The Crown Prince in the Jade Pendant: Chapter 41 (Part 1)

Edited by Larkspur

Chapter 41: Interruption at the Banquet (Part 1)

As soon as Lin Bao Zhu finished speaking, the room was filled with silent awkwardness.

Lin Bao Zhu was born as County Princess and was treated as though everything she said was correct, and everything she wanted was given. She had long gotten used to not caring about anything and being in the dominant position. When she asked the question, it was most likely that she had heard the rumours about Chu Jin Yao and Chu Jin Miao and felt that it was bizarre as it was more interesting than those novels, thus she ran over to enquire about it. However, she did not care one bit about the occasion or how the two parties would handle the situation.

Chu Jin Miao looked extremely embarrassed. Although everyone in the Residence of the Marquis of Chang Xing knew about it, they would all tacitly avoid the topic when talking. Who would want to deliberately speak about it and create an awkward atmosphere? No one would mention this matter in front of Chu Jin Yao and Chu Jin Miao so that everyone would look good. However, they were guests outside and with so many people around, Chu Jin Miao, the fake young lady, was unable to stand up when County Princess spoke loudly.

Chu Jin Yao was also embarrassed but she was much calmer than Chu Jin Miao. She smiled as she replied, “ County Princess is correct. It is me. When I was young, I grew up outside because of the Tartars and was only found by Father in the first lunar month this year.”

“Oh?” County Princess became even more curious. She pointed at Chu Jin Miao and asked, “That is to say that you grew up in her house and she grew up in yours?”

County Princess completely disregarded other people’s faces. Chu Jin Miao’s entire face was red but the other party, Chu Jin Yao, was very calm. “Yes. I was raised by a farmer family, the Su family.”

A meaningful look appeared on the County Princess’s face as she turned her head and looked at Chu Jin Miao before turning back to Chu Jin Yao and asking curiously, “You actually grew up in the countryside and just admit it like this?”

“There is nothing shameful about it.” Chu Jin Yao laughed, “I have grown up this much and did not steal, cheat or rob. It is just that the environment was somewhat poor, so what is wrong with it? Even though the Su family were farmers, they made a living with their hands and worked with dignity. So why would I not dare to admit it?”

Even if the young ladies of the rich and powerful did not say anything, they more or less looked down on the commoners, much less poor peasants like the Su family who used their hands to gather food in the fields. The young ladies of the Chu family avoided them on purpose. First, it was due to Marquis Chang Xing’s and Madam Zhao’s faces, and second, was because Chu Jin Yao’s background was not worthy to be spoken about in public. Thus, whoever spoke of it would only evoke Chu Jin Yao’s cold attitude. The more they wanted to avoid it, the more they thought about it inwardly. When the County Princess asked this question, the few young ladies of the Chu family were shocked.

Sixth Young Lady had felt that it was over and the scene following would be very difficult.

However, no one had expected that Chu Jin Yao would admit the matter so openly and even take the initiative to reveal her past for others to see. If Chu Jin Yao’s words were evasive, the other young ladies would have felt somewhat amused, but when Chu Jin Yao was this unfazed, to their surprise, they felt embarrassed on the surface.

Wounds would only fester when hidden, but when the person involved was open-minded and not fearful of the eyes of the outsider, then it was the onlookers who would be embarrassed.

County Princess did not expect Chu Jin Yao to say such words. She was at first startled then smiled as she said, “I have never seen a person like you. Others would be either evasive, put up airs or act up. But your straightforward nature is more to my taste.” County Princess walked over and took Chu Jin Yao’s arms and continued, “Come on, I will take you out to look at the flowers.”

Lin Bao Zhu was County Princess, there was no one with a higher status than hers in ShanXi. She was used to flattery, just like she was used to eating delicacies, thus when she encountered people, like Chu Jin Yao, who spoke the truth, it was unexpected, and she liked it a lot.

Third Young Lady and Sixth Young Lady watched helplessly as County Princess brought Chu Jin Yao out; they were unable to hide their astonishment. No one had expected such a development. Not only did the County Princess not despise, she instead looked at Chu Jin Yao with a level of higher importance. They were cracking their brains to be County Princess’s study companion, with Third Young Lady carefully putting on makeup and Sixth Young Lady having prepared what to say and do today. However, before they could even start, they were suppressed by Chu Jin Yao’s casual words?

What a joke! Third Young Lady and Sixth Young Lady immediately stood up and smiled, “Where will County Princess be appreciating flowers? We will accompany each other.”

County Princess was not too concerned about it and allowed Third Young Lady and Sixth Young Lady to follow along. Even Seventh Young Lady, who had been instructed by Madam Yan previously, took advantage of her young age to deliberately get closer. The hall was filled with people just now but in a whoosh, it was empty. Chu Jin Miao just stood there without anyone paying attention to her or talking to her, making her expression turn extremely ugly.

The maid carefully reminded, “Fourth Young Lady, Country Princess has gone out. Should we…”

Chu Jin Miao knew that this was not the occasion for her to throw a tantrum, so she forcefully concealed the displeasure on her face and walked out with a stiff expression, “I understand. So it turns out that County Princess fell for the trick of acting pitiful. It is just an act. Who doesn’t know how to do it?”

Chu Jin Miao presumed that County Princess was only close with Chu Jin Yao among others because she was pitiful enough. It was right, she had a rough background, grew up in a poor family, and did not have much exposure. As such, to a noble and delicate County Princess, wouldn’t this be something that struck one’s heart?

Chu Jin Miao thought to herself and adjusted her plan. She knew that the selection of the County Princess’s study companion was a façade, in reality, it was preparation as the Crown Princess. She had to stay by County Princess’s side no matter what. With County Princess as a springboard, she would have the opportunity to jump to even higher places in the future.

County Princess was carried away by a sudden impulse and insisted on pulling Chu Jin Yao to the inner garden to see the chrysanthemums. All the maids in the Prince Residence said, “County Princess, it would be time for a meal soon. One would not be able to look for Old Ancestor when one goes too far.”

However, Country Princess was in high spirits, thus these words were like wind by her ears. She could not be bothered to listen to the maids and pulled Chu Jin Yao saying, “My Mother found some green chrysanthemums two days ago, I will show them to you.”

County Princess was so focused on playing that she did not control her arm strength, making Chu Jin Yao feel a little uncomfortable being held like that. She moved her wrist slightly and pulled it back calmly as the maid was speaking to County Princess.

Chu Jin Yao’s steps were slightly slower, she was immediately pushed away by Third Young Lady. Third Young Lady had a slim waist and graceful figure and was able to squeeze into the gap. She then turned her head back and glared at Chu Jin Yao complacently. Chu Jin Yao felt that it was ridiculous and just covered her sleeves and rubbed her wrists. Sixth Young Lady walked over to Chu Jin Yao silently and spoke to her in a soft voice, “Fifth Older Sister, do you still remember what you promised me a few days ago?”

Chu Jin Yao’s expression did not change as she asked, “What is Sixth Younger Sister referring to?”

“Fifth Older Sister is really good at joking.” Sixth Young Lady laughed, “That’s right. Fifth Older Sister is originally a Di born noble daughter. From the farm house to the Marquis residence, one can just jump over such a big ravine, so how would one be unable to handle a small ditch? It turned out that I had no foresight and underestimated Older Sister. Initially, one even thought of giving a helping hand and assisting a little. Now it seems that the words I spoke previously were just a joke. Fifth Older Sister is very skilled, so why would one need me?”

It could only be said that one would perceive another in the way one was. Sixth Young Lady had originally planned to use Chu Jin Yao but after seeing her today, she suddenly realised that she had miscalculated? However, she did not want to capsize the boat in the gutter.

Chu Jin Yao withdrew her hand and turned to look at Sixth Young Lady, “What does Sixth Young Lady mean?”

Sixth Young Lady’s expression changed slightly, “Fifth Sister need not pretend that you do not understand in front of me.”

“I truly do not understand.” Chu Jin Yao continued, “Hoping that Sixth Young Lady directly tells me what exactly are you trying to say?”

Sixth Young Lady was stunned and her smile stiffened. Even though she had deliberately angered Chu Jin Yao and ideally made her lose her temper, when Chu Jin Yao questioned her so bluntly, the one who could not stand it became her instead.

After speaking, they arrived at the gardens. The sun was shining brightly overhead, thus the servants led them towards the gazebo and spoke after laying cushions for the young ladies, “May Young Ladies sit down for a while as it is presumed that Old Prince Consort would be calling for the meal soon. The sun is extremely strong, thus one dared not let young ladies play outside. One can only wrong the young ladies to enjoy the breeze here and return in the afternoon to view the chrysanthemums.”

Her words were reasonable. Moreover, there were many different species of flowers planted around the gazebo, so when the breeze blew, the flowers would sway, creating a rarely-seen beautiful scenery.

Chu Jin Yao nodded with a smile and sat down, not intending to make things difficult for the maids. However, County Princess was not happy just sitting down. She took a look around and spoke with lips curled up, “It is boring to stay here. I remember that the cluster of green chrysanthemums is about to bloom. Green chrysanthemums are rare so I want to pick them for a vase arrangement.”

Old Prince Consort’s personal maids quickly spoke, “County Princess must not. It is not good to be exposed to the sun. This servant will instruct the maids to do whatever you want.”

“Why so troublesome? I already said that I want to go there myself!” County Princess swept the maid’s hand off. She looked at the crowd and waved at Chu Jin Yao when she saw her saying, “Quickly come over. I remember the flowers are there. Accompany me there to pick the flowers.”

The maid who was embarrassed publicly could not hold back her expression but upon remembering Old Prince Consort’s words, she could only persuade patiently, “County Princess, it is almost noon. The sun would be at its highest during the day, thus one cannot go out.”

“Why is it up to you what I want to do?” Country Princess continued, “Besides, I am currently absolutely fine.”

This was simply an annoying troublemaker. Chu Jin Yao looked at the sunlight outside the pavilion and felt that the maid’s words were reasonable. She could not help but speak, “This Older Sister’s words are reasonable. The sun is extremely strong and there is no absolute need to head outside now. Anyway, the flowers have bloomed and they would not run away, it is ideal to wait for a while more when it is not scorching hot.”

“It is not interesting if one needs to wait till the afternoon. I am going now. You all are so naggy. So annoying.” County Princess was rather disappointed that Chu Jin Yao was helping others to persuade her and complained as she frowned.

When Chu Jin Miao heard it, she quickly spoke, “It is said that one has to come in high spirits and return after thoroughly enjoying oneself. How could an elegant matter like appreciating flowers be hindered by mere external matters? If everyone dislikes the sun, then I would accompany County Princess out to enjoy the flower viewing.”

This was the difference between Chu Jin Yao and Chu Jin Miao. Chu Jin Miao had thought of herself as a Di-born young lady and was used to giving orders, so it was only natural for everyone to accommodate her. However, Chu Jin Yao would not be this capricious and would put herself in others’ shoes. Everybody was human, so why would there be a need to make things difficult for others with such a whim? Since everyone came out together, why could it not be discussed? It was too selfish to just look out for one’s own interest.

However, such logic would not make sense to Country Princess. The maid was obviously doing it for County Princess’s good but still had to be scolded by her. Now with Chu Jin Miao’s response, County Princess became even more stubborn and just did whatever she wanted.

“County Princess, your complexion may not withstand the sun. If a rash appears upon returning, Prince Consort would start blaming.”

“Shut up! How can a servant intervene with my matters?”

Chu Jin Miao spoke out, “If County Princess’ health is weak, then just instruct the maid to hold an umbrella at the side so that the sun would not shine on the County Princess’s face. Isn’t that fine?”

What kind of those were those? Wasn’t it too bothersome for the others if the maids were to shade the Country Princess with umbrellas? Chu Jin Yao walked over and softly spoke to Chu Jin Miao, “Just say a few words less. These maids were instructed to look over County Princess, so if County Princess is exposed to the sun, they would be punished whereas nothing would happen to County Princess. We are guests, it is fine that we do not persuade County Princess, but why make things more bothersome?”

Chu Jin Miao instead sneered and glared in disdain at Chu Jin Yao and said, “I know what thoughts you have. You fear that I hit off with Country Princess and are thus obstructing me in every possible way. Your intentions are truly unbearable. Let me tell you, just save all these crooked thoughts!”

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