Chapter 189: Sharpening (Part Two)
Seeing the servants quickly decorating the stage, Fang Jie said humbly, “Your Highness, it would be my first time seeing Ms. Xi’s Dance of Flowing Flower and Water Sleeves. Thank you for the honor, or I wouldn’t be able to enjoy this.”
Yang Yin waved his hand and said with a smile, “You don’t need to thank me. This will be my first time seeing this dance as well. When Beckon of the Red Sleeve opened for business last year, I asked Xi Huamei for the one-time opportunity to invite Ms. Xi to perform the Dance of Flowing Flower and Water Sleeves. I didn’t want to use this opportunity right away, and I feel like I should enjoy the best dance in the world with someone who appreciates art as much as me.”
“I planned on inviting Senior Huai, but he is old and might not enjoy it. After seeing you today, I instantly decided to use this opportunity even if I won’t see Ms. Xi’s dance ever again.”
Fang Jie quickly got up and bowed, “I’m overwhelmed by your appreciation.”
Yang Yin replied, “Please sit down. How boring would it be if there are so many rites and rules when we are only listening to songs and watching dances in Beckon of the Red Sleeve? I’m straightforward and don’t like those annoy rites. Don’t treat me as a royal king, and I will only see you as a friend, ok?”
“I don’t dare to be so rude,” Fang Jie replied respectfully.
Yang Yin said with displeasure, “Young people should be more straightforward; it wouldn’t be fun to be restricted by rites all the time. Should I talk in poems during a casual chat?”
Fang Jie smiled and replied, “I got it. I’m only afraid that I might disturb your enjoyment by saying the wrong thing. I’m from a poor background and don’t know much, so that is why I’m careful.”
“Juexiao, you are great in many aspects. You have ambition, persistence, and a good understanding of yourself… You would have a big spot in the government one day. Although I’m not in the government, I’m much older and know a lot of things. If you want to, you can come to my residence frequently. I like talented young men like you benefiting Great Sui and serving His Majesty. I won’t hold back if I can give you some pieces of advice.
Fang Jie thought, “This is the main point of the talk today.”
He quickly lowered his head and said, “I will probably trouble you a lot in the future.”
Hearing this, Royal King Yi laughed, “Great. I said that you know when to do things; I wasn’t wrong.”
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While these two chatted, drums suddenly sounded from the outside.
Royal King Yi pointed outside the room and said with a smile, “The view in the room isn’t the best. How about we watch by the railing?”
“As you wish.” Fang Jie got up and moved away, allowing Yang Yin to walk out first before following. The two stood by the railing on the second floor and looked toward the stage.
Typically, drums would only be beaten when a show was over. However, in Beckon of the Red Sleeve, loud drums would sound before shows, and bronze gong would sound when shows ended.
“On the battlefield, drums signal advance, and metal noises signal retreat. Although Beckon of the Red Sleeve is mostly comprised of women, everything seems serious and solemn. When a single performance is even treated with such seriousness, how could Beckon of the Red Sleeve not be popular?” Yang Yin praised after hearing the drums.
Fang Jie learned about how Beckon of the Red Sleeve conducted the performances, but he never linked the sounds to the battlefield. Royal King Yi was known in Chang’an for his elegance, and it was probably true.
After the drumming, 12 girls in red long dresses got on the stage. These 12 girls were all young and had slender figures, and they stood on two sides of the stage elegantly. After they stood still, three drumming sounds appeared, and music echoed in the building.
People didn’t know what method Beckon of the Red Sleeve used, but a ton of white smoke suddenly appeared on the staircase to the stage like cloud, making it look like an immortal palace.