Chapter 82 – Prince Li (26.1)
Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong watched in disbelief as the emperor Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen, the crown prince Xuan Yuan Han Cheng, the second prince Xuan Yuan Han Qi, and a large number of guards heading towards him.
“Impossible… impossible…” Prince Li looked at Xue Gui with murderous eyes, “It’s you… is it you who betrayed this prince…” If eyes could kill, Xue Gui would have turned to ashes long ago.
“No… I didn’t, Your Royal Highness. This subject clearly received a signal from his son.” Xue Gui also did not know why things turned out this way…
“You want to revolt based on this type of meager plotting, you’re really overestimating your capabilities,” Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen said without an iota of politeness. “You better give up quietly without a fight, if you delay the auspicious time for sacrificing to the heavens, you will be a first class criminal…”
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Xuan Yuan Han Cheng clapped his hands, and a team of archers emerged from the guards behind him. They loaded their bows, facing Prince Li and his cohorts…
“There are five thousand more soldiers waiting for you outside, you can’t escape, Uncle Prince Li,” Xuan Yuan Han Cheng said as he looked at Prince Li.
“Hahaha, you want to take me down, it won’t be that easy.” Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong violently pulled Xue Gui, who was closest to him, towards him. He also seized Xie Changqing, who was standing in the front.
The moment Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong made a move the archers released their arrows. Xue Gui, who was blocking in front of Prince Li, was shot full of arrows.
“Haha, shoot your arrows again… and make Prime Minister Xie the first prime minister in the Xuan Yuan Dynasty to be shot until he becomes a hedgehog, hahaha…”
“Let go of the prime minster, and I will leave you an intact corpse.” Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen said in a deep voice.
For a while, no one dared to move, and the atmosphere was a little anxious.
Disregarding his own safety, Xie Changqing struggled to say, “Your Majesty, don’t worry about the safety of this old official…”
“All of you, get out of the way… if you don’t want this old thing to die, then obediently make way for me.” Prince Li pushed his blade up against Xie Changqing’s neck.
“Okay… We* will let you leave, don’t hurt the prime minister…” Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen was helpless to do anything else. He really did not want to let Prince Li run free, but he could not disregard Xie Changqing’s life and disappoint the courtiers by letting them think that he was coldhearted.
[*T/N: 朕 zhen – imperial we]
The people that Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong brought with him gathered around him, putting Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong and the prime minister in the center of their midst. They slowly started to make their escape. Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong dragged Xie Changqing onto a horse. Then he said arrogantly, “Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen, what can you do about me? Hahahaha…”
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Xuan Yuan Han Cheng was prepared to lead the cavalry to chase them. He said to his imperial father: “Imperial Father, quickly commence with the worshipping ceremony, ba. Erchen will go chase them…”
“I’ll go too…” The second prince, Xuan Yuan Han Qi, also got on a horse and headed in the direction where Prince Li had fled.
Their horses galloped for a long time, and finally they glimpsed the silhouettes of Prince Li and his people.
Upon seeing this, Prince Li tossed Xie Changqing aside. Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong didn’t really dare to kill Xie Changqing. Xie Changqing’s prestige in the imperial court was high. He was loved and respected by the civilian court officials. If he really killed Xie Changqing, then all the scholars under the sky would likely spit on and curse his name.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng and the others had to slow down and go forward to rescue Prime Minister Xie first.
Xuan Yuan Han Qi was not resigned. He stared after Prince Li’s retreating back and drew his bow.
Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong heard the swish of a flying arrow, and then he was struck in the back by the arrow and almost fell off his horse. Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong did not expect that the second prince Xuan Yuan Han Qi’s archery skills would be so good. He was able to shoot Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong despite the distance… Fortunately for Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong, the second prince’s arrow did not hit one of his vital areas.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng helped Xie Changqing to his feet.
“Prime Minister, are you all right?”
“Your Royal Highness, this old official is fine. All of you, go after Prince Li, ba…” Xie Changqing had received a bit of fright, but asides from a few scrapes on his body, he was all right.
Translations by Vanilla Muse.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng ordered several guards to escort the prime minister back. Then Xuan Yuan Han Cheng himself and his younger brother continued to chase after Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong with the cavalry.
By following the trail of blood on the ground, they were unlikely to lose track of Prince Li. The entire time they chased after Prince Li, they did not slow down or stop.
There were several times when they were about to catch up, but then Prince Li would send out his sishi to obstruct them.
[Reminder: 死士 sishi – a person who is willing to sacrifice his life for a cause]
Making use of his numerical advantage, Xuan Yuan Han Cheng and his cavalry quickly took care of the sishi, but it still gave Prince Li the time to escape.
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