Chapter 515 The Explanation to Lord Protector’s Manor
Madam Dowager immediately became silent because it was not easy to give a proper answer, especially when she had promised Ning Qingshan previously that she would send Ning Lingyun to Prince Yi’s Manor.
Ning Xueyan went to the chair opposite Ao Mingyu, silently sat down, and slightly lowered her eyes, avoiding the look in the deep eyes of Ao Mingyu.
“Grandma, how could Fourth Sister do such a thing? Previously, she…” Seeing Madam Dowager remained silent, Ning Qingshan became quite anxious and said tearfully as she raised her head. “I can’t let Ning Lingyun marry into Third Prince’s Manor. The bitch even dares to take Third Prince from me.” Although she saw Ao Mingyu holding Ning Lingyun in his arms just now, she never believed that Third Prince would hug Ning Lingyun first.
“It must have been the bitch Ning Lingyun who arranged it on purpose. I heard that Ning Lingyun had done this before I came back.”
“Third Sister, is it useful for you to embarrass our grandma like this? Since this… is the affair between Third Prince and Fourth Sister, we’d better ask Third Prince to make an explanation to our Lord Protector’s Manor!”
The light but graceful voice entered the sharp voice of Ning Qingshan, sounding even sweeter, and stopped her talk directly. Ning Xueyan raised her black jade-like eyes and looked at Ao Mingyu.
These words helped Madam Dowager out of her predicament, and she glared at Ning Qingshan with a dark face. “Third Young Lady, you can’t make a final word about this, and nor can I, but His Highness can. If His Highness is not willing, it doesn’t matter. Anyway, she is the daughter of the Marquis’s Manor. Her unmarried woman’s reputation is more important. Naturally, the Marquis’s Manor will not give His Highness a dilemma. Third Young Lady, stand up. You and Fourth Young Lady are sisters. When one has honor, both of you have honor. As your grandma, I know you worry about this.”
If Ning Qingshan publicized the previous marriage between Ning Lingyun and Princely Heir of Commandery Prince Li, Ning Lingyun’s reputation would be ruined. How could Madam Dowager not know the meaning of Ning Qingshan? So, she said these words to her with a cold face. If Ning Lingyun had a bad time, she should not think about having a good time, for Madam Dowager did not want a good “chess piece” to be ruined by Ning Qingshan.
“Since Prince Yi’s Manor is a dangerous place, Fourth Young Lady would better marry into Third Prince’s Manor. Look at the ferocious behavior and the look of aiming to kill Ning Lingyun of Ning Qingshan! She is not easy to control in the future. Besides, she is not my blood, after all. So, the family relationship built on blood between us is very light. Who knows when I will lose control of her!”
Madam Dowager had completely changed her mind this time, feeling that the Lord Protector’s Manor could only maintain a close relationship with Third Prince by sending one more woman, Ning Lingyun, to Third Prince’s Manor.
She looked at Ning Qingshan coldly. If she had known that this girl was an ungrateful one, she would have never adopted her. The fact was that she had doted on her again and again when she found that she behaved well. Originally, she thought that with her talent, good looks, and good behavior, she would give the Lord Protector’s Manor help no matter what family she would marry into.
Only now did she find that since the girl was an adopted one, she would never be her family member. No matter how kindly she treated her, the girl and she would never share the same mind.
Madam Dowager said these words indirectly, without the slightest idea of forcing Third Prince. This was Madam Dowager’s sophistication. She did want to build a marriage bond with Third Prince, not to have grudges with him. If Third Prince was really forced to accept Ning Lingyun and had an antipathy, she would rather not send her.
As for the last half of Madam Dowager’s words, they just showed the attitude of the Lord Protector’s Manor. If Third Prince insisted that he did not want Ning Lingyun, Ning Lingyun would have to fulfill her good reputation by death.
In the back hall, Ning Lingyun was scared to have a cold sweat. Now she had changed her clothes and been led to the back hall. Just now, she had been listening there.
Hearing Madam Dowager’s words, Ning Qingshan understood what Madam Dowager meant. Immediately, her face turned ashen, and she began to sway so that she could hardly kneel and sat on the ground directly. Turning her head, she looked at Ao Mingyu pleadingly with her tears falling down drop by drop and said sadly, “Third Prince!”
She did not have unnecessary words, but the grievance and sadness on her face showed all her thoughts. Of course, she was unwilling to marry into Third Prince’s Manor together with Ning Lingyun, but when facing Madam Dowager, she could not say anything and only expected that Third Prince would not allow Ning Lingyun to enter his manor for her sake and directly treated what Madam Dowager, the bitchy old woman, said as a piece of unheeded advice.
She believed that as long as Third Prince gave his word, Madam Dowager would never dare to say anything anymore. That Madam Dowager curried favor with Third Prince was a fact, about which Ning Qingshan had been knowing because she kept an eye on it.
Ning Xueyan did not say anything. She just picked up the tea served by a maid, took a quiet sip, and put on a light smile on her lips.
“Madam Dowager, so be it. When Third Young Lady Ning marries into my manor, bring her too!” Seeing that Ning Xueyan raised her head to look at him with a light smile in her watery eyes, completely showing an air of watching the fun, Ao Mingyu suddenly felt that this was so boring. He waved his hand and spoke with an indifferent expression.
Although he was still smiling, anyone could see that he was impatient.
Hearing that he accepted the offer, both Ning Lingyun who was inside and Madam Dowager who was outside could not help but feel relieved. The thing had been solved perfectly. Anyway, Ning Lingyun was sure to enter Third Prince’s Manor as his woman. This could be counted as the second insurance made for the relationship between the Lord Protector’s Manor and Third Prince’s Manor.
As for whether Ning Lingyun would have status or not when she entered the manor as the prince’s woman, people of the Lord Protector’s Manor thought that for the sake of the Lord Protector’s Manor, Third Prince was bound to give her the concubine’s status of the lowest class at least. Anyway, statuses such as concubines and madams would not be recorded on the royal list in Third Prince’s Manor.
Madam Dowager and Ning Lingyun did not have a high requirement. As long as the latter could enter Third Prince’s Manor as the prince’s woman, other things could be conspired to get bit by bit.
The hidden bitterness and grievance on her face stiffened immediately, but a trace of viciousness appeared and vanished in her eyes. But she knew that the matter had been decided. Since Third Prince had given his word, she could not object. She gritted her teeth, turned her eyes around silently, and bowed her head, showing a look that she had been wronged but could not say anything.
She looked aggrieved and pathetic.
Ning Xueyan glanced mockingly at Ning Qingshan, with somewhat coldness in her watery eyes. “Ning Qingshan reacted really fast. Just now, she still acted like an official wife, but after a while, now she looks so pathetic. Those who don’t know about the situation will think that Ning Qingshan is the victim who suffered most. Sure enough, Ning Qingshan is very difficult to deal with.
“She wanted to let Ning Lingyun bring vexation to me or deal with me, but she did not expect that she ended up with the fate of being hurt by her own scheme.”
Since the matter had been decided, now Madam Dowager felt so sorry about what she had done to her when she saw this appearance of Ning Qingshan. Instantly, she gently asked Mother Qin to help Ning Qingshan to her feet and let her sit on the chair beside Ao Mingyu.
“Third Young Lady, Fourth Young Lady can only be your follower in the future. By then, as her elder sister and the consort, you will need to take a little more care of her,” Madam Dowager said earnestly. At the same time, she hinted to Ning Qingshan that she was the consort of Third Prince anyway, and Ning Lingyun would only be her assistant even when she married into Third Prince’s Manor in the future and would not trouble her.
Madam Dowager was trying to set Ning Qingshan’s mind at rest.
Now Ning Qingshan was at a loss as to what to do. Since Third Prince had agreed, what else could she do? Although she had so much hatred in her heart that she could crush her teeth, she had to put on a little dejected expression. Just now when she was impulsive, she overreacted, so now she could not show that she did not mind it at all.
“Grandma, don’t talk about it anymore. I know everything! Fourth Sister is clever. I… I may rely on her in the future.” When Ning Qingshan spoke of this, it seemed that she could not continue her talk any longer. She lowered her head, wipe away her tears with her handkerchief, and then turned to Ao Mingyu. As expected, she saw that Ao Mingyu had changed his expression slightly.
“Third Young Lady, don’t take it to heart. You are my consort, and others are irrelevant.” At this moment, Ao Mingyu surely knew that he had been tricked by Ning Lingyun. When he saw that Ning Qingshan was now aggrieved, his expression became a little gentle. This was the first time that Third Prince had shown sincere kindness to Ning Qingshan since the incident of the Cold Mountain Temple took place.
When Ning Qingshan heard Third Prince clearly say that Ning Lingyun was just an irrelevant person, the resentment in her chest was somewhat relieved. When she looked at Ao Mingyu again and found that his attitude was quite different from his previous attitude, she was stricken by a surprise.
“Third Prince… I don’t mind, but I’m afraid that Third Prince… you will mind. It’s all my fault, and then you had such serious trouble.” Then, Ning Qingshan was about to say something but forced herself not to say it, and she was on the verge of crying. Apparently, she was aggrieved because allowing her younger sister, the daughter of a concubine, to marry into Third Prince’s Manor together with her was like slapping her in the face, but she was worrying about Third Prince.
This also gave an explanation for her behavior of fury that happened just now. It was not that she was worried that she would be wronged. Most importantly, she was worried about Third Prince.
Compared with her behavior, Ning Lingyun’s behavior was quite questionable. He thought that her behavior, which was frivolous, was indeed against the code of conduct of women.
Ning Lingyun, who had been inside, had a dark expression and had almost crushed the handkerchief in her hands.
Ning Xueyan watched the scene in front of her quietly. Ning Lingyun had just been confirmed to enter Third Prince’s Manor as the prince’s woman, but now she could not wait to deal with Ning Lingyun. She was really a little too impatient. Although she won the favor of Third Prince, Madam Dowager was so unhappy.
Others might not know what these words meant, but how could a person like Madam Dowager who had been living in the backyard for many years not know their meaning? Ning Qingshan said that Ning Lingyun did not abide by the code of conduct of women and had seduced Third Prince, but this happened in her Lucky Garden. That was to say, Ning Qingshan accused her too. Moments ago, Madam Dowager felt so sorry about what she had done to Ning Qingshan, but when hearing these words, she frowned and looked at Ning Qingshan a little coldly.
Ao Mingyu nodded at Ning Qingshan but was not going to respond to what she said and do credit to her. Instead, he turned to Ning Xueyan and said gently, “Fifth Young Lady, it’s really gratifying to hear that you escaped a catastrophe you fell into a few days ago.”
This was his main aim of coming here today. Now when he saw Ning Xueyan, he would raise this topic, of course. After saying it, he stared attentively at Ning Xueyan, observing her reaction.
First, Ning Xueyan had an astounded expression; then she seemed to remember the event that she passed out. Next, her face turned a little red, and she was a little ashamed and annoyed. For anyone, this kind of thing was a shame, especially when it happened on the wedding day.
“Thank you, Third Prince.” Ning Xueyan curved her brows as she smiled, but her smile was alienated and cold, in a way that she did not want to mention it again.
“Do you know who wanted to hijack your bridal sedan chair, Fifth Young Lady?” Ao Mingyu pressed as if he had not found the ashamed and annoyed expression on Ning Xueyan’s face because he did not plan to stop at this point.