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67 Yuwen Hong, She Said?




Le-anne was relieved because of Grand General's departure and with that, she slept for the rest of the afternoon, shivering because of the cold that engulfed her.

He didn't know it but if he took her, her mission would be over. People would think they were romantically involved, which would get her killed or cast out by her mistress. She was the emperor's woman as a palace maid and could not be with anyone else. On top of that, she didn't want to lose her mistress; not when she had worked so hard to build a relationship with her.

Grand Consort Shu slipped into bed next to her. Le-anne was not sure when it was that she started sharing the bed with her but didn't question it either. She did not like sleeping on the floor and much preferred the bed too.

"How are you feeling Li'er?"

"Still hot but better," she sighed.

Grand Consort Shu measured her temperature by the back of her hand. Her small hand was soft like feathers due to her ritual of oiling.

"Li'er, how do you know Yuwen Hong?"

Le-anne yawned sleepily. "Who?"

"The Grand General."

Yuwen Hong. That was his name?

She met him during an attempt to steal from him. "I met him before I entered the palace when I was travelling."

Grand Consort rested her head on her palm as she lay on her side to watch her. "He is handsome and quite striking don't you think?"
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Was that a trick question? "He is alright."

Grand General was more than good looking. His eyes were piercing hazel, his jaw beautifully crafted and his body ripped.

"I bet his mother is as beautiful," Grand Consort dreamily said.

Obviously, she would be. Le-anne pictured what his mother probably looked like. A grey haired woman who was aging well.

"I wouldn't hate you if you thought he was handsome," her mistress kept pushing the topic.

Oh no, what did the Grand General tell her? Worst thing is she could not rely on him to have her back.

"Li'er do you like him?"

"No," Le-anne flat out denied. She didn't like him. Before she was confused, but why she was not thinking straight was beyond her. He was the cause of her problems, responsible for the delay in her mission.

"I think he likes you," her mistress sighed. "Don't let him use you. He lusts over women yet deeply his heart yearns for his lost lover." It came out as a warning.

Le-anne didn't know why she was not overjoyed at the words. Didn't she seek a reason she could use to turn him down?

"And he has a wife, concubines and a child too. You deserve better."

Not surprising.

Nevorian men could marry as many women as they wanted, taking in concubines on the side. Over the weeks, she thought she could like the place but she was back on where she began. It was an ugly culture they had, horrible people that did not care for lives. She almost died.

"It doesn't matter because this maid's heart is not after him."

She flared at the fact that he came where she worked, and now the favored mother of the emperor knew this.

"Thank you Li'er, stay loyal to me and I will be good to you too."

She so often repeated those words to her and everytime she said so, there was an ache in her voice. It's like Grand Consort Shu battled with herself more than she was willing to battle with Le-anne. This posed a question in Le-anne's mind, 'To what extent did Grand Consort Shu trust her?'

"... And if you were loyal to me, I'd give you my world." Grand Consort continued.

It was as if her mistress was hinting that she'd give her the emperor too since he was her everything. But also, Grand Consort Shu spoke as if Le-anne was not loyal to her. For the first time, Le-anne felt like her mission was not as much a secret like she imagined.

Grand Consort Shu stayed quiet, contemplating, before adding, "I know you indeed gave him the letter instead of the Senior Court Lady."

What? How did she find out? Grand General! That sly beast gossips more than women. Aiyah! What will she say now?

Grand Consort lay on her back, making herself comfortable. "So you are a traveller, which places have you been to?"

She seemed to not have interest in confronting her about the issue and Le-anne was more than happy to avoid the elephant in the room too.

Le-anne couldn't spew random places when she did not travel around the empire. It could get her in trouble later. What she needed was to get herself together, figure out things.

"This servant is tired, she wishes to rest if Her Highness will let her." This was true, she was exhausted and needed rest.

"Forgive me Li'er, that you are experiencing this."

"No. It's not Her Highness' fault." Poor woman. The root of the problem was the Grand General. Him and his fake promises. Everything else fell in because he betrayed her, alongside his lies.

But then on a good note, some palace maids told her about the saga involving Prince Kuan Hui, when 'he' was drunk. Apparently, the emperor ordered his very close shadowing guard to escort Le-anne back to the chambers. And Grand Consort Shu admitted that 'Le-anne was dear to her heart' to the emperor. This delighted Le-anne. Any progress, no matter how big or small was good in her books. She was going to ride that small wave till it was a big one.

But her heart couldn't help getting excited over how the Grand General took care of her a few days ago, when she had just experienced a nightmare. His warm body heated her shivering body, and the sweetest thing was that no matter how horrible she looked he still desired her. It made her stomach flatter just thinking of it.

Yuwen Hong, Grand Consort Shu said? Hmm, but he was still a bastard.