10 Roses and books

Beauty and Beast
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Lord Liu HaiKuan performed  more than one wide curtsy  before the fuming princess:
"Please forgive me. I am so sorry, your Grace Yang Zi, for upsetting you. It was not my intention.
And I'm sure that it was not Prince Xiao Zhan's either, as he asked me to  pass to you his deep regrets for this unexpected situation.
I was also requested to ask permission from you to get his and lord Wang ZhuoCheng's luggage from their rooms."

"Lord Liu HaiKuan! Don't make me to...!
What did you do to Prince Xiao Zhan? If you hurt him, not only that our kingdom could get into a war with Rose, but also,  you would deal with me personally!
I hope that you didn't forget  who I am!
I hope that you know that you are obliged to pay respect to me, not only as the daughter of the mighty King Yang The Third,  the only true king of Peony, but as the possible head of Peony, the possible future rightful queen of our beloved and blessed Peony!
You are not allowed to lie to me!", the princess hysterically screamed, stomping her foot in anger.

"Why do you say that I'm lying to you? I would never dare to do such a thing!
But please, your Grace, allow me to hold your chair. Please, take a seat and let me bring you a glass of water. Oh my goodness, your face changed from red to purple!", HaiKuan started to get worried for real.




"Oh, stop with the bullsh!t, Yang Zi has a royal brain, not only a royal blood, thus I am too intelligent  for getting tricked by you and your king!
I know that King Wang Yibo is not sick!
I mean, he is sick, alright! But  not infected with the  virus  that you two are lying about!
There is no weird sickness that nobody has ever heard of, except you!
The king of Peony is just simply a beast! And Peony doesn't deserve such disgrace and humiliation!
That is what our king is!  A. B. E. A. S. T.!", the princess shouted, sprinkling spit onto HaiKuan's face while spelling the word.

"But, your grace! I'm sorry for daring  to ask you, but why are you calling king Wang Yibo a beast?
He is the sweetest and kindest, not only as a king, but as a person in general.
He was never violent against anyone, I have never seen him getting not even angry at anyone, much less at you.
I assure you that he loves you, cares about your well being and respects you very much!", HaiKuan bowed again and again, getting more worried.
But this time not for the princess's face ready to explode, but for a different reason, a very worrisome reason!

Both of them flinched at the loud thump coming from  behind the closed door, probably the guard dropped his sword to the tiled ground.

That sound was like a bucket of cold water dropped onto Andy's heated head, as she had a sudden realization about what a huge mistake she was on the verge to commit.

"I am sorry for yelling at you, I was just upset and worried about prince Xiao Zhan's safety!
What I meant was that I know that my cousin is infected with a different virus,  the virus of gayness. I know that he is sick, that he likes men!
That's why I called him an animal, a beast, because I hate that our king is gay and will never be able to give Peony a queen and an heir!
I assumed that you know that, too, it's not like I'm telling on him to you.
But, don't worry, I'm not going to  reveal the secret to anyone.
Let me ask someone to help you with the luggage, now.", the princess smiled, showing a very sudden and suspicious  kindness to HaiKuan.

Hmm, he will analyze later  what had just happened, for now he should go get the luggage and hurry back to the mountain palace. Never know when Snowflake (he started to call the king in the white wolf's form, same as Beauty, because Wang Yibo loves that nickname) would take the human form and  HaiKuan must be there to help.
When it happened the first time,  they both ascended on the ninth cloud of happiness, thinking that the curse was lifted. But their happiness was short, as after an hour he got back into animal form. Animal, meaning the wolf, but the night beast form, too.
They noticed that the king was taking the human form daily, for an hour, but at random times, sometimes in the night time, sometimes in the morning, or later in the day.

And as all these problems were not enough, now HaiKuan had to deal with prince Xiao Zhan's constant bugging!
HaiKuan doesn't know for how long he will be able to keep the stubborn prince of Rose, away from the main palace.

This is only the third day since The Rose guests are living in the separated wing of the palace and  he had already caught prince Xiao Zhan twice,  trying to  sneak to the main palace building, through the connecting corridor.
He managed to trick even lord Wang ZhuoCheng, his extremely vigilant friend.

Not talking anymore that he was not able to stop King Wang Yibo from creeping over his crush while he was asleep, as soon as he got into the human form! 
Jeez, these two will be the death of Liu HaiKuan’s self esteem as the best secret service agent and the most effective protector of a royalty!








~Meanwhile at the mountain palace:



"Jeez, ChiangCheng, you are worse than my childhood nanny!
Why can't I go alone to collect herbs or plants if I'd find any? I promise to not go too far, I'll just have a short walk in that garden and maybe in the small grove from behind the main palace, and I'll be back in a blink of an eye.", Beauty tried to get rid of his friend, but to no avail.

"No, your Royal Highness! I'm sorry, but I do not trust you anymore! You promised before too, but you still tried to sneak into the palace!
Please, ZhanZhan, don't do it!  Kuan Ge  told you  that  it's not safe, nor for you, nor for his king, and I really trust him that he's not just saying it! 
If you don't care about your safety, please do care about your loyal friend who would be a dead friend if anything would happen to you! I promised to King Xiao that I will  bring his son back to Rose, alive and unharmed.", ZhuoCheng didn't let himself be convinced by the prince's cute pout weapon.

"Okay, but don't get angry when...",  the prince mumbled, but only in his thoughts, rolling his eyes  at his annoying  friend and guard.

"Don't be so paranoid, you could kill an innocent rabbit or other scared animal with your overzealousness!
Do you expect that Wen Chao would jump from behind those bushes, or what?", Xiao Zhan laughed at Wang ZhuoCheng who was walking  before the prince,  stabbing every bush with his sword, before allowing Beauty to walk further.
"Better, let's play a little!", he laughed more when ChiangCheng  took the on-guard fencing position at the cold snowball thrown  onto his head by the naughty Beauty.



Wang ZhuoCheng gave him a few "tsk", while  shaking his head. But even though he couldn't get angry at his childish friend, it was about time to get serious:
"It's nothing to laugh about, ZhanZhan.
I think that it's the right time to tell you about what happened before you found me and Kuan Ge in that situation.
As you know we were searching for that document, when a sudden scream reverberated from somewhere close. We hurried to search for the source, as someone might have been hurt and in need of our help.
That way we found a man trapped into a net hanging from a tree branch exactly like you found me.
But while we were trying to get him free, two other nets popped up out of nowhere and encircled our bodies. Well,  I was the only one who remained caught, because Kuan Ge was lucky enough to have in his pocket a knife  that he used for getting himself free right after  the thugs ran away.
And that way he was able to try to help me, too.
When you arrived, he was just about to get me free ."

"But, what about that guy you were helping? And  where were your horses?
Wait! The thugs?", Xiao Zhan asked, completely engrossed now in ChiangCheng's telling.

"Two other men popped up from behind trees and freed the alleged victim, who was actually one of their gang.
They started yelling at us to give them everything we have valuable.
But when  they finally understood that we have nothing, nor money, nor jewelry, they just stole our horses and got lost."

"So, you were robbed, luckily they didn't harm you in any other way.
But why didn't you want to tell me this, each time I was asking you about it?
Were you afraid that I would laugh at you or what? It's nothing to laugh about, as I said, thank god that they didn't harm you.", Xiao Zhan  smiled, endearly rubbing his friend's back.

"Wait, ZhaZhan, there is more.
I didn't want to tell you, because I didn't want to get you worried or even scare you.
One of the  thugs who seemed to be the leader kept screaming 'Tell me where is him? Why is he not with you, idiots?'
All three were masked, but...You can call me paranoid, but it seemed to me that I recognized Wen Chao's disgusting greasy hair. I swear, ZhanZhan!"

"Oh, calm down ChiangCheng! Nobody from Rose knows where we are, and how could that retard reach here to Peony?
Besides, he would have killed you both, god forbid,  not just steal your horses.
They were just a gang of thieves, no worries."

At some point, after walking more, Xiao Zhan  handed his friend a sandwich and a bottle of water taken out from his quiver and told him:
" Wait for me there under that tree. It's a tall tree, easier to be spotted when I'd come back . Eat this until then, if you want. Don't  freak out, I just  don't want you as my audience while I'm taking a  pee. Will be back in a minute."

"Your Highness! ZhanZhan! Please, no monkey business!", Wang ZhuoCheng pleaded, looking  with suspicious eyes at his not too trustworthy prince.

In a matter of a few minutes, Wang ZhuoCheng almost choked to death with the water that he was just quaffing.
He startled like hell at the strident shriek, thinking that the wild beast is attacking again. But these sharp high screams sounded  closer to  a bird than to a werewolf. Suddenly a weird animal jumped out  from behind a tree.
When ZhuoCheng calmed down a bit and looked more attentive at the 'animal' that was jumping around. howling and 
waving his arms menacingly, he understood:
"What the hell, Your Royal Highness! So this is what you were doing the whole night! You were  sewing and painting this mask!
But why? Do you enjoy getting me scared like that?"



"Oh, Wang ZhuoCheng, I hate you! How the hell did you know that it's me?
No, no, ChiangCheng, you know that I don't hate you, please forgive me!
You know that I love you, but I really need to do that!
Don't get upset, please, I will be as quick as possible, I promise!
I just want to see  with my own eyes what's going on with him. ", Beauty kept rumbling while pulling at a long string that ZhuoCheng didn't notice  before to be  hidden under the layer of dried leaves.

ZhuoCheng didn't believe his eyes when his body was, once again, strangled by a net trap and lifted up to the tree. The only difference was that this time the trap was maneuvered by his friend, his prince.
"Okay, the joke was funny, ha, ha, look I'm laughing! Now cut it off!
What the hell!
What in the name of Rose, are you doing?!
Do you want to leave me here in the middle of nowhere to be attacked by thieves again, or killed by Wen Chao's thugs, or possibly eaten alive by who knows what wild animals?
Do you hate me that much?"

"ChiangCheng, you know that it's not true!
I love you, you are my best friend, my only friend, you are my brother, whom I love dearly.
You know that I tried to convince you, I even begged you, but you left me no other choice.
I shouldn't miss more than an hour. You are a strong man, you will survive! It's not snowing, the weather is pretty warm, your clothes are thick and warm enough too. And as you saw I took care to give you food and water. 
I planned to bring Snowflake with us, so as to watch over you while I'd be missing, but I didn't find him anywhere. Maybe lord Liu HaiKuan took him to accompany him to the main palace. But, do not worry too much, I asked the lord if there are many wild animals around that could be a danger to us, and he said  that he never met any. So you will not get eaten alive, don't be afraid. Besides, I'm sure that you are not very alluring to them, with your lack of fatness, ha, ha.
I  might  be back even sooner than an hour, though. I must hurry, as lord Liu HaiKuan should be back soon and it would be really embarrassing if he would  catch me for the third time.
Bye ChiangCheng, take care, I love you. I promise to take care of myself, too, don't worry!"








Xiao Zhan never imagined that the palace would be so huge. It was already more than half an hour since he kept opening doors and there was no trace of the royal patient.

The echo of his shouts was reverberating through the long and high hallways of the palace:
"Hello, Your Majesty, are you  there?
Yo, King Wang Yibo, don't be afraid to answer! There is no enemy or a burglar here. It's me, Beauty, the prince of Rose.
Woah, everything is so beautiful!
I am surprised that the spoiled princess Yang Zi didn't demand to live here, instead of the main palace."

"This must be the kitchen. 
Eww,  this meat looks  uncooked.
Seems like Wang Yibo is not as lucky as I am with ChiangCheng's cooking skills.
ChiangCheng should teach lord Liu HaiKuan some cooking lessons.", Beauty grimaced at the disgusting plates of raw meat dipped  in a sauce looking more like a spooky fresh blood.

Xiao Zhan mussed if to climb down the dark stairs going to the basement:
"I hate basements!
I just hope there are no rats down there. I'm sorry, M

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Please, take a few seconds and answer this question, through your comments, thank you in advance for your bother!

Question: How would you like me to build Beauty's character?

1) The sweet, sensitive, romantic type?
2) The naughty, joker brat type?
3) A mix of the two above?


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Chapter 21: Looking forward to the next chapter!
Chapter 12: Your story is interesting. I'm invested. Good job authornim ❤
Mrunalinee #3
Chapter 12: I really like this story. And Author I wanna mix option (3) type . It will be fun.
I am hooked at the intro itself!
Chapter 3: Iloveit
Chapter 2: This first chapter was interesting and I am looking forward getting to know these characters more!!
Cannot wait for the next update!
Ooohhh this sounds so interesting! I cannot wait to start reading this! ^-^
Oh God! This is so beautiful❤ I can't wait to read this darling. I will be waiting. ❤