Proofread by Zhu Yuan
"She was not a demon." Listening with great interest, I suddenly heard a familiar voice. I subconsciously looked back, and I was surprised. I didn't know when Emperor of Donghua arrived and sat beside me, and the words were uttered by him.
"How did you know?" I asked absently, and all my attention was drawn by the storyteller.
"The plague continued to rage, and all people in Mu agreed that this was caused by the sorcery of Consort Li. They urged the emperor to depose the demon concubine and restore the order of the state. Monks and nuns from all over the country also rushed to the capital of Mu in succession, ready to depose the demon concubine and save Mu at one stroke. So what would happen to Consort Li? And what would Yinde Emperor do in face of this situation? If you want to know how things would turn out, please listen to my narration next time."
The storyteller triumphantly finished his narration with a clap of the wood block, leaving me tantalized by the dubious end. This suspense stuck in my craw. The storyteller was extremely unkind. Every time he talked about the wonderful part, he would end the narration and leave, saying "If you want to know how things would turn out, please listen to my narration next time", which made people want to beat him.
My resentful look was caught by Emperor of Donghua and he rea.s.serted to me weakly: "She was not a demon."
"How did you know?" I asked subconsciously.
He said nothing.
I suddenly realized that I hadn't been born yet two thousand years ago, but he was already an immortal in heaven at that time. Fairies in heaven must know everything.
"What happened to Consort Li next? Since she was not a demon, did Yinde Emperor save her?" I asked him expectantly.
"No." A hint of pain flashed across his eyes, and his voice was obviously depressed. He looked at me and took a deep breath: "He didn't save her, but handed her to Taoist priests and watched her burn to death."
"What?" I immediately flew into a rage and said: "He was so evil. Didn't they fall pretty hard for each other? How could he be such a ruthless madman?"
Emperor of Donghua was still silent.
I gave him a nudge: "Isn't that right?"
He was slightly shocked, then nodded and whispered: "Yes, he shouldn't have hurt such a wonderful girl."
I nodded with satisfaction, and then continued to comment: "If I were Yinde Emperor, since I really loved Consort Li, I would try my best to protect her even if I had to give up my country."
Emperor of Donghua suddenly looked up with curiosity in his eyes. For a long time, he asked: "What if you were Consort Li? What would you do if Yinde Emperor treated you like this?"
"Me?" I was dumbfounded. I really didn't expect that I would be a heroine in such a tragic story. I wouldn't have the same poor taste as Consort Li and marry such a wimp!
However, I did think about it for a while and then answered Emperor of Donghua sincerely: "Of all the rotten luck, if I were Consort Li, honestly I would be quite satisfied with the result."
He looked at me in surprise. "Why?"
"The earlier you die, the earlier you reincarnate." As soon as I finished speaking, he was speechless.
"You should look at it in this way. She lacked fortune when it came to men in this life, and women were not allowed to remarry at that time. The only way to get out of her mess was death. After that, she could expect the next life. Maybe she could marry a good man after reincarnation!" I explained.
"Do you really think so?" He asked doubtfully.
"But I am different from Consort Li. I am an authentic demon. I can blame no one even if I was burned." I shrugged my shoulders.
"Would you hate that man?" I don't know why, Emperor of Donghua was quite curious today. As a demon who had only practiced for two thousand years, I could only answer his questions conscientiously.
Suddenly a glimmer of light flashed across his eyes, and he seemed to be happy. This made me wonder. I was not Consort Li and he was not the emperor. Why would he be happy?
"Because I would never love him again." I slowly spoke the second half of the sentence, and then I was surprised to find that the light in his eyes went out, leaving only loneliness, which made it impossible for me to guess what he was thinking about.
After a while, he seemed to be calm again and smiled weakly. He said to me: "It's getting late. Li, let's go back!"
I looked at him as he walked away and came to a conclusion: Emperor of Donghua was trapped by love.
His Miss Right, if I was correct, should be the beauty in the portrait mentioned by Bai Qingqing.
Thinking about this, my curiosity about that portrait began to stir again.