ARC 1 – The Way to become an Empress Part 15
The day to greet the Empress came again.
I woke up early and readied my self.
At the entrance to the Empress’ palace, stood an imperial guard I’m intimately familiar with.
When he saw me, his eyes widened and he visibly stiffened, luckily, the other people were busy greeting each other and didn’t notice.
Our eyes met for a second, but I immediately averted mine and continued walking on a straight path.
After a while, Xi Jiu seemed to have recovered, and
“That lady just now was…”
“Shh. You shouldn’t call Imperial Consort Ye a mere lady!”
“Imperial Consort Ye?! …the Emperor’s… most… favored…”
“Yes! Now you get it, you should be more careful.”
“…U-un…” Xi Jiu reluctantly agreed.
‘She’s— the Emperor’s—‘ Xi Jiu clenched his fists.
‘Why?! Why?!’ Xi Jiu repeatedly asked within, without really knowing who he’s directing that question to, or why he’s even asking that question. “…Maybe it’s not her? … Ha! Who am I kidding…”
Inside the hall.
“Greetings to the Empress.”
Everyone greeted Li Zhen Zhen courteously.
“Sisters don’t need to be so polite.” Li Zhen Zhen smiled, but again, it definitely didn’t reach her eyes.
“I heard His Majesty had visited several concubines and consorts over the past few days.” Li Zhen Zhen said, lightly glancing at me, her eyes taunting, as if saying ‘you’re not the only one in his eyes’.
I bowed my head down a little, not because I don’t want her to see me hurt or frustrated, rather, I don’t want her to see the actual indifference in my eyes.
She’ll most definitely become wary of me with that, thinking what I’m up to now, after all.
“I’m giving gifts to you sisters who did their best to serve the Emperor.”
Another one of her “gifts”? What is she up to now?
“I received this incense from a travelling merchant offering gifts to the palace only two days ago. I heard this incense has a calming effect and can be of help to pregnancy. Wishing all the sisters to get pregnant with the dragon child.”
Again with her same old lines. I bet this incense is definitely not an ordinary “gift”.
“System, analyze that ‘gift’ of hers.”
《System analyzing… …The incense does have a ‘calming effect’. But, it is highly addictive that with frequent use or smell of it, one could start not being able to live without it. It also has hallucinatory effects. Also, it does ‘help’ pregnancy… if one wants to abort it. Once aborted, a woman may not be able to get pregnant again. Aside from the hallucinatory and infertility effects it gives, side effects also include dizziness, heart palpitations, impairments, and increased blood pressure.》
“Li Zhen Zhen’s even more cruel today…” The soup from before did have infertility effects, but other than not being able to give birth, it did not have other side effects. With the incense from Li Zhen Zhen right now, not only will she be able to eliminate child threats to her throne, she’ll also be able to erase her rivals to the Emperor, at least for now. But, come to think of it…
“But if multiple women in the harem would get sick, and the contents and effects of the incense she gave would be found out, won’t she be the one in trouble?” Now that I think of it, is it really worth the risk?
《Effects differ by the usage. If used frequently, then one might fall prey to it earlier, but if not used as often, it may go undetected.》
…Just where exactly does she get these things from? I’m actually kind of amazed.
《Li Zhen Zhen’s maternal side has history of medicinal knowledge.》
[…It definitely is. I totally agree with host. All for the sake of that person’s entertainment, he had even set up multiple plans like this. Haa.] Thought the system. Though, of course, I didn’t know that.
“Please do use it as you like. I still have some left, so if sisters want more, I’ll give them to you.”
“Thanking the Empress for her generosity.” Everyone bowed in gratitude, and I followed suit, though I didn’t really want to.
After a while of tea and talking, the session ended.
But I just noticed,
“Is Imperial Consort Ming absent again? Is she ‘sick’ again?”
“Just how much does this Imperial Consort Ming fear Li Zhen Zhen? Just what did she do? … …I’m only asking myself, since I know system wouldn’t answer my question.”
“Well, I’ll figure things out eventually. …Speaking of which, I need to talk to someone.”
I had my maid invite that person over.