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“How strange! Why is there a lingzhi growing in the soil?” exclaimed Ting Yue softly in surprise.
Right at this time, Jue Chen suddenly coughed a mouthful of blood. He staggered, then fell to the ground.
“How could this be? Guards, hurry and help Daoist Priest up!” When Ye Hongyi saw this, he immediately instructed the guards to help Jue Chen over to him.
“Your Majesty… For the sake of gaining Your Majesty’s trust, this humble Daoist has revealed Heaven’s plans… So now this humble Daoist’s life has been shortened due to the wrath of Heaven… This lingzhi glows with violet light. It is an extremely auspicious omen, a great sign of prosperity! Your Majesty must move it to Central Dragon Palace and carefully cultivate it. It will definitely guarantee longevity for Your Majesty for as long as the Heavens exist…” After Jue Chen forced out these words, he immediately fell unconscious.
“Daoist Priest! Guards! Hurry and carry the Daoist priest over to the imperial hospital!” commanded Ye Hongyi, his face filled with worry.
Once the guards carried Jue Chen out of Guan Osprey Palace, Ye Hongyi immediately instructed the gardeners to move the lingzhi into a porcelain pot of the highest quality and carry it to Central Dragon Palace.
During dinner, Yao Mowan, who had gone through a lot today, leaned back tiredly on the chaise lounge as she gently stroked Fluffy’s fur.
“A lingzhi that big can’t even be found in the imperial palace, so how exactly did you get your hands on it?” Ye Junqing was sitting by the table and looking towards Yao Mowan in puzzlement.
“Just because the imperial palace doesn’t have it doesn’t mean that Phoenix Feather Manor wouldn’t have it,” replied Yao Mowan with a slight smile, her eyes sparkling.
“Yan Nansheng’s sure pitiful… In this prince’s opinion, even if Jue Chen has exhibited some extraordinary abilities today, His Majesty still wouldn’t fully believe in him.” Ye Junqing could vividly imagine the scene of Yan Nansheng leaning weakly on a table as he vomited blood. He couldn’t help but sigh.
“Of course not. Mowan’s waiting.” Yao Mowan’s lips hooked in a smile as a shrewd light flashed through her eyes.
“Waiting for what?” Ye Junqing looked towards Yao Mowan curiously. Right at this time, Yin Xue flew down with a ledger that was nearly half an inch thick.
“Your Imperial Highness, the item you’ve been waiting for has arrived.” As Yin Xue spoke, she placed the thick account book down next to Yao Mowan.
“Yes. Carry the side table over, and bring over this consort’s treasure too,” instructed Yao Mowan as she sat up straight. When Yin Xue placed the gold abacus in front of Yao Mowan, Ye Junqing abruptly rose to his feet in stunned amazement. He walked over to her curiously.
“What is this?” When Ye Junqing saw that the cover of the ledger had the words ‘Yao Manifest Trade’s Silk Fabric Store, 23rd Year’, a guess started forming.
“It’s time to calculate exactly how many assets Mowan possesses.” Yao Mowan took the account book as she gave the abacus a shake with her other hand. She started flipping through the account book and her jade-like fingers flew on the abacus as gracefully as if she was stroking the strings of a zither. The resulting sound was crisp and melodious. It was only now that Ye Junqing noticed that the gold abacus actually contained beads made of a combination of white jade, jadeite, and glass. That was why they made such a pleasant sound as they collided with each other.
“This is Mangyuan’s ledger? There’s this much?” Ye Junqing looked towards Yao Mowan in disbelieving realization.
“Is it bad to have more? If one day, Prince encounters trouble, you can consider seeking shelter with Mowan. With these assets, it’d be no trouble to guarantee the basics of food and clothing.”
“This prince has no interest in days of living while relying on someone else’s charity!” said Ye Junqing indignantly.
“Then what kind of days is Prince living now?” Yao Mowan smiled lightly as her fingers continued to move rapidly like a smooth stroke of wind.
Ye Junqing was at a loss for words, then he sullenly stormed off.
The next day, when Jue Chen woke back up, the first thing he did was use his tongue to lick his teeth to make sure that he had swallowed the sack of blood he had previously squeezed between his teeth.
“Daoist Priest is awake?” The gentle voice swept past his ears like the spring wind. Upon hearing this voice, Jue Chen looked over and was surprised to find an extremely beautiful face appear before him.
“This humble Daoist…”Jue Chen was about to get up, but Yao Suluan gently pressed his shoulder to stop him.
“Daoist Priest’s currently in poor health so there’s no need to worry about formalities.” As Yao Suluan spoke, she lifted the teacup she was holding to his lips.
“This humble Daoist… is grateful for Your Highness’s empathy…” Jue Chen couldn’t help but gulp when he felt Yao Suluan’s fingers slowly massage his shoulder and his voice was hoarse when he spoke.
“Suluan and Daoist Priest has also once had the fortune to meet a few times. When Suluan heard that Daoist Priest had fainted after vomiting blood yesterday, Suluan was so worried that she could not sleep, which is why Suluan has selfishly entered Remote Realm Courtyard to visit. It’s good that Daoist Priest is fine, otherwise Suluan’s heart would’ve…” Yao Suluan lowered her phoenix eyes slightly as her hand which was on Jue Chen’s shoulder seemed to reflexively stroke down towards his chest.
“Jue Chen appreciates Noble Consort’s kindness.” As Jue Chen spoke, he took the teacup with both hands and seemed to inadvertantly shift backwards slightly.
“Since Daoist Priest is fine, Suluan will return to her palace for now and come visit again later.” Yao Suluan knew that she couldn’t stay too long in Remote Realm Courtyard, so she unwillingly moved her hand away and turned to leave.
As Jue Chen watched Yao Suluan walk out with swaying steps, he couldn’t help but exhale hard in relief. That was so close! He had barely managed to hold himself back.”
“Who are you… Mmph…” Just as Jue Chen relaxed, a figure suddenly flashed past.
In Guan Osprey Palace, Yin Xue was reporting everything she saw in full to Yao Mowan.
“Tsk tsk, what a pity. Daoist Priest, how could you reject the beauty that was right in front of you?” Yao Mowan looked towards Jue Chen with a sincere expression of lament as she lifted her hand to indicate for him to rise.
“This humble Daoist swears that this humble Daoist does not harbor any trace of covet for Noble Consort Li! Your Imperial Highness, please see the truth!” Jue Chen knew very well that Yao Suluan was the second older sister of the pestilence demon that was currently in front of him. Even if he wanted a woman, there was still no need to break ground on the local god’s territory. Ever since that night, Jue Chen had understood from the bottom of his heart that it would be better to die than to offend this great ancestor. As for what exactly happened that night, Jue Chen was determined to take it to his grave.
“Why? Is Second Older Sister not pretty? She can’t enter Daoist Priest’s eyes?” asked Yao Mowan, her eyes widened in confusion.
“That’s good then. Listen up, if Yao Suluan paws at you again, there’s no need to polite. Flowers that wish to be plucked should be directly plucked. There’s no need to end up waiting until all the flowers are gone and there’s only an empty branch to snap, understood?” Yao Mowan lifted her brows as she instructed this sternly.
“This… isn’t really good right?” Jue Chen lifted his eyes timidly as he looked towards Yao Mowan probingly.
“Of course it’s good! Since Second Older Sister has that need, you should just fulfill her. If this consort hears that you pretended to be aloof from material pursuits again, you should prepare for a visit to the castration room! Some things, if not used, should just be gotten rid of.” Yao Mowan looked towards Jue Chen, her expression completely serious.
“This humble Daoist guarantees to satisfy Noble Consort Li!” Upon hearing this, Jue Chen immediately made this vow solemnly.
“In five days, the violet light lingzi placed in Central Dragon Palace will show signs of wilting and it’ll gradually lose its luster. You know what to do at that time?”
“This humble Daoist understands.” Jue Chen nodded firmly.
“Good. Yin Xue, send him back.” Yao Mowan glanced towards Yin Xue meaningfully. Yin Xue naturally understood what her master meant, so as she was bringing Jue Chen back to Remote Realm Courtyard, she first threw him into Jade Lake so that he could have a good long swim. Hence, when Jue Chen finally got back, he caught a chill that night and only got better the day that he received Ye Hongyi’s summon.
In Central Dragon Palace, Ye Hongyi’s brows were tightly furrowed as he securitized the lingzhi that was by the window with a dark expression.
“We wish to know why this lingzhi has become so withered?” Ye Hongyi looked towards Jue Chen angrily. The reason why Ye Hongyi hadn’t gone to look for Jue Chen since that day was because Jue Chen was once his imperial second older brother’s hanger-on after all. He couldn’t help but be apprehensive of making use of this past acquaintance without careful consideration.
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