Chapter 168: Calm Response

De Quan kept the decree that the Emperor had just written and went to look for the eunuch responsible for issuing the decrees. He instructed the eunuch, “Send this decree to the general’s residence immediately. If there are any delays, your head will roll.”

The eunuch acknowledged his order and immediately prepared to leave. However, he paused for a moment and asked, “May I please ask Eunuch De a question… Which general’s residence is this decree supposed to be issued to?”

The eunuch forgot that the former general’s residence had fallen and it was normal for there to be doubts. De Quan immediately instructed, “The former military general’s residence. The one who sacrificed himself to rescue the late Emperor. Hurry up and go!”

That eunuch responsible for issuing the decrees stared blankly for a moment. Since he took over this position a long time ago, he had never visited the former general’s residence. Now that he was suddenly asked to issue the decree, he felt that it was rather unfitting.

No matter what he thought, he couldn’t complain. The job of issuing the decree was a tough one to obtain. He had put in a lot of effort and stepped over plenty of corpses of his fellow-workers to climb to this position. He would go to any place His Majesty ordered. He was just a servant and he no longer possessed his manhood. The only thing he desired was riches and honor, he shouldn’t be too curious lest he lost his rice bowl.

...

“Summoning Luo Chu of the general’s residence to receive the decree! In tribute to Heaven and to accept the Mandate of Heaven, the Emperor’s decree states Luo Chu of the general’s residence is innately kind and has a beautiful appearance. Because of the feats accomplished by the former military general, this Emperor has to reward him. This Emperor remembers the former general’s grace and decided to invite Luo Chu to the palace after morning assembly. This Emperor will provide more care and shall not let down the late general! End of the decree!” The eunuch finished reading the decree and closed it. He then handed the decree to Bai Luochu before helping her up. He then said to Bai Luochu, “Young Lady Luo Chu, are you not going to quickly thank the Emperor for his favor? Aren’t you going to accept the decree? His Majesty wants to compensate you for the late general’s service.”

“This official’s daughter thanked His Majesty for the grace! Will His Majesty live for ten thousand years!” Bai Luochu bowed respectfully and accepted the decree. She calmly handed some gratuity to the eunuch that issued the decree.

The eunuch weighed the bag in his hand and realized that it was full. He then treated Bai Luochu even more politely. “I hope Young Lady Luo Chu won’t forget this servant in the future.”

Bai Luochu thought about how she was going to survive the summons. Who cared about the future? However, she understood that the eunuch wasn’t privy to such matters and she laughed it off. “Eunuch must be joking. I am just an orphan daughter, how will I be able to breakthrough and obtain riches and honor? I shall thank eunuch’s blessings. If that day truly arrives, I will definitely remember you.”

“Hahaha, that will be good. That will be good. Now that the decree has been issued, if you have nothing else, I shall return to the palace.” The eunuch was naturally coaxed into a great mood by Bai Luochu’s promise.

“Please take your time.” Bai Luochu’s face was filled with a smile and she bowed to the eunuch with her hands in front of her. When the eunuch was far away, she entered the general’s residence and headed towards the secluded courtyard.

“The decree has been issued. It says that I am to have an audience with the Emperor at the throne room after the morning imperial court assembly. In honor and remembrance of my father’s benevolence, the Emperor wants to compensate me. I have no idea what is going on.” Bai Luochu tossed the decree onto the table and spoke to Cai Ling and Pei Qingfeng.

Cai Ling became rather anxious and said to Bai Luochu, “What should we do? Why not let Mistress hide for now and quietly return after this blows over?”

Bai Luochu looked at Cai Ling and refuted, “I might be able to hide for now, but I won’t be able to hide forever. Even if I can continue hiding, won’t I need to be on the run? This is a little too unrealistic. Furthermore, the world belongs to the imperial clan. Even if I can escape, where can I escape to?”

“But…” Cai Ling wanted to say something but before she could speak, she was interrupted by Pei Qingfeng.

“I feel that Emperor Father doesn’t intend to punish you for the crimes.” Pei Qingfeng leaned on the headboard and gave his opinion.

Bai Luochu’s brows arched upwards and she felt rather confused. “Tell me about it. You are a prince and you should understand the Emperor better than us. I would like to hear your opinion.”

“My Emperor Father has always been distrustful and would rather kill 10,000 innocent people than allow a criminal to escape. If he wants to kill you, you’ll be a corpse right now. In my opinion, my Third Brother is related to this.”

“The Third Prince? Why is he involved?” When Bai Luochu heard the Third Prince being mentioned, she was puzzled.

Pei Qingfeng hesitated and said, “He might be my Third Brother, but Pei Wuchen has always been a person who wouldn’t move unless it involved his interest. Previously, he wasn’t willing to mention the engagement with you because he didn’t see any value in you. If you were to marry him, you wouldn’t be able to provide any advantages. Instead, he felt that you would be holding him back. The reason he gave preferential treatment to Feng Wan’er was because of her identity. Although his feelings played a part, in the eyes of my Third Brother, all these emotions and relationships are far inferior to practical benefits.”

“You mean that the Pei Wuchen thinks that I am different? He reported it to His Majesty because he thinks that I am now valuable enough to be exploited? Is that why His majesty summoned me? Is this all a test?”

“That should be the case. As long as you don’t make any mistakes in the conversation with His Majesty tomorrow, you will be able to return safely.” Pei Qingfeng replied.

Bai Luochu nodded. “Since that is the case, I will personally make the trip. I want to see His Majesty’s plans.”

Early the next morning, Bai Luochu got Cai Ling to help with her grooming before she boarded the carriage with the decree. She headed straight for the imperial palace. She would be lying if she said she wasn’t nervous. However, she was surprised that the Emperor didn’t make things difficult for her as she made her stay for lunch before asking his most trusted eunuch to escort her out of the palace.

Previous Chapter Next Chapter