Tan Ge relaxed her fists and looked at Su Xi-er with a sliver of a smile in her eyes. “I have thought everything through, and I might as well stay in the Imperial Library since I don’t have a place I belong to anymore. It’s also likely the safest place in the imperial palace.”


“Since that’s the case, I hope that you can continue living properly from now on.” Su Xi-er smiled back.


Chao Mu eyes kept darting between the two of them before she finally reached out her hands to grab Su Xi-er and Tan Ge, pulling them together. “From now on, the Imperial Library will be Tan Ge’s home, so just treat us as your family.”


Feeling her icy cold fingers wrapped by the warmth of the other two, Tan Ge felt her heart move, and a trace of warmth made its way into her gaze. “It’s so nice to have you both.”


Su Xi-er smiled. “It’s not early anymore, and it’s only going to get windier at night. Let’s wash up and rest early.”


Tan Ge nodded. “Alright.” But as she pulled her hand out of Chao Mu’s, she felt the frigid wind blow past them. Tan Ge jolted at the chilly feeling, as if the wind had travelled from her hands into her heart, jolting her awake from her warm dream into a cold and cruel reality.


She couldn’t forget the words her father had said when she had returned to the Tan Residence.


“Daughter, it’s because of Commandery Prince Xie’s help that the Tan Residence hasn’t reached the point of selling our estate yet. Your Dad had no choice but to kill your Mum. Tan Ge, if you go against Commandery Prince Xie again and hesitate to act, the next person to die could be your Dad.”


Despite the worry gnawing at her heart, Tan Ge appeared very calm on the surface, managing to enter her room and close the door behind her before anyone noticed her inner turmoil.


Chao Mu found her calmness strange, and looked towards Su Xi-er. “There’s something wrong with Tan Ge. When she returned to the Tan Residence, could she have suff…”


Su Xi-er interrupted her. “Don’t intervene in her matters anymore, and let her recuperate on her own. In addition, don’t get close to her the next few days, understand?”


She naturally had her own reasons for advising so. Tan Ge’s thoughts are pure, but she might have been threatened when she went back to the Tan Residence. Right now, her heart must be rife with turbulent emotions. In the end, it all comes down to what she decides to do with them.


Chao Mu didn’t quite understand why, but obediently listened when she saw Su Xi-er’s solemn expression. I won’t disturb Tan Ge for the next few days then.


“Come on, let’s go back to our rooms to rest.” Su Xi-er patted Chao Mu’s shoulder and went to her room.


When Chao Mu sat down in her room, she looked in the direction of Tan Ge’s own abode. I hope she can get over her trauma soon


As for Tan Ge herself, she was currently sitting on a wooden stool with her fists clenched together. It was a long time before she finally took out a packet of medicine from her sleeves with shaking hands.


She was very clear about what kind of medicinal powder it contained. It’s colourless, odourless, and dissolves in tea, silently robbing its victim of their life.


Many memories flashed past her mind. Her father’s helplessness, Commandery Prince Xie’s smiling face, and the smiles of Chao Mu along with Su Xi-er.


Tan Ge immediately placed the packet down. No, I can’t. I mustn’t do something like this.


With winter around the corner, the nights had become much colder, and the usually illuminating moonlight seemed to have become frigid.


The next day, Shu Xian still didn’t come back, and Xiao Yuanzi disappeared off to the Imperial Household Department to help out as usual. Even Grand Tutor Kong became busy after asking for Su Xi-er’s birth information. As a result, the talkative Chao Mu found the Imperial Library desolate, lacking anyone she could talk to.


The days passed by, and on the day before the Winter Solstice palace banquet, a piece of news had swiftly circulated throughout the palace. 

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Translation: Rakumon

Edit: Lunarlark


Rakumon's Corner: 

Things are really tough for Tan Ge man ;_;