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   Chapter 68 How are You, Mother and Father

Fire Phoenix By Yi Jian Zhong Qing Characters: 11471

Updated: 2018-08-26 10:02

As proud as any other person holding a high official rank, Yun Canglan walked into Juxian Palace as if nobody was there. Yun Qin and Yun Qi, still dressed up as servant girls, followed her inside. They did not give the impression of ordinary servant girls but looked as lofty as their mistress.

Yun Canglan didn't salut Huo Yang and Huo Liuyun. In fact, she did not give them a sidelong glance, let alone greet them. She entered the palace and went straight to where the top officials were seated. She stopped before Yun Yajun and Lin Wan'er and bent her knees slightly.

"How are you, Mother and Father?" she asked in a loud and crisp voice. All the people gaped at her in shock when they heard her words. A collected gasp could be heard.

Huo Liuyun hastily rose, his body frozen, his eyes filled with wonder and undisguised pain. Trembling slightly, it was difficult for him to stand.

Huo Yang looked ghastly pale. His eyes filled with fear as if he was looking at a ghost. But he kept sitting in his seat, trying to maintain the dignity of an Emperor.

Yan Cangyue was so surprised that he knocked over the wine glass that was resting at his elbow. Once the surprise subsided, he felt frightened and resentful.

Xi Zhiyao was drinking. His hand paused midway to his mouth, but just for a second. He looked away slightly, took a deep breath, and regained his composure.

Shui Minghan squinted his steely eyes. He gave Yun Canglan an impenetrable look and his fists clenched tighter.

Yang Gezhi stared at Yun Canglan's back as if under a spell. His eyes were full of palpable excitement and enthusiasm.

All the officials had their mouths open, but not a sound could be heard. They looked at the beautiful woman as if they were seeing a ghost.

Yun Canglan looked sideways at everyone's reaction. A cold sneer formed at the corner of her sensual mouth.

'Are you surprised, Your Majesty? I come to revenge.'

'I'm back, Huo Liuyun. Remember what I had said? You will be my slave. I am Yun Canglan and I am back. You must double what you owe me, My Crown Prince. How about giving your Can kingdom as a collateral?'

Everybody knew that Huguo General Yun Yajun had only one daughter. He had followed Fearless Armor's suggestion and had raised her as a boy till she turned fourteen. Three years ago, she was betrothed to Huo Liuyun, the Crown Prince of Can Kingdom. But a day later, she had died in order to save him.

Huo Liuyun had snubbed all dissent and buried Yun Canglan, his fiancee, in the imperial mausoleum of Can Kingdom. Huguo General Yun Yajun had lost all interest in politics after the death of his beloved daughter. He handed in most of his military power. From then on, he stayed far away from the court, unless there was a war.

Now, after all these years, all of a sudden, his daughter was back. This scared everyone!

On reflection, however, some officials had guessed that the real owner of the Fengyun Firm was the adopted daughter of the Huguo General. Almost all officials had seen Yun Yajun's daughter as an unruly and unworthy person. She was known as the biggest idiot in the world and had very ordinary looks.

As for Feng Yun'er, her brilliance, her adamancy, demeanor and her ordinary features were incomparable to Yun Canglan's.

Lin Wan'er looked at Canglan with tears in her eyes. It seemed that everything was self-evident to her and Yun Canglan. Yun Yajun was embarrassed. He did not realize that he was being watched by the hundreds of people present in the palace. He was disturbed by the fact that the Emperor was looking at him sullenly.

Lin Wan'er helped Canglan back to her feet. "Stand up, Yun'er, " she lovingly said.

Everyone was stunned when Lin Wan'er addressed Yun Canglan as "Yun'er".

Everybody knew that the Huguo General's daughter, considered the biggest idiot in the world, was called Yun'er.

Huo Liuyun had thought that Feng Yun'er was the adopted daughter of the Huguo General and his wife. But when he heard Yun Canglan being addressed as Yun'er, he was plunged back into gloom. He felt as if he had been ravaged by a storm.

Yun Canglan stood up smiling, "Mother, Father, have a good time. I'll join you later." This was a state banquet and she had her own seat.

Huo Liuyun felt another pang of melancholy when he heard Yun Canglan talk about her seat.

Banquet seating was usually dictated by official status. The highest position was held by the Emperor of Can Kingdom, Huo Yang. The next position was that of the Crown Prince, Huo Liuyun. Then came the princes of various countries, like Prince Xiaoyao Xi Zhiyao, Prince Yan Cangyue of Chi kingdom, Prince Shui Minghan of Lie kingdom and Prince Yang Gezhi, who though was a hostage in Can kingdom, was the tenth prince of Ling Kingdom. Next, came the officers. The Huguo General Yun Yajun was the first military officer whereas the Grand Preceptor Wu Ci was the first civil officer.

The seating arrangement for Feng Yun'er was a matter of concern for Huo Liuyun.

As a rule, with no official rank and being a woman, Yun Canglan should sit at the bottom. However, she was the real owner of Fengyun Firm, and the guest of honor. Mister Zi Zhu, who managed Fengyun Firm for her, was not supposed to kneel in front of the Emperor, so how could he force the real owner to do so?

But it was not proper for her to sit on the top seat. After all, she had no official rank. Besides, among the scholars, farmers, artisans and merchants, the merchants came last as they were the most despised.

Huo Liuyun tore his hair out but still could not think of a solution. He was wondering if he had become old before his time, when a young eunuch gave him an idea.

The eunuch

asked him to set up a special seat in the palace called the VIP seat.

The seat was just behind the Princes of the other countries, but in front of all the officials. This way, it would neither lower Yun Canglan's status nor would the Can Kingdom be blamed for being inhospitable.

Yun Canglan was led to her seat by the young eunuch. There was a difference between the seats of the royals and the officials. These two kinds of seats were located on two steps, one high and one low. The seats of princes of the various countries were one step higher than those of the officials. Thus, there was some distance between the two kinds of seats.

Yun Canglan was seated next to Yan Cangyue.

Was this a meeting between the alleged enemies?

The first indispensable of the banquet: The opening.

When almost everyone was there, Huo Yang coughed a few times to signal the start of the banquet. "Eh-hem, eh-hem! I thank all of you for coming to this banquet. This honor is being held to welcome the owner of Fengyun Firm, Feng Yun'er. Miss Feng, since you are in Can Kingdom, I will do my best to host you. Make yourself at home and if you need anything, please feel free to tell me."

"Thank you, Your Majesty." Yun Canglan replied with a faint smile. 'Okay, I won't stand on ceremony. I know here very well.' She thought to herself.

Though it was not flattering, everyone noticed how polite the Emperor was towards the owner of Fengyun Firm. Of course, they knew what the firm represented.

"Liuyun, " Huo Yang softly called, "Miss Feng is our guest of honor. You must treat her well. She must not feel neglected!"

"Yes, Your Majesty. I understand, " said Huo Liuyun. Though he looked kind, he was not as gentle as Yang Gezhi. But, he did come across as a harmless and charming young master. As the Crown Prince, it was his duty to entertain not only the guest of honor, but also the others.

"Sixth Prince, Third Prince and Prince Xiaoyao, I won't be able to move much. If there's anything you need, please let Liuyun or the Tenth Prince know. The Tenth Prince has been here for over ten years, just like my own son. I am sure, he would be able to help you. Please forgive me for the poor reception, " Huo Yang apologetically addressed the princes. He had been the Emperor for decades and knew how to handle such situations.

The second indispensable of the banquet: Songs and dances.

After the greeting, Huo Liuyun beckoned for the music to begin. A group of women, dressed in gorgeous clothes, entered the palace and started their dance routine.

But not everyone was in the mood to enjoy the performance.

Each prince was affected by Yun Canglan's presence and reacted differently.

Shui Minghan had drawn back his icy breath. Though he was handsome, his expressionless face looked as if paralyzed. This scared people away. Some of the ministers' daughters were deeply attracted to Wu Hen, but they were afraid to talk to him because of the indifference he oozed. They only dared to secretly look at him a few times and silently laugh among themselves.

However, Shui Minghan stared unblinkingly at Yun Canglan all the time.

Yang Gezhi smiled gently. His manner was as elegant as that of an orchid and as soft as the chrysanthemum. He wanted to ask Yun Canglan a lot of questions. Although, he did not show much interest in her, occasionally, he would turn his questioning gaze upon Yan Canglan, seated opposite him.

Prince Xiaoyao drank his wine, and his lazy manner fitted his name. The dancers in the palace attracted his attention, but from time to time, he would glance sideways to look at Yun Canglan.

Yan Cangyue looked straight ahead. His eyes were filled with greed when he looked at the graceful dancers. But as Yun Canglan was seated beside him, he could not decide if he should look at the beautiful woman next to him or appreciate the dancers first.

The third indispensable of the banquet: Chatting and socializing.

After trying to appreciate the dancers for some time, Yan Cangyue finally decided to chat with the beauty next to him. After all, she was more beautiful than all the dancers combined.

"Miss Feng, I admire you. May I offer you a toast?" he said offering a glass of wine to Yun Canglan. As his eyes and hands moved, he let out a faint, ambiguous sigh.

Yun Canglan smiled. "You flatter me, Third Prince. You're the dragon among men and indescribably beautiful and striking. It's my honor to drink this wine, " she said, taking the glass from him.

Yan Cangyue was one of her feathers. But as he was damaged goods, he could only be her slave.

She covered her mouth with her wide sleeves, and drank the hot wine.

"You're so forthright, Miss Feng, " Yan Cangyue admiringly said. She could see the desire in his amorous eyes.

It was said that Yan Cangyue, the Third Prince of Chi Kingdom, was the most romantic man around. One could see that in his eyes now as he looked upon Yun Canglan.

"Miss Feng, you're so beautiful, I wonder if you are engaged? Are you interested in my Chi Kingdom? Why don't you visit my imperial palace some day?" he said. The delicate beauty was more beautiful than any woman he had ever seen. He itched to take the association further, but for some reason, when he looked into her charming eyes, he felt a bit afraid.

"Sure. I've enjoyed traveling around the world since I was a child, but I haven't been to Chi Kingdom yet. Maybe I would visit it some day, " she replied. Her simple smile had a thrilling attraction.

Yan Cangyue rolled his amorous eyes and gave her an enchanted smiled, "I would love to introduce you to the wonders of my country." Saying this, he let his seductive eyes linger upon her.

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