At the Noble Consort’s Feet Chapter 79

Chapter 79 No worry

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Sleeping so peacefully, there must be nothing to worry about.

The figure lying prone on the bed shifted slightly to the side, but remained asleep with a book propped upon her chest. One hand pressed down upon the spine to keep it from slipping.

Taking his seat beside the bed, he tugged gently at the corner of the book, seeking to extract it from her grasp without waking her up.

With her eyes shut tight, Li Zhi appeared to sense something, her grip on the book tightening while her brows furrowed slightly.

A brief smile crossed Pei Ji’s lips as he paused for a moment, before proceeding to pull the book away with a firm tug once more, placing it upon the nearby table.

As the book no longer concealed her bosom, the shapely hills beneath her clothing began to reveal themselves gradually. A lone, pristine camellia barely covered a faintly visible crevice.

His gaze deepened and he extended his hand, lightly caressing the inch of exposed skin with his rough fingertips.

The velvety skin glided beneath his touch, captivating him for what seemed like eternity, until the heat on his skin reminded him to withdraw his hand.

He averted his gaze and sat upright at the edge of the bed, hands resting on his knees as he struggled to compose himself.

Although only separated from her during the day, his composure faltered at the sight of her.

In her presence, his once-sturdy self-control seemed to dwindle, unsure if it was her spell or his own reluctance to resist.

After a moment of stillness, he exhaled a breath and relaxed his rigid posture.

Unexpectedly, when he turned his head back, he was met with a pair of misty, exquisite almond eyes gazing leisurely at him.

It was unclear when Li Zhi had roused from her slumber, though she may have caught sight of his unguarded moment.

As their gazes met, Pei Ji’s eyes danced with an unspoken emotion. On his ruggedly handsome face, a faint blush blossomed soundlessly.

With a soft cough, he casually averted his eyes and placed his hands neatly on his knees. “You’re awake.”

“Mmm.” Li Zhi stirred like a cat, agilely climbing onto his back and wrapping her dainty arms around his neck. “When did you arrive?”

Nestled against him was something plush and yielding, causing Pei Ji’s body to stiffen in response. It seemed his self-control was once again being tested.

Inhaling deeply, he traced the lotus-like arm that peeked from her sleeve. Turning his head, he pressed his nose against hers and caressed her slowly.

“I’ve only just arrived, and when I saw that you were asleep, I didn’t want to disturb you. I didn’t mean to wake you up.”

With a smile on her face and her eyes sparkling, Li Zhi lightly touched her lips to his nose, then sat up straight and straddled him, hooking her arms around his neck. “I’m happy today, so of course I was waiting for you to come. How could you possibly be a disturbance to me?”

Pei Ji looked at her smiling eyes, his palm caressing her back as he couldn’t resist kissing her deeply until her breath grew ragged and her cheeks flushed. Only then did he release her slightly and ask, “What about your sister’s matter—don’t you care at all?”

After all, they were cousins who shared the same bloodline. If something like this happened, he would always worry that she would be upset. Even though he came to see her in person and saw that she was not acting differently, he still couldn’t relax and had to ask her in person.

Li Zhi hesitated for a moment, her smile fading slightly. “How could I not care? I naturally care a great deal.”

Pei Ji looked at her silently for a while before finally saying, “Oh.”

Li Zhi looked at his reaction and couldn’t help but vigorously rub his stiff face, continuing, “My displeasure has nothing to do with His Majesty. It is purely because I detest this kind of sisterly conflict.”

Miao Yun was proud and temperamental, and loved to throw tantrums and kept her thoughts hidden. She had always known this. But usually it was just small fights and quarrels. Today, however, it was for a man. Not only did she have to struggle with her cousin, she also implicated innocent bystanders, using a real human life to pave the way for the glory she wanted.

Especially the man she was fighting for was Li Jing Ye, who was selfish, weak, and indifferent.

Even though Li Zhi had no feelings for Li Jing Ye, and even deliberately distanced herself from him because of this incident, she still looked down upon such behavior.

Pei Ji’s tense body slowly relaxed as he hugged her into his arms, his chin rubbing against her hair. “I am also afraid that you will be sad because of sisterly conflict.”

Li Zhi leaned against Pei Ji’s shoulder and let out a soft laugh, not bothering to contradict him. “I’m not exactly heartbroken. After all, Miao Yun and I aren’t exactly close. As long as it doesn’t implicate me or my elder sister, I don’t really care.”

Pei Ji’s hand rested on her shoulder, and he rubbed her gently through the thin fabric. “Your elder sister and Wei Peng left the city this afternoon.”

Li Zhi half-closed her eyes and made a noncommittal sound. Then she playfully punched him and complained, “It’s not really our fault if things like this keep happening. If it weren’t for you men, who can’t control yourselves and always keep mistresses and concubines, these things wouldn’t happen in the first place.”

Pei Ji was a man himself, but he didn’t argue with her. Instead, he chuckled softly and asked, “I know you don’t like men with multiple wives and concubines.”

Though she hadn’t explicitly stated it, he had picked up on her feelings from her words.

After a beat, he added casually, “I don’t like it either.”

Though Li Zhi didn’t reply, she couldn’t shake off the unease that his words stirred in her heart.

But, in that moment, she found herself unable to confront his constant look of disappointment.

Hesitant for a beat, she steered the conversation elsewhere, recounting the earlier exchange with Li Jing Ye. She then let out a soft sigh, “Miao Yun’s arrival brought me some solace, but it’s a pity that the monk from Fusang, who came seeking aid, had to fall victim to this unexpected calamity…”

Pei Ji’s lips pressed together as he stated, “Xuan Guang has aided countless people and garnered the favor of Master Hui Xian. It’s only fitting that we give him a proper burial.”

Pondering for a moment, he continued, “Knowing the Princess’s disposition, I fear she’ll request the Empress Dowager to handle Xuan Guang’s funeral affairs with the utmost dignity.”

Due to his intricate history with the Princess of Wuyang, he always took care to avoid bringing her up, lest she misunderstand his intentions.

Li Zhi didn’t pay attention to such minor details and merely nodded in response, lost in her own thoughts.

Holding her close for a moment, Pei Ji felt a heat spreading throughout his body until he could no longer resist and followed the trail of her lips with his own.

Li Zhi’s body felt weak and she collapsed into his embrace, her clothing becoming loose and revealing. She playfully touched his face, full of desire, and said, “Darling Third, you hurt me last night and I’m still sore.”

Pei Ji’s eyes were already tinged with redness as he struggled to lift his head, meeting her watery gaze. He panted and asked, “Where does it hurt? Let me massage it for you.”

With that, the hand that was holding her waist began to apply pressure, kneading her sore spots.

The warmth and comfort of his touch made her unable to resist, and she lay down on the bed, letting him do as he pleased.

He remained as restrained as ever, even though his body was as taut as steel. As long as she didn’t give her consent, he waited patiently.

Li Zhi waited for a while and didn’t see any movement from him, becoming impatient. She murmured, “I’m not in pain anymore…”

As soon as she finished speaking, Pei Ji remained silent and lifted her onto his shoulders, carrying her to the bed in the inner chamber.

In Shicui Palace, after having dinner with Li Jing Ye, Pure Consort Xiao brought out their son.

They played with the child for a while while he was awake, but when he became sleepy again, they let the wet nurse take him back to bed.

Pure Consort Xiao stood up, brewed a pot of tea herself, and presented it to Li Jing Ye. When he drank it and showed his approval, she smiled and sat down to take a sip.

“Your Majesty, the Lady of Yingguo has entered Zilan Hall today. I have a request for Your Majesty.” She put down her teacup and asked with a smile, “In the future, how should we handle the affairs of Zilan Hall?”

Li Jing Ye’s eyes turned cold for a moment when he heard about Lady of Yingguo, but he quickly regained his gentle demeanor and said with a smile, “You don’t have to worry about her affairs. Just transfer some palace maids from Yeting Palace, and I will take care of everything else with Yuan Shi.”

Pure Consort Xiao was momentarily surprised, but she quickly smiled and nodded, not saying anything more.

Although Your Majesty had appointed Fourth Miss Zhong as the Lady of a Country, which seemed to be a humiliating act, he had quickly instructed Chief Eunuch He to handle the affairs of Zilan Hall personally, which made people wonder about the special treatment.

In the past, she would have felt a surge of jealousy and bitterness at the thought of the Emperor spending time with someone else. But now that she had a son, her heart was only slightly affected, and soon returned to its usual calm state.

After exchanging a few more words, Li Jing Ye rose to his feet, aware that the night was getting late.

The imperial carriage glided through the darkness, and He Yuan Shi spoke softly, “Your Majesty, are you going to Chenghuan Palace or back to Zichen Hall?”

Knowing the Emperor’s previous preferences, he assumed that they were headed for Chenghuan Palace.

But today, Li Jing Ye did not answer immediately. He stared into the abyss of darkness for a long time before murmuring, “Let it go.”

The words spoken by Li Zhi earlier in the day echoed in his mind, each sentence striking a chord in his heart.

How could he even consider visiting Chenghuan Palace at a time like this?

He took a deep breath and turned to He Yuan Shi, “Let us pay a visit to Lady Wei today.”

With only one heir to his name, Li Jing Ye knew that he needed to father more princes.

Lan Zhao rushed back to Shicui Palace and closed the door behind her. She turned to Pure Consort Xiao and said, “Your Highness, His Majesty didn’t go to the Noble Consort’s palace. He went to Lady Wei’s courtyard.”

Pure Consort Xiao was sitting before a bronze mirror, removing her makeup and undoing her hair. Upon hearing the news, she laughed and shook her head, “You needn’t worry about His Majesty’s whereabouts anymore. It doesn’t matter where he goes.”

Lan Zhao sat behind her, took a wooden comb and started to comb her long hair. “Your Highness, aren’t you worried anymore?” 

Pure Consort Xiao smiled but didn’t reply.

Previously, she worried because she loved the Emperor and did not want him to be close to others. She was also afraid that if he had more children with others, he would treat her and the little prince differently. But now, those worries had disappeared.

She was no longer worried about the Emperor being intimate with others.

She was even less worried about him having more children.

Lan Zhao suddenly exclaimed, “Ah!” She widened her eyes and held up the wooden comb, “Your Highness, you have a strand of white hair!”

Pure Consort Xiao took the long strand of hair and examined it closely in the light. It wasn’t entirely white, but it had a sheen of silver. The roots had turned white, the middle was yellow, and the tips were still black.

She chuckled and threw the hair into the incense burner, watching it disappear in a cloud of smoke.

“I’m not young anymore, and I have become a mother. Naturally, I will have white hair. Everyone ages eventually, so there’s no need to be surprised.”


A/N: I have looked at the map and found out that traveling from Silla didn’t require crossing the sea, so I changed it to Fusang.

If you enjoy this novel, support the Translator ginevre on her ko-fi account :))

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