Arc 7: Dizi’s Remarriage Chapter 5
Tao Yuan stood motionless and looked at her. He didn’t need to guess. He knew what she was thinking. Now both Lei Yuan and Yan Hao want to marry him, and she must have found out he just accepted the lantern from Princess Yunyang. She thinks he wants to marry Lei Yuan, so she came to teach him a lesson.
When he really becomes Lei Yuan’s zhengjun, his status will be no lower than hers. Moreover, Lei Yuan holds much more real power than her father. At that time who looks down on whom is uncertain. She just wants to suppress and bully him before he becomes Lei Yuan’s zhengjun to vent her jealousy.
“This princess told you to kneel down, didn’t you hear me?” Xing Chen said loudly.
Tao Yuan looked at her with an expressionless face, a hint of disdain flashing in his eyes. Dealing with such a simple-minded princess was too easy. He was now the Sacred Spirit’s vessel, the only person who could keep Lei Yuan alive. Even Princess Yunyang treated him with courtesy, but this princess, who was so determined to marry Lei Yuan, treated him so disrespectfully. It shows her brainlessness had reached a certain level.
But as the most beloved daughter of the Emperor Wen, she had been spoiled and domineering since childhood. It’s not surprising that she behaves this way. Although the Emperor Wen’s real power was not as great as that of the Wu Wang, he was still the most noble person in the end. And even the three Wu Wang had to show outward respect. Moreover, the two most powerful Wu Wang were both her cousins, so she naturally looked down on the original host.
“How dare you look at this princess with such eyes?!” Xing Chen became even angrier because of Tao Yuan’s obvious disdainful eyes. “Don’t think that just because you’re some vessel of the Holy Spirit, this princess won’t dare to discipline you!”
Tao Yuan thought to himself, what kind of approach should he take to deal with this simple-minded and arrogant princess? With his current status as the vessel of the Holy Spirit, no matter what he did to this princess, Lei Yuan and Princess Yunyang would protect him.
Recalling the feeling of being observed just moments ago, Tao Yuan made up his mind. A scornful and disdainful smile curled up on his lips.
Tao Yuan’s smile completely angered Xing Chen, causing her to lose her temper. She raised her hand and swung it towards Tao Yuan’s face in a fit of anger.
Tao Yuan went along with the motion and fell to the ground as if Xing Chen’s slap had struck him. In reality, her palm hadn’t touched his face at all. As he fell, Tao Yuan clapped his hands together, producing a clear slapping sound.
Xing Chen stared stunned at the fallen Tao Yuan because she knew she hadn’t actually hit him. But the sound of the slap and Tao Yuan’s posture on the ground left her unable to react.
The people standing nearby were equally taken aback. Some didn’t know how to react, some found amusement in the situation once they realized what had happened, and most simply observed from a distance, because it was evident that Princess Xing Chen had come to trouble Tao Yuan.
“How dare you in front of this princess… Ah!”
A scream echoed as Xing Chen was suddenly lifted by an unseen force and was thrown heavily to the ground.
The palace maids who had accompanied Xing Chen rushed over to help her.
Lei Yuan suddenly appeared and strode towards Tao Yuan. He bent down to help Tao Yuan up, his face filled with concern as he asked, “Does it hurt?”
Tao Yuan covered his face, lowered his head, and tears continued to stream down, appearing both aggrieved and hesitant to speak.
Meanwhile, Xing Chen was forcefully thrown to the ground so hard that tears flowed out due to pain. She had been pampered since childhood, and the most beloved princess of her father. She had never experienced such pain before. What made it even more difficult for her to bear was the person who made her endure the pain was Lei Yuan, whom she wanted to marry but couldn’t. That’s why her jealousy towards Tao Yuan’s status as the Sacred Spirit’s vessel was so intense.
Lei Yuan felt heartbroken witnessing Tao Yuan’s tears. He resisted the urge to hold Tao Yuan and offer comfort, and once again asked, “Is it very painful?”
Tao Yuan shook his head and continued to silently shed tears, intentionally trying to make Lei Yuan feel heartache.
With the help of her maids, Xing Chen struggled to stand. Seeing Lei Yuan comforting Tao Yuan, she felt a mix of anger and grievance and loudly protested, “I didn’t even hit him! He’s pretending!”
Lei Yuan turned around and walked step by step towards Xing Chen.
Xing Chen looked at Lei Yuan’s angry expression. She trembled in fear from his momentum. But she still defended herself desperately, saying, “Cousin, I really didn’t hit him. He fell on his own. I swear, please believe me!”
“The Xihuang Guo 1 has sent a proposal for the princess’s hand in marriage. I think I’ll let you go to Xihuang Guo for a marriage,” Lei Yuan said expressionlessly.
“No, I don’t want to go and marry in Xihuang Guo…” Xing Chen’s face immediately turned pale, and tears filled her eyes as she begged in fear. “I’ll never go near him again. I swear, I won’t go near him again. Please, I beg you, please…”
“Jiang Shuang, Jiang Yu,” Lei Yuan called.
“Take Qu Xiao Lang and tend to his injuries,” Lei Yuan ordered.
“Yes.” Jiang Shuang and Jiang Yu approached Tao Yuan, helping him up and leading him away.
After watching Tao Yuan leave, Lei Yuan turned and walked in the opposite direction.
Princess Xing Chen had been reprimanded by Lei Yuan in front of so many people, which was a humiliating experience. But she could only turn and run away, tears streaming down her face.
The others had all been stunned since the moment Princess Xing Chen was thrown to the ground. The sight of a princess being taught a lesson by a Wuwang was not something they were supposed to witness, and Lei Yuan’s imposing presence had left them terrified. They would rather have not seen this scene at all.
Princess Xing Chen went to the royal palace to complain. Upon learning that Xing Chen had actually physically attacked Tao Yuan, Princess Yunyang was furious and taught her a lesson. Then, she had someone escort Xing Chen back to the palace and instructed her not to return to the Leiwu Wang’s palace in the future.
After Princess Xing Chen was scolded by both Lei Yuan and Princess Yunyang, she cried all the way back to the imperial palace. She had never given up on her desire to marry Lei Yuan, but Princess Yunyang told her not to visit the Leiwu Wang’s residence anymore, which seemed to shatter her hopes. This thought made her cry even harder, she couldn’t breathe.
Tao Yuan who had fallen to the ground earlier, had gotten his clothes dirty. They provided him with a fresh set of clothing. Jiang Shuang and Jiang Yu then helped him wash his face and applied some transparent ointment to reduce swelling and pain.
Tao Yuan walked into the outer chamber and saw Lei Yuan standing there. He paused for a moment before walking up to Lei Yuan and saluted, saying, “Last time, Your Highness saved Qu Yun, and Qu Yun has yet to express his gratitude.”
Lei Yuan stood with his hands behind his back, looking at him seriously, and asked, “Does your face still hurt?”
Tao Yuan hesitated for a moment, then shook his head and replied, “It doesn’t hurt anymore.”
Lei Yuan raised his hand, and a maid holding a wooden box immediately stepped forward. Lei Yuan opened the box and took out a lantern from inside, handing it to Tao Yuan, “Take this lantern for a night stroll.”
Tao Yuan looked at the exquisite lantern, which was even more beautiful than the one Princess Yunyang had given him. It can be seen at a glance that it had been carved from several types of jade, carefully shaped and arranged by color and form. It was incredibly intricate and lovely. Moreover, Tao Yuan faintly sensed some spiritual energy from it. He felt that using spiritually-infused jade for a lantern was quite luxurious.
“Do you not like it?” Lei Yuan asked with a hint of confusion when he noticed Tao Yuan’s hesitation.
“I like it.” Tao Yuan said as he reached out to take the lantern. He then lowered his head and continued, “Last time, Your Highness saved Qu Yun, and Qu Yun didn’t know how to repay Your Highness, so he offered himself…”
“If you wish to offer yourself, I won’t refuse,” Lei Yuan said as he looked at him.
“Eh?” Tao Yuan lifted his head to look at Lei Yuan, completely stunned. He had thought that Lei Yuan hadn’t mentioned his act of saving him to Princess Yunyang because he didn’t want him to feel obligated to marry him as a form of repayment. He never expected Lei Yuan to respond with such a statement.
“I won’t force you to feel obligated to repay me, but if you voluntarily offer yourself, I won’t refuse, nor will I give you a chance to back out. So, you better think carefully before saying anything,” Lei Yuan said, looking at Tao Yuan’s surprised expression. He couldn’t help but find it adorable, though he managed to maintain his serious expression.
“I…,” Tao Yuan found himself at a loss for how to respond. If he said he was willing to offer himself, it would make him seem too forward. But if he declined, when would he ever have the chance to marry Lei Yuan?
“You don’t need to answer in a hurry. Go back and think it over carefully. When you answer next time, there will be no turning back,” Lei Yuan said. He really wanted to reach out and touch Tao Yuan’s face, but he had been genuinely unable to control his anger when he saw Tao Yuan being struck by Princess Xing Chen.
“Is Your Highness saying this because I’m the vessel of the Holy Spirit?” Tao Yuan looked at him and asked seriously, “If I weren’t the vessel of the Holy Spirit, would Your Highness still say this?”
“…” Lei Yuan hesitated. He wanted to say no, but the words wouldn’t come out. What he wanted to say was that if Tao Yuan weren’t the vessel of the Holy Spirit and yet married him, then unless they never consummated their marriage, he would surely die. But why couldn’t he say it? Why did he have this feeling that he wanted to be with him regardless of whether he was the vessel of the Holy Spirit or not?
“You don’t need to rush to answer either, Your Highness. Take your time to think it over. There’s no need to hurry,” Tao Yuan replied. He didn’t expect Lei Yuan to be hopelessly in love with him right now, given that he still retained the thoughts of the original host and lacked memories of their past life. After all, this was only their second meeting.
The two people’s gazes lingered, and both could sense the complex emotions in each other’s eyes. They felt a deep connection on a spiritual level. Unable to resist any longer, Lei Yuan reached out and gently touched Tao Yuan’s smooth face.
After returning to the general’s residence, Tao Yuan told Qu Cang and Miao Chen that he had received the blessing lantern from Princess Yunyang.
The couple looked at each other and then asked if he was willing to marry Lei Yuan.
Before heading to Xiuling Temple, Qu Cang and Miao Chen didn’t give him specific instructions about which lantern to accept, leaving the choice entirely up to Tao Yuan.
Tao Yuan told them what had happened today and expressed that he felt a strong sense of security from both Lei Yuan’s previous rescue and today’s protection. In short, since he was going to marry someone eventually, it might be better to marry Lei Yuan, who showed his willingness to protect him, rather than someone whose intentions were unknown.
After careful consideration, Qu Cang and Miao Chen agreed with Tao Yuan’s reasoning. Among the two Wu Wang who could protect the vessel of the Holy Spirit, choosing the one Tao Yuan wanted to marry made the most sense.
So, Qu Cang and Miao Chen went back to Leiwu Wang’s palace to discuss the marriage with Princess Yunyang. She was both excited and delighted, she wished to have Tao Yuan brought to the royal palace immediately and arrange the wedding between Lei Yuan and Tao Yuan as soon as possible.
Once the news of Tao Yuan and Lei Yuan’s engagement spread, the most angry and anxious individuals were Princess Jiade and Yan Hao. They were angry because Qu Cang and Miao Chen hadn’t agreed to Princess Yunyang’s proposal earlier, and then after a few days when someone went to propose, Qu Cang and Miao Chen immediately accepted it. It was clear that they were reluctant to marry Tao Yuan to Yan Hao.
They were anxious because they were worried that Tao Yuan could actually help Lei Yuan control the Xuan Yang power, and without Qu Cang’s support, Yan Hao would have a difficult time competing with Lei Yuan.
Aside from their anxiety and unease, Princess Jiade and Yan Hao had no other recourse. Qu Cang and Miao Chen were not meeting with them, and Lei Yuan had sent many secret guards and soldiers to protect Tao Yuan.
As the wedding day drew closer, Tao Yuan spent his time either with Miao Chen or preparing medicinal pills for him. After the marriage, he wouldn’t be able to cook soup for Miao Chen every day, so he decided to put space spring water into the medicinal pills he personally made. This way, Miao Chen could take one pill every day for his nourishment.
On the day of the wedding, Tao Yuan sat in front of a mirror in his room within his courtyard , dressed in a red bridal gown while Miao Chen stood behind him, watching.
“Daddy, please don’t cry,” Tao Yuan said while looking at the mirror.
“I’m not crying,” Miao Chen denied, though his eyes were indeed a little moist but he hadn’t cried yet.
“Daddy, I’ll be going to Leiwu Wang’s residence today. I won’t be able to cook soup for you every day anymore,” Tao Yuan explained. “I’ve prepared those medicinal pills for you, so make sure to take them on time. They’re good for your health.”
“Okay,” Miao Chen nodded.
Tao Yuan was still a little worried, so he told him again, “Make sure to take them every night before you sleep. If you can’t remember, ask Father or Qing Feng to remind you every day. Please remember to take them. Also, when I’m not here, take good care of yourself, and be careful when you go out with Father.”
“I know,” Miao Chen nodded again. Then, he suddenly came to his senses and looked at the mirror, saying, “Shouldn’t I be that one reminding you? How did it turn into you reminding me? Today is your wedding day.”
“Although it’s my wedding day, I’m more concerned about you, and that makes me worry even more,” Tao Yuan said in an old-fashioned tone.
“Nonsense, when I accompanied your father on military campaigns, it was me taking care of him. When did I ever need someone to take care of me?” Miao Chen argued.
“It’s precisely because you only take care of your father and neglect yourself. And when Father gets busy, he won’t have time to take care of you either. That’s why I’m worried,” Tao Yuan explained.
“Daddy will definitely take care of himself, and you must take care of yourself too,” Miao Chen said as he gently stroked Tao Yuan’s hair, feeling a deep sense of reluctance.
Tao Yuan turned sideways, hugging Miao Chen’s waist, “Daddy, I know you can’t bear to part with me. Even though I’m getting married, I will always be your child. Don’t worry, I will take good care of myself, and both you and father must take care too.”
Miao Chen held Tao Yuan in silence, afraid that if he spoke, he would start crying.
“Qu Langjun, the wedding procession has arrived,” Qing Quan said after walking in quickly.
Tao Yuan stood up, picked up the folding fan from the dressing table, covered his face with it, and then walked out hand in hand with Miao Chen.
A large group of soldiers had gathered outside the main gate. Lei Yuan helped Tao Yuan get onto the carriage and then mounted his own horse. The procession set off towards the Leiwu Wang Palace.
As they watched the procession getting farther away, Miao Chen couldn’t hold back his tears. When the procession was no longer visible, Qu Cang held his hand and turned around to enter the house.
Lei Yuan had brought many soldiers to escort the bride. They marched toward the Leiwu Wang Palace in a grand procession, attracting the attention of many onlookers.
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- 西荒国 Xi Huang Guo: Western Wasteland Kingdom