Su Xi-er, why are you so lucky? You’re the real Western Region Imperial Princess, and Du Ling still doesn’t believe that I’m his younger sister to this day. If it weren’t for the support from the left faction and the Grand Empress Dowager, I wouldn’t even have my current position. To think that you will never know how lucky you are with such a powerful husband and older brother… The only evidence of your identity, the jade pendant, was even taken away by Du Ling as he denounced my worthiness.
It’s true that I’m not worthy. The jade pendant is pure, while I’m already sullied, even going so far as to seduce the leader of the left faction in order to obtain his support.
It is just like my dance, only able to light the flames of passion among the male members of the audience. Meanwhile, Su Xi-er’s was like the pure jade pendant, invoking looks of pure admiration from the very same audience with her elegance.
Su Xi-er completed her dance as Du Rin was deep in thought, but all who were watching remained entranced. Only once she returned to her seat did everyone snap out of their reverie.
Applause sounded, and a profuse string of compliments could be heard.
“Princess Consort Hao, you’re really skilled. This subordinate finally understands why Prince Hao dotes on you so much. A very worthy lady!”
“Exactly, this subordinate would be extremely heartened if my daughter had just a tiny bit of Princess Consort Hao’s skills.”
Su Xi-er smiled sweetly. “Thank you for your compliments.”
Seeing how polite and humble Princess Consort Hao was, they were reminded of how she skilfully engaged Crown Prince Chu at the palace banquet. Tonight, she was the one who had punctured the Western Region Imperial Princess’ arrogance. It feels great!
Du Rin remained silent as she listened to the shower of compliments, only able to admit that Su Xi’er’s dance had a soul of its own.
Soul? Ha, what a joke. If Su Xi-er’s soul is pure, then what is mine? Filthy?
Pei Qianhao lifted his wind cup and addressed everyone. “This Prince presents a toast to everyone.”
Immediately, Du Rin said, “Prince Hao, aren’t you planning on having a child after getting married? Should you be drinking?” She paused before continuing, “Wait, you’ve already drunk in the afternoon. That won’t do. Princess Consort Hao, you have to lecture him on this after you return to your residence.”
She spoke with a hint of playfulness, but displeasure was apparent in Pei Qianhao’s eyes. “Your Highness, are you trying to say something by continuously poking your nose into this Prince’s personal affairs?”
The atmosphere turned awkward instantly. Everyone knew that Prince Hao was angered. No matter how wilful the Western Region Imperial Princess was, she should never have targeted the Princess Consort!
Du Rin laughed. “This Princess shouldn’t have done that. Please forgive me, Prince Hao.”
She did not sound the least bit sincere, even though she was asking for forgiveness!
Commander Zhao Wu stood up and tried to salvage the situation. “This is the first time the Imperial Princess is visiting another country, and there may be some customs here that she is unfamiliar with. I hope Prince Hao will not take this to heart. Allow me to present you a toast as an apology.”
“Don’t come to Beimin if you’re unfamiliar with our customs.” Pei Qianhao’s unexpected reply was meant to utterly embarrass Du Rin.
However, Du Rin did not react to his provocation. Instead, she smiled at him. “Prince Hao, you’ve misunderstood this Princess. This Princess presents you a toast as an apology.” She then poured wine into her cup and downed the contents in one single shot.
Su Xi-er had been observing Du Rin, and realised that the latter had built up her tolerance for alcohol in just a few months. Despite the amount of wine she had drunk, Du Rin’s face isn’t red at all, nor does she look the least bit tipsy.
Commander Zhao Wu’s gaze swept across the audience. The Grand Empress Dowager’s first choice for the Imperial Princess’ consort was Prince Hao. After witnessing how Prince Hao conducted himself today, I feel that the Grand Empress Dowager has a rather astute eye. However, it would be impossible to make this particular match. With Commandery Prince Xie crippled, the only remaining choice is the powerless Third Imperial Prince.
Scanning through the audience again, finding himself to be in a difficult situation when he found that none of them could match up to Du Rin. I have to report the current situation to the Grand Empress Dowager first.
The Western Region’s goal of forging a marriage alliance with Beimin had been kept well under wraps. Du Rin’s trip to Beimin was simply to familiarise herself with some of the country’s prominent figures.Previous Chapter Next Chapter