Housekeeper of the Hundred Blossom Palace - Chapter 11
Yui Mei sent the crown prince off after he learned how to disinfect. She started to nurse the crown prince’s sleeping concubine back to health.
Yui Mei learned from Ziliang that the consort’s name was Jiang Yu Xiu. The crown prince, who had yet to choose a future empress, favored this Honored Consort the most.
‘So that’s why he came to see her in person.’
This fact added a grave weight to Yui Mei’s responsibility.
With regards to nursing a patient, one must take precautions to avoid dehydration from excessive perspiration. According to Ziliang, it was the cause of death in this illness. Apparatus such as intravenous drips were not yet discovered in this world, so there was no other way but to let the patient drink water through her mouth.
‘Giving water to a patient is harder than I expected.’
There was a risk of aspiration if it was not done properly. Therefore, one must pay careful attention to fluid intake.
“Alright, let’s try once more to make you drink water.”
Yu Xiu slightly opened her mouth when Yui Mei brought the cup near. At first, she could only lightly lick the spilled drops on her lips. However, even if it was just enough to dampen her mouth, as long water was patiently given to her, she would gradually be able to swallow more. The amount being given would then be increased to match her intake.
Yui Mei administered an oral rehydration solution made from water, sugar, and salt to Yu Xiu.
She gave it to her in small amounts and encouraged her to sweat. If plain water was given, minerals that were lost would not be replenished, blood would thin, and in worse cases, disorientation and loss of consciousness could occur.
Medicine intake should be possible as long there is water intake to some degree, since it could be dissolved in water. There was also fear of pneumonia from aspiration, so food must wait until the patient was fully conscious.
In any case, it was just water first. Ultimately, people could survive on water for two to three weeks only, anyway.
Yui Mei continued nursing the patient until the sky darkened completely.
“Yui Mei, I got your dinner.”
Ziliang, who entrusted the patient’s care to Yui Mei, returned while carrying a tray with some rice gruel on a bowl. They both missed dinner, so he went to the kitchen to get some. There were also some manju, but it was obviously a bonus that was added by someone.
“Hooray, we got food!”
Yui Mei left Yu Xiu’s side for a while and cheerfully went to the table where Ziliang placed the bowls. It was also important for the caregiver to replenish her strength. One shouldn’t be restrained when it was time to eat, or else both of them will perish.
“How is she?”
“Her fever is not that high anymore, and it’s beginning to go down. The medicine is probably taking effect now.”
Yui Mei ate her porridge and glanced at the wooden bed where Yui Mei was laid. When she was just brought in, she was almost on the brink of death after drowning. Her breathing was faint, but as her fever rose, it also became labored. However, it gradually calmed down.
“Yeah, it’s a disease that is fatal when not treated right away.”
Ziliang had a bitter expression as he remembered the people who died because they were not given medicine immediately.
“This person will surely survive.”
Yui Mei made her resolve to not contribute to the casualties further, even if it’s just one person. She expressed her determination by gobbling down her gruel.
“Even so, it seems you know this disease well.”
Ziliang eventually asked. As expected, it was not a question she could evade. However, Yui Mei already prepared an answer as to why she was knowledgeable about that disease.
“I was raised in a remote region, so I sometimes heard stories from travelers.”
Yes, she planned to bluff with the story of ’hearing it from a traveler well-versed in medicine, who passed through the remote regions.’
Ziliang’s eyebrow shot up when he heard Yui Mei’s reason.
“Oh, so an erudite traveler passed by.”
Ziliang’s tone said he didn’t believe a single word of it, but the first to react would lose. Yui Mei avoided his eyes and reached for a manju after she was done with her porridge. “So, what did that erudite traveler say about this disease? Is it a variation of cold, or is it another disease altogether?”
Ziliang stopped prying, and he asked another question, instead. He probably thought that Yui Mei also had her circumstances. Well, those ‘circumstances’ referred to the memory retention of her previous world, though.
“It is a totally different disease from a cold. The initial symptoms were similar, so it is easy to make a mistake, but effective medicine is different.”
Ziliang grinned when he heard Yui Mei’s words.
“Is that so! The physicians are also divided regarding this matter, but I stand on the opposite side.”
Ziliang happily stated, since he was overjoyed that he had another supporter of his theory. And so, the two of them passed the night nursing the patient while having discussions about the field of medicine.
The day broke, and dawn came.
Yu Xiu had a low-grade fever, and some of her color returned.
“Her temperature is still slightly elevated, but she’s already safe.”
“Indeed, really, I’m relieved!”
Yui Mei and Ziliang raised their hands and rejoiced. Yu Xiu finally opened her eyes after a while.
“It is the clinic. It was His Highness the crown prince himself who requested that you stay here for the meantime.”
Yu Xiu asked in a hoarse voice, and Ziliang told her the whole story.
“His Highness did….”
Tears welled in Yui Xiu’s eyes when she heard the name of the crown prince.
“This person is Yui Mei. She was the one who nursed you, changed your clothes, and wiped your sweat.”
Ziliang introduced Yui Mei. He intended to clarify that it was not him, a male, who did all these things, but a court lady, instead.
“Indeed, I was the one who accompanied you constantly.”
“….Is that so, thank you.”
A vague smile passed through Yu Xiu’s face upon hearing Yui Mei and Ziliang’s words.
Yesterday, the crown prince mentioned that no one would take care of her even if she went back to the palace. Yu Xiu was the prime candidate for the seat of the empress, so she had a lot of enemies. She would probably be too preoccupied in trying her best to display her power to the bastards who wanted to take advantage of her illness. It was not the place for her recuperation. Otherwise, in normal circumstances, the maids and court ladies would have already stopped her abnormal behavior when she tried to go to the stream.
‘So the person who wanted her to fall in disgrace should be one that is close to her.’
That desire was hindered by Yui Mei’s intervention. Yu Xiu should get better, so she could cultivate the power to fight those malevolent people.
“Do you have an appetite? Would you wish to partake of some food?”
“…Yes, I do feel very hungry.”
Yu Xiu answered Yui Mei’s question with a troubled expression.
For a woman who was raised with a silver spoon in her mouth, hunger must have been a novel experience.
“It is good that you feel hunger. It means the body is trying to recover.”
Yu Xiu was relieved when she heard Yui Mei’s words. Even though she wanted to eat, she must avoid rich foods since her stomach was still weak.
“Well then, I will go and prepare some soup. Ah, but will the crown prince’s palace prepare Honored Consort Jiang’s food?”
Yui Mei thought that it was a hassle if she were to get it from there.
“No, the court lady’s kitchen will prepare the food according to the crown prince. So get our breakfast, too.”
Ziliang ordered from her side.
And so, Yui Mei headed towards the kitchen to secure their breakfast.
T/L Thoughts: Refreshing to see the story unfold from a protagonist who is currently a bystander, and not the target of those malicious scheming. Ah, but I was wondering how long it would last, till Yui Mei draws the ire of the concubines, or whether she will, in the first place. Also, I changed her way of speaking to a more polite, servile tone, to reflect her Japanese intonation.
*I couldn’t use noble consort, as only one woman could use that title – the consort one step below the empress. Noble concubine is also different from the noble imperial concubine, which is used for the emperor’s concubine. Edited to ‘Honored Consort Jiang’ since she is apparently a Guifei. Sorry took so long to correct this, I only discovered it recently 🙂
Hi everyone, Hanazakura here, thanks for reading, I’m grateful to you guys! Hope you enjoyed this chapter. We reached our 10th chapter milestone, hurray! Housekeeper of the Hundred Blossom Palace will now have a set schedule! 🙂 We will be releasing a chapter three times a week from now on. It will be every Mon, Wed and Fri, at 8:00 GMT. 🙂
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