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MJT Chapter 9

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Inside Noble Consort Ru’s palace, all the palace maids and eunuchs were driven out by Noble Consort Ru, leaving only one person in the palace. Noble Consort Ru cried and cursed: “Even though the crown prince and I didn’t do anything, his majesty rebuked us. Now Concubine Qin, that bitch, has clawed her way up above me. If the crown prince wasn’t his majesty’s only son, his majesty would even have the crown prince abolished. I can’t let that bitch off easily! Chongren, help me vent this anger!”

Yi Chongren gave a silk handkerchief to Noble Consort Ru to wipe her tears. Although his expression remained cold, this action was very warm. Noble Consort Ru leaned against the injured side of Yi Chongren’s body and gently laid her hands upon him: “Your martial arts is so powerful. How could you get hurt?”

Yi Chongren wasn’t immediately comforted. After waiting for Noble Consort Ru to calm down a bit, he lightly said: “I also wonder why I’ve been injured. This matter is strange.”

Noble Consort Ru straightened and whispered: “What’s strange?”

Yi Chongren didn’t answer directly and said: “From the time Prince Yue returned to the capital to the time he raised the troops, many strange matters occured. Prince Yue was able to escape right under the noses of the Hu An guards and imperial guards. Once this happened, his majesty vented his anger on you and the crown prince. What do you think?”

Noble Consort Ru’s eyes widened. She thought carefully about the incident and couldn’t help but gasp: “Someone wants to harm the crown prince and I!”

Yi Chongren coldly said: “Lord Sishi is your biological father. I am your confidante. If I die, you and your highness will lose the protection of the Hu An guards. Now, it is hard for Lord Sishi to preserve even his own life. If I die, who would reap the most benefits?”

Noble Consort Ru was enraged: “Zhang Zhong, that undying bastard, dares to scheme against me! He’s got a lot of nerve!”

“I didn’t say anything.” Yi Chongren’s expression became even colder, “But I’ve never been a man who’s been at the mercy of others. You should know this the best.”

“Whoever dares to mess with you will be offending me. Chongren, in my heart, you are the only one worthy of the position of Lord Dugong of the Hu An guards. I definitely won’t let Zhang Zhong off lightly!”

Noble Consort Ru was able to gain her current position and birth the only son of his majesty, so the schemes of others couldn’t be compared to hers. After such a big incident, his majesty unjustly vented his anger out on her, his favored consort, while Zhang Zhong found that bitch to appease his majesty. Even his father had to go through that bitch when entering the palace to see his majesty. In the blink of an eye, she lost his majesty’s favor. Zhang Zhong’s move was very clever. Although Yi Chongren was Zhang Zhong’s trusted aide, Zhang Zhong didn’t trust Yi Chongren as much as he trusted Liu Yu in the past. Maybe Liu Yu’s betrayal was even one of Zhang Zhong’s tricks. Noble Consort Ru felt like she could see Zhang Zhong’s butcher’s knife right in front of herself and the crown prince. She felt a chill down her spine.

“I will immediately send someone to invite father over!”

“No.”

Noble Consort Ru didn’t understand: “Why not? Now the only group that can compete with the Hu An guards is the imperial guards.”

Yi Chongren only said a few words to make Noble Consort Ru dispel this idea. “Do you plan on relying on Lord Sishi even after the crown prince ascends the throne?”

Noble Consort Ru’s heart skipped a beat. She knew better than anyone that her birth family was a double edged sword for her. She was the noble consort, but she still had to rely on her father for many issues. The crown prince was still young, but once he ascended the throne, she would be promoted to empress dowager. If she still relied on her father for everything at that time, she and the crown prince would be no different than puppets.

“Niangniang, if you don’t break off what should be broken off, you will be harmed.”

Noble Consort Ru’s expression appeared resolute and fierce. She was the noble consort, the future queen mother. Whoever hindered her would be her enemy, even if the other party was her closest family.

“Chongren, what do you think I should do now?”

“We will become fishermen.”

Noble Consort Ru’s eyes flashed, and then she laughed sinisterly.

As expected, Concubine Qin calmed down the Jiazheng emperor and Sun Jiyu was able to see his majesty. Following Yi Chongren’s plans, Sun Jiyu explained the matter once more with snot and tears dripping from his face. They were a bit too hasty at most, but the young master’s disappearance and the prince consorts’ suicide had nothing to do with them. Sun Jiyu thoroughly reported his analysis to his majesty. They concluded that no matter how his majesty tried to appease Prince Yue, even if this incident did not occur, Prince Yue would definitely still rebel. This time Prince Yue raised troops in the name of the “Qing Jun Ce”. This sounded awe inspiring but in actuality he held the evil intention to “use the emperor’s name to command vassals for personal reasons”. Also, the crown prince was the only son of his majesty. If Prince Yue were to kill the crown prince, then the crown would naturally become his. Rather than have this happen, it would still be better to act first by taking Prince Yue’s child as hostage or by directly killing him.

The Jiazheng emperor thought Sun Jiyu’s words made sense. Concubine Qin also persuaded him in a timely manner, so the more the Jiazheng emperor thought, the more he was convinced that his little brother held malevolent intentions. The hatred he initially held towards Zhang Zhong and Sun Jiyu immediately turned into hatred for his younger brother from the same mother. As expected, with the imperial throne on the line, familial affection was all fake.

“I do my best for your majesty and the land, so it is inevitable that I will offend some people. Those people take advantage of their situations to frame me. Heaven and earth can stand witness to the sincerity I hold towards your majesty. If Prince Yue didn’t have the intent to rebel, how would I dare to frame Prince Yue.”

The Jiazheng emperor’s expression distorted and he asked: “Then where is the child?”

“He’s with Yi Chongren. After heavy discussion, Zhang Zhong and I decided that having him stay there is the most safe. Yi Chongren’s martial arts is powerful and all the people in his residence are not weak. If he stays in the palace, it’s hard to ensure he won’t be secretly taken away. We must let Prince Yue know that the child is in your majesty’s hands. Prince Yue should be clear on whether he wants the child or the throne.”

The Jiazheng emperor nodded with satisfaction: “Then leave the child with Yi Chongren. Have the Hu An guards and imperial guards cooperate to defeat Prince Yue. I’ve already completely closed my heart to him. Issue an edict in my name to gather forces to suppress the rebels.”

“Yes.”

Sun Jiyu felt relieved, and he smiled with satisfaction. As expected, Yi Chongren was a master strategist, but allowing such a person to stay at Zhang Zhong’s side was dangerous for him. After this matter was dealt with, he must find an opportunity to get rid of Yi Chongen.

His majesty’s attitude did a 180, so naturally, Zhang Zhong was very pleased and came to trust Yi Chongren even more. Once the Jiazheng emperor’s edict was issued, Zhang Zhong and Sun Jiyu would have regained his majesty’s trust. Naturally, the ministers who attempted to impeach them wouldn’t be pleased. However, Yi Chongren restrained the two’s butcher knives to prevent more issues from arising. It wasn’t too late to deal with Prince Yue and those people. After all, they can’t run away, so as to not make his majesty dissatisfied once more. Zhang Zhong and Sun Jiyu followed Yi Chongren’s advice and didn’t bother messing with those people. After a while, the court was in a state of trepidation. The officials that had submitted the articles of impeachment were prepared to have their heads fall to the ground. They only felt bellies full of buried anger and discouragement toward his majesty. There was already no hope for this emperor.

When Prince Yue’s troops met with the Jiazheng emperor’s army, the war officially started. All of Southern Chu was drawn into the quagmire of war once the two armies met. At this time, Yi Chongren stayed within the gates of his mansion to recuperate from his injuries. Zhang Zhong, Sun Jiyu, and Noble Consort Ru also began to secretly work in the shadows to advance their own interests. Following the plan Yi Chongren made for Zhang Zhong and Noble Consort Ru, he did not have to appear, and with Sun Jiyu’s presence, his majesty wouldn’t summon him for the time being. Yi Chongren leisurely recuperated and rested in his residence.

On a bed, a child with a yellowish complexion and thin face slept deeply. Yi Chongren sat at the bedside, watching him, and holding the child’s similarly thin hand in his palm. Under his sleeve, his wrist was wrapped with a circle of white cloth. After watching the child for a bit, Yi Chongren put down the his hand and lightly touched the child’s unhealthy face, whispering to the man standing beside him: “Take him away overnight. Send him to old brother. This child’s name is Jiabao. You don’t have to return. If nothing unexpected happens, the matters on this side will end soon. At that time, I’ll directly go to find you all.”

Yaba frowned and said in a low voice: “I’ll still come back to meet you. This place is a den of wolves. If something goes wrong, you’ll be in a dangerous situation. You’re also still injured.”

Yi Chongren calmly said: “Zhang Zhong, Sun Jiyu, and Noble Consort Ru are busy scheming against each other. Huo Feng’s army is suppressing his enemies everywhere he goes. They don’t have time to think about me. Don’t worry, I’ll leave safely.” Saying this, Yi Chongren caressed the child’s face, “I can’t have children in this life, so this child is my child.”

Yaba leaned over and picked up the child: “I’ll take the child away now. You must return safely.”

“Don’t worry.”

Glancing at Yi Chongren, Yaba picked up the baggage he had prepared and put it on his back. Then he tied the child to his chest, put on a cloak, and left into the night.

Sitting before the vanity, Yi Chongren washed off his makeup and looked at his unfamiliar reflection in the bronze mirror. He raised his left hand and slowly touched his face. Without the demonic heavy makeup, this face appeared less fierce, more gentle, and even more beautiful. Yi Chongren had a face that could be considered beautiful, but with his stern eyes, that face contrastingly revealed a sort of nobility that was difficult to scorn. Even Yaba, who had stayed by Yi Chongren’s side for many years, had never seen him without his makeup. As if he had just thought of something, Yi Chongren’s eyes flashed coldly and he stood up to walk away from the vanity.

————————————————————————————————————-

In Songlai city, Huo Feng, who had just captured the city, led his men into the province governor’s residence. The governor of the province had already surrendered, as it hadn’t taken too much effort to capture the city. However, Huo Feng was not satisfied with the current situation. This was only the beginning, and the hardest part had yet to come. He had already gotten a tip that the court’s army was approaching them. The Jiazheng emperor had used four cities as a gift to persuade Southern Chu’s allies, Meng and Kun, to send troops to help, so the situation suddenly became uncertain. Huo Feng knew that they needed to move faster to capture more cities before the troops from Kun arrived so that more of his troops could gather. He didn’t expect that the Jiazheng emperor would actually exchange four cities for reinforcements from Kun. Huo Feng did not feel the slightest sense of guilt towards such an imperial brother.

“Your highness, his majesty’s edict says that the two young masters are in the palace. Should we think of a way to rescue them? His majesty will definitely use the two of them as hostages to threaten your highness.”

Tang Nian, Huo Feng’s best counselor, said worriedly. His majesty’s first imperial decree and subsequent edicts had completely different attitudes, making it difficult not to think of the two children who had fallen into his majesty’s hands.

Huo Feng’s face did not reveal the slightest trace of worry. He stared at the battle map and calmly said: “His majesty is just bluffing. The children aren’t even in his hands.”

“Not in his majesty’s hands!?” Tang Nian was surprised. After Huo Feng raised the troops, he defected to become Huo Feng’s counselor. Seeing how sure his highness was, he thought to himself, could it be that his highness has already rescued the children? After seeing his highness’s calm face, which didn’t show the slightest trace of concern for his children, Tang Nian became more sure of his conjecture. He couldn’t help but admire his highness. After all, his highness was able to save the children from his majesty without batting an eyelid. His power truly was unfathomable. The whole world knew that of his highness’s two children one went missing and the other was captured by Yi Chongren of the Hu An guards. Thinking of how his highness had his own power in the Hu An guards, Tang Nian did not find it strange that his highness was able to escape from the capital safely.

Huo Feng didn’t know about Tang Nian’s thoughts as all his focus was on the battle map. Raising troops in the name of the Qing Jun Ce naturally helped him gain more support despite how everyone knew in their hearts that he was rebelling. The strongest forces in Huo Feng’s hands were those seven hundred thousand soldiers and his loyal subordinates, but he couldn’t win Southern Chu with only soldiers and horses. After the war started, he still felt that he lacked counselors. In war, the strength of the soldiers was important, but to win the world, strength and resourcefulness need to coexist, both are indispensable. Although Southern Chu was already rotten to the bones, skinny camels are bigger than horses[1], not to mention those forces connected to the interests of the Hu An guards and imperial guards wouldn’t possibly let them into the capital easily. Huo Feng understood that the future would become more and more difficult to walk. However, he had no way out. He could either break into the capital or be completely defeated and fall from grace.

However, as he said to Tang Nian, Huo Feng believed that the imperial edict was false. Not only were his sons not in his majesty’s hands, they were also very safe. For no apparent reason, whenever Huo Feng thought of those cold yet always mocking eyes, he firmly believed that that person would protect his sons even though he denied it when they fought that day. Occasionally when he was tired or resting, Huo Feng would think of Yi Chongren, think of his demonic face and those eyes that seemed to hide all his thoughts. Why did he save him? Why did his children have to be in Yi Chongren’s hands? Why did he escort him all the way back to Jade City Pass? Since he and Zhang Zhong were not on the same side, why did he have to stain his hands with the blood of so many loyal officials? Countless questions continuously flew through Huo Feng’s mind whenever he was tired. He had never been so “concerned” for anyone. Even towards his own late wives, Huo Feng had never “longed” for someone like this. Huo Feng’s irritation was palpable as he couldn’t stop thinking about that eunuch he once hated so much.

Half a month later, Ruan Xingtian’s troops encountered  the army sent out by the court. A fierce battle was inevitable. At the same time, a man called “Sima Xian” suddenly appeared in the south, claiming to be an envoy sent by the gods to exterminate demons. The demons meaning Zhang Zhong and Sun Jiyu. He also claimed that the current emperor connived with demons and harmed the people because he was possessed by the devil. Once this Sima Xian appeared, hundreds of thousands of his followers appeared, signifying that this group had been around for more than one or two years. Taking advantage of Prince Yue’s rebellion, Sima Xian, using the name of envoy of the gods, built the “Tian Shen Sect[2]” to raise troops from across the land, becoming the second biggest “rebellion” force after Prince Yue.

However, Sima Xian clearly did not have the same goals as Prince Yue. Prince Yue’s troops came from the northwest, while Sima Xian’s troops came from the southeast. Sima Xian bewitched the common people with his claims of divine power, earning him more and more followers. In contrast, Huo Feng, this orthodox prince who lived as a general, didn’t appear as prestigious as Sima Xian.

“Where did this Sima Xian come from?

In the Qianhu manor in the capital, Yi Chongren, who was still recuperating, asked his subordinates. One of his subordinates answered: “The man is an orphan who was raised in a Daoist temple. He used to be a nobody, but he took advantage of Prince Yue’s rebellion to establish himself as an envoy of the gods in an attempt to win the world, very ambitious.”

“He is indeed quite ambitious.”

Yi Chongren put down the teacup in his hand and lightly said: “Prince Yue has already beaten us black and blue, and here come some gods. Even if Kun agrees to send reinforcements, it’s only because Southern Chu agreed to give them some benefits. If there aren’t enough benefits, they won’t help us deal with Sima Xian either.” After pondering for a while, Yi Chongren commanded: “Lord Dugong and Lord Sishi have been busy dealing with Prince Yue lately and are not able to deal with this matter. Send people to go undercover in the ‘Tian Shen Sect’ to investigate. Then send some people to oppress men and dominate women. Plot some murders and blame the Tian Shen Sect. Label them as a ‘cult’. Let’s see how they can deal with this.”

“Your excellency is wise.”

“Go. Work carefully. Don’t let anyone find out we did it.”

“Don’t worry, your excellency!”

The man left after receiving his order. Yi Chongren’s eyes turned colder. Tian Shen Sect? Even frog really dare to jump out.

[1] 瘦死的骆驼比马大 Came from Dream of the Red Chamber. About how someone with special skills but has met with hard times is still stronger than someone who has just started learning those skills

[2]天神教 literally means sky god sect or heavenly sect but I’ll keep pinyin

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3 responses to “MJT Chapter 9”

  1. this business of good and bad people being inverted in black and white is all bullshit. for Yaba our MC was his savior and in his heart he is a good person, but for his victims he remains their killers. The supposed lesser evil might be called horrible below thunderous evil, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t still cruel, and that all this good and evil is just a stubbornly persistent illusion.

    Like

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