A Rare Visitor
When that person brought up imperial daughter Ji An, everyone fell silent. They were the family members of officials that had come from out of the province. Their knowledge could not compare to those that lived in the capital. In regards to Feng Yu Heng, they had only heard about her; however, they had never personally seen her. It was even less possible for them to have interacted. This was also the first time that they had ever seen this imperial carriage.
But with these thoughts in mind, the people began to look back at the imperial carriage before them. Looking more carefully was fine, but everyone inhaled sharply.
“Are the jewels inlaid on her carriage real?”
“That bright and sparkly stuff should be crystal. Last year, my father gave me a small crystal pendant for my birthday, and it looks very similar to what’s on the carriage. Its quality just wasn’t as high.”
“How could we compare the things that we have to the imperial family?”
“What imperial family, she’s just an imperial daughter with a different surname. She was conferred the title later on.”
“An imperial daughter with a different surname is so arrogant. So many nice things are just inlaid on the carriage. If they’re taken by anyone, the price would be extremely high. She really has grand plans.”
Feng Yu Heng heard these things through the window and could not help but laugh internally. It was no wonder why the court would need to improve security every time there were officials that came from out of the province. Just based on the experience of these people, perhaps they would cause a stir over anything that they saw. Her imperial carriage was not considered much inside the capital. Moreover, Xuan Tian Ming’s carriage was far more excessive than her carriage. The people in the capital treated it as if it was only natural. Why was it that when it came to these young misses and madams, it became her having grand plans?
However, just a short discussion about the imperial carriage was not enough. When women gathered together, they loved to gossip, and the topic very quickly began to change. This time, the topic became about Xuan Tian Ming.
“Did you guys know? Not only has the ninth prince’s leg injury been healed, but his face that had also been ruined had returned to normal without any blemishes.” These words were filled with envy.
Feng Zhao Lian’s eyes became sharp, as he occasionally said to Feng Yu Heng: “Hah, there are people looking at us sideways. The jealousy can be smelled through the carriage’s walls.”
Immediately following this came a voice: “Hah, put plainly, that imperial daughter Ji An is lucky. Being engaged to the ninth prince from a young age, we do not have that sort of luck.”
“How can we compare to the people of the capital. People in proximity to those with power will reap some benefits. Speaking of, I have seen the ninth prince once before. At that time, he was a youth, but his appearance really was… absolutely amazing.”
“Even better than his Highness the seventh prince?”
“They are at two extremes. His Highness the seventh prince is refined like a deity, while the ninth prince is a ruler that is proud and aloof.”
These descriptions caused these young miss’ pure hearts to shake. Feng Yu Heng could practically feel the envy wafting over. She was feeling irritated and patted Feng Zhao Lian: “Put down the curtain.” She then hurried Huang Quan: “Go and have the people outside open up a path. This imperial daughter’s carriage will be given the same treatment as palace princess Wu Yang, and it can be driven straight to the Rui Gate. There is no need to continue lingering here. Have them all move. Who knows what those imperial guards are doing?”
Huang Quan knew that she had heard someone outside yearning for his Highness the ninth prince, and she laughed internally; however, she did not point it out. Lifting the curtain of the carriage, she caught hold of an imperial guard and gave the order. Very quickly, there was movement outside. It was clear that the people outside were heeding the instructions of the imperial guard to move. Not long later, a path for her imperial carriage was opened up.
When Huang Quan returned inside the imperial carriage, the vehicle had already begun moving. She said to Feng Yu Heng: “I really wonder if the imperial palace will burst from squeezing so many people inside.”
Feng Zhao Lian was puzzled, “Is Da Shun’s imperial palace very small?”
Huang Quan rolled her eyes at him, “I am just making a conjecture. Do you know what a conjecture is?”
Feng Zhao Lian’s ignorant look left Huang Quan feeling very helpless. She simply decided not to speak to him and silently sat to the side until the imperial carriage stopped once more.
Outside, the driver lifted the curtain: “Young miss, we’ve arrived at Rui Gate.”
Feng Yu Heng nodded and got up to get out of the carriage. Just as her two feet touched the ground, the female official in charge that was waiting went forward to salute and pay her respect, saying warmly: “This old servant has specifically been waiting for imperial daughter’s arrival. Would imperial daughter come ahead with this old servant.”
Feng Yu Heng gave her thanks then told her that Feng Zhao Lian was someone that she had brought along. The female official expressed that she understood and just had the workers take some simple notes before bringing them inside the palace. As for the madams and young misses still waiting to be let in, they could only sigh.
The days around the middle of Autumn were cool, but since the day had just passed noon, it was at its hottest. They had all come after getting dressed up in meticulous clothes, but they never thought that there would be so many people. After standing in line for such a long time, they felt that the makeup on their face had already burned.
In the group lining up, Feng Fen Dai was still waiting. Although there was a relationship between her and the fifth prince, she received an invitation into the palace; however, she did not get the same treatment in being able to avoid the line as Feng Yu Heng. Of course, the number of people on the ladies’ side that did not need to wait in line could be counted on one hand. Princess Wen Xuan, palace princess Wu Yang and imperial daughter Ji An were the only three. The others could only wait anxiously while feeling envious.
But the people that concerned themselves with many things would be lacking in restraint, as one directly asked Fen Dai: “Younger sister, just now you said that you are the future official princess of the fifth prince. I recall that the person engaged to the fifth prince was the Feng family’s fourth young miss, right? If it’s as you say, Imperial Daughter Ji An would be your elder sister. Why is it that your own elder sister went into the palace first without taking care of you?”
It would have been better if this matter was not brought up. When it was brought up, Fen Dai became filled with anger. When had Feng Yu Heng taken care of her? Not directly opposing her was already good enough. She immediately snorted coldly and said: “So what if she’s my elder sister. At present, her standing is high, and she has ability, and she is someone with merits. How could she be someone that this sister of a concubine could get close to. It’s already good enough if she does not cause me trouble. I don’t dare cause her to to become annoyed.” She had completely forgotten that every time that she had conflicted with Feng Yu Heng, she was the one that looked for trouble with Feng Yu Heng.
Fen Dai’s words were spread forward and back as if it was the truth. The madams and young misses from the capital that knew the situation might laugh or feel helpless, but the madams and young misses from out of the province had found something to talk about.
In an instant, Feng Yu Heng’s image suffered a drastic decline. It had become one of someone that had received glory from the entire world yet treated her younger sister of a concubine terribly.
Fen Dai was very happy to hear this and looked back. She then saw Xiang Rong standing in the crowd with a look of wanting to refute things but had nobody to listen to her. This made her even happier.
On the other side, Feng Yu Heng had already been led toward the garden by the female official. The official walked while saying to them: “Her Highness the Empress is feeling quite well today. She is also in good spirits. Princess Wen Xuan was the first to come into the palace, and the two have been chatting the entire time.”
Feng Yu Heng asked further: “Has Palace Princess Wu Yan already arrived?”
“She has, she has.” The female official was quite kind, quickly saying: “Palace Princess came early and went to find Their Highnesses to chat and play around. Thinking about it, she should be returning shortly.”
Feng Yu Heng nodded and did not ask any further. Xuan Tian Ge’s status was different from other people. This imperial palace was partially her home. Who could do anything about her if she wanted to go anywhere. Also, she was familiar with the place, thus she would naturally run off on her own.
Very quickly, they arrived in Jing Ci Palace. When the group first set foot in the yard, they heard the sound of quiet laughter. It was not just one or two people. she was clear that there were at least four people.
When she entered to take a look, it was the Empress, Princess Wen Xuan and Xuan Tian Ge. There was also another person that caused her to feel a little surprised, but she did not act too shocked. She just steadily walked over to the Empress and bowed: “A-Heng pays respects to Your Highness the Empress. Happy Mid-Autumn Festival.”
When the Empress saw Feng Yu Heng, her eyes became squinted from smiling. She quickly gestured for Fang Yi to help her up. At the same time, she said to Princess Wen Xuan, who was seated at her side: “To be able to attend today’s banquet in such good spirits is truly thanks to A-Heng. You know, a while back, this One’s illness did not show any signs of improving, as I spent a few months laying in bed without any strength. Later on, it was A-Heng coming back from the North who specially came to examine this One, and she gave me one of her specialty medicines. After this One took them, I have improved greatly.”
Feng Yu Heng courteously said: “Your Highness’ foundation is steady. A-Heng just put in a small amount of work is all.” After saying this, she very intimately called out to Princess Wen Xuan: “Aunty Lan, are you well today?”
Princess Wen Xuan also looked at her with a smile, “Good, good, everything is well.” In her heart, however, she was sighing over Yao shi. She did not know what she was thinking, leaving behind such a good daughter and causing such a rift. Instead, she turned her head and wanted the one of unclear origins. She had already decided that she would go and try to advise her some more after the palace banquet ended. After all, she could not bear to watch this mother and daughter pair continue to act so distant.
While she was thinking, the Empress was already about to introduce Feng Yu Heng to another person. At this time, Feng Yu Heng nodded and greeted Xuan Tian Ge before turning to look at the other person and said with a smile: “Seventh princess of Gu Shu, you’ve come quite a distance. You really are a rare guest.”
The Empress was stunned, “You two know each other?”
Feng Yu Heng nodded, “Back then, the sixth prince of Gu Shu brought the seventh princess to our Da Shun, and they especially came to our Feng manor. At that time, my father was still the left prime minister, and he was taking care of Qian Zhou’s eldest princess Kang Yi and her daughter. Gu Shu’s sixth prince and seventh princess came to the manor together. That sixth prince had visited to speak about marriage with eldest princess Kang Yi.”
After she finished speaking, the Empress nodded, saying: “If you say it like this, this One is able to remember it. There was something like that.”
The seventh princess of Gu Shu also smiled at this time then said to Feng Yu Heng: “Imperial daughter really has a good memory. I had nearly completely forgotten about that matter. I never thought that imperial daughter would still remember. You really are considerate.”
The girls born in the South were charming, and while she spoke, her expression did not change. It also carried a bit of a foreign look that was very beautiful. But Feng Yu Heng saw a bit of anger in her eyes, thus she said: “It can’t be considered considerate. Two countries being joined by marriage is a big matter. Who could forget about it? Didn’t her Highness also say that she remembers?”
With the Empress being placed out so openly, the seventh princess could not say anything further. It was the Empress that picked back up on the conversation, saying: “Seventh princess is a beautiful person, and her mind is agile. This trip into my Da Shun alone was not easy, thus enjoy this palace banquet today fully.”
Princess Wen Xuan also added: “That’s right, the girls born in the South are beautiful. Their noses are high and eyes are round, and all are beautiful girls, much less a princess of the imperial family. I heard that seventh princess’ appearance is enough to be considered the best in Gu Shu’s imperial family. You’ll be able to get the attention of those men today.”
This was originally meant to be a joke, but this seventh princess clearly had a great deal of confidence in her own appearance, and she could not help but raise her chin confidently; however, she immediately caught a glimpse of the woman in red behind Feng Yu Heng.
That red was immediately noticed by her when it came into the room, but she had no choice but to speak with Feng Yu Heng first, given her identity. Now, however, she had a chance to find out the situation. She pointed at Feng Zhao Lian and asked: “Who is that? Why is she wearing a veil? Could her face be…”
Feng Yu Heng smiled slightly, “That’s right, her appearance is a bit hard to deal with. I fear that having the veil removed will frighten princess.”