Chapter 293 “In your dreams!” (Part one)
This farce in the auction house has finally come to an end. Du Wei attempted to grasp Prince Son’s intentions on all this, but try as he may, he didn’t have a clue still.
Most importantly, this was his second day after returning to the capital, yet he still haven’t met with the Regent.
According to the rules of Roland Empire, “outer officials” like Du Wei can’t just waltz into the palace and demand an audience. Sure, Prince Son wasn’t the emperor and was only a regent, but his position wasn’t much different at this point considering the authority of the current emperor was but an empty husk.
But of course, favored characters like Du Wei tends to get special treatment and wouldn’t have to go through so much formality. With a single message to the palace, he would usually be summoned at once. Yet this time, Du Wei still hasn’t been summoned despite the fact that he sent a messenger on the day of his return!
Now the meaning behind this was worth pondering… Seems that Prince Son wishes to drag this out and not meet with him right away, but why?
Just remembering the auction today makes him unhappy. Du Wei can only speculate the delay was likely to keep him out of the loop and corner him for the event today.
With the auction coming to an end and the guests dispersed, the first thing Du Wei wanted to do was run off to ask that blasted Prince Son what the deal was. Hurrying another messenger to the palace, he impatiently waits for news of his summoning.
Mister here has spent the money and did as you wanted, if you still won’t see me then that’s too much! After all it was you who called me back to the imperial capital! To leave me hanging like this, that’s too unprofessional.
Not getting time to finish his thoughts, Zack had already come running with a report: The Temple has sent someone over.
Du Wei furrowed his brow at the news: “What is the temple coming here for, isn’t this situation not troublesome enough? What else could they want now?”
Zack then went on to explain that the temple wasn’t here for anything special, they are here for the money.
Du Wei did after all “buy” the Pope’s decree at a whopping sixteen million gold, it’s only proper he pays this sum.
His face turned even more unpleasant: “The auction only ended at noon and they are here for the money already, how can they be so fast?!” At that, he brooded for a moment before mildly replying: “Go tell the people from the Temple that no matter how rich a business was, a sum of that size wouldn’t be kept in the treasury at one time. Give me a few days to raise the fund and I’ll have it sent over in person.”
Going down to give Du Wei’s answer to the people of the Temple, Zack returned with another message that they agree. However, before departing, they stated that three days was the max and that the Duke should gather the necessary funds as soon as possible because it’s needed for the refugees in the south.
Hearing this, Du Wei felt even more annoyed in his heart.
He only came back a day and what did he get? A triumphant return ceremony that gave him some face, but can someone’s face be exchanged for real money? Then there’s the Rowling manor. That estate originally belonged to his family so it’s no different from returning it to him. Compared to what he spent today, that manor was peanuts in comparison! Just thinking about all this annoyed Du Wei to no ends.
Waiting in the shop for a while, Du Wei begins to have evil thoughts. Sneering, he told himself: if that Son doesn’t see me soon and give a good explanation, then don’t blame me for being ruthless. I’m no pushover!
His mind was still in the middle of all these dangerous thoughts when the people he sent earlier finally returned with news from the palace. According to their words, Prince Son was summoning him.
And accompanying Du Wei’s people was a court emissary. Upon meeting him, this emissary was very polite because the guy didn’t know about the auction today. To the emissary, he only knew Du Wei was the current most favored official in the empire and could definitely be called the number one personnel in the court.
Hearing that Prince Son was summoning him, Du Wei’s brow immediately pricked up. Not wasting time to chit chat with the emissary, he promptly called for a carriage and headed straight for the palace.
On the other hand, the court emissary was shocked by this for he was already a senior in the palace. According to tradition and customs, a vassal, no matter how favored they are would first return home to freshen up and change their wear to formal clothes before entering the palace.
But this Duke Tulip… Aside from keeping on his casual wear, his face was showing an obvious displeasure.
Hearing Du Wei’s order of leaving immediately, the court emissary hurries to stop him and began faltering in his words: “Your lordship…. This, isn’t this a little too hasty…”
Du Wei immediately glared at the fella for saying something like this: How can I not be anxious? I just spent sixteen million gold, who wouldn’t be!
“This … According to the rules, shouldn’t you, shouldn’t you have a change of wear?” The court emissary sighs.
Narrowing his eyes: “Do you not see the clothes on my body, or am I naked to you?”
Frightened by the remark, the court emissary hastened to remind him: “Of course not, just that…” He can see the impatience in Du Wei so he got straight to the point of etiquette. However, Du Wei didn’t let him and grew furious: “I’m a magician, whatever rules of the court doesn’t apply to me.”
At that, Du Wei went ahead and left the court emissary behind. Knowing this wasn’t his problem, the guy followed suit and knew best not to offend someone as favored as this Duke.
Coming up to the palace gates, the guards on duty easily recognized Du Wei’s carriage due to the court emissary and the Tulip banner. Making a few random checks, Du Wei was quickly let through without much hassle.
Then coming into the court, the first person to come greet him was a herald carrying the message from the regent: he’s been invited into the palace garden to meet Prince Son.
The palace garden of the Roland Empire, this place was what they called a oddity on this land. Normally in the gardens of wealthy individuals, it would be decorated with all sorts of valuable plants and gorgeous looking flowers, but this was not so here. In the garden of the emperor, the ruler of this land, his garden seemed very shabby even by a commoner’s standpoint.
It’s not for anything special, it’s because there was only one plant being grown in this garden:
This Thorn flower may be the insignia of the royal family, but in fact it didn’t look very good at all. As the name implies, the nature of this flower was a thorny plant living in harsh arid conditions. Like the thorn vines in Du Wei’s past life, small tiny white flowers would grow like dots all over the barbs. Rather than say this was beautiful, it’s better to call it a tenacious plant with strong vitality.
Pity the royal palace. In order to conform to the “Thorn Flower Family” tradition, the only flower allowed to be grown inside the palace was this plant, thus making it look depressing to the eye: what’s so good looking about all those thorns and vines?
By the time Du Wei came to the garden, he could already hear the faint laughter of children playing from afar with a group of royal guards standing by in a circular formation. So with a brief introduction, he was allowed inside.
The season was winter so there weren’t much to see in the garden, merely strips of withered thorns and the like. Despite this, a pair of children dressed in fine clothes was playing together in the garden while the maids on the side watched on nervously, afraid they might accidently run into the thorny bushes.
It was here that Du Wei finally saw Prince Son. The youngest regent of the Empire and the one responsible for him in spending sixteen million gold today. Dressed in a simple elegant white robe, this ruler of the empire was currently watching the two children playing together with a smile.
Paying close attention, Du Wei began assessing Prince Son’s appearance….
Not meeting for a year and a half, this Prince Son seems more mature and sedated. They only knew each other for a few days prior to the coup back then, but the vigor of a young man was obvious on this man despite being the same profound and mysterious person that he was. But now nearly two years had passed. This young regent seems to have retracted his temperament and grew more dignified, completely different from someone that’s not even thirty years of age yet.
Seeing Du Wei coming over from afar, Prince Son smiled and actively laughed aloud: “Du Wei, you are finally here. Hurry and let me have a look. Two years in the northwest huh, you sure grew taller.”
The tone of the remark was exceedingly affectionate, as if it were the tone of a brother who had not met for two years. Against this level of affection, Du Wei’s temper somehow couldn’t come out and seems to be subsiding somewhat.
Frustrated, Du Wei can only press down his temper and walk over. Coughing once to clear his voice: “Your highness.”
Giving Du Wei a careful look over, Prince Son’s tone grew gentler: “Du Wei … My friend, spending two years in the frigid winds of the northwest have made your skin darker then when you were in the capital.”
Du Wei smiled mildly, his language proper: “The environment in the Northwest is almost perennially cold and windy. Against such bad conditions, I would of course have to do more.”
Patting Du Wei on the shoulder, Prince Son then cast him an apologetic look. For someone like his status, it’s likely only this Regent would dare pat Du Wei so casually outside of the family elders in the clan.
“It’s been hard for you… I will remember your sacrifices.” Prince Son softly smiles and pointed to the pair of children playing over there: “Come, this here is my daughter and son.”
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