The Crown Prince in the Jade Pendant: Chapter 40 (Part 1)

Edited by Larkspur

Chapter 40: Prince Residence’s Banquet (Part 1)

Early in the morning, the carriage from the Marquis of Chang Xing set off. Even if they went to the Prince Residence for a banquet, there was no reason to trouble Old Furen. Thus, only Madam Zhao and Madam Yan went out, each bringing their daughters.

The Third Household’s TaiTai was a concubine’s daughter-in-law and thus could only stay back on such occasions to serve Old Chu Furen. However, the Third Household had a daughter and in such an instance it would be deemed unreasonable to leave Sixth Young Lady behind. Thus, Madam Zhao took over Third Furen’s responsibility and brought Sixth Young Lady out and looked after her during the banquet.

They set off early in the morning and only arrived at Prince Huai Ling Residence when the sun was shining the brightest. There were maids waiting at the main doors and when they saw their horse carriage, they were greeted by a woman wearing a long crow blue robe, “Marquis Furen, Second Chu TaiTai, you have finally arrived!”

As a lady previously from the Marquis Residence, Chu Zhu naturally had to come out to greet the sisters-in-law of her maiden family. She was wearing a long red robe with a royal blue horse pleated skirt, while golden threaded hairpins adorned her head. She looked extremely high-spirited. Chu Jin Yao alighted the carriage with the other sisters and stood quietly at the side, listening to Madam Zhao chatting with the people of the Prince Residence. After a while, some sedan was brought over and they were taken to the inner residence to chat.

The woman who was leading, looked very distinguished as she said, “Old Ancestor and Prince Consort have been reminiscing about the Chu family furens and are currently waiting at the main hall. TaiTai please do not rush to reminisce and instead talk in the room.”

Madam Zhao naturally complied and the woman from the Prince Residence pointed to the sedan chair and said, “The Chui Hua Doors is still a distance away from the hall and as the sun is shining very brightly, it is not good for Furen and Young Ladies to bask under it. Let us take the sedan chairs instead.”

After passing the Chui Hua Doors, it was the world of the Inner Residence. One had not expected that a sedan would be required to travel from here to where Prince Consort and Old Furen were at. Chu Jin Yao was somewhat shocked in her heart and saw that the other young ladies of the Chu family were no different. Even so, they were outside and thus refused to display their timidity and were carrying the image of the Residence of Marquis Chang Xing. As such, they did not have any expression as they went up to the sedan individually.

Madam Zhao and Madam Yan each had a sedan of their own. However, the young ladies obviously could not do so, therefore, two of them were seated in one. Chu Jin Xian was already married and Second Young Lady was Madam Yan’s shu daughter, so for such a big event as coming to the Prince Residence for a banquet, Madam Yan used the excuse that Second Young Lady had to stay at home to embroider her dowry and declined it. In the end, among the younger generation, there were three young ladies from the Eldest Household, Third Young Lady, Chu Jin Miao, and Chu Jin Yao, Madam Yan’s daughter, Seventh Young Lady and Third Household’s Sixth Young Lady. Eighth Young Lady was only six years old, so she was excluded for being too young.

Two of them sat together, and according to the sequencing, Chu Jin Yao should sit with Sixth Young Lady. Chu Jin Yao sat upright in the rickety sedan chairs and did not lift the curtain to look around. She had returned to the residence for half a year now and was used to such scenes of wealth and nobility.

There was not much space in the sedan chair and it would inevitably shake when walking; Chu Jin Yao would bump into Sixth Young Lady’s knee from time to time. Sixth Young Lady was also sitting upright but did not speak. Third Furen had not come today, thus when everyone was chatting, they naturally skipped the topic of her mother as if there were only two Furens, Madam Zhao and Madam Yan, in Marquis Chang Xing Residence. Sixth Young Lady sat for a while before suddenly reaching out and covering the back of Chu Jin Yao’s hands, “Fifth Older Sister, you did not forget what we spoke about the last time, right?”

As Chu Jin Yao was not used to being touched by others and having her hands suddenly covered by another, she almost swatted Sixth Young Lady’s hands away. However, she endured and did not pull her hands out while speaking plainly, “Sixth Younger Sister do not think unnecessarily. We are in the sedan and do not know when it will stop. It is better not to talk for the time being.”

These words were ambiguous, neither agreeing nor refusing. Sixth Young Lady tilted her head and smiled towards Chu Jin Yao before retracting her hands slowly. Even though she was still smiling on the surface, she was scoffing in her heart as she knew that benefits would move one’s heart and no one would be able to resist it.

During the rest of the journey, Chu Jin Yao and Sixth Young Lady no longer spoke and just sat there relatively silent. It was fortunate that they soon arrived and the rough maids placed them down and called out, “Young Ladies, we have reached the hall.”

Chu Jin Yao and Sixth Young Lady got up and bent down to exit the sedan. After waiting for everyone, Madam Zhao quickly shuttled through them to ensure that there was nothing improper on the Young Ladies before speaking, “Let’s go. Follow me to greet Old Ancestor.”

There were already a lot of people sitting in the hall of the Prince Residence. Chu Jin Yao followed behind Madam Zhao and smelled a strong warm fragrance as soon as she entered. Mixed with the scents of different powders from the females, it had become a recognisable symbol of a wealthy family. There were females on both sides, sitting and standing. Other than the masters of Prince Huai Ling Residences, there were maids serving Old Furen and maids that were brought over by Furens and Young Ladies, inevitably making the room filled with women.

Chu Jin Yao did not care to see who were the ones wearing bright colours and instead greeted Old Prince Consort with Madam Zhao. After the greetings were done, Old Prince Consort smiled and said, “I have long been looking forward to you all visiting me but it is a pity there was a delay in matters and could only be fulfilled now.”

Madam Zhao smiled and replied, “We too were looking forward to seeing Old Ancestor, thus we came now.”

A married lady sitting by Old Furen’s side suddenly asked, “Are these the Young Ladies of the Marquis residence?”

This married lady was around the age of thirty-seven or eight, with a fair and round face, wearing a bright red and gold robe, looking like a pampered noble Furen at first glance. With a head full of gems and gold hairpins and her bright red dress, not one person in the entire room was able to match her extravagances.

To dare to speak like this in front of Old Prince Consort and to dress like this, one did not need to think as this could be only one person… The matriarch of the Prince Huai Ling Residence, Prince Consort of Second Rank.

At this moment, Chu Jin Yao gradually understood that even the usually flamboyant Chu Zhu dared not dress entirely in red on such occasions. Even though she wore a long red robe, she matched it with a sapphire blue skirt underneath. So it was to avoid clashing with Prince Consort.

Chu Jin Yao knew she had shallow exposure as she had never seen what the Imperial arrogance of a Prince Consort and Princess looked like. Seeing Prince Consort of Second Rank today, Chu Jin Yao felt that there were some gaps in her imagination, but nonetheless thought that it should be this noble.

When Prince Consort spoke, no one dared to take it lightly. Madam Zhao quickly responded, “It is them.” She then called their names individually and allowed them to come up to greet Prince Consort, also letting Prince Consort recognise their faces.

As to why there was a need to recognise their faces, everyone knew the obvious reason. After Prince Consort had seen them, she smiled and said, “They are all good Young Ladies. This is a first meeting gift to seek good fortune for the young ladies.”

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