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Read Sha Po Lang Chapter 83

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Gu Yun knew nothing about the technique of acupuncture, he only followed Miss Chen’s teaching step for step. He had heard the exaggerated rumor that one wrong needle could paralyze a patient, therefore, he dared not be the slightest bit careless, down to the depth of each pin. It was truly quite hard for his blind eyes.

Only until the last needle was put in place that Gu Yun let out a sigh of relief, a thin layer of sweat had broken out on his body. He wiped his hands with the towel beside him. When he turned around, Chang Geng was watching him without blinking, with his head tilted to the side. The blood hue and double pupils in his eyes were gone, his gaze was quiet and distant, reflecting a glimmer of the steam lamp, resembling a pair of flames inside the oil lamp lit under the ancient Buddha.

Gu Yun: “What are you looking at?”

Chang Geng stiffly lifted the corner of his lips. With the silver needles on his body, his face was sealed up in a state of paralysis, unable to laugh.

Gu Yun’s eyes wandered across his smooth back with beautiful curves. Although he truly wanted to ‘take revenge’, he dared not violate the doctor’s orders and touch him at this moment. He coughed and said, “Alright, stop smiling, hurry and take a rest. Don’t you have to get up early tomorrow?”

“Zi Xi,” Chang Geng’s face could not use many muscles, his words could only be said in a hushed gentle tone, sounding even more like acting spoiled, “Can you give me a kiss?”

Gu Yun gave him a warning glance: “Are you looking for trouble? Already become a hedgehog but still seducing me.”

Chang Geng had seen already him through, only the word ‘yifu’ was enough to make him admit defeat. The honest gentleman hidden under the layer of an improper man would not touch even his finger when he was stuck with all these needles. Thus he looked at Gu Yun without fear, only smiling – the corners of his mouth could not be lifted up, but his eyes were full of laughter.

Gu Yun thought: “Climbed all the way to my head already.”

However, Gu Yun was not an old monk after all. When he saw the young man’s naked broad shoulders and narrow waist, body like jade, his scattered black hair resembling satin, black and white in clear cut, he could not avoid feeling moved, hence he had to sit with his eyes closed to rest.

After a short while, he could hear a rustling sound coming from the side. Gu Yun opened his eyes and saw Chang Geng climb up like a corpse. He first touched his lips, then gently held his lips between his own and nibbled, his thick eyelashes shaking slightly, in sharp contrast to his stiff expression of being sealed by needles.

Gu Yun wanted to push him away, but Chang Geng’s body was covered in needles, there was no place to do so. Before he could act, Chang Geng had pushed him onto the bed.

The man he loved was plunging on him in a half-naked state and hair scattered all over. Gu Yun’s throat moved. He felt that he was about to transform into iron from enduring for a hundred years. He angrily patted the royal b.u.t.tocks of His Highness Yan w.a.n.g: “The needles are still on, are you going crazy again!”

Chang Geng leaned over him, his chin placed on Gu Yun’s neck and murmured, “I’m all right. That day when I thought about you being in my arms, I always felt that I still haven’t woken up. I never had any good dreams after many years, I was always afraid that as the beginning is happy, later I would be struck by demons. I somewhat scared myself and caused nightmares.”

Gu Yun looked up at the bed curtain, thought about it, and asked, “What would you usually see in nightmares?”

He did not know whether Chang Geng heard him or not. He only looked at him and did not answer, his lips hovered over his cheek, giving him a peck after a few moments.

Gu Yun stretched out his hand to block it: “Stop clinging to me, you can ignite the fire, but you don’t care to extinguish it.”

Chang Geng sighed. For the first time, he did not want to listen to the doctor’s advice at all.

Even so, he did not stop bothering him and said in a low voice, “You look so good in formal clothes.”

Gu Yun picked a needle-free area to hold him lazily. “What do I wear that doesn’t look good on me?”

He was already a little sleepy. Because Chang Geng did not sleep well, the room always burned the tranquilizer. Whether it could tranquilize Chang Geng or not, this was difficult to say, only knowing that Gu Yun, the fish that was affected by the pond, was feeling sleepy earlier and earlier.

He was ambushed by the people of the Western Regions. For a while, the old wounds kept recurring. After half a year, although they had become better, he could feel for himself that his spirit was much worse than before.

When he was on the front line, he still had a string tensed up in his heart. Now as he had returned to the court and did not need to be in a ready state every day, the string was slowly loosened, he often had a kind of exhaustion that was unable to dissipate. At this time, although not spoken for long, his eyes were already closed in a haze.

Chang Geng immensely loved this bold shamelessness of his, he laughed a few times in a low voice: “It would be nice if it is only for me to see, formal clothes only for me to see, armor only for me to see, casual clothes was also for me, n.o.body has the right to desire you…”

His words were half-truth, half-joking. Gu Yun, who had closed his eyes, a.s.sumed it was only playful, flirtatious words whispered in bed. He laughed and replied, “I’m afraid that’s not possible, but wearing nothing, on the other hand, is only for you to see.”

Chang Geng’s eyes instantly changed. Several silver needles erected from the back of his hand to the wrist could not stop him from moving his hands up slowly and began to touch all over, to the point of waking Gu Yun up.

Gu Yun had to avoid the silver needles on the back of his wrist and hand, pressed Chang Geng back and said sleepily, “Don’t make any ruckus. Do you want to get more needles?”

Just then, the window lattice was tapped gently from outside.

Gu Yun’s eyes were sleepy. “Hmm? I’ll get it.”

He put Chang Geng away lightly and pushed open the window. A dirty wooden bird flew in and fell into his hand. The wooden bird was very old. A sandalwood scent had soaked through it deeply, slightly penetrating Gu Yun’s dog nose.

Gu Yun returned and handed the wooden bird to Chang Geng. “Is this the bald donkey’s? Where did he run off to again?”

Hu Guo Temple had been cleansed by Li Feng, the position of the head monk was intended to be given to Liao Ran for his successful rescue, but he refused to accept it at all cost, only hanging this name in the temple and continued to traveled all over the world living as an ascetic monk.

“He is helping the refugees settle down in Jiangbei.” Chang Geng did not get up very easily. “Sometimes among the common people, a monk’s talk is better than officials.”

He opened the wooden bird as he spoke, took out the letter of Liao Ran and looked at it once. The lingering smile on his face gradually disappeared. For a while, he sighed slightly and put the letter aside.

Gu Yun took it and swept over: “Jiangbei had an epidemic, how come I had not heard anything about it?”

“The climate over there is hot and humid, and there are many dead people. If we can’t deal with it in time, it’s not uncommon for an epidemic to occur… Last year, the ca.n.a.l valley was renovated. I a.s.signed those people the task of settling the refugees to place into their achievements. b.a.s.t.a.r.ds, they even learned to hide things.”

Chang Geng whispered as he sat beside the bed, his soul seemed to be fixed in his body by several silver needles, appearing very exhausted and dull. His eyes fell on the corner of the bed. The headlamp of the bed threw a large shadow over his nose and spread it on his face that had become much thinner. “I thought after adjusting, it would stay clean for two years, then I will think of something after fighting through these two years, I did not expect that it would be this way…”

If it hadn’t rotted to the root, he was afraid it would not have produced such bold and courageous local officials resembling hooligans.

Gu Yun saw that he was not at all surprised by it, he asked, “You already know this?”

Chang Geng was silent for a moment. “Zi Xi, help me to get the needles down. It’s better now.”

Many people were exhausted, many people were losing their lives, but the court continued to argue.

Gu Yun removed the silver needle from his body fluently, picked up a thin robe from the side and draped it around Chang Geng. He put his hand around Chang Geng’s waist and said, “Don’t think about it. Get a good night’s sleep. If there’s any difficulty, do tell me. You must not shoulder it alone.”

Not knowing which nerve of Chang Geng was provoked by this remark, suddenly, he turned to Gu Yun and said, “You will help me with anything?”

Gu Yun thought about it and said, “Except for things that are above the proper laws and orders. If you want the stars, I will not give you the moon. Even if it is rainy or cloudy, I will still put up a ladder to the sky to pick them for you. Alright?”

At the end of the sentence, he seemed to have a little hint of teasing, but this time Chang Geng did not laugh. Maybe the body that was just sealed had not been fully relaxed, maybe he was able to hear the hidden meaning of Gu Yun’s words.

Gu Yun kissed him gently at the ear: “Come here, lie down.”

Chang Geng, however, turned back and grasped Gu Yun’s chin. His expression that was once as calm as a sea of stars and dust suddenly broke out a storm, dispelling the usual gentle outer layer. His cheeks were pale, his eyes incredibly dark, blue veins jumped violently on the back of his hands, concealing the power of ancient evil G.o.ds in legend.

It was not until Gu Yun frowned that the strength of Chang Geng’s fingertips suddenly loosened. He stared at Gu Yun with an indescribable expression for a moment. “Zi Xi, what you have given me, do not take it back from me.”

Gu Yun agreed and calmly answered, “Alright, the Manor’s salary is given to you, but can you give me one or two pieces of silver as pocket money every month?”

Chang Geng heard him answer just for the sake of it, his expression grew dim, but Gu Yun laughed and hugged him, rolling him into the bed: “I will not leave you, I swear to G.o.d – how is your suspicion so severe? Sleep fast, I’m feeling sleepy to death already.”

Chang Geng did not let it go, “Even if I really…”

“Even if you’re crazy, I will not leave you.” Gu Yun pillowed himself on his crouched arm, patting Chang Geng’s body lightly, consciously or unconsciously, and closed his eyes. “If you dare to go out and hurt people, I’ll break your leg and tie you up in the house, watching you all day and all night. Satisfied now? Already in the middle of the night, you still want to be scolded…”

What he said was not any good words, but Chang Geng’s breathing became erratic, his eyes suddenly lit up and wished he could swallow the person in front of him. But he suddenly remembered the doctor’s advice. Still knowing his boundary, he dared not venture further with the Bone of Impurity. He only stared at Gu Yun for a moment, and finally reluctantly laid back.

Chang Geng closed his eyes and imagined the scene of what he had just heard. His entire body tightened. He wished Gu Yun could really break his legs and shut him up in a room – even if it was a small and dark room, he would never complain.

He tossed and turned for a moment, and finally, he could not help but reach out and grab Gu Yun’s wrist. “You said it, if I’m crazy, you can lock me up, or if you want to go ahead of me in the future, you can give me a bottle of He Ding Hong*. After sending you off, I will end my own life…Ah!”

*Red Crown of Crane, a poison akin to a.r.s.enic

Gu Yun raised his hand and slapped him on the b.u.t.tock. This time it was not a loving caress, but with real strength, hot and painful.

Gu Yun: “Ending my foot. Shut up, if you won’t sleep then get out.”

Yan w.a.n.g who started talking nonsense as soon as the needle was taken off was finally smacked to obedience and shut up. When Gu Yun’s consciousness slipped away, he was still worrying. He’s afraid Chang Geng’s ‘ending his own life’ sentence was something he could keeps to his words and committed. He did not know whether it was his nature or the Bone of Impurity was changing him subtly. Although Chang Geng tried hard to hide it, Gu Yun could feel the stubbornness and intense temperament in his heart day by day.

It would be dangerous to go on like this.

Emperor Long An’s grand court was held once every ten days. But in the recent extraordinary period, many things have not been resolved, thus it had changed to every day. The court’s civil and military officers have to wake up at the fifth period and go to bed at midnight. However, the Grand Council had to arrive more than half an hour earlier than all the other officers.

The next day when Gu Yun was awakened by Huo Dan, Chang Geng had already left first, but it did not wake Gu Yun up at all. He did not know whether his movements were too light or whether Gu Yun slept too deeply.

“Put that thing out,” Gu Yun rubbed his temple and pointed to the incense burner. “I’m about to be smoked by that thing to the point of being unable to wake up.”

Huo Dan put out the incense burner according to his words, he said: “Marshal, this is just an ordinary sleep and tranquility fragrance. There is no problem for everyone else, but how come when used on you, it was as if you were sedated? You can’t blame the incense burner. You are tired everyday, there is an obvious deficient in both qi and blood. You are still young, it is not good to go on like this.”

“Shh,” Gu Yun said to him with a low voice and signaled with his eyes “I’ll go and ask Miss Chen to prescribe for me. Don’t be too lengthy about this to others, do you hear me?”

Commander Huo paid attention to ‘military commands are as heavy as mountains’, and immediately responded: “Roger!”

At the same time, he thought in his heart, “The Marquis told me to not to be lengthy, but he did not tell me neither to run my mouth nor to shut up. I have to think about it carefully and allocate the right opportunity to report it secretly and reasonably.”

On that day, it was already hostile as soon as the court started. As expected, several families joined hands to bring up the paper Jiang Chong had copied and showed Chang Geng the night before. Then the officer of the Ministry of Housing, Lu Chang, step forward, using harsh words to accuse the head of the Ministry of Works who had recommended thirteen merchants to dip their hands in Ziliujin matter as ‘showing his true intent’. The two groups of people almost tore each other apart in the hall in front of everyone, the Emperor angrily shouted for them to stop.

Fang Qin stood on the side to watch, a.s.sessing the Emperor’s unsightly expression in his spare time. He made a signal with his eyes towards his own party, knowing he had stabbed the Emperor where it hurts.

Sure enough, Li Feng took a breath, pinched his temple and said slowly, “Let’s take a long look on this matter, I think the private sale of Ziliujin is still not very proper, what does the Grand Council think?”

Jiang Chong came out and said, “Your Majesty, all the masters of the Grand Council came here early this morning to discuss this matter. Our worries accidentally coincide with Officer Lu. We all think it is not alright to sell Ziliujin to civilians and businessmen.”

These words stunned everyone. Fang Qin hesitantly looked at Yan w.a.n.g. Suddenly, he was unsure which side this mysterious Prince was on, neither did he know what kind of play he will be performing today.

Li Feng had good impression with Jiang Chong, a pure minister who had been promoted by his own hands. He also felt that what he had said was quite to his opinion. He waved his hand to signal that he could continue to speak.

Jiang Chong: “However, the disaster of refugees is imminent. There are many bandits in the Central Plains of Sichuan. Even if the Marquis of Order killed one Huo Long, there may still be ‘Shui Long’ and ‘Feng Long’ hidden among the people waiting to raise up. As long as it is profitable, they will emerge in endlessly. The refugees are good civilians today. But if they cannot survive, they will fall into the ranks of bandits tomorrow. At present, there will be military disasters in all directions. If we continue to fight internally, not mentioning resting, will we not make those foreign enemies laugh when they see it? What’s more, some time ago, your subject also heard of the outbreak of a plague in Jiangbei. If this is true, it will be even worse…”

*Shui Long – water dragon, Feng Long – wind dragon

Before he had finished, the court outburst.

Li Feng’s eyes blackened: “Plague? What plague?

Fang Qin who was idling was stunned as he heard this, he looked up at Officer Lu with unbelievable eyes, who was just now still aggressively threatening people.

Last year, a large number of officials along the ca.n.a.l were pulled down by Yan w.a.n.g. Every big family was busy planting their people inside. The governor of Liangjiang was Officer Lu’s brother-in-law. This generation of Lu family was not very outstanding, but they had the advantage of being in-laws with the entire court. Consort Lu was the birth mother of the first son of the Emperor, they had a deep foundation. But Fang Qin would never expect that they would be this bold!

In Great Liang Dynasty, when the Emperor was far away, it was common to either conceal or to exaggerate the disaster situation in case of catastrophe. The first reason was for the sake of the official’s own reputation and achievements, the second was for the sake of deceiving the country and to take little bit more of resources sent out for disaster relief.

At present, the country was poor and weak, a.s.suming that they would not manage to get any sc.r.a.p and fearing that the epidemic would be serious enough to implicate them. In addition, Lu family thought of themselves as smart, fearing that the Emperor would be too worried about the people’s livelihood and ended up following the wishes of the businessmen, thus the news of the plague was deliberately withheld.

Fang Qin immediately understood everything in this mess. He angrily glared at the surname Lu, wishing he could grit his teeth until they bled. Why didn’t they think that paper could not contain the fire? Yan w.a.n.g unexpectedly patrolled the ca.n.a.l coast last year, it had only been a few months since? The head of the last man in charge hadn’t even rotted into a skeleton yet!

Emperor Long An himself was industrious, thrifty, and hardworking. What he despised the most was corruption. Yan w.a.n.g was also an odd ball who did not form any party or harbored selfish intention. The Lu family truly was trying to find death under the eyes of those two people.

If failure was only inches away, it would all be because of the hindering of these people who thought of themselves as smart!

Li Feng said angrily, “Subject Jiang, quickly elaborate on this!”

Chang Geng unhurriedly went out of the line and said, “Your Majesty, your brother liked to copy sutras and rituals of Buddhas in leisure time, I had a very good personal relationship with Master Liao Ran. When Master Liao Ran resigned from the post of Hu Guo Temple, he went south to Jiangbei to help settle the refugees. Because he has no status and position, it was inconvenient to disturb the local officials, thus he only went around, preaching the teaching and raising some donation money from the local rich families to relieve the urgent need.

“Recently, the master sent a private letter to me, telling me that the disaster was serious, asking me to think of a solution as soon as possible. However, Jiangbei’s severe epidemic mentioned in the letter, your subject had never heard of it before. The letter had just been received, the actual situation had not been verified yet. Master Jiang was quick to mention it from feeling restless, Royal Brother please pardon him.”

As Yan w.a.n.g spoke, he casted a look untainted by the dust of mortal world towards Officer Lu, then as if intentionally or unintentionally, his eyes glanced over to Minister Fang whose expression had turned green.

Li Feng took a deep breath and said, “Six departments and nine ministers, a crucial Grand Council, yet no one had heard any news,… it was thanks to an ascetic monk in ragged clothes to leak the news, if it is true…”

He was silent for a long time and gritted his teeth: “I, on the other hand, did not know who was the one intending to cover the sky with one hand in this court!”

The officers in the hall all knelt down at once.

To be Continued…

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