Chapter 19: His Majesty wants to eat... Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
After Ning Xiaoyao left the side hall, she looked up to see the sky. Right now it was just about dusk, and the sunset had dyed half the horizon red like scorching flames. She glanced at the rhododendrons in the courtyard, then sniffed the chamei blossoms’ fragrance, until her mood improved enough to enter her main rooms.
By now, Fang Tang and the others had already found a very young looking imperial physician to examine Lou Zigui’s injuries. Beside the bed, there was a pail of water and a washbasin. The water in the pail was still clean, but the water in the washbasin had turned red. It was obvious that the generals had helped wash down Lou Zigui already. Their actions had been swift and prompt, earning them a point in Ning Xiaoyao’s favor. She walked to the bed and stuck out her neck for a look at the physician currently binding Lou Zigui’s wounds. “How are Supreme Commander’s injuries?”
When the imperial physician heard Ning Xiaoyao speak, he didn’t dare to turn back and look at her, much less bow to pay his respects. Right now, there was still a sword pressed to his neck!
Fang Tang slightly turned the blade in his hands before shouting, “His Majesty is asking you a question!”
“To, to reply Your Majesty, Supreme Commander’s wounds look severe, but they’re not life-threatening,” the young imperial physician replied. Right now, he really wanted to cry. He was already grown-up, but no one had ever pressed a blade to his neck before. At the same time, he was curious. Everyone said that Lou Zigui had suffered 20 to 30 cuts of the blade on the execution platform before being eaten alive by the common people. But his wounds weren’t as serious as he expected. Was Supreme Commander Lou endowed with Heavenly favors, or were the executioner and commoners all Lou Zigui’s people, and thus on his side?
“Then that’s alright,” Ning Xiaoyao found an empty chair and sat down before placing the soup bowl in the bowl holder on a table. She asked the generals, “Which one of you will go find the kitchens? Why don’t we get some food to fill our stomachs?” Sweet soup was delicious, but it didn’t stop hunger!
The generals were all silent. One of them asked, “If Your Majesty is hungry, why not ask them to chuanshan[1. chuanshan (传善) - a fancy way of saying “bring in the food” at the palace.]? Could anyone in the palace not dare to serve the emperor?”
“What’s a chuanshan?” Ning Xiaoyao asked. She heard that people before the apocalypse could order dishes at restaurants, but did chuanshan mean the same thing as ordering food?
The generals stared at Ning Xiaoyao. The young Imperial Physician Gao also wanted to look at the emperor who’d spoken such foolish words, but he didn’t dare to turn his neck. After all, there was a still a sword resting there…
The generals exchanged glances to share their thoughts.
His Majesty had just assumed the throne.
In the past, he’d lived in the Grand Preceptor’s estate.
Today was His Majesty’s second day as emperor.
He must not be used to being emperor, since he kept using “I” to refer to himself.
That’s right, didn’t all emperors refer to themselves as Zhen[2. Zhen (朕) - the royal “We,” a self-appellation used exclusively by the emperor.]?
A few generals bowed towards Ning Xiaoyao before saying, “This subject shall help Your Majesty chuanshan.”
“Sounds good,” Ning Xiaoyao nodded hastily.
“... …” said the rest of the generals. Dammit, they forgot to bow in the presence of the emperor again.
Chuanshan, then having the imperial kitchens cook, then carrying the food over to Supreme Splendor Hall weren’t things that could be done in a short time. Ning Xiaoyao waited to eat until she saw that food wasn’t coming. Then she couldn’t sit still anymore and stood up to walk to the bed. By now, Imperial Physician Gao had already patched up Lou Zigui’s injuries. When Ning Xiaoyao saw the gauze covering his shoulder, she said, “You can just stay with me for now so you can treat Supreme Commander anytime. What do you think?”
Imperial Physician Gao agreed in one breath. Leaving aside the fact that a subject couldn’t disobey an imperial decree, he didn’t want to leave the Supreme Splendor Hall and get captured by the empress dowager’s men in the next instant! If the empress and Grand Preceptor forced him to do something unthinkable to Supreme Commander, would he have to agree or disagree? He didn’t believe that Supreme Commander Lou would betray the country, but he and his family couldn’t fight against the Xie father and mother pair!
“Your Majesty,” Imperial Physician Gao told Ning Xiaoyao, “This sub, this subject wants to make a prescription for Supreme Commander.”
“That’s fine, you go on,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with his injuries, so you can make up a prescription to fortify his body.”
“This subject obeys,” Imperial Physician Gao answered as he glanced at Fang Tang.
Ning Xiaoyao looked at the sword in Fang Tang’s hand that was resting on Imperial Physician Gao’s neck and decided she couldn’t pretend not to see a thing. Thus, she told Fang Tang, “Let’s be nicer to him.”
Only then did Fang Tang remove his blade and speak. “Your Majesty, this subject will escort His Excellency Gao to retrieve the medicine.”
“Sure, go ahead. You guys can all leave, I’ll be enough to watch over Supreme Commander,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “That there, all of you go wash your hands. We’ll start the meal later.”
This time, the generals were all very respectful to Ning Xiaoyao as they bowed and left with Imperial Physician Gao in tow.
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