步步惊心/ Bu Bu Jing Xin
Startling Surprises with Every Step
Written by Tong Hua
Chapter 6 Part (4-6)
Translated by Cutzie
Brought to you by the Magnolia Translation Team
As everyone here are fans of Bu Bu Jing Xin, I'm assuming that you are excited for the drama as well. So I wanted to let everyone know that a new fansubbing team, Faeries, is planning to sub the show once it airs. They are the only subbing team I know (besides Viki) that are taking on this project. I will be joining them as a guest translator for the drama, mainly doing some editing and QC'ing. This is the link to their blog: http://dramafairyland.blogspot.com/
Hope to see everyone there :)
Download link (Chapter 7 part 1-2): http://www.mediafire.com/?234656219lrmo4a
This work is an amateur fan-translation of original work by Tong Hua as available in free online format in Mandarin Chinese at:
The translation is done as good will, so that fellow fans who do not read Mandarin may enjoy this lovely work. We declare that we do not profit monetarily in any way from this work, and also do not pretend to be professional translators. Hence, we apologize in advance for inadvertent translation errors. In addition, reposting of the translation must be done with explicit permission of all translators as contactable via spcnet.
Characters Introduced So Far
(In Alphabetical Order)
Crown Prince (Aisin-Gioro Yinreng): The second son of Emperor Kangxi. Currently the Crown Prince and thus next in line for the throne.
Dong Yun: One of Ruolan’s maids.
Fourteenth-prince (Aisin-Gioro Yinzheng): The fourteenth son of Emperor Kangxi. He is described as being quite handsome. Is currently around fourteen to fifteen years of age.
Fourth-prince (Asin-Gioro Yinzhen): The fourth son of Emperor Kangxi and the future Emperor Yongzheng. Slightly pale and has an impassive demeanour.
Eighth-prince (Aisin-Gioro Yinsi): The eighth son of Emperor Kangxi. Also known as the Eighth Bei’le. Ruolan is his Ce’fujin (Second Wife). Is often seen smiling out of the corners of his mouth as well as conducting himself with a calm and gentle disposition.
Kangxi: The current Emperor of China.
Mingyu Ge’ge (Guoluoluo Mingyu): Younger sister of the Eighth-prince’s Di’fujin, Guoluoluo Minghui. Not on good terms with Ruoxi. Most likely the one who caused the original Ruoxi’s accident after an argument. During the Tenth’s Birthday banquet, Ruoxi and Mingyu gets into a fight, resulting in quite a spectacle.
Ninth-prince (Aisin-Gioro Yintang): The ninth son of Emperor Kangxi. Currently not given a peerage title. Seems to have a more taciturn personality. Nicknamed “the venomous snake” by Ruoxi.
Qiao Hui: One of Ruolan’s maids. Qiao Hui used to serve Ruolan even before Ruolan’s marriage. When Ruolan married, Qiaohui accompanied Ruolan to Eighth-prince’s household. Seems to be concerned for her mistress especially regarding Ruolan and Eighth’s relationship.
Ruolan, Maertai: Ruoxi’s older sister. The two are especially close as they are born from the same mother.She is also the Ce’fujin (Second Wife) of the Eighth-prince. Mild and gentle in nature, Ruolan likes to spend a better part of her days reciting Buddhist scriptures. Has a deceased lover who was a soldier in her father’s army. The man was of Han descent and had taught Ruolan how to ride.
Ruoxi, Maertai (Zhang Xiao): Protagonist of the story. Originally a modern day, white collar professional named Zhang Xiao. Under certain unexplainable, supernatural occurrence, Zhang Xiao’s spirit travelled through time upon her death and took over a young Manchurian girl’s body. Now stuck in ancient times, Ruoxi must navigate through an entirely foreign environment armed only with the little historical knowledge she remembers.
Tenth-prince (Aisin-Gioro Yin’e): The tenth son of Emperor Kangxi. Currently not given a peerage title. A bit of a simpleton. Likes to tease and bicker with Ruoxi. Nicknamed “the blockhead” by Ruoxi.
Thirteenth-prince (Aisin-Gioro Yinxiang): The thirteenth son of the Emperor Kangxi. Nicknamed “the Death Challenging Thirteenth” by his brothers. Has a more carefree and unrestrained demeanor.
Glossary of Terms
(In Alphabetical Order)
Bei’le: Shortened from Duo’luo Bei’le. A peerage title that can be bestowed to those within the royal family. It is the third rank in the Qing peerage system for the imperial line.
Ce’fujin: A title. Meaning second wife or ‘side’ wife in Manchurian.
Di’fujin: A title. Meaning first wife or main wife in Manchurian.
Ge’ge: A Manchurian word for young mistress, or lady. It is a title you would call an unmarried noblewoman (or before they are bestowed an official title by the Emperor) above a certain rank.
Jie-jie: Older sister in Chinese.
Ji’xiang: A standard greeting one of lower status uses to greet people with higher status in court. The word literally means auspicious and can be translated as, ‘I wish good fortunes, prosperity and happiness to you”
Chapter 7 (Parts 1-2)
The Lunar New Year was approaching, filling everyone with anticipation. I, however, was getting more desolated by each day. After the New Year passed, there would be the Lantern Festival, and after that, the Concubine Selection would start. No matter how many times I counted, the truth was that there was barely a month left. I was not happy, therefore, about the impending holiday, and wished that it would never come. But there were many things in life that doesn’t go the way people wanted. So, as unwilling as I was, I still had to welcome the forty fourth year of Kangxi’s reign.
In celebration of the New Year, the Palace had planned a lavishing party. For the past six months, I had already attended many kinds of Palace parties, big and small, so there wasn’t that sense of novelty as there was in the beginning. Not to mention that I was troubled at heart, and therefore was feeling rather lazy. That night, I allowed Dongyun to pack as she liked then followed Jie-jie and Eight prince to the Palace.
As my mood wasn’t very good, all the beautiful and exquisite decorations of our surrounding were lost on me. Tell me to curtsy, and I curtsied; tell me to rise, and I rised. Order me to sit, and I sat; just like a puppet to be control by everyone. At least this way, I was sure not to make any mistakes.
This party was unlike the one at Mid Autumn. Almost all the court officials and their wives were there, creating a livelier atmosphere. I thought that this was good, that no one would notice me in this crowd and I would be allowed to wallow in my own thoughts. However, what did the elders said? “In life, eight to nine times out of ten, things will not go as you wished.” Tenth prince and his wife was the prime example of this saying.
First, Tenth prince stared at me, not minding that his Fujin was sitting right next to him, and looked at me from top to bottom. I had to endure two pairs of eyes, one full of fire, the other of ice. The combination of the two made me felt as if I was sitting on pins and needles, leaving a bad taste in my mouth. Finally, I couldn’t take it any longer, raised my head, and glared fiercely at Tenth prince. He saw that I looked as if I wanted to eat someone and hastily looked away. Tenth Fujin, seeing that he was no longer looking at me, shot me a disdain glance, and also steered her gaze somewhere else.
The world was at last at peace. I sighed and settled back into my daze. After a little while, I once again felt as if someone was looking at me. My heart burned in anger. Old Tenth, would you stop! I looked up with what I imagined as my most evil glare, only to be greeted with Thirteenth prince’s smiling face. His friendly smile froze the moment he saw my face.
I quickly smiled back at him. My expression changed so quickly that it actually hurt my face. I laughed, looking at him helplessly, not sure if he understood. Regardless, he laughed along and held his cup toward me in a toast. I happily picked up my cup and return his toast from a distance.
Just as I finished drinking and was preparing to go back to my thoughts, I saw that the Eight prince had been looking at me, a faint smile on his face. I felt flustered and did not know how to react. I quickly pour myself another cup of wine and held it out in a toast to him. With a smile, he also picked up his cup and drank with me.
I put the cup down, thinking that I could finally rest now. But then my gaze fell upon Fourteenth prince who was staring at me thoughtfully. I didn’t know what he was thinking, or even bother to care, but merely made a face at him. He saw my ugly expression and shook his head slightly, his mouth curving in a small smile.
I also turned my head to smile, only to discover sitting right next to Fourteenth prince was Fourth prince, who had seemingly witnessed all that had occurred. Though his expression was calm, his eyes seemed to be gazing into me with some sort of intense pondering. I thought to myself that this was definitely someone I couldn’t offend or else it would be hard to survive later. Therefore, I smiled sweetly at him then quickly turned my head away, not daring to look up.
After the party was over and we returned to the mansion, I was extremely tired. My heart felt disturbed. It wasn’t wise for me to play around with government officials, not to mention these people has dragon blood in them.
As soon as I followed Jie-jie back to the room, I immediately told the maid to help me wash my face, thinking that I could finally go to sleep. Jie-jie saw that I looked as if I haven’t seen my bed in three hundred years, laughed and said, “You’re not allowed to go to sleep so early tonight. You have to stay up and greet the New Year with me.”
I was stunned for a moment after hearing that. It had been many years since I’ve participated in New Year’s Eve celebration. However, as I was in the ancient times, I had to do as the ancients did. Jie-jie ordered the maids to bring the prepared fruit pastries out, pulled Qiaohui and Dongyun to sit and chat while waiting for the New Year. Qiaohui saw my sleepy state and quickly went to find a rope for me to play with.
Jie-jie and Dongyun continued to chat while watching and laughing at Qiaohui and me playing jump rope. Suddenly the maid outside called out, “Beil’e, ji’xiang!” Qiaohui and Dongyun quickly got on their feet. Jie-jie and I looked at each other in surprise but also stood up.
We hadn’t had the time to go out before Eight prince entered the rom. Everyone hurriedly performed the ceremonial greetings. Eight prince smiled and allowed for us to rise. With their heads down, Qiaohui and Dongyun left the room. Eight prince saw Jie-jie and I standing there motionlessly, smiled and asked, “Do you not welcome me here to greet New Year together?”
Jie-jie immediately laughed, “I just didn’t think that you’ll be coming, and therefore was just a bit surprised.” As she spoke, she went to help him sit down.
Eight prince smiled, “Everybody, sit. It’s rare for us to be able to welcome the New Year together.”
I quietly sat down and conveniently grabbed a few snacks.
Eight prince and Jie-jie laughed and said a few words. But after a while, Jie-jie talked less and stayed quiet more, so the conversation eventually ceased. The three of us sat in silent, my head began to feel heavy and my eyelids as if they’re about to shut at any second. Jie-jie saw my sluggish condition, pulled me into her arms, and said, “Sleep for a while, when it’s time, I’ll wake you up.”
I leaned on Jie-jie to sleep, drowsily I heard Jie-jie and Eight prince talking, the topic revolving around me. Although my eyes were closed, my mind was becoming more and more awake.
Jie-jie whispered, “I have a presumptuous request. Ruoxi grew up in the military compound and cannot compare to the young ladies in the Capital. I’m afraid that after she enters the Palace, she will cause some kind of trouble. I want to ask milord to help, to have some knowledgeable servant in the Palace look after her.”
“That is not a presumptuous request. Even if you do not ask, I would have still done so.”
Jie-jie’s hands stroked my head, I didn’t have to look up to feel her hesitation and sadness.
Eight prince could also see her heart, “There’s something else you wish to say.”
“If Ruoxi can luckily escape the concubine selection and Imperial Father is willing to grant her a marriage, I felt that she and Thirteenth brother get along really well. As for Thirteenth prince’s side, he and Fourth brother’s relationship is good. If we can ask Crown Prince to talk to Fourth brother, and milord were to put in a few words, the situation can easily be arranged.”
The corner of my eye became wet. Jie-jie had always been lukewarm to Eight prince, refused to even say an extra word to him. But, for my sake, she could even beg him.
Eight prince was silent for a moment, then smiled and said, “It’s still too early to discuss these matters.” After a while, perhaps seeing that Jie-jie looked sad, he added, “But don’t worry, I will not watch her suffer.”
“Thank you, milord.”
There were no more words coming from the two; they merely continued to sit in silent depression. Suddenly there were several loud firecracker bangs. I was caught off-guard, and, startled, sat up from my sister’s embrace. Jie-jie brushed back my hair for me, “It’s New Year.”
Eight prince also looked at me and laughed, “Yes, it is.”
I quickly stood up, “Good. Since everything is done, I want to go to bed.” I did not wait for them to respond and ran to my room, jump on my bed, and was soon deep asleep.
When I woke up the next day, I realized that my first New Year in the ancient times had gone by just like that. There was a bit of regret, but, thinking it over, if every New Year here can passed like this one, it wouldn’t be such a bad thing.
Dongyun stood behind me, brushing my hair. I asked, “Did Eight Bei’le stayed here last night?”
Dongyun’s hands stopped, then sighing, she replied, “No, a bit after Ge’ge went back, Master also left.”
I silently looked in the mirror, not saying another word.
The festive atmosphere of New Year has yet to dissipate, but Lantern Festival was already here. Although there were still many worries in my heart, I was definitely interested in the Lantern Festival. On this day, every household must hang decorative lanterns, and, at night, there are lion dances, dragon dances, as well as lantern riddles and fireworks. Normally, females rarely have a chance to go outside, but on that day, they’re allowed to go with another female companion, solving riddles and looking at lanterns. For that reason, this was the festival that every girl here anticipated for the most. In addition, many ancient poems have described the holiday, the beautiful meetings of men and women beneath the romantic moon. I hoped that the festival this year would be no exception.
 A term to describe royalty (i.e. children of the emperor)
 Referring to Eight prince.
 Solving riddles written on lanterns was a custom established since the Song Dynasty and continued on until today. The riddle usually has the challenger guessing a word, poem, or phrase, from the clues it gave.