Arc 4 – Slag that Prince Regent
Shen Wumian’s temper indeed wasn’t very good but he was also someone who highly valued talent so even if the old doctor was rude to him, he was able to silently endure it.
Concussion and detoxification treatment commenced together and taking medicine daily had now become commonplace for the young Emperor. As the saying goes, medicine is three parts poison. The process of detoxification was also a slow poisoning process. It was just that this poison was too subtle, too gentle, so even the top doctor couldn’t avoid it.
Today’s weather was good. In addition to that, the court had also been cleaned up thoroughly over the past month and those who were dishonest and waiting for an opportunity to disturb the court had been dealt with by Shen Wumian. During this period, there were many who wanted to get close to the young Emperor and deal with him first or use him to threaten Shen Wumian or even try to get in between the young Emperor and the prince regent. At the beginning, Shen Wumian would patiently stop their attempts but once he started feeling irritated, all that patience was gone.
Shen Wumian released a eunuch he had imprisoned. That eunuch was a spy who had been planted in the palace more than ten years ago. As he had been very peaceful before and never came into contact with anyone outside, Shen Wumian didn’t discover his identity but a month ago, his master had asked him to secretly approach the young Emperor, show his favour and to use that opportunity to make the young Emperor rely on him.
In the royal setting, dependence was a very terrible world. It meant that a person had a weakness. That eunuch had planned it out very well. He believed that the young Emperor who had lost his parents at a young age and grown up alone in the palace must be very lonely. If he played the role of a father, the young Emperor would most definitely fall for it. With this thought in mind, the eunuch approached Chen Yi but before he could say a single word, he was taken to the Criminal Interrogation Bureau by a shadow guard who had been watching over him since a while ago.
The spy eunuch spent a week there. After he was released, Shen Wumian ordered his subordinates to place a cage at the palace gate and chained the eunuch up in there, allowing everyone going by to see him very clearly.
All the officials had to go through the palace gate when they go to court. That night, many of the officials had nightmares when they returned. When they returned to court the second day, many of their faces were fragile like gold paper and they could barely maintain the demeanour and dignity of a court official. As for the thoughts they had prior to this, they had long disappeared without a trace.
Please read this from kk translates
Chi Zhao naturally didn’t know about all of this. Shen Wumian had protected him very well. Every message that reached Chi Zhao’s ears were only those that were approved by Shen Wumian. He would never allow something as filthy as this to reach Chi Zhao.
After two days of peace, the officials below once again regained their spirits. As long as they encountered a somewhat controversial political case, they would instantly turn into the aunties at the vegetable markets and would start arguing with their colleagues until their faces were flushed red.
Chi Zhao silently watched the officials below, silently counting to himself.
When the count reached twenty, an official suddenly fell onto his knees and cried and wailed for a long time. The general gist of his words was that if the Emperor didn’t listen to him, Chen Empire would be finished.
When the count reached forty, another official who couldn’t stand watching this jumped in. He picked up the crying official by his collar, scolded him for being crying sissy and said that if he had the ability, they should go out onto the field to have a proper showdown with their swords.
When the count reached sixty, someone on the side watching over the chaos pondered for a few seconds and instantly changed their expressions into a tragic and solemn look. They cried out loudly, “This is all because of official’s incompetence to be unable to make the Emperor take back his order. Late Emperor, this official would join you down there to make amends!”
Chi Zhao: “……”
In just sixty seconds, all sorts of acts were displayed before him.
Only after becoming an Emperor did Chi Zhao realise that it wasn’t just a woman’s forte to act dramatic. It was even more so for these civil servants before him.
When he finally left that chaotic court, Chi Zhao’s ears were still buzzing, like there was a group of flies nearby. He slowly walked back at a snail’s pace with Shen Wumian accompanying him by his side.
After being silent for a moment, Shen Wumian asked, “Today’s court, what is Your Majesty’s opinion?”
Chi Zhao blinked lightly and answered quickly, “Um…. Everyone’s in good spirits.”
Chi Zhao had made up his mind to be wishy washy so he naturally wouldn’t give him any serious responses. Shen Wumian however wasn’t angry when he heard Chi Zhao’s answer and didn’t think that he was being perfunctory. Instead, he let out a low laugh and continued looking ahead.
“The owner of Ye Zhetai went to Dongliang and used 36,000 taels of silver but reported to the Ministry of Civil Affairs 36, 824 taels. Both the minister and the supervisor there believe that he had done it out of greed and embezzled 824 taels. The minister advocated the dismissal of him, and the supervisor insisted that he be imprisoned. They made it seem like it was a very serious matter, but it was in fact embezzling just a mere 800 taels. Although that amount could sustain an ordinary family for a few lifetimes, it is nothing for those who have already achieved a status as an official.”
A skinny camel is still larger than a horse. Chen Empire was also a very wealthy country a few years ago. Although it was now declining, there was still a lot of money in the treasury. As an official with high authority in this country, if he was corrupt, tens of thousands of taels wouldn’t be considered as a big amount for him. After all, Ye Zhetai was equivalent to an official charity foundation in modern society. It would receive donations every day and its annual expenditure was also quite a large amount. It was indeed strange for them to argue about a mere 800 taels.
Talking about something he was interested in; Chi Zhao’s attention was drawn. He widened his eyes slightly and looked at Shen Wumian curiously, hoping that he could tell him the answer.
Shen Wumian smiled and didn’t hide anything. He directly gave him the answer, “The minister and supervisor are not considered very influential officials but just by raising this issue in court today, the reaction was very strong. The reason for this was because the officials had more important things in mind and that is, their own circumstances.”
“That owner of Ye Zhetai had entered and left the Beijiang Mansion half a month ago. When he came out, his expression was nervous and he accidentally tripped over the threshold, cutting his face. The next day, the mansion closed its doors and Lord Beijiang no longer went to court due to sickness. The officials all have their own network of connections. From one to ten and ten to a hundred, everyone soon found out about this and then today Your Majesty made your appearance. Your Majesty, why do you think they are doing this?”
Chi Zhao seemed to understand a little, “They want to show loyalty to you.”
Lord Beijiang was also a high-ranking official with a status on par to Shen Wumian. Before, he had always been high-profile and would from time to time go against Shen Wumian in court. Chi Zhao knew about this. With him suddenly becoming so quiet, Chi Zhao could tell that something must have happened.
Shen Wumian slowly came to a stop. It was now the end of the summer and it was no longer so hot especially with the occasional autumn breeze. He reached out to straighten Chi Zhao’s clothes with had come loose with his movements.
When Shen Wumian did this, his fingers would lightly sweep across Chi Zhao’s chin a few times. Chi Zhao couldn’t help but purse his lips and lower his eyes such that he didn’t look at Shen Wumian. Shen Wumian didn’t do anything else, as if that action earlier really was done unintentionally.
The smile on Shen Wumian’s face deepened, “Not only that, they want to create an opportunity to attack Lord Beijiang’s party. With this, they can not only strike Lord Beijiang while he’s down and also show loyalty to me.”
So it turned out to be like this.
In troubled times, everyone is at risk and everyone wants to protect themselves. Even the most non-corrupt officials would want to protect their lives first and foremost. Lord Beijiang originally had been going against Shen Wumian but now that Shen Wumian was able to finally deal with him, others would most definitely follow.
Perhaps there were some officials who didn’t want to do this but with everyone else arguing so passionately, they couldn’t stand silently on the side. In the end, in order to go with the flow, they joined in and that resulted in that vegetable market scene.
Chi Zhao couldn’t help but sigh. Shen Wumian had been calmly watching him the entire time and, seeing that he was listening carefully and deeply in thought, he slowly withdrew his hand and said his next words with a natural expression.
“Your Majesty must learn to understand the officials minds. There is only one Emperor in this world but there are countless officials. Your Majesty can not learn about handling major national affairs since there are officials who can help but Your Majesty must learn about managing the officials.”
Chi Zhao was stunned. Was Shen Wumian wanting him to learn how to govern a country?
Please read this from kk translates
But after some thought, it made sense. The poison was no longer given and the abuse that he had planned to do initially had now been abandoned. The next thing to do following that was naturally to return everything that originally belonged to him. After the initial astonishment passed, Chi Zhao quickly gathered up his thoughts. The cogs in his mind turned a few times and Chi Zhao lowered his head, making himself look gloomy and wronged.
Staring at the tip of his toes for a while, he spoke in a very small voice, “Imperial Uncle….Do you still not believe me?”
Shen Wumian was startled.
When the young Emperor is emotionally unstable or frightened, he would forget to refer to himself using ‘Zhen’.
The eunuch and palace maids were standing three feet away from them, so they didn’t hear the young Emperor just now. Shen Wumian suddenly felt a little weak. He had tried to fix everything and the past few days he had been with the young Emperor almost every day, using his actions to express his sincerity but the young Emperor never trusted him.
Closing his eyes, Shen Wumian suppressed his emotions and said, “This one believes in Your Majesty and that is why I want Your Majesty to learn how to govern the country and how to be a good Emperor.”
Having said that, he took a step forward to rub the young Emperor’s soft hair. But before he could touch it, the young Emperor suddenly raised his head. That frail and pleading look in his eyes made Shen Wumian stop and freeze in place.
Those sickly lips opened and closed and the words that were spoken were like a blunt knife piercing into his heart. It hurt a lot, but it didn’t bleed.
“Imperial Uncle, what do you want me to do, just tell me. I will definitely be obedient so please…….Stop testing me, okay?”
Shen Wumian’s face paled with every word. In the end, there was no colour left on his face.
As it turned out…..In Chen Yi’s eyes, everything he had been doing these days were tests?
He thought that as long as he had enough patience, he could convince Chen Yi to fall in love with himself but what if he had completely lost Chen Yi’s trust? What if Chen Yi had been hurt so badly by him, the wounds left behind couldn’t heal?
Shen Wumian’s expression was extremely poor, as if he was rejected by the entire world, completely alone and helpless. Chi Zhao looked up at him and didn’t say anything. He just turned around in silence and left. The entourage behind them looked back and forth between him and the prince regent who looked like he had just been abandoned by his master before finally choosing to run after the Emperor.
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KK has something to say:
Chi Zhao: *Plunges knife into Shen Wumian’s heart and twists it around a few times*