Chapter 262: Black Devil’s Snare Protecting Its Mistress
“This old servant understands.” The old madame’s men arrived right after the old servant gave her reply. Yu Xiaoshu might’ve been a little brash earlier but now she had calmed down a little. One large reason was likely the throbbing headache she was having right now, while the other was the realization that she couldn’t make any more trouble. After all, Bai Xiangxiu was still the princess consort and her cousin’s wife. She suddenly felt lethargic after the old servants escorted her out. Although, in all fairness, she was practically dragged away.
“Leave! All of you!” Long Heng gestured imperiously for everyone else to leave. “What happened just now? You seem to know something?”
“Yu Xiaoshu was probably acting that way because she attacked me while we were in that room. She was probably poisoned by some hallucinogen. Of course, she probably desperately wanted to sleep with you as well!” Bai Xiangxiu had just only realized this as well because Huo’er had been complaining that the air in the room was polluted. However, it seemed like the only person affected by the hallucinogen was that crazy woman. Yes, both the plants were calling Yu Xiaoshu a crazy woman because she’d just hit their mistress.
“They are conscious beings?”
“Actually, all plants are conscious. It’s just that humans cannot understand them, just like how we cannot understand animals.” Scientists have proven this.
“As long as they don’t hurt you.” Long Heng replied.
“Of course not. They only seek to protect me.”
Long Heng wanted nothing more than to sing the devil’s snare praises right now. Once the old madame heard what Yu Xiaoshu just did in this place, she’d probably…
“Your Highness, this old servant has returned. Old Madame has something she wishes to convey.”
“You may enter!” The old servant entered the room and reported that the old madame had already sent the cousin back home. She had also been ordered to get married immediately to prevent her from doing something so disgraceful again.
Long Heng nodded with approval. “You may leave. Tell the servants to serve dinner.”
“It’s almost night. Why don’t we eat together?” Bai Xiangxiu asked.
“You keep fainting because your body is frail. There must be no delays in your meal times. Eat!”
“……” What is this new tough love scenario? Is this some kind of domineering CEO play? Regardless, Bai Xiangxiu ate as ordered. She was feeling quite happy because she’d managed to chase the female supporting character away in just one day. Come to think of it, Long Heng was actually quite well-behaved. He’d never once fooled around with any other woman in both the novel and reality. Because of that, there hadn’t been too many female supporting characters. All the other women had suffered from unrequited love.
However, she believed that a new female supporting character would likely appear some time in the future, because that’s just what authors did when they wrote long stories. She couldn’t really know for sure as she hadn’t finished the book yet. Well, at least I’m the only person in his heart right now.
The house was much more serene after the departure of Yu Xiaoshu. Soon, the day of the banquet arrived. The Long family had already arrived in force two days ago. Bai Xiangxiu truly didn’t have a favorable opinion of them. Even though they were both officials of the imperial court, they didn’t share much in familial relations with each other any more.
Why are the female guests all looking at me like that? What’s with the scorn on their faces? While it was true that Bai Xiangxiu hadn’t had the best upbringing, she definitely had these women beat both in terms of looks and conduct. Since she had to make a point, she decided to dress up lavishly even though she was the type who would normally prefer to keep a low profile. She was so beautiful that she even seemed to shimmer as she walked, making it hard for others to take their eyes off of her.
Bai Xiangxiu was the type of beauty who could dress up modestly or elaborately. She could bring out her beauty by dressing up in almost any way she liked. Her figure hadn’t changed much after giving birth to Long Lin, but there was now a tinge of maturity to it which no young lass could ever hope to beat. After using some modern makeup techniques, Bai Xiangxiu was able to achieve a modest yet extremely delicate and exquisite look. Nobody there could point out a single flaw in her beauty. Add to that a general commanding aura she’d cultivated, and nobody dared to say no to her on the ceremony day.
However, no one realized just how tired Bai Xiangxiu was. She immediately slumped into a chair to rest when she returned to her room. Xiaohuan had returned today, bringing Prince Rong’s gift with her. This made Bai Xiangxiu so happy that she allowed Xiaohuan to stay in the room while she rested.
“Why don’t you let this servant loosen up your shoulders?” Xiaohuan asked when she saw how tired Bai Xiangxiu was.
“Mm. That’d be great. Come, help me massage my shoulders. I still have the second half to deal with.” The bowing rites were next, and were going to be performed after all the guests were greeted and shown to their seats. She’d have to change into the red bridal clothes even though she was already wearing the bridal veil.
“It means that there’s still more to do!”
“I didn’t think that it’d be so tiring to be a princess consort. Your Highness had so much more freedom in Tranquil City.”
“How did you know?”
“Ah Quan told me.”
“It’s true. I could really spread my wings there.” Bai Xiangxiu nearly dozed off during the massage, but was quickly interrupted by a mama who’d come to help her change. Oh well, I’ll just treat it as having the child before marriage!
After putting on her red ceremonial clothes, she climbed into a plush sedan chair and was carried to the front hall. Long Heng was standing right in front of the door and had personally come to receive her when she arrived. He was also dressed entirely in red and seemed very dashing. The look of happiness on his face was impossible to conceal.
For some reason, Bai Xiangxiu began to blush as well. They’d been calling it a banquet all this time, so it took her until this moment to realize that the banquet was more like a wedding ceremony. She was about to be married to Long Heng. A man from a novel who was seemingly perfect in every way. She suddenly felt a sense of gratitude to the author. If the author hadn’t written in such an excellent male lead, she would never have wanted to stay in this world long enough to marry him.
With that, she placed her hand on his arm. In reality, Long Heng was actually younger than her by five or six years, and was an extremely handsome man. He might seem a little cold at first, but he was actually quite gentle. No, he actually treated her quite well despite having said nothing about it. Upon realization of those facts, Bai Xiangxiu immediately fell into the mindset of a new bride. She was shy, afraid, and solemn; all sorts of emotions were surfacing in her heart at the same time. In fact, she even seemed to have forgotten how to walk properly! Fortunately, Long Heng kept his calm. He led the way and brought his beautiful bride-to-be all the way to the front.
The bowing rituals! They were going to be a real husband and wife after this! Wait. Did that mean we were living together illegally before? Bai Xiangxiu furrowed her brows. She was thoroughly defeated by her own thoughts. This won’t do. I will perform the bowing rites today no matter what!
Long Heng had no clue why her expression kept changing. However, he quickly realized from the blank look on her face that this lass’ mind must’ve flown away again. How can she have so much to think while still so young? I’m impressed that she can manage to be distracted by her thoughts even at such a time.
“Wait! You cannot perform the bowing rites! This woman has gone against her duties and obligation. She was supposed to be my wife!” A yell thundered through the hall as a man barged through the doors. He had a tiny nose and small eyes which made him look very much like a scholar. He was dressed as a pageboy, likely so that he could sneak in amongst the guests.
Bai Xiangxiu had no idea who he was and wasn’t even sure if the original Bai Xiangxiu knew him. However, she had asked Xiaoshi about previous matters after Née Xiao’s visits. Her father had actually betrothed her to a family years ago with the surname of An. Sir An was one of the rising scholars at that time and was from a family that had been doing quite well at the time.
However, people from the Prince Li Manor had come to ask for her hand only three months after the supposed betrothal. The An family hadn’t even hired a suitable matchmaker yet. Née Xiao and the original Bai Xiangxiu scorned the idea of marrying into that family, and thus came up with all sorts of plans to get her father to rescind the betrothal offer.