Eunuch Chang returned to the Hall of Splendor and purposefully showed his face in front of the Jing Prince.
A short while later, Eunuch Fu was sent out on business by the Jing Prince.
Seeing this, Eunuch Chang went to the study.
Eunuch Chang entered. He first gave a bow in salute, and after he was asked to rise he walked a few steps closer.
“Highness, Doctor Hu said that by following the schedule listed on here, there should be no problems.” After speaking, he respectfully placed the paper onto the table.
This wasn’t Eunuch Chang’s first time performing this task. Every month, his highness would send him to look for Doctor Hu. He didn’t know what was written on the slip of paper. The Jing Prince ordered him to fetch it, and also said not to let Eunuch Fu know. He merely obeyed his orders.
Eunuch Chang had always been someone cold faced and withdrawn, and also didn’t have much curiosity. This was because he knew that servants with more curiosity died faster. Although his highness wasn’t quite like other masters, Eunuch Chang would still remind himself every once in a while not to overstep his bounds.
Overall, compared to Eunuch Fu, Eunuch Chang was a very fitting and useful servant. This was also why the Jing Prince would leave many things to Eunuch Chang instead of Eunuch Fu.
Of course, Eunuch Fu and the Jing Prince’s affection was naturally not the same. This had nothing to do with whether or not their relationship was good. The situation this time was also kept from Eunuch Fu for various reasons.
Waving his hand to let Eunuch Chang take his leave, the Jing Prince opened the slip of paper in his hand. He looked at the dates listed on it, and couldn’t help but frown.
He actually had to wait that long?
When this thought flashed through his mind, he actually didn’t realize its implication.
After a brief moment, the Jing Prince stood up and took out a book from the shelf, putting the slip of paper inside.
Time passed by quickly, and in the blink of an eye half a month had passed.
During this time the Jing Prince did not come to the western pavilion again. Meanwhile, the Jing Consort’s side seemed very impatient. The day before her confinement was to end, Chun Xiang came over to inform Xiao Hua her restrictions can be lifted.
She certainly wasn’t that kind hearted, and the reason she came over was to remind Xiao Hua to pay respects the next day. Xiao Hua naturally understood the meaning behind this.
Regarding this, Xiao Hua was helpless and speechless. Sometimes she couldn’t understand what the consort was thinking. Was she really not afraid she would bring it up to the Jing Prince?
After all, no matter how one put it, she was someone who came from the Hall of Splendor, and could be said to be favored. The consort was not favored, and this was something the whole estate was aware of. Where did she get her confidence from?
But when she thought of the Jing Prince’s apathetic face, she understood a little in her heart.
Just based on that master’s apathetic appearance, it seemed like he had no one in his heart. None of the women or nothing that happened in the rear court seemed to be able to evoke any waves in his emotions. Furthermore, Ding Xiang had told her that the consort was someone from the current empress’s clan. As her niece, her status was extremely noble. No wonder she had such confidence.
Compared to her, she was just a servant-born lowly concubine.
Thinking like this, Xiao Hua’s heart overflowed with sorrow.
But no matter what her thoughts were, time wouldn’t stop for anyone. She would face what she had to face.
Moreover, Xiao Hua had also thought things through. Since things were like this, she would act shameless until the end. Let’s see if the consort had the ability to directly fall out with her.
As though Madam Hua’s arrogant and despotic behavior was merely a flash in the pan, she had resumed her respectful, gentle and docile manner when she appeared once more.
The Jing Consort didn’t seem any different from before. Senior Concubine Qiao and Yu Rong were also still the same, speaking a few superficial words with the Jing Consort. Xiao Hua once again sat in her old spot. Because Yu Jiao who enjoyed jumping out to provoke others wasn’t there1, today’s paying of respects passed smoothly and cleanly.
“Alright, this consort won’t keep you all here any longer.”
The Jing Consort stood up and Chun Xiang stepped forward with the appearance of seeing the guests out. Xiao Hua followed the others in bowing before turning and heading out.
As she turned, she secretly took a glance over to the side. She clearly saw the Jing Consort’s brows concealing impatience and restlessness.
Could the consort not be planning on dealing with her? Or was there something else going on…..
Seeing the people off with their eyes, Chun Xiang and Xia Xiang looked at each other. Both of them were worried sick as they walked to the inner room.
Today the consort was unexpectedly silent. Not only were the people paying respects surprised, even her personal palace maids were extremely astonished.
When news of his highness’s visit to the western pavilion several days ago had been reported, the consort had smashed many things in the house. Chun Xiang had thought when the consort let her remind Madam Hua to come pay respects that she definitely had some scheme in mind. What she never expected was for nothing to happen.
Everyone was used to the Jing Consort causing a ruckus. When she didn’t cause a ruckus, that’s when everyone started worrying, afraid that she would fall ill out of anger.
“That Madam Hua is really a vixen!” Xia Xiang cursed in a low voice.
Since she was on different sides, her viewpoint would naturally be different. If today his highness had repeatedly visited the Changchun Pavilion instead, everyone there would say it was to be expected.
Chun Xiang laughed bitterly and didn’t say anything.
This was a knot that couldn’t be unraveled to begin with. They could only hope the consort’s disturbances wouldn’t end up causing any problems.
Having returned to the western pavilion, Xiao Hua didn’t say anything and seemed no different from her normal self. Ding Xiang started to keep a tighter leash on her subordinates. Not only did she give them a lecture every once in a while, she also made sure to personal fetch Xiao Hua’s meals from now on.
With a helper like Ding Xiang, Xiao Hua really felt a lot more at ease. Ding Xiang was also extremely smart. She basically didn’t need to give any instructions for her to know what to do next.
While Xiao Hua guarded against the Jing Consort’s schemes on one side, the Jing Prince seemed to get busier on the other.
Movements over in the capital seemed to increase a lot recently. This news sent over by someone, but it was overly scattered.
The Jing Prince had muddled along too much in his past life, and he wasn’t clear how the Jin Prince had rebelled and seized the throne.
In this life, as a simple person he could only use simple methods, having his scouts collect a lot of scattered tidings from the capital while he pieced and analyzed and compared before managing to obtain a little news. His focus was placed on the crown prince, as well as Senior Imperial Concubine Xu, the Jin Prince and the Qi Prince.
The Jing Prince wasn’t good at such things, and reading over it was extremely strenuous. However, he was very serious in his efforts and didn’t give up. Doing it is better than not doing it in the end. Every time he did would be another chip in his hand. This diligence also matched his nature.
After working for several days straight, the Jing Prince finally relaxed a little.
He sat there silently, enjoying the rare moment of leisure. A bunch of words suddenly appeared in his mind. He thought that he must have misremembered, turning towards the book shelf and taking out a book.
Opening it, the small slip of paper was still between its pages.
His jade-white hands grasped the paper, and rubbed its edges with his fingers while his face was apathetic as usual.
One corner of this palm-sized slip of paper was already crinkled, clearly having been rubbed many times by someone.
The Jing Prince stood silently for half a moment before putting it back inside the book.
That night, the Jing Prince arrived at the western pavilion.
Because the Jing Prince came quite late, the pavilion doors were already closed.
The Jing Prince stood unmoving, and shot Eunuch Fu a glance. Eunuch Fu honestly walked up on the spot, pulled up his sleeves and started knocking on the door.
He knocked for a long time before the doors were finally opened.
“Why did you close the pavilion doors so early?” scolded Eunuch Fu.
Chun Lan2 took a while to realize who was standing there before kneeling down with a thump. Apart from saying “this servant deserves death”, she didn’t dare say anything else. She naturally didn’t dare point out the lateness of the hour.
The Jing Prince had already stepped inside the pavilion.
Xiao Hua had already heard the commotion and gotten up. She was awoken while still blurry from sleep by Ding Xiang, who said his highness had come. She had thought it was a dream, and before she was fully awake she got pulled off the bed. Before she could finish putting on her clothes, the Jing Prince walked in.
“Highness.” Xiao Hua could only drape a shirt over herself and lower herself in a half squat as a salute.
The Jing Prince raised his hand a little and didn’t say anything.
Seeing this, Ding Xiang and Chun Lan both didn’t dare to move. Only when Eunuch Fu gave them a glance did the two of them follow him out.
The room grew quiet. Xiao Hua glanced at the Jing Prince who was sitting on the bedside, and saw that he sat there silently and expressionlessly without looking at her. Towards the prince’s habits, Xiao Hua had already long gotten used to them. However, it was still hard to cover up the restlessness in her heart. She had told herself she needed to find some shelter, but after being left hanging repeatedly the drive had faded.
Who was willing to stick their warm face to a cold butt?3. However, circumstances trumped personal feelings. Xiao Hua didn’t forget her own situation. She forced a smile and quietly said: “Highness, do you want this servant concubine to help you change and wash up?”
The Jing Prince gave her a glance and didn’t make a sound. Only when Xiao Hua was about to call Ding Xiang to prepare water did he say a single phrase: “Already washed.” Xiao Hua secretly snuck a glance at him.
He was wearing a casual purple robe and his white jade crown, appearing to be dressed in his everyday clothing. His hair was also tidily combed, not seeming like he had washed up at all. Furthermore, why would he not go to sleep after washing up, and instead run all the way over here?
When this thought crossed her mind, Xiao Hua mocked herself on the inside. He’s here to sleep of course!
Thinking of this, Xiao Hua blushed a bit.
“Then this servant concubine will help you change.”
The Jing Prince didn’t say anything and glanced at her with hidden depths in his eyes as he stood up.
After changing, it was time to do what was supposed to be done.
The two of them lay on the bed. Xiao Hua didn’t have time to consider how to take the initiative yet before the Jing Prince already moved over impatiently. She really didn’t want to use this word to describe it, but compared to the past, the Jing Prince truly seemed a little impatient this time.
The Jing Prince also didn’t have any fancy moves. He would always go straight for it every time. With careful observation, one could even make out the clumsiness within his actions. Under such circumstances, the girl would naturally not feel good. This Xiao Hua still understood. But since she was serving this weirdo, this master who appeared to not know what he was doing, she didn’t dare make any requests of him.
She did her best to relax her body as much as possible, allowing her to get past this initial juncture. Having served the Jing Prince so many times, she was quite experienced.
Looking at the eyes that seemed half asleep and the apathetic looking face above her, Xiao Hua realized that she rarely saw the Jing Prince make any other expressions. Even under such circumstances, when she could clearly feel his movements getting harder and harder, his face would still be without expression.
Did he feel good or not? Xiao Hua really couldn’t tell.
But she really didn’t feel good!
She bit her lips and curled up a little, which was followed by her being pressed even tighter. Wave after wave, making her unable to even catch her breath.
Seeing his face still without expression, Xiao Hua suddenly felt wave of determination in her heart.
She wrapped her arms around his neck, and pressed herself completely against him. She blew a breath of air into his ear and lightly took a bite.
The arms around her waist gripped even tighter.
Xiao Hua decided since she did one thing she might as well do another and stuck the tip of her tongue out to give a little lick. Seeing the Jing Prince not make any moves to stop her, she grew bolder and bolder. She left the earlobe, and wandered down towards his jaw.
Only when she kissed it did she realize she had been a little impetuous, but it was too late for regrets. She could only brace herself and keep going.
After a few more times, the breathing by her ear had gotten heavier and heavier, boiling, burning and engulfing the tip of her ear, making her unable to resist shivering a little. Therefore she felt even more regretful. Just as she was considering whether or not to stop, her cheek was suddenly lightly pecked, after which her chin was raised and her cherry lips were held between his.