Yuan Chongsheng’s face turned abnormally sinister. He struggled, as if he was about to pounce on the flesh and blood of the person in front of him, his eyes were so red that it was almost dripping with blood.
His tone suddenly rose.
Li Yuanmin looked down at him for a while, sighed, and said indifferently: “Xuntai Daren is overestimating Ben Wang”
He modestly pointed to the people behind him: “They are angry like this, for what reason….it’s likely that Daren knows it clearer than Ben Wang.”
Yuan Chongsheng stared at him firmly, gritting his teeth.
Li Yuanmin ignored it, only pacing in front of He Jian,
“Leader He, how about I borrow your tiger seal?”
But even before he finished speaking, the guard jumped off the ox cart, took out the tiger seal from He Jian’s arms, and handed it to Li Yuanmin respectfully.
Li Yuanmin touched it in the palm of his hand, walked a few steps in place, then his eyes fell on the faces of several deputy governors of the county guard.
“The matter has already reached this point, I’m afraid you can’t get rid of your responsibilities, but now you can help the commoners to do a few things and make up for your faults. Are you willing?
Those few deputy governors of the county guard looked at each other and immediately paid respect to him: “We obey King Guangan’s order!”
“Good.” Li Yuanmin nodded, and with a side eye he told Ni Lie:
“Many people in the city took advantage of the chaos to loot, you go and cooperate with a few deputy governors to maintain the order. You can not let any evil deeds happen to disturb the citizens!”
“Yes!” Ni Lie took the tiger seal, then hopped on his horse. The group quickly ran towards the city gate.
Li Yuanmin then took another look at Yuan Chongsheng, who was still gnashing his teeth: “Xuntai Daren needn’t be so resentful to Ben Wang. Whether today’s affairs can end well is up to Daren.”
Yuan Chongsheng endured his anger: “What good end?”
Li Yuanmin said: “If you are dressed in white, although you won’t have riches and honor, you still have a life left and your wife and children are preserved.” (dress in white here means abandoning his position)
The words didn’t fall yet when Yuan Chongsheng, whose eyes’ sockets were about to split open said: “Don’t even think about it! You’re just a lowly female entertainer’s son! Do you dare?”
Li Yuanmin’s face did not change, but his eyes turned cold.
Soon, the two accompanying people around him jumped off the ox cart, grabbed a piece of rag and stuffed it into Yuan Chongsheng’s mouth. After a roar, Yuan Chongsheng’s eyes suddenly widened. The corners of his lips were stuffed and the blood was flowing. He struggled violently, and was immediately slapped by the guard’s palm, and immediately froze. His whole body trembled and his head drooped down.
He gasped for breath, there was a whimpering sound in his throat and two lines of tears rolled down.
The ox cart started to move again, the people got excited and started to squeeze towards the ox cart. Yuan Chongsheng hissed as if begging for mercy, but the people ignored him, and even more excited people turned over and climbed onto the ox cart, giving him a round of fists.
The extreme panic made him completely lose his calmness. He struggled more and more violently, and there were bloodstains on his neck. He called out and it actually made him push the blood stained rag out of his mouth.
“Your Highness! Your Highness!”
He burst into tears!
Li Yuanmin raised his hand and his guard dragged Yuan Chongsheng out of the chaos and threw him on the ground.
He looked at Yuan Chongsheng for a long time, then squatted down and said softly:
“Xuntai Daren, Ben Wang only permits you to speak a word a moment later. Afterward, Ben Wang doesn’t want to hear anything from you anymore.”
Yuan Chongsheng’s face was full of filth and wetness, and he no longer had an awe inspiring look anymore.
Li Yuanmin stretched out his finger and flicked a vegetable stalk off his face: “Understand?”
Yuan Chongsheng whimpered, appearing to be similar to a leather bag without gas. He bowed down: “This subordinate…..understands……”
Li Yuanmin clapped his hands, took the handkerchief that Ni Ying handed over, and dusted off the dirt in his hand. His guard handed over a pen and paper, which he took and threw on the ground, coldly saying:
“Xuntai Daren, please confess and lay out your crimes, writing everything in detail of Lingnan’s farmsteads one by one, including everything regardless of their importance.”
He paused and said word by word: “And the person in the capital…Yuan Daren, this is your last chance, I hope you don’t waste it.”
Yuan Chongsheng’s body trembled. His pupils shrank suddenly, there was no more hatred in his eyes, only deep fear remained.
He underestimated him, underestimated the borderland of Lingnan. He was completely defeated by his own arrogance!
Li Yuanmin stood up, “Someone come! Prepare a private room, and let Xuntai Daren take a good rest!”
Very quickly, Yuan Chongsheng, who was weak and soft as a lump, was taken away.
Li Yuanmin raised his eyes and glanced at the two people behind.
Cao Shiye shuddered, and hurriedly surrendered: “I would also like to ask traitor Yuan to be responsible for the crime in order to show justice and for the people’s grievance and complaint!”
He Jian on the side also immediately followed suit: “He’s the sinner!”
The corners of Li Yuanmin’s lips pulled up, “Zhang Long, take both of them away.”
10 miles (chinese miles so 5000m) away from Zhu Que Street, it was all commoners.
The scorching sun was like fire, and the hot wind was like a wave, brushing a hot breath on everyone’s face.
Li Yuanmin stepped toward the stage step by step, standing on the high platform, and said loudly to the people below:
“Please rest assured everyone, Ben Wang will give you an explanation!”
Guangan’s prince mansion flag swirled around, making noise under the blue sky.
It was already night and most of the people in the city had not left. King Guangan ordered that they should not be violently expelled and only ordered the county guards to send more people to strengthen the defense, and there should be no disturbance to people’s lives.
Li Yuanmin privately summoned every clan elder to restrain and control the commoners from their area, to not let any side issues arise.
The situation was temporarily stable. In the afternoon, Li Yuanmin traveled to the Governor’s Mansion in Jiangjing, a hundred miles away, holding a wooden box containing Yuan Chongsheng’s crime.
Jiangjing Governor’s Office had jurisdiction over the two rivers and three provinces, and he was extremely powerful. Jiangjing was not far from Lingnan, so the change in Lingnan must have reached the ears of Governor Xue Zaixing.
However, Li Yuanmin was not worried that Xue Zaixing would characterize the change in Lingnan as a rebellion, nor was he worried that he would easily send troops into Lingnan to suppress the rebellion.
After all, even if Xue Zaixing is an iron fist, he will never gamble on his own future. There is such a big civilian revolt scandal in the territory under his jurisdiction, if others heard of it, his official career will no longer be progressive.
Sure enough, Xue Zaixing didn’t talk about the suppression of the rebellion. He just stared at Li Yuanmin with a pair of sharp eyes and said with a smile, “What plans do you have in mind, Fourth Royal Highness?”
Li Yuanmin let his guard offer Xue Zaixing the criminal books that Yuan Chongsheng wrote down.
With the help of Cao Shiye and He Jian, these criminal books were written in great detail, including the secrets of Wang Chaoluan’s wealth accumulation.
Li Yuanmin has gone through a lifetime and he knew that this seemingly neutral governor Daren was actually the person of the first prince. He pulled down Yuan Chongsheng like this to displease Wang Chaoluan, and also borrowed Lingnan’s civilian revolt to send Wang Chaoluan’s shortcoming to her mortal enemy, borrowing his hand to suppress Wang Chaoluan.
Xue Zaixing opened the booklet and glanced at it a few times. A strange color flashed on his face, but he soon recovered his calm. Resuming his same expression, as if the record was something insignificant.
If it wasn’t for Li Yuanmin knowing his background and paying attention, maybe he wouldn’t even notice that strange change.
Everyone here was smart. He put down the booklet on the table, Xue Zaixing was very happy: “It seems that Your Highness already has your safety plan. Then I will have to listen to Your Highness’ suggestion now.”
Li Yuanmin smiled: “I have always heard that governor Daren always handles things straightforwardly, I really understood it clearly today.”
He gave such a big gift to the other party, naturally he had to get some benefits back. He poured wine in a cup and offered it to Xue Zaixing.
“Ben Wang has something to say.”
“Your Highness, please express your concern.”
Li Yuanmin said: “The biggest reason for the resentment of the Lingnan people this time is that barbarians are rampant and the Xuntai government didn’t care about it. In order to appease the commoners, Ben Wang would like to ask for permission from governor Daren to send troops to guard the border.”
“Of course, it should be like this.”
“However, He Jian, the former leader of the county guard has lost the people’s hearts and is being detained in the Lingnan official prison. …” Li Yuanmin paused and smiled, “I’m not afraid if governor Daren would laugh, but Ben Wang already has a new candidate in mind. That is Ben Wang mansion’s general, Ni Lie. During this time, he has been at the border with the clan elders to form a militia for self-defense. He is very familiar with the local terrain and situation, so, in this Lingnan region, Ben Wang thinks that there is no one more suitable to station in Jiangling other than him.
“That Ni Lie whose strength has surpassed all others?” Xue Zaixing raised his eyebrows, after thinking for a moment, the corners of his lips twitched:
“It’s merely an insignificant county leader position, I can recommend him for you.”
Li Yuanmin’s lips curled up: “Then Ben Wang thanks Governor Daren on his behalf first.”
After three rounds of drinking wine.
Xue Zaixing played with the wine glass in his hand, and suddenly asked, “How old is Your Highness?”
“Just past 20 by less than a year.”
“It turns out I didn’t remember it wrong at all. Looking at Your Highness’ appearance, I thought you’re only about 16-17. To think that…..” He narrowed his eyes slightly, there was some kind of light shining in his eyes, as if he was emotional: “Compared to your childhood, the changes in Your Highness in these recent years are really great.”
Li Yuanmin snorted: “Back then Ben Wang was only 13 years old. And being polished in this frontier for a few years, who wouldn’t change?”
“No, I mean your appearance.” He fixed his gaze at Li Yuanmn, “King Guangan’s elegant bearing, not to mention the two rivers and three provinces, even in the entire Bei An, I am afraid that no one can match you.”
Li Yuanmin’s eyes moved, but his expression was light and cloudy: “Buddha says, all appearances are false, but the skin, after a hundred years, all will return to dust, not even worth mentioning at all.”
“Ha, it’s this official rudeness,” Xue Zaixing hurriedly bowed, “I hope Your Highness doesn’t blame me.”
“It’s no matter.”
Li Yuanmin tilted his head and placed the cup lightly on the table.
In the afternoon of the second day, several announcements were posted on the streets and alleys of Lingnan city.
One was that the new law on harvesting that had been promulgated for one month was abolished, and the entire Lingnan area was restored to its original state. The taxes and silver that have been paid in accordance with the new law can be returned.
Another one being the county guards being stationed in the frontier within the next few days, and if there are barbarians they will be killed without question.
Third, the people who participated in the incident will not be held accountable. However, starting from the date of the announcement, those who stay in the city to pick quarrels and stir up troubles will be punished with first-class penalties.
Fourth, the chief official of the Xuntai government took the blame and resigned. The affairs will be temporarily supervised by the governor, reporting back to Jiangling to follow the ministry of appointments as arranged.
A month later, following the governor’s recommendation, Ni Lie successfully took over the county guard.
At the receiving warrant ceremony, Li Yuanmin glanced at the officials in Lingnan one by one, and those officials bowed their heads, not daring to look at him.