142 Being Allowed
Though Tian Jingren had left, the Plum Meeting had to continue. Yet, many Cultivation practitioners felt rather disappointed since they missed the chance of meeting the grandmaster to get evaluated.
Guo Dong, the disciple of the Water-Moon Nunnery, won first place in the zither tournament. The chess tournament was next.
In the past plum meetings, the chess tournament had attracted the least attention, simply because the final result had already been determined, rather than the fact that people weren't interested in the tournament.
Like the saying "The winner is guaranteed to be the Water-Moon Nunnery", the winner of the chess games…was guaranteed to be Tong Yan anyway.
However, the situation was kind of different that year. More attention had been paid to the chess tournament.
Of course, nobody doubted that the final winner would still be Tong Yan.
He had defeated the number one chess player, Grand Scholar Guo, in the imperial court at the mid-stage outside the old plum garden, and he had done the same to a dozen high level chess players of Zhaoge City afterwards. His fame and ability had never been witnessed since the ancient times.
Yet, a trivial matter put another person on the spotlight, who was of course Jing Jiu.
Jing Jiu had become famous in the Cultivation circle.
It was because he was the personal disciple of the Immortal Jing Yang, and he and Zhao Layue were the youngest senior masters of the Green Mountain Sect.
Jing Jiu had won first place in the chess tournament at the Four-Seas Banquet.
Yet, he wasn't ranked in the top ten in the booklet written by the Curtain Rollers. So he wasn't qualified enough to threaten Tong Yan, and most likely he wouldn't even have the chance of playing against Tong Yan in the chess tournament.
Many people were wondering why Tong Yan asked Jing Jiu to watch that chess game and made those statements.
Why did Tong Yan and Grand Scholar Guo look at it for a long time after Jing Jiu had placed that cunning black chess piece on the chess board in the end?
Someone asked Grand Scholar Guo about it, but Grand Scholar Guo only smiled back without saying anything.
All this had triggered people's curiosities and imaginations; as a result, they were even more interested in the coming chess tournament.
Actually, that the chess tournament had become such an exciting event was because of two occurrences.
Another occurrence was that the Emperor himself would come to observe the chess tournament.
In the past plum meetings, the Emperor would merely come to the last event, the Cultivation tournament, but why would he place such an emphasis on the chess tournament?
Having heard of what Zhao Layue described, Jing Jiu shook his head, amused that as an emperor, he had a lot of free time on his hands.
The incessant spring rain had finally taken a break.
The morning light shone in the imperial palace. Droplets of water were hanging by the edges of the green plants outside the window. When the sunlight shone through those water drops, the reflected light bands landed on the walls.
The Royal Concubine Hu waved her hand dismissively, gesturing the palace maids not to disturb her.
There was no rush for washing and brushing.
She laid her upper body lazily on the window sill, smelled the clean and fresh air from the outside and looked at the scenery in the garden; at that moment she was in a very good mood, better even than the self-confidence of her own appearance.
The good mood originated partly from the Tian Jingren's statement the child had relayed in the old plum garden the last day, and partly from the wonderful time she had last night.
Thinking of the scene that involved naked bodies moving amid the silk quilt under the candlelight, her face turned slightly red, displaying an uncomfortable expression. The Emperor still loved her so much even though she had been in the palace for so long. She somehow still felt embarrassed when doing that thing; so she wondered, how come the rumored talent of her race didn't show in her even slightly?
Of course, the affection the Emperor had for her was more than this.
Last night she was a bit flirty on the pillow, and the Emperor agreed to bring her to observe the chess tournament. This was the absolute affection.
When the two of them were to show up at the Plum Meeting, the chess tournament would become the focus of all the people; then that guy Jing Jiu would be defeated badly by Tong Yan under the gaze of so many people, how wonderful would that be?
Thinking of this scene, Royal Concubine Hu let out a jovial laugh, with the tip of her nose slightly wrinkled, looking truly cute.
She was fully aware of the status the Green Mountain Sect had in Chaotian Land.
She had already given up the thought of avenging Zhu Gui after being refused by the Young Zen Master to meet her.
But she still wanted to do something for that unfortunate Zhu Gui and let out her own pent-up anger.
--This was the so-called "returning the favor", and also "terminating the cycle of cause and effect".
She dared not forget what the Young Zen Master had taught her.
The morning light grew brighter, and the water drops hanging on the edges of the green leaves had fallen down. Royal Concubine Hu was finally ready to get out of bed.
The imperial palace during the daytime was always boring and quiet.
She retrieved her gaze from outside of the window reluctantly and fixed it on the old eunuch serving by her side, saying, "Bring the medicine here."
Every morning she had to take this medicine, the name of which was Duanli Pill.
The Duanli Pill wasn't harmful to those who took it; on the contrary, it could help soothe emotions. In addition, it had another function: making it impossible for females to get pregnant.
The Emperor told her so the first day she came to the palace. From then on, she had to take the Duanli Pill every morning, even if the Emperor didn't come to her chamber the night before.
The Emperor didn't send someone to keep tabs on her taking the medicine, and nobody forced her to take it; but she had never dared to not take it for one single day.
At the beginning, she couldn't help but feel sad and even angry, but gradually she became numb about it. It even became her habit to take the medicine. If she forgot to take the medicine one day after she got up, she would feel restless and think she had forgotten something that she should do that day. She wouldn't feel relieved until she remembered and took the medicine.
However, she felt somewhat depressed and even irritated whenever she thought of taking the medicine in the past few days.
She was born a vixen demon, so she didn't dare to think of having a child with the Emperor. Yet, the Crown Prince's eyes fixated on her had become stranger all the time in the last two years, including the previous day in the old plum garden.
Thinking of what Tian Jingren had said, she had a slim hope that the Emperor might agree to let her have a child, since he loved her so much. But…how could she mention it to him?
As she was thinking of these matters, she didn't notice that the old eunuch hadn't brought the pill and water like with the usual routine.
"The Emperor issued a decree before his leaving. You don't have to take the medicine anymore from now on."
The old eunuch said mildly.
Royal Concubine Hu was taken aback for a while, then asked blankly, "What have you just said?"
The old eunuch looked at her full of kindly warmth, saying, "Congratulations, Your Highness."
At that moment, Royal Concubine Hu recovered from the initial shock, pressing her mouth with both hands, as she could hardly believe it.
The Emperor…allowed her to have a child?!
What was going on?
Who could change the Emperor's idea?
The indescribable ecstatic emotion had filled her heart.
The happiness came a little too suddenly.
She passed out.
"I don't like the prince."
Jing Jiu added, "His size sense and position sense are not so good."
Zhao Layue didn't quite catch what he had just said, feeling curious, and she said, "This isn't something you usually care about."
"I don't want to, but I have no choice," said Jing Jiu.
Zhao Layue still couldn't understand what Jing Jiu said.
The present emperor only had one prince, who was that noble young man in embroidered cloth in the old plum garden the previous day.
Many chancellors in the imperial court and the majority of the populace had already taken it for granted that he was the heir of the imperial court, and therefore called him the Crown Prince directly.
Jing Jiu didn't think so.
In regards to the Cultivation state the Emperor was in, he could have other children easily, but he didn't want to.
Since Jing Jiu had expressed his opinion on the matter, the Emperor should have another child soon.