Since she helped humanity, Lin Shan felt awesome. The nightmare totally left her mind. For the next two days, she ate and slept well. Whenever she was bored, she would take a look at her treasure box and calculate her current monetary worth.
“This one (banknote) can buy us a house in Jiang Nan.” Lin Shan took out another sheet and placed it on the table, “This one can buy us a couple acres of land and two ox. As for this sheet, Xiao Lu, do you think I should open a tavern or a restaurant?”
Xiao Lu intently stared at Lin Shan: “Master, didn’t you say you wanted to open a brothel?”
“That was before!” Lin Shan rolled her eyes at Xiao Lu: “I thought about it. There are too many beauties in brothels. The sexual tension is too strong. I don’t want my man to be tempted. Plus, brothels are too common. It cannot show off my talents. So I have changed my mind. I am going to open a tavern! The name will be called the Dragon Gate Tavern. Selling buns will be the specialty!”
Xiao Lu was clearly shocked: “…Master, you’re truly one of a kind.”
“Of course!” Lin Shan thought very highly of herself: “I also plan on opening a biao ju*!”
“What do you plan to call the biao ju?”
Lin Shan thought about it: “I know! The Golden Sabre Biao Ju!”
Xiao Lu nearly choked on her tea. She gave Lin Shan a dirty look: “Master, you still can’t forget the golden sabre, eh?”
“Bullshit. That’s gold!” Lin Shan naturally nodded.
Xiao Lu was speechless. After a few moments, she said: “Speaking of the golden sabre, Lian Superior should be back today.”
“Mhm.” Lin Shan nodded, pretending to look calm.
Xiao Lu was excited: “Master, why don’t we go to the Palace gate and wait for Lian Superior?”
“Pah! Grow up. What type of young lady would throw herself out there like that? Be reserved. Understand?”
Xiao Lu looked wronged and grumbled: “Who was the one who secretly hid behind a stone statue to bid farewell? Psssh, reserved.”
“What did you say?”
“Your servant did not say anything!” Xiao Lu quickly shook her head.
“Hmm.. that’s right!” Lin Shan made a humph sound and started counting her banknotes again. After she counted them for the third time, she reluctantly placed the banknotes back into the box and closed the lid. Then, she lifted her head and looked at Xiao Lu: “Why don’t we go out and take a look?”
“……Master, you need to be reserved!”
“Reserved your sister! I’m going to greet the golden sabre. Not to greet a person!” She carefully put the box away and pulled Xiao Lu with her.
Poor Xiao Lu only drank half her tea, but was dragged out by the frenzy Lin Shan.
Since Dawn, Du Hao had already brought a bunch of his people with him to an upper area to wait. From where he was, he could see a lot further. He could see the flat and expansive main street that was right outside the palace gate. The main street ran straight through the Capital. The country’s flourishing districts could be seen all around. All the wealthy and riches were mixed within.
Yet, at the end of the road, outside the Capital, stood tens of thousands of Du Ye’s troops. Each of the soldier’s blade had once faced the enemies from the border. But now, they were ready to face his country and his people for his title.
Was this the price of being born royal? There was no such thing as the so-called family love. “Blood is thicker than water” was no match for the enticing position of the Emperor. Despite being siblings, ultimately, they will massacre each other.
Du Hao closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He was enjoying his last moments of peace. The air had already started to become unstable. The flames may spark at any moment.
“Your Highness, they have arrived!” A guard with good eyes was keeping on a lookout saw horses heading towards the palace gate.
“Let’s go down to greet them!” Du Hao snapped out of his peaceful moment. Victory or defeat will be determined by this result.
A bunch of guards followed Du Hao down as the palace gates slowly opened. Two horses stormed in. One of them had the golden sabre around his waist. It was shining against the sunrise.
Xiao Lu glanced through the crowd and suddenly whispered: “Master, look! The golden sabre!”
“Grow up!” Lin Shan said under her breath. But the corner of her mouth couldn’t help but curve upwards. She looked towards the palace gate with anticipation. Gradually, the horses’ hooves became clearer. The men on the horses stood straight and firm. They bear the hope of many. But at this moment, Lin Shan’s expression froze.
That face didn’t have a mask!
At the same time, there was also a slight change in Du Hao’s expression.
The horses finally stopped and Gu Zuo leaped off. Gu Zuo had a very unnatural expression on his face as he knelt in front of Du Hao. He had bloodstains all over his body, and his face was filthy. It was clear that he had gone through a fierce battle. Behind him, Chang Yu’s expression was also grave.
“Your subordinate deserves to die ten thousand times. I have failed to complete the mission your Highness had given me. Please punish me!” Gu Zuo’s voice caused everyone’s hearts to thump.
Immediately, the lively Palace gate turned deadly silent. Du Hao’s face paled and he looked grey. A few moments later, he asked in a hoarse voice: “Where is Lian Superior?”
“To report to your Highness, we entered the black forest but were ambushed. Traitor Chi Fei betrayed us. Lian Superior was stabbed and fell into the river valley. We tried to find him, but the flow of the water was too strong. We were only able to find Lian Superior’s sabre and….” Gu Zuo stopped speaking. Instead, he raised the sabre and presented Du Hao with Lian Feng’s mask.
The sunrise gave the silver mask a layer of gold. It looked very tragic underneath the radiance.
Du Hao didn’t ask the eunuch beside him to bring him the items. Instead, he took a few steps forward and took the items from Gu Zuo’s hands. At the same time, there was suddenly a noise. Quickly following was Xiao Lu’s screams: “Oh no! Come and help! Prince Consort has fainted!”
Du Hao’s heart sank as he turned around and saw Lin Shan’s white face. His heart felt twisted and in pain. “Hurry and help! Send the Imperial physician!”
“Send the Imperial physician!” Everyone started yelling everywhere. A couple of guards clumsily tried to pick Lin Shan up. At this moment, a strong pair of arms carried her away.
Du Hao’s eyes were filled with anxiety as he carried Lin Shan horizontally to his residence. Behind him was a big mess; some were screaming and some were crying. The whole Palace was chaotic. No one noticed a little eunuch sneaking out from the crowd and headed towards the Eldest Prince’s residence.
“To report to your Highness, your subordinate saw it with his own eyes. It is definitely true.” In Hua Qing Palace, Du Ye had assigned his trusted aide, Han Ying, into the Eastern Palace. Han Ying told Du Ye everything he knew and saw.
“Oh?” Du Ye had a poker face as he calmly stated, “So Prince Consort actually fainted.”
“Your subordinate saw it during the chaos. It is absolutely true. She didn’t fake it.”
Du Ye cunningly smiled: “The Crown Prince and an Imperial guard fighting over a woman. Fascinating. Truly fascinating!”
“Your Highness, if the Emperor is dead for good, then why don’t we allow the soldiers from outside to….”
Du Ye’s eyes flashed: “When were you given the authority to speak?”
Han Ying was so scared that he instantly got down on his knees: “Your subordinate talked too much. Your subordinate knows his wrongs. Please forgive me!”
“Get up.” Du Ye waved his sleeves.
“Thank you for your forgiveness. Thank you, your Highness!” Han Ying trembled as he got up. He was already covered in sweat.
“Remember, whenever I am assigning you something, never question or speak. Just do as I say. Understand?”
“Your subordinate understands.”
“Good. You may leave.”
“Your subordinate will take his leave….” Han Ying sighed in relief as he turned to leave. But the moment he stepped out, another subordinate entering directly stabbed his sword through his heart. Han Ying fell down onto the ground.
Right before he died, Han Ying turned and stared at the expressionless Du Ye: “Your Highness, w-why…..”
Du Ye slowly walked up to him with a disappointing look on his face: “Never question or speak. You just promised me, why don’t you understand?”
The other subordinate pulled out the sword and Han Ying struggled for a few seconds then died with his eyes opened.
“Never ask or speak. Until death, understand?” Du Ye harshly looked at the one that killed.
“Your subordinate understands.”
Han Ying’s body was dragged out. There was a pool of blood by the doorstep; as if it could foretell an upcoming gory battle.
*A biao ju is a place that you can go to if you want to deliver items to certain locations (they’re supposed to be very powerful people who can keep the items safe. They will send people to deliver your items).