Feng Yu Jiu Tian
Volume 2 Chapter 10
Sookybabi @ Livejournal
I’ve been kind of addicted to Diablo3, my btag is MrPokeybear#1736, XD it was released when I was still writing my thesis and I kind of went wild when I got hold of it. I played so much that my head spun and I saw afterimages. I finally got around to starting translations for a chapter because the server was down.
Three Months of Spring '12 Outcome
It was exciting to hold this competition, and seeing a positive response! Thank you everybody that entered. Regardless, the level of skill, it's all about showing how much you love a fandom. It has power boosted me in believing that I made the right choice to continue this arduous journey of mine. Now that I am armed with gorgeous art, I feel invincible (for now XD). I'll be contacting you guys soon...I'm a bit brain dead, it's 6 AM, and my brain is telling me to go and play video games because sleep is for the weak.
The shiniest gem: kingyo_mint
Sooky's soft spot: Rosannah @ Devart this was instantly my favorite because the nipples are pink and tender. In all honesty seriously I love traditional art. You know, before photoshop.
Pie π sounds the same as clap 拍 (pai) and r sounds like 阿(ah) , which is an expression similar to ‘what’.
“Well, my question is...” The Princess paused, cutting off mid-sentence. Her eyes glimmered, they had an aura of elegance and it was without a doubt they were beautiful like the rest of her. She released s soft laugh.
Feng Ming consulted with his inner conscience. His Aunt was one fine-looking widow thanks to An Xun’s blood on his hands. It will be such a pity to destroy her second spring. With that thought, Feng Ming’s flashed his eyes onto the King of Li.
This proved to be an untimely mistake on the Prince’s behalf, the very moment he turned to face the man, their eyes locked. The King’s gaze was sharp as the tip of a blade, and they did a great job of piercing into the Prince. Feng Ming could easily imagine electric sparks streaming from the man’s eyes.
Rong Tian’s gaze had the same level of electrifying intensity, however, it was different. Feng Ming would turn into gooey hot mess, his heart and brain would be completely flustered, as if he had accidentally poked his finger into a power socket.
Instead, Ruo Yan’s gaze was startling, like cracks of lightning and once he struck, you were left surrounded by a harsh chill. The unfriendly gesture, was etched into Feng Ming’s mind, he couldn’t help but break into a cold sweat. Feng Ming never knew that a man could send him trembling with unease by the mere use of his eyes.
The pinning stare lasted for a brief moment although the effects lingered on the Prince. Ruo Yan switched on a more amicable look and nodded in acknowledgement to the Prince. The King’s action sent every last strand of hair standing on his body, Feng Ming shifted from his spot from discomfort.
As he backed away, he felt a tug on his sleeves.
“Prince?” Fen Yan asked gently.
The maid gave him a giggle, “Prince An He, the Third Princess has given her question to you.”
“Oh?” Feng Ming was amazed by his own absentmindedness.
Any reason to break away from Ruo Yan’s line of fire was good at this point. Feng Ming pulled his sleeves down and patted the beads of sweat from his forehead before turning his attention back to the Princess.
The Princess’s observant eyes noticed her nephew’s paled complexion, with a frown she continued, “Why is the Prince in a panic? “. She thought for a moment, before advising, “As for the question I have set for you, there is currently no defined method to resolve an answer efficiently. Nor has anyone come close to solving the problem. Therefore, it is completely understandable that answering this question on the spur of the moment is beyond your capabilities.”
Reassuring his Aunt that this challenge was the last of his problems Feng Ming replied, “I’m fine, I’m just feeling a bit cold.” With that said, he automatically turned his attention to the sand pit. The question, installed for him was neatly drawn out with a bamboo stick. Studying closer, his Aunt had drawn a perfect circle, almost as if she had drawn it with a compass.
The audience were all focused on the shape in front of them, it was clear that the topic was centric around a circle.
Feng Ming frowned, “A circle?”
Don’t tell me you want me to find the circumference of a circle or the area of one?
Now he was secretly kicking himself on the inside for not listening, he might as well play the fool, “Royal Aunty, forgive me, as for the question, An He did not understand clearly, could you inform me again?”
The Third Princess was surprised to see Feng Ming’s persistence, she stated, “The Prince must be well acquainted with this area of mathematics to have such confidence in a topic with little negativity. “
Ecck! Feng Ming had a gut feeling that he was supposed to know the question just by looking at the shape she drew.
Is this how the ancient folk set out questions? What does she want me to answer?
Fortunately for Feng Ming, lady luck was smiling on him. Fen Yan, out of kindness whispered softly just within his ear’s reach.
“Your Highness, the Third Princess’ requested the calculation of how many granules of sand does it take to fill a globe.”
In the end, Feng Ming’s worst concerns were coming true, even in this era mathematics was well developed. The young man quickly forced himself to think quickly. A bolt of lightning struck his thoughts as he realised, the question was basically asking him, how to work out the volume of a sphere.
He laughed inwardly, isn’t this a piece of cake?
Given relief, Feng Ming’s tensed muscles could finally relax. The Prince offered his eager audience a smile before blurting, “Well, if it is this question, it is rather simple. If one seeks the volume of a sphere, it can easily be solved by a formula. First we will need to know the radius and the formula is four thirds multiplied by pie and further multiplied by radius cubed.” ***
Feng Ming had answered nonchalantly, as if it was the simplest problem he had encountered. Everyone in the room was surprised.
The Princess’ face was painted with confusion, she queried, “ Aunt cannot follow your prompts, what’s clap? And what’s Ah? What did you mean by four thirds and cubed?”***
“It’s quite simple, if Aunt would review what I have mentioned here.” Feng Ming grabbed the bamboo pole and etched in the formula on the surface of the sand. He drew a line from the centre of the circle that extended to the edge to represent the radius.
He patiently explained, “This line is given the name R, and pie is roughly a number valued at 3.14159, and cubed indicates a value to the power of three. Four thirds is the same as, four parts divided by three“.
Feng Ming was very fortunate, that during his younger years he’d often get punished writing out formulas by his maths teacher. Now, not only did he retain his knowledge for a broad range of formulas, he could explain them in a detailed manner. This was sufficient to pull off his stunt of a maths genius.
Fen Yan was astonished, how the belittled Prince had instantaneously managed to captivate everyone’s attention. All eyes in the room was drawn to where he had made scribbles during his lecture.
Master Dong, was wide eyed and eager, it was clear the man was still trying to process this new found information. The man’s jaw coated with a grey bearded jittered. Naturally, as a proud researcher in the field, Master Dong’s first reaction was to send a servant to retrieve measurement tools, so he could immediately exercise Feng Ming’s solution. He wanted to test whether such profound formula would solve this challenge.
Prior to the Prince’s induction, as part of his research, Master Dong had manually quantified the number of sand granules in a given sphere. However, this was a primitive method, and an attempt to work backwards trying to find any patterns in the numbers. They had simply filled certain spheres with their capable volume of sand. The contents of the spheres were measured in pre-weighed boxes. This tedious manner was carried out over various sizes of containers. When brush and paper arrived, Master Dong jotted down the calculations and found that Feng Ming’s formula gave the same answer to his research.
This affirmed, Feng Ming was a serious contender, the faces of the Third Princess and Master Dong could only be described as shocked. Both of them were true enthusiast of the art of arithmetic, studying countless years and placing their souls into research. Seeing such an unearthly challenge resolved before their very eyes, they could only stand in awe. It was truly, a heaven sent moment and both were extremely touched by the turn of events.
Master Dong choked on his words as he struggled to make a coherent sentence, “Third Princess...this...is really the same...as our manual quantification. “
The Third Princess’s face was still suspended in disbelief, the quick pace at which Feng Ming provided the answer to a baffling problem left her feeling flustered. A blush washed across her cheeks, as if she was being coy with a sweetheart.
The Princess turned her head suddenly towards her maidservant, Fen Yan.
“Quickly, go retrieve a brush, ink and paper. Record everything.” And her servant made a wild dash to bid her master’s orders.
Returning her attention onto her nephew, her face glowed with anticipation, “Prince, seems like your talents as a mathematician was underestimated, there are countless questions which has not been solved, and yet to witness a solution to one unravelled before my very eyes, there is nothing I can offer in return. Please Prince, accept my gratitude and respect.”
The woman immediately, dropped to her knees, giving him a deep prostrated bow.
Feng Ming snapped into action, “Please Aunt, An He does is not deserving of your praise!” Not in a million years would Feng Ming foresee the Princess to be enrapt to this extent, and at once helped her back onto her feet.
As he was supporting his Aunt to stand upright, Master Dong had followed suit out of excitement. The old man’s eyes brimmed with tears of joy.
“Old Dong, was also very disrespectful to your Highness. Please forgive my rudeness.” The old man knelt on his knees and offered him a deep bow.
Feng Ming’s face was red as a tomato, given that he was trying to preserve a bit of modesty, but it was a tough job as he had to help people back onto their feet left and right.
“Please, don’t mind me. Please rise.” Feng Ming muttered slightly abashed.
Whilst this took place, Ruo Yan sat as the silent bystander with his sharp watchful eyes.
After much trouble and chaos, everyone finally returned to their seats that surrounded the sand box. The Third Princess was still rallied with energy, she couldn’t resist issuing another question, “This formula is certainly advance, even for our current standing in mathematics. Can Prince explain, how we can apply the ‘Abacus’ for calculations?”
“Indeed, such a clever tool. If Old Dong could have the privilege of understanding the mechanisms, he would certainly die a happy man.” Master Dong chimed in.
Feng Ming had actually forgotten about the Abacus he had boosted about, the contraption laid undisturbed in the middle of the room. Sure, he could pull off basic calculations with addition and subtraction. However, he had never used the abacus for complex calculations. How was he going to give them an answer!
Master Dong waited for a response enthusiastically, but seining hesitation from the Prince, he gave his own question a thought and suddenly realised, “Oh, this is Xi Rei’s invention. If the Prince is uncomfortable with sharing the country’s secret knowledge then please refrain from obliging.”
One could read disappointment stamped all over the Third Princess’s face, and her feelings were made clear by her silence.
At this moment, it wasn’t good to offend the Princess. This would mean taking a step back to square one. So far, Feng Ming and his blunders have managed to make great progress, and it was best to exploit this avenue whilst it was still active.
He had to get his Aunt to promise to return with him,after his own experience with Ruo Yan, although short, he was very sure that the King of Li was in fact a terrifying man and the Princess would probably be better off not marrying him.
Given this circumstance, a bright spark flashed inside Feng Ming’s mind. He dipped his head down, thinking for a short while before returning his attention to the crowd around him. A triumphant and charming smile eased across his lips.
He arose from his seat, and looked at his audience; this included making eye contact with Ruo Yan. This was the second time their eyes met, although it was momentary, it wasn’t any easier than the first. Feng Ming’s heart was erratic and in distress even with the short contact. However, this time he managed to switch on a calm facade, his face remained indifferent, as if he was brushing the negative vibes off effortlessly.
Finally, his eyes settled on the face of his Aunt, with an air of elegance he brought his hands clasped together to give her a greeting of obeisance.
With a tone of deference he reasoned, “In truth, Ah He cannot be fully credited for the formula demonstrated today. My explanation is only partial, in fact King Rong was the one who created this formula. I’m unclear in which methods he used to create such a solution. However, this shouldn’t matter as upon returning to Xi Rei, Aunty would have plenty of time to confer with the Regent King. Naturally, Master Dong is also welcomed to join us in Xi Rei. An aggregation of the smartest people in the field solving all these earthly challenges is a rare opportunity, and our findings would be a blessing from the heavens.”
Feng Ming had thrown the silly old man a lifeline, seeing that he was winning in this tug of war he did him a favour and offered to save him from Ruo Yan’s clutches. Once Feng Ming had finished announcing his offer, the Princess was on the edge of her seat. No one could argue that the Prince’s invitation, to join a league of scholars, to combat difficult challenges in her beloved field of studies was extremely attractive. In contrast, Ruo Yan’s offer was wanning in prestige.
The Princess worded her response tactfully, as Ruo Yan was still present, she replied faintly.
“Thank you Prince, I have heard of Xi Rei’s Regent King’s feats over many matters. It would truly be a splendid experience to witness his abilities for problem solving first hand.”
It was clear on where the Princess sentiments lay, after this confrontation. Ruo Yan knew he was out of the game, in terms of mathematics. He retained his noble demeanour and offered the Princess a slight smile, and didn’t pursue the matter vocally.
The King pinned his eyes onto Feng Ming, his glare was alike sharp arrows piercing into the Prince, the only person to obstruct his objectives.
Feng Ming had also been keeping tabs on the King of Li in the corner of his eyes. For the ill back digging look he was receiving, Feng Ming could only wish he could return it with equal animosity. However, he was afraid as having the man’s cold stare linger on him, made him feel like a frog in the vicinity of a viper, ready to pounce onto a meal. He was frozen to the ground.
Hearing the Princess’s positive response gave him relief, at least he managed to accomplish half of his goals. It was best he stayed clear of Ruo Yan and search for means to seal the deal later on. Finding a reason to end his discomfort, he quickly cupped his hands again and directed to his Aunt, “To trouble my Aunt today for such a long time, An He is best to take his leave.”
The Princess and Master Dong didn’t hide their expressions of dismay, as both were unwilling to let go of the Prince from their discussion.
His Aunt exclaimed, “Prince, you are leaving so soon?!”
“That’s right, this Old man has many questions pertaining to this subject to discuss.”
Feng Ming was beginning to feel like a pin cushion, and Ruo Yan was the one doing the stabbing, no one in their right mind would stand around and subject themselves to this psychological pressure.
Feng Ming waved his hands in protest, “My apologize, I have matters to attend to. An He will make sure to visit another time.”
Seeing the situation was helpless, the Princess stood up and personally saw her guest out of her manor. Shortly, General Tong and the rest of his entourage made their way out from the waiting from where they had spent most of their time resting and drinking tea. The party met in front of the main gates.
It was a promising sight, when the Third Princess stepped out and attentively saw off her nephew to the door. Regardless, everyone inwardly felt that there was something strange about what had happened.
After climbing into the horse drawn carriage, not only Lie Er but Official Xia had squeezed into the small space to accompany the Prince. The only one riding a horse was General Tong, as his stature was a bit too big to be welcomed into the carriage.
The first words to leave Official Xia’s mouth when he scooted into the chamber were, “Congratulation Prince, Prince certainly has god sent powers, to be able to win over the Third Princess and persuade her to side with Xi Rei.”
Feng Ming flashed him a grin, “What gave it away?”
Lie Er interjected, “It’s really obvious, it’s her attitude towards you. Prior and after, who can’t tell the difference?”
“Furthermore, Li’s King, Ruo Yan gives off an unfavourable feeling, and his appearance is not very attractive, perhaps he failed in his attempt to propose a marriage on that basis. Recognition must be given to the Prince’s courage. This humble Xia had suspected that due to Prince’s youth, Prince may not be able to stand his ground whilst facing such a fearful man. It appears my concerns were unrequired.”
The zany old man let out a hearty chuckle, giving a nod of acknowledgment to Feng Ming.
Feng Ming thought of Ruo Yan, his brain flooded with the overbearing weight the man imposed onto him just by staring at him. He shuddered at recalling the scene. He shook his head and grumbled bitterly, “Don’t mention him again, that man is horrible. When I’m near him I can’t help but tremble.”
His face pulled strange expressions as if he was trying to get a bad taste out of his mouth.
“Nonetheless, in the end Ruo Yan could not match up with Prince’s brilliant streak of tact. He was unable to capture the heart and mind of the Third Princess.”
“That’s right, how did Prince coerce the Princess? What kind of clever trick did you employ? And how did you deal with Ruo Yan?”
It was going to be a long story from start to finish, so Feng Ming did his best and incorporated gestures with his hands and makeshift drawings on the ground, giving very animated detail as the group travelled back to their stay.
Both Lie Er and Official Xia were infatuated with every minor detail, and at the end they couldn’t help but cheer and applaud the Prince’s moves.
As the debriefing concluded, Official Xia sighed, “Xia knew King Rong was well versed in history, geography and astronomy. I did not expect him to have reached such a high plateau in the field of mathematics.”
This statement clicked with Feng Ming, considering he fabricated this lie for the sake of boosting Xi Rei’s credentials, he giggled to himself.
In a short time, the fleet had made their way back to the hotel. Inside, Chiu Lan and the rest of his servants had awaited their return for the whole day. Hearing the bustle of their master’s return, they ran eagerly to greet him outside.
The Prince was welcomed with the smiling faces of his three closest maids, each of them ushered him inside, and helped him change into his indoor outfit.
Chiu Lan praised “Congratulations Prince, in a few days we will be able to escort the Third Princess back to Xi Rei. If news reaches King Rong, he would be certainly happy of your success.”
“How did you guys know?” Feng Ming was surprised, word certainly leaked out fast. He hadn’t even mentioned it to the girls.
Chiu Xing was straight forwards, nodding with a grin, “Naturally, because our Prince is suave, outstanding and charming, he has no match in the world. It is only right that the Princess would return with us.”
“Oh please, Chiu Xing. We used those words yesterday! You should find something fresh to say!”
Chiu Xing pouted, “Hmph! I’m only speaking the truth. Everyday His Highness is very charming; therefore we can say it on a daily basis. Chiu Lan, it’s not my fault you decide to read Official Xia’s and General Tong’s faces to figure out that it is ‘good news’. What does that say about your taste?”
Feng Ming laughed at the petty bickering and decided to do some damage control by raising his hands.
“Okay, alright that’s enough. We’ve manage to pull today off without much of a hitch. We should be able to return to Xi Rei quite soon. We should all be happy.”
With that statement, the three maids giggled and steered the conversation into gossip and curious ramblings. Questions such as, what the Princess looked like, and whether she lived up to rumour were first on the agenda.
The hotel was filled with chatter and laughter.
6AM !! I need to stop late nights. *runs off to play diablo*