Bai Qiu smiled while looking in Ye Futian's direction but it faded quickly. Ye Futian, Hua Jieyu, and Yu Sheng were enjoying the food and hadn't even glanced at him.
"The emperor's banquet is so nice with great food and wine. Fox, eat your fill," Ye Futian said to Hua Jieyu with a smile.
"Okay." Hua Jieyu smiled back while Yu Sheng stared at them in annoyance.
Bai Qiu's smile froze on his face. Was he ignored just like this?
Princess Ye Lingxi was around the same age as Ye Futian. She gazed at Ye Futian's handsome side profile, her lips seeming to curl into a smile. This guy is too bad, she thought. She obviously knew that Bai Qiu was trying to make things difficult for Ye Futian but what was more embarrassing than being ignored? It was even worse for someone of Bai Qiu's status.
Everyone else looked over. Some were looking for the drama; others thought that Bai Qiu was looking for trouble for himself. After all, they had already had conflicts at today's Fenghua Banquet. If he targeted Ye Futian now, the youth obviously would not treat him with respect. However, Ye Futian's response was a bit special. Or rather, he didn't respond at all.
Of course, some others thought that Ye Futian was too conceited. After all, Bai Qiu was at the Dharma Plane and was the representative of the Qin Clan. He had been taunted by Yu Sheng and Ye Futian for his invitation earlier. Now, he spoke but was ignored. Furthermore, it was the princess who spoke first.
"If someone asks a question, you should reply no matter what your answer is," a voice said. The speaker was one of the Cangye College students.
There were many talented students of Cangye College; eight were present at the banquet. Cen Xia, whom Ye Futian knew, was here too but she wasn't the one who spoke. Instead, it was the even more talented Yu Jiang. He was one of those who didn't like Ye Futian. After all, Bai Qiu was someone at his level.
Ye Futian put down his wine and looked around. His gaze landed in the direction of the Cangye College. He had met Yu Jiang at the college. The day of the pretest, Cen Xia had pointed out Yu Jiang and Bai Qiu, saying that they were popular contenders of the Fenghua Banquet.
Ye Futian looked directly at Yu Jiang. He watched as the other lifted his glass and sipped it without breaking the eye contact. In Yu Jiang's eyes, Ye Futian's group was talented but they were too arrogant.
"Are we close?" Ye Futian's smile was more like a smirk.
"Of course not and I don't wish to be either." Yu Jiang set down his wine. "But since the princess invited you, shouldn't you respond?"
"It's alright. It was just the spur of the moment," Ye Lingxi said, seeing that the mood was off. Her beautiful smile was like a spring breeze that blew away a bit of the awkwardness.
"Princess, your tolerance is impressive but some people think too highly of themselves," Yu Jiang continued. "This is the banquet held by the emperor but some come with veiled faces. This is too self-conceited. Even Lin Yueyao, the top beauty of Cangye, is not like this." He was obviously targeting Hua Jieyu.
"My father said earlier that this is just like a family banquet. There is no need to feel restricted and there is no need to push others," Prince Ye Danchen said, seeing that Yu Jiang still wouldn't let the matter go.
They were all proud people and rivals at the Fenghua Banquet. It was natural that there would be some conflicts. This further tested their reactions and processing abilities.
Seeing that both a princess and prince had spoken, Ye Futian couldn't be too disrespectful. He smiled at Princess Ye Lingxi and said, "Indeed, I know a court dance and I am willing to play it for you."
With that, Ye Futian walked out alone. He came to the peach trees behind the banquet and sat down with crossed legs. As for Bai Qiu's suggestion of having Hua Jieyu dance and what Yu Jiang said about the veil, he ignored both of them. He respected the princess but not those two.
His Guqin Spirit appeared. A graceful melody traveled into everyone's ears, pulling everyone into the artistic conception of the song. The Melody of the White Feathers Garment was a superb court dance song and suited the current atmosphere. As the music played, the mood became more natural. Drinking under the festive atmosphere, many people were involuntarily influenced.
"This piece makes me feel that all the court dance songs from the past were nothing," Ye Danchen praised. "However, it feels like something is missing."
"This is a dance song. It is naturally missing a beauty," Bai Qiu said with a smile as he glanced at Hua Jieyu again. "But the beauty refuses to entertain us."
Yu Sheng stood up, his expression extremely cold. Bai Qiu was stirring trouble.
The music was affected as well, growing cooler. Seeing this situation, Princess Ye Lingxi smiled and said, "If there are no complaints, I can embarrass myself a little."
Shock flashed past everyone's eyes at these words. Would the princess dance personally?
"Princess, no," Yu Jiang said. How could a princess dance for Ye Futian?
"I was just joking. The princess mustn't take it seriously," Bai Qiu said.
"I am suddenly in the mood to do so. The music is so beautiful that someone must dance for it. Why can't I?" As Ye Lingxi spoke, she walked up to Ye Futian. Her long dress fluttered as she danced.
"Beautiful," Ye Danchen praised while everyone was still shocked.
Everyone's gazes were attracted by the dancing Princess Ye Lingxi and the music performer Ye Futian. Under the moonlight, peach blossoms covered the ground around them like a painting.
"If news of today's banquet spreads, it will become a beautiful legend," someone said. Many nodded in agreement. Before, they'd thought that the princess would be lowering herself by dancing. Now, they realized that it was a type of grace and this performance was indeed beautiful.
"Miss Zhixin, would you be able to add some color to this scene?" Ye Danchen asked Hua Zhixin.
Hua Zhixin smiled and walked to the peach trees. Using her hand as a brush, she gathered the Spiritual Qi into various spiritual birds. Cuckoos, cranes, and phoenixes flew in the air. They circled Ye Futian and Ye Lingxi, instantly making one feel that they were looking at a painting of fairies. This should not exist in the human world.
"So beautiful." Lin Yueyao could not help but praise this either. Ye Futian was extremely handsome and seemed to glow while playing the guqin. With the princess dancing for him and Zhixin's painting, the sight was mesmerizing.
At this moment, Bai Qiu and Yu Jiang looked uncomfortable. They didn't like Ye Futian so they had him perform. They didn't expect for this to become something beautiful. Bai Qiu especially was thinking that if he were the one playing right now, it would be a gorgeous sight.
When the song ended, everyone was still intoxicated by the melody. Ye Futian's Guqin Spirit disappeared. Ye Lingxi looked at him, her eyes sparkling. "The music was stunning."
"Princess, your dancing was beautiful as well," Ye Futian said with a smile.
"I must have you teach me this song in the future," Ye Lingxi replied and then walked into the crowd. Hua Zhixin nodded lightly at Ye Futian.
Ye Futian smiled in reply and returned to his spot. He gazed at the crowd and saw Bai Qiu and Yu Jiang staring at him coldly. His lips curled into a smirk. He had performed well at the Fenghua Banquet and both Yu Sheng and Hua Jieyu were outstanding. But Bai Qiu and Yu Jiang still wanted to trouble him. They probably thought that the trio was in a lower plane and still looked down on them. Hopefully, this sense of superiority would survive until after the Fenghua Banquet.
"Your Highness," Ye Futian called. Everyone looked over at him and he smiled. "There are seniors at home waiting for us to return. I have played a piece so now I must excuse myself."
"Alright." Ye Danchen smiled and nodded rather than stopping him. If Ye Futian stayed, there might be more conflicts. It would be better if he left.
"See you tomorrow," Ye Lingxi added.
Ye Futian nodded subtly and said, "See you at the Fenghua Platform." No one knew if he said this to the princess or someone else.
After that, the three rose and left. Someone helped them out of the palace. Under the moonlight, the three climbed onto the Black Wind Eagle to return.
"Was it nice to have the princess dance for you?" Hua Jieyu smiled at Ye Futian.
"When we get back, I'll play a piece and you dance for me. It'll be prettier," Ye Futian said, laughing.
"Sure." Hua Jieyu smiled but Ye Futian got a bad feeling from her smile.
The next morning, countless people gathered around the Fenghua Platform. Yesterday, the Fenghua Banquet had started. Thousands upon thousands of strong talents came from all over the Cangye Kingdom. Now, only 200-some were left but they made the spectators much more excited.
When Ye Futian's group arrived, many people were already therethe Qin Clan, the Cangye College students, the Demon Clan, and various forces and nobles were all present.
As if sensing something, Ye Futian glanced over and saw Bai Qiu smiling at him. He knew what the smile meant.
Ye Futian looked away, ignoring Bai Qiu. The three continued forward, approaching the Fenghua Platform to prepare for the battles.
Carriages came from the direction of the palace. The emperor and empress came with the princes and princesses. They all sat in their seats. Ye Danchen and Ye Lingxi were there too, naturally. Ye Lingxi scanned the crowd and smiled at Ye Futian when she saw him.
Ye Futian returned the smile and glanced at Hua Jieyu nervously. "I'm being polite"
What happened after they returned to the inn last night was unforgettable.
"I don't mind," Hua Jieyu said with a smile.
"Yes, I know," Ye Futian answered. Seeing Hua Jieyu's gentle smile, he almost believed her.
At this time, many people rose to bow to the emperor but he waved his hand. "No need for the customs. Please continue."
The elder from the Cangye College walked onto the Fenghua Platform. He put the remaining bookmarks into a line. Next, a minority of these names would shine on the Fenghua Platform and be known throughout the kingdom.