Chapter 730 The Lan Family’s Scheme
The Lan family’s large courtyard was not far from the center of the capital. Those who lived there were all aristocratic families and offspring of the nobility of the Yan Kingdom’s capital. None of them were ordinary people. There were many carriages and horses, and the clothes of the guests were richly woven muslin and silk. Fragrance wafted in the air, and sweet voices rang out all around. These were all prosperous families.
The Lan family was in the center of the street. In front of the large manor, there were two imposing stone lions, with their heads raised and as if roaring, looking very dignified.
Lan Yanwen’s carriage stopped in a hurry. After the carriage stopped, Lan Yanwen got off and went straight into the study without stopping. At the same time, he asked the manservant to invite his father and two uncles to the study.
The manservant received the order and ran in.
When Lan Yanwen entered the study, Lan Tian, the head of the Lan family, and his two younger brothers, Lan Ren and Lan Mo, were already waiting there.
“Wen’er, what happened?” Lan Tian, the head of the Lan family, was sitting at the very front of the room. He was Lan Yanwen’s father. The Lan family had already transferred the important work of officialdom to Lan Yanwen, but Lan Tian was still at the center of the family. When he learned that his son had just rushed back to manor and wanted to see him, he knew that something big had happened.
“Greetings, Father, Second Uncle, Third Uncle.” Although Lan Yanwen was a little anxious, he still greeted them one by one as he was enough cultivated.
Lan Ren, the Second Elder Master of the Lan family, was an intelligent person. He looked Lan Yanwen up and down and asked with a smile, “Wen’er, since you came from the East Palace, you must have seen the woman of the branch of the Lan family. What’s wrong with that?”
“What’s wrong with a daughter from a poor family? Second brother, you worry too much.” Lan Mo, the third son of Lan Tian, glanced at his second brother with contempt. “This time, our Lan family also sent a girl to the palace. If there’s really something wrong with that girl of the distant branch, she wasn’t sent to the palace from the main branch.”
“Lan Mo, I heard that the girl is well-behaved and smart. Almost everyone who came to the East Palace has peeked at the Crown Prince of the East Palace. She is the only one who lives in her own courtyard quietly. She didn’t even ask anyone to help her change the room even though her room feels cold,” Lan Ren stated in a low voice. This was enough to show that she was not to be overlooked.
A girl in her teens was at the age when she loved fun most. She entered the palace, which she had never been before, with confusion about the future. In the face of splendid and beautiful thing, everyone would be greedy and try their best to stay in the palace. Of course, they would manufacture ways to secretly meet the Crown Prince, who was said to be extremely handsome. It would be better if they could have a beautiful encounter.
The ladies who entered the palace to attend the Beauty Contest appeared calm on the surface these days, and nothing seemed to have happened. However, there was an undercurrent in the dark. Especially when they saw the handsome and noble appearance of the Crown Prince, all the ladies were excited and only thought that they could win his heart. It could be said that in the Beauty Gathering Palace, the only one who had done nothing was that girl.
The reason why she was so calm was that she didn’t care about it, or that there was another secret!
Given Lan Luo’s current status and background, if she failed in the Beauty Contest, she would have to get engaged and married immediately when she went back. With the greedy nature, her aunt might sell her for a high price in the form of marrying someone. In other words, if she wanted to live a better life, she could only stand out in the Beauty Contest.
However, she didn’t care about it. How could she win the Crown Prince’s favor? This was the reason why the head of the Lan family specially asked Lan Yanwen to see her.
“She’s just a young girl. How capable can she be?” Lan Mo said disdainfully.
“Alright, let’s not talk about it. Let’s listen to Wen’er.” Lan Tian gave a cold snort and asked the two brothers to shut their mouths.
“Father, Lan Luo is very beautiful… She doesn’t look like she comes from a small family… Judging by her elegance, she can’t be from a business family or cultivated under someone else’s roof.” Lan Yanwen frowned and replied while thinking how to say it. That girl was definitely not an ordinary person.
“Wen’er, did you make a mistake? I’ve already sent someone to investigate. This girl of the Lan family is good-looking, but she is weak and can’t leave the medicine jar. Sometimes she gets sick and can’t even get up from the bed. Her aunt loves money so much that she didn’t hire an etiquette instructor for her at all. Thus, she isn’t elegant at all.” Lan Mo jumped up and said, unconvinced.
The Lan family was a big family, and not all branches would get the attention of the ruler of the Lan family. However, the Lan family was cautious. Any outstanding girl of the Lan family, who appeared in their sight, had been thoroughly investigated. Even if she was not controlled by them before, she would become a new famous figure because her new value was recognized by the whole clan.
Therefore, as soon as Mo Xuetong used Lan Luo’s name to participate in the Beauty Contest in the East Palace, the Lan family could investigate which branch the daughter of the Lan family was from and why she grew up in someone else’s family. The Lan family thought that they had investigated everything very clearly. In the territory of the Yan Kingdom, the Lan family’s ability to investigate was not inferior to that of the royal family.
Since the investigation was so clear, they certainly knew that it was impossible for the daughter of the Lan family to be a fake, and she couldn’t be as outstanding as what Lan Yanwen described.
“Don’t worry, Third Uncle. I’m just telling a fact. This girl of the Lan family, who has been away from the family, is extremely outstanding. It can be said that among the daughters of the Lan family raised in the main branch, no one can compare with her. She is beautiful and intelligent,” Lan Yanwen stated.
The girl impressed him with a sense of calm. Although she quietly pushed people away with just a few words, she was neither humble nor arrogant. It was hard to imagine that she was cultivated by a businessman’s wife who valued money, was greedy and low-status. It was said that all her cousins showed a low taste.
Lan Yanwen was also very confused about this.
“It’s impossible. Yanwen, are you sure you’re not mistaken?” Lan Mo almost jumped up.
“I’ve seen her clearly. It is indeed Lan Luo. Third Uncle, don’t you believe me?”
“Impossible, that’s impossible. How could that girl make you give her such a good compliment? There are so many beautiful women in the backyard of our Lan family, and the imperial consort in the harem can’t even compare with one or two of them. How could a country bumpkin compare with them?” Lan Mo was not convinced.
Lan Ren, Lan Yanwen’s second uncle, listened with a sullen face. After thinking for a while, he frowned and said, “I believe what Yanwen said.”
“Second brother, why did you also kick up a fuss with Yanwen? If she really has such a good appearance, how did she protect herself for so many years?” Lan Mo retorted.
She was so beautiful but had no power to protect her. How could such a woman live safely in a businessman’s home?
Lan Ren shook the fan in his hand and nodded. “Or, this is exactly what she’s smart about. She didn’t fight, didn’t stand out, didn’t show her face, and had been feeding others with medicine. Who would have thought that such a low-key woman would be so beautiful and smart?”
She kept a low profile and never stood out, just like the fact that she stayed in the northern courtyard of the Beauty Gathering Palace. She seemed to be obedient, but actually she was hidden in the dark. If she did not stand out, she would not draw the other ladies’ attention and become a thorn in their eyes. No matter how others fought, she just stood aside silently. A woman who could do this was really a smart person.
Although Lan Yuyan got the help of the main branch of the Lan family, she still wasn’t able to do this. She asked Lan Yanwen to help her move her room to another courtyard. On the surface, the Lan family would help the girl of the Lan family if she asked because it was the dignity of the Lan family, but in fact, they pushed the girl of the Lan family to the front of the curtain. As it was said that the girl of the Lan family was good-looking, a crowd of hostile glances gathered around Lan Yuyan.
It was hard to say whether she could live in the East Palace or not.
“Since this girl is completely beyond everyone’s expectations, Wen’er, what do you think is the possibility of her entering the East Palace?” Lan Tian waved his hand to end their debate. Then he looked at his son and asked tentatively. He was still very confident in his son’s judgment.
“In my opinion, it’s almost no problem for Sister Lan Luo to enter the East Palace,” Lan Yanwen replied with certainty.
“There’s such a big possibility!” Lan Mo was doubted once again.
“Third brother, don’t worry. Just hear Yanwen out.” Lan Ren stopped him from being impetuous. The third master of the Lan family was a smart person, but because he was impetuous in everything, he showed a lack of composure in doing things. Therefore, as an elder, his words were not as convincing as that of Lan Yanwen.
“Wen’er, why do you think so?” Lan Tian, too, was a little incredulous.
“Father, she is placid and won’t compete with others. This will make Crown Prince like her. You will not forget that our Crown Prince is like an immortal who is detached from worldly affairs. Of course, he will like this kind of pure, calm and intelligent lady. Moreover, this girl is not from the main branch of our Lan family, and there is a barrier between she and us. Besides, she is sick and weak, which is easy for her to get the approval and protection of men. Is it not enough to have these points?”
Lan Yanwen stated the fact with a smile on his face.
Being placid and not fighting for anything were in line with the tenet of a woman’s life in the palace.
Being pure, calm and intelligent were in line with the immortal-like superficial image of the Crown Princess.
Although she was born in the Lan family, there was a barrier between her and the Lan family. It not only pointed out her good background, but also showed that she couldn’t have been sent to the East Palace by the Lan family.
Being sick and weak was enough to arouse a man’s desire to protect her. Although the Crown Prince did not get close to a woman, he would still feel pity for such a delicate and lovely beauty, who was a little sick and weak.
In a few words, Lan Yanwen pointed out the reason why Mo Xuetong could win. Others had to say that he was very precise.
“Wen’er, do you think you should fully support Lan Luo?” Lan Tian nodded and asked, a light flashing across his deep eyes.
“Father, I do think so. If we take her in for our own use, we may be able to break the strong defense of the East Palace,” Lan Yanwen uttered seriously.
All the people present knew that the East Palace was like an iron bucket. So far, the Empress had not put her hand in it. If a girl could really cut into it… Thinking of this result, they felt a little hotheaded.
“Elder brother, I support Yanwen’s statement.” Lan Mo was the first to respond.
“I agree as well.” Lan Ren thought for a moment and also nodded.
“Since that’s the case, let’s come up with a new plan. Wen’er, what method do you have to make her listen to us obediently?” Lan Tian said, settling the matter.
“Being friendly with her is certainly not enough. Father, I heard that Sister Lan Luo’s family was forced to die. I wonder if that person is still alive,” Lan Yanwen asked. It was a scandal at that time. That man abducted the wife of a member of his family. It was also a stain of dishonor for the Lan family, which had always preached the unity of the clansmen.
Lan Mo was sitting on one side, and his face changed slightly. He no longer jumped out to speak and something flickered across his eyes.
“That person has already been dealt with by the family.” Lan Ren immediately understood what Lan Yanwen meant. Narrowing his eyes, he interrupted, “We can’t start from this aspect. Find a way to find her uncle’s family. As her uncle has raised her for 10 years, she should be grateful to him.”
He wanted to use Lan Luo’s uncle to threaten her as the spy of the Lan family in the East Palace.
“Second Uncle, it’s…”
“Wen’er, listen to your Second Uncle. It’s decided. It’s all for the sake of our Lan family. Just do as your Second Uncle said,” Lan Tian said coldly and proudly. “You can try to tell her that if she wants to live well in the East Palace in the future, she can’t just keep a low profile. Without the support of her family, she is still nothing.”
If a woman didn’t have a strong family backing her, how far could she go in the imperial palace? If she was smart, she should know that cooperation benefited both sides.