Chapter 262: His Majesty wears a flowery dress Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
“That’s right,” Ji Yuerong finished smoothing out her sleeves and looked back at Ning Xiaoyao. “Your Majesty, you’re unhurt?”
Ning Xiaoyao pursed her lips. Miss Ji’s reaction time is really something else. It took her this long to ask that question.
“Ah!” Ji Yuerong suddenly got it. “Your Majesty, you were playing dead.”
Ning Xiaoyao waved a hand at her. “Whether I’m dead or alive isn’t important right now. The main point is that I need to send someone out of the city tonight without the Grand Preceptor finding out.”
“How about putting them in disguise?” Ji Yuerong suggested.
Ning Xiaoyao shook her head. “That kind of stunt won’t pass someone at the Grand Preceptor’s level.”
“That old crook!” Ji Yuerong cursed.
“It’s mostly because I’m inexperienced,” Ning Xiaoyao admitted. “I’ve never caused chaos in the past before.”
“......” said Ji Yuerong. Why would an emperor like you need to do that in the first place?
Ning Xiaoyao clutched her head in thought, bitterly wishing for a solution. Meanwhile, Wheat returned from his flight. With Ji Yuerong around, he avoided Ning Xiaoyao’s shoulder and perched on a branch above her head instead to shout, “Xiaoyao, latest news! Chen Lu might not live until tomorrow. The Grand Preceptor will be visiting him in Fangqi Lane tonight instead.”
Ning Xiaoyao looked up at Wheat and blew him a flying kiss. Wheat chirped at her twice before flying off. Ji Yuerong stared at the empty branch and said, “Your Majesty, why do I feel like that sparrow was talking to you just now?”
It’s not just a feeling. Ning Xiaoyao sighed. “That’s not the important thing. Let’s worry about the present first.”
“We’ll make a row at their door,” Ji Yuerong declared again.
Looks like that’s the only trick she’s got. Ning Xiaoyao had no choice but to hug her head and keep thinking. Soon enough, a cloth ball rolled to a stop at Ning Xiaoyao’s feet. Following that, Xiaoqiu appeared like a missile from the stone path and dove into her lap. The next second, Ning Xiaoyao’s clothes were soaked in the little boy’s tears. Everyone had heard about the sad death of their emperor in the city streets, so Xiaoqiu had caught wind of it in the palace too. He had been scared to death by the news.
“Xiaoqiu be good, don’t cry,” Ning Xiaoyao coaxed the child as she hugged him. “I’m fine. See? I’m really okay, ah.”
Xiaoqiu clutched tightly at Ning Xiaoyao’s clothes, afraid that she’d disappear as soon as he let go. Erya caught up soon afterwards and immediately turned teary-eyed when she saw Ning Xiaoyao herself. Ning Xiaoyao hastily beckoned towards the girl, who ran over and rested her head against a shoulder before she started to bawl.
Ning Xiaoyao really felt that she’d suffered a big loss this time. Not only did she bleed for nothing, she even scared her own people half to death. In the end, it was Grand Preceptor Xie, that jerk, who got to watch a big show!
Ji Yuerong patted Xiaoqiu’s head and said, “Xiaoqiu’s looking better and better these days.”
“That’s true,” Ning Xiaoyao nodded. Xiaoqiu wasn’t the yellow-skinned, skinny bean sprout he used to be, but white and plump. His arms and legs were like the stout joints of a lotus root, his tummy round as a ball just like his name. Ning Xiaoyao comforted Erya and Xiaoqiu for awhile before the siblings stopped crying. Looking at the little boy clinging to his side, Ning Xiaoyao suddenly asked Ji Yuerong, “Actually, how many children does Chen Lu have?”
Ji Yuerong grew astonished. “Your Majesty, you don’t know?”
Seeing this, Ning Xiaoyao was certain she’d missed out on some gossip. “Tell. What’s up?” Her eyes were positively gleaming.
“Chen Lu doesn’t have any children,” Ji Yuerong said.
“Everyone in the world knows that Great General Chen only has a single wife who can’t bear a child, He Dongshi.”[1. He Dongshi (河东狮) - He is a surname that means river, Dongshi means “eastern lion.”]
“He Dongshi?” Ning Xiaoyao echoed.
“She’s a scary woman,” Ji Yuerong explained. “A literal tigress. They say in a duel she can even best Chen Lu himself.”
Ning Xiaoyao sucked in a breath.
“I’ve never understood why Chen Lu sacrifices himself for Xie Wenyuan so much when he’s got a woman like He Dongshi back home. What’s up with him?” Ji Yuerong remarked. “If I was him, I’d long go to my next reincarnation instead.”
So that’s what Chen Lu’s life is like. Ning Xiaoyao’s eyes spun in thought before glancing at Erya leaning by her side and Xiaoqiu nestled in her lap. A lightbulb went on in her head as she thought up an idea.
“Miss Ji, does Chen Lu’s wife know what you look like?” Ning Xiaoyao asked.
Ji Yuerong shook her head. “I’ve never met that tigress.”
“Then can you help me out?” Ning Xiaoyao smiled coaxingly at Ji Yuerong.
“No problem,” Ji Yuerong agreed easily. “I’ll go make a ruckus at the Grand Preceptor’s estate this very night.”
“Nonono,” Ning Xiaoyao protested. “The Grand Preceptor’s going to Fangqi Lane to see Chen Lu tonight. His wife is coming along too, so let’s block her way instead.”
Ji Yuerong knitted her brows. “We’re going to beat up his wife?”
“No,” Ning Xiaoyao said as she patted Erya. “Tonight, Erya is going to be your firstborn daughter.” Then she patted Xiaoqiu and added, “Xiaoqiu will be your son.”
Ji Yuerong grew blank. “Then who’s going to be the father?”
“Chen Lu, ah,” Ning Xiaoyao said.
“.......” said Ji Yuerong.
“Why would Chen Lu be in cahoots with the Grand Preceptor?” Ning Xiaoyao challenged. “Because he’s helping him supporting his mistress and children, of course. Miss Ji, what do you think Chen Lu’s wife would do in a situation like this?”
Ji Yuerong gulped. “Kill me, then Chen Lu. If she has the skills, she’d even kill Xie Wenyuan, right?”
“Then have his wife be the one causing chaos,” Ning Xiaoyao said with a snap of her fingers. “No need to fear. I’ll protect you. Tonight I’ll be your little sister and together we’ll block off Chen Lu’s wife.”
Ji Yuerong thought she’d misheard. “My sister?”
“I wanted to be the mistress,” Ning Xiaoyao said, “But with looks like mine, I don’t think I’d be able to convince his wife.”
“Then you could be my little brother,” Ji Yuerong was a little confused. She’d never met a man who wanted to crossdress willingly.
“Then what if someone discovers I’m His Majesty? What will I do then?” Ning Xiaoyao asked.
True enough, Ji Yuerong thought as she observed Ning Xiaoyao. For some reason, she suddenly wanted to see what His Majesty looked like in drag!
“Are you game?” Ning Xiaoyao asked.
“I’m game,” Ji Yuerong replied. If His Majesty’s even willing to crossdress, why can’t I pretend to be a mistress, too?
“Erya, Xiaoqiu,” Ning Xiaoyao said to the children. “Are you two alright with this? Remember to call Miss Ji mother tonight, and me as auntie.”
“No problem,” Xiaoqiu’s face was filled with determination.
Erya was more worried. “But Miss Ji said that woman was really fierce. Will we get beaten?”
“Your Majesty will be there,” Ning Xiaoyao said as she thumped her chest. “I’ll definitely make sure no one beats you up.”
“Then does Your Majesty mean I have to be the one who’s beat up?” Ji Yuerong asked.
Ning Xiaoyao paused, then added, “I’ll be there getting beat up right with you.”
Ji Yuerong breathed in before nodded. “Fine then.” She felt a lot better if she wasn’t the only one earning a smacking.
“Then let’s start,” Ning Xiaoyao said as she picked up Xiaoqiu and rose to her feet. “Make some preparations, we’ll set out tonight.”
The two tall and small figures both left for their rooms, all of them wearing serious expressions. It looked like they were about to undertake some monumental task.
It was easy enough to find jewelry and dresses that would fit Ning Xiaoyao in the palace. She had Mute Nanny help her out and even re-comb her hair before slipping into a flowery dress. After adding a few simple accessories, Ning Xiaoyao twirled in front of the mirror and asked, “Granny, what do you think?”
Mute Nanny quickly nodded in approval. Although His Majesty’s looks can’t be compared to the empress dowager, she’s a beauty, too!
Ning Xiaoyao was very happy to get her affirmation. She ran out of the rooms and jumped out in front of Ji Yuerong, Erya, and Xiaoqiu. “Ta-da, look!”
Ji Yuerong was stunned. The almond-eyed, pouty-lipped, and perky-nosed figure with the tender, snow-white skin faintly tinged with pink looked every inch an adorable little beauty. Erya and Xiaoqiu were shocked as well, staring at Ning Xiaoyao in a daze.
“Hey, hey,” Ning Xiaoyao waved her hand at them. “Give a reaction or something, don’t just stare.”
Ji Yuerong recovered her wits and leveled Ning Xiaoyao with a complicated look. She never realized His Majesty was such an androgynous type. “Very convincing,” she said. “If not for your flat chest, Your Majesty, I would have really thought you were a---” She caught herself then. Suspect His Majesty was a girl? Am I sick of living for thinking such things?
F l a t--
Ning Xiaoyao was grievously injured by those words. I’m going to stuff two mantous down there later! (Author: Hey hey, what’s the point of doing something like that? o(╯□╰)o )
“We’ll set out as soon as it gets dark,” Ning Xiaoyao covered her chest with her arms before leaving for the courtyard, her head drooping.
Ji Yuerong stood dumbfounded for a long time before she turned to ask Erya and Xiaoqiu, “What did I say to make him so unhappy?”
“His Majesty is so pretty,” Erya only muttered back.
“A beauty,” Xiaoqiu declared.
“.......” said Ji Yuerong. Wake up, you two! That’s a man!
(Author: Actually, she’s not…)
Meanwhile, a group of angry men were currently sitting together in a room.
“Unless we can summon a bunch of men by magic,” the Lord Protector said hopelessly, “We’ll have no way of avoiding Xie Wenyuan’s eyes and ears.”
“If we can’t do that, how are we supposed to escort the empress out of the palace?” one of the Black Frost Calvary generals asked. “It’s almost dark now, what do we do?”
Pei Yan spoke up next. “It’s impossible to hide from his scrutiny, but if we distract Xie Wenyuan with something else, we might have a chance.”
“Besides rebelling, what else does Xie Wenyuan have to worry about?” the Lord Protector asked his brother.
Pei Yan looked towards Lou Zigui instead. “Supreme Commander, what do you think we should do?”
Ning Xiaoyao knocked on the door at this moment before stepping over the threshold. “I have an idea.”
Everyone turned to face the little girl that had suddenly entered their ranks with shock. She’s not wearing any clothes from the palace. Who is she?
Ning Xiaoyao stopped at their stares. “It’s me, ah. You guys don’t recognize me anymore?”
“Your Majesty?!” Shadowthunder was the first to cry out.
The chairs moved in unison, and everyone except for Lou Zigui rose to their feet. They stared at Ning Xiaoyao in shock. Her voice was unmistakable, as was the face. This was their Majesty!
Ning Xiaoyao looked at Lou Zigui with an ear-splitting grin. Lou Zigui had always wanted to see Ning Xiaoyao dressed as a girl, but never imagined she’d be standing before him this instant in a flowery dress. His heart grew chaotic, both with surprise a pleasure. There was a hint of unhappiness too, because his treasure was being stared at by so many other people now…
Ning Xiaoyao scratched her head when she saw Lou Zigui sitting there without a single reaction. Does he not like it?
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