Title: The Dreamer in the Spring Boudoir
Chapter 274 - A secret that she hadn't known (1)
Wen Wan's expression was quite marvelous to watch after she realized it was Nie Sangyu, who had come out of the room. To describe it in simpler terms, it was as if red, yellow, white, and green had been blown up together to make fireworks that lit up the entire night sky.
Right after Ji Man said what she wanted to, she turned around and started to scamper away.
Unexpectedly, she heard Ning Yuxuan shout from behind her, "Nie Sangyu!"
Nothing good could happen when he even included her last name. Ji Man's steps paused, and she slowly turned around to look at him.
"Why are you in such a rush to leave?" Marquis Moyu took a few breaths to calm down, gently pushed Wen Wan's hands away from himself, and looked at Nie Sangyu as he said, "Are you not hungry?"
She had eaten dinner before coming here. Why would she be hungry? Ji Man thought; Ning Yuxuan's brain must be broken today. Still, she properly answered, "This servant isn't hungry."
Wen Wan helplessly stood in place with her fingers tightly clutched together. She felt wave after wave of pain as she looked at Ning Yuxuan. In the past, no matter where they were, he would always be looking at her. But now, she was standing next to him, and he looked past her as if she didn't exist.
She had originally thought he had released the sky lanterns for her, but why was Nie Sangyu here?
Having a difficult time calming her heart, Wen Wan was so anxious that she stopped breathing. She wanted to take a step forward, but she ended up fainting.
Ning Yuxuan reacted quickly. He caught her before she felt onto the ground and noticed that she was slightly feverish when his hand touched her forehead.
It was a cold winter night, and she had rushed over here without being dressed for the weather. It would be strange if she wasn't feeling hot. Marquis Moyu frowned. He leaned over, picked her up, pushed open the doors, and carried her inside.
"Since you're not hungry, then you can go back first."
Ji Man shrugged. Looking at the sky lanterns that were gradually floating too high up to be seen, she turned around and left the western courtyard.
Wen Wan was having a nightmare. In her dream, Marquis Moyu was holding Nie Sangyu's hand, and they were gradually walking farther and farther away from her. She did her best to chase after them, but no matter how hard she tried, she couldn't catch up."
"No... I don't want this..."
Nie Sangyu's face turned slightly towards her. Her smiling face was full of contentment and happiness. Seeing this sight, Wen Wan felt as if vines with venomous thorns were wrapping around her heart and making it difficult for her to breath.
"You wretched woman..."
Inside a room in the western courtyard, the doctor took his hand back, wrote out a prescription, and handed it over to Tanxiang. On his way out, he couldn't resist looking at a nearby table.
The table was full of dishes, but there was an especially strange thing at the center of the table, a braised pig head had been placed on top of a cutting board. The doctor had no idea why someone would do such a strange thing.
It seemed that the marquis's taste was getting more and more bizarre.
Ning Yuxuan was quietly sitting nearby. Seeing Wen Wan, who wasn't at peace even in her sleep, he let out a small sigh.
When Wen Wan woke up, the pain in her heart remained. When she raised her eyes and saw Marquis Moyu, she felt a bit better. But, thinking of that scene in her dream, she couldn't resist crying. She grabbed his sleeve and asked him while weeping, "My lord, why does your heart no longer have Wan-er?"
Marquis Moyu gently patted her beautiful hair and lightly asked, "Do you know when it was that I loved you the most?"
Stunned, Wen Wan froze for a moment before she carefully recollected her memories. From the time they had met to when they had fallen in love, when had Ning Yuxuan loved her the most? Perhaps, it was that time when assassins were chasing him after, and she had hid him in her home without regard for her own safety?
At that time, Ning Yuxuan's had looked at her with a gaze that was gently enough to pardon the entire world. Looking at her, he had said, "You're such an idiot."
Back then, their love had been so simple. She had just been a girl from a commoner's family, and he was the lofty marquis. She didn't care about riches and status, and he had wanted to give her everything.
When had everything started to quietly change?
Wen Wan pressed her lips together and silently looked at Ning Yuxuan.
The beautiful man in front of her lowered his head and whispered into her ear, "I loved you the most when there was nothing more important than me in your heart. My feelings started to fade when your affection for me had already vanished."
"Yuxuan..." Wen Wan wanted to argue. She hadn't. Her feelings for him, it hadn't...
She suddenly remembered something. During the incident with the smallpox in the other estate, she... It was true. She no longer loved him to the point that she would endanger her life for him. If this had happened in the past, when she had nothing, she would have been wiling to care for him. But after experiencing a luxurious standard of living and knowing that one's life on earth was to be treasured, she had actually flinched back.
Ning Yuxuan's eyes were very deep. He gently pulled up the quilt for her and said, "Have a good rest."
The food on the table was already too cold to eat. Looking at the pig head, Ning Yuxuan was silent for a long time.
Guibai quietly asked, "Master, do you want the food to be sent back to the kitchen and have it warmed up when Madam comes over tomorrow?"
Marquis Moyu shook his head. His gaze was complicated as he said, "I still don't clearly understand what she meant by xiu. Let's wait a few more days."
(T/N: The word xiu has more than one meaning in Chinese. I choose the meaning that matches what Ji Man wanted to say (repair) in a previous chapter, but Ning Yuxuan probably wouldn't be able to correctly guess which meaning she meant.)
Guibai solemnly nodded and ordered the servants to take away all of the dishes on the table.
Translator Ramblings: I wish that Wen Wan could argue back that her feelings for him only changed because he broke his promises to her and played mind games trying to grind her down into his ideal woman, but that would be the same as admitting she doesn’t love him anymore, so she can’t say those words.
I think Ning Yuxuan does acknowledge to himself that he’s partially responsible in how Wen Wan has changed since her met her. If Wen Wan hadn’t married him and entered this poisonous household, she might have stayed the same self-sacrificing girl that she was when he first met her. The responsibility and guilt that he feels towards her is what makes him willing to look the other way whenever Wen Wan does something bad. Even though it causes unpleasant consequences, I like that he continues to feel responsible for Wen Wan even though he’s falling in love with Nie Sangyu/Ji Man. I just wish his execution of it was better. At the same time, he’s encumbered by having to put on a show for the first prince and the empress that he’s still in love with Wen Wan.