Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
The next day, Luo XiaoLou appeared in the lounge of the palace with an unnatural pallor, and the smiling faces of the people in the palace made him feel extremely uncomfortable.
A cup of black tea appeared at Luo XiaoLou’s hand, and Mr. Butler curtsied slightly and said, “Your Highness, two of your relatives have been here during your trip with His Highness…”
Mn, stupid trip! But relatives?
Luo XiaoLou frowned and asked, “Is it the Luo family?”
Now, because of Luo ShaoTian, Luo XiaoLou’s dislike of the Luo family diminished a lot. The Luo family was understandably looking for him, and he should really try to settle the animosity and so on.
“No, you misunderstood, it’s the Jin family.” Mr. Butler said.
Luo XiaoLou was bewildered, and by the time he thought of Ms. Jin, it was already ten seconds later.
Observing Luo XiaoLou’s reaction carefully, Mr. Butler quickly concluded that Luo XiaoLou was not at all familiar with the two relatives who had suddenly appeared, so he continued reassuringly, “Unfortunately, the two young masters of the Jin family had already left on a trip a few days ago because they couldn’t wait for your return.”
Despite his expressed regret, Mr. Butler’s tone had a subtle lightness to it. He did not want His Highness, Prince Consort to be close to two people who did not care about his well-being and were only concerned about their inheritance.
Yuan Xi’s eyes, which had been angry, quickly calmed when he heard that it was the Jin family. He waved his hand, ordering without consulting Luo XiaoLou, “If they come back later, talk to me directly.”
Luo XiaoLou’s closest relative now was him, and if others wanted to be his relatives, they had to satisfy him first.
Luo XiaoLou gazed at Yuan Xi without saying anything.
After so many years in the Yuan family, the butler had already gotten used to the fact that the people in charge of the family were the wives. His Highness, Yuan Xi and His Majesty, Yuan Lie were similar not only in looks, but also in their personalities, and even in the rare kind of devoted and pure affection they had for their wives.
Yuan Che and Feng JiaLing had not yet arrived, but Yuan Che was said to be recovering very well.
Luo XiaoLou looked at Yuan Xi and said, “Tomorrow, I will go to my master’s place, and meet Tian Li and Yates.”
Yuan Xi nodded, “I’ll go with you. I have to go to Planet Anse as well.”
Luo XiaoLou hesitated for a couple seconds and asked carefully, “Isn’t the territorial issue the most important issue for a country? Why aren’t you dealing with it?”
Yuan Xi took a sip of tea, “Are you talking about Yue Shang’s problem?” His eyes were cold and he smiled, “My mother and I were already aware of this, and even my father could not have been unaware that there was a force that had been plotting to revive the old Federation. He just liked Yue Shang so much that he thought he was not involved. But now that the facts are in front of him, I think my father probably won’t expect anything from him anymore. As for the territorial issues you mentioned, how could they be neglected?”
Luo XiaoLou was surprised and said, “Since they have been planning for a long time, it is impossible that they are not well organized. They will definitely try their best to recruit the top management of those planets in important geographical locations.”
“Of course they will pull together, even by all means. But they won’t succeed because Mother stayed here,” Yuan Xi explained, with great gentleness. Yuan Xi’s lips curled up and he continued calmly, “Several important planets were persuaded by the top brass, but the day before they were to make their decision, Mother had the troops destroyed, and the top brass replaced, with twice as many troops left behind. I heard that the newly formed Federation was furious about this, and even made accusations against the Empire.”
Luo XiaoLou was stunned. All the people were replaced! Your Majesty, Feng JiaLing, what great courage and magnanimity!
“As for the other planets, during the last war, they came over of their own accord and pleaded to join the Empire. But after the empire protected them and gave them a comfortable life for more than ten years, those people were not grateful, but were always concerned about their own interests. They refused to give up and kept operating in the dark. My father and mother have long been fed up with them, and likely want to take advantage of this incident to reshuffle the cards.”
Luo XiaoLou was stunned. So they already knew. While relieved, he was still a little worried that an interstellar war might break out. And there was still the unresolved issue of the exotic beast and the third party entity.
While they were talking, someone outside suddenly called out, “His Majesty will arrive at the palace in five minutes! Quickly go and report to the Queen.”
Yuan Xi went out with Luo XiaoLou, and on his way, he leaned down to Luo XiaoLou’s ear and reassured, “Don’t worry, if we don’t say anything, my brother won’t tell anyone who you are.”
Luo XiaoLou’s steps faltered. He never thought that Yuan Xi would notice his uneasiness.
Luo XiaoLou’s heart warmed up, and he felt that all the unwelcome pressure had been relieved.
Ever since the moment Yuan Xi had chased him into the gray hole, he had decided that no matter what happened, he would try to stay with him. Besides, they were married. He liked Yuan Xi and there were many things that they would have to face together.
The two of them followed Feng JiaLing and Yuan Che, and five minutes later they were greeted by Yuan Lie, who was still incredibly dominant, as he walked away from the ship without any expression on his face.
Feng JiaLing looked on with a smile on his face, while Yuan Che took a step forward and called out, “Father.”
For some reason, the news of Yuan Che’s return had not been announced, and the people of the Empire only knew that His Highness Yuan Xi had returned with the Prince Consort. Yuan Lie, who had been dozens of stars away, also had no news – so now he was in for a big surprise.
The moment Yuan Lie saw Yuan Che, he suddenly stopped in his tracks. Then Yuan Lie pulled Feng JiaLing out from behind Yuan Che and embraced both of them tightly.
“Little Che, it must be God’s gift to me to see you standing in front of me,” Yuan Lie whispered. It had always been his biggest regret that he did not protect Yuan Che. His first son, the eldest son who looked exactly like Feng JiaLing, had always been Yuan Lie’s favorite son.
While Feng JiaLing didn’t say anything, Yuan Che reached back to embrace his father and whispered, “Father, I have no more regrets after seeing you, mother, Yuan Xi and Little Nuo again.”
As he said this, Yuan Lie lowered his eyes. No more regrets…?
“What are you talking about? Now that you’re back, live well!” Yuan Lie glared at him and reprimanded him, but because he was reluctant to do so, his voice was not stern at all, unlike when he spoke to Yuan Xi, Yuan Nuo and the others.
When he saw Luo XiaoLou, his eyes narrowed slightly and he said, “I’m glad you two still remembered to come back from your honeymoon.”
Yuan Xi glared at his father angrily. When did he go on his honeymoon? He hasn’t spent a day relaxing at all! He must make up for it! There is no doubt about it.
Someone behind them laughed softly at the apparently inferior father-son relationship between Yuan Lie and Yuan Xi, but there was no way around it. Yuan Lie had doted on Yuan Che since he was a child, while Feng JiaLing had always shown a warmth to Yuan Xi that made even Yuan Lie jealous.
Both of them clearly preferred the other son, but in reality, the bond between parents and sons was equally deep.
Yuan Lie and Feng JiaLing led them into the lobby, and shortly afterwards, Yuan Nuo rushed over. Yuan Lie’s face was visibly happy because of Yuan Che’s return.
Only when everyone was present did the butler say, “Your Majesty, it’s time for lunch.”
Yuan Lie nodded, and the four juniors went into the dining area first, while Yuan Lie and Feng JiaLing left for ten minutes. When they returned Yuan Lie had already changed his clothes.
“I think you all know the situation now,” Yuan Lie said shortly after lunch began.
“Of course, we should know about it,” Yuan Xi said, as he helped Luo XiaoLou put his favorite dishes into a bowl, occasionally mixing in some fish, shrimp, and other items he liked.
Yuan Lie stared at his youngest son’s behavior and averted his eyes with resentment. It’s true that my older son is more attractive, both in looks and personality.
“This situation is to be expected, and there’s nothing I can’t figure out. As for Yue Shang, everyone has his own will, and since it’s his own idea, he can leave if he wants to.” Yuan Lie stated indifferently, “I have nothing to think about,” Yuan Lie added faintly, with an obvious coldness in his face.
After raising his adopted son for more than ten years, it was false to say that he had no feelings for him, but no matter how close he was, he was not as close as his own sons. He liked Yue Shang to a large extent because Yue Shang’s parents disappeared at the same time as Yuan Che, and when he saw Yue Shang, he thought of his own eldest son, and that’s why he invested so much emotion in him.
Moreover, he was the king of the empire, and there was no greater emotion than his love of the empire, except for his closest relatives.
“So how was the situation at the border you went to inspect?” Yuan Xi asked.
Yuan Lie was silent for a couple seconds before admitting, “I had the people of several surrounding planets evacuated.”
As soon as that was said, everyone at the table fell silent. Feng JiaLing frowned, and Yuan Xi asked, “Is it that serious?”
All knew that the evacuation of a planet’s population would not be just for show.
“Let’s see what happens first. I hope my order was wrong,” said Yuan Lie, “For the next few days, Yuan Xi and Xiao Nuo will go to the military headquarters more often. As for Luo XiaoLou, pay more attention to your safety.”
Luo XiaoLou was flattered by Yuan Lie’s words of concern. It seemed that his father, who was just as awkward as Yuan Xi, had accepted him.
After lunch, Yuan Lie went to rest, having been busy for more than a month.
Yuan Xi and Yuan Nuo went to the military headquarters, while Yuan Che went to arrange accommodations and work schedules for the people who followed him back from the gray hole, who would be assigned as guards. Luo XiaoLou went to his and Yuan Xi’s room, where Mr. Butler, at Yuan Xi’s request, had put together a studio for Luo XiaoLou next to their room.
Luo XiaoLou intended to start designing Yuan Xi’s Tier 10 mecha, but instead of the advanced materials, he took out the design of the bio-mecha that 125 had given him and spent the afternoon studying it.
While in the gray hole, he had studied it, and Luo XiaoLou had also considered some ways to integrate designs from the Energy Sword into the bio-mecha.
After an afternoon, Luo XiaoLou contacted Master Maku of the Gray Galaxy, and they had a long conversation. After the communication ended, Luo XiaoLou again frowned at the drawing for a long time, until he finally determined what he intended to do, and he finally put it down.
The next day, Luo XiaoLou and Yuan Xi went to Planet Anse, where Yuan Xi sent Luo XiaoLou to Kane first and didn’t leave until he watched the man walk in.
Luo XiaoLou went up to see Master Yan, where he was first caught and scolded. Master Yan couldn’t understand how Luo XiaoLou could run into a gray hole.
When he thought of how the old man had worked so hard for a month to refit the battleship, Luo XiaoLou could only feel his heart warm at the scolding. His own grandfather was no better than that to him.
After Master Yan finished scolding him, he asked Luo XiaoLou to describe the situation inside the gray hole.
When Luo XiaoLou talked about the energy sword, Master Yan’s eyes lit up. Then Luo XiaoLou smartly took out a piece of Scorching Shallow, and a high-grade energy stone and put them on the old man’s desk. Finally, Luo XiaoLou took out a small box and said, “Master, this is a surprise for you.”
Master Yan opened the box with a puzzled expression, then turned pale, carefully closed the lid, laughed, and slapped Luo XiaoLou hard, “You kid, you’re really a fool! You can actually cultivate the Holy Vine in the gray hole!”
After a few more questions, Master Yan, who obviously had something to do, kicked Luo XiaoLou out of the office and pressed a button on the wall, where the face of a proud old man appeared.
Luo XiaoLou went downstairs again to talk to Shen Yuan and deliver the gray hole specialties before leaving Kane, where he had already told Tian Li and Yates to come pick him up. But Luo XiaoLou was obviously early, because instead of Tian Li and Yates, a group of journalists were waiting for him.
It was too late for Luo XiaoLou to walk back, and a reporter snapped, “Prince Consort, is it true that you were abducted when you disappeared for a month?”
Another shouted, “Prince Consort, the Federation Roadshow asks if you remember the challenge you were asked to participate in with Yu Pei about mecha making? Are you admitting defeat by delaying to mention this now that you have returned?”
“Your Highness Prince Consort, what do you think about the Federation and the Empire, and whether or not the Empire should give the Federation a fair shake?”
Luo XiaoLou did not turn away from the reporters who were scrambling to ask questions below, nor did he try to push past them. Kane’s security personnel had already rushed over, and some plainclothes guards belonging to the palace, who were already outside, also stopped the group of journalists who suddenly appeared.
But if Luo XiaoLou didn’t reply now, there would soon be comments that the Empire was afraid of the new Federation! At this moment, a number of cameras were pointing directly at Luo XiaoLou.
And Tian Li, finally driving the hover car, squeezed in and shouted, “Luo XiaoLou, come here!”
Luo XiaoLou walked past, and before he got into the car, he turned slowly to look at the reporters, who were clearly following him.
For a moment, the reporters outside Kane’s gates, scrambling to ask questions or be sarcastic, were all quiet, their eyes ecstatic.
Luo XiaoLou’s quiet voice rang out across the square, “The month I was away was a private matter, and I have the right not to answer it. As for the second question, I remember that before, when we were being urged to have a match between the two of us, Prince Yu Pei himself mentioned one thing: I had beaten him, so he wanted to try again. I have only one answer to this statement: If I beat him the first time, I can beat him the second time. The results of the contest will be out soon, and there will be surprises.
“As for the last question, the fairness between the Empire and Federation, why don’t you all ask His Majesty Yuan Lie and the current Federation Prime Minister, Yue Shang? I believe they will give you the answer you want more. All I can say is that I love the empire, and she has given me many days of peace. In the future, she will continue to give me protection. All I can do for her in return, is to protect her in her time of need, and not renege.”