She Really Doesn’t Like The Third Prince
“The Right Minister is currently occupied with affairs.”
Those few words shut Xiao Yuan’s mouth immediately. Xiao Yuan knew that the Right Minister must be really busy handling national affairs. Affairs of the rear court that could be ignored would be ignored, and all matters would be handled by the main madam instead. But even if the Right Minister were really busy, he would still find time to accompany her for a day every month. Other ladies had no such privilege.
Xiao Yuan was somewhat disappointed. After standing barefoot for a little longer, her whole face became flushed and she started to sway, tottering on the edge of collapse.
Immediately, Zhao Zun went to catch her body with one hand around Xiao Yuan’s waist. Hazily, Xiao Yuan was held in his arms. A faint whiff of cold fragrance entered the tip of her nose, and her body couldn’t help but tremble.
Xiao Yuan then had repeated fevers for the whole night. No matter how much medicine was forced to her mouth, she just wouldn’t loosen her lips.
Zhao Qi was confounded. Wasn’t she all better? How had she gotten sick again? This dainty damsel was really hard to serve.
Meanwhile Zhao Zun was blaming himself a little. Xiao Yuan was too vulnerable to frights. She had fallen ill as soon as she had experienced shock. The glossy face had a bloodless complexion and her lips unconsciously uttered murmurs.
Just then, Zhao Wu’s figure paced a couple of times outside the door.
Zhao Zun stood up, pressed his own lips and said, “Take good care of her!”
Having entered the study, Zhao Wu spoke out his findings within the two days in detail.
“Master, the third prince is sending people to spread lies everywhere,saying that miss Xiao ninth had fallen into bandit hands and thus lost her innocence. The Xiao manor’s main madam intends to make miss Xiao fifth marry the third prince in exchange. The minister is still hesitating right now.”
(TN: innocence here means virginity)
Zhao Zun went silent. If they were to wait for a few more days, after the wedding finished taking place and let Xiao Wan return in one piece, then the nature of the matter would cause a rift to form between the Right Minister and the third prince. But then, Xiao Yuan’s reputation would ……
Zhao Zun couldn’t bear it all of a sudden. He couldn’t bear the thought of Xiao Yuan being slandered by the masses and live under endless scolding. But this was still a good opportunity.
Xiao Yuan was innocent.
Zhao Manor was like a small circle, so Xiao Yuan was isolated from all outside information. Zhao Zun would come by sometimes to have meals with Xiao Yuan.
Gradually, Xiao Yuan grasped Zhao Zun’s disposition, and she became emboldened. Sometimes she would even throw tantrums, to which Zhao Zun simply laughed off.
This day, Zhao Zun ordered Jin Hua to put an overcoat on Xiao Yuan.
(TN: The overcoat here refers to one of the dynastical outer robes worn by court females)
Xiao Yuan knew that Zhao Zun would not hurt her. It was certain that he was using her to coerce the Right Minister, her father. If he were to know that, he would definitely try to find a way to get her out of trouble.
“Where are you taking me?” Xiao Yuan asked.
Zhao Zun glanced at Xiao Yuan, who was wearing a snow white coat. Around her neck was white fox fur, which was extraordinarily beautiful under the sun. Zhao Zun shifted his eyes away while looking at her.
Word of the capital had it, that of the Two Wonders within the capital, Xiao Yuan herself was the top. She was the most beautiful among the Right Minister’s holdings.
Zhao Zun had simply smiled it off when he heard this saying before. Now however, he thought that if given time, she would surely overshadow the capital with her beauty–unable to be reached.
Her brows were clear in their form–soft yet firm. Between her brows there was a trace of naivete, while her facial features were exceptionally ornate. After some days of care, her cheeks were slightly flushed against her fair skin, like a branch of blooming peony. Not just any peony, but the best quality Wei Purple peony, blooming in radiance, graceful and luxurious, that made others want to pluck it. She would make people want to bring her the best they could offer subconsciously, simply to make her giggle.
A few times before, Xiao Yuan had spoken gibberish while sick. Zhao Zun was still somewhat in disbelief, so he intended to put it to the test.
Passing rumors in the capital said that the Xiao ninth was shameless, and liked to chase after the third prince since they were little. Whenever there was a girl who involved herself with the third prince, the Xiao ninth would use the Right Minister’s authority to bring down the other party in one way or another, until she would no longer appear in front of the third prince.
Zhao Zun thought, how could such a finely sculpted girl be like those rumors? He decided to make comparisons. Seeing is believing, after all.
“What are you bringing me to the tastery for?”
Zhao Zun wasn’t willing to answer. Even if Xiao Yuan asked it would be for nothing and just obediently followed him.
Lifting the curtains, Xiao Yuan was somewhat in doubt. Zhao Zun helped her down from the horse-drawn carriage, Along the way, a big palm was wrapped around her waist, while an arm blocked a large part of her face.
Zhao Zun was very tall. Xiao Yuan could only reached his shoulders, and her walking had become strained. Zhao Zun slowed down slightly in order to match her pace. It was the first time Xiao Wan was this intimate with someone else in public.
Her heart was about to beat itself out of her body. After closing the door, Xiao Yuan exhaled and breathed deeply. She glared Zhao Zun in annoyance.
Zhao Zun shrugged. A full course meal had already been put on the table. All of the dishes were famous in the restaurant’s lineup. Xiao Yuan had also snuck out of her home often in her previous life, in order to have meals here.
“I’ll ask you one more time. If you are given an opportunity to marry the third prince as desired, will you accept?”
Zhao Zun’s face was completely serious when he asked. After these days of being together with her, he felt like things had become tricky and couldn’t help but compare himself to the third prince.
The third prince was younger than him, more revered than him, and more popular than him. Zhao Zun casted aside these frustrations somewhat absurdly.
Xiao Yuan was taken aback. Before she could speak, a girlish voice reached her ears. Xiao Wan would never forget that voice, even in death.
In her previous life of going missing in the snow, being slandered, a cavalry general’s peasant had brought her coat to seek marriage from her family. Without a choice, the Right Minister called off the engagement between her and the third prince, and married her off to the peasant instead.
After that, Xiao Ruo married the third prince in Xiao Yuan’s place and became the third prince’s imperial concubine.Which led to Xiao Yuan’s future days being a living hell, with insults coming from everyone, everywhere.
Xiao Yuan clenched her fist tightly, with nowhere to vent her anger. Her eyes surfaced a hint of hatred, “I’d rather beautify a brothel by selling myself than to marry the third prince!”
Zhao Zun shook when he heard that. He suddenly regretted bringing her here.
Xiao Yuan walked to the vestibule, and she could look into the opposite building.
Xiao Ruo just took off the cloak, directed her maidservant away, and sat next to a man. Xiao Yuan would never forget him even in death. He was clearly Lian Jiye!
Xiao Ruo puffed out her red lips while in Lian Jiye’s arms. Lian Jiye smiled as he brought a cup of wine to Xiao Ruo’s lips. Xiao Ruo sipped it a little before putting it down.
“Have you forgotten, Your Highness? I am not suited for alcohol. I worry about our child.”
Xiao Ruo shifted herself enticingly, seemingly in a good mood.
Lian Jiye drank the remaining wine in one go. “If you hadn’t mentioned it, I would’ve forgotten. Just relax. Once the Right Minister agrees in these 2 days, I will immediately welcome you into my family.”
Suddenly, Xiao Ruo used a kerchief to rub her eye corners, while the corners of the mouth were actually curving in delight, “I don’t know what happened to ninth sister. I’m really worried that if something happened to her, I won’t be able to live with myself.”
Lian Jiye snickered, “What are you bringing her up out of the blue for? Blast it! In the ministry, she and that temperament of hers gave you more than quite the hard time. You are too kind Ruo”
“So many days had passed already, and not a single sight of the two of them. Maybe they were snatched away and sold to some unsavory place. I’m ticked off just by looking at her. How would I ever look at her if not for the Right Minister’s leverage? What a whore. How can she compare to you?”
Xiao Ruo was very full of herself, but her face was not showing it one bit. Her brows knitted, “Your Highness, although ninth sister is a bit mischievous but this time, I want to pray for our child’s blessings.”
TLC: Armored Raven