The moment she saw the wrinkled baby bundled in the swaddle, Cheng Yujin’s eyes widened in surprise as she turned to look at Li Chengjing in horror.
Healthy and good-looking? Looking like her?
What exactly were Li Chengjing’s criteria for ‘good-looking’?
When Li Chengjing finally saw the red and wrinkled face of the baby, he also fell silent for a moment. He didn’t pay attention just now, so he simply described the babies’ appearance according to his own imagination. Unexpectedly, the difference was a bit too much.
However, Li Chengjing just paused for a moment before calmly continuing, “They are our biological children. Whether they are like you or like me, there is no way they will look ugly. It’s only a matter of time before they grow beautiful and handsome.”
They were in front of the children now, so Cheng Yujin held back her temper and simply said succinctly. “Of course. Your Highness is indeed very observant.” This person clearly hadn’t taken a good look at the babies, yet he said whatever he liked and even made up a bogus reason afterward.
Both Li Chengjing’s adaptability and thick skin were first-class, and he didn’t look embarrassed in the slightest. He and Cheng Yujin watched their sleeping children for a while. When Li Chengjing saw Du Ruo coming in with the tonic, he ordered the wet nurses to carry the children away and personally feed Cheng Yujin before forcing her to sleep.
Cheng Yujin was indeed exhausted. After drinking the warm decoction, she fell asleep in no time. Seeing her asleep, Li Chengjing brushed some loose hair from her ear and gently placed a kiss on her forehead.
His wife, his Crown Princess, and the creator of the greatest miracle of his life.
Li Chengjing quietly exited the inner room and sternly ordered the servants to take good care of the Crown Princess. Finished with this, Li Chengjing summoned the wet nurses again, took one of the children, and learned how to hold a baby cautiously and patiently.
Li Chengjing felt very fortunate. He made a lot of preparations and even braced himself for the worst, but he didn’t expect heaven to give him such a happy surprise. Until today, Li Chengjing’s best hope was a pair of twin daughters, and he didn’t even dare to think in the direction of the dragon and phoenix twins.
Who knows, a miracle really happened in his life.
His eldest son, his eldest daughter. After fate arbitrarily toyed with his life, it gave him the most precious compensation.
The Crown Prince didn’t come to the morning court, yet he was the center of attention today.
First, when the court officials gathered at the Chengtian Gate, they were surprised to find that the Crown Prince was not among them. At this time, a eunuch of the Eastern Palace came to inform them that the Crown Princess was about to give birth and that the Crown Prince would not attend to his duty today.
This was Li Chengjing’s first, and probably the only, absence.
So in the first half of the morning court, the attending officials played it slowly. Everyone seemed to be listening patiently on the surface, but inside, they all were waiting for the news from the Eastern Palace. The Emperor also had few words today. He seldom spoke, and often looked distracted.
Halfway through the court session, one of the Emperor’s personal eunuch arrived at Jinshui Bridge, full of smiles. Everyone’s attention shifted to him at once, and the Emperor quickly suspended the discussion and summoned the eunuch to come forward to report.
No one had objections, and even the person whose speech was interrupted also looked eagerly at the eunuch. The eunuch kowtowed to the Emperor before announcing loudly, “Congratulations, Your Majesty. The Crown Princess gave birth to a pair of dragon and phoenix twins, and the mother and child were safe. Timely heavy snow promises a good harvest, and an auspicious dragon and phoenix twins have come to our dynasty. This is the sign of Heavenly Favor. May Your Majesty’s blessing last forever!”
When the words ‘dragon and phoenix twins’ fell, the court immediately broke into an uproar. The Emperor was overjoyed. He stood up and excitedly said “Good” three times in succession. He clapped his hands and made an order, “This is indeed a happy event! Celebrate! Pass Zhen’s order — prepare a big celebration for the little Junwang and little Junzhu’s three-day wash ceremony1 and full moon ceremony2!”
All the court officials knelt down in unison. Their long sleeves brushed the floor as they bowed deeply to the Emperor, “Congratulations to Your Majesty, Congratulations to His Highness the Crown Prince. Heaven blesses our dynasty!”
After that, the morning court naturally couldn’t resume normally. Everyone was beaming with joy, exulting congratulations one after another. This festivity even rivaled that of the New Year. When the court session ended and everyone reluctantly dispersed, the Emperor hurriedly stepped off his throne and went to the Eastern Palace to see his grandchildren.
The news of the Crown Princess giving birth to dragon and phoenix twins spread to the entire capital in no time.
For a whole day after that, the Crown Prince became the center of everyone’s talk, despite never showing himself at all. The birth of a dragon and phoenix twins was a good omen, told to be the culmination of the good deeds done by the ancestors, which prompted heaven to bless their descendants with favor. Now that a dragon and phoenix twins were born in the imperial family, it only proved that the dynasty’s rule was indeed ordained by heaven.
No wonder the Emperor was so happy. The Crown Prince obtained not only a di-born eldest son, but also a di-born eldest daughter in an auspicious pair of dragon and phoenix twins. Their birth date was on the first of the twelfth month, on the morning of the first snow. Even people who had never learned fortune-telling knew that it was very auspicious.
The birth of the twins was a tremendous burst on Li Chengjing’s reputation, showing that even heaven approved of his position as the Crown Prince.
It was rumored that when the Crown Princess was still pregnant, Empress Dowager Yang and Shou Wangfei hinted that the fetus was ominous twins and would lead to disaster, causing the Empress Dowager to fall gravely sick. The Emperor personally ordered his attending physician to come forward with a diagnosis that the Crown Princess wasn’t carrying twins. Yet, rumors still circulated. Under all kinds of rumors, many people believed that the Emperor was covering the truth for the Crown Prince’s sake.
As a result, when the day came, everyone was stunned. What ominous? It’s a dragon and phoenix twins! The rumors instantly became self-defeating. Empress Dowager Yang and Empress Yang had caused so much ruckus, summoning a nun to make a fortune-tell and even calling the imperial clan elders, causing the matter to spread practically overnight. In the end, they ended up with a huge slap on their figurative faces.
This slap was very loud and reverberating throughout the capital.
After exchanging the biggest hot topic of the day, the officials began to envy the Crown Prince. As a man, it was no doubt that the Crown Prince was a winner in life!
He was born the Emperor’s eldest di son and made a crown prince at age five. Later, he accidentally encountered a natural disaster and was rescued by a talented woman famous in the capital thirty years ago. Although he lost his identity, he was admitted to the imperial examination and obtained the title of jinshi at sixteen, which attracted the Emperor’s attention, who then recognized him.
Being appointed as a prestigious Jinshi was already an achievement that many scholars couldn’t hope to obtain in their entire lives, and Li Chengjing was only sixteen when he passed the examination. No doubt, he was indeed a young genius. Later, it was proved that he had not only an outstanding intellect but also the noblest birth in the world — the imperial crown prince.
After regaining his status as Crown Prince, Li Chengjing married his former niece. Of course, it was not something to be proud of. However, the Crown Princess was beautiful, elegant, and talented. The husband and wife were in harmony, and in the second year of marriage, they gave birth to a pair of dragon and phoenix twins.
Career, family, fame — the Crown Prince had it all at such a young age. Many men in the capital tried to compare at first, but now they had all completely given up.
Indeed, such a person always existed in the world. As if favored by heaven, their life and achievement were far above others.
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