Chapter 406: The duke's rage dashes to the skies Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
Swim back to Northern Li?
Fishery Island was located in the central region of the seas that border Tianning. The fastest ships would need three to four days to reach a Tianning harbor from Fishery Island, let alone a Northern Li port. Even a fish needed multiple days to cover the same distance! Long Feiye was clearly giving Jun Yixie...a dead end!
But Jun Yixie had no choice but to stay on the island. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing, yet reality showed him the truth. The entire island was already surrounded by warships with their archers aiming at his form. No matter how much skill he had, there was no way he’d be able to fight past them. His well-laid plans ended up screwing himself over. This was no better than burying himself in his own snare!
He glared at Ouyang Ningruo, who immediately averted his eyes to look at Long Feiye instead. With a light and airy smile as if nothing had happened, he said, “Your Highness Duke of Qin, Cloud Realm’s Trade Consortium is willing to donate 300,000 dan of grain to assist with Tianning’s relief efforts!”
Long Feiye didn’t have any grain reserves left, but the Trade Consortium would definitely still have some in stock. Otherwise, they couldn’t be called a trade consortium at all. Ouyang Ningruo had originally planned to offer his stores to Long Feiye after all the grain in Tianning had run out. Unfortunately, Man proposed and God disposed. He had no choice but to use the grain as his ship ticket now. With the Northern Li’s imperial ship in ruins, his only way back to shore was to rely on Long Feiye.
Long Feiye ignored him in favor of shooting Han Yunxi a frigid glance before he headed towards the warship. Ouyang Ningruo wanted to chase after him, but General Baili had blocked his way. Most likely, His Highness wouldn’t pay anyone else attention at a time like this. Now that they’d taken care of Jun Yixie, His Highness and esteemed wangfei needed to sort things out between the two of them. Even though esteemed wangfei’s gecko cinnabar mark had greatly surprised him, General Baili could still tell that His Highness genuinely doted on his wangfei.
Whatever the case was, esteemed wangfei should have told His Highness that she had suffered such a slight. What kind of man could tolerate his woman hiding such a thing? Meanwhile, Ouyang Ningruo was quite happy to approach General Baili for a discussion instead. Compared to a wily fox like Long Feiye, it should be much easier to talk business with this old lout, surely?
Long Feiye had already walked quite a ways off while Han Yunxi was still rooted in place. She stared after his frigid retreating form and felt her heart drop below sub-zero temperatures. Even though she’d told herself to stop caring, she still felt herself ache. By now, she’d even forgotten when Long Feiye had started to take her hand habitually whenever they walked together. Even if she didn’t move, he’d stop walking within 10 steps to turn back and asked, “Han Yunxi, you’re still not leaving?”
But this time he hadn’t bothered to look back, and he’d walked much farther than just 10 steps.
So this is it? Long Feiye, you’re walking away from us just like that!?
In the end, pain overtook her heart. Han Yunxi grit her teeth and prepared to walk away from him when Long Feiye had suddenly turned back, strode over, and grabbed her by the wrist before pulling her away to the ship. There was nothing visible but fury in his eyes, a testament to his self-control in getting rid of Jun Yixie without blowing his top. His grip was tight as a vise, his steps quick; Han Yunxi was caught off-guard from the beginning and nearly stumbled and fell as she was dragged along with him. It wasn’t until they were both on the warship that Long Feiye released her to shout the order, “Someone come, set sail!”
All of the people on deck scattered in their fright. They’d followed His Highness Duke of Qin for years, but they’d never seen him enraged so.
Han Yunxi stood in the spot he’d let her go as she heaved for breath. She couldn’t understand why this man was mad at her. Is he blaming me for what happened while he was away? Her head sunk as her eyes drooped, before long she grew very still. Long Feiye narrowed his eyes to stare are her, his icy eyes filled with the same burning questions he had earlier. The starkness of his stare burned in its frozen intensity. The two of them were less than five paces apart, but they could’ve been in completely separate worlds instead.
The decks of the ship surrounding them were both empty and silent but for the sound of their breathing. Han Yunxi seemed rather calm on the surface, but Long Feiye was extremely restless, and his rapid breaths gave away his fury.
Abruptly, he ordered her sternly, “Raise your head!”
Han Yunxi remained as still as a statue.
Long Feiye clenched his fists so hard they creaked as he attempted to rein in his temper and repeated again, “Raise your head!”
Finally, Han Yunxi looked up at Long Feiye. She was about to ask him why when he beat her to the punch. “Han Yunxi, you had the gall to hide something like that from me, your lordship? Who gave you the guts to do such a thing?” Each and every syllable seemed laced with flames from his fiery temper. The duke’s rage dashed to the skies!
When Jun Yixie had first stated those claims, he thought the man was merely making things up in order to force his hand. But as it turned out, Han Yunxi had really been taken advantage of! He had finally recalled how she’d returned to Medical City after the incident at the Sky Pit with a white robe draped over her shoulders. That piece of clothing had belonged to that man from the Shadow Clan, the very one who rescued her.
Why didn’t she tell me then?
Something so big had happened, but would she have kept it a secret for the rest of her life if Jun Yixie hadn’t brought it out today? Was she planning to silently let things go at that? She was only willing to speak up after she was publically humiliated? Did she take her husband to be someone who didn’t exist?
Han Yunxi, ah, Han Yunxi! You’ve always been the one making advances on your lordship! Day by day, you circle around me and call for ‘Your Highness,’ but what I am to you in your heart?
You hid away something this monstrous for so long now!
Long Feiye’s icy, violent stare only made Han Yunxi’s heart quiver like a rabbit’s. She had no idea how to answer his question.
“Answer your lordship’s question!” Long Feiye demanded.
Startled, Han Yunxi had finally realized what he was so angry about. She unconsciously backed up a step and lowered her head to her chest again. She hadn’t meant to hide it from him on purpose, but because the incident had happened at the same time he rescued Duanmu Yao, she’d been thinking of nothing but his rescue of Duanmu Yao instead. Immediately after that, she had up and run away. How was she supposed to tell him under those circumstances?
Later on, he found her at the Mu Estate and cleared the things up to up regarding Duanmu Yao. After that, she didn’t want to bring up this topic again and reopen old wounds. In the end, Jun Yixie hadn’t gotten his way, after all--and it wasn’t a pleasant subject. She wasn’t the type of woman who would get all teary-eyed as she poured her grievances to her man. Naturally, these were all reasons she could offer him, but she knew in her heart that he wouldn’t believe them. Right now, this man was furious enough to murder someone, multiple times.
When Long Feiye saw that Han Yunxi kept staring at the ground without speaking, his fists clenched again, the joints cracking with his effort. The sound made Han Yunxi’s heart lurch even lower. Her heart had been like ice before, but now it felt like a guilty child. Her head hung so low that it was nearly buried in her robes on her chest.
Long Feiye, I’m sorry. I never have enough self-confidence when I’m standing in front of you. That’s why I always doubt your feelings.
“Answer me!” Long Feiye was close to going mad, his furor ever growing as he insisted on a reply from her silent form.
Han Yunxi raised her head and murmured faintly, “It’s because I was scared...afraid that you wouldn’t want me anymore.”
There were far too many reasons to list, but she probably knew the truest one best.
Long Feiye, I’ve worked so hard to take those 100 steps towards you. I’m so afraid that you’ll back away from me--and walk away too far for me me to meet you again.
Long Feiye suddenly felt like something had bitten a part of his heart, causing it to ache in pain. The feeling banished all of his anger, and he faced Han Yunxi’s clear, limpid eyes with furrowed eyebrows. Suddenly, he felt a sense of helplessness when it came to this woman.
Han Yunxi, you’re afraid as well?
Who was the one who had the courage to kick her own sedan chair door and step through the Duke of Qin’s front gates? Who was the one with the gall to run away without a word and abandon me?
Who again, was the one with the guts to hold me back and insist on asking me whether I was jealous of Gu Beiyue?
Han Yunxi, you’ve tested your lordship’s boundaries again and again, and yet you’re still afraid?
Why wouldn’t Han Yunxi be afraid of him no longer wanting her?
She’d done her best to walk towards him, but he had too many secrets to keep. She never knew what he was thinking, nor did he answer her when she asked. Many times, she wouldn’t even know where he went or what he was up to.
How could she not be scared? Again, she hung her head; again, Long Feiye immediately cried out, “Raise your head!”
She did so obediently and he gripped her by her chin, his eyebrows knitted together as he stared at her intently.
“Your Highness, does it even matter to you?” she asked in a low voice.
“It matters!” So speaking, he pulled her into his arms and hugged her tight. A long time passed before he finally murmured, “In the end, it was your lordship who slipped up.”
The reason she’d been kidnapped in the Sky Pit was because I had been careless.
“Your Highness…” Han Yunxi wanted to speak up, but Long Feiye pressed a finger against her lips. He didn’t talk, but simply held her firmly as he stared out to the vast and endless seas. His pupils dark and unreadable.
Han Yunxi, you don’t know how much your lordship fears no longer being wanted, even more than you...that’s why, your lordship has to finish so many different things quickly. Before the Seven Noble Families come knocking at your door, I have to resolve everything!
A firm hug like his should’ve made Han Yunxi feel safer than anything, like it used to; but she couldn’t help but sense unease--his unease.
Maybe I’m imagining things, she thought to herself. She planted a light kiss over his heart, unwilling to think or say anything else. It’s good that he’s still here, holding me.
Their warship headed for Tianning’s harbors. General Baili had been put in charge of affairs at Fishery Island and of the shipments of fish to the various famine regions. As for Jun Yixie, even his superior martial arts and poison skills were a null point on Fishery Island. If he stepped even a foot away from its shores, he’d be facing death by 10,000 arrows, enough arrows to blot out the sun! He could only stand and watch as Long Feiye’s men hauled in the fish and sent them away. This feeling is worse than death!
General Baili finished up all business related to the fish before starting to talk shop with Ouyang Ningruo. Reality had proved that even a man as shrewd as the merchant could suffer accidental setbacks. General Baili actually demanded a lion’s share of 1,000,000 dan of grain.
“General Baili, you know that Tianning’s the only country that produces any grain. The entire nation had poor harvests last year, so we couldn’t buy much even at high prices!” Ouyang Ningruo said as he shrugged helplessly.
“Give me as much as you’ve got. The rest can be sold at a discount from the market prices of the second month of the year,” General Baili came straight to the point. He didn’t know how to do business, but His Highness had long sent men to buy grain from the trade consortium. Back then, the consortium had offered to sell them at prices from the second month of the year.
His Highness Duke of Qin had plenty of money, but of course he was no fool. He didn’t like being taken advantage of, so he hadn’t bought the grain. Naturally, Ouyang Ningruo would’ve know about the trade consortium’s pricing as well. Now he had no choice but to admit defeat! After he signed the agreement on a contract, General Baili delivered Ouyang Ningruo to Baili Mingxiang’s boat and had him return together with his daughter.
Jun Yixie watched the ship sail off into the distance, furious enough to want to murder the merchant. But his own predicament became the more pressing matter.
What am I supposed to do now?
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