The sounds of silk bamboo instruments slowly grew louder as a swirling red dress made its appearance, accompanied by the fragrance of osmanthus flowers.


The current Su Xi-er was different from her alluring display of last night. Her moves were quaint and slow, but every sway of her body was elegant. She perfectly kept with the rhythm of the music, slowly drawing her audience deeper into her spell.


Ning Lianchen's gaze was fixated on the osmanthus branch. He could almost make out its faint fragrance being carried on the wind.


He saw his Imperial Elder Sister's shadow during the Jinghong Dance yesterday, and now she was presenting the Bending Branch Dance...


Ning Lianchen didn't even blink his eyes. Imperial Sister once told me, "This is called the Bending Branch Dance. The Jinghong Dance is to be performed during the state banquet, but I will only present the Bending Branch Dance to my closest kin." Yun Ruofeng had also been present at that time.


At this thought, Ning Lianchen swiftly turned to look at Yun Ruofeng. Sure enough, there was a crack in the latter's usual calm countenance. His eyes were filled with disbelief as his hands remained tightly clenched on top of his thighs. The rest of his body had gone stiff.


Yun Ruofeng's heart was beating in his throat. Why does Su Xi-er know the Bending Branch Dance! Why is she holding an osmanthus flower branch as well?!


"Prince Yun…" Ning Lianchen lowered his voice, his eyes deep with meaning. "Say, do you think it’s possible for Imperial Elder Sister to be back from the dead?" There was a tinge of almost inscrutable delight in his voice. If the woman on the floating platform is indeed Imperial Elder Sister...


Yun Ruofeng's expression changed yet again as he stared straight at the woman dancing on the floating platform. He tried his best to ignore Ning Lianchen, but his eyes couldn’t help but narrow as he slowly relaxed his fists. Resurrection after death is nothing but a fantasy. Death is death, and the occult is just a sham!


"What if Imperial Elder Sister is Su Xi-er, and she never died in the first place..."


Yun Ruofeng interrupted Ning Lianchen, and taking into consideration that they were surrounded by guests, Yun Ruofeng could only speak quietly. "Your Majesty, you should be thinking logically; how can you believe in the occult? If this continues, how can this Prince trust you with Nanzhao in the future?"


Ning Lianchen snickered softly, "Prince Yun, you thought of entrusting this Emperor with state affairs? Don't you always like to be in total control? If not for your greed for power, why would you kill Imperial Elder Sister?”


"Enough!" Yun Ruofeng's voice was stained with displeasure, his gentle aura completely dissipated. However, he managed to restrain himself after noticing the strange look in Pei Qianhao’s eyes.


In the end, Yun Ruofeng slowed down his speech and softly replied, "This Prince doesn't want to see Your Majesty going astray. If you miss your Imperial Elder Sister so much, this Prince shall send you to the Imperial Maseoulem. You can then kneel before the late Emperor of Nanzhao for three months and reflect on your actions while showing your filial piety."


"Prince Yun is sure heartless. If this Emperor were to be punished for missing my Imperial Elder Sister then I should be sent to kneel before my her grave instead of the Imperial Maseoulem. Yet, where is her grave?" Though Ning Lianchen spoke in a soft whisper, but he enunciated each word clearly. Every word was like a stone striking Yun Ruofeng’s chest.


Ning Rulan's grave - She was not buried in the Imperial Maseoulem. Only Yun Ruofeng knew how Ning Rulan's corpse was dealt with, as well as where it was buried.


During their conversation, Su Xi-er had finished her dance and curtsied towards the guests from other nations. She then descended from the floating platform with Eunuch Fu and made her way towards the observation deck.


Chu Linglong was the first to clap and repeatedly sing his praises, "This dance has broadened the horizons of this Crown Prince. Even the previous Eldest Imperial Princess didn’t show such a dance. That said, this Crown Prince has some doubts. Although this was different from the Jinghong dance performed at last night’s banquet, why do I feel like the figures of the performers look strikingly similar?"

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Rakumon's Thoughts

Translation: Cosy

TLC: Rakumon


Rakumon: Hoho, is the cat gonna be let out of the bag XD