Colorful lights lit up Hundred Flowers City, and each gong rang out in unison.
Everyone within the city sensed its air of celebration. All of this was for none other than the city lord, Lin Xihe, and her upcoming wedding.
Since the moment the sun first peeked out over the horizon, the firecrackers had resounded throughout the city.
In truth, weddings were usually held at noon, but Lin Xihe’s wedding was to be held at night.
As for the firecrackers, they’d started at dawn, and continued well into the night before finally quieting down.
As night fell, starting from the city gates, shops and businesses decorated their doors with festive red lanterns and fresh roses carpeted the road to the city lord’s manor.
The citizens of Hundred Flowers City had spread the flowers. From the bottom of their hearts, they celebrated that their hard-working city lord had found a lifelong partner.
Around ten miles from Hundred Flowers City, a team of horsemen came to a stop. From their configuration, it was clear that they were musicians.
Before them, three other men sat astride large horses. Each horse’s neck carried a wreath of red flowers. The central horse was white and stood at the forefront. The other two horses were black, and stood just a few steps behind, one on each side.
“Emperor Ye,” said the man sitting atop the white horse, “I was truly pleasantly surprised and flattered when you said you wanted to my groomsman.”
The man was dressed in red, and his hair was neatly bound. Just now, he had just addressed the man on his left.
The speaker was the upcoming wedding’s bridegroom, Zhao Zizhao, and the one he had addressed was naturally Ye Zichen. As for the other groomsman sitting astride a black horse, that was his younger brother, Zhao Ziming.
Ye Zichen was dressed in black, the same color as his horse. Under the starry sky, he looked quite stern.
“General Zhao, you’re exaggerating,” said Ye Zichen, his expression blank as he stared up at the bright moon. “City Lord Lin has two bridesmaids. Amongst your guests, I’m the only one suitable to join your younger brother as one of your groomsmen. Furthermore, back when the demons invaded the Three Realms, I become quite close to you and City Lord Lin. Serving as your groomsman is the least I could do.”
“If Emperor Ye says so, then I’ll suppose I mustn’t be overly polite,” said Zhao Zizhao with a cool smile.
Then, he noticed Ye Zichen’s gaze, and couldn’t help but laugh, “Emperor Ye, why are you so fixated on the moon?”
“Don’t you think the moon is especially lovely tonight?”
The moon was bright, its light bathing the land below.
It was already late at night, but the moonlight kept the darkness at bay.
Ye Zichen remained focused on the moon. He wasn’t speaking randomly; tonight’s moon was truly much brighter and more beautiful than normal, especially given that it wasn’t a full moon.
“Is it?” said Zhao Zichao, eyebrows raised inquisitively, lips pursed, “I am but a common and unrefined person. I have no way of evaluating its beauty.”
Ye Zichen seemed not to have heard him. He simply kept staring at the moon. As he did so, he could vaguely discern two beautiful figures standing on its surface.
“We’ve finally lulled the little devil to sleep. We’ve disturbed you for the past few days. I hope you won’t take offense,” said Xiao Yumei, her arched eyebrows drooping with exhaustion. The “little devil” she mentioned earlier was naturally little Tiantian.
In truth, the pair had been in the Heavenly Court for a few days alrighty, but unlike in the Modern Realm, there was no clear sense of time passing.
That Tiantian had stubbornly insisted on playing for several days straight. Just now, she’d finally grown tired and had gone to Chang’e’s sleeping quarters to rest. Now, she slept embracing the Jade Rabbit.
It was fortunate that Xiao Yumei had Sky Immortal-level strength, or she wouldn’t have been able to endure it.
“Little kids all like to play. I naturally won’t take offense,” said Chang’e. “I’m rather fond of Tiantian. Furthermore, no one has come to my Moon Palace for a very long time. I’m absolutely thrilled that you two could come and liven the place up a bit, so why even bring up ‘taking offense’?”
Chang’e smiled gently, then looked at Xiao Yumei and said, “It’s been so long, yet this is the first time we’ve been alone together.”
“That’s true,” nodded Xiao Yumei. If you paid attention, even their manner of speaking was quite similar, peaceable yet ethereal, like talking to a fairy.
“Actually, there are some things I’ve been wanting to discuss with you, but I’ve never had the chance.”
Chang’e laughed in response. “Me too.”
Their eyes met.
As they saw their own image reflected in the other’s eyes, they felt an inexplicable throbbing deep within their hearts that threw their emotions into disarray.
Xiao Yumei looked away, and so did Chang’e.
The two of them were silent as they stared at the space below the Moon Palace.
After a long while:
Xiao Yumei and Chang’e spoke at the same time, then turned to look at each other. Their movements were in sync. When their eyes met, they opened their mouths and spoke in unison,
“You go first…..”
“You go first…..”
When they realized they’d spoken in sync again, they stared at each other briefly, then burst into laughter.
“We really do have a lot in common,” said Chang’e, hands covering her mouth as she spoke.
“We do,” said Xiao Yumei with a noncommittal nod. “The moment I first saw you, I had an extremely strange feeling in my heart. I can’t explain it, but I felt strange.”
“I was the same way,” nodded Chang’e. “That senior hinted at it. There must be some sort of relationship between us, but I can’t for the life of me figure out what it is. If we really do have a relationship, then based on appearances, we do seem rather like sisters.”
After speaking, Chang’e seemed to have thought of something as she spoke again uncertainly, “I almost forgot. How did you get here? Did Zichen bring you over? If so, why didn’t he come in with you?”
“Hm? Xiao Yumei was struck dumb. She blinked at Chang’e and said, “Didn’t you give Tiantian some sort of treasure? Something that could send us to your palace?”
Chang’e shook her head in astonishment.
“The Moon Palace is nominally part of the Heavenly Court, but it is sealed off from the outside world. There is no way of coming here directly. When you two appeared within the palace, I assumed Zichen had brought you. Is that truly not the case?”
Their eyes met. As they gazed astonishedly into each other’s eyes, they could both tell that the other’s surprise was genuine.
“Then, could it be….” Xiao Yumei started to speak but suddenly felt as if there was someone standing behind her. She turned to look and saw….
The person behind her was Tiantian, who was supposed to be sleeping.Previous Chapter Next Chapter