Rebirth of the Excellent Daughter of the Marquis Household - Chapter 22
Chapter 22: Banquet
What followed next was that Princess Ping Hu took the three of them into the warm pavilion. As princes, if they were not accompanied by their elders, they could not enter rashly. It was full of female relatives and they would look frivolous.
After the host and guests greeted each other, Princess Ping Hu really wanted to know which one was Gu Yu Qi but in front of so many noble women and girls, she could not show too much attention to Gu Yu Qi. She could only announce the start of the banquet. Secretly, she asked the maid following her to point out Gu Yu Qi and her mother to her.
Gu Yu Qi ate very little during the meal, not to maintain the image of the Marquis’ daughter, but because the people around her made her feel really weird as though she was sitting on pins and needles. How would she have any appetite?
Zhang Wan Yi had already sat down up front with her mother. Of course she would have a good position and could be closer to her cousins. It was the first time Gu Yu Qi and Liang-shi had appeared. Sitting in the corner, they did not feel that people despised the Marquis’ family, but rather were just ignoring them… The servants in the princess’ residence had never seen Liang-shi and Gu Yu Qi before. They felt that they were from Jiangnan and although they were from the Marquis’ residence, the Marquis was nothing more than an upstart so how could they compare to those deep-rooted aristocratic families? The servants also had sharp eyes and would rather offend the nouveau riche than offend deep-rooted aristocratic families.
Besides, this was the first time Liang-shi and Gu Yu Qi came to this kind of gathering so they did not know what was important about the seating arrangement. If it had been other considerate noble ladies, they would have arranged everything in advance so that they could be as close to the front as possible. In this way, as a first rank official’s wife, Liang-shi was instead placed after some second rank and third rank officials’ wives.
In the previous life, Liang-shi would have been sick around this time and naturally would not have had the opportunity to bring Gu Yu Qi to attend such a gathering. Gu Yu Qi’s stunning appearance in the capital was all her own successful plan.
Right now, Gu Yu Qi knew that their positions were arranged too far down, but she thought it was good this way. Liang-shi was a newcomer and did not care about it much, so the two of them were obviously neglected by the people of the princess’ residence.
Zhang Wan Yi understood in her heart, but when she stealthily looked at Gu Yu Qi and her mother and saw they were ignorant, she felt more and more contempt in her heart. Those from the countryside were indeed from the countryside, unaware that they were even being despised like this. Not only Zhang Wan Yi, but the other wives who had a bit of prestige could not help but look down on Liang-shi and Gu Yu Qi in their hearts. As for how talented Gu Yu Qi was rumoured to be in the capital, it was nothing more than that. So what if she was talented? If she did not know how to use it, she would soon fade out of sight.
Yun Ke sat next to Yun Yi and also glanced at Gu Yu Qi secretly. She was placed too far back and he could not see clearly, so he could not observe her. However, he still felt that in this life, Gu Yu Qi seemed to have changed a bit.
The first time he met her in the previous life was at Hu Guo Temple. She should have been slightly older than she was now. Her gaze towards him was stunning and fiery, unlike how she avoided and dodged now. What exactly was wrong? A thought popped up in Yun Ke’s mind again. Could it be that she really had been reborn with memories of her previous life, just like himself?
This thought made him very horrified but the more he thought about it, the more he felt it was possible.
He had no empress in his previous life. Before his death, he had secretly ordered people to take Gu Yu Qi’s ashes and bury them under his coffin.
As for why he had done this, he could not explain it clearly. He just thought that this woman was too seductive, entangling with him before dying, then telling him to remember her for decades after dying, saying something about never meeting again in any life. He just had to suppress her. He was the emperor, the ruler of the world. Whether they met again or not was up to him, not Gu Yu Qi!
She had been obsessed with him for half his life but she came and let go as she wanted. She burned herself, but left him with thoughts that he had endured for decades.
Fortunately, Gu Yu Qi did not know about the latter, otherwise Gu Yu Qi would likely have vomited blood.
Princess Ping Hu also gave the mother and daughter another look under the quiet identification from the palace maids. Her eyes were sharp. As soon as she saw this seating arrangement, she knew that someone in the house had been bribed. She had always boasted about being fair and did not want such things to happen under her own eyes. A first rank official’s wife had been arranged behind a second rank official’s wife. This kind of matter that disregarded seniority was just slapping her in the face. It was just that they were at a banquet and in order to preserve the reputation of the princess’ residence, she could not lose her temper. She could only wait until everyone had dispersed before pulling the servants out one by one and giving them a good beating. As for the noble women and girls who seized this opportunity, in the future, they would be put into the list of those she would not befriend.
The princess was originally worried that Liang-shi and her daughter would have some resentment against her because of the seating arrangement. However, seeing the mother and daughter sitting peacefully in the corner without any indignation in their eyes, she could not help but feel a little more fond of Liang-shi and Gu Yu Qi. Knowing that this was her banquet, if the servants made such a mistake and if others really brought up the topic, it would be the princess’ residence that lost face.
Liang-shi had not thought that there would be so many complexities and she also did not know that her inadvertent actions had already gained the princess’ favour. She was the same as Gu Yu Qi in that she was not very comfortable during this meal. She felt that there were a lot of eyes focusing on her and Gu Yu Qi which made her feel uneasy, and she did not know what she had done wrong.
The mother and daughter had their own concerns and neither of them relaxed when they dined. They just had small bites and sips and their behaviour caught the princess’ attention, which gained them quite a lot of points.
By the time they finally finished the meal, it was already afternoon and the cold wind had become milder under the warm winter sun.
Princess Ping Hu led the group of princes, noble women and girls in amajestically as they set out from the warm pavilion to walk along the paths within the plum blossom forest.
The scenery of the plum blossom forest was the same every year, but everyone animatedly sang lavish praises to Princess Ping Hu all the same.
They were all mature old foxes and naturally understood what Princess Ping Hu was thinking. When people became old, they liked to be lively and be matchmakers… The three princes who were symbols of good conduct accompanied them and one of them was even the crown prince. Which family would not be a little cautious? They could only hope that their own daughter could catch the princes’ attention and soar forward in the future by marrying into the imperial family. Then they would really be wealthy.
The noble ladies had this thought and so did their daughters. It was just that they could not flirt because of their identity and upbringing, but their eyes still floated to the three handsome princes from time to time and they compared in their hearts.
The crown prince behaved well and with his clear eyes and eyebrows, he was obviously the first choice. Even if he already had a crown princess, it was still good to be the Lady of Virtue. Perhaps in the future they could become a consort, or the noble consort. The remaining fifth prince had always been good-natured, always smiling and no matter how they looked, he was a gentleman who was like jade. The seventh prince was the best looking among the three, but he had a fierce aura which made strangers unable to approach. He was not easy to get along with, and they could not withstand his eyebrows and eyes which seemed to be carved from ice and jade. Although he was cold to the bones, he was extremely appealing.
Gu Yu Qi took small steps and followed her mother, covering herself with her mother’s body.
Even at a distance from Yun Ke, she could still feel the chill emanating from him which made the winter in the capital actually a bit colder.
Zhang Wan Yi walked in front, dignified and magnanimous. Her appearance was not the most outstanding among the noble girls but her behaviour was impeccable. Gu Yu Qi looked at her graceful back from a distance and sighed silently.
Princess Ping Hu led everyone around and then invited the noble women to play cards in the warm pavilion. Her intention was very clear. She wanted to let the younger people relax. This was the princess’ courtyard and no outsiders would enter, so the noble women could also relax. As they went with Princess Ping Hu to the warm pavilion, they had to speak with their own daughters before leaving.
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