Chapter 211 – The Emperor Is Not Nervous, But the Eunuch Feels Anxious
Edited by Aruthea
Original and most updated translations are from volare. Please don’t read elsewhere and stop supporting theft.
Ji Yunshu felt as if she was sitting on pins and needles, aware that Ji Li and Ji Huan were staring at her. Their eyes were like rockets pointing at her, ready to launch and burn her to death.
A bit before the banquet started, Jing Rong came back. He quietly sat down. His expression was neutral, as if he did not to want to let his state of mind show. When he sat down, his gaze lowered for a moment before he raised his eyes and stared directly at Jing Yi.
Jing Yi lifted his wine cup to him. Then, he deliberately glanced at Ji Yunshu before draining his cup.
“Did Prince Yi approach you?” Jing Rong leaned his head toward Ji Yunshu.
She let out a grunt of affirmation.
“So, did Ji Li and Ji Huan came over?”
Once again, she confirmed his guess with a grunt.
Jing Rong frowned while balling his fists. “As soon as the banquet ends, quickly send Teacher Ji back.” He ordered Lang Po.
“Yes, your Highness!”
Where did Jing Rong go? Did he meet Kong Yu? Since he didn’t mention it, Ji Yunshu also didn’t ask.
At this moment, a few people entered Moon Gazing Terrace, attracting everyone’s eyes, becoming the focus of their attention.
“General Yuchi!” Someone exclaimed.
It was Yuchi Lin with his two generals. They were garbed in armor, wearing a vigilant smile while being led by a eunuch to their seats.
However, unexpectedly, they were accompanied by another individual – Su Ziluo.
Clang! A cup fell to the floor.
When Ji Huan saw Su Ziluo, his eyes were riveted on him for a moment, enough for his trembling hands to drop his wine cup.
‘How could it be?’ Ji Li was equally shocked.
“Isn’t that Ji Pei? Didn’t he die?” They looked at each other with eyes widened in shock.
Their disturbances didn’t escape Jing Yi’s notice. He looked over and followed their line of sight, landing on Su Ziluo. He squinted his eyes, puzzled by their relationship with that man in wheelchair.
Su Ziluo took place next to Yuchi Lin, maintaining an apathetic expression from start to end. However, behind his tranquil eyes hid sinister intentions. After a moment, he suddenly shifted his gaze and crossed eyes with Ji Li, reading the shock on the other party’s face.
The suddenness of it caught Ji Li off guard. The wine pot in his hand was about one inch away from being thrown at Su Ziluo. This time, Ji Huan was the calm one, pulling him from making any movements. His second brother approached his ears and whispered, “Eldest Brother, it’s impossible for him to be Ji Pei. Ji Pei already died two years ago. That man is a subordinate of Yuchi Lin.”
Ji Li didn’t respond. He cast another glance at Su Ziluo. Then, he poured himself another cup of wine and drank it, trying to repress the uneasiness. Yet, the frown between his eyebrows still remained.
Ji Yunshu’s gaze followed Su Ziluo. Her hand couldn’t help clenching tightly her onto her surcoat. She felt her eyes burning, almost turning red from emotions. ‘He is not Ji Pei! He is not him!’ She wordlessly chanted countless times, but it was stronger than her – her gaze tended to gravitate to him.
Jing Rong noticed her abnormalities. He glanced at Su Ziluo from the corner of his eyes. ‘Is Yunshu familiar with him?’ He wanted to ask and was about to do so, but at the last moment, he kept quiet.
“The Emperor has arrived!” A court eunuch loudly shouted.
Everyone got up and bowed in respect.
Qi Zhen Emperor and Concubine Xiao arrived together. Qi Zhen sat on the dragon throne. “Everyone get up. No need to be polite.”
“Thank you, your Majesty!” Each of them sat down again.
Ji Yunshu still have yet to pry her gaze away from Su Ziluo. Whatever was said between the Emperor and the crowd of officials, none entered her ears, except when Yuchi Lin introduced Su Ziluo to the Emperor.
“Teacher Su is this General’s good friend and mentor. He also came from a household of generals. Although he’s unable to move freely and can’t go to the battlefield, he has become my most capable right-hand man. I have brought him with me today to let him experience the prosperity of Great Lin.”
After his words were said, Qi Zhen also treated Su Ziluo as a noble guest, gave him a toast of wine in greetings. Su Ziluo reciprocated, but he only drank tea.
Jing Rong frowned more and more. He leaned toward Ji Yunshu. “You said before that this General Yuchi wasn’t one to waddle in schemes. Seeing that you look at Teacher Su, are you suspecting he might be the puppetmaster?”
“I’m not sure.”
“Then, why are you looking at him so intently?”
“I only feel… that he resembled an old friend of mine.”
“You mean Ji Pei?” Jing Rong put his finger on the truth.
Ji Yunshu looked at him, but she didn’t respond.
Jing Rong pointed at Ji Li and Ji Huan with his chin. “Your brothers also looked at him, but they are more shocked. Whereas you showed nervousness and frustration. There must be an inextricable relationship between your Ji siblings and that Teacher Su. From what I gleaned, shouldn’t that man be the one you have been waiting for – Ji Pei?
“He is not!” Ji Yunshu immediately denied. ‘He is Su Ziluo, not Ji Pei.’ Otherwise, why would he refuse to acknowledge her? Why would he not find her after two years?
Jing Rong was secretly relieved by her words.
Since he asked her, she wasn’t shy to ask about his matter. “Shouldn’t your Highness think about rescuing Miss Kong instead of paying attention to Su Ziluo?”
At the mention of Kong Yu, Jing Rong’s expression turned cold. After a moment of silence, he answered, “She is her own person and she has made her own decision.”
‘Huh?’ It was hard to judge from his words how his conversation with Kong Yu went.
Seeing the pondering expression on her face, Jing Rong leaned closer, and his stern and handsome face showed a hint of slyness. “You really want this Prince to marry her? I’m afraid that I will let you disappointed because the position of Prince Rong’s consort is exclusively yours.”
He strongly hinted that he wouldn’t marry Kong Yu. His words of affection came in suddenly like always.
Ji Yunshu slightly lowered her head, throwing his words to the back of her mind. She seriously asked back, “Then, do you really want to watch her get married off to Qujiang?”
“This Prince said before, she is her own person.”
“She isn’t willing to get married.”
“Perhaps, she is willing.” Jing Rong retorted. His reply left her speechless.
Distracted by Jing Rong, Ji Yunshu leaned closer to converse with him, retracting her gaze from Su Ziluo. Unbeknownst to her, when she stopped looking at him and focused her attention on Jing Rong, Su Ziluo had looked back at her.
Watching how “intimate” Jing Rong and Ji Yunshu were, his expression remained unchanged, but the hands on his armrest were tightly gripping it to the point blue veins appeared, betraying his real state of mind. It was only until Qi Zhen raised his cup of wine for another road of toast that his mind returned. “The king of Qujiang has sought a marriage with our Great Lin. We felt honored for the thought. Thus, the past few days, we have searched for a bride amongst the imperial family and noble clans. Finally, we have sealed her as Princess Huiwen, and she is the chosen one to be married to Qujiang.” He retracted his gaze and gradually put back his hands to his sides.
Yuchi Lin turned toward the emperor and respectfully spoke. “The woman chosen by your Majesty must be a phoenix amongst phoenixes. Our King will send a great dowry and escort her back as befitting her status.”
“The marriage between our countries is an unprecedented matter ever since the war five years ago. The countless casualties at that time still weigh heavily on our mind. I hope there will be no war between Great Lin and Qujiang.”
“Of course, your Majesty. This is also our King’s intention.” Yuchi Lin replied perfunctorily.
Qi Zhen laughed and motioned. “Servants, invite Princess Huiwen to come. She will be heading to Qujiang tomorrow, so today will be her send-off.”
A eunuch bowed down and hurriedly left to bring Princess Huiwen. Seeing that this was a foregone conclusion, Ji Yunshu should let it be since this has nothing to do with her, but she still reminded Jing Rong.
“If you don’t ask for her hand now, it will be too late.”
Jing Rong did not respond nor did he move. The situation truly could be described as the Emperor is not nervous, but the eunuch feels anxious.
Soon, Kong Yu arrived with the court eunuch. She was dressed in a beautiful crimson gown with a long Watteau train embroidered with lotus flowers, and when the breeze rose, the petals fluttered and popped out from her shoulders. Gold and silver hair pins with pearls decorated her head. On her forehead, a small flower was drawn, pink in color, highlighting her sweet temperament. She was like a red rose amongst a bouquet of flowers, dazzling to the eyes.
Grenn’s Rants Corner
It sounds like Jing Rong wants to save Kong Yu without marrying her, but she refuses.