Palace Full of Delicacies

Chapter 99 - The Legend

Chapter 99 - The Legend

The royal carriage, which had arrived to greet him, had been parked at the dock for quite some time. When the large ship docked, the imperial guards who came to greet him cleared a path through the crowd.

King Jing stepped off the ship, and his black-clad guards quickly gathered around him.

"King Jing is truly extraordinary in his beauty." The young ladies in the adjacent private room exclaimed, filled with excitement.

"It's said that his eyes are the most enchanting, just one glance, and it's unforgettable." Another young lady murmured dreamily.

Su Yu’s mouth twitched. After all that talk, it seemed these young ladies hadn't actually seen King Jing!

He glanced down at the fervent crowd below. The beach was flat, and with King Jing walking on it, most people's views were blocked by those in front. Even if someone stood in the front row, they might only catch a glimpse of him for a few steps before he boarded the royal carriage.

"These people, do they really recognize King Jing?" Su Yu was very skeptical. These people might not even know what King Jing looked like. Otherwise, if King Jing looked so much like the Emperor, how come no one recognized him when he and the Emperor walked down the street?

"They don't." The Emperor finished the last shrimp, wiped his hands, and glanced at the scene below with a somewhat mischievous look.

King Jing is one of the nation’s Qinwang and has been stationed in the East Sea for many years. It's only natural that very few of the common people in the capital have seen him. As for those sheltered young ladies who rarely step out of their homes, how could they have seen King Jing? It's all just hearsay...

This all stems from the tragic tale of the beautiful young lady from the Changchun Marquis Manor.

Two years ago, in the twelfth month, the Empress Dowager hosted a banquet for foreign dignitaries’s wives.

As this type of palace banquet was an excellent opportunity for the noble ladies to network and make connections, most of the prestigious and influential families' noblewomen brought along their beloved daughters or younger sisters.

This Young Lady Cen was the youngest sister of the Marquis Changchun. Due to her delicate health since childhood, she was quite doted on by her elder brother. In the warm pavilion of the banquet, where the charcoal burned brightly, Miss Cen, feeling a bit overwhelmed by the heat due to her frail constitution, stepped outside to catch her breath. Unintentionally, she wandered to the edge of a small lake.

By the lakeside, the winter plum blossoms were in full bloom, emitting a delicate fragrance that wafted in the air. At the end of this fragrant grove, there stood a tall figure, hands clasped behind his back. The person was adorned in a robe of royal blue brocade, with sleeves flowing like clouds. Upon their head rested a crown adorned with blue sapphires and silver tassels, while a few strands of dark hair fell gently along the temples, partially veiling their nearly perfect profile.

"Dare I ask, this young master..." Miss Cen was somewhat mesmerized, forgetting that men were not supposed to be present in this area, tentatively stepping forward.

The man turned his head, allowing Miss Cen to see clearly those smiling peach blossom eyes.

The corners of the eyes were like peach blossoms, untainted yet with a rosy hue; bright gaze akin to watery mist, arousing emotions with a glance.

The handsome man noticed her, seeming somewhat surprised, his thin lips gently parting. "Don't come any closer!"

"Ah?" Miss Cen, who was too preoccupied with looking at the man, didn't notice that she had already stepped onto the frozen lake. Crackling sounds echoed as the thin ice couldn't bear Miss Cen's weight, quickly forming cracks. Before she could react, with a splash, she fell into the icy water.

The mysterious handsome man was none other than King Jing. Seeing this, he lightly tapped his toes and leaped over, swiftly grabbing Miss Cen by the collar, and pulling her out of the water before her head could be submerged. He then gently placed her on the bank. Seeing her turning purple from the cold, he removed his outer robe and wrapped her delicate body with it.

It wasn't until the handsome man called for palace maids to take her back to the warm pavilion that Miss Cen realized it was King Jing who had rescued her.

"And then?" Su Yu poked Emperor down who was lying on his lap.

The carriage swayed as it made its way from the eastern outskirts to the palace, taking two hours. His Majesty the Emperor, who was feeling drowsy, wasn't the most responsible storyteller, often falling asleep halfway through. So, he needed the occasional nudge to keep him awake.

Emperor yawned: "And then she died." With that, he reached to embrace Su Yu's waist, preparing to take a nap.

"Hey!" Su Yu poked the Emperor. Who told a story like this?

”How did she die?"

"She died of illness." The Emperor said impatiently, brushing off Su Yu's hand that kept poking his shoulder.

Young Lady Cen had always been frail since childhood. Falling into icy water during the cold winter month of December worsened her condition. Despite efforts to treat her, she fell seriously ill and, tragically, succumbed to her illness. Such is the fate of beauty, fleeting like fragrance, perishing like jade.

Afterward, rumors spread throughout the capital, suggesting that Miss Cen, having seen King Jing and unable to forget him, fell into lovesickness upon her return. However, due to their difference in status, they couldn't be together, leading her to weep day and night until she passed away. The news of King Jing's rescuing Miss Cen was known only among the daughters of prominent families in the capital, and so this tale of King Jing’s mesmerizing beauty and deadly allure quickly circulated throughout the city...

Su Yu’s mouth twitched. “Why was King Jing standing in the middle of the lake?”

It was the tenth month of winter, and the lake was covered in thin ice. It was also not far from where the ladies were gathered in the warm pavilion. It was indeed strange for King Jing to appear there at that time.

“To catch fish.” His Majesty the Emperor glazed at Su Yu inexplicably. What else could he be doing?

Su Yu: “...”

The procession of King Jing's carriage slowed down due to the enthusiasm of the people. After the Emperor returned to his palace, changed his clothes, and had a cup of hot tea, he slowly caught up with them in the palace.

"Chen pays his respects to Your Majesty, may the Emperor live ten thousand years, ten thousand years, ten thousand of ten thousand years!’ The moon-white Qinwang’s attire, dignified and solemn on others, appeared noble and extravagant on King Jing.

“Rise.” An Hongche waved his hand, signaling him to stand up.

Su Yu stood on the side, curiously observing King Jing, who bore a striking resemblance to the emperor. Except for their eyes, almost every feature of the two men was identical, yet standing together or viewed separately, there was no mistaking one for the other.

"This must be the Xian Fei?” King Jing looked up at Su Yu. His peach blossom eyes naturally carried a smile, which, even if unintended, still evoked a sense of affection. His speech had a subtle charm that was hard to describe.

"Greetings, Your Highness King Jing." Su Yu paused for a moment, then hurriedly bowed.

King Jing returned the gesture with a gentle smile. "I've heard that Xian Fei is quite skilled in the art of killing fish. Would you be interested in visiting the East Sea…"

"Swoosh!" Before the sentence could be finished, a sound of breaking air suddenly rang out. King Jing's eyes flashed, reaching out to catch the swiftly approaching object. With a graceful motion, like plucking a flower from the air, he neutralized the profound force hidden within. As he lowered his hand, nestled between his slender fingers was a white... crab stick.

Su Yu was startled. Before he could figure out what was happening King Jing had already put the crab stick into his mouth. "Tastes good."

The Emperor looked coldly at King Jing, who returned his gaze with a smile.

"You, leave first." An Hongche raised his chin towards Su Yu.

Su Yu sensed the tension in the air and felt worried.

"What? Afraid of losing face in front of sister-in-law?" King Jing chuckled as he chewed on the crab stick.

"Hmph!" The Emperor snorted coldly, leaping up and throwing a punch at King Jing's handsome face.

King Jing immediately raised his hand to block, simultaneously reaching out to grab the Emperor's throat.

Su Yu watched in disbelief as the Emperor and King Jing went from exchanging blows with their bare hands to drawing their swords, and then suddenly throwing their weapons and transforming into cats, engaging in a fierce battle of scratching and biting.

A burst of white light flashed, and a golden cat and a pure black cat rolled into a ball.

He originally thought that since King Jing’s biological father and the former emperor were twin brothers, so he assumed that King Jing and Sauce would have the same fur color. However, he was surprised to discover that he was a black cat without any other colors.

The golden kitten had grown rapidly lately, and now its size was almost the same as the black cat's. It didn't fall behind in the fight either. With a vigorous kick of its hind legs, it overturned the charcoal ball attempting to bite its ear, pounced on it, and bit the other's neck.

"Meow!" The black cat let out a howl and then stopped struggling, gradually calming down.

Su Yu hurried over to intervene, fearing that King Jing would be bitten to death by the Emperor. This would be brother-slaying! "Your Majesty, please let go."

The golden cat let out a low growl before slowly releasing its grip and sitting beside the black cat, its tail swishing arrogantly.

The black cat twitched a few times, then looked at the golden furball sitting beside it, slowly extending its paw and scratching it gently once, and then again.

The Emperor raised his paw and swatted the black head lightly.

The black cat rolled in place, avoiding the merciless blow from its younger brother, and transformed into a handsome man in a black robe. He elegantly flicked off the dust from his attire. "This round goes to you... Ahem, I shall first pay my respects to Imperial Uncle at Anguo Tower, then return to report on the situation in the East Sea to Your Majesty." With that said, he respectfully bowed to the Emperor, then smiled at Su Yu with his peach blossom eyes, picked up the Qinwang’s regular attire from the ground, and turned to leave the Beiji Palace Hall.

The situation changed so fast that Su Yu was a little dumbfounded. He picked up His Majesty the Emperor and smoothed the messed-up fur. "What's with King Jing..."

"He's gone to fight with Imperial Uncle." The golden cat jumped down and transformed into the handsome emperor. "Don't mind him. Let's eat first."

The author has something to say:

Small Theater:

Citizen A: They say King Jing is gentle and romantic, charming and elegant.

Citizen B: They say King Jing is unmatched in martial arts, his might shaking the four corners of the earth.

Citizen C: They say, King Jing, deprived of imperial favor, was exiled to distant lands.

Citizen D: They say…

Little Fish: So the question is, what kind of person is Prince Jing?

King Jing: Fight me and I'll show you. (⊙ω⊙)

Some folks are confused about the hierarchy of the cat family, so here's a list:

Fifth, King Zhong (father of King Li)

Sixth: Retired Emperor, Cat Daddy

Seventh: King Hao (father of King Jing), Cat Daddy's twin brother

Ninth: King Yong

Thirteenth, King Su

Seventeenth, KingLing

Twenty-first, State Teacher

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