Consort of a Thousand Faces

CHAPTER 23 (1): ASTONISHMENT
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CHAPTER 23 (1): ASTONISHMENT

Hence, once Prince Hao spoke, all the palace maids widened their eyes. A jealous heat filling their gazes to varying degrees.

Some inwardly lamented. Prince Hao didn’t pay He Xiangyu any attention after she was flogged by the Empress Dowager, but now he is suddenly involved with Su Xi-er. What would He Xiangyu think if she finds out?

Su Xi-er smiled sincerely. “Many thanks for your kind intentions, Prince Hao. However, this servant won’t be able to adjust to the Beauty Palace after getting accustomed to staying in the Palace Side Quarters for so long. Furthermore, this servant always has a lingering stench on me due to my work of scrubbing the chamber pots. I have no connection to the word ‘beauty’ at all.”

All the palace maids were astonished again. They could no longer restrain themselves from raising their heads to look at Su Xi-er.

The expression on her face is too unperturbed. She doesn’t care about the Beauty Palace at all, actually daring to reject Prince Hao! Only he is allowed to reject others. How would he tolerate others rejecting him!

When they looked at Prince Hao again, his gaze was sinister and callous while his whole body was emanating coldness.

The palace maids’ knees involuntarily trembled as they immediately lowered their heads, not daring to look up again as their hearts palpitated in fear.

They were afraid and on tenterhooks, having witnessed Prince Hao’s handsomeness and cold imposing manner with their own eyes.

“Already accustomed to staying in the Palace Side Quarters?” Prince Hao chuckled and glanced at Su Xi-er. Then, he walked towards the palace gate of the Palace Side Quarters.

His calm tone made his mood indiscernible. As she watched his departing figure, Su Xi-er looked pensive.

Once Pei Qianhao’s figure was out of sight, the previously quiet Palace Side Quarters exploded into activity. With Old Maidservant Zhao, the old-maidservant-in-charge, having been punished, there was no one to discipline them.

As everyone’s voices gradually became louder, their eyes naturally drifted towards the topic of conversation: Su Xi-er.

“She has lost her mind, right? It’s the Beauty Palace, yet she actually chose to not go!”

“Exactly. She offended Prince Hao while already being under Commandery Prince Xie’s ire from when she helped He Xiangyu take the blame. From the looks of it, she’s going to die.”

Hong Li raised her eyebrow. “Do you treat Commandery Prince Xie as a fool? He is very clear about who has offended him. It’s because He Xiangyu got taken into the Beauty Palace that Commandery Prince Xie didn’t pursue the matter further with her.”

Now that she mentioned it, that also seems to make sense.

A fat palace maid chuckled. “Hong Li, you take Su Xi-er’s side a lot. Is it because you think that she is going to prosper that you are so hurriedly hugging her thigh[1]?”

Su Xi-er hadn’t spoken all this while and finally responded, “My arms and legs are thin. If it’s about the thigh, it’s better to hug yours instead.”

In an instant, the other palace maids could no longer hold it in and laughter escaped their mouth.

That palace maid was the fattest in the Palace Side Quarters. She had been fat since she was young, even growing fatter by drinking water.

Having been teased, the palace maid’s face flushed. People had commented that she was fat since she was young. My body is just like that. I have no choice.

Which woman wouldn’t like to be beautiful? But I am unable to slim down.

The fat palace maid was sad to the point that tears threatened to fall from the rim of her eyes.

At this moment, Su Xi-er walked to her side and patted her shoulder. “Some people are fat and unhealthy. You, however, are very sturdy. You have sufficient strength to work and your body wouldn’t collapse. Instead of seeing this as a flaw, treat it as your unique strength.”

The fat palace maid’s tears flickered and she sniffled. “I don’t need you to pretend to be kind. You can just ridicule me directly for being fat.”

“It’s just you deriding yourself for being fat, not others.” Su Xi-er then turned around and entered the room, Hong Li following closely behind without minding the stares of others.

Right now, everyone was aware that Hong Li was already on the same side as Su Xi-er.

They were all starting to hesitate. Should we learn from Hong Li?

~~~

1. to forge connections with a powerful person

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