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Lu Wuyi frowned deeply. The call in his ears was getting more real. He began to feel afraid, stretching his arms to wave away those horrible sounds. However, his hands were controlled firmly by a force. His face was burning. He was slapped by someone.
Opening his eyes suddenly, Lu Wuyi only saw Leng Changxi’s stolid face.
“You,” Lu Wuyi got up in a hurry. He wanted to curtsey, but he was afraid that his movement would attract others’ attention. So he lowered his voice, “Why do you come here?”
“I’m asking you. Do you know what’s wrong with Elder Princess’s food every day?” Qin Yunuan came straight to the point.
The evening wind was blowing gently, bringing a chill to Lu Wuyi, which was nothing compared to the coldness in Qin Yunuan’s eyes. It was the first time for him to see Qin Yunuan’s decisive and sharp eyes. At last, she had guessed something.
Lu Wuyi lowered his head, “I was also forced to do it.”
“It is you who did it, then,” Qin Yunuan gave Leng Changxi a hint with her eyes. The latter immediately pushed the dagger in his hand against Lu Wuyi’s throat. With simply the softest scratch, Lu Wuyi’s artery will be cut off, causing him to bleed to death at the very moment. “Tell us,” Qin Yunuan stared at Lu Wuyi, “Why did you do this? You have nothing against Elder Princess, so you must be following other’s orders. Is the man Jing Yuanchu?”
Lu Wuyi shook his head, looking much frustrated, “I… I can’t say.”
“You can’t say?” Leng Changxi pushed the dagger much closer to Lu Wuyi’s throat, “Now that you can’t say, it seems that your throat is utterly useless. Shall I cut it off for you?”
“I…” Lu Wuyi lowered his head, “Alright. I’ll tell you everything. But you got to promise not to let him know that it is me who tell you this.”
“In the end, you cherish your own life most,” Qin Yunuan sneered at Lu Wuyi. Otherwise, he wouldn’t turn from Sima Ray’s camp to Qin Yunuan’s, ending up leaving in Wanyan Su’s team and being taken in by Jing Yuanchu. Dou Meishuang survived with her ability to recognize clearly the situation and know what should do and what shouldn’t. On the other hand, Lu Wuyi totally depended on his fear of death to switch from one large camp to another.
Lu Wuyi held his breath and said, “At first, I don’t know that Thirteenth Prince wants to harm Elder Princess. He took away several kinds of elixirs from me, including those highly poisonous ones and less poisonous ones. I thought that he needed them to protect himself. But half a month ago, when Elder Princess caught a cold, I found in the process of diagnosing that Elder Princess was poisoned by my nepenthe. I can feel that the one who poisoned her carefully mixed nepenthe with several other tonics to cover her pulse condition, but after all, nepenthe was developed by me. I’m the person most familiar with its drug property and effects.”
“What is nepenthe?” Qin Yunuan made a detailed inquiry.
“It’s a kind of medicine that can make people lose memory temporarily,” Lu Wuyi paused, then continued, “However, the memory loss is also selective. At first, the medicine is used to help those who dwell too much on their sad past to relieve pain, mostly the loss of their children or wives. Therefore, this pill will only make people forget the past they can’t face and lovesickness as well.”
“So,” Leng Changxi’s voice began to drift, “mother is forgetting Jing Donghua?”
Elder Princess had waited for Jing Donghua in Yeren Valley loyally for 20 years, which was absolutely the biggest pain in her heart. However, every cloud has a silver lining. At this moment, when they were so close to West Liang, the capital of West Xia, if Elder Princess had forgotten about Jing Donghua, how should she recognize him? If Jing Donghua knew that Elder Princess had taken nepenthe, then it would be good. What could be worse was that Jing Yuanchu’s goal was much more. When Elder Princess and Jing Donghua met each other, there were only two possible ways if Elder Princess couldn’t remember Jing Donghua: one was that Jing Yuanchu would slander Elder Princess by blaming her for forgetting the feelings in the past and even make up some unrealistic lies to aggravate Elder Princess’s crime. The other was that Jing Donghua believed firmly that the woman in front of him was not Elder Princess. It was a greater pain that two people loving each other couldn’t recognize each other when they were face-to-face.
Having already known that Jing Yuanchu harbored malicious intentions, Qin Yunuan had never thought that he played his cards so well. It was lucky that Elder Princess took out the white sugar sponge cake today. Otherwise Qin Yunuan wouldn’t have realized it.
“Where is the antidote?” Leng Changxi looked into Lu Wuyi’s eyes, “You are the one who makes the nepenthe. You must have its antidote.”
Tottering, Lu Wuyi said, “Haven’t I said just now? Thirteenth Prince took away many elixirs from me along with the antidote of nepenthe.”
Well, how thoughtful Jing Yuanchu was!
“It’s your elixir. You must know the formula of the antidote,” Leng Changxi stared at Lu Wuyi, “Write it down, or make it now.”
Lu Wuyi was scared to shiver by Leng Changxi. He stammered, “But… but even if I write down the formula, it’s impossible to find all the ingredients, especially one of them. You may not find it for the rest of your life.”
Lu Wuyi choked, “The warmest blood.”
“The antidote of nepenthe cannot be made unless you find a person with the warmest blood who is willing to offer a bowl of blood as an added ingredient.” Lu Wuyi thought that this condition would frighten Leng Changxi’s determination. To his surprise, Leng Changxi just smiled, “It’s easy! I can get that.”
“How is that possible?” Lu Wuyi wouldn’t believe it. Leng Changxi lowered his eyebrows to look at him. He was not going to tell him that he himself had the warmest blood. He didn’t want to expose himself too much to the man. So he merely said in a firm tone, “Anyway, I can get the warmest blood. For the rest ingredients, you need to get them regardless of the cost. Also, you need to keep the making of the antidote as a secret. Lu Wuyi, I’ll be watching you. I’ll be watching you all the time.”
Leng Changxi stretched out his index fingers and middle fingers. He pointed at his own eyes first, and then pointed at Lu Wuyi’s eyes as a hint.
The crescent far away was already falling into the western mountains. It was time for the soldiers to change their guards. When the sun just rose, Jing Yuanchu was the first to get up. He saw from afar that Qin Yunuan and Leng Changxi leaning against the rock were still in a light sleep. He couldn’t help smiling with a hint of contempt and triumph. He used to think about how great the first general of Qi was. After being entrusted for so many times, he was cautious at first. However, as far as what he saw now, the experience in Yeren Valley had taken away the vigor of the tiger. Now Leng Changxi seemed to be satisfied with any comfort. He had no ambition or enterprise.
Three days later, in West Liang, the capital of West Xia, the return of Thirteenth Prince, who had been away from the capital for three months to perform the task, was cheered and welcomed by all the residents in the city.
Sitting in the carriage, Qin Yunuan seemed to feel the enthusiasm around her wave after wave. People surrounding her all dressed up as natives of West Xia. Men all looked graceful wearing robes jacket breasted jacket. Women’s dresses were extremely magnificent. They all tied colorful silk ribbons to their chest with dresses and half-arm waistcoats outside and a long-sleeve shirt inside. When they walked, their dresses’ hemlines would sway. The whole scene looked like it was a large garden.
It seemed that Jing Yuanchu had won lots of people’s hearts. People they passed by all threw flowers towards Jing Yuanchu excitedly to show their admiration for Thirteenth Prince.
Qin Yunuan could even hear passers-by talk in high-sounding phrases.
“What a good person Thirteen Prince is! A few years ago, when a drought happened in the southwest of the country, he had sold a lot of treasure in the mansion to support the victims by sending food and drinks. What a messianic figure he is!”
“There’s more! I’ve heard that even beggars can have a bowl of chicken soup on the day he married. If you ask me, I’ll say that Thirteenth Prince is not only rich but also benevolent and kind.”
“That’s true. Indeed, Thirteenth Prince and his wife are a couple with good hearts. He is much better than the crowned prince.”
Jing Yuanchu was mentioned in the same breath as the officially crowned prince of Jing Yuanchu in public. It seemed that the position of the crowned prince was in danger.
Xinger, who also sat in the carriage, gritted her teeth tightly. What she cared about was that actually all the people thought Thirteenth Prince and the mean woman were a perfect couple.
The carriage stopped in front of the courier station. Thirteenth Prince got down from a horse himself to ask Elder Princess to stay here for a rest.
Elder Princess stepped on the wooden footboard. She lifted her eyes to look at the courier station of antique beauty and smiled to Leng Changxi, “Are we going to stay here?”
Leng Changxi nodded and looked at Jing Yuanchu. His tone was inquiring, but his look was determined, “We… are going to stay here, aren’t we.”
Leng Changxi intentionally stressed the word “we” to tell Jing Yuanchu not to separate him from Elder Princess so easily.
Jing Yuanchu smiled and nodded, “Of course. Father’s condition has not been stable yet. When he’s getting better, I’ll take Elder Princess to the palace to see him.”
Leng Changxi didn’t look at him because he didn’t trust him at all, “That’s the best.”
Now that Elder Princess came to stay here, she will definitely choose the best yard. Although the courier station was not large, there happened to be an East Garden where the surrounding was beautiful and quiet, which was the best for Elder Princess to have a rest-cure.
Elder Princess stayed in the principal room of the East Garden, while Leng Changxi and Qin Yunuan chose a side room to live temporarily. Their main aim was to take care of Elder Princess.
“Xinger will stay to serve you,” Jing Yuanchu took a glance at Xinger, and said in a tone of command, “I’ll enter the palace to visit my father, then I’ll return to my own mansion to deal with some trifles. I have to go now.”
“Your Highness,” Xinger was unwilling to part. After all, once Jing Yuanchu was back to his mansion, he returned to the Dou woman’s side.
“Xinger, you need to remember your own identity,” Jing Yuanchu frowned, which was the signal of the end of his patience.
Xinger was left speechless. She didn’t dare to say one more word. However, not long after Jing Yuanchu had left, Xinger immediately returned to her original state, ordering servants in the courier station to arrange a variety of furniture and decorations.
Just when everybody was busy, a high-pitched woman’s voice came from outside the yard, “Who is Leng Changxi? Get out!”
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