Chapter 427 Spending the Night in the Apricot Forest
There was a hint of worry in Qiu Yu’s eyes although on the surface, he looked relaxed.
If they wished to take a shortcut, they would have to take the risk of facing more dangers.
They would perhaps still have some confidence under normal circumstances. Although the terrain was treacherous, they could pass through with more caution.
However, they had been watched now.
If that someone’s intention was to prevent Lin Mengya from finding the medicine she was searching for, a battle was bound to break out here.
“Would it be better if I go to Master Guo and request that we set off earlier? I don’t want to implicate the group of businessmen. If I’m the target, I don’t want to remain among the group of businessmen. I believe they would not wish to complicate the matter too.”
At sunset, they would pass the forest of apricot trees and the treacherous section of the mountainous path would come into view. At the narrowest part of the path, only one carriage could possibly pass.
Furthermore, what lay below was a 30000-meter-deep cliff. What was even more dangerous was the strong wind blowing up from the valley.
Not to mention that people would lose balance there, even horse carriages would wobble violently under such strong gale.
This was the reason why most people would choose not to subject themselves to such natural dangers.
Usually other groups of businesses would have to rely on chains on the horse carriages to get across this dangerous stretch, even so, they would be in great fear.
It would like be very dangerous for the three of them if they were to ride across this section on horseback.
“Let me inform Master Guo. I believe he would understand.”
Qiu Yu nodded in agreement. After all, the people in the group of businessmen were commoners. There was no need to implicate these innocent people.
Keeping her eyes on Qiu Yu’s back, Lin Mengya sighed softly.
“Are you so anxious? I will protect you.”
Long Tianyu took Lin Mengya’s delicate hands into his own and reassured her tenderly. The look in his eyes touched Lin Mengya and it gave her a sense of security.
She nodded in response. For some unknown reason, she had always believed that Long Tianyu would keep to his words.
Qiu Yu, who discussed the matter with Master Guo, was back in no time.
Master Guo was no doubt an intelligent and experienced person. He was keenly aware of their special status. The kind of trouble they might get into would be out of ordinary.
“Master Guo has agreed, but he said that the gale would be stronger at night. Therefore he would let the group of businessmen rest one more day in the forest of apricot trees. He said we could set off on the second day.”
This was the greatest compromise Master Guo could make for them.
Lin Mengya turned to look towards Master Guo and nodded as an indication of her gratitude.
As the group of businessmen proceeded with their journey, they soon reached the forest of apricot trees as Qiu Yu had said.
Before they entered the forest, the subtle fragrance from the apricot entered their nostrils.
Compared to the out-of-the-world fragrance of the plum flowers, the more-than-common apricot flower was like a girl next door, being lovable and close to the heart.
Perhaps even the best artist in the nation might not be able to express a tenth of this beautiful scenery in painting.
Extensive patches of pastel pink and snow-white flowers seem to be connected together and the apricot flowers seemed to pile up into a never-ending hill.
Who would have imagined that behind this forest of apricot flowers on the hill, there was a deep gorge which could cost the lives of people traveling through it.
“Let’s all take a rest in the forest of apricot trees ahead!”
Wen Shi called out with his deep rough voice and everyone responded in unison.
Before the sky became dark, the people spread themselves out in the forest to look for a suitable place to set up their place to cook and rest.
Riding the horse, Lin Mengya followed Long Tianyu to check out what was ahead of them.
The road was not too difficult, but on seeing that treacherous gorge likened to the grand canyon of Africa, Lin Mengya could not help swallowing hard.
“It was no wonder that for many years, no other nations had tried to invade the Nation of Lintian although it was not especially strong and prosperous.”
Having witnessed the natural landform, Lin Mengya was in awe of the creator.
“That’s for sure. The Nation of Lintian was surrounded by the sea on three sides, so it was only connected to the land on one side of its borders. Because of this deep gorge, there were left only two paths that people use to enter and leave the nation.”
Despite Qiu Yu trying to suppress his excitement, he could not hide how he sounded pleased with himself.
Lin Mengya could not be bothered to press him further. She would be stupid not to have guessed that Qiu Yu was a citizen of the Nation of Lintian.
However, be it a citizen of the Nation of Lintian or the Jin State, at least they were friends who would help and support each other.
“Although the country is easy to guard against the attack of enemies, if any army were to take over the two entrances and exits, wouldn’t the people of the Nation of Lintian be trapped?”
Long Tianyu did not like the complacent look of Qiu Yu. If they were in the Capital City, he would seize this guy and interrogate him as if he were a spy.
However, Qiu Yu was not at all angry. He simply shook his head and said, “Why do you think no one lives here when this area belonged to the Nation of Lintian? It was precisely because the nation is surrounded by water on its three sides. Every household owns boats and everyone is a skillful sailor. If these two exits have been overtaken by the enemies, the people of Lintian would get onto their boats and sail away. Would you be able to sail on land even if you are skillful?”
Qiu Yu’s words stupefied Long Tianyu and the two of them merely refused to give in to each other.
They argued from military geography to the livelihood of its citizens.
Lin Mengya looked at the two men as if they were engaged in cockfighting and could only shake her head.
They were both grown men, but they were behaving like childish kids.
She squinted as she tried to look to the other side of the gorge.
Although this was the first time that she had been in the Nation of Lintian, for some unknown reason, she had a strange yearning for the land on the other side.
She put her hand into her clothes and took out the plum flower bronze coin.
If she guessed correctly, this item was definitely linked to her mother’s identity.
Qiu Yu had told her that the noble families in the Nation of Lintian mostly used the plum flower as the sign for their families.
She had kind of expected that this was her mother’s homeland.
Regardless, half the blood flowing in her body was of the blood of Lintian people.
Therefore, despite this being the first occasion she had been here, she did not feel like an alien at all. On the contrary, there was a sense of elation deep inside her.
The anxiety that had been weighing her down seemed to have disappeared at this moment.
She wondered what kind of changes would this trip to the Nation of Lintian make to her life.
At the thought, she began looking forward to what was going to happen.
“Let’s go. The breeze has begun to blow and we might catch a cold.”
After one round of argument, there was a look of satisfaction from his victory hidden deep in his eyes.
They followed Long Tianyu, who was controlling the reins, back to the forest of apricot trees. Qiu Yu, who was at a disadvantaged position at this moment, could only mumble while he trailed behind.
The dejected expression on his handsome face clearly said that he was not happy.
“Look at the both of you. You’re already adults. Can you stop acting so childish?”
Lin Mengya could no longer withstand it. They were getting along fine in the past when they were in the Capital City.
Why did their IQ drop to that of a child once they were out of the Capital City?
“He started it. Of course, I can be magnanimous and bear it, but this concerns the nation’s reputation. As Prince Yu, the third prince of Dajin, it is only natural that I not give in.”
Long Tianyu put on a severe look as he argued.
“Bah!” went Lin Mengya towards Long Tianyu.
He was obviously just acting childishly but he had to explain himself away with a noble excuse.
The group of businessmen was made of so many people who worked together to prepare the meal, so soon, the entire apricot forest was filled with the aroma of food.
The awe-inspiring landscape on top of the delicacies was a rare enjoyment for Lin Mengya.
When she got down from the horse, she found a patch of ground covered with fallen petals and rolled in it with some fun.
Soon, she was full of the fragrance of the apricot flowers. Little did she realize that all the people in the company were smiling at her behaving like a child.
“Little Brother Yuan, how are you still behaving like a child when you’re already a married man?”
Having spent many days together, everyone knew that this young man, though severe in the way he handled matters, he was an exceptionally kind master.
Also because he was young and had a lively disposition, the people enjoyed teasing and joking with him.
He did not get offended but always responded with a friendly smile before letting it pass.
At this instant, Lin Mengya had smiled cheekily after getting up from the pile of apricot petals and snatched the bottle of wine from that man’s hand.
“Have you become angry, so much so you want to pour my wine away? That won’t do. I’m only left with that little wine. Hey, what are you doing?”
The man pursued Lin Mengya to get back his bottle, but he did not expect her to reach out and break off a branch from the apricot tree and stuff it into the wine bottle.
Seeing that the man had become anxious, Lin Mengya shook the bottle and cheekily brought the bottle to the man’s mouth.
“Have a taste of it!”
The man did not try to be contentious, but took the bottle and drank a mouthful from it.
Never did he expect the bitter strong wine tasted much nice with the addition of apricot flower.
The taste of sorghum with the subtle fragrance of the apricot flower was exceptional.
“Erm, this wine tastes so good! Thanks, Little Brother Yuan!”
Satisfied, the man went around showing off, while Lin Mengya was left there picking the apricot flowers.
“What are you going to do with these flowers that you picked?”
Long Tianyu did not know what Lin Mengya was trying to do. She held on to him as she tried to contain the flower petals with part of her skirt.
Soon, when the part of her skirt was full of flower petals, Lin Mengya led Long Tianyu to the stove where they prepared food.
She put some rice grains into the pot and washed the flower petals with water before putting them into the pot of rice.
“Little Brother Yuan, we had carried the rice on our back along the journey. Aren’t you wasting it this way?”
Wen Shi did not understand what Yuan Lin was doing. He quickly came over to stop her, wearing a frown on his face.
However, Lin Mengya continued stirring the contents in the pot with a big ladle as she explained, saying, “The apricot flower can also be used as a kind of medicine. It is a tonic for qi and circulation of air in the body. It’s especially beneficial for the skin. I’m preparing this for the ladies in my household. As for all of you men, please step aside!”
Apart from Qiu Yu, the rest of the people were surprised to learn that apricot flowers, seemingly of not much use, could actually be made into medicine.
These clueless people could only standby and watch.
As the sun set, everyone had made some simple dishes from whatever resources they had.
All the people sat on the floor as they ate and the apricot flower petals kept falling into the rice and dishes they were eating.
It made the entire atmosphere a little dreamy. Although most of the people in the group of businessmen were unrefined people, they were equally amused by the beautiful sight.
Lin Mengya and her company took up a corner of the space, and as they sat and ate, the most eye-catching dish was Lin Mengya’s apricot flower porridge.