Yun Qian Yu smiles as she glances at him.
"I'm afraid, Ding Hai Wang's affection is in vain." Gong Sang Mo looks noble and esteemed as he walks towards Ji Shu Liu.
"Oh? What's wrong? Xian Wang also likes Princess Hu Guo?"
"Correct. This king had to fight for three years to get to where I am today," Gong Sang Mo's jade-like eyes are full of gentleness as he looks at Yun Qian Yu. The deep love he harbours for her is almost palpable.
Long Xiang Luo who has been keeping a low-key presence looks at Yun Qian Yu in fury. Why does she, of all people, receive the love of the world's most perfect man?
"Fair and extraordinary, it is not surprising that Xian Wang admires Princess Hu Guo," Ji Shu Liu smiles serenely.
"It is not merely wishful thinking on my part. We have promised to get married. This is the token of our love. Qian Yu has the same exact pendant." Gong Sang Mo shows everyone his necklace.
Ji Shu Liu's eyes change when he sees the character 'Yu' on the pendant of that necklace.
"This king has never heard of any news suggesting that Princess Hu Guo has been matched to anyone," Ji Shu Liu looks like he does not believe Gong Sang Mo.
"Just because you haven't heard of it doesn't mean that it is not there," Gong Sang Mo refuses to give way. What a joke. Will he let anyone snatch his bride away from him?
"Haha, must you be like this, Xian Wang? Even if there is an agreement, that agreement can always be broken. Even people who have gotten married can get a divorce!" Ji Shu Liu says.
"Is Ding Hai Wang intending to break someone else's marriage agreement?" Gong Sang Mo's handsome face is now cold.
"Whatever we say is pointless. The decision lies on Princess Hu Guo," Ji Shu Liu looks at Yun Qian Yu while smiling in confidence.
"She already made the decision."
"I wasn't there when she made it!"
"It doesn't matter! Her decision will not change!"
"You don't know that for sure. What if I have something that she cannot reject?" Ji Shu Liu smiles while looking at Yun Qian Yu.
Gong Sang Mo suddenly remembers what Chang Qing told him. He looks at Yun Qian Yu; she looks completely normal, completely unaffected. That girl. She is actually watching him fighting over her like she is watching a play! How heartless!
All eyes are on the two handsome men. The unmarried maidens envy Yun Qian Yu so much. Never mind two, even if there is only one of the two willing to fight that hard for them, they will already faint from joy.
Ji Shu Liu leisurely says, "Do you know Xiang Yun Ling, Princess Hu Guo?"
Yun Qian Yu raises her eyebrows. He is indeed going to use Xiang Yun Ling. He clearly used one back when he was begging for treatment, why is he acting like this is the first time they are talking about it?
"Of course. Xiang Yun Ling are tokens of gratitude given by bengong's grandfather to his three benefactors," Yun Qian Yu replies.
"One Xiang Yun Ling gives the person the privilege to be treated by Yun Valley. Three Xiang Yun Lings gives the person the right to request anything from the Yun Valley itself."
"Correct," Yun Qian Yu answers truthfully.
"What a coincidence! This king is in possession of all three Xiang Yun Lings," there are traces of smiles on Ji Shu Liu's eyes as he looks at Yun Qian Yu.
Yun Qian Yu remembers what Gong Sang Mo said about Ji Shu Liu's penchant for plotting in the open. He clearly knows that she already has one Xiang Yun Ling with her. He is telling her that he has laid out a trap; if she can fight, then fight. If she can't, then, be obedient and just marry him.
Yun Qian Yu also knows that if she says that she already has one Xiang Yun Ling, people will think that she is lying to escape from this situation.
She is quiet. Gong Sang Mo is anxious now, Ji Shu Liu has been telling the truth!
Murong Cang frowns while Yu Jian's face becomes cold. Hua Man Xi looks at Yun Qian Yu in concern. Out of everyone, only one is happy, Long Xiang Luo.
Wen Ling Shan tugs at her brother's sleeve tight as she whispers to him, "What do we do? What do we do?"
Wen Lan Jin helplessly pulls his sleeve back and fixes the crease, "Even the princess is not panicking, what are you panicking for?"
"Do you think she will announce it to the whole world if she is anxious?"
Wen Lan Jin is taken aback a little. She is right; no matter how nervous Yun Qian Yu is, she will not show it to the world.
Ji Shu Liu slowly says, "I only have one request; Princess Hu Guo must break her marriage agreement with Xian Wang and she will marry me."
The entire hall is quiet in a frightening manner. All eyes are on Yun Qian Yu.
Gong Sang Mo races to Yun Qian Yu's side, looking at her with his scorching phoenix eyes. He looks like he is going to cry if Yun Qian Yu agrees with Ji Shu Liu.
Yun Qian Yu feels a little helpless, "You are Xian Wang, a respected figure in Nan Lou Kingdom. Mind your bearing."
"My future wife is getting snatched away, what is the point of minding my bearing?"
Seeing Gong Sang Mo who is putting on an aggrieved and wronged look, Yun Qian Yu smiles.
"Don't worry, no one is going to get snatched away."
Gong Sang Mo's face immediately brightens up.
Although their voices are not loud, it is enough to be heard by a lot of people. They look at Gong Sang Mo in shock; is he really the feared God of War?
After comforting Gong Sang Mo, Yun Qian Yu purposely reveals the bracelet that she has on her wrist. It is very clear that the pendant on her bracelet is similar to the one on Gong Sang Mo's necklace.
"Ding Hai Wang does not know how to count? You are asking for two things, not one: One, to leave Xian Wang; two, to marry you."
Everyone who has been waiting for Yun Qian Yu's reply didn't think that she would answer Ji Shu Liu in that manner. The stifling atmosphere becomes a little relaxed.
Ji Shu Liu is stunned before he laughs, "Then, I will present only one request: marry me."
"Ding Hai Wang, is there any proof to your claim that you have all three Xiang Yun Lings? Why don't you show them to bengong? Bengong would like to check their authenticity."
Yun Qian Yu gives him a look as though saying 'do you think I am stupid?'
Ji Shu Liu laughs, "Is the princess suggesting that I, Ding Hai Wang, is a liar?"
He waves his hand at his people and they immediately bring in a box.
Ji Shu Liu opens the lid, revealing the three Xiang Yun Lings inside. The pendants are irregular in shape and gives off cold air, it is clear that they are made of cold jade.
Everyone are busy stretching their necks to take a look at what is inside the box. Only Yun Qian Yu remains unperturbed.
Yu Jian grabs Yun Qian Yu by the wrist before whispering, "Imperial sister, will you be able to handle him?"
Seeing that confident look on Ji Shu Liu's face, Yu Jian gets a little restless.
Yun Qian Yu glances at Yu Jian; this is the first time Yu Jian is not confident in her. Seems like Ji Shu Liu knows what he is doing.
"Just wait and see," Yun Qian Yu light-heartedly says.
Ji Shu Liu finds it funny that Yun Qian Yu still has the mood to whisper around with Yu Jian, "Aren't you going to check the authenticity of the Xiang Yun Lings, princess? Only people from Yun Family are able to validate their authenticity."
Yun Qian Yu looks at him and then, at the Xiang Yun Lings in his hand, "That is indeed the easiest way. I can do that, but I'm afraid it will not be enough to satisfy Ding Hai Wang and everyone else here."
"Oh, princess have made quite a thorough consideration," Ji Shu Liu raises his eyebrows.
Yun Qian Yu looks at the crowd, "People may not know, there are other ways to authenticate Xiang Yun Lings."
Ji Shu Liu's eyes flash when he hears that. "What kind of way?"
Everyone looks at Yun Qian Yu in anticipation.
"I believe, after what happened with Shi Hai, everyone now knows that only the true descendants of Yun Clan can learn Zi Yu Xin Jing. The inner power of people who practiced Zi Yu Xin Jing is purple; the same colour on the cloud inside the Xiang Yun Lings."
After saying that, Yun Qian Yu conjures a purple lotus with her finger. Everyone watches the purple lotus in shock; what kind of inner power is this? It looks so clear and palpable.
Wen Ling Shan watches everything with sparkling eyes, like a fangirl.
"Back then, my late grandfather went to Cai Xia Island to look for blood fox for my late grandmother. He almost died there, but was luckily saved by three people who happened to be exploring the island. My grandfather was a person who puts importance to grace and gratitude. He divided a cold jade that he brought with him into three parts. To prevent counterfeits, he channelled in the power of Zi Yu Xin Jing into the jade. He promised them that the owner of one pendant will be given the privilege to receive treatment from Yun Valley. The owner of three pendants, on the other hand, will be allowed to ask anything from the owner of Yun Valley."
"What does that have anything to do with determining the authenticity of Xiang Yun Lings?" Ji Shu Liu asks.
"It doesn't have anything to do with it. But it needs to be known for people to accept my verdicts," she runs her eyes over the crowd.
"Other than directly using Zi Yu Xin Jing to test it's authenticity, one can also tell by combining the three pendants together. Other than breaking it apart and grinding the sharp edges, grandfather did not do any changes to the jades. If they add up together perfectly, the Xiang Yun Lings are authentic."
Ji Shu Liu combines the three jades together.
"There seems to be a gap here."
"Yes, you are right. It is a little crooked," someone else says.
"One of the pendants is fake. It does not fit the other two," Yun Qian Yu says. "This may not be enough to convince Ding Hai Wang and everyone else, so I am willing to prove it using another way."
"What way?" someone asks before Ji Shu Liu could.
"Who is willing to lend me their jade? Fair warning, the jade will not regain it's original appearance."
Everyone look at each other in reluctance.
Gong Sang Mo would have been willing, but he does not have any jade pendant with him at the moment.
Hua Man Xi gets up and hands Yun Qian Yu his jade pendant, "Use mine, little girl."
Yun Qian Yu does not bother being courteous with Hua Man Xi. She takes the pendant and brings it in front of Ji Shu Liu.
"Look carefully, everyone." Yun Qian Yu channels her purple inner power into the pendant. A little purple ball of smoke can be seen forming inside. "This is the inner power of Zi Yu Xin Jing. Man Xi, channel your inner power into the jade." She hands the jade over to Hua Man Xi.
Hua Man Xi's eyes light up. The little girl's inner power is inside the pendant. Once his is channelled into the pendant, their inner powers will be together forever.
His heart is suddenly filled with joy.
He channels his inner power into the jade.
Something peculiar happens. Hua Man Xi's white inner power refuses to merge with Yun Qian Yu's purple one. There are two separate balls of smoke inside the jade, one purple and one white. It looks really beautiful.
"Unlike normal inner power, Zi Yu Xin Jing will not fuse with other inner power. If other people channel their inner power into the jade, we can tell if it is authentic or not by seeing if they integrate with each other."
Hua Man Xi volunteers himself, "I will!"
Yun Qian Yu stops him, "Let other people do it. We need three volunteers, one for each stone. That is the fairest way."
Hua Man Xi knows what Yun Qian Yu means by that; she does not want other people to think that they are cheating.
Wen Lan Jin volunteers, followed by two other young men.
With Ji Shu Liu's agreement, the three men grab one Xiang Yun Ling each and channel their inner power into it. Sure enough, the purple smokes inside two of the pendants reject the white smokes. The one inside the crooked one, on the other hand, fuses with the white smoke before promptly disappearing.
It is confirmed then; that pendant is fake!
They look at Yun Qian Yu, impressed. Without wasting any effort, the princess managed to prove that one of the Xiang Yun Lings is fake.
"Do you believe bengong now, Ding Hai Wang?"
"What is this king says no?"
"Then it doesn't matter. Bengong has other ways of determining it's authenticity," Yun Qian Yu appears completely unperturbed.
"Haha, this king was only joking."
Ji Shu Liu hands Yun Qian Yu the fake Xiang Yun Ling. "Since this Xiang Yun Ling is fake, it is up to Your Highness to deal with it."
Yun Qian Yu accepts the jade and breaks it into three parts. She turns them into three small jade balls and channels her Zi Yu Xin Jing into them.
Although it is not a real Xiang Yun Ling, it is still made of top-grade cold jade. Although they are now only half an inch large, they are still pretty. She gives them to the three volunteers.
"This is a little reward for the three of you. You can exchange this for a treatment in Yun Valley. The Yun Valley Elders will personally treat you," Yun Qian Yu says.
Everyone else sigh in regret upon hearing that. They should have volunteered! They just lost a chance to be treated by Yun Valley's Elders.
Other than Wen Lan Jin who calmly thank Yun Qian Yu, the other two look so excited at the prospect of owning that pendant.
Hua Man Xi feels wronged, "I was the first one to volunteer, why didn't I get anything?"
Yun Qian Yu sighs while shaking her head, "You are my aunt's son, my older cousin. Have you seen a physician that charges his own family members?"
Hua Man Xi laughs, "I just knew you wouldn't be that heartless, little girl!"
Ji Shu Liu hands over the remaining two Xiang Yun Lings to Yun Qian Yu.
She is stunned by his action.
"Now, the entire world knows that this king owns two Xiang Yun Lings. I have brought trouble upon myself. I will return it to you now, but you still owe me two medical treatments!" Ji Shu Liu laughs. He does not seem to carry any displeasure over his failed proposal.
"Of course. Yun Valley honours their promises."
"Seems like I am not getting engaged today. However, as long as the princess is not married, I still have my chance, right?" He glances at Gong Sang Mo.
Gong Sang Mo raises his chin, as though saying, 'in your dreams'.
The banquet finally returns normal.
Just as the banquet is about to end, an urgent report comes from Hu Wei Camp. Jiu Xiao Kingdom's 7th wangye's attendant had went to Hu Wei Camp begging for help. Bei Tang Ming has been kidnapped by the bandits of Wolong Ridge.
Yu Jian's little face darkens. What on earth is wrong with this Bei Tang Ming? Why does he like being kidnapped so much?