"Since Grand Tutor Kong has asked for you, you should make the trip."


Su Xi-er nodded. "This servant obeys the order."


"Su Xi-er, please follow this servant." The eunuch gestured for Su Xi-er to follow.


Hence, under the envious gazes of the other palace maids, Su Xi-er walked out of the Palace Side Quarters.


Seeing that all of the palace maids were frozen and staring at the exit of the Palace Side Quarters, Old Maidservant Liu couldn't help but remind, "Do your work diligently and who knows, there might be a day where you can leave the Palace Side Quarters as well."


One sentence from Old Maidservant Liu pulled everyone's thoughts back as they immediately continued on with their work. The past few months have really been an endless ride for Su Xi-er; rising and falling, before rising again now!


On the way to the Imperial Library, Su Xi-er saw the woman in the pink dress again. She was led by a servant from the Imperial Household Department.


Coincidentally, both of them were heading in the direction of the Imperial Library.


Su Xi-er was able to guess their purpose from the given clues. So she is the person who Commandery Prince Xie is sending to the Imperial Library. She isn't someone from within the palace, and was instead brought in from the outside.


Tan Ge looked at Su Xi-er, doubts starting to form in her head. Who is this? Commandery Prince Xie clearly told me that I would be the only one entering the Imperial Library, so why is there another woman? Not only that, she has a slim and svelte figure, and is even more beautiful than me.


The only thing that doesn’t match her beauty is her coarse uniform from the Palace Side Quarters.


As Tan Ge was busy wondering, Su Xi-er flashed her a brief smile. She was reciprocating the etiquette that she had received earlier, something that Tan Ge immediately understood. She then genially smiled back out of courtesy.


The two of them didn't know that the eunuch from the Imperial Library had observed the exchange between them. This was one of the minute portions of Grand Tutor Kong's test.


The Imperial Library only had one opening for a court lady, but both Prince Hao and Commandery Prince Xie had recommended someone for the position. This wasn't a simple matter to deal with, and Grand Tutor Kong had only come up with the idea of testing them after racking his brains for several hours.


A few moments later, the group of four entered the main hall of the Imperial Library. There weren't any tables, and only a large black wooden chair stood where the main seat should be. Above it was a painting of a teacher guiding the students.


The wisps of burning sandalwood suffused the main hall, calming one's mind and soul.


At this moment, Grand Tutor Kong entered the main hall.


Su Xi-er and Tan Ge bowed, but before they could say their greetings, Grand Tutor Kong had gestured for them to stop.


Grand Tutor Kong was dressed in navy blue official robes, wearing a stern expression on his thin face which also grew a grey short beard on his chin. 


Just then, the eunuch who led Su Xi-er to the Imperial Library approached Grand Tutor Kong and whispered a few words to him.


Grand Tutor Kong nodded, his gaze falling on Su Xi-er before shifting to Tan Ge.


Both of them are beauties with backgrounds that can’t be underestimated. If I accept either one without a test, it will bring trouble regardless of my decision.


Stroking his short grey beard, Grand Tutor Kong tested, "Everyone who entered the Imperial Library has something unique about them. Tell me, what's unique about you?"


Tan Ge couldn't fathom the question at all. What is there that is unique about me?


Just as Tan Ge hit a dead end, Su Xi-er smiled and spoke up. "What is your name?"


Her question immediately sparked inspiration within Tan Ge by reminding her that her name was unique. Hence, Tan Ge shared, "This peasant girl's name, Tan Ge, is special. The word ‘Tan’ in my name is the character for ‘sandalwood’, the material used in the construction of a zither. As for the word ‘Ge’, the character is the same as that for ‘song’, with the intent for me to meet friends through the literary arts and please others with songs."


Grand Tutor Kong nodded and complimented her. After that, his eyes fell on Su Xi-er. This woman reminded me of Tan Ge, but has now put herself in a passive position. I want to know how she will answer.


To Grand Tutor Kong’s surprise, Su Xi-er didn’t seem panicked at all. In fact, she was wearing a relaxed smile as she answered. "This servant's name is Su Xi-er. It's an ordinary name without any meaning, and was given by my parents. Every part of me, from my hair down to my skin, was received from my parents, and I have no way to change it. It is precisely because of this that this servant is purely average."

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Translation: Cosy

TLC: Rakumon

Edit: Lunarlark

Rakumon's Corner: 

Oopsies some competition? ><