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Pearl of the Palace - Part 7


Serialisation of the exciting Qing China fantasy sequel to Dragon Sisters by Joyce Chng. Read chapters 14 and 15 today!

419 words 2 minute read

Other parts in this serial

Chapter Fourteen

I Am Here

Xiao Xin woke up and the landscape was very different from where she was last. Beneath her she could feel the gigantic heart and the roar of its breathing.

Stifling a sob, she looked around. Everything looked small. The wind was tugging at her face. She wished Mother, Autumn, and Xiao Xiao were here to comfort her, to hold her.

Was she lost?

"Are you going to eat me?" she said, pounding her fist on the mane.

The monster didn't reply. Perhaps it didn't even know she was there.

"Xiao Xiao!" she shouted into the wind.


I am here!

The wind spun her words, scattering them like seeds.

And like seeds, the words landed in rich soil and germinated, growing tiny roots. The carps in the river swallowed these words and passed them through. The crabs and snails picked at the words, and made houses out of them. The words landed in the fields where the livestock fed and in turn they then fed the flowering weeds. The dandelions, the pu gong ying, sent the words further with their tiny white parasol-like seeds.

Herds of deer called out the words.

The eagles sang the words.

Porpoises in the sea leaped and danced the words.

I am here.

I am here.

I am here.

Chapter Fifteen

Winds of War

Meanwhile, the foreign ships clamored for trade, for treaties. They eyed with greed the Middle Kingdom's bounty: silk and tea. And the promise of so much rich land.

They fanned the winds of war, beating their war drums.

The Nian smelled this wind.

It tasted delicious.

It wanted to eat. To devour.

To destroy.

Ming Zhu shivered. The winds had changed. Or the smell of the winds.

Danger, she whispered, her tail thrashing about in agitation.

I can still hear her voice. Let's follow it! Xiao Xiao insisted.

And they listened.

The song was scattered across the land. A powerful trail.

Xiao Xin's trail.

She was telling them that she was still alive.

I am here.

I am here.

I am here.

Jasmine Tea



  1. Pour hot water into a pot containing the loose-leaf jasmine tea.

  2. Steep for about 5 -10 minutes.

Sip it in a cup.


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