Fu Yin had given birth to a son. Although the labor had been difficult, she was alright. Now, she was Lu Qi’s concubine. Everyone was addressing her as “Lady”. She was happy for a period of time, taking care of her child and receiving Lu Qi’s love. Her heart was full and satisfied.
On this day, Fu Yin realised that Mo Li was missing. In the morning, when she woke up, she did not see Mo Li come to serve her. Fu Yin then asked the other servants and they all said that they did not know the reason why. Her first reaction was that Lu Qi had lied to her and gotten rid of Mo Li.
Fu Yin barged into the study room, angrily criticising Lu Qi and asking where Mo Li was.
Lu Qi did not think anything was strange as he walked up to Fu Yin and helped her put on an outer coat. He then asked. “You just gave birth and should be lying in bed. Did you come to the study room just to ask about a servant?”
Fu Yin threw the outer coat onto the ground. “Where exactly is Mo Li?”
Lu Qi frowned. “She is gone. After all, she made a mistake and ruined an important letter of mine. She is so clumsy, I cannot let her stay and serve in the study room. Just now, her uncle came to see her and told her that her father was sick. Hence, I decided to be nice and let her go.”
“You promised me that you would not hurt her.” Fu Yin did not believe him. How can there be such a coincidence?
“You don’t believe me?” Lu Qi got angry as well.
“I don’t believe you.” Fu Yin’s eyes became red. “You killed her. Just like how you killed Ling Long.”
“Yin’er, listen to me…” Lu Qi still tried his best to suppress his anger and explain to her.
Fu Yin covered her ears. “I don’t want to listen! I am a fool. I always thought that you would change and can one day let go of your hatred and everything will be well. No! It is not possible! You are a killer. Since the first day I met you, you are a cruel and heartless murderer!”
“Don’t think that just because you helped me give birth to a son, you can act so unrestrained in front of me! Go to your room now!” Lu Qi was slightly confused as he listened to her. But he could clearly hear the disgust in Fu Yin’s voice.
“Son?” Fu Yin had been suppressing her feelings for so long and she finally exploded. “I should not have helped you give birth to a son. How can I help a murderer give birth? When I was pregnant with him, I should not have kept him!”
Lu Qi was shocked and anger boiled within him. He raised his hand. However, he then lowered his hand, grabbed Fu Yin’s hand instead and led her out of the residence. He got on a horse with Fu Yin and started galloping.
An hour after they left the city, Fu Yin saw an old carriage in front of them. The curtains were open and Mo Li’s face could be seen.
Mo Li hopped out of the carriage happily. “Sister Yin’er! Are you here to send me off?”
Fu Yin mumbled, “Mo Li, you are still alive…”
“I am sorry, Sister Yin’er. I can no longer serve you. My father has fallen ill and I have to follow my uncle back home. Young Master said that you gave birth to a son and everyone in the residence was to be rewarded. I was given some money and that saved me from selling my valuables. When I was leaving, you were still sleeping…”
Fu Yin wiped her tears and felt sad for herself. Mo Li was stunned. “Sister Yin’er, are you okay?”
Fu Yin forced a smile. “I am happy to see that you are well.”
The both of them spoke for a while before Fu Yin sent Mo Li off. She walked slowly back to Lu Qi. She knew that she was in the wrong. However, half of the things that she had blurted out in anger was the truth that she had buried in her heart. She did not know what she should say to mend the crack that had formed between them.
“Cruel and heartless murderer?” Lu Qi looked coldly at her. “Should not have been the mother of my child?” It was the first time he realised that he did not know her at all.
Fu Yin bit her lip.
“I am going to ask you one last question. I hope you can answer me truthfully.” He wished for her to coax him, even if it was full of loopholes. “When you were pregnant with our child, did you ever think of getting rid of him?”
Fu Yin fell silent for a long while before finally nodding. However, as she saw Lu Qi’s expression turn stoic and scary, she could not help but reach out. She wanted to touch his face and express how apologetic she was.
Without waiting for Fu Yin to touch him, Lu Qi turned and walked away. She stared at his back in a daze, with tears running down her face. In the end, she had gotten what she deserved for the demons in her heart.
Something happened to the Crown Prince as he was hunting in the mountains behind Han Mansion!
The Crown Prince was the one that initiated the hunt this time in order to show the Empress that the relationship between him and Prince Han was still good. However, when the time came to hunt, he silently stifled his interest. As he thought of how grand Prince Han was, he decided that he had to outperform him in terms of archery no matter what. Hence, when the hunt started, he rushed off on his horse, leaving all his guards behind as he entered the forest alone. In the end, he went missing.
Sheng Chumu was the first to find the Crown Prince’s mount and immediately called for a search. They finally found him at the bottom of a precipitous slope. At that time, the Crown Prince was already unconscious and there was a stranger attempting to help him stop bleeding. This was a huge matter and Sheng Chumu could not let the man go. He brought the man back with them.
When Prince Han saw this man, he was extremely shocked. This man looked extremely similar to Chen Ji. He was dumbfounded as to how there could be two people that looked so alike in this world. Meanwhile, he rushed to send the Crown Prince back to the Eastern Palace.
The entire Royal Palace was in chaos. The Crown Princess was frenzied and blamed Prince Han for not taking care of him. She also blamed the Imperial Physician for not being capable enough. Empress Zhangsun ignored her own health and set up an altar outside of Lizheng Palace. She prayed to the heavens to bless the Crown Prince.
Only Sheng Chumu did something substantial. He returned to the Han Mansion and brought Ye Qiulang along with him to the stables. Ye Qiulang had followed Sheng Chumu to take down Qi City and capture Prince Zhao alive. He was highly approved of Sheng Chumu. Even the fact that the Crown Prince’s saddle had yet to be sent to the Eastern Palace was within Sheng Chumu’s expectations.
Sheng Chumu wanted to examine the saddle but the horse was extremely violent. It kicked up its back legs and did not allow Sheng Chumu to get near it. He found it strange and restrained the horse that kept kicking around. He took the saddle down. Upon a closer inspection, he found a clue. The brocade layer on the horse’s saddle had been broken and there were pellets inside. The smell made him want to choke.
Sheng Chumu recalled that the saddle was new and had just been given to the Crown Prince by Prince Han today. However, because the embroidery had a few stray strands, Consort Han had asked the seamstress in their mansion to mend it. A new saddle was broken and there were pellets in it. This was definitely linked to the Crown Prince’s fall. Upon inspection by an animal doctor, they found that there was a kind of poison on the pellets that would make a horse go crazy. Because the embroidery was torn, the pellets had touched the horse’s skin and caused the horse to lose control.
Sheng Chumu immediately notified Prince Han and Consort Han.
Prince Han stared at the saddle. “Won’t...won’t this affect me? I just gave the saddle to the Crown Prince and something happened to him!”
Consort Han was also startled. “Our relationship with the Eastern Palace is not the same as before. The reason why the Crown Prince came to hunt was for Imperial Mother. In the end, something happened to him. In the future, I don’t think we will even have a superficial relationship with the Eastern Palace.”
“Brother-in-law, we can’t hide this. You have to tell everything to the Emperor.” Sheng Chumu made the decision. “Oh right, Elder Sister, what was the name of the seamstress?”
“Xiahan.” Consort Han did not understand the situation. “Why?”
Sheng Chumu narrowed his eyes. “Before the saddle was placed on the horse, the Crown Prince’s imperial guards had checked it. At that time, nothing was wrong. However, after the seamstress mended it, the poison in it was exposed. Do you all think that there is something suspicious about her?”
Consort Han thought. “Yes. The brocade layer was also done by Xiahan.”
Prince Han immediately ordered people to capture Xiahan while he rushed to the palace to explain everything.
Consort Han was extremely worried as she sent Prince Han off. “Chumu, I am afraid that even if your brother-in-law tries his best, Imperial Father may believe him, Imperial Mother may believe him but the Eastern Palace may not trust that he is innocent.”
However, Sheng Chumu said, “If a person stands upright, his shadow will not bend. Nothing will happen to Brother-in-law.”
Consort Han laughed bitterly, “That’s right. This is the way of life, we can only leave it up to fate.”
Fu Rou never expected that the next time she saw Xiahan would be in the cold and sinister Imperial Prison. Xiahan was covered in streaks of blood and looking as if she was on her last leg.
Fu Rou heard from Empress Zhangsun that there was poison hidden in the horse’s saddle. After the brocade was broken, the poison had caused the horse to go crazy. As a result, the Crown Prince had fallen from the horse. Xiahan was the last person to have touched the saddle and was the most suspicious. However, no matter how much they tortured her, Xiahan did not admit to anything. Fu Rou then told the Empress that she knew Xiahan and wanted to try to convince her.
She sighed internally as she crouched down and helped Xiahan to sit up. She fed Xiahan some water.
Xiahan struggled to open her eyes. “Fu Rou? Is that you?”
Fu Rou’s expression was filled with sorrow. “Back then, you were secretly making a wedding dress for your sister. How did you end up like this?”
Xiahan smiled. “Fu Rou, you are so smart, how can you not understand.”
Fu Rou understood. “For Xiong Rui?”
“That’s right. It is for Xiong Rui.” Xiahan’s lifeless eyes suddenly shone. “In the Crown Prince’s eyes, a seamstress like me and an actor like Xiong Rui are just ants. An ant can be stepped on at any time. How laughable is it for an ant to feel indignant and want to take revenge to kill the person that hurt it. But I am not an ant. I am a person. I know what love is and I know what hate is. Of course, I also know what it means to take revenge!”
“But none of this was the Crown Prince’s fault.” Fu Rou shook her head, her eyes filled with pain and pity. “He did not want Chen Ji to die and he never thought of taking Xiong Rui’s life.”
“If it is not his fault, then whose fault is it? Is it the Emperor’s fault? Or the Empress? To someone like me, I will never get to meet them in my lifetime! But Xiong Rui is innocent. He can’t die for no reason. Someone has to pay the price! In this world, someone should pay for Xiong Rui’s death!” Xiahan shouted.
Fu Rou’s tone suddenly became sharp. “You---paid the price!”
“You could have been embroidering, enjoying simple food and watching the days pass. You could have lived a simple life. But now, you have turned into a heinous criminal that tried to kill Great Tang’s Crown Prince. The person that paid for Xiong Rui’s death was no one but yourself.”
Fu Rou believed that Xiahan would not have been able to carry out this entire scheme by herself. There must be a mastermind instructing her. “Thankfully, the Crown Prince is lucky and managed to survive. He has regained consciousness. If not, your nimble hands would have turned into a murderer’s hands.”
Xiahan was stunned. “The Crown Prince did not die?”
“You are very lucky. The Crown Prince is still alive.” Fu Rou tried to talk through to her. “Xiahan, stop with your foolish ways and tell the truth. Don’t torture yourself.”
“Why does everyone think that someone instructed me?” Xiahan’s expression changed. “But you are right. Who am I? How can I think of a plan to hurt the Crown Prince? Fine. Fu Rou, let me tell you. But you must promise to tell everything I said to the Empress.”
“Yes, I promise.” Fu Rou would have done it even if Xiahan did not ask her to.
Xiahan moved beside Fu Rou’s ears. “Everything was planned by Prince Han. Prince Han ordered me to make the saddle and sew the picture of Imperial Grandson hunting. He told me to put the poison in the saddle. Prince Han is the one who wants to kill the Crown Prince!”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
In case you guys forgot, Xiahan is one of the maids that liked Xiong Rui. Xiong Rui was the guy who trained with Chen Ji (they acted together). She made something for Xiong Rui before and asked Fu Rou to hand it to him (that was the first time when Fu Rou met Chen Ji).
If you guys want more details, you should watch the drama! There are more scenes in the drama that weren't shown in the novel. The drama prepares you for the attack.
I was actually really surprised since Xiahan was not that memorable to me. I didn't expect such a minor character to attempt something so extreme.