Edited by Jelly Mae & Spirit Song
Lin Xi was not expecting Lin Jingyuan to defend Lin Feilu. Although she was usually arrogant, her standing still paled in significance by comparison to Lin Jingyuan. In the first place, her fourth elder brother had never really interacted with her, yet now he was even scolding her. She felt so wronged that she ran away crying.
Lin Jingyuan let out a loud snort. He turned around and gently patted Lin Feilu’s head, “Don’t be afraid.”
Lin Feilu raised her small face and blinked her eyes. Her eyes seemed to be filled with outspoken trust and respect for him.
Seeing this, Lin Jingyuan felt like he was on cloud nine. He clenched his fists and swore in his heart, I will always protect Little Sister Feilu!
When the commotion ended, Song Jinglan planned to return to Cuizhu Villa with his servant boy. He gently smiled at the two, giving a slight nod before he walked away at a leisurely pace. Dancing shadows from the bamboo canopy fell on his back, painting a peaceful scene.
Lin Feilu whispered, “Brother Jingyuan, who is he?”
Lin Jingyuan casually answered as they walked forward, “You don’t recognize him? He’s the prince that was sent by the Song Kingdom to be held here as a hostage five years ago. His name is Song Jinglan.”
Lin Feilu’s current understanding of this era was limited to the Great Lin Empire. This was a good opportunity to find out more things. After listening to him, she pretended not to understand anything and asked, “What is a hostage?”
For the first time, the fourth prince found a sense of accomplishment for knowing things and happily explained to his younger sister.
She found out that in addition to the Great Lin Empire which was located in the north, there was also the Song Empire located in the south and the Yong Kingdom which mainly consisted of nomads. In total, there were three nations that ruled this continent.
At first, the Song Empire was the strongest because the southern land was fertile and rich in resources. Compared to the barren northlands of Lin and the endless prairies of Yong, Song had inherited a natural advantage.
However, their abundance led to negligence. The emperors of the Song Kingdom became worse with each generation. Gradually, they dug into the national treasury to fill the royal family’s coffers and sunk deeper into their indulgences. The current emperor of Song was a lustful man who coveted all beautiful women. His lechery was renowned across the lands, as he liked to collect beautiful women from all over the world.
A few years ago, in order to combat the growing militaristic strength of the Great Lin Empire, the rulers of the Song Empire and the Yong Kingdom proposed an alliance through a marriage of state. However, when the Great Lin Empire unexpectedly caught wind of this matter, it enraged Emperor Lin.
The Great Lin Empire had always coveted the fertile lands of the Song Kingdom, but could never find an ethical reason to invade its borders. Moreover, there was a natural moat between the two states — the Huaihe River. Emperor Lin was also worried that a war of attrition with the Song Empire would not be easy. The Song Empire was known for their abundance in wealth and resources, thus he could not be rash with plans of conquest.
The emperor of the Song Kingdom knew this as well. Regardless, Emperor Song was fearful of the very thought of an enraged Emperor Lin attacking the Song Empire. He immediately rejected the alliance with the Yong Kingdom, and sent an emissary to convey his message to Emperor Lin. As a demonstration of sincerity, he even sent one of his imperial sons to live in the Great Lin Empire.
That prince was Song Jinglan.
According to Lin Jingyuan, when he arrived at Great Lin Empire, he was only seven years old and was only accompanied by a young servant boy. Although he was a prince, he was also a hostage. His life in this Imperial Harem was not pitifully difficult, but it was not an easy one either. Lin Jingyuan did not dare to confess to his little sister that he had also bullied Song Jinglan on several occasions in the past.