Chapter 98 – Ending
Ji Wu Jiu wanted to go out of the palace, but this matter was severely negated by Ye Zhen Zhen.
Ye Zhen Zhen knew that his purpose was to go to the south to find Teng Yi to break the gu. She was also eager for him to be able to get rid of that nuisance and pull out the insect soon, but Ji Wu Jiu was in poor health beyond recognition, plus the blow from Empress Dowager. Now he simply resembled a paper lantern, might be blown by the wind at any time. This trip was 2,000 li(1) to the south, the road passing the mountain was dangerous and the river was hazardous. Repeating over and over again on this point, the conclusion was that they could not afford it. Even if in the end he reached Miao village and by any chance met Teng Yi, but once knowing that he was the emperor, not only would he not break the gu, but Teng Yi might even gave him another poisonous insect seed……
Ye Zhen Zhen’s idea was that she, as the wife of the victim, would go to Miao village in Qian Nan and request Teng Yi to come. It was easier for pregnant woman to get sympathy. It could be used as proof too that the person under gu had wife and child and receiving gu was completely disaster. Those were more convincing when facing Teng Yi.
Ji Wu Jiu firmly disagreed. No need to say anything, Ye Zhen Zhen was pregnant and could not tolerate the least bit mishap. She should be surrounded and protected and must not go anywhere.
Both of them came to disagreement on this matter and temporarily no one gave way to the other. After delayed for several days, Ji Wu Jiu’s health was getting worse, the frequency of coughing blood increased. Ye Zhen Zhen worries affected her pregnancy. The Taiyi anxiously told her thrice a day that she had to maintain her mind entirely free from worry.
Seeing the other side’s suffering, finally they used the simple rock–paper–scissors method to decide who was going or staying.
Result: Ji Wu Jiu won and personally went to the south to seek treatment.
Ji Wu Jiu was a very thorough person. Before leaving, he issued an imperial edict and also a secret imperial edict. The edicts said in case that he could not return, the child in Ye Zhen Zhen’s belly would become the crown prince, succeed the throne and inherited the great treasure, no matter whether the child she gave birth was boy or girl. Before the crown prince officially ascended the throne, Ye Zhen Zhen temporarily acted as regent and supervised the country.
He handed over the whole country to her hands.
Holding that light silk letter, Ye Zhen Zhen only felt the heavy weight. Her eyes turned red and she said to Ji Wu Jiu, “Tell me, what’s the function of this babbling nonsense? Coming back soon is proper!”
Ji Wu Jiu took her into his chest and gently rubbed her hair, “Zhen Zhen…… If I am really dead, you may remarry after the new emperor ascends the throne.”
Ye Zhen Zhen pushed him away and seriously said, “Ji Wu Jiu, if you really leave me, I will not remarry. I will live a lifetime suffering in pain, grieving to the extent of wishing to die, it would be better to die than to live.”
Only hearing her said this, Ji Wu Jiu had awfully regretted. He caressed her face and said, “I will certainly return, wait for me.”
“En,” Ye Zhen Zhen nodded. She took the initiative to return to his embrace and put her arms around his waist, “I’ve been thinking of another and I’ve been puzzled all along.”
“Bai Xiang Ru said she had given you the gu a long time ago. Why was the time of the gu insects showing effect after more than half a month? I asked Da Xing and he said that normally Peach Blossom gu will react the next day after the gu is descended.”
“I also don’t understand, maybe it’s different for each person?”
“No. Even if your will is firm, it will not conflict with the onset of the gu insects, and at most you will be able to stay awake and restrain your conduct. To be honest, I suspect you have eaten something before and suppressed the effect of the gu insects. You think about it, have you eaten anything special?”
Ji Wu Jiu shook his head, “Nothing.”
“I seem to have heard you said that you ate what medicine?”
Ye Zhen Zhen sat up and looked at him carefully, “What medicine did you eat before?”
Ji Wu Jiu glanced his eyes away, “Nothing. You remember incorrectly.”
Ye Zhen Zhen thought, “No, you did say. That night when I was diagnosed with pregnancy, you personally said that you have been taking medicine. At that time, I was throwing up and only half conscious so I did not take it seriously. Now may it be assumed that the medicine you took affected the initiation of the gu insects?”
“Absolutely there is not.”
Ye Zhen Zhen recalled again and was more certain that Ji Wu Jiu previously said these words. Now seeing him denied it, she angrily said, “Why don’t you tell me the truth! Do you know how worried I am about you?”
“……” Ji Wu Jiu looked at her with difficulty.
Ye Zhen Zhen covered her belly, “You infuriated me. My belly hurts.”
Ji Wu Jiu quickly held her, “I will say, I will say, don’t be angry……”
He confessed that foolish thing he had done. Ye Zhen Zhen did not have the heart to tease him and asked if there were any remaining pills. The answer was that he had thrown it away.
So she quickly ordered Tie Taiyi to make some more.
Tie Taiyi was already helpless with Ji Wu Jiu illness. Now he only hoped the emperor could endure until the little successor was born and handed over the country. When Ye Zhen Zhen asked him to make the pills, he did not think too much and came with it the next day.
Ji Wu Jiu ate one pill under Ye Zhen Zhen gaze. On the same day there was no symptom of disorder emerged and there was no coughing blood.
Ji Wu Jiu : ……
Ye Zhen Zhen : ……
The result was an unexpected delight, and the way he could not tolerate it. However, Ye Zhen Zhen gave him a package full of pills before his departure and forced him to swear to eat one pill everyday. She also repeatedly warned Feng You De to supervise the emperor to take the medicine.
Ji Wu Jiu really wished to cry inside.
Recalling Ye Zhen Zhen’s face full of worries, although extremely unwilling, Ji Wu Jiu became softhearted. Together with Feng You De’s ramble, unexpectedly he did not fall to eat this medicine from the capital until he reached the Miao village.
He almost worshiped himself.
Ji Wu Jiu liked to do things thoroughly. Before advancing to Miao village, he had mobilized the surrounding garrison and gathered a hundred thousand people to surround Qian Nan.
If Teng Yi did not give him treatment, he had no choice but to threaten the life of men, women, young and old ones in the entire village. When the moment came, he was not afraid that this old man would not agree.
Of course, Ji Wu Jiu would not really kill innocent people, just threatened them. Moreover, this was the next next plan. He would not do this if not as the last resort.
But it was always necessary to have a thorough preparation.
Before entering Miao village, Ji Wu Jiu thought about the difficulties he might encounter and found the good solution of that problem. Yet he didn’t expect that the thing was much easier than his imagination.
In fact, the biggest difficulty that Ji Wu Jiu encountered in Miao village was really not from Teng Yi, but from the girls of Miao village. Seeing an out of the ordinary pretty young man, refined and courteous yet scholarly and nice, the hearts of affectionate and enthusiastic girls were touched. Every day they sang love songs for him and gave him all kinds of small object brimmed with affection
There was a time when Zhao Zhi Cheng did not pay attention and Ji Wu Jiu was taken away by a girl. Zhao Zhi Cheng scared and sweated out from head to toe. He quickly rushed to take him back.
This time, Ji Wu Jiu was really not weak and helpless. However, since he was a guest here, it was not good to use violence against the local girls and say careless thing.
Actually, he was not much worried about his integrity.
Because he had the medicine……
Well, ceased the scandal and persuaded Teng Yi. Even though this old man was an unadulterated **ism practitioner, but he was also fair and reasonable. In the beginning, when Teng Yi found out that Ji Wu Jiu was under Peach Blossom gu, he thought that Ji Wu Jiu personally visited him was because he was fed up with his girl and wanted to abandon her, so he came to break the gu. However, after Teng Yi looked at Ji Wu Jiu in person, he discovered a miraculous question: the Peach Blossom gu inside this person was not fake, but since the beginning he did not have sexual intercourse under the gu.
Since he played with gu until became supernatural entity, that was the first time Teng Yi run into this kind of circumstances. He could not help but ask how Ji Wu Jiu accomplished it.
“I have a wife and I love her very much,” Ji Wu Jiu replied.
Miao family attached importance to affection. Listening this, Teng Yi was completely touched. In his eyes, Ji Wu Jiu had become a loving man, the image of him immediately turned much better.
Actually, the more exquisite the gu technique, the more cautious gu technique should be used, because of the difficulties in dealing with the points. At that time, when Teng Yi met Bai Xiang Ru at Liaodong, he quite got along with this little girl, he felt that she was earnest and courteous, so he gave her a Peach Blossom gu. Thinking of it now, Bai Xiang Ru fell for another woman’s husband and destroyed the happiness of another family, it really should not happened.
Teng Yi was shaken a bit. However, thinking of the man before his eyes whom the Emperor deeply cared, he was quite annoyed, so he asked Ji Wu Jiu, “What is the relationship between you and the Emperor?”
Ji Wu Jiu did not cover up the truth, “I am the Emperor.”
The same day, Teng Yi drove Ji Wu Jiu out and shut himself in the room for a long time. On dinner time he took the initiative to find Ji Wu Jiu, “You could have lied to me.”
Ji Wu Jiu shook her head, “If you can save me means you are my benefactor. I don’t want you to find that I am cheating you after you save my life and become my benefactor.”
Thus Teng Yi bad impression towards Ji Wu Jiu as emperor was slightly milder, but he still did not like him!
Ji Wu Jiu asked, “How many people are there in your village?”
“The common people under my jurisdiction are six thousand of six thousand at least.”
Thus Teng Yi was astounded.
Ji Wu Jiu continued, “The more people, the more complicated the situation. I dare not say that my way in governing the country is absolutely correct, but probably it won’t work if the simple customs of the village is used to administer this many people. You also know that Central Plain people are not simple and honest like Miao people.”
Teng Yi indescribably sympathized him a bit. Oh, Central Plain people were smart and clever. Taking care of one village had awfully troubled him. This young man had to take care of six thousand villages……
Ji Wu Jiu added, “All along I do things slowly. In the past, probably because of my governance method was lacking, there was bureau committed an offense at you. I hope daren(2) to be generous and do not haggle with wanbei(3).”
Teng Yi touched his beard. Again, his impression towards Ji Wu Jiu was slightly better.
Getting along like this for several days, Ji Wu Jiu showed modesty and courtesy, neither servile nor overbearing and reshaping his image in Teng Yi’s mind. So the old man finally agreed to help him break the gu.
Ji Wu Jiu still hesitated on one thing, “If the gu is lifted, undoubtedly Bai Xiang Ru will die?”
Teng Yi comforted him, “You do not have to worry. She is courting death. When giving her Peach Blossom gu, I warned her repeatedly do not use this thing to misbehave and harm someone else.”
“I am not afraid of her death,” explained Ji Wu Jiu, “I am afraid my wife will think that I have an accident when seeing her die. My wife is pregnant, she should not be frightened.”
Teng Yi was touched by his consideration for his wife and promised to follow him back to the imperial palace. Once met Ye Zhen Zhen, he would break the gu.
Because of psychological shadow and for several years did not leave home, finally he was swayed by Ji Wu Jiu to go to the capital.
When Ji Wu Jiu returned to the palace, Ye Zhen Zhen’s belly was already big. She stood on the gate of Kun Ning Palace and looked around with her protruding belly. Seeing Ji Wu Jiu came, she could not help to spread her arm and dash towards him. The people following her was not expecting the empress to do such thing, they run in panic following her, afraid that she would have any mishap.
Ji Wu Jiu was scared by her, his heart almost stopped. He stood still on the same place and waited Ye Zhen Zhen throwing herself in his chest. He gathered her in his embrace before retreated and adjusted the strength.
Actually, Ye Zhen Zhen was not that rash. She pulled her belly backward to avoid pressing the child, just her pit of stomach that pressed on Ji Wu Jiu.
Her plump breasts were developed a lot now. Pressing on Ji Wu Jiu’s chest, they awfully urged him to have nosebleed.
Ji Wu Jiu chuckled and hugged her. He really wanted to press and ferociously kiss her, but surrounded with so many eyes which watched attentively, he had to let go of her. He took her hand, pulled her to Teng Yi behind him and introduced them to each other.
Actually, Teng Yi and Ye Zhen Zhen had some similar character. Both are straightforward and sincere, did not like to beat about the bush when expressing opinion, and magnanimous.
Sure enough, before two days they had become friends despite the difference in age. Teng Yi liked Ye Zhen Zhen very much and wanted to give her a small insect which was specially used to deal with disobedient husband. Ji Wu Jiu’s ears were raised hearing these, he promptly blocked it.
After several days of preparation, Teng Yi started breaking the gu inside Ji Wu Jiu. The process was quite complicated and savage. The scene was brutal. No one was allowed to stand in circle and watch. Ye Zhen Zhen as pregnant woman was also not allowed to see. She only knew that the servants acted as assistants at the site all threw up when coming out.
At the same time, Bai Xiang Ru died quietly in Ba Jiao Pavilion. When she died, black blood flowed from her mouth and nose, really like she was poisoned.
Thus Ji Wu Jiu retrieved his life. His hard breathing finally relaxed and the sign of healing from serious illness was shown. Tie Taiyi and Teng Yi made some cordial and friendly discussions and in the end they agreed to give an important suggestion: prohibited sexual activity for half year.
Ji Wu Jiu was super obedient on this since it related with his second half of life happiness.
So the main objective for the next half year was to recuperate his body and take care of Ye Zhen Zhen. On the contrary the affairs of the nation were to be pushed behind. Anyway in the cabinet, there were reliable people. Talented ones like Fang shi and Ye shi were plenty, just tormented them first as he pleased.
Without the fragrant and romantic emotions of making love, the relationship between Ji Wu Jiu and Ye Zhen Zhen as husband and wife were even purer like an old couple, surrounded by practicality and sense of fulfillment.
Probably, they were getting old like this. This sort of feeling was not bad either. Ji Wu Jiu imagined.
In the half year of recuperation, Ji Wu Jiu did two big things.
First, to look for the chief of secret agent who was with his father at that time. Others maybe knew one and understood only half of the late emperor affair, but this person should know more about the whole story. Later on, under Ji Wu Jiu detailed investigation, this man spoke the truth during that time: The late emperor was poisoned which caused all of his child died young. Empress Dowager’s son death was also because of this. Afterwards, he no longer wanted a son. As for why he was poisoned, seems like it was because of a woman, this was another unknown debt of gratitude.
Ji Wu Jiu told this person to go to Empress Dowager and tell the truth, but no matter what she did not believe. Ji Wu Jiu did not have any way then. Every day after the morning court, he would go with Ye Zhen Zhen to Ci Ning Palace to have a look on her. No matter what, he had called her mother for twenty years. Although this mother hated him, during those twenty years she did not harm him. It was enough. Later on, she was stubborn and did something wrong, but in the end did not really hurt him.
Second, he built a garden at the west side of Taiye Pond named ‘Xi Yuan’. The entire imperial concubines in the hougong were moved to live in Xi Yuan. He also gave monthly salary to all the imperial concubines and supported them with delicious food and drink. They did not have to worry about life. Passing through that venting feeling from Bai Xiang Ru, Ji Wu Jiu felt that having numerous wives was troublesome. Simply ‘what the eye doesn’t see, the heart doesn’t grieve over’ and made everybody leave. Later on he and Ye Zhen Zhen considered that those women were innocent and if they were trapped in Xi Yuan, their life were difficult. Thus he also decreed that the imperial concubines in Xi Yuan might choose to leave or stay in the palace. After they left the palace, their name would be removed from hougong, in other words they were going to return to normal life and become ordinary person. Wherever they wanted to go, whoever they wanted to marry, no one would stop.
With this move, they cleaned the hougong.
During this time, Ji Wu Jiu nursed his health awfully well, his body became stronger and his complexion became rosy. Thus he put all his attention on Ye Zhen Zhen’s belly. He felt sorry watching her suffered so much for this child, so every day he took care of her very carefully and coaxed her with soft whispering. If Ye Zhen Zhen said one, he did not dare to say two. If Ye Zhen Zhen pointed at the east, he absolutely would not go to the west. He gradually turned into a husband with good filial piety.
Seeing with his own eyes how the emperor harshly scolded some ministers in one moment and in the next moment instantly changed and behaved as meek little sheep when going to Kun Ning Palace, Feng You De was scared in mind, to the extent that he followed the atmosphere and did not dare to make a single sound in Kun Ning Palace. Seeing Wang You Cai bared his teeth and laughed with group of people at late night, he threatened Wang You Cai until both of his legs weakened and could not walk steadily.
Even though her belly stuck out, Ye Zhen Zhen was still restless. She was fond of wandering around everywhere. When she had been everywhere in hougong, she wanted to see the front palace. Speaking the truth, she had not seen carefully the greater part of the front palace.
After Ji Wu Jiu heard about it, he immediately asked someone to bring the emperor’s carriage and brought Ye Zhen Zhen to stroll around, while said, “This is your home, where do you want to go?”
In front of Huang Ji Hall, they went down and walked. Stepping on the top quality white-marble stone steps, they entered the palace hall. Huang Ji Hall was the grandest and the most dignified main hall in the Imperial Palace. It was also the prestige of the Imperial Palace. Inside the spacious and empty hall, there were 4,781 pieces of gold brick spread on the ground, surrounded by 72 gigantic Chinese cedar pillars and inside the palace hall there were 6 gold cloud-dragon pillars. Between the pillars above was hanged an inscribed plaque with words ‘jian ji sui you’(4). Under the plaque was a throne painted with nine-dragon, motionless like a mountain, high and tall above, the appearance overflew with glistening yellow luster.
Ji Wu Jiu pulled Ye Zhen Zhen’s hand and slowly ascended the red stairs in front of the throne. Ye Zhen Zhen stood still in her current place.
“Zhen Zhen, come.” He called her in a low voice.
Ye Zhen Zhen followed him up. Pulled by him, she sat on the throne.
They sat side by side on the golden seat, viewed down and gazed to the distance, transcended the spacious and empty hall, continuously to the vast platform outside the palace hall.
She felt like finally saw the country festivity, saw the congratulatory ritual performed by numerous officials, saw at all nations coming to the court.
She saw his world.
Ji Wu Jiu tightly grabbed Ye Zhen Zhen’s hand and interlocked her 10 fingers with him.
Grew old together and depended on each other.
《Empress with no Virtue》The End.