CHAPTER 23 (2): ASTONISHMENT
Su Xi-er glanced at her and smiled. “Are you not going to marry? How can you forever be my person?”
“I...it’s still early for me to marry. Besides, I would already be elated if I could walk out of the Palace Side Quarters. Su Xi-er, what is your goal? Tell me, and I will cooperate with you fully.” Hong Li’s eyes glimmered with hope. She didn’t dare to harbour extravagant hopes of leaving the imperial palace. As long as she could get out of the most desolate part in the imperial palace, she would already be very jubilant.
The expression in Su Xi-er’s eyes became distant. My goal...
Due to Hong Li’s question, Su Xi-er’s thoughts eventually came to Nanzhao’s imperial palace.
Those people probably think that I’m already dead. Was my body tossed into the unmarked mass grave?
“Su Xi-er, what’s wrong?” A soft call pulled her back from her thoughts.
She looked at Hong Li. “We will get out of the Palace Side Quarters. If you want to marry, you will have to leave the imperial palace. None of the men in the imperial palace is decent.”
Hong Li could see the coldness in her eyes and was puzzled. “You sound like you have experienced it before.”
Su Xi-er replied indifferently, “I’m in the Palace Side Quarters throughout the year. How would I have experienced something like that? Instead, it was easy enough to tell just from watching others like He Xiangyu.”
“You’re right; when He Xiangyu was favoured by Prince Hao, her status was high and above. Now that she has been punished by the Empress Dowager, Prince Hao doesn’t pay any attention to her at all. The men in the imperial palace only want something novel.” Hong Li nodded as she reasoned. In a split second, she had understood many principles.
No wonder Su Xi-er is unwilling to go to the Beauty Palace. That place is a grandiose cage. All the women dress and groom themselves every day, looking forward to Prince Hao’s arrival.
“Old Maidservant Zhao’s punishment is about to end soon,” Su Xi-er unhurriedly said as she looked at the window.
Right at this moment, the door of the room was opened. The three palace maids who lived in the same room as Su Xi-er were standing outside.
Although they stayed in the same room, it was the first time Su Xi-er had seen them clearly. In the past, she had only caught brief glances of their backs or simply not seen them around at all because their working and resting times were staggered differently.
“Old Maidservant Zhao was beaten by the plank thirty times. With her old body, it doesn’t look like she will survive!” A palace maid made a big fuss as she shouted.
“The Palace Side Quarters is going to have a change in the old-maidservant-in-charge, Su Xi-er,” another palace maid suddenly called her.
Su Xi-er looked at her. This palace maid was very short and her face was round. She ran over with her short legs and pulled Su Xi-er’s hand intimately with a cheerful face.
“You’re so amazing, borrowing Prince Hao’s hand to fix Old Maidservant Zhao. In the future, the new old-maidservant-in-charge probably has to fear you a little as well. Is it alright if I mingle and follow you?”
Su Xi-er removed her hand impressively. “I’m the same as you; just a palace maid. You should follow your master instead. I’m not your master. Besides, I didn’t borrow Prince Hao’s hand to punish Old Maidservant Zhao.”
The palace maid with a round face pouted. “You still don’t know who I am, right? I’m Lian Qiao. My bed is the fourth one, just beside yours.”
Su Xi-er’s bed was the third one. She is cottoning up to me.
However, I must keep away from this person. Although her words sound normal, they clearly hide a profound meaning.
“Lian Qiao, do your things obediently. In the Palace Side Quarters, all the palace maids are the same.” Hong Li couldn’t stand watching her any longer and cut her off.
Lian Qiao pretended to feel wronged. She lowered her head and didn’t look at them.
Just as the atmosphere in the room became awkward, the sound of footsteps could be heard outside.
“Palace maids of the Palace Side Quarters, assemble!” The person addressing them was an imperial bodyguard with a powerful voice.
There were usually only women in the Palace Side Quarters. Imperial bodyguards would only come when something major transpired.
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