“It’s really an early reunion,” Landbis quickly calmed down and showed a light smile, “I know that the identity of the messenger is a bit abrupt and will arouse suspicion… But, I’m curious as to why you see through it at a glance that it is me? My transformation technique is taught by Old Dean Carlisle. Even Saint powerhouse may not be able to see through it. Don’t tell me that the weak boy has the strength of Saint or even surpassed Saint?”
“I hope your guess… or your blessing will come true, but unfortunately, the truth is that I was almost killed by that damn guy with a scroll. Then, I was unfortunately severely injured by the aftermath of some important sir.” Chen Rui pointed to his own haggard face and sighed, “I’ll tell you the truth. The reason I saw through you was because of a special ability I got. You can think of it as a mechanic’s talent for certain areas. This kind of talent can’t completely see through the cover of transformation technique. The most important thing is that you give me a sense of familiarity. I seem to see a person who likes to read quietly in the library, but sometimes she would make some unexpected little pranks. That… little girl.”
Most of Arthur’s memory fragments were now complete. Landbis was his elementary school junior at Starlight College back then. As the royal nobles of the 2 empires, the 2 had a lot of intersections. Although their friendship was ordinary, they were considered old acquaintances.
The last sentence made Landbis’ eyes swept over the nostalgic expression, then she smiled, “I don’t think the talent you call ‘mechanic’ fits all mechanics, right? Sir Grand Master Arthur.”
Chen Rui also smiled as he took out a bottle of wine and 2 glasses. He poured her a glass of wine, and raised his glass, “Every life is different. Grand master is actually just a fluke, the biggest fluke in 7 years.”
“7 years. The little girl who didn’t know anything back then is almost 20 years old, and the boy who was infatuated with Teacher Veronica has become the current famous grand master.” Landbis took the wine glass, lightly took a small sip of wine and looked up at him, “Can you tell me what happened in the 7 years you disappeared?”
Chen Rui said lightly, “It’s just a struggle to survive in an unfamiliar place. Fortunately, I have survived until now.”
“So, 7 years later, you’re back to everyone’s vision again?”
“Why? Shouldn’t I?” Chen Rui looked at Landbis with a smile. Is she finally going to get to the point?
“There’s no should or shouldn’t,” Landbis shook her head while putting down the glass, “I just feel a little bit emotional. The plan can’t keep up with the changes.”
Chen Rui frowned deliberately, “Princess Royal Highness means… my appearance sabotaged 1 of your plans?”
“Can I speak openly?”
“Of course.” Chen Rui laughed, “I believe you are not here just to catch up with me or meet in advance.”
Landbis nodded slightly, “When I was studying in college, I was just an ignorant little girl. Just like what you said, I like to read quietly in the library and pranked people from time to time. I have also once anticipated love as mentioned in the books, but I didn’t think much about my life or plan at all. After the empire announced my marriage to you, my life was suddenly decided like this. A little girl was going to marry a man who definitely didn’t love her before she even understood what love was. You… can’t understand that feeling.”
“Perhaps you have a different feeling in your heart because the woman you are infatuated with ended up marrying someone else.” Landbis smiled mockingly, “Actually, as the princess of the Blue Glory Empire, political marriage is actually inevitable. To be honest, I don’t have any bad feelings for you. Maybe it’s better to marry you than to marry those nasty guys. Just when I had accepted my fate, as my fiancé, you disappeared, and this disappearance is 7 years. In the past 7 years, I have experienced a lot. If it wasn’t for the huge pressure exerted by your royal father, I would have been ‘married’ again and again in the whirlpool of interests just like a piece of goods! As long as you don’t appear or Lex the Great does not let it go, I can only hold on to the title of ‘fiancee’ and be a ‘living widow’ until the end of my life! Countless rumors, glares, conspiracies… almost defeated me. I’m not reconciled. I’m not willing to accept such a fate!”
Chen Rui listened silently, feeling the mood swings of Landbis. After a while, he asked, “So, you have your own plan?”
“Yes, I swear to control my own life! I won’t let others control my own destiny again!” Landbis sneered, “Just when I got back on my feet, re-planned my life, and moved forward step by step according to my plan, you suddenly appeared after 7 years of disappearance!”
“I understand that my appearance, especially the timing, was a mistake.” Chen Rui stood up, took a few steps and sighed.
For Landbis, the ‘Arthur’ who appeared now had indeed become redundant. “I admit that upon reappearing, you are better than I imagined. A lord with extraordinary means, a world-famous grand master, and also a very talented person. You are also a high potential inheritor of the next great emperor of the Dragon Bright Empire – but, this does not mean that I will give up my ambition and pursuit to be an accessory, a vase or even a good, and hand over my life to someone other than myself! Absolutely not!”
Chen Rui looked at Landbis’ emotional look and nodded, “I understand your purpose today.”
“Sorry, I’ve lost my temper.” Landbis took a sip of wine, took a few deep breaths, and her mood returned to normal. Her eyes flashed a different expression, “You are actually so calm? The calmness is beyond my expectations. It seems that you really have changed a lot.”
“Time and circumstances can change many things; same with you.” Chen Rui said indifferently, “I want to ask you formally, are you really unwilling to accept this marriage?”
“You should know the answer.” Landbis raised her eyebrows, looked at Chen Rui for a while, and asked back, “Can I assume this question as a good start to solve the problem?”
“I just want to solemnly clarify your attitude.”
“I don’t want to!” Landbis answered affirmatively.
This expected answer made Chen Rui take a deep breath and nodded slowly. In fact, Landbis didn’t know that the ‘fiance’ in front of her was the person she wanted to recruit previously. He understood her pursuit and persistence better than she imagined.
“So, what do you want me to do?”
Landbis, who had thought that the other party would refuse, was taken aback. After preparing all kinds of rhetoric, she couldn’t use them. She said in surprise, “You… agreed?”
“Why object?” Chen Rui spread his hands, “Even if I don’t agree, you have many plan Bs, right? I don’t believe you will come here without any preparation or certainty. The most important thing is that marriage is very important to me. It’s not just a political bargaining chip, it’s a real life event involving ’emotion’, ‘responsibility’ and ‘commitment’… This does not include ‘reluctance’.”
Landbis was silent for a moment, then she suddenly showed a moving smile, “This kind of words is a bit like ‘Arthur’ from the beginning. It seems that your 2 female guardians have real happiness that many women envy. Maybe Teacher Veronica will also have a good ending? “
“Hope so.” Chen Rui was reluctant to say more on this issue, “There is no such thing as reaping without sowing. Now that we have reached a consensus, we can settle down and talk about a deal really openly and honestly.”
Landbis nodded, “What do you want?”
Chen Rui sat down without going around in circles and said what he wanted directly, “Holy Grail.”
Landbis was shocked with a gleaming light in her beautiful eyes. She stared at Chen Rui’s eyes tightly. This is actually the condition… ‘Arthur’ came to the Blue Glory Empire this time to ‘escort the bride’. He obviously came here with ill intention!
Before coming here, she had always had preconceived notions about how to convince Arthur to give up the marriage, and she was prepared for all kinds of difficulties. But now she suddenly found out that the other party actually came here for purposes other than marriage, so her mood suddenly became complicated.
“No wonder that Cardinal Gralin will visit the capital at this time…” Landbis suddenly figured out a lot of things and blurted out, “Are you from the Holy Church?”
Chen Rui praised Landbis’ reaction speed. In fact, Gralin visiting the Blue Glory Empire was indeed the plan that Raphael had negotiated when he came to the Golden Estate. The purpose was to conspire against the Holy Grail. Gralin was quite accurate in timing, but the Sir Cardinal was really taken aback when ‘Arthur’ was accidentally ‘wounded’ in Jaqda City.
“Why do you think I’m from the church?”
“I got intel that the magic game technology that has swept the world is probably from the Dragon Valley. Although I don’t know if this intel is accurate, the magic game equipment is manufactured by the Golden Estate, and the promotion is implemented by the church. This is known to everyone. You must have a close interest relationship with the church. And after you disappeared for 7 years, the first time you appeared was accompanied by Sir Gralin, so I have every reason to guess that you are a member of the church. Even your disappearance for 7 years is very likely to be related to the church.”
“Commendable reasoning.” Especially the last sentence, which made Chen Rui smile mysteriously, “But the focus of our discussion seems to be shifted. Let’s go back to the Holy Grail.”
“This condition is impossible! Don’t you feel like you are taking it for granted?” Landbis shook her head resolutely, “Holy Grail is the highest holy relic of the empire. I just held the title of a princess, in which the value cannot be compared with the Holy Grail at all!”
“You’re wrong, the Holy Grail is just a dead thing no matter how powerful it is. In my opinion, your value is far more than the Holy Grail.” Chen Rui smiled, “Landbis. Sherbert, one of the most outstanding younger generations in the Sherbert Royal Family. Several princes of Klongter the Great are not incompetent. The only one who can barely compete with you is Second Prince Victor. You have gathered nearly 30% of the voice of the congress, and the elf tribe has a very good impression of you. There are also a lot of Holy Sanctuary powerhouses supporting you secretly and implicitly. The talent and strength of your talents alone are not trivial. For example, Shueisha, the small group of Starlight College. If I insist on marrying you, except for some loyalists, these powers will be completely out of your grasp, right? In fact, as far as I know, after the Blue Glory Empire announced the marriage, your power has been affected quite a bit.”
“It seems that you know a lot about me.” The light in Landbis’s eyes was fleeting, and what ‘Arthur’ just said was not only her strength in the light, especially ‘Shueisha’ that was her secret weapon. He just revealed them in 1 sentence.
“Just some necessary knowledge about my fiancée… Don’t tell me, you don’t know anything about my movements after my return.” Chen Rui’s serious gaze showed no smile, “Your ambition is indeed very lofty, but the difficulty must also be beyond imagination. You have been using Lex the Great’s pressure on the Blue Glory Empire to block the eyes of those around you, paving your way step by step. Now my re-emergence has really put you in a dilemma, but this is also a test and an opportunity. I can fully cooperate with your plan, and I can also win the support of the Holy Church for you, then the road ahead will be wider and smoother. As for the Holy Grail… The Holy Church will take the lead, and you just have to play a few key roles.”
“Only this?” Landbis frowned slightly and asked when she saw that he did not continue.
Landbis fell into deep thought. She spoke up after a long while, “I can’t seem to find a reason to refuse this kind of favorable trading conditions. Are you sure you can get me the support of the church?”
“Sure, Gralin is at the inn, I can arrange for you to meet and talk with him.” Chen Rui replied without hesitation, “Not only that, I know you have always wanted to win over the Mordeng Family. This time in the Magician Tower Group’s incident, due to the accidental death of Ed, Klongter the Great’s illegitimate child, Lild and the Mordeng Family are in deep trouble. It is also a good opportunity for you. I can also play some unexpected roles in this regard.”
“Your ability… to be precise, your change in these 7 years really surprised me.” Landbis gave him a deep look and smiled suddenly, “Perhaps it was a mistake for me to give up this marriage?”
“It’s too late to renege.” Chen Rui shrugged, “Are you going to keep this choice?”
“No.” Landbis’ gaze showed steadfastness, “I have come to this point, and I will never look back. I want to control my own destiny, not controlled by someone else’s. I’m sorry, including you. This is the path that I choose. I will keep going until I completely control myself and the fate of everyone in the empire.”
I decide my life, not others; I decide my life, not God.
This was the real Landbis.
From another point of view, she was somewhat similar to Chen Rui. Both wanted to control their own destiny, but the path they chose was different.
However, when she truly controlled the empire, she might find that she had lost the real self that she once wanted to take charge of. When Chen Rui thought of Catherine and Lex, he felt an inexplicable sigh in his mind. No matter what, as she said, this is the path that she chose, and she will keep going.
Chen Rui took a deep breath and raised the wine glass, “I admire your perseverance and respect your decision, then… I wish you success, Your Highness Landbis.”
“‘Our’ success, Your Highness Arthur.”
The 2 wine glasses clinked.
TL: Will she fals for him later though? Hmm…
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