The Records Of The Human Emperor Chapter 1278
Chapter 1278: The Whole Story
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
"What letter? Was it from King Qi?!"
He Qingrong shook his head and bitterly smiled, a complicated look on his face.
"The matter isn't that complicated. They only sent me a letter written by my honored mother. This unworthy He belongs to a major clan of Jiangnan. My honored mother is also from a famous family of scholars and is well-educated and skilled in calligraphy, so I was able to immediately recognize my honored mother's handwriting."
Wang Chong and King Song glanced at each other in realization, turmoil in their minds.
"Your Highness, I know why King Qi sent me that letter, and I know what their plan is. But my honored mother is correct. Ever since I entered the court, I've rarely returned home. My honored mother is of advanced age now, and if I don't go back, we might be eternally separated by the heavens and I will no longer have the chance. If that happens, this He will be wracked by regret for the rest of his life!
"Even without King Qi's meddling, I had already made up my mind to return to the capital. This is my personal decision. I hope that King Song can forgive me!"
He Qingrong couldn't help but sigh once more and made an extremely deep bow.
King Song emotionally sighed. Filial piety was the foremost of virtues. Although He Qingrong's decision was surprising, it was still within reason. Not even King Song could criticize it.
"Brother He should only concern yourself with your journey. Be at ease—I will not blame you."
"Many thanks, Your Highness!"
He Qingrong blushed in shame, dropping his head even lower. This was one of the reasons he admired King Song. His open-mindedness was something very few people could ever match.
He Qingrong quickly departed, his back appearing both dejected and relieved. As Wang Chong watched him leave, he couldn't help but sigh.
"We completely lost this round. He Qingrong has spent many years in court, and the one that sent him back was not his mother's letter, but the sentiment he felt for his mother deep inside his heart. It's precisely because they saw this that they were able to exploit it. This plan isn't something that King Qi could have thought of, nor could Li Linfu or the Grand Preceptor."
King Song placed his hands behind his back and sighed.
"That person is much smarter than we imagined. I would even dare to say that everything was a part of his plan. Now, he has gotten his wish and successfully entered the court. I'm afraid that the Imperial Court is entering a time of many troubles!"
Both of them fell silent.
Just when they were about to reach the palace gate, they heard a clamor from up ahead.
Raising their eyes, they saw many officials gathered around the gate, heading in one direction with respectful looks on their faces. In the center of the crowd was a snow-white figure, graceful and elegant, freely chatting with these officials. He vaguely gave off the sense of a crane standing amongst chickens.
"It's that Confucian Sect leader!"
King Song's brow rose as he glanced at Wang Chong.
Wang Chong said nothing, only squinted as he gazed at Li Junxian. For a moment, both of them seemed to sense something.
"Your Highness, you should leave first. I will follow you soon," Wang Chong suddenly said. His body seemed to be nailed in place.
King Song nodded.
"I will wait for you outside!"
After profoundly glancing at Li Junxian, King Song quickly stepped away.
At the same time, the nearby Li Junxian apparently said something that caused the crowd of officials around him to scatter. In a flash, only Wang Chong and Li Junxian were left at the palace gate.
Without any other officials present, it was so quiet that one could hear a pin drop.
For a few seconds, neither of them moved, apparently waiting for the other side to come over.
But a moment later, both of them stepped forward at the same time. There was yet another period of extreme silence as the two of them stopped. A moment later, Li Junxian seemed to think of something and smiled as he began to walk toward Wang Chong. A split second later, Wang Chong strode forward as well.
"King of Foreign Lands! This time, we are finally subjects serving the same sovereign!"
Li Junxian was the first to speak, his expression natural and unrestrained.
Even though they were enemies, putting aside their different standpoints, one had to admit that Li Junxian was truly a very open-minded and amiable person.
"You won this round. I didn't think that you would even use He Qingrong's mother," Wang Chong scornfully said.
"Heh, do you not understand? It was not we who made the pivotal decision in this round, but He Qingrong himself. Not a single person attempted to influence his decision. All we did was show him the path to the correct decision!"
Li Junxian grinned, not taking Wang Chong's words to heart.
"Although I don't know how you managed to do what you did with the foreigners bordering the Great Tang, as a fellow official and subject of the Great Tang, I want to give you a warning: the mountains and rivers are easier to change than the minds of people," Wang Chong sternly said. "In the sixteenth year of the Great Sui's Daye era, the Great Sui signed a treaty with Ü-Tsang. Both sides would have their soldiers withdraw thirty li and cease hostilities. But before the ink on the paper was even dry, the Tibetans used the withdrawal of the Sui army to launch a major offensive and kill more than one hundred thousand soldiers. It was only in the eighteenth year of the Daye1 era that the Sui were finally able to get revenge.
"In the seventh year of the reign of the Sui's final Emperor, a Sui princess was married to the Western Turks, both sides signing a treaty to become allies and not attack each other. In the twelfth month of the same year, the Sui princess bore a son for the Western Turkic Khagan, and the princess was titled Empress Xiao. The border generals believed that the Great Sui had developed good relations with the Western Turks, and with the birth of a son, they decided to loosen their guard. They did not expect the Western Turks to choose this moment to launch a major invasion. The Sui suffered a major defeat, and it was precisely this event that laid the seeds for the subsequent warlord era. These are only events from the last two to three hundred years. Further back in history, such events are innumerable. The words of foreigners cannot be so easily trusted.
"Moreover, nomadic people are different from the Tang of the Central Plains. Removing soldiers from their armies will not affect their fighting power. With a single order, they can gather their armies once more. Reducing armies simply does not carry the same weight for them and cannot be trusted."
"Heh, there is no need for the King of Foreign Lands to worry about this matter. I have already planned for everything. Even without the King of Foreign Lands' warning, I have already sent people to observe Ü-Tsang, the Western Turks, and the other countries to see that their armies are reduced. That was then and this is now. If one person commits a crime, must their descendants also be treated as criminals?
"In the Spring and Autumn Period, Yan Zhuoyu was a bandit of Liangfu, but did he not also become a disciple of the Sage Confucius? In the end, he had great accomplishments. It is still the same words: if you don't try, how can you know if you will succeed?"
Li Junxian gently smiled.
"King of Foreign Lands, a great era has arrived. The minds of the people are disgusted by war, and everyone's mind turns toward peace and serenity. This is the irresistible trend, and war is no longer suitable for this era. Anyone who tries to go against the tide will be rejected by this era and by history. King of Foreign Lands, you are the leader of the militarists. In the midst of the rapid tides, even the brave know when to retreat. Only the talented know when it is time to withdraw so as to protect themselves. This is your last chance."
Wang Chong's pupils constricted and his expression instantly turned cold.
"So this is a threat?"
The mood instantly became tense, the carefree air vanishing into nothingness. Across from Wang Chong, Li Junxian's smile gradually faded, as did the smile in his eyes.
Li Junxian stared at Wang Chong and coldly said, "If I were you, I would never say such a thing. Instead, treat it as a well-intentioned warning. There will not be another conversation between us like this. For the people of the Great Tang and the world, I will not permit anyone to break this hard-fought-for peace. If I discover any of the militarists trying to break this peace, I will not show mercy!"
The Confucian Sect's plan for the 'Harmonious World' had reached its most crucial stage. The moment he entered the Imperial Court, everything became irreversible, and there was no going back. At this moment, anyone who dared to stop the progress of the Confucian Sect and the people of the world was not someone that he could tolerate.
This was also the reason he had waited here for Wang Chong.
"This is also something that I wanted to say!"
Wang Chong spoke almost right after, his eyes even colder than Li Junxian's.
"Li Junxian, the militarists do not exist so that you Confucians can create your Harmonious World, but to protect the people of the realm. Withdrawing armies, talking peace, signing treaties with the foreign countries… you simply have no idea what you're doing. Li Junxian, I will tell you one more time: what you are doing is not protecting the world. On the contrary, you are turning this empire of great abundance into an unprotected land. I will never allow you to succeed! Every day I live is another day that I will not permit the Confucian Sect to succeed. Even if you're now Secretariat Advisor, entering the Secretariat to replace He Qingrong, this has not changed!"
The two of them stared at each other with eyes as sharp as knives. Both of them now realized that whether they were willing or not, neither one could back down now.
After some time, Li Junxian took in a deep breath and coolly said, "King of Foreign Lands, you will regret this!"
"Is that so? Then I'll be waiting!"
With a sweep of his sleeve, Wang Chong turned around and began to head out of the palace.
"Right! I might as well tell you that I am a person who hates being threatened the most!"
With these last words, Wang Chong left through the palace gate.
Behind him, Li Junxian stared at Wang Chong with a razor-sharp gaze.
A voice came from behind Li Junxian. "Young Master, it seems like the King of Foreign Lands is now our greatest obstacle in the court. As long as he remains, it will be very difficult to develop any of our plans!"
A man wearing an azure Confucian robe walked over and stopped several paces behind Li Junxian. A gentle wind blew at his sleeve, revealing for a moment an ink symbol.
The azure-robed Confucian gazed at Wang Chong, his eyes brimming with killing intent. He had heard the entire conversation between Wang Chong and Li Junxian. In the end, this leader of the militarists, the Son of Heaven's disciple, remained the largest hindrance for the Confucian Sect.
"Young Master, we cannot continue to show mercy. We have already gone to great lengths to reach this stage. This is no longer a matter that concerns you alone, but the fate of our entire Confucian Sect. Even if we want to withdraw, it is already too late. No matter what, we cannot allow him to continue threatening us!" At this moment, a voice like silver bells came from Li Junxian's right as a girl wearing a dress of white cotton emerged.
1. The Daye era was actually the last era of the Great Sui and only lasted thirteen years. The author has clearly somewhat extended the amount of time the Sui Dynasty reigned over China.