The crowd outside the yamen cheered when they saw Lin Haihai emerge safely. She bowed with clasped hands towards them to thank these kind-hearted people. She was deeply moved. She had always silently offered her help and never thought about getting a reward. However, it was with this state of mind that she ended up getting more than what she expected.
When Xiao Jueran heard that the empress was working at the plantation as a technical advisor, she was eager to go have a look. Lin Haihai was happy to accompany her, but she had to move back into the sixth prince's residence tonight. She still hadn't discussed it with Yang Hanlun to see if he was willing. So she went to Linhai Hospital to ask Ming Yue to speak to him. If he agreed, she would move in this evening. If not, she wasn’t going to insist on it. Ming Yue started to say something but hesitated.
"What is it?" Lin Haihai inquired in confusion.
Ming Yue looked up and asked, “Master, are you sure you’re going to move back?”
Lin Haihai smiled, “Yeah. What’s wrong?”
Ming Yue worriedly said, "Master, I know that as the princess consort, you should move back into the sixth prince's residence. However, the sixth prince is about to marry a well-known talented lady. She's as beautiful as a fairy. I'm afraid that Master will be mistreated when you go back!"
So the girl was worried about this. Lin Haihai laughed, "It's alright. Just go. Your master will handle it!"
Ming Yue looked at Xiao Jueran. Xiao Jueran also looked worried but she stayed silent. So Ming Yue could only leave.
Yang Hanlun had been afraid to see Lin Haihai these past few days. The closer to the wedding he got, the more tangled his emotions became. He had looked forward to this marriage for so many years. His wish had always been to marry Birou, but why was he feeling dejected instead of joy?
"Your Highness, there's a girl named Ming Yue here!" the steward bowed, reporting respectfully.
Yang Hanlun turned. Ming Yue is here? Is she in trouble? He rushed out in a panic.
At the main hall, Ming Yue was sitting on a chair in a daze. Seeing that Yang Hanlun had arrived, she kneeled and politely stated, "Greetings, Your Highness!"
Yang Hanlun stared at her and questioned with a hoarse voice, "Are you here because she's in trouble?"
“Master sent me to ask Your Highness if she could move back in!” Ming Yue respectfully answered without raising her head.
Yang Hanlun was ecstatic upon hearing this. “Really? She’s willing to come back. That’s great!”
She was willing to move back in. Does that mean she has accepted Birou? In truth, Lin Haihai had never objected to the marriage, but her indifference made him uneasy. Now that she was moving back in, did that mean she no longer bore a grudge?
"Your Highness is willing to let Master move back on?" Ming Yue inquired again. If the sixth prince was willing to let her move back, Master might be better off. However, Miss Chen was the sixth prince's true love; she would naturally be doted on once she was married to the prince. Ming Yue was afraid this would sadden her Master even more!
Yang Hanlun looked at her oddly. "Why would you ask that? Of course I want her to move back!"
"Would someone like Master be able to accept sharing her husband?" Ming Yue was often by Lin Haihai's side, so she had an understanding of Lin Haihai's perception of marriage and love. Ming Yue bravely asked this question because she knew that Lin Haihai would not tolerate her husband being with another woman.
Yang Hanlun was stunned. He had considered this question before. However, with the marriage coming up, he didn't dare or want to think about this question. He didn't want to lose either woman. Birou had grown up with him. In his heart, she was just as important as his mother. Yang Hanlun didn't want her to be wronged; he wanted her to be happy for the rest of her life. As for Lin Haihai, she wasn't his ideal woman, but this woman, who was no longer his consort, consumed his thoughts all the time. He wanted to hold her hand and accompany her through the ups and downs of the years to come.
How wonderful would it be if he could spend the rest of his life with Lin Haihai? Just the two of them, together. The thought had crossed his mind when he was most consumed by his affection for her, making him forget about Chen Birou. However, he hadn't lost his senses completely. Chen Birou had been a constant in his life for twenty years. Even though he knew he was in love with Lin Haihai, Yang Hanlun was used to being good to Che Birou. Doting on her and seeing her smile had become a habit that was ingrained into his life.
At that moment, he was weighed down by the thoughts he had. When he was just a youth, he saw how miserable the women of the imperial harem were, so he made a promise that he would only marry one person. And yet he ended up in this dilemma.
Ming Yue sighed and bowed as a farewell. Master was such a pure woman. She was going to have it tough fighting for favor in this residence.
The steward stood behind Yang Hanlun and saw his Master's sad expression. He couldn't bear it and tried to say something, but he didn't know what to say. In the steward's mind, a man having multiple wives and concubines was a normal thing. What was wrong with enjoying life with multiple women? Wasn’t that the most blissful kind of life? Why was the prince worried? The steward didn't understand, so he kept silent and stayed beside his master.
“Your Highness, Consort Lin hasn’t tried on her ceremonial robe yet. We don’t know if it’ll fit her?” A seamstress reported with a red robe in her hand.
Yang Hanlun turned and stared at the dazzling red robe. The first consort must wear it when accepting tea from the secondary consort.  This wedding would be doing two women wrong. “Put it aside for now. When Consort Lin returns tonight, you can bring it over for her to try.”
No wonder I haven’t seen Consort Lin at all, Chuntao thought. Apparently, the princess consort has been driven off to some other place. The only reason why she returns is for the wedding. According to rumors, the incoming secondary consort is the one the sixth prince truly likes. It wouldn’t benefit Chuntao if she stood on the wrong side.
Yang Hanlun pondered for a long time, but he couldn’t think himself out of this miserable feeling. He recalled that his imperial elder brother never became vexed because of a woman even though he had three thousand beauties in his harem. Maybe it’s because he’s never loved them.
In truth, Yang Hanlun had overestimated his imperial elder brother. Shortly, he would learn that his seemingly indifferent brother was more enamored than he let on. It was only because of his identity and their brotherhood that he hid his love, so deeply that no one was the wiser.
Currently, Yang Hanlun would never anticipate the many things that would occur after he married Chen Birou. Was Miss Chen truly as harmless as her appearance suggested? What would happen to Lin Haihai when she was living with them? Yang Hanlun hadn't thought about these things, and so their future was doomed to be fraught with chaos and trouble.
Imperial Palace Entrance
The second prince arrived at the entrance to the Imperial Palace. There, he met Chen Luoqing and Luo Kuangyuan, who were going to meet the emperor. Chen Luoqing could tell how deep in thought the second prince was, so he asked, "Your Highness, what's the matter?"
The second prince told them everything that had happened, bringing the matter to Luo Kuangyuan's attention. With shining eyes, the official exclaimed, "Let's hurry and head into the palace to speak to the emperor. There’s more to this matter than meets the eye!"
The second prince and Chen Luoqing looked at each other with a sinking feeling in their gut. If their instincts were right, he must have been behind everything.
The three of them rushed to the Imperial Study without saying more. Yang Shaolun had just come back from Ci'an Palace. The empress dowager had prepared a lot of gifts for the sixth prince's wedding tomorrow. She had called over Yang Shaolun to help her choose gifts. Yang Shaolun looked at the many pieces of jewelry in front of him, but he could only think about Lin Haihai’s stubborn expression, her sadness that night, her warmth, her ruthlessness, and her indifference. All of these thoughts were like a sharp knife carving into his heart.
He didn't want to ruin his Imperial Mother's joy, so he humored her before taking his leave. She must be in a lot of pain right now. Why else would she choose to leave? Would she really leave? She said it was because she loved him too much. If she really loved him that much, why would she leave? He couldn't make sense of it. Just the thought of him not being able to see her in the future made him feel like his heart was being stabbed.
"Your Majesty, the second prince, Official Luo and General Chen request for an audience!" Xiao Yuan came in and reported.
Yang Shaolun’s eyes narrowed. "Quick, send them in!"
The three men came in at the same time and respectfully said, "Greetings to Your Majesty!" Yang Shaolun was secretly surprised. For the three of them to come together, it must not be a simple matter.
“Rise. What happened for the three of you to visit me together?" Yang Shaolun looked at the three men from behind his royal desk.
"Imperial Elder Brother, the price of medicine has been very high recently. There's someone buying vast amounts of medicine and hoarding it, creating a shortage in the market," the second prince replied with a solemn look.
"I've heard about this and have already ordered a thorough investigation. There's no need to make a fuss!" Yang Shaolun thought they were overreacting.
"It's not the end of it. The one hoarding the medicine is very likely Grand Councilor Yan. Today, outside the capital magistrate's yamen, I saw our sixth sister-in-law being shackled by yamen runners. Apparently, they were going to exile her. The capital magistrate didn't know her identity, so he charged her with a lot of falsified crimes. They were going kill her when they escorted her to be exiled!"
"What! How dare the capital magistrate do that? How did... our sixth sister-in-law get involved?" Yang Shaolun was shocked. That scum of an official had become even more audacious in ignoring the law!
“The capital magistrate colluded with the Baoyuan Pharmacy. Using the pharmacy as front, he bought large amounts of medicine from everywhere in the country. According to Sixth sister-in-law, she started investigating it after she found out about it by accident. Except she was arrested by the capital magistrate's men before she got to the bottom of it. I don’t know for sure what they’ve done to her, but Sixth sister-in-law was covered in injuries when I saw her. It’s very likely that she’s been tortured!" The second prince angrily exclaimed. He was going to interrogate that scum once he went back.
"Torture?" Yang Shaolun was so furious he was shaking. "There's no need to interrogate him, just kill him!" Covered in injuries? Why was she so meddlesome? These were matters of the imperial court, what was she getting involved for? Anger and concerns warred in his heart; he was angry that he had failed to protect her. For a moment, Yang Shaolun lost all rationality and allowed anger to dominate his action.
Luo Kuangyuan and Chen Luoqing glanced at each other and couldn't refrain from sighing. Luo Kuangyuan was a very intelligent person. From a glance, he could tell what the emperor was thinking. As his subject, Luo Kuangyuan knew it was better to not ask about the emperor's personal affairs.
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Would you choose obligation or your true love? Imagine if you've been dating this person for 10 years and then you realized you actually love someone else... ahhhh