Phoenix’s Requiem - Chapter 447
Chapter 447: Soup And Snacks
Yun Ruoyan followed Xi Lan and Peony back into her rooms, and Peony placed the lunchbox on the table. As Xi Lan took off the lid, a familiar, flowery fragrance spread through the room.
“It’s as fragrant as I remember! Your cooking has only improved since I saw you both last.”
With a sudden tremble, Xi Lan knocked down one of the teacups, which smashed against the ground. She glanced at the shards of porcelain, an anxious look flitting across her face.
“Ah!” Peony nudged Xi Lan, her face as red as if she had just committed some heinous crime.
Yun Ruoyan was surprised by her two maids’ exaggerated response. “It’s nothing, it’s nothing!”
“Miss, I’ll clean it up immediately!” Xi Lan walked outside, found a broom, and began sweeping the shards away.
“Leave it at the door. Be careful not to hurt yourself,” Yun Ruoyan said. “There’ll be other servants responsible for cleaning the place in the evening, so just leave it by the side of the door.
Yun Ruoyan took a few pieces of the osmanthus cake and had some phoenix-orchid soup. “The two of you haven’t eaten yet, have you? Won’t you join me?”
“It’s alright, Miss, we’ve both eaten. This is for you,” Xi Lan said, then retreated to the side where Peony was standing.
Yun Ruoyan noticed that her two maids were acting somewhat strangely, but a rumbling in her stomach caused her to focus on the food in front of her: it wasn’t her who was hungry, but rather her child.
Just as Yun Ruoyan was about to take a bite of the osmanthus cake—
“Miss!” Peony and Xi Lan both called out to her simultaneously.
“What’s the matter?”
“N-Nothing,” Peony replied. “Take small bites so you don’t choke.”
“And the soup’s a little hot, so don’t drink it all in one go,” Xi Lan added.
Yun Ruoyan cocked her head. “What’s going on with the two of you? I expect an answer by the time I finish eating.” She wagged a finger at them, then had a third of a piece of osmanthus cake. “Ah, this brings back memories! You don’t know how much I’ve missed this during the last three years.”
“Miss, these are both sweet desserts, so you shouldn’t consume too much,” Peony reminded her.
“Right, it’s not good to have too much sugar! We’ll make more for you tomorrow, Miss,” Xi Lan added.
Yun Ruoyan shook her head. “It’s alright, I’m already sustaining myself with spiritual energy at this point. I don’t often have the appetite to eat, so it’ll be fine even if I have a little more.”
As she ate, she suddenly felt a strange spike of pain coming from her abdomen. She dropped her ladle and clutched her stomach, an agonized expression on her face. The pain grew and grew in magnitude, until it felt as if all her strength had been sapped away. She slumped and almost fell to the ground.
“Miss, Miss! Are you alright?” Peony and Xi Lan hurriedly asked as they supported Yun Ruoyan.
“Mistress, what’s wrong?” Qiuqiu had also felt Yun Ruoyan’s pain.
“My stomach hurts, and it feels almost like I’ve been poisoned, but—Xi Lan and Peony would never do such a thing!” Yun Ruoyan thought to Qiuqiu, staring at her two maids in stunned disbelief. When they saw her face turn blue, beads of sweat rolled down their foreheads.
“Xi Lan, call Miss Li Luo, quick! I’ll stay here and accompany Miss!” Peony instructed.
“Alright, I’ll go, I’ll go!” As Xi Lan stepped outside, she almost tripped on the doorframe.
“Peony, the two of you didn’t do this, did you?” Yun Ruoyan asked between spikes of pain.
“Miss, Miss, don’t frighten me! I’m sorry, I’m so sorry,” Peony repeated over and over again. Yun Ruoyan’s heart turned cold, and she slowly closed her eyes…
In a house by a small valley next to the beastkin valley, Li Mo was speaking with Su Nan and Su Bei.
“Your Highness, following your orders, we’ve investigated the missing beastkin and found that they’ve somehow made a reappearance within the Yuelu Villa,” Su Nan replied.
“As expected,” Li Mo said coldly. “It looks like we’ll have to take down the owner of the villa.”
“Your Highness, he’s the grandfather of the fourth prince! The fourth prince and his grandfather work closely with Li Qianyuan, so wouldn’t killing him bring unwanted attention to the beastkin valley?” Su Bei asked worriedly. He was responsible for keeping tabs on the capital, and was relatively familiar with Li Qianyuan’s personality.
Li Qianyuan was born of a servant girl, and he had always held a lowly position in the palace, especially compared to his fellow princes. Almost from his birth, he had stuck to the crown prince for safety. And yet it was none other than this seemingly innocuous prince who had taken his father’s life, placed his own brother in house arrest, and ascended to the throne. What the second prince had done was more than sufficient for Su Bei to categorize him as a dangerous figure.
“I’ve never been interested in the Li kingdom’s politics,” Li Mo replied coolly. “But I won’t forgive them for threatening my kin. Take my writ to the Yuelu Villa. If they’re willing to hand over the beastkin obediently, I won’t pursue the matter further, but if not, I’ll level the villa to the ground.”
Two things were of utmost importance to Li Mo: Yun Ruoyan and the beastkin. He didn’t care about the rest of Li Qianyuan’s plans, but if Li Qianyuan dared to touch either Yun Ruoyan or the beastkin, blood would be shed.
“Yes, Your Highness!” Su Bei and Su Nan hurried out of the house. The moment they did so, a large bird flew over. The two men recognized it as Mo’er, a spiritual beast contracted to their master, primarily used for transmitting messages. Mo’er was in its larger form, which indicated that the message it was carrying was unusually urgent. Su Nan and Su Bei hesitated for a moment and were just about to keep walking forward when a gust of black wind suddenly blew past the two men.
The two men rubbed at their eyes to see their master’s back disappearing before their eyes.
Li Mo soared to the skies faster than the wind itself. The message that Mo’er had brought him contained only seven words: Yun Ruoyan’s been poisoned; she’s in danger. At his fastest speed, Li Mo flew back to his manor in no more than four hours.
“Yan’er, Yan’er!” he called out as soon as he landed.
When Li Luo heard Li Mo’s voice, she hurriedly rushed out. Her eyes reddened, she said, “Your Highness, you’re finally back! Please, take a look at Consort Yun.”
Li Mo followed Li Luo inside the house, where Yun Ruoyan was lying in bed. Her face and forehead shone with a sheen of sweat, her face a stark white. She was conscious, if only barely.
“Yan’er!” When Li Mo saw his beloved wife in such a state, he almost stumbled. Stooping down against the bed, he clutched Yun Ruoyan’s arm tightly and asked in a quavering voice, “What happened?”
Yun Ruoyan grit her teeth, shook her head, and forced out a smile. The curious pain in her stomach had long since reached a crescendo, and every second felt like an eternity. She didn’t dare open her mouth, because she knew she would scream if she did so. Yun Ruoyan had a surprisingly high tolerance for pain, and she had never screamed in pain in either this life or her last.
Li Mo placed his palm gently on Yun Ruoyan’s abdomen and inspected her body using spiritual energy. Except for the baby’s unusually active movements, he didn’t notice anything else amiss. Both her spiritual vortex and bodily functions seemed normal.
“Physician, what’s wrong with my wife?” Li Mo asked.
“Your Highness, Consort Yun consumed some poisoned food that induced premature labor,” the physician replied.
“Will she be in danger?”
“Consort Yun’s cultivation and constitution seem to have shielded her from harm, but as for the baby in her womb…”
When Li Mo heard that Yun Ruoyan would be alright, it felt as though a heavy burden had dropped from his shoulders—one which he immediately picked up when the physician informed him that the baby was in danger.
“You must save both of them,” Li Mo said firmly.
“I’ll do my best, Your Highness,” the physician replied. Subsequently, he hesitated and asked, “But if I can only save one, Your Highness?”
“Save Ruoyan!” Li Mo replied immediately. “You must save her!”
“Yes, Your Highness,” the physician replied, then started performing acupuncture on her.
“N-No, sa… save…” Yun Ruoyan wanted to tell the physician to save the child, but her eyelids grew heavier and heavier, and she fell asleep before she could finish speaking.
Yun Ruoyan dreamt of a cute, chubby boy, with locks of black hair and eyes that could change color: black one moment, blue the next, and red another. When he smiled, others would too.
“Xun Moyan,” Yun Ruoyan called out. “Xun Moyan, let’s go home. Father, Grandfather, and Grandmother are all waiting for us.”
“Alright, Mother!” Xun Moyan jumped toward Yun Ruoyan, then tugged at her hand. “Father told me that you’re bad with directions, Mother, so I have to make sure you don’t get lost.”
Suddenly, his feet shone with sword aura—the same blue-green aura as Li Mo’s sword.
When he saw Yun Ruoyan staring at the aura, he said proudly, “Father gave it to me! He told me that, as long as I was able to learn swordflight within three days, he’d give me his sword as a present. I didn’t even need all three days to learn it! Mother, aren’t I smart?”
“Of course! Our Moyan will be the best at whatever he does,” Yun Ruoyan praised.