[TYCDTN] Chatper 139 Part 1
Translated by: Jellylynn
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Edited by: Lynn
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Names mentioned in this chapter (which can also be found in the glossary):
-沈元奇(Shěn yuán qí)- Shen Yuan Qi, Yu Xiang’s biological elder brother.
-九公主(jiǔ gōngzhǔ)- Ninth Princess, Yu Xiang’s best friend.
-白云道观(báiyún dàoguàn)- Baiyun Taoist temple
It was another annual Sacrificial Festival. Everyone, commoners and dignitaries of the capital, gathered at Baiyun Taoist Temple to pray for good weather and rain for the coming year.
As Shen Yuan Qi wandered through the forest of blooming peach blossoms, he heard the familiar sound of laughter in front of him. He stopped in his tracks and turned around to leave.
“Lord Shen, wait for me!” The Ninth Princess hurriedly caught up with him, followed by two palace maids carrying food boxes. “Lord Shen, the peach blossoms are in full bloom here. The scenery is beautiful, why don’t we sit down and eat something?”
She tilted her petite face up. Her bright eyes filled with joy at the sight of her beloved. The two palace maids immediately took out cloth towels and spread them on the soft grass. Then, they took out the tea boxes and arranged them neatly.
“Come and sit down!”
While Shen Yuan Qi was still hesitating, the Ninth Princess had already pulled him down to the ground. Seeing him sit in a rather dishevelled state, she pursed her small lips and grinned cheerfully.
“The Imperial Kitchen just created the green tea pastry. It is sweet but not cloying; it melts in your mouth and is full of tea flavour. I like it. Try it too, Lord Shen.” With an anticipated expression, the Ninth Princess picked up a piece of light green pastry and fed it to Shen Yuan Qi’s mouth.
Shen Yuan Qi could not help but sigh in his heart. Although the Ninth Princess had grown up in the inner palace, her nature was unsophisticated; and would always give her heart and soul to those she cared about. She didn’t know of any tricks, let alone tricks to seduce her partner to fall in love with her. The only thing she would do was to give her favourite things to her partner. She loved to eat, so she would send delicious pastries to the manor from time to time, causing Shen Yuan Qi to feel complicated.
At an early age, Shen Yuan Qi envisaged what kind of wife he would marry in the future. She had to be a woman of virtue and competence, gentle and yielding; a woman who would help him with the household and keep the affairs within the household in order, while he strived in imperial court. The Ninth Princess was not all what he had envisaged, but she had the most precious quality of all — sincerity.
Who wouldn’t like a sincere person? Having experienced so many betrayals and trials, Shen Yuan Qi yearned for a simple life and relationship. It was not that he didn’t love the Ninth Princess, but she was the Emperor’s biological younger sister. Her identity was unattainable and unreachable; whereas himself, although he was a second-rank official of the Ministry of Justice, he was a merchant by birth and had been sold into slavery before.
In order not to add to his sorrow, he could only suppress his inner longing and waved his hand to decline, “You can eat it yourself, Princess. I have no interest in very sweet pastries. Please don’t send anyone to send food boxes to this lowly official’s manor in the future.”
The Ninth Princess froze and forced a smile as she said, “So you don’t like pastries. In fact, I actually don’t like them either and will never eat them again. What do you like then? I’ll send something else instead.”
She reached out her fingertips and unconsciously ruffled the pastries arranged in the shape of flower petals, appearing very dejected.
“Replying to the Ninth Princess, this lowly official does not have any other hobby, so this lowly official does not dare to trouble the princess.” Shen Yuan Qi couldn’t hold himself back and added, “Since the pastries have been brought, it would be a waste not to eat them. This lowly official will accompany the Princess to eat a few. This lowly official has important business to discuss with my colleagues after eating, so I must take my leave. Princess does not need to send anything further to my manor in the future. This lowly official is afraid that I cannot afford to do so.”
How could the Ninth Princess not understand such an obvious attitude of rejection? She blinked her teary eyes and mumbled, “Will…Will you accompany me to finish the pastry before you leave?”
Shen Yuan Qi hesitated for a moment before nodding. “Yes.”
The Ninth Princess picked up a piece of pastry and bit into it little by little ‒ nibbling it slowly with her teeth. After nibbling it for a long while, the outer layer of puff pastry was still intact. At this rate, even if the sun set, the pastry would still be unfinished.
Shen Yuan Qi wanted to laugh. The corners of his mouth were about to rise, but he controlled himself. The young girl in front of him was so pure and beautiful; she deserved to marry the best man in the Han Dynasty, and not to a humble scholar with no background or foundation. He was no match for her.
The Ninth Princess slowly licked the puff pastry with the tip of her tongue. Her teary eyes stared at the young man’s handsome and matchless face. It was as if the other person was the wine that accompanied the meal, and she was already drunk before she had a sip. Two round pink patches appeared quietly on her cheeks silently.
Shen Yuan Qi was on pins and needles being under her gaze. Just when he was wondering whether he should take his leave, he saw his servant rush over to report , “Master, Lord Wu is looking for you.”
“What is it regarding?”
“This servant does not know. He said he had something important to discuss with you.” He only noticed the Ninth Princess only after he finished relaying his message; he hurriedly knelt and paid his respect.
Shen Yuan Qi, who was originally looking for an excuse, was relieved to see that someone was willing to help him. He let out a big sigh of relief and immediately got up to take his leave. When he was far away, the Ninth Princess ate the pastry in her hand in two or three bites and rubbed her red eyes vigorously.
“I want Lord Shen to be my fuma. I will ask my imperial brother to bestow my marriage.” She stood up with a determined look on her face.
 驸马(fùmǎ)- Princess’ husband or the emperor’s son-in-law.