"So you mean to say that it is not true that the Quiangdu refuses in mingling with other countries?" Lin Xulian asked. This totally turned her views in a hundred and eighty degrees.
"We refuse to meddle not mingle your majesty. Those who do cannot return. That is also the reason why we don't inform anyone about our origin when we go outside."
"But it is said that outsiders are not allowed to enter. Isn't that enough proof that you refuse to mingle?"
"That is rule set by the ancestors the moment the walls are built. It is the same as the decree in your empires. It is because an emperor of the destroyed Tongyi empire wanted to steal the King's wife that resulted to war. The Quiangdu won but the King became uneasy so he ordered for the walls to be built then isolated the country from other countries."
Lin Xulian is interested in learning about the Quiangdu's history but she can't help but warn the blabbermouth Envoy Hu. "Don't you think you are revealing too much?"
"Do not worry your majesty. I am aware of what to and not to reveal." Envoy Hu stepped back and cupped his fist. "Your majesty, Emperor Feng and Empress Lin, this envoy will bid farewell now. The King's order is finally fulfilled so it's time for me to return."
Feng Jun Yi didn't hold him back anymore and let him leave after a few pleasantries. After the envoy left, he looked at the black bracelet lying inside the wooden box. Based on what the envoy said, the bracelet is made from a stone that is considered special for the Quiangdu country. Why would they give it to him? He said that it is the only thing that could rival the Feng bird's worth. So how special is this bird exactly?
Seeing him deep in thought, Lin Xulian knew exactly what he's thinking. "I don't know what is their motive is but I can assure you that they don't mean any harm."
"I hope so. Than envoy alone is not simple. I don't exactly know how strong he is but I'm sure I cannot beat him. To think that such person is just an underling, I can't imagine how strong their king is." As a person practicing martial arts, meeting strong people gives an unexplainable thrill. Feng Jun Yi can't get his head out of this sudden encounter.
Lin Xulian also felt the same way. From the moment Envoy Hu entered the hall, she can tell that he is extremely powerful. And knowing that there is a country out there that has a lot of powerful masters, she can't help but be excited.
Just as Lin Xulian and Feng Jun Yi thought that they had their fair share of surprises for the day, a eunuch entered the hall with a pale face. Then after they heard his announcement, they finally understood why. "E-emperor Xing Wenhe and Princess Xing Baihe of Zhixiang country arrives!"
Feng Jun Yi stiffened hearing the announcement. Even though the relationship of the two country is considered civil, he thought they would only send a representative or envoy. To think that the emperor himself came in person, Feng Jun Yi doesn't know if he should be flattered or worried.
Emperor Xing Wenhe's arrival shook the hearts of the people of Gonglu. The Zhixiang and Gonglu was involved in not just one but several major and minor wars for centuries. It only stopped during Feng Jun Yi's grandfather's time. But despite the truce, the tension between the two countries still remained. Because of this, they can't help following him with their gazes.
To their utter surprise, it seems like Xing Wenhe can't feel the tension. He has a gentle and warm smile the whole time making him look like a blooming sunflower on a summer day. Anyone who looks at him felt warm and comfortable. Even though he only looked a little above average, that warm smile caught the attention of the ladies in the hall. It made them fantasize of being pampered by this gentle looking emperor. They can't help but swoon. He wore a dragon robe but on a much simpler style, maybe to avoid overshadowing the celebrant.
They also notice the young lady following him. She is about thirteen or fourteen years old. Despite her young age, she walks and moves like a dignified lady that fully shows her status as a princess. But to others, she looks so adorable trying to act like a grown up lady in her small form. Even Lin Xulian can't help but swoon. She is a pretty young lady and no doubt that she will grow up into a fine woman in a few years. She earned a lot of admiring gazes both from young men and women. But there is one obvious exception.
Han Yimei felt troubled seeing the appearance of the princess. It is probably her intuition as a woman. She has this strong feeling that this little lady is potential love rival. Bringing a beautiful unmarried lady to meet the emperor, and a princess on top of that. What is the other purpose other than a marriage alliance? Lin Xulian is enough of a problem. She has the emperor's favor. If this princess enters the harem, she will gain at least the emperor's respect. This will take more of his attention and it would mean lesser chance for her.
Because the arrival of Emperor Xing is totally unexpected, the servants tried hard to set up a proper seat as fast as possible. The table and seats are only a little lower that Feng Jun Yi and Lin Xulian's seats to show that they are guests but is still higher than the rest because of their status. The guests are ushered to their seats and Feng Jun Yi welcomed them respectfully. "It is a pleasant surprise to finally meet you Emperor Xing. I am honored that you took the time to attend this banquet in person."
"The pleasure is mine Emperor Feng. Besides, I have a proposition to offer and these kind of things needs to be discussed in person." Xing Wenhe said while smiling warmly. He then signaled a servant he brought along to bring the gift they prepared. "But before that, let me present the gift we prepared. This gift represents the whole Zhixiang country not only for your birthday but also to congratulate you in ascending to the throne."
The servant place the gift covered in red satin cloth with golden dragon embroidery in front of Feng Jun Yi and Lin Xulian then slowly uncover it. It is a potted plant enclosed in a glass container. Seeing the plant with purple lustrous leaves, Lin Xulian's eyes widened and she subconsciously sucked in a deep breath. Seeing her reaction confirms Feng Jun Yi's assumption. This plant is no other than the Buxiu herb they needed very much.