By now, Pei Qianhao had already left the stone pavilion and headed to the flower pergola in the backyard. The five flower growers stood in a line as they waited for Prince Hao to make a final decision.
Su Xi-er stood by the side and bowed. "Prince Hao, please pick from the remaining five people." In the last two rounds of selection, she had deliberately dropped some of the most experienced flower growers in order to increase Feng Changqing's chances of being selected.
Pei Qianhao's eyes scanned the five of them before his gaze finally landed on Feng Changqing; more specifically, upon the veil that he wore. "Why are you wearing a veil?" Pei Qianhao didn't test him about floriculture, but instead went straight to asking him about his veil.
Feng Changqing's hoarse voice sounded. "Replying to Prince Hao, this peasant's face was injured when I was young, ruining my appearance. This peasant is afraid that I would be an eyesore to Prince Hao if I remove my veil."
"This Prince only cares about your ability in cultivating and growing Lingrui flowers. Remove your veil."
Feng Changqing acknowledged the order and was about to lift his hand to remove his veil when Su Xi-er walked to Pei Qianhao's side and interrupted. "Prince Hao, you already said that the only thing that matters is his skill in cultivating Lingrui flowers. Despite this, why are you still fixated on his veil?"
"Can’t this Prince just find it strange?" Pei Qianhao replied coldly, his gaze remaining on Feng Changqing, as if ordering the latter again to remove his veil.
Without any change in expression, Feng Changqing simply removed the veil. His scarred appearance was horrifying in broad daylight, causing the four other flower growers to stumble back in fear. Every scar ran deep, making Feng Changqing look like a ghost.
Su Xi-er could see the fear and contempt in the eyes of the four flower growers. Despite this, Feng Changqing remained expressionless, as if he had long grown numb to such reactions.
Feng Changqing continued to use a hoarse voice so that Pei Qianhao wouldn’t grow suspicious. "Prince Hao, the villagers all said that this face of mine is the face of a ghost, and they were terrified upon seeing it, which is why this peasant wears a veil."
Pei Qianhao carefully studied the scars on Feng Changqing's face, his eyes filled with suspicion. "This Prince won't believe you so easily. Judging from their colour, the scars on your face were only inflicted a year ago at most. However, you claim that they are from your childhood."
Feng Changqing's eyebrows curved up. Prince Hao does have a keen sense of observation. He can see through my lies just by the colour of the scars.
Hence, Feng Changqing simply fell on his knees. "Everyone has their past, and these scars are a reflection of mine. Regardless of when they were inflicted, they are part of this peasant’s life. It was not this peasant’s intention to deceive Prince Hao just now.
Su Xi-er noticed the doubt and interest in Pei Qianhao's eyes. She took a step back and kept quiet. Pei Qianhao will only get more suspicious if I speak now.
"Past events are like passing clouds; everyone has their own story. What I am interested in right now is your skills." Pei Qianhao then beckoned an imperial guard over. "Bring the few pots of withered Lingrui flowers out."
"This subordinate obeys the order." The guard disappeared for a few minutes before coming back with five pots of withered Lingrui flowers, setting one in front of each candidate.
At this point in time, Feng Changqing had already put his veil back on.
"The person who can most accurately determine the root cause for the withering of these Lingrui flowers in the time it takes to burn an incense will follow this Prince back to Beimin tomorrow afternoon.”Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Haha looks like Feng Changqing's chances are gonna be very high then XD