Love in Another Life: My Gentle Tyrant - lightnovelgate.com
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Hello ~ To clarify the part about their first and second lives:
Basically, Xuanji is the second (and final) life. Xuanji will not reincarnate.
In her first life (which is already over, and happened about a thousand years ago), she was Zisu, the 7th daughter of the Celestial Emperor. Zisu died and reincarnated as Zhu Qi (born in the 21st century), who time-travelled to Xi Liang (ancient China) and became Nian Xuanji.Chapter Eleven
Defying the Heavens.
His fingers, which had been pressed against her wrist, fell to his side.
Her pulse had broken.
Those pair of eyes were tightly shut, teardrops still glistening like crystals under the sunlight.
Shouldn't he be rejoicing?
But he wasn't happy, not at all.
At the instant where the execution axe had been raised, he had abruptly spoken.
Then, he had already made up his mind.
It was just - he did not wish to acknowledge it.
What did a wish without a time limit signify? If she never said what she wanted, she would never need to die. He was foolishly, obsessively in love to the extent of giving her the chance for forgiveness.
He laughed, a cold, hollow sound.
It turns out, even though she had betrayed him, he did not want her to die.
It turns out, he could not bear to.
In the end, he still could not bear to.
His heart felt like it was being ripped to shreds. Softly, he exhaled, yet that possessing anguish remained relentless, clawing at him.
Nian Xuanji, you cannot die.
You haven't fulfilled your wish.
His gaze fell on her skirts, dyed a vibrant red.
No - how could the wounds on her ankles seize her life?
His heart constricted, and he extended one hand to reach beneath her skirts, then withdrew. His palm was smeared with blood.
His eyes narrowed, expression darkening. Carefully, he carried her out of the carriage.***
No one had ever seen the Emperor in this state.
His hair, let loose from the crown, fluttered in the breeze; his eyes, red-rimmed, burned with anguish and ruthlessness.
After one glance, not one person dared to continue looking at him, be they the common folk lining the streets or the imperial guards encircling the grounds.
A heavy, desolate silence had blanketed the entire compound.
Long Zijin stared blankly at the woman within his brother's arms. Then he laughed, a broken, low sound. Turning towards Qingfeng, he spat, 'She is dead. Are you finally happy now?'
The colour drained out of Qingfeng's face. As he met Long Zijin's gaze, his lips twisted into a smile. His fingers trembled faintly.
Jingying covered her face with her hands and desperately moved to rush forward, yet Duan Yuhuan held her back, his grip tight and unrelenting.
'Your Majesty.' The Empress walked over, her hands reaching out to brush across Xuanji's body.
'Who allowed you to touch her.'
Those words, tonelessly spoken, was all the Emperor said, yet the Empress jerked backwards, her fingers falling from Xuanji's body as though burned. Eyes widening in disbelief, she stared at the man before her. For the first time in her life, she finally forgot the composure she should possess as the world's most dignified woman.
'Xu Xi.' The ghost of a smile appeared on Long Fei-li's lips.
Xu Xi's gaze fell; his stare fixed on the ground. He said, 'Your Majesty.'
There was a pause.
When Long Fei-li finally spoke, his words were articulated with cold precision, each syllable clear. 'Last night, I ordered you to give the Lengxiang pill to Consort Nian and you did not. Last night, I ordered you to summon a physician to stop her blood loss and you did not. Am I right?'
Xu Xi did not reply. His body curved and he fell to his knees on the ground.
'Lengxiang pill?' Long Zijin suddenly said. 'That is Xian Yantai's prohibited resurrection pill!'
As his words fell, the figure before him shifted. Long Fei-li had carefully entrusted Xuanji into his arms.
In the next instant, Xu Xi's body was lifted off the ground, Long Fei-li's fingers clenching around his throat in a stronghold, knuckles whitening.
'Hand it over.'
Xu Xi said hoarsely, 'Your Majesty, Consort Nian is dead.'
'The resurrection pill can protect the heart of any individual who has been seriously wounded, but for someone whose pulse has already faded -' Qingfeng interrupted, his voice betraying his shock. Swiftly, he moved to Long Fei-li's side. Face clouded with heaviness, he continued urgently, 'Senior, you must remember Xian Yantai's warnings - once the pill is used, a person's corpse will transform into something strange. Even if she revives, her soul has already left her body. Life and death is predestined; you are acting in defiance of natural order!'
'So what if I were to defy the Heavens!' Long Fei-li said, lips twisting into a smile.
A muscle in Qingfeng's jaw twitched as he moved to stop the Emperor. Yet a sudden numbness spread through him. His eyes fell to his body, only to see that his six major acupuncture points had been speared by six needles, freezing him in place, preventing his movements.
'Senior, you cannot!' he cried, voice desperate. 'Prince Lingrui, Commander Duan - are you not going to stop him?'
Long Zijin only laughed bitterly. He took a step forward, his gaze landing on Xuanji. Faltering, he said, 'Sister-in-law.'
'Your Majesty, please allow Consort Nian to rest in peace.' Duan Yuhuan quickly released his hold on his wife to kneel before Long Fei-li, his usually bright eyes filled with tears.
'Peace? Yuhuan, her wish has not been fulfilled. How can she be at peace?'
Long Fei-li's expression hardened, his gaze faraway, intent on the woman still within Long Zijin's hold. His fingers which were clenched around a small wooden comb never once relaxed.
'Your Majesty!' the Empress and Lin Sizheng cried, joining the others to kneel on the grounds.
The guards and the common folk did not know what had happened. It appeared that the traitorous consort had died, but upon seeing the darkly ominous gaze on the Emperor's face, their hearts were too seized with an indescribable fear. Immediately, they followed suit, their knees falling to the ground.
Zhang Jin wanted to rush into the execution grounds, but he was violently restrained by the guards. In his heart, he swore that one day, he would rise to become a man of power.
'Your Majesty, even if you were to kill me, I will have no grievances! Only the lady of Xuesong Palace treats you with sincerity. This Consort Nian -'
Xu Xi's shrill voice pierced through the air, choking with agitation. Instantly, his body was pierced by countless silver needles and flung across the compound to land on the snow-covered ground. A small box fell from within his robes, rolling to a stop.
Long Fei-li sheathed his sword. Body straightening, he walked over and picked up the box.
'Every imperial guard within the capital is to obey the following decree: without exception, anyone who dares to approach me is to be killed,' Long Fei-li said, his voice ringing across the silent compound. Swiftly, he strode towards Long Zijin. Eyes cooling, he added, 'Including the Empress.'
Yu Mixiu trembled, her jaw clenching tightly. Her eyes remained fixed on Long Fei-li, who had reached over to carry Xuanji from Long Zijin's hold. His body was bent over, tightly embracing the woman within his arms, as though she were his life.
No one could approach the Emperor.
Qingfeng and Xu Xi, whose martial arts abilities were the strongest out of all who were gathered within the compound, were both indisposed - Qingfeng having been frozen in place and Xu Xi having been grievously injured. Duan Yuhuan tried to help Qingfeng unlock his acupuncture points, yet he was helpless. Long Fei-li had acted with unsparing callousness to seal Qingfeng's major acupuncture points. Duan Yuhuan did not dare to act rashly, afraid that a minor mistake could cost Qingfeng's life.
Qingfeng, by force of his innate martial arts ability, tried to use his own energy to break the hold, but was unsuccessful, coughing up blood.
An unending line of imperial guards had encircled the Emperor and his consort, forming an impenetrable barrier.
Trembling, Long Zijin stared at Long Fei-li, and his heart welled with sorrow as he thought of Qingfeng's warning about acting against natural order. A dazed realisation filled his mind that, perhaps, his brother was on the brink of of insanity.
Wordlessly, Long Fei-li opened the box.
Nestled within the box was a small white pill, a swirling mist lingering around it.
The box, having been opened, immediately caused that strange mist to diffuse across the entire compound.
His slender fingers reached into the box and carefully picked up the pill. The pill was pure as snow; his hand pale as jade. His other hand brushed across the beautiful face of the woman in his embrace, lingering at her lips.
Slowly, he placed the pill in his mouth, his lips moving to press against hers.***
From the tiny cracks of vision beyond the wall of imperial guards, the Empress stared as the most powerful man in the world bent down, his lips brushing across the woman's.
Lips a horrifying shade of white.
That woman was already dead - wasn't he afraid?
She was his Empress. He had used the most lavish ceremony to wed her. Their joining was not one of families, but of countries.
That day, her procession had stretched for miles, the capital crowded with thousands of commoners and lined with hundreds of soldiers bearing the insignia of the Emperor.
If, today, the one who died was her, would he hold her the way he held Xuanji?
She was the most luxurious woman in the world.
Yet, she was not happy.
As women, what was it they wanted in their lives? Immeasurable glory and splendour, or unparalleled wealth and rank? Or perhaps, simply an eternal promise of love, never to forsake?
Long Fei-li, who exactly is the woman in your heart? That bright and intelligent woman of Xuesong Palace or the stubborn and detestable Nian Xuanji before your eyes?
In that case, where does that leave me, as your rightful wife?
'Your Majesty.' From behind her came Lin Sizheng's voice, bringing a tinge of heaviness.
The Empress waved her hand, her eyes fixed ahead.***
Prying open her lips, Long Fei-li pressed the pill into Xuanji's mouth. Their breaths mingled, but because it was her, he did not feel a silver of disgust. His gaze remained intent on the woman within his arms, as though afraid to miss her slightest movements.
Long Zijin, who had been silently watching in a corner, quickly turned away as sorrow welled in his heart.
But the woman's face remained ashen, her eyes tightly shut.
Long Fei-li gently caressed her face, cold and devoid of life. His other hand reached over to envelop hers, intertwining their fingers, a familiar gesture.
'Xiaoqi, it's cold there, isn't it? Wake up, I'll bring you back right now.'
His hair, which had been coiled within her fingers, fluttered in the winds.
Once, with a radiant smile, she had told him, 'Ah Li, your hair should be tied by me and unpinned by me.'
Her words implied exclusivity and were forbidden, a taboo. As the Emperor, the world was his, just as she was his. How could she desire him for her alone?
Remembering her mischievousness, his lips lifted in a faint smile.
Before her death, her final wish was to tie his hair for him. Tying one's hair in a knot - the knot, representing their union, a marriage custom. The intertwining of their hair akin to the intertwining of their lives, never to part nor to doubt.
She was -
Had such a person really betrayed him?
Abruptly, an indescribable emotion rose within his heart, eclipsing his anger. His mind was seized with a sudden clarity of thought: no matter his doubts, no matter the faultless facts flowing from impenetrable logic, she had said that it wasn't Bai Zhanfeng. If she did not have the intention to betray him, did that mean someone else had forcibly possessed her body?
His fingers clenched around her shoulders, engulfing her into his tight embrace. The anxiety and unease which had welled within him burned fiercely, yet in the next moment, he suddenly realised that he did not want to think about this at all.
His mind was only obsessed with one conscious thought: he wanted her!
All he wanted was for her to awaken.
'Senior, even if you are not afraid of retribution, the Heavens have already collected her soul. She will not revive,' Qingfeng said as he spat out a mouth full of blood. His steps were uneven as he stumbled forward, having finally succeeded in using his inner strength to break free. 'She betrayed you; she will harm you,' he continued, his expression ugly. Step by step, he moved forward towards them.
Apart from Long Fei-li, the only people who knew that Xuanji's unborn child was not of his blood were Xu Xi, Jingying, and Qingfeng.
'What did you say?' Long Fei-li said in a bland voice, his hand slowly raising.
His sleeve, which rippled faintly in the cold wintry breeze, was suddenly twisted in a person's tight grasp.
'Don't.' The voice, soft and clear, carried a hint of fragility.
He stilled, his gaze falling to meet those pair of eyes fixed unwaveringly upon him.
Something fell to the floor in a clatter. It was a guard who had dropped his weapon in his fright.
The snowflakes which had been falling gently seemed to have stilled in an instant, yet the winds increased in their intensity, billowing madly like howls of sorrow. In the horizon, a sudden clap of thunder echoed as a darkly oppressive force seemed to descend upon the compound.
At the sight of this abrupt change in the weather, a rising fear seized the hearts of everyone within the grounds.
Yet Long Fei-li appeared unaware of all these, his eyes fixed on the woman's face.
'Even though you have many followers by your side, the number of people that you can truly trust are few and far between. Don't hurt him. He means the best for you.'
The woman smiled faintly as she said these words, but her brows were knit, as though enduring great pain. Her palm extended to caress his face, but they faltered, falling to the ground.
Long Fei-li's grip tightened around Xuanji's hand, his lips pressing against hers in a sudden, desperate movement.
Long Zijin, who was standing by them, paled in shock. He had held Xuanji earlier and knew that her pulse had faded. But at this moment, she had indeed revived. A shiver spread through his body as he remembered Qingfeng’s words, that the pill would only cause a strange change to the corpse. Staring at Xuanji's pallid face, he could not help the feeling of unease settling over him.
Translating this makes me sad. T_T The last few chapters have been kind of heavy…