Thousand Miles of Heaven Chapter 44

Ch 44 “Goodbye, Your Highness.”

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Five days later.

Before going out, Xie Chaoling helped Xie Chaoyuan put on his outer shirt, and then carefully fastened his belt. Xie Chaoyuan lowered his eyes to look at him, until Xie Chaoling raised his eyes and smiled at him: “What is your Highness looking at me for?”

“This face is not good-looking.” Xie Chaoyuan stated.

He was talking about Xie Chaoling’s face after he changed his face. Most of the time Xie Chaoling used this face when he went out. However, since New Year’s Eve, he hadn’t been out of this villa for a long time, let alone Xie Chaoyuan, even he felt a little uncomfortable.

“Your Highness is also a person who judges people by appearance.” Xie Chaoling teased.

Xie Chaoyuan ignored him, turned around and left first.

The smile on the corners of Xie Chaoling’s mouth gradually faded, and he walked back to the back room, and put down the comb that Xie Chaoyuan had bought for him.

Looking back at the place where he had lived for two months for the last time, he sighed silently and strode out the door.

Xie Chaoyuan got into the carriage first, Xie Chaoling followed, sat down and took the initiative to stick to Xie Chaoyuan’s side, holding his hand: “I was just joking with Your Highness, Your Highness, don’t be so stingy, are you angry?”

Xie Chaoyuan only reminded him: “Follow me every step of the way, you can’t leave my sight for a step, you said it yourself.” Xie Chaoling said

Xie Chaoling: “Okay.”

He knew that Xie Chaoyuan was still unwilling to take him there, so he nodded in agreement in the end, reluctantly.

The carriage left the villa, headed towards the capital, entered from the south gate, and then joined Xie Chaohui’s convoy at the west gate, and together they went to Yecheng, which was eighty miles west of the city.

After meeting with Xie Chaohui, Xie Chaoyuan didn’t get out of the carriage to say hello. The two didn’t meet until noon when they stopped at the post station on the official road. Xie Chaohui had always been taciturn, Xie Chaoyuan had nothing to say to this King Xing, he casually congratulated him on marrying the princess at the end of the month, Xie Chaohui remained calm.

After saying something indifferent, Xie Chaoyuan led Xie Chaoling to the other room for lunch. From the beginning to the end, Xie Chaoling never had any communication with Xie Chaohui.

“Send someone to keep an eye on King Xing.”

After entering the room, Xie Chaoyuan dropped this sentence to Wang Rang.

Xie Chaoling turned his head to look at him: “Is Your Highness going to do something bad again?”

Xie Chaoyuan glanced past his smiling eyes: “No, I am not the one who is going to do something bad.”

Xie Chaoling didn’t ask any further questions, and pulled him to sit down and eat.

There were some things that don’t need to be said clearly, he knew that Xie Chaoyuan was on guard against Xie Chaohui and without his cooperation, Xie Chaohui would not be able to get him away under Xie Chaoyuan’s nose. But unfortunately, Xie Chaohui had given him his sincerity.

Xie Chaoyuan had thousands of calculations, but the only thing he missed was that he misjudged Xie Chaohui’s thoughts.

After lunch, they continued on their way until dusk. When they arrived in Yecheng, Emperor Qianming’s mausoleum was located on Yeshan.

Yecheng was a small town with a small population. Almost all the strong labor force from the eight villages in the vicinity were requisitioned to build the emperor’s mausoleum. This emperor’s mausoleum had not been repaired since Emperor Qianming ascended the throne. Empress Li was already buried in it first. After Yuan Empress hanged herself, she was buried with a concubine ceremony, so there was only Empress Li in the underground palace of Yeling.

Tomorrow they will officially go up the mountain to worship, and they will settle down in this post house in Ye City tonight.

While Xie Chaoling was washing up, Xie Chaoyuan walked out of the house, and Wang Rang reported to him in a low voice: “King Xing did have some changes on the other side, and it should be because he wants to take advantage of the two of you entering the mausoleum to worship tomorrow.”

Xie Chaoyuan frowned. The ceremony of offering sacrifices to the queen was lengthy and complicated. Xie Chaoling couldn’t follow in and could only guard outside the hall like the other guards. Xie Chaohui’s idea was to steal the person away at that time.

“Then let Langjun change his identity and follow in.” Xie Chaoyuan ordered in a deep voice.

Guards cannot follow into the hall, but there was always a group of sacrificial etiquette officials in the hall. The person they worshiped was Empress Li, Xie Chaoling would be happy to go in with them.

When Xie Chaoyuan went back to the house, Xie Chaoling was already sitting on the couch, playing with chess pieces, his eyes and eyebrows quiet and peaceful under the lights.

Xie Chaoyuan stepped forward and sat down, picked up a piece and played chess with him.

“Your Highness lost again.”

Two quarters of an hour later, Xie Chaoling picked up the pieces on the chessboard one by one, and smiled at Xie Chaoyuan.

Xie Chaoyuan didn’t take it seriously. Playing chess with Xie Chaoling, no matter how high his chances of winning were, in the end, Xie Chaoling would always beat him by a move and a half, without exception. Xie Chaoling’s superb chess skills already had the upper hand but he had too much of a desire to win and lose, and he would never be able to truly be at peace. Maybe there was another reason, but Xie Chaoyuan didn’t want to change, and he couldn’t change it.

“Will there be another round?” Xie Chaoling asked with a smile.

“Go to bed earlier, you have to get up early tomorrow.” Xie Chaoyuan reminded softly, and swept all the remaining chess pieces into the chess box.

Xie Chaoling looked at him, knelt and moved two steps forward, stuck close to the front of Xie Chaoyuan, and lowered his voice: “Your Highness, what time is it, are you going to sleep?”

Xie Chaoyuan raised his hand and stroked his cheek: “Then what do you want to do?”

Xie Chaoling turned his head and kissed him on the lips.

Xie Chaoyuan didn’t move.

Xie Chaoling laughed, wrapped his hands around Xie Chaoyuan’s neck, and continued to kiss him.

A moment later, Xie Chaoyuan picked him up.

Behind the bed curtain, Xie Chaoling was hugged and sat on Xie Chaoyuan’s body, holding his face with both hands and kissing him closely, sweat dripping from his forehead, and his cheeks soaked with red.

Tonight’s Xie Chaoling was almost abnormally enthusiastic.

“A little deeper…”

Lip to lip, Xie Chaoling whispered softly, urging Xie Chaoyuan.

Xie Chaoyuan stopped, reached out and patted his waist, and said hoarsely: “Don’t be unrestrained.”

Xie Chaoling’s throat rolled out a more sticky sound: “I want Your Highness…”

Xie Chaoyuan’s eyes darkened and he turned over and pressed the person down, The hot kisses were overwhelming.

In the dead of night, Xie Chaoling huddled in Xie Chaoyuan’s arms, motionless. Xie Chaoyuan caressed his sweaty back and kissed the little mole on the tip of his nose: “Tomorrow you will pretend to be a ceremonial officer and follow me into the mausoleum to worship the queen, and stand where I can see you.”

Xie Chaoling said “Mmm”, which was considered to be a response.

Xie Chaoyuan didn’t say any more, and hugged him even tighter.

Early the next morning, they got up as soon as Maoshi arrived.

Xie Chaoling waited for Xie Chaoyuan to change clothes. Xie Chaoyuan lifted his long hair that was hanging down and curled it between his fingers: “Are you sleepy waking up so early?”

Xie Chaoling yawned. Last night, they stayed up too late. He got used to being lazy for a while, but in the East Palace, he woke up earlier than this every day.

The good times were finally coming to an end.

“Go wash up,” Xie Chaoyuan reminded him, “It should be over before noon. When we go back, I’ll ask someone to slow down the carriage so that you can sleep in the carriage. At worst, we’ll stay at the post station tonight.”

Xie Chaoling’s eyelashes moved. He lowered his eyes and responded softly: “Okay.”

Afterwards, the two of them had breakfast together, and Xie Chaohui sent someone over to urge Xie Chaoyuan to leave.

Xie Chaoling changed his face again and became more inconspicuous. Looking at the mirror, Xie Chaoling couldn’t help laughing and said: “This face is even more ugly.” 

Xie Chaoyuan glanced at him: “You can take it off when you come back in a while.”

Xie Chaoling threw a candy into his mouth, and leaned over to kiss Xie Chaoyuan’s lips.

Xie Chaoyuan didn’t move, and looked at him with slightly lowered eyebrows. Xie Chaoling smiled, bit Xie Chaoyuan’s lower lip, rolled his tongue into his mouth and stirred it around, and during the entanglement, the candy was also fed to Xie Chaoyuan and swallowed by him.

“Sweet.” Xie Chaoling stepped back a little, still smiling against his lips, “Is it delicious?”

“It’s okay.” Xie Chaoyuan said.

At the end of Maoshi, Xie Chaoling followed Xie Chaoyuan out, joined Xie Chaohui, and soon mixed into the team of ritual officials behind them.

When Xie Chaoyuan turned his head, Xie Chaoling was indeed standing within his line of sight, and he could see him as soon as he turned his head.

After that, the sacrificial procession went up the mountain.

The entire Mountain was included in the scope of the imperial mausoleum, and the supporting hall on the ground had already been repaired. It was grand and magnificent, and its scale was even larger than that of the first emperor and even the previous emperors. 

At three quarters of the hour, they entered the mausoleum hall.

The mausoleum hall was divided into inner and outer halls. The queen’s tablet was enshrined in the back hall. Xie Chaoyuan and Xie Chaohui entered the hall, kneeled down three times, kowtowed nine times, and offered three sticks of incense. The ceremony officer lit candles and handed them wine glasses. The two of them offered wine, gave a toast, and repeated the similar process three times, followed by rice offering, soup offering, tea offering, and then kneeling to read the sacrificial text and burn the sacrificial offerings.

Xie Chaoyuan and Xie Chaohui had their own thoughts and were absent-minded. Xie Chaoling followed in the procession of ceremony officials, repeated the movements of getting up and kneeling, but was very serious.

Until someone smelled the smoke of something burning.

First one person, and then several people found something was wrong. There was commotion in the line behind, and finally someone shouted in panic: “It’s on fire!”

Xie Chaoling turned his head, and a candlestick near the outer hall was dumped on the ground, burning. Looking at the cloth curtain on the side, the flames had quickly risen, and the smell of smoke gradually permeated the hall.

The palace door that was supposed to be open was closed tightly at some point.

All the ceremonial officials panicked. Xie Chaohui got up, and commanded in a deep voice: “Go and open the door of the palace, and ask people to come in to put out the fire.”

Xie Chaoyuan walked quickly to Xie Chaoling, pulled him to protect him and retreated behind the altar, away from the place where the fire started.

The hall became more and more chaotic.

“The palace door can’t be opened, why can’t it be pushed?! Come on! Come on! Is there anyone outside! There’s a fire here, open the door!”

The few people who were ordered by Xie Chaohui to open the palace door shouted in panic. They kept beating on the door panel, but the door of the main hall seemed to be chained from the outside and remained motionless.

There were hanging curtains everywhere in the hall, the fire spread faster and faster, the smoke had filled the whole hall, coughing and choking can be heard everywhere.

“It’s on fire.” Xie Chaoling whispered, there was no panic or timidity in his voice.

Without a word, Xie Chaoyuan hugged him tightly in his arms, quickly took a handkerchief and threw it into the sacrificial tea to soak. He covered Xie Chaoling’s mouth and nose, without hesitation, and ran towards the gate of the main hall protecting him.

Everyone crowded to the door of the hall, trying to break the door.

The people waiting under the stone steps outside the mausoleum finally realized that something was wrong inside and rushed in to save the people. The inner hall door finally opened, and no one cared about, superiority and inferiority, and ran for their lives in a hurry.

Xie Chaoyuan and Xie Chaoling were squeezed at the end, and could already hear them calling Xie Chaoyuan loudly.

“Let’s go quickly.”

Xie Chaoyuan only said this, and walked around Xie Chaoling to the gate of the hall.

When crossing the threshold, Xie Chaoling staggered suddenly. Xie Chaoyuan reached out to help him, but Xie Chaoling pushed him hard.

One was pushed out of the inner hall, and the other retreated into the hall.

Xie Chaoyuan suddenly raised his eyes, and the completely burned beam on the door fell down, blocking the gap between him and Xie Chaoling.

Xie Chaoling looked at him calmly, and stepped back, step by step: “Your Highness, goodbye.”

He slightly opened his lips, and said these words slowly, with reluctance in his eyes, and it seemed that it was just Xie Chaoyuan’s illusion.

Xie Chaoyuan’s eyes were burnt red at that moment, he wanted to rush in and pull him back, but his feet went limp, his whole body seemed to be drained instantly, and he fell to the ground in a sorry state.

Wang Rang and the others rushed over in a panic and supported Xie Chaoyuan.

“Go in, let me go in to pull him back, come back…”

Xie Chaoyuan vomited a mouthful of blood, clenched his teeth to give orders, but he couldn’t even lift his fingers. After that, he fainted amidst the screams of the servants, losing consciousness.

Xie Chaoling turned around and disappeared into the smoke and fire.

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