Long Live The Emperor!

Chapter 28

If Karma Does Not Come For Good And Evil, Then I Will Be Karma

The streets of the Imperial Capital no longer had a prosperous air to them. The war had turned the entire place into a living hell.

Several millions of refugees pouring in from the East.

Wave after wave of refugees.

Refugees who lost their homes.

Refugees with neither food nor clothes.


A short trip across the bridge would often reveal the sight of a freshly frozen corpse under the bridge.

It was noontime.

There were no longer the usual bustling noises of stall owners crowing to promote their wares. There was only silence and low sounds of pitiful wailing.

Xia Xiaosu had opened up the palace’s granary. She was wearing the clothes of a normal palace maid as she pushed the congee cart out onto the street. She lifted her arms and rubbed her eyes, sighing slightly.

She waited until the congee cart was properly set up.

Many refugees instantly crowded toward her in a rushed frenzy.

The guards hastily tried to maintain order as they shouted, “Queue up, queue up, everyone. There’s enough for all.”

The people, the experience of the cruelty of war still fresh in their minds, eventually started queueing up listlessly.

“Miss, please give me one more bowl. I have a five-year-old girl at home. She’s my granddaughter and she’s just lost her parents, and she’s currently terribly ill…”

“Okay,” Xia Xiaosu did not say much as she immediately gave two bowls of congee to the old woman in front of her.

“Thank you, miss…”

A man showed up next after the old woman left. He took out a bowl and said pitifully, “Miss, I filled up my stomach yesterday with soil from the river and I’m barely making it. Can you give me a little more?”

“Okay!” Xia Xiaosu scooped a big bowl of congee for him.

After the man left, another woman in tattered clothes came to her with two children clutching onto her hand. She lifted her head and fixed Xia Xiaosu with a piteous gaze.

Seeing these expressions one after another, Xia Xiaosu’s heart went out to all these poor people. She sniffled a little but did not cry. Instead, she served them congee and forced a gentle smile onto her face. “There will be congee every day, I’ll be… I’ll be here again tomorrow.”

“Thank you, miss.”

Xia Xiaosu stared at the long, grey line and her eyes suddenly went red. When another palace maid saw her condition, she hurried over to take over her shift, whispering, “Imperial Princess, you should take a rest first.”

Xia Xiaosu shook her head. She persistently gripped the ladle as she scooped up more congee for the people. When the reserves ran dry, she did not say ‘that’s all the congee for today. Come back again tomorrow’. Instead, she consoled the refugees while instructing the palace maid to return to the palace and make more congee.

There was no food for the hungry and no medicine for the sick. The homeless had nowhere to go and the dead on the street had no one asking after them…

The Imperial Princess turned away and could not help wiping her tears away with her sleeves.

That night.

In the palace.

Brother and sister sat at the long table. There was only a simple meal of congee placed on the table.

Xia Ji asked, “Why were you crying during the day?”

Xia Xiaosu, “I felt sorry for them…”

She put her chopsticks down. It was only in front of her older brother when she would allow herself to express her emotions freely. Her eyes went red as she covered her face with her hands. She said softly, “The war destroyed everything they had. They lost contact with family and have even lost loved ones to death.”

“I can see many corpses and bones while walking on the streets of the Imperial Capital. I can hear many people choking from the pain. Even the sound of the wind is filled with the cries of numerous pitiful souls…

“I feel so sad for them. They have never done anything wrong and have all worked hard in their own villages and homes, working hard while planting crops. Why… Why do they deserve such treatment?”

Xia Ji replied, “This is destiny.”


The Imperial Princess picked up her chopsticks. She was stunned for quite a long time. She wanted to say something, but instead, sighed deeply and lowered her head.

If not for her older brother, she would have been brought to the South to wait for Springtime, when she would be married off to Tujue.

If not for her older brother, she would have pulled out the dagger at the top of the city walls and stabbed it through her heart.

This was destiny.

She had no right to question it.

It was because she too was suppressed by destiny.

That was why Xia Xiaosu sighed heavily, but when she lifted her head, she saw her older brother smiling. Xia Ji tousled her hair and told her, “Kindness begets kindness and evil begets evil. You have such a kind heart. You will definitely, definitely, have a good life.”

Xia Xiaosu asked dispiritedly, “Is that true?”

Xia Ji smiled and said, “If not, how would you have an older brother like me?”

Xia Xiaosu broke into a smile despite her tears. She nodded vigorously. “You’re right. The Heir Apparent, Third Imperial Prince, Fifth Imperial Prince… they couldn’t hold a candle to you even if combined.”

Xia Ji quickly waved his hand dismissively. “Don’t.”

Xia Xiaosu knew very well what he meant and she pouted. “Are you trying to say I’m poisonous milk again? Which part am I poisonous?”

Xia Ji said, “Quick, sing the praises of the Third Imperial Prince. Just take a look at the Third Imperial Prince and Imperial Concubine Wan. She is a doting mother and he is a filial son…”

Xia Xiaosu gave him an exasperated look. “To be honest, I really do think the Third Imperial Prince is charming and dashing, has a cultured wit and is surrounded by intelligent people, dresses and dances well, and is admired by many scholars. As for Imperial Concubine Wan, she has quite the presence and stands out much more than the Imperial Empress.”

Xia Ji looked extremely sincere as he replied earnestly, “Thank you.”

Xia Ji opened the wooden box and removed the wooden beads as he continued carving the beads which were filled with spiritual strength.

He was at Lake Huaqing. The night wind was icy-cold, the lake looked mystically dark, and as he stood between the icy sky and snowy earth, no disruptive thoughts were able to intrude on his mind.

He focused on his finger as he carved out one after another prayer bead with the gold 卍 on it. Every bead was a hidden trump card and he managed to carve another ten. He rubbed his forehead as exhaustion threatened to catch up to him.

He breathed a sigh of relief.

He slept until the next morning.

He took out the remaining prayer beads after that and took the opportunity of his perky condition in the morning to complete his work in one go. He ended up stringing one hundred and eight Prayer Beads of Karma.

The number of one hundred and eight represented the different troubles faced by all living beings. All troubles would eventually lead to evil conduct. When praying with the beads, one’s mind and soul would be cleansed. Naturally, one would be able to obliterate the Five Aggregates at that moment, as fabrications and falsehoods were emptied from the mind and soul.

Of course, the most important factor was that the Buddhist instrument would become stronger in proportion with the beads’ quantity.

He felt a pang of hunger after he was done with the work. He looked out the window. He had no idea when the snow had stopped falling. The sun had already appeared in the sky and it was noontime.

He had a simple meal and had just walked out the door when a guard came rushing toward him from afar. The guard knelt on one knee and said, “Reporting to Your Highness, people are congregating around the congee stall on the street and are creating trouble. The situation is becoming more chaotic by the minute and the patrolling soldiers are unable to keep things under control.”

“Creating trouble? Did anything happen to the Ninth Imperial Princess?”

“No, but the situation is currently getting serious…”


Xia Ji gathered the one hundred soldiers of sacrifice and Eunuch Mei, and they left the Imperial Palace together.

The streets were in a state of helter-skelter. One could hear countless refugees curse out in anger from the distance.

“Take a look at this, everyone. This is the Ninth Imperial Princess, Xia Xiaosu. There are mountains of grain kept within the Imperial Palace and all that is needed is just a fraction of it for everyone to be well-fed and no one in the city would die of hunger!”

“That’s right. The people in the Imperial Palace are having extravagant feasts. Meanwhile, we are homeless and have lost our loved ones to the hands of death!”

A timid voice said, “I have to say, the Imperial Princess has always spoken gently… She has been kind to us as well.”

“She’s just trying to bribe the hearts of the people!”

“Do you think the Imperial Emperor would bear to see us suffer such terrible tragedies if he was still in the Imperial City?”

“Sigh! Stop being fooled by such petty kindness. We’ve received just a tiny portion of charity and they expect us to bear a debt of gratitude!”

Xia Xiaosu stood next to the congee stall as the guards protected her. She did not try to explain herself—she was no fool. She knew these people were most probably working for someone. One may try to reason with others, but there was no way of ever convincing someone intent on creating trouble. Every explanation given and every pain expressed would only serve to give such individuals delight and satisfaction.

That was why her expression looked slightly grim. The palace maids, on the other hand, were shouting, “It’s not like that. There isn’t much grain left in the palace. This is the time for everyone to work together and overcome this crisis…”

“Liar! How is it possible that the Imperial Palace doesn’t have much grain left?”

“You’re enjoying magnificent feasts every day. All you need is to give us a little of your grain and it could save us all. No one would die if you did that… Why are you treating us this way?”


“Exactly, that’s exactly right! Open up the granary and give us the grain!”

The group of people started to wave their hands about threateningly. Many of the refugees who were not aware of the truth had been influenced into joining the outcry from behind as well. There were even some from the group who threw stones to the front.

“Be careful, Imperial Princess!”

Some palace maids quickly tried to protect her.

However, more and more stones and mud were thrown toward them. The remaining congee had also been snatched completely during the commotion. Stones were continuously pelted from afar and the cursing continued.

Xia Ji stood below a roof as he watched silently. A vicious look flashed in his eyes.

Eunuch Mei, who was standing at his side, said quietly, “Your Highness, this is not a suitable time for execution. All that is needed is to chase off the few who are taking the lead in this ruckus. The people’s sentiments are antagonistic right now. If you kill one of them, it would be equivalent to throwing a spark into a pot of oil. The consequences would be unthinkable.”

Xia Ji shot him a look. “Are you trying to teach me what to do?”

Eunuch Mei immediately replied, “I would not dare.”

Xia Ji looked afar. The Ninth Imperial Princess lowered her head insecurely. Her eyes were puffy as peaches from all the crying. She had been quietly crying for the past few days and now, the cursing and scolding came to her in waves. Every voice was like a sharp knife stabbing into her heart.

Kindness begets kindness and evil begets evil. His Imperial Sister was a kind person whose tears flowed for those in pain and suffering. She had quietly pretended to be a palace maid to give out congee without asking for fame, but someone had used her to create a ruckus. Why did she deserve this?


Loathing for destiny and the unfairness of life!

Loathing for kindness and evil not getting the karma they deserved!

“I have been too soft-hearted.”

Xia Ji gently muttered a sentence. He closed his eyes tight as the aura around him turned dark. There used to be a splash of light there, but now, that spark had completely vanished.


A stone flew across the crowd and hit Xia Xiaosu heavily on the shoulder. She cried out in pain.

Xia Ji’s eyes flew open. All it took was one thought, and one would either be Buddha or the Devil. All he wanted to do now was laugh maniacally. He had never thought that after two years of imprisonment and numerous times of being bullied and suppressed, he would still have the ridiculous sense of mercy in his heart.

He looked into the distance and said with the calmest tone, “Kill them all.”

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