TN: bonus chapter!💕
The fifteenth of the seventh month was a full moon night, and the evening breeze was slightly cool.
Zhao Manor, in Zhao Miaorong’s Xiuwan Residence.
The servant girl Shui Tao took a pair of small silver scissors and cut a newly blooming rose from the window, held it up to Zhao Miaorong’s temples for comparison, and smiled: “The young lady is really beautiful.”
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Zhao Miaorong was picking up the rose-colored rouge with a hairpin, and dabbing it on her lips in front of the mirror. Hearing the words, she smiled and said, “You are very good at talking.” But she couldn’t help revealing her joy on her face.
Seeing that she liked to listen to this, Shui Tao then complimented her: “Really, they all say that the eldest young lady is famous all over the capital. In fact, our young lady is not worse than her at all, not to mention in terms of this appearance, this figure, the young lady is even better than her.”
Zhao Miaorong couldn’t help but curve up her lips. She raised her hand to take the rose in Shui Tao’s hand, and gently tucked it into her hair. Shui Tao clapped her hands and praised her even more, and she felt even more proud in her heart.
Meng Qiucui walked around the partition and said with a smile: “The main room has already finished preparing, you must hurry up.”
“Coming.” Zhao Miaorong smiled and got up, smoothed her hair and stepped forward. When she passed by Meng Qiucui, she reached out and pulled the rose off her temples. Zhao Miaorong’s smile froze.
Meng Qiucui looked at her and said coldly, “Don’t be too ostentatious.”
Zhao Miaorong looked at her in fright, lowered her head and walked out. Shui Tao followed her: “Young lady…..”
She gave her an icy look, and Shui Tao felt a chill in her heart. But the next moment, she showed a soft smile: “It’s fine, mother is right to scold me.”
“…..Ai.” Shui Tao responded timidly.
The carriages and sedans of the officials were parked outside the palace. After getting off the carriage, they had to walk into the palace.
Zhao Mingde got off the carriage, looked back at the female family members behind him, and saw that after Xu shi stepped on the low stool and got off the carriage, she was followed by their eldest daughter, Zhao Miaoling!
Zhao Mingde suppressed his temper, and did not bother to respond, only flicking his sleeves before walking towards the palace gate. Seeing this, Xu shi couldn’t help but grit her teeth, but she turned back to Zhao Miaoling and said, “Be good after entering the palace, your father is already angry.”
“Yes.” At this time, Zhao Miaoling’s mind was full of the person she had been dreaming about for two years, so she didn’t care to refute, “This daughter understands.”
“En, good.” Xu shi looked at her beautifully dressed daughter, and smiled very proudly, but in a blink of an eye her face turned cold after she saw Zhao Miaorong getting out of the carriage: “Follow well.”
Zhao Miaorong curtsied slightly: “Yes.”
Several of the surrounding officials’ wives came over together to chat and laugh, and Xu shi put on a warm smile again, pulled Zhao Miaoling, and entered the palace with them.
Jing Ye watched as the officials entered the hall, and one by one, brought their family members forward to bow in salute, secretly covering his lips and yawning.
Lin Xiaosheng, Lu Baizang, and Gu Hong’s small tables were placed beside him. Don’t know what the two former were still doing, but they still did not enter the hall at this time. Only Gu Hong was with him. Seeing his appearance, he smiled and said, “Your Majesty is tired?”
Jing Ye glanced at him and nodded.
Gu Hong chuckled, and the hand under the table reached out to hold Jing Ye’s: “Your Majesty, bear with it, this subject will take Your Majesty out secretly at that time.”
Jing Ye pulled his hand, but was unable to break free.
Soon, Zhao Mingde brought his family into the hall, stepped forward and saluted: “Paying respects to Your Majesty.” After saying that, he knelt down and bowed, followed by Xu shi and Zhao Miaorong. The eldest daughter Zhao Miaoling’s heart moved and she couldn’t help but look up.
Gu Hong was sitting in front of the table and smiling and chatting with the emperor. He was wearing a jade crown and elaborate robes, but none of that could hide his divine appearance, like that of a god untouched by the dust of the secular world. He still resembled the beautiful white robed gongzi from the prime minister’s manor many years ago.
She was so intoxicated that she even forgot the etiquette. The people in the hall were still chatting amongst themselves at first, but then the people who discovered this scene pointed to her and everyone gradually became quiet.
On this side, Jing Ye swallowed the “rise” he had prepared to say, and glanced at the person next to him.
Meeting the emperor but not saluting, if given a heavier punishment one could even be sentenced to death. This lady is risking her life just to get a glimpse of you.
Gu Hong didn’t look at the eldest young lady of the Zhao family who was in a trance at the bottom of the steps, but clenched Jing Ye’s hand tightly and smiled: “Your Majesty, those who meets shengshang yet does not kneel and salute have committed the crime of belittling the monarch and should be punished to death.”
The officials burst into whispers.
Zhao Miaoling, who was standing under the steps, regained her senses, and when she heard this, her face turned pale immediately.
Xu shi also knelt at the foot of the steps, and when she heard this, she felt both shock, fright and hatred, and hurriedly leaned over and kowtowed: “This official’s wife has not taught well, causing my daughter to lose her morality. Please, Your Majesty, for the sake of blood relationship, please forgive my daughter!”
Jing Ye’s eyes moved.
Zhao Mingde was Jing Ye’s grandmother, Emperor Xian Ming’s grand-nephew. In terms of familial ties, Jing Ye had to call him “elder cousin”.
Xu shi was beside him pleading continuously for forgiveness, Zhao Mingde hated his daughter for not knowing her place, but he still chose to remain silent. In his opinion, the big mistake had already been made, whether the crime was punished or not, the blemished reputation of the Zhao family would spread, and the reputation of his daughter was ruined. In this situation, not only did Miao Ling cause trouble for herself, she also ruined the reputation and future of the other daughters of the Zhao family.
As of now, there was only one thing that could turn this situation around——whether it regarded things done in the past or what they were faced with now——it could turn everything around.
So long as he took that seat up high.
“Your Majesty.” Zhao Mingde raised his head and said slowly: “As my wife said, please forgive my daughter for the sake of old affection, and even if there is no affection, please also forgive her for the face of…..this official.”
As soon as these words came out, even Gu Hong frowned, not to mention the officials in the hall, all of them closed their mouths tight and thoughts arose in their hearts.
Your face? What face do you have to make the emperor bow down? You are…..
Jing Ye’s expression remained unchanged, and he said with a slight smile: “Zhen naturally wants to give Zhao Qing face, the whole family can rise, it must not be easy to speak while kneeling.”
When Zhao Mingde heard these words, he got up and helped Xu shi up aa well. The couple looked at each other, and Xu shi’s poise which had been disrupted just now was regained. She wiped away tears and smiled and said, “Thanking Your Majesty. Miaoling, what are you doing standing there in a daze? Why are you still not thanking His Majesty?”
Zhao Miaoling hurriedly stepped forward and curtsied: “This official’s daughter, thanks Your Majesty for your forgiveness.”
This family was really…..Jing Ye didn’t expect that he just wanted to test this family on a whim, but Zhao Mingde actually ripped away any shame d o decisively.
As expected, he was unable to hold back any longer?
“Enough, this matter is over, let’s continue to be lively.”
The music that had stopped just now, began to strike up again with the emperor’s words, and the officials continued entering the hall to celebrate at the birthday banquet which was full of lively sounds of revelry and laughter.
Those who couldn’t understand the situation continued to chat and have fun, and those who understood, also kept their mouths shut and continued to socialize.
Jing Ye sighed softly and glanced around. Seeing this, Gu Hong smiled and asked, “Who is Your Majesty looking for?”
“En, Zhen is looking for…..” He searched to no avail, so he gave up, “…..Why doesn’t Zhen see Lord Feng?”
Gu Hong’s eyes darkened: “Lord Feng had taken leave due to illness.”
“Due to illness?” Jing Ye couldn’t help sitting up straight, “Why did he become sick too?”
“Oh, this…..” Gu Hong smiled and poured wine for him, “This subject doesn’t know either. Is Your Majesty bored?” As he spoke, he lifted the wine cup up to his lips.
“A little.” Jing Ye hurriedly took the wine cup over and drank it.
Gu Hong said with a smile: “In that case, Your Majesty might as well accompany this subject out to relax.”
Jing Ye thought about it for a while, and decided that he could just go back to his quarters to sleep if he didn’t want to go with the other, so he let him hold his hand and got up.
“Zhen has tired, and will now go back to the palace to rest, everyone can enjoy yourselves, no need for restraint.”
The officials in the hall all stood up and bowed: “Thanking Your Majesty! Respectfully sending Your majesty!”
Zhao Miaorong also saluted by her father’s side, and when she raised her eyes, she saw the emperor walking out of the hall being led by the hand by that person, the gesture and demeanor very intimate, and she couldn’t help clenching her fists.
After leaving Zhaoyang Hall, Gu Hong didn’t let the palace people follow, and carried the five-cornered glazed lantern himself while leading Jing Ye to the imperial garden. When Jing Ye asked him where he was going, he just smiled and said, “Taking Your Majesty to get some air.”
Don’t know how long it took, but they finally came to a lotus flower pond.
The night wind was chilly, perhaps because it was close to the water, Jing Ye felt the coolness even more than anywhere else: “Here?”
Gu Hong shook his head slightly, raised his hand and curved his fingers. Soon something moved in the mottled tree shadows, and it turned out to be a small awning boat.
Jing Ye’s brows twitched.
Gu Hong pulled him to step on. The boat swayed slightly on the lake and the cabin was a little narrow. Gu Hong put his hands on both sides of Jing Ye, and suddenly said: “Your Majesty…..”
“In the future, when no one else is present, could Your Majesty…..still call this subject ‘Ah Hong’?”
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Jing Ye’s fingers twitched and he felt a little embarrassed by what he said.
Gu Hong looked at him quietly, and the two of them fell into silence for a while. Outside the boat was the sound of the wooden boat gliding through the water, and the breeze sneaked in, sending traces of the mixed fragrance of leaves and flowers.
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