PCTG Chapter 42

Chapter 42

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Cao Gang basically immediately confirmed all his speculations of these days.

Even though the person in front of him hid well without showing anything on his face, being as astute as Cao Gang was, he still captured the exploration, suspicion and a little bit of restraining fear in that split second.

The third prince in front of him was indeed reborn like him, but he was eight years later. During these eight years, he taught and trained the overlord who was originally able to split the heavens and create a new world into a family general who was obsessed with him. Since then he has been turned to be willing to live in this small land of smoke and miasma becoming an unknown county garrison leader.

Cao Gang was vaguely angry in his heart, but on his face he respectfully saluted Li Yuanmin: “Thank you for Your Highness’s concerns, you can call me teacher but the past is over. I am only a little commoner now and am just staying in the army for some food to eat and nothing more.”

Li Yuanmin supported him up, “Back during the time in the Imperial School, teacher had covered for me many times. This student has always been grateful. I have not had the opportunity to repay you back for many years, unexpectedly we meet each other in this border area now…” 

It seemed to mean something: “The fate encountered between humans is truly wonderful.” 

Without waiting for Cao Gang to reply, Li Yuanmin directly instructed: “Quickly go and prepare Ben Wang and teacher’s breakfast… Wait a minute. ”

He smiled at Cao Gang, “I still don’t know what teacher’s food preferences are? What do you like to eat? However, in this borderland, it may be assumed that there are only those crude, rough things. I don’t know if it is in line with teacher’s taste. ”

He didn’t even ask if he wanted to stay for a meal, but directly asked him about his taste, it seemed that he had to stay.

Cao Gang only made a gesture of gratitude, raised his hand and saluted: “It is already a reward to be able to dine with Your Highness. I am merely a commoner, even humble vegetable soup is fine, so anything will do.”

“Then, teacher, please.”

Li Yuanmin made a gesture toward the barracks. Cao Gang paused slightly before lifting his feet and walking in.

Cao Gang raised an eyebrow, the corner of his eyes carefully examining the dignified appearance of the third prince in front of him. Maybe because he saw a different side of him last night, Cao Gang’s heart was more or less feeling strange. However, nothing was shown on his face, nothing was revealed.

Soon, a soldier came in with a food tray.

It was not that Li Yuanmin was too humble, but the breakfast in this military camp was simple and crude. Even for his own meal, he would only add a bowl of milk, and the rest were porridge rice, pickles, brine and other usual breakfast items.

Li Yuanmin waved to send his guard away before personally serving a bowl of porridge to Cao Gang. Cao Gang himself was not very terrified, “How can I trouble Your Highness like this, I can serve myself.”

Then he reached out to take it.

Li Yuanmin pulled the corner of his lips, put the thick porcelain bowl containing half a bowl of steaming hot rice porridge in front of him, and picked the dishes for him one by one.

“Teacher does not have to be so polite, this is only right. During those years in the Imperial School, teacher must have already seen what it was like for me. Ben Wang had always been weak in the palace, fortunately I ran into teacher, thus allowing me to take a breather during that interval. If it’s others, then I don’t need to be like this, but I am merely serving teacher a meal. What could this be regarded as? How could it be worthy of teacher’s grace? ”

His eyes were soft, as if he was thinking of a very distant memory, “I still remember midwinter of that year when I was ten years old. Teacher had assigned us an essay topic, having us princes write a poetic essay and divided the score into rank one, two, three and so on. Ben Wang had always been slow-witted, so I scored last once again. At that time I was deeply hurt for a while, but when the sun set, I was stopped by teacher to be comforted. Teacher didn’t know this, but at that time, it was no less than providing help in one’s time of need.” 

He smiled slightly, then sighed “When Ben Wang was young and happy, that was definitely one moment.”

Cao Gang was stunned. He also recalled this matter that had long been tossed to the back of his head. To be fair, the essay he wrote back then was really good, considerably full of power. He regarded Li Yuanmin’s essay as the top scorer, but it was human instinct to climb high and stomp on the inferior in the Imperial School——All of them were princes and princesses who they could not afford to offend. So who could have afforded to be dug at by those pampered princes for the sake of this one lowly born prince? At that time, Cao Gang was at the prime of his youth, so watching the thin child limp away with his own scroll, his heart was a little sympathetic, thus, he did what he had just mentioned.

Maybe it was because they had a common memory, but the extreme atmosphere just now suddenly became much more relaxed. The two began to talk about all kinds of things from the Imperial School, joking together as to find joy in sorrows. Later, when they were talking about the fact that he was hated and retaliated against by the fourth prince, Li Yuanmin sighed.

“Fourth brother is not the kind of person who spares others. Teacher had offended the person who should not be offended, the matter of teacher’s family…Ben Wang also heard about it. I wanted to help, but I was suffering from a decline in authority. The will was there but not the strength.” 

The past events of his family being robbed and killed were still vivid in his mind. Cao Gang’s eyes had a hint of anger. Only when he thought of Li Yuanxu’s miserable end in his past life was he slightly better.

He also heard Li Yuanmin being sentimental: “Not only this, but many things were beyond Ben Wang’s influence, just like the case of Commander Ni’s twin younger sister. Even though Ben Wang looked for opportunities all around to save her, she still ended up with her tragic past. Now when I think about it, I feel that I have let him down.”  

Remembering that tragic old incident, Cao Gang also sighed: “This matter is not the responsibility of Your Highness, it is all because of those wicked people in power, making the good people bear the wrongs and creating injustice.” 

His heart was sorrowful and his mouth sighed:

“Nowadays, I also stop thinking about things. I just plan to live my life without ambitions and get by for a lifetime.” 

Li Yuanmin nodded, “It is better to be steady and stable. Teacher traveled a long distance and arrived at LIngnan, which could already be considered as fate bringing people together. From now on, you can remain in the military. Although Ben Wang’s power is weak, in this Lingnan border, I can still voice my opinion out.”

Cao Gang smiled bitterly, he was thinking of making a gesture of gratitude to return to the last two sentences, when his brain quivered. Not good! a stirring thought in his brain came out. Not good! He’s been tricked!

He began to look up and the person in front of him was looking at him, his face still elegant and gentle, with no changes. 

Cao Gang’s heart was pounding loudly. How could he have imagined that this vassal state king, a drop dead beauty with a gentle lukewarm appearance, was quietly laying down the cover layer by layer. First, he showed weakness with softness, pulled out old memories, and then step by step removed his heart’s defense, inadvertently hitting his vital point in one fell swoop.

The only difference between him and his previous life was that he came to Lingnan to find his lord from the past life. A person from Jiangnan Province who had been degraded from the capital, how could he have traveled thousands of miles just to go to Lingnan. He thought of his rigorous words just now, it was nothing more than some melancholy from a depressed heart, to swim in the great rivers and mountains to relieve stress. But obviously, there were too many places where the other party was different from the previous life.

He had been in this world for so many years, and what had changed was not just the fate of the Red Tiger King!

Almost instantaneously, Cao Gang’s thoughts in his mind suddenly passed like running water.

Yes! The Red Tiger King’s younger sister’s fate is estimated to have been reversed from her tragic death by the person in front of him, otherwise the Red Tiger King would never have the peace he has now!

He shouldn’t have taken this path so lightly, let alone show such a look; he has underestimated the enemy too much!

Remembering the thoughts of coming today, he couldn’t help but regret it. He had planned to come over to probe things, but with only a breakfast’s effort, he was probed out of his secret by the other party. 

Cao Gang stared at him with a calm face, but the other party acted as if they couldn’t see it. He was still unhurriedly drinking the porridge, as if nothing had happened.

Half a day later, Cao Gang’s throat moved and he stood up: “Does Your Highness have any other orders? If not I will ask to retreat.”

Cao Gang’s complexion was bad, he stared attentively at him.

“What other matter could there be.” Li Yuanmin took the towel and wiped the corners of his mouth, stood up, and smiled gently, “Teacher, please feel free to withdraw.”

Cao Gang, with a calm face, stormed off in a huff.

As soon as Cao Gang left, Li Yuanmin slowly sat down and closed his eyes.

When he learned about Cao Gang from Ni Ying’s mouth, he had doubts in his heart, but that speculation was too unbelievable, so he almost immediately denied it. But an absurd thing had already happened to him once. With the world so vast, an absurd thing could happen more than once. So, he pushed the boat along the current and invited him inside to probe things out. Unexpectedly, it really did allow him to find a gap and catch the braid!

He basically confirmed that Cao Gang was reborn like him!

He let out a long breath, stood up, and commanded toward the tent door, “Call A Ying.” 

Soon, Ni Ying came in. Once the guard left, there were only two of them in the tent, and Ni Ying immediately had a little resentment on her face:

“Suddenly a visitor came without rhyme or reason and snatched away my share of breakfast with His Highness; I had to eat alone in the back camp, it was very boring.” 

Ni Ying understands a lot of things now and has always been well-behaved in the outside world, but she had always been arrogant and unbridled here.

Li Yuanmin pulled the corners of his mouth, let her sit down, and poured some water, “Since you came here, you haven’t revealed your identity to anyone, right?”

“Naturally,” Ni Ying said triumphantly, “I will not let them see through my disguise and guess my gender. The soldiers thought I’m Your Highness Gege’s guard.”

Li Yuanmin asked again, “That new accountant Cao Gang, he doesn’t know either, right?” 

Ni Ying saw him with such a cautious look, put away the smile on her face, and pondered for a moment: “I didn’t talk to him, I only looked at him once from a distance. At that time, he looked lost in thought so he didn’t notice me. Seeing his face, I asked A Zhu, and only then did I know that he was that Cao Gang… What doubts does Your Highness have? ”

“No, I was just asking casually. ”

After repeatedly confirming that there was no mistake, Li Yuanmin took a deep breath, smiled warmly, and touched Ni Ying’s head, “Since breakfast has been eaten, I will take you to ride a horse outside the camp later, okay?”

“Really?” Ni Ying was surprised.

Li Yuanmin nodded. Looking at her joyful appearance, his heart was full of sourness. He was afraid of revealing something for her to see, so he waved her hand to let her change into a riding suit first.

When the door tent was lowered, Li Yuanmin sighed and closed his eyes.

 A Ying’s death in his previous life was too humiliating and too tragic, it also led to the extinction of Ni Lie’s last trace of conscience.

Originally, when he rescued her from the Jiaofang Division, Li Yuanmin had the original intention of protecting Ni Lie’s humanity, but over the years, it was no longer the same reason as at the beginning.

This child grew up with himself. Compared to the cold Ni Lie, she was even closer with him. He had always cherished her. Although the two had no blood relationship, mutual affection was more superior than being blood siblings, but with each added layer of deep feeling in this life, there would be more pain in his heart.

The death of A Ying in his previous life was only an exaggerated tragedy for him who had laid deep in the palace. But in this life, it was a thorn in his heart. From time to time when he thought about it, he was stimulated to be in violent pain and sorrow.

So over the years, if A Ying did something wrong, as long as she was not too out of line, he could hardly be harsh.

He couldn’t help but spoil her.

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