Chapter 18 – Intruder of Inner Palace
Gong Jue’s eyes were bleeding from hatred!
At this time, he was already near death’s door. Gong Jue gave Chang Xi a piercing glare; his anger and reluctance had almost drowned him to death.
So this is how the magnanimous Father Emperor runs his kingdom. While he is joyfully celebrating the birth of a newborn prince, to another son he threatens to give the death penalty. Heaven sure is ruthless and fickle!
In that case, why did Gong Jue have to come all the way here himself? What a joke!
As clear sound of festive music floated in the air, the boy closed his eyes. When he opened them again, there was no trace of pain, only a murderous intent! Even if he dies! He must see the Emperor!
He refuses to believe that the emperor would suffer the murder of his children right under his nose!
Chang Xi did not expect Gong Jue to still have strength at this time. He himself was a martial artist, and was a grand master in Great Tang. How could he not see that Gong Jue was already at the end of his strength? Suddenly he noticed the prince drawing up his sword for battle.
“Your Highness, you cannot rival this servant. Please turn back!”
But the imperial prince had already fallen in a kind of dreamlike trance; he couldn’t hear the eunuch’s warning! There was only one thought left in the ragged boy’s mind: Kill! As long as he killed enough people, the emperor would naturally come to see him! Even if it comes down to killing the emperor himself!
The Wind and Nature was originally a peaceful martial arts. However, the more Gong Jue used them, the more murderous they became! Dull pain pierced his limbs; His vision was hazy, not knowing whether it was obscured by rain or blood. The sword in his hand seemed to grow heavier; each swing was like a mountain. At this time his heart felt empty. It seemed to be missing a piece.
He is really useless; he doesn’t want to drag down his sister, but in the end he’s still a burden! If he can’t even accomplish the simple task of getting backup, does he still have face to stay by Sister Gong’s side?
This time he was shielded by sister Gong to escape. But what about next time? Will there even be a next time? In the future, if Gong Yi once again faces a crisis because of his weakness, Gong Jue will never forgive himself! How can I become stronger?
He wants to be much stronger! He has someone to protect!
As if triggered by his resolve, a sliver of air entered into the boy’s dantian causing the his whole body to relax. Unexpectedly, in such a dire moment, Gong Jue achieved a breakthrough in cultivation!
The prince launched an attack, and Chang Xi gave a strange squeal as he attempted to dodge. Surprisingly, the boy landed a blow and stabbed his arm!
He was astounded. For the past ten years, Chang Xi had never been wounded in a fight; he had almost forgotten what it’s like to feel pain.
Gong Jue was not satisfied with stabbing his opponent. What he has to do is to kill this enemy!
At this time, a strong laughter came. Chang Xi immediately blocked Jue’s attack then retreated ten meters. He turned around and bowed, shouting, “Greetings Your Majesty!”
His Majesty, Father Emperor?
Gong Jue suddenly felt an emptiness in his heart…..
Celebratory music rang; Zhaoyang Temple’s palace door was wide open, allowing festive music to float in the air. At this time Gong Jue collapsed, almost kneeling. He forced himself to look up, and saw numerous lanterns flashing dazzling lights near and far. In the distance approached shadows; there was a group of well dressed men nearing him. At it’s head was a man who gave the longest strides; he was clearly wearing a crown. The man’s stature was draped with golden robes which glittered under the lights!
As if to watch a play, Emperor Gong eagerly strode to the front of the temple, along with his Ministers. Finally, the entourage arrived at the top of the steps while Gong Jue was left standing alone at the bottom of the staircase. One side was full of flowers, wealth and glory, while the other was cold, bleak, and covered in wounds.
“Are you my Ninth Son?”
Emperor Gong does not even remember the boy’s name. He sneered “You have wounded my guards and have intruded into the inner palace. Do you not fear death?”
The King laughed at the haggard boy, along with his snickering princes and princesses; the proud look in their eyes made Gong Jue feel humiliated!
His small, thin body stood alone in the cold wind, and his hands trembled!
The crowd openly gave mocking and unpleasant stares……”Ah”, Gong Jue closed his eyes again. He had to endure!! He is alone in this palace, even if it is for Sister Gong, he must endure!!
The boy bent down and knelt on one knee, but his head was raised high. He looked straight at the bright yellow figure and loudly pleaded with a hoarse voice, “I came to beg Father to save the Princess. The Cold Palace has been attacked by assassins and Sister Gong is in danger. She seeks rescue from her Father!”
He was not asking for himself; his plea was to save his sister.
Gong Yi was very proud and stubborn. On her behalf, Gong Jue refuses to bow his proud head and even kneels only with one knee.
The emperor stared at him in amusement for a moment, This boy is quite prideful. Unfortunately such things were not useful to the king, so although the man had some compassion, he did not speak.
Pressure began to reign down from the emperor, causing a chill to spread. Gong Jue could feel the man’s sarcasm even if he couldn’t see his face.
The emperor looked down on the prince from his supreme pedestal, as if looking at an ant — a delusional ant who thinks he can command imperial power.
Gong Jue suddenly heard a several female voices laughing.
As if enlightened, at this moment, he came to understand.
Gong Jue no longer hesitated. He quickly rushed down on both knees, and kowtowed deeply!
“I beg Father to save Sister Gong!”
He hit his head squarely on the front steps, and the sound of knocking was heard. Even the emperor at the top of the stairs could hear clearly!
Every time the prince knocked his head once, he shouted and pled his father for help! The voice was getting more and more urgent, and more and more sorrowful. His every word sounded as if he wept with blood! The crowd couldn’t see his expression, but they knew he was in pain.
Soon the child’s forehead began to bleed, but he was unaware of it.
At this point his pride didn’t matter. He has succeeded in meeting the emperor. Now his only wish is that his sister was okay. For the sake of his sister’s survival, he didn’t mind giving up dignity; even if his body was humiliatingly torn apart, and he had to kneel and beg, he would do it!
Meanwhile at the top of the stairs; as he watched his son desperately kowtowing on the steps, begging for help, Emperor Gong’s heart of stone began to slightly soften. His displeasure for the boy’s killings gradually dissipated. He even wanted to know, what kind of sister would make this boy so desperate to call for help?
Emperor Gong narrowed his eyes and finally said, “Oh? There was even a daughter in the cold palace? What is her name?”
His voice was slow and hateful. Gong Jue was stunned at his words. He no longer kowtowed, but began to stand up straight, causing blood to tickle down his cheek. He sheathed his sword and looked up at the emperor with a deep and complex gaze. With a trembling voice, he said,
“Father Emperor, when you gave Sister Gong the name “Yi Mo”** you promised you would love Xue Rong even in death. Now that Xue Concubine has passed away for seven years, have you even forgotten this name?!”
(***translator’s note: “Yi Mo” [以沫] in essence meant “perish into foam.” 以 into 沫 foam…..The name’s characters describe a type of fish species where if a pair was formed, one’s life and death was tied to the other; when one fish died, the other would soon follow and perish into foam. For the Emperor, this meant that even if his beloved Xue Rong died he would follow after her….. see ch.12)
Gong Jue was heavily disappointed. His sarcastic and angry words caused Emperor Gong’s smile to stiffen. A serious expression finally dawned on his face, which caused the Empress to express unconcealed jealousy!
He a generation of emperors, still dare to think of other women. If so where is her place as Queen? Emperor Gong simply gave a slight smile and said, “Interesting. Very interesting, I really would like to know who it is that dares to assassinate my children right under my nose.”
His cold eyes turned to Chang Xi and ordered, “prepare my sedan. I want to personally go to the Cold Palace!” ….. “As for the crowd, let them come along!”