I Came to Find an Answer
The palace maid was running quickly and was not looking forward. When she noticed Feng Yu Heng and Huang Quan, she was already too late to try and slow down, as she crashed into them.
Huang Quan was fast and managed to stop her, preventing her from crashing into Feng Yu Heng. But the palace maid was also given a fright, as she quickly kneeled and said: “I don’t know which noble you are, but this servant did not do it on purpose. Would this noble please spare my life!”
Feng Yu Heng looked at her for a while. Seeing that she had a very anxious expression, she asked: “Which palace do you belong to? Why are you in such a rush?”
The palace maid said: “This servant is from Qing An Palace. Concubine An has fallen ill once more. This servant was in a rush to invite an imperial physician.”
“Concubine An?” Feng Yu Heng blinked a few times. Taking the initiative to visit could not be compared to providing some compassion at a time of need, thus she said: “This county princess was planning to go pay respects to imperial concubine Yun. Since I have heard about this matter, it would not be good to just watch from the side. I will go with you to take a look at concubine An’s illness!”
Da Shun only had one county princess. How could the palace maid not know who was standing in front of her. Although inviting a county princess to see a patient was inappropriate, this county princess was a divine doctor. This was something that everyone in the capital knew about. She wanted to have someone take a look at concubine An’s mental illness, but she felt that the imperial physician’s hall was too far. Not only that, but it was not guaranteed that they would be willing to visit Qing An Palace. Thus she could only grit her teeth and kowtow to Feng Yu Heng and say: “This servant thanks county princess for the grand grace! Would county princess please follow this servant to Qing An Palace!”
Like this, Feng Yu Heng was “invited” to Qing An Palace. Just after entering the palace, she heard someone screaming as though they had lost their minds: “Kill that beast! Kill him!” The sound of falling bottles and jars immediately followed this. Following this came the sound of someone on the verge of mental collapse- “How could This one give birth to a son like that? This one did not give birth to him! Definitely not!”
The palace maid that had invited Feng Yu Heng helplessly said: “Concubine An will go crazy after a period of time. Normally, she will just start singing or crying. After a while, she would get better. But this time, starting from last night up until now, she has not gotten better. Concubine is even raising her hand to hit people. A eunuch and a palace maid have already been beaten to death.”
“That serious?” Feng Yu Heng was a little suspicious. At first, she thought that concubine An was just suppressing herself that led to trouble. At most, her temper was just poor; however, she did not think that she would be crazy to this degree.
She increased her pace and walked into the courtyard. Upon entering concubine An’s bedroom, she saw a woman in a court dress with her hair in disarray sitting on the ground. The fabric of the court dress was quite good, but the color had faded, and it looked a little too big.
Feng Yu Heng knew that this had to be concubine An, and at this very moment, she was holding onto a palace maid. While pulling her hair, she shouted: “What use was there in me raising you? Why can you not kill him? Why is he still living so happily? It must be because you did a poor job of teaching, and she did not dance like her!”
The palace maid had a slight build and had a beautiful face. Her thin willowy waist was so thin that a man’s large hand could grab it. Even if she was wearing a standard servant’s uniform, one could see that she was outstanding.
Unfortunately, no matter how beautiful a person was, they would lose their beauty from being tugged at by concubine An. She kneeled on the ground, unable to break free or dodge. She also could not begin to retaliate against concubine An. She could only grit her teeth and endure. Despite having been pulled on so forcefully, she did not cry out.
Feng Yu Heng recognized her, as it was Hong Yun. Of course, she did not believe that was her real name, thus she asked the palace maid at her side: “Who is the one being pulled on by concubine An?”
The palace maid replied: “That is Yin Lan. Normally, concubine favors her the most, but every time she falls ill, she is also the one that suffers the most.”
Feng Yu Heng nodded then quickly walked forward. Grabbing concubine An’s wrist, she heard her loudly shout: “Don’t touch me! Scram! Everyone scram!” But just as she shouted this, her eyelids drooped, as she fell asleep.
Yin Lan finally broke free and could not help but let out a sigh of relief. When she raised her head and saw Feng Yu Heng, the calm that she had felt immediately disappeared. “County princess.” She kneeled and lowered her head. After saying county princess, she did not say another word.
Feng Yu Heng ignored her, as she had one of Qing An Palace’s servants bring concubine An onto the bed. She then pulled out some silver needles from her sleeve and began to stick them in concubine An’s head.
Upon seeing this, the servants of Qing An Palace finally felt at ease. If they had not run into county princess Ji An, perhaps there would have been even more people that would have been beaten to death. The imperial physicians would mostly prescribe a medicine after seeing her. Concubine An could be considered a concubine that had been abandoned. The Emperor giving her a palace and not lowering her rank was already pretty good. How could he possibly put forth any effort into taking care of her.
Yin Lan continued to kneel in the middle of the room without standing up. The palace maid that had brought Feng Yu Heng to Qing An Palace felt that this was a little strange. She wanted to go and ask; however, she felt that county princess Ji An had a bit of a gloomy expression despite coming to treat concubine An. She did not dare ask too much, thus she could only stand to the side.
After an hour, Feng Yu Heng finally removed all of the silver needles from concubine An’s head. She then pulled out a small porcelain bottle from her sleeve and poured out a few pills, which were stuffed into concubine An’s mouth. Only then did she speak up and order: “Go fetch some water to help concubine An swallow the pills. She needs to sleep a little longer. After a while, she should wake up.”
The palace maid complied and went to fetch some water. Feng Yu Heng stood up and glanced at Yin Lan then began to walk out while saying: “This county princess has some questions for you. Come with me for a while.”
Yin Lan stood up, as she carefully followed behind Feng Yu Heng. The other servants only thought that Feng Yu Heng wanted to ask some questions about concubine An’s illness, so nobody put too much thought into it as they all dispersed.
Feng Yu Heng did not go very far, as she sat down in a corridor nearby. Yin Lan stood in front of her without the pride of when she was Hong Yun. Looking at her now, she still had a bit of a frosty appearance.
Huang Quan had recognized her long ago. Before Feng Yu Heng could speak, she hurriedly spoke up, angrily saying: “With a change of clothes, you managed to sneak into the Feng manor. What exactly is your intention?”
She did not speak.
Huang Quan angrily glared at her, “Do you believe that I will kill you?”
She still did not speak.
Feng Yu Heng suddenly laughed, “Your temper still is that of Hong Yun, but helping an insane mother harm her own son is something that will incur the wrath of the heavens.”
Yin Lan finally reacted; however, her eyes turned red, as she balled up her fists.
Feng Yu Heng continued: “There is an emphasis on harmony between men and women. Although one side is already dead, placing the blame entirely on one side is no good.” She raised her head to look at Yin Lan, “It has already been many years since the incident, and concubine An’s mind is muddled. It must be bothersome for you to be at her side, constantly reminding her to hate her own son.”
When Yin Lan heard this, she was startled at first, but then she began to laugh. It was as though she had heard the funniest joke, as she pointed at Feng Yu Heng and said: “Is county princess reporting an injustice for his Highness the fifth prince? Could it be that you’ve forgotten that the first person to push his Highness into the water was you!”
Feng Yu Heng nodded, as she did not avoid this responsibility, “That’s right. It was me.” She said, “At that time, I did want to use a depraved prince to muddy the waters; however, because of a mistake due to a strange set of circumstances, it caused him to sink further and further into these waters. But it now seems like pushing him into the water was correct. He should die.”
She just threw out the two words should die, causing Yin Lan to be a little confused, as she rushed to say: “I did not say that earlier.”
Feng Yu Heng told her: “My idea of should die is different from what you are thinking. For me, he should indeed die. But for you… Speak, the concubine that drowned that year, who was she to you?”
Yin Lan was startled then stared at Feng Yu Heng. She felt that her profound eyes seemed to be able to see everything. Although she did not have any hope of hiding it from everyone, Feng Yu Heng directly pointing out her relation to that concubine, not just finding out that she was a servant at Qing An Palace, caused her to feel a little afraid.
Seeing that she hesitated and did not speak, Feng Yu Heng smiled and said: “The enemy of your enemy is your friend. I have no intention of tearing you down. Whether or not you speak is all up to you. I just came to Qing An Palace to find an answer for something. If you can help dispel my doubts, Yin Lan, when you don’t wish to die, I may be able to help you.”
Hearing this, Yin Lan’s eyes, which had been like a calm lake, suddenly revealed some waves, as she subconsciously asked: “Are those words true?”
Feng Yu Heng nodded, “They are.”
The hope in Yin Lan’s eyes became more pronounced.
She had already thought that she could not avoid death. Entering the palace and walking this path, she had never planned to leave alive. But whether or not she planned to was one matter. When she heard someone tell her that she did not need to die, that was another matter.
For some reason, she trusted Feng Yu Heng. Although this child was much younger than her, she trusted every word that this county princess Ji An said.
Yin Lan pondered for a while. Gritting her teeth, she frankly said; “Fine, I will speak. The imperial concubine that died was my elder sister. When she first entered the palace, she was just a dancer; however, she looked a little bit like imperial concubine Yun. Once, his Majesty became drunk and favored her for a night. Unfortunately, his Majesty became regretful after that night and felt sorry to imperial concubine Yun, thus he never went to visit my elder sister; however, he gave her the position of imperial concubine such that she could enter the palace and live without worry. Who knew that the fifth prince would seek death and also fall for my elder sister! With him expressing his goodwill in all kinds of different ways, my elder sister became moved. However, the palace’s walls are thin. After the matter was seen through, my elder sister was executed over this secret, but the fifth prince is still living happily. Say, isn’t this very unfair?”
Feng Yu Heng thought to herself that her own guess was correct. When she noticed that Hong Yun had mingled into Qing An Palace, she felt that something was off. Concubine An’s mind was muddled, as she spent every day trying to figure out how to kill her own son. Hong Yun went to teach Fen Dai how to dance, making it clear that concubine An was trying to harm the fifth prince. If it was said that Hong Yun was someone else and did not have her own goals, she definitely would not have believed it. The beautiful snow dance was not something that everyone knew how to perform. How could concubine An have managed to coincidentally take in Hong Yun?
Yin Lan continued to speak: “I do not hate his Majesty, and I do not hate imperial concubine Yun. If the fifth prince did not exist, elder sister would still be in her palace, living a glorious life. This is entirely the fifth prince’s fault. That’s why he must die.”
Feng Yu Heng did not say anything else. Yin Lan’s hatred for Xuan Tian Yan was unrelated to her. If Yin Lan worked with concubine An to kill Xuan Tian Yan, she would also be given a bit of relief.
“I heard that the fifth prince’s manor once had a concubine from the Southern border. Is that true?” She asked Yin Lan, “Although concubine An hates her son, the fifth prince is still quite loving of his concubine mother, right? Say, if concubine An made a preposterous request of the fifth prince, would the fifth prince agree?”
Once this was said, Yin Lan seemed to have understood the meaning. Without replying, she only pointed to a corner and said to Feng Yu Heng: “County princess, look.”