IBTBTED Chapter 2
It’s Better to be the Empress Dowager
Chapter 2 Supporting Female Character
Tang Shishi frowned. She looked at Zhou Shunhua’s well-packed and unopened bag, and then at the book in her hand, she was confused.
The male servant moved her bag into the house and never came in again because Tang Shishi was packing her bag inside. Zhou Shunhua did not want to be in the same room with her and had not returned to the room yet. Besides, Tang Shishi cherished her bag very much and marked the bag. If someone moved the bag, she would definitely find out.
It was impossible for anyone to change the book, so why did Zhou Shunhua’s name appear in the book?
Tang Shishi gently turned to the first page with a strange feeling.
“Zhou Shunhua was the treasure in the palm of her parents. However, she was forced to enter the palace after the selection. She had no intention to fight for a favor, only wanted to live a good life, but was drawn into a dispute over and over again in the backyard harem. She was repeatedly harmed by others and finally could not bear it. She rose to fight back. From the tongfang (bed warmer) to Empress, from the rear courtyard to the Eastern Palace then to the Imperial Palace, she went through four dynasties and seven emperors, and became the most blessed Empress Dowager of the Great Yan Dynasty…”
Tang Shishi was confused after finishing reading the book. What kind of book was this, who made up this kind of ridiculous story, and who dared to talk about “The Most Blessed Empress Dowager”?
Not to mention to boost that one’s fortune was greater than the Empress Dowager Yao. Zhou Shunhua was sent to the fief of Jing Wang and was conferred as Cefei*, it was impossible to be the Empress Dowager in the end. Who wrote this, and was there any common sense in it?
(Cefei* – side imperial concubines, higher ranking than regular concubines)
Tang Shishi endured the disgust and continued to flip the page. She thought it was nonsense at the beginning, but gradually, her face changed.
The beginning of the book was the palace selection. Everything was the same as Tang Shishi knew. In the second year of Shentai, some of the beautiful young ladies were left behind and then moved to the Chuxiu Palace for independent training. In the fifth year of Shentai, ten women headed by Tang Shishi were selected by Empress Dowager and sent to the fief of Jing Wang.
In addition to Zhou Shunhua’s family background, the book also recorded the life experiences of several other beautiful young ladies, including Tang Shishi. Tang Shishi did not know the life experiences or past events of other young ladies, but her life experience and past events were exactly the same as those written in the book.
Was there such a coincidence in the world? Was this really a wordless heavenly book?
Tang Shishi knew that something was not quite right, and immediately flipped the page, but the content turned out to be blank. The timeline ended on the sixth day of June in the fifth year of Shentai, which was today.
Tang Shishi was lost in thought, could it be that this book could only show what has happened, and not the future? Tang Shishi was bewildered, and suddenly there was a sound at the door, “What are you doing?”
Tang Shishi was shocked, and immediately tucked the book into her sleeve, and packed up the bag casually, “I’m going to Feng Momo’s to sleep tonight and came in to clean up my things.”
Zhou Shunhua went in and looked at her suspiciously. Zhou Shunhua felt that Tang Shishi’s actions were suspicious just now. She cleaned up the bed and the pillow and there was nothing under the bed. It looked like Tang Shishi was just tidying up her things honestly and did not do anything.
But this was just what it looks like. However, Zhou Shunhua was still vigilant, “My boudoir has always been me alone, and I don’t like others touching my things. If you lack anything in the future, you can tell me, but don’t touch my belongings without permission.”
Tang Shishi laughed when she heard this. She stood up and straighten up the lapel of her light blue dress, “Sister Zhou was born in the capital, and probably hasn’t heard of the situation in Linqing. The tax deduction from trading can be equivalent to a tax deduction for one year in one province. Although our Tang family is not the richest, we still have a name in Linqing.”
When Tang Shishi said these words with her back was straight, her neck was raised, and her eyes were sparkle. Today, she was wearing a high lapel dress with golden buttons, which made her neck look long and slender, like a swan.
Tang Shishi walked past Zhou Shunhua and Tang Shishi turned her head, her bright and beautiful eyes seemed to be smiling and yet not smiling, “Although the Tang family is in business, they will not treat the eldest daughter of the first wife unfairly. I also have my own courtyard with maids and servants.”
Zhou Shunhua did not like living with others in the same room, did Tang Shishi like it? The Tang family was the richest in Linqing, and even though Tang Shishi was sidelined, but her expenses were not lacking at all.
Zhou Shunhua pursed her lips, and her expression was very forbearing. But Tang Shishi, like a victorious swan, lifted her head upright and walked away softly.
Tonight, she and Feng Momo have some “private matters” to talk about and would not be coming back to sleep.
After leaving the room, Tang Shishi still maintained a proud posture and walked for a while. Seeing that there was no one around, she immediately looked for a remote place and opened the book.
Just now, Tang Shishi did not pay attention to the details in the book. Now, avoiding people’s eyes and ears, Tang Shishi read it word by word from beginning to end.
This time, she found a lot of things that she had not noticed just now. For example, the main page was like a brief introduction, and there were two columns at the end that read “protagonist” and “supporting role” respectively. The first name in the main protagonist column was Zhou Shunhua, and the second was Zhao Zixun. In the supporting role column, Tang Shishi saw “Zhao Chengjun”, “Ren Yujun”, “Empress Dowager Yao”… as well as “Tang Shishi”.
What did this mean? She was a supporting role, and Zhou Shunhua was the main protagonist?
Tang Shishi continued to turn the page. The second page was the title, followed by a page number, which looked like a table of contents. The next page was the main content which Tang Shishi had just read, and nothing new was found the second time she read it. After that, there were only empty pages.
It seemed that there was a mysterious power that prevented her from seeing the following chapters. Tang Shishi didn’t believe in mystery, and looked back and forth again, trying to find a mysterious power behind this wordless heavenly book but inadvertently saw a line of very inconspicuous words.
“Finally, Tang Shishi’s came to an end and her soul was broken in the cold palace.”
Tang Shishi was stunned cold palace?
From the book descriptions, she would be dead?
Tang Shishi immediately checked the content of that chapter, but the corresponding page number was empty, Tang Shishi could only guess the cause and effect from the table of contents. Although she has not read the main plot yet, Tang Shishi probably could guess that she has severely offended the female protagonist without knowing what she had done wrong, and the Emperor was completely disgusted by her. She was sent from the Changchun Palace to the cold palace and died soon after.
After her death, the male and female protagonists did not make any big moves even though she deserved to die.
Tang Shishi closed the table of contents, and had mixed feelings for a while, not knowing what to say. On the good side, she did live up to her beautiful face, and indeed became famous in the palace, and became a favored concubine. On the bad side, she was just a loser in the palace struggle, after all, she did not even live to the end. After her death, there was still a long section of the table contents.
She was just a small and insignificant female supporting role in Zhou Shunhua’s life story.
Tang Shishi leaned against the corner, completely stunned. As night fell, the light quickly dimmed, and the corner was half-dark, with fine dust flying. She was leaning against the wall in despair, like a picture of a depressed court lady.
In the middle of the trance, there were suddenly panicked voices and sounds of station officers running around from outside. Tang Shishi suddenly returned to her senses, walked quickly to the corridor, and listened attentively to the movement outside.
What was happening?
In the chaos, Tang Shishi vaguely heard the words “catch the assassin”. Tang Shishi was shocked, assassin?
The relay post station was specially designed to entertain the imperial court officials and foreign envoys. Who was not cautious and dared to come to the imperial relay post station to make trouble? Immediately, Tang Shishi thought of Jing Wang.
No ordinary people, bandits, or wealthy merchants dared to oppose the imperial court. Those who dared to commit a crime in the relay post station were only Jing Wang’s people.
However, Tang Shishi still felt that it did not make any sense. This was the fief of Jing Wang and they were the beauties given to Jing Wang by the Empress Dowager. Even if Jing Wang did not like them anymore, he would not let them die on his own territory. Would this not give Empress Dowager Yao an excuse against him? Jing Wang and his subordinates would not make such a low-level mistake.
The voice of the station officer spread until inside, and the charming beauties quickly got up. Panicked shouts came and went one after another. Tang Shishi was planning to seek refuge in an area with big crowds and suddenly remembered something, she quickly turned her head down, and flipped the pages.
Sure enough, a new chapter has been updated, and the title was astonishing “When I first arrived at the fief, something happened at the relay post station and it was frightening late at night.”
Tang Shishi quickly finished scanning, it was a pity that the title read “Late Night Terror”, but was mostly about those beauties quarreling with each other. Until the end, there was a sentence of chaos in the relay post station and an assassin broke in.
Of course, the description in the book was that the beauties were panicking, one by one like roosters falling into the water no longer held the prestige of the earlier quarrel, and the female protagonist Zhou Shunhua was not afraid of danger, soothing the beauties, telling everyone go back to their rooms, closing the doors and windows, wait and do not act alone. In contrast to everyone else, Zhou Shunhua was calm and unhurried, with a sense of propriety and manner of a general, and immediately won the admiration of everyone at the relay post station.
Tang Shishi turned the page, and it was blank, but the title has been updated.
Tang Shishi muttered the content, “The delicate beauty gradually fell in love with Shizi*, at the first encounter on a frightening night.”
(*Shizi – heir son; heir apparent to a qinwang, Prince of First Rank)
“The first encounter with Shizi…” Tang Shishi unconsciously kept repeating the keywords, looking at the description, delicate beauty must not be her, it must be Zhou Shunhua. In other words, Zhou Shunhua would meet Zhou Zixun, the heir of Jing Wang, tonight and would leave a wonderful first impression on the male protagonist to lay the foundation for the future to confer her as an imperial concubine?
Immediately Tang Shishi got excited, how could she miss such a good opportunity? Shishi Tang has never been second place, wherever she could be famous and advantageous, there would be Shishi Tang.
What was the reason for Zhou Shunhua to be the protagonist and her as the supporting female? Looking at the synopsis of the book, she only knew the male protagonist was an heir of a prince and would become the Emperor of heaven, and Tang Shishi did not care how did the male protagonist became the Emperor, she only knew that the male protagonist was the Emperor.
The introduction stated that Zhou Shunhua was the only person the male protagonist really loved. Tang Shishi would not fight for true love with Zhou Shunhua. She was satisfied to be an empress.
Tang Shishi was immediately full of strength. She hid the book, no matter how petty she was just now, she went back to Zhou Shunhua’s room assertively. She made up her mind, even if she had to offend Feng Momo, she would stay with Zhou Shunhua tonight. Tang Shishi did not believe it, with her manner and appearance, she would not be able to compete with Zhou Shunhua in front of a man.
Tang Shishi lifted her skirt and rushed back to the room. She slammed the door open. The person inside seemed to be frightened by her. Zhou Shunhua stood in the middle of the room, stopped, and then slowly turned around.
Zhou Shunhua was holding a teacup in her hand, immediately raised her head, notice Tang Shishi’s sight, and drank the water in the cup in one gulp. She put the porcelain cup on the table and casually asked, “Tang Shishi, why did you come back?”
Tang Shishi was still holding her own bag in her hand and ran, gasping slightly at the moment, her face was red. Tang Shishi’s eyes swept across the corner lights, half-dark room, and finally swept across Zhou Shunhua, who was standing calmly on the ground.
Tang Shishi felt that there was someone else in the room almost immediately.
Besides her and Zhou Shunhua, there was a third person.