Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
A huge cage covered with black cloth was moved over. The crowd couldn’t guess what was inside. However, Chu Liuyue could smell the light fishy scent, and she narrowed her eyes.
Rong Zhen stepped forward and pulled the cloth away.
A golden-yellow python was coiled up inside the cage. Its body was as thick as a human thigh. Its layers of pale golden scales reflected the cold lighting. Its blood-red vertical pupils were more like two sharp daggers, cruel and indifferent. It was a Golden Python, a third-grade beast.
The sudden sight of light caused it to be alert. It raised its huge head, showed its fangs, and made hissing sounds which sounded creepy.
The crowd in the palace were taken aback by the sudden revelation of this huge creature. Even Emperor Jiawen, who was seated up there, appeared to be surprised.
He then followed Rong Zhen’s line of sight and looked over. A young girl’s unfamiliar face appeared before him.
In his heart, he already knew that it was the Big Missy of the Chu family, Chu Ning’s daughter—Chu Liuyue—who had a marriage agreement with Rong Jin.
“Zhen Zhen, what are you doing?” asked Emperor Jiawen. “This is your brother’s birthday banquet, not the place for you to fool around.” He remembered that Chu Liuyue was born with a lacking Yuan meridian and that she was unable to cultivate for her entire life.
How was she going to handle this third-grade Golden Python? He wasn’t concerned about Chu Liuyue, but she had an existing marriage agreement with Rong Jin. It wouldn’t be good if things got ugly. Besides, if he indulged Rong Zhen with so many pairs of eyes on them, people would think that the royal family was ruthless. They would think that they treated Chu Liuyue so shabbily because she was a loser.
Instead, Rong Zhen laughed. “Father, this is my first time meeting Big Missy Chu. I like her so much that I want to give her the Golden Python that I tried extremely hard to obtain. I caught it myself. I initially wanted to keep it as a pet, but my meeting with Miss Chu is fated. I am willing to part with it, no matter how painful it is for me.”
She looked at Chu Liuyue and said, “I’m guessing that Big Chu Missy hasn’t obtained a contracted fiend yet, right?”
A few snickers came from the crowd.
What kind of contracted fiend could a good-for-nothing have?
Quite a number of eyes sarcastically landed on Chu Liuyue as they waited for a good show to start.
Rong Zhen pulled a face as though she was displeased. “What? Is it possible that Big Chu Missy doesn’t care for the Golden Python that I’m giving her?” She was the most favored true-born princess of the country. Who would dare to say they didn’t like what she was giving them?
Chu Liuyue stood up. “The Fourth Princess is so kind. I am very grateful from the bottom of my heart. Why wouldn’t I like it?”
Only then did Rong Zhen smile again. She crooked a finger at Chu Liuyue as though she was summoning a lowly servant. “Since you are so grateful to me, why don’t you come here and accept your gift?”
Chu Liuyue paused for a moment before moving forward. She first bowed to Emperor Jiawen, then she looked at Rong Zhen and bowed again. Her movements were very standardized, but they were even better executed than any of the palace’s training sisters.
All her movements were as smooth as a flowing river; it was pleasing to the eyes. Most importantly, she was carrying herself like royalty. Her disposition was more distinguished than that of the true-born princess, Rong Zhen, herself.
Despite the fact that she was wearing old clothes with frayed edges, and her small face was unpainted, she stood out more strikingly than the gorgeous Princess Rong Zhen—who had dressed with care for the occasion.
Like a pearl, she would be the first to attract everyone’s attention in any location.
Some people couldn’t help but whisper among themselves.
“Isn’t Chu Liuyue a born good-for-nothing and was thrown into the pile of inferiors since she was a child? How is it that she is so well-mannered?”
“It’s kind of strange! No one in the Chu family even took her seriously, so how can they be teaching her this? Was she taught specifically before entering the palace?” The voice of the person who said this gradually diminished.
All of them came from great families, so they naturally knew very well that these rules could not be learned in a matter of a day. That noble and elegant temperament simply couldn’t be cultivated overnight.
“… How is that possible? Even Chu Xianmin didn’t have such nobility and elegance.”
“Not to mention Chu Xianmin, don’t you see that even the Fourth Princess can’t be compared to her?”
The crowd didn’t dare to say this openly. But with one look exchanged after another, they knew what everyone else was thinking.
Rong Zhen definitely sensed this too. A surge of anger arose from within her. What is Chu Liuyue pretending to be? She didn’t believe that this loser could stir any waves. “Miss Chu, although this python is my gift to you, there is a condition.”
Rong Zhen’s scarlet lips curved into a smile as she pointed at the Golden Python. “This is a newly-captured Golden Python. It is wild and untamed. If you want to be its master, you will have to defeat it. So, how about you fight it instead?”
The atmosphere froze instantly. Nobody expected Rong Zhen to make such a request.
Chu Liuyue is a loser. She will only die if she fights the third-grade Golden Python. Emperor Jiawen frowned without waiting for Chu Liuyue to speak. “Zhen Zhen, stop your nonsense!”
The smile on Rong Zhen’s face disappeared, and she said coldly, “Father, I am not messing around. I’m doing this for a reason! Do you know that she sold the hunting ground belonging to my brother, the Crown Prince, for private use?”
Emperor Jiawen was stunned. “What?”
“Brother put in a lot of effort into that hunting ground. In the end, it was all for naught! He had been generous enough to leave her alone, but as his sister, I can’t stand it. This Golden Python might be a third-grade fiend. However, it can’t compare to what Brother has lost!”
She raised her voice as she looked at Chu Liuyue. “Are you going to admit it or not?”
Emperor Jiawen finally recalled that he had indeed given a hunting ground to Chu Liuyue. She actually sold it? In any case, it was something I personally bestowed to her. How could she sell it away so casually?
This caused Emperor Jiawen to harbor some dissatisfaction toward Chu Liuyue. But if he were to agree with Rong Zhen’s proposition, it was possible that Chu Liuyue might not live until the end of the day.
“Your Majesty, Chu Ning is willing to atone for my daughter’s sins.” At this moment, Chu Ning suddenly stepped forward and knelt on one knee.
Emperor Jiawen’s attitude somewhat relented slightly when he saw Chu Ning. After pondering for a while, he finally nodded. “This is possible.” Although Chu Ning was no longer the same, it shouldn’t be too dangerous for him to deal with a third-grade Golden Python. Moreover, he was Chu Liuyue’s father. It would be most appropriate for him to step in.
On the one hand, it saved the Crown Prince and the royal family from embarrassment; on the other hand, the father-daughter duo’s lives wouldn’t be in real danger.
In that instant, Chu Liuyue suddenly stepped forward. “I am willing to try.”
Rong Zhen had been annoyed about losing an opportunity to teach Chu Liuyue a lesson, but she didn’t expect her to take the initiative to come forward on her own!
“What did you say? Say that again.”
Chu Liuyue raised her chin. Her black and pure eyes were as brilliant as the stars. “I said that I am willing to try. I will fight the Golden Python.”