“Your Highness, is that Wei Lan?” Fu Yun waited for Luo Wei and Wei Lan to walk until their figures disappeared from view before running to Long Xuan’s back.
Long Xuan stood motionless, only looking in Luo Wei’s direction spellbound.
“Your Highness, that man surnamed Wei is only a bodyguard in the Senior Official’s residence. He dared to raise his hand against Your Highness, he cannot be spared!” Fu Yun indignantly declared. “The Senior Official is too arrogant!” (T/N: lit. The Senior Official has no one in his eyes).
Long Xuan only then glanced at Fu Yun.
With this glance, Fu Yun lowered his head.
“It’s just a trifle,” Long Xuan said, “don’t bother with it.”
“Your humble slave understands,” Fu Yun hurriedly replied.
Long Xuan turned around and walked dozens of steps, and only then asked, “Lady Xu has left?”
“Yes,” Fu Yun said carefully.
“Her name is Xu Rou,” Long Xuan told Fu Yun.
“Wha-,” Fu Yun froze for a moment, and then immediately reacted. This Xu Rou was Consort Xu’s name. “Your humble slave takes note of this.”
Long Xuan said, “Find a relatively quiet place and bury her.”
“Yes,” Fu Yun’s tears flashed in his eyes for a moment, “this humble slave obeys.”
Long Xuan strode forward.
“Your Highness,” Fu Yun asked Long Xuan again, “that little son?”
“That is beyond my control,” Long Xuan replied. “Don’t manage it.”
Those children of the imperial family who never received the opportunity to see the sun were handled by the Hu Guo Chan Buddhist Temple, which had always kept its secrets.
“This humble slave understands.” Fu Yun knew in his heart that he had asked a question that should earn him a beating, but fortunately this time Long Xuan didn’t care.
Long Xuan quickly walked through the mountain’s forest. After this, Long Xuan never mentioned a person called Lady Xu again. It was as if a woman named Xu Rou had never appeared in his life.
“Young master are you feeling uncomfortable anywhere again?” Wei Lan did not stop supporting Luo Wei as they walked, and Luo Wei’s body leaned on him more and more, such that Wei Lan couldn’t help asking.
Luo Wei’s back had just hit a tree trunk again, and the pain rushed through him like fire. He felt as if something was rolling around in the pit of his stomach, a repressed discomfort.
“I’ll carry the young master,” Wei Lan said, seeing that Luo Wei already completely leaned against him, relying on him to drag him along. He stood still.
“No need,” Luo Wei shook his head. Wei Lan had just had a fight with Long Xuan. He was still thinking about going back and finding an imperial physician to see if Wei Lan had any serious injuries.
“This road is not easy to walk on,” Wei Lan said as he squatted with his back to Luo Wei. “It’s better for me to carry the young master.”
“If I can’t walk anymore Lan, then you can carry me,” Luo Wei replied.
“The young master walks too slowly,” Wei Lan said, turning his head to look at Luo Wei with a smile.
“You,” Luo Wei lay on Wei Lan’s back, his tone not not happy, “don’t blame me if you get tired.”
Wei Lan walked steadily on the snowy mountain road carrying Luo Wei. “I’m not tired, is the young master cold?”
“Not cold,” Luo Wei answered, “Lan, are the second prince’s martial arts skills very good?”
“En, his sword is also very powerful.”
“That’s the sword conferred to him by the emperor. At fourteen years old, he entered a martial arts competition and won over the top scorer in the military imperial examination that year. Thus the emperor bestowed him with this sword. At that time…” Luo Wei didn’t speak further. Now there was no need to speak of past events.
“At that time, young master was his study companion?” Wei Lan asked.
“Yeah, it’s just that I didn’t like to read at that time, causing my father and the rest grief.”
“The young master is very learned.”
“Xie Yu is truly learned, I don’t have much genuine talent. I only have the ability to teach Lan some characters.”
“I have heard many people praise you. Why do you never think that you are good?”
“That’s because I have self-awareness.”
Snow fluttered down from the sky again and landed on Luo Wei and Wei Lan.
“It’s snowing again,” Luo Wei said to Wei Lan.
“Cold?” Wei Lan sped up and asked.
Luo Wei nestled his head against Wei Lan’s back. “Lan, I want to sleep for a while. When you get home, call me to wake me.”
“Not going back to the hunting grounds?”
“My second brother was sent back to the estate. I want to go back to see my second brother. My dad is here, it’ll be okay.”
“Okay,” Wei Lan agreed. “Then sleep, young master.”
Luo Wei dazedly fell asleep, each breath he took filled with the scent of Wei Lan’s body. Perhaps it was because Wei Lan had stayed in his room for a long time; his body carried a medicinal smell. That slight bitterness actually set him at ease.
Wei Lan turned his head and looked at Luo Wei on his back. Seeing that Luo Wei had already put up the hood of his cloak, he was relieved. Though snow fell, the night sky still held twinkling starlight. Wei Lan’s qinggong was not at the level that he could step on snow and leave no traces, but he left only shallow footprints in his wake.
Under the mountain, Luo Zhi Qiu was just dispatching someone to find Luo Wei when he saw Wei Lan coming over with a person on his back. He didn’t need to think too much. He knew that the person on Wei Lan’s back must be Luo Wei.
“Prime minister,” Wei Lan walked to the front of Luo Zhi Qiu and called out in a low voice.
Luo Zhi Qiu glanced at Luo Wei on Wei Lan’s back. A layer of snow had fallen on Luo Wei’s cloak of brocade and rabbit fur. “He is asleep?” Luo Zhi Qiu asked Wei Lan quietly.
Wei Lan nodded.
“Go into the tent first,” Luo Zhi Qiu said.
Xie Yu stepped forward and held up an umbrella for Luo Wei.
“The young master said he wanted to return to the estate,” Wei Lan informed.
“He wants to go back now?” Luo Zhi Qiu asked.
“Young Master wants to go back to see the second young master.”
Emperor Xing Wu was inquiring about Luo Wei. Luo Zhi Qiu couldn’t agree to let Luo Wei go back to his house. “Return to the tent first and then talk,” Luo Zhi Qiu replied. “There is an imperial physician here, so he can also take a look at him.”
“Let’s go,” Xie Yu patted Wei Lan’s shoulder, “after making sure Yun Qi is fine, it won’t be too late to go back.”
In Luo Zhi Qiu’s tent, the fire in the furnace roared. Several people came in from the snowy grounds, and the chill they carried with them scattered the moment they entered the tent.
An attendant efficiently covered the bed, and Wei Lan carefully placed the deeply sleeping Luo Wei upon it, covering him with a quilt.
“Go to ask for an imperial physician,” Luo Zhi Qiu whispered to the attendant behind him.
Xie Yu exhaled a few warm breaths onto his hand, glanced at Luo Wei’s head wrapped in white cloth, and felt Luo Wei’s cheek. “No fever,” he said to Luo Zhi Qiu and Wei Lan.
Luo Wei’s face was a little red, but it was still cool to the touch.
“His sleep is light,” Luo Zhi Qiu said from the back, “let’s go over here to talk.”
Wei Lan and Xie Yu approached Luo Zhi Qiu.
“Let’s all sit.” Luo Zhi Qiu sat down first.
Xie Yu sat down while Wei Lan remained standing.
“You sit down, too,” Luo Zhi Qiu said, “You must be tired from carrying Xiao Wei back?”
Wei Lan replied, “This lowly one is not tired.” (T/N: 小人, lit. = “small person,” means person of low social status).
“Sit down,” Luo Zhi Qiu pointed to the empty chair beside Xie Yu.
“Lan,” Xie Yu got up and pulled Wei Lan to sit, and then he sat down again.
“Don’t call yourself a lowly person in the future,” Luo Zhi Qiu said. “Xiao Wei values you, and I won’t look down on you. You are different from the servants in the official’s estate.”
Wei Lan said nothing.
Xie Yu nudged Wei Lan.
Luo Zhi Qiu did not wait for Wei Lan to reply, and continued, “What did Xiao Wei do on the mountain?”
Wei Lan didn’t know if he could divulge Luo Wei’s matters, and he looked at Luo Zhi Qiu with hesitation.
“I am his father,” Luo Zhi Qiu smiled at Wei Lan’s reaction. “What can’t I know about his affairs?”
“I didn’t do anything,” Luo Wei said, awake on the bed.