The spring rain pitter-pattered as it fell, the lightning outside flashed menacingly, and suddenly a bright ray of bluish-purple light shone into the house, then disappeared.
On the soft bed, Shen Shu’s brow wrinkled imperceptibly, then, she forcefully closed her eyes, her crow-feather-like eyelashes trembled uncontrollably as she tossed and turned in her sleep.
Next, Shen Shu emitted a cry of hopeless despair, and as if in accompaniment, a loud ringing clap of thunder resounded throughout the palace chamber.
In shock, Shen Shu sat up abruptly and opened her eyes. Those eyes, that were usually lively and expressive, were now like pools of dead water, the corners of her eyes were slightly reddened, and tears threatened to spill from them.
A bolt of lightning streaked across the sky, and lending the power of its light, Shen Shu was finally able to see that she was currently lying on a soft couch of gold-silk, the kind that could only be seen in the Northern Lin Palace. Above her head pinkish tassels seemed to hang down over her, the interior of the room was exactly the same as from the time before she had been sent to fulfill the political marriage to the Huns.
She looked at the familiar setup of the room around her, she felt like she hadn’t even woken up from her nightmare yet, and confusion in her eyes didn’t decrease at all.
She… Had she returned to the Palace?
Before she could mull over it any more, the doors to the inner palace chamber were suddenly flung open with a “bang”.
Shen Shu lifted her eyes to look in that direction, and before she could clearly make out the identity of the person in front of her, she soon heard a sharp, shrill voice, the tone was inflected with a touch of ridicule as it seeped into her ears, “Jiějie, your body must be so delicate, you merely fell into water, and yet you took about ten to twelve hours to regain consciousness?”
As she spoke, the girl lightly laughed, her words betraying a strong sense of hatred as she commented, “I almost thought that jiějie would never wake up again!”
The voice was unsettlingly familiar, but for a moment, Shen Shu was unable to pinpoint whose voice it was. She slowly lifted her eyes, and looked in the direction where the voice was coming from. What she saw was a young girl, wearing an aquamarine pleated gown. Her chin was tilted slightly upwards, and with the assistance of a crowd of palace maids, she began to delicately make her way towards Shen Shu.
The person was none other than the Empress Dowager’s birth-daughter, the Emperor’s sister by blood, revered by the entire palace like an ancestor, she was Princess Jingan—Shen Yuan.
Finally recognising the newcomer, Shen Shu’s brow imperceptibly wrinkled, and a streak of confusion flashed across her eyes.
Logically speaking, she should have just returned from the Mobei battlefield, how come she couldn’t remember when she had fallen into water?
Not to mention, she recalled that the year she was sent to be married to the Huns, Shen Yuan had long since been betrothed to the heir apparent of the Marquis of An Yang, and was soon to complete the marriage. Upon completion of the marriage, she would accompany the heir apparent of the Marquis of An Yang to his fief Ganzhou, so why was she still here?
Thinking of this, the questions in Shen Shu’s heart began to multiply, and for a moment, she failed to remember to stop herself from staring too long.
Noticing how blatantly Shen Shu was staring at her, Shen Yuan felt her heart racing as she got goosebumps, for some reason, she felt like Shen Shu’s gaze was vastly different from before, but if someone asked her to point out the exact reason behind this feeling, she was unable to directly pinpoint it.
Her thoughts continued, usually, whenever Shen Shu met her she would be meek and obedient, not even daring to breathe too audibly, so why on earth was she staring at her so noticeably today?
That vile, lowly child of a worthless maid—how dare she?! Could it be because of when she slipped and fell into the lake during the day, that water really entered her brain?! With such a theory, a shadow of sorrow covered Shen Yuan’s elegantly made-up face, and looking into Shen Shu’s eyes, she suddenly felt self-conscious.
“What are you looking at?! If you keep looking at me like that, this princess will order someone to dig out those flirtatious eyes of yours, is my royal highness someone that a low-life wretch like you can look at thusly?”
The one thing she coveted the most was Shen Shu’s eyes.
“Don’t think for a moment that just because my royal self felt pleasant today, and greeted you as my jiějie, that you actually deserve to sit shoulder-to-shoulder with my royal self. Forget you, even if that worthless servant girl of your mother was here too, in front of my royal self, she would only have the right to carry my shoes!”
Upon hearing this, Shen Shu stopped staring, unknowingly the hand hidden in her sleeve had already formed a tight fist. Her fingernails forcefully digging into the flesh of her palm, leaving behind bloodied crescent-moon marks.
If it wasn’t for the fact that her mother had implored with her to hide her claws and that she had to protect her younger brother at all costs, why in the blazes would she ever let Shen Yuan demean her like this, and mercilessly ridicule her birth mother.
Shen Shu silently gritted her teeth, her anger causing the fingers hidden in her sleeve to tremble slightly.
Four years ago, she had been sent far away to form a marriage alliance with the Huns for peace and stability between the two nations. Now, as the two states took up arms against each other, she had fallen from grace and become someone forfeited by the Northern Lin. If it hadn’t been for Pei Yunqian, who had risked his life to save her, she probably would have met her end as a lonely ghost on the yellow-earth of a battlefield.
Thinking such thoughts, she raised her head to look at Shen Yuan, “Pei Yunqian…” How was he now?
If it hadn’t been for Shen Shu’s reminder about Pei Yunqian, she had nearly forgotten the matter. Today, if Pei Yunqian hadn’t been such a busybody and gone to save Shen Shu, Shen Shu would probably have already been on her way to the yellow spring (death), and she wouldn’t have enjoyed such ‘luck’.
Before Shen Shu could finish, Shen Yuan laughed and replied, “Initially, my royal self had planned on coming here to share some good news with jiějie.”
As she spoke, Shen Yuan pretended to curtsey in greeting, but the gloating expression in her eyes was unmistakable.
“Today, mèimei would like to congratulate you jiějie, jiějie you must still be in the dark right, when jiějie experienced today’s accident of falling into water while at the Imperial Gardens, it can be considered that your ‘accident’ brought you some good fortune! Apparently, word is that the Ambassador of the Huns happened to pass by at the time, and was stunned by your breathtaking beauty jiějie, and as of this moment, is asking brother-Emperor for your hand in marriage! Jiějie, you’ll soon be sent to form a marriage alliance with the Huns, jiějie’s luck is really incomparable.”
While saying this, jealousy flashed across Shen Yuan’s eyes, the fact that Shen Shu had such a bewitching and enchanting face was an original sin, but now, she couldn’t help but be thankful for that face of hers.
Hearing this made Shen Shu wrinkle her brow, then she lifted her head to look at Shen Yuan. Her eyes still seemed clouded by confusion, as if she couldn’t understand why Shen Yuan was speaking of this.
Noticing that Shen Shu was not speaking, an uncontrolled expression of laughter appeared on Shen Yuan’s face, as she tried to ‘comfort’ her, “Jiějie, there’s no need to be afraid. Queen Mother wished to show her compassion, and she even gave you a special allowance for your personal servant maid to accompany you there, that way you can have a companion.”
While speaking, Shen Yuan arrogantly waved her hand, and the serving attendants instantly understood her meaning, and immediately dragged in someone from outside the chamber doors.
Looking at the young girl kneeling on the ground, Shen Shu felt her heart tremble, and the feeling of confusion exuding from her eyes grew even stronger.
This was because the person kneeling on the ground right now, was none other than her personal servant maid, Linlang, who had already died at the hands of the Huns. She remembered this with great detail, for she had personally buried Linlang and she knew that it was impossible for her to have come back to life.
She could hardly believe what she was seeing, if it weren’t for the pain in her heart that felt too real to be fake, she probably would have thought that those memories of the four years worth of lifeless days spent with the Huns was merely a dream.
Thinking as she was, she turned her head and coincidentally caught sight of her reflection in the bronze mirror. Her gaze immediately stopped, and for a good while, she had no idea what expression to wear.
For, the sight that entered her eyes, was a young lady’s reflection. The young lady was a beauty of jade bones and ice skin, her eyes and eyebrows looked like strokes from a painting. That pair of lively, expressive eyes seemed like they were immersed in a pool of March’s spring water, every frown, every smile, and every backward glance were actions of exquisite beauty. They shone as brightly as the luminous moon by Heaven’s edge, beautiful beyond comparison.
She knew very well that she had long passed the age of a girl’s blossoming, but the reflection in the mirror was so obviously her appearance from before she had been sent to fulfill the political marriage with the Huns.
After a moment or two, Shen Shu finally regained some focus, and with various thoughts running through her head, she merely inhaled a deep breath, and slowly raised her head. Catching Shen Yuan’s eyes, she tried her best to keep an even tone, and carefully enunciated, “At present, is it the Tenth Year of the Mingxuan Era?”
Digesting what she had just said, Shen Yuan sputtered out a laugh “Ha-Ha”, “I say, Shen Shu, you haven’t really been scared out of your wits right? Or could it be that your fall into water today has caused water to enter your brain too?”
Shen Shu remained silent, her gaze fixed on Shen Yuan’s face, without faltering at all. Her eyes seemed to hold shards of ice, and her gaze was piercingly cold.
Shen Yuan could sense a raw chill emanating from Shen Shu’s eyes, something that had never been present in the past, and this was enough to send waves of fear through her, causing her to tremble. Instinctively, she opened her mouth to say, “Now… It’s the Sixth Year of the Mingxuan Era.”
After hearing this reply, Shen Shu’s silence lasted for another couple of moments. Her crow-feather-like eyelashes lighty trembled as she tried to suppress the turmoil of emotions in her eyes. The corner of her mouth also began to curve upwards in a bittersweet smile.
It truly was as she had guessed! She had been reborn!
She had been reborn four years earlier, at this point in time, she had not yet left to complete the political marriage with the Huns, and she was still the unloved Princess Lingan in the Northern Lin Imperial Palace.
Still standing beside her, Shen Yuan couldn’t help but feel that the shadow of a smile on the corner of Shen Shu’s mouth was too unfamiliar and penetrating. It was clear to see that Shen Shu was exactly the same as she was from before, but for some reason a sense of fear seemed to seep into her heart, it truly was quite confusing for her. She muttered the words “How unlucky!” under her breath, and with a huff, lead her entourage away as she exited Shen Shu’s inner palace chambers.
After Shen Yuan left, Linlang hurriedly dried her tears, and got to her feet, diving towards the side of Shen Shu’s bed, “Princess, how are you, does your body feel uncomfortable in any way? This servant will go and look for an Imperial Physician to take a careful look at your royal highness Princess!”
Before Shen Shu could say anything, like beads from a broken beaded necklace, Linlang’s tears began to fall, big fat drops spattering against the floor, “It’s all because this servant is useless! I ran into Princess Jingan while on my way to invite an Imperial Physician, and the delay of being taken away by her has negatively impacted your highness’ body.”
Through hooded eyes, Shen Shu looked at the girl crouched by her bedside, she couldn’t help but feel a little absentminded as images of those painful, trying days flitted across her eyes. Back then, Linlang and herself had only each other to depend on as the Huns repeatedly pushed them to the edge of desperation.
After a lengthy pause, Shen Shu finally stopped reminiscing, and lifted a hand to help wipe away the tears on her face. Her voice was soft and gentle as she tried to comfort her, “Why are you crying, am I not perfectly alright now?”
Ever since the new Emperor had risen into power, the entire Capital knew that she—the only unmarried daughter of the former Emperor, was now the most unimportant princess in the entire Imperial Palace.
In her last life, the only worth her poor life had was her sacrifice for Northern Lin, when she went to those barbarian lands to complete the political marriage. This had in turn blessed the Northern Lin with four years of peace.
She could still recall the words of the Empress Dowager when she had been forced to fulfill the marriage alliance, ‘As a Northern Lin Princess, it is absolutely natural for one to sacrifice one's life for the nation. If the thought of the nation’s benefit is not enough for you to sacrifice yourself, then what about your birth brother?!
This life, she only wanted to live for herself. She would protect herself with care, and make sure her younger brother would be able to peacefully continue living the rest of his life. The most important thing was that she could not be sent to be married to the barbarian lands of the Huns again.
Half a second later, Shen Shu lowered her eyes, and said, “Linlang, do you know who rescued me from the water today?”
Linlang carefully combed through her memories of today’s incident, then she replied, “If this servant is not mistaken, the person should be Great General Pei.”
“Great General Pei? Pei Yunqian?”
Upon hearing this, astonishment flashed across her face, so, in her last life, when she fell into the water, had it also been Pei Yunqian who had rescued her?
Shen Shu couldn’t stop a bitter laugh from escaping her, thinking back carefully, in both her lives, she already owed Pei Yunqian her life a total of three times, how on earth would she ever repay him?
Linlang was oblivious to the inner workings of Shen Shu’s mind, and misunderstood Shen Shu’s expression of surprise.
It was common knowledge that the Great General Pei Yunqian, who, in possession of immense military power, was a man of unpredictable moods, malicious and ruthless. Everyone described him as a treacherous court official.
In her last life, Shen Shu had believed these rumours, and had avoided any contact with this Great General, she hadn’t even dared to spare a glance towards him.
But, until that day, upon the yellow-earth of the Mobei battlefields, all she had seen, was how that so-called cold-blooded and heartless man, had fought with his life to protect her.
Thinking of this, Shen Shu’s eyes flashed.
If someone completely unrelated to oneself, could sacrifice their life for that person, how bad could they be?
Therefore, it was obvious that those rumours were fake.
Shen Shu’s brow wrinkled slightly, hidden in her sleeve, her fingers uncontrollably clenched inwards, now, how was she supposed to prevent this unlucky incident from falling onto her again?
As if she had suddenly realised something, Shen Shu abruptly lifted up her head, and like a drowning man clutching at straws, she stumbled outwards.
Perhaps it was because her heart was a chaotic mess, and that’s why her steps were also disorderly. The minute she pushed open the palace chamber door, she lost her balance, and was sent tumbling toward the ground. Instinctively she thought this fall was going to be harsh, but unexpectedly, she ended up falling into a steady embrace, one with a lingering scent of sandalwood.
Two pairs of eyes found each other.
The man’s ink-black hair was neatly combed up, his facial features striking to see. Sword-sharp eyebrows and star-like eyes, even the tiny red mole by the corner of his eye was exceptionally bewitching. All of which added together, only made him appear more like a person from a painting. The only thing was that those pair of eyes were deep pools of ice, bone-chilling, and a complete contrast to what she remembered from Mobei.
A moment passed, and the man turned his face away, his Adam’s apple bobbed up and down, and something sinister settled between his eyebrows, “Not letting go yet?”
Shen Shu’s mind was completely blank right now, and her clear, bright and bewitching almond eyes merely stared at him, those crow-feather-like eyelashes slightly trembling, almost as if she were nervous beyond comparison.
After a while, she gently said, “I don’t wish to be sent to complete the marriage alliance, General, are you willing to marry me?”
The author has something to say:
Future work 《To be Married to the Disabled Crown Prince To Chongxi》My fellow baba please bookmark this~
The night before she received the imperial decree of marriage, Song Qingyi witnessed the bloodbath brought on by the Crown Prince as he ascended the throne. Rivers of blood flowed from all members of the court, and even the Song Family could not escape this fate.
In the palace enveloped by pitch-black darkness, a man wearing robes drenched in blood stood before her, his icy-cold fingertips lightly tracing across her face. His voice was deep and forceful, “Do you still intend on running?”
Song Qingyi shook her head, “Your highness… Have mercy on me…”
The man’s gaze sharpened, and he slowly lowered his head to her ear, his voice now slightly hoarse with a beguiling tone, “Wrong again, call me once more.”
Song Qingyi’s voice trembled as though she were about to cry, “M-my… My husband…”
When she awakened from the dream, in order to save the lives of her entire family, against all opposition, Song Qingyi remained steadfast in her decision to be married into the Eastern Palace.
On the day of the big wedding, Song Qingyi’s legs trembled as she slowly walked to the side of the Crown Prince. “This… This commoner girl greets His Highness the Crown Princess.”
Jing Li slowly lifted his eyes, his fingertips lightly tapping the wheelchair. His voice was low and betrayed a dangerous tone as he asked, “What should you call gu?”
Suddenly reminded of the scenes in her dream, Song Qingyi’s heart shivered, and she instantly corrected herself, “My husband…”
Sweet little biscuit of a Modern romance《Accumulated Tenderness》My fellow baba please bookmark this~
*First-Marriage-Then-Love/Double V/Two-way Crush/Tiny sweet biscuit
God-level street-pouncing Small female idol x Bottomline-less Wife Pampering Movie Emperor】
The entire entertainment industry knew that Jiang Yu was an 18th-line small fry female idol, who had used underhand tactics to gain fame and popularity and was still causing chaos.
The netizens claimed that she was a clout-chaser, with a plastic-surgery face, a white lotus, and on a number of occasions their scolding and negative comments had topped the internet, and every time Jiang Yu had never appeared to give an explanation.
Until one day, an anti-fan uncovered her personal Weibo account with the username “Won’t_Give_Up_Until_I_Can_Sleep_With_Qi_Zhoushi”, and once again, Jiang Yu’s Weibo account experienced another vicious slaughtering.
Unable to hold it in anymore, Jiang Yu tried to deny the rumours, “Personal Idol Fan Account from High School Days, Thank You in Advance for Not Digging Any Further!”
Cream of the crop in the entertainment industry, Qi Zhoushi had enjoyed a rumour-free past 5-years, with his heaven-blessed godly visuals and top-notch acting skills, he successfully gained the title of “Film Emperor” for a consecutive three years, alas, he still remained an ice-mountain.
Much later, at one of the celebratory dinners, a drunken Jiang Yu wobbled dangerously as she moved towards Qi Zhoushi. Standing on tiptoes, she supported herself by leaning onto his shoulders, and haphazardly began kissing his Adam’s apple.
A deathly silence filled their surroundings...
Everyone was silently mourning Jiang Yu’s actions.
The very next second, the usually-ascetic and desireless man suddenly lifted his arm to embrace her slim waist, helping her regain her footing. Then, he slowly lowered his head towards the woman’s lips, and said, “Stand properly, and kiss a little higher.”