World of Hidden Phoenixes

Chapter 137 part 3

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Suddenly realizing that she was the princess of Northern Kingdom, Dan Hong’s heart could not remain placid. She tightly gripped the painting in her hand as countless thoughts swirled in her head. She always thought she was an orphan without a family so how did she become the princess of Northern Kingdom all of a sudden? And this man standing before her, this austere, imposing northerner was actually her elder brother. Everything seemed like a dream.

She remembered the general said that someone would come and take her away. Then that means the general knew of her identity already. That’s why she left first, but where is she now? 

Dan Hong stood motionless like a wooden puppet. She didn’t know what she must do next. A hint of displeasure flashed in Huangfu Wu Shuang’s eyes but very quickly he exhibited a bright smile and said, “I didn’t know she was your younger sister. I thought this was Young Miss Nie. This matter needs to be investigated thoroughly. Perhaps, you have mistaken. In this world, it’s not like there aren’t people who look similar.” 

The officials below began to whisper amongst themselves. A high-ranked official then stepped forward and said, “If the Empress is indeed the Northern Emperor’s younger sister, then the unmarried wife of the Left Chancellor was not. Your Majesty, please investigate this matter thoroughly to absolve Left Chancellor’s injustice!” 

“This matter need not be investigated.This Emperor only has one sister, that is the Empress in front of Your Majesty. Moreover, Ji Feng Li was wrongfully put to death. Should Your Majesty not clear his name and return his innocence?” Xiao Yin exclaimed. 

“Your Majesty, please exonerate Left Chancellor daren!” 

“Your Majesty…” 

The appeals rose and fell in succession, one after another. 

It was supposed to be a grand wedding ceremony filled with joy and merriment. But the Northern Emperor’s sudden appearance had turned it into an appeal to redress Ji Feng Li’s injustice. 

Huangfu Wu Shuang stood solemnly on the high platform. He didn’t expect such massive support for Ji Feng Li from the officials even though he had long since passed away. 

He coldly stated, “Today is zhen’s grand wedding, other matters should be left for another day for discussion!” Once he spoke, he held Dan Hong’s hand and pulled her into the palace hall. 

Na Lan Xue whispered into Ji Feng Li’s ears, “What’s happening? Did you join hands with the Northern Emperor, why is he addressing your injustice?” 

Ji Feng Li remained silent. His dark eyes, hidden behind the golden mask, flashed with suspicion but quickly subsided. 

Aside from why the Northern Emperor was addressing his injustice, what made him even more puzzled was that this woman was not the Nie Yi Ren he abducted this morning. So where exactly was Nie Yi Ren? 

Nightfall.  

The celebratory banquet was held within Kang Ning Hall. There was singing and dancing alongside the beautiful arrays of candlelights, showcasing a harmonious celebration. 

The Empress, Young Miss Nie had turned out to be the princess of Northern Kingdom. This was quite startling news to many officials. But the Emperors of the two kingdoms appeared as if nothing was amiss so how could they dare to speak up? 

Sitting beside Huangfu Wu Shuang, Dan Hong felt unsettled. Though a brilliant smile traced his lips, she could sense the coldness emanating from his body. 

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All of a sudden, the back of her hand warmed. She looked up and saw Huangfu Wu Shuang drinking a cup of wine and was smiling at her. His smile was brilliant and warm. If she had not witnessed his cruelty firsthand, perhaps she would’ve been captivated by that smile. 

He slowly leaned towards her and softly asked,  “She… where is she? Tell me!” 

Dan Hong looked at him and said with a smile, “She’s gone. You won’t ever see her again!” Dan Hong understood that the general didn’t want to marry the Emperor thus she willingly left with those kidnappers. Was she able to escape safely, Dan Hong wondered. 

“Gone?” Huangfu Wu Shuang knitted his brows as a cold smile surfaced on his lips. “I will find her!” 

All the officials had raised their cups to toast to the Emperor. No matter who it was, Huangfu Wu Shuang drank with them. Right Chancellor Nie Yuan Qiao also stepped forward to raise his cup in congratulations. He knelt down and kowtowed. “This humble official has sinned. This humble official did not know she was the princess of Northern Kingdom, Your Majesty please forgive me!” 

Huangfu Wu Shuang raised his cup of wine and drank it. Smiling, he said, “Right Chancellor daren, what crime have you committed? You found the princess of Northern Kingdom, that is a great achievement. Zhen will certainly reward you well! Come! Bestow the wine!” 

A eunuch stepped forward with a tray and a cup of wine. He went to stand in front of Nie Yuan Qiao who received the cup. As he drank it the eunuch suddenly turned his wrist and the gleam of a cold blade suddenly flashed beneath the tray as it attacked straight towards Huangfu Wu Shuang. 

The incident occurred so suddenly, making it difficult to guard against. 

The blade was cold as snow, slashing through the air in an instant.  

People exclaimed in alarm while others screamed for help. 

As chaos shook the entire hall, Nie Yuan Qiao suddenly rushed forward to fight the eunuch. Today, many things happened, one after another, completely beyond anyone’s expectations. 

For many years, Nie Yuan Qiao had kept a low profile in order to secretly support Huangfu Wu Shuang, patiently waiting till the day heHWS ascended the throne, so that hisNYQ daughter could enter the palace as the master of the harem while heNYQ dominated the court.  

But his daughter was still too young and he had no choice but to recognize this woman, who Huangfu Wu Shuang was fond of, as his daughter. 

But beyond expectations, a series of incidents took place on this grand wedding day. 

Now this Empress can no longer be his daughter, but Huangfu Wu Shuang can’t die, at least not before his daughter reaches a marriageable age and enters the harem. 

The assassin’s martial skills was not bad. Nie Yuan Qiao had just exchanged a few moves with him when his body lost strength all of a sudden. The internal force within his dantian seemed to be blocked and he could not harness any more energy. 

At this moment, the icy glimmer of a blade shone in front of him as the assassin’s knife pierced his chest painfully. The ebb and flow of his blood spewed forth, staining his robes in a gruesome red.  

“Right Chancellor daren!” Huangfu Wu Shuang exclaimed. He held out his hands to support Nie Yuan Qiao who was staggering backwards. “Right Chancellor daren, are you alright? Quickly send for the Imperial Physician!” he anxiously shouted.  

Very quickly, the Yu Lin Imperial Guards had surrounded the assassin and subdued him. 

 Hearing Huangfu Wu Shuang’s voice, Nie Yuan Qiao slowly turned his head and gazed at him in disbelief, gasping, “You…it was your doing? Why…” 

Bestowed by him, that cup of wine contained poison.

That assassin was also arranged by himHWS to eliminate himNYQ once the poison took action. 

“That’s right, maternal uncle. Did you think I didn’t know what you were truly thinking in your heart? But based on your meritorious services, zhen didn’t want to act against you. But you shouldn’t have lost my Bao Er, nor should you have kept it hidden from me, forcing me into this situation. But you can leave at ease. Elder cousin Nie Ning shall continue to assist me!” His voice was frosty and callous, next to Nie Yuan Qiao’s ears, it sounded slow and unhurried, like a devil’s calling. 

Nie Yuan Qiao’s eyes widened and a low gurgling sound emitted from his throat as if he was lamenting. The emperor wanted to fight, in the end, who will be the winner, it certainly won’t be him anyways! 

Huangfu Wu Shuang slowly placed Nie Yuan Qiao on the ground and walked out from the circle of guards surrounding him. “Right Chancellor has given his life to protect zhen. Zhen is moved by his loyalty and bravery. He shall be allowed to be buried accordingly to the national custom. Before passing away, Right Chancellor was not at ease leaving his son behind. Thus Zhen shall confer the title of Zhong Yong Wang(Loyal and Brave Prince) upon Nie Ning!” Huangfu Wu Shuang’s voice was full of sorrow and grief. Upon hearing the decree, everyone couldn’t help but be moved. 

The officials were all shaken by the quick turn of events. Since Huangfu Wu Shuang ascended the throne, Left Chancellor Ji Feng Li had passed away. The person dominating the entire court, the person below one and above thousands was none other than Nie Yuan Qiao. And today his daughter was crowned as Empress. Infinite glory, wealth, and honor was in his possession. But who would’ve expected such an ending. 

Overnight, everything turned into naught. Everyone had witnessed the death of Nie Yuan Qiao with their own eyes. They couldn’t help but sigh at the fact that the assassin had unexpectedly taken the life of the Right Chancellor. It was truly a pity. 

 Sitting on the sidelines, Ji Feng Li calmly watched the show before his eyes, smiling wryly. He originally wanted to stir up a dispute between Nie Yuan Qiao and Hua Mu but little did he expect Huangfu Wu Shuang to taken action, eliminating Nie Yuan Qiao himself. 

In this round of attempted assassination, Huangfu Wu Shuang played his opponent in the palm of his hand. It wasn’t until the moment of death did Nie Yuan Qiao learn the truth. In the end, he died leaving behind a renowned reputation of having sacrificed his life for the Emperor and for his kingdom. Huangfu Wu Shuang was truly ruthless.

When Nie Yuan Qiao was carried out by the Yu Lin Imperial Guards, Huangfu Wu Shuang said, “For such an incident to occur, zhen is deeply disheartened. However, today is zhen’s grand wedding, everyone need not feel ill at ease.” 

The entire hall was enveloped in silence. It was not until Huangfu Wu Shuang ordered the music to resume did the coldness gradually dispel from the hall. 

“Your Majesty, there is a new dancer in the palace. How about sending her up to perform to liven up the atmosphere!” Jixiang whispered in Huangfu Wu Shuang’s ear. 

“Huangfu Wu Shuang replied, “Alright!” 

A eunuch stepped forward and whispered something in Huangfu Wu Shuang’s ear who consented with a nod. Thereafter, several candlelights were extinguished and the hall became faint as twilight. Only a few candles were left lighted, reflecting a faint shadow up everyone’s faces. 

 At this moment, in the darkness, the sound of the qin rose. It was soft, like the rain of early spring, akin to the gusting wind of early summer, clear and melodious. 

 A halo of light suddenly lit, shrouding a hazy figure descending from the skies. Fluttering in the air were her long sleeves and the hem of her dress as she gently descended. Once her feet touched the ground, her red skirt fluttered, spreading out like a gorgeous blooming flower. 

From behind, the crowd could only see a slender waist, fine and soft with graceful bearing. Some couldn’t help but be captivated by the lovely figure. On her body, a thin white silk dress, like a hazy mist, enveloped her. Golden designs were embroidered at the hem of her dress while her sleeves were decorated with golden tassels. Under the candlelight, it sparkled in resplendent colors. 

The sound of the qin suddenly changed tune and she slowly stood up, leaning backwards until her body was bent in a beautiful curvature like a crescent moon. 

With her neck graceful bent back, she raised her slender jade arm. Within her hand, she held a branch of plum blossoms that complimented her beauty. 

 In the faint lighting, the thin silver veil could not mask the graceful curves of her face. Just when everyone’s curiosity was piqued regarding her appearance, her dance movements began to pick up speed. 

With her slender waist, she spun around in beautiful poses as her fair hands motioned correspondingly. 

As she shook her head slightly, a hairpin loosened and fell to the floor as her black hair streamed down like a waterfall. 

 With her foot slightly raised, her skirt fanned out like a graceful lotus slowing blooming. 

In accordance to the music, the dance was at times swift, at times slows. When it was slow, it was like a flower bathed in the sunlight, gently blooming, one petal after another so that onlookers could not help but hold their breath to catch her each and every movement. When it was swift, her long sleeves were dancing in the air like small whirlwinds. The dance was spirited and lingering; her figure, like a fire, had set everyone’s hearts aflame.  

Her every movement attracted countless gazes but no one had caught sight of that face behind the veil. Only a pair of clear, water-like eyes could be seen, radiating like the starlight, shining in the darkness of the night.  

This was a dance that extended its reach deep into one’s soul, beckoning one from the mortal worlds to elevate to the heights of heavens. 

Slowly, the sound of the qin came to an end. She gracefully twirled once more and the veil took flight in the passing wind. A beautiful face appeared in front of everyone’s eyes, a beauty unlike that of the mortal world. Her eyes were crystal clear, seemingly in possession of the glories of heaven and earth, bright as the moonlight, radiant as the starlight…

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