Chapter 84 – Prince Li
Xue Song obeyed Prince Li’s orders and made plans to infiltrate the harem. The main targets were the princes, empress, and the imperial concubines of the harem. He was to capture them and then meet up with Prince Li. This way, if Prince Li failed, they could use the hostages to threaten [the emperor and the crown prince], and thus safely return to Li City. If Prince Li succeeded, then those hostages would naturally be killed…
Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong did not expect the emperor to bring all the princes with him to worship the heavens this time. But it didn’t matter. It would be fine as long as they could capture the empress or a few of the imperial concubines.
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Those concubines were related to officials in the imperial court. If Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen ignored their safety in order to kill Prince Li, then the emperor would not be able to justify himself before the court.
As long as Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong could capture these protective talismans, then he wouldn’t have to worry about Xuan Yuan Zhao Shen barging into Li City in the short term. He would be able to use that time to recuperate and expand his strength.
“Xuan Yuan Han Cheng, do you dare to disregard the safety of your mother? Ha ha, if you guys don’t let me go, then there will be a lot of people accompanying me to hell…”
Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong saw his pursuers pause. He laughed heartily and then departed with his remaining sishi on horseback.
“Imperial Brother, what do we do? Imperial Mother, she…” Xuan Yuan Han Qi asked his brother. He was not resigned to the situation. At the same time, he was also very concerned for their mother’s safety.
“I have already sent people to follow them. They are riding horses so they will leave traces along the way. We must find out their agreed upon meeting place. We have to investigate clearly without alerting them.” Xuan Yuan Han Cheng said to his brother. “Send a signal to Imperial Father to lead the main forces here. Once we find out where they are meeting up, we will encircle them.”
“Understood. We definitely can’t let them go. If anything happens to Imperial Mother, I will definitely make mincemeat out of him…” Xuan Yuan Han Qi was furious.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng instructed a guard to climb to the top of a tree and look towards the capital.
The guard reported, “Your Royal Highness, there is thick black smoke rising above the imperial city…”
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng’s heart tightened upon hearing this. His darling…
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng made a prompt decision. “I will take half of the people back to the capital first. Prince Li’s words may not be true. There are many imperial guards in the palace. It’s not that easy even if they want to seize the place. I have to go back and see for myself…”
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Xuan Yuan Han Cheng said to his younger brother, “Prince Li specified one hour. This means that the place that he will be stopping at is not far from here. You can search around the capital’s outskirts. I’m going back to the palace to take a look. If Imperial Mother and them are safe and sound then I will immediately send a signal to you.”
Then, Xuan Yuan Han Cheng instructed his younger brother not to act recklessly. After they find Prince Li’s hiding place, they must wait for the main forces to come before taking action.
Xuan Yuan Han Cheng led a small group of people back to the capital on horseback. His darling must be safe and sound… He really could not bear to lose his treasure all over again…
Prince Li, Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong, rushed to Ciyun Temple with a dozen or so people.
When his mother was alive, he often came here to burn incense. And the abbot of the temple had received his mother’s favor*. After the death of his mother, Ciyun Temple gradually sunk into obscurity and the number of worshippers going there decreased. This was his most secretive hiding spot in the capital. This time, when he came to the capital from Li City, he had also stayed at Ciyun Temple, bidding his time. It was the most safe and reliable place for him.
[*T/N: “favor” as in monetary donations]
The abbot saw that His Highness Prince Li was covered in blood.
“Your Highness Prince Li, Your Highness Prince Li… Are you all right…?”
“Where are Xue Song and the others…?” Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong grabbed the abbot and asked.
“This old one has been waiting here for a day and a night, but I have not seen Xue-daren and the others… I’m afraid it’s…” the abbot replied.
Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong’s blood bubbled up upon hearing this. He clutched his chest. He finally couldn’t hold back a mouthful of blood and vomited it out.
“How… how could… Xue Song, this rubbish [person]!”
“Your Highness Prince Li…” The abbot quickly supported Prince Li.
Prince Li was thinking of a way to escape. He didn’t want to die. He was not resigned…
At this time, a little monk came over to report: “It’s not good, it’s not good. The army has surrounded the monastery. There are as many as a thousand soldiers outside, and there are even more soldiers coming…”
Xuan Yuan Zhao Hong’s vision went black.
Did the heavens want him to die…?
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