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The origins of Qu Qing Ju’s name are revealed! Also, some men are terrible. Thanks for the follows, likes and comments!

Chapter Six The Beautiful Times of Lunch

Coming out of Cui You Yuan, Qu Qing Ju raised her hand to touch the buyao in her hair and the corners of her lips lifted. She hadn’t thought that this Duan Wang was interested in this aspect of a woman. That stare when he had been touch this buyao, she didn’t dare look directly at it. This wang ye was to be pitied, he had to hide even this little fetish.

Unaware that her wang fei had made wang ye into a little cabbage in the ground during winter, Yin Liu said: “Wang fei, nubi doesn’t understand, why move Jian Yun to zhengyuan?”

“You dummy, how can you not understand such an easy thing?” Mu Jin looked at the surroundings before saying lightly, “That Jian Yun is one of wang fu’s servants and wouldn’t have much loyalty towards Yun Qing. Today, wang fei moved Jian Yun to zhengyuan, tomorrow, other people will have the same idea. Water will flow to the lowest grounds, people will walk to the highest grounds. Who knows if there are people beside the other qieshi that want to walk higher.”

Yin Liu had a brief trance and was surprise at Mu Jin’s understanding of wang fei’s mind. She now understood a little bit at why wang fei put Mu Jin at the first position. She looked at wang fei and Mu Jin and realized for the first time that wang fei was different than in the past.

The news that wang fei had disciplined that beautiful huakui in Cui You Yuan had already spread. Qu Qing Ju hadn’t reached zhengyuan but on the way there she had encountered a few bowing yahuan and all of those yahuan were in the service of other ce fei or qieshi.

Just reaching the entrance to zhengyuan, Qu Qing Ju saw Yu Zan and Jin Zhan standing at the door. Seeing her return, the two shows expressions of happiness as they moved forward: “Wang fei, Qian Chang Xin came over with others and delivered a lot of good stuff. He said it was what wang ye picked especially for you. Xian Chang Xin is still here, do you wish to meet him?”

Qu Qing Ju nodded and entered the outer room of the zhengyuan. She saw Qian Chang Xin and a few taijian standing respectfully with eyes down. On the table in the room were a few moderately-sized boxes and bolts of cloth. There seems to be a lot of stuff.

Seeing wang fei enter, Qian Chang Xin bowed and said: “Greetings to wang fei. These are what wang ye ordered nucai to deliever to you. Wang ye also said, if wang fei needs anything else, to just order the servants to do.”

“Thank wang ye for me,” Qu Qing Ju opened the box on the very top. Inside was a speckled blue-green jade sparrow hairpin. She smiled as she closed the box, “Qian gonggong had to make a special trip, it must have been such a bother.”

“No bother, no bother,” Qian Chang Xin quickly replied to the contrary, and with both hands presented a box with good fortune embossed on the top, “This box, wang ye said specifically ordered nucai to present to wang fei in hopes that wang fei would like it.”

Mu Jin received the box and delivered it into Qu Qing Ju’s hands. Qu Qing Ju opened the box, her eyebrows raising slightly. She took it out with her hand and the room instantly filled with sighs.

It was a luan buyao but the craftsmanship was impeccable. A slight movement created the illusion that the bird was alive and in flight. Mu Jin stood the closest and was able to distinguish every line on the luan. The eye was an inlay of bright agate. Mu Jin was instantly dumbstruck.

“Such a beautiful buyao,” Even Qu Qing Ju was shocked into exclaiming. This was a masterpiece. Even in her previous life, she hadn’t seen such an intricate piece. This was probably the legendary nobility of the Imperial House. Qu Qing Ju smiled widely and looked at Qian Chang Xin: “Thanks for your labors, Qian gonggong, I really like this buyao.”

Ming He, who had just passed the entrance saw this smile and thought inside that this smile was blinding. Even Feng ce fei and Yun Qing guniang in comparison would be less vibrant. He couldn’t resist looking at wang ye who was walking in front of him and wonder what wang ye thought.

“Liking it means that it has a use,” He Heng walked in front of Qu Qing Ju and took from her hand the buyao, personally replacing the buyao she had originally in her hair with the new one.

The roomful of servants all lowered their heads. They couldn’t gaze upon the intimacy of wang ye and wangfei. After wang ye spoke in admiration, then did they dared raise their heads.

“It suits you to perfection,” He Heng stepped back and looked at the buyao in the black strands. A satisfied expression appeared, “Wang fei’s hair is as black as night and contrasts beautifully against this buyao.”

An embarrassed smile appeared on Qu Qing Ju’s face. She lowered her head to avoid meeting He Heng’s gaze. She was a vain woman. She liked other people complimenting her. But this person in front of her that complimented her wasn’t that simple, she didn’t believe that this was purely a compliment.

The two hadn’t interacted together for long periods before so after they sat down, they didn’t have much to say. Thankfully, the presentation of food disrupted the silence between the two.

The protocol was to not speak while eating so when the two remained silent during eating, there wasn’t an awkward atmosphere. Qu Qing Ju looked at He Heng’s eating and had to admit that this man in front of her had the most beautiful eating motion of all she had seen before. Those motions were much more soothing to the eye than the so-called higher nobility of her previous life.

The supposed feast for the eyes was this situation. The state of He Heng was enough to arouse the appetite of Qu Qing Ju who couldn’t resist adding another bowl of rice. But in the eyes of others, it became “Of course, wang fei is definitely in love with wang ye, with wang ye here, she would even eat more.”

He Heng hadn’t thought that Qu Qing Ju would be so casual in his presence. In front of him, the other women in this fu would take small sips of soup, and quietly eat vegetables. When it came to wang fei, he kept on feeling strange with wang fei’s gaze on him.

After the meal was finished, Qu Qing Ju saw the yahuan that knelt in front of her with a copper bowl raised high. She quickly washed her hands and let the other stand to the side.

He Heng looked at Qu Qing Ju before taking away his gaze: “Now that wang fei has recovered, ben wang feels much less worried. In the future, you should manage this houyuan well. If you don’t understand anything, don’t worry. Qian Chang Xin and Ming He are the stewards of this fu. Any problems can be given to them.”

Taking the silk handkerchief that Mu Jin presented to wipe her hands, Qu Qing Ju said: “These past days, qie’s body was constantly ill, and couldn’t help wang ye manage the houyuan. Qie is embarrassed to face wang ye.” Finishing, she looked at Qian Chang Xing and Ming He who were in the corner, “These two were very good at managing the big and little things. In the future, qie wouldn’t have much to worry about.”

Hearing wang fei’s words, Qian Chang Xin and Min He buried their heads deeper to express their humbleness and respect. Even if wang ye depended on them, wang fei was the true mistress of this wang fu. Wang fei taking charge of houyuan was the natural order of things, what was the two of them?

Putting the tea for rinsing to one side and wiping clean his mouth, He Heng saw wang fei, with a smile on her lips, lean back lazily on her chair. The corner of his own mouth rose: “When they were in charge, this houyuan was a mess. In the future, you will have to spend effort.” He lowered his face, looking at the green flowers on the tea cup on the table as though he didn’t place any importance on the women in the houyuan, “You are ben wang’s zheng fei[1], the others cannot compare to you.”

These words were probably a pretty impressive promise that a man of the Imperial House would make to his “big wife.” Qu Qing Ju looked from the corner of her eye towards He Heng and at the same time, the other raised his head. Their eyes met and both allowed the smile on their own faces to become even more friendly, as though they were an old couple that had no visible flaws.

“Qie has no skill but can only make the best effort, to help wang ye find a place to relax at home, if nothing else.” Qu Qing Ju’s smile became blinding, “The trust that wang ye places in qie, is qie’s honor.”

He Heng looked at the bright smile of the woman in front of him and thought about her birth. She was a di daughter of Chang De Gong Fu, but soon after her birth, her birth mother passed away. The fact that the Duke of Chang De liked his second wife had already spread through all of the city of Jing. It was rumoured that the two had been involved even when the original wife had been pregnant and had been expressing his emotions through borrowing from the “Poems of Luo Shen.[2]” He had actually used the “Poems of Luo Shen” to name his daughters which had been the subject of much admiration of many wives and girls in the city of Jing. Unfortunately, they all forgot the previous Duchess of Chang De and her young daughter.

Actually, his own wang fei’s name came from “she wore shoes embroidered with delicate designs, what trailed behind was a garment as light as the mist.”[3] He named the daughter borne by his deceased wife using a name that represented the depth of love he had with his present wife. The Duke of Chang De was either too in love or had no love but what was certain that this daughter borne by his previous wife was to be pitied. Thankfully, she had a reliable maternal family. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be certain that she would have grown up. The He Heng which had grown up in the Imperial Family was very clear about those dark schemes. Wang fei’s personality after the marriage was dull, he hadn’t been surprised. But these two days, he was very surprised at what wang fei had done.

Was it that his wang fei in the past, living in Chang De Gong Fu, had suppressed herself in order to survive and was really showing her true self now that she was at wang fu?

Qu Qing Ju wasn’t interested in what He Heng thought. She leaned back in the chair with a smile on her face, waiting for He Heng to speak first. This man wasn’t simple. She didn’t want to speak without preparation and make it difficult for herself.

“Wang fei does not have to worry needlessly. You are ben wang’s wang fei, your position is high. If the servants in the fu do not perform well, then just discharge them,” He Heng narrowed his eyes, “My Duan Wang Fu will not tolerate servants who disobey.”

“Yes,” Qu Qing Ju smiled and turned to more minor topics.

The two discussed for another fifteen minutes before He Heng stood and said: “You’ve just recovered, take a noon rest. I’ll come back at night.”

Finding that He Heng had changed what he called himself from “ben wang” to “I”, Qu Qing Ju understood that this Dung Wang had at least respect for her. She stood as well and walked him towards the door. Seeing him gradually walk far away, she finally let go of the smile on her face.

Mu Jin, standing behind her, saw her expression was calm and hesitated before speaking: “Wang fei, wang ye is coming over at night, is there anything to be done?”

Qu Qing Ju raised an eyebrow. In this present situation, she wasn’t as unreasonable as to not be willing to sleep in the same bed as wang ye. She used a handkerchief to wipe at the non-existent sweat on her forehead, “Do what is needed, I’m going to rest. In two hours, serve me as I bathe.”

Seeing wang fei’s expression was normal, a faint smile appeared on Mu Jin’s face: “Nubi will order the others to prepare.”

Nodding, Qu Qing Ju lowered her head and rubbed an ear. To be with somebody unfamiliar so quickly, there was just the slightest bit of embarrassment.

[1]正妃: proper, “legitimate” wife.

[2]洛神赋: Luo Shen Fu(poem). It is a collection of poems by Cao Zi when he passed by the river Luo. In mythical history, Luo Shen was originally the daughter of Fu Xi, a Chinese Emperor and the mythical creator of fishing. She drowned in the Luo River and became the spirit (神) of the Luo River, hence the name of the collection.

[3] The original poem phrase was: 践远游之文履,曳雾绡之轻裾 and Qu Qing Ju’s name came from the last two characters. 轻裾 is a light garment.

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