Chapter 6: Preparing a performance

If possible, Gu Qingyu wanted to slam Jia Qizhe into the walls so hard that he would etched into it. But she thought about the huge gap in power between them, and finally resigned to practicing her Guzheng instead… Things just keep getting in her way… 

Gu Qingyu arrived at the Guzheng room, and found one of her sisters there.

“Well, I never knew you were interested in Guzheng, Younger Sister?” The elder sister smirked, “But, one should know their limits…”

Gu Qingyu gave a wide smile, “Don’t worry, Elder Sister, I will definitely keep within my limits!” She paused, and continued, “Yep, with my skills, getting first would not be a problem at all. Do watch me, Elder Sister!”

The girl did not expect such a bold and confident response, but she gathered her wits and replied, “Rest assured, I will definitely peel my eyes open to see you become the champion.”

Gu Qingyu smiled brightly. “Then, I shall thank Elder Sister in advance!”

I must become the champion and escape this place! That was now Gu Qingyu’s only goal. 

The warm afternoon sun shined on the trees, the relaxing sunlight scattered through the leaves. Gu Qingyu sat in the pavilion as she watched the ripples in the pond. The lotuses bloomed beautifully, their leaves swaying in the wind. Everything looked so pleasing, but Gu Qingyu felt irritated and troubled to no end.

“What can I perform…” Gu Qingyu sighed over and over again.

“Young Miss,” Xiao Qi walked over with a plate of fruits, “Have some fruits.”

“Xiao Qi, you can have them, I am not in the mood…” Gu Qingyu sighed for the N-th time, “This would be so much easier in modern times…”

“Young Miss, what is ‘modern times’?” Xiao Qi looked at Gu Qingyu in puzzlement. “Young Miss, you should really have some fruits, maybe you would feel better.”

Gu Qingyu’s eyes flashed brightly, “Xiao Qi, what did you just say?!”

“Young Miss, you should really have some fruits…” Xiao Qi repeated her reply word-for-word. 

Gu Qingyu shook her head, “Nonono... before that!”

“Young Miss, have some fruits?” Xiao Qi asked warily. 

“After that!”

“Young Miss, what is ‘modern times’?”

“Yes, that’s it!” Gu Qingyu clapped, “Thanks Xiao Qi! I know what I am going to perform!”

She ran back into her room and started her preparations.

“Young Miss, but your fruits...” Xiao Qi looked at the closed door helplessly, and decided to eat the fruits herself…


The next day.

Gu Qingyu left her room with a skip in her step, and decided to take a relaxing stroll in the courtyard. After all, the competition was just around the corner, it was imperative to rest and relax a little. But to her surprise, someone was already in the courtyard!

Dress in all blue, jet black hair flowing in the wind. An extraordinary air surrounded that person, nonchalant yet cunning. Gu Qingyu was stunned, but walked over nonetheless. She sneaked up behind him, raising her hands to surprise him (or spook), but who would have thought...

“Hey.” He turned around, “What are you doing?”

“Eh...Oops!” Gu Qingyu’s hands hung awkwardly in the air. She withdrew her hand as if nothing had happened, and changed the topic, “Uh-hum, Jia Qizhe, I just wanted to ask if you are ready?”

“Ready for what?” Jia Qizhe was confused by the sudden question.

“To take me away!” Gu Qingyu said matter-of-factly.

“You’ll have to win the competition first.” Jia Qizhe smiled.

Gu Qingyu returned the same smile, “You just wait and see!”

She sauntered off, leaving Jia Qizhe speechless…

Talent Competition.

“Haha! What a crowd!” Gu Qingyu looked at the people surrounding her. She couldn’t help but exclaim, “Such a grand display! I wonder who got so bored out of his mind that he would organise such a competition…” 

But I really have to thank him! If it weren’t for him, perhaps Jia Qizhe will never take me away? Even though he did bluff me before, I still believe he isn’t such a dishonest man.

“Now that’s not exactly nice to say, young lady!” An usher around the venue spoke out, looking displeased, “My young master organises this competition every year, to give ladies from any part of the city a chance to display their talents, rather than compete with their looks. And Young Master promised to fulfill three of the winning lady’s requests or prize her with a rare instrument, completely up to the winning lady’s needs. This is a platform for talented ladies to perform, how can you say this as the efforts of someone being bored out of his mind?”

He made a great point, which Gu Qingyu also agreed, thus she took a deep bow, “Sorry, my bad. I shouldn’t have mocked your Young Master.”

Seeing Gu Qingyu’s sincerity, the usher didn’t take it to heart, “It’s fine, Young Miss. My Young Master is forgiving and friendly, he won’t hold it against you, but you’ll need to be careful outside.” He reminded her out of goodwill.

“Yes, thank you!” Gu Qingyu bowed again.

“You’re welcome.” The usher walked away.

Gu Qingyu watched his back, and fell into deep thought, “A usher under the organizing committee is already so well-spoken, wouldn’t the man himself be even greater?”

Forget it, why should I care so much about him? It doesn’t concern me anyway!

Gu Qingyu swung her sleeves and sat down in a seat.

The talent competition was about to begin.

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