Chapter 182 Taking Her for Ning Ziying by Mistake
Xia Yuhang was frozen at sight of Ning Xueyan. He stood still at the gate of the garden, looking both excited and shocked. He clenched his slender fingers into a fist and pressed it on his chest, trying to keep a lid on his pounding heart.
He didn’t know how many times he had seen the familiar gentle, watery and jet-black eyes in his dream. When he saw them again, he was so surprised and overjoyed that he couldn’t keep his calm anymore. He strode toward Ning Xueyan, and in his eyes, there was nothing but the bright and familiar eyes.
She was still alive!
It was true that she was still alive!
Ning Xueyan and Heng Yuqing had chosen their seats. They entered the gate of the Plum Garden, with Heng Yuqing in front and Ning Xueyan behind, and was about to walk inside before a well-dressed girl suddenly appeared in front of them and deliberated gave a push of Ning Xueyan.
Without any preparations, Ning Xueyan took several steps back. She couldn’t keep her balance anymore and was about to fall onto the ground behind her.
Heng Yuqing wanted to pull her hand, but it was too late. She was anxious and screamed.
“Ziying!” An excited voice came from Ning Xueyan’s behind. Ning Xueyan was sensitive and she immediately recognized the voice. She bit her lips hard.
It was Xia Yuhang behind her! She didn’t want to have anything to do with this man!
Ning Xueyan tried to change her direction as she stumbled backwards, so she dashed aside. She would rather have her head broken or even die than fall into the arms of that cold-blooded man!
She had loved him so much, but finally she got nothing except for his betrayal. He even murdered her for his own benefits! She had already realized how vicious this man was the moment her blood was shed on the side of the lotus pool that had once been full of affection and sweetness.
She felt into a man’s strong and warm arms. Ning Xueyan immediately gave it a backhanded shove subconsciously, coldness and bitterness flashing in her beautiful eyes.
The man who was holding her hadn’t expected that the weak girl would burst out with such strength. He was pushed away and almost fell onto the ground. In the process, Ning Xueyan lost her balance again and was sent fly backward towards the gate that slanted behind her. People in the garden had already found something wrong.
They stood up to watch what was going on. A trace of triumphant smile appeared on Ning Qingshan’s lips. No matter whose arms she now fell into, Ning Xueyan would be a laughing stock. If the man who was holding her was a playboy, her reputation might be ruined. Then it was impossible for Madam Dowager to marry her into the imperial family.
She was so careless at her first imperial party! Even her reputation hadn’t been ruined, all the noble ladies would look down upon her in the future.
Suddenly, she felt herself being pulled by someone, and then she stumbled into the cold and broad arms of a person. That person lifted her up and loosen her teeth between her lips with his slender fingers. She raised her head in surprise and saw an extremely handsome face, as cold and cruel as Asura.
Her dazed brain suddenly became sober, and a chill came over her back.
“Prince Yi, Ao Chenyi? How can he show his face here?”
“What’s wrong?” Ao Chenyi let go of his hand from Ning Xueyan’s slender waist and asked. He glanced at Xia Yuhang, who had already been back to normal, Wen Xueran, who was both graceful and extremely beautiful, Princely Heir of Commandery Prince Li, who was in confusion, and other noble childes who had just arrived at the gate.
Under Ao Chenyi’s gaze as cold as ice, all of them lowered their heads.
“I have no idea. Fifth Young Lady was knocked fly out the moment I just reached the gate,” Wen Xueran answered, looked innocent. He blinked her eyes, which were even more charming than ladies’ and smiled. His smile made him look even more beautiful than flowers. “Fifth Young Lady also stepped hard on my foot just now,” he continued.
It was Wen Xueran, not Xia Yuhang who had been the first one to hold Ning Xueyan just now. To prevent her reputation from being ruined, he didn’t mention it, but cleverly covered it up, merely saying that Ning Xueyan stepped on his foot.
Ning Xueyan was a little surprised, as she had never expected that the beautiful Princely Heir to be so smart and bold.
It happened suddenly, and it was only a few seconds from Ning Xueyan’s falling into Wen Xueran’s arms to pushing him away, so nobody had noticed it, except for Ao Chenyi.
He looked at Wen Xueran for a while and then waved aside.
Two guards came over. They had seen Ling Xue, who was standing at the gate, looked triumphant the moment they entered the gate. One of the guards walked closer to her, grabbed her by the arm, and dragged her to Prince Yi. The other one kicked her on the ankle before she could stand firmly. She lost her balance and fell onto the ground heavily. She screamed at the pain and collapsed, propping her hands on the floor.
“Prince Yi, this woman deliberately knocked that lady onto you,” a guard said seriously, pointing at Ling Xue on the floor. It sounded like Ling Xue wanted to hurt Ao Chenyi deliberately.
“Take her out and beat her twenty times with sticks,” Ao Chenyi ordered coldly, as if the person he was talking about wasn’t the daughter of a minister assistant, but only an ordinary servant.
“Prince Yi… my father is Ling Huanian,” Ling Xue shouted. Although it hurt so much that she couldn’t even utter the words clearly, she had to take the opportunity to defend herself. Otherwise, she might have no opportunity anymore.
“Anyone who dares to hurt Prince Yi must die!” a eunuch shouted. His shrill voice seemed to come from the hell, and it gave everyone present the creeps.
Prince Yi was the demon king who killed people without blinking an eye, so it was a piece of cake for him to end a person’s life. Even the minister had no opportunity to survive if he offended Ao Chenyi, let alone the daughter of a minister assistant!
Third Prince, Ao Mingyu walked over in a hurry. He clenched his fists in his sleeves, veins sprang up on the back of his hands, but he looked calm with a faint smile. He walked closer to Ao Chenyi and bowed to him respectfully. “Uncle, what happened?”
“She tried to hurt my favorite concubine!” Ao Chenyi answered coldly. His voice was low and magnetic, but as cold as ice.
“No! I didn’t! I, I just knocked her by accident,” Seeing that Third Prince stood out and spoke for her, Ling Xue immediately argued.
With two loud sounds, she was slapped twice. Blood ran down the corners of her mouth, and she burst into tears out of pain.
It was not Ao Chenyi’s people, but two eunuchs behind Ao Mingyu who had slapped her.
“Uncle, please forgive her for my sake. Today is supposed to be a happy day, and my father and mother will come out later,” Third Prince pleaded.
Ling Huanian was on his side, so he must save his daughter, but he knew he should let Ao Chenyi vent his anger first. Otherwise, Ao Chenyi might take it out on Ling Huanian. Everyone knew that Ao Chenyi never show mercy to people who had offended him, and the imperial guards under his leadership were good at extracting a confession by torturing. They could even turn black and white. Besides, it was a fact that Ling Xue had pushed Ning Xueyan.
“Throw her out! My woman doesn’t want to see her.” Ao Chenyi looked at Third Prince and suddenly smiled with strange coldness. Then he waved his hand generously.
“Got it. I’ll arrange it right now.” Third Prince waved his hand, and two guards immediately came over. Despite the fact that she was an official’s daughter, they lifted Ling Xue up, one held her head, the other her feet, and moved her out.
“Prince Yi! Prince Yi, I was wronged…” Ling Xue was scared, and regardless of the pain, she struggled and shouted.
A eunuch walked over to her and stuffed a piece of cloth which he had found from nowhere into her mouth. Then the noble lady was thrown out like trash.
Seeing that Ling Xue had been thrown out, Ao Chenyi smiled with satisfaction. He shook his black sleeve and nodded to Third Prince before walking into the Plum Garden, following by his concubine and a group of people.
He didn’t even talk to anyone else present.
Ning Xueyan lowered her head and stood aside cautiously. Only when the aggressive man had disappeared did she raise her head again and take a deep breath.
Heng Yuqing, who had been frozen at shock came to herself and rushed to Ning Xueyan. She grabbed her by the hand and sized her up. “Xueyan, are you okay? Did you get hurt?” she asked.
“I’m okay!” Ning Xueyan shook her head and smiled faintly. Heng Yuqing suddenly saw the wound on her lips and she asked anxiously, “What’s wrong with your lips? They’re bleeding!”
“It’s not a big deal. I hurt my lips accidentally just now.” With that, she pulled Heng Yuqing and turned to bow to Third Prince. “Thank you very much, Third Prince!” she said.
No matter whether Ao Mingyu really wanted to save her or not, she had to pretend that she had been saved by him. It would be better for both of them.
“It’s you?! Did you get hurt?” Ao Mingyu was surprised that it was Ning Xueyan who had been knocked fly out. After a short moment, his surprise was replaced by terror. He knew that Ao Chenyi wasn’t a reasonable person. If he insisted that Ning Xueyan had knocked him deliberately, she would get into big trouble, and she could be even worse off than Ling Xue was.
After all, she was the person who had bumped into Ao Chenyi.
“I didn’t get hurt. Thank you, Third Prince.” Ning Xueyan showed her appreciation again. Then she turned to Wen Xueran, who stood aside with an enchanting smile. She smiled at him to show her gratitude, and she had a feeling that Wen Xueran knew her well.
“I’m glad that you’re fine. Third Prince, we’ll go back to our seats.” Since Ning Xueyan didn’t get injured and even had survived from Prince Yi, Heng Yuqing felt relieved. She had been in a cold sweat and now her feet felt like jelly, so she only wanted to find a place to sit down.
“Go ahead!” Ao Mingyu nodded with a smile and made a way for them. He looked at Ning Xueyan’s slim and weak figure, and was lost in thought.
She was by no means an ordinary lady! Ling Xue had been severely punished only because she had pushed her. Ning Xueyan bumped into Ao Chenyi, but she could still stay calm. Even when she saw that Ling Xue had been treated like that, she had shown no sign of panic. It was impossible for an ordinary woman to keep calm under such circumstances.
As for the men present, except for a few of them had been able to remain calm, all the others hadn’t dare even raise their heads, and none of them dared to speak in front of the ruthless killer, Prince Yi.
But this woman could face him calmly!
With her ease, she had the potential to be a prince’s wife.
“Maybe my wife should be this Fifth Young Lady of the Lord Protector’s Manor.” Thinking about this, Third Prince’s eyes softened unconsciously.
The softness in his eyes was caught by a pair of enchanting and bright eyes, which rolled slightly and suddenly flashed with a trace of weird look.