Ch 26 He is also a beast, he is greedy for pleasure, eating the essence and coming back for more

Xie Fengzhen did not stay long, he said a few words to confirm that Xie Chaoling was safe and sound, then soon left.
But before leaving, he asked Xie Chaoling one last question: “Crown Prince, you don’t want to go back now, is there truly no selfish explanation at all?”

Xie Chaoling smiled gently: “Royal Uncle, what selfishness can I have?

“If Chaoyuan truly isn’t His Majesty’s child and is even Xirong’s spy…”

“When he becomes useless, I will deal with him.” Xie Chaoling said.

Xie Fengzhen stared at his calm and smiling eyes for a moment, then didn’t ask any more questions.
He reminded him to “be careful”, put on his cloak again, and left quickly.

Lu Fu came back and whispered what happened just now: “Slave has been picking flowers in the garden, and then hid under the rockery, no one noticed anything wrong.” 

Although there were not many maidservants at King Ke’s mansion, but the appearance of them were all similar.
Thus, it didn’t matter if it was Lu Fu or someone else, Xie Fengzhen could enter and exit this Xile Tang smoothly.

Xie Chaoling nodded: “You did a good job.”

In Shouan Palace, Xie Chaoyuan was having lunch with the Empress Dowager.

Zhao Wanniang was still there, sitting beside the empress dowager with her head bowed and eating in silence.
Since Xie Chaoyuan came in, she didn’t dare to look at him.
Empress Dowager Zhao had obvious intentions.
As if she was afraid of their embarrassment, besides Xie Chaoyuan, she also called a few young princes and princesses to accompany her.
Xie Chaoyuan greeted her then sat down to dine, not taking the initiative to speak.
Fortunately, the few children chattered away so there was no awkward silence.

The Empress Dowager was very dissatisfied with Xie Chaoyuan’s ignorant attitude, but she was patient and didn’t show it.
She said with a smile that Xie Chaoyuan usually liked to play polo and throwing pots and that Zhao Wanniang also liked it, then asked Xie Chaoyuan to take Zhao Wanniang to play together in the future.

Xie Chaoyuan raised his eyelids and glanced at Zhao Wanniang, who kept her head down, looking nervous.
He asked the Empress Dowager with a half-smile, “Grandmother, this is not good, men and women are different cannot be so close.
Wouldn’t it be bad for Lady Zhao’s reputation to play together?” 

Without waiting for the Empress Dowager to speak, he said again: “Perhaps the meaning of what grandma is saying is that she wants to make me and lady Zhao a pair?”

Even Empress Dowager Zhao didn’t expect Xie Chaoyuan to ask so directly.
Zhao Wanniang bit her lips and squeezed the chopsticks in her hand tightly.

The Empress Dowager smiled stiffly: “You are not young anymore, you should marry a wife sooner.
Wanniang is about the same age as you, and has similar interests, so she is a good match.
Since you asked this question, it seems that you are interested in Wanniang, and your grandmother will like to match you two up.” 

Xie Chaoyuan lowered his voice: “Grandmother is worrying too much, I have no intentions towards Lady Zhao.”

Now not only did Empress Dowager Zhao’s face darken, but Zhao Wanniang was even worse, she was mercilessly rejected in public.
If it was someone with a slightly thinner face, one would be afraid that they would have lost their face completely right now.

She had envied the demeanor of His Highness King Ke before, and secretly had affection for Xie Chaoyuan, but last time she was warned by Xie Chaoyuan; especially when Xie Chaoyuan’s black eyes stared at her with no warmth when he spoke, it made her timid and retreat.
However, the Empress Dowager Zhao had already made up her mind, so how can she let her say anything?

Xie Chaoyuan didn’t seem to realize that he said something very offensive, his eyes fell on Xie Chaoyi who was burying his head in eating, and he said with a smile: “Grandmother, why don’t you consider Seventh Brother.
Seventh Brother and Lady Zhao are cousins, putting them together, wouldn’t they become even more intimate.”

Xie Chaoyi choked on a mouthful of soup, and after coughing earth-shatteringly, he quickly waved his hands: “Sixth Brother, stop kidding, I’m only twelve years old, how can I marry my cousin.”

It’s not impossible, this Zhao Wanniang was only fifteen years old.
Female older by three, the gold will rotate*, it’s actually just right!

* one meaning is that two people who are three years older are suitable for marriage, which is a kind of auspiciousness

** another meaning = female spouse is three years older than the male spouse.
The detailed interpretation is that when an old man is looking for a wife for his child, he always finds a woman who is three years older than him, because such a woman is mature and stable

Xie Chaoyuan smiled: “Oh, Seventh Brother also refuses to marry, so just pretend I didn’t say it.”

When he said it, it was as if Zhao Wanniang couldn’t get married and they insisted on giving them to any of their brothers.

Zhao Wanniang couldn’t hold it in any longer.
She put down her chopsticks, covered her face and sobbed softly.

Empress Dowager Zhao turned livid: “That’s enough, don’t be full of nonsense.” 

Xie Chaoyuan cupped his hands and apologized to Zhao Wanniang: “Lady Zhao, please don’t be angry, this king is outspoken, and I didn’t mean to offend.”

Zhao Wanniang was a treasured daughter, so how could she have ever suffered this grievance, even the Empress Dowager couldn’t help, so she got up and ran away crying.

When Xie Chaoyuan returned to the palace, it was Shen Shi.

“His Royal Highness King Ding went to rest after lunch, and never came out again.
Two quarters of an hour ago, His Royal Highness saw that you hadn’t come back, so he left a message saying he will go back first, and he had already left.
Langjun has been in Xile Tang, nothing unusual.”

After listening to the subordinate’s report, Xie Chaoyuan went straight to look for Xie Chaoling.

Xie Chaoling was absent-minded, still playing with the comb.
Xie Fengzhen’s words “Do you have any selfish intentions” was in his ears.

He actually did.

Although he was not free in King Ke’s mansion, and that little b*stard Xie Chaoyuan was too domineering, at least here he didn’t have to hide his true nature, he didn’t have to restrain himself every day, not daring to make any mistakes, and he didn’t have to imitate the former prince in every word and deed in order to cater to the emperor.
Even if he slept until he woke up at noon every day, there would be no officials pointing at his nose and scolding him, there would be no Tutors of the East Palace giving orders.

He really didn’t want to go back yet.

The comb suddenly fell into the hands of another person, and Xie Chaoling regained consciousness.
Xie Chaoyuan was standing in front of him, looking at him with a low-key smile: “Is Lin Lang in a daze? Is this comb so fun? How about giving it to me?”

Xie Chaoling twisted and raised his eyebrows and reached out to snatch it back: “No.”

He put the comb aside and looked up at Xie Chaoyuan: “Your Highness has been called into the palace by the Empress Dowager again?”

“Ah,” Xie Chaoyuan said casually, “She wants to marry me off.”

Xie Chaoling was startled: “Is Your Highness getting married?” 

Xie Chaoyuan said with a smile: “I refused, is Lin Lang disappointed?”

Xie Chaoling: “…”

“Can you refuse the Empress Dowager’s marriage proposal? Who does she want to appoint to you?”

Xie Chaoyuan said contemptuously: “Who else can it be, her grandniece.” 

Xie Chaoling understood the Empress Dowager Zhao’s intent after a while, but she was picking the wrong person.
Someone like Xie Chaoyuan, how can he be easy to handle, one mistake and they would be bitten by him.

But seeing Xie Chaoyuan’s appearance, it was clear that he had made up his mind not to marry.
Xie Chaoling asked him: “If the Empress Dowager insists on marrying a girl from her own family to you, does Your Highness really intend to resist the order?”

Xie Chaoyuan stared at Xie Chaoling’s eyes and calmly said: “I have given her a chance, if she must marry into King Ke’s mansion, she will be seeking her own death.”

“The little lady should also be involuntary, she can’t disobey the Empress Dowager’s will.”

“What does it have to do with this king?” Xie Chaoyuan asked in a deep voice.

Xie Chaoling shut his mouth, forget it.

If Empress Dowager Zhao really forced a person into King Ke’s mansion, Xie Chaoyuan’s temperament would definitely kill the person…he should think of a way to help Xie Chaoyuan refuse the marriage.

Xie Chaoyuan changed the subject and stopped talking about this: “Can’t you give me the comb?”

“No.” Xie Chaoling said seriously.

Xie Chaoyuan looked at him.
Xie Chaoling avoided his gaze, and after a while, Xie Chaoyuan reached out to caress his cheek: “Linlang is so stingy, if you don’t want to give it, then don’t give it.”

Xie Chaoling ignored him, and they lived in peace after that.
He felt lazy all over and said he wanted to take a bath.

Xie Chaoyuan nodded, and accompanied him to the bathroom.

Xie Chaoling sat in the water, Xie Chaoyuan knelt down behind him, helping him comb his long hair.
He scooped up hot water and poured it on his shoulders.

Rubbing his calloused fingertips between his shoulders and neck, Xie Chaoling closed his eyes and did not move.
Since he and Xie Chaoyuan were already like this, it seemed unnecessary and wasteful to refuse Xie Chaoyuan’s ambiguous intimacy.


Xie Chaoyuan’s voice pressed against his ears.
Xie Chaoling responded casually, and paused for a moment.
Xie Chaoyuan didn’t say anything, just reminded him: “It’s cold, don’t soak for too long, get up when you’re done.”

Xie Chaoling looked back at him.
There was something vaguely hidden in Xie Chaoyuan’s eyes, but he didn’t want to get to the bottom of it.

Xie Chaoyuan handed over the cloth towel, Xie Chaoling took it, and stood up calmly.

After returning to the room, Xie Chaoyuan sat under the lamp to read a book.
Xie Chaoling squeezed a cloth towel in his hand to wipe the slightly wet ends of his hair, and looked sideways at him from time to time.

Xie Chaoyuan lowered his eyebrows, and the palace lantern reflected the light and shadow on the lower half of his face, outlining the smooth curve of his jaw.

When Xie Chaoling came back to his senses, he had stared at him for a long time, thinking that this little b*stard was indeed the best-looking among their brothers.
If he really wasn’t the son of the emperor, would it be surprising?

Xie Chaoyuan raised his eyes.

Suddenly meeting his bewildering black eyes, Xie Chaoling, who was caught peeking at someone, was a little embarrassed, and turned away with a sneer.

Xie Chaoyuan put down his book and got up, took the cloth towel from Xie Chaoling, helped him dry the ends of his hair, then picked up his comb, and smoothed his hair carefully from top to bottom.

Xie Chaoling stared at his own face in the mirror for a moment, then raised his eyes to look at Xie Chaoyuan behind him in the mirror.

“I can comb it myself.”

Xie Chaoyuan didn’t respond, and his hands didn’t stop.

“Your Highness…”

Xie Chaoyuan bent down, leaned close to Xie Chaoling, tucked his long hair behind his ears, looked into his eyes in the mirror, and smiled softly: “My older brother was born better looking than me.”

Xie Chaoling’s eyes paused for a while.

Xie Chaoyuan’s breath was close to his ears when he spoke, and the phrase “older brother” was repeated over and over again, this man clearly did it on purpose.

Xie Chaoling turned to look at him: “What’s good about it?”

“Eyes, nose, mouth, everything is good.”

“Your Highness, this is talking nonsense.”

Xie Chaoyuan tilted his head, touched his face lightly with his lips, and insisted: “No, what I said is true.”

Xie Chaoling was beautiful, only he didn’t know it.

Xie Chaoling’s heart moved slightly, and he asked him: “Why does Your Highness like me? Is it because I was born good looking?”

“If you like it, you like it.” Xie Chaoyuan lowered his voice.

“There must be a reason.”

Xie Chaoyuan still stared at him in the mirror: “One day, if Linlang likes someone, he will naturally understand.”

Xie Chaoling suddenly felt some inexplicable emotions.
This person would ask whether he can like him, but now he only says that one day he will understand if he likes someone.

So he didn’t know what to say.

“Linlang.” Xie Chaoyuan called his name again.

Linlang, Linglang*, Xie Chaoling only today suddenly figured out the meaning of the name.

* cold lord -> refers to how he treats him coldlys

When Xie Chaoyuan hugged him, Xie Chaoling did not refuse, and put his arms around his neck.

He wished he could cut this man into pieces and be seduced by him.

His selfishness was far more than that.

Xie Chaoling thought he was also a beast, greedy for pleasure, eating the essence and coming back for more.

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