Pampered Into Being the Empress – Chapter 39
Many thanks to Kim who sponsored this chapter on buymeacoffee!
Translated by: Cozy Translations
Chapter 39 – Loyal Dog
The fragile and delicate girl was weeping sorrowfully in his arms. Mu Huai couldn’t bear to see Rong Xi’s tears the most, so he was not at all suspicious whether Di Shiyin had pulled Rong Xi’s hair or not.
In his heart, he had already deemed that this Di-Whatever-Shi person had bullied his woman.
Although Mu Huai was aware that the Empress intended to betroth her niece to him as his legitimate wife, after going through two lifetimes, he had yet to differentiate between the two siblings Di Shiyin and Di Shihua. Forget their names, he couldn’t even differentiate how they looked. His impression of them was hazy at best.
The night was a little foggy. Di Shiyin knew that her face must be extremely swollen right now and didn’t want Mu Huai to witness her current ugly state. She held the side of her face, turning askew.
Mu Huai faintly remembered that last time Rong Xi was bullied along the palace corridors by one of the Di sisters. He already couldn’t tell the two sisters apart, and Di Shiyin also had her face turned. Remembering how last time in the palace corridors, one of them had thrown a plum branch onto Rong Xi’s face, now they had come to pull her hair.
Although the methods used were different, they both lowly methods.
Mu Huai’s gaze sharpened. The woman in front of him should be the bitch that he punished into kneeling last time.
His voice was frosty as he asked in a heavy tone, “Last time I had you kneel on the palace paths, do you think that you haven’t been punished enough that your courage has grown even more, daring to bully my liangdi?”
Di Shiyin was stunned.
What punished into kneeling? When did Mu Huai ever punish her to kneel?
Seeing Di Shiyin’s surprised expression and feeling his luxurious banquet robes turning wet from the Rong Xi’s tears, Mu Huai suddenly felt a burst of anger in his heart.
He suppressed his turbulent emotions, then scolded Di Shiyin again, “Still not kneeling?”
Di Shiyin was shocked by Mu Huai’s icy voice. She reluctantly knelt on the ice-cold stone ground, her heart gradually becoming panicked. Last time when Di Shihua had went to the plum garden to pluck plums, that Physician Ye had bumped into her. At that time, the pock-faced, ugly servant of Mu Huai’s had pleaded for mercy on behalf of that Physician Ye.
Di Shihua had always been brainless. Relying on the fact that she was the Empress’s niece, she had slapped the palace maid’s face with a plum branch. Di Shiyin didn’t expect that Mu Huai actually mistook her for Di Shihua!
She hurriedly explained, “Your…Your Highness, last time was my younger sister Di Shihua, it wasn’t me.”
Mu Huai gently caressed the back of the woman in his arms. However, he didn’t know that Rong Xi had stopped crying a long time ago. When she heard Di Shiyin say this, a smile appeared at the corner of her lips.
Since she wasn’t the perpetrator, then what her words meant that she was the perpetrator this time.
As expected, Mu Huai’s countenance turned even darker as his tone became more aggressive, “I don’t care if you were the one who bullied my maidservant last time. I just want to ask where you got your courage today to dare to pull liangdi‘s hair?”
Di Shiyin was speechless.
Her daddy Di Zhuo had eighteen concubines. These past few years, she had gotten used to seeing how the concubines in the inner courtyard had fought for favor, and had also seen those who were as arrogant as Rong Xi. But one that acted like her, the perpetrator tattling first, this was the first time Di Shiyin had witnessed such a thing.
Di Shiyin’s clear and beautiful eyes filled with tears. She anxiously explained to Mu Huai, “Your Highness…this subject-daughter had never raised her hands towards Rong liangdi tonight, but Rong liangdi she…she actually slapped this subject-daughter.”
Mu Huai sneered, “My liangdi is most gentle and delicate. Usually, she wouldn’t even dare to step on a bug. If she really hit you, it must be because your words were too infuriating, annoying her.”
Di Shiyin felt extremely unjust, no matter how she explained, he wouldn’t listen. She forced herself to stay calm, “But this subject-daughter…subject-daughter did not hit Rong liangdi. It was Rong liangdi herself who messed up her own hair and pulled out her hairpins, slandering this subject-daughter. If Your Highness doesn’t believe me, you can ask the maidservant next to me.”
Di Shiyin’s maidservant quickly nodded her head. Slightly fearful of Mu Huai, she answered in a trembling voice, “Replying to Your Highness…it truly was Rong liangdi who messed up her own hair, framing my Young Miss.”
Rong Xi put on her most pitiful appearance as she spoke in a slightly hoarse voice, “If Young Miss Di wants to make up false claims, naturally your maidservant will protect you. If you want to use this method to deceive His Highness, then you can also ask the maidservants and guards next to me, whether you were the one who pulled my hair or whether I’m faking it…”
Mu Huai asked the crowd, “Speak the truth, was it surnamed Di who hit Rong liangdi?”
The Eastern Palace’s guards and Dan Xiang all bowed, looking downwards as they answered in unison, “Replying to Your Highness, it was Young Miss Di who pulled Rong liangdi‘s hair.”
When their voices fell, Di Shiyin felt as if all of her energy was sucked out as she collapsed onto the ground.
Ever since she was young, she had been raised as the pearl in her parent’s hands. She had never been punished or beaten. Yet today she was slapped by that concubine bitch.
She has never been wronged like this before. This group of lowly servants actually turned black into white1, placing a false charge on her head. Di Shiyin’s nails pierced the flesh of her palms. She secretly swore that one day she will definitely have this evil woman pay for what she did.
Mu Huai swept a glance over the kneeling Di Shiyin. His gaze was as if he was looking at an ant. The low and mellow voice was faintly hostile as he ordered the guards behind him in a cold tone, “Since you like to pull people’s hair, then I will teach you a lesson tonight. Someone come, pull out all the hair from this surnamed Di. Not one strand should be left.”
The guards replied emotionlessly, “Yes.”
Di Shiyin was in disbelief. Her long and thick black hair had been carefully nurtured through the use of countless expensive herbs and perfumed soaps. Yet Mu Huai actually wanted to pluck them all out.
She hurriedly placed her arms over her head as she cried and begged to Mu Huai, “Begging Your Highness to have mercy to this subject-daughter. This subject-daughter was wronged, this subject-daughter never did anything to Rong liangdi…”
The Empress’s senior palace maid heard the ruckus and came over. When she saw Di Shiyin kneeling on the ground, she was so startled her face turned paled.
How did she provoke this evil master.
Just now, when the Empress saw Di Shiyin had not returned to the banquet even after a long time, she had dispatched her [the palace maid] to look for Di Shiyin.
The senior palace maid walked up tot he crowd and bowed respectfully towards Mu Huai before lowering her head, “…Your Highness Crown Prince, Her Majesty the Queen sent this slave to look for Young Miss Di. This slave…should bring Young Miss Di back to the banquet.”
When Di Shiyin saw the Empress’s senior palace maid come over, she let out a sigh of relief.
Mu Huai’s gaze was sharp as he eyed the woman kneeling on the ground, “Returning to the banquet, okay, she can only return after all her hair is plucked out.”
Finished, Mu Huai’s guards began to drag Di Shiyin, plucking her head of glossy black hair.
The senior palace maid hurriedly protected Di Shiyin behind her. She was the attendant the Empress had brought over as part of her dowry, and thus had seen many battles over the years. She had already guessed that Di Shiyin must’ve offended Rong liangdi and the Crown Prince was standing up for her.
The senior palace maid anxiously spoke to Mu Huai, “Your Highness…Young Miss Di is the Empress’s niece after all. Although the Empress is not your birth mother, she is still your di mother. On behalf of the Empress, please forgive Young Miss Di this time…”
What Mu Huai hated the most was people trying to negotiate with him, not to mention this palace maid wanted to suppress him using the Empress. His countenance turned even worse as he continued to order, “Pull this palace maid away. Continue to pull out her hair. If you leave even one strand of hair behind, I’ll personally come question you.”
After the senior palace maid was pushed aside by the guards, she knew that she could not persuade Mu Huai, this god of death. She hurriedly ran back to Zirui Hall to find the Empress for backup.
Mu Huai heard Di Shiyin’s rising cries. Becoming annoyed, he frowned and spoke in a low voice to the woman in his arms, “Let’s go, I’ll go back tot he Eastern palace with you.”
Rong Xi nodded her head. But she was only able to walk a few steps when she felt a throbbing pain from her ankle. She frowned. It must’ve been when she was walking too quickly just now and she had rolled her ankle.
Mu Huai sensed her abnormality and questioned, “What’s wrong?”
Rong Xi pointed towards her ankle and replied in a small voice, “Your Highness…this concubine seems to have twisted the ankle and will have to walk more slowly.”
Dan Xiang spoke up at this time, “Then this slave will go find someone from the Palace Service to bring over a wheelchair for liangdi.”
Mu Huai waved his hand, stopping Dan Xiang.
His voice had returned to its usual calmness, “No need.”
Finished, in front of Di Shiyin and her palace maid, he picked up Rong Xi in a princess-carry and strode towards the Eastern palace.
After Mu Huai and Rong Xi’s figures disappeared into the distance, the Empress had personally arrived. She immediately ordered the guards pulling Di Shiyin’s hair to release her.
Although the guards were afraid of Mu Huai punishing them, the person standing in front of them was the Empress after all. As a result, they released Di Shiyin.
With a cold expression, the Empress had the palace maids behind her bring Di Shiyin back.
As for Di Shihua who was standing behind the Empress, when she saw her own older sister looking so dispirited and haggard, a faint smile appeared on her delicate and round face.
After returning to the Eastern Palace, Mu Huai immediately sent Dan Xiang to fetch an imperial physician to inspect Rong Xi’s ankle injury.
The imperial physician said Rong Xi’s ankle had just pulled a tendon. It would heal after applying a medicated oil to relieve swelling.
After the imperial physician left, Mu Huai saw Rong Xi’s hair was a little messy and the rims of her eyes were red. Resembling a fragile beauty, he couldn’t help but frown as he asked, “What did that surnamed Di talk to you for today?”
Rong Xi pursed her thin lips. Half-laying on the arhat bed, she looked over at Mu Huai sitting next to her. Instead of answering his question, she asked one of her own, “Your Highness…do you blame this concubine for hitting that Young Miss Di?”
When Mu Huai heard this, his thin lips hooked upwards.
He took the medicated oil from Dan Xiang’s hands and waved his hand, indicating for her to retreat.
Under Rong Xi’s somewhat astonished gaze, he personally rubbed the medicated oil between his callused palms, then massaged her injured ankle. He spoke up in a low voice, “That day, you accompanied me to Hanlin Academy and blocked the ice water that Mu Qian’s eunuch had prepared for me. That day, I had wanted to let the guards to hit that eunuch’s palms, but I didn’t expect that a little girl like you would actually take the switch, ruthlessly teaching a lesson to that eunuch.”
When Rong Xi heard this, she looked down in guilt. Her voice was like an ant’s as she answered, “Then does Husband think that this concubine…was unreasonable?”
Mu Huai had on an indifferent expression as he controlled the strength of his hands, afraid that he would use too much force and cause this delicate lady to cry out in pain. He replied, “At that time, I had thought that the palace maid following me should never be cowardly. They need to be like you, a little fiercer.”
Rong Xi felt her heart warm up. She placed her hand on top of his, “Husband, let this concubine do it…”
Mu Huai lifted his eyes, his cool gaze was slightly probing as he looked at her and asked again, “So what did that surnamed Di say to you? Tell me.”
Rong Xi bore with the ankle’s pain as she somewhat helplessly told Mu Huai, “That Young Miss Di seems to know who this concubine’s father was. But this concubine is afraid to cause trouble for Your Highness, so I didn’t confirm it…as for the rest, she was just saying the usual about how this concubine has a lowly status and didn’t have any maternal clan backing, unfit to occupy the position of liangdi…”
Before she could finish, Rong Xi saw the originally somewhat calm man begin to emit a dark and gloomy aura again.
His brows tightly furrowed and his fist fell heavily onto the small desk by him.
The small desk immediately split in to.
Rong Xi was shocked. She knew that Mu Huai practiced martial arts, but she had no idea he was that strong.
After going through one lifetime, when Mu Huai recalled his attitude towards Rong Xi in the past, he felt that he had treated her really terribly.
If he were Rong Xi’s father, after knowing that his own daughter had not only fallen from an official’s daughter to a government slave, but also had encountered a master like him. And this master not only had a cruel and extreme personality but also took away his daughter’s virginity, not given her any position or status, even knocking her up.
If his daughter had fallen to such a state, he would definitely cast a thousand cuts on the man of whoever treated her this way.
And although he had given Rong Xi a status now, her maternal clan’s background was actually looked down upon by a bitch. Humiliating her under his nose, really made him infuriated.
Rong Xi found a handkerchief and carefully wiped off the medicinal oil from Mu Huai’s hands. The desk had already been smashed into two halves by him, and his hand was also a little red.
When Mu Huai recalled the day Rong Xi cried while telling him she didn’t have any family, she only had him, his heart tightened.
Mu Huai lowered his eyes, “In the future, you don’t need to care about what other people say about your family background. My own concubine mother’s family background wasn’t noble…my maternal grandfather was just a deputy minister of the city guards.”
Rong Xi raised her eyes, looking into Mu Huai’s deep ones.
This was the first time he had brought up his mother.
Mu Huai solemnly promised, “In the future, I will be your greatest backing.”
This author wants to say:
Old Dog Mu has evolved into being a loyal dog
Translator’s comments: I especially loved this chapter because we can very obviously see how Mu Huai has grown. Unlike other ML’s who never show any remorse for their actions or gloss over/ignore the harm they had caused to the FL, Mu Huai here has clearly acknowledged his past mistakes (ie. forcing Rong Xi to become his woman, etc.) and how it was wrong to treat her that way.
Speaking of this, I also want to applaud the author for choosing to have Mu Huai rebirth to the day just before Rong Xi was about to be killed, instead of (like so many other rebirth novels) before she became his servant or before he ever slept with her. I think this makes his character growth much more believable, because the effect/consequences of the mistakes he made are tangible (ie. Rong Xi’s fear of him, etc.) and he has to actually work to atone for his mistakes and he becomes a better partner (and ruler) by having to become more empathetic to how others feel. If he had rebirthed to the beginning of everything, I don’t think we would have nearly gotten as much character growth, nor would it be as impactful, simply because he would be getting off too easy.
For everyone’s whose followed this story to this point, thank you! It only gets better (and more pampering) from here!
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