Chapter 286: First Young Master Ning’s discovery
“Your Majesty, can we have a talk in private?” Ning Xiaomu asked Ning Xiaoyao in a soft voice.
As long as it wasn’t to whisper sweet nothings, Ning Xiaoyao felt like she could talk at any given place. However, Ning Xiaoyao couldn’t bear to reject such a handsome man. After all, First Young Master Ning’s smile was so gentle and his appearance could rival that of the Supreme Commander. After taking one look, Ning Xiaoyao nodded, “Alright.”
“Stay here with the rest and wait for me.” After getting approval from Ning Xiaoyao, Ning Xiaomu turned around to instruct his little brother.
Ning Xiaoluo was displeased as he questioned, “I can’t listen?”
First Young Master Ning instantly replied, “You won’t be able to understand what I say anyway.”
“That’s right!” Ning Xiaoyao chipped in, “Little Luoluo, even your big bro Ning knows that I’m smarter than you.”
“……” Everyone was speechless. What the hell is Little Luoluo?
“You!” Third Young Master Ning wanted to roared at Ning Xiaoyao after having suffered a gigantic blow to his ego, but he immediately shut up at the sight of Ning Xiaoyao’s waving fist. He would lose face big time if he were to be beaten up in front of those he was acquainted with. (Author: So it’s fine to beat you up when your acquaintances aren’t around? ╮(╯▽╰)╭)
“Your Majesty, please.” Ning Xiaomu patted his little brother’s head before he led Ning Xiaoyao toward the depths of the woods.
“Alright.” Ning Xiaoyao nodded and followed Ning Xiaomu.
Third Young Master Ning stood unmoved and watched the two of them go. Only when they were out of sight did he mutter, “As the Son of Heavens, he was actually forced by an old rascal to run around with a floral dressed on. Does he still have any face left?”
The soldiers of the Destruction Prisoner Army all looked at their third young master with sympathy. If you have the guts, why don’t you say this to His Majesty’s face? Don’t think we didn’t notice, we know you’re afraid of His Majesty’s fists ah!
Ning Xiaomu brought Ning Xiaoyao to stand under a cedar tree. He let the latter have the windward spot so she could enjoy the fresh breeze of the forest, while he himself took the lee side. He cupped his fist with nothing but solemnity to pay obeisance towards Ning Xiaoyao, “Your Majesty, this subject would like to thank you for saving my little brother.”
“Ah? No problem,” Ning Xiaoyao laughed hahaha, “I was just passing by that day and happened to lend a hand.”
First Young Master Ning nearly choked. So basically, his little brother survived because His Majesty happened to lend a hand.
Ning Xiaoyao asked, “Big bro Ning, are you guys aware of Grand Preceptor Xie’s true face now?”
“Yes,” First Young Master Ning replied with a nod, “This subject has been ignorant, this subject is ashamed to face Your Majesty.”
“It’s fine,” Ning Xiaoyao said offhandedly, “If we must blame someone, we can only blame Great Preceptor for being too good at acting. His face alone looks much more amiable than old gramps Li.”
First Young Master Ning was puzzled, “Old gramps Li?”
“It’s Elder Li, ah.” replied Ning Xiaoyao.
“Oh.” First Young Master Ning smiled. He noticed he had a bit of trouble keeping up with the emperor’s words. (Author: You’re definitely not the only one who feels that way…)
“Just imagine Empress Dowager’s face,” Ning Xiaoyao continued, “Compare to her, the Grand Preceptor actually looks like a decent person, doesn’t he?”
In response to Ning Xiaoyao’s question, First Young Master Ning could only say, “Your Majesty, this subject has never seen the Esteemed Empress Dowager.”
“Is that so?” Ning Xiaoyao asked, “So do you want to meet the Empress Dowager?”
“This subject does not.” First Young Master Ning hastily shook his head. What would he want to see the Empress Dowager for?
“Then big bro Ning, why did you and Little Luoluo come to the capital?”
“Naturally, we wanted to directly thank Your Majesty for your grace.” First Young Master Ning said, “Also, there are things I want to make clear, face to face, with Xie Wenyuan as well. But now that Xie Wenyuan is deemed a subject against the state, this subject had better come inside the prison to question him someday.”
Inside the prison. Ning Xiaoyao pondered over First Young Master Ning’s words and suddenly became overly excited, “Yeah! Yeah!! Let’s throw Xie Wenyuan into prison. I’ll lock him up for life sentence!”
First Young Master Ning inquired with a hint of smile on his lips, “Your Majesty, may this subject hear about the overall situation of the capital?”
“Oh, right now,” Ning Xiaoyao instantly told First Young Master Ning everything she knew without the least bit of hiding and holding back.
First Young Master Ning listened to Ning Xiaoyao talk with gravitas. Whenever His Majesty Ning was about to go off-topic or spew nonsense, First Young Master Ning would always smoothly steer back to the main point with one or two sentences.
“So that’s that,” Ning Xiaoyao concluded, “If there’s anything else, big bro Ning, you can go ask Supreme Commander.”
Ning Xiaomu smiled, “Your Majesty, this subject believes that Your Majesty will not lose this time.”
“Really? Hahaha!” Ning Xiaoyao laughed and made a loud clap with her hands, “I knew Supreme Commander could do it.”
A gust of wind suddenly picked up and sent the dust flying through the woods. First Young Master Ning hastened to move himself to the windward position and shielded Ning Xiao from the gale of sand. When he saw Ning Xiaoyao rub her eyes, he softly patted her shoulders and explained, “Your Majesty, there is dust here on your shoulders.”
“Really?” Ning Xiaoyao turned around, wanting to check her shoulders.
First Young Master Ning tightened up Ning Xiaoyao’s robe collars a little. It looked like he was doing it inadvertently.
“No dust, ah.” Ning Xiaoyao mumbled as she looked at her own shoulder.
No laryngeal prominence. (I didn’t use Adam’s apple because ancient Chinese people sure don’t know who Adam is) First Young Master Ning quickly loosened his fingers and withdrew his hands. He placed his hands behind his back and smiled at Ning Xiaoyao. “That’s because this subject has brushed it off for Your Majesty.”
“So that’s why, ah,” Ning Xiaoyao didn’t doubt First Young Master Ning’s words at all. She squinted to look at his shoulders, then tiptoed to brush his shoulders as well. “Alright, now we are both clean.”
“Your Majesty,” Ning Xiaomu addressed Ning Xiaoyao. First Young Master Ning reached out to grab the latter’s hand from his shoulder and rested his fingers against her wrist arteries.
“Yeah?” Ning Xiaoyao blinked at Ning Xiaomu.
First Young Master Ning released his hand. The words he wanted to say were rolling around his tongue but never left his lips. Eventually, First Young Master Ning said to Ning Xiaoyao, “This subject would like to ask Your Majesty’s favor to bring this subject’s little brother into the city. This subject would like to meet with Supreme Commander.”
“You want me to bring Little Luoluo into the city?” Ning Xiaoyao was puzzled, “Big bro Ning, why are you guys choosing to enter the city now?”
“This subject has brought 120 soldiers from the Destruction Prisoner Army,” Ning Xiaomu explained to Ning Xiaoyao in a soft voice, “They are the army’s very best. Although few in number, they can still follow Your Majesty as personal bodyguards.”
“Eh,” Ning Xiaoyao was hesitant. Little Luoluo is already like this and they plan to protect her instead?
“Your Majesty is the Son of Heavens, nothing must happen to you,” Ning Xiaomu slightly leaned over and took a protective stance when he looked at Ning Xiaoyao, “Your Majesty, now that this subject is here in the capital city, please allow this subject to carry out his responsibility as Your Majesty’s subject.”
Ning Xiaoyao scratched her head. For some reason, she felt like First Young Master Ning was looking at her with eyes filled with an inexplicable sadness. It was as if he was seeing someone else through her. Ning Xiaoyao found herself unable to shoulder his gaze and nodded in assent, “Okay, alright.”
“This matter should not be delayed,” First Young Master Ning said, “Your Majesty, please return to the city and be careful. Don’t let Xie Wenyuan trace your steps.”
“Mhm, understood,” Ning Xiaoyao nodded. She was wearing a floral dress at the moment. Who would figure out her identity once she covers up her face?
“Does Xie Wenyuan truly want to fight Your Majesty to death?” First Young Master Ning asked Ning Xiaoyao right before they were about to leave..
“That’s right,” Ning Xiaoyao fumed with rage at the mention of Grand Preceptor Xie, “That old fogey is bad to the core! His life goal is to kill me, then put Ning Xin up as the emperor!”
“Then Your Majesty, do you know why he is so adamant on making Prince Cheng the emperor?” First Young Master Ning asked again.
Because I’m a girl.
Ning Xiaoyao felt stifled as she heaved a long sigh, “I don’t know.”
“This subject won’t pry anymore,” First Young Master Ning said while he gestured his hand to motion Ning Xiaoyao to go first, “Your Majesty, don’t be sad.”
Ning Xiaoyao raised her head to look at First Young Master Ning. “How do you know that I’m feeling sad?”
First Young Master Ning only smiled and didn’t reply.
What a gentle person. Ning Xiaoyao thought as she gazed at First Young Master Ning and opened her mouth to ask, “Big bro Ning, are you a general?”
“Yes.” First Young Master Ning nodded.
“You don’t look it.” Ning Xiaoyao was honest about her judgement. She couldn’t imagine the sight of such a gentle person hacking at zombies, no wait, hacking at the enemies in the battlefield.
“This subject studied literature during childhood,” First Young Master Ning replied as he followed behind Ning Xiaoyao, “But as the first son, this subject has to take over the family business, so this subject ultimately had to become a brute soldier to lead the army and fight our enemies.”
“Brute is good,” Ning Xiaoyao took a few steps back and said, “I like brute men, Supreme Commander is a brute man too, ah.”
“Your Majesty likes Supreme Commander?” First Young Master Ning asked with unchanging expression.
Ning Xiaoyao’s face stiffened while thoughts and ideas swirled around in her little head. His Majesty Ning immediately remedied her own speech, “I also like big bro Ning!” she blurted.
First Young Master Ning once again smiled. “Thank you, Your Majesty.”
Ning Xiaoyao was very dazzled by First Young Master Ning’s smile. In fact, it was so impactful that she couldn’t help but question Third Young Master Ning on their way back to the capital, “How did you grow up to be totally different from your big brother? Are you sure you weren’t adopted?”
Ning Xiaoluo rolled his eyes at Ning Xiaoyao and rebuked, “Why doesn’t Your Majesty just say that I’m your brother?”
“That’s impossible.” Ning Xiaoyao shook her head. If Empress Dowager Xie already had a son before giving birth to her, why would Empress Dowager Xie and Grand Preceptor Xie bother tormenting her?
“Both my big brother and second brother resemble my father, while I take after mother.” Ning Xiaoluo replied honestly, he wasn’t about to claim himself a royal kinsman either.
“Alright, good baby of the Duke of Yue’s Lady,” Ning Xiaoyao teased Third Young Master Ning, “This time, I’ll still protect you all the same.”
“I’ll be alright with my big brother here,” Ning Xiaoluo proudly stated, “My big brother will protect me.”
Ning Xiaoyao shrugged her shoulders. So she doesn’t need to worry about this guy, that’s good news.
The soldiers of Destruction Prisoner Army couldn’t look straight at their third young master. You’re expecting the First Young Master to protect you. Do you still have any face left?
First Young Master Ning watched as Ning Xiaoyao took his idiotic little brother and left. After that, he lingered alone at the entrance of the path leading into the woods for a while. From time to time, light breezes would pass by him. Since he was standing under the shade, no sunlight shone on him. However, Ning Xiaomu could feel his chest aching in a way that prevented air into his lungs. It was still difficult to breathe with his mouth open.
Fifteen years ago in the Grand Preceptor’s estate, his mother – the Duke of Yue’s wife Lady Li – went into labor at the same time as the Empress Dowager Xie. Empress Dowager Xie went through a difficult labour and gave birth to Prince Ning Yu. Meanwhile, just briefly before that, Lady Li gave birth to a baby girl. However, the baby girl couldn’t be treated and died two hours later. Now, the current emperor’s face bore a striking resemblance to Lady Li. In addition, Xie Wenyuan was set on killing Ning Xiaoluo who took after his mother, and His Majesty was not a man. What did all of this indicate?
First Young Master Ning could no longer remain standing and fell down onto his knees. He didn’t tell Ning Xiaoyao, the literature he’d read were actually medical books. From looking at her neck and checking her pulse, he could tell Ning Xiaoyao wasn’t male.
Mother had cradled that baby girl. His father had also cradled that baby girl from outside the labour room. First Young Master Ning half knelt underneath the tree. He dug his fingers into the soil as his face turned ashen. Empress Dowager Xie didn’t give birth to a prince fifteen years ago. That woman gave birth to a princess, and this princess’s ashes are currently held within a cinerary urn buried under their Ning clan’s ancestral grave in Fengzhou. As for their Fourth Young Miss Ning, she is now wearing the Dragon Robe and the ruler of the country…
Isn’t this like OHHHH SHITTTTTT??? Dun dun dun. Note: The chapters are so long and taking forever. Please be patient!!! <3 And please read on volarenovels (dot) com. Don’t support aggregator sites.