Chapter 78 – Pregnant with a phoenix instead
Jian Luo had not looked at his contacts for a while. It wasn’t until Zhan Wentai said to him, “It’s time to take a break.”
“Hmm?” Jian Luo returned from his books, raised his hand to glance at his wrist, and realized time had passed quickly. “How did it get so late?”
Zhan Wentai asked, “Didn’t you finish reading?”
Jian Luo was holding a document that recorded the history of Earth’s changes over thousands of years, something he had never experienced. Originally, he had a sense of detachment from this era. Subconsciously, he still thought of himself as belonging to the 21st century, part of a different world, a different group, unconnected to this era. But as he slowly read through the history of this era’s changes over the years, watching it rise and thrive, he couldn’t help but feel a sense of belonging.
Jian Luo held the book and said, “I think… can I come again next time?”
Zhan Wentai reached out and placed the book in Jian Luo’s arms, nodding, “Of course.”
Yay! Jian Luo cheered inwardly, hugging the book as if it were a precious treasure. “Thank you!”
“You’re welcome,” Zhan Wentai said casually, glancing at the tall bookshelves nearby. “There are plenty more here. If you ever need them, feel free to come anytime.”
Jian Luo nodded. “Alright! Thanks, teacher!”
Zhan Wentai escorted him out, and on the way, he discussed some rare characters with Jian Luo. He said, “A good dictionary is essential. If the information is not well-researched, the text may not flow smoothly. Ancient characters and modern characters are quite different.”
Jian Luo was an expert in ancient characters and knew little about modern ones. “I’d like to borrow one to study.”
Zhan Wentai nodded.
On the way back, Jian Luo noticed an unread message on his communication bracelet. He felt a slight pang of anxiety and quickly tried to call back to his secretary. However, the call didn’t connect, and Zhan Wentai, walking alongside him, stopped in his tracks.
Jian Luo looked up, feeling puzzled, and saw Lu Shifeng, the Grand Marshal, standing in the hall not far away. Lu Shifeng was dressed in a crisp military uniform, and the lighting was dim, making it difficult to discern his expression.
Zhan Wentai said, “Grand Marshal Lu, you’ve come to welcome us.”
Lu Shifeng stood in place, lazily raising his eyes to glance at Jian Luo, speaking slowly, “Not at all, Professor. Jian Luo is here, and he’s caused you trouble.”
Zhan Wentai cast a sidelong glance at Jian Luo, “Grand Marshal Lu is being too polite. Jian Luo is my student, and it’s my responsibility to teach him.”
Lu Shifeng raised an eyebrow, “Teaching is fine, but Professor, you must remember to exercise moderation.”
As they exchanged words, a tension began to emanate in the air, something even someone as clueless as Jian Luo could sense.
Jian Luo swallowed nervously, quickly walked up to Lu Shifeng, and bowed to Zhan Wentai, “Thank you, Professor. I’ll be leaving with Brother Long now.”
Zhan Wentai nodded, “Hmm, remember to read the book.”
Jian Luo held the book, “Sure!”
After exchanging greetings with Grand Marshal Lu, Jian Luo followed Lu Shifeng out. He asked, “Wasn’t Secretary Jin supposed to pick me up?”
Lu Shifeng looked down at him condescendingly, “Are you disappointed to see me?”
Jian Luo began to speak. Since that day, he had changed. In general, he was not a particularly sensitive person. However, after becoming pregnant, he had become a bit sentimental at times, which was quite unlike his usual self. But these emotional ups and downs always came and went quickly. By now, he had completely moved on and didn’t feel anything wrong about the situation. After all, their relationship had always been a business one, and Lu Shifeng hadn’t done anything wrong. Instead, Jian Luo felt like he was the one being immature.
Jian Luo said, “I’m not disappointed. When did you decide to leave? I can make you a farewell meal when we get back.”
Lu Shifeng heard the excitement in his tone, seemingly hoping for him to leave, and unconsciously furrowed his brows.
Jian Luo got into the car, looked at the book in his hand, and added, “I’ve thought about it. This side of Phoenix Terrace is the best for me. It’s close to where I work, and the Professor takes good care of me.”
Lu Shifeng raised an eyebrow and looked at Jian Luo, “Have you decided?”
“Hmm?” Jian Luo tilted his head, feeling that something was off in Lu Shifeng’s tone but nodded decisively, “Yes, don’t worry. I’ll get along well with Professor.”
Silence filled the car. Lu Shifeng had originally not worried, but seeing Jian Luo’s previous interaction with Zhan Wentai, he suddenly felt uneasy. It wasn’t that he didn’t understand Zhan Wentai; anyone who had reached this position was far from simple and had desires and ambitions beneath their calm exterior.
Jian Luo asked curiously, “What’s wrong?”
Lu Shifeng snapped out of his thoughts, looking at Jian Luo, “Have you made your decision?”
“Yes,” Jian Luo said a bit nervously. “You’re the one who asked me to choose. Are you changing your mind?”
Lu Shifeng withdrew his gaze. “If you’re comfortable being with him, then stay with him for now. We can move in a couple of days.”
“Okay,” Jian Luo replied.
Even though neither of them had said anything they shouldn’t have, even the most obtuse driver could sense that there was tension between these two. It felt like they had argued, and the atmosphere was no longer as relaxed as usual.
The next day, Jian Luo returned to the seed planting base for work. On the way, at the central square, he unexpectedly saw an advertisement he had filmed on a large screen.
It was a promotional ad for Jinjiang Livestream, and what shocked him the most was that this ad was displayed in high definition. Even a side profile of him was clearly visible.
The central square was an area with high Dark Star traffic, and almost every Dark Star saw it. Jian Luo couldn’t believe that Jinjiang had invested so heavily in advertising here; it was as if the whole platform had suddenly changed its strategy.
The driver said, “You did really well.”
Jian Luo smiled shyly, “Thank you.”
While he didn’t have much of a reaction to the ad being displayed, as he knew it was only a matter of time before it happened, something unexpected occurred during his lunch break at the seed planting base.
Wang Gang suddenly rushed in, asking, “Did you film an advertisement?”
“Yes,” Jian Luo replied, puzzled. “What’s wrong?”
Wang Gang shivered slightly and pointed outside, “It’s outside, and there are a lot of people. Check the Interstella web; it’s trending like crazy.”
Jian Luo felt puzzled. He opened his information terminal, checked the trending topics, and saw the first one hanging prominently:
Jian Luo was aware of the situation. At that time, he had been suspected, but there was no evidence, just speculation. However, why had this topic resurfaced today?
Perplexed, Jian Luo clicked on the comments beneath the trending topics:
“It’s definitely him; the silhouette matches!”
“He rarely showed his back during the livestreams; it’s hard to compare.”
“It’s really him.”
“Is he pregnant, and whose child is it?”
“It’s gotta be someone from the nobility; the soulstone turned to smoke.”
The online community was buzzing with excitement. Jian Luo read through it from beginning to end and sighed. It seemed he couldn’t live a normal life even if the child was born.
Jian Luo turned to Wang Gang and asked, “What did you say was happening outside?”
Wang Gang pointed outside, “A commotion. There are reporters and even fans. Some fans brought food and games. They’re all here to see you. Reporters want to interview you, and they’ve surrounded Phoenix Terrace. If it weren’t for the fact that we don’t allow anyone inside, I’d think they’d break down the walls.”
This was too much.
Jian Luo felt a little panicky. He didn’t know how to deal with these fans who cared about his offspring’s life. He hadn’t been taught what to do in such a situation. Just as he was thinking about it, there was commotion outside the tent.
Jian Luo and Wang Gang both nervously looked outside.
The curtain was lifted, revealing a maid who bowed to Jian Luo and spoke warmly, “Your Highness, His Majesty has sent me to pick you up. You’ve been startled.”
Jian Luo stood up, “His Majesty sent you?”
The maid nodded.
Jian Luo recognized her. She was someone who had always followed the young emperor. He exchanged a few words with Wang Gang and was about to leave. Before leaving, Wang Gang said, “Jian Luo.”
Jian Luo stopped in his tracks.
“Don’t be afraid,” Wang Gang, in his straightforward way of comforting, said, “They don’t have any ill intentions. They’re just excited. Don’t worry.”
Jian Luo paused for a moment, then smiled. He nodded, “I understand.”
Following the maid outside, there was a car waiting. Jian Luo quickly arrived at the palace. When the flying car soared into the sky, Jian Luo saw the crowd outside the palace walls. Wang Gang’s description of the situation being contained to one circle was far too restrained; it was clear that there were multiple layers of people gathered outside, densely packed and numbering in the thousands.
On his way back to the palace, Jian Luo tried to contact Xiu Liang several times but couldn’t get through. When he arrived at the palace, he met with the young emperor, who gave him a warm hug. “Luo Luo, are you okay?”
Jian Luo shook his head.
“Because everywhere else is surrounded,” the young emperor said with a cheeky smile, his small tiger teeth showing. “It’s very relaxing in the palace, so I came to pick you up.”
Jian Luo smiled and replied, “Thank you.”
The young emperor patted his hand. “You’re welcome. Let me take you to your room to rest.”
Jian Luo couldn’t help but worry about his home. Even after returning to the palace, he couldn’t calm down. Discussions about him were flooding the internet, and even within the palace, people constantly wanted to see him. Some were curious if he was really pregnant, and others were just curious about the hope he represented.
The palace remained restless for half the night, and Jian Luo hadn’t seen Lu Shifeng at all. While he didn’t particularly mind, it felt strange to be without him. The room felt too empty, and the emptiness made him uncomfortable. But he supposed he would have to get used to it; Lu Shifeng was leaving sooner or later, even if not today, then tomorrow, or maybe the next year.
Simple things like home-cooked meals, conversations, and warmth would be missed, Jian Luo realized as he leaned against the window. He sighed deeply and, in a moment of distraction, heard a tapping on the glass.
Startled, Jian Luo looked outside, and there was Lu Shifeng, standing on the rocky ledge by the window, gesturing for him to open it.
Jian Luo opened the window. “Long-ge? What are you doing here?”
Lu Shifeng didn’t come inside but kept looking at him with his crimson eyes, unblinking. He spoke in a deep voice, “I’ve come to pick you up.”
Jian Luo was puzzled. “Pick me up? Where are we going?”
“Perhaps…” Lu Shifeng raised an eyebrow. “Would you like to visit another planet?”
T/N: Hey there! There is plenty more where that came from, so stay tuned! And stay healthy! Straighten your posture, so some stretches and drink some water before continuing hehe~
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