A Great Bargaining Chip
“Third brother, it’s your turn.” Feng Yu Heng passed the pot of wine back to Xuan Tian Ye, “Of course, if third brother does not dare drink it, just pour it out. Heng just wanted to give third brother a taste of something good, but I can not be too forceful.”
The more she said this, the more Xuan Tian Ye felt that he had to drink it. A young girl had already drank it, so if he did not, what sort of situation would that become?
Deciding to grit his teeth, he picked up the pot and took a sip, but when he swallowed, he felt his heart begin to race.
Seeing him drink the wine, Feng Yu Heng let out another laugh, “Third brother, do not worry. Snake venom only activates in blood. Drinking it as wine will not be similar to drinking poison.”
Xuan Tian Ye knew that she was a doctor, so she would be knowledgeable in such things. Either way, he had already drank it, so he no longer lingered on the topic. But he now felt even more dread towards Feng Yu Heng.
The two turned around to admire the flowers, and their gazes were turned to the tree where the snake’s head was nailed. Xuan Tian Ye then suddenly said: “Being able to bring out a full set of white crystal head ornaments is truly rare. Eldest brother seems to have taken interest.”
Feng Yu Heng lightly sighed, “Eldest sister has a good life, so she is naturally worthy of receiving such love. Unlike me, who was called the star of disaster by someone from a young age. If it were not for my engagement to his Highness Prince Yu from many years ago, I fear I would have remained in the manor as an old maiden lady.”
“County princess really knows how to tell a joke.” Xuan Tian Ye’s face was expressionless, as his gaze continued to remain on that tree. Only by doing this could he remind himself what sort of girl he was speaking with. If he truly took her for a twelve year old little girl, it would truly be an extreme mistake.
“Hah.” Feng Yu Heng smiled wryly and shook her head, “I am the star of disaster, and I was unable to heal his Highness Prince Yu’s legs. I also lost the phoenix hairpin, and father Emperor… no longer treats me as he did before.”
Hearing her mention the phoenix hairpin, Xuan Tian Ye’s heart trembled.
The deity with miraculous hands had acted three times and actually did not acquire it. Where exactly was that thing? Could it be… he squinted his eyes and turned to look at Feng Yu Heng. Could it be that the girl still had it?
“The day is cold, and the ground is frozen. Is county princess not going to return?” He felt a wave of irritation in his heart, and he did not want to continue speaking with Feng Yu Heng. He continued to feel that this girl’s words were digging deep pits for him. He had seen the first one, but it would difficult to ensure that there would be no other holes later on.
“I will remain a little longer, as the liveliness inside causes me to feel uncomfortable.” Feng Yu Heng smiled to him, “Third brother can return first.”
“Good, then let us drink again at another time.” Xuan Tian Ye threw these words out and left with large strides. He always felt uncomfortably repressed when speaking with Feng Yu Heng. This girl’s slyness made him not want to look at her.
But before he could get very far, he heard Feng Yu Heng seemingly mutter to herself: “Hah, if it’s this cold in the capital, who knows how many will freeze to death in the North.”
His eyebrows twitched a couple times, and he increased his pace.
Seeing him walk further away, Feng Yu Heng moved back to the stone chair and sat down. She then shouted into the air: “Come on out, don’t continue hiding.”
Not long after, the sound of footsteps came from behind a rock formation.
“When did younger sister discover this prince was here?” The person that had come was Prince Jing, Xuan Tian Qi.
Feng Yu Heng turned to look at him and said: “I was just shouting randomly. It was just a guess.”
Xuan Tian Qi shrugged and smiled. Speaking with this county princess was always entertaining. He had experienced this point a few days prior when Xuan Tian Ming had secretly brought him to Tong Sheng pavilion.
“Younger sister and ninth brother really played this situation well, handing this mess to this prince. Do you know how many times the deity with miraculous hands has come to the Jing Palace? If it were not for this prince’s hidden guard being vigilant, I fear that this one’s head would have been taken away countless times.”
“Eldest brother is a businessman. If you can not even protect yourself, how could you dare to do this business?” Feng Yu Heng looked Xuan Tian Qi with a smile, “Last time, his Highness the ninth prince said that so long as eldest brother helps us act out this play to the end, there will naturally be no shortage of benefits to you.”
“Oh?” Xuan Tian Qi sat down across from her then asked seriously: “Then tell me, what exactly will I get from this business opportunity?” The reason he dared dive into Xuan Tian Ming’s crisis was because of a hatred he had developed for Xuan Tian Ye many years ago. Secondly, Xuan Tian Ming had said that if he provided support, Feng Yu Heng would give him a pleasant surprise. Thus, he decided to participate in this play for the sake of receiving that surprise. He even acted very well with the Emperor. Even when told to act kindly to Chen Yu and give her a full set of crystal head ornaments, he actually did it. Now, it was time for that surprise to be made known.
Feng Yu Heng looked back at him with a serious expression. After a long while, she finally said: “So long as eldest brother is able to coordinate with us and father Emperor in suppressing his Highness the third prince’s personal army, we will, at the very least, be able to push them back from the North to the Central Plains. So long as we are able to maintain control of Da Shun’s territory, everything will be easier to handle.”
She did not directly state what her gift would be, but she did suddenly reveal her, Xuan Tian Ming and the Emperor’s main goal.
Xuan Tian Qi naturally knew that the third prince had been amassing a personal army over the years in order to seize the throne; however, he did not understand why they had to stop him from gathering in the North.
He verbalized his doubts, and Feng Yu Heng very honestly told him: “Because we suspect that he may have collaborated with Qian Zhou. If we allow them to join hands, I fear that it will not be as easy to deal with at a later date.”
Was it easy now?
Xuan Tian Qi smiled bitterly, “It isn’t easy now, either! You also saw it. A full set of crystal ornaments, and Feng Chen Yu turned around then gifted it to your Feng family’s fourth young miss. I fear that fifth bro is already chatting with the fourth young miss Feng. As for your eldest sister, Feng Chen Yu, although she is the most beautiful in the city, I see that her brain is a little lacking. Does this sort of person truly have the aspect of the phoenix?”
“Whether or not she does is not for us to say. After being spread around for so many years, even if people were told not to believe it, they would still think about it a bit. As for the crystal ornaments…” Feng Yu Heng felt another wave of irritation, “There will always be unexpected mishaps. We will carefully investigate once again, so there is no need for eldest brother to mind. Either way, the one father Emperor is paying most attention to as candidate to be heir to the throne is eldest brother. Let’s first watch to see if his Highness the third prince will be able to endure. Secondly, I just hope that he can relax his guard towards his Highness the ninth prince, giving us time to deal with the private troops that have already gone to the North. As for eldest brother’s reward for this business…”
She finally reached the key factor. Xuan Tian Qi’s eyes were opened wide, and he leaned a little closer.
Feng Yu Heng smiled. The eldest prince, Xuan Tian Qi, absolutely loved doing business, and he definitely did not care about politics. Instead, he devoted himself fully to doing business. Saying that he is the wealthiest person in the world was not an exaggeration at all. Most importantly, his businesses were spread out across the entirety of Da Shun, as well as the four surrounding countries. No matter where one went, his people would be there.
This sort of person was actually the most difficult to deal with. Although he did not have any soldiers, he did have money. Sometimes, something like money was much more fearsome than soldiers.
“We do not have money.” Feng Yu Heng spoke the truth, “The thing eldest brother likes the most, his Highness the ninth prince and I do not have.”
“Then what do you have?” Hearing her say this, Xuan Tian Qi did not show disappointment. Instead, he became joyful and curious.
Feng Yu Heng leaned forward and lowered her voice: “I heard that eldest brother is approaching 40 but still does not have children?”
Xuan Tian Qi was startled, and his aged face turned red. He wanted to ask “How did you know?” But when he thought about it, with Xuan Tian Ming, what was there that this girl could not find out?
“I am a doctor. There is no need to eldest brother to worry about too much before me.” She did not keep him waiting, as she said: “My bargaining chip is my medical ability. If eldest brother assists us in this large matter, I will treat eldest brother’s fertility illness.”
Xuan Tian Qi took in a breath of cold air.
For him, this temptation was too great!
He had spent half of his life doing business, and he viewed expanding his business and wealth as the greatest joys of his life. But just as Feng Yu Heng had said, he was approaching 40 but did not have a son nor daughter. In his palace, regardless of whether it was the official princess or his concubines, none could bear a child. If he did not have an heir in this lifetime, what was the point of having this wealth? Could it be that it would be donated to the imperial treasury after his death?
Xuan Tian Qi held his breath for a long time before exhaling, but he used an almost trembling voice to ask Feng Yu Heng: “You are truly able to treat it?”
She nodded, “It can be treated.”
Xuan Tian Qi did not even think before clapping his large hands: “Deal!” He then recalled some other important matters, “The crystal ornaments… younger sister, forgive this prince for being direct, but have our plans have been seen through by the other side?”
Feng Yu Heng shook her head and honestly said: “I do not know, but it is impossible for them to not suspect at all. His Highness the third prince originally had a distrustful personality, so we can not hope that the play we have put on over the past few days to completely fool him. Let’s watch a little longer.”
“Very well, then this prince will wait for news from younger sister.” He said this then stood up. He did not remain any longer and said: “This prince will go back first.” Turning, he immediately left.
Only then did Huang Quan trot back to Feng Yu Heng’s side. A little worried, she said: “Meeting with his Highness the eldest prince is fine, but young miss meeting alone with his Highness the third prince made this servant feel nervous the entire time.”
Feng Yu Heng laughed, “Could it be that he can eat me?”
“Do you think he can’t?” Huang Quan’s eyes widened, “Two years ago, rumors spread from the Xiang Palace about how his Highness the third prince would bite people when he became angry. The palace’s former housekeeper had been bitten to death by him.”
“I am not a defenseless housekeeper.” Feng Yu Heng rolled her eyes and spun the dagger used to skin the snake in her hand, “Look, I am quite fierce.”
The corners of Huang Quan’s lips twitched, “Young miss, this servant will not make any assessment of your sleeves.” She then turned her eyes to the snake skin that Xuan Tian Ye did not take away. Unable to help herself, she asked with interest: “How should this be taken care of?”
Feng Yu Heng looked at the bright green snake skin and found it to be truly quite beautiful, thus she placed it in her sleeve and tossed it into her space, “At a later time, I will find someone to make something out of this snake skin. Un, in another two months, it will be the new year. When that time comes, we will use it as a gift to the Xiang Palace. Thinking about it, his Highness Prince Xiang will definitely like it.”
Only then did Huang Quan cover her mouth and begin to laugh, “This servant watched from far away and saw his Highness Prince Xiang’s expression when young miss skinned the snake. Thinking about it, when he sees this present, he will enjoy the coming year with similar feelings!” She said this while looking at Feng Yu Heng with a gaze full of admiration, “The skill revealed by young miss truly was quite shocking. Forget about Prince Xiang, perhaps even our Highness the ninth prince would have no choice but to give in.”
Feng Yu Heng smirked, “You absolutely must not tell Xuan Tian Ming. Last time, he even said that I am not like a female.”
Huang Quan immediately began laughing, “Young miss is still young. Young girls all like to play, but the things you play with are a bit special. That’s all. There is nothing too surprising.”
Feng Yu Heng and Huang Quan’s minds were truly satisfied. She stood up and prepared to return to the banquet, but just as she exited the pavilion and before she could take even a few steps, she saw a round figure rushing over from the direction of the banquet hall.
Huang Quan let out a “huh” sound then said: “The Emperor’s young grandson came out to find young miss, right?”
As she said this, Xuan Fei Yu ran over and grabbed Feng Yu Heng’s hand. Not worrying about catching his breath, he began to drag her back. At the same time, he shouted: “Deity big sister, quickly! Quickly come back! Something happened to your younger sister!”