Thread: The Deer and The Cauldron

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ace High View Post

    As a military advisor nicknamed Taiwan’s Zhuge Liang, CJN should have foreseen the problems and dangers of having troops that refused to obey orders and running wild on their own, or in this case, the Guis. They ‘might’ won them a battle, but they will surely lost them the war because they disturbed the overall battle plan. He should remove them as quickly as possible, even kill them if he has to, rather than risking them jeopardising the overall battle plan. This is war, not the time and place to show your high moral integrity and gentleman manners.

    And this is the first time I read about a council of war that anybody could attend, be they are high ranking or low ranking or even those who have no rank at all. It just like privates attended a tactical meeting with the generals.

    Yes, it was not suspicious at all that over 20-30 known rebels (that the Qing gov't must have been secretly tracking) held a meeting in the living room of one of the highest ranked officials in Beijing. Then WXB sends over assassination warning in the middle of the night. I feel like KX is rolling his eyes saying "too easy".

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    Senior Member foxs's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 42 - Part 6

    Sky, Zhx, have you ever wondered why is it that when two girls are good friends, they are called BFF, but when two boys are good friends, people think differently? Pannonian, thanks, I'll add your info. Ace, thanks for the info, I edited my source file. Anh, Mr. Weird, LOL. I was just kidding. But I am touched by Anh's support. Thanks. Sablemagi, you are welcome. Athlon, Smurf, Crazee, I often wondered too: if people like that died in battle for their country, it's good and commendable, but if they died for nothing just because of 'loyalty' (may I add 'blind'?), it's just pissed me off.


    Kangxi asked, “What kind of renegade are they?”

    “They were sent to the Capital by Wu Sangui,” Wei Xiaobao replied.

    Kangxi nodded. “As soon as rebel Wu deployed troops, I tripled the imperial bodyguards. When I received your memorial last night, I added the night guards.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “This time Wu Sangui sends assassins with really high martial art skill. Although the Holy Son of Heaven has a hundred deities to protect and bless, still we must be doubly careful, so that Your Majesty will not be frightened.” Suddenly he remembered something, “Your Majesty,” he said, “Your servant have a treasured vest, when worn on the body, swords and spears cannot penetrate. Your servant will take it off and ask Your Majesty to wear it.” While saying that, he unbuttoned his long robe.

    Kangxi smiled, “You took it from Oboi’s house, didn’t you?” he asked.

    Wei Xiaobao was shocked; although his face was really thick, but caught completely off guard this time, unexpectedly his face turned bulging red. He dropped on his knees and said, “Your servant deserves to die, nothing can be concealed from Your Majesty.”

    Kangxi laughed and said, “This gold-silk vest was obtained from the previous Ming’s Palace, at that time Oboi rendered a lot of meritorious service; he charged and broke through enemy lines, hence the injuries from saber, spears, arrows and rocks he received were quite a few. For this reason the former Regent bestowed this vest to him. When I sent you to search and seize Oboi’s house that time, this vest is not listed among the confiscated items.”

    Wei Xiaobao could only giggle nervously, his expression looked very awkward. Kangxi laughed and said, “Today you want to take it off and give it to me to wear, it goes to show that you have an outstanding loyal heart. But I am in the Palace, with Imperial Bodyguard numbers in hundreds and thousands, even the assassins would not be able to get close to me. I have no need of this vest. You are outside, working for me, oftentimes you encounter dangers. Just consider I give this vest to you today. From this day onward, this stealing is excused.”

    Wei Xiaobao kneeled down again to express his gratitude, but his body was drenched in cold sweats; he thought, “I stole the Forty-two Chapter Sutra, it would be best if His Majesty did not know about it.”

    “Xiao Guizi,” Kangxi said, “You are loyal to me, and I know that. But you should handle the matters following the rules and regulations. The vest that you are wearing right now, supposing in the future someone else is sent to search and confiscate your possession, and then that person secretly embezzles it, that won’t be good.”

    “Yes, yes,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Your servant will not dare anymore.” The sweats on his forehead dripped down as he kowtowed several more times before standing up.

    Kangxi said, “The business in Yangzhou, you may return someday.” Finished speaking, he yawned. He did not sleep the whole night, naturally he was very tired.

    “Yes,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Relying on Empress Dowager and Your Majesty’s good fortune, your servant has arrested that old wh0re whose crime is great, her evil extreme.”

    As soon as Kangxi heard this, he cried out, “Quickly bring her in, quickly bring her in.”

    Wei Xiaobao went out and ordered four guards to have Mao Dongzhu brought into the Hall, and have her kneeled in front of Kangxi. Kangxi walked over to her and shouted, “Look up!”

    Mao Dongzhu hesitated, then lifted her head, fixing her gaze on Kangxi. Seeing her deathly pale countenance, Kangxi was suddenly overwhelmed with grief, “This woman murdered my birth mother, grieved Fu Huang’s heart [father emperor] that he left home to become a monk, making me an orphan without father and mother. She also imprisoned Empress Dowager for many years and tortured her. Among those with great crime and extreme evil in the world, really nobody has surpassed her. But … but … I lost my mother when I was a baby, all along she was the one who raised me. Over the last few years, she actually treated me with bestowed kindness, just like if she was my own mother. Deep in the Palace, those who genuinely care about me, I am afraid only this woman in front of me, and this crafty troublemaker Xiao Guizi.”

    In the deepest part of his heart he had an indistinct feeling, “If not for her assassinating Consort Donggo and Consort Donggo’s son Prince Rong, based on how deeply Fu Huang doted on Consort Donggo, the throne would definitely be passed on to Prince Rong. Not only I would not be the Emperor, perhaps I should be worried over my life. That being said, I can say that this woman has rendered me meritorious service.”

    A few years ago, Kangxi was still very young, he always thought that the thing he hated the most was losing his father and mother. But for the last few years, his personal political power had grown, he was fully aware that if someone else seized the throne from him, everything would be lost. In the deepest part of his heart, the imperial power of being the Emperor was heavier than the love of his father and mother. It’s just that obviously he must not declare this feeling publicly, that even when in his heart he was thinking about it, he would inevitably feel very guilty.

    Seeing Kangxi’s expression was changing indeterminably, Mao Dongzhu sighed and slowly said, “Wu Sangui is rebelling, Your Majesty must not be too anxious; you must take a good care of yourself. Do you still take Fu Ling Swallow Nest soup every morning?”

    Kangxi was still lost in his thought; hearing her question, he absentmindedly replied, “Yes, I still take it every day.”

    Mao Dongzhu said, “The sins I have committed are too big, you … please kill me with your own hands.”

    A burst of sadness filled Kangxi’s heart. Shaking his head, he said to Wei Xiaobao, “Take her to Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful to have an audience with Empress Dowager, tell her that I am asking the Holy Sage Empress Dowager to decide on how to deal with the offender.”

    Wei Xiaobao bent his right knee and complied, “Cha!”

    Waving his hand, Kangxi said, “You may go.”

    From his pocket Wei Xiaobao took out Galdan and Sangjie’s two memorials. Taking two steps forward, he presented the memorials with both hands and said, “Congratulations Your Majesty, Tibetan and Mongolian troops and horses are turning their backs against Wu Sangui, they are determined to strive for Your Majesty.”

    For the last several days Kangxi was moving an army and sending a general, he always had deep worry in his heart that Mongolia and Tibet’s military forces would respond to Wu Sangui’s rebellion. Hearing what Wei Xiaobao had just said, he could not help but was pleasantly surprised. “Is there such thing?” he asked.

    Opening the envelope, he read the memorials, and was even more overjoyed at the unexpected good news. Waving his hand he ordered the Imperial Bodyguard to take Mao Dongzhu out of the Hall first, and then he asked Wei Xiaobao, “These two great services, how did you do it? Damn it, you are indeed a great good-luck general.”

    By that time, Tibet and Mongolia, two places’ military power was considerably strong. Kangxi was aware than Sangjie and Galdan secretly colluded with Wu Sangui; hence he had already deployed massive military force in preparation to face these two fronts. Now that he saw that the wording in the memorials was deferent and sincere, and offered to be a strong support to suppress Wu Sangui instead, how could he not be overjoyed? It’s just that this turn of events was too abrupt that momentarily he could not believe it as the truth.

    Wei Xiaobao knew that whenever the young Emperor used the phrase ‘damn it’ to him, it meant that the dragon heart was very happy; with a giggle he said, “Because of Your Majesty’s flood of good fortune, your servant has sworn brotherhood with them. Great Lama Sangjie is Dage [first brother], Prince Galdan is Erge [second], your servant is Sandi [third (younger) brother].”

    Kangxi laughed and said, “You really possess great magical power. For them to agree to help me beat Wu Sangui, what benefit have your promised them?”

    Wei Xiaobao laughed and said, “Your Majesty is an enlightened sage, knowing that this sworn brotherhood is pretentious and not to be considered real. With one heart and mind they want Your Majesty to bestow them something. Sangjie wants to be the Living Buddha. Other than Living Buddha Dalai and Living Buddha Banchan, he wants to ask Your Majesty to give him a favor, to appoint him Living Buddha Sangjie. That Prince Galdan actually wants to be a ‘Zhengge’erhao’ [see chapter 39]; which your servant does not understand.”

    Kangxi roared in laughter. “Zhengge’erhao?” he asked, “Ah, right, he must want to be Zhun’ga’er’han [Dzungar Khan]. These two matters are not difficult; it won’t cost the imperial court anything. When the moment comes, I’ll write an imperial order while building imperial treasure, sending you as the Imperial Envoy Minister to announce the decree. Go tell your Dage and Erge that if they really strive for me, just consider that I agree to grant them the desire of their heart. But they must not be two-faced, three-knives [i.e. double-cross/back stabbing]; their mouth says one thing, their conduct says another, seeing the wind and set the helm, seeing which side has the upper hand and helps that side.”

    “Your Majesty is right,” Wei Xiaobao said, “These two sworn brothers of mine, their moral standing is not particularly brilliant. Your Majesty cannot trust them completely; we must put our guard up a little. As Your Majesty said, in the years ahead we will suffer some defeat, we must guard against not only they do not help the banker, they are helping the opponent instead, and place their bets on the Heaven Gate.” He thought that it would be better for him to speak in advance, lest the responsibility he bore would be too big.

    Kangxi nodded and said, “You are right. But we are not afraid; if they dare to attack, Heaven Gate, left Green Dragon, right White Tiger, we will eat ‘em all!”

    Wei Xiaobao burst into loud laughter; he was quite impressed. Turned out the Emperor was adept at playing Pai Jiu.

    (Book note: Later on Galdan and Sangjie separately rose in rebellion, and were separately suppressed by Kangxi. Galdan died in Kangxi’s thirty-six year, Sangjie died in Kangxi’s forty-forth year.)

    With Mao Dongzhu in custody, Wei Xiaobao went to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful to see the Empress Dowager. The eunuch passed on the decree, ordering Wei Xiaobao to bring the offender to the throne inside. Wei Xiaobao thought, “Formerly I was a eunuch, hence I could enter the Empress Dowager’s bedroom [orig. palace hall to lie down]. But now I am a high-ranking officer, why would she want me to enter the bedroom? Perhaps when Empress Dowager heard that the old wh0re has been caught, she is so happy that she forgot that I am not a eunuch anymore.” Thereupon with four eunuchs holding Mao Dongzhu, he went in.

    The bedroom was pitch-black, just like when the fake Empress Dowager was still living there. The Empress Dowager sat on the bedside, behind her the bed curtain was drooping down. Wei Xiaobao kneeled down and kowtowed, respectfully wishing the Holy Sage well. The Empress Dowager glanced at Mao Dongzhu, nodded, and said, “You have arrested the offender to the throne. Hmm, you may go!” Wei Xiaobao kowtowed again before withdrawing, leaving Mao Dongzhu in the bedroom.

    While walking out of the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful, his heart was discontented, “I caught the Old Wh0re, rendering a great merit, but Empress Dowager did not appear to be happy at all, she did not even say half a sentence of praise. His granny, whoever lives in the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful is a female b@stard; doesn’t matter if it was the real Empress Dowager or the fake Empress Dowager, they all old wh0res.”

    With a bellyful cursing and swearing he walked through the stone path of the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful flower garden. While passing by the side of a rockery, suddenly a shadow flashed, three people jumped out from behind the rockery, one of them reached out and grabbed Wei Xiaobao’s left hand, and said with a laugh, “How are you?”

    Wei Xiaobao was shocked; it was an old eunuch. He was about to ask sternly when he saw clearly that the old eunuch was actually Gui Erniang. His shock was no small matter; when he looked at the other two people by her side, he was not surprised to see Gui Xinshu and Gui Zhong, both were wearing night guard uniform. Wei Xiaobao groaned inwardly, “Turns out the three of you are hiding in here.”

    Since his left hand was grabbed by Gui Erniang, half of his body was hurting and numb. He knew that if he made the slightest noise, Gui Xinshu would lightly strike him with his palm, his head would immediately shatter into pieces, remembering that his head can’t possibly be harder than the stone lion’s head at the gate of his Earl Mansion. With a forced laugh he said, “Are you, Senior, well?” while his mind was thinking of a plan to escape.

    Gui Erniang said in a low voice, “Tell them not to move from here, I have something to say.”

    Wei Xiaobao did not dare to disobey; turning his head around, he ordered the several Imperial Bodyguards who followed behind him, “You wait for me here.”

    Pulling his hand along, Gui Erniang took several dozen steps forward and said in a low voice, “Take us to find the Emperor.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “The three of you have arrived last night, why haven’t you found the Emperor?”

    Gui Erniang said, “We asked several eunuchs and Imperial Bodyguards, they all said that the Emperor was in a meeting with the cabinet ministers; he did not sleep all night. We had no way of coming in, hence we could not make our move.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Just now I was thinking of seeing the Emperor myself, I wanted to inquire what has happened to the three of you, but the Emperor has gone to bed, I could not see him. The three of you have put on your disguise, nothing can be better than that. Let us go out of the Palace.”

    Gui Erniang said, “We have not accomplished our mission, why would you want to get out of the Palace?”

    “You can’t do it during the day,” Wei Xiaobao said, “If the three of you wish, there is no harm in coming again tonight to give it another try.”

    “We came in with great difficulty,” Gui Erniang said, “Before the important matter is accomplished, we won’t go out. Quickly take us to wherever he is sleeping.”

    “I don’t know where he is sleeping either,” Wei Xiaobao said, “I must find a eunuch and ask.”

    “I won’t allow you to talk to anybody!” Gui Erniang said, “A moment ago you said you were going to see the Emperor, how could you not know where he is sleeping? Humph, you are thinking of playing trick in front of laoniang? That won’t be easy.” While saying that, her fingers tightened. Wei Xiaobao felt the pain was penetrating his bones, he felt like his five fingers were about to snap; he could not help making a loud grunt.

    Gui Xinshu reached out to stroke the top of his head gently. “Very good!” he said.

    Wei Xiaobao knew he was incapable of disobeying them; he had an idea, “I’ll take them to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful, make a big fuss for a while, the young Emperor will hear it and will increase the guard. If they make their move by killing the Empress Dowager, it’s none of my business.” Thereupon he said, “I have just walked out of the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful; perhaps the Emperor is seeing the Empress Dowager to pay his respect. Let us go back to look.”

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    Oh the plot thickens! The dowager situations sounds suspicious, like the dowager was under control again. Important members of the sect is not yet neutralized, like Mdm hong and hong jiaozhu. Would be interesting if they were there and got into a fight with the GUIs. Ok am just fantasizing

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    Thanks foxs

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    Senior Member Ace High's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smurf120 View Post
    Yes, it was not suspicious at all that over 20-30 known rebels (that the Qing gov't must have been secretly tracking) held a meeting in the living room of one of the highest ranked officials in Beijing. Then WXB sends over assassination warning in the middle of the night. I feel like KX is rolling his eyes saying "too easy".
    I feel the Anti-Qing movement underestimate their opponent by a lot. They are acting like KX is just an incompetent and foolish brat, rather than a capable emperor and a very good tactician. They also failed to read the populace moods regarding the revolt. Aside from places that actually being attacked by the rebels, there are no mass uprising in support of the revolt.
    You plant a garden and the flowers do not bloom, you poke a stick in the mud and it grows into a tree

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    Thanks foxs. lol you're right. I think it's safe to say they're BFFs.

    I like that Kangxi was hesitating on whether he should kill MDZ or not 'cause even though she commit those horrible crimes, she raised and took care of the Emperor. I don't think she's really bad, though.

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    Wow....the story is getting really interesting. Somehow, I like reading about the two youngsters. It's like they are playing a game but both have a genuine concern for the other.

    Plots within plots again ?? XB is too naive here. The dowager is not likely to behave this way. I mean she will not ask XB to enter when he is no more an eunuch, and she would have a few more words for bringing her enemy to her. I really smell rat.... well, I suppose with XB's luck, creating trouble will turn out to be another good deed heh heh heh.

    Thanks foxs....Not much time to lurk around the side many times nowadays....siggh
    cheerio..

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    Thanks Foxs! I just found the site and finally, there is a good translation of the story.

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    Senior Member SkyWalker's Avatar
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    Thanks foxs.

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    Default Chapter 42 - Part 7

    Sablemagi, interesting thought. Zhx, she belonged to Shen Long Jiao, whether she received order to kill or not, she murdered the empress, imperial concubine, the prince, and imprisoned the real empress dowager. About that BFF, it was just a puzzle that I cannot figure out myself. Anh, Sky, you are welcome. Ace, good point. They only had the desire without the means (and that includes the brains as well). Crazee, looks like you can prophecy with supernatural accuracy. Ashtongar, welcome to the forum. Glad you enjoy it.

    End of Chapter 42, not including Chapter 1, 8 more chapters to go.



    Gui Erniang did see him walking out of the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful, so he was not lying. She said, “Since the three of us are already inside the Palace, we are not thinking of coming out alive. If you make the slightest wrong move, I don’t have any choice but to take your little life. The four of us will go together to see Yan Wang [King of Hell], our journey will not be lonesome. My child would be very happy to have you as company.”

    With a forced laugh Wei Xiaobao said, “There’s no harm in accompanying you; let us spread out in the imperial garden! I’ll say we don’t have to take that journey to the underworld.”

    Gui Erniang said, “Do you like to go to see Yan Wang, or to see the Tatar Emperor? You will have to see either one of these two fellows today.”

    Wei Xiaobao sighed and said, “Alright, let’s see the Tatar Emperor then. But I want to be clear, as soon as you see the Emperor, the three of you do whatever you want to do, I will not help you.”

    “Who needs your help?” Gui Erniang said, “As long as you take us to see the Emperor, I will immediately let you go. What happens afterward won’t have anything to do with you.”

    “Alright!” Wei Xiaobao said, “So be it.”

    Coerced by the three people, Wei Xiaobao went back to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful. Seeing the peacocks and red-crowned cranes, Gui Zhong was very fascinated. Wei Xiaobao pointed this and that and chatted with him incessantly, he was hoping to stall as long as possible. Although Gui Erniang was impatient; however, thinking that her child was sick all his life, and that he would not live for too much longer, in the death’s door he was having a little bit of fun, she could not bear to hinder his keen interest.

    From a distance they saw a group of people coming out of the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful, carrying two sedan chairs. With one hand pulling Wei Xiaobao and the other hand pulling her child, Gui Erniang ducked behind peony flower terrace. Gui Xinshu hid by her side.

    The party gradually came near. Wei Xiaobao saw the one at the front was the eunuch from the Empress Dowager’s room; the two sedan chairs followed behind him, one belonged to the First Imperial Concubine, the other one belonged to the Empress Dowager. Each sedan chair had several eunuchs carried the sedan chair poles, behind the sedan chairs there were eunuchs holding up large yellow gauze umbrellas. At the end of the procession there were several dozen eunuchs and palace maids, plus about a dozen night guards. Usually when the Empress Dowager was traveling within the Palace, she did not have any Imperial Bodyguards to escort her. It may be assumed that ever since the Emperor received his information, he increased the number of Imperial Bodyguards on duty. A bright idea suddenly occurred; he said in a low voice, “Careful! The one inside the sedan chair in the front is the Tatar Emperor, the sedan chair behind it carries the Empress Dowager.”

    The Gui Family husband and wife saw the pomp and the prestige of this procession, plus they were coming out of the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful, it was only natural that they were the Emperor and the Empress Dowager. They could not refrain their hearts from beating faster, both looked at their child at the same time with tender expression.

    “Child,” Gui Erniang said in a low voice, “The one sitting inside the sedan chair in the front is the Emperor. When they come near, I will say ‘go!’ the three of us will attack together and beat him rotten!”

    Gui Zhong laughed and said, “Alright, this will be fun!”

    The two sedan chairs were coming nearer and nearer. Wei Xiaobao’s palms were wet with perspiration. His ear heard the eunuch from the Empress Dowager’s room calling out incessantly, “Chi! Chi! Chi!” telling people to get out of the way.

    In a low voice Gui Erniang commanded, “Go!” The three of them simultaneously charged forward.

    These three people’s power and speed were extraordinary, they arrived like unexpected storm. ‘Bang!’ three people, six palms, struck together on the first sedan chair. Gui Xinshu and Gui Erniang were afraid their strike did not kill the Emperor, immediately they pulled the swords from their waists and stabbed forward. In an instant the swords were thrust into the sedan chair four, five times. Each time the swords were pulled, the blades were dripping with blood, even if the person in the sedan chair had ten lives, all ten lives would be gone.

    The escorting Imperial Bodyguards were greatly shocked; they shouted and yelled and pulled out their weapons to charge forward.

    Gui Erniang called out, “Success!” With her left hand she pulled her child and dashed to the north. Brandishing the sword in his hand, Gui Xinshu charged ahead to open the path; how could the Imperial Bodyguards stop him? They saw the three of them ran along the path in the flower garden west of Shou Kang Palace.

    The palace maids and eunuchs were shouting and screaming; it was a total chaos. From all directions came the sound of gongs, hundreds or thousands doors in the Palace were shut and bolted, the night guards and the Imperial Bodyguards quickly blocked all major access in and out of the Palace. Inside and outside the Palace wall, the officers and men of the three banners’ guard battalions, the Vanguard Battalion and the Valiant Cavalry Battalion formed layer after layer of defense with strung bows and unsheathed sabers.

    Wei Xiaobao was very happy to see the three people of the Gui Family had assassinated the First Imperial Concubine, how they were thinking that they had succeeded, and how they had escaped. Immediately he leaped out from behind the flower terrace and shouted loudly, “We must not panic, protecting the Empress Dowager is more important!”

    The Imperial Bodyguards were in confusion just like a housefly without a head; seeing Wei Xiaobao suddenly appeared and took command, their confidence returned. Wei Xiaobao barked his order again, “Everybody surround the Empress Dowager’s imperial sedan chair, if other assassin comes to assault, we must stake our lives to block!”

    The crowd of Imperial Bodyguards complied in chorus, “We receive the order!”

    Wei Xiaobao snatched a saber from a guard, he raised it high and said in a loud voice, “Today we display utter loyalty in dedicating ourselves to the service of our country, we fight to the death for the Empress Dowager, for the First Imperial Concubine; even a thousand or ten thousand assassins, everybody must protect the Empress Dowager’s holy self!”

    Again the crowd of Imperial Bodyguards complied in chorus, “We receive the order!” They saw the Deputy Chief of the Imperial Bodyguards, the Bojue Daren’s [Earl] awe-inspiring presence, how he took command with confidence, his loyalty and devotion, viewing death as a return home, none did not admire him from the bottom of their hearts. They all thought, “Although he is young, he is actually a cut above others!” About a dozen Imperial Bodyguards formed a fence around the Empress Dowager’s imperial sedan chair.

    Wei Xiaobao shouted to the crowd of eunuchs and palace maids, “What are you panicking for? Quickly form another circle outside to protect the Empress Dowager. If the assassin attacked, let him chop your people of little value’s heads first.”

    The crowd of eunuchs and palace maids thought that although their heads were of little value, but they were not too willing to have it randomly chopped by others. However, seeing Wei Xiaobao brandishing his saber with imposing expression, nobody dared to disobey; trembling with fear, they had no choice but to form another circle outside the circle of Imperial Bodyguards. Several of them were so scared that they peed in their pants.

    It was only then did Wei Xiaobao put down his saber and walked over to the Empress Dowager’s imperial sedan chair. He said, “Your servant Wei Xiaobao was too late to save your highness, and has alarmed the Empress Dowager’s holy self. I respectfully wish the Empress Dowager holy peace, the assassin has already killed and retreated.”

    From inside the sedan chair the Empress Dowager said, “Very good!”

    Wei Xiaobao reached out to lift open the corner of the sedan chair’s curtain, he saw the Empress Dowager’s pale countenance, but she was smiling wide while nodding her head repeatedly. “Wei Xiaobao,” she said, “You are very good, very good! You saved me once again.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Empress Dowager has ten thousand good fortunes and holy peace, your servant is extremely delighted,” and he gently lowered the sedan chair’s curtain.

    Turning around, he pointed to two Imperial Bodyguards and said, “Quickly go to report to His Majesty, the Empress Dowager’s holy self is safe and sound, ask His Majesty not to worry. Tell him his servant Wei Xiaobao is wishing His Majesty holy peace. Summoning courage and determination, all the Imperial Bodyguards are protecting the holy selves; the assassins have attacked and retreated.” The two Imperial Bodyguards received the order and left.

    Suddenly he heard Empress Dowager called in low voice, “Wei Xiaobao!”

    “Cha!” Wei Xiaobao responded, “Your servant is here.”

    The Empress Dowager asked in low voice, “Are the two people inside the sedan chair in the front dead?”

    “Two people?” Wei Xiaobao asked.

    The Empress Dowager said, “Go look, be careful.”

    Wei Xiaobao complied. He was greatly baffled, “How could there be two people there? Why must I be careful?” He walked over to the first sedan chair, lifted up the sedan chair’s curtain, “Ah!” he could not help crying out; dropping down the curtain, he took several steps back. His knees went weak; he nearly fell down on his buttocks.

    The sedan chair was bloody and in such a mess; indeed there were two dead people inside! The two bodies had several sword cuts and blood was still flowing out of the wounds. One was the fake Empress Dowager Mao Dongzhu, the other was a short and fat man, his five sense organs were crushed by the palm strikes, but looking at his stature, there was no doubt that he was Thin Toutuo. These two people died in each other’s arms.

    He was not surprised to see Mao Dongzhu died in the sedan chair, it was ex himself who held her in custody and brought her to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful and handed her over to the Empress Dowager; but where did this Thin Toutuo come from? These two people unexpectedly sat inside the First Imperial Concubine’s sedan chair, accompanied by the Empress Dowager; but where were they going?

    After calming himself down, he returned to the Empress Dowager’s sedan chair and said in a low voice, “Reporting to the Empress Dowager: those two people are dead, they are dead in a confused heap, so dead that they could not be even more dead.”

    The Empress Dowager laughed and said, “Very good! Let us go back to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful. Bring the other sedan chair as well, don’t let anybody open it and look inside.”

    Wei Xiaobao complied; he passed on the order, and personally escorted the Empress Dowager’s imperial sedan chair back to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful. He opened the curtain of the sedan chair and helped the Empress Dowager out. The Empress Dowager smiled to him again and said, “You are very good!”

    Wei Xiaobao smiled in return, but in his heart he was wondering, “What’s so good about me? Although the Empress Dowager is not young anymore, her appearance is extraordinarily beautiful.”

    The Empress Dowager beckoned to him, telling him to follow her into the bedroom. She ordered the palace maids and the eunuchs to leave, and told Wei Xiaobao to close the door. Wei Xiaobao’s heart was thumping, he could not stop his face from blushing. “Aiyo,” he groaned inwardly, “It’s desperately serious! The Empress Dowager continuously praised me very good, could it be that she wanted me to be Lao Huangye’s [old master Emperor] substitute? The fake Empress Dowager had a Shige who dressed as a palace maid; she also had Thin Toutuo inside her quilt. If this real Empress Dowager also wanted me to dress as a palace maid or squeeze into her quilt, what should I do?”

    The Empress Dowager sat on the edge of the bed, she was lost in thought for a half a day before saying, “That was really dangerous; and it all depended on you exerting yourself.”

    “Your servant has received Empress Dowager and His Majesty’s great kindness,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Even if my body is torn and my bones crushed I cannot repay it.”

    The Empress Dowager nodded her head and said, “You are very loyal. His Majesty employs you, it is also our good fortune.”

    “That is by Empress Dowager and His Majesty’s grace,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Your servant only know how to display utter loyalty and strive for the sake of my masters.” While in his heart he said, “Jade Emperor, Guanyin Pusa, please bless and protect me, please don’t let her tell me to dress as a palace maid.”

    The Empress Dowager smiled at him again; this smile made all the hair on Wei Xiaobao’s body stood up. He heard her say, “Take those two dead offenders to the throne, along with the sedan chair, and burn them all. Do not leak this matter even for half a sentence. The Imperial Bodyguards, palace maids and eunuchs who were present just now …” Speaking to here, she hesitated and did not continue.

    Wei Xiaobao said, “May Empress Dowager has holy peace. Your servant has a way to make them not dare to even let out half a fart.”

    Hearing Wei Xiaobao’s vulgarity, the Empress Dowager frowned slightly; she said, “Just finish the task well; it will be for your own benefit.”

    Wei Xiaobao paid his respect and said, “Your servant will do it attentively. If anybody dares to leak the least bit of rumor, Empress Dowager can have your servant’s head.”

    “Then I will feel relieved,” the Empress Dowager said, “You may go!”

    Wei Xiaobao was greatly delighted; he kowtowed and withdrew.

    As he exited the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful, he saw Kangxi’s imperial sedan chair was coming this way; several hundred night guards accompanied him in front, behind, left and right of the sedan chair. The security was several times tighter than normal. Wei Xiaobao stepped aside and waited. From inside the sedan chair Kangxi saw him. “Xiao Guizi,” he called out, “Wait for me here.”

    Wei Xiaobao complied. He knew Kangxi must be going to pay his respect to the Empress Dowager. He thought hard, “How could Thin Toutuo hide inside the First Imperial Concubine’s sedan chair? This is really strange!”

  11. #2651
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    I love it! thanks a lot Foxs.

    great that these two was finally killed, though I would have liked leader hong and the guis to have a fight.

    WXB accidentally achieves something again

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    thanks foxs

  13. #2653
    Senior Member smurf120's Avatar
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    WXB is indeed Lucky General! I love that KX still calls him Xiao Guizi.

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    thanks foxs. oh killed. I wonder if the Guis martial arts skills are ranked below or above MDZ and fat man. but poor jian ning lol.

    I'm still wondering myself cuz like wxb once 'instinctively' shielded kangxi with his body and we all know his biggest fear is to die. His action is kinda beyond me even for BFF relationship. Would he do that if it was his mother in danger? maybe. idk. His wives? Maybe not lol. There are many chinese fanfics out there about wxb/kangxi so not surprised if most people believe they're more than bffs.
    Last edited by zhxzhx; 09-21-12 at 10:55 AM.

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    Thanks Foxs, really a fast moving update.
    .... was I accurate ? It's just an analysis based on Jin Yong's writing style and XB's uncannily lucky way of turning disasters to his fortune. Just imaging if he were ti have the empress or royal concubine murdered ?...maybe he will have a way to glib his way out but his fortune will be down, right ? Unless I'm wrong, our hero will not be so unlucky as to loose his fortunes..... right ?
    cheerio..

  16. #2656
    Senior Member SkyWalker's Avatar
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    Thanks foxs.

    Quote Originally Posted by zhxzhx View Post
    I'm still wondering myself cuz like wxb once 'instinctively' shielded kangxi with his body and we all know his biggest fear is to die. His action is kinda beyond me even for BFF relationship. Would he do that if it was his mother in danger? maybe. idk. His wives? Maybe not lol. There are many chinese fanfics out there about wxb/kangxi so not surprised if most people believe they're more than bffs.
    ROFL! I love their interactions, but I don't really want them to pull a brokeback mountain! The romance in this novel left a lot to be desired so a lot of fans probably don't mind their bromance.

  17. #2657
    Senior Member foxs's Avatar
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    Default Chapter 43 - Part 1

    Sablemagi, it was a great thought, I also want to see the strongest villain versus the strongest hero (according to legend anyway). Anh, you are welcome. Smurf, I think those two are the only ones who call each other like that, am I right? Zhx, Sky, LOL, I have not seen any adaptation, hence no comment from me. I think someone once mentioned that it was more common than people think that an emperor had illicit relation with his eunuch. But I don't have any proof. Crazee, that was the reason Kangxi called him 'lucky general'. Anyway, new chapter ... the plot thickened.


    Chapter 43 – The body becomes like red cloud that always stay close to the sun, the heart follows green jade grass facing the wind.
    (Translated by Foxs)

    Kangxi went out from the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful. Wei Xiaobao followed him back to Yang Xin Dian [Nurturing Heart Palace Hall], and waited outside to hall to be summoned. After waiting for a long time he saw the Vanguard Battalion Commander Ajichi came out of the Hall. Wei Xiaobao thought, “His Majesty must be mobilizing the Vanguard Battalion to intensify the guard against the assassins.” And then a eunuch came out to summon Wei Xiaobao.

    Kangxi dismissed the Imperial Bodyguards and the eunuchs, and ordered Wei Xiaobao to close the Hall’s door. With knitted brows Kangxi paced back and forth in the Hall. It looked as if he had a difficult problem but was not sure how to deal with it. Seeing Kangxi like that, Wei Xiaobao was quite anxious and scared. The young Emperor was growing older, his power and influence was flourishing more and more by the day. For each time Wei Xiaobao saw him, he always felt that their closeness decreased by one part, while the fear toward him increased by one part; they were no longer the same boys who wrestled each other absolutely unrestrained.

    After a while, Kangxi said, “Xiao Guizi, there is one thing, but I don’t know what to do.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Your Majesty is intelligent and wise, even Zhuge Liang would step down gracefully to you. Your idea must be brilliant.”

    “This time even Zhuge Liang would be at a loss,” Kangxi said, “You have rendered three great merits, yet I have rewarded you not a single thing. Capturing Mao Dongzhu is the first merit. Talking to Mongolia and Tibet that the two military forces surrender to us is the second merit. Just now you sent people to kill the rebel thief and saved the Empress Dowager is the third merit. You are very young, yet you are already bestowed the title Bojue [Earl]; I can’t grant you the title Wang [King]!” At this point he burst into loud laughter.

    Only then did Wei Xiaobao know that the Emperor was joking with him; he said happily, “These several merits are due to the Empress Dowager and Your Majesty’s flood of good fortunes, all merits are Your Majesty’s own meritorious service. Too bad Your Majesty cannot promote your own official rank; otherwise, Your Majesty should promote yourself three grades at once.”

    Kangxi roared into laughter again; he said, “Although emperors cannot their own official rank, but since ancient times I don’t know how many emperors loved to give themselves honorific title. Whenever they celebrate something, or achieve tiny victory, they would add several titles to their name. Although it was said that the subject respectfully proposed, the fact is still the emperors who paste gold onto their own faces. Genuinely good emperor who praises himself is rather ridiculous, much less there were a lot of tyrants and muddle-headed rulers who bore the title holy sage, adept in pen and sword, brilliant ruler, wise and farsighted, or whatever title they want to string together. The more muddleheaded the emperor, the longer his title was, they really had no sense of shame. Since the ancient times, have there been any virtuous ruler and sovereign who surpassed Yao Shun Yu Tang [see chapter 14]? But Yao is Yao, and Shun is Shun; when later generations want to venerate and look up to, at most they only say ‘Great Shun’ or ‘Great Yu’. Those who become the emperor, if they have only thirty-percent of self-realization, they would not add several-dozen-character long title to their name.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Turns out Niao Sheng Yu Tang [‘raw bird fish soup’; again, see chapter 14] did not add their own title. Your Majesty is ‘raw bird fish soup’, naturally you won’t add any title to your name. It’s just that in your servant’s opinion, after we defeat and pacified Wu Sangui, if Your Majesty did not add several grand titles, you would suffer too much losses.”

    Kangxi laughed. “Suffer what loss?” he asked.

    Wei Xiaobao said, “After defeating and pacifying Wu Sangui, Your Majesty will greatly rewarded the ministers who have given outstanding service, the three armies; everybody will be promoted and gain wealth. Not only Your Majesty yourself will not be promoted, you will have to open wide the coffer instead, glistening yellow gold, shining white silver, will have to be carted out and spent; won’t that mean you will suffer financial loss?”

    Kangxi laughed. “You are unlearned, and don’t have any future prospect,” he said, “After sweeping away the rebel Wu, the whole world at peace, common people live in harmony and work happily; that will be your lord’s promotion and gain.”

    “I see,” Wei Xiaobao said.

    Kangxi continued, “However, after the rebel Wu is wiped out, the ministers will definitely want to propose a title. This kind of ‘boot-licking the big king’ is not something that Zhen [I, imperial use] wants to waste my time worrying about right now. When the task is successfully accomplished, they will come together to bootlick big time.”

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Your Majesty has foresight of everything. When that time comes, we will quietly see which ministers will propose some honorific title for Your Majesty, who will bootlick the big king.”

    Kangxi laughed. “Right!” he said, “At that time laozi will kick some damn dogs’ butt.” Both the lord and his minister burst out in loud laughter.

    Indeed it happened as Kangxi had expected; as soon as Wu Sangui was subdued, the ministers immediately proposed honorific title, sang Kangxi’s praises, and bootlicked him big time. Kangxi issued an imperial edict: “Although the traitor has been subdued, the wound has not been healed; the ruler and his ministers should rebuild the country, give relief to the troops and support the people, spreading encouragement, in integrity restoring the affairs to former condition, together delivering peace and security. If the mission is believed to be satisfied with achievements and virtue, honorific title will be granted; excessive request of grace is very shameful.”

    The wording of the edict was very stern, but the ministers still did not understand, they thought Kangxi was only pretending to decline, hence they submit the proposal again. Kangxi issued another decree: “Since childhood Zhen has read books, and is aware of the ancient rulers’ conduct, from the beginning to the end very few have been able to escape from this narrow way of life, and I have always tried to guard against it. For fear that several affairs might be neglected, I exercise restrain to the end, eat late and get up early, in vast coldness and flourishing heat, do not dare to neglect. Occasionally feel unwell, also make an effort to go out and head and decide. In the middle of the night several proper memorials are reported, draping my clothes I go out, always planning on behalf of the people under the heavens. Today the efficacy of cleanliness and quietness is even more rare, the people are without abundant health but with rough lives, the ruler and his ministers are completely without merits and achievements that can be recorded. Supposing honorific title for Zhen is repeated, plus all of you officers get promoted in rank, this vanity is shameful, where is the honor and glory in that?”

    The crowd of ministers wanted to ‘pat the horse’s buttocks’ [i.e. bootlick], but they patted the horse’s leg instead; after making so much noise their heads and faces were filthy with grime, so now they did not dare to propose anymore. It was something that happened later, our book will not show it.

    Kangxi laughed and said, “Emperors who grant themselves honorific titles are indeed too many; it can’t be considered rare. The Ming Dynasty has a certain Emperor Zhengde[1], now that was rare.”

    “This Emperor,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Your servant has met him several times.”

    “You met him several times?” Kangxi asked in surprise, “In your dream?”

    “No,” Wei Xiaobao replied, “Your servant saw him on stage. There is a play called ‘Plum Dragon Town’; Emperor Zhengde was roaming the Jiangnan, in Plum Dragon Town he saw a young woman selling wine, Li Fengjie, who was very beautiful. He fooled around with her.”

    Kangxi laughed and said, “Emperor Zhengde loved to roam around in plain clothes, it is not known whether this Li Fengjie matter really happened or not. This Emperor did not grant himself any honorific title, but he loved to assign himself an official rank. He bestowed himself the title ‘Zongdu [governor-general] Junwu [military affairs] Wei Wu [formidable/mighty, usually in military force] Dajiangjun [great general] Zongbing [regional commander] Guan [officer]’, coming across something like ‘wind blowing grass moving’. He issued an imperial edict: ‘to the northern bandit rebel boundary, specially assigned Zongdu Junwu Wei Wu Dajiangjun Zongbing Guan Zhu Shou in command of six armies took the journey.’ Zhu Shou was his name. Afterwards he fought a battle, which he actually lost, but he said it was a victory, his meritorious service was great, hence he issued another decree, bestowing himself the title of ‘Zhen Guo Gong’ [duke of little town and country (or state duke Zhen?)], plus an official salary of five thousand dan of rice.” [1 dan is approximately 100 liters or 100 quarts]

    Wei Xiaobao roared in laughter; he said, “This man did not want to be the Emperor, but wanted to be ‘Zhen Guo Gong’ instead; he was really muddleheaded.”

    Kangxi laughed and said, “At that time his high-ranking ministers opposed the idea, saying that if he took the title ‘Zhen Guo Gong’, he must also confer posthumous title to his ancestors to the third generation. The Emperor became ‘Zhen Guo Gong’ was not a big deal, but the Emperor’s three generation ancestors were all Emperors, they would definitely not agree to be demoted. Emperor Zhengde did not care, he was determined to be ‘Zhen Guo Gong’. Later on he rendered another meritorious service and conferred himself the title of ‘Taishi’ [imperial tutor]. Fortunately he died early, otherwise he would grant himself higher and higher title, until in the end he would have usurped his own throne and just be the Emperor.”

    Hearing the word ‘usurping the throne’, two characters [cuan wei], Wei Xiaobao did not dare to talk too much; he only let out some hollow laughs.

    Kangxi said, “Emperor Zhengde had done a lot of stupid things, he had caused the common people so much hardship. While it is true that he himself was not good, but half of those were from the eunuchs and ministers who taught him bad things.”

    “Yes, yes,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Bad emperors loved to employ bad eunuchs and treacherous court officials, good emperors employ good eunuchs and loyal court officials.”

    Kangxi shook his head slightly. “That is not necessarily true,” he said, “Bad eunuchs and treacherous court officials also exist around a good emperor, it’s just that if the emperor is not muddleheaded, even if others deceived him, in the end he would be able to uncover the treacherous official’s sinister plot.”

    “Yes, yes,” Wei Xiaobao said, his heart could not help thumping madly.

    Kangxi asked, “That s1ut Mao Dongzhu’s lover [orig. male adulterer], what’s his name?”

    “He is called Thin Toutuo,” Wei Xiaobao replied, “His real name, your servant does not know.”

    Kangxi said, “But he is so fat, he looked like a meatball, why was he called Thin Toutuo?”

    “I heard that he was originally very tall and very fat,” Wei Xiaobao replied, “Afterwards he took Shen Long Jiao Jiaozhu’s poison, he curled up and became a short and fat person.”

    Kangxi asked further, “How did you know he and Mao Dongzhu were hiding inside Shen Taifei’s [first imperial concubine Shen] sedan chair, and were forcing the Empress Dowager to escort them out of the Palace?”

    Wei Xiaobao’s mind churned lightning fast, “First the Emperor said that I sent people to kill the rebel thief and save the Empress Dowager, and that my merit was very big. But now he said that those two people were hiding inside the Taifei’s sedan chair and the Empress Dowager was forced to take them out of the Palace. In that case the Emperor still does not know the matter of Gui Family’s three people assassination attempt. However, whether by this time the Gui Family trio have escaped, or are caught alive, or are killed, in the end this matter cannot be concealed. What should I say?”

    Seeing him hesitating without answering, Kangxi asked, “What is it? Is there something I shouldn’t know?”

    “No, no!” Wei Xiaobao said, “Your servant is wondering in my heart, how could those two rebel thieves hide inside the Taifei’s sedan chair? I really cannot figure it out even after thinking about it until my skull cracks. I was about to ask Your Majesty to enlighten me.”

    “Let me ask you first,” Kangxi said, “How did you know that the one sitting in the sedan chair was not Taifei, and thus you ordered the Imperial Bodyguards to assault the imperial sedan chair?”

    Wei Xiaobao thought, “Turns out the Emperor still thinks that it was the Imperial Bodyguards of the Palace who killed Thin Toutuo and Mao Dongzhu. This matter will be exposed sooner or later, I’d better tell him the truth.” Thereupon he said, “Your servant is guilty and deserves ten thousand deaths. Your Majesty, please forgive me.” While saying that he dropped to his knees.

    Kangxi frowned. “What is it?” he asked.

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Your servant received Your Majesty’s imperial decree to escort the offender to the throne Mao Dongzhu to the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful. When I walked through the imperial garden, suddenly from behind the rockery ‘hua la!’ jumped out three people wearing Imperial Bodyguards and court eunuchs uniform. They grabbed your servant, and forced me to take them to see Your Majesty. These three people’s martial art was very high; pinched by them, your servant’s fingers were nearly broken.” Speaking to this point, he lifted his left hand, and indeed his five fingers were black and swollen.

    “Why did they want to see me?” Kangxi asked.

    Wei Xiaobao said, “Those three must be the assassins sent by Wu Sangui; even if they pinched your servant to death, I would never agree to take them to violate your holy self. It just so happens that … no, not just so happens, it was by good luck. By good luck the Empress Dowager and the First Concubine’s luan-selves [luan is mythical bird related to phoenix] came by. Those three assassins were muddleheaded; they thought inside Taifei’s sedan chair was Your Majesty’s holy self, right away they dashed out to commit the violent crime. It was due to the Empress Dowager and Your Majesty’s flood of good fortune that unexpectedly the rebel thieves killed other rebel thieves. I don’t know if by this time those three assassins have been killed by the Imperial Bodyguards, or have been captured alive. Your servant will go right away to find out and will come back to present a memorial.”

    Kangxi said, “Those three assassins are not necessarily muddleheaded; most likely it was you who gave them direction, wasn’t it? You thought that rather that let the assassins violate my holy self, it would be better to harm Taifei. As soon as they made their move, the Palace would be thrown to confusion, they would not be able to harm me, and your little life would also be preserved; isn’t that so?” Having his innermost thought penetrated by Kangxi, Wei Xiaobao knew it was useless to deny, he could only kowtowed repeatedly.


    [1] Zhengde, 11th Ming Emperor Zhu Houzhao (1491-1521, reigned 1505-1521).

  18. #2658
    Senior Member SkyWalker's Avatar
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    Thanks for another great update foxs.

    Aiya, why did you have to stop at such an exciting part? Can't wait to read the next part. Is WXB's good fortune finally running out?

  19. #2659
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    ‘Zhen Guo Gong’ [duke of little town and country (or state duke Zhen?)]
    Duke who Receives Grace and Guards the Nation (奉恩镇国公; feng en zhen guo gong), simplified as ‘Duke who Guards the Nation’ (镇国公; zhen guo gong) is the first subgrade of National Dukes (国公; guó gōng), a title granted only to members of the imperial clan.

    The rank of National Duke (国公; guó gōng) was higher than 'Commoner' Duke (民公; mín gōng)' which often simplified as 'Duke', but lower than a king (王; wáng).
    Last edited by Ace High; 09-22-12 at 09:50 PM.
    You plant a garden and the flowers do not bloom, you poke a stick in the mud and it grows into a tree

  20. #2660
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    ... looks like my analysis is not too right.... our hero is getting into hot soup.
    Yes Kang Xi is growing so is XB. It a friend ship unlike that of a boy with a baby tiger. Young, they can play and wrestle together...but sooner or later, the tiger will be too strong for the man......
    Thanks foxs, No, XB will still manage to get out of this alive,.... errrr I know XB did not die in this story, so that's cheating heh heh heh. Anyway it's too early for XB to exit the scene, as there are still some more chapters to go.

    Don't get mad folks.... remember I'm crazee heh heh heh
    cheerio..

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