Edited by Tnyhy
Chapter 138: Snatch (Part 1)
“As luck would have it, this Prince also want.”
Everyone seated were initially smiling but after a few more smiles, they were unable to continue smiling. HuangFu Hao stared at Prince Rui’s eyes and even Fu Xiu Yi unexpectedly looked at him, while Princess Ming An’s facial expression froze and her mood was instantly distorted.
It was the Crown Prince that laughed and smoothed things over, “A elegant and virtuous maiden, a gentleman’s desire. Young Lady Shen has both looks and talents, naturally she would attract countless of heroes.”
Everyone then followed and nodded their heads. Prince Rui picked up the wine cup that was placed down with a smile yet not a smile, and did not speak anymore.
Everyone all thought that he merely jested and said a joke, because not for anything else but, how would Prince Rui from the Great Liang be able to marry a daughter of an official of Ming Qi? Not to mention these two persons were not well matched, now under such sensitive and tense circumstances, by marrying a Young Lady from another country was like entering a trap that makes one uneasy. Who knew if that Young Lady was a spy that was sent by the other country, and no matter how courageous one was, no one would dare to take this risk.
Everyone continued to laugh, drink and eat, but after Prince Rui said those words, Princess Ming An had fallen into a state of resentment that even her gaze was filled with hatred, and even HuangFu Hao was frowning at it.
Speaking of which, the banquet that the Crown Prince hosted was fairly satisfactory, as the Princes of Ming Qi most likely wanted to find out the attitude of the Qin country and the Great Liang towards Ming Qi. Until now the Qin country had been very intimate with the Ming Qi, and did not have any intention to be enemies. However it was Prince Rui, hailing from the Great Liang that was neither cold nor warm, one could saw that it was not close nor hostile and it made one feel elusive. Even during toasting when everyone was tipsy and merry, he made others frustrated as he was not drunk and his mind was clear, thus there was no slip up in his words at all.
At the end of it, Prince Rui was also the first to leave. Because of him leaving the banquet, Princess Ming An’s mood became even worse. On the way back, Princess Ming An had punished several servants, and even Prince Ding’s subordinates that were on official business were also cursed by her.
Those two people were not others but Xie Chang Wu and Xie Chang Chao. Fu Xiu Yi scolded them some more before Princess Ming An let it go. After returning to Prince Ding’s residence, Fu Xiu Yi had told his aides about what had happened at the banquet today and pondered, “That Prince Rui of the Great Liang seemed to be hostile to this Prince, and deliberately oppressed during the banquet.
Fu Xiu Yi was able to attract a group of capable people and as a Prince, other than being able to forbear, his schemes might not be the highness but his ability to recruit talent and perseverance, were something that no one among the nine Princes was able to compete with him. He could spend days facing another’s wooden door and wait, and each time he waits, it would be an entire night, and he also planned a stable and prosperous future for the entire life of that person’s family. Thus all the aides that followed him were talented and also loyal to him. Once there was any problems, he was able to get the answer from the aides’ mouth.
As for the ability to manage people, it was what an Emperor should learn to do. At this point, Fu Xiu Yi was indeed an outstanding Emperor.
Each one of the aides were deep in thoughts, as Fu Xiu Yi looked at the plainly clad male right in front and said, “What is Gentleman Pei’s thoughts of it?”
If one were to saw that every aide here was Fu Xiu Yi’s trusted people, then Pei Lang was definitely considered to be Fu Xiu Yi’s confidant. Pei Lang was recruited by Fu Xiu Yi two years ago. At that time Pei Lang’s talent caught Fu Xiu Yi’s eyes, but Pei Lang was one who had no greed for power and Fu Xiu Yi at the end, had to spend a lot of effort in reasoning before Pei Lang finally moved. After all the twists and turns, the person did not disappoint Fu Xiu Yi and within the two years, he helped Fu Xiu Yi solve many problems. Therefore, up to now, whenever he meet with an unsolvable problem, Fu Xiu Yi would often thought about Pei Lang.
Pei Lang frowned, “Did Your Highness crossed paths in any way with Prince Rui previously?”
Fu Xiu Yi shook his head.
“This is strange then.” Pei Lang analysed, “Prince Rui is a representative of the Great Liang and should not only focus heavily on Your Highness. If there was no intersection previously, there would not be any reason to put Your Highness in a difficult position. Your Highness did not block his route, and even if the Great Liang want to make things difficult for the Ming Qi, the person he would be looking at is His Majesty or the Crown Prince.
Fu Xiu Yi nodded his head, “This is also what I had thought. Perhaps.” He pondered, “Perhaps it was because of Shen Miao.”
“What does Your Highness’ words mean?” Another aide questioned.
“I was thinking that in those words that Prince Rui said, only Shen Miao was related to me. It is just that at that time I was unsure if he was joking or doing it intentionally, and only felt that Shen Miao and him did not have any relations. But now thinking about it, one feel a little strange.”
There was an aide that said, “Could it be that Prince Rui and Shen Miao have some unspeakable secret relationship?”
Pei Lang said flatly, “This is impossible.”
Everyone all looked at him. Pei Lang’s words were very convincing, and what he said in front of Fu Xiu Yi would always become true at the end. No matter how others were convinced, they would always concede to his conjecture.
“It is Prince Rui’s first time in Ming Qi, and Shen Miao followed Shen Xin’s return to the capital not too long ago. There was absolutely not possibility for them to have any contact. Even if it was after this,” Pei Lang cupped his hands and said, “Your Highness is being well aware that Prince Rui, is not a person that is easy to deal with after having contact with him a number of times. Since the Great Liang sent him over to Ming Qi, Prince Rui is bound to be one who knows how to weigh the advantages and disadvantages. In such a short time, it is not of his interest to be hostile with Your Highness just because of a female like Shen Miao.”
Hearing that Fu Xiu Yi mused, “Your words made sense. Accordingly with Gentleman Pei’s perspective, what should be done?”
“Since Your Highness has not be implicated much today, if one were to act rashly, it would make Prince Zhou and the rest to be wary and alarmed. Ever since the tribute banquet, Prince Rui had never mentioned the matter of leaving, so there must be something else that he needs to be done in the Ding capital. Currently the Qin country is still present so one need not fear. Why not just wait and observe to see what kind of game that Prince Rui is playing, before making a decision?”
Pei Lang said it convincingly.
Fu Xiu Yi nodded his head, “In that case then follow what Gentleman Pei said.” He pressed his forehead, “One had had more drinks today and it would be a long court tomorrow morning. I will rest first and everyone can disperse.”
After Fu Xiu Yi left, the aides in the hall also scattered in twos and threes. No one was with Pei Lang, because Pei Lang was originally alone and was also very trusted by Fu Xiu Yi, thus many would be jealous and no one would make friends with him.
Pei Lang walked out and was entranced as he looked up at the stars in the skies.
Two years. It had been two years. He had followed the agreement with that young female and finally became Fu Xiu Yi’s confidant. Living comfortable like this, he had gained Fu Xiu Yi’s trust with his resourcefulness, and everything was done so naturally that at times Pei Lang would think that this should be his entire life. However Shen Miao’s reappearance broke the illusion. From the beginning Pei Lang knew that by making this transaction with Shen Miao, it was akin to making a deal with the devil. From the moment he got closer to Fu Xiu Yi, there would be a day, just like now, that he would become the spy that he initially did not want to be.
Fu Xiu Yi treated him very well, but he was a person who would betray right from the very beginning.
Pei Lang sighed deeply.
The comfortable days were over and from now onwards, the road that he needs to walk would always be like today, filled with trembling fear and if one was not careful, that one will fall into the abyss and there would not be any room left for redemption.
Shen Miao. The purple clad young female’s delicate and pretty face appeared in front of Pei Lang’s eyes.
It was already so challenging for him as a man, how could a young female who schemed behind the scenes be able to shoulder on everything?
This was something that he would never understand in his entire life.
Under the light of the oil lamp, Shen Miao was carefully writing. The snow white paper was spread out, and Gu Yu was grinding the stone ink while Jing Zhe carefully added some oil onto the lamp, as the light was not bright enough.
She was writing very seriously but from time to time, she would pause midway to think for a while before continuing writing. After finishing writing on the entire paper, everything outside was quiet. Shen Miao put the brush aside and picked up the paper to blow. After ensuring that all the ink on the paper was dry, she then found an envelope to put the letter in, before handing it to Jing Zhe.
“Early tomorrow morning, go out and find someone reliable and send this letter over to Chang Zai Qing in the Shen residence. Must guard against others and not let it fall into the hands of others. It must only be in the hands of Chang Zai Qing.” Shen Miao said.
Jing Zhen complied as she kept the letter properly. Although she was confused why would Shen Miao be writing a letter to Chang Zai Qing, but she did not ask.
Gu Yu started to gather the paper and ink on the table before smiling, “It is better for Young Lady to rest early. It is already late at night and if one were to rest later, it would not be good for health.”
Shen Miao nodded her head. After Jing Zhe and Gu Yu left, she took the lamp and brought it to the small stool near the bed, but sat on the side of the bed lost in thought.
After having such a dream like last night, now she was unable to sleep and she was thinking about it the entire day. It was as if she had glimpsed to an inkling of the past life. She finally knew how did Chang Zai Qing was able to easily turn Luo Xue Yan into a wisp of a spirit. It was Shen Miao herself that gave the succor to the enemy. If one were to say that Chang Zai Qing was the main culprit, then she would be executioner that was used by others.
Upon remembering this, hate that could topple mountains and overturn seas came pouring in. Shen Miao hated that she was unable to swallow Chang Zai Qing whole.
However, now she had to think of ways to let Chang Zai Qing’s reputation be swept away, and it was just overly simple. Chang Zai Qing constantly thought of living her life in inexhaustible wealth and status for her entire life, so why not let Chang Zai Qing gain everything she want first, before bursting the bubble and let her be laughed at by the whole world? By using Chang Zai Qing to deal with Chen Rou Qiu, perhaps it was enough to save her some some effort.
Making the best use of everything. The lesson from that phrase was already carved into her bones, and this time Shen Miao is to play the game of killing others through the hands of another.
She had spent the whole day and at the end managed to come out with something. On that piece of paper, it was all filled densely with Shen Wan’s preferences. Being the niece of Shen Wan for so many years and because she sincerely respected Shen Wan, Shen Miao had a lot of knowledge as she had done a lot of things when she was young to please this Third Shu. Now all these knowledge was given to others with both ends and means, and it was to an ambitious female. Shen Miao did not believe that with Chang Zai Qing’s many methods, this hypocritical gentleman Shen Wan would not fall into the trap.
The gentleman had intention and the concubine had feelings. On the surface it was a match of talents, but on the inside they were all wolves and leopards, all not a good thing. Thus the tearing up in the future would be even more interesting.
A trace of sneer appeared in Shen Miao’s eyes. It was always fun to watch dogs biting dogs.
She took off her outer garments and went up to the bed and just as she was about to lay down, she unexpectedly looked over at the window.
The windows were tightly shut and the breeze outside was swaying. There was no one else in the dark and deep night.
Shen Miao was startled a bit and scolded herself in her heart. Why did she suddenly looked at the window without any rhyme or reason? It was like she was somewhat not used to Xie Jing Xing not appearing. She shook her head and pressed that weird feeling in her heart, before blowing the oil lamp off and finally went to sleep.