“Come on!” Shaquille, who seemed to be waiting for this moment, jumped up and landed forcefully, causing the gold and silver tableware beside him to fly up in the air. He stepped hard on the roasted beast, needing just one jump to land in front of the Haliph family head, displaying his amazing foot strength. The maids’ screams seemed to become cheering music. They fought barehanded and tried to bite each other as they rolled on the carpet. Some lizard demihumans joined the fight while others retreated quietly, leaving the fighters the space that they needed.
The girl knew that this would happen but could not help but cover her mouth as she cried in surprise.
“Calm down,” whispered Carmelo.
The girl swallowed her saliva and forced herself to look on indifferently.
She knew that this was the tradition of the lizards when inviting new guests. First, someone would deliberately provoke the new guests and engage them in a fight to understand both parties’ statuses and political stances. Although sometimes nobody died—they often did—it was required that somebody be seriously injured before they stopped the fight. Survival of the fittest is the way of the Desert Kingdom, and to determine who the fittest is, the weakest has to be identified.
Similarly, if the banquet hosts had no control over these fights and panicked, they would be cast aside by the guests. Therefore, Idnan and Carmelo looked on seriously and awaited the outcome of the fight.
The girl waited painfully for the fight to finish, which ended when the Haliph family head let out a final cry as he fell to the ground. The Suha family owner stepped back triumphantly, enjoying the view of the loser covered in blood. “You did well, my friend,” said Shaquille, who had numerous scratches on his body and a tail that was almost broken.
“Thank you for taking it easy on me… my friend,” said the Haliph family head painfully as he spit out bloody phlegm. His bones were broken.
“Haha! You are too kind. From today on, we are brothers—” The Suha family head swung his hand and hit the lizard on the chest, causing the recipient to immediately spit out more blood and faint. “Carmelo, hurry up and send this new brother of mine away to get him treated!”
The head maid was already on standby. She rolled up her sleeves and ordered that the remaining courtiers of the Haliph family head carry their family head to the guest room, ending the chaos.
“Get your wounds bandaged, son of Suha,” said Idnan, smiling and speaking in an admiring tone.
“That will not be necessary. Some bleeding is good for appetite. I am finally hungry for food!” The Suha family head stepped on the food to return back to his seat, staring sharply at Diana. “The candidate for the throne has to be braver. Come, Diana, why not come down and have a meal with your uncle?”
The sudden invitation made everyone laugh. Nonetheless, Idnan had a serious look on her face.
“I am afraid that there are no seats next to you,” said Idnan.
“Mrs. Juan, I am asking her.” The Suha family head continued to beckon the girl to come, showing a big smile. “You did not come here just to tremble, right?”
The family heads exchanged glances. It seemed futile to resist the Suha family’s test.
The girl’s heart throbbed violently. Not once did she think that the banquet could cause her to become more anxious than the time she faced the assassins.
—What would the real Diana say? No, what she should worry about now was what the best reply would be.