Chapter 18: The Short-Lived Peace.
On the next day, taking advantage of the absence of her brother, Yan Luan swiftly called out to her Momo before instructing softly, “Ah Mo, please find someone whom you can trust and tell them to look for my mother, tell her that I do not like this place and I wish to return home.”
After what happened yesterday, she realized that the servants in this villa were all Yan Jing’s men except for this lone Momo who had raised her since she was a baby. Even so, Momo had been conveniently sent away on an errand by her brother, it was no wonder that she had not come running at her cries and screams.
“Return home? But WengZhu had already been here for just a single day, and you haven’t even completed the task assigned to you by the Princess,” Momo gasped in surprise at her request as a subtle flash of disapproval past through her eyes, thinking that the princess was throwing an unnecessary tantrum.
Yan Luan blinked in confusion, before recalling the tasks assigned by her mother, apparently, her mother had told her to plan out the new renovation for this villa, but at this rate, she would be the one renovated by Yan Jing…
“I can always come back next time to do it, but for now, please send someone to deliver my message immediately, furthermore, I wish to be fetched personally by ZhaoYu.”
Yan Luan was not stupid, as of right now, her each and every move was controlled by him, so it would be extremely difficult for her to leave this place… Hence, the only other option she had was to send someone back home, and as long as her mother send someone over to fetch her home, there’s no way Yan Jing could refuse!
“Do it quickly! Plus, do not let brother hear about this.”
Her menstrual period would not be able to hold him off for much longer, she had a feeling that as soon as she’s clean, her elder brother would turn into a ferocious beast immediately! That’s why she needed to find a way to return home before it all ends, and perhaps, escape the city entirely to avoid the future progression with her incestuous brother…
Noticing the seriousness of her expressions, Momo nodded silently before leaving the room quickly.
Unfortunately, even after two whole days had passed, there was still no sign of her mother’s men’s arrival…
A heavy rain yesterday dispelled the sultry summer heat, as the clouds hid away most of the sunlight. A rare cool breeze blew past the villa while Yan Jing ordered his men to prepare a two-man tatami in the middle of the garden.
“You! Let go of me! I can walk myself!” An angry scream echoed throughout the hallway suddenly, momentarily disturbing the peaceful morning.
Yan Luan had been carried away from her bed forcefully this morning when she was still half-asleep. Her snow-white dress swayed elegantly in his arms as they moved quickly towards the garden, before gently placing the young lady on the huge tatami, patting her head softly to calm her down.
“You’ve been hiding in your room for many days on end now… The weather is surprisingly good today, how about spending your day here drinking tea with me?”
Such lies… Yan Luan pouted her lips unhappily at his words, he claimed that they would drink tea together, but from the look of the huge pile of letters on the nearby table, it was clear that he wanted her here while he worked.
Noticing her unhappy glance at the table’s direction, he chuckled softly at her, “They nothing but some government affairs on the lands belonging to our family, you should spend some time to look through it and get familiarized with it yourself.”
Yan Jing was not in a hurry at all, as he had flattened out the creases on his clothes before sitting down near her legs and pulling her into his arms. He reached out a hand towards the hand-maiden who had been waiting on them and picked up a golden phoenix hairband before running his fingers through her soft silky long hair.
Yan Luan had extremely long hair which run down her waist, in fact, she had the type of hair that all men and women alike would be envious of, as it was silky soft, with not a single tangle to be found.
He took a deep breath, taking in the subtle fragrance of her hair, seemingly intoxicated with it, but fortunately, he was able to contain his urges as he quickly tied her hair up into a messy braid with the hairband before releasing her.
“Do you even know how to braid? H…how can it even look so horrible!” She burst out laughing right after she took the braid in her hand, examining it thoroughly.
Her outburst sent him into a momentary pause as he gazed intently at her laughing face, so beautiful that the scenery paled in comparison with her. Yan Jing blinked at her amazement, but quickly regained his conscious before flicking her on the forehead softly, “It’s my first time, I had not expected it to look good.”
To think that him, the firstborn son of the imperial princess, who had lead armies into wars and someone who had taken the lives of many, would one day be braiding the hair of a young lady, and worst of all made his first mistake in his entire twenty-two years of life.
Ignoring his explanation, she flipped the braid backward before lying down on the tatami and reaching out for the golden fish stick, occasionally teasing the tiny goldfishes in the fishbowl nearby.
Meanwhile, Yan Jing was already seated on his working desk, flipping through the large pile of letter diligently.
When the hand-maiden returned with the pot of hot tea, Yan Luan quickly released the golden stick before taking a tiny sip out from the teacup while taking a peek at the hard-working man on the table.
She had to admit, he looked extremely handsome when he was focused on his work.
On this particular day, he had been dressed in dark colors while his sleeves were embroidered with dragons. From his belt hanged an expensive-looking jewel, which was the same color as his clothing, while his dark obsidian hair was held up tidily with a golden hair-crown, which enhanced his already-striking features to the very maximum.
Yan Luan took another sip of her tea before sighing deeply at her own brother’s manly appeal…
Just look at that sturdy body and those deep dark eyes… Those slender and long fingers which held the brush easily…
It’s too bad that this man was her brother!
A little demonic voice sounded nearby her ear: Who cares if he’s your brother, how can you miss out on such a perfect man? Why not just accept him right now and then, since he’s interested in you too!
Meanwhile, on the other side, a little angelic voice sounded up angrily in her other ear: You can’t! That’s straight-up incest! Yan Luan, you must persevere this test, or else you would end up bearing the name of a slut for the rest of your life!
Her hand trembled at the little angel’s shrilled voice, her teacup almost falling from her hand.
Yes! I must endure this torture, I shall not be tempted!
“What is it? If you’re feeling bored, feel free to come over and help me do some stamping.” His gentle voice sounded from the desk as he stared at her expressive face, shaking his head softly at her adorableness before placing his personal stamp on the table.
The mood today was surprisingly harmonious, hence even though her heart was filled with her deep thoughts, she had not refused his kind gesture. She moved immediately towards his desk before reaching out for his stamp and examining it curiously, slowly getting the hang of the weight of it before she began stamping his mark on the letters on after the other.
She felt an overwhelming sense of achievement with each stamp, as it had given her the false impression of an emperor, and it felt AMAZING!
As a woman herself, she somewhat understood how the Queen Dowager felt and why she would go to such measures to grab onto such high authority.
After that, even without Yan Jing leading her, she positioned herself properly on the stool and began stamping onto the letters which had been settled by Yan Jing previously, obviously enjoying the fun work.
Yan Jing would glance at her direction frequently before smiling tenderly at her actions and allowed her to continue on at her own pace. He would even reach out with his handkerchief occasionally to wipe off the building sweat on her forehead, the pampering posture was even worse than that of Princess Yong Kang.
Although she was somewhat embarrassed by his actions, she had chosen to cooperate as his actions had not annoyed her at her.
As the gentle breeze blew past, the handsome man who was seated under the canopy looked extremely striking… At least he had been, until Yan Dao arrived, as he had frowned in annoyance at the horrible view as if he had been stabbed in his eyes.
“Second brother is here?”
Yan Dao? She released the stamp from her grasp before lifting her head up curiously, staring at the man who was standing at the hallway while gazing at them coldly. Ah, it’s really him, but why is he here? She thought curiously.
His face was as cold as ever, even when he made his way slowly towards the desk to greet his elder brother, “Big brother, I was sent here by mother as she had received a complaint from our sister regarding her horrible treatment here, hence I was sent here to check.”
Yan Luan – Title “Mi Yang Weng Zhu”, the daughter of the imperial princess
Yan Jing – Eldest brother of Yan Luan
Yan Dao – Second brother of Yan Luan
Imperial Princess – Title “Princess YongKang”, favorite sister of the current emperor
ZhaoYu – Princess YongKang’s personal maid.
Yan Rong – consort of Princess YongKang, father of Yan Luan, Yan Jing, Yan Dao and Yan Fei.
Lord Chu – Title “Guo Jiu”, brother of the current Queen Dowager
(TNote: Guo Jiu means “uncle of the country”, usually bestowed to the emperor’s uncle.)
Lady Chu – Legitimate wife of Lord Chu after his previous legitimate wife passed away
Chu YanShang – Title “Xian Zhu”, daughter of Lord Chu, pampered and loved by the queen dowager
Jiang FuYuan – the other girl who had drowned together with Yan Luan on the day of the feast.
Lord and Lady Jiang – House Jiang was bestowed the title “Heng Guo Gong”. It is a title of nobility and authority. (TNote: From what I’ve seen, there are usually 4 of these Guo Gong in each country, the position is pretty high, I think it’s right under the Wang title if I’m not mistaken…)
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