Mo Flower: Chapter 1

Title: The Mo Flower

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Author: Heibai Jian Yao

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Genre: ancient, 1×1, HE

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Converter: QT & raw

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Translator: mnemea

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Editor/Beta: Faithless Lady (Many thanks for edit the story)

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Disclaimer: I own nothing; this is for yaoi fan with no finance gain.

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Prologue

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If you visited the New Mountains (Jiuxianshai), travellers would hear an old folk’s song about “The Mo Flower.”  They said that in every spring Lady Wu Yue visits her family home in Lin An. The King always sent a letter to his wife saying only one sentence. “When Mo Flowers blossom, you can slowly come back.”—Su ”  quote taken from The Mo Flowers.”

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*Verse explanation: when Mo flowers bloom along the field, you can look leisurely at them so there’s no need to hurry back- opposite meaning to his true feelings if he would simply say “I miss you.”*

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* “Lady* is a title used for wives of the King besides the Queen below the rank of the Queen*

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Chapter 1

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In the eighteenth generation of Da Shao’s dynasty, the Emperor has been ruling with righteousness for twelve years.

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In the Palace Court hall, a group of high ranking officials has a report of indictment charges for bribery against another official. They are still waiting for the final verdict from the Emperor who sat on the throne. Soon after, another group walked out of their stations and asked  for the pardon of the said official. They are pleading for his crimes to be absolved because the man has spent his entire life working for the better of the country. Even if he has no merit to credit him, still his efforts should be counted. What he had done in a moment of weakness, so they requested for the Emperor to have mercy and so on…

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In short, all of this happened because of the obese official. He is kneeling on the ground while the Ministers are debating whether to simply kick him or fry him in an oil pan.

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Standing at the last row, Li Qing’s head could not help but nod every time to everyone’s comment. He seems to agree to everyone, though no one really knows which of the party he was in favour.  He is nodding to ensure himself for any foolproof and in a way made him no commitment to anyone.

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“Your Majesty, I’ m being framed by the villain” said the fat old man tearfully to plead his innocence.

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The young Emperor quietly listened to each party’s pleading, the corner of his  lips raised and unhurriedly, started to speak, “Oh, which villain dares to provide conclusive evidence, fabricated charges and framed you? Let me hear the name and I will help your case.”

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The Emperor’s word has stopped his furiously noisy officials. Silence can only be heard in the halls. Not knowing His Majesty’s temper, may result to anyone being done as an official.

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Li Qing was still nodding, but more frequently to the point that his head is closely dropping to the ground.

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The Emperor’s eyes quickly swept over his courtiers below, and stopped on top of Li Qing’s head.

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“Li Qing.” The Emperor called.

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Li Qing was still nodding, but did not reply.

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The closest official to Li Qing was De Gang Bai, who hastily pulling his top elbow, but there was still no sign of response, De Gang Bai was simply anxious that he rolled his eyes.

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This guy really have little nerves to just dozed off here.’

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“Rites Assistant Minister Li Qing”, the Emperor patiently called him, his tone was gentle not showing his anger.

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The officials sweats coldly, their faces were  blackening with one line of thought. “Where does Li Qing gets his courage, daring to fall asleep inside the Court Hall so often?” Clearly he doesn’t value his life.

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Unfortunately, Li Qing was there for the last six years. The Emperor doesn’t find any reason to take his life or dismiss him from his duties. His Majesty was the one who appointed him an idle position neither promoting nor demoting him.

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The Emperor slightly give a wink to his personal servant beside him. Wei Xiao Miao immediately walked down the hall to Li Qing and said, “Lord Li, His Majesty summons you.”

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De Gang Bai had elbowed him once more with more force, causing him to wobble, Wei Xiao Miao helped to steady him.

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Li Qing was belated looked up, blinked his misty eyes that seems not getting enough sleep, his eyes did not catch a glimpse of the emperor who was looking down at him.

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‘What?’
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“Li Qing” the Emperor then called out again.

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Li Qing stood, respectfully replied: “I’m here, Sire.”

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“What do you think?”

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‘What is it that am I supposed to think?’, Li Qing blinked in confusion and looked ahead at the other officials which stood  at the middle of the Court Hall. He ambiguously replied, “As discussed Your Majesty Lord Huang had justified the case, Lord Wei Chen’s words are also agreeable, while Lord Chen…..”

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In the end, the fat official kneeling down starts to sweat coldly as well.

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“What way?” , the Emperor’s faint smile become curvier.

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The Officials thought that the Emperor was obviously intimidating Li Qing and cannot help gloating inside. They guessed that if the Emperor did not spare him again, then the Official would take his hat and His Majesty will order him to be dragged outside, give a few thrashes then be demoted.

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“Li Qing, the Emperor asked for your Excellency’s opinion on the bribery charges of buying official rank and discrimination against the citizens by Lord Chen.” Wei Xiao Miao reminded him and also taken the initiative to explain the Emperor’s question again.

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Li Qing understood the situation whilst he slept in the hall, hastily resorted to the old trick “sit on the fence” and rebutted: “Your Majesty, the ancient quote, ‘If one does not encounter the situation before, then one should disregard one’s judgement.’ Therefore I am afraid to dare comment on Lord Chen’s case.”

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‘What he has said made no difference, he just uttered nonsense!”
The officials all felt the same.

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The Emperor was neither angry nor continued to intimidate him. He just smiled, looked away and returned with the other ministers to continue the meeting. Therefore, the officials thought that His Majesty must simply laugh at Li Qing and does not value his opinion.

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Li Qing did not seemed to be bothered by the situation and resumed sleeping which he perfected while standing but he decreased the number of his nod.

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When describing Li Qing, he seems plain with average intelligence. He does not have many vices or virtues and his rank could be described as moderate.

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Ironically, even though he is an average person, one cannot be promoted to any official rank. However, six years ago, he had blocked a sword meant for the Emperor and saved him. Thus, he was promoted from the fifth level of Service Ministry to the third level official in Rites Ministry, that’s why he was able to enter the Court Hall for Stately Meeting.

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Although he was severely injured because of the stab wound which nearly took his life, it still did not explain his attitude. Usually, when one was given opportunity to enter the Main Court Hall, that person uses this chance to rise further in his career. He did not tried this path but instead made a habit of just sleeping and yawning. This of course set off many ambitious and young officials whose goal is to become  greater. They were jealous and with clenched teeth publicly scold him as a “gutter.”

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He did not care and ignored them, he just sighed: “So, why are you describing  a Court Official as a gutter? If the court is really a pit, then the Court Officials will be some sort of things inside it,”

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This statement spread out and caused many officials filled with anger. Thus they accused him of slandering the court and charged him ruining its reputation. Then they implored the Emperor to severely punish him.

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The Emperor thereby specially summoned him to his Royal Office for questioning, asked him if he indeed said “The court is latrines and that the court official are muckworms?”

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“Your Majesty, your servant dare not slander and mock the court officials, it is not I who said the court is a pit.” Li Qing face was blameless but neither showed expression of flattering.

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If one looked at his words being used literally, then his answer was indeed true.

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The Emperor did not mind, he just smiled and said, “Are you smart or stupid when you said it?”

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“Your Majesty is right and just.”Li Qing responded obediently with very sincere attitude and humility.

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“Alright”, the Emperor decided not to pursue the matter further and personally recorded in the memorandum that “the speaker has no intention but the listener was misintended.”

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These words were a cynical rebuff to those who had laid the charges and the what ‘so-called getting hold of evidence’ in “slander and ruining the court”, counts against them and further pursuance of the subject means for them to wear it. This kind of situation does not really resolve anything but concluded the saying “If the hat fits”.

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They were not able laid on one single hair of Li Qing since the incident and he continued to go on with his merry way, living his easy and pleasurable official life.

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Since the Da Shao’s dynasty rule for eighteen generations, the nation is prosperous with little trouble over domestic issues, and good defence against foreigners that cause no fear for external invasion. Issues such as natural disaster, forces of event outside of their control; a corruption charge for bribery and oppression of the citizens caused by Official Chen was rare. Moreover, it’s not every day occurrence that a corrupt official kneels in the Court Hall. It’s a brand new topic for the people to discuss that the common routine report staged a court drama that’s why one cannot blame for Li Qing to be lost in Land of Morpheus.

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The advantage of standing at the end row has allowed him to take a nap; all he has to do was not to fall down (sitting position) to sleep.

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The main law of Da Shao for the Emperor was to oversee meetings everyday at the Court, this ensure the Officials from becoming lazy. Fortunately, each of the Emperors taken their responsibilities seriously with diligence and caring. Thus without exception had made Da Shao prosperous for many centuries which resulted for unshakable national power. Prosperous period means there was no need for heroes and as a result peaceful time had nurtured Li Qing to became unambitious official was not surprising.

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Logically this humble officer should not enter the Emperor’s eyesight. However, they were unsure when the Emperor started to occasionally summon Li Qing to invite, whenever there is a feast or hunt. The two rarely speak to each other, nor shown any intimate behaviour, and sometimes the Emperor almost ignore his presence, as if he doesn’t exist.

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Some sensitive officials were suspicious, others feel strange but could not find what was the exact problem. They did not understand why the emperor had this “spare” person beside him. Well if this person was from an old noble family or an elegant man like Scholar Lou Chu Yun, then there’s no need for an explanation. Li Qing was not from old noble family, at most his appearance could be described as fine placid, and compared to Lou Chu Yun(known as today “Pan An”) was far worse. Even Wei Xiao Miao was better looking than him.

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‘Not able to figure it out; yeah, still not able to figure out’

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The Sixth Duke, the most beloved brother of the Emperor was forthright to these officials unhesitatingly gullible question: “If one could able to read what are on the Emperor’s mind, then you might as well be the Emperor.”

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“Your subordinate is frightened”; “your subordinate is frightened.”

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Since then, the officials were not dare to made further speculation privately or otherwise on how the Emperor treated Li Qing. Anyway, from whatever point of views on Li Qing, he was harmless and unobstructed so there’s no need to worry.
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Let’s return to the present. Inside the court hall, from the perceptive Emperor’s sight of Li Qing, although he no longer saw him nodding his head. Still the anxious man sometimes frown, bite his under lip to prevent from yawning and sometimes quietly rubbed his waist and legs seems. It seems to giveaway that fact and might not stand up any longer.

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The Emperor decided to discuss the prevention of White River flood for another day, “Today we’ll stop here, the Royal Meeting ends.”

“Your servant, escort Your Majesty out.” The Emperor leaved precisely as the Courtiers echoes sound of custom for his exit.

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‘…. could finally relax.’ Li Qing cannot wait and walked out the hall, his thoughts was how quickly return to his office and sleeping there again.

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Only a few steps away when Wei Xiao Miao voiced was behind him: “Li Qing, please stay.”

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Li Qing frowned, really wants to pretend he did not hear and although he was unwilling to stop but still turned around, “Official Wei is there a problem?”
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“The emperor summoned you to His Royal Office.”

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“Now?”
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“Yes, please depart immediately, do not let His Majesty wait.”

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Li Qing face suffered gravely, he really want to say ‘Let me go to sleep first’,  but the Emperor had summoned him. He dare not delay his meeting, unless he was tired of living, so he followed Wei Xiao Miao towards the direction of the Royal Office.

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“Lord Wei, I really wanted to say thank you.” Li Qing offered his sincere thanks.

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“Lord Li, please call me Little Miao, do not called Lord, it will be the ruin of me.”

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“Lord Wei is the Manager of the Palace House, but also the Emperor’s closest personal Officer, I am only an assistant minister so asking me to address you by your name will be my ruin.”

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“Lord Li, you surely jesting me again.”

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“Really, Little Miao, do you know why the Emperor summoned me…?”

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“Lord Li would natural knew what to be expected.”

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“Ah! I do not understand what is possibly to expect.” Li Qing really felt gravely suffering as he quietly cried out, ‘I just want to sleep!’

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“Lord Li certainly knows the Emperor’s mind clearly than me.”

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“I do not want to know what he was thinking.” Li Qing mumbled the words in his mouth; the phrase cannot be blatantly said aloud.

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A moment later, they had arrived outside of the Royal Office.

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“Your Majesty, Official Li has come.” Wei Xiao Miao reported at the door.

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“Let him in.”

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“Official Li, please come inside.”

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Li Qing bowed lowly but did not kneel and strode towards the Imperial chair, “Your subordinate here sees you, Your Majesty.”

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After he entered the room, Wei Xiao Miao closed the door from the outside, leaving him alone with the emperor.

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“Come here, beside me.”
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Li Qing went to Song Yu side, eyes lowered respectfully.
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Song Yu looked at him carefully; eyes were softened a bit, his fingers brushed slightly over Li tired eyes. “I really tired you out last night.”

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Li Qing was startled, his eyes dashed back at the door and made sure it was closed for good. Only when determined everything was fine, he pouted and said: “Since Your Majesty knew your servant was tired, why did you singled me out in court?”
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“If I had not called you, your head certainly hit the ground, where do you think the court hall is for you fallen asleep like that?” Song Yu chided.
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“I was only taking a short nap, if you had not called, no one would have paid any attention at me.” Li Qing tone little snappish. Lack of sleep would made anyone to have a bad temper, especially when sleeping is his life’s passion, a night with only three hours of sleep indeed almost taken his life.

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Song Yu saw one of his rare revealing wayward look, smiled: “My bad, I could not help but notice you.”

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“ Your servant did nothing to warrant Your Majesty attention.”

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“Angry?”

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“Your servant did not dare.”

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“I see that you are.” Song Yu pulled him over and seated him over his lap, circled him inside the arms and softly coaxed him and said, “I did not know that tribute drug was powerful, do not get angry, we’ll not use it again.”

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The Emperor was persuasive; Li Qing could not be bothered to remain angry. Anyway, anger will only consume energy and he did not want to be more tired, so being lazy, he do not like the feeling of fatigue.

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Whenever they were together he always feel tired, not only physically tired but spiritual tired …… well concealment of their relationship is a tiring thing, but if he does not conceal it, it would be thousand times more troublesome.

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Although Li Qing loved being pampered, what he hate the most of all was being bothered by anything in life. Sometimes, Li Qing was depressed over these complex thoughts, ‘when the problem had began to tied him down?’ Nevertheless, normally he would not be troubled by anything for too long, because these would waste his memories making him feeling fatigued, thus it was best simply not to be contemplated.

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Whenever he could sit down he would never stand, whenever he could lie down he would never sit; so he is too detested of his good health, ‘why could I not be like those sickly patient?’ He may then be rightfully laying in bed for half a month or ten days at the very least and no one would nags at him. ‘When I feel like going to bed then I can and no one would fear why I am resting for too long.’

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Unfortunately, he had never been sick in his life, the only bad habit was his love of sleeping. Of course this vice was not a good reason to explain to others why he needs twice as much times rest than normal people do.

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In fact if he was alone in bed, he probably have eight to nine hours of sleeping, though not satisfying but reluctantly acceptable for his wealth being. But whenever he was  with Song Yu, he would be lucky just to get five hours, because most of the time……

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“Qing, your cries are like mellows, I liked it, if only you not able to maintain your sanity and cluttering aloud for me to listen, then I probably would not tried so hard on loosen up your body, and even drugged you last night.”  Song Yu was undisguised frivolous, eyes carefully were glinted.
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After heard these words, Li Qing thrown away any reverence for his King and angrily glared at him. “Moaning aloud is very tiring and the throat certainly will be numbed and uncomfortable. If you like to listen, why not do it yourself?”
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“I could never scream so nicely.” Song Yu smiles, mischievous and said “How could you not be ashamed when we discussed something like this.”
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“The things that should not be doing we had already done, what is there to be ashamed off.” Li Qing pouted, for his legs and lumbar were still sore, his private place…… he thought back on how absurd the Emperor had been last night, cannot help but lower his brows.

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Of course he did not dislike their love making, he was enjoying the sexual pleasure it had brought, but the after effect had always made him sleepy, tired and feeling unwell, he just need severely sleep in order to rest. However, he always insisted on attending the Court Meeting every day, even Song Yu was sometimes puzzled why he was so persistent. Obviously his heart is not on court matter and was much undisciplined person at the Court Hall, always doze unwilling and yet he had never absent at work.

Everyone have their own perseverance principles. This was Li Qing resolved.

There was a time when Song Yu had forced him in taken a rest and take a sick leave, Song Yu was surprised for such a mild passive person like Qing could shown off such temper. After the incident Song Yu permitted Li Qing to do as he please, pretended not to see him dozed off during the Court Meeting, even if he feels like ordered him to go back to bed.

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“Just do not made me too tired constantly is fine.” Li Qing once said.

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“I cannot control myself; I’ve always in need of you.” Song Yu replied.

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“Why am I so fascinated by you?” the young Emperor muttered to himself; not able to understand why either, what good point about this unremarkable man that had been driven him to points of distraction, and even fascinating. “It is your lips or your eyes? …”

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Song Yu’s fingers caressing Li Qing’s face, touching his lips, beautiful rounded lips like a soft small droplet, at first glance his slightly pouting lips for a man have added a subtle innocent cuteness. Two third of the lashes had covered his eyesight’s which already deeply clouds, plus his core being is nothing less than laid-back, constitute a form that is such a man called Li Qing.

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In other words, Song Yu could only subtle guessed of his ethereal dream.

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This man who loved to sleep seems put a part of his spirit in living inside his dream, not allowed other to see them.

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Song Yu memorised Li Qing, his thoughts were tried to search for something deeper inside the man, as if digging out the treasure that buried beneath; Li Qing could not help but yawn aloud, “If Your Majesty have no business with me then I’ll go back to sleep.”

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“Nothing that is important.”

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“I’m sleepy.” Li Qing blinks a few times, looked innocently, whenever he wanted to sleep he was unwittingly revealed an incredibly cute face and others would happily to let him off to see Morpheus.

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Song Yu’s back pounced like a burst of current electricity as he trembling, unable to restrain, he lifted Qing’s face to kiss him. On the contrary to other people act, when he saw Qing expression like this, he had an urge not let the man go to sleep, just pushed him down, enjoyed eating him up, if not finished then pack up for a take away, wanted him for his completely ownership……

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“Emperor, Administration Head Official Xu requested for an audience.” Wei Xiao Miao who guarded outside the door spoken, interrupted their sweet lingering kisses.

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“Go first and sit somewhere nearby.” Song Yu released Li Qing. “Permit to enter,” replied sternly and forbidding majestic of an Emperor.

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Li Qing obediently waited aside on the couch, he was too tired and sleepy. He barely sat nodding off at first, then fallen fast asleep on the long couch, regardless of everything and became  unconscious.

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Minister Xu entered the Royal Office and saw Li Qing, he only glanced and did not paid any further attention. Li Qing was often called to the Royal Office, especially after being caught asleep during Court Meetings. He thought the Emperor probably do not want him become so idle, that he deliberately made him a personal servant as his punishment. Today, not only he dared to be lazy off in Court Meeting but also here in the Royal Office, such as directly laying there and sleeping unhindered.

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Minister Xu was very displeased with Li Qing’s laziness. It was even more intolerable when he saw the man’s irreverence, looked sideways at him from time to time, and wondered whether to report to the Emperor for his reprimand.
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The chill of spring caused Li Qing to sneeze, he quietly shrink his body but did not awaken and continue in the land of Morpheus.

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The sound of sneeze had caught the Emperor’s glance.

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‘Emperor, did you see? You must look! This guy actually dares to be arrogant. Please teach him some manners now!’Minister Xu’s heart cried aloud to the Emperor.
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The Emperor stood up and went over to him.

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Xu Minister was ready to applaud it.

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However, it was unthinkable that the Emperor took the royal robe proffered by Wei Xiao Miao, covered it over Li Qing’s body, and asked Wei Xiao Miao to take the shoes and his official hat off for him. Then gently moved his body correctly positioning on the long couch, even placed a soft pillow behind his head so he slept more comfortably.

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The action was natural, it cannot be mistaken with pity but loving indulgence, like it has been done thousands of times.

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Minister Xu’s jaw dropped.

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The Emperor casually sat back and proceeds the case with Minister Xu, no longer looked at Li Qing, as if seemingly forgotten him again.

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Though Minister Xu was too shock by the event that he no longer able to concentrate, and finally it all click in suddenly, he realised what was weird between the Emperor and Li Qing in the end …

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This idle official and the Emperor attitudes were incompatible, infrequent showed of lukewarm and yet almost similar to the point of sympathise each other.

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He looked back carefully, ‘as if the Emperor deliberately ignored, but also seems deliberately having him around …… but when did it all was started, the Emperor and Li Qing in “good term”… ah?! Could it be at the Royal Feast where assassination event had taken place six years ago?’
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Minister Xu left the Royal Office but was still contemplating, he was curious to death, but it was the Emperor’s private matter consequently he could not inquire them.

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After he had gone, there were a few high ministers in succession for the Emperor audience, they saw Li Qing sleeping aside and his body was covered with a royal robe.

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Not only that, a minister happens to saw the Emperor help Li Qing tuck in the slipped gown, another minister then saw the Emperor took a handkerchief to wiped his drooling, such action was undoubtedly favoured.

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Some people stared; others were speechless, and everyone reactions were the same as Minister Xu not less terrified.

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After the shock, gossip quickly began to takes it turn, whatever seems like a glimpse of secret unintentionally between the Emperor and Rites Assistant minister, was singled out and itching to be retold to other people.

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It’s hard to blame the ministers for blazed garrulous, the Court Officials have many important responsibilities, but a little chat during the afternoon tea and away from busy working pressure was the best entertainment. However, they had no guts in daring to gossip about the Emperor openly, only telling it inside themselves, said “The Emperor is really a loving Emperor who loved his people as his children.”
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‘But to hold it in the heart is very sad ah!’
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There is nothing in the world that could be hidden forever; the thing that could not be disclosed had become known as the confidential information and secretly shares.

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At this time, Li Qing still in his intoxicated dreams and had no idea that he had become the biggest scandal in the kingdom, ‘congratulations, and congratulations.’(Of course not!)

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End Chapter 1

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Posted on November 9, 2013, in translated stories and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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