"The Andleen Crown!" the crown prince exclaimed in a low voice.
The commoners present didn't understand what his words meant, but the nobles recognized the significance of his words, understanding the meaning deeply. When they saw what was in Li Yuewen's hand, all of the nobles expressions changed greatly. The dazzling golden crown was inlaid with multiple types of precious jewels, exceptionally exquisite. Under the sun, it glistened.
The Andleen Crown was the favorite crown of the founding emperor of Lagark. The crown was created by the country's top ten or so craftsmen, and made out of the most valuable jewels in the empire, one of a kind because after the craftsmen finished the crown, the emperor executed them. The later generations pitied the craftsmen. As the country later fell into war, the crown was lost in the chaos, never to be seen again, but today, they saw it here! All of the nobles present, including Hua Xiuning, recognized that the crown was definitely the Andleen Crown! Because there was no ways of recreating it! Within the royal treasury, the portraits of the founding emperor all had him wearing this crown! How did the Andleen crown suddenly appear here?
"We acquired it by chance." Claire smiled faintly. "We will be taking our leave now."
"Your highness, we are taking our leave." Li Yuewen supported Claire as they turned and walked gracefully away, only leaving behind a faint, sweet scent in the air.
The crown prince nodded, his expression complex.
The nobles craned their necks, watching Claire's figure disappear dreamily. But the crown prince's gaze lingered on the crown, countless thoughts flashing through his mind.
Who was the mysterious beauty? Why would they have the Andleen crown? From her tone of voice, the valuable crown was only a trifling thing in her eyes. And her purpose was very clear. The items donated were to be auctioned as funds to start the clinic, but this was originally from the royal family. Naturally, nobody would dare to bid for it. The royal family could buy it even if they used a low amount of money. The mysterious beauty would give away such a huge favor just like that? Just how powerful was her background?
And like so, Claire, Li Yuewen, and Camille left.
Everybody was deeply stunned, unable to come back to their senses. The mysterious beauty had arrived brilliantly, like fire works, but after stunning everyone, disappeared immediately.
Hua Xiuning's face paled, then darkened, then greened. She clenched her fists tightly until her knuckles were white, nails piercing into her flesh.
The day was an important page of history.
Even after a long, long time, people would still this day, when a lady as beautiful and holy as a goddess appeared in the capital square. Her grace was matchless and her unparalleled complexion was dazzling, charming everyone. Her mysterious and luxurious dress added a deeper impression.
Inside the carriage, Claire stretched, cracking her neck, then leaned back, giving a cold humph. "Hua Xiuning, you dared to insult my mother? I will make you pay."
"But today really was awesome." Li Yuewen smirked. "Every time I think back to how angry she looks, I just want to laugh."
"You should think of our next step. Also, has the matter of the clothing store been settled yet?" Claire said quietly.
"Oh... the incoming tides of waves... " Li Yuewen face palmed, a bit dismayed, then changed her tone suddenly. "Oh wait, Claire, I never expected that you were so talented at designing clothes. When the clothing store opens, business will be booming, haha."
Claire wanted to say something, but didn't. How could she explain that the cheongsam was one of the most important aspects of Oriental culture? They would definitely not understand.
But in any case, the first step was completed successfully. Now they were truly going to start!
Night, cold and calm as water.
The palace, in the study.
"It really is the founding emperor's Andleen Crown," A dignified middle aged man inspected the Andleen Crown carefully. He was dressed in luxurious ivory clothes with golden designs. The large jasper ring sitting on his thumb revealed his identity: Lagark's emperor, Collin Kiel. Although he was now in his middle ages, you could tell that in his prime, he was very handsome.
"Yes, Father*. This is a memory crystal. You can see what happened that day." The crown prince, Albert Kiel, handed over a clear crystal.
*Literal is father king, used every time he addresses his father
The palace magician standing at the emperor's side immediately received it then infused magic in, starting the memory crystal.
As the situation in the magic crystal developed, the glint in the emperor's eyes changed accordingly.
He had never heard of such a stunning beauty before. Lotus flowers with every step? How was it possible?
The emperor set down the crown, smiling as he asked the crown prince, "Albert, what do you think?" He was most proud of his only son, similar to him in every aspect: wise, calm and collected, magnanimous, and farsighted. His exceptional military talent was even more praiseworthy. The emperor foresaw that under the leadership of his son, Lagark would enter a more prosperous and glorious era.
"This woman is very mysterious. But one thing is certain. There is a strong power backing her whose existence we are currently not aware of." The crown prince analyzed in a low voice, "First, the woman herself is very strong. The lotus flowers were a creation of her own technique. Second, she handed over the Andleen crown that has been missing for so long without any care. Third, I have never heard nor seen such attire before. And lastly, her devastating beauty. How could such a stunning beauty be unheard of? But today, she appeared, creating a commotion. She must have been raised secretly for her own protection."
"Not bad." A flash of admiration glinted in the emperor's eyes, but he paused and reverted back to a heavy tone. "Albert, your analysis is logical, but it is not enough to be sure she has a powerful backing. You know what I am most interested in, not this crown or treasures more valuable than this either."
"Yes, Father, I understand." The crown prince smiled. "Father must be thinking of the ordinary looking sword."
"Yes." The emperor nodded in approval. "Worthy of being my son. You understood immediately what I was thinking about."
"I have already sent people to investigate. The weapon was actually forged by the Li clan. Much more time, effort, and materials were spent than for an ordinary sword. Although such a weapon cannot be mass produced, a slightly inferior version could be. If our soldiers were equipped with such weapons..." The crown prince's eyes were shining.
"Albert, go. Didn't that woman say she was going to gift you another weapon? Approach her and investigate her background. She was able to donate so much at the convention. Go investigate clearly what her aim is." The emperor's gaze shifted back to the Andleen crown. There was a flash of shock in his eyes. The crown was incomparably refined, its luster even more captivating. No wonder it had been so famous. It was so valuable, but didn't seem to be anything important in the stunning beauty's eyes. Then what other treasures did the beauty have? In an instant, the emperor curiosity was piqued.
"Yes, Father. I will be taking my leave." The crown prince bowed, about to leave.
"Wait, Albert." The emperor called out, stopping the crown prince, smiling.
"Does Father have any other orders?" the crown prince asked with confusion.
"Albert, wait and see if the woman truly has a powerful backing. I think that she has the right to become your crown princess. Oh, you have always set your sights high."
"Father..." The crown prince's expression became unnatural, slightly embarrassed.
"You are my son. How could I not understand? Go." The emperor smiled.
The crown prince left with a bit of embarrassment. Only after the study door closed did the emperor rub his temples a little helplessly. "Lisa, can you come down now?"
With a whoosh, a woman in fiery red appeared before the emperor's eyes. See seemed no more than thirty with a beautiful countenance, an imposing aura about her, fiery red hair, jet black eyes staring at the emperor. Her entire being emitted grandeur.
"Lisa, don't look at me like that." The emperor rubbed his temples with a bit of a headache. Of course he knew why the fiery beauty was displeased.
"You want to hand over the right of supplying the royal army to the Li clan from our Feng clan?" THe woman slammed a fist onto the desk, causing it to shake violently. At the side, the palace magician was not surprised at all. The woman was the only person in the entire country who dared to be so rude to the emperor without any worry of being punished. She was Lagark's current minister of defense!
"Lisa, listen to me. If the Li clan can forge weapons like the one at the convention, wait, no, even half as good as that and equip our army with them, then think of how might it would be!" the emperor explained patiently, obviously a little afraid of the fiery woman.
The woman's beautiful eyes slitted, staring at the stunning beauty in the memory crystal as she humphed,
"We can consider it. But I need to meet this woman. That woman, humph, is not simple." What kind of support did the Li clan find to lean on? She wanted to see for herself.
"What do you think?" The emperor seemed to be interested in the woman's opinion.
But the woman only said, "Not simple."
"Yes, I can't see her through either. I've already sent Albert to investigate." The emperor said.
"I kno, I heard everything just now. I need to congratulate your majesty. You son has finally fallen for a woman." The woman raised a brow, teasing as she said, "At the time, you had even thought there was something wrong with your son."
"Enough. Didn't you think there was something wrong with your son too and even sent people to examine her? Oh right, how is Feng Yixuan doing right now?"
*TL: the pinyin for Lisa is Lisha or Lisuo and the author does not refer to her full name like she usually does for anyone with an ancient last name so I English-ified it to Lisa. It seems like her name is meant to sound English/European too.