Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
“The Crown Prince Mansion will receive her as my concubine in three days!”
Song Yuan hesitantly asked, “Your Highness, Third Missy is a trueborn lady of the Chu family after all. Isn’t being a concubine… a bit inappropriate for her?”
“I am already bestowing her an honor!” Rong Jin looked cold. There was no love in his eyes when he spoke of Chu Xianmin.
The series of events had disgraced him! He was doing her a huge favor by giving her a place in Crown Prince Mansion!
Song Yuan watched Rong Jin and realized that the prince had made up his mind. Since the matter had been settled, he didn’t say anything more. “Yes.”
Rong Jin let out a breath of foul air and intended to walk into the mansion. However, Song Yuan stood rooted to the spot. There was something about his expression… He couldn’t help but frown. “What are you still standing here for?”
Song Yuan bowed and whispered, “Your Highness, the men we sent to investigate Zhen Bao Pavilion… are gone!”
Rong Jin’s frown deepened; he was startled by the news. “How is that possible? Those guys are stage four warriors!” He had no reservations when he made his move, knowing that Zhen Bao Pavilion wasn’t a place to be trifled with. However, who would have thought…
“Your Highness, those people had just started to poke around Zhen Bao Pavilion when they were assassinated one after another. The other party was so highly-skilled that they barely left any traces! We can’t even find any evidence to prove that they did it!”
Rong Jin clenched his fists tightly and said through gritted teeth in a tense voice, “You mean to say that I have no choice but to suffer in silence this time?”
“Your Highness, I didn’t mean it like this!” Song Yuan hastily fell to his knees.
Rong Jin shut his eyes, deep in his thoughts. After a long time, he sneered and said, “If we can’t investigate without them knowing, let’s come out in the open!”
Song Yuan seemed worried. “Your Highness, didn’t His Majesty ask us to stop pursuing this matter? If you investigate them openly, I’m afraid it won’t be easy to explain to His Majesty!”
“Naturally, I won’t get it mixed up with this. However, Zhen Bao Pavilion has been operating in the Imperial City for so many years. Who knows if there are any issues with their accounts? It’s just as well that those officials at the Ministry have been having a leisurely time lately. It’s a good idea for them to check all those accounts now!”
The Chu family residence.
Chu Yan and Lu Yao were dumbfounded as they stared at Song Yuan, who stood before them. They almost thought they had misheard him.
“Lord Song, you just said… His Highness is going to marry Minmin and make her his concubine?”
Song Yuan wore a smile on his face. “That’s right! His Highness has always been interested in Third Missy. As you both know, he has long intended to marry her. Although we’re in a bit of a rush, His Highness has said that he wishes to keep things simple for the sake of Third Missy’s health since she is still recovering from her injuries. Nevertheless, you can be assured that His Highness will never mistreat Third Missy, even though the formalities have been simplified.”
Chu Yan and Lu Yao shook with anger.
“Lord Song, no matter what, our Minmin is still a trueborn lady of the Chu family. Even if she can’t be the Princess to His Highness, he should make her his secondary consort at the very least! A mere concubine? He’s asking for too much!” Chu Yan couldn’t suppress the anger inside him, and the way he spoke sounded pushy.
Song Yuan’s smile never wavered, but there was a hint of coldness. “Hehe. Lord Chu Yan, you should know very well why His Highness wants things to be done this way. The injuries on Third Missy’s face may never heal. As the Princess or the Secondary Consort, she will have to go to the Royal Ancestral Hall to meet all the ancestors. Is it… appropriate for Third Missy to do so with the way she looks?”
“Besides, not only did Third Missy hurt her face, but she has also hurt His Highness’s reputation. His Highness is already being very kind to her to marry her as his concubine. Both of you should have a proper discussion. Don’t forgo His Highness’s good intentions.”
Everyone could hear the threat in his words.
Chu Yan and Lu Yao exchanged a look with each other. Both of them felt extremely sullen!
Chu Xianmin was their only child. Initially, they had been counting on her to forge a relationship with the Crown Prince and become his princess. However, that now seemed impossible with their current situation!
How could they possibly prepare everything in three days?
It was a disgrace to marry like this! They would become laughingstocks in the whole Imperial City!
“I will marry!” Just when they were in a stalemate, a woman’s voice could be heard from outside. It was Chu Xianmin. She was wearing a veil that covered most of her hair and face, revealing only a pair of eyes.
Her eyes were no longer proud and vain like they used to be. Instead, they looked gloomy and cold, which unsettled people.
In his mind, Song Yuan thought that this Third Missy wasn’t quite the same as before.
“Minmin! What are you doing out here?” Lu Yao went to her side quickly and scrutinized her with worry. “D-Did you hear our conversation?”
Chu Xianmin nodded. “Yes, I heard everything. I am willing to marry.”
Song Yuan smiled. “Then I ask that Third Missy make your preparations for your marriage to His Highness in three days’ time!” With that said, Song Yuan didn’t bother staying any longer. He turned and left.
Chu Yan only came back to his senses when Song Yuan had left. He felt puzzled as he looked at Chu Xianmin. “Minmin, you should think about this. You will be a concubine once you marry him.”
Chu Xianmin laughed with self-mockery. “What can I do now when I look like this?”
Everyone fell silent.
“There’s no Crown Princess or Secondary Consort in the Crown Prince Mansion, only a few mistresses. Anyway, I won’t be bullied when I’m there. Besides, I have no intention to be a noble concubine my whole life.”
Lu Yao’s eyes lit up. “Minmin, you mean…”
“My looks may be ruined, but I still have my talent and capability. I can make use of the Crown Prince’s status once I marry him! I haven’t forgotten who made me land in such a state!”
Chu Liuyue. Let’s settle our score bit by bit!
It was very quiet in the room. Everyone focused on the chessboard in front of them.
A crisp sound was heard!
Gu Mingzhu had unraveled the first Xuan formation!
Dongfang Qing looked at her with surprise. He never thought she would be the one to crack the first level after Si Ting.
Si Yang heard the sound and couldn’t help himself from turning around to take a look. He felt even more frustrated.
Gu Mingzhu lifted her chin arrogantly and glanced at Chu Liuyue, who was sitting in front of her. “This simple Xuan formation is a piece of cake!”
Chu Liuyue heard her and looked back at her. “Huh? You’ve unraveled the first formation?”
“Why? Are you surprised? Are you confused by this simple Xuan formation?” Gu Mingzhu had mockery in her eyes. “Actually, as long as one has gone through systematic learning and received guidance from a famous master, one would know a Xuan formation’s characteristics. With that knowledge, one is naturally fast when it comes to unraveling the formation. However, I think you must not have seen any decent Xuan formations. As such, it’s only normal that you have no idea where to start.”
Chu Liuyue nodded seriously. “It’s true. I have not seen many Xuan formations like this.”
She hadn’t played with one since she was six, so of course, she hadn’t seen much.
Gu Mingzhu rolled her eyes. “Why don’t I wait until you’ve cracked the first level as well? We can then start on the second one together. I don’t want any disputes or anyone saying I won dishonorably.”
Chu Liuyue turned down her proposal with a smile. “That’s not necessary.” After saying that, she turned back to her table. She held a chess piece and placed it on the board.
It was the sound of an unraveled Xuan formation!
“I’ve had a hard time waiting for you. Please don’t bother to wait for me.”