Translated by Eve
Edited by Kara
15. Love Must Always Be Full of Pleasant Surprises and a Feeling of Freshness
After Chu Xing left the Palace to meet up with Prince An, he wracked his brains, thinking about how to go about appeasing the two high-ranking military officers who had come in advance in a stern but amicable way. Recently, in order to make sure that court matters did not stagnate, he had pretended to pass on the Imperial Decree that Prince An would act as regent. With Prince An’s identity, even if people wanted to gossip, their claims would have no grounds. After all, aside from Jing Zhao, Prince An had the purest Imperial blood. He also had Chu Xing assisting on the side. Thus, for the time being, no one could make any waves.
Chu Xing was concerned about Xie He at all times. He didn’t dare to stay out for too long. Recalling that Xie He wanted to eat tanghulu, he quickly purchased two sticks and rushed back home.
However, he was stopped by someone midway.
Chen Cong sat atop his horse, blocking his way with furious eyes.
Chu Xing sighed. He didn’t force his way through and just said, “Let’s talk elsewhere.”
Their horses were tied to a couple of trees, grazing at the grass by their feet.
Chu Xing had both hands behind his back, the wind rustling his clothes. He looked at Chen Cong calmly, “Say whatever you want now.”
Chen Cong looked like he was about to spit out fire when he looked at Chu Xing! How could Chu Xing act so indifferent at this moment?! How could he let go of that Incapable Ruler, the murderer who had hurt Chen Yan, so easily?! He gritted his teeth, “Have you really fallen for that Incapable Ruler?!”
Chu Xing’s lips pulled into a straight line, “We must honour the Heavens, the Earth, the Lord, our kin, and our teachers. As his subject, I should display utter loyalty towards His Majesty. Although I’ve made mistakes in the past, I’ve already decided to mend my ways. From this moment on, I will never go against His Majesty again.”
Chen Cong shouted, “Then, what about Xiao Yan?! Are you letting this go just like that?!”
Sadness flashed in Chu Xing’s eyes. He said, “The real perpetrator has already been handed to you.”
If he hadn’t said it like that, it would have been fine. But as soon as he did, Chen Cong only became even angrier. He was fuming with rage between gritted teeth, “But, he was killed by that Incapable Ruler!”
Chu Xing could not provide an explanation on that nor did he want to. He fell silent for a while and then said, “Since ancient times, it has been difficult to be both loyal and righteous. Although His Majesty has made mistakes, I cannot be a traitor.”
Chen Cong smiled in anger, “I didn’t know before that you were one to have blind faith! That Incapable Ruler has incurred the wrath of the Heavens and the resentment of men, and yet, you still want to be his loyal subject?! Putting aside Xiao Yan, have you forgotten about the people he’s killed!? He even killed his own mother!”
A cold glint flashed through Chu Xing’s eyes, and his tone turned icy, “Why shouldn’t he kill people who deserved to be killed?”
Chen Cong looked at Chu Xing, incredulous, as if he didn’t recognize him at all, “What did you say?”
Chu Xing did not explain. His Majesty would rather be reviled than let the truth be divulged. He would not tell it to anyone else. He finally understood the pain of suffering alone, of others not being able to understand you. Moreover, what His Majesty had to endure was thousands of times worse than what he had to! Chu Xing looked at the furious Chen Cong and suddenly didn’t want to speak to him anymore. He knew that from this moment on, they would truly split ways….In the end, he had betrayed his friend…but, he did not regret it.
“You don’t need to try to persuade me. I have made my decision,” After saying this, Chu Xing jumped onto his horse and squeezed the horse’s sides with both legs.
Chen Cong stared at Chu Xing’s back, gaze unmoving. He watched him leave but suddenly said, “Do you still remember what you’ve done to that Incapable Ruler? Isn’t your remorse a little late? What if he wants to kill you?”
Chu Xing paused and then said indifferently, “If his Majesty wants Chen to die, then Chen has no choice but to die.”
He then urged his horse on, never looking back again.
When Chu Xing returned to the Imperial Palace, he discovered that the tanghulu tucked into his chest had already become a bit deformed. However, it was already too late to buy a new one. He could only take it as it was and search for Xie He.
Xie He was playing around by himself in the garden, extremely joyful. He had dug a small hole in the ground and was playing with the ants.
When he saw that Chu Xing had returned, he immediately rushed over happily, “Uncle, you’re back, la.”
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
Chu Xing smiled, “Mn. This is your tanghulu.”
Xie He took it and impatiently tore it open to lick it. His soft and pink tongue came out to lick at the red tanghulu probingly, little by little. Chu Xing averted his gaze, not daring to watch any longer. With a low voice, he said, “Is Your Majesty having fun?”
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Chu Xing, this big man who had participated in campaigns and fought on battlefields, played with a “child” with a mental age of five without any regards for his image. If his subordinates had seen this, their eyeballs might have just fallen out of their sockets.
He looked at the unmasked, lively smile on Xie He’s face, a thread of warmth appearing in the pain within his eyes. This was probably what His Majesty had wanted, ba…to be happy, carefree, blessed with no misgivings…with loving parents and friends to play with—simple but happy days.
If people could really forget about their pain, then that would be good.
It was just a pity that this false beauty would only last for a short amount of time.
Chu Xing looked at this version of Xie He, reluctant to look away….
Xie He laid on the grass, tired from playing. He giggled as he spoke to Chu Xing, “Uncle, I found something odd.”
Chu Xing asked, “What?”
Xie He said in a secretive manner, “Although I’ve never been here before, everything feels very familiar. I’ve dreamt of here before, oh.”
Chu Xing plucked grass out of his hair and said, “You’ve dreamt about this place before?”
Xie He said, “Yes, ah! I’ve dreamt of this place many times before! In my dreams, there’s also another person!”
Chu Xing’s heart squeezed. He saw that Xie He looked like he was thinking back. Xie He then continued, “In my dream, that person told me that he is my previous reincarnation.”
“Previous reincarnation?” Chu Xing was shocked. What was this about? Why would His Majesty have this kind of idea?
“Yes, ah~” Xie He looked at Chu Xing with wide eyes, puzzled, “He said that he is my previous reincarnation, but he was a sinner, so he was tortured endlessly. This place was a cage he could not escape from…but he also said that once he died, he would be free. In the next world, he absolutely didn’t want to be a part of the Imperial Family again. He wanted to be a normal person, to have parents who love him, to have a life that was carefree and without worries, and to be just wealthy enough to be at ease….He said that he came to see if I was doing fine. Seeing that I’m doing well, he felt reassured.”
Chu Xing’s expression froze, words difficult to force out of his mouth, “And then…?”
Xie He thought it over carefully, “Then, I dreamt about him a few more times. He said that his wish had been fulfilled, so he won’t come again. Afterwards, I really stopped dreaming about him. If I hadn’t seen this place today, I wouldn’t have thought of him! It’s really strange. It can’t be that my dreams were real?”
Chu Xing shut his eyes. A long time later, he said, “Perhaps.”
When Xie He heard this, it seemed like his interest was piqued. He grabbed Chu Xing’s hands and asked, “Uncle, what’s a sinner? Why did he say that he was a sinner?”
Chu Xing said, “He was not a sinner. He had just made some mistakes while alive.”
Xie He’s face scrunched up, “But, he said that he was a sinner. ah.”
Chu Xing cupped his face and said firmly, “No. If he was a sinner, he would go to the eight circles of Hell. How could he reincarnate into you? How could he be allowed to be this blessed and happy? Therefore, he was not a sinner.”
Xie He seemed confused. He stared at him blankly.
Chu Xing’s thumb lightly swept across Xie He’s face, brushing away the tears under his eyes. His gaze was fixed onto the confusion in the other’s eyes.
Your Majesty, this was the only thing you persisted and obsessed over, right? This was why you wanted to be buried and put to rest, why you would be willing to yield to me…because the only thing you really wanted was to not be a part of the Imperial Family in the next life, to be able to grow up in peace, to have doting parents, a life of joy, and no worries.
It was this belief that made you hold on in a world without light.
Meanwhile, I threatened to let your body rot in the wilderness, to be trampled on by tens of thousands of people, to never be able to be reincarnated.
The person who should not be allowed to reincarnate is me.
【Ding, the target, Chu Xing’s Favourability Value +2. The current Favourability Value is 98.】
【444：Host dada, how long do you plan on pretending to be a young child?】It had already been five days! My goodness, watching Host dada act cute hurt his eyes, ah! He couldn’t hold on for much longer…. _(:зゝ∠)_
【Xie He：A little longer.】
【Xie He：Baby, you’re still young. Wait until you grow up. You will know just how precious one’s childhood is, ah. 🙂 】
A few days passed. Xie He began to be a little sulky and told Chu Xing, “Uncle, why hasn’t Father come back yet? When will he come back?”
Chu Xing said, “Very soon.”
However, this time Xie He did not smile like he usually did. There was fear in his eyes as he said, “Does Father not want me?”
Chu Xing immediately said, “Impossible! How could you think that!?”
Xie He’s eyes were red, “Father has never been away for so long. I miss Father, wu..wah…..”
Chu Xing suddenly felt a headache incoming. Where would he find Xie He a father?
He coaxed Xie He, flustered. Unfortunately, Xie He only cried more fiercely. Chu Xing felt like he had a splitting headache. Then, he suddenly recalled the name Xie He had given himself. Yang Jing…Yang Jing…Yang Xian had always been by his side within the palace…Could it be that in his imagination, Yang Xian was his father?
Chu Xing hesitated and then asked, “What’s your father’s name?”
Xie He cried even harder, seeming to not realize the issue with this question. He sobbed, “My father’s name is Yang Xian….”
Chu Xing smiled bitterly.
In His Majesty’s mind, Yang Xian was a father-like person to him, who loved and protected him. Meanwhile, Chu Xing was the master who hurt and possessed him….
He swallowed down the pain and gently caressed Xie He’s trembling back, “Don’t be anxious. Your father will be back soon.”
Chu Xing coaxed Xie He to sleep before leaving.
As soon as he left, he called for his subordinates. He sucked in a deep breath, “Invite Yang Xian into the palace.”
Yang Xian had not been at ease all this time. He had really wanted to be by His Majesty’s side inside of the palace, however, Chu Xing’s grudge against him was too deep. He only allowed Prince An to enter the palace.
He knew that his identity was a sensitive topic, that Chu Xing had no way to feel assured with him by His Majesty’s side. For the sake of His Majesty’s safety, he did not force his way into the Imperial Palace. So long as His Majesty was well…he was content.
Therefore, when he heard that Chu Xing had invited him into the palace, he was extremely shocked. His first thought was, Had something happened to His Majesty?!
Yang Xian didn’t care if this was a trap and just rushed to the Palace.
Chu Xing looked at Yang Xian with a complicated gaze. This was the person who had been by His Majesty’s side for the longest time. Although he was a castrated man, he was also the only one His Majesty trusted.
He brought Yang Xian in and said, “His Majesty wants to see you.”
Yang Xian looked at Chu Xing guardedly. He entered the Palace. The originally sulky Xie He immediately showed an expression of pleasant surprise upon seeing him. At once, he pounced over, calling out, “Father, you’re finally back!”
Yang Xian’s heart shook. Fortunately, he already knew that His Majesty was not very normal at the moment. There were no obvious changes in his expression. He complied with his words and said, “Yes, I’ve returned.”
The gloom on Xie He’s face was swept right off. He once again smiled happily, pulling Yang Xian’s hands, unwilling to let go.
Yang Xian looked at Xie He’s eyes. No matter how he changed, he was still His Majesty, who he loved the most. His Majesty had always trusted him. Even if he forgot who he was, he still would subconsciously recognize him as the person most worthy of his trust—the one he could rely on. This was more than he could ever hope for in this life.
【Ding, Yang Xian’s Favourability Value +2. The current Favourability Value is 100.】
Yang Xian accompanied Xie He patiently until Xie He fell asleep once more with a smile on his face. Only then did he leave with gentle steps.
Chu Xing had been waiting outside the whole time. He hadn’t left.
Yang Xian glared at him fiercely and said, “I want to stay by His Majesty’s side and take care of him.”
Chu Xing looked at him and said, “Alright.”
For the sake of His Majesty, what grievances couldn’t he let go of? The hands of this castrate were stained with the blood of countless people. From the eyes of the populace, he was a sycophant who had committed every crime imaginable. However, in His Majesty’s eyes, he was the person he relied on and trusted the most. Everything he did was for His Majesty’s sake. So long as it would make His Majesty happy, he would not distinguish right from wrong and would not care about whether he himself lived or died.
He didn’t understand this before. But now, he understood a bit.
Only, he could not be like Yang Xian, acting without any scruples whatsoever…from this point of view, he and Prince An could not compare to Yang Xian. They had their own identities, their own misgivings, things they could and could not do. Meanwhile, Yang Xian did not.
His Majesty’s likes and dislikes were all that guided him.
Chu Xing relaxed his clenched hand. So long as it would make His Majesty happy, he could tolerate Yang Xian staying here…tolerate there being another man in love with His Majesty by his side. He was silent for a while and then said, “His Majesty’s situation hasn’t been very good recently. You can stay by his side…You just have to remember to follow along with him. Don’t upset him.”
Yang Xian sneered, “There’s no need for General Chu to instruct me on this.”
Chu Xing laughed bitterly and refrained from saying anything more.
He indeed didn’t have the qualifications to do so.
As before, Chu Xing still came every day. However, he only watched from a distance as Xie He spent time with Yang Xian very happily before leaving them.
The current him no longer had any hopes. As long as he could see His Majesty happy and at peace, that was already the greatest satisfaction he could have.
That was until one day, Xie He woke up and didn’t recognize Yang Xian anymore. He was obviously very terrified as if he didn’t know why he was in an unfamiliar place. He was even a bit afraid of Yang Xian.
Chu Xing came over to take a look, worried.
As soon as Xie He saw Chu Xing, he ran over to him excitedly as if he had found a lifeline to grab hold of in this unfamiliar world, “Chu dage!”
Chu Xing froze and said, “What did you call me?”
Xie He looked up with a smile, “Does Chu dage not recognize me? I’m Xiao Yan, ah!”