Chapter Eighteen Autumn love is not the answer to spring hate
The bright autumn light approached leisurely and the red leaves reflected the blue sky.
In the courtyard on the outskirts of the capital, under the edge of the window, there were several bowls filled with precious chrysanthemums, gilded lions, jade phoenixes and black ink. Gold, red, fluffy like snowballs interspersed with green and purple, it was very eye-catching.
Li Yi stood in front of a big desk, with the painting he had left in the Regent’s Palace, “The Cranes soar to the Nine Heavens” in front of him, but at this time the painting was sketched to the end and was being colored in.
Ping An came in with the decoction, and while delivering it, he told Li Yi: “Young master, please take a break and remember to drink the medicine while it is hot.”
Li Yi was immersed in his creation, everything else sounded like the wind in his ears; he didn’t even hum. He just waited for the wind of Ping An to blow past, so he could concentrate on his drawing.
Ping An was not surprised. Seeing that Li Yi didn’t listen to what he was saying, he was ready to take the medicine away and keep it warm. When he turned around and stepped out, he saw Zhao Yuan walking from the courtyard to the porch.
Ping An hurriedly greeted him and stepped aside.
Zhao Yuan had already noticed that the bowl of medicine in Ping An’s hand was full, so he couldn’t help frowning and said, “Still painting?”
Heh, this one is a real caretaker.
Ping An sighed secretly and then walked into the house behind Zhao Yuan again.
When he arrived at the door, Zhao Yuan saw Li Yi waving his sleeves, the brush dancing in his hand; his state of concentration making him look like he was out of this world.
He couldn’t say whether he liked the painting or not. The exiled immortal was in his house, which made him very happy, but he also knew that the immortal’s heart was not here and he was afraid that the immortal would fly away if he looked away, dissatisfied with the people.
Zhao Yuan stopped, quietly sent all the followers away, took the medicine in Ping An’s hand and carried it in.
At this moment, Li Yi finally reached the point when the brush could leave the paper; then he had the leisure to wash his brush and say, “Ping An, bring the medicine. Uh, hang up the painting first, don’t touch anything.”
When he turned to pick up the medicine, the medicine bowl was given to him by a strong hand with distinct knuckles.
Li Yi was stunned when he looked up and saw Zhao Yuan standing there in his open-sleeved robe, with the gold weaving of the dragons on the red background. Not only did it not take away any of his brilliance, but it also made his whole body glow.
What an artist finds the most irresistible is beauty.
Li Yi was lost in his world for a moment, and couldn’t help but secretly compare how different Zhao Yuan looked when he was wearing this red dress.
Zhao Yuan and Li Yi watched each other.
Now, as the house where Li Yi recuperated was located on the outskirts of the capital, he couldn’t come here every day. It was not easy for him to slip out from time to time, so it was extremely gratifying to have Li Yi look at him more often.
The troubles in the court were left behind, and Zhao Yuan felt relieved. When he felt relieved, he had some different thoughts. While Li Yi was in a daze, he silently brought the medicine in his hand to Li Yi’s mouth; the two of them were very close.
“It’s not good when it’s cold,” Zhao Yuan said lightly.
Only then did Li Yi regain his senses and was about to reach out to pick it up, but Zhao Yuan stopped him. He subconsciously looked at the other man, and Zhao Yuan brought the medicine bowl to his mouth again, with a bright smile on his face.
The meaning couldn’t be clearer; Li Yi was supposed to drink it from his hands.
Li Yi’s jade face suddenly flushed red as he watched Zhao Yuan’s movement; his shame and anger were hard to suppress.
In his two lives, he had always been noble and reserved, regardless of his former career or his situation in his latter life. He had never been subjected to such teasing.
But in the end, he couldn’t throw a tantrum.
In the past month and a half after he was released from prison, Zhao Yuan’s meaning was very clear. Although reluctantly, Li Yi had to admit that Su Wang treated him with courtesy, apart from the occasional teasing.
To put it bluntly, if the other party insisted on forcing him, there was nothing Li Yi could do about it, since his life was spared by that uncle and nephew.
Zhao Yuan saw Li Yi’s expression. His hand holding the bowl lowered and he turned to put the medicine on the table, as if he knew Li Yi’s thoughts and didn’t want to embarrass him.
It was ridiculous; he, Li Yi, was a low-level prisoner, how could he afford to be embarrassed.
“You don’t have to force it if you don’t want to.” Zhao Yuan walked two paces to the window. Seeing the red leaves scattered under the steps, he had some indescribable feelings in his heart.
If Li Yi was unwilling, he would feel quite helpless and troubled. Years had passed, the person was now here, nice and friendly, but Li Yi just wanted to run away.
But what if Li Yi was willing? He would not be happy, by and large. What about those profound school days once spent in unrepentant youth, what were they?
He was simply competing with himself, and he had no solution.
Zhao Yuan had no desire to stay, but Zhao Xi came in and reported that Zhou Yi was waiting in the reception pavilion.
After entering the reception pavilion, Zhou Yi was straightforward.
“Lord, it’s almost time.”
He couldn’t do anything else, so he had to bite the bullet and give Zhao Yuan a reminder.
This house was originally used as a temporary recuperation place for Li Yi, not the place to stay for a long time.
Since knowing that Li Yi was in prison, Zhao Yuan began to prepare this place. He was worried about Li Yi for a reason. When he left the Regent’s Residence, his health hadn’t improved yet, and after his time in prison, who knew what his situation would be when he was released.
The situation was really bad indeed, but fortunately Zhao Yuan prepared early and went to great lengths to find Lin Ji’an who helped Li Yi to get better.
Li Yi was now a person whose path was cleared in the imperial court. He could not always live in this house to avoid people’s eyes and ears. Over time, it would only lead to unnecessary speculation.
It was necessary to know that these remnants of the previous dynasty that came out of the secret prison, although they had regained their freedom on the surface, still had Luan Yiwei staring at them from time to time in the dark.
If Li Yi wasn’t seen for a while, it was fine, but if he wasn’t seen at all, one could be sure that Wei Che would turn the capital upside down to find him. Li Yi was not a small clansman.
The tiger had to pull out his teeth and put them out for everyone to see to be safe.
Zhao Yuan knew it better than Zhou Yi, and it was not that he wouldn’t be able to see him anymore. When he settled down again, he would think about it slowly, there would be enough time for it.
To think that he had travelled all over the Central Plains, commanded in the north and in the south, led his troops to break into more than a thousand cities and his plundering had not stopped with the Central Plains…
Yet he can only attack one heart in this life and plunder one person’s land… oh god, can you grant me triumph?
Zhao Xi looked at Zhao Yuan’s expression, bowed and said, “Your Highness, don’t worry, Dr. Lin’s medicine box is all equipped, and all important things that can’t be bought outside are also prepared. All in all, one cart will hold all the belongings, so that no one will pay much attention.”
Zhao Yuan nodded.
Zhao Xi was the most aware of what was going on between those two men, and no one could be more dedicated than he was to getting things done. How could it be otherwise since the five welts on his bottom were still fresh?
“The latter things, this slave will be watching, and if there is a need to help, he will take care of it.”
Zhao Yuan heard this sentence but said, “No need to watch too closely, it will cause trouble if people notice what is going on.”
Now that Li Yi’s path was clear, he was already heading in a very good direction, and Zhao Yuan no longer needed his original plan to hide him for the rest of his life.
After a while, so as not to make the emperor suspicious, he could pretend that he was just slowly beginning to take a fancy to Li Yi, and he would take Li Yi under his wing in the future. Although they wouldn’t have a good reputation, the two of them would be able to live together for a long time.
Although it looked like letting go for a while, in fact, Zhao Yuan did have some calculations in his heart. Five city military departments and the military camp of the capital were in his hands, he could have people take care of Li Yi without leaving a trace whatever area he made a home in.
At the beginning of the new dynasty, the defense of the capital division was the strictest. The late emperor was gone just a short time ago. Although the palace was still in mourning and the people were in mourning, the discipline was severe and there were not even many reports of theft, let alone major cases.
Seeing that everything was in order, Zhao Yuan stood up.
When he reached the courtyard, the whirlwind rolled the dead leaves, and the yellow danced and swirled, inexplicably halting Zhao Yuan’s steps towards the house.
In the waning sun, he only looked at the silhouette in the lattice window, then mounted his horse and departed.
Li Yi didn’t see Zhao Yuan on the day he left the outskirts of the capital. Only when he asked did he learn that the regent personally led the troops to Jizhou. The Tatars took advantage of the situation, crossed the border and invaded the country for more than a hundred miles deep, burning, killing and looting.
On that day, Zhao Yuan had come to say goodbye.
Li Yi no longer had to face the various distractions brought by Zhao Yuan and was somewhat relaxed. He and Ping An moved to the rented courtyard in the city and started a new life together.
Zhao Yuan took the painting “The Cranes soar to the Nine Heavens” and gave Li Yi enough money to live for a long time. Li Yi hired a cook, a laundry woman who came for two hours a day and did some menial work on the side.
The peaceful days seemed to have returned to before the capital was broken into.
After Li Yi and Ping An stopped hiding and without Zhou Yi’s strict security, the residence of Dingguo Gong quickly got the news of their exact whereabouts.
The night was chilling and desolate, the dew dripping heavily.
Several figures quietly slipped into the small courtyard. The stove was turned off and the entire courtyard was pitch black, with only a very small night light burning in the house not far away.
Neither the cook nor the laundry woman spent the night at Li Yi’s place. Obviously, these people knew that, so they were not afraid of alerting anyone and were ready to act…
When Ping An woke up choked by the smoke, the flames had already reached the edge of the window. He wanted to get up but found that his limbs didn’t obey him, his whole body was so soft that he didn’t have any strength!
He wanted to wake Li Yi up but couldn’t make a sound. Only a very light hum escaped his mouth, not louder than the sound of a fly fluttering its wings.
Ping An burst into tears.
The fire was set deliberately, so it was spreading extremely quickly. In the blink of an eye, not only the window frames were burning, but the door on the east side was also encircled with the tongues of fire, glowing red.
At this time, Li Yi still hadn’t woken up.