T/N: Thank you patrons for sponsoring this chapter part.
Title: ChongFei Manual
Chapter: 154.2 out of 171
Wei Luo turned around and saw Zhao Jie wearing a dark reddish purple robe with a Taotie pattern. He was standing only a few steps away.
Wei Luo threw herself into Zhao Jie’s arms, wrapped her arms around his waist, raised her head, and said, “Yang Zhen isn’t as good-looking as big brother. It’s enough just to look at big brother.”
Zhao Jie clearly knew that she was deliberately saying these words to curry his favor, but he still felt delighted. He pinched her small cheeks and said, “Little rascal, what were you two talking about? You’ve been very diligent about coming to Zheng Rong Courtyard every day.”
Wei Luo didn’t answer and only wrinkled her nose. She leaned against Zhao Jie’s chest like a puppy and sniffed his body’s scent.
Zhao Jie said, “What’s wrong?”
Wei Luo deliberately said in an exaggerated way, “Such a strong vinegar scent.”
(T/N: In Chinese, eating vinegar means you’re being jealous of your lover.)
Zhao Jie picked her up and repeatedly patted her butt. “Little fellow, you’re asking for a beating.”
Wei Luo had already experienced his slaps. After he had only spanked her once last time, it hurt so much that she didn’t dare to sit on a stool for an entire evening. She obediently wrapped her arms around Zhao Jie’s neck and rubbed her face between his shoulder and neck. She meekly said, “ I’m only taking care of Yang Zhen because Liuli asked me. Otherwise, I wouldn’t pay attention to him.”
After she said these words, Zhao Jie’s expression improved.
She hurriedly kissed him to strike while the iron was hot. “I only care about you.”
Zhao Jie pinched her chin and wouldn’t let her move away. He sucked on her lips to taste them for a long time.
Wei Luo was heavily breathing when he let her go and her face was flushed red. “Where did you go before you came here?”
Zhao Jie said, “The palace.”
At the mention of this, Wei Luo remembered a serious matter and solemnly asked, “Did you see His Majesty? What did he say?”
Zhao Jie didn’t go to the palace for Zhao Liuli. He had gone to discuss the drought in Qing Zhou. Qing Zhou had been suffering from a drought for over half a year and the bad harvest this year had led to the absolute suffering of the common people. Emperor Chong Zhen had given this matter to Zhao Jie to handle. Zhao Jie had gone to the palace today to deliberate over decreasing Qing Zhou’s taxation. Afterwards, Zhao Jie had mentioned Zhao Liuli’s matter. Right after he spoke, Emperor Chong Zhen angry expression showed that he didn’t want to talk about this matter. And so, Zhao Jie didn’t continue this topic and left the palace.
Zhao Jie said, “Let’s wait a few days and talk about this after imperial father calms down.”
Wei Luo was expecting this answer. She helplessly sighed. “I’ll be going to the palace to pay respects to imperial mother tomorrow. While I’m there, I’ll ask imperial mother for her opinion.” She suddenly thought of something and her almond-shaped eyes narrowed as a light flashed through her eyes. “Seventh princess has so much free time. She even had time to interfere with this matter.”
If it weren’t for Zhao Lin Lang, there wouldn’t be any difficulties.
On the next day, Wei Luo went to the palace after tidying up and changing her outfit.
Wei Luo knew that Empress Chen liked to eat these common people snacks, so she specially brought several types of sweets from a new confection shop on West Street on her way to palace. Included in these sweets, there were two of Empress Chen’s favorites, candied winter melon and hawthorn cake.
(T/N: Below are picture of those two sweets.)
When she arrived at Zhao Yang Hall, a palace servant said Empress Chen was chanting sutras at Bao He Hall. Wei Luo left the desserts at Zhao Yang Hall and turned around to go to Bao He Hall.
Wei Luo knew that this meant Empress Chen was feeling troubled.
Whenever Empress Chen was feeling unhappy or unsure about something, she would go to Bao He Hall to chant sutras.
When Wei Luo arrived, there were only two servant girls waiting outside. Empress Chen was kneeling on a praying mat as she endlessly muttered sutras.
Hearing footsteps, Empress Chen furrowed her eyebrows and said, “Didn’t this empress order that no one should enter here?”
Wei Luo said, “Imperial mother, it’s me.”
Empress Chen was slightly surprised, but she didn’t stand up. She continued to kneel on the praying mat as she said, “Ah Luo, why did you come here?”
Wei Luo kneeled down on the neighboring praying mat, and put her palms together, and piously closed her eyes. Like the empress, she believed that the gods and Buddha existed in this world. Otherwise, she wouldn’t have been reborn again. She said, “I brought several kinds of common people’s confections for imperial mother. I don’t know if imperial mother will like them.”
After Empress Chen finished reciting a sutra, she tilted her head to look at her and said with a smile, “That’s very thoughtful of you.”
Wei Luo said, “These confections are from a recently opened store. Imperial mother, try them later. If you like them, I’ll have them delivered to you every day.” Her words were sweet and made Empress Chen very happy.
A while later, Wei Luo couldn’t resist asking, “Imperial mother, do you also disagree with Liuli marrying Yang Zhen?”
Empress Chen had already guessed why Wei Luo had come here. Her previous words were just camouflage for why she was here. It must have been difficult of her to resist asking this question first. Empress Chen stood up from the praying mat, walked to a small, vermillion-lacquered table carved with a cloud pattern, sat down, and poured two cups of tea. “When I started looking for a husband for that child, she had used various excuses to avoid marriage. I had thought she truly didn’t want to marry anyone and wanted to stay at this empress’s side forever. I didn’t expect that her heart already had someone.” Her voice sounded rather wistful.
Wei Luo didn’t make a sound and obediently sat down across from Empress Chen.
Empress Chen continued, “You probably already knew about this for a long time. You two worked together to deceive this empress, right?”
Wei Luo hurriedly shook her head and explained, “I also only recently found out about this. When Yang Zhen went to Guang Dong, Liuli decided that she would confess to you after Yang Zhen came back. That’s why I didn’t say anything to you.” At this time, it was harmless to tell a little lie.
Empress Chen’s expression slightly eased and she slowly said, “I just want Liuli to marry a person that sincerely loves her and will take care of her. I want her life to be harmonious and sweet. As long as she doesn’t experience any turbulent times, I’ll be satisfied as her mother.”
When she had been looking for a husband for Liuli, the candidates all had one common point, not ambitious. Empress Chen liked people that were satisfied with what they had. Once men became too ambitious, they were likely to neglect their wives. She had already tastes this bitterness herself; she didn’t want her daughter to follow her disastrous path.
Wei Luo said, “Imperial mother, you don’t have to worry about this point. Yang Zhen’s affection for Liuli is absolutely sincere. He’s not doing this for her princess status.”
Wei Luo gave a few examples. Minor examples were carving things and catching fireflies for Liuli. A major demonstration was rushing to join the army to put down the revolt in Guang Dong for Liuli. Each of these examples conveyed Yang Zhen’s genuineness.
After Empress Chen heard this, she was naturally slightly moved. She sighed and said, “It’s not obvious, but Yang Zhen is truly an infatuated child.”
Wei Luo nodded in agreement. “Then, will you agree to their marriage?”
Empress Chen said with a smile, “So what if I agree? There’s nothing I can do if His Majesty doesn’t agree.”
Even though she said these words, Emperor Chong Zhen would definitely listen to her.
Wei Luo had heard for Zhao Liuli that Emperor Chong Zhen would listen and follow Empress Chen’s words without any regard for his dignity. He was as flattering to Empress Chen as a concubine towards her master. He did all this in hopes of obtaining Empress Chen’s forgiveness.
Unfortunately for him, Empress Chen didn’t appreciate his actions at all.