Ning Fei felt that he shouldn’t have left his house today. If he wanted to see Luo Wei, as long as he was in the capital he could find him on any ordinary day. Ning Fei couldn’t understand why he had to listen to his mother and run off to find Luo Wei after his family had finished their reunion meal.
“General Ning, then I won’t be polite!” Fu Wei was very particular about the customs of the Jianghu. She cupped one fist in the other hand towards Ning Fei as she spoke.
Ning Fei glanced at Luo Wei, who was sitting leaning against the warm furnace in the veranda. The smile on that person’s face at this time seemed very vile to Ning Fei. It wasn’t only Luo Wei–Qi Zi eating peanuts as he watched the excitement, Xiao Xiao and the rest, they all provoked anxiety in Ning Fei’s heart. Only Wei Lan seemed a little worried. But do you have to eat the peanuts that Xiao Xiao gives you? Ning Fei roared in his heart.
“Careful ah!” Fu Wei slashed her sword.
Ning Fei only made one move sideways and dodged. “Matching skills” with this sixth young lady Fu in Ning Fei’s view was truly a trifle!
“How’s her martial arts?” Luo Wei watched for a while and then turned his head to ask Wei Lan.
“Is sixth cousin dancing or using martial arts?” Xu Yue Miao actually asked Wei Lan this question.
Wei Lan was a polite person, and directly replied, “General Ning is going easy on the sixth young lady.”
Xu Yue Miao felt a bit embarrassed. She didn’t know what Luo Wei meant by letting an unmarried young lady have a match with a man she just met. If this got out how could Fu Wei still be selected to enter the palace as a well-bred lady? The more Xu Yue Miao thought, the more she felt something wasn’t right, and she spoke up: “Youngest uncle, it’s better if you make them stop. It’s not proper for them to keep fighting like this!”
Luo Wei answered, “It’s only our own people here. No one will go outside and talk nonsense. Second sister-in-law shouldn’t worry.”
In the center of the courtyard, Ning Fei quietly said to Fu Wei, “Young lady should stop, this subordinate admits defeat.”
“Wei, you punk!” The roaring voice of the eldest uncle Jing Zong, provincial governor of Ling Chuan, resounded from the entrance to the courtyard.
The rarity of hearing this sound from her father caused Fu Wei to be scared stiff. One of her feet slipped, the narrow sword in her hand clattered to the floor, and the person herself also fell.
Ning Fei reflexively reached out his hand.
Fu Wei fell into Ning Fei’s arms. They were so close that she could faintly smell Chinese honey locust on his clothing. So this person used honey locust to wash his clothes, Fu Wei suddenly thought.
Ning Fei’s arms were stuffed full with Fu Wei. Soon after, he reacted. He loosened his hold in a hurry and retreated several steps back.
Fu Wei stared at Ning Fei in a daze, only just realizing that Ning Fei’s appearance was so handsome. She let out a small “ya,” and her whole face turned red.
“Who are you?!” The eldest Fu walked forward, blocked his daughter behind his back, and shot out a sharp-toned question.
“Uncle,” Luo Wei stood up and walked to the center of the courtyard, coming in front of Ning Fei. He paid his respects to Fu Jing Zong.
Luo Zhi Qiu and Fu Hua came over with Fu Jing Zong. Seeing Luo Wei come out to speak, Luo Zhi Qiu hurriedly asked, “Wei Er, what’s going on?”
Luo Wei replied, “It’s not a big deal. Zi Zhou came to see me just as sixth cousin was practicing her sword. I’m not sure what sixth cousin was thinking, but she slashed at Zi Zhou and Zi Zhou avoided her. Perhaps this sparked sixth cousin’s interest, and she chased Zi Zhou to my place.”
“I found him to have a match with,” Fu Wei walked out from behind her old dad, “It has nothing to do with General Ning.”
Fu Wei’s words were clearly in defense of Ning Fei, and caused Luo Wei’s mind to begin turning. He looked at his sixth cousin and did not fail to notice that Fu Wei’s face had not shed that shade of blushing red.
“Let’s enter a room to talk,” Luo Zhi Qiu said. Luo Zhi Qiu’s observational skills were also sharp. He saw Fu Wei sneaking glances at Ning Fei. This reminded him how Fu Hua, back then still the eldest young lady of the Fu family, looked at him when he was a young man and saw her for the first time. Sure enough, the daughters of the Fu family were all exactly the same.
Ning Fei wanted to leave, thinking that something seemed off about today. A beautiful, fragrant, and soft woman had fallen into his arms. Ning Fei, who’d never come that close to a girl before, blushed profusely. The only reason none had discovered his abnormal state was that he stood in a darkly lit area.
Several people sat inside Luo Wei’s study.
Imperial Physician Wei personally carried in the snow ginseng soup to give to Luo Wei.
Luo Wei had a sip and said, “Why is the taste of the ginseng soup this time different?”
Imperial Physician Wei replied, “Young master, there is some other medicines added to this ginseng soup.”
Imperial Physician Wei looked at Luo Zhi Qiu. He knew Luo Wei also had a bit of medical knowledge. If he continued to fabricate, he was afraid he wouldn’t be able to conceal the truth.
“Just drink it while it’s hot,” Luo Zhi Qiu said. “Would Imperial Physician Wei fail to harm you if he really wanted to?”
“This subordinate official doesn’t dare,” Imperial Physician Wei hurriedly denied, “this subordinate official cannot afford such jokes from the prime minister.”
Luo Wei drank the ginseng soup and then took the tea from Wei Lan’s hand to wash it down.
Imperial Physician Wei asked, “Young Master, how do you feel?”
“Nothing special,” Luo Wei replied. “How should I be feeling?”
Luo Zhi Qiu waved a hand at Imperial Physician Wei, signalling for him to retreat first. If Luo Wei continued to question this doctor, he couldn’t guarantee that Long Xuan’s name wouldn’t be revealed.
Fu Jing Zong waited for Imperial Physician Wei to exit before saying to his daughter, “You have really been spoiled by your mom. You don’t have a lick of discipline!”
Fu Wei pouted, looking entirely unconvinced.
Ning Fei wanted to speak, but Luo Wei patted his hand and stopped him.
“How old are you? You still aren’t ladylike at all!” Fu Jing Zong continued to give his daughter a lesson.
“I’ve always been this way, how come dad can’t accept it now? What did I do?” Fu Wei still talked back.
“You’re still talking?” Fu Jing Zong smacked the table, “For when you leave your home to get married, how did your mom instruct you?!”
Ning Fei became more and more restless. Compared to everyone else in the room besides Wei Lan, he was the only outsider. Even so, he was sitting here listening to a father and daughter quarrel to the point that they even argued about her prospects for marriage.
“Why wouldn’t I be able to get married?” Hearing her own old dad talking about her like this, Fu Wei became excitable, “Am I uglier than others, or am I incapable of bearing children?! Dad, explain yourself clearly today!”
Ning Fei began to sweat. He wanted to leave, but needed a decent excuse. What kind of excuse? Ning Fei racked his brains.
“Big brother, little six,” Fu Hua finally couldn’t stand it anymore and spoke: “You are not allowed to speak anymore! What kind of scene is this? Are you acting out a play for us to watch?”
Fu Jing Zong followed Fu Hua’s line of sight to Luo Wei, Ning Fei, and Wei Lan in succession, and at this his old face finally couldn’t hold on anymore. He tried to explain to these three, “This punk grew up with me in the barracks since she was young, so she’s used to being wild. It’s hard to change.”
Now even Luo Zhi Qiu felt embarrassed. Even a military man couldn’t speak about his own daughter like this to outsiders, right?
Ning Fei stood up and saluted to all those sitting, saying, “Zi Zhou just remembered that he has matters to deal with at him, so won’t stay any longer.”
“Since you have matters at home, then leave quickly.” Luo Zhi Qiu hurriedly took advantage of a sudden slope to ride his donkey down, “be careful on the road.”
“Yun Qi,” Ning Fei faced Luo Wei again and said, “I’ll come see you on another day.”
“All right,” Luo Wei replied while suppressing his laughter.
Ning Fei escaped in a somewhat miserable state. However, he was certain that this New Year’s Eve night would be hard for him to forget in this lifetime.
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