Hearing what Chao Mu said, all the palace maids turned their attention to the figure in the pink peach blossom dress. Some recognised Commandery Princess Xie, and couldn’t help but sing her praises. “Commandery Princess Xie is indeed worthy to be one of Beimin’s three great beauties. The graceful aura that she exudes is simply different.”


The other palace maids agreed, and soon, compliments for Xie Liuli were all that could be heard.


Su Xi-er continued staring ahead, watching as Pei Qianhao raise his wine cup and accepted Xie Liuli’s gesture. He then downed the cup of wine that she had poured with everyone’s gaze focused on him.


While the officials were applauding, Xie Liuli sweetly smiled. She then slightly nodded as a form of courtesy.


With the wine pot in hand, she proceeded to Xie Yun’s side in an elegant manner.


Chao Mu initially wanted to say something, but decided against it when she saw Su Xi-er’s solemn expression.


At this moment, Pei Zheng held his wine cup as he stood up; he then bowed at everyone while declaring in a resounding voice, “The Pei and Xie families have had an arranged engagement for many years. Now that Commandery Princess Xie is already 18, and Prince Hao has long passed the marrying age…”


The group of palace maids were paying close attention when a few imperial guards with swords at their waists suddenly appeared, gesturing for them to leave the Imperial Garden.


As the opera performance had ended, the palace maids could no longer remain to watch. Thus, they could only sigh as they turned to leave.


Chao Mu pulled on Su Xi-er’s sleeve. “Time’s up, let’s go.” She then stepped forward, taking Su Xi-er with her.


Hence, Su Xi-er didn’t hear Pei Zheng’s subsequent words, nor the audience’s reaction.


Only after they left the Imperial Garden did Chao Mu let go of Su Xi-er and ask worriedly, “Is your heart feeling uncomfortable? I trust…”


Su Xi-er interrupted Chao Mu with a smile. “Commandery Princess Xie only poured some wine. I didn’t think too much.”


The palace maids passing by happened to hear her and immediately mocked, “Even if you did have any thoughts, what would you be able to say? Even if you’re a court lady from the Imperial Library, it can’t compare to Commandery Princess Xie’s status.”


Chao Mu was indignant, and before Su Xi-er could stop her, she had already walked up and slapped one of the palace maids across their face.


The palace maid touched her face as she glared in fury. “You! How dare you make a scene during the palace banquet! I am going to report it to the old maidservant!”


Chao Mu coldly snorted. “Go and report then. Why would I be scared of you?”


“ just wait!” The palace maid ran ahead while covering her swollen cheek.


Despite having kept silent all this while, Su Xi-er’s gaze deepened as she swiftly bent down to pick up a pebble before aiming it at the palace maid’s knee.


Ding! The pebble dropped to the ground, accompanied by the palace maid’s agonising screams. With the weather having gotten colder in winter, injuries would hurt more than usual.


The palace maid was left kneeling on the ground with one knee, causing it to be scratched by the icy cold and rough floor. She turned her head and fiercely glared at Su Xi-er and Chao Mu. “You two don’t know what’s good for you! I’m going to look for the Consort Dowager right after she returns to her repose palace!” Enduring the pain, the palace maid stood up and left.


Chao Mu was taken aback. Consort Dowager? Could it be Consort Dowager Guo? 


While she was still dumbstruck, Su Xi-er explained, “Consort Dowager Guo peacefully prays to Buddha, and stands aloof from worldly affairs. Her only regret is her son, the Second Imperial Prince. He still hasn’t returned to the palace, and acts as if he has forgotten about his Imperial Mother.”


Chao Mu’s eyes lit up. “That means that Consort Dowager Guo won’t come and look for trouble with us?”


“It was Consort Dowager Guo’s palace maid who first provoked us, so why would she have any reason to look for trouble?” Su Xi-er smiled, and turned to look behind, but noticed that Tan Ge had disappeared.


Chao Mu was stunned. “Where’s Tan Ge?”

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Translation: Rakumon

Edit: Lunarlark


Rakumon's Corner: 

Where do you think Tan Ge disappeared to? Hmm