Fu Zhiyu waited patiently for the bowl of medicine, and it really arrived as expected.
Dr. Chen had known about it from Fu Zhiyu beforehand. His master said that there was a problem with this bowl of medicine, and when he smelled it, there was really something wrong. But he was watching the whole time when the medicine was being decocted, so something must have been wrong with the medicinal materials delivered.
Like last time, Fu Zhiyu didn’t take a sip. He poured the bowl of medicine into his quilt smoothly. This time, he prepared and sewed a special bag in the quilt. Most of the medicine flowed into the bag and was saved.
“Let’s see what he’s got up his sleeve. If I really drank it, what would happen?” Fu Zhiyu said, “I need to put on a full show.”
“Don’t you want to continue to pursue this?” Dr. Chen was really puzzled. “This must be related to the incident on the ice lake last time, and it is likely to be the work of the same person.”
“No need,” Fu Zhiyu said, thinking that he had already investigated it once, there was no need to spend time investigating it again. “Just do as I say.”
Dr. Chen removed the bag with the medicine from the quilt and took out another thing from his sleeve.
“This is the residue of the medicine,” Dr. Chen said. “I’ve just taken a look at it. This is quite a coincidence. It is not a poison; the medicine that the prince takes has to go through a silver needle test for poison. If it was a poison, no matter what, it would not enter your mouth.
There is one herb in it, the dried chaste tree. It is a mild tonic for qi and blood, but it can only be used if it is less than five years old. Although the old dried chaste tree is also non-toxic, the older the age, the stronger the medicinal properties are. It is very unsuitable for Master to take it now and it conflicts with the medicinal properties of other herbs. Dried chaste tree is generally cut into small pieces for use, and if you don’t look closely, you can’t tell its age. If the Master drank this bowl, I’m afraid Master…”
Fu Zhiyu nodded, indicating that he understood, and asked again: “Will it cause a high fever?”
“Very good,” Fu Zhiyu finally showed a smile on his face, “Then I will continue to have a high fever.”
“You will?” Dr. Chen was surprised, “You asked me to prepare those things before, just for this?”
Fu Zhiyu smiled and said, “Of course. You are the only imperial doctor here now. Even if other imperial doctors receive orders to come, they will miss the most critical moment. We have enough time to prepare.”
“But…” Dr. Chen hesitated, “If you really want to do it at this level, even if you just pretend, it will be easy to hurt your body. I’m afraid…”
Fu Zhiyu said calmly, “It’s fine, you can apply the needles.”
Dr. Chen still didn’t dare. For the first time, his hand holding the golden needle trembled.
“Does Noble Imperial Consort Yun know about this?” Dr. Chen asked rebelliously, “If she knew, I’m afraid she wouldn’t agree.”
Fu Zhiyu was not angry. He even stretched out his hand and patted Dr. Chen on the shoulder as a comfort: “I will tell her so that Mother Consort won’t need to worry.”
Dr. Chen still didn’t dare to start. He asked again: “Master, why are you doing this?”
Fu Zhiyu sighed and did not answer directly, but asked, “If you had a choice, Dr. Chen, would you enter the palace?”
Dr. Chen barely gave it much thought and immediately shook his head. He was from the family of imperial doctors. From the moment he was born, he was destined to enter the palace as an imperial doctor.
“A healer is only a healer if he can help the world. Living in the palace for a long time is only counted as being a subject, not a doctor.”
“Very good,“ Fu Zhiyu said, “Do as I say, and I promise you will get what you want in the future.”
You have to get farther and farther away from this vortex, otherwise you will be sucked in, unable to get out.
Dr. Chen gritted his teeth and finally applied the needle.
The grand ceremony was originally to pray for peace, but the imperial family was really not peaceful this winter. The Ninth Prince, who was originally said to be out of danger, for some reason started to burn again, and the fever wouldn’t subside.
The fever continued intermittently for about ten days, and Fu Zhiyu was transferred back to the palace from the temple.
“Don’t overact,” Fu Zhiyu sat in the carriage on the way back to the palace, wiping the tears of his distressed mother. “Your eyes have been red for days, don’t hurt your body.”
“Dr. Chen’s needles are too cruel,” Consort Yun touched his face, lowered her voice and said worriedly, “Is it really fine? I feel your forehead is hot when I touch it, it feels just like the real one.”
Fu Zhiyu said: “It’s fine, it’s just for the time of the consultation with other imperial doctors. It’s all fake but if I don’t do this, I can’t fool them.”
“You, what exactly are you trying to do?” Consort Yun sighed, “Although it’s pretending, it’s not easy to toss yourself like this.”
Fu Zhiyu: “Don’t worry. After returning to the palace, we’ll just watch the dog bite the dog.”
The fever was just a process. What Fu Zhiyu wanted was the result.
“Now I am the one whose brain has been burnt out,“ Fu Zhiyu didn’t want to say any more. He snuggled up to Consort Yun, like an ordinary teenager, coquettish with his mother, “Mother Consort, I want to eat milk cake.”
“You won’t eat it,” Consort Yun tapped him on the head, “Dr. Chen said you still have to drink medicine so you can’t eat these things.”
Fu Zhiyu raised his head to look at her. His Highness the Ninth Prince had tossed himself hard enough lately. He had lost a lot of weight and his eyes were even bigger than before. He blinked and looked pitiful.
“Just one bite for you,” Consort Yun was defeated. “I’ll tell Caiyan later that the kitchen is not allowed to cook these things in the near future so as not to delay the Prince’s recuperation.”
Because of his illness, the Ninth Prince couldn’t bear the bumpy road, so the procession moved very slowly but was so tightly guarded that no one could approach it.
The worst news is the most difficult to hide, and Fu Zhiyu didn’t want to hide it at all. The Ninth Prince’s brain had been burnt out because of a high fever. The imperial city already knew about it. The fact that the prince, who was praised as a “genius” by the great scholars of the dynasty, was brain-damaged might be more dramatic than his death from illness.
Everyone was curious as to what His Highness the Ninth Prince looked like now.
No one noticed that there was always a man following the procession that returned to the palace.
Xie Ke didn’t expect things to turn out like this at all. During all this time, he had never found the opportunity to meet Zhiyu again. Now, too, the procession was too strictly guarded. With his current status and strength, it was not impossible to break through forcibly, but the trouble that would follow was more than he could handle now.
Being back for so long, he had only come into contact with Zhiyu once that night, but Zhiyu was asleep and didn’t even say a word. Xie Ke thought it would be okay to wait until Zhiyu felt better, but things didn’t develop according to his memory.
That bowl of medicine, Zhiyu was obviously aware of it in his previous life and escaped unscathed. Why did he drink it this time?
Xie Ke still remembered the cold feeling in his body when he received the news. Since then, Longquan Temple had been under martial law and he could no longer enter Zhiyu’s room at night. He could only see the imperial doctors coming to and going from the northern wing, each of them saying that the situation was not good.
Listening to these words, he felt as if he had been plunged back into the memories that had caused him so much despair before; his heart ached and he couldn’t breathe, his mind going blank.
He must not let any more accidents happen in the future!
Xie Ke followed the procession all the way. He didn’t expect to have another chance to see Zhiyu now but was extremely afraid that something else would happen to him. When the procession slowly entered the palace, Xie Ke stared at the vermilion palace wall for a long time before turning around and leaving.
It was not enough, he thought to himself. He had come back at this point in time, very critical and timely, but he was still too weak.
Zhiyu was a prince; there was not enough to protect him and possess him in all his rightful glory.
Fu Zhiyu didn’t know anything about it and he didn’t plan to think about Xie Ke at this time. He had to set his life on the right track first.
When he returned to the palace, he saw the emperor.
Emperor Qingyuan, Fu Qingyan, was forty-five years old this year and still in good health. He looked like he was in his early thirties, and his appearance was considered very elegant. He had been the emperor for twenty years, and his aura was subtle and noble. At first glance, he really had the appearance of a great emperor.
His affection for Consort Yun was unmatchable. Fu Zhiyu looked very similar to Consort Yun and was smart and intelligent. He had been favoured by the emperor from a young age.
“Why is Xiao Jiu (Little Nine) so thin?“ When Emperor Qingyuan saw Fu Zhiyu, his face also showed a bit of distress, “Father Emperor has already ordered people to investigate again, they must give an explanation.”
The incident on the ice lake still could be said to be an accident, but if there was something wrong with the medicine Fu Zhiyu drank, then someone must have plotted against the prince.
Fu Zhiyu gave Fu Rongli enough time to finish the job. Whether he could be found out by the emperor depended on his ability, but looking at the situation, if the clues couldn’t be found at this point in time, then the chance of finding them later was very slim.
Fu Zhiyu really didn’t want Fu Rongli to be found out. If Consort Xue’s line fell, the stalemate between the Third Prince and the Crown Prince would be broken. With the Crown Prince’s family dominating, his life would be difficult.
Fu Zhiyu was thinking about this but there was a simple smile on his face as he said, “I believe in Father Emperor.”
Emperor Qingyuan looked at his smile, somewhat stunned.
Imperial doctors had reported to him before, especially Dr. Chen, who was in charge of treating the Ninth Prince, saying that the Ninth Prince had been suffering from a high fever and the fever had caused some damage to the Ninth Prince’s brain. Although it was not to the point of becoming a fool, the Ninth Prince was no longer as bright as before, and there was some damage to his memory.
Of course, the words of the imperial doctors were more euphemistic, but Emperor Qingyuan could understand them.
Seeing Xiao Jiu for the first time today, he didn’t notice anything unusual at first, he just felt that the child had lost a lot of weight, but now that Fu Zhiyu smiled, the emperor felt something was wrong.
Xiao Jiu was an early learner, he could write essays on political theories at the age of eight and could participate in disputes with the great scholars of the dynasty at the age of ten. In the aspect of talent, he was the first among the princes.
With much wisdom comes much sorrow. Xiao Jiu hadn’t smiled like this since he was ten years old.
Such a smile was too… mediocre?
Emperor Qingyuan came up with such an adjective in his mind. This was a carefree smile that an ordinary teenager would show. It seemed that the things he encountered were nothing and he didn’t worry about how to deal with them in the future.
Xiao Jiu, he…
A trace of pity appeared in the emperor’s heart for an instant, but his face didn’t show anything. As if he was really just a loving father, he stroked Fu Zhiyu’s head: “Go and rest, get well, you’ll be better soon.”
Fu Zhiyu nodded obediently.
There had to be a degree in pretending to be stupid. Fu Zhiyu knew that many people in the imperial palace had doubts about his brain being burnt out. At least the Crown Prince, a very suspicious person, couldn’t believe it all at once.
If he degenerated too badly at once, it would be a bit too much, and it would be too easy to reveal a flaw. It would also be too easy to be set up while having a hard time trying to maintain the persona. The gain wasn’t worth the loss.
It would be too predictable to play a fool.
He just degenerated from an obvious genius to an ordinary person.