Consort of a Thousand Faces

CHAPTER 10: AN ABNORMAL RELATIONSHIP
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CHAPTER 10: AN ABNORMAL RELATIONSHIP

Within the Compassionate Peace Palace, a woman clad in an elegant pink dress was lying on the bench. Her features were delicate and pretty, smooth porcelain skin accented by a pair of bright eyes underneath her arched willow-leaf shaped eyebrows1. Her right hand waved a small round hand fan2 to and fro lightly.

Free and Original on volarenovels. Please read the most updated chapters on volarenovels. “Empress Dowager, Imperial Bodyguard Wu has arrived.”

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“Summon him to come in,” a faint voice slipped out from the woman’s lips. She was still waving the round fan in her hand.

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Who would have expected that the seemingly innocent woman was already the esteemed Empress Dowager.

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“This subordinate pays his respects to the Empress Dowager. May I know for what matter I was called here?” Wu Ling bowed and made his greetings. Although he behaved deferentially, it could be heard from his words that he wasn’t the Empress Dowager’s subordinate, and he didn’t need to take orders from her.

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“Audacious! How dare you speak to the Empress Dowager like this!” He Ying glared. A bright glint flashed across her eyes as she glared daggers at Wu Ling.

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“Xiao He3, go to one side. Imperial Bodyguard Wu, this Empress Dowager naturally called you over because I have something to ask.” Pei Yaran stood up from the bench and swayed her round fan as she walked towards Wu Ling.

Free and Original on volarenovels. Please read the most updated chapters on volarenovels. “Imperial Bodyguard Wu, where did you find Prince Hao this morning?” She spoke smilingly with an inquiring tone.

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“The woods beside the Palace Side Quarters.” These few simple words caused Pei Yaran to furrow her brow. She also stopped swaying her fan.

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“To think he was in such a good mood and ran there.” Pei Yaran chuckled. Her expression stiffened for a split second before returning to normal.

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“Empress Dowager, if you have any questions, please ask directly. This subordinate still has matters to handle.”

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Pei Yaran sneered, her voice shrill. “Capturing a woman is called handling matters? From now on, you don’t have to mention this matter again. Creating such a commotion just for a woman is really a joke!”

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“Empress Dowager, this matter was instructed by Prince Hao. If you’re dissatisfied, you can tell Prince Hao.” Wu Ling was neither supercilious nor servile and had a stern expression. It was precisely such an appearance that infuriated Pei Yaran.

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“You!” She raised her hand. Her face was full of ire. “Alright, this Empress Dowager will tell Prince Hao. Xiao He, go with this empress dowager to the Beauty Palace.”

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“Empress Dowager!” He Ying was anxious. The 72 concubines Prince Hao is raising live in the Beauty Palace. How can the Empress Dowager go to such a place?

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“Prince Hao is not in the Beauty Palace.” Wu Ling’s words set He Ying’s heart at ease.

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Pei Yaran threw the round paper fan heavily onto the ground. “Where is he?”

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She had been worried as he had been drinking yesterday, immediately ordering people to search for him as soon as he had gone missing. They searched for the entire night but to no avail. Early this morning, she had received news that Prince Hao had fainted in the woods beside the Palace Side Quarters last night, even going as far as to instruct Wu Ling to find the woman he had encountered near the Palace Side Quarters last night.

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She had called Wu Ling to ascertain the veracity of this piece of news.

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Previously, he had taken a palace maid from the Palace Side Quarters to the Beauty Palace. In the past, she had turned a blind eye to the 72 concubines of the Beauty Palace, but she could no longer endure it now!

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“When has this prince ever needed you to interfere with my matters?” A deep and low male voice could be heard. When she looked in the direction of the voice, there was a man donned in purple robes with snake patterns. His hair was tied up with a blue silk thread, a round fretwork jade pendant4 hanging at his waist.

Free and Original on volarenovels. Please read the most updated chapters on volarenovels. As he moved, his imposing manner was to the point that it felt oppressive.

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This aura caused all of Pei Yaran’s temper to dissipate. When He Ying noticed it, she immediately bowed and withdrew.

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“Wu Ling, withdraw.”

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“This subordinate obeys.”

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Only Pei Qianhao and Pei Yaran were remaining in the Compassionate Peace Palace.

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Pei Yaran’s fierce bearing immediately vanished, the charming attitude of a little girl emerging on her visage. She raised her right hand to grab Pei Qianhao’s. “Elder Brother, am I or the women in the Beauty Palace more important in your heart?”

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Pei Qianhao looked at her and raised his hand to touch her forehead.

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“Elder Brother…” Pei Yaran seized the opportunity to hug him and rest her head against his chest.

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“You are my younger sister. How can those women compare to you?” He pushed her away and walked to a table to pour himself a cup of green tea. Pei Yaran bit her lips firmly. Younger sister. It’s younger sister again! I have no blood relations with him at all! How do I count as a younger sister! What I don’t want to be the most is to be his younger sister. I want to be his woman!

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“Hao…” She changed her manner of address and slowly approached him.

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Pei Qianhao turned around to look at her and automatically took a step back, increasing the distance between them.

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“Whether I will pursue the matter regarding the palace maid will depend on my mood. If you’re bored in the Compassionate Peace Palace, get Xiao He to accompany you to the Imperial Garden. The Purple Fragrance Flowers transplanted from Xiliu last year have bloomed.” He then put his teacup down and turned around to leave.

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Watching his retreating figure, Pei Yaran was unable to speak and clenched her fists tight. Does he actually like me or not? Or does he fear the Three Cardinal Guides and the Five Constant Virtues5?

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“Empress Dowager, Prince Hao has already left.” He Ying felt something clutching her heart. She was very clear about the Empress Dowager’s intentions towards Prince Hao.

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“Xiao He, I’m only eighteen years old. Why must he do this to me?” Tears trickled down endlessly from Pei Yaran’s eyes.

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He Ying bit her lips, feeling sorry for her. “I understand your pain. With how many years you have been together, Prince Hao definitely likes you. But with the current situation, Prince Hao has no choice but to keep you distant. The Beauty Palace is just another ruse for deceiving the public.”

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The Beauty Palace is used to mislead the public? Pei Yaran’s eyes shone. “Xiao He, if that’s really the case…”

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“Empress Dowager, after eliminating Commandery Prince Xie and the other imperial princes, there will no longer be anyone in the court who dares to say no to the Pei Family. At that time, Prince Hao will marry you.”

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“Xiao He, if he really thinks that…” Pei Yaran’s face was full of joy.

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“Empress Dowager, this servant has already investigated. The palace maid Prince Hao took with him from the Palace Side Quarters is related to Commandery Prince Xie.”

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“Hm? Related to Xie Yun? Explicate it specifically.” Pei Yaran had a stern expression. Her misery as a woman had vanished, and her aura as an Empress Dowager reappeared.

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“That palace maid is He Xiangyu, the one you just disciplined. She had previously offended Commandery Prince Xie, but her good sister Su Xi-er took the blame for her. Only after that did He Xiangyu meet Prince Hao and enter the Beauty Palace.”

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When He Ying spoke until here, she paused. “Commandery Prince Xie is someone who will seek revenge for even the smallest grievances. How could he have forgiven a person who had really offended him? As for the matter of Su Xi-er taking the blame, Commandery Prince Xie didn’t pursue.”

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“Xiao He, instruct the maid in charge of the Palace Side Quarters to dispose of Su Xi-er as quickly as possible. Leave He Xiangyu’s life first.” The corners of Pei Yaran’s mouth were raised as her eyes filled with viciousness.

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“This servant has already instructed the maid in charge of the Palace Side Quarters. Su Xi-er will completely vanish very soon.”

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“You did well! I’ll reward you handsomely!”

~~~

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Meanwhile, Su Xi-er didn’t know that the Empress Dowager was already ‘concerned’ about her. After scrubbing the chamber pots for the entire night yesterday, her body was weak and her only thoughts were those of a good rest.

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However, right after she entered the room, someone pushed the door open from outside. Old Maidservant Zhao entered the room while carrying a white bowl.

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“Su Xi-er, sit. I personally instructed someone to simmer a bowl of chicken soup for you. Drink it while it’s still hot and nourish your body.” Old Maidservant Zhao then placed the white bowl on the table.

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Su Xi-er looked at the contents of the white bowl. It was Wood Ear Chicken Soup6. There were three big pieces of chicken meat with some chopped onions sprinkled on it.

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“Drink it while it’s still hot.” Old Maidservant Zhao’s face was wreathed in smiles as she constantly urged Su Xi-er to drink it quickly. https://www.volarenovels.com/novel/consort-of-thousand-faces/ctf-chapter-10#footnote-ref-6ed6

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1. It’s an eyebrow design women draw

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