Chapter 95: The Pain From The Death Of A Child
Zhuo Qing followed Fu Ling and rushed into Qing Feng Hall. When they pushed the door to enter, they saw a group of people kneeling at the inner chambers. When they approached near the screen, a wave of heat hit them. Qing Feng then found out that there was actually seven to eight brazier in the room, making the air steam and Qing Feng was kneeling in front of the bed motionless.
Zhuo Qing’s brows wrinkled and her face turn cold. She walked to the window and opened the tightly closed frames. The cold wind hit her face and broke the burning sensation of the heat.
Zhuo Qing walked to Qing Feng and saw the silent and unbreathing child. Her heart burst with irritation as she faced the entire floor of kneeling people, “Everyone leave and bring the braziers out.” The servants in Qing Feng Hall all raised their head and Fu Ling nodded her head slightly before all of them dared to move the braziers out. The two Imperial Physicians also left the house quivering.
Zhuo Qing squatted down and called, “Qing Feng?”
Qing Feng was still staring blankly at the child on the bed and was deaf to any other sounds.
Zhuo Qing lacked of a better option and could only give a sigh. She grabbed onto Qing Feng’s shoulder to turn her to face her and coldly said, “Qing Feng, wake up!”
After a long time, Qing Feng then gently replied, “Eldest Sister?” Her naturally fair skin seems greyer and that clear eyes had become chaotic.
Zhuo Qing softly replied, “It’s me.”
“He… He fell asleep…”
The low and soft murmuring that Zhuo Qing heard made her heart ached, she soften her voice, “I know. You go over there and let me take a look at him alright?”
Qing Feng was somewhat taken aback and somewhat at a loss as she nodded.
“Fu Ling.” Qing Feng gave a look and Fu Ling immediately approached and supported the already weakened Qing Feng. She initially wanted to help her to the chair outside to rest but Qing Feng sat down on the head of the bed and Fu Ling could only stand at the side to accompany her.
The child was quietly lying on the bed and his face, eyes and lips were all purple grey in colour. Zhuo Qing gently opened the child’s mouth and could see the swelling in his throat. It seemed that the cause of death was respiratory failure. Zhuo Qing picked the child up a little and found that the body was showing slight signs of livor mortis. Zhuo Qing frowned. Even though the temperature in the room was way high and would have moved the livor mortis of the body earlier, but this… Was too fast. Zhuo Qing rolled the child over and took a closer observation as her brows tightened.
A normal livor mortis should be dark purple and red in colour but this child’s livor mortis was greyish in colour, could it be that…
Zhuo Qing softly called, “Fu Ling.”
Fu Ling look at Qing Feng sitting quietly beside her, without saying anything or moving, and walked to Zhuo Qing’s side a.s.sured.
“Who was taking care of the child in the afternoon?”
“It is this servant.”
As Zhuo Qing was continuingly checking the child’s body for any external injuries, she was also calmly asking, “Did you hear if the child had any shortness of breath or cries?”
Fu Ling thought a little and replied, “No. The Little Prince drank milk this afternoon and also the medicine that the Imperial Physician had prepared. He then fell asleep very quickly and was all the while quiet.”
Medicine? Zhuo Qing looked up and asked, “Where is the medicine?”
“It has been finished.” The medicine dosage was small today and she saw Mistress feeding the Prince.
“The medicine dregs?”
Medicine dregs? Fu Ling understood the meaning of Zhuo Qing’s intention and immediately said, “This servant will go and find it now.” Fu Ling took two steps and looked back at Qing Feng who was sitting at the foot of the bed with sluggish eyes and she could not help but got worried. Fu Ling instructed Ru Yi to take good care of Qing Feng before running towards the Medical Court.
Zhuo Qing held the child’s hand to check. All ten fingers were relaxed and there was no signs of injuries. The child’s hand was hanging at his sides naturally from the beginning and there was no external injuries on the face or body. According to Fu Ling’s words, she did not hear the child’s cries and this was not quite right. Whether it was a poison or a respiratory failure caused by his illness, death would be very painful and the child would have been struggling and crying loudly but not be so peaceful.
At this moment Zhuo Qing’s head started to hurt. This incident is very suspicious and in order to figure out the child’s death, performing an autopsy was the only way to confirm if the child’s death was caused by a respiratory failure from his illness or by consumption of poison, so as to unlock the mystery of such a peaceful death.
But to perform the autopsy… Zhuo Qing turned and looked at Qing Feng. She had a lifeless expression but her eyes did not leave the child on the bed for a moment.
Just as Zhuo Qing was at an awkward position, the many calls of arrival sounded with chaotic footsteps came from outside the courtyard—
“The Emperor has arrived!”
“The Empress Dowager has arrived!”
“The Empress has arrived!”
They were here and she would definitely not have any opportunity to access to the child. Zhuo Qing instructed the palace maid beside her, “Go and get me a clean silk handkerchief now.”
Ru Yi froze for a moment before immediately took a small silk handkerchief from the small cabinet behind her and pa.s.sed it to Zhuo Qing. Zhuo Qing quickly opened the child’s mouth and pushed the handkerchief into the child’s mouth to retrieve the child’s saliva and oral tissues. With the fastest speed, she took it out and folded it before placing it in her belt.
Just as she finished her actions, a large group of people entered. Zhuo Qing took a step back and walked to Qing Feng’s side. Zhuo Qing was afraid that Qing Feng would suddenly become provocative when there was so many people suddenly entering but who knew that she leaned a little against her as her eyes still continued to stare unblinkingly at the child on the bed and turned a deaf ear to the group of people entering.
Qing Feng being like this… Was not quite right. Zhuo Qing was worried Qing Feng’s mental state and wanted to give her a check but a sorrowful voice came from behind, “Where is Aijia’s obedient grandchild?”
Zhuo Qing looked over and saw the Empress Dowager, with the helping arm of the Empress, stumbled all the way to the bed side to look at the silent and breathless child on the bed and the usually proud Lou Shu Xin actually started to cry bitterly.
“How could this have happen? Empress Dowager, please restrain your grief and be careful of your body! This child is born under an ill star…” As Xin Yue Ning was consoling, she started to also get choked up.
Zhuo Qing slightly frown and suddenly felt a pair of sharp eyes landed on herself. Zhuo Qing did not hesitate to look and discover that the owner of the sharp eyes was Yan Hong Tian. Both of them looked at one another for less than a second before Yan Hong Tian actually look away and look at Qing Feng. But at this moment in Qing Feng’s eyes, there was no one else other than her son.
For a period of time, crying sounds from the Empress Dowager and Empress were heard in the house. The two Imperial Physicians were kneeling outside of the screen and was almost prostrating on the ground, “This officials is incompetent and unable to cure the Prince’s illness. This official deserves to die ten thousand times.”
Zhuo Qing pat Qing Feng pacifyingly but her eyes were secretly watching Yan Hong Tian. It was said that this was not his first child that died prematurely and Zhuo Qing could not get the hang of what Yan Hong Tian’s temperament was and can only wait and observe.
Yan Hong Tian finally walked to the front of the bed and Zhuo Qing accompanied Qing Feng on the floor and could not see his expression. Zhuo Qing only saw his hands that were under his wide sleeves were balled to a fist. Zhuo Qing had thought that Yan Hong Tian would fly into a rage but she only heard him speaking in a calm deep voice, “Send Zhi-er back to Chu Xiu Palace.”
“Yes.” Just as the two guards walked to the front of the bed, Qing Feng who was leaning against Zhuo Qing quietly by the side of the bed suddenly moved and her clouded eyes instantly opened wide, “What are you doing?”
“Do not touch my son!” Qing Feng stood up ferociously and rush to the front of the bed. She pushed two guards away and use her entire body to cover the child’s body, “Do not touch my son!”
The two guards stood there stunned, they could not go up to stop the concubine. In the next moment, Qing Feng’s should was grabbed by Yan Hong Tian as he pull her away.
“Let me go! Let me go!” Qing Feng was frantically struggling but Yan Hong Tian was tightly clutching her shoulders. Qing Feng could only look at the guards carrying the child away and she became crazed and started to struggled so much and actually bit Yan Hong Tian’s hands angrily.
Everyone was stunned silent. Zhuo Qing stood the nearest and saw Qing Feng’s teeth biting down and even making gurgling sounds. She could hear clearly it and even though she could not see the skin that she was biting, very soon the dark red blood surrounded the mouth and flowed down. It could be seen how vicious that bite was. Qing Feng bit id down so hard like she wants to tear off a piece of meat. Yan Hong Tian’s expression did not change and his brows did not even move as he let Qing Feng bite him like that but his dark pair of eyes was staring at her even more coldly.
Xin Yue Ning was the first one who recovered and she screamed, “Qing Feng, have you gone insane?!”
“Someone come someone come!” The guards who were outside the doors heard the Empress’s cries and immediately rushed in. Xin Yue Ning pointed at Qing Feng and shouted, “Quick! Pull that crazy woman away!”
Qing Feng’s hair was dishevelled, her face was pale and with the bloodstains at the side of her mouth, she looked very frightening. As the guards came forward, Zhuo Qing was worried that they would harm Qing Feng but because she did not know martial arts and most likely was not able to stop them, she could only stand in front of Qing Feng.
“All step down.”
When the cold voice sounded lowly, all the guards were like they had their pressure points pressed and immediately did not move. Zhuo Qing did not expect that Yan Hong Tian would have stopped them as after all the injury on his hand was not light. When she turned back to look, her heart could not help but shudder.
Qing Feng did not relent at all and instead bit even more viciously as if she had gone insane. Yan Hong Tian unexpectedly also did not move, as if it was not his hand. The blood continuously flow down his arms to his robe and there was a death silence in the inner chambers and the only noise was heard was Qing Feng’s m.u.f.fled gasps.
Qing Feng’s hair was dishevelled so Zhuo Qing was unable to see her eyes but she could see clearly Yan Hong Tian’ cold expression. Her memory of Yan Hong Tian was violent to a point that he was cruel but at this moment he was extremely cold and lonely. In the dark cold eyes that were bottomless, it seems that a terrible storm was brewing and Zhuo Qing was unable to guess what Yan Hong Tian wanted to do but at least from how it seems now, he would not harm Qing Feng.
Qing Feng finally loosen her bite but the next moment she fell backwards. Yan Hong Tian grabbed onto her waist with one hand and Qing Feng fell into his arms.
“Empress, support Aijia back to the palace.” Lou Shu Xin felt burnout like she had gotten a lot older. The usually n.o.ble and straight back looked like it had stooped. These years she had experience so many of these type of grief. Was premature deaths the fate of the Yan family?
“Yes.” Xin Yue Ning obediently supported the Empress Dowager to leave the place first and just before she left she turned back and saw Qing Feng who had fallen in Yan Hong Tian’s arms. She felt resentful yet carefree, this time if Qing Feng didn’t die, she would have gone mad!
“Take good care of her.” Yan Hong Tian place Qing Feng on the bed and even though his voice was as cold as the ice on snow-capped mountains, his hand movements were extremely gentle. Zhuo Qing did not even have time to react that he was talking to her when Yan Hong Tian walked out without a second glance at the person on the bed.
One by one everyone left and the inner chambers was empty. Zhuo Qing immediately did a check of Qing Feng and found that her heart rate and breathing were normal. She should have just faint due to excessive stimulants. Suddenly there was a sound behind her and when Zhuo Qing looked back, that palace maid by the name of Ru Yi had carried a basin of hot water over.
She took the cloth over and gently wiped the blood traces at the corner of Qing Feng’s lips. Zhuo Qing sighed but she was unable to do anything else.
After great difficultly of cleaning Qing Feng up and tucking her, Fu Ling finally returned. Seeing both of her hands were empty, Zhuo Qing asked, “Where is the medicine dregs?”
Fu Ling gently shook her head.
“Gone?” Zhuo Qing quickly said, “How is it possible?! All the dregs of medication for the Emperor and concubines have to be retained for more than a day. How is it gone?!”
Fu Ling was very clear on what Zhuo Qing had said and thus her expression was a little grey, “When this servant when to the Medical Court, the dregs were gone. When the personnel on duty were asked, they all said that they did not know.”
The child’s death is suspicious and now the medicine dregs were missing. Zhuo Qing felt that there was a heavy fog shrouding in her head and she did not know how to make it disperse.