Housekeeper of the Hundred Blossom Palace - Chapter 44
‘Eh, a child in the crown prince’s palace?’
The crown prince supposedly didn’t have a child yet, so Yui Mei confusedly looked around her surroundings.
A small figure poked her head behind Yu Xiu.
She was a girl clad in a gorgeous outfit, and she looked older than Imperial Prince Youren.
However, she looked barely ten years of age despite that.
Assuming she was the child of the 25 year old crown prince – he had become an adult just recently, so she must have been born even before that.
It was not as if that was impossible, but it was also very likely that the crown prince’s younger sister came to play.
Various conjectures ran through Yui Mei’s head. The girl stared at her and tilted her little head.
“Is this person the court lady who saved Elder Sister?”
Yu Xiu gently chided the girl after she said that.
“You should greet her first, no?”
“Oh, that’s right!”
The girl replied with a start, then she turned around and faced Yui Mei with a smile on her face.
“I am En Xiao Hui, the Pure Consort of His Highness the Crown Prince. I am pleased to meet you.”
She greeted her very politely, but Yui Mei wasn’t focused on that.
‘Pure Consort!? This child!?’
Yui Mei’s jaw dropped. She was too dumbstruck that she forgot to bow her head.
There were four consorts, and Pure Consort was one of them, along with Honored Consort, Virtuous Consort and Worthy Consort.
In other words, she had the same ranking as Yu Xiu, who was the Honored Consort. It was impossible not to be shocked by this.
“…ahm, if I may ask, how old is Consort En?”
Yui Mei nervously asked.
Perhaps, Xiao Hui had a young appearance, but she was already an adult – was what she thought, so she inquired.
“Xiao Hui just turned ten years old, right?”
“Yes, my birthday was two months ago!”
Yu Xiu gently negated that thought, and it was also affirmed by Xiao Hui.
She was indeed a child just like how she appeared to be.
In that case, the crown prince had her when he was fifteen years old.
However, the emperor also had concubines who were that young, so that age difference was not a big deal. There were also political marriages, and some people also say ‘Age gap doesn’t matter when it comes to love!’
She understood that values differed among people.
However, taking a child as a bride was something else.
‘Perhaps, the reason why the crown prince didn’t have a child was because he had that kind of disposition?’
Yui Mei’s eyes spontaneously turned upward due to her misgivings regarding the crown prince’s preference for children.
“It’s good that you’ve come, Yui Mei.”
A voice called out to her from behind, and Libin bowed his head at the same time beside her.
Yui Mei turned around. The crown prince in question was standing there, accompanied by the lady-in-waiting she saw earlier.
“Err…thanks, Your Highness.”
She perfunctorily bowed her head deeply, but it couldn’t be helped that her answer was slipshod since she was suspicious that he was a pedophile.
The crown prince’s eyes widened in surprise at Yui Mei’s suspicious gaze, and he muttered ‘What an incredible expression, huh.’ with a wry smile.
Yui Mei looked back and forth at the crown prince and Xiao Hui, then she pulled Libin’s sleeves since he was beside her.
“Libin! This is reeking with crime!”
Libin scowled when he heard what Yui Mei mumbled.
“Stop saying idiotic things, His Highness also has his various circumstances.”
He also whispered back, but Yui Mei became concerned about the specific details behind the word ‘various’.
They were whispering right in front of him, so there was no way the crown prince himself didn’t hear it.
“Sorry to disappoint you, but I am innocent, alright?”
The crown prince deepened his smile as he replied.
He was smiling, but his eyes were scary.
Apparently, he couldn’t turn a blind eye against being suspected as a pedophile.
“Oh my, Yui Mei.”
Yu Xiu was watching their exchange and she giggled.
Xiao Hui had a blank look on her face. She did not understand what they were talking about, apparently.
It was obvious from this that she was not summoned to perform the duties of a concubine.
If they were truly husband and wife, Xiao Hui would assert her relationship with the crown prince more forcefully.
‘I’m glad, Bro (provisionary) isn’t a loli!’
Yui Mei was relieved, and the crown prince talked to her once again.
“My wives wanted to have tea with you, so I had you summoned. However, you’re considerably late.”
After being pointed out by the crown prince, Libin opened his mouth.
“A small dispute arose. It was easily settled. Ah, Mother, could you please arrange her hair?”
Libin talked to the lady-in-waiting, but she felt she heard another shocking truth.
‘Eh, this person is Libin-sama’s mother?’
She was the crown prince’s personal attendant, so she must have a high ranking among the maids.
Family background should be one of the standards being considered during recruitment for this post.
Perhaps, Libin was the son of a relatively respectable family?
It was truly a mystery why a person such as he would serve as an eunuch.
The lady-in-waiting approached Yui Mei who stood frozen on the spot with her eyes popping out.
“Oh my, it’s truly messy. What happened?”
Libin replied in a small voice as she fiddled with Yui Mei’s hair.
“Actually, we met His Highness the Imperial Prince Dawei midway.”
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Pure Consort – Shufei, one of the concubine rankings in Ancient China. Based on this, Yu Xiu’s ranking should be Guifei – Honored Consort. In some cases it was Noble Consort, so from now on I’m following the Tang Dynasty’s harem system for consistency. I used the other dynasties’ system, so I didn’t realize right away that it was Guifei as in Honored Consort since those dynasties I referred to didn’t have shufei. Hmm I think I should go back and find the chap where Yu Xiu was introduced, and clarify this. And I should also fix the titles of Consort Hu (who should be Imperial Concubine Hu) and Consort Jiang based on the Tang Dynasty’s imperial harem system. >.<
Ranking: Honored Consort>Pure Consort> Virtuous Consort>Worthy Consort, although author-sama said Yu Xiu and Xiao Hui had the same status.
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