Chapter 56 – Promise
Xu Xue Ying still wanted to say something to Lin Jia Bao, but she stopped all of a sudden and looked straight behind Lin Jia Bao.
“Your Royal Highness, Your Royal Highness… Xue Ying can finally see you.”
“Xue Ying has been looking forward to seeing you everyday, Xue Ying really misses you!” Xu Xue Ying pushed Lin Jia Bao away and ran in front of Xuan Yuan Han Cheng.
Lin Jia Bao was pushed out of the blue and he staggered for a few steps. Xuan Yuan Han Cheng hurried to support his baby, ignoring Xu Xue Ying’s emotional words.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng saw that there was something amiss about Lin Jia Bao’s expression. He took him into his arms, thought for a while, and said to Jia Bao, “Baby, you go back with Yuan Qing and the others first.”
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Xuan Yuan Han Cheng could feel his baby stiffen in his arms for a split second, so he wrapped him tightly in his arms again, and said into his ear: “Darling, your husband, I, will be return to Ping Le Courtyard in a short while.”
Lin Jia Bao’s expression was somewhat wooden as he followed Yuan Qing and them back to Ping Le Courtyard.
Xu Xue Ying just saw the crown prince whispering to Lin Jia Bao, and his expression was so focused and gentle. Xu Xue Ying couldn’t believe her eyes. Even when she was most favored, His Royal Highness had never been so gentle to her. This Lin An Zhu looked incompetent and ordinary. How could he be worthy?!
Xu Xue Ying looked at Lin Jia Bao’s retreating back. Jealousy and resentfulness exuded from her eyes. Xuan Yuan Han Cheng caught the vicious look in Xu Xue Ying’s eyes. It looked like Xu Xue Ying could not stay in the East Palace anymore. She has been confined, and she was still able to trick his darling into this place. From this, it could be seen that she had quite a few tricks up her sleeves.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng thought about how his baby’s expression just now had looked very bad. He had to go back as soon as possible and explain clearly to his treasure. It would be no good for his darling to misunderstand him.
Seeing His Royal Highness watching her, Xu Xue Ying hastily changed her expression.
“Your Royal Highness… Your Royal Highness, back then, it was not Xue Ying’s intention for Bi Zhu to offend you. Xue Ying missed Your Royal Highness day and night. When [I] heard the news of Your Royal Highness’s expedition, Xue Ying also prayed daily for the heavens to bless Your Royal Highness to come back safely. Please understand, ah, Your Royal Highness…”
As Xu Xue Ying spoke, her voice became choked. She cried silently as if she had suffered a lot of grievances. At the same time, she did not forget to show off her beautiful profile with tears clinging to her eyelashes in front of His Royal Highness.
“You don’t have to pretend anymore, Xu-shi*. I already know. Exactly how did Yu-shi’s child pass away… You must be clear about the truth in your heart…” Xuan Yuan Han Cheng said coldly.
[*T/N: 氏 shi – an honorific suffix attached to a married woman’s maiden name.]
“It wasn’t me… I didn’t… Your Royal Highness, you’re really accusing me wrongly. How can I hurt Your Royal Highness’s children? Someone must have framed me. It must be Yu-shi or the crown princess! Your Royal Highness, you can’t believe them. You must see clearly the downy feathers of autumn*, and return justice to Xue Ying, ah…”
[*T/N: 明察秋毫 “see clearly the downy feathers of autumn” – an idiom from Mencius meaning to be perceptive of even the finest detail]
Xu Xue Ying instantly panicked after hearing the crown prince’s words. However, she immediately calmed down once she remembered that Bi Zhu was already dead. The dead could not testify. And all other trails [that could lead back to her] have already been taken care of.
Xu Xue Ying cried even more heartbrokenly, “They really want to force me to death… Xue Ying is really wronged… Your Royal Highness must believe me…”
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“You’ve been wrong?! …Ha ha, do you want to confront Bi Zhu [in court]?” Xuan Yuan Han Cheng said coldly.
“Bi Zhu died a long time ago.”
Xu Xue Ying looked at the cold expression on His Royal Highness.
“No… No… Bi Zhu, she…”
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng didn’t bother to look at Xu Xue Ying’s hypocritical expressions anymore. He turned around and say to Yuan Fu, “Move Xu-shi to Bei Han Palace tomorrow.”
Xu Xue Ying screamed when she heard the three words Bei Han Palace.
Bei Han Palace was a veritable cold palace*, not just in name only, but also in reality.
[*T/N: 冷宫 cold palace – you’re probably familiar with this one already, but it’s a place to which a monarch banishes a wife or concubine who falls from favor, figuratively, the doghouse]
If Xu Xue Ying went there, her ending would be to either go crazy, or to die alone after suffering. Even if she died, she didn’t want to go there.
“No… I was framed… Your Royal Highness… Your Royal Highness!”
Regardless of Xu Xue Ying’s bitter pleading, or how she quibbled and refused to admit that she did not harm Yu-shi’s child, Xuan Yuan Han Cheng did not care. He hurriedly left the small courtyard where Xu Xue Ying was imprisoned.
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