IBTBTED Chapter 9
It’s Better to be the Empress Dowager
Chapter 9 Misunderstanding
Actually, Zhao Chengjun arrived a long time ago. He just stood in the hallway. Others could not see him, but he could see others.
He watched with his own eyes as Tang Shishi caught up with the two women, and then poured water on their clothes.
Zhao Chengjun frowned and felt that this woman was really not good at scheming. At the relay post station, it could still be explained that she reported her roommate due to safety, but now, for no reason at all, she was harming people again.
Zhao Chengjun could not stand it anymore and walked out of the dark. He did not pay attention earlier, but when he approached, he found that the woman who had been splashed with tea had embroidered cotton rose hibiscus on her dress.
Zhao Chengjun was surprised. He recalled what had happened just now and realized it immediately.
However, he underestimated this woman. He did not know where Tang Shishi learned of his taboo against cotton rose hibiscus, and he also noticed something wrong with the other woman’s clothes too. If the two women were allowed to enter the hall to exchange wine, and they would have caused trouble in front of so many people. Inevitably, the Imperial Palace and the Jing Wang mansion would be at odds. Tang Shishi’s obstruction was fruitless, so she forcibly destroyed the other women’s dresses too and left them with nowhere out.
Although her methods were somewhat amateur, the methods were simple and crude, and they had an immediate effect.
Zhao Chengjun had not misjudged a person for many years, but he did not expect that this time, he had misjudge a woman. He originally thought that this woman was proud and arrogant and knew petty tricks and had no great wisdom, just like those beautiful women with an empty vase* with ambitions written all over their faces. Who knew that he actually misunderstood her?
(beautiful women with an empty vase* – beautiful women without brains)
However, he did not like smart people, especially women who did their best to please him.
When Zhao Chengjun reached the door, he was still feeling agitated and really wanted to flog that woman, at the same time indirectly flogging the people from the capital without needing to lift his fingers. Unexpectedly, while still lost in his own thinking, that woman ran into him directly.
Marvelous, Zhao Chengjun was more certain about his speculation just now.
Zhao Chengjun’s good feeling vanished in an instant. After he finished the warning, he did not want to spare another look at her and strode away. Zhao Chengjun had decided to separate this woman from Zhao Zixun. This Tang Shishi was too scheming and up to no good.
Could not let her lead Zhao Zixun astray.
Tang Shishi was utterly confused by what Zhao Chengjun said. Tang Shishi, on the contrary, wanted to change, and Jing Wang reminded her not to be smart. The question was, where was she smart?
Zhao Chengjun left without looking back. After he walked away, others also followed through.
Zhao Zixun smirked at Tang Shishi and then, quickly dashed after Zhao Chengjun. Later, Tongxiu looked at Tang Shishi meaningfully and eventually smiled, “Miss Tang has good fortune, Wangye rarely praises others. Miss has made a great contribution today.”
Tang Shishi was even more at a loss with what she said, Jing Wang actually complimenting her? After Tongxiu finished commenting, regardless of the expressions of the people around, she bowed her head and walked into the hall. After the people of the mansion left the scene, Feng Momo walked up to Tang Shishi and patted Tang Shishi’s hand with a happy face.
Tang Shishi was puzzled, “Huh?”
Feng Momo could not help but laugh at her. She looked at Tang Shishi as though she was looking at a priceless jade, “Momo doesn’t dote on you in vain, knows how to put the overall situation into consideration and take care of your peers. That’s the right way. Although all of you were selected from the same group, you must work together to advance or retreat when you are outside. After I leave, only ten of you are left to depend on each other. You should help each other and support each other like sisters.”
When Feng Momo finished, she gave Ren Yujun a death stare, “Tang Shishi helped you a lot today, and you falsely accused her of bullying you. Why don’t you come up to apologize to Tang Shishi?”
Ren Yujun’s face was extremely ugly. After being pushed discreetly by someone, she reluctantly stepped forward, “Thank you, Miss Tang.”
After listening for half a day, Tang Shishi could be considered to understand the meaning behind it. It turned out that Jing Wang, Tongxiu Gugu, and Feng Momo all thought that Tang Shishi had discovered that Ren Yujun’s dress was not appropriate, and she deliberately poured the wine on purpose. Let Heaven be my witness, she knew nothing about it, she was simply bullying them.
No wonder Jing Wang said that she was smart. Tang Shishi was too embarrassed to admit it. In fact, Jing Wang misunderstood her. She was not playing smart and was not covering Ren Yujun up. She really just wanted to harm her.
And Feng Momo uphold Tang Shishi and kept telling the beauties to set Tang Shishi as an example. Zhou Shunhua lowered her head and listened to the teachings, Ren Yujun bit her lip, and Ji Xinxian looked around and lowered her head obediently.
Feng Momo severely reprimanded them, and said with a stone face, “Look at all of you, and then look at Tang Shishi. No wonder she can get ahead and you all can’t. Every one of you is an idiot. In the future, you should learn more from Tang Shishi. Don’t be fooled by others and use yourself against your peers. What happened today is not allowed to happen again, understand?”
The beauties bowed their heads and responded feebly, “Yes.”
“All right, let’s clear out, and be smarter in the future.” Feng Momo retreated with a cold face. After the beauties retreated in twos and threes, Feng Momo clasped Tang Shishi’s hand and led her to a secluded area.
Feng Momo sized up Tang Shishi with a genuine smile. She patted Tang Shishi’s hand and said, “You did well today.”
Tang Shishi smiled with a guilty conscience, and said docilely, “It’s Momo who taught me well.”
“You can lead a horse to the water, but you can’t make it drink. I’m just a servant. I can only teach you the daily etiquette. How can I teach you to be rich for a longer time?” Feng Momo looked at Tang Shishi with profound meaning and said, “A wealthy family courtyard is very different from others, it overflows with wealth and honor. It depends on whether you have the courage to fight. At first, I was worried that you were too hasty, but looking at your actions today, one more will make it thicker, and one point less will make it lighter. You seem to have a very good sense of propriety. It turns out that I was worrying too much before.”
Tang Shishi was cautiously seeking confirmation, “Momo, do you mean…”
“You just bumped into Jing Wang.” Feng Momo praised her sincerely, “Everyone stopped, but you continued to move forward and happened to run into Jing Wang. After that, your performance was very natural as if you really accidentally bumped into him. It not only attracted Jing Wang’s attention, but you also did not do it too deliberately. You did well.”
Tang Shishi was silent. She felt that these people might have misunderstood her.
Feng Momo was still very excited and continued, “In the early years, when this prince was in the palace, he was a good-natured prince, Shizong’s scholars that belonged to him were the most precious. I didn’t expect that no matter how mighty a hero is, he still falls into the hand of beauty. When you bumped into Jing Wang, he was not angry. It can be seen that he treats you differently.”
However, Tang Shishi’s opinion was different. If and only if Jing Wang truly wanted to kill her, he could do it.
Tang Shishi smiled awkwardly and did not understand why Feng Momo had so much confidence in her. She thought so highly of her. Tang Shishi had not seen many people in her life, but she still has some basic understanding of human relations. After these few meetings, Tang Shishi firmly believed that Jing Wang was by no means a good person. How could a man who could lay dormant for many years, invaded the capital, and seized the throne from his nephew, be bewitched by the beauty sent by the Imperial court?
The day he rose up was the day when these beauties died. If she wanted to cling to Jing Wang, she might gain Jing Wang’s favors. Anyhow, Jing Wang also needed someone as a disguise to confuse the Imperial Palace for him and let Empress Dowager believe that he had no intention to rebel. It just so happened that these beauties were sent by Empress Dowager, who knew that in the end, were they spying on Jing Wang or Jing Wang taking advantage of them?
Tang Shishi was indeed overly ambitious, but at least she knew her limitations. She was very clear that if she managed to fool Zhao Zixun, she still had a little chance of success. With her personality and appearance, she was quite certain that Zhao Zixun would be unwilling to kill her after he successfully staged the rebellion. But Jing Wang…
Tang Shishi just listened to Feng Momo’s opinion indifferently, Feng Momo could fantasize all about it, but Tang Shishi did not want to gamble her life away. The ready-made script of Empress Dowager was in her hands already, as long as she followed Zhou Shunhua’s path and endured for 30 to 40 years, she could be the Empress Dowager. Why would she want to challenge a more difficult man?
Tang Shishi listened to Feng Momo’s opinion with a smile, but she did not answer. When Feng Momo was almost done, then only Tang Shishi asked, “Momo, besides the cotton rose hibiscus, what other taboo in Jing Wang’s mansion?”
Hearing this question, the expression on Feng Momo’s face immediately sunk. After a while, Feng Momo shook her head lightly, “Cotton rose hibiscus is not a taboo, but it was Imperial Concubine Gonglie. Concubine Gonglie was the birth mother of Jing Wang. In the future, you should not inquire about those related to Concubine Gonglie, just avoid them all.”
Unexpectedly, it turned out to be Jing Wang’s birth mother! Tang Shishi was taken aback, and suddenly thought that according to her calculation, were not Imperial Concubine Gonglie and Empress Dowager Yao from the same generations? When she was in the palace, she heard that Empress Dowager Yao was not favored when she was an Empress…
Tang Shishi did not dare to think about it anymore. Seeing Feng Momo’s tight-lipped, it looked like these old stories were not something that Tang Shishi could inquire about. Tang Shishi bowed her head and said respectfully, “Yes, this little girl understands.”
When Feng Momo thought of the former Imperial Concubine, her mood also went downhill. She looked at Tang Shishi, without beating around the bush and said, “Empress Dowager is kind to you, you have to repay her, do you understand? If you do it well, your contribution will benefit the family. If it is not good, you will implicate others. You should know which is more important, right?”
“This little girl understands.” Tang Shishi lowered her head and said respectfully, “I am loyal and devoted to Empress Dowager and I will follow orders obediently. If I give birth to two hearts, my father and brother will be destitute and will not die easily.”
Feng Momo was relieved, nodded, and said, “That’s right.”
After the warning, Feng Momo was completely reassured and finally willing to let Tang Shishi return to rest. After Tang Shishi bid Feng Momo goodnight, she was stopped halfway.
When Tang Shishi turned around and found that it was Tongxiu Gugu. Tongxiu personally approached Tang Shishi and bowed, “Thank you, Miss Tang, for your help today.”
Tang Shishi hurriedly supports Tongxiu, “Gugu please get up, this little girl doesn’t deserve your ceremony.”
Tongxiu properly finished the ceremony, then stood up and said to Tang Shishi, “I misunderstood Tang Shishi previously. Unexpectedly, Miss Tang was the most sensible. It is not convenient for this servant to talk about today’s affairs due to the taboo for the esteemed person, but when Wangye saw the cotton rose hibiscus, he couldn’t help but feel dejected. Miss is a compassionate person, and Tongxiu will remember.”
Tang Shishi waved her hands again and again, “Gugu is being too modest, I can’t afford it.”
She really could not afford it, she just did what a vicious female supporting character would do.
Tongxiu earnestly thanked Tang Shishi and gave her a token of gratitude. She also told Tang Shishi that if there was any inconvenience in the future, she could come and tell her, and then she retired courteously.
Tang Shishi held the gift and continued walking absently all the way. After a short distance, she was not expected to be stopped again.
Tang Shishi was accustomed to it by now. She wanted nothing more than to go back to her courtyard right now. Why could this not be the end of the journey?
Ren Yujun came up from behind slowly and said to Tang Shishi, “Thank you very much for today.”
Tang Shishi looked at her calmly. Ren Yujun was used to being an arrogant young lady, it was hard for her to say such things as thanks or apologies. Ren Yujun twisted for a while, suddenly a jade bracelet slipped off from her hand and put it on Tang Shishi’s hand, and quickly said, “Don’t mix two things together. Don’t think I’m afraid of you. I won’t lose to you.”
After speaking, she ran away quickly.
Tang Shishi was inexplicably thanked by three waves of people, and she felt very delighted. She took a look at Ren Yujun’s jade bracelet and accepted it rightfully.
Since everyone has misunderstood her foresight and thoughtfulness… Then she had no choice but to be disrespectful.
That’s right, this was her.