Tan Ge immediately followed, and Grand Tutor Kong began to instruct Su Xi-er on how to do her job in managing the books, as well as some of the rules of the Imperial Library.


Outside of the main hall, Xie Yun stopped on a path and remarked, “This Prince didn’t expect you to lose.”


Tan Ge lowered her head and softly admitted, “This peasant girl isn’t as talented as her; I willingly accept my defeat.”


Xie Yun looked at her. “Patriarch Tan is anxious and impatient, but you are the exact opposite. If this Prince hadn’t helped you, you would have had to return to the Tan Residence again.”


“The truth is that this peasant girl doesn’t want your help, Commandery Prince Xie. Maybe this peasant girl would have left the palace if not for your interference.” Tan Ge suddenly raised her head with tears glimmering in her eyes. Any dreams of freedom I have are now gone, destroyed by this man before me. Unless someone raises my status, I will be a servant for life. If I was outside of the imperial palace, perhaps I could still try to be a normal civilian.


Xie Yun suddenly raised his hand and tucked a loose hair behind her ear. “Leave the palace? You really think that you can be an ordinary civilian? Although there aren’t many of them, you’ve already met people like those three brothers. Tan Ge, since you’ve already entered the palace, you should properly carry out your responsibilities.”


Tan Ge’s heart trembled. Commandery Prince Xie is threatening me.


Xie Yun put his hand away and looked at the deep blue sky. “The sky is blue everywhere. Why do you care whether you are in the palace or on the outside? Su Xi-er is someone Prince Hao has taken a liking to. You should be smart enough to understand why this Prince sent you here at the same time as Su Xi-er and made you a palace maid just now.”


After that, his gaze landed on her.


Tan Ge’s lips were tightly pursed together. How could I not understand? It’s only that I don’t wish to become one of Commandery Prince Xie’s pawns.


“Commandery Prince Xie…”


“No one in this world can reject this Prince. Tan Ge, do you understand?”


His voice was gentle, but full of malice. Seeing that Tan Ge didn’t respond, Xie Yun began to depart. Even after he had disappeared from her sight, her fists were still tightly clenched.


Why are the heavens treating me like this?! The only reason I entered the palace in the first place is because my father threatened to kill Cui-er if I refused.


Her desperately yelling out for me broke my heart. I wanted to run into a pillar and commit suicide, but I couldn’t. Even if my parents don’t like me, I cannot run away from my family. The blood of the Tan Family runs through my veins.


It just so happened that this was the moment that Su Xi-er walked out. It is a sunny day today, but Tan Ge’s back looks so desolate.


When Tan Ge finally put away her pained expression and turned around, she was surprised to see Su Xi-er staring at her. In the end, she politely smiled and greeted her. “Su Xi-er.”


Tan Ge’s voice is pleasant to listen to. She would be a very talented singer if she tried.


Su Xi-er didn’t call her name, choosing instead to gently nod and walk forward. She needed to go to the book room to organise and record the new books that arrived the day before.


As Tan Ge watched Su Xi-er walking away, she was suddenly envious. Her status is low, and she doesn’t feel the pressure of carrying the hopes of her family on her back.


Of course, Tan Ge didn’t know that Su Xi-er was carrying around an even heavier burden than her own. It wasn’t just a family, but a whole nation. 


“Tan Ge, Grand Tutor Kong has instructed you to go to the Imperial Household Department to register your name. Be sure to get some clothes for early winter. From now on, you will be a palace maid of the Imperial Library.” The voice of a woman could be heard; it was the palace maid who had previously looked after all the miscellaneous things in the Imperial Library on her own.


Tan Ge smiled. “Thank you, I will go now.”


“You can accompany me in the future. My name is Chao Mu. Grand Tutor Kong gave me the name; it sounds nice right? I heard that there are two women who arrived at the Imperial Library, and that the other one is called Su Xi-er. Where is she?” Chao Mu smiled brightly, her innocent look stunning Tan Ge.

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Translation: Sangria

TLC: Rakumon

Edit: Lunarlark


Sangria: Poor Tan Ge...

Rakumon: I feel like there's this large invisible hand that's constantly pulling Tan Ge away from the life she seeks as she desperately tries to escape from this fate ><

What do you think Commandery Prince Xie's goals are?