“What is there for me to be afraid of?”

An hour ago, Ji Yue was still unswervingly thinking, ‘How could he sleep soundly if he had only half of his bed?’

An hour later, Ji Yue stared at the sleeping man and wondered why he called the other back so impulsively.

Such an insolent man, not even putting us in his eyes.

We should have left him out to freeze to death.

Ji Yue tugged the covers, indignantly thinking, ‘We see you asleep, let’s see if you could still steal the quilt from us.’

Wei Lian indeed stopped fighting Ji Yue for the cover.

His eyes were closed, face exhausted, and his breathing was even and long.

The young man lay on his side, one hand rested under his head, he frowned in his sleep, and his body curled up slightly.

The quilt was rolled away by Ji Yue, exposing most of the younger man’s body to the cold, and his posture of curling up into a ball made him appear more frail.

Ji Yue knew very well that this was how people behave when they were in a state of uneasiness.

There was a sword over Lian Gongzi’s head consistently the moment he entered this foreign empire, and he also had to deal with this notorious tyrant. At what point could he truly feel at ease?

It appears you have moments where you show your fear.

Ji Yue sneered as he threw the quilt back heavily on top of Wei Lian, covering the man completely.

He lifted the bed drapes and blew out the candle burning at the bedside.

The room was suddenly in complete darkness.

Only then did Ji Yue lie down, grab the other end of the quilt and close his eyes.

He actually didn’t feel repulsed by Wei Lian.

If there was one person whose goal was to get close to you, not for your life, but who would embrace you without fear, treat you like a normal person, and had the courage to romp around with you.

How could you have the heart to push him away?

In the tranquility and darkness, the eyes of the supposedly sleeping Wei Lian opened, showing the crystal clear gaze.

He clutched at the brocade quilt covering him, then pulled out several folds.

He closed his eyes again after a long time.

To get a good night of sleep.

* * *

The sky was dark blue with a slight glow, the snow that had fallen for several days had finally taken a break, as rays of sunlight appeared behind the cloud.

A few palace maids were sweeping away the snow accumulated in the Yangxin Palace Hall’s courtyard. One of them finished her task, resting and leaning on the broom, before waving at the other two maids.

“Zhu Lang, Zhu Se, come over here, I want to tell you two something.” Zhu Yu said with a mysterious expression.

Zhu Lang and Zhu Se glanced at each other, walked forward and gathered around. Zhu Se asked curiously, “What is it?”

It was a dull day at the palace. If there was any gossip, they were always happy to listen.

Zhu Yu looked around, put her palm next to her lips and whispered, “I've been holding this in all night and have to tell you about it. The one who came from the Qingzhu Pavilion has been favoured!”

Zhu Se pffted out a snicker. “Zhu Yu, everyone in the palace knows this news. How could his Majesty not favour that person after bringing him here? Aren’t you just wasting your breath!” She showed a slightly disinterested expression.

Zhu Yu blurted out, “Oh, not at all! I was serving in the imperial study last night, and the ministers sent a pile of beautiful candidate’s portraits. His Majesty had Wei Shijun to pick one out, which he couldn’t, because none of them were as beautiful as he is. Guess what his Majesty did next?”

Zhu Se was surprised. “How dare he? Did his Majesty punish him?”

“Of course not! Not only was his Majesty not angry, but he said he wanted him alone and-and—” Saying to here, Zhu Yu felt rather shy. “He even did Wei Shijun on the table where the memorials were stacked!”

This topic went straight to bedroom matters immediately. The few untouched palace maids were dumbfounded, feeling ashamed and curious at the same time.

Zhu Se, who was younger and bolder, finally asked, “How do you know this? They did it in front of you?”

“Don’t ask such an embarrassing question! We were naturally dismissed by his Majesty, but I was at the end of the line. I saw it through the door crack before I closed it...Really, I saw it with my own eyes!” Zhu Yu lowered her voice. “Afterward, in the Tangquan Pavilion, his Majesty did it again in the pool...Ahhhh, this is too much for me.”

Zhu Lang listened, wanted to say something, but hesitated.

Zhu Se was skeptical. “Is it really true? But to tell you the truth, I really like how Wei Shijun looks.”

“Shh!” Zhu Yu quickly covered the other girl’s mouth. “You’re talking about his Majesty’s man.”

Zhu Se smiled to brush it off. “What are you afraid of? There is no one else in this courtyard.”

“I think it’s true.” Zhu Lang had a sweet-tempered nature as she blushed before she had said much. “To tell you the truth, last night, I was on night watch. I saw a tong shi lady official hurrying out of the pavilion. Judging from her appearance, she must have seen the good part where his Majesty and Wei Shijun...and then...” She suddenly was too embarrassed to go on.

Zhu Yu and Zhu Se both urged, “And then what? Stop keeping us in suspense!”

Zhu Lang simply finished it in one breath, “And then, I heard from Zhu Yue-jiejie this morning on how when she went to serve his Majesty on dressing, Wei Shijun was still asleep on the bed. His Majesty specifically ordered her not to wake him. Per-perhapsText used here was 'shatter'. So he was um 'shattered' by His Majesty's attention...yes, it means what you think it means. he was exhausted from last night.”

The three palace maids stood in silence for a moment.

Zhu Se murmured, “To bear three rounds of the Emperor’s benevolence in a single day. I don’t know if Wei Shijun could handle it...”

To be pampered by his Majesty regardless of location and time...his Majesty was really amazing.

Wei Shijun was pretty amazing as well.

“What are you three dillydally about instead of working?” This was the scene Zhu Chu witnessed as soon as she entered the courtyard. Three palace maids crowded together, blushing and talking away about who-knows-what. 

The three hurriedly formed a line and greeted, “Zhu Chu-jiejieOlder sister..”

Zhu Chu was the most respected palace maid in the Yangxin Palace Hall, her status was higher than theirs. They naturally didn’t dare to gossip before her.

Zhu Chu narrowed her eyes. “Off you three go.”


The three palace maids separated out again to clear the snow from the courtyard. Zhu Chu turned back to gaze at the glorious palace hall, shaking her head and sighing softly.

The Young Master had indeed been favoured. But she felt sorry for him when she thought about how the noble and benevolent man suffered from these humiliations.

There were no secrets in the palace. With the Qin Emperor favouring Wei Lian so ostentatiously, it didn’t take longer than half a day before word was spread throughout the entire palace.

With this momentum, it wouldn’t be long before it reached outside the palace wall.

* * *

Wei Lian ignored beyond his immediate surroundings, as he busied himself in the classics.

When Ji Yue returned from the court, he saw that the youth was already dressed and leaning lazily on the soft couch, supporting his head with one hand and holding a book in the other. His eyes were downcast and his attention was focused on the text.

Ji Yue asked, “What book are you reading?”

Without raising his eyes, Wei Lian turned the page. “A holy book.”

Oh, it looked like the younger man didn’t bother with the basic return greetings.

He was getting bolder and bolder.

Instead of asking more questions, Ji Yue went forward to pluck the book out of Wei Lian’s hand.

Wei Lian raised his eyes slightly when his hands became empty.

Ji Yue looked down and the first thing he saw was two shining white figures stacked together, their limbs entangled as the couple were in the process of lovemaking.

His hand trembled as he threw the book on the ground immediately, feeling his eyes had been defiled.

He said doubtfully, “...You call this kind of thing a holy book?!”

Wei Lian said lazily, “Today, a tong shi lady official specially delivered this subject this book filled with erotic picture diagrams of secret techniques performed between men, so this subject would be more diligent and well-educated on how to serve your Majesty.”

Suddenly, his expression turned serious, “This subject has the intention to seek such knowledge, so how come it’s not a holy book?”

Following this statement his eyebrow arched slightly. “Your Majesty, why are your ears red?”

Ji Yue subconsciously moved his hands to touch his ears, the temperature was normal, not red nor hot.

As someone who was used to hiding his emotions, how would he show his emotion on his sleeves that easily?

He gritted his teeth. “You tricked us?”

Wei Lian leaned back on the couch and laughed cheerfully without restraint. “Hahahaha, your Majesty is acting like this makes this subject wonder if your Majesty had a taste of this before.”

It was common for noble families to have servant girls teach bedroom activities to male members at thirteen to fourteen years of age, it was even true for the royal family.

“What, are you saying you have tasted it?” Ji Yue countered, but without much expectation.

...He didn’t know what this anticipatory feeling was, or the feeling of wishing it wasn’t.

Wei Lian should have an intimate education.

He was one of the Chu Empire’s royal heirs, and was adopted by Noble Consort Yan around the age to learn. So he should have been taught by the palace maids.

Just the thought of the youth having been with another woman, Ji Yue was a little...no, not a little, but very unhappy.

He pondered about it and decided that Wei Lian was at least his person now in name. He would never let anyone else lay their hands on anything that belonged to him, even before they belonged to him.

That was how domineering the Qin Emperor was.

Unbeknownst to him, Wei Lian had stopped laughing and replied, “Not ever.”

This answer startled Ji Yue.

“Why not?”

He was on guard with the women the last Empress sent him. What about Wei Lian?

Wei Lian said frankly, “Because I like men.”

Wei Lian had never fallen for a person, but he was naturally drawn to men, and this he knew the best.

Ji Yue took a step back without making a sound.

“You better not fall for us.”

Partners and whatnot became messy when there was emotion involved.

People who were led by emotions would always ignore their reasoning. And Ji Yue had always been rational above all else.

Wei Lian raised his eyebrows, “This subject should be the one saying that to your Majesty. Your Majesty must not fall in love with this subject.”

Ji Yue immediately denied, “That will never happen.”

How could he possibly like someone else?

“Is that so?” The corner of Wei Lian raised up. “Then why has that smile not come off the corners of your Majesty’s mouth since the moment this subject shared that I never lost my virginity and prefer men?”

It took a moment for Ji Yue to realise that he had been smiling.

Not the usual meaningless laugh.

...But one that was unconsciously happy.

Ji Yue immediately flattened his lips and tried to change the subject, “You insolent subject, you haven’t saluted us yet."

Wei Lian submitted to the older man’s complaint, saying, “Greetings, your Majesty.”

He only greeted verbally, making no other movements at all.

Wei Lian never really liked to kneel. On the first day, he was a complete stranger to the Emperor, so he had no choice but to kneel for a long duration. Now he only had to get acquainted with the Qin Emperor, to not be held responsible for his occasional impoliteness by the older man.

Ji Yue studied him. “Wei Lian, you appeared like a gentleman at first, but it only took three days for you to show your fox’s tailImplies he's seductive and/or devious.?”

“It’s only natural for this subject to not deceive.” Wei Lian said courteously. “This subject acted somewhat reservedly because we were strangers. But now we have spent time together, and this subject got the time to know your Majesty better, of course there is nothing for me to fear.”

Ji Yue narrowed his eyes. “Li Fuquan had been by our side for twelve years, but he didn’t dare to say he understands us. But you do?”

“Wei Lian, we don’t know where you get your confidence from. But don’t say foolish things, like treating us as a husband again, we don’t want to hear it a second time.” Ji Yue’s tone was light, but it contained a dangerous warning.

With a pause, Wei Lian said, “Then this subject will tell the truth.”

He abruptly got off the couch, looking out of the window, and spoke in a stern tone, “The world is full of black-hearted people, ungrateful to their benefactor, blinded by greed, a never-ending vicious cycle.”

The beauty with a gently coloured face turned around and gazed at the young Emperor with a smile. The courtyard was covered by deep snow and wrapped in winter’s cold chill, but both of them were blocked out as much as possible.

Standing inside and in front of the window was a beautiful Young Master, with a jade-like figure and peerless elegance. His eyes were clear and cold, like they could only exist in a painting.

He spoke each of his next words like they were precious gems. “Human hearts harbour evil, yours has none. What is there for me to be afraid of?”

Editor's Corner

* Cut Sleeve – for those that don’t know, this is a common term in China for homosexuality. It’s based on the story of an Emperor who cut the sleeve off his robe rather than wake his male lover (who was sleeping on the sleeve of the robe).



  1. Muggelschmuggel

    JY forget it, you’re already jelly, you’re falling for him. Or you are just possessive af. Both lol

    Thx for the ch ٩(。˃ ᵕ ˂ )و

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