The words Princess Lian has returned to the manor succeeded in shocking everyone in the yard.
Xuan Tian Ming and Feng Yu Heng had been shocked, while city lord Wu was shaken with anger.
They just saw him step forward and point at the so-called Princess Lian, who was stepping through the entrance, saying: “Get her out of here! Quickly take her away!”
The woman looked at her in shock and confusion, raising her voice to ask: “Father, why do you want to chase me away? His Highness Prince Lian sympathized with how I was unable to fulfill my filial duties and allowed me to return home to see my relatives. Why is it that father wishes to chase me away?”
The girl supporting her had a subdued expression on her face and hated that she could not find a crack to hide in.
City lord Wu stomped his foot: “What a bunch of nonsense! Do not act crazy. Quickly return to your residence and don’t come here to lose face for me!”
“Father!” The girl was a little angry, “I am one of Prince Lian’s people. You have no choice but to pay respects to me!” After saying this, her tone immediately softened once more, quickly walking over to the city lord. With a coaxing tone, she tried to say: “Father must be blaming daughter for leaving home and not coming back to see you. Don’t be angry, alright? Hasn’t daughter come back now! I also brought back a number of gifts for you and mother. They were all chosen for daughter by his Highness Prince Lian.” While saying this, she said to the servants outside: “Quickly bring the gifts prepared by his Highness in for father to see! Be careful. If you break them, I’ll have your heads chopped off.”
City lord Wu’s face darkened as he stood there, glaring at the entrance; however, once he saw his retainers begin to carry things in, one crate at a time. Looking more carefully inside the crates, he saw that they were filled with pieces of snow and ice. His expression became even uglier.
Feng Yu Heng and Xuan Tian Ming also looked at each other helplessly. Bai Ze was completely dazed. He watched the woman in red point at the snow in the crates and say: “His Highness Prince Lian heard that father is usually quite thrifty and has never eaten vegetables before. These are the vegetables that his Highness ordered be delivered immediately by fast horse. In a while, have the kitchen prepare them for father to taste.”
The woman spoke with a look of pride on her face. There did not seem to be any doubt on her face that there was anything wrong with her pointing at the crates of snow and saying that they were vegetables. The phoenix crown let out a crisp sound, which provided a nice backdrop to make her look even more beautiful.
City lord Wu raised his hand and wiped his face. He then gently patted the back of the girl’s hand and coaxingly said: “Alright, father knows your… the feelings of you two. We will accept it. You should go back!”
“Go back?” The girl raised her voice a bit, “Why go back? Father, have you become muddled from old age? Daughter has rushed all the way here from the capital to see you. I traveled for an entire month and only just entered Bin City today. Why is it that you want to chase me away upon seeing me? No!” As she spoke, she pushed away city lord Wu and began to walk toward the inside. While walking, she said: “Where’s mother? Could it be that she caused father to lose weight from anger? Is that why father is so unhappy? Don’t worry, daughter has come back and will definitely support father on this matter. You… huh?” She finally noticed that there was an extra group in the yard. It was Xuan Tian Ming, Feng Yu Heng, Bai Ze and a group of soldiers. The girl stopped and looked at them curiously. Tilting her head, she seemed to begin thinking seriously. Not long later, her eyes suddenly lit up: “I know who you are! Da Shun’s ninth prince and imperial daughter Ji An, am I right?”
Feng Yu Heng kindly smiled toward her, “You recognize us?”
City lord Wu saw her heading in their direction and quickly went forward to try and stop her; however, he was stopped by Xuan Tian Ming, who only said: “It’s fine.”
They then heard the girl say: “Of course, I recognize you. Over the past few days, I’ve heard the citizens on the streets mention it. They said that Da Shun’s ninth prince entered Bin City, wearing a gold mask and is very dignified. They also said that imperial daughter Ji An’s medical abilities are amazing and is very beautiful.” While saying this, she looked at the two. After a while, she smiled and said: “Beautiful is correct, and dignified is correct, but they’re both just a little worse than his Highness Prince Lian. You won’t mind me saying this, right?”
Xuan Tian Ming shook his head and did not speak, but Feng Yu Heng said: “Young miss Wu just said that you just came into the city today, but how could you have heard the rumors in the city over the past few days?”
With her asking like this, the woman in red froze. She just stood there and frowned, repeatedly knocking her head while saying in a confused tone: “Is that so? Did I say that I just came into the city today? That’s right, I did not just come into the city today, but where did I hear those words from?” After thinking for a while, she could not figure it out. She was quite unconstrained, simply giving up on thinking about it and smiled while saying to Feng Yu Heng: “My memory isn’t too good. You also know how Qian Zhou’s days are cold. Perhaps my brain has been frozen. Are you my father’s guests? Don’t be in a rush to leave. I only just returned to my maternal home today and happened to run into you two. This could also be considered fate. Speaking of, my husband is a prince of Qian Zhou, and your Highness the ninth prince is a prince of Da Shun. You could be considered of similar rank. If you do not have any pressing matters, just remain and allow me to act as a host!”
Xuan Tian Ming smiled brightly and looked at Feng Yu Heng, the intention in his eyes was very clear: You make the decision.
Feng Yu Heng thought a bit then nodded, saying: “Alright, then we’ll listen to young miss Wu.”
The girl in red smiled happily upon hearing this. Grabbing Feng Yu Heng’s hand, she said: “Imperial daughter should call me princess, not young miss, but it’s fine. We currently are not in the palace, nor are we in the capital. We should simply refer to each other as friends. Just call me by my name. My name is Wu Li Sheng.”
“Li Sheng.” Feng Yu Heng pondered, “That name, could it be that you… princess was born during the first month.”
“Your guess is correct.” Li Sheng said, “My mother chose the name. She loved playing the sheng.” As she spoke, she turned around and said to the servants with a serious expression: “Quickly take these vegetables over to the kitchen and have the chef prepare some nice dishes. I need to take care of his Highness the ninth prince and imperial daughter Ji An.” After saying this, she turned to inform another maidservant: “Go and tell fifth concubine mother to tidy up. We will eat together a little bit later.” After she finished handing out orders, she finally grabbed Feng Yu Heng’s hand and happily said: “Let’s go! Let’s go sit in Ice Flower Hall.”
Feng Yu Heng was dragged along by her down a small path. City lord Wu walked over to Xuan Tian Ming’s side with a helpless expression. “Your Highness, this way, please! Ice Flower Hall is where the banquets are held in the city lord’s manor. It is a bit more scenic.” While speaking, he looked at the girl in the red and helplessly said: “I’ve allowed your Highness to see something ridiculous.”
Only then did Xuan Tian Ming get a chance to ask: “Princess Lian?”
City lord Wu quickly waved his hand: “What Princess Lian, it’s just her own fantasy.”
While they spoke, Li Sheng’s voice could be heard once more. It was crisp and sounded quite nice. She was saying to Feng Yu Heng: “In truth, the North has its own charms. The people here are candid and do not have such colorful insides. Just like me, although I am a princess, that bearing is just for others to see. Once I come home, I am still father’s daughter. It’s fine if we don’t pay attention to those rules.”
Feng Yu Heng nodded, “This is good. This imperial daughter does not like keeping up such appearances. Right, I wonder where his Highness Prince Lian currently is? Did he not accompany the princess to Bin City?”
“I said that you can just call me Li Sheng.” She told Feng Yu Heng: “Your Da Shun immediately began fighting after announcing it, and the imperial family is in a mess. Everyone is worried about this battle, but my husband does not like fighting. A few days ago, he went to Song Zhou, and he should be returning soon.”
“Oh.” Feng Yu Heng pretended to be very entertained, “I wonder, how long as Li Sheng been married to Prince Lian?”
Li Sheng was startled, and another look of confusion filled her eyes. She thought very seriously for a while but still could not figure it out. Helpless, she could only ask city lord Wu for help: “Father, when did daughter get married?”
City lord Wu’s face was dark, and he did not want to reply; however, Li Sheng was unhappy. Running back over, she asked: “What year was daughter’s marriage? You know that there are times when my mind doesn’t work too well. Father, just tell daughter; otherwise, if there comes a day when his Highness asks and I cannot answer it, how could that be good?”
City lord Wu stopped in his tracks and raised his handing, wanting to slap her. But after looking at Li Sheng’s small face covered in thick makeup and her sorrow-filled eyes, he could not bring himself to do it.
He sighed and lowered his hand. He then pointed at Li Sheng’s red clothes, saying: “You’re still wearing your wedding clothes. How many years could you have been married for?”
“Hm?” Li Sheng looked down and glanced at her body, suddenly noticing something, “Oh! Could it be that today is the day I get married to his Highness? That’s not right!” She then shook her head, “The marriage was something that has already happened. I just felt that these wedding clothes looked beautiful, thus I wore them. If you don’t believe it, father, take a look. These clothes are already getting old. They clearly are not newly made.” She looked over her clothes, “Look at just how old this material is. It should have been worn for at least two years. I married his Highness the year that I became of age. Until this point, it’s been two years.” After saying this, she very happily ran back to Feng Yu Heng’s side and told her: “It’s been two years.”
Feng Yu Heng reached out to hold her wrist. It seemed that they were chatting normally; however, she was secretly checking her pulse, but she did not find anything too out of the ordinary.
They arrived very quickly at Ice Flower Hall. The group sat down at Li Sheng’s request, as Li Sheng sat at Feng Yu Heng’s side, moving a little closer.
City lord Wu reminded her: “Li Sheng, sit a little further. You must not sit too close to imperial daughter.”
“No.” Li Sheng shook her head very seriously then told city lord Wu: “There’s a very good smell coming from the imperial daughter. It’s like the smell from his Highness Prince Lian. I like smelling it.”
“Shut your mouth!” City lord Wu became furious, and he had become frightened. This ninth prince was still sitting here, yet she was saying that his wife smelled like another man. Wasn’t this asking to die! He quickly tried to stop Li Sheng: “Come sit at father’s side.”
Li Sheng’s face became stoic, as she shook her head, “No.”
Feng Yu Heng did not mind. Holding Li Sheng’s hand, she said to city lord Wu: “If she likes it, just let her sit here.” She then asked Li Sheng: “You said that I smell a little bit like his Highness Prince Lian? What smell is that?”
Li Sheng pondered a bit then said: “It’s a unique fragrance. It’s taken from the bones of an animal from the far North. After being submerged with 36 other medical herbs for 49 days, the bone is dried then ground into a powder before being placed in an incense burner. The end smell is like that.”
Feng Yu Heng was very interested in Li Sheng. It was not hard to see that there were some problems with the girl’s mind. Princess Lian was most likely one of her fantasies. But aside from her own identity, she was reasonable about other things, which left people feeling a little odd.
Even odder… after meeting Prince Lian, there was indeed a strange fragrance that faintly lingered on her. That scent was extremely faint. Aside from herself and Xuan Tian Ming, there was nobody else that could smell it. As for the smell, aside from her, Ban Zou also had it.