Chapter 472: Busy, bustling Han Yunxi Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
Every time Chu Qingge received one of Chu Tianyin’s messages, she opened it with great reluctance. That was because all he did was tell her how to please Emperor Tianhui or warn her not to touch Han Yunxi. She clutched the missive tightly in her hands and didn’t open it at all in the end. By her side, Xu mama smiled and tried to coax her, “Noble consort, perhaps eldest young master has some urgent business. It may be best to open it quickly.”
“What kind of urgent business could he have? Here I am, absolutely miserable, while he forbids me from touching Han Yunxi and put up with Empress Dowager Li and the rest. What’s there for him to get so excited about?” Chu Qingge scoffed.
“Noble consort, eldest young master is right. His Majesty isn’t blind and knows perfectly well what goes on in his imperial harems. We’re new to the palace, so we must endure everything. Gain Emperor Tianhui’s favor first so he’ll turn a blind eye when we overstep our boundaries in the future,” Xu mama coaxed.
Recently, Noble Consort Xue had been making all sorts of little moves against them. This wasn’t big news, but Chu Qingge couldn’t stand such things with her personality! If big brother hadn’t held her back, she would’ve poisoned the other woman ages ago.
“Noble consort, hasn’t His Majesty kept you in the imperial study to accompany him the past few days? Even Noble Consort Xue was sent away, yet you still haven’t vented your temper?” Xu mama coaxed again.
“Vented my temper? What does that Noble Consort Xue count for? I’ll only be happy after I kill Han Yunxi!” Chu Qingge voiced her thoughts coldly.
Without a choice, Xu mama paused before trying again, “Noble consort, there’s one thing this old servant doesn’t understand. Sowing discord between Han Yunxi and Empress Dowager Li would be shooting two targets with one arrow without harming us an inch, but why does eldest young master refuse to agree? If we can’t do it, he must have good ideas of his own.”
After being told repeatedly to leave Han Yunxi alone, Chu Qingge had naturally thought of the question herself. She gave a cold snort and said, “He and father are just afraid of His Highness Duke of Qin, I bet!”
Seeing her mistress like this, Xu mama didn’t know what to say. Noble Consort Chu liked the Duke of Qin very much, but she really shouldn’t be praising him that much. “Noble consort, why don’t you open the message first,” Xu mama urged again.
Chu Qingge finally obeyed and unfolded the missive. If her elder brother really was in an emergency, she couldn’t afford to ignore his words. But after reading through the contents, her face lit up in smiles. “Excellent, this is excellent! Big brother’s finally come to his senses!”
Her brother’s message was for her to keep calm and stay put. She wasn’t to summon Han Yunxi to the palace again, but wait. He had his own ways to cause strife between Empress Dowager Li and Qin Wangfei. Xu mama couldn’t believe her eyes. She re-read the message herself to verify its claims.
“Esteemed Noble Consort, what is…eldest young master planning now?” Xu mama asked doubtfully.
“He’s thought it through and grown bolder!” Chu Qingge didn’t care about the details. As long as big brother was helping her, she had full faith in the matter of taking care of Han Yunxi. As for Long Feiye—well, that man couldn’t very well stick his hand into women’s affairs all the time.
Tonight, Chu Qingge finally slept peacefully in a good mood. Meanwhile, another woman stayed awake until the sun came up. Inside an inn close to the Duke of Qin’s estate, Mu Linger had already spent an entire night perched on the windowsill in blank thought. Although she didn’t have much silver left, she maintained staying at the second-best room in Tianning’s most expensive inn because Qi gege had reserved the number one room. If he came back to the capital, he had the best chances of showing up here. Even since flagging down Han Yunxi’s carriage last time, she had come to Tianning’s capital city instead. Her efforts to find Qi gege had failed, so all she could do was wait. Although she didn’t want to admit it, she was sure he’d come looking for Han Yunxi eventually.
Recently, the news of Pill Fiend Valley sell off its wares and allying with Han Yunxi to open Pill Fiend Pharmacy in the capital had spread all over the place. Although Mu Linger didn’t always show interest in gossip, she had paid close attention to news about Pill Fiend. She dearly disliked Pill Fiend Valley’s usual conduct, but she still respected Gu Qi Sha greatly for his pharmaceutical skills. But she couldn’t figure out why he would agree to cooperate with Han Yunxi. Why the sudden change in attitude? Why the sudden agreement to sell medicine? It was absurd!
In the midst of Mu Linger’s morose thoughts, her stomach grumbled. She was hungry again. Father had always sheltered her since she was young and she rarely left the house, so she didn’t have the usual airs of a rich young Miss. But that still was who she was in the end, so she had no idea how hard it was to survive outside. Now she was roaming about, her silver in her purse almost too little to pay for her room fees, much less her meals. Her financial support had been severed as well, making her sorely lacking in funds. Last time, her father had sent her a message to slip back into Medicine City in secret so she could stay in one of the Mu Clan’s hidden rooms and work as their pharmacist from there. After that message, Mu Linger had never contacted her father again.
She was very clear that it’d be very difficult for her to ever leave that room again once she returned. Father doted on her not because she was his daughter, but because she was a genius pharmacist. He wouldn’t hand her over to the other elders, but neither would he risk offending Medicine City for her sake. In the end, all he could do was trap her at home. She hated the thought of being reduced to a tool and living her days without freedom!
“Aye, Qi gege, just where are you?! If you don’t show up soon, Linger will starve to death!” Mu Linger sighed before deciding to go back and catch up on sleep. I shouldn’t feel hungry if I’m sleeping. I still want to be able to save some silver to pay the room fees…
Some people couldn’t sleep, but Han Yunxi slept the whole night away. After handing over the rainbow signal flares to Long Feiye, she went right back to taking care of her Pill Fiend Pharmacy. Although Steward Luo was in charge of most of the work, she still insisted on handling many aspects herself. For example, the blueprints of the pharmacy itself, the fixed prices of its goods, the advertisements inviting applications for pharmacists, young medical assistants, footmen, and guards, and some more rules and regulations for Pill Fiend Valley. The blueprints alone were enough to give Han Yunxi an aneurysm. Those involved both its storefront and storehouse depository, both of which required careful thought before construction could even begin. After all, she wasn’t just storing ordinary ingredients, but rare and precious goods. The rarer the product, the more care that was needed to store it away.
Han Yunxi had plenty of precious ingredients of her own, but she’d tossed them all in the detox system with its automatic storage. She had never needed to consider such arrangements in the real world. Now things were starting to get a little overwhelming. Sometimes, she was so tired that she even had the wicked thought of just absorbing all of Gu Qi Sha’s medicine into her detox system instead. Of course, that was only a passing fancy.
She originally wanted to find Gu Qi Sha so they could discuss the arrangements together, but when she recalled how undependable he could be, she thought of Gu Qishao and Mu Linger instead. However, she had no idea how to find either of the other two, so she went asking Gu Beiyue for help instead. Today was his usual consultation day over at the Han family’s eastern clinic. Han Yunxi got up extra early to arrive at the clinic and help out. Seventh Madame, little Yi’er, and Chen Xiang hadn’t seen her in ages, so they circled her and talked nonstop. By contrast, it was Gu Beiyue who only greeted her with a bow before busying himself with his work. In the course of one day, he went through 50 different patients. Once evening fell and dinner was prepared, he was still stuck treating different people.
“Esteemed wangfei, Imperial Physician Gu will tire himself out. Have him stop,” Lady Helian said earnestly. Lady Helian was none other than the Han Clan’s Seventh Madame Helian Zuixiang. Because she was the sole female mistress left in the Han estate, everyone had started calling her ‘lady’ as little Yi’er grew up. At first, she didn’t know how to manage things like a ‘lady,’ but now she had grown quite skilled in managing the household and raising her son.
Han Yunxi felt her heart ache at the sight of Gu Beiyue’s pale but peaceful face. Still, she knew that coaxing him would be useless. Gu Beiyue came at a fixed time every month to this clinic to treat patients. Many of the most complicated and difficult cases all waited for him to show on this day, so the line outside the clinic was huge. Anyone who couldn’t wait their turn this month would have to wait until the next. As a doctor, he was very clear on what waiting a month might mean to some of those patients. That was why he insisted on clearing the line every time he came. All Han Yunxi could do was to have the clinic limit the number of people in the line.
“When Pill Fiend Pharmacy’s established, I should call over some well-known doctors to attract more clientele. Then the pharmacy can supply the medicine for patients here at the clinic,” Han Yunxi remarked.
Little Yi’er scooted closer at her words. “Big sis, I want to take the examinations at the medical academy! Then I’ll come back and help big brother Beiyue!”
After spending over a year studying the Han Clan Medical Canon and taking tips from Gu Beiyue, little Yi’er’s medical skills were no less inferior to any of the regular doctors on call in the clinic. Unfortunately, he didn’t have a proper qualification to practice medicine, much less a medical rank, so very few patients dared to find him to treat their illnesses.
“When your big brother Beiyue has time, let him test you first,” Han Yunxi smiled.
“Big sis, big brother Beiyue is already a fifth-ranked Divine Doctor, but when’s he going to rise and become Primogenitor level?” little Yi’er asked seriously.
Han Yunxi tugged on his little ears and laughed. “Big brother Beiyue doesn’t care about that.”
“Why not?” little Yi’er didn’t understand.
Han Yunxi was only joking, but Gu Beiyue heard the words as he headed their way and wore a light smile. “It’s not that I don’t care, but that I might be hard-pressed to qualify.”
Little Yi’er was about to ask more questions when Lady Helian cut him off. “Children shouldn’t ask questions nonstop, it’s impolite.” Having said so, she quickly urged Han Yunxi and Gu Beiyue to come over and start dinner.
It was only once a month that everyone met like this with no pretensions at the dinner table. There were no superiors or inferiors here, just a group of people enjoying their dinner. Once the food was finished, Han Yunxi handed the blueprints of Pill Fiend Pharmacy to Gu Beiyue.
“Imperial Physician Gu, help me see if there’s any places that need adjustments, especially the area with the storehouse.”
Gu Beiyue carefully went over the diagram and offered quite a few suggestions before he finally concluded, “Esteemed wangfei, if you really want the pharmacy to prosper, I don’t think just selling rare ingredients will do it. You’d only be an exclusive shop, then.”
Han Yunxi grew still. How could Gu Beiyue be so intelligent? He’d pinpointed her main source of worry over the past few days with a single sentence. One of her main reasons for opening Pill Fiend Pharmacy was to sell off the valley’s precious ingredients, but she also wanted to make a big splash across Cloud Realm Continent so she could snatch herself a foothold in the medical community. Pill Fiend Valley’s precious items were amongst the rarest of the rare, but the medicine with the greatest market share were the more common ingredients, most of which fell under the control of Medicine City. Once Pill Fiend Pharmacy opened for business, the question of where to get a steady supply of such goods would be the next big issue.
Han Yunxi hesitated for a second before she said, “Pill Fiend Pharmacy is heading forward under Pill Fiend’s name. I’m afraid that Medicine City won’t be willing to do trade with us.”
Gu Beiyue smiled. “Esteemed wangfei, there’s one person who can help you with that matter.”
“Who?” Han Yunxi couldn’t think of anyone. Even though Long Feiye was friends with Wang Gong, the Wang Clan wouldn’t take risks with something like this.
“The head of Cloud Realm Continent’s Trade Consortium, Ouyang Ningnuo,” Gu Beiyue answered plainly.