown Prince was in a good mood. 

Prince Han did not comment and simply asked what she was embroidering. 

Consort Han’s expression was slightly awkward as she wanted to hide it. Prince Han sat up and took the embroidery. There was a hundred children on it. 

“The Crown Princess works hard and it has only been a short while since she entered the palace and she already gave birth to an Imperial Grandson for Imperial Mother. Compared to her, I…” Consort Han felt bitter.

“You can’t compare these kinds of things.” Prince Han did not allow her to continue.

“Although that’s what we say, who doesn’t know how Imperial Mother feels. Even I feel like I have let you down.” Her deepest anxiety was not having any sons.

“You are still young and I am still strong. We will soon have sons. I just can’t bear to see you look so depressed.” In his life, he only enjoyed two things. The first was eating and the second was his wife. 

“He who gives no thought to far-flung problems soon finds suffering nearby. Now I only have two things on my mind. The first is to bear you a son and the second is Chumu; he makes me worry incessantly--”

Before she could finish her sentence, their attendant announced that Sheng Chumu had returned.

Consort Han was pleasantly surprised. However, she did not expect her brother, who had gone missing for some time, would be vomiting and smelling of alcohol as soon as he returned. 

“What’s wrong with this family? Is alcoholism infectious? Everyone's the same.” She glared at Prince Han.

Prince Han hurried to find a scapegoat. “That’s right, Chumu. If you can’t drink then don’t drink. What if you get ill from this? You are disappointing. You went missing for no reason. Did you know how worried your sister was? You are a general and cannot leave your position as you wish. If Sheng Chuling did not personally come to beg me and I went to apply leave for you, I am afraid that your position would have…”

“That’s enough. Can’t you see that he is drunk? How can he understand you? Hurry and help him into the guest room.” In the end, her heart ached for her younger brother. She did not know what he had suffered outside.

When Sheng Chumu was settled, Consort Han went to make a hangover soup. Prince Han wanted to follow her but was held back by Sheng Chumu. 

“Don’t go, you are not allowed to leave!” Sheng Chumu’s eyes were hazy and he could not see who was in front of him. “I gave up everything for you. Why do you still want to leave? That day, the bun that I bought for you was still hot but you stepped over my heart. Touch it…”

Prince Han’s eyes jutted out as he struggled to pull back his hand. “I am not touching!”

“Why do you always let me down? If you don’t care about me, why would you give me hope. Why did you make me think that you were willing to grow old with me?” He was determined not to let go.

“You are worse than me when I am drunk!” Prince Han wanted to laugh and cry. 

“I can’t believe your smooth hand would crush my heart.” He rubbed his cheek on Prince Han’s plump hand. “When I wake up, I won’t be so stupid anymore. With this last kiss, let’s end the feelings we have for each other.”

Prince Han did not have time to react before Sheng Chumu planted a kiss on the back of his hand. Of all things, Consort Han caught sight of this. 

Consort Han was shocked. “What is going on?”

“Consort, don’t misunderstand.” No wonder Sheng Chumu managed to go through all the pretty women in Chang’an. He was skilled in this. Prince Han pulled his hand back and wiped the back of his hand. He was so cheesy. “He is too drunk and cannot recognise anybody. He said a bunch of things and then...did that.”

“He is drunk but you are not drunk. You let him do his nonsense.” Consort Han thought it was hilarious. 

“Who asked for him to be your dear brother. I have no choice but to give in to him.” Prince Han lowered his voice, “From what I see, he must have gotten his heart broken by some women. Okay, who cares about his nonsense. Now that he is back, everything will be much easier.”

“That’s right. As long as he has returned safely.” As Consort Han spoke, she suddenly saw Sheng Xiaojing poke his head through the door. “Aiyo, father. You should make a sound. You scared me. Why are you here?”

“I received the news that you sent. How can I not come?” Sheng Xiaojing looked at his eldest son who was in deep sleep. He breathed a sigh of relief. “Stupid brat, when he wakes up tomorrow, I am going to break his legs!”

“Okay, you can scold and hit him all you want as long as you wait for Chumu to leave my Han Mansion.” Consort Han was a filial eldest daughter as well as a protective sister.

Sheng Chuling and Sheng Chujun accompanied their father and could tell that he did not mean what he said and they laughed secretly.

Sheng Xiaojing suddenly turned around. “What are you laughing at? Brats, remember to tell your mother that Chumu has returned from his travels. No one is allowed to let your mother know that there was no news of Chumu for a period of time. If not, she will cry out for the heavens and earth to hear. Sigh, a kind mother begets many failures of sons.”

Prince Han looked at this family and laughed foolishly.

 

There was a new courtesan at Swallow House. This news attracted a pack of wolves and Grand Prince Liang headed the pack. The beauty went on stage with a white muslin cloth covering her face. Her figure was enchanting and she danced like a fairy. She attracted everyone’s souls. The pack of wolves hooted and clapped. When it was time to win the beauty over, she walked in front of Grand Prince Liang and kneeled.

“I am here to seek forgiveness from Your Highness.” The beauty had glorious and brilliant eyes. “I was fortunate to meet Your Highness on Chang’an’s streets before. Your Highness was confident and at ease, making me admire you. When I got home, I mentioned to my elder brother that I coincidentally bumped into a hero on the streets. However, I was shy and did not mention your identity. Unexpectedly, just because my elder brother heard what I said, he believed that my heart was with the hero and rejected all marriage requests for me.”

“It was right to reject the marriages.” Grand Prince Liang has had an uncountable number of affairs and could not remember who this lady was. However, his eyes lit up. “Since I intend to take in a concubine, you will be happiest with me.”

“However, the person that got rejected is angry. I am thinking of a way to appease him. That’s why I came to Swallow House to show my talents and make him smile.” The beauty removed her muslin cloth and exposed an extraordinary beauty. It was Lu Yingying. “That person is Your Highness.”

“It is you!” Grand Prince Liang’s smile turned cold. “Lu Qi dotes on you and looks down on me as a brother-in-law.”

“That day when my brother came back, he told me that he rejected your kind intentions. I was anxious and did not know what to do. I didn’t explain myself to you and was afraid that you would misunderstand me and my brother. I wanted to find you but could not go without a reason. Today, I am here to seek forgiveness.” She was left with no choice but to head into the lion’s den.

“No wonder Lu Qi did not give me face that day. He had done it because you already had a man in your heart. But you actually liked me.” So Lu Yingying had actually set her eyes on him. Grand Prince Liang became proud. “Haha, what a misunderstanding! Lu Yingying, do you really like me or are you trying to use your beauty to seduce me to save your father and brother?”

“I do not dare to lie. Both are my reasons.” She knew the consequence of lying. 

Grand Prince Liang was not annoyed. “What a great two reasons.”

“Although I admire Your Highness, I cannot give up my duty to my parents and kinship with my brother. As long as Your Highness graces us with kindness and saves my father and brother, I will be willing to be your servant and serve Your Highness.”

“For a daughter of a Duke to be my servant, it is a pity. I wanted to raise your status and make you my consort. Unfortunately, you don’t have the blessing.” Grand Prince Liang held Lu Yingying’s chin as he looked lecherously at her appearance. “With your beauty, you can be my concubine. If you treat me well, I will not neglect you.” As he said this, he reached out for her waist and led her away.

Lu Yingying pulled herself away and spoke nicely, “Your Highness, even if I am just a concubine. My father and brother should be the ones to send me off.”

“...I understand.” She made it clear that she was sacrificing her beauty for him to save her family. She was not willing to go without benefitting first. “Okay. On the day that your father and brother return home, you will become my concubine.”

Grand Prince Liang laughed boisterously.

Lu Yingying stood there silently, her eyes lowered. She was like a statue. 

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Coca's Thoughts

The part with Chumu and Prince Han was so cute. Haha.