Old Eighth’s Sinister Ruthlessness

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Feng Yu Heng felt that she herself was not the best at scamming people. Xuan Tian Ming was the one that was truly the expert! Happily handing over the rights to command the imperial guards, he obtained 300 thousand troops. No matter how she thought about it, this was a good deal, but the only thing that caused her to worry was that the imperial guards worked inside the imperial palace. If there were troubles at the border, there would be room to maneuver. Even if cities were snatched, there would be a chance to snatch them back, but once the imperial palace was controlled, the heart of Da Shun’s power would be held captive. This was the equivalent of cutting off a person’s hands and feet but leaving them alive versus having the heart crushed directly causing death. When Feng Yu Heng thought of this, a look of worry appeared on her face.

After the matter was handled, the Emperor finally spoke up to have everyone immediately leave the palace. This included the princes, imperial concubines and the Empress. Nobody was to accompany him. He had drank too much and wanted to go back and sleep.

Zhang Yuan helped the Emperor walk out of the small brush and onto the imperial sedan. Even after being seated on the sedan, the Emperor muttered: “Will A-Heng really not be able to enter the palace in the future? It seemed that We did not promise too firmly. This can be reversed, right?”

Zhang Yuan helplessly told him: “It can’t be reversed. Your Majesty’s agreement was very proper. In the future, imperial daughter will no longer meddle with the affairs of the courts, and she will not enter the palace. Even the Hundred Herb Hall in the city might be closed.” Zhang Yuan began to feel a bit angry, and he could not help but curse: “Really what a group of damn geezers. Why did His Highness the ninth prince not just whip them all to the heavens?”

The Emperor snorted coldly: “Do you think that whipping a group of officials to death is the same thing as whipping an imperial concubine? Whipping an imperial concubine to death is, to put it plainly, a family matter. Whipping an official to death is a country’s matter! Although We favor old ninth, We do not intend to be a bad ruler, and We want even less to have old ninth be called a scoundrel. Forget it, the country will eventually be given to the next generation. Letting them compete a bit is also good. A-Heng is a good child, but since she is engaged to old ninth, this is something that she must endure. On this path, whether it’s stormy or bumpy, they need to experience it all. Only like that can the world be at peace. If they are protected the entire time, and they ascend the throne too easily, perhaps they will not know to cherish it and will not handle it properly. It’s just a pity that A-Heng will no longer be able to enter the palace frequently. We really liked the tea that she sent, as well as those strange and new items. Just accompanying Us for a talk was also quite good.”

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Zhang Yuan, however, said: “This servant is not worried about that the most. Imperial daughter will no longer be able to frequently enter the palace to check on Your Majesty’s health, nor will she be able to bring those mystical medicines. If the Hundred Herb Hall in the capital is then closed, if you have a headache or anything like that, you will only be able to go back to drinking those bitter soups. They are bitter, and they are slow, but you know that the medicine passed down by our ancestors work to treat the root of the illness. The problem is that the imperial physicians are too scared to use stronger medicine on you. They’re all just a bunch of mild treatments. Something that could be treated in three days with accurate amounts of medicine would be drawn out to ten days or half a month by those guys. Isn’t that just plain suffering.”

The Emperor also sighed from listening to this. This was not all, as the most troublesome would be old man Yao. He had heard that the Yao family and the Heng girl had reconciled, and now his eighth son had offended her. Based on old man Yao’s temper, he would no longer enter the palace to drink with him. Hah! How could he have forgotten about this earlier. This truly was troublesome. If he had known sooner, he would have just been a bad ruler rather than agree with those damn geezers! He truly had erred!

The Emperor repeatedly sighed. Zhang Yuan thought that it was for Feng Yu Heng. How could he know that he was actually feeling depressed over losing a drinking buddy. Back in Ming Zhi Palace, after the Emperor had left first, the Empress brought the imperial concubines to leave. Noble Lady Yuan left a bit slower. When she passed by the eighth prince’s side, she looked at him with a bit of worry; however, she heard the eighth prince quietly say to her: “Imperial Concubine Mother, don’t worry. Only controlling the imperial palace is equivalent to controlling Da Shun.” Only then did Noble Lady Yuan feel a bit more at ease. She then quietly followed the group of imperial concubines and left.

The remaining people also left, while Xuan Tian Ming walked over to Feng Yu Heng’s side and happily said: “Dear wife, let’s leave!”

However, his mood was far less relaxed than he let on. After the two left the palace and got into Xuan Tian Ming’s imperial carriage, Wang Chuan also went along, while Huang Quan brought Zi Rui to inform the imperial daughter’s imperial carriage to return first. Upon setting out, Feng Yu Heng began to express her worries. In regards to this, Xuan Tian Ming was in agreement, but he still comforted her, saying: “It’s not as serious as you make it sound! The imperial palace is indeed important, but no matter what sort of mess he causes, it will all be confined to the inside of the palace walls. The crisis will not reach the citizens. There will be no need for the soldiers at the border to fight. We will be able to resolve things very quickly. Once a city has been snatched, based on the way the small desert countries act, the cities would definitely be eradicated.”

“Cities eradicated…” Feng Yu Heng furrowed her brow and began to think. She knew what it meant for a city to be eradicated. That did not just mean leaving the citizens with no way of surviving. She had not experienced an ancient battle that eradicated cities; however, she had experienced the battlefield of Qian Zhou. She had also seen the miserable condition of Duan Mu An Guo’s Winter Palace. Moreover, she had been to the Middle East in her previous life. She had rescued injured people from the smoke of battle and treated them on the spot. She had seen the people that were drunk with conviction in their inhuman beliefs. It was indeed frightening, but compared to the eradication of a city, it was still too far from what she could understand. “Would the desert countries really cause trouble?” She asked Xuan Tian Ming, “Can you be certain of it?”

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Xuan Tian Ming nodded, “I am. Old eighth has made a deal with them with Gu Shu acting as the representative of the South. They will work together to attack Da Shun and cause trouble at the Southern border. He is certain that I would go out to the battlefield, thus he himself would find an excuse to remain in the capital. The South will not allow me to be at ease. His troops also will not listen to all of my orders. This battle will surely be a loss, and at least three cities will be lost. As for the small desert countries, they will use that opportunity to negotiate for peace with Da Shun. Their conditions will be to name old eighth as the crown prince. Once old eighth assumes the throne, their deal will go forward. Da Shun will hand over the three southern cities to the coalition of small desert countries, with Gu Shu dividing them up.”

“You said last time that the eighth prince is not one to keep promises.” Feng Yu Heng’s gaze revealed a cold look, “Also, are you really so certain that you will lose?”

Xuan Tian Ming smiled bitterly, “Of course, old eighth is not one to keep promises. Once he ascends the throne, what Gu Shu, and what desert. He would, at the first moment possible, amass the majority of Da Shun’s troops and attack at full strength. He definitely will not allow Da Shun’s territories to remain in someone else’s hands. This is also why I still have some brotherly feelings left for him. At the very least, his plans for after ascending the throne will not be a loss for Da Shun.”

“But during this process, who knows how much the citizens will suffer!” Feng Yu Heng angrily gritted her teeth: “For his own private desires, he would rather drag so many people to accompany him to the grave. Even if the three cities are snatched back, what of the citizens that died? Can they be brought back?” In her heart was still the ideals of humanity. In regards to people that viewed the lives of citizens as nothing more than trash, she could not get used to them.

“That’s why we must fight.” Xuan Tian Ming told her, “You just asked why I am certain that I will lose. That’s because I understand his methods too well. If I go out for this battle, just wait and see. The amount of military supplies, medicine and rations will definitely not be sufficient, and it’s impossible that they will arrive in time. It’s very likely that they will be stranded halfway, leaving our soldiers with nothing to eat, and our horses with no grass to feed on. How can a battle be won like this?”

“Wow, fuck!” Feng Yu Heng let out a rough swear, “That’s too fucking sinister.” To go onto the battlefield to kill enemies, more important that weapons and tactics were supplies and food, along with the medicine. If these could not keep up, the soldiers would not even be able to eat enough. How could they possibly go and fight a war? Not to mention not having the strength, but they could not even feel at peace internally! Going to kill enemies on the battlefield was something to be done with their head held high. Each time they rushed out, there was a chance that they would not return; however, they could not even get food to eat before going to their deaths. This sort of reasoning has never existed throughout the ages. Even before being sent to the guillotine, the damned is allowed to eat their fill!

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Feng Yu Heng’s heart trembled with anger, but what could she do? She asked Xuan Tian Ming: “Can you choose to not go?”

Xuan Tian Ming, however, told her: “When the military rights for Da Shun reached Father Emperor’s era, they were not spread among many generals. Even General Ping Nan has gradually relinquished control of his troops. They have all been returned to the princes. As for the princes that have the right to command troops and can lead a battle, aside from me and old eighth, there is only seventh brother.”

“Seventh brother?” Feng Yu Heng gritted her teeth, “You mean to say that if you don’t go, only seventh brother can go? Then what’s the fucking difference?” She found it a bit difficult to control her emotions; however, she also knew that no matter how much she cursed, it would not make any difference. Unless she killed Xuan Tian Mo, this matter would not come to an end. But killing Xuan Tian Mo was easier said than done. Even if she had her space, Xuan Tian Mo’s bedchamber would not be so easy to break into. But… She came up with an idea. The bedchamber might be difficult, but it was not impossible to go to other places. Since the supplies might not be able to keep up after Xuan Tian Ming leaves for battle, all that could be done was to buy it after they reached the South. As for before that… “Alright, we’ll talk about this later on. Send me back to my manor. The day is late, and I still have something to do after resting for a bit.”

“What is it?” Xuan Tian Ming frowned, “What are you going to do now? I’m telling you that old eighth is not like old third. He’s not that easy to deal with. Do not mess around.”

“Hah, who would mess around with him.” Feng Yu Heng smiled and said: “I am preparing to go to the Lu family. Lu Yan mysteriously became poisoned. I am feeling uneasy about it and will be going to investigate tonight.”

Xuan Tian Ming knew that this matter had been tugging at her, thus he did not suspect anything else. Sending her to the entrance of the imperial daughter’s manor, he advised: “Be careful when moving around at night. Bring along Ban Zou.”

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Feng Yu Heng smiled to him, “Don’t worry. It’s just a lowly Lu manor. It’s not some wolf’s den. Bringing along Ban Zou would be like bringing a deadweight. You understand.”

Xuan Tian Ming nodded and did not say anything else. He knew that this girl had a mysterious space and could hide inside it when there was danger. Not even a great deity would be able to find her. This also allowed him to feel at ease with letting her move alone.

The two went their separate ways at the imperial daughter’s manor. Huang Quan and Zi Rui had returned to the manor in the manor’s imperial carriage. After the matter in the palace, Zi Rui had been frowning and unhappy the entire time. Seeing Feng Yu Heng, he really wanted to say something; however, he only said: “Elder sister, rest well. We’ll speak tomorrow.”

Feng Yu Heng sighed. This child really had grown up, thus she advised the servants to bring Zi Rui back to his room. She then brought her own maidservants back to her courtyard. Upon entering the room, Wang Chuan could not hold back and said: “Young Miss, you lied to His Highness!”

Huang Quan was given a fright, “Young Miss lied to His Highness? What did she lie to His Highness for?”

Wang Chuan stomped her foot and stared at Feng Yu Heng, saying: “Young Miss said that she had to visit the Lu manor tonight, but you actually want to go somewhere more dangerous, right? If this servant has not guessed incorrectly, it should be the Sheng Palace, right?”

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