Chapter 1021 A Mess After The Imperial Edict
Even the Empress needed a convincing reason when she would have to promote Madam Jiang, who had been degraded to a concubine, to a secondary legal wife.
“You can put it this way: Madam Jiang has a filial daughter-in-law, and people in her mansion are willing to explain for her and share her responsibility because they love and respect her.” The Empress Dowager waved her hand and said impatiently.
She was now the Empress Dowager who was supposed to live in ease and comfort. But now, for the Marquis Xing’s Mansion, she had to work hard with her brains and even brought disgrace upon herself. How could she be nice to them?
“Yes, I understand.” The Empress nodded.
Of course, the Empress Dowager would never do anything wrong. Even if she made a mistake, no one was allowed to point it out frankly, including herself.
Bestowing the title of nobility on Shao Yuanhao could be regarded as compensation for the Marquis Xing’s Mansion. Beyond that, in the imperial edict, she made it clear that the people of the Marquis Xing’s Mansion valued Madam Jiang and were willing to share the responsibility for her, which sounded like Madam Jiang was in the wrong. Then, she said the Marquis Xing’s Mansion felt ready to give up the title of nobility. It meant some people in the mansion wanted to take the blame for her.
With the Emperor’s decree, the Empress’s imperial edict would be undoubtedly well-reasoned, and the Empress Dowager would not be proved wrong.
The causes and effects were tightly interlocked, which made their decisions perfectly logical and reasonable. Now, it was crystal clear why Madam Jiang was demoted from a legal wife to a concubine. And because the Marquis Xing’s Mansion gave up the title of nobility, she was elevated to a secondary legal wife.
Since the people of the Marquis Xing’s Mansion felt ready to take on all the responsibilities, Madam Jiang’s matter was finally settled.
As soon as the Marquis Xing’s Mansion received her imperial edict, the Empress could foresee that Madam Jiang would have a hard time there. In the past ten years, people in that mansion had been secretly fighting for the position of the heir of a duke. Now, because of Madam Jiang, they practically gave the title of nobility to Shao Yuanhao…
Since the Empress Dowager made the final decision, the others carried out her instructions fast. On that day, Great Elder Princess sent her memorial to the Emperor, who happened to discuss state affairs with several important officials in the Imperial Study. After he gave a quick look at it, the Empress’s memorial to the throne also arrived. One eunuch took out the memorial of pleading for title sent by Shao Jing before.
After comparing the few memorials, the Emperor decided to make Shao Yuanhao the heir of a duke on the spot.[email protected]@@@[email protected]@@@@=======
The Emperor sent someone to deliver the decree.
When the people of the Marquis Xing’s Mansion received the imperial edict, they were still in a daze and didn’t know what had happened. After all, the matter about Madam Jiang belonged to the inner court, so even if there was an imperial edict, shouldn’t it be sent by the Empress Dowager and the Empress? So, what was the Emperor’s noble intention?
Old Madam took the decree in great trepidation. After the eunuch finished reading the decree, she still knelt there, her mind blank. The news sounded like a thunderclap piercing her ear. Stretching out her trembling hand, she asked with a ghastly pale face, “Please… Sir… Are you… are you telling the truth?”
“Congratulations, Your Grace. Your mansion finally has an heir of a duke!” The eunuch grinned.
“His Majesty ignored my plead for so many years. Why would such a decree come all of a sudden?” Shao Jing stayed cool and asked.
“I guess the time is ripe! I don’t know the details. If Your Grace wants to know, you can go directly to see His Majesty in the Palace,” the eunuch said with a smile.
“Shao Yuanhao is not here… I’m afraid that the decree…” Shao Jing said in embarrassment. The decree was for Shao Yuanhao, so he should be the one to accept it. When Shao Yuanhao was not here, it could be considered that he didn’t receive it.
“Rui’an Great Elder Princess had reported that. The heir of a duke is still young and has been learning very well in the Great Elder Princess’s Mansion, so it’s not convenient for him to return to your mansion. Therefore, a decree is also sent to the Great Elder Princess’ Mansion. You can keep this decree in your mansion.” The eunuch understood what he meant and explained with a smile.
Flames of wrath leaped in Shao Jing’s breast. Shao Yuanhao became the heir of a duke, but he could still live outside of his mansion. Even if Shao Jing was eager to do something, he couldn’t bypass Rui’an Great Elder Princess.
“My Madam, My Madam…”
“My Madam, wake up…” These servant girls and old maids suddenly cried in fear. Shao Jing turned his head in a hurry and saw that Old Madam had fainted on the ground.
“Your Grace, I have delivered the decree. I should go back to the Palace now.” The eunuch, seeing that the Marquis Xing’s Mansion was in chaos and disorder, stopped smiling.
“Thanks a lot, sir!” Shao Jing, terribly perturbed, couldn’t show it on his face. He asked someone to take out a bag of money and sent off the eunuch who came with the decree.
Nanny Yu took some medicine and fed it to Old Madam whose face then turned slightly better. When she woke up and saw Shao Jing, her tears fell, “My second son, how could this…”
“Mother, watch your words!” Shao Jing’s face changed slightly, and he immediately interrupted Old Madam. Then he said seriously, “This is a great thing. You should feel happy about that. Mother, you’re in poor health. I will help you to rest.”
So many people were in the lobby, and it was not the right time to discuss some private matters.
Old Madam came to her senses and knew that she had lost her composure. Slowly, she got up with the support of Nanny Yu’s hands. At this time, the old housekeeper ran inside and called out, “Your Grace, the Empress also sent someone to announce her imperial edict.”
Shao Jing and Old Madam were struck dumb by the news, but the former reacted quickly and said, “Hurry up and invite him in!”
The eunuch who worked for the Empress came in, smiling all over his face. Everyone knelt on the ground, but Madam Jiang had to present this time. Therefore, the servants hurriedly went to the inner court, helping Madam Jiang walk out. After that, all of them knelt.
After the announcement of this edict and everyone thanked the Empress, the people in the mansion politely saw the Empress’s messenger off.
Either of the two decrees seemed to be a good thing. Today, two happy events came one after the other to the Marquis Xing’s Mansion.
However, for Old Madam, each good news was like a dagger being twisted in her heart, which made her so painful that she almost couldn’t speak. When she struggled to her feet with the help of Nanny Yu, she spotted Madam Jiang, who appeared incredibly delighted and relieved. This scene made Old Madam bristle with rage, and she struck Madam Jiang violently across her face beaming with happy smiles. Madam Jiang staggered two steps back and fell heavily to the ground.
“You are a jinx. How do you have the brass nerve to smile? If it weren’t for you… for you…” Old Madam was so infuriated that she couldn’t utter a word, so she could only point at Madam Jiang with trembling fingers. She deeply regretted that she had followed the advice of Zhao Xiran and her second son, thinking she could make good use of Madam Jiang’s matter. In her mind, if Madam Jiang became a concubine, her eldest grandson would never be the heir of a duke. That was why she went to the Palace to beg the Empress Dowager.
In the end, Shao Yuanhao became the heir of a duke. Now that Rui’an Great Elder Princess seized the fruits of their victory, what was the point of Madam Jiang becoming a secondary legal wife?
“You bring bad luck. When I kept you in the mansion, I should have strangled you to death with a piece of string to keep you from ruining the family now.”
Madam Dowager, gnashing her teeth, hated Madam Jiang to the marrow of her bones.
They had made a perfect pair, but at present, they became each other’s most hated enemy.
Madam Jiang was slapped dumb and didn’t know what was happening for a moment. Then, when Old Madam stomped her feet and scolded her harshly, she was exasperated beyond all control. “For a long time, I had been the Madam of Marquis Xing and handled everything well. If she had not sent me to the Yuhui Nunnery, there wouldn’t have been so many bad things following up.”
“She did not blame herself at present but turned to reproach me, accusing me of bringing ill luck to the family! But didn’t this old bitch acquiesce in all those things I had done?”
“What you said makes no sense at all. I did all these things according to your instructions! How could you blame me instead? You said I was a jinx. Oh, if that’s true, you brought me to your family. If you hadn’t requested His Grace to marry me, I wouldn’t have married into the Marquis Xing’s Mansion!”
Madam Jiang retorted sarcasm for sarcasm.
“How dare you! You… how dare…” A wave of fierce wrath rolled up in Old Madam. Out of control, she rushed over and was about to trample on Madam Jiang.
Nanny Yu hurriedly stopped her. If she rushed over, Old Madam with high status would look worse than a shrew shouting abuse in the street.
“Maids, take Madam Jiang back!” When Shao Jing saw the mess, the blue veins on his forehead stood out, and he shouted.
Two old maids came to pull Madam Jiang up and brought her inside. It was not a good thing for her to stay here any longer. Violent disturbances might occur.
“Mother, let’s go back and talk!” Shao Jing comforted Old Madam and reached out to help her go back.
“This jinx, jinx…” It seemed to be the only sentence Old Madam could say at this moment. The longer she muttered, the more miserable she felt, and her eyes gradually turned red.
It was indeed her who invited Madam Jiang to this mansion. She must have been blind not to realize Madam Jiang’s danger and take her as a lovely lady. To save her, Shao Yuanhao got the title of the heir of a duke. She had fought with Rui’an Great Elder Princess for a lifetime to get the title. It was a great pity that Old Madam lost it to her and ended up in misery.
After she sat down in her room, Old Madam sobered up a little. She grabbed her son’s hand and asked anxiously, “What should we do? What should we do now?”
With a wave of her hand, Nanny Yu led the servants out to guard the door.
It was evident that the mother and son had something confidential to say.
“Mother, we can only accept the reality first!” Shao Jing gritted his teeth nastily and said. Of course, he was unwilling to give up. He had tried hard to get the title of nobility but lost it so easily. This was something he had never thought of before.
It was all very sudden, and he was still a little dizzy. How could it be done?
“Accept it first… but Hua’an is the one…” Old Madam was so anxious that she spoke without careful diction.
“Mother, be careful. From now on, Hao’er will own the title of the heir of a duke. You can’t talk nonsense.” Shao Jing interrupted Old Madam, who was in utter stupefaction.
“But… But if this title belongs to Hao’er, who is not close to us, it will eventually be under Great Elder Princess’s control…” Old Madam said in a panic.
Shao Jing gritted his teeth in determination and said in a low voice, “Mother, let’s wait and see. Anyway, the person who eventually takes the throne has the final say in this matter. Hao’er is still young!”
The ferocious fight for the throne was in progress. Who finally got the title would depend on the will of the new Emperor in the future. It was actually their most helpless choice, but they could only hope for the future. There would be plenty of time for them to snatch a victory out of defeat, wouldn’t there?
“Yes, you’re right! There is a new one. Ru’er…” Old Madam nodded repeatedly, her hands relaxing a little, and she muttered to herself, “Ru’er… We should spare no effort to support her. As long as she can get a position in the future, I’d like to do anything for her. How about Madam Jiang now?”
How Old Madam wished she could lock up Madam Jiang forever. It would be best if she could die lonely inside her cell. They lost the title of nobility to make Madam Jiang a secondary legal wife. Upon receiving the edict, Madam Jiang immediately grinned from ear to ear! How dare she be so happy? How could she have the nerve to smile?!