Lu Ningxiang was shocked by her daughter's expression. Though what she said is true, the Pei Residence only stands to gain if Pei Anru managed to become Princess Consort Hao. To think that my daughter has already burned bridges with the Pei Family...
Lu Ningxiang was expressionless as she knelt on the ground and stared at the ruthless look in her daughter’s eyes. She was afraid that she would say something wrong and anger the latter even further.
Pei Yaran slowly stowed away the resentful expression before chuckling. Lifting one of her hands, she carefully examined her pink nails. "Will Elder Brother Hao like it when he returns from Nanzhao and sees these nails that I just painted? It's been a long while since he last talked to me."
She then coldly snorted. "Elder Brother Hao is like a ray of light, influential and powerful. Even if I were to agree to bring Pei Anru into the imperial palace, there is no shortage of women who like him. With how young and naive she is, there is no way she would become Princess Consort Hao, no matter what I do."
A raging fire emerged from the bottom of Pei Yaran's heart. Call me bad or selfish, but even if Pei Qianhao were to reject me for the rest of his life, I wouldn't allow any other woman to succeed. If I can’t have him, nobody can! I would rather remain single for life!
Pei Yaran set her hand down at the thought, then looking down at her mother who remained on the ground. "Get up. Even if I am the esteemed Empress Dowager, you are still my mother. I can be heartless towards the Pei Family, but I can't do that to you. As for Pei Yong, if he had really committed a crime, my intervention would be seen as blatant favouritism. To ignore his crimes would become a subject for gossip."
Her statement had expressed her attitude - she wouldn’t mind intervening on behalf of Pei Yong. However, that was on the precondition that he was truly innocent.
Lu Ningxiang stood up and called her daughter's name. "Yaran, what your father meant was that regardless of whether Pei Yong committed a crime or not, you must do your very best to protect the Pei Family's reputation. Delay Wu Ling's investigations first. If Prince Hao pursues this matter after returning to Beimin, your father will step forth to settle it."
"Got it. This Empress Dowager is tired and shall not keep you in the palace today. Someone, send Matriarch Pei back to her residence." Pei Yaran then entered the inner chamber without sparing Lu Ningxiang another look.
Lu Ningxiang was stunned, hurt that her only daughter was treating her in such a manner.
"Matriarch Pei, you should leave the palace." A palace maid softly reminded as she walked to stand beside Lu Ningxiang.
Lu Ningxiang nodded, her heart overwhelmed with pain. She took a glance at the cold and spacious main hall of the Compassionate Peace Palace, and sighed before leaving.
There is no other way. The Pei Family has to make sacrifices to keep our position as the number one family in Beimin, and my daughter has, unfortunately, become a victim.
Pei Yaran's gaze turned sorrowful upon entering the inner chamber. She walked to the front of the mirror, and couldn't help but lift a hand to caress her face. I am only 18 years old, and my looks hasn’t faded.
Moreover, the Old Emperor wasn't in good health when I entered the palace, so I have kept my virginity. In this lifetime, I am only willing to offer my virginity to Pei Qianhao.
Yet, why is he so heartless towards me? Doesn’t he know how much I have sacrificed for him? I pulled through all the schemes and tricks of the imperial harem when they were at their peak.
Her hands were stained with blood, and she was unsure of the number of women from the imperial harem who had died in her hands. She was originally pure and naive, but three years had already changed her immensely.
Pei Yaran let out a chuckle. Pei Qianhao, if you bring the siren from Nanzhao back to Beimin, I will not relent.
Meanwhile, the siren who Pei Yaran couldn’t stop thinking about was getting out of bed and putting her clothes back on.
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Rakumon: I'm kinda feeling a bit sad for Pei Yaran :/ her experience with her family, her unrequited love for Pei Qianhao, her struggles in the imperial harem...