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Chapter 421: Does this count as protecting you? Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
Han Yunxi soundlessly fainted on top of Baili Mingxiang, causing the detox system to grind to a halt. Nothing had gone wrong with it this time. Its owner was just far too exhausted. The morning that Baili Mingxiang had gotten into trouble was right after she’d pulled an all-nighter. Over the past five days, she and Long Feiye were too busy hurrying back and forth on the road. Though she caught a few snatches of sleep in his arms, it wasn’t much. With a human life at stake, she couldn’t relax enough to sleep. Moreover, she could hardly rest soundly when Long Feiye was working so hard to gain them speed.
The insides of her brain had been stretched taut over the last few days from tiredness and neglect. Thus, the moment she let down her guard, she collapsed. Outside the room, Long Feiye stood facing the courtyard, his hands clasped behind his back. General Baili paced back and forth, the two of them forming a guard.
After a while passed with no reaction from inside, General Baili couldn’t help but ask, “Your Highness, now that the medicine’s here, everything should be fine, right?”
General Baili dearly wished for His Highness Duke of Qin to go inside and take a look. Esteemed wangfei might lose her temper when others disturbed her, but His Highness Duke of Qin should be an exception to that rule.
“Mm,” Long Feiye replied. Generally speaking, he’d always been asked out of the room when Han Yunxi was doing her treatments. Never had he witnessed her at work. General Baili tried to speak up, paused, and gave up to resume his pacing back and forth.
The two of them waited and waited until someone suddenly cried out, “Someone! Someone come, ah!”
That’s Baili Mingxiang’s voice! What’s going on?!
Before General Baili had recovered his senses, Long Feiye was already pushing open the doors! When he saw Baili Mingxiang sitting up in bed with an unconscious Han Yunxi across her legs, his face filled with alarm before he found himself at a loss. Baili Mingxiang panicked as His Highness Duke of Qin headed her way.
Long Feiye picked up Han Yunxi and nestled her protectively against his chest before he demanded, “What happened here?”
Baili Mingxiang saw the bloodshot eyes and icy expression of His Highness Duke of Qin up close and was frightened mute. She had just woken up, so the last thing she remembered were memories from days ago. She had no idea what had happened. Impatience flitted across Long Feiye’s eyes at Baili Mingxiang’s reaction. He raised his voice and roared, “Baili Yuanlong, go find a doctor!”
General Baili had just entered the room and was equally shocked by the scene. He assumed that his daughter was in trouble, but it was actually esteemed wangfei. Fortunately, the doctors were all nearby, so he found one very soon. All of the physicians at the estate held His Highness Duke of Qin in reverence and awe, so the one that came in couldn’t help his knees going weak when they entered to see his icy, murderous expression. He took a few deep breaths to calm himself before finally taking the patient’s pulse. As the room grew silent, Baili Mingxiang calmed down as well. Although she had no idea what had happened, she knew that esteemed wangfei must have come to save her.
After figuring out his diagnosis, the doctor’s heart sank back down in his chest. “Your Highness, please set your mind at rest. Esteemed wangfei collapsed from overexhaustion, so she’ll wake up after sufficient rest. It shouldn’t be anything serious.”
Thank goodness it wasn’t anything serious. Otherwise, he might kick me out of this room. His Highness Duke of Qin has a ghastly expression on right now!
Long Feiye pursed his lips into a thin, cold line. He cradled Han Yunxi in his arms and prepared to leave when General Baili spoke up.
“Mingxiang, hurry and thank His Highness and esteemed wangfei. If they hadn’t traveled nonstop for five days and five nights to find you medicine, you would’ve died already!”
Five days and five nights? Nonstop traveling? His Highness went as well?
So the reason esteemed wangfei fainted from exhaustion was my fault? And the reason that His Highness’s eyes look so bloodshot is because I tired him out as well?
Baili Mingxiang’s heart clenched. Ignoring her weak body, she hastened off the bed to kneel on the cold, hard floor and kowtow her head. “Thanks to Your Highness Duke of Qin and esteemed wangfei for saving my life!”
Long Feiye ignored her as she struck her forehead against the floor, refusing to reply in favor of take large strides out the door. He wasn’t even interested in knowing whether Baili Mingxiang had taken her medicine, much less if she’d recovered. Long after they left, Baili Mingxiang remained kneeling until General Baili pulled her up and had a doctor examine her.
The doctor marveled at her state after doing a thorough examination. “Imperial Physician Gu’s prescription really is marvelous. No major ailments are plaguing young Miss. You’re only too weak right now, so you need time to recover your body.”
General Baili rejoiced and rewarded the doctor before dismissing him. Bail Mingxiang finally spoke up. “Father, His Highness, he—”
Naturally, a father was privy to his daughter’s thoughts. General Baili told Baili Mingxiang everything that had happened in the past few days, including the updates on the Beauty’s Blood.
“You had to be disobedient! Esteemed wangfei told you to take your poisons slowly, but you just had to eat them all in one go! It was lucky that esteemed wangfei was only exhausted this time. If anything happened to her, see what would’ve become of you!” General Baili rebuked her.
Baili Mingxiang’s head drooped as she accepted the lecture. She hadn’t meant to eat 10 days’ worth of poisons all in one go. But that day, she’d been unable to bear the agony of her poisons acting up again and lost all sense of reason. In her pain-addled haze, she’d simply gobbled up all the poisons in sight until her memories turned blurry.
It was difficult to describe certain types of pain without experiencing them personally. She knew that any further explanation would be useless, because other people would only accuse her of being quarrelsome and contentious.
“Have you forgotten? The fate of the Baili Clan is to obey without question!” General Baili roared. Though he felt distress for his daughter’s sake, the duties of the clan were paramount.
Baili Mingxiang raised her head, her gaze steady. “Daughter knows her wrongs, may father punish me.”
General Baili exhaled. “Stop running off with flights of fancy. Just take care of your body until you recover. I’ll get you a servant girl and mama to wait on you afterwards.”
The corner of Baili Mingxiang’s eyes stung before she quickly lowered her head. After all these years, this was the first time father had spoken such words. General Baili rose and prepared to leave, but stopped to add, “Mingxiang, since you’ve managed to preserve your life, it’s about time father arranged for your marriage affairs as well.”
No daughter of a large clan ever had a say in who to marry. Each wedding was an investment, because marrying a girl was equal to gaining the strength of her clan. The logic applied to the family marrying out their daughter as well. General Baili’s other daughters had all married off to powerful families, expanding their sphere of influence. Baili Mingxiang was the Baili Clan’s youngest daughter but also the one in most demand. If she was willing to marry, she’d definitely draw powerful forces to their side as allies.
Baili Mingxiang hung her head and didn’t reply. Marriage was more than the talk of a few days, so General Baili’s words were only a reminder for now. He left as soon as he finished.
Meanwhile, Long Feiye summoned Gu Beiyue as soon as he arrived at the Duke of Qin’s estate. Although he held reservations against the man, he trusted his medical skills above all other doctors in Tianning’s capital city. Gu Beiyue’s skill was such that he could tell what was wrong with Han Yunxi without even taking a pulse. Naturally, he made a show of doing it anyways in addition to a simple examination. Only then did he announce the diagnosis to be overexhaustion.
He creased his brows and said, “Your Highness, esteemed wangfei lost consciousness due to being tired out. She’s too exhausted.”
“When can she wake up?” Long Feiye asked coldly.
“That’s hard to say!” Gu Beiyue grew serious. “Your Highness, in typical cases the patient only sleeps for one to two days. But in severe cases…”
“Well?” Long Feiye was obviously getting anxious.
Gu Beiyue retreated with a bow, his hand clasped before his chest. “In severe cases, the patient might never wake up!”
That was the sound of Long Feiye’s fist slamming against the table, splitting the ebony tea stand into pieces on the floor. Zhao mama and Su Xiaoyu both had a fright as they stood on the side, too afraid to come forward and clean up the mess.
“What’s her case?” Long Feiye asked angrily.
“Your Highness, please restrain your anger. Esteemed wangfei’s case can’t be counted as severe. It’s impossible for this official to give you an exact time, but I estimate that she’ll wake up within three days. I ask that Your Highness remember to remind esteemed wangfei not to overwork herself in the future. This official will write her a prescription. When esteemed wangfei wakes up, she can take the medicine often,” Gu Beiyue replied in a rush.
Long Feiye finally exhaled in relief, the sound especially loud in the quiet room. Zhao mama couldn’t resist stealing a peek at her master. This was the first time his emotions had been written so clearly on his face! Gu Beiyue penned his prescription, which was filled with nothing but rare and precious ingredients. Many of them couldn’t even be found at the Imperial Physician Courtyard, but had to be ordered from speciality stores in Medicine City. Some ingredients were the only one of their kind in the world.
For example, there was the Thousand Year Snow Lotus, Two-Thousand Year Ganoderma, and three-year old dangshen. Most people who possessed these ingredients kept them in storage rather than eat them! Still, Gu Beiyue was confident that Long Feiye would find the ingredients for Han Yunxi as long as he wrote them on the prescription. In truth, he knew exactly when the woman would wake up, but exaggerated the situation on purpose so Han Yunxi could have more time to rest.
Who else can keep this woman at bay, besides Long Feiye himself? Han Yunxi, does it count as protecting you if I find someone more capable than myself to stay by your side?
As Gu Beiyue looked at Han Yunxi’s white face, he felt a twinge of pained reluctance in his heart. But in the end, he bid farewell. Long Feiye glanced at the prescription before handing it over to Chu Xifeng. “Hurry and track down these ingredients. Your lordship wants three of each item on the list to start!”
Chu Xifeng was utterly dejected. It was going to nigh impossible to find even one of some of the things listed, but His Highness wanted three of each. And this was only ‘to start!’ Sobsob, he only wished that esteemed wangfei would get well soon!
“Your Highness, drink some water. Don’t exhaust yourself,” Zhao mama carefully handed over a cup of warm water.
Long Feiye accepted the offering before indicating they should withdraw. As soon as Zhao mama and Su Xiaoyu left, Long Feiye’s icy expression gradually softened. He looked at Han Yunxi with eyes filled with distress as his hand gently brushed past her face.
In a helpless tone, he said, “As soon as your lordship got careless, this happened.”
In the past, he’d been used to looking after himself and never showed interest in others. But now he realized that he had to look after this woman as well. His fingers rested softly against Han Yunxi’s lips before Long Feiye drank a mouthful of warm water and leaned in. He prepared to feed her the liquid mouth-to-mouth, only for…