Chapter 563.1: Morning Court (1)

Qin Huaiyuan and his two younger brothers had just set foot into the main hall when they saw née Sun quickly walking up to welcome them. 

“Milord, has our daughter returned? Everyone on the streets was talking about it when I went out today!” 

Qin Huaiyan nodded with a smile. “His Majesty is benevolent and arranged an imperial manor outside the capital for our daughter and His Highness to spend the night at.” 

“They aren’t coming straight home?” née Sun asked in surprise. “It's been almost a year since I’ve last seen our daughter after her wedding in the sixth month of the last year. I really miss her very much, and who knows what she’s suffered in Tatar! What if His Highness doesn’t treat her with the same trust and love as before?” 

“Don’t worry,” Qin Huaiyan chuckled when he saw how worriedly his wife was frowning. “The prince is a treasured subject of His Majesty, and the emperor isn’t a heartless man who discards the old for the new. I’m sure our daughter will be home soon.” 

Née Sun adroitly picked up on how her husband’s tone was different from usual and snapped into perfect circumspection on the spot. 

“You’re right, milord.” She nodded with a stiff expression. “His Majesty is a wise ruler and the prince is a faithful subject. Our daughter is also a kind and virtuous wife, so there shouldn’t be any problems.”   

Qin Huaiyan nodded and the group made for the rear residence to pay their good wishes to the old dowager. 

Another round of sickness had struck the old dowager a few days ago, so she wasn’t in the best of spirits. Combined with her grave disappointment in Qin Huaiyuan during this period, she only scowled when she saw her firstborn and redirected her attention to her second son. 

Upon making their bows, the old dowager acknowledged only her current favorite. “So you’ve come back, Xiu’er, come sit by mother. It’s warm here.” 

The second elder master nodded smilingly and took a seat in front of the old dowager. The second madame also walked in, personally serving them tea. 

The old dowager ignored her eldest son and daughter-in-law and couldn’t be bothered to even look at her third son. She pulled the second elder master into an animated discussion before finally asking about Pang Xiao’s return to the capital. “Is what I heard them say earlier true?” 

The second elder master’s expression stiffened. Who’d run their mouth and told the old dowager about things happening outside?? 

The old dowager was in poor health and needed quiet rest and recovery. More important was that Pang Xiao had been sent to an imperial manor outside the capital upon his return. Those who weren’t in the know praised the emperor for being so considerate of his subjects, to afford them some space to rest in before summoning them to court. However, those who read the situation clearly knew this was just another form of house arrest. 

Who knew what kinds of punishment and denouncements would be forthcoming after this? 

Given the situation, no one knew whether the Qin family would be implicated or not. Therefore, there were undoubtedly numerous pairs of eyes fixed on them from the shadows.

The second elder master deeply worried that the old dowager would say something untoward that’d travel into the emperor’s ears and create trouble for the family. He looked at Qin Huaiyuan for help. 

His older brother was much more experienced at dealing with such things. Right now, he had no idea how to respond.

“Mother, recuperation is the true task at hand.” Qin Huaiyuan responded to the second elder master’s signal for help. “You can’t change the affairs outside the family, so asking about them will only result in fruitless labor.” 

“Do I not even have the right to ask anymore?!” the old dowager flew into a rage. “You took the power to handle matters of the household from me and now want me to be blind, deaf, and dumb?? You unfilial son!”

“Mother, please calm down,” Qin Huaiyuan said in exasperation. “Don’t be so quick to anger, it might harm your body.”

“I might be able to live for a few more years if you spoke less!” the old dowager retorted. “Besides, I was speaking with Xiu’er, what are you butting in for?!” 

She returned to speaking lovingly to her second son, “There are quite a lot of rumors outside all having to do with how that wretched Pang Zhixi betrayed His Majesty’s favor and grace. He committed treason and defected to the Tatars for the sake of a woman! Now that he’s returned, who knows how the emperor will punish him?

“Our family was so unlucky in becoming in-laws with the Pangs. This is all because of that no-good Yining who welcomed disaster through our front door! Judging from His Majesty’s current attitude, he might assign all of the crimes to the Pang family, what a good thing that only Yining married into their family! I was incredibly wise and far-seeing in not marrying off eighth lass to that good-for-nothing Pang. Oh, the trouble we would be in if two Qin daughters were Pang wives!

“Now, I’m telling you all this and I’m telling you good, keep to ourselves! Break off all ties to that family so we’re not dragged down by them. Us Qins have experienced so many trials and hardships to finally be able to live a stable and peaceful life now. We can’t afford to put a single toe wrong in this matter, I won’t stand for it!” 

The old dowager shook her head as she spoke, the very picture of stalwart benevolence in the face of arduous suffering.

Née Sun struggled to repress her anger. If this old woman hadn’t been Qin Huaiyuan’s birth mother, she would've already dished out a few slaps to the face! This was what they meant by a shameless and despicable woman who was utterly devoid of gratitude! 

She really couldn’t be bothered to quarrel with the old woman. It’s not worth the bad reputation I’ll get if I infuriate her to death. Instead, she turned her heel and left without another word.

“Look at her, putting on airs even though she’s the one who failed to teach her own daughter well,” sneered the old dowager and spat on the ground as she watched Née Sun leave.

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etvolare's Thoughts

Damn, that was a stiff transition by née Sun! But she's learning and so much better than before, I'm proud of her omg!

And really, someone gimme a stick for that old hag.