Life is so Short, and the World is so Chaotic
Things went as Feng Yu Heng had expected. Before dinner, sure enough, someone came from the Feng manor to Tong Sheng pavilion, and it was not just one person. It was a pair of people.
The Cheng shi sisters coming was something that Feng Yu Heng thought would happen. After the two entered the manor, they did not communicate with her too much. Now that she was about to leave the capital, they had to make this trip.
The Cheng shi sisters saluted Feng Yu Heng, paying their respects and wishing county princess well. Feng Yu Heng personally invited the two into the hall then gave them seats, as a servant brought out some tea. When the servant left, she closed the door behind her.
The two were direct and did not bother with any small talk, as the elder sister, Cheng Jun Man, said: “When aunty told us to marry into the Feng manor, she said that county princess would need to go and produce steel sooner or later, so us sisters will definitely need to take care of the family.”
Cheng Jun Mei also said: “Aunty is worried about that eldest princess from Qian Zhou because the tributary moon palace silk that was brought in this year was soaked in musk.”
Feng Yu Heng was slightly startled; musk? It would increase the strength and rate of contractions to stop early pregnancies. Moon palace silk was a valuable thing. After Da Shun obtained it, it would definitely be awarded to the Empress or a favored concubine. Qian Zhou had this sort of idea?
Seeing her fall silent in contemplation, the Cheng shi sisters did not rush her. They patiently waited until Feng Yu Heng let out a slight sigh, as her usual calm smile returned to her face. They then heard her say: “Qian Zhou has wicked ambitions. Sooner or later, they will need to eat their own poisoned fruit. Didn’t father Emperor award two bolts of moon palace silk to Ru Jia? You two should think of a way to have those two bolts sent into the palace for her to use. Remember, she must use it herself.”
The two looked at each other. Having received instructions from Feng Yu Heng, they could not help but smile, “County princess, don’t worry. We understand.”
“Un.” Feng Yu Heng nodded then said: “You must take care to watch over Han shi’s pregnancy. You absolutely must make sure that she can safely give birth to her child. Make absolutely certain that nobody can do anything that child.”
Cheng Jun Mei was puzzled, “Is Han shi one of county princess’ people?”
Feng Yu Heng shook her head, “No, but her child must be born. Like that, this family will become more entertaining.”
The Cheng shi sisters did not understand what these words meant, but before they left the imperial palace, the Empress had said that they would listen to county princess Ji An after arriving at the Feng manor. Feng Jin Yuan would not be their support. It would be Feng Yu Heng.
Cheng Jun Main quickly expressed herself: “Very well, us sisters will definitely protect Han shi’s pregnancy. Some news came from the palace over the past few days. Concubine An’s insanity became worse. Surprisingly, she had the people of her palace perform a dance, and this happened to be seen by his Majesty, who ordered her execution. I heard that before she was sentenced to death, his Highness the fifth prince was taking care of her. Although he could sit at concubine An’s side, unfortunately, concubine An continued to think of him as his Highness the third prince.”
Feng Yu Heng had been inside her space for most of the past few days, or looking at accounts and arranging matters with Tong Sheng pavilion. How could she have the time or energy to worry about the situation outside. She truly had not heard anything about concubine Ann.
But thinking about it, after she had gone to Qing An Palace the last time, it would not have been very possible for concubine An to continue living well. Going crazy then dying might have been the best possible end for her. In regards to that woman, she had been very merciful. Otherwise, with her emerald hummingbirds poisoning the army, once she had told the Emperor, concubine An’s end would definitely have been much worse than going insane.
“Speaking of concubine An, I remembered something.” Feng Yu Heng said to the two: “Qing An Palace has a palace maid named Yin Lan. I once promised that I would protect her life at a critical moment. Can you two think of a method to handle this matter?”
The two pondered a little then nodded together, “Yes.”
Like this, Feng Yu Heng calmed down, “After she has been saved, just let her go. Have people observe her for a while. As long as she does not contact anyone in the Feng family, she can live as she likes. It will be unrelated to us.” Having finally handled all of her matters, Feng Yu Heng looked at the Cheng shi sisters and calmly said: “Presently, I do not have much that I can give you; however, I can promise to help you out. Consider it thanks for taking care of the Feng manor in my absence.”
The Cheng shi sisters stood up then solemnly saluted Feng Yu Heng. The responsibility of managing the Feng manor had been handed over.
The next day, Feng Yu Heng woke up early. Taking off her usual bright and beautiful clothes, she put on a plain set of Winter clothes. Aside from all of her clothes having their iconic wide sleeves, the rest of the clothes fit her perfectly, giving her a very clean look.
Wang Chuan and Huang Quan packed a small box of clothes for her and had already climbed into the carriage. On Yao shi’s side, there were servants that had helped her into Feng Yu Heng’s imperial carriage.
At this time, Yao shi was awake. Although her consciousness was still weak, she could still recognize people.
Qing Lan wrapped her up tightly with a cloak then said to her: “Young miss said that madam must not catch a cold. Let us sit further inside. The wind absolutely must not blow on you.”
Yao shi listening was the same as not listening. She did not react too much and could only have Qing Lan help nudge her further inside.
When Feng Yu Heng climbed into the carriage, she saw that Yao shi’s gaze was a little blank. Because of her addiction, her face would occasionally twitch awkwardly. Seeing it, her heart began to ache. It felt as though an angry flame was raging fiercely inside her chest.
“A-Heng.” Yao shi suddenly spoke, her expression showing a little confusion. Her eyes did not focus, but her mind was clear, as she said: “Me going to the military camp is not good. The military camp does not allow for women to be present. Don’t cause his Highness the ninth prince any trouble.”
“Mother, don’t worry.” Feng Yu Heng held her wrist and said: “Things have already been arranged with that side. We will not be living in a conspicuous place. He will not be troubled.”
Yao shi let out an “oh” sound, as her breathing became a little ragged. She began to discuss with Feng Yu Heng: “Can you get me a pastry to eat? I just want one piece, no! One bite! Just one bite is enough!”
Feng Yu Heng shook her head, “Mother, don’t blame A-Heng for being cruel. Once you have taken a bite, all of the suffering that you have endured these past few days will have been in vain.” As she said this, she flicked her wrist and pulled out two needles. Raising her hand, she placed one into Yao shi’s neck.
Yao shi slowly fell asleep, and Qing Lan wiped away some tears and covered her in a brocade blanket that had been prepared. Feng Yu Heng patted her shoulder and advised her: “Take good care of her.” She then turned around and got out of the carriage.
Outside, Xuan Tian Ming was still waiting in place, as Bai Ze told her: “This servant will personally take care of driving the imperial carriage that madam is in. County princess should sit with his Highness. Once we have arrived at the foot of the mountain, you will go over the mountain with his Highness, and this servant will bring madam and the luggage the long way around.”
She nodded and walked over to Xuan Tian Ming’s side, “Mother’s condition is still not good. My heart is filled with discomfort.”
Xuan Tian Ming pulled on her hand and told her: “The Northwest Army is located in the Ping Xu Mountains. You have been there before. That place is filled with mountains and hills. I believe that madam living there will be better than living in the county princess’ manor. Or perhaps a change in the surroundings will be good for her health.”
Feng Yu Heng agreed with this point, thus she nodded and finally put on a smile: “I knew that you had a way to make me feel better.”
He smiled, “This is not to make you feel better. This is the truth. Heng Heng, life is so short, and the world is so chaotic. In this limited lifetime, I will always take care of you and your family. This is my responsibility, and I am all too happy to do it.”
The smile on her face became even brighter, as it seemed that a knot in her heart had been relieved. In an instant, her innocent appearance was restored, “Xuan Tian Ming, let’s get in the carriage!”
Two imperial carriages, two carriages filled with luggage and the attendants that followed on horseback formed a mighty group that headed towards the city gates.
Unbeknownst to them, in front of the Feng manor, Xiang Rong poked her small head out from a corner and sent them off. Her gaze was filled with envy and hope. Heavens knew how much she wished she could be like her second sister and not be bound to the Feng manor. To be able to go along with her beloved, but An shi, who was standing behind her, pulled the small girl back into reality. An shi said: “I must remind you that second young miss not assigning that debt to us was her being generous; however, you definitely must not overstep your bounds. You cannot hope that she can continue to help you. One’s fate can only be changed through one’s own hands. It is not changed by relying on others. If you want to escape from this manor, you need to think of your own ideas. I don’t care what methods you use, but as long as you don’t have a mind to harm others, it is fine. If you really do succeed some day, concubine mother will personally send you out of through these gates. I will allow you to be happy and free. Even if you do not succeed, as long as you put forth your best effort, there is nothing to regret.”
Xiang Rong turned around and looked at An shi. The girl that was now one year older was able to think more thoroughly. She knew that concubine mother was doing this for her own good, and she also understood that everything relied on her own efforts. But she lacked confidence. This Feng manor was so profound and large. How should she do her best to get out?
“Let’s go back.” An shi reached out to pull her, “The day is still early. You can sleep a little longer. After you wake up, we need to go pay respects to elder madam and madam. That is the most important thing to do right now.”
Xiang Rong was pulled by An shi back into the manor. She was unwilling to look away; however, she was already unable to see any trace of Feng Yu Heng’s group.
From the capital to the military camp, from dawn to evening, they finally arrived in the mountains. The imperial carriage began to tilt and bump around. Feng Yu Heng drowsily clambered out of Xuan Tian Ming’s lap and asked him: “Have we entered the mountains?”
He reached out to help brush away some loose hair from her forehead, “After a little while longer, we will be at the foot of the mountains. Wake up a little. I will be bringing you over the mountains!”
The carriages finally stopped, and Xuan Tian Ming sat the little girl in his lap. When he used his qinggong and soared up the mountain, the cold wind blew fiercely, causing her cheeks to hurt; however, she felt extremely happy. She even opened her mouth to welcome this cold wind.
Xuan Tian Ming smiled and pulled her into his embrace and once again used his internal energy. Flying over the mountain, they entered the valley where the military camp was installed.
As they landed, Feng Yu Heng noticed that something was different. The empty valley did not have a single person. The further in they walked, the quieter it became. This silence would cause people to feel a bit flustered.
She was a little worried: “This is the only path into the camp. Normally, wouldn’t there be heavily armed guards here?” She asked Xuan Tian Ming, “Has something happened?”
She said this; however, there was no feeling of crisis. Instead, she was calm, as though she was walking through her own yard.
When the two moved along a small path until they arrived at an empty field in the military camp; however, they still did not see anyone.
But there was a bamboo pole there. It was very thick and very long. It should have been many bamboo poles bundled together. It was like the Jin Gu Bang from the Eastern Sea, standing there without moving.
Suddenly, from directly in front of them, a fierce wind surged forward. The force was strong and loud.
Feng Yu Heng’s eyes became wide, as she noticed countless arrows appear ten steps away and flying straight toward them.
TN: The Jin Gu Bang is the staff used by Sun Wu Kong in Journey to the West.