Tan Ge was dressed in purple from head to toe, and also used a veil to cover half her face. There were only three imperial consorts in the palace, and since Dignified Consort Liu was the only one who wore purple, everyone Tan Ge passed by addressed her as such.
Although the new emperor of Dongling had yet to turn eighteen, he had already taken three consorts in order to stabilise the court. As for Chao Mu, all of the major court officials knew that their emperor had hidden another woman away. He was also adamant that she was the empress despite the officials disagreeing.
They had been extremely dissatisfied to start, but simmered down after hearing that it was a dead woman. If she’s already dead, she is unlikely to be able to wield any sort of power over the court. Thus, they left the Emperor to his devices.
A woman in pink holding a round fan sashayed over as she spotted Tan Ge, mistaking her for Dignified Consort Liu like many others.
“Elder Sister we haven’t met in a while. Have you heard about the Empress Palace catching fire? How are you so calm about it?”
The lady in front of Tan Ge raised her brows as she fanned herself in the icy wind. Tan Ge thought, This lady must be mad. She then walked away while ignoring the other woman, attempting to sneak out of the palace under the guise of Dignified Consort Liu while everyone was concentrated on the fire.
In an attempt to try to stop her from leaving, the woman in pink said, “Elder Sister, you might hold a higher rank because of your birthrights, but we are both serving His Majesty now. You must curb the arrogance that you had in the Liu Residence. The palace is not a place where you can come and go as you please.”
Tan Ge stopped and turned back to shoot her a piercing gaze. The lady stopped fanning herself, finding that the woman before her somehow felt different. Though she was still charming and elegant, there seemed to be a domineering air about her now.
“Elder Sister, I’m just doing my part to remind you. You shouldn’t be thinking about leaving the palace all the time. The things that you do in secret...”
This piqued Tan Ge’s interest instantly. She imitated Dignified Consort Liu’s voice as she asked, “What did this consort do in secret?”
“Elder Sister, what’s wrong with your voice?” The lady felt something was amiss.
“The weather isn’t great, and my throat doesn’t feel well.”
“I see; you should be inside resting then. Although His Majesty did say that you can leave whenever you wanted, he might not allow you back inside if you really decide to leave in a fit.” The lady snorted and sashayed away.
A tiny smile appeared at the corner of Tan Ge’s lips. I was right to pretend to be Dignified Consort Liu!
Continuing on her way, she felt that the heavens were on her side! Since the Emperor has already approved it, all I have to do now is locate the Dignified Consort Palace and get a carriage to take her out. The Empress’ palace catching fire and Dignified Consort Liu hearing that from the Emperor...everything is working in my favor!
Continuing her streak of luck, Tan Ge was able to meet a palace maid from the Dignified Consort Palace along the way. After arriving, she took some silver and jewellery from the Dignified Consort Palace before boarding a horse carriage.
In the meantime, the fire at the Empress Palace was not abating. Pei Qianhao and Du Ling were searching for Su Xi-er in the compound, and were about to go insane from being unable to find her! Chu Xian rushed in after a few moments and anxiously dashed into the icy room.
1. Imperial consorts tend to address each other as ‘elder sister’ or ‘younger sister’ (‘jiejie’ or ‘meimei’).