Yong Lin hurried out of the small wing.
This was the place where the guards and the Palace servants who had no duty gathered together. This average place was 108,000li (44906km, correct me if I’m wrong, I’m not very sure about this.) away from the Crown Prince and Shu Fei’s Palace, even the thatched hut (the toilet) was very far away.
But since he often used to sneak out here to play around, he was familiar with the road, going down the steps and passing by in the yard like an old horse knows his way.
The thatched hut was at the far end of the yard, and when he got here, the betting sound that was as loud as the sky rumbling noise was no longer heard.
Because of the large number of guards and servants in the Palace, the thatched hut wasn’t built in anything as important in quality, just a wooden house with a simple wooden door separated by a row of small single rooms.
Yong Lin chose to go in a random compartment and unfastened his belt.
It just so happened that there was movement outside the door, and it seemed there were people coming in again. Yong Lin was only concerned about getting things done quickly without delay and going back to continue to be the dealer, and so he ignored them.
“The snow is so heavy these days, it’s freezing to death.”
“Yes. Jin Fei Niangniang is the most thrifty, and not until recently has all the underground heaters been heated up.”
It turned out that they were two little Palace servants without duty, chatting while going to the thatched hut.
“You don’t say, at Shu Fei Niangniang’s side, the underground heaters and the heating stoves have been lit long ago. I heard Xiao Qian say that it is warm until you sweat all over when you enter the door. Tsk tsk, nobles are indeed nobles, and it is already a blessing for us to have a small stove. Between individuals are really incomparable, it all depends on which mother you choose when you are reincarnated. Look at those princes, they have a good life and good fortune. They are born to eat well and dress well, and we will serve them for the rest of our lives.”
“Hey, let me secretly tell you something, you must not envy the prince, if they are out of luck, they’ll meet a great misfortune. I am afraid that it is worse than us. Haven’t you seen the example of His Highness Yong Qi?”
“How can it be counted? If he could only be good and didn’t do anything, he wouldn’t have fallen into this condition. The Crown Prince is abolished, and it is inevitable that he will suffer grievances. Besides, isn’t he fine now? I heard he is not detained in the Inner Punishment Court, but moved to the Crown Prince’s Palace, and most of the servants are in charge of heating the underground heat. Ah, His Highness Yong Shan is such a cold-faced King of Hell, I can’t tell how he is being so good to his brother.”
“What do you know? You only saw that His Highness Yong Qi was abolished, but you didn’t see that the Crown Prince’s Palace is still a dangerous place. I think, His Highness Yong Shan may not be able to keep his own safety either.”
Yong Lin was shocked all over, he quietly approached, and leaned down against the thin door panel to listen.
The whispers from the next door were suddenly suppressed a lot.
“Ge, be careful, this is not a casual remark. If someone finds out, you will be killed.”
Most of the servants who entered the Palace had no relatives or friends. They often swore to recognize their brothers in the Palace, and it was common for them to form gangs, and call them “Gege” and “Didi” in private.
“Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone these words other than you. I’m telling you, just to remind you that this kind of heavy snow is not a good omen. The Palace is about to change, and something big will happen. The nobles above are vindictive, holding a grudge against each other. Let us lowly servants not provoke them, and only stay at the side line to be safe. If you are told to run an errand in the Crown Prince’s Palace or Shu Fei Niangniang’s Palace, you’d better find a way to refuse it, pretending to have a stomach ache or even crushing your own foot with a stone would be better too. On the other hand, go to Jin Fei Niangniang’s place from time to time to fawn over her.”
“Ge, your words are of course correct. However, isn’t His Highness the Crown Prince very favored by the Emperor? I heard that a while ago, he had been asked to do serious business as a grown up. I saw Chang Zongguan (Head Chang) holding a memorial on the way. What? Could it be that something like last year is going to happen again?”
Yong Qi being abolished happened in the sixth month last year.
He was crowned in the first month, and was abolished within six months. Li Fei’s family clan was almost completely beaten to the bottom.
There was no serious reason at that time. Everyone only knew that because Li Fei Niangniang wanted to be the Empress. As a result, not only did she not succeed, she also dragged her son along.
“But, why? His Highness Yong Qi is gentle, intellectual and polite, but he doesn’t seem to be powerful enough; but His Highness Yong Shan, people will be scared of him with just a glance, how could something happen to him?”
“You don’t know?”
The neighbor was silent for a while.
The atmosphere suddenly became tense.
“I tell you, don’t carelessly talk about this to outsiders. If these words spread, both of us will be unlucky.”
“I won’t tell anyone if you kill me. Ge, tell me.”
The voice was lowered again.
“I also heard others secretly talking about it. It has been passed on from many places in the Palace in the past few days. I said it already, these words will only pass on to your ears.”
“Aiya, Ge, just say it. My mouth is tight, you know that.”
There was another silence, as if the speaker was trying to sort out his thoughts.
No matter how thick Yong Lin’s nerves were, he knew it was a big deal at this time. He held his breath and tried his best to wait for the man to speak.
“I don’t know where the words came from in the Palace. It was said to be His Highness Yong Shan, and His Highness Yong Qi, that…”
“Which is that?”
“Stupid.” That senior scolded in a low voice, “What else could it be to roll on the bed?”
Yong Lin, who was next door, was suddenly shocked.
“No way? Aren’t they brothers?”
“So what if they are brothers? It’s not like they have the same mother, anyway. There are a lot of things like this in the Palace, and you will understand after you stay for another 30 years. Anyway, the chaos in the Crown Prince’s Palace seems to have leaked and spread to the Emperor’s ears. By the way, have you heard? The Crown Prince went to pay respect to the Emperor, only to be blocked by the Emperor, cold and hungry under the corridor. Afterwards, His Highness Yong Shan kowtowed until his head oozing blood, his face full of tears in front of the Emperor, saying that His Highness Yong Qi had seduced him, and that he did something stupid for a moment…”
There was a sudden loud noise, and the thin wooden door behind them was kicked in half from in the middle.
The two people who were whispering to each other were stunned for a moment. Before they could react, they had already been pulled out of the grid by the collar and ruthlessly thrown to the ground.
The two servants who were thrown to the ground were confused and rolled on the ground a few times. When they looked up, they met Yong Lin’s glaring eyes that were red with anger, and were bigger than copper bells. With his hands on his hips, occupying the high ground, as ferocious and malevolent as a Rakshasa coming down to take their lives.
How did the two of them expect that on the heavy snowy day, they would meet the Third prince here. They were so frightened that they knelt down and shouted, “Your Highness, spare my life! Your Highness, spare my life!”
Yong Lin viciously kicked that senior till he flew backward, then dragged him over and had him knelt in front of him again. Fuming with rage between his gritted teeth, he said, “Spare your life? You slandered my two brothers, you said all the nasty things, and you dare to ask me to spare your life? Go, go see my mother!” Pulling the collar of the man, he threw him out.
That servant knew that he would definitely die in front of Shu Fei, so how dared he go. He knelt on the ground and refused to get up, shuddered and kowtowed to beg for mercy, “Servant dares not to slander. Servant only listens to what others say. Your Highness, please forgive this servant once. In the future, I won’t dare to say a single word! Your Highness, spare my life, spare my life!”
That young man was trembling all over, he crawled over and hugged Yong Lin’s thigh, crying and said, “Your Highness, Your Highness, our brothers are stupid, you spare our lives…”
“What was the thing you just said?”
“We dare not say it again! We really don’t dare!”
“Bastard!” Yong Lin kicked that servant who was holding his thigh aside, grabbed the older one and slapped him, “Tell me! Say it carefully and clearly! If you dare to hide a word, I will tear you apart!”
He had always been a kind and cheerful character in the hearts of the people below, and had never shown such ruthlessness as if he was about to kill someone. With a slap in the face, half of the senior servant’s cheeks swelled up. Seeing that he was about to be caught by Yong Lin and dealt with in front of Shu Fei, he might as well confess and be lenient in front of Yong Lin, maybe there was still a chance. He desperately kowtowed and said, “Yes, yes! This servant will say everything, Your Highness listen to me, listen to me…”
“What I just said was all from what I heard from other people…”
“Who are those people? Say the names!”
The servant scowled miserably: “Your Highness, this nonsense is a form of idle gossiping, how can I make it clear? The servants in the Palace will squat down to drink and eat together when they are tired. There are new words every day, I really don’t know which one is exposed by which person. Besides, the thing pass on from mouth-to-mouth, like… like that… that His Highness Yong Shan said that it was His Highness Yong Qi who seduced him, but servant vaguely remembered that it was said by Fu Qing, who was in charge of tea in Tianxin Palace. He even heard it from Mianbao, the servant at Jin Fei’s Palace…”
Yong Lin roared, “Bullshit! How can the people at Jin Fei’s Palace know what’s going on in the Tiren Palace? The Ministers don’t even know, how can this lowly servant in the corner know?”
When the two saw him getting angry again, they kowtowed again and again, echoing in a mess, “Yes, the servants spout nonsense, Mianbao also talked nonsense…”
Yong Lin gasped for a while before asking, “What else? What are other disgraceful rumors, talking bad about my brothers? Tell me all about it!”
“No, no more.”
“Still hiding it from me? I’m too lazy to deal with your pesky. Go! Let my mother judge you!”
“No, no! Your Highness, Your Highness, I say it, I say it!”
“There have always been a lot of rumors in the Palace, but there is no real evidence, and I don’t know who started talking about this nonsense. Some say… say that His Highness Yong Qi didn’t take His Highness Yong Shan seriously in the past, but now that His Highness Yong Shan has become the Crown Prince, he has become attached, and trying to figure out an escape route and at the same time looking forward to a comeback: others say…” The servant glanced at Yong Lin timidly and stammered, “…say that His Highness Yong Qi is really good-looking, just like Li Fei Ninagniang. It is hard to avoid male homosexuality. His Highness Yong Shan doesn’t seem to be interested in women, and has never seen him…”
Seeing him stopped halfway through, Yong Lin asked angrily, “Never have seen him what? Speak! If you don’t speak, I’ll kick you to death!” Raising his foot, he kicked him fiercely a few times.
Being kicked to the ground by him, the servant could only hold his head and cry: “I’ll say it! I’ll say it! Those people said that there are so many beautiful maids around His Highness Yong Shan, but they have never seen any one that His Highness Yong Shan particularly likes, maybe His Highness Yong Shan is a man-loving man, and it just so happens that His Highness Yong Qi looks good… Your Highness, spare my life! These are the rumors this servant started, I just overheard…”
“What else? Say it!”
“Also… that is to say, even if Li Fei Niangninag has entered the Cold Palace, Shu Fei Niangniang still hasn’t let go of her hatred, so she instructed His Highness Yong Shan to help his mother relief and give His Highness Yong Qi… to that…”
“This, this… also… also some people say that it was His Highness Yong Shan who fell in love with His Highness Yong Qi. He couldn’t get him in the past, but now His Highness Yong Qi is powerless, he can obtain him and enjoy the pleasure. Probably previously at the Inner Punishment Court… that. Being in the Inner Punishment Court might be inconvenient, so he brought His Highness Yong Qi to the Crown Prince’s Palace to warm the bed every night, aiya! Your Highness, please don’t beat me! Don’t beat me! This servant shall be punished by slapping his own mouth! Your Highness, these words were just overheard by this servant, they were really all created by the servant…” He begged for mercy like a pig being slaughtered.
“And… there are others saying, not only His Highness Yong Shan, but His Highness Yong Lin, you… you… you also…”
Yong Lin’s teeth were almost crushed from his gridding as he fiercely asked, “I also what? Say it!”
The servant saw that he was almost bleeding from the beating, for fear that he would be really beaten to death if he made a move, so he had to go out and continue to confess, “There are also rumors that you have a share in this matter, Your Highness. The twin brothers are messing around with the elder brother, which is why you go to the Prince’s Palace every day…”
Yong Lin was in a rage. He bent down and dragged the man up by the collar, arching his hand left and right and slapped his mouth a few times until the corners of his mouth were dripping with blood. With fire in his eyes, he roared, “My mother is Shu Fei, who was proclaimed by the Son of Heaven! Even if Li Fei, even if she is in the Cold Palace, she is a hundred times more noble than you! Our brothers are from the blood of the Son of Heaven! Golden branches and Jade leaves! All of them are clean! To be so filthy and ruined by a sleazy thing like you? Spread this heinous rumor? Damn you!”
“Your Highness, Your Highness, forgive me! Your Highness, forgive me, you forced me to say it!”
The two of them kowtowed again, hugged Yong Lin’s leg and begged.
Yong Lin kicked them until they flew backwards in disgust and shouted, “Don’t let me see you again!”
In an instant, they ran out in a sloppy manner one by one in succession. Kicking the wooden door with one kick, he also walked out.
It was early noon, and the snow was blowing outside. Yong Lin had no intention of handing over the game to Tu Nan, and he even had no time to take back his belongings on the gambling table. Alone, he walked aggressively towards the Prince’s Palace.
The ground was covered with snow, and after snowing half a day, the snow layer was even thicker making Yong Lin’s footsteps appear one foot deep and one foot shallow. The cold wind that was blowing over his head and caressing his face made the anger in his mind subdued a little. However, not soon after, something cold and wet suddenly rushed up from the soles of his feet, freezing his steps.
In the rumors just now, ninety-nine percent of the reason was that the people below, after having eaten enough, started talking nonsense, making up scandals about the princes with bad intentions, and making fun of it morally.
However, he suddenly remembered the day he stabbed Yong Shan in the thigh in the Inner Punishment Court.
At that time, the expression on his brother Yong Qi’s eyes…
Also, why did his brother Yong Shan use a soldering iron to deal with his brother Yong Qi? Saying that they were interrogated by order and had to be punished. Now that he thought about it, his brother Yong Shan was the Crown Prince, and a younger brother of his brother Yong Qi. Even if he had to be punished under the strict orders of their Imperial Father, he shouldn’t have done it himself.
“Impossible.” Yong Lin shook his head vigorously, as if to throw all the weird thoughts out of his mind.
But another dubious one came in without giving prior notice.
When he went to see his brother Yong Qi at the Inner Punishment Court, why was his brother Yong Shan unhappy?
Why did his brother Yong Shan order the people from the Inner Punishment Court to let him in?
Why did his mother persuade him not to meet for the time being? Did his mother also know about this?
He helped his brother Yong Qi send a letter to Li Fei, and his brother Yong Shan was so angry…
The hurried footsteps slowed down.
Yong Lin’s footsteps became heavier and heavier as he walked, and the more uneasy he felt, as if he suddenly realized that there were more than a dozen poisonous snakes hibernating in his heart.
He wouldn’t believe it even if he was beaten to death, but every step he took, every doubt seemed to become clearer, and he couldn’t solve the confusion even if he tried his best.
T/N: I actually feel bad for YL.
If there’s nothing up this weekend, the next part will follow up soon.
– 3205 English words translation.