Ch 6 “If anyone looks at you too much, this king will gouge out his eyes.”
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For the next few days, Ting Song Zhai was at peace.
Every morning, Xie Chaoyuan went to Emperor Qianming to greet him, then returned. When he passed the garden, he would pick some flowers to bring to Xie Chaoling. Xie Chaoling liked this, and in a few days, he decorated his house with a lot of them.
As long as he didn’t have the mind to run away, Xie Chaoyuan was happy to satisfy him.
Xie Chaoyuan’s actions could not escape the eyes and ears of other people. When Emperor Qianming invited him out, Xie Chaorong specially stopped him, and asked strangely, “Sixth Brother is going to pick flowers in the garden again? This king is really curious, did you keep one in Ting Song Zhai? What kind of beauty is it? Is it worth Sixth Brother’s efforts to pick flowers every day to please this beauty?”
Xie Chaorong was not only stupid, but also extremely narrow-minded. Last time he was taught a lesson by Emperor Qianming for being gifted some people and he suspected that Xie Chaoyuan did this intentionally and hated Xie Chaoyuan; not to mention the assassination of the crown prince, Xie Chaoyuan also helped Xie Chaoqi in public in saying some words.
On the other hand, he was reluctant to let go of the beauty he had just obtained, so he had already sent someone to send the beauty back to his palace in the capital. Yet, he still thought Xie Chaoyuan was not pleasing to the eye.
Xie Chaoyuan didn’t mind. He smiled and said, “It really is a beauty. The beauty in my heart, Second Brother won’t understand.”
Xie Chaorong sneered: “I didn’t realize that Sixth Brother was also a romantic and affectionate kind.”
Xie Chaoyuan took a fancy to a wood hibiscus that was blooming enchantingly, picked it down, bowed to Xie Chaorong, and left.
Xie Chaohui saw this scene in the distance and stopped.
The wood hibiscus bloomed everywhere. He also picked one, pinched it between the thin calluses on his slightly rough finger, looked down, and didn’t move for a while.
The guard behind him called him: “Your Royal Highness…”
“My older brother’s favorite flower back then was this wooden hibiscus.” Xie Chaohui’s voice was almost inaudible.
After a long silence, Xie Chaohui squeezed the flower into his palm, his eyes darkened slightly, and he asked the person behind him in a deep voice: “Bamu, why do you think the crown prince’s horse was suddenly frightened? I heard that the horse was a war horse that had retired from the battlefield. It was just an arrow, how could it be so frightened that it rushed off the cliff?”
The bodyguard called Bamu lowered his voice: “Time is also fate, maybe it’s because His Royal Highness had bad luck, Your Highness doesn’t need to worry about it.”
Xie Chaohui frowned thoughtfully.
Ting Song Zhai.
Xie Chaoling was bored and leaned on the couch to play chess alone. He wanted to find someone to accompany him, but there was only one person in the room. Wang Jin knew a little bit about chess, but his chess skills were limited.
Hearing the footsteps of Xie Chaoyuan entering the door, Xie Chaoling turned his head and smiled: “Does Your Highness play chess?”
Xie Chaoyuan sat down, handed the flowers he just picked to Xie Chaoling, and picked up the black piece: “Linlang is interested?”
Xie Chaoling asked a person to go out to the window to cut some branches and leaves to put them in with the delicate flowers, then he sorted the pieces apart: “Your Highness, accompany me for the next game, if I win, can I go to the front yard to look?”
Xie Chaoyuan was noncommittal: “It turns out that Linlang has this idea. Then what if this king wins?”
Xie Chaoling looked up at him with a smile in his eyes: “Whatever Your Highness wants.”
The Crown Prince of the East Palace was very good at chess, and some of the grand masters who have played chess all their life had been defeated by him. Xie Chaoyuan knew this, but Xie Chaoling himself did not know it.
Xie Chaoyuan asked someone to bring hot tea, indicating Xie Chaoling to go first.
Two quarters of an hour later, Xie Chaoyuan threw the pieces in his hand back to the chess box and simply conceded defeat: “Linlang wins.”
“Does Your Highness’s promise still count?” Xie Chaoling asked him with a smile.
Xie Chaoyuan said, “When did this king agree to your terms?”
Xie Chaoling choked, how could he be so shameless…
Xie Chaoyuan smiled casually: “Want to go to the front to take a look?”
“Not today, let’s talk about it in two days.”
The emperor’s palace.
Xie Chaoqi was once again blocked from the door. The servant lowered his eyes and told him the words of Emperor Qianming: “Your Majesty said, this king should go back and think about the matters behind closed doors. If there is no important matter, this king should not leave his bed chambers.”
“This king has an important matter! Why can’t this king have anything important! Get out of the way for this king! This king wants to see Royal Father!” Xie Chaoqi shouted, trying to force his way in.
It had been four days since Emperor Qianming refused to see him. He was turned away even when he came to give his morning greetings. Xie Chaoqi was worried about Jiang Shi, who was still in prison. He could not obtain any news on him and was very anxious.
The commotion outside alarmed Emperor Qianming, and the sound of Emperor Qianming’s cough came from the inner hall. He scolded: “Come in!”
Xie Chaoqi strode into the door and knelt down with red eyes: “Royal Father, my guard was really wronged. He really doesn’t have the courage to assassinate the crown prince. Father, please don’t be blinded by those treacherous people… “
“It’s just a bodyguard, is it worth your trip to me over and over again? Are you doing it for him, or for yourself?”
Being stared at by the emperor’s sharp eyes, Xie Chaoqi couldn’t say anything more, and he only kept saying that his guard was wronged.
Emperor Qianming stared coldly at his son, who was kneeling on the ground, unable to do anything.
These sons of his, one and two of them, how could he not know that it was someone else who assassinated and murdered the crown prince and then framed the others. Xie Chaoqi dared not do it, Xie Chaorong couldn’t do this, and now the crown prince’s life and death was unknown. This case had no progress. In this dead end, the Zhao family was being aggressive and the Empress Dowager was pressuring him with filial piety; how could he not be annoyed when he was an emperor who had been aggrieved.
“Royal Father, let Jiang Shi go, he really is innocent…”
Xie Chaoqi choked and begged.
Emperor Qianming asked, “Do you want me to let him go?”
Xie Chaoqi kowtowed vigorously: “I beg Royal Father, please Royal Father.”
“You withdraw. Go back and think about it behind closed doors, don’t come again.” Emperor Qianming’s voice was completely cold.
Xie Chaoqi still wanted to intercede, but when he saw the undisguised disgust in Emperor Qianming’s eyes, his body shook. He dared not say anything and retreated in despair.
Emperor Qianming’s face became more and more ugly. Wang Qing served him tea at the right time, and whispered: “His Highness is confused, don’t be angry, Your Majesty.”
This old eunuch served Emperor Qianming for many years, and was well versed in Emperor Qianming’s thoughts and preferences.
Emperor Qianming glanced at him: “What do you know?”
Wang Qing lowered his eyes: “This slave has only heard some rumors about his Fourth Highness and his guards, I was afraid it would disrupt Your Highness and dare not discuss them at will.”
Emperor Qianming sullenly lowered his face.
Xie Chaoqi’s attitude towards the guard was too strange, even if the assassination had nothing to do with it, the guard could no longer stay.
Two days later, news came from the side of the Imperial Army who had been searching for the crown prince for many days along the water under the cliff, His Royal Highness had been found.
When the news came back, the emperor called his ministers to discuss matters and he was ecstatic.
All the ministers said that His Royal Highness the Crown Prince must have met a saint. As for what they really thought in their heart, that was another matter. There were quite a few people who secretly hated him.
“It is said that His Royal Highness was swept to the downstream river bank by the turbulent water that day. He was rescued by the local villagers and remained in a coma. When the Imperial Army found His Highness, His Highness was still in a coma and had not woken up yet.”
Wang Rang whispered to Xie Chaoyuan about the news he had just inquired about. Xie Chaoyuan smiled, “Found? In a coma?”
“Yes, the person has been sent back to the palace and His Majesty has personally seen him.”
Xie Chaoling was leaning against the window, teasing the bird again in boredom, but he didn’t dare to let it out of the cage again.
Xie Chaoyuan looked back at him and asked Wang Rang, “What else?”
Wang Rang lowered his voice: “His Majesty only brought his two most trusted imperial physicians to treat His Royal Highness, they did not let others see His Highness. King Xun wanted to visit, but His Majesty asked someone to stop him outside the door.”
Xie Chaoyuan laughed and said: “This is something not even Xie Chaorong, that straw bag, would believe, so he went to find out the truth? Who does His Majesty think he can deceive like this?”
“It doesn’t matter who he can deceive, His Majesty said that the Crown Prince is back, so that means he is back. As long as there is still someone in the position of Crown Prince, there is no reason for others to grab it. His Majesty wants to maintain the current situation. “
Xie Chaoling put down the birdie stick, stretched his waist, and answered.
Xie Chaoyuan waved his hand and Wang Rang led the people in the room to retreat.
With a look, Xie Chaoling came over and sat on his lap obediently.
“I’ll take you out of Ting Song Zhai to have a look, will you go?”
Xie Chaoling’s eyelashes moved: “Really?”
Going out from the front yard of Ting Song Zhai, crossing an arch bridge, and then climbing the stairs, there was a three-storey waterfront building.
This area was located in the most remote northwest corner of the palace, which was chosen by Xie Chaoyuan himself. Xie Chaoling wore a hat and was led by Xie Chaoyuan. On the way, he occasionally encountered one or two people from the palace. They all greeted Xie Chaoyuan and did not dare to look up at them.
Going up to the building where there was no one, Xie Chaoling lifted half of the veil and asked Xie Chaoyuan, “Why does Your Highness want me to wear this?”
“I don’t want people to see my Linlang.”
Xie Chaoyuan leaned close to his ear and said, “If anyone looks at you too much, this king will gouge out his eyes.”
Xie Chaoling felt that this little Highness was simply unreasonable.
“What about the people who serve me in His Royal Highness’s room? Are you going to have their eyes gouged out too?”
Xie Chaoyuan said coldly, “They don’t dare to look at you presumptuously. If anyone dares, I will gouge it out.”
Xie Chaoling recalled that Wang Jin and those people really never dared to look at him directly.
“Your Highness, the others are afraid of you.”
“Linlang said Linlang is not afraid.” Xie Chaoyuan helped him lift the veil that was blown off by the wind again, revealing Xie Chaoling’s handsome appearance.
Xie Chaoling: “If Your Royal Highness really becomes the emperor, you will be a tyrant.”
Xie Chaoyuan stroked his cheek lightly: “Then Linlang will be a virtuous empress.”
No extra words were spoken.
Xie Chaoling’s gaze fell forward. The palace was built on the mountain. The northwest corner was the highest place in the whole palace. This platform was especially high. Although it was only three stories high, it had a panoramic view of the palace.
In the early morning, the mountains were shrouded in mist and clouds, and the glazed tiled roof of the double-eaved palace was hidden in the shadows, as if unreal. Xie Chaoling squinted his eyes lightly, the thoughts that flashed through his mind had not yet been understood. Xie Chaoyuan approached him and asked, “Do you like it here?”
Xie Chaoling said casually: “What’s the difference between whether I like it or not? Your Highness won’t let me go anywhere else, and didn’t Your Highness say that we will return to the capital in a few days?”
Xie Chaoyuan wrapped his arms around his waist, his tone dangerous: “Where else do you want to go? Wouldn’t it be better to stay with this king?”
Xie Chaoling let out a sigh of relief, raised his hand and patted the back of his hand: “I won’t go, I won’t go anywhere, don’t worry, Your Highness.”
Xie Chaoyuan tightened his arms: “Linlang, as I said, my patience is limited. Now that we’re in a temporary residence, I won’t calculate the scores. However, you can’t run away when we go back to the palace.”
The low hoarse voice was in his ear. Xie Chaoling was unhappy, and could only follow his words: “Your Highness, you said that you would break my legs, how could I dare run?”
Being stared at by Xie Chaoyuan, Xie Chaoling remained motionless and competed with him silently.
After a long while, Xie Chaoyuan rubbed his nose lightly on his cheek and calmed down: “Be obedient.”
1. The previous crown prince, the eldest son of Empress Yuan
2. King Xun, Xie Chaorong, mother Imperial Consort Zhao
3. King Xing, Xie Chaohui, mother = maid and Empress Yuan. Maid died of dystocia, adopted son of Empress Yuan
4. King Huai, Xie Chaoqi, the second son of Empress Yuan
5. Crown Prince, Xie Chaoling, Successive Empress (formerly Concubine De) Li Family
6. King Ke, Xie Chaoyuan, his mother was Bailing country’s tribute dancer. Adoptive mother, Concubine Li, Zhang family
7. King Ning, Xie Chaoyi, the youngest son of Imperial Consort Zhao
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