T/N: Thank you patrons for sponsoring this chapter part.
Title: ChongFei Manual
Chapter: 151.3 out of 171
After returning home, Wei Luo asked the servants about Zhao Jie’s whereabouts and found out that he wasn’t home.
“Where did the prince go?” Wei Luo asked.
Steward Wang answered, “To respond to the princess consort, His Highness went to Shen Ji Barracks and won’t be coming back until the evening.”
Wei Luo nodded and didn’t think too much about it. She returned to her room to rest for a bit, but she ended up sleeping until dusk. She drowsily woke up, asked Jin Lu, and found out that Zhao Jie hadn’t returned yet.
Jin Lu said, “Miss, are you hungry? This servant can have dinner prepared.”
When there weren’t other people around, Jin Lu and Bai Lan were still more accustomed to calling Wei Luo, “Miss.”
Wei Luo walked to the yellow rosewood gao mian pen jia and washed her face. She considered for a moment before she said, “Let’s wait. I’m not hungry.”
(T/N: Below is a picture of gao mia pen jia. It’s a type of ancient furniture from the Qing Dynasty. It’s a rack used to hold a basin of water and towels.)
She had felt stuffed after eating at Zhao Yang Hall at noon. Because Emperor Chong Zhen and Empress Chen didn’t speak, she and Zhao Liuli had their heads down as they focused on eating. She wasn’t careful and ended up eating too much. Even now, she wasn’t the slightest bit hungry.
Wei Luo read a book for a while. When she looked up at the sky, she saw that night had fallen and the courtyard was completely dark. Zhao Jie still hadn’t come back. She asked Jin Lu, What time is it?”
Jin Lu said, “Miss, it’s around 8 PM.
Wei Luo got up from the bed, put on her shoes and a purplish pink wide-sleeve outer robe that was embroidered with white cranes and clouds, and walked outside. “Let’s go to Shen Ji Barrack.”
Jin Lu was startled for a moment, then she hurriedly tried to persuade, “Miss, it’s so late at night. It’s not safe for you to go outside by yourself.”
Wei Luo thought her words were reasonable, so she had Steward Wang look for a few residence guards to escort her to Shen Ji Barracks.
Jin Lu saw that her mind was made up, so she stopped trying to persuade her and called Bai Lan over to go with them.
Shen Ji Barracks was located in the northwest part of the palace. Zhao Jie was currently in charge of the troops that lived in this barrack. The imperial court considered these troops to be their most important soldiers.
Jin Lu and Bai Lan thought that Wei Luo would rush into the barracks, but she only had the carriage stop at Shen Ji Barracks’ entrance. She didn’t make any movements to step closer to the entrance.
Jin Lu asked, “Miss, you’re not going inside?”
Wei Luo gathered her clothes closer, shook her head, and said, “He’s definitely inside handling official business. It’ll be better if I stand here to wait for him,”
Jin Lu said, “It’s windy outside. I’ll go get you another layer of clothes.”
She soon came back dejected. “We left the residence in a hurry. This servant forgot to bring thicker clothing.”
Wei Luo didn’t mind. “It’s fine. I’m not cold.”
After they waited for about half an hour, there was finally movement inside the barracks. A person came out with a lantern and illuminated the people around him. Wei Luo immediately saw the person at the front. It was Zhao Jie.
But Zhao Jie didn’t look like his usual self.
Zhao Jie was wearing a dark blue robe that was embroidered with Taotie and his sleeves and shoes were stained with blood. His expression was solemn and his phoenix eyes were cold as if he had just walked out from a sea of blood and corpses. His body was overflowing with the scent of blood.
(T/N: Taotie is the fifth son of the dragon king. He’s a ferocious, gluttonous mythological creature. Below is a picture of him.)
Behind him, a solider that wearing zhao jia armor was dragging a thing that she couldn’t clearly identify. Wei Luo didn’t realize it was a person until the thing moved. The person had already been tortured to the point that he no longer resembled a human. His body was covered in blood and there was a long, bloody line in the spots where he had had been dragged past.
(T/N: Below is a picture of zhao jia armor.)
The solider asked Zhao Jie, “Your Highness, how should this person be dealt with?”
There wasn’t any use in keeping this person. Zhao Jie lightly said, “Feed him to the dogs.”
The solder acknowledged the order. Just as he was preparing to leave, he saw a glimpse of a young girl from his peripheral vision. Using the light from the lanterns at the entrance, he clearly saw her face. “Your Highness, this person is…”
Zhao Jie followed his gaze and saw that Wei Luo was standing not far away and staring at him without moving.
Her brilliant and vibrant eyes were especially moving in the night. They resembled lustrous gems that could illuminate the haze in a person’s heart.
Astonished, Zhao Jie walked forward, “Ah Luo?”
However, after walking two steps, he smelled the bloody scent on his body and suddenly stopped.
He had recently finished the torture session and his hands reeked of blood. But, his young girl was so clean and resembled flawless white suet jade.
Wei Luo raised her head and he saw her bright and clear eyes. He almost couldn’t bear to dirty her.
Zhao Jie had originally intended to return home in the evening, but a problem had temporarily come up. One of the assassins tried to escape and was captured again.
Zhao Jie had had stayed on the side to watch his subordinates interrogate the prisoner. He was planning on taking a bath when he returned home before seeing Wei Luo. Unexpectedly, she had come here.
Zhao Jie stood still on that spot. He wasn’t far from Wei Luo, but he didn’t continue to walk closer.
“Why did you come here?”
Wei Luo returned to her senses and walked to Zhao Jie’s side. Her small hand came out of her purplish pink wide-sleeve outer robe and naturally held his hand. Her expression didn’t change as if his body only smelled of his usual clear wintersweet scent instead of reeking of blood. “I was worried because big brother hadn’t come back yet, so I came here to look for you.” She led him towards the carriage. “It’s too cold outside. Let’s quickly go home.”