The Throne Hall in Da Hui’s imperial palace was dead silent in the afternoon. So silent that the sound of a needle could be heard falling onto the ground.
A middle-aged man, wearing a luxurious dragon, robe sat upright on the highest throne in the room. His eyes gazed at the entrance to the hall. No one could see the immeasurable gleam at the bottom of his eyes.
“Your Majesty, all the officials have left the imperial palace.” An imperial servant came to the hall and reported.
“Your Majesty, all the gates are closed.” A long moment later, another servant came, reporting.
Ok, (you all) retire.” The man sitting on the golden throne waved his hand to dismiss the servants after a moment of staying quiet.
“I said, leave!” The man raised his voice. The two imperial servants kneeling on the ground exchanged looks before bowing and excusing themselves.
“If you are here, why don’t you show yourself? Do you need we to welcome you personally?” The man looked at the main entrance to the hall. His cold voice broke the deadly silence in the Throne Hall.
“Can’t believe you’re still so rude after twenty-four years we haven’t met!” As soon as the man said that, a middle-aged couple wearing luxurious clothes slowly entered the hall.
“To the kind of despicable people that don’t keep their words like you, it’s already an honor that we agreed to send all of my people out of the imperial palace and meet you.” The man sitting on the throne was the Emperor of Da Hui. In this moment, facing the married couple that leisurely browsed Da Hui’s imperial palace as if it were their own house, he couldn’t suppress his anger.
“Tch tch… all I did was send a lettering requesting for some of your time. Don’t act like it's the end of Da Hui!” The man walked into the hall, holding the woman’s hand. He chose a chair and pulled the woman to sit with him.
“Say it! What is it this time?” Da Hui’s Emperor did not want to waste any time with the man and asked in a straightforward manner.
“Nothing. I just want to visit you, the people you rule, who are living well, and your loyal subordinates…”
“Get to the point!” The Da Hui’s Emperor cut off the man’s nonsense. “We still remember. Twenty-four years ago, Da Hui and Blood Union signed a treaty. The Blood Union are not allowed to send armed men to Da Hui Empire. You’ve violated the original agreement.”
“Right,” the old man frankly replied. “The Blood Union didn’t send any soldiers to Da Hui. I didn’t violate the treaty.”
“Twelve-Blood-Knights!” Da Hui’s Emperor said through his gritted teeth, stressing the words. Blood Union’s twelve Blood Knights only listened to the emperor. Without the Blood Union’s Emperor’s order, how could they infiltrate to Da Hui without premeditated intentions?!
“Oh, I also want to ask you about that! Last year, my Twelve Blood Knights disappeared into thin air. I don’t know where they had gone. I heard that Da Hui found them. Well, on the occasion of your birthday, I come to join the party and take them back.” The man smiled, lifted his head to look at the man who was about to explode on the throne. He explained with a sincere voice that couldn’t be sincerer.
“You… You…” Da Hui’s Emperor was so angry he wanted to vomit blood. He pointed at the man who acted as if everything he had done in his life was all right and just. However, his words and his actions all showed he was an evil-doer.
“What? Did I receive wrong information? The Twelve Blood Knights weren’t in Dai Hui’s territory? Then, that’s okay, too. My nation didn’t violate the treaty as you had accused us.” The man didn’t even want to look at the Emperor, who was about to erupt on his throne. He talked fast but calm.
“You…” Da Hui’s Emperor tried hard to suppress his anger. He retreated his shaking index finger, trying to calm his heart: He had known that extremely malicious man for thirty years, and he had never defeated him in any official war. However, he did have one counter...
“How’s your Civet Crown Prince?”
Indeed, this question could become the strongest weapon in the history that had stabbed the other directly in his heart.
“Li Wen Xiu!”
Tch, tch, what did the mess look like when the demonic dragon flies over? Like this! Da Hui’s Emperor, Li Wen Xiu scoffed as he watched his Throne Hall being wreaked havoc as if a storm had just come by. Unexpectedly, after twenty-four years they hadn’t met, the hundred-year humiliation of Blood Union’s royal family was still a bleeding wound in that man’s heart.
“Xue Li…” The woman sitting next to him had tears all over her face. She hugged the man who had just got himself together after his wrath. “Li… Don’t think too much… didn’t you say that we found a clue, right?”
The man shuddered awake at her words. He retrieved his evil aura, lifting his head to look at Li Wen Xiu who was sitting on the throne and watching them as if he was enjoying some comedy. Shortly, his eyes resumed their calmness.
“It’s our honor that we could amuse you!” That man, no, Emperor Xue Li of Blood Union sneered. He didn’t feel ashamed of his destructive vandalizing act at all.
“Much thanks!” Li Wen Xiu felt much better when he could strike the other back.
“Then we can sit and talk nicely about the reason why we are visiting, alright?” Xue Li arched his brow.
“Alright,” Li Wen Xiu sighed begrudgingly. What else could he do then? Blood Union was several times stronger than Da Hui. Twenty-four years ago, they had met each other by chance. While he was still a prince, he helped Xue Li find his wife who had ran away in anger. In return, he got a written promise stating that the Blood Union would never invade Da Hui. That promise had helped him secure his Crown Prince position and become the Emperor after the former Emperor passed away.
However, that written promise could be kept only up to twenty-four years. The twelve Blood Knights of Blood Union had sneaked into Da Hui. Although the problem had been resolved, they had become a thorn in his eyes. The twelve Blood Knights represented the power of Blood Union’s royal family. Until now, the twelve Blood Nights had never failed a single mission. However, this time, they were buried in Da Hui’s territory. It was easy to guess that Xue Li would come sooner or later.
However, he hadn’t expected that Xue Li would arrive that fast. Right at his fiftieth birthday when he was about to choose an effective assistant, Xue Li came. He (XL) sent him a letter informing him of his arrival and requesting all irrelevant personals out of the palace for a secret meeting. The letter indicated that Xue Li would come to find him to solve the debt of his twelve Blood Knights.
“So the Emperor and the Empress of Blood Union have come to the palace? Then why did the Emperor didn’t treat him with a proper greeting ceremony but instead have a secret meeting?” It didn’t sound like their Emperor’s style at all. Receiving very brief news from Lin Sin Yao, Liang Xuan Jing and Liang En Zai looked at each other in confusion.
“Father, has our Emperor known the Blood Union’s Emperor before?”
“Could they be… some old acquaintances? Anyway, when the former Emperor was still alive, he had signed the treaty with the Blood Union’s Emperor, which says they wouldn’t trespass each other’s territory. At that time, we guessed that our current Emperor could be a good friend of Blood Union’s Emperor. Afterward, there hasn’t been any dispute between the two nations but there weren’t any trading, business either, let alone any gathering between the two Emperors. Except for signing the “No Armed Troop Invasion Treaty,” on other aspects, Da Hui and Blood Union weren’t different from two real enemies.
“Son-in-law, we troubled you.” Liang Xuan Jing talked then patted Lin Si Yao’s shoulder, ignoring his own son, who was contemplating with a stooped head. He said lovingly, “Go to your room. Xu’er has been worried about you.”
“Hm” Lin Si Yao nodded. Wearing an emotionless face, he walked out of the study room and headed towards Lotus Courtyard where the guests stayed in the Prince’s mansion.
Lin Si Yao did not inform the pair of the scene where the Blood Union’s Emperor destroyed the hall in anger and Blood Union’s Empress cried, comforting him.
Recalling that part, Lin Si Yao tried to press down the strange concern in his heart. He dashed to the guestroom Su Shuilian was staying in. He had made up his mind. On the eighth day, after meeting the Emperor, he would leave the imperial city with Su Shuilian and the twins.
He was used to the peaceful, leisure life in Fan Hua Town. The bustling, luxurious scenes in imperial city made it hard to forget his dark past. He had an urge to bring his wife and children out of here immediately.
“Yes, we’ll go home the day after tomorrow.” Lin Si Yao hugged the soft, aromatic body of his wife, sighing.
“Okay,” Su Shuilian agreed. She missed their home, too. Although Fan Hua Town wasn’t as brustling as Feng Cheng, although their two-acre house wasn’t as big as the Lotus Courtyard they got in Prince Mansion, although their daily life back there wasn’t really convenient like the life in the imperial city, although this place was also her home – her parents’ house, but she... still missed home.
Su Shuilian gently pushed the special, small crib, which Feng Cai Yun had ordered the craftsman to make, with both hands. Her eyes were filled with her children’s images. When she turned her head around, she saw her dear husband placing his head on her neck, and he refused to move away. She smiled.
“Why are you laughing?” Although Lin Si Yao had buried his head into the side of her neck, he could feel all of her emotions. He asked her, his voice a little husky.
“Nothing,” she smiled at him. There was no way she would say romantic words like she was very satisfied with her current life. She would feel too embarrassed to do so.
“Really?” He smiled and didn’t expose her. She was really innocent, and all of her mood could be seen on her small face. It was the reason why he didn’t want to let her face life alone. Only the simple, peaceful life in Fan Hua Town was the most suitable place for her to live.
Prince Jing’s mansion? Ha, even if she were the daughter of the main wife, the first legitimate Young Lady, so what? Who could ensure that the other concubines and their children in Prince Jing’s mansion would behave and follow the rule?
They had just stayed one night and Liang Xuan Jing’s concubines had brought their daughters to disturb Shuilian. Regardless of their intentions, Shuilian already had a headache when they “passed by” her Lotus Courtyard, let alone the cunning, malicious ones.
“Ah right, A Yao, I’ve finished your robe for your audience on the eighth. Try it on to see if it fits you or not.” Su Shuilian turned around and came back with an azul colored, double lapel robe. She had started preparing his outfit as she knew he had to visit the palace.
“So fast?” Lin Si Yao smiled, receiving the robe from her. It had only been ten days since they were informed to head to the imperial palace to meet the Emperor, including four and a half days they had spent traveling. However, he had never underestimated his little wife. Especially in terms of sewing, her talent and ability were incredible.
“You should wear proper clothing when you see the Emperor.” Su Shuilian smiled, gently nudged him. “Put it on. If it doesn’t fit, I’ll fix it immediately. If she didn’t assure that A Yao got a proper gown, her mother would make the biggest tailor shop in the imperial city bring all of their high-quality robes for him to choose.
“You made it,” Of course it fits. Lin Si Yao said but still obediently put the gown on. Only this way, would it assure her.
T/N: I've gotten permission to continue translating this novel. At the same time, I'm also posting the chapters she translated but hasn't uploaded on her site due to technicalities. Enjoy!