Chapter 2: Young Master Ling Lan is Born!
Ling Lan regained consciousness, however she seemed to have problems seeing and could only rely on her sense of touch. She felt encased in something warm, surrounded by water. Every now and then it felt like she was being moved by someone, jostling her…
Could it be she didn't die? Did the hospital place her in a nutrient solution to recover?
Before she could understand she passed out once again and returned into the darkness.
Some time later she woke up again, still in the warm water. This time she managed to stay awake longer than the first time.
She could hear some sounds, but they were muffled, as if passing through numerous walls. She really wanted to know what her situation was; however, she couldn't move and had to rely on the unclear sounds. Before she could understand what was happening to her she lost her consciousness again.
Kao! Can you really not give me more time?! She couldn't help but complain a bit before she lost awareness.
It seemed that Ling Lan's protest had some effect. The time she spent awake managed to increase, until she one day felt like she could finally move.
After being trapped for such a long time she naturally started to punch and kick. However, she tired from just a few times and became sleepy.
This couldn't do. She could not let herself be so weak, otherwise, how could she withstand the inhuman pain from her disease…Speaking of which, it seemed like she hadn't felt it for quite a while. Could it be that the pain happened during the time she was unconscious? Apparently being in a coma wasn't that bad for her after all.
However, she disdained running away. How else could she have managed to withstand twenty four years of daily pain? She exerted her spirit and began to practice the body qi cultivation formula she was taught by an old Chinese medicine doctor after she entered the military hospital.
Although she practiced for more than ten years and never felt any qi being produced, she felt that her body's pain would ease a lot after each practice and her patience towards it would improve a bit. Of course that may simply just be her consoling herself, a self deception. Nevertheless, it gave her the energy to keep practicing it again.
She practiced until she fainted. When Ling Lan woke up again, she did not know how much time had passed. She started moving her hands and feet, exercising a bit, before evaluating her body's physical condition.
This time, she was shocked. She felt the sensation of qi that she had never felt before! It was fantastical; could it be that she was someone with rare talent? Just one false death let her break through her second meridian and allowed her to become a great martial arts master?*
Ling Lan didn't understand why she was successful this time after ten years of tedious practice without effect. However, being able to feel qi was a good thing. That old Chinese medicine doctor told her that it would mean that her sickness could be cured. For twenty-four years, she spent every day looking forward to a cure for her sickness that would relieve her of that daily inhuman, crushing-to-the-point-of-madness body pain.
Ling Lan became very excited and her interest towards practicing increased. It developed into something she would do every time she woke up. It became a habit. Up until now, she still did not realize that her progress wasn't caused by some some sudden breakthrough, but because she had been reincarnated as a fetus. Her past life now had nothing to do with her. There was no way for the things she was worrying about to happen.
Lan Luofeng anxiously rubbed her belly. She had already been pregnant for five months. Recently, she could not feel the child's fetal movements, which concerned her. If it were not for the checkups stating that her child's growth and development was perfectly fine, she would surely die from worry.
She couldn't endure another blow. She received news about her husband after a month of battle. Something had happened while he lead the fleet through the Channel of Death to ambush the enemy camp and all contact with headquarters was lost.
Later, it was confirmed that the fleet came across a violent energy anomaly after passing through the Channel of Death. The tyrannical energy swallowed the entire fleet and devoured all the officers and soldiers without even leaving a trace of bone.
She didn't even have the chance to fully accept the bad news when something even more disgusting happened. Ling Xiao's nth-generation removed relatives wanted to claim the military inheritance Ling Xiao prepared for their child. They even went so far to say that they would wholeheartedly take care of her for the rest of her life.
She drove them out on the spot, but these disgusting people wouldn't give up and dragged the federal government into the matter. Lan Luofeng wasn't a weak woman and definitively wasn't going to sit idly by while those despicable villains tried to take away the fruits of Ling Xiao's sacrifice.
She refused to retreat. To the faces of those abominable and despicable villains, she boldly and decisively declared: Ling Xiao has a son! I am pregnant! And only his son is eligible to inherit!
The federal law detailing military sacrifice inheritance was, in fact, biased. It only allowed the males of the family to inherit. Initially Lan Luofeng did not reveal that she was carrying a child, because both she and Ling Qin knew that the child in her belly was a girl. However, the situation did not leave her space to retreat. The steward, Ling Qin, admired and agreed with her decision.
They had already planned out everything. Once Ling Lan was born, they would arrange to have a girl raised from a young age to be Ling Lan's sishi². When the two grew up, they would put on a show of marrying them.
They would also find a way to give Ling Lan another identity, which she could use to appear as a girl in public. Of course, this still had to be carefully considered and arranged. However, Lan Luofeng believed that, many years from now, by the time Ling Lan grew up, she would have come up with a good solution.
There was only one thought in her mind – everything from her and Ling Xiao could only belong to Ling Lan. No one, no matter from which crevice or corner they crawled out of, was allowed to take advantage of Ling Lan. She would absolutely not allow it and would endure all hardships this would bring her, regardless of the cost.
Of course, she could only have this kind of confidence because the servants and steward were extremely loyal to the late master. They would manage the Ling family strictly and not allow those greedy people a chance to harm their small master. Not only that, the Ling family also had it's own exclusive hospital, which allowed Lan Luofeng to easily hide Ling Lan's secret as a girl.
Thus, after resolutely defending to the very end, the time for Lan Luofeng to give birth arrived. Of course, the place she chose to have her delivery was the family hospital. Up until the last minute, nothing was allowed to go wrong. The doctors and nurses responsible for Lan Luofeng's delivery were the Ling family's sishi² and would not reveal this secret.
Ling Lan was still cultivating when a great piercing scream harassed her ears. This upset her greatly. At the same time, she suddenly heard the sound of running water as a great force caused her body to slide downwards head first.
Surprised, she immediately opened her legs and stopped her downward movement.
"Damnit, why won't the child come out? The amniotic fluid is running dry." A sheen of sweat appeared on the foreheads of the doctor and nurse. The delivery was going smoothly, yet for some reason, the child refused to come out. The situation was very similar to dystocia. If it really turned out that the madam was having dystocia, then they would have to do a c-section operation. That would mean that their little lady's secret could not be completely secured due to the increase of involved people. The chance of exposure would increase.
Lan Luofeng grit her teeth, rubbed her stomach and spoke in a appeasing tone: "Child, please stop causing difficulties for your mother, come out quickly and let me meet you. If you resent your mother for making you live an abnormal life, at least come out first and protest then."
Alright, Lan Luofeng was in pain to the point of incoherency and did not realize how silly she sounded. How could there be a mother that would let a child hate themselves?
Nevertheless, Ling Lan heard Lan Luofeng's words. She compared the sudden sensation to the previous difficulty and came to the sudden realization that she had been reincarnated; no wonder she spent so long incapable of moving.
However, she obviously died, right? Did she reincarnate? Even if that was true, why didn't she drink the Meng Po Tang*¹? Why were the memories of her past life so clear? After hearing that soft and pleasant voice, she knew this mother was definitely not her last one, which ruled out the possibility of rebirth at least.
"Come on, do you even still have time to consider or think about the whole reincarnation/rebirth problem? Your mother's already been tormented the point of dystocia…why don't you stop hanging on and hurry and withdraw your feet?!" A childish voice fluttered angrily in her mind, reminding her of what she was supposed to be doing.
After hearing this, Ling Lan promptly withdrew her feet. She heard a piercing scream and suddenly a great force pushed her entire body out.
Immediately, she sensed light…
Without waiting for her to react, fingers were digging into her mouth and made her feel like she had to vomit. She tried to open her mouth to protest, only to hear a "waawaa" shout!
Right, a shout! Ling Lan absolutely refused to admit that it was crying – that would be completely losing her face!
"Lady, the little miss is all good!" The Ling family sishi² doctor finally breathed out a sigh of relief. With the mother and daughter safe, his task was finally complete. Smiling fully, he carried Ling Lan – who, after howling twice, became silent – to Lan Luofeng's side.
Lan Luofeng opened her tired eyes and lovingly stroked her child before her countenance hardened, her voice steely: "Please tell Qin Shu, I and Ling Lan shaoye are safe and sound."
"Yes, madam!" The doctor replaced his smile with a serious expression.
Young mistress's birth – no, young master's birth did not mean the problem was at its end. To guard the military inheritance left behind by Major General Ling Xiao, there was still many difficult battles to fight.
Translated by somnious and edited by 帅三三〇三
* The initial phrasing is: "果断玄幻了，难道自己真是天纵奇才，一次假死就让任督二脉打通，然后成为一代武林高手？" I am not sure if I got it properly so I left this here for people who understand it better to read.
*¹ Meng Po Tang (孟婆湯) – Soup drunk by souls after their death that makes them forget their memories.
*²Sishi (死士) – The literal translation is 'slain' or 'dead warrior'. In this series, 死士 are people who have sworn their lives into a family clan to support the main family members. As a result, most cannot leave the main house, have a proper education, enter the military, and whatnot. In return, these people and their descendents gain resources from the family to improve themselves and gain the trust of the family. They are also not required to give their life up for the family unless they've chosen to swear themselves to serve a single master until death.