The Rise of Phoenixes - Chapter 249

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Chapter 249: Chapter 249

On the Sixteenth of February in the Sixteenth Year of Chang Xi, the Shunyi King and his Queen arrived at King’s Court. The anxious members of the Irgi Tribe, worried since the tragic death of their Old King, now welcomed their new King and his great defeat of the Golden Roc Tribe. The tribespeople sang with joy and danced with glee.

Feng Zhiwei rode alongside Helian Zheng and watched the beautiful girls sing and laugh and dance in their colorful dresses by the road as the more adventurous broke through the circle of guards to toss perfumed cloth and waistbands into Helian Zheng’s arms. Feng Zhiwei smiled, commenting: “Our great King is very popular.”

“I am also popular.” Mudan Hua called out competitively, waving at the crowds as she yelled shrilly: “Irgi’s pretty boys, I your Queen am finally free! Come chase me…”

A shower of stinky boots and ripped socks flew over at her from the hands of pretty boys and the wives of pretty boys.

Feng Zhiwei glanced over sympathetically, but the Queen Dowager showed no embarrassment as she continued: “Men are so thin skinned, deep down they all want me, I know.”

Truly, compared to the great Queen, everyone below heaven was thin skinned.

The nursing father, Young Master Gu, also received quite a few sachets and waistbands. His exquisite and bright Central Plains robes alongside his soft and ethereal veil lent him a delicate, elegant beauty alongside his already deadly jade-smooth skin.

Young Master Gu examined the fragrant things seriously and finally deduced that they were gifts for his Gu Zhixiao and accommodatingly hung them around Gu Zhixiao’s little blanket. As the unfortunate child immediately began sneezing, Hua Qiong quickly intervened and plucked all the cloths and bags away, much to the fury of the glaring steppe beauties.

Helian Zheng cheerfully leaned over to speak to Feng Zhiwei when a laughing voice called out.

“Ah Ja[1]!”

A gold purple whirlwind flew towards Helian Zheng, leaping through the air as light as a feather and twisting skillfully mid jump before gently landing on Helian Zheng’s horse. The woman’s dress fanned out in the air like a blossoming flower, and in the blink of an eye she was perched behind Helian Zheng, hugging his waist.

With her face pressed against Helian Zheng’s back, she called out joyfully: “You’re finally back!”

The guards all watched with smiles as the woman broke through their circle and leapt towards their King. Around them, the various commanders burst into applause at the skillful display and the watching women called out with cheers.

Helian Zheng half turned, calling out happily: “Aunt Medora, you’re here!”

“What aunt! Sounds so bad!” Medora smile, reaching up and examining Helian Zheng’s face. “Let me look at my Ah Ja. You’re so skinny!”

“Ah Ja this Ah Ja that. That is what sounds bad!” Helian Zheng laughed. “I’m not skinny, I’m more fit.”

“You are my Ah Ja, mine.” Medora repeated, cocking an eyebrow as she smirked at the young King. “I’ve called you this since you were three, and you want me to change that today?”

“Alright, alright, only you.” Helian Zheng replied obligingly, his already happy mood reaching another pitch at the sight of this women. His spirit soared.

The two chattered pleasantly, ignoring Feng Zhiwei. The new Queen was perfectly happy in her quiet bubble and observed the happy pair with great interest. She could clearly feel that this aunt of Helian Zheng’s was somewhat dissatisfied with her, and throughout her whole appearance had steadfastly ignored Feng Zhiwei.

But Helian Zheng could never forget and he grasped Medora’s sleeve, turning proudly to Feng Zhiwei as he spoke: “Medora, this is my Queen, the Central Plains’ Sheng Ying Princess.”

Medora finally turned to face her.

The woman’s features were elegant and heroic, with sharp angles and gentle brows. At first glance, she seemed quite similar to Hua Qiong, but on a deeper examination, her beauty was clearly of a different sort. While Hua Qiong gave off a natural aura of vast oceans and wide seas, this stranger seemed to cut the air like craggy cliffs. She immediately locked gazes with Feng Zhiwei, her eyes sharp as knives.

She stared burning holes through Feng Zhiwei’s face, not sparing any effort to mask her hostility as she examined the new queen. The two woman faced off silently and the awkward and intense moment stretched on and on. Helian Zheng looked from one woman to the other and his face fell, but just as he was opening his mouth to speak, Medora flicked her eyes away and smirked somewhat arrogantly, her voice placid as she said: “You’re the Queen? How uncourteous.”

No one could say whether she was speaking of herself or Feng Zhiwei.

“En.” Feng Zhiwei inclined her head a touch, smiling in reply. “You are quite discourteous. You should dismount and pay your respects, but since you are Helian Zheng’s aunt and this Queen respects the elderly, we won’t stand on ceremony.”

“You…” Medora began, her face paling with anger. Helian Zheng quickly intervened, smiling and lifting Medora by the waist and setting her down on the ground before loudly calling out:

“Aunt Medora, we must find some time to catch up. We are wanted up ahead.”

With that, the brave King immediately spurred his horse and fled. Feng Zhiwei swiftly followed, glancing back at the resentful woman standing in the growing cloud of dust and she smiled mirthlessly as she said: “You really spare no tenderness for the fair maiden.”

“No, I saved her life.” Helian Zheng sniffed. “Fighting you is simply courting death.”

“Your auntie…” Feng Zhiwei replied casually. “Not blood related?”

“Of course not.” Helian Zheng laughed as he replied. “When I was two, Da Yue attacked. Father King was marching out to battle and Mudan Hua was recovering from childbirth, and Medora just happened to be the Queen’s maid. A younger cousin of Father King’s was colluding to kidnap me and sell me to the Central Plains, and Medora happened to discover this plot and risked her life to save me. She hid me among the haystacks and leapt into an icy lake. The cousin assumed that she and I had both died in the winter waters and gave up the plot, and although Medora survived, she took gravely ill. To show her gratitude, Mudan Hua took her in as a younger sister and has treated her well.”

Truly, quite well. The maid acted as if she were the dowager queen.

“Mudan Hua.” Feng Zhiwei called out to her mother-in-law, slowing her horse. “Do you know that you’ve offended someone?”

“You’re the one who’s offended someone.” Liu Mudan rolled her eyes. She had been right behind them the entire time and had seen everything.

Feng Zhiwei smiled silently and after a while Mudan Hua sighed and confessed, whispering quietly: “You slippery child… yes, I took her in as my sister intentionally, even knowing that was not what she wanted, but… it was impossible! Medora suffered in that lake and can never have children!”

Feng Zhiwei thought quietly, unease growing in her heart as she thought back to the woman’s arrogance and anger. Finally, she asked: “How old is she?”

[1] 阿札 Ja = Jadran; Ah = Ah.

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