Edited by: Silv
Chapter 17: Serve the Lord and Save the Country (2)
After Ye Huai finished eating the noodles, Jiang Hao took out a cloth bag from his bosom. He carefully opened the cotton cloth and uncovered the layer of oil paper. Two delicate pieces of pastry were revealed.
“This is the plum blossom cake from the family shop on the street.” Jiang Hao said.
“Jiang xiong, isn’t this plum blossom cake very expensive?” He thought that they were both poor scholars? Where did he get the money from?
“I don’t have money. This is given to me by the shopkeeper’s young lady.” Jiang Hao said, “It rained a few days ago. She didn’t have an umbrella when I happened to meet her. She borrowed my umbrella and said she would send me something to thank me.”
Ye Huai didn’t say anything. This Jiang Hao is dense and honest. Most probably, he did not see that the girl is interested in him.
“Cheng Qi, should we go to Zhuang Yuan Building in the north of the city tomorrow?” Jiang Hao bit into the plum blossom cake and said, “I heard that every year there would be a Gong Shi  who would share the exam questions. Let’s go listen to it. Maybe there will be gains.”
“I’m not going.” Ye Huai also bit into the plum blossom cake. He still had a crying face of a dumped person. “Jiang xiong, you can go alone.”
“If you don’t go, I won’t go. I have to watch you so that you can’t do such stupid things anymore.” Jiang Hao seriously said.
Ye Huai didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Does this brother look like he’s looking for a woman to die for? But he looked at Jiang Hao seriously and nodded, “Trust me. I’m not going to do anything stupid, okay?”
Jiang Hao also unconsciously nodded, “Okay, good, I believe you.”
However, the next day, even before Jiang Hao left, he still didn’t feel reassured. But in the end, he took rations to go to Zhuang Yuan Building in the north of the town.
After Jiang Hao left, Ye Huai immediately became like a husky who experienced freedom. 520 finally took out what he yearned in his dreams; the muscle shaping and beauty kit.
520: “Ding, The host exchanged a muscle shaping and beauty kit for a total of five thousand hero points. There are nine thousand one hundred hero points remaining.”
Ye Huai looked at the contents of the package and was shocked, “Isn’t this an elliptical machine and a face mask?”
520: “This is not a normal elliptical machine and face mask. These can help you quickly become handsome and beautiful.
Ye Huai: “Is that true?”
520: “Of course! If you don’t believe it, try it!”
Ye Huai used the elliptical machine. He only exercised for ten minutes and found that Gu Cheng Qi actually formed some faint muscles! As it turns out, the system props also have a time when they can be reliable. Ye Huai was not very pleased.
For more than one month, Jiang Hao brought rations with him almost every day to go to Zhuang Yuan Building in the north of the city. And also almost every day, Ye Huai hid in the inn, applying the mask to his face and exercising using the elliptical machine.
After one month, Jiang Hao patted Ye Huai’s shoulders, “Cheng Qi, tomorrow is the palace examination. Are you nervous?”
Ye Huai shook his head. My body and face are so perfect. What is there to be nervous about?
520: “……” Hopeless. He’s incurable. These goods are not for the examination. They’re for beauty.
After more than a month of hard work, Ye Huai finally turned Gu Cheng Qi’s rough skin soft and smooth. He also developed smooth muscle lines. Gu Cheng Qi’s original features and the foundation was good. Under Ye Huai’s maintenance, he became a handsome young man. Unfortunately…… The handsome man had a fatal weakness.
One day, Ye Huai suddenly asked 520 a question, “Xiao Lingling, How tall is Jiang Hao? Why do I always feel that I’m so much shorter than him?”
520: “He’s ah. Less than 1.8 meters.”
Ye Huai had a bad premonition, “What about me?” Every time he sees Jiang Hao, he has to look up. How much worse is he?
520: “You ah. 1.68 meter.”
Ye Huai: “Excuse me?” (said in English)
520: “One point sixty-eight, a third-class cripple. And please don’t speak English, Thank you!”
Ye Huai: “……” Sure enough, it’s like menopause.
The next day, Ye Huai went to the examination venue with Jiang Hao while carrying rations. Although it’s called the palace examination , it wasn’t held in the main hall but on the square outside the hall. Thousands of young people majestically stand there.
Ye Huai glanced around. It somewhat felt like those years when he participated in the college entrance examination.
The palace examination was also called the top grade imperial exam. This was because the emperor personally invigilates the exam.
Ye Huai: “Is that the emperor? I can’t see clearly. Does he look good?”
520: “I don’t know. Concentrate on the exam.”
Ye Huai: “…… You think that I can take the exam?”
520: “Can’t you? You’re not nervous at all!”
Ye Huai: “Then why are you nervous?”
520: “You have a point. I can’t refute that.”
At this time, the gongs sounded. The examination began. All of the examinees simultaneously opened the paper in front of them to see the exam questions.
Very simple seven words: Regarding Disaster Relief to Help the Poor
Ye Huai’s eyebrows rose in happiness. He picked up the brush to answer and said to 520, “This brother thought that he won’t understand the examination question. Isn’t this so simple? The many times I went to a disaster area as a volunteer is not for nothing!”
Ye Huai held the brush and wrote so fast it was as if the brush was flying. In less than half a day, he had written two pages worth of paper.
When he was a child, Ye Huai’s writing was very ugly. It was ugly to the point that his mother wanted to have a DNA test to see if he is her real child. Later, when he went to the third grade of elementary school, his mother feels that this was too unbearable and sent him to the Children’s Palace.
He had never complained about the pain of copying medical records. Because it was less work compared to his mother’s obsessive-compulsive disorder where he didn’t even know just how many times he had to write!
Ye Huai stopped writing, blowing the horizontal spread of rice paper, satisfied with his beautiful cursive style writing. Indeed, it had some of a doctor’s distinct style— most people won’t be able to understand it.
Zhao Chang Yu barely stayed for a while and went back to deal with government affairs. At this time, he had just finished lunch and came back to watch for a while. However, when seeing the group of people thinking hard or writing at a tremendous speed, he noticed one person who was already examining his answer with satisfaction.
So fast? Zhao Chang Yu looked at this Gong Sheng.
“What’s the name of that man?” Zhao Chang Yu asked the head eunuch, Chen Yan, on the side.
Chen Yan noted down the man the emperor was asking for and immediately ran to the rites official to ask. Finally, he searched through the list of candidates to find his name.
“To answer the emperor, the name of that person is Gu Cheng Qi, a candidate from Lu prefecture of Donghu county.”
“Tomorrow, let the rites official hand in his answer papers. Zhen  wants to see.” Zhao Chang Yu said. He was quite curious what this little boy, who looked like he hasn’t even matured, can say in his paper.
Ye Huai didn’t notice Zhao Chang Yu’s movements at all. He has always been a person who can’t stay in the examination room after answering the exam. At this time, he was looking around, thinking about how he can leave this place.
“Look at your own paper, don’t look around!” The rites official immediately came over to stop Ye Huai’s actions.
Ye Huai seemed to have seen his savior, “My lord, this scholar has already finished, may I go now?”
The man stared blankly. It was evident that he had never seen an examinee who answered this quick. He turned around to his superior and whispered for a long time before coming back and taking Ye Huai’s exam paper and letting him go.
Ye Huai walked through the middle passage between the rows upon rows of writing examinees. His heartfelt an unparalleled sense of comfort. These sort of people are still taking the exam but he already handed over his exam. It’s been a long time since I experienced it!
The streets today were more empty than before. The scholars who were wandering, playing around or preparing for the exams were all taking the palace examination. Even the always bustling Zhuang Yuan building was very deserted.
Ye Huai strolled around and suddenly heard a fight. As soon as he looked back, he saw a woman held in the hands of another woman disguised as a man. The woman was crying pitifully while the on another side, a few big men were being beaten and were in disorder. The person was about to get up to continue the fight.
“Come on! This great aunt is not afraid of you!” The girl disguised as a man held the woman in her arms and went forward to continue to beat people.
Ye Huai’s curiosity rose. In any case, he had free time and he was bored so he joined the crowd at the side. The people around him talked fiercely. Ye Huai also understood most of what happened. In fact, this crying woman was brought by her father to a brothel. When she escaped, she was saved by the other girl who then beat up the big men chasing after her.
“The girl came from another place. Peony Pavilion doesn’t have a good reputation. Someday, this big moldy place will fall.”
“Yes, I heard that there is someone backing up the Peony Pavilion.”
“I can’t say. It can’t be said. It a very important person.”
Don’t tell me it’s Zhao Chang Yu? Ye Huai disagreed.
520: “It’s not Zhao Chang Yu. It’s his younger brother, Zhao Chang Lin.”
Ye Huai: “King Qin?”
At the moment, the girl and the men opposite her were still entangled with each other. Suddenly, one man had a sword piercing to the woman’s shoulder and neck. Ye Huai rushed out of the crowd and pulled the girl. She was able to escape from the sword.
“Thank you very much.” The woman said in a high voice. After looking back to see Ye Huai’s face, she was stunned.
“Young lady?” Ye Huai had no time to remind her. The sword is swinging in their direction. Ye Huai dodged it too late. When he was about to be stabbed, someone flew in the air obliquely and kicked the big man’s head. The officers urgently followed and arrived. All the troublemakers were put under control.
“We’ve come and rescued late. Asking the princess for forgiveness.” The general who led Ye Huai’s rescue kneels on one knee in front of the girl dressed as a man, begging for forgiveness.
Princess? The gears in Ye Huai’s brain turned fast. Zhao Changyu has only one daughter. She is Princess Yurong.
“What are you doing here?” Zhao Yurong is quite in a bad mood. When she saw Ye Huai standing on the side, her complexion improved a bit, “ Xiao gege, thank you for saving me a moment ago. Did you get hurt?”
“No, I’m alright.” Ye Huai smiled. This girl is so cute. The little princess is flat-chested.
“You must be frightened. Come with me to the Princess Palace, alright?” After Zhao Yurong gave the order, Ye Huai was immediately stuffed into a carriage to the Princess Palace.
That night, Ye Huai became an instant celebrity in the city. Everyone knows that there was a poor Gong Shi whose scholarly honor (in the imperial exam) probably has no hope, but the princess had a crush on him.
The listeners had to sigh at his good luck! Who said that his academic honor was hopeless?
Of course, the general opinion was formed because the exam was still ongoing in the palace but he was found wandering outside. He must’ve submitted a trash exam early ah.
 Gong Shi – tribute scholar or candidate who has successfully passed the first grades of the examination system, but not yet the palace examination.
 palace examination – also known as the top grade imperial exam
 Seven words – it was actually five words/characters but I can’t make 5 words in English. This is the exam: 论赈灾济贫
 Children’s Palace – 少年宫: an institution in which children can take part in various extracurricular activities.
 cursive – 狂草: extreme cursive，a Chinese script which evolved from Jin Cao and was used during the Tang dynasty
 Gong Sheng – 贡生: candidate for the imperial examination proposed by a tributary state
 Zhen – emperors call themselves this.
 Yurong – 玉蓉 means jade lotus; 玉 means jade; 蓉 means lotus.
 I’m alright – Ye Huai used the polite language here. From now on, if Ye Huai is speaking to royals, he is polite but his thoughts are always informal