Chapter 224: His Majesty says, hello, second uncle

Chapter 224: His Majesty says, hello, second uncle Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.

At this moment, a gray pigeon flew over Supreme Splendor Hall. When it saw the crowd below him, it resorted to circling the air above them as it called towards Ning Xiaoyao, “Xiaoyao, Wheat told me to pass on a message. Xie Anji’s going to leave by the north gate, coocoo~”

Ning Xiaoyao blew a kiss up at the gray pigeon.

“My name is A’Meng,”[1. A’Meng (阿蒙) - this is also the Chinese spelling for Amon, the Egyptian deity. By itself, A is a common prefix for nicknames while Meng means “ignorance, illiteracy, drizzly, hide the truth.”] the pigeon introduced itself.

Ning Xiaoyao sent A’Meng a few more flying kisses in succession.

“......” said everyone else. Is His Majesty raising this pigeon as well?

Big Boss Black couldn’t bear to watch the show of affection anymore and scratched Ning Xiaoyao.

“Bad cat!” the gray pigeon A’Meng cursed him before flying off.

Ning Xiaoyao rolled her eyes at Big Boss Black before turning back to Shadowgale and the Sect Head. “Let’s head off. That brat Xie Anji’s leaving from the northern gates.”

“Your Majesty is certain of this?” the Sect Head asked.

“Impudence!” Shadowgale scolded. Is His Majesty someone a mere commoner like you can doubt?

“Let’s get along now, let’s all get along. Don’t fight each other,” Ning Xiaoyao pulled Shadowgale to stand behind her, before adding to the Sect Head, “Don’t use poison on your own allies, ah. With me here, none of them will work anyway.”

“.....” said the Sect Head. I wasn’t going to use any poisons.

“Let’s go!” Ning Xiaoyao shouted at the Dragon Guards. Everyone formed a row to face the setting sun as they left the palace on horses headed toward the north city gates.

--

Meanwhile, Xie Anji had left the Grand Preceptor’s estate, where he stopped to kneel down and kowtow three times in front of Grand Preceptor Xie.

“Go with care,” Grand Preceptor Xie told him. “Remember your father’s words.”

Xie Anji stood up. He thought of how defenseless his mother would be now without him at the estate, and braced himself to say, “Father, this son doesn’t know when he’ll come back again. Mother’s health isn’t well, so I ask father to look after her more.”

Grand Preceptor Xie’s expression was cold. “The estate’s full of people. You’re still afraid that your mother will be mistreated?”

Xie Anji was left speechless by his father’s words, so he simply turned to board his carriage. Grand Preceptor Xie watched until the guards and horses were out of sight before telling his steward, “Go send people to follow him until he’s safely out of the city. If anything happens, they should hurry back and report to me.”

The steward accepted the orders before taking along a few retainers to follow Xie Anji’s group on horseback. Grand Preceptor Xie’s two pageboys picked up his chair and turned him back towards the house, just as Madame Mo and her two servant girls approached him.

“What is it?” Grand Preceptor Xie asked coldly as he ordered his pageboys to halt.

Madame Mo smiled and walked to his side with a bow. “Her ladyship heard that second young master was going to pay a call to a family friend for Grand Preceptor’s sake and wanted to see him one last time. What are your thoughts, Grand Preceptor?”

Grand Preceptor Xie stared at Madame Mo until the smile on her face grew strained, before replied, “Don’t you know that Xie Anji’s already left?”

“This concubine…”

“Stop your petty schemes,” Grand Preceptor Xie said coldly. This concubine was simply telling her that née Wang was making a row about wanting to see her son, thus smearing her name. The minor struggles and plots between jealous women to vie for favor only seemed loathsome to Grand Preceptor Xie now.

Madame Mo was left feeling thoroughly embarrassed.

“If anyone else disturbs the peace of this house,” Grand Preceptor Xie said ruthlessly, “This old man will take her life.”

Madame Mo lost all strength in her legs and crumpled to her knees. The two pageboys carried Grand Preceptor Xie into the estate with his servants following in his wake, leaving Madame Mo behind. Once they were completely gone, she had a servant girl help her to her feet.

“Madame?” another servant girl whispered, “What about her ladyship?”

Madame Mo straightened out her hair before replying, “I can only give an answer to her ladyship, what else?”

By now, née Wang had already moved from the main courtyard in Grand Preceptor Xie’s estate to a small, no-name residence at the southern end of the estate. The gate to the courtyard wasn’t locked, but the one to her rooms were. Four old female servants sent by Grand Preceptor Xie also took turns in pairs to stand guard over her. When Madame Mo arrived at the courtyard, she simply stood in front of the locked door. None of the servants moved to unlock it for her, but only slid open a slot near the top and announced, “Your ladyship, Madame Mo is here.”

Footsteps sounded from inside before née Wang’s face appeared at the slot. “Where’s second young master?”

Madame Mo bent one knee for a bow before replying, “Your ladyship, second young master has already departed. For the sake of passing on your words, this concubine was also scolded by Grand Preceptor.”

Lady Wang pounded a fist against the door as her voice grew shrill. “He’s already left?”

Madame Mo replied simply, “This concubine asks your ladyship to take pity on this concubine and stay at ease in your quarters to nurture your health.”

“You,” Lady Wang could plainly hear the mocking in her tone. “Just who do you think you are?”

Madame Mo turned towards the two female servants guarding the door. “If her ladyship has any further business in the future, you should tell the Grand Preceptor directly.” She then turned and left with her servants without waiting for their answer.

“Née Mo!” Lady Wang shouted from inside the house. Madame Mo ignored her shrieks and quickly left the courtyard. The two old servants glanced at Lady Wang through the door. Her clothes were still clean, but the hair she’d combed this morning was already disheveled, and there was a bit of grime on her face. As she stood in front of the door and pounded on the wood, they could hear her cursing Madame Mo while begging Grand Preceptor Xie for forgiveness. But soon enough, née Wang’s speech had devolved into incoherent mumbling.

The two servants exchanged worried glances. If they keep her locked up like this, her ladyship might really go insane.

“Madame, will there be trouble for you in the future after talking to her ladyship like that?” the servant on Madame Mo’s left asked quietly.

Madame Mo only smiled. “Her ladyship won’t resign herself to her fate. She thinks that I don’t know that she’s already sent for help from her maternal clan.”

The two servant girls gave a start at the news.

“Then the Wang Clan?” the servant girl on her right quickly questioned.

Madame Mo only grinned and shook her head, her voice soft. “She’s a woman who even murdered her own niece. Would the Wang Clan come save her just to see her hurt their own family members again?”

The two servant girls fell silent at the words. Although Lady Wang was pitiful now, even pathetic people had their hateful sides. When her ladyship was in power, many had suffered under her hands. Meanwhile, Madame Mo kept walking towards her courtyard. Lady Wang had given birth to three sons, but now only Xie Anji, the most useless one, was left. Perhaps Heaven had finally opened its eyes to her. Although her own son was concubine-born, he would still have a chance to rise if Xie Anji couldn’t support the family on his shoulders. Then their days could only improve.

--

Inside the study, the Grand Preceptor’s aide, Xu Yiming, bowed as he reported, “Grand Preceptor, the people in the army have already been arranged. Does Grand Preceptor want to see him?”

“Sir has explained everything to them?” Grand Preceptor Xie asked.

Xu Yiming replied, “Only the routes that the troops will take. That wasn’t very difficult.”

Grand Preceptor Xie nodded. East Ji was full of mountains, so as long as the rebel bands set strategic ambushes for General Tao Yu’s army along the way, they’d be sure to win.

“Does the Grand Preceptor want to grant him an audience?” Xu Yiming asked again.

“Wait until after Anji leaves the city,” Grand Preceptor Xie said. “As long as he can make it out safely, this old man will be free to act as I like.”

“Grand Preceptor is still worried that something might go wrong?” Xu Yiming asked.

Grand Preceptor Xie’s face broke into a bitter smile. “Too many things have gone wrong recently. This old man isn’t sure whether this time will go the same way.”

“Second young master departed in complete secrecy. If he hadn’t passed by her ladyship’s courtyard to kowtow, she never would have known he was leaving,” Xu Yiming replied. “It’s impossible for His Majesty to know, either.”

Grand Preceptor Xie believed the same thing, but he still couldn’t be absolutely certain.

--

A hour later found Ning Xiaoyao and her men blocking the public road outside of the north gates as Xie Anji’s caravan departed the city.

“Huh?” Ning Xiaoyao stuffed the last pieces of her apple into her mouth before puffing out her cheeks. “Just where are you lot all going?”

The Grand Preceptor’s men saw Ning Xiaoyao as their expressions turned blank. Why is he here?!

Xie Anji emerged from his carriage and felt his vision start to go black at the sight of Ning Xiaoyao.

“Eh?” Ning Xiaoyao said. “Isn’t this Xie Anji? Hello, second uncle.”

Screw you and your ‘second uncle!’ Xie Anji wanted to curse, but he knew he was no match for Ning Xiaoyao’s words if even his father couldn’t beat him.

“You’ve seen His Majesty, but you’re still not kneeling?” Shadowgale yelled at Xie Anji.

The Grand Preceptor estate’s men didn’t even know what to do at this moment, so all of them looked towards Xie Anji. Yan Hong took this chance to move closer to Ning Xiaoyao and murmured, “Your Majesty, there are denizens of the jianghu in that crowd. Their martial skills aren’t half bad, so Your Majesty needs to be careful.”

Ning Xiaoyao turned towards Yan Hong. The woman wasn’t very tall, but she noticed the female’s perky chest at first glance. Damn it, how did she grow them? A flash of jealousy rose in her breast before Ning Xiaoyao said, “No worries, I can fight, ah.”

Yan Hong only looked at Ning Xiaoyao with an indulgent smile.

“Alright, stop grinning,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “Don’t try to seduce me with your smile.”

“.....” said Yan Hong.

“Speaking of which, how’d you get a chest that big for your height?” Ning Xiaoyao cocked her head at Yan Hong as she murmured. “Can you tell me about it?” If she knew the secret, she could try it out herself.

Yan Hong was an experienced woman of the world, but Ning Xiaoyao’s words were enough to turn her face red. She never thought His Majesty could be so lecherous despite still looking like a child. (Author: She’s asking for her own sake…)

“You can’t say?” Ning Xiaoyao pressed.

“This young woman was born this way, ah,” Yan Hong finally managed to answer.

Born that way? It was all natural?! Ning Xiaoyao’s jealousy towards Yan Hong suddenly rose to fever-pitch. Ning Yu didn’t eat badly at all, so why wasn’t she born that way?! “That can’t be right,” Ning Xiaoyao suddenly came to a realization. “You must be fooling me. What kind of baby looks like that when they first come out of the womb? Wouldn’t that make them a freak?”

By now, Yan Hong had grown used to Ning Xiaoyao’s hoodlum ways, so she quirked her lips into a charming smile. “Your Majesty, this young woman grew and grew until she turned into this. Wouldn’t that count as being born this way, too?”

Dangit!

Ning Xiaoyao felt that the world was completely unfair in that moment!

“.....” said Shadowgale from the front, where he and the others had already drawn their swords. What time is it now for His Majesty to be fretting over Yan Hong’s chest size? Just what was the point of our trip this time?!


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