Chapter 82: Idle Talks
No matter what, Shen Yi was still a commander. On regular days, only Gu Yun would treat him too casually, two words of deep friendship, immediately quarreling in the next three. Others could not be so impolite and must regard him as a guest. Gu Yun did not manage this matter, Chang Geng himself had to go to instruct the servants.
Shen Yi started to become tense as soon as he entered the manor. He was restless for a moment then carefully glanced at the back of Yan Wang’s tall and lean stature, asking Gu Yun, “Did you do it?”
“…” Gu Yun could not express it in one word, hesitating for a moment, he vaguely made a noise in response, “Mm.”
Shen Yi’s whole body was in discomfort, he finally understood why Gu Yun was dodging the topic on the way. At one hand he felt shocked. At the other, he was helpless. Spouting ‘You, you and you’ for half a day, but not one complete sentence could be said.
It was not convenient for Gu Yun to explain too much in details, so like how a dead pig would not be afraid of boiling water*, he sat on the side, opening the oil-paper bag and took out the crispy salted fish to eat.
*idiom that means nothing would bother them anymore
Shen Yi knew that he was partially heartless, but did not expect that he was this heartless. His heart resembling a nosy mother surged up and down, he said in pain, “You… How could you… Momentary pleasure, what will we do in the future, huh? The two of you will continue to entangle like this? Where would the proper order be! No one dares to manage someone like you who dominated one side, but what about Yan Wang? Would the Emperor agree to it? In case of any change in the future, there will be separation, letting go of the many years of sentiment! You…what am I supposed to say to you here, Gu Zi Xi? You’re an animal! ”
Gu Yun wiped the pepper and salt grains on his mouth. Getting hit by the word ‘animal’, he was so wronged that he had to sit on the side with an unfathomable expression, unable to explain himself.
Shen Yi’s words were obvious nonsense. Of course, Gu Yun had thought about it before.
If it was a matter of being unable to hold back feelings, then he could control himself. This world was complex, one could not control others, but could control themselves.
If the deeply ingrained feelings could not be forgotten, then find a brick to smash the head, parents and ancestors and one’s own name would all be forgotten, let alone feelings?
But it was not so…
Chang Geng’s body had the Bone of Impurity since childhood, making him unable to let go no matter the case. Instead of pacifying Chang Geng, it seemed he had made it turn from bad to worse. Even until today, Gu Yun still did not know whether the step he took was right or wrong.
It’s just that entangling danger and melancholy could not be expressed to an outsider.
Gu Yun calmly said, “In the future when Jiangnan is recovered, I will take him away. It does not matter what others say. As long as I am alive for a day, I will protect him for a day.”
He spoke lightly, but Shen Yi gasped for a moment, glaring at him. Gu Yun picked up a small yellow croaker with crispy salt. After thinking about it, he broke it in half and gave it to him, “Remember to eat quickly later, go away after you finish. Didn’t you see how busy he was in the Grand Council all day long? Learn how to read the mood.”
Shen Yi almost choked on the fish to death, turning upside down from rage. He lowered his voice and said angrily, “I come all the way here to worry for you, yet you present to me this display of forgetting friendship as soon as there is beauty, now I understand what is ‘to see a man’s heart after a long time’.”
*the original phrase is ‘日久见人心了‘. The 日久 means ‘long time’, however, it also sounds like a profanity that would mean ‘long fuck’, making the sentence to the dirty mind seem like ‘to see a man’s heart after a long fuck’.
Gu Yun: “…”
A group of vigorous men in the army, some of whom came from Hanlin origin and could be presented before the Emperor, some of whom were ordinary martial artists who did not know a single word before enlistment, everyone had different tastes. Joking with each other in a playful way in private, there were often some vulgar remarks – some of which were normal sentences, but when rearranged by them, they could also attract countless crude meanings.
Gu Yun bit back: “Why are you so low?”
Shen Yi was stunned at first. He then carefully reexamined his last careless remark and was convinced that Gu Yun was truly helpless, he shouted, “You are the one who is low!”
Chang Geng was talking to Uncle Wang at the door when he heard the roar inside. He looked back and saw General Shen shouting, he then asked, “Is there any loquat tea sent from the palace left? Remember to bring a bowl for General Shen later, I’m afraid he will ruin his throat from shouting.”
Gu Yun sat on the side with his legs crossed, grabbing the small yellow croaker in the oil-paper bag to eat and waited for Shen Yi’s anger to fade, he suddenly said, “Alright, Ji Ping, I know you’re upset. Although it’s all the orders of your parents, making promises and arrangement, but if you do not like it, there is no need to care about whose daughter it is? Although the Shen family relations are complicated, can they manage people from the Black Iron Camp?”
Shen Yi was bewildered for a moment, his face became depressed. “I am not afraid, just…”
Gu Yun nodded his head. Growing up together as the sons of noble families, they understood each other’s difficulties full well without a need to speak them aloud.
“When I was very young, I heard my aunt and grandmother talking about my father, saying how useless he was, how he was not well-versed in either martial arts or literary, all day sitting idly in the Imperial Board of Astronomy, hanging around with a group of monks.”
Shen Yi sighed, “My father’s generation only have three people, first uncle is disabled, his career path is difficult, and my father is the idling type. In those years, the Shen’s family weight all depended on third uncle to support.
“That year, I resigned from Hanlin to enter Ling Shu Institute. When my grandfather knew, he almost fainted, wanting to expel me from the house. It was father and uncle who had protected me till the end, bearing the name of having no filial piety. At that time, even the family laws had been brought out. My grandfather’s hand slipped, in order to protect me, my uncle took a whip. He was already exhausted mentally, his physical condition was not good, he had vomited blood on the spot from grandfather’s hit. Since then, his health went from bad to worse, he had passed away before thirty-five years old. This is why I made up my mind and joined the army with you.”
For guilt, for not having to go home and… To earn a reputation for themselves, to show the family whose eyes were above their heads.
When it came to noble families, people watching from the outside would more or less see how they eat and dress well, worthy of admiration and envy. Only the people inside would know of the countless helplessness.
“Sometimes it just feels too unreasonable,” Shen Yi said. “Too unreasonable. Several times going through life and death situation, earning a name for yourself, but returning home and opening the curtain, the attitude awaiting you were still the same. Unless I sever all familial ties and get out of the house, I’ll always be dominated by these tangled relationships… Well, I only complained to you a few words, don’t take it to heart. It’s not a big deal. Compared with your family, mine is only trivial matter.”
Gu Yun laughed and said, “It’s all idle talk.”
“Isn’t it?” Shen Yi laughed at himself. “Did you see the paper of General Zhong? In addition to the military situation, it also details the desolate state of the victims in Jiangbei. It is still summer now, what would happen when autumn came? If they could not be settled down, there was no telling how they would live, eat today, worry about tomorrow. Only those of us from the upper class would sit around being sorrowful about trivial family problems.”
After he had finished, he sighed quietly, the two were silent for a moment. Gu Yun suddenly said, “Tomorrow, show me General Zhong’s paper. If the time is right, I will present it on the court, I have had enough listening to those people quarreling.”
Shen Yi was stunned. The attitude of the Marquis of Order fully represented the military. For so many years, he had never had any input towards the internal affairs. This time he intended to stand behind the Grand Council…Yan Wang?
At this moment, Chang Geng came in unknowingly and interrupted, “There is no need, yifu, these are small matters, no need for you to come out in person.”
When Shen Yi saw him coming, he abandoned the improper position and suddenly sat up straight. “Your Highness is working hard for the people who live in the world. We, the soldiers who will only spend money but do not know how to earn money, also want to do our best to help, no matter how trivial our strength is.”
Chang Geng laughed: “What is General Shen saying, the generals bathed in blood so that we could breathe and fall back. The matter of the factories along the canal involved many branches, if you all interfere, it could easily cause more troubles. I can resolve it, rest assured that the people can settle down well before the winter comes.”
Today’s Yan Wang was no longer an ignorant teenager at Yanhui town. There must be someone who carried the beam when the country was in danger. Although he was young, his calm dignity when leading the Grand Council was shown clearly. A few sentences that sounded like a casual chatter, through his mouth, there seemed to be a strong sense of logic.
Shen Yi suddenly remembered that since Yan Wang took over the Grand Council, whether they asked for money or rations, they received it all, batches of machines and armor were sent to the front line without delay. If they had not come from the capital, knowing full well how the court had holes all over, they would wonder why they were even better off compared to before the war.
Shen Yi put his hands together: “In any case, in place of tens of thousands of generals in the frontier, I must express my gratitude to Your Highness.”
Chang Geng laughed and said, “What is General Shen saying. Besides, yifu has already expressed his thanks, hasn’t he?
Gu Yun: “…”
This little bastard!
Chang Geng pulled the oil-paper bag from his hand and said softly, “Just eat a few bites as a snack, you must know how to restrain. There will be dinner later.”
Shen Yi, a single man for thousands of years, was uncomfortable sitting here. This time, there was no need for Gu Yun to shoo him away. He also wanted to run off after dinner. The food at the Marquis’s manor was truly painful to eat.
In the evening, General Shen, who had suffered severe physical and mental damage, was sent away. Chang Geng finally took the cup that Gu Yun was holding without letting go.
Gu Yun laughed lazily and said, “No more wine, just an empty cup. Let me smell it for a while.”
Chang Geng threw him a pack of tranquilizer: “Smell this if you like.”
Gu Yun shook his head helplessly. He would usually indulge, but if he wanted to control himself, he would also be absolute serious. He had not drank for many days and only had three or two cups as Shen Yi was here, basically only enough to moisten his lips and throat, aware that Chang Geng wanted to manage him, he did not put the cup down.
Chang Geng truly liked to manage him and take care of everything, he would never borrow another’s hands either, as if by doing this, it could make him feel at ease.
It’s all trivial matters. Gu Yun was also very happy to indulge him in silence.
They bathed cleanly and went back to their room, but no beautiful scene happened. Gu Yun patted the bedside and said to Chang Geng, “Bring me the silver needles.”
On that day, Chang Geng had suffered both extreme shock and sorrow, almost falling into hallucination. Then, his many years of long-cherished wishes came true, his heart was overjoyed, his whole body was in a state of ecstasy and madness. Gu Yun had said nothing of it and held back at that time. Two days after Shen Yi and the others arrived in the capital, he went to find Chen Qing Xu.
Miss Chen came for a check up once, then began to perform acupuncture on Yan Wang, who had double pupils appearing from time to time, making him into a hedgehog. She said with deep meaning, “From ancient times, there was a saying that too much joy will transform into sorrow. It is not uncommon for even normal people to turn mad from extreme happiness. With His Highness’s condition, it would be better to have some restraints.”
After that, she also looked at Gu Yun obscurely, as if the word ‘animal’ had flashed between the lines, shooting towards and onto the Marquis of Order’s head.
She issued a dozen of prohibitions — no alcohol, no spicy food, no arguments and no sex, instructing him to use needles to stabilize his mind every night before bed. Some places where she could not reach, she could only let Gu Yun do her work for her. Gu Yun studied with Miss Chen for several days. Fortunately, as he learned martial arts from childhood, he managed to correctly find all the acupoints.
Chang Geng laid still on his stomach on the bed, unfastened Gu Yun’s hair bun, grabbed a strand of loose hair lock in his hand to play with, handed his back for the amateur man Gu Yun, not afraid that he would made a mistake.
No matter how exhausted he was physically and mentally every day, this moment was when his heart relaxed the most. He wished that it could go on like this until the end of time.
Tip: You can use left, right, A and D keyboard keys to browse between chapters.