T/N: Posting an extra chapter to greatly appreciate Laura, K, and Songtham, for showing support by giving me coffee donations! ~ (ᵒ̴̶̷̤́◞౪◟ ᵒ̴̶̷̤̀ ). I also would like to apologize for the previous chapters. I wasn’t able to include an ending paragraph that was supposed to be in chapter 61. I included it in the beginning of chapter 62 (thanks to matryoshka~).
Translated by: Tinker
Song Luan’s sleeping habit seemed to have improved. The next day when she woke up, she found that her whole body was wrapped around him.
Zhao Nanyu was still not awake, so she gently took back her legs and feet, slowly retreating from his arms.
Song Luan’s eyes focused on the man in front of her. The corner of his eyes had a tint of blue and black, as if he hadn’t had a good sleep for a long time. She stretched out her fingers and stroke his eyebrows and eyes, and it gradually fell on his thin lips.
His eyelashes are long and curly, his nose, eyes and mouth are delicate. His face is a kind of morbid white.
His collar was slightly open and his collarbone was visibly seen.
It was still dark outside the window, and only a faint light could be seen in the distance.
Song Luan was just about to take her hand back, when the man suddenly opened his eyes and held her fingers. His dim eyes gradually became clear, and his deep and magnetic voice flowed into her ears. “Why did you wake up so early? Did you have a nightmare?”
Song Luan took her fingers back, looked at him, and shook her head, “No.”
Zhao Nanyu got up. Even though the room was dark, he didn’t put on the light. After putting on his clothes, he turned to her and said, “It’s still early. You can sleep more.”
Song Luan’s eyes did not move away from him. He was a lot thinner than before, and his long clothes looked a little empty on his body. Looking at his back, she suddenly said, “Are you going to the court?”
“Not yet.” Zhao Nanyu explained to her in a low voice, “But I’ll be back soon after I go out to work.”
Song Luan got up slowly from the bed. She licked her mouth and explained to Zhao Nanyu, “I’m hungry. I’ll get up and have breakfast before I go to sleep. “
Zhao Nanyu pressed her shoulder. “Okay, I’ll tell the maidservants to prepare breakfast.”
Song Luan looked down, and her long black hair covered half of her face. He couldn’t see the expression on her face.
By the time she got dressed and washed, the sun was already shining.
Zhao Nanyu filled a bowl of millet porridge for her and pushed it to her, “Have a taste.”
Song Luan took a sip and almost threw out the food. Her eyebrows wrinkled tightly, as she said, “It tastes so bad.”
It’s very salty and had a burnt smell.
Zhao Nanyu’s eyes darkened and took the millet porridge in her hand to his side, “Then don’t eat this.”
Grandma Lin coughed twice, but she couldn’t say anything when the young master was here. The young master personally went to the kitchen this morning. She didn’t know if it was on a whim.
His first time cooking porridge was not good.
Naturally, Song Luan didn’t know about it.
Zhao Nanyu had no appetite these days. Seeing that he had eaten only a little bit, she placed down her chopsticks.
Song Luan was supposed to pretend that she didn’t see anything. However, she was too soft hearted, and couldn’t resist saying, “Eat more.”
His body was becoming thinner. It looked so unfamiliar and strange that it made her distressed.
After Zhao Nanyu heard her, he ate an extra bowl of rice.
Later, old lady Zhao sent two maidservants who were close to her. The two girls were very young, around 15 or 16 years old, a perfect age to marry.
It was said that the maidservants belittled their identity. They were beautiful as flowers, and had a good figure. They all showed their perfect demeanor with a smile.
The old lady knew her grandson. Zhao Nanyu looked good in talking, but he didn’t acutally obey the discipline. If she took two concubines directly for him, he would not accept it. He wouldn’t even touch those concubines, and would send them back to her fully intact.
So the old lady planned to take these girls as Song Luan’s maidservants. Song Luan was also fragile, delicate, and sickly, while Zhao Nanyu was very energetic. How could she bear it?
After seeing the beautiful maidservants around Song Luan as time goes by, he wouldn’t help but yearn for them.
The two maids, Chunyu and Donghui, were named by the old lady herself. They were brought up as maids in Zhao’s family since childhood. They were knowledgeable, reasonable, clever, and sensible. The most important thing was that they had a clean family background, and they treat people wholeheartedly.
Obedient girls were those who please their elders. Song Luan’s persistence to disobey and contradict elders irritated people around her.
Song Luan held her head, and looked at the graceful Chunyu and Donghui on her spare time. This made the two girls upset.
When they served in the old lady’s yard, they had heard of the young lady’s prestige, and that she often quarreled with the old lady. Therefore, even if the young master was bright and good-looking, they wouldn’t dare to rejoice in their hearts, for fear that they would be caught and scolded by the young lady.
In the past six months, they saw that Song Luan’s temper had restrained, so they dared to come by her side and serve her.
Young master, that was as gentle as the clear wind and shining moon, had an excellent appearance. No one would not be moved. If their body could be given to this young master, what was it to take some risks?
Song Luan coughed twice and said in a cold voice, “Since you have chosen to serve me, you will abide by my rules from now on.”
They nodded, “Yes.”
Song Luan didn’t want to talk to them anymore, so she waved her hand and said, “Okay, you go out first.”
When they left the room, grandma Lin came up to remind her, “Madam, you better guard against them. I see that they did not come with good motives.”
Although they were not as beautiful as Song Luan, they were far better than ordinary girls.
The old lady’s mind was clear, even if it was to open branches and leaves as soon as possible through a concubines room. Grandma Lin felt that the old lady was determined because she was dissatisfied with Song Luan. She wanted to take advantage of this opportunity to fill the young master’s room.
She shook her head. Others could not see clearly, but she could see that the young master’s feelings for Song Luan was very deep. When she slept for a few days, he couldn’t help but guard by her bedside.
While Song Luan was unconscious, the young master had sung a soft tune in her ear, while gently wiping her body with medicine. The young master never borrowed other people’s hands to watch over Song Luan.
Song Luan laughed, “I know.”
Then she looked at grandma Lin and asked curiously, “Is Zhao Nanyu really so popular?”
Why do little girls like to come up to him? even Song Yu wanted to die for him.
Grandma Lin hesitated and didn’t know how to reply.
In those days, if the young master didn’t marry her, he would still not have to worry about his marriage. Many of the nobles in the Marquis came to Zhao Nanyu’s residence. They didn’t despised his origin.
“The young master is good-looking and good-natured, so naturally he will be liked.”
Song Luan did not agree with this. Zhao Nanyu’s temper is not good! He had extreme jealousy, hatred, and anger.
But thinking about it carefully, he treated her well on so many days, but his extreme paranoia made her afraid.
Indeed, in this world, Song Luan had never seen a man as better looking as Zhao Nanyu. His facial features seemed to have been carefully carved–delicate and elegant, and his temperament was excellent.
For most of the month, it snowed in the capital. Little Zhao hadn’t seen Song Luan for many days. Only after her body was better, could the child be allowed to visit her mother.
After the year passed, little Zhao was already five years old.
During this period of time, Song Luan’s body was taken care of by third lady Zhao.
The little kid was forced to put on red coat that he didn’t like very much. He was tender and white, but his face was serious.
She was very joyful to see little Zhao in red. Song Luan chuckled and pinched his face. “Little Zhao is really brilliant.”
In this world, only she and Zhao Nanyu had the honor to pinch little Zhao’s cheek. Other people could not carelessly touch.
Little Zhao also knew that his younger brother or sister was gone. His father said that he was not allowed to mention it in front of his mother. He closed his mouth and did not even ask.
He opened his hand, and there was a pink camellia. “Here you are, mother.”
He picked it specially for his mother.
Song Luan took the flower and praised him happily, “Oh, how beautiful. I like it very much.”
“I’ll give you some more next time.”
She was moved and amused. Song Luan touched his head. “You don’t need to pick it. The flowers won’t live long after you pick it.”
“Okay.” Little Zhao was really obedient. Since his mother said so, then he would naturally follow. After a bit of silence, he added in a low voice, “Then I won’t pick any more.”
Such beautiful flowers should live long.
This time, little Zhao suddenly talked more in front of her. He stayed obediently in her arms and slowly said, “I saw my uncle during the New Year.”
On the first day of the new year, he went to the Song family to pay New Year’s greetings and met his grandmother and uncle.
He stayed for three or four days.
Little Zhao used to hate going to the Song family. No one talked to him or played with him, and his mother would keep him in the house.
Since his mother didn’t shut him down, he felt that his uncle and grandmother also liked him very much.
“Is it? Is it fun there?” Song Luan asked him.
He thought about it and nodded, “Mm-hmm.”
Although he liked to be quiet and alone, but the children over there were willing to talk to him.
Song Luan suddenly had some regrets. She didn’t return to her mother’s home during the Spring Festival. Aunt Lin must have missed her very much, and probably hated Zhao Nanyu more.
Aunt Lin had been dissatisfied with Zhao Nanyu. This time she had a miscarriage, which was enough for Aunt Lin to gnash her teeth with hatred, and wanted to tear him to pieces.
Song Luan knew that Zhao Nanyu was guilty. Since he didn’t do it on purpose, her resentment seemed so unreasonable.
However, Song Luan was really afraid of that kind of intense and long pain. The pain in her body was tolerable, but her heart now felt painful and uncomfortable.
She tried very hard not to blame him.
Little Zhao looked up at his mother, and suddenly fell silent. His little hand gently tugged at the corner of her dress.
He took out a red and white envelope from her pocket and put it in her hand as if he was flattering her, “Mother, this is the red envelope given to me by my uncle and grandmother.”
“Then you keep it.”
He wanted to give all his good things to his mother.
Song Luan couldn’t laugh or cry. Although she liked money, she was also embarrassed to take her baby’s lucky money.
She said, “You can keep it yourself. By the way, your mother hasn’t given you a red envelope yet! Wait, your mother will give you a big red envelope tonight, okay?”
Little Zhao thought that gold and silver were not important to him, and he could not use it. Seeing his mother liked it, he wanted to give them to her.
He shook his head. “I don’t want it. My uncle and grandmother gave me a lot of things.”
Song Luan knew her mother and brother, and she always put gold in her hand every time they met. They were very generous.
Little Zhao stubbornly put all the money he received into her hand, and looked at her expectantly with a pair of big eyes, afraid that she would not want it.
Song Luan finally compromised and locked his lucky money in a small drawer. She said with a smile, “When you grow up, this money will be used to marry your wife!”
Although she didn’t know if it was enough.
Little Zhao was too young to understand the words of marrying a wife, so he just nodded stupidly, “Okay.”
Song Luan flicked his forehead and was amused by the child’s rare stupidity.
Although little Zhao said he would not ask for her red envelope, Song Luan still wanted to prepare one for him that night. As a mother, she couldn’t do nothing to prepare her children during the Spring Festival.
She called grandma Lin into the room and asked, “Is there anything little Zhao like in his daily life?”
Grandma Lin took care of little Zhao since he was born. She knew his hobby better than Song Luan.
She replied, “It seems that he doesn’t like anything, other than reading books.”
Song Luan was a little embarrassed and asked, “If I give him a chessboard, do you think he will like it?”
Grandma Lin replied truthfully, “As long as it is given by madam, he will like it.”
Song Luan frowned and said, “No, I’ll think about it again.”
After thinking about it for a long time, Song Luan had an idea. Little Zhao would go to school after the new year. Although she was not good at sewing, she could still sew a small schoolbag.
Song Luan immediately told grandma Lin to prepare the needle and thread. She buried herself in sewing the whole afternoon before barely making a decent little schoolbag.
In the evening, Zhao Nanyu asked the servants to send a message that he would return late.
Song Luan didn’t wait for him, and had dinner with little Zhao. Before long, grandma Lin brought in the medicine she used to drink.
Song Luan was used to the bitter taste of the medicine, so she could directly drink it without frowning. As Song Luan turned around, she saw little Zhao with red eyes, and an aggrieved face while looking at her.
She was surprised. “What’s the matter?”
He wiped the water out of the corner of his eyes and said in a stuffy voice, “I’m okay, mother.”
He just remembered the basin of blood coming out of his mother’s residence that day. The smell of medicine reminded him of the scene.
Song Luan knew that he was distressed, so she took out the small schoolbag she made in the afternoon, and handed it to little Zhao together with a red envelope. “Have a look, do you like it?!”
He squeezed the strap of his schoolbag. It was just right. His books could fit into this bag. he wanted to use in school.
His appearance gradually changed, and he laughed again, as he nodded heavily, “Yes.”
When Song Luan saw him happy, she was in a better mood.
Well, her baby was still her sweetheart!
Song Luan whispered to little Zhao, coaxing him to sleep.
Zhao Nanyu still did not return, so grandma Lin asked her whether to wait for him to come back?
She shook her head. “No. I won’t wait.”
Grandma Lin retreated from the room. Song Luan put out the paper lamp and closed her eyes. After half a column of incense, she was still awake. After a long time, Song Luan heard something coming from the door.
Zhao Nanyu, wrapped in cold air, pushed the door open. Someone carried hot water for him from outside. The girl pinched her voice and whispered, “Young master, I will wait for you to change your clothes, so you can go and take a bath.”
This was the voice of Donghui.
Song Luan sat up from the bed, her eyebrows lifted, these two young animals that old lady Zhao sent really worked fast! On the first day that Zhao Nanyu arrived, they hurriedly came to his side.
Zhao Nanyu’s face was like frost, and his voice was as cold as a thousand years ice. “Roll.”
Donghui bit her lip, but she didn’t give up. She didn’t want to give up such a good chance, although it’s very rare for young master to speak loudly, and also for him to say roll to people.
She was red eyed and looked like a willow. “Let me serve you.”
Zhao Nanyu, white and frightening, glanced coldly and said angrily, “Grandma Lin, take her out from me. Those who do not obey the rules of the master will be killed directly.”
Grandma Lin’s heart leaped suddenly, but she didn’t expect that Zhao Nanyu would be so ruthless on the first day. He even wanted to kill her directly.
Donghui was so scared that she knelt down and begged for mercy. “Forgive me, master.”
Zhao Nanyu waved his hand, “Take her out.”
Her life was spared. She was not killed.
Song Luan eyebrow gradually unfolded as she listened. Since she couldn’t sleep, she put on her shoes, and got out. She wanted to spectate this joke.
Zhao Nanyu was already sitting in the bath bucket behind the screen. His clothes were hanging high on it. Song Luan twisted her eyebrows. She did not know if it was her own illusion, but she could smell the scent of blood.
As soon as she reached the screen, the man inside said sharply, “Get out.”
Song Luan raised her eyebrows and poked out her head. “Oh, I’ll roll.”
Zhao Nanyu didn’t expect it would be her. So late, he thought she would have gone to bed. As soon as he returned to the yard, grandma Lin told him that Song Luan didn’t wait for him, and went to bed on her own.
Zhao Nanyu was stunned for a moment, and explained in an unnatural tone, “I don’t know that it’s you.”
How could he be willing to let her go?
Song Luan was about to leave, but she was grabbed by her wrist behind her back. She fell into the bath tub in confusion, and the warm water wet her cheek.
She wiped the water in front of her eyes and opened her mouth to speak, but was frightened by the shocking scar on his chest.
Zhao Nanyu was injured. It seemed that he was stabbed by someone.
Song Luan moved her lips and said, “You…are you okay?”
Zhao Nanyu put the palm of her hand on the wound on his chest and pressed it hard. “It’s a little painful.”
It would be strange that such a cruel self-mutilation wouldn’t hurt!
Song Luan gave him an angry look, and tried to climb out of the tub.
However, even though he was hurt, he still had great strength. He immediately took her back to his arms, leaned wearily against her, and whispered, “Why didn’t you sleep? Are you waiting for me?”
After a little silence, Zhao Nanyu gently stroke her back and said, “I can’t sleep.”
He couldn’t sleep these days. All of his dreams were pictures of her covered in blood. He couldn’t make a noise in his dreams every time.
Song Luan didn’t say anything or resist, so he hugged her tighter.
He coughed twice, and whispered hoarsely, “Don’t be afraid. I’ll sing you a lullaby later.”
T/N: ZN has the habit of singing lullabies to Song Luan. Maybe it’s because Song Luan always had nightmares?