Thousand Miles of Heaven Chapter 45

Ch 45 It’s good to be alive and kicking

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At the end of Haishi.

When the sky was darkest, there was a rush of knocking on the door of King Xing’s Mansion. The doorman came out and opened a small door next to him. He frowned and asked the person who knocked on the door: “What are you doing? Do you know where this is? How dare you knock on the gate of this palace at night, do you want to die?”

The guard who knocked on the door drew his sword out of its sheath and pointed it at the other party: “Open the door, His Royal Highness King Ke is requesting King Xing to come out and speak.”

Xie Chaoyuan’s carriage stopped outside the gate of King Xing’s mansion, and he sat in the carriage with eyes closed, his whole body was full of hostility that could not be suppressed.

After the fire in the early morning, Xie Chaoyuan was unconscious until noon. Xie Chaohui sent someone to send a message, saying that the fire had been extinguished and there was something suspicious so he would go back to the capital to report the matter to His Majesty.

Wang Rang and the others prostrated themselves on the ground and did not dare to say a word. When Xie Chaoyuan pressed them, asking them about Xie Chaoling’s whereabouts, they said tremblingly that after the fire was extinguished, they found a corpse from the scene of the fire. It was beyond recognition and no one could tell who it was .

Xie Chaoyuan went to see the person. The charred black body was lying on the cold floor tiles, and there was a jade pendant beside it that Xie Chaoling never left behind. It was something left to him by his mother, even when Xie Chaoling lost his memory, he always wore it with him.

Xie Chaoyuan stared at the dead body expressionlessly, with indistinct emotions in his eyes. The servants who followed him knelt down and did not dare to breathe too much, the air was filled with the lingering burnt smell.

Half a day later, he said “It’s not him” in a cold voice, turned around, left, got on the carriage and returned to the capital, going straight to King Xing’s Mansion.

In less than a quarter of an hour, the door of the mansion was opened wide. Xie Chaohui came out, stood in the dark and asked Xie Chaoyuan in a deep voice: “What is the meaning of this sixth brother?”

Xie Chaoyuan drew his sword, the tip of the sword reaching Xie Chaohui: “Hand the person over.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Xie Chaohui said calmly.

Xie Chaoyuan’s sword moved forward, and the sentence was still the same: “Hand over the person.” 

The tip of the sword had reached Xie Chaohui’s throat, and Xie Chaohui’s expression remained motionless. He looked at Xie Chaoyuan, as if seeing the old him, but this person, was far luckier than him: “The person you are looking for has already returned to the place where he should go. The choice was made by him, and no one can force him.”

Xie Chaoyuan’s expression became more and more serious and gloomy.

“Sixth brother knows, even if you ask me, you won’t get the person.”

After Xie Chaohui finished speaking, he quickly reached out and grabbed the blade of Xie Chaoyuan’s sword, and stabbed it into his shoulder with the tip of the sword.

In the Dongshan hunting grounds, the arrow released by his men was aimed at the crown prince’s shoulder. Before the crown prince settled the account with him, he first showed the crown prince his apologetic gesture, by borrowing the hand of King Ke. This must be able to satisfy the prince of the Eastern Palace.

The color of Xie Chaoyuan’s eyes changed, and his grip on the hilt of the sword became tighter. He really wanted to kill someone.

Finally, he drew out the bloody sword, and sneered, “His Royal Highness King Xing really can bend and stretch, no wonder he is willing to use you.”

Xie Chaohui didn’t take it seriously, “It’s sixth younger brother who is too confident.”

Xie Chaoyuan turned around, got into the carriage and left .

Instead of going back to Prince Ke’s mansion, he went straight to the gate of the palace and parked the carriage at the gate of the palace, waiting for the gate to open early in the morning.

It was only February, and the night was still cold.

Wang Rang whispered outside the carriage that he should go home first, but Xie Chaoyuan turned a deaf ear to him, and slowly closed his bloodshot eyes without saying a word.

Outside the emperor’s bedroom, Princess Shurou was kneeling on the ground and was shaking. She had been kneeling here for almost half an hour, and no matter who tried to persuade her, she refused to get up.

The imperial decree of Shen family’s execution had been issued, and her husband was also among them. Emperor Qianming originally asked someone to hide it from her, but she had heard the news from those servants by accident. Now without care, she came to beg, even if the hope was slim, she still wanted to beg Emperor Qianming to forgive them.

There was someone walking up the stone steps step by step behind her, and Shurou realized in a daze that her arm was being held by someone, and a familiar voice sounded: “Sister, get up.”

She raised his head suddenly, and looked at the person in front of her in disbelief. Her eyes blurred with tears: “Crown Prince…”

“Mmm.” Xie Chaoling’s voice was low and powerful.

Shurou staggered and was helped up by Xie Chaoling. Clutching his hand all the time, it was as if she was afraid that he would disappear again in the blink of an eye. Xie Chaoling patted the back of her hand to comfort her: “I know everything, sister, go back first, you are pregnant and can’t just kneel here forever, I’ll go in and speak with Royal Father.”

Princess Shurou finally came back to her senses, tears streaming down her face: “Crown Prince, where have you been?”

“I’ve been in the East Palace,” Xie Chaoling smiled gently, “I’m fine, sister don’t worry.” 

After Xie Chaoling finished speaking, he signaled to the servants behind Shurou: “Help the princess back to rest.”

Finally, there was a tinge of blood on Shurou’s pale cheeks. Her heart was a little relieved, and she was helped back.

Xie Chaoling turned around and looked calmly at the majestic palace ahead.

Wang Qing hastily led people out to greet him, because when Xie Chaoling appeared earlier, someone had already gone in to report to the emperor.

“Your Highness, Your Highness the Crown Prince! It’s really you!”

The old eunuch pretended to be happy, but he couldn’t hide the panic in his eyes. Xie Chaoling gave him a cold look and didn’t say much.

Although this person was helping Xie Chaoyuan, he probably didn’t know that he had been staying at King Ke’s mansion all this time.

After all, Wang Qing was a man of business, soon his expression returned to normal, and he greeted Xie Chaoling with a smile on his face.

Xie Chaoling said indifferently, “Wang Gonggong has worked hard these days”, and stepped into the door.

Emperor Qianming had already fallen asleep, and no one dared to disturb his old man about Princess Shurou kneeling outside, until the crown prince suddenly appeared.

Emperor Qianming didn’t even put on his clothes, he came out personally, and supported Xie Chaoling who was about to kneel down with both hands, he was very excited: “It’s good to be back, it’s good to be back, get up and talk, let Royal Father take a good look at you.”

Seeing Xie Chaoling appear in front of his eyes intact, Emperor Qianming’s eyes were red. Xie Chaoling comforted him in a low voice, and only after all the servants in the palace retreated did he talk about his experience during this period.

“This son fell from his horse and fell off a cliff that day and was lucky enough not to die. I fell into the river and was washed downstream. Later, I was indeed rescued by the villagers in the local mountain. I couldn’t remember anything, so I lived in the mountains until a month ago when officers and soldiers from outside came to search for people in the mountains. I felt that they were coming for me, and not for good reasons, so I had to flee in a hurry and hied in a small temple. The night before yesterday, someone came to surround the temple and set fire to it. I escaped by chance. The fire killed the monk in the temple. Those people probably regarded the monk as me, so they withdrew. This son was frightened by this, then I finally remembered everything and hurried back to the capital.”

Xie Chaoling calmly told the story he made up without panicking, and Emperor Qianming was furious when he heard it: “Who dares to do this, how courageous they are! Did you see clearly who the officers and soldiers chasing and killing you were?!”

Xie Chaoling lowered his voice: “At first, I thought they were officers and soldiers, but later recalling the situation at that time, those people actually looked like the guards of the palace.” 

The emperor understood the meaning in his words was nothing more than the good deeds of those beasts: “The guards of the palace? Which mansion are they from?!”

Xie Chaoling shook his head: “I don’t know.” 

That was enough talking, the rest his father would guess by himself, and some people just can’t wait to face the muzzle of the gun.

Xie Chaoling turned to talk about other things: “Father, when I came over just now, Princess Shurou was kneeling outside, begging for the Shen family’s matter…”

Emperor Qianming interrupted him: “Don’t talk about this matter. Shen Zhongdao failed to live up to my expectations. Letting down my trust, doing such things, and killing my 100,000 soldiers, if I don’t deal with it seriously, it will be difficult to convince the people.”

Xie Chaoling’s eyes moved, but said: “I already know about this matter.”

Emperor Qianming frowned upon hearing the words: “You already know?”

Xie Chaoling’s voice was even lower: “A few years ago, someone wanted to report this matter to myself, but I suppressed the matter.” 

Hearing this, Emperor Qianming wanted to explode. Remembering that Xie Chaoling had just escaped from the dead, he held back, his tone no longer the same as before: “Why didn’t you tell me about such a big matter, but suppressed it privately? Who taught you to do this?”

Xie Chaoling raised his eyes, looked at the emperor, who stood high in front of him and claimed to be a sage, a benevolent king: “Father, do you really not remember? Where did the military expenditure that was taken away by Zhongdao ten years ago go to?”

Emperor Qianming frowned even more: “Speak directly if you have something to say.”

“The site of Yeshan’s Emperor’s Mausoleum was not originally located in Yeshan, but on another hill thirty miles away from Yeshan. It had been built for more than five years since the father ascended the throne. There was a mountain fire, and father felt it unlucky. He heard people say that the feng shui on the mountain was not good, so he asked people to bulldoze the half-built imperial mausoleum and rebuild it on Yeshan. This lost several millions of taels of silver and the Ministry of Industry could only ask the Ministry of Revenue. Shen Zhongdao was indeed wrong. He miscalculated the speed of the war in the Northwest and was afraid of making you unhappy, so he moved most of the military expenditure originally reserved for the Northwest to the Ministry of Industry.”

“After the Northwest War started, he didn’t dare to report the truth, so he could only fill the hole in the military expenditure by himself, selling Shen’s ancestral property to fill up a lot of money, but the money was still swallowed by those officials when it was in the hands of the Ministry of War. For the most part, their death was not a pity, and there was no such thing as them suffering due to the Ministry of Revenue.”

“Shen Zhongdao said that the accounts of the Ministry of Revenue were evened out for the purpose of self-protection, and also to save the face of father. This is why I did not report it.”

Xie Chaoling said it bluntly. This was the first time he dared to contradict Emperor Qianming.

Emperor Qianming took two steps back in shock, staring incredulously at his son whom he didn’t know. What Xie Chaoling said made him even more frightened. How could it be possible, how could it be this old man’s fault in the end?

Xie Chaoling knelt down: “This son’s words are true. This son knows that things have come to this point and it is impossible for the Shen family to be released without incident. I just ask father to let them live, as they are suffering on the behalf of others.”

This sentence “on behalf of others” made Emperor Qianming’s mouthful of blood choke up and down his throat.

After a while, he waved his hand in embarrassment and exhaustion: “Get up first, you just came back today, go back to the East Palace first. Remember to ask the imperial doctor to see if there is any serious problem.”

Xie Chaoling didn’t insist anymore, got up and retreated.

When he was going out, he heard someone go in to report the news from outside the palace, saying that King Ke and King Xing had a conflict in front of King Xing’s mansion in the middle of the night. They drew their swords and saw blood, thus the night patrol of the capital guard army dare not delay, and reported it to the palace overnight.

After hearing this, Emperor Qianming became angry again, and immediately ordered people to call the two people into the palace after dawn for questioning.

Xie Chaoling’s eyes darkened slightly, and he waited outside the door for a while. When the person who reported the incident came out, he stopped him and asked, “Was it King Ke or King Xing who saw blood?”

The person replied respectfully: “The news from outside the palace said it was King Ke who went down to attack the gate of King Xing’s mansion at night, and after His Royal Highness Xing came out, he said a few words and drew his sword, stabbing His Royal Highness King Xing’s shoulder.”

Xie Chaoling did not expect that Xie Chaoyuan would do such a thing. Him not coming to attack the palace gate at night showed he already restrained himself.

It’s good to be alive and kicking.

After a moment of silence, Xie Chaoling stepped away.

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