Xie Ke waited from late at night until dawn, until his heart was cold, and didn’t wait for the person he wanted to see.
When the sky started to brighten, a carriage drove over from the city gate. Xie Ke’s eyes lit up first, but when it got closer, his expression immediately changed.
This is not an imperial carriage, it was much smaller than the one commonly used by Fu Zhiyu, and there was a veil draped on the top of the carriage, making it look like it belonged to a lady from a noble family.
Sure enough, after the carriage stopped, a woman ran out of it. When she saw Xie Ke standing there, she froze for a moment, then a smile appeared on her face, she lifted her skirt, and ran over quickly.
Why was it her?
That was Xue Rouping, the young lady of the Xue family, the female lead in the original book. When Xie Ke came back this time, he didn’t want to think of the memories that made Zhiyu suffer. He thought that everything was different now; but Miss Xue was still walking along the plot line conscientiously. Even if it was Zhiyu he rescued in the ice lake, Miss Xue still found the opportunity to fall in love with Xie Ke, and she was even quite courageous doing so.
But Xie Ke’s rejection was also obvious. He was almost afraid of her, thinking that if Zhiyu came over now, it might remind him of something he shouldn’t remember, and make him hate him even more.
He immediately took a big step back as if avoiding a snake or a scorpion, then raised his hand and made a movement. A masked man immediately tumbled down from the tree behind him.
“Shadow Seven, take her away and send her back to the city immediately,” Xie Ke didn’t listen to a word Miss Xue said. No matter how travel-worn she was, he was as alert as if there was a fire-breathing dragon in front of him, “How does Lu Linhai guard the city gate? Isn’t there martial law? How could a woman get out so easily?”
As a result, before the brave Miss Xue could express any of her intentions, she was quickly stuffed back into the carriage by Xie Ke’s secret guard.
Only when Xie Ke saw the carriage being driven away did his whole body relax.
“If 061 and the others saw such a scene, they would laugh at you to death,” his system couldn’t help but speak out at this time, “You look like you’re facing an enemy. You were not so nervous even when you were a newbie, almost failed the mission and were about to be wiped out, right?”
Xie Ke looked up at the sky and sighed. He knew that Fu Zhiyu would not come.
“Because I haven’t fallen in love with someone at that time,” He sat down and said slowly. “I scoffed at this kind of thing, thinking I would never be like this. Now as long as there is a little thing about him, I feel nervous.”
He raised his hand and rubbed his eyes that were dry from waiting, but then smiled and said, “027, maybe you will understand this feeling when you have the opportunity in the future. I don’t know how to describe this mood to you completely. But you see, I waited here all night and he didn’t come, yet every moment of expectation made me feel happy.”
The system originally wanted to say that it would never understand and it was not programmed to do so. But Xie Ke, the actor who had the reputation of being colder than a machine, had been softened by someone, so almost anything in this world could happen.
As soon as Xie Ke finished speaking, the system saw Xie Ke’s right hand shake visibly. He raised his hand and looked at it. A red light suddenly lit up and then wrapped around Xie Ke’s wrist, leaving a shallow red mark.
“You used this? When?” The system was surprised, “Didn’t you only collect two red magic boxes?”
Xie Ke stroked the red mark on his wrist with a smile on his face and said, “Before I came here, I paid some price to exchange it with others.”
“Did you use it on Fu Zhiyu?”
“There is no data disorder?” The system was puzzled, “This thing would logically not work on him either.”
Xie Ke tried it on the spot and said, “Well, it probably doesn’t work, there is no response now. But if it works a little bit in an emergency, it was worth exchanging it. I can’t let anything happen to Zhiyu again.”
The system was silent for a while, then calmly commented: “You are wasting it.”
But Xie Ke didn’t think so. He raised his head in a happy mood and looked in the direction of the capital. Others could only see some vague buildings, but he saw a clear goal.
“It seems that Zhiyu got up a lot earlier today than usual,” Xie Ke said to himself, “Is he worried about something again?”
Indeed, Fu Zhiyu got up earlier than usual today.
He had lived carefree since he was reborn and made a point of sleeping until he woke up naturally almost every day. Today was an exception. He was disturbed by his thoughts and didn’t sleep well.
Xie Ke left another box on his bed last night, a bloodstone box that was exactly the same as the first two.
He was really cunning.
Every time he left the box, he picked the right time. The first time, Fu Zhiyu didn’t know who had left it, so he opened it curiously; the second time, he already knew it was Xie Ke, but he had doubts about whether his mother was noticed when she left the palace, so he opened it again; the third time was this sensitive period. Fu Zhiyu was worried about whether there was really any important information about the situation in it, and if he completely ignored it, he would feel a little uneasy.
The bloodstone box was so thick that he couldn’t see what was inside. Fu Zhiyu picked it up and shook it, feeling that it didn’t seem to be a note inside.
He sat on the bed in silence for a long time, but his hands were true to his instincts. His thumbs moved slowly, and he easily opened a slit in the box.
Inside was… a ring?
In addition to the ring, there was also a note, as it should be. The note said: This is the last box, there are no more. The ring is a gift for the baby ^_^, I’ll come back soon.
That’s right, Xie Ke really drew a “^_^” expression at the end. He might have had some brain disease, trying to be cute here.
Fu Zhiyu: “…Curiosity killed the cat. Sure enough, everything related to Xie Ke was out of this world. The box shouldn’t be opened, ah.”
He decisively threw the box with the rest of them. He didn’t take a closer look at the ring and threw it in together.
The relieved Fu Zhiyu fell asleep, just wanting to quickly erase this memory, while Xie Ke outside the city had waited for the departure of the army.
“That person came?” Xie Lin rode a bay horse and looked down at Xie Ke, who seemed to be in a good mood, “I haven’t seen you smiling like this recently.”
“No,” Xie Ke said calmly, “still angry with me. Still hates me now and refuses to believe anything. How could it be possible to come to see me off?”
But when he said this, there was no trace of unhappiness in his tone, as if he was remembering that person in his heart, his eyes full of doting.
Xie Lin didn’t know what to say about his son. Xie Ke hadn’t been by his side when he was young. When he came back, he was already like a little adult. Now that he had grown up, Xie Lin didn’t dare to play the father’s card in front of Xie Ke and he didn’t think it was strange that the two of them were now on an equal footing.
“I wonder whose girl it is? The other day he even took the ‘Shadow’ ring away, he is willing to hand over anything, it’s really…” Xie Lin muttered, and then said with emotion, “Who is the strange person who can treat Xie Ke like this?”
At this time, Xie Ke had already mounted his horse, and the army was about to leave. He glanced back in the direction of the capital, and then embarked on the journey.
After Xie Ke left the capital, Fu Zhiyu was much more relaxed. The Lu family and the Du family guarded the capital, and it was indeed quite peaceful on the surface. As for the undercurrents surging inside, what did it matter to him?
It was selfish, but he was the only one who could take care of himself. He hadn’t started those things and it was not his turn to end them.
There was a war ahead, and the capital tensed a bit; even the food and clothing in the palace became a lot simpler.
As for the residence that was repaired, Fu Zhiyu also ordered to keep everything simple. According to the development rate of the plot, he probably wouldn’t be able to live there for long, and it was better to keep a low profile now.
But he soon found a new joy in his domestic life.
A melon seedling grew in the yard. He didn’t know when someone ate the melon and left the seed there. It was next to the pavilion, growing bigger and bigger. When Fu Zhiyu found it, there were already a few small melons under its leaves, round and lovely to the touch.
He went to touch them when he had nothing better to do. He remembered that he had been lazily eating melons here some time ago, so he must have planted it himself. Seeing him like this, Caimei thought that her master had become interested in flowers and plants, and brought a few pots of precious orchids. But Fu Zhiyu didn’t even look at them, waved his hand and told her to move them aside.
He felt that the melons he planted were beautiful, with large leaves and thick roots. Perhaps because Fu Zhiyu often went to see it, it grew rapidly, and after a few months, it occupied a large area under the pavilion.
The melons were also bigger, but when Fu Zhiyu picked one and tasted it, it was not tasty. The capital was not a suitable environment to grow melons. Even though the fruits were so big, they were useless. He stopped picking them, letting them fall and rot naturally and then grow new seedlings.
In late autumn, these melon seedlings had already been raised into a garden overlord by Fu Zhiyu, looking like a dense mass of large green leaves. Melons were unpalatable, flashy but impractical. They grew so much because the master liked them, giving the illusion of a bountiful farmland, a living flattering essence.
But who cared, it was the master’s business. Last time Emperor Qingyuan took a look at the garden, he laughed for a long time, saying that he hadn’t seen such an idyllic scenery for a long time and that it was very nice.
Recently, Emperor Qingyuan had been in a very good mood. Good news was coming frequently. The Xie family had won many victories, especially Xie Ke, whom the emperor admired. Their marching speed was abnormal. His troops had never been defeated. Gradually, his reputation also increased. The people praised him for using the troops like a god, even more so than Xie Lin.
Emperor Qingyuan really didn’t expect the Xie family to be so brave after not fighting for many years, and Xie Ke, who went to the battlefield for the first time, was not like an amateur at all. The Lin family and the Xue family had been quiet like little chickens recently. The so-called changes in the West and domestic rebellions had all been resolved quickly, and now it was peaceful. How could Emperor Qingyuan be unhappy?
At this time, Jilin not only resolved its own border crisis, but also drove the barbarians out of Chen’s territory. The Xie family had sent a report on the battle, asking if they should take advantage of the victory and pursue the barbarians so that they would not dare to come again.
Of course, Emperor Qingyuan approved, and a big banquet was held today. As Wang Zhao, Fu Zhiyu was naturally going to be there.
The one who came back to report the news was also a commander from the Xie family’s army, surnamed Song. The emperor was very happy to let him sit at the top of the table, but Fu Zhiyu always felt that this man seemed to be looking at him, intentionally or unintentionally.
He frowned and turned away.
Soon after that banquet, Fu Zhiyu’s residence was ready. He picked an auspicious day and finally moved out of Liuli Palace with Mingdao. However, with the approval of Emperor Qingyuan, he was allowed to come to the palace to visit Consort Yun from time to time.
Fu Zhiyu still didn’t forget to move one of the melon vines in the garden of Liuli Palace to his new home, but it was early winter now, and the weather was quite cold. Even though Fu Zhiyu took care of it every day, it was still a bit wonky.
“It won’t grow until the spring,” the steward of the residence, surnamed Zhou, was a kind old man with a strong ability to observe words and expressions. “If Wang Zhao likes these things, there are some newborn small livestock in the countryside, with more vitality than these melons, and they are easy to feed. How many does Wang Zhao want me to bring?”
When he saw Fu Zhiyu nod, he brought in a litter the same evening.
He called it livestock, but chickens, ducks, geese and the like were noisy and smelled bad. After all, this was a residence of a member of the imperial family, not a farm. Steward Zhou picked and brought a few little rabbits. His daughter-in-law’s cat also gave birth to a litter of kittens, and Steward Zhou took a tabby one, saying that it was the most obedient and clingy. He also brought a two-month-old wolfdog back from the country. This one was not for Fu Zhiyu to play with. It was reserved to be raised to guard the residence.
Steward Zhou was experienced, and a loyal dog was sometimes more useful than ten people.
Fu Zhiyu was petting the furry creatures for a few days, but the rabbits ignored him, eating vegetables boringly. The tabby cat, Ah Tang, was really well-behaved and clingy, but who knows what she was eating all day. Her body shape was changing quickly. She was originally such a small one, but increased in size after coming to the residence; however, she was very very warm to hold in winter.
In comparison, Fu Zhiyu liked the wolfdog brought by the steward the most. Because the dog was hairy, Fu Zhiyu calls him Rongrong (Fluffy).
Although Rongrong was round and cute when he first arrived at the residence, this chubby dog had cold eyes, arrogant expression, and was well-trained. Rongrong seemed to like Fu Zhiyu’s smell very much, but because of the pride of a wolfdog, he was reserved when he rubbed against Fu Zhiyu. After rubbing a few times, he would take a proud step back and leave with particular self-control. He looked fierce but was very affectionate.
Yuan Mingdao also likes the dog. Recently, in addition to practising martial arts, he would go to play with Rongrong. Whe the kitchen made bone stew, he had to take the best big bone to Rongrong.
The days were lived leisurely like this. In a blink of an eye, it was the snowy winter again. Fu Zhiyu celebrated his eighteenth birthday. He went to see his mother that day. After coming out of the palace, he went to the Yuan residence again.
The two elders seemed very happy and gave him two bags of gold ingots. Both of them knew that he was not short of money, it was just a ritual to mark the occasion.
“The war is almost over,” Old Master Yuan sighed, sitting at the table, “I heard the news from the outside, saying that it is about to be a triumphant victory in the spring, right? It’s good to finish the war quickly. If the world is chaotic, the people will suffer.”
Fu Zhiyu also nodded. At this time in his previous life, the war hadn’t started yet, but now it was over. He was afraid that the trajectory of many people’s lives would undergo earth-shaking changes.
“Then the Xie family will come back too,” Old Master Yuan continued.
Fu Zhiyu didn’t answer, just lowered his head and said “en” absent-mindedly.