Husband, It’s My Dowry
That was how people were. When something had not yet been done, one would feel afraid to do it or feel that it could not be done. But once they had truly done it, it would immediately become: This isn’t much!
In the past, Zi Rui had never thought that there would come a day when he would raise a knife and cut off another person’s fingers; however, the world was unpredictable. It was the exact same as him never thinking that his finger would be cut off by someone else. Feng Yu Heng’s words replayed in his mind, “A person that is not vicious cannot remain steady! If a person is not vicious, they cannot remain steady!”
Elder sister was right! If he wanted to become strong, he had to be vicious!
Zi Rui gritted his teeth and moved the military knife in his hand. All five of the living people from Qian Zhou had their fingers cut off by this child in the blink of an eye.
Those people were also as strong as steel. They clenched their jaws tightly but still did not let out a single sound. But death’s arrival meant that death had arrived. At this time, Zi Rui was going so wild that Feng Yu Heng could not stop him. All five had become corpses in the blink of an eye.
The hatred inside his heart was not directed just at these people from Qian Zhou. The one that he hated the most was his father. These cuts today were practice. Sooner or later, there would come a day when his knife would be placed against Feng Jin Yuan’s neck. Who cared about thunder shaking the sky or any sort of heavenly retribution. With that sort of father, even if he had to die, he still did not want him!
Feng Yu Heng took a few steps forward and pulled the child into her embrace from behind. She could feel the child’s body trembling. There was hatred in this trembling along with horror. The horror of his first time killing someone would remain in his heart for many years. In fact, it would last for an entire lifetime, but at the same time, with this sort of hatred and horror, he would not speak as much about righteousness as Yao shi. His future would no longer be as difficult.
Xuan Tian Ming ordered for someone to take care of the corpses. Turning his head, he accurately located the owner of the boat that did not dare step forward. He waved to him: “Come here.”
The owner of the boat had been hiding the entire time. He had clearly heard the conversation between the two sides. He knew the identity of the person standing before him. At this time, when he heard Xuan Tian Ming call him over, he immediately scrambled forward then kneeled on the ground, loudly saying: “This lowly one greets your Highness the ninth prince! Your Highness, please spare my life!”
Xuan Tian Ming sneered, “What crime have you committed? Why do you beg this prince to spare your life?”
The person bowed once more: “This lowly one truly did not know that those people were from Qian Zhou and ended up letting them on the boat. This is the crime. This lowly one admits to this crime but begs your Highness to forgive this lowly one.” Having conducted the boat for many years, he was very smart. He knew what sort of person he could offend and what sort he could not. He was also able to tell what sort of person could not be reasoned with. Xuan Tian Ming was that sort of person! If he properly admitted his crimes, perhaps he could continue living; however, if he continued to refuse to admit it, he would most likely be slapped to death.
Xuan Tian Ming looked at him for a while and did not say anything. The boat owner had just received money to carry guests. For people from Qian Zhou to have snuck into Da Shun is a fault of his Xuan family. It’s not the fault of the citizens. Speaking of, it was him that had frightened his own citizens.
He sighed to himself internally and spoke with a gentler tone, “Get up. This matter is unrelated to you.” Following this, he asked: “Why did your boat turn back?”
The owner of the boat let out a sigh of relief then replied: “Along the way, we ran into a storm. Only that forced us to turn around. Not to hide it from your Highness, but turning around on the Peng River is something that happens many times each month, especially since it is now the mid-Autumn season. When the winds get too strong, if we do not turn around, it’s likely that the boat will capsize.”
Xuan Tian Ming nodded. When he had come here in the past, he had also heard about this situation, thus he did not ask any further, only saying: “You can go. Take care of sailing the boat. Safely bring the guests on this boat back to the departure point.” While saying this, he looked into the river once more. The living people had already gotten to shore, and the dead had sunk to the bottom of the river. A piercing pain filled his heart once more. “Heng.” He lowered his head slightly and whispered, “Give some money to the guests on the boat.”
Feng Yu Heng nodded and leaned close toward Xuan Tian Ming’s side. She then pulled out a small pouch from her sleeve. Inside the pouch were some silver ingots worth five taels each. The total value of the pouch was one thousand taels.
Xuan Tian Ming handed the money to Bai Ze and ordered: “Give it to the guests on the boat. Each person gets one. Just treat it as helping them get over their shock.” Bai Ze nodded and brought Wang Chuan and Ban Zou to take care of this. Xuan Tian Ming then asked the boat owner: “Will you continue sailing back?”
The boat owner nodded, “Replying your Highness, yes.”
“Un.” He waved his hand, “Then go!”
The boat owner quickly bowed and retreated. Not long later, the boat began to move once more. Having received orders from Xuan Tian Ming, three hidden guards received some money from Feng Yu Heng and began to distribute it to the people on the shore, after all, they had suffered from this crisis. Using this boat would definitely not work. There were too many people. If they all came onboard, there would be problems with the weight of the boat. Fortunately, however, there was a place that they could stay nearby the shore where they had landed. With Huang Quan and the hidden guards present, as well as some money, they would be able to have some temporary comfort.
Some of the boatmen prepared a few private rooms for them, and everyone went in. Feng Yu Heng, Xuan Tian Ming and Zi Rui stayed together in one room. Zi Rui was still a little afraid. This combined with the many tumultuous days resulted in Zi Rui falling asleep shortly after lying down on the bed inside the private room. Feng Yu Heng’s heart ached, as she caressed the child’s head. Helplessly removing his clothes, she thought a bit, and the three entered her space.
Xuan Tian Ming brought the sleeping Zi Rui to take a bath. He then swapped out with Feng Yu heng. In this space, Feng Yu Heng had already prepared spare clothes for all three long ago. At this time, she had a chance to make use of them.
After everyone got washed up, the three exited once more. After settling Zi Rui, Xuan Tian Ming said: “After we reach shore, we need to rush to Xiao Zhou. We must quickly alert the government to come and save the people here.”
Feng Yu Heng pulled freshly cooked noodles out of her space while saying: “I fear that the people in the river can no longer be recovered. I am responsible for this matter. I… should return to the capital and ask father Emperor for forgiveness.”
Xuan Tian Ming helplessly shook his head: “At the very root of it all, it was for the method to produce steel. Heng Heng, you must know that Da Shun is now in the same situation as Zong Sui was in the past. Iron essence was hot, and steel is even hotter. This is a burden that Da Shun must endure. Speaking of, it’s Da Shun that is unworthy of a child like you.”
She smiled bitterly, “There are many things that coincided and happened at the same time. In the end, it’s unclear who is sorry to whom.”
Just as she had on their previous boat, Feng Yu Heng brought out a large amount of noodles. She then had people bring the portions to the other rooms. She thought a bit more and brought out pieces of candy. She personally went around the boat and handed them out to the children that had been frightened.
The heavy rain stopped around noon, and the sun came out shortly after. Everyone let out a sigh of relief. The owner of the boat came to ask Xuan Tian Ming a few times what he wanted to eat. The boat had a few fish onboard that could be roasted. Xuan Tian Ming thought a bit then ordered for the fish to be made into a soup; however, it would not be for him. It would be split among all of the guests on the boat. The owner of the boat did not say anything and went to take care of it, and he did it very adeptly.
After all of the mess, everyone was exhausted. When Feng Yu Heng fell into bed next to Zi Rui, she also fell to sleep. Furthest to the side, Xuan Tian Ming slept while holding onto her tightly, fearing that this damn girl would not sleep peacefully and kick him off of the bed.
They slept until midnight, as Feng Yu Heng woke up from the heat. In her dream, she felt as though there was a furnace next to her. Just as this thought appeared, her mind was startled, and she immediately opened her eyes.
In practically the same moment that she opened her eyes, Xuan Tian Ming also opened his. He then quietly asked her: “What is it?”
Feng Yu Heng quickly felt Zi Rui’s body. Sure enough, it was hot.
“Zi Rui has a fever.” She sat up and lay Zi Rui down flat. She then reached into her sleeve and pulled out a thermometer.
Xuan Tian Ming also sat up and went to feel his head. He then picked up the left hand that was missing a finger. After looking at it for a while, he furrowed his brow and said: “Being caught in the rain is a small matter. More importantly, his wound has become inflamed.”
A look of shame appeared in Feng Yu Heng’s eyes once more. He quickly said to her: “There is no need to feel too responsible for this. Zi Rui is a child of the Feng family. His background has determined that he would have a difficult life, thus this is not your fault.”
She knew that it was not entirely her fault, but if she had truly been a little more careful, if she had taught the hidden guards how to avoid tracking arrows, Zi Rui definitely would not have been kidnapped. Those ten comrades would not have died such brutal deaths. In the end, it was her that had been negligent. This responsibility was not one that she could shirk.
Feng Yu Heng’s lips twitched into a smile that was even uglier than a crying face, “Everyone has their own lives. I want to see whose hands Feng Jin Yuan’s life falls into.”
Xuan Tian Ming snorted coldly, “That person cannot be killed right now. Qian Zhou’s other third of the map needs to be found, but if you want to get revenge, that is fine.”
Feng Yu Heng understood what he meant and finally smiled, “That’s right. Death would be too easy for him. He will be a living eunuch, and this imperial daughter will then find another 100 ways to leave him feeling that living is worse than death.”
The thermometer showed that Zi Rui had a high fever of 39 degrees. Feng Yu Heng carried him into her space and gave him an antipyretic injection. She also placed an ice pack on his forehead. Only after his temperature dropped did she bring him out of her space.
Xuan Tian Ming had to sigh: “That space of yours is really great. If this was anyone else in this situation, they would die of anxiety.” After thinking a little more, he asked her: “What did you use to hit those people from Qian Zhou?” He had always been curious about this matter. For Xuan Tian Ming, that sort of thing was basically the same as Feng Yu Heng’s space. It was something that existed beyond his understanding. He clearly remembered the process of Feng Yu Heng using that thing to kill people. He even remembered that Feng Yu Heng had pulled on something before something shot out of the round entrance. It had the same effect as a bow and arrow, but it was much smaller and much faster. He did not understand.
Feng Yu Heng knew that Xuan Tian Ming would ask this question sooner or later. Once a gun was brought out, she could no longer act as though it did not happen. Even if Xuan Tian Ming did not ask, she would have taken the initiative to speak about it. It was just that she was still tangled about some of the concepts. She did not know whether or not this would be the correct way of doing things.
“If you cannot say it then don’t say.” Xuan Tian Ming saw that her brow was furrowed, and she was feeling unbearable. Reaching out to caress her brow, he retracted his own question. “Just treat it as though I never asked. I said it before. There are some things that are not easy to explain. Even if I asked, you can choose to not answer. Heng Heng, I do not blame you.”
She laughed and shook her head, “It’s nothing that I can’t say.” Reaching into her sleeve, she pulled out two revolvers. She handed one to Xuan Tian Ming and said in seriousness: “Husband, it’s for you. It’s my dowry.”