Author: Chai Jidan
Being faced with this dangerous predicament, Mu Xueshi suddenly became quick-witted. He imitated the ancients’ laughter a few times and held the Third Prince’s hand without the slightest intention of letting go.
“So, it seems that the Third Prince doesn’t want me to be close to others. I didn’t expect that there’s someone who values me so much…” After Mu Xueshi finished speaking, he smiled at the Third Prince with his pursed up little lips. That expression seemed to show indistinct happiness.
Mu Xueshi used such thinly-veiled language to voice out his thoughts toward the Third Prince, yet he also did not have the slightest hint of embarrassment. Eunuch Tai’An, who was beside him, was somewhat embarrassed so he bowed and withdrew from the room. When Mu Xueshi cursed that the Third Prince was an evil murderer and also for being so overbearing, for him to consider Mu Xueshi as an insider, he was secretly excited.
In his view, an insider was the opposite of an outsider. The Third Prince did not regard him as an outsider, and he was even protective of himself like this so that he did not want himself to make friends with others. This was his own blessing.
In Mu Xueshi’s previous life, besides his flawed appearance, what he lacked the most was friends. He hated those classmates who judged people based on their appearance. They only remembered him when they received a misfortune because he could bring them relief in their heart by comparing their situation with him. Not to mention a true friend, he could not even encounter a friend who was willing to go home together with him.
With this thought in mind, Mu Xueshi decided to compose himself. With a resolute face, he told the Third Prince: “Third Prince, I won’t have any close relationships with people other than you. As long as you treat me sincerely and won’t abandon me, I will share joys and sorrows with you.”
The Third Prince did not expect that Mu Xueshi would change this fast. After hearing his assurance, the Third Prince was somewhat touched. He had to admit that Mu Xueshi, unguarded, was even harder to resist than before. The three maidservants who were bestowed upon Mu Xueshi were exempted from punishment. In the end, Mu Xueshi inquired of their names. They were named Qing Yun, Qing Ya, and Qing Zhu. They all looked pretty and pleasant. The two attendants were named Lu Fei and Lu Fan. They all looked impressive, lofty, bold and powerful. As for what the chef looked like and what his name was, Mu Xueshi did not give much thought to it. As long as he could cook a delicious meal, that was all that mattered.
Mu Xueshi also asked the Third Prince to give him a private tailor, who would make his own style of clothing according to his design. Mu Xueshi had been wearing these foreign apparels all day long, in and out of the Third Prince’s palace.
After living here for a few days, Mu Xueshi became roughly familiar with the environment. The Third Prince also gave him personal freedom. Excluding the Emperor’s imperial palace, he could wander anywhere. The Third Prince hung a token around Mu Xueshi’s neck. This token identified the Third Prince as his master. Mu Xueshi treated it as a treasure. He tucked it inside his clothes and took it out from time to time to admire it. Now that he had personal freedom, Mu Xueshi was not willing to go out. Although the outside world attracted him, the Third Prince was more important to him.
With this purpose, he spent most of the month by always accompanying his one and only friend. Mu Xueshi spent almost 12 hours a day around the Third Prince — wherever the Third Prince went, he would surely follow.
The Third Prince was not happy when he would go to his side, asking all sorts of questions from east to west. At first, the Third Prince was happy and overjoyed that he would always follow him around. He was like the Third Prince’s shadow — he could not be shaken off.
After a few days, every inhabitant of the imperial palace knew that the peerless and handsome Third Prince has gotten himself his first male pet. Even though a male pet in that time was not a big deal, but for the Third Prince who had always been indifferent, it was a great change.
The Third Prince’s small courtyard no longer had its original loneliness and secludedness. Ever since Mu Xueshi regained his strength, chickens would fly and dogs would jump everyday in here .
(「鸡飞狗跳」ji fei gou tiao – used to describe a situation that is chaotic or out of control.)
When the Third Prince would practice swordplay, he would be next to him. Mu Xueshi would hold a stick as he thrashed on fallen leaves and grasses, scaring off flying birds and insects. When the Third Prince was reading a book, he would be next to him chattering non-stop, like an engine that never stopped working, thus disturbing the Third Prince’s mood, making him extremely irritated.