Chapter 280: Time waits for no man
The group went inside a palace room and sat down. Ning Xiaoyao looked at Lou Zigui and told Xu Jichang, “Supreme Commander will inform you of all the specifics. I only came to clarify his position.”
Xu Jichang made eye contact with Ning Xiaoyao and stated, “Your Majesty, this subject doesn’t seek scholarly honour or official rank...”
“You don’t seek position or wealth. Who would throw away their life for no reason?” Ning Xiaoyao waved her hand and interrupted Xu Jichang. “Right now, we’re running out of time. It’s obvious you’re full of shit. Let’s not talk about it.”
Pei Yan coldly laughed at Xu Jichang. “Just tell us what you want.”
“Before we begin, let me make it clear. I have no money, but I can offer you an official title. But I can’t let you be the emperor. I have asked before but my ancestors made it a rule that the emperor must be under the surname Ning. Is your Xu Clan ok with an Extremely Powerful and Mighty Great General?”
Xu Jichang didn’t expect Ning Xiaoyao to be so blunt. What type of subject would directly tell the emperor what they want? Or what government position they want? Eldest Master Xu was rendered speechless by Ning Xiaoyao.
“I can help your sister Xinghua get pregnant. I can also ensure Chen Lu doesn’t get forced into another marriage by Grand Preceptor Xie. From now on, your clan will be on a path of bright future outlook. What else? Oh yeah, as I have mentioned, I can give you the position of Extremely Powerful and Mighty Great General, ah!” Ning Xiaoyao proposed and cracked her knuckles.
Xu Jichang stared at Ning Xiaoyao, dumbfounded.
“Eldest Master, give me a sentence!?”
Xu Jichang remained silent.
Ning Xiaoyao shook her head and turned to the person next to her, Lou Zigui. She whispered, “What’s going on? The benefits aren’t good enough? I really don’t have money ah!”
Lou Zigui lightly patted Ning Xiaoyao on the hand. It’s not that the benefits aren’t enough. Most likely, this is Xu Jichang’s first encounter with you and he isn’t used to your style of speech. “Don’t worry.”
Ning Xiaoyao could see Xu Jichang digging his fingers into his palm. Fine, it’s an important decision. She should give him some time to think about it.
After a long period of silence, Xu Jichang finally spoke again. “Your Majesty is very straightforward.”
“This is regarding the lives of people! Why would I be in the mood to talk about the wind, flowers, snow, and the moon with you?” Ning Xiaoyao frowned.
Eldest Master Xu turned quiet again. What does being direct have to do with the wind, flowers, snow and moon?
“Supreme Commander,” Deng Rong’s voice could be heard behind the doors.
“Your sister Xinghua and Chen Lu are here.” Ning Xiaoyao could tell who they were based on the sounds of their footsteps. She turned to Xu Jichang. “Do you want us to go somewhere else to give you guys some privacy?”
Deng Rong could hear Ning Xiaoyao and stood behind the door without making a sound.
Xu Jichang stood up. “Your Majesty’s words are too serious. This subject does not dare.” How could anyone ever ask the emperor to step out? That’s preposterous!
“No need to be so courteous.” Ning Xiaoyao stood up on her own and dragged Lou Zigui up as well. “You’re not even scared of Supreme Commander’s icy face. What else would scare you? Eldest Master, you can chat with your sister and Chen Lu.”
Ning Xiaoyao tugged Lou Zigui with her and walked out of the room. The Pei brothers followed closely behind. Now, Xu Jichang was the only one left in the room. ...Weren’t they supposed to discuss serious matters? How can they all leave just like that?
“Oh!” Lady Xu was standing in the courtyard dressed in a military uniform. Ning Xiaoyao ran over with jolting buttocks and sized up Lady Xu. “Lady, you’re here la!”
Quite frankly, Lady Xu didn’t want to see Ning Xiaoyao. But she reluctantly bowed.
“No need.” Ning Xiaoyao waved her hand and hastily touched Lady Xu’s shoulder. No baby yet…
“How can you not make your salutations when you see His Majesty?” Pei Yan icily blasted.
“No, it’s fine.” Ning Xiaoyao patted Chen Lu on the shoulder. After a few days of rest, his face was still swollen, but at least he looked more like human now.
Chen Lu bowed and yelled out, “Your Majesty.”
“Yelling Your Majesty isn’t going to help.” Ning Xiaoyao lowered her head and focused on the lower region of Great General Chen’s body. “In regards to having babies, Your Majesty can only help you guys dissolve the poison. Do you understand, Great General?”
Chen Lu’s face instantly turned boiling red. What does he need to understand?
Everyone who were present avoided to look at Lady Xu. They didn’t dare.
“Lady, let me tell you…” Ning Xiaoyao turned her head to speak to Lady Xu. Aiya! Motherf**ker! Lady Xu was giving her the killer glare the night she got beaten up again!
Ning Xiaoyao retreated back to Lou Zigui’s side and pointed into the room. “Xu Jichang is inside. You guys chat first.”
Chen Lu wiped his sweaty face with his hand and reluctantly bowed. “This subject obeys His Majesty’s decree.”
“You gotta work harder!” After thinking about it, Ning Xiaoyao added.
He would be much better off if he didn’t understand His Majesty’s hints!
Lou Zigui dragged Ning Xiaoyao with him. This girl has no filter! How can she be so nosy about the status of another couple’s baby!?
Now, there were only Lady Xu and Chen Lu left in the courtyard. Suddenly, Lady Xu burst out laughing. Chen Lu hurriedly reminded her, “This is the palace. You have to be respectful to His Majesty, my lady.”
Lady Xu gave Chen Lu a thoughtful look. Then, she shook her head and walked into the room.
Chen Lu: ...what does that mean? Is his wife looking down on him? She also thinks he’s not trying hard enough?
“Elder sister?” Xu Jichang stood by the door and called out. Ever since Lady Xu married Chen Lu, she had remained in the capital. The last time these siblings saw each other was six years ago. In their respective minds, her younger brother was still young and distinguished, while his elder sister Xinghua was still the pretty daughter of the general. But after six years of separation, there were more hardship and wrinkles displayed on Xi Jichang’s face. As for Xinghua, she now had some strands of white hair mixed with her fine black hair. They were no longer the same image from their memories.
“First brother,” Lady Xu went up to Xu Jichang and spoke in a low voice. “Long time no see.”
“I heard you were injured. Why are you walking around?”
Lady Xu sighed. “That was bad timing on my part.”
Eldest Master Xu angrily glared at Chen Lu. “This is how you’re taking care of my older sister?”
Chen Lu felt wronged but also guilty. It’s true he wasn’t able to take good care of his wifey this time.
“Let’s go in and talk.” Lady Xu headed in the direction of the room and stood up for Chen Lu. “Don’t blame him. One is His Majesty and the other is Grand Preceptor Xie. Which one can he offend?”
“Older sister,” Xu Jichang didn’t look at Chen Lu again and followed Lady Xu into the room. He whispered, “Is it true what you wrote in the letter? You really wrote the letter?”
“Yes.” Lady Xu sat down and replied, “It’s true. Do you think I would joke about something like this?”
“F**k!” Xu Jichang immediately used foul language.
“What did father say?” Lady Xu asked.
“Father said he will protect both Grand Preceptor and His Majesty.” Xu Jichang sat down next to his sister and muttered quietly. Chen Lu entered the room and went to sit across the siblings. He had no status on the Xu Clan’s side. Chen Lu knew this the day he married his wife.
Lady Xu looked withered and tired after Xu Jichang’s reply. She forced herself to smile. “I guess father still tries to look out for me.”
Xi Jichang rushed. “What do you mean, older sister? When has father ever not look out for you?”
“Xu Jing’s wife was sick a lot. Lady Xu is the eldest daughter of the family. After Xu Jing’s wife gave birth to Xu Jichang, she passed away.” Lou Zigui explained to Ning Xiaoyao in the courtyard.
“Oh, so the mistresses gave birth to the rest of the sons of the Xu Clan. Got it.”
“That’s not what I mean. This has nothing to do with the first wife or concubines.” Lou Zigui asserted.
“Then what are you trying to say?”
“When Xu Jichang was four, it was rumoured that Xu Jing went to fight bandits with armed forces. The clan members of the Xu family all fled respectively. In addition, all the mistresses ran away with belongings from the home. Lady Xu was the one who took care of her five younger brothers and drifted around the wild for a year until Xu Jing returned back victorious.”
Ning Xiaoyao’s mouth twitched. “For a year, ah?”
“Lady Xu was seeking her father with her siblings. But they went the wrong way. Xu Jing sent people to find them, but they failed.” Pei Yan disclosed while leaning against the wall.
Ning Xiaoyao was silent. What a sad story.
“After that, the members of the Xu family saw Lady Xu as their mother. She was the one who raised them up. So Lady Xu’s words have the most impact in the family.”
Ning Xiaoyao thought about it. “Alright then, forget about offering them the official title.”
“Forget it?” Lord Protector squeaked.
“Dude, the salary of an Extremely Powerful and Mighty Great General is so high!” Ning Xiaoyao glared. “Even if we don’t give Great General Xu Jing the position, he’ll help me. So why should I pretend to have money?”
Lord Protector’s mouth and eyelid both twitched. If Xu Jing found out he wasn’t getting his title because of the salary cost, he would probably cry himself to death. Do you believe me, Your Majesty?
After the time it took to burn half an incense, Chen Lu came out with a heavy-hearted expression. When he saw the four people standing outside of the courtyard, Great General Chen headed straight to them. “Your Majesty, we’re done talking.”
“So what’s the consensus?” Ning Xiaoyao asked.
“The Xu Clan will follow Your Majesty’s assignment no matter what.”
“How about you?” Lou Zigui asked Chen Lu. Chen Lu dipped his head. “This subject will also follow His Majesty no matter what.”
Ning Xiaoyao slightly nodded and turned to Lord Protector. “Lord Protector, from now on, don’t try to kill Great General Chen, ok?”
Chen Lu: ...
Lord Protector gazed at Lou Zigui. Could they trust Chen Lu’s words?
Lou Zigui turned to Ning Xiaoyao. “Your Majesty, why don’t you go in and talk to the Xu siblings?”
“What about Great General Chen?” Ning Xiaoyao pointed at Chen Lu.
Pei Yan laughed out loud. “Your Majesty, can’t you tell? Great General Chen has no authority on the matter.”
Ning Xiaoyao stared at Chen Lu. He was a tall and sturdy fellow. But he wore such a pitiful expression. Not only that, he shrank his body like a quail. “Pah, what were you and your wife doing at home these last several days? I've already helped your wife dissolved the poison. Why isn’t she pregnant yet?” Ning Xiaoyao criticized and smacked her lips.
Chen Lu’s face flushed once more. Can we not talk about this?
“Go in.” Lou Zigui pulled Ning Xiaoyao away.
“Dang, you have one job and you can’t even do it right? Why should Lady Xu keep you around? Wow! Following the Grand Preceptor is screwing you over to the point where you don’t even know how to get your wife preggo?” Ning Xiaoyao’s mouth was vicious.
Chen Lu couldn’t hold back and refuted a line. “Lady Xu is injured right now.”
Ning Xiaoyao: ...oh yeah. Xinghua stabbed herself.
Lou Zigui was a bit irritated that Chen Lu tried to retaliate Ning Xiaoyao. When Ning Xiaoyao remained silent, Supreme Commander coldly added, “You have a reason even though you’re the one lacking the skill?”
“Yeah! That’s right!” With someone backing her up, Ning Xiaoyao became spirited again. “You have a reason for your lack of skill!?”
Chen Lu truly wanted to quarrel with these two. They make it sound like they have children of their own! Pssh! One who retreats fifty steps laughs at the one who retreats a hundred*. Do they think it’s funny?
*This basically means “You have your own faults. Perhaps it’s not exactly on the same level but you dismiss your own problems and laughs at mine.”
Happy New Year, guys!Previous Chapter Next Chapter