“Yes!” Ji Feng Li rose with elegance and slowly went to stand at a place not too far from Hua Zhu Yu.
Furrowing her brows, Hua Zhu Yu didn’t know if she would be able to dance with Ji Feng Li playing accompaniment. In her hand tonight was a genuine sword, perhaps because the Emperor did not think that bamboo she used last time to perform at Eastern Palace displayed enough sharpness. Hua Zhu Yu was uncertain whether she would charge at Ji Feng Li in the midst of her performance and pierce him with this sword.
Moreover, will his flute harmonize well with her dance? Hua Zhu Yu wanted to ask princess Huangfu Yan to play her accompaniment but she knew the Emperor wouldn’t allow it.
Meanwhile, Ji Feng Li was quite calm as he watched her with a graceful smile, leisurely, like the glow of moonlight. He took out his jade flute, placed it near his lips and began to blow. The wide snow-white sleeves slowly drooped down, fluttering in the wind.
Hua Zhu Yu had never heard of this song before, she was certain Ji Feng Li wanted to give her hard time. Though, if he wanted to make things difficult for her, it wasn’t going to be that easy.
Tightening her hold on the sword, Hua Zhu Yu began to dance.
On the ground, a sillouette intermingled with the radiance of the moon as the sword flickered beneath the light.
At first Hua Zhu Yu danced along to the music but she gradually became engrossed in the dance and it wasn’t clear who was accompanying whom. But surprisingly, the music and dance were very harmonious. It could even be described as impeccable. Little did she expect to coordinate so well with Ji Feng Li, making her feel quite astonished.
The audience was intoxicated by the performance.
Even an apathetic person such as the Empress was watching Hua Zhu Yu with rapt attention.
Xiao Yin need not be mentioned as his attention was entirely focused on Hua Zhu Yu as soon as she stepped out. He sat up on his seat and closely watched. He did not expect Hua Zhu Yu’s sword dance to be so beautiful.
When the performance came to an end, Xiao Yin repeatedly praised, “This Crown Prince did not imagine a sword dance could be this beautiful. This Crown Prince finds it interesting and wants to learn. If every Southern Kingdom person knows of this dance, don’t know if the Emperor could send someone to teach this Crown Prince. After returning home, this Crown Prince shall perform the sword dance for Imperial Father.”
“Oh!” The Emperor was pensive for a while before saying, “If Crown Prince Xiao wants to learn, how about letting this little eunuch wait on you for a few days.”
The Emperor’s few words had pushed Hua Zhu Yu into Xiao Yin’s grasp.
Of course this was what Xiao Yin wished for. He smiled for the first time and paid his respects, “Many thanks to Your Majesty!”
The Emperor narrowed his eyes and said, “That’s right, Crown Prince Xiao and Rui Wang went through the trouble of traveling so far to come to zhen’s kingdom which makes zhen so happy zhen almost forgot about a matter. Ji aiqing,” The Emperor shifted his gaze to look at Ji Feng Li and said, “How old are you this year? Zhen still remembers that year when you passed the Imperial Examination with top scores you were only 15 years old. You’ve been in court for 7 years so this year you should be 22?”
Ji Feng Li had just returned to his seat and was playing with the wine cup in his hand. Suddenly hearing the Emperor’s question, his beautiful eyes slightly narrowed as he quickly placed the wine cup down lightly and gracefully stood up. “Your Majesty, this humble servant indeed just turned 22 this year.”
“So its true Chancellor Ji is already 22 years old. Zhen still remembers during this Imperial Examination you were but a youth, now in the blink of an eye you are already this grown, you ought to think of your marriage. Ji aiqing, this year the third princess is already 16 years old, zhen shall grant you the Prince Consort title, what do you say?” the Emperor asked with a faint smile.
‘Twenty two years old so ought to think of marriage’. Did the Emperor forget he already granted a marriage to Ji Feng Li once before. This old Emperor truly is an old Emperor, open his mouth and wants to decide other’s marriages. Ji Feng Li has feelings for Wen Wan and the marriage the Emperor granted before has already annoyed him greatly. Now the Emperor wants to grant another marriage. But perhaps Ji Feng Li is willing, after all, compared to being a Left Chancellor, the Prince Consort title was much more illustrious.
The third princess sat with her head lowered, her face flushed in bashfulness. The Empress who had always been indifferent was also looking at Ji Feng Li, a glimmer of anticipation shone in those beautiful eyes as though she approved of this marriage.
Hearing this, Wen Wan suddenly lifted her head. Her eyes had a complicated look, a mix of nervousness and sorrow as she looked at Ji Feng Li.
Xiao Yin and Dou Qian Jin were also watching Ji Feng Li with a seeming smile.
“Ha, no wonder today Imperial Mother also came, so its because of Yan Er’s marriage.” With his head lowered, Huangfu Wu Shuang strengthed his hold on the wine cup. His voice could not conceal the bitterness in his heart. It was easy to see that Empress Nie treated her two children very differently, making the Crown Prince feel indignant.
As for the Emperor, he granted a marriage at this time because he was afraid Xiao Yin would fancy the third princess Huangfu Yan and bring her back to the Northern Kingdom. This decision he did not tell Ji Feng Li, and most likely only discussed it with Empress Nie.
It was very quiet inside Bai Hua Yuan as everyone was waiting for Chancellor Ji to accept. In the end, how many people vied to become the Prince Consort? Though the Left Chancellor was below one and above thousands, he still wasn’t part of the Royal Family but if he becomes the Prince Consort, he will automatically become a royal.
But Ji Feng Li did not express gratitude and accept as everyone thought. He rose and walked up to face the Emperor and Empress, knelt down on the ground and said, “Your Majesty, Feng Li does not dare to accept this marriage. Feng Li is of low background is not suitable to be with the third princess who is a treasured pearl. Moreover, Feng Li has vowed to not take another wife before the age of 30.”
Hua Zhu Yu did not anticipate Ji Feng Li to refuse the Emperor so straightforwardly. Isn’t he the type to regard face and gains as important?
Hearing Ji Feng Li’s reply, Wen Wan’s face lit up, her eyes glimmering with joy.
Ahh, so their feelings were this deep, even if Wen Wan entered palace, Ji Feng Li would stil refuse the princess for her.
Hearing Ji Feng Li reject her in front of everyone, Huangfu Yan covered her face as she ran out. In the end, this lady also had feelings for Ji Feng Li but was rebuffed like this, what’s left of her face.
As for Empress Nie, she coldly gazed at Ji Feng Li and instructed a few maidservants to follow after Huangfu Yan.
“Ben gong doesn’t know why Chancellor Ji cannot marry before the age of 30 but that is not a problem, third princess can wait. You two can get engaged first and marrying after a few years won’t be too late!” Once Empress Nie finished speaking, she indifferently stood and a maidservant came to assist her as she slowly left.
Unexpectedly, a person as indifferent as the Empress was a difficult person to rebuff. Opening her mouth she had halted Ji Feng Li’s words, not allowing him to refuse and left.