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Chapter 30: Prince Mediocre

Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations

When the emperor heard Lu Chen’s words, he was angry. “How do you have the nerve to say that? You were happily enjoying your family life in the South, but do you have any idea how I and your mother got through the past three years…”

Lu Chen bowed his head and said, “I know. That was why I rushed back to Chang’an as soon as I recovered my memory, not daring to delay for half a day.

“But Father, do you really think that the person who assassinated me was my eldest brother?”

The emperor certainly knew that his eldest son was just a scapegoat. “But there is no evidence pointing to your fifth brother. I have ordered your fifth brother to go guard the border, which had already made your grandmother very unhappy.

Now that you are back, your grandmother and Earl Cheng’en have petitioned me many times, asking me to let him back, so I can no longer make him stay at the border.”

Lu Chen saluted and said, “I see, Father.”

Lu Chen left the imperial study, applied a layer of powder on his cheek to cover the swelling, and went to the Queen’s palace.

When the Queen saw Lu Chen coming in, she hurriedly got up from the chaise lounge, “Chen’er.”

“Mother.” Lu Chen respectfully bowed. “Prince Mediocre will return to Chang’an before the Dragon Boat Festival.”

The Queen clenched her hands. “How dare he come back!”

Lu Chen said, “I’ve received a message that he is already in Luoyang.”

The Queen said with annoyance. “Nice, just let him come back. The Queen Dowager sacrificed your eldest brother to protect him. I’d like to see what trouble he can make with the title of Mediocre!”

As the Dragon Boat Festival approached, it got hotter.

After Qiao Jinniang finally made a sachet two days later, she decided to send it to the Duke Rong’s Mansion by herself.

She could go check how Tasty Pavilion’s business was on the way there.

As soon as she arrived on the street holding a sunshade umbrella, she saw a four horse-drawn carriage entering the city, followed by a great flood of troops.

This was the first time Nuomi saw such a scene. She raised herself on tiptoe to get a better view. “Miss, who is in the carriage?”

Qiao Jinniang saw a flag hanging on the carriage with the character “Mediocre” on it, but she didn’t know who was in the carriage.

Suddenly, a gust of wind blew the curtain of the carriage, revealing the face of the man inside. He seemed to be around twenty-four or twenty-five.

The people watching on the streets all praised, “Prince Mediocre is really good-looking. He still looks the same after being at the border for three years!”

“Prince Mediocre is not as handsome as the Crown Prince! Among all the princes, the best looking one is still the Crown Prince!”

Qiao Jinniang listened to the crowd’s words, wondering why this prince was titled “Mediocre”…

After all, he was the emperor’s son. How could the emperor give his son such a title?

When she arrived at the Tasty Pavilion, there happened to be literati officials talking about Prince Mediocre in the lobby.

Some of them felt sorry for Prince Mediocre.

“Prince Mediocre’s former title was ‘Wise’. He was famous for his smartness and was known as a virtuous prince. Unfortunately, someone envied him and made his title be changed to ‘Mediocre’. What a pity!”

“Prince Wise is virtuous, polite, and caring for the people, but His Majesty is too partial to, alas…”

“Shhh, don’t talk about that. The officials who spoke for Prince Mediocre were either demoted or dismissed…”

“Master, Princess Fulu is in the No.1 private room. Are you going to meet her?” A waiter greeted her.

Qiao Jinniang nodded and went to the private room on the second floor. Today, in addition to Princess Fulu, there were also Junior Duke Rong, and two handsome young men.

Qiao Jinniang entered and saluted.

Fulu waved her hand and said, “Jinniang, you don’t have to salute me. Let me introduce, this is Lin Mo, the son of the Left Prime Minister, and Zhou Siming, the eldest son of Duke Wuguo, the Queen’s nephew.”

Qiao Jinniang didn’t know that the two young men’s family background was so prominent, so she wanted to leave.

But Fulu held her hand. “This is the little shopkeeper of this restaurant. Her cooking skills are even better than the cooks here. It’s a pity that I am a woman.

“If the three of you are smart, quickly marry her, and then you will be able to eat the delicacies she makes every day. What a blessing it’ll be!”

Qiao Jinniang, “…”

If it wasn’t for her knowing the straightforward personality of Princess Fulu, she would leave immediately after hearing these words.

Junior Duke Rong said with a smile, “I want to marry her but I’m not that lucky!”

Princess Fulu said, “Do you also pick on her for being raised by a servant and running a restaurant to make a living? Hmph, you’re just a dandy!”

Qiao Jinniang: “…” Princess Fulu always managed to say the wrong thing.

Junior Duke Rong said with a knowing smile: “How dare I pick on Miss Qiao? I may have to rely on her in the future!”

Zhou Siming also said, “Miss Qiao is bound to have an uncommon future, so I don’t dare to marry her.”

Princess Fulu looked at Lin Mo.

Lin Mo turned to Qiao Jinniang and saluted. “Miss Qiao, forgive me. I prefer a lively woman.”

Junior Duke Rong hurriedly changed the topic. “Why did you call the three of us here?”

Princess Fulu bowed her head and sighed. “You know that Prince Mediocre is back, right?”

“My imperial grandmother wants to marry me off to Prince Mediocre, but I don’t like him!”

“Which of you is willing to pretend to be married to me? After Prince Mediocre marries someone else, we can divorce and I will give you half of my dowry as payment!”

“Puff.” Zhou Siming spat out the liquor in his mouth. “Princess, are you kidding me?!”

Princess Fulu said, “No, this is a life-threatening matter. If I were to marry Prince Mediocre, I might as well just jump down from here.”

Qiao Jinniang hurriedly stopped Fulu Princess. “No! Princess, if you jump down here, my fifty thousand taels of silver will be gone.”

Fulu: “…Very good, Qiao Jinniang, I take you as my good friend, but you don’t care about my life at all. All you worry about is your Tasty Pavilion.

Seeing that Fulu could still joke, Qiao Jinniang said, “When I came over, I came across Prince Mediocre on the road. He was really handsome and charming. If he had come out of the carriage, there would have been a lot of women throwing themselves into his arms…”

Before Qiao Jinniang finished speaking, she suddenly felt a cool breeze behind her. She looked back…

Lu Chen stood behind her, but fortunately, the powder on his face covered his angry livid face.

When Fulu saw Lu Chen, she saluted him. “Imperial Cousin, Grandmother wants me to marry Prince Mediocre. You have to save me!”

Lu Chen glanced at Qiao Jinniang. “I think the one blind is not me but Miss Qiao.”

Fulu remembered that Qiao Jinniang had scolded the crown prince for being blind last time, and said, “Jinniang, quickly apologize to His Royal Highness. He is very kind. If you apologize, he will definitely not be angry at you.”

Qiao Jinniang coldly snorted in her heart, Kind?

However, under the gazes of the others, she had to salute and say, “Your Royal Highness, please forgive me. This sachet was made by me. Please accept it as my apology to you.”

Lu Chen said, “Then I’d like to trouble Miss Qiao to put it on for me.”

Qiao Jinniang clenched the sachet, her nails going deep into the flesh of palm. If the son of the Left Prime Minister and the son of Duke Wuguo were not here, she would definitely slam the sachet and spit on Lu Chen’s face.

But now she could only walk up to Lu Chen obediently and tie the sachet to his jade belt.

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