After the attack at the Empress Dowager, of course the Imperial Palace would be on high alert and security will be tighter. Naturally the course of action would be to lay low and/or tried to escape when the situation permits, not to keep on trying to carry out the assassination attempt.
You plant a garden and the flowers do not bloom, you poke a stick in the mud and it grows into a tree
I suppose this must be one of the most dramatic scene in the whole story. The Guis' death are so vividly describes....makes this story line a violent rating.
Yes, I can't help but feel sad for 3 such powerful character who wasted their lives for nothing.
Now what happens to XB. He is definitely in deep trouble. Looks like he cannot be in the midst of everything anymore.
Honestly, If I'm KangXi, I'll let him be as I know he'll not harm me. His association with the powerless and divided rebels will actually bring benefit as indirectly XB will try to protect kangxi if there's trouble........
In the mean time.......well waiting for the next dose.....
Thanks a lot Foxs for your great translation...
Until now, i feel this story is just a funny story about wxb as a naugthy child (liar, even a horrible raper), so this time JY set this crisis moment for wxb. As u guys know, a hero is decided at this kind of moment. What wxb choose will decide what his values. In my opinion this is surely the greatest work of JY. So many twisted story and he tried hard to make reader like us to love wxb character which most of them are really unacceptable but still i am enchanted with wxb character.
So again many many thanks Foxs. I have read this in my country translation which was pretty good for more than 10 times, but yours is the best.... Best...
Sky, Smurf, Zhx, Ace, Crazee, my point is: as the Emperor, Kangxi could no longer be WXB's friend. If he knew WXB's secret early on, why he did not expose it earlier? Why now? Granted, Ace argued that this time his life was targeted, but if I were Kangxi, by exposing this secret, Kangxi had more to lose. Why not try to steer WXB against 'the enemy of the state' in a subtle way? Like Pannonian said about German spies in Britain. Plus as I mentioned earlier, in the previous part, Kangxi seemed sincere. My guess is he has just found out between the time he sent WXB out, and he received the report about Empress Dowager's assassination attempt. Ren, thank you. I knew I can count on you, but I did not know that you are following this thread. I guess as our moderator, you kind of have to ... Anh, you are welcome. Didilung, thanks.
The Imperial Bodyguards Zongguan [chief] Dolong rushed into the Hall. He kneeled down and said, “Reporting to Your Majesty: The assassins in the Palace have been completely … completely purged …” Seeing blood all over the floor of the Hall, he was terrified. He kowtowed and said, “The assassins have frightened the Holy Self, your servant … your servant deserves to die!”
Just now Kangxi was grabbed and brought down by Wei Xiaobao. Although it was such a sorry situation and was harmful to his dignity, this person was risking his life to protect the holy self; his loyalty toward the master was undoubtedly real. He said to Dolong, “There are still people outside who want to assassinate Wei Xiaobao. You must protect him well, don’t leave him even a cun or a step. You must not let him leave the Palace even more. Tomorrow early in the morning I will give you further instruction.”
“Yes, yes,” Dolong hastily replied, “Your servant will strive to protect Wei Dutong.”
Wei Xiaobao groaned inwardly, “The Emperor is going to bombard Tian Di Hui tonight, he is afraid I might tip them, hence he instructed Dolong to watch over me.”
Kangxi walked to the Hall’s gate; he thought, “Xiao Guizi is cunning and extremely crafty, this old boor Dolong is not his match.” Turning his head around, he said, “Dolong, get more people, follow Wei Xiaobao closely, don’t let him talk to other people, also don’t let him send anything out of the Palace. In short, the situation is dangerous, you just have to treat him like an offender to the throne.”
“Yes, yes,” Dolong replied, “Your Majesty treats your subject with kindness in every possible way.” He thought that the Emperor treasured Wei Xiaobao so much that he did not want to give the assassins any opportunity to harm him.
Wei Xiaobao said, “Your Majesty’s kindness, your servant cannot repay even if my body torn my bones crushed.” In his heart he knew that by saying that, the Emperor was taking Wei Xiaobao’s face into consideration; in the future he might still find Wei Xiaobao useful.
Kangxi smiled and said, “You won another round. Starting from tomorrow, we will play again. That golden rice bowl of yours, you must hold it firmly with both hands, don’t let it be broken and rotten!” Finished speaking he went out the Hall’s gate.
Naturally only Wei Xiaobao understood what Kangxi was saying. Just now he had protected Kangxi’s holy self, hence Kangxi considered him rendering another merit. Tonight, after his Shifu Chen Jinnan and the others were killed, he would not have anything to do with Tian Di Hui anymore, the Emperor could reinstate him into an important position. The golden rice bowl was engraved with these four characters ‘gong zhong ti guo’ [serving one’s country loyally]. The Emperor wanted him to be loyal and devoted to him, and not having two-heart.
Wei Xiaobao imagined the devastation of his Shifu and Tian Di Hui brothers, flesh and blood flying everywhere; even if his nobility rank was raised again, how could his heart be at peace? He thought, “If as a human being I do not uphold yi qi, what am I if not a turtle b@stard?” He pondered further, “Why is the Emperor so well-informed all of a sudden? Which son of a b1tch told him? This morning when I first saw the Emperor, he was very good to me, saying that he was going to send me to victorious battle, hoping that I would catch Wu Sangui and he would bestow me the title Ping Xi Wang. I am sure at that time the Emperor still did not know anything about Tian Di Hui Wei Xiangzhu. He must have received the information while I was taking the old wh0re to be presented to the Empress Dowager; but which dog thief giving him the tip off? Humph, most likely it was Wu Palace people, or perhaps Wang Wu Pai Situ He’s subordinate. Otherwise, how could the Emperor not know other matters such as I stole the Forty-two Chapter Sutra, or I became the White Dragon Envoy of the Divine Dragon Cult?”
Seeing Wei Xiaobao frowning and worried, with blank expression on his face, Dolong patted his shoulder and said with a laugh, “Wei Xiongdi, His Majesty dotes on you like this, I wonder for how many previous incarnations you have cultivated good deeds? It doesn’t matter which, Princes, Beilei, Generals, Cabinet Ministers, of the imperial court, His Majesty has never sent any Imperial Bodyguards to protect him. Everybody says that before Wei Dutong reaches twenty, he will be bestowed the title Gong and Wang. You don’t have to worry, as long as you do not step out the Palace gate for one step, even if the rebel thieves have magnificent army with thousands of men and horses, they won’t be able to harm a single strand of your hair.”
Wei Xiaobao could only force a laugh as he said, “His Majesty’s benevolence is as high as the heaven and is deep as the earth, we as the servants can only do our utmost to repay it.” He saw dozens of Imperial Bodyguards stood in front of him, behind him, on his left and right; to send a letter to Tian Di Hui brothers would be extremely difficult. He thought, “Any Gong or Wang title, Laozi does not want. I would rather the young Emperor kick me in the butt and shout at me: ‘Get your Ma’s stinky duck egg out of here! From now on I don’t want you to see my face.’ This kind of protection can really protect my old life.”
Dolong said, “Wei Xiongdi, His Majesty instructed you not to move carelessly. Do you want to return to your old residence to rest, or do you want to go to the Imperial Bodyguard office, so that everybody can accompany you several rounds?” He knew throwing dice or playing Pai Jiu would definitely fit Wei Xiaobao’s fancy.
Wei Xiaobao had a sudden inspiration, he said, “Empress Dowager ordered me to do something very important, I have to do it right away. Would Duo Dage [‘Dolong’ in Chinese is ‘Duo Long’] come with me?”
Dolong’s face appeared to be reluctant; he said, “Empress Dowager’s order, naturally you must do it immediately. It’s just that … it’s just that His Majesty’s imperial decree was very strict, he said Wei Xiongdi must never ever leave the Palace …”
Wei Xiaobao laughed and said, “This is something that I have to do inside the Palace, Duo Dage needs not be worried.”
Dolong was relieved instantly; he laughed and said, “As long as you don’t go out the Palace gate, all taboos are off.”
Wei Xiaobao ordered the Imperial Bodyguards to bring the First Imperial Concubine Shen’s luan sedan chair to the burning ground west of Shen Wu Gate. He said, “Whoever opens the curtain of the sedan chair, Empress Dowager ordered me to immediately chop his head.”
Dolong and the Imperial Bodyguards were all aware about the assassins attacking the First Imperial Concubine’s sedan chair. Although they did not know the details, they all knew that it was the Empress Dowager’s secret, and all along they felt queasy about it. When they heard that Wei Xiaobao wanted to bring the sedan chair to be cremated at the burning ground, it meant they were getting rid of a fetus of a gargantuan disaster; everybody felt as if a large rock was taken off their heads.
Right away Dolong came with Wei Xiaobao to get the luan sedan chair and bring it to the burning ground. Along the way, blood was still dripping from the sedan chair, as for who died in the sedan chair, naturally nobody dared to ask even half a question.
Arriving at the burning ground, they had the sula [odd jobs/part-time worker] pile up firewood around the luan sedan chair and burn it. Wei Xiaobao picked up a piece of wood and with a charcoal drew a small sparrow on it. He cupped the piece of wood in hands as he faced the burning sedan and prayed, “Thin Toutuo, Old Wh0re, in this world you could not be husband and wife, in the underworld you can be husband and wife for a thousand years, ten thousand years. By this time the three Gui people who killed you are also dead. You two left first, they were right at your heels. If you meet each other at the bridge as you gaze toward the edge of the platform, everybody must be friendly with each other.”
Dolong and the others saw him moving his lips, they assumed he was praying for the departed spirit to be reincarnated soon. They saw him moving several pieces of rock and made a small pile, and then he stuck the piece of wood into the rocks, just like an incense stick. How could they know that it was a secret code between him and Tao Hongying when they wanted to communicate with each other?
When the sedan chair and the corpses inside it were burned to ashes, Wei Xiaobao returned to his former dwelling place. Earlier some eunuchs who wanted to fawn on him had already come over and swept the place clean, and delivered food and drink as well as some light refreshments. Wei Xiaobao gave the eunuchs some tips and then he invited Dolong and the Imperial Bodyguards to have some.
“Duo Dage,” he said, “You and the gentlemen please sit and relax here, Xiongdi has been working all night last night for His Majesty, I am really tired.”
“Xiongdi,” Dolong replied, “There is no need to stand on ceremonies, please go to bed quickly. Your Gege will protect you.”
Wei Xiaobao said, “That is really one thousand times, ten thousand times, I do not dare to accept. Duo Dage, what is it that you want His Majesty bestow to you? Tell me, Xiongdi will remember it in my heart. Next time I see His Majesty is happy, I will ask him on your behalf, I have 80% confidence that it will be successful.”
Dolong was greatly delighted. “Wei Xiongdi is willing to ask His Majesty on my behalf, how can it not be successful?” he said.
Wei Xiaobao said, “Duo Dage’s business is Xiongdi’s own business; why would I not strive to accomplish it?”
Dolong laughed and said, “Your Gege has been doing errands in the Capital for a while, I am somewhat tired, hence I am thinking of going to outside provinces for a change of pace.”
Wei Xiaobao slapped his thigh and said with a laugh, “Dage is not wrong at all. Within the city of Beijing, I don’t know how many princes, dukes and high-ranking officials whose rank is higher than ours; in all honesty we cannot display our prestige at all. If we are out of the Capital, it will be free and easy. If we want several taels of silver, we only need to cough, other people will immediately deliver it with both hands.” The two of them roared in laughter.
Wei Xiaobao went into the bedroom and lay down in the bed; he mused, “Duo Dage received the Emperor’s decree, he is keeping a very close watch on me. It’s impossible for me to go out of the Palace to warn Shifu. I will have to wait for Tao Gugu and ask her to pass on the message. It’s just that I am afraid she will come here too late in the evening. If she arrived in the depth of the night to see me, over there the cannon will already be fired, over here what can I do?” A moment later he thought, “Right now the only plan I have is to send some Imperial Bodyguards out to beat the grass to scare the snake.”
Once his mind was set, he closed his eyes to nap for about two hours. When he woke up, the sun was slightly slanting to the west; it was already passed Wei hour [between 1-3pm]. He walked out of the bedroom to talk to Dolong.
“Duo Dage,” he said, “Do you know the reason why those bunch of assassins wanted to make their move on me?”
“That, I do not know,” Dolong replied.
Wei Xiaobao said, “One group is Tian Di Hui, the other is Mu Palace.”
Dolong stuck out his tongue. “Those two groups of rebel thieves are very formidable,” he said, “No wonder His Majesty is very anxious.”
Wei Xiaobao said, “I am thinking of hiding in the Palace for one day, but I don’t want to hide for life. Today although I have Duo Dage to protect me, but if the rebel thieves are not wiped out, they will cause no end of trouble.”
Dolong said, “By the time His Majesty summons us for the morning audience tomorrow, he will definitely have a marvelous plan. Wei Xiongdi does not need to worry.”
“Yes,” Wei Xiaobao said, “I won’t conceal it from Dage, in Xiongdi’s home, there are several girls whose appearance is like flower or like jade, whom Xiongdi loves very much. Apparently tonight the rebel thieves will come to my house to assassinate me. When they fail to harm Xiongdi, most probably they will kill these several girls; that … that will be a pity.”
Dolong laughed and nodded his head. He recalled the instant where Wei Xiaobao wanted him to pretend and put on airs to give Zheng Keshuang some trouble, it was precisely for the sake of a beauty. This young brother was loose and lecherous; although he was still young, he must have had a collection of not a few good-looking concubines in his house. Thereupon he said, “That’s easy, I’ll send some men to Xiongdi’s mansion to protect them.”
Wei Xiaobao was greatly delighted; he cupped his fist to express his gratitude. “The young girls in Xiongdi’s house,” he said, “There are three that I most dote on, one is Shuang’er, the second is Zeng Rou, and then there is another one called … called Jianping (he thought that if he mentioned the name Mu Jianping, the word ‘Mu’ might cause suspicion); their appearances are quite not bad. Xiongdi is really worried. I ask Dage to send the men to protect them, tell them that tonight some Tian Di Hui and Mu Family assassins will come over, tell them to hide immediately. It would be best if Dage send a bit more people to guard Xiongdi’s house, so that when the assassins arrive, they can capture that his granny bunch. Whichever brothers are working hard, I will heavily thank them with gifts.”
Dolong struck his chest and said with a laugh, “That’s easy. It’s Wei Bojue Mansion’s matter, who would not want to strive to step forward?” Immediately he ordered the Imperial Bodyguard captain to select several men and send them out.
All Imperial Bodyguards knew that Wei Xiaobao was very generous; usually, even without any problem at all he would often tip them eight hundred or a thousand taels. This time it was to protect his beloved concubines, he would definitely reward them handsomely. Immediately they all happily accept the assignment. Inevitably those who were out of turn and not selected were sighing and moaning inwardly, blaming their own poor luck.
Wei Xiaobao was somewhat relieved; he thought, “When Shuang’er and the others hear the Imperial Bodyguards’ message that the Palace is sending people to protect them, to wait for and arrest Tian Di Hui and Mu Palace’s assassins, they will tell my Shifu and the others to flee. But if my Shifu and the others stay out, Shuang’er, Miss Zeng and Xiao Junzhu, three people might die from the bombardment; that would be terrible! But with a large group of Imperial Bodyguards in my house, the gunmen outside will not open fire carelessly.”
Last edited by foxs; 10-01-12 at 11:48 AM.
Why didn't KX exposed it earlier?
WXB was a very valuable asset. He has rendered merits that no other people could even dream of achieving. Up until then, WXB’s actions was more of undermining the rebels. He sowed dissension between TDH and the Kingdom of Tungning. He did create problems for WSG, by alienating WSG’s allies and turn them to support the Qing instead. Rather than having to face five enemies (the Three Feudatories, Russian Empire, Taiwan, Tibet and Mongolia) at multiple theatres, KX only have to worry about the Three Feudatories and Taiwan. WXB was also a good judge of talented generals. If it was somebody else, those four (Zhang, Zhao, Wang and Sun) would certainly get punished severely or at least demoted to mere privates. These were not the actions someone who wished KX’s harm.
KX’s decision to expose WXB now was also no different than CJN’s decision (or lack of it) to support the Guis’ assassination plan (CJN did order tell WXB to help the Guis).
After all is said and done, WXB is KX’s only friend.
You plant a garden and the flowers do not bloom, you poke a stick in the mud and it grows into a tree
Foxs, thank you for the update. The plot is getting more and more interesting with all the twists and turns.
You may want to review the following translation piece:
"When the sedan chair and the corpses inside it were burned to asses, Wei Xiaobao returned to his former dwelling place."
Thanks for the update. Yeah it was shown in the Mainland TV adaptation that KX found out about his identity right after
Maybe KX didn't want to expose him earlier because he wanted to test WXB, to see if he was lying or to confirm the information he got. But I agree with you that KX could no longer be his friend. I'm not saying that they're not friends anymore, but it seems that as time passes by, their relationship becomes more Emperor/servant. Now that he's a more responsible and experienced emperor, Kangxi has to consider him as a servant or minister first. Then, it is as a friend. It also seems that he doesn't want to kill him because he is a very useful minister (friendship aside).
I wonder how he's going to save TDH members.
Please use spoiler tags for all spoilers - RWX
Last edited by zhxzhx; 10-01-12 at 10:48 AM.
I think I agree with Foxs and WXB's assessment that the discovery is very recent:
"Wei Xiaobao imagined the devastation of his Shifu and Tian Di Hui brothers, flesh and blood flying everywhere; even if his nobility rank was raised again, how could his heart be at peace? He thought, “If as a human being I do not uphold yi qi, what am I if not a turtle b@stard?” He pondered further, “Why is the Emperor so well-informed all of a sudden? Which son of a b1tch told him? This morning when I first saw the Emperor, he was very good to me, saying that he was going to send me to victorious battle, hoping that I would catch Wu Sangui and he would bestow me the title Ping Xi Wang. I am sure at that time the Emperor still did not know anything about Tian Di Hui Wei Xiangzhu. He must have received the information while I was taking the old wh0re to be presented to the Empress Dowager; but which dog thief giving him the tip off? Humph, most likely it was Wu Palace people, or perhaps Wang Wu Pai Situ He’s subordinate. Otherwise, how could the Emperor not know other matters such as I stole the Forty-two Chapter Sutra, or I became the White Dragon Envoy of the Divine Dragon Cult?”
foxs, I've been following on and off for quite a while, and have been and remain impressed by the speed and quality of your translation. The past half year has been a bit turbulent as I've been country hopping, finding new apartment, etc., so I haven't had much time to translate or to comment, but I do follow all threads as best as I can
Thanks foxs, and nice to see you in this forum RWX.
Seems like WXB is also wondering when KX knew the truth about him. I think KX knew about it for awhile now and didn't expose him because WXB hasn't done any harm to him or his country. I also think the reason he exposed WXB is because of the Guis', after all, WXB was the one who brought them into the palace.
Ace, IMHO, Chen Jinnan cannot be compared to Kangxi. He was a good man, a patriot, no doubt about it. But he was not a national leader. His loyalty was not to the country, or even to the defunct Ming Dynasty, but to Taiwan’s Zheng family. I am sure those of you who have read the book or watched the adaption understand what I am talking about. His decision to allow the Guis was not based on national interest, it was simply because the Guis were seniors of Jianghu, and he did not want to offend them. Anh, you are welcome. Eagle, good catch, thanks. Zhx, you are right. In the previous part Jin Yong even explicitly stated that Kangxi grew to value his throne more than family relationship, there was no way he would sacrifice his throne for a ‘friend’ like WXB. Smurf, I am glad you agree with me. Ren, does that mean you are not in Kuala Lumpur anymore? I understand that you are a diplomat. Sky, if he did, seems to me he was out of character. But I realize that no matter what we say, the fact is that the author himself did not explicitly say when.
He then had a second thought, “If the gunmen received the Emperor’s strict order, it does not matter if three by seven is twenty-one, they absolutely must open fire, and then what would happen?” Xiao Junzhu and Zeng Rou were not a big deal, but Shuang’er’s love and loyalty to him was very deep, she was the most important person in his heart, he simply must not let her delivering her life. Only it was such a dilemma for him; if he ordered the Imperial Bodyguards to get Shuang’er and the others out first, there would be nobody left to warn Shifu and the brothers. If he saved Shuang’er but did not save Shifu, he would be paying more attention to a lover than friends, then he would be a turtle b@stard. Momentarily he paced back and forth in his room in distress for not able to find an ingenious plan.
More than an hour later the captain of the Imperial Bodyguards that was sent to Zhong Yong Earl Mansion returned and reported: they had not reach the Earl Mansion and were already stopped by Vanguard Battalion’s officers and men. The Canling [regimental commander] of the Vanguard Battalion said that they were on imperial orders to protect the Earl Mansion, there was no need for the Imperial Bodyguards officers to take the trouble. The Imperial Bodyguards wanted to come in to protect the women, but no matter what the Vanguard Battalion would not allow them, saying that everything had been arranged by His Majesty. Afterwards even the Vanguard Battalion’s Commander Ah [from ‘Ajichi’] also personally stepped forward to stop them. The Imperial Bodyguards were unable to change their mind, and were obliged to return.
When Wei Xiaobao heard this, he uttered a series of groaning in his heart. Dolong laughed and said, “Xiongdi, His Majesty is really considerate toward you, unexpectedly he sends the Vanguard Battalion to protect your pretty women. What else are you worried about? Ha ha, ha ha!”
Wei Xiaobao had no choice but to accompany him with some hollow laugh. He thought, “In everything the young Emperor is a thousand li ahead of me. This time my Shifu and the others really face imminent catastrophe. The Vanguard Battalion must have received strict order to guard around my Earl Mansion; seeing common people, they let them come in, so that tonight they will be blasted to death together. If it is civil or military government officers, they won’t let them in.”
His mind went further, “If I suddenly release the ‘Han Sha She Ying’ [see note 3, Chapter 41] secret projectiles, taking Duo Dage’s life is not difficult, but there are many Imperial Bodyguards in here, how can I kill them all? Too bad last time my knockout drug has been used up in the Zhuang House.” He saw the sun was getting lower and lower, he was like an ant inside a hot pot, his body was burning hot, and he had to pee several time, but all along he could not come up with the least bit of idea.
More than two hours later, the sky was gradually turning dark. Wei Xiaobao pushed the window to look out, and saw seven or eight Imperial Bodyguards patrolling back and forth outside his room, the security was extremely tight. He looked in all directions, but where was Tao Hongying’s shadow? Heaving a very deep sigh he dejectedly collapsed onto his bed; thinking that perhaps by this time quite a few of his friends had already inside the Earl Mansion. For every moment he was delayed, all his brothers were a step closer in their journey to the underworld.
From the corner of his eye he caught a glimpse of the big water jar standing at the corner of his building, it was the one Hai Dafu used to use. That day he was totally dependent on this big jar to kill Rui Dong; he thought, “Why don’t I lure Duo Dage to enter the room, and kill him with the secret projectile, and then set the room on fire? Then I can escape in the midst of confusion. Duo Dage’s treatment to me is not bad at all, without any reason whatsoever I am harming his life, in all honesty I am doing him too much wrong. But there is big yi qi and then there is small yi qi; the dozens of my Shifu and the others’ lives are somewhat more important than his, one person’s life.”
His mind was set, he took a fire-knife and a flint to light a candle; he thought, “The mosquito net will be burned the fastest; after I kill Duo Dage, I’ll set the mosquito net on fire.”
Right this moment he suddenly heard Dolong calling out from outside the room, “Wei Xiongdi, the food and drink is here, come out and drink some wine.”
“Let’s the two of us brothers eat inside!” Wei Xiaobao replied.
“Alright!” Dolong said. He instructed the eunuch who deliver the food and drink to bring the food case inside.
The eunuch was around sixteen, seventeen years old. When he entered the room, he paid his respect to Wei Xiaobao before opening the food case and taking out the food and drink. A divine light suddenly flashed inside Wei Xiaobao’s brain, he thought of an idea. “Stay here to serve us drinking the wine,” he said to the eunuch.
The little eunuch was extremely delighted; he had long understood that Wei Bojue was formerly the chief of the Imperial Kitchen, and had always treated the people working under him generously. Serving him eating and drinking would definitely be beneficial; thereupon delightedly he set up the bowls and chopsticks.
Dolong followed inside; he said with a laugh, “Xiongdi, you have not been working in the Palace for quite a while, yet His Majesty did not take away your room. Even a prince or a Beilei would not receive such preferential treatment.”
“It’s not preferential treatment by His Majesty,” Wei Xiaobao replied, “His Majesty is dealing with a lot of important matters in the world, how can he care about this kind of irrelevant small matter? Honestly speaking, Xiongdi living here is totally against the rule.”
Dolong laughed and said, “To others it may be against the rule, but to Xiongdi it’s not a big deal.” He knew that the chief of the court eunuchs wanted to fawn on Wei Xiaobao, so nobody dared to send other people to live in this building. Besides, there was no lack of rooms in the Imperial Palace, plus there was nothing special with Hai Dafu’s residence, naturally the eunuch in charge of the imperial kitchen had other accommodation.
Wei Xiaobao laughed and said, “If Dage did not mention it, Xiongdi would have forgotten. Tomorrow I should notify Zongguan Taijian [chief manager eunuch] that I need to hand this room back. If we as external ministers lived in the Palace, if the external imperial censor found out and he submitted a report to our superior, it won’t taste very good.”
“His Majesty likes you,” Dolong said, “Who would care about that?”
“Please sit down, please sit down,” Wei Xiaobao said, “This room has nothing special, it’s just that Xiongdi was accustomed to live here, so that Xiongdi does not feel that living in the Earl Mansion is not as comfortable as living in here.”
He slowly walked around Dolong’s back, pulled his dagger, and said, with a laugh, “These eight bowls of dish are all the food that Xiongdi loves to eat; the imperial kitchen still remembers. Dage, how about trying this crab meat lion’s head [i.e. meatballs]?”
Dolong said, “The food that Xiongdi loves to eat must be the best …” before he could finish, suddenly he felt coldness on the left side of his back; he slumped to the table and stopped moving. Turned out Wei Xiaobao already aimed the dagger at the middle of his back, and thrust it in.
The dagger was completely noiseless; the little eunuch did not notice at all, he was still pouring the wine. Wei Xiaobao walked over to his back and noiselessly thrust his dagger into his heart. Immediately he turned around and bolted the door, and quickly took off his clothes and cap, shoes and socks, leaving only his underwear and his protective vest. And then he wore the little eunuch clothes and hat, and put on his clothes and hat on the little eunuch. The two of them were more or less of the same height, hence their clothes and hats also fit on each other’s body. Afterwards he dragged the little eunuch’s body and sat it on the chair; raising his dagger, he made random cuts on the little eunuch’s face, destroying his facial features beyond recognition.
While his hands were busy working, in his heart he said, “Duo Dage, you are a Tatar, our Tian Di Hui makes our living by killing Tatars, so I have to kill you. Today I harmed your life, I really am sorry. Luckily you are bound to die anyway. Tonight I escape, tomorrow His Majesty will definitely have your head chopped, so you died only half a day earlier, it can’t be considered big loss. Moreover, because I killed you, you died in the line of duty. If the Emperor chopped your head, your possessions will be searched and confiscated, your wife and children will be dragged into this; you might as well die half a day earlier, your family will receive pensions and gift for the bereaved. Come to think about it, you are actually in a much more convenient situation.” But thinking that usually Dolong was really not bad toward him, and that he was compelled by circumstances to kill him, in his heart he was genuinely grieved and was unable to stop tears from flowing down his face.
After wiping his tears, he turned around to look at the little eunuch; he said in his heart, “You, Xiao Xiongdi, are wearing the Yellow Magua, you look very impressive. Originally, even you reincarnate ten times, you could not dream of achieving even half a part of the Yellow Magua. On your head you are wearing Bojue Daren’s hat. Just the ruby alone is enough to last you seven or eight lifetimes. Hey, hey, you are being promoted and gain wealth, it could be the Will of Heaven. In those days I, Wei Xiaobao, masqueraded Xiao Guizi; since then I enjoyed meteoric rise, until I become a high-ranking officer. Today you masquerade Wei Xiaobao, whether you could enjoy meteoric rise in the future or not, it will depend on your ability.”
He also thought, “Previously I masqueraded a little eunuch, today I let a little eunuch masquerade me. I debt I previously owed, I pay it back fair and square. Xiao Xuanzi, oh Xiao Xuanzi, I do not do you any wrong.”
Straightening up his clothes and hat and did not see any flaw, he said in a loud voice, “Xiao Wa’er [lit. little baby], you may leave; no need to serve here anymore. Here’s five taels for you to buy some candy.”
And then with an unclear voice he said, “Thank you very much Bojue Daren.”
Raising his voice again he said, “I am drinking wine and have a heart-to-heart chat with Duo Zongguan in here, I don’t want anybody to come in and disturb us!”
In the Palace, the court eunuchs’ assignment was to serve the Emperor, the Empress, the Imperial Concubines, princes and princesses, but it was not uncommon for the senior eunuchs with official duty to have little eunuchs serving them. Although Wei Xiaobao was not a eunuch anymore, previously his prestige in the Palace was impressive, he was a big time eunuch; for him to have a little eunuch serving him and then rewarding him with money was a very common occurrence. When the Imperial Bodyguards outside heard this, nobody notice anything was out of place. They saw the door opened, the little eunuch came out, carrying the food box in his hands, with head hung low turning around to close the door.
Carrying the food box, Wei Xiaobao walked to the main gate with head hung low. He saw the Imperial Bodyguards were getting rice and pouring wine, nobody paid him any attention. Wei Xiaobao was secretly delighted; he thought, “It will be at least two hours before the Imperial Bodyguards find out that the two people inside the room are dead; they would think that Wei Bojue and Duo Zongguan were murdered by the assassins. It will scare them off that they will piss in their pants in terror.”
Stepping over the main door, he saw a procession of several eunuchs and palace maids, the leader carried a lantern, the rest of them carried a sedan chair. The sedan chair was decorated like a pheasant tail and feather; it was called a ‘long-tail pheasant sedan chair’. The eunuch leading the procession announced in loud voice, “Her Highness the Princess has arrived.”
Wei Xiaobao was shocked, “The Princess did not come late, she did not come early, but she came exactly at this moment. As soon as she enters the room, she will immediately see me, Wei Xiaobao, killed; won’t she raise a ruckus in the Palace like the sky and the earth turning upside down? Now it will be extremely difficult to go out.”
Momentarily he was at a loss of what to do. He saw the sedan chair stopped, Princess Jianning stepped out from the sedan chair. “Is Xiao Guizi inside?” she called out.
Wei Xiaobao gritted his teeth; he stepped forward and said in a low voice, “Princess, Wei Jueye [noble master] is drunk, let your servant take Princess inside.”
The lantern was not too bright, the Princess did not recognize him. Seeing the Imperial Bodyguards coming out of the room together to welcome her, she thought, “Why are there so many people?” Frowning, she waved her left hand and said, “Everybody wait outside.” In big stride she walked in.
Wei Xiaobao followed her in. As soon as he was in, he turned around and closed the door. The Princess said, “You also go out.”
“Yes,” Wei Xiaobao said, “Wei Bojue is in the inner room.”
The Princess entered in quick steps. She pushed the door open, and saw ‘Wei Xiaobao’ and Dolong two men were slumping over the table; obviously they were very drunk. She knitted her beautiful eyebrows and sternly said, “You are still not out?”
Wei Xiaobao laughed and said in a low voice, “If I go out, I cannot burn the rattan-armored troops.”
The Princess was startled; she quickly turned around, and under the candlelight, she was shocked to see Wei Xiaobao standing behind her. She could not help but was surprised and delighted at the same time. “Ah,” she cried out. “You … what are you doing?” she asked.
“Don’t make noise!” Wei Xiaobao hissed.
The Princess looked at him, and then she looked at the ‘Wei Xiaobao’ crouching on the table. “What trick are you playing?” she asked in a low voice.
Wei Xiaobao pulled her into the room and closed the door. “Things are not good,” he said in a low voice, “His Majesty wants to kill me!”
“Huangdi Gege has already killed the Prince Consort,” the Princess said, “Why does he want to kill you too? He … he … if he killed you, I will stake my life against him.”
Wei Xiaobao reached out and pulled her into her arms, he planted a kiss on her cheek and said, “Let us quickly flee from the Palace. His Majesty knew about you and me, he wants to chop my head.”
Being embraced and kissed by him, the Princess’ body went weak; she said in a tender voice, “Huangdi Gege has killed the Prince Consort, I thought he was going to give me to you in marriage, how … how could there be such thing? How did he find out?”
“It must be you who tip him off, wasn’t it?” Wei Xiaobao said.
The Princess blushed. “It was not,” she said, “I only asked several times, when are you coming back.”
“And you said it wasn’t you?” Wei Xiaobao said, “It does not matter. Anyway, the two of us are already husband and wife; let us quickly get out of the Palace.”
Poor Dolong - I wish that WXB just used his knock-out drugs but he is right, if he does not try to kill him, his whole family would be executed or left with nothing. Lucky General strikes again, with Princess dropping by for a visit.
KX really is better than three (Taiwan) Zhuge Liangs…
Both KX & WSG are first rate generals. We could see both side extensively making preparations for their incoming war. WSG buys a lot of horses, KX breed a lot of horses. WSG colluding with foreigners, KX (via WXB) make alliances with them. However, there are no actions from those who wanted to restore the Ming aside from
a) talking (hosting ‘secret’ public gathering included),
b) fighting each other,
c) courting beautiful girls (or women),
d) all the above
This is the first time WXB cried after killing someone.
You plant a garden and the flowers do not bloom, you poke a stick in the mud and it grows into a tree
Oops sorry for the spoiler :\
Poor Duolong. Fell bad for him since he treated WXB like a friend.
I like the interactions between the Princess and WXB. Unrelated, but many teachers and those who analyze JY's novels believe that, the Princess is the only woman who is the most suitable to WXB, if he has to marry one in the present day . I don't remember the reason, though. I think it has something to do with getting WXB more disciplined, mature lol.
Last edited by zhxzhx; 10-03-12 at 11:24 AM.
Smurf, I noticed that the protagonist killed quite a bit of people; compared to the Trilogy, for example. Other than the war, I don't recall Guo Jing, Yang Guo or Zhang Wuji killed that many individuals. Ace, for that reason I felt that it was out of character if Kangxi knew WXB's secret for a long time and did not do anything about it. Anh, you are welcome. Zhx, the princess was too violent. I think WXB would suffer the most if she was his only wife.
The Princess hesitated. “I will plead with Huangdi Gege tomorrow,” she said, “He can’t possibly kill you. When he killed the Prince Consort, he already told me that he really offended me, and he promised to find another good Prince Consort for me. He is always very fond of you …” Speaking to this point, she felt that the reeking of blood in the room was getting thicker and thicker. Sniffing twice, she asked, “What is …” Suddenly a burst of bad chi bubbled up in the pit of her stomach, ‘Wah!’ she leaned over the back of a chair and threw up; her throat felt nauseated, she vomited another mouthful of bad-taste clear liquid.
Wei Xiaobao lightly patted her back and gently comforted her, “What happened? Did you eat any bad food? Are you feeling better?”
The Princess threw up two more times; suddenly she turned around and shot a heavy slap on his face. “I ate some bad food?” she cursed, “It’s you who are not good, you are not good!” With both fists she punched the pit of his stomach continuously.
The Princess had always been harsh, unreasonable, and rough; this moment she suddenly threw a fit, Wei Xiaobao did not think it strange; however, realizing the urgency of the situation, for every moment he was delayed, the time the cannon would be fired would also be a moment closer. He really could not afford to have unnecessary bickering with her. “Alright, alright” he said, “I am not good.”
The Princess twisted his ear and shouted, “You and I are going to see Huangdi Gege, the two of us are going to immediately bow to the Heaven and the Earth to become husband and wife.”
Wei Xiaobao was greatly anxious; he pleaded, “Leave the matter of bowing to the Heaven and the Earth to be husband and wife to me, but as soon as we see His Majesty, your husband will turn into a headless Prince Consort instantly. Let us flee out of the Palace immediately, it is very important.”
The Princess pulled Wei Xiaobao’s ear hard, he was in so much pain that he could not bear not to cry out. The Princes cursed, “You don’t have any head, what’s the big deal? You are a little demon, originally you did not have any head anyway. What shall I do with the baby little demon in my tummy?” Speaking to this point, ‘Wah!’ she broke into crying.
Wei Xiaobao was shocked, “What … what … baby little demon?”
The Princess’s leg flew, she kicked his lower abdomen, while saying with a cry, “In my tummy there is a baby little demon; it’s you who are not good. If we do not become husband and wife immediately, my belly … my belly will grow every day … His Majesty knew Wu Yingxiong was a eunuch, he could not do it, I … how can I conduct myself as a human?”
Wei Xiaobao’s countenance turned deathly pale; right now a thousand pounds was hanging by a thread, he was facing an urgent matter, and then this highly embarrassing matter arose. He busily said, “If we don’t get out of the Palace quickly, the baby little demon won’t have any Dad. After we escape out of the Palace, we will immediately bow to the Heaven and the Earth and get married. You give birth to a baby little demon, won’t that … won’t that be His Majesty’s nephew [orig. waisheng – sister’s son]? His Majesty becomes a maternal uncle, he will become my dajiuzi [wife’s older brother], won’t he feel it’s embarrassing to kill his meifu [younger sister’s husband]?”
“Why would he feel embarrassed?” the Princess said, “Wu Yingxiong was his meifu, didn’t he kill him with one chop of a saber?”
Wei Xiaobao said, “His Majesty knew that Wu Yingxiong was a fake meifu, I, Wei Xiaobao, on the other hand, is the genuine goods at fair prices. He killed fake meifu, he can’t possibly kill real meifu. Good Princess, after our baby little demon is born, he will wrap his arms around your neck and call you Mama, won’t it be beautiful?” While saying that, he reached out to embrace her neck.
The Princess let out a tender giggles; she happily said, “If I can get the beautiful thing, which is you, this son of a b1tch, I won’t want any baby little demon calling me Mama.” Her mouth said those words, but her hand that was twisting Wei Xiaobao’s ear actually loosened up. She said in tender voice, “I haven’t seen you for such a long time; were you thinking of me?” While saying that, she threw herself into his embrace.
“I was,” Wei Xiaobao replied, “I was thinking of you every day, I was thinking of you every night, I think of you all the time.” But in his heart he cursed, “This hopeless romantic is really a damn dead wh0re.” He saw her lingering feeling, her blushing face, but this was really not a good time to be intimate with her, yet he did not dare to offend her. In a low voice he said, “As soon as we are out of the Palace, later on day and night we will be together, we won’t be separated anymore. Let us go now.”
The Princess wriggled herself free from his embrace. “Can’t do!” she said, “We must become husband and wife tonight.”
“Alright, alright!” Wei Xiaobao said, “If you say tonight, then tonight it is. But we must get out of the Palace first and talk about it later.”
“What do you mean get out?” the Princess said, “Huangdi Gege loves me most, he is your Shifu, he also loves you the most. Tomorrow we will plead with him, he won’t be angry. Huangdi Gege hates Wu Sangui the most, you can ask him to issue an imperial decree, assigning you to lead the troops to attack Wu Sangui, I will go with you. I will be the grand marshal of the army, you can become my deputy, we will beat Wu Sangui that he will be utterly defeated. Huangdi Gege may bestow you the title Wangye.” While saying that, she embraced him tightly.
Wei Xiaobao was in an extremely difficult situation. Suddenly someone knocked the window lightly three times, and then after a short pause knocked again twice. Wei Xiaobao was greatly delighted; he said in a low voice, “Is it Tao Gugu?” He gently pushed the Princess away, and scrambled toward the window to open it. A shadow flashed, someone leaped in; it was precisely Tao Hongying.
As the two women faced each other, both were shocked. Tao Hongying called in a low voice, “Princess.”
The Princess angrily said, “Who are you? What are you doing here?” Thinking it over, immediately her jealousy arose, thinking that in the dead of the night this palace maid hopped over the window into Xiao Guizi’s room, it couldn’t possibly be a good thing, could it? Doubtlessly she must be his lover. Although she saw that Tao Hongying was old, thinking that Xiao Guizi was fooling around with this old and ugly palace maid, she could not forgive him even more. She was feeling rather amorous, but this woman suddenly broke in and spoiled the mood, her fury blazed like crazy. “Gu …” she loudly called out. Wei Xiaobao had already prepared against this possibility. As soon as he knew that she was going to yell ‘guards’, he reached out and pressed his hand on her mouth.
The Princess struggled hard; she slapped backhandedly to strike Wei Xiaobao’s face. In his panic and fright, Wei Xiaobao’s right hand reached to her neck and tightened his grip. “Dead wh0re,” he cursed, “I’ll strangle you to death!” The Princess could not breathe, her hands and feet flailing randomly. Wei Xiaobao pulled his left hand to hammer it on her head twice.
Seeing he dared to beat up the Princess, Tao Hongying was shocked; she knew immediately that this matter would get noisy really quick. Stretching out her finger, she jabbed the Princess’ waist and the pit of her stomach three times in succession, sealing several acupoints on the upper part of her body. It was only then did Wei Xiaobao let go of his grip.
“Gugu,” he said in a low voice, “Things have turned really bad, the Emperor wants to kill me, I have to escape right away.”
“There are a lot of Imperial Bodyguards outside,” Tao Hongying said, “I have been here quite a while ago, I waited behind the flower terrace more than an hour before I was able to sneak in. Look.” She quietly pushed the window a slit.
Wei Xiaobao peeked out, and indeed he saw seven or eight Imperial Bodyguards patrolling back and forth with lanterns in their hands. He thought for a moment, Thin Toutuo and Mao Dongzhu came into his mind; he mused, “Those two people’s luck was not good, they came across Gui Xinshu, husband and wife. Laozi can imitate their method. Those three people from the Gui Family can’t possibly reincarnated in someone else’s bodies, I can ride in the Princess’ sedan chair.”
Turning to the Princess, he said, “Princess, please don’t drink vinegar [i.e. be jealous], she is my Gugu, my Dad’s Meizi [younger sister], my Mama’s Jiejie [older sister]. You must not throw a fit randomly.”
After her acupoints were sealed by Tao Hongying, the Princess was so angry that she nearly pass out; hearing Wei Xiaobao’s explanation, her heart calmed down. She did not think that ‘Dad’s Meizi and Mama’s Jiejie’ couldn’t possibly be the same person. In any case, this woman was not Xiao Guizi’s lover, so there was no problem. Instantly her face showed a smiling expression as she said, “In that case quickly release me.”
Wei Xiaobao wanted to make her happy; he said, “You are my wife, quickly greet Gugu.”
The Princess was very happy, to everybody’s surprise, she really called, “Gugu!”
Tao Hongying was bewildered; a moment ago these two were beating each other, how could the Princess suddenly call her ‘Aunt’?
Wei Xiaobao said, “Order the sedan chair to be carried inside the room, and then tell everybody to get out, close the door, and then you and I will ride inside the sedan chair. We will sneak out of the Palace, and immediately bow to the Heaven and the Earth to get married. During the wedding ceremony, we must have an elder standing on the side as the witness, otherwise the ceremony will not count. Our Gugu can be the witness. What do you think?”
The Princess was overjoyed; her face blushed as she said in a low voice, “Good!”
Wei Xiaobao pushed her back away and urged, “Quickly go, quickly go!”
Being rushed urgently like that, without waiting for the acupoints on her upper body to be unsealed, the Princess went to the door and ordered, “Bring the sedan chair into the room!”
All the eunuchs and palace maids were baffled, but this Princess has always been unpredictable, the orders that she gave usually had very little common sense, but had a lot of wildest things imaginable; therefore, they complied in chorus and brought the sedan chair inside.
The First Imperial Concubine Shen’s luan sedan chair could be brought into the Palace of Compassionate and Peaceful and quietly brought Thin Toutuo and Mao Dongzhu out. Wei Xiaobao’s door was only several chi wide, how could the Princess’ long-tail pheasant sedan chair be brought through the door? Only the two long sedan chair poles could go in, the body of the sedan chair was stuck on the doorway and could not get in.
“Useless bunch,” the Princess cursed, “Get out!”
The two eunuchs carrying the front part of the sedan chair thought, “The door is too narrow, how can you blame us?” Immediately they slipped out from the side of the sedan chair.
Wei Xiaobao whispered in the Princess’ ear, “Order the Imperial Bodyguards not to come in.”
The Princess raised her voice, “Xiao Guizi, you must accompany me in the room, I forbid you from going out.”
“Yes,” Wei Xiaobao replied in loud voice, “It’s getting late, Your Highness the Princess please take a rest earlier.”
The Princess cursed, “But I definitely want to go out to have a stroll, what do you care?”
Wei Xiaobao replied loudly, “There’s assassin in the Palace, it would be better if Your Highness the Princess is a bit more careful?”
The Princess said, “His Majesty raised these many Imperial Bodyguards, the only thing they are good at is eating. Have everybody stand outside, nobody can go in.” The crowd of Imperial Bodyguards complied in chorus.
Wei Xiaobao climbed into the sedan chair and sat down; he beckoned. Tao Hongying unsealed the Princess’s acupoints. The Princess also climbed into the sedan chair and sat in front of his bosom. Wei Xiaobao wrapped his arms around her and said in a low voice to Tao Hongying, “Gugu, please accompany us out of the Palace.” He thought that her martial art skill was superb; with her escorting them next to the sedan chair, if their trickery was discovered, she could help fighting and killing people.
Tao Hongying readily agreed. She was wearing palace maid uniform, standing next to the Princess’ sedan chair, nobody would suspect anything. The Princess shouted, “Take the sedan chair out.”
The two eunuchs carrying the front part of the sedan chair slipped back into the room from the side of the sedan chair. Together with the two eunuchs carrying the rear part of the sedan chair they lifted the sedan chair poles. They brought the sedan chair in reverse for several steps, and then they turned around and carried the sedan chair away. In their hearts they were all puzzled, “How come the sedan chair suddenly grows heavier?”
The Princess followed Wei Xiaobao’s direction and ordered they carrier to get out of the Palace via the Shen Wu Gate. When the long-tail pheasant sedan chair reached the Shen Wu Gate, as the Imperial Bodyguards guarding the Gate saw that the Princess’ long-tail pheasant sedan chair wanted to get out of the Palace very late at night, they stepped forward to inquire. The Princess leaped out from inside the sedan chair and shouted, “I want to get out of the Palace, quickly open the door.”
The captain of the Imperial Bodyguards on duty at the Shen Wu Gate that night happened to be Zhao Qixian. Immediately he bowed to salute and said with a laugh, “Reporting to Your Highness: there are assassins in the Palace tonight, it’s not too safe; would Your Highness please wait for the daybreak before going out of the Palace.”
The Princess angrily said, “I am in a hurry, I am not scared of the assassins.”
Originally Zhao Qixian would not dare to disobey, but he knew that the Prince Consort Wu Yingxiong has been put to death, the Princess wanted to get out of the Palace this late at night, perhaps this matter had something to do with Wu Sangui’s rebellion. If that was true and this matter was investigated, he would not escape grave responsibility. Thereupon he repeatedly bowed in respect, but all along he refused to open the gate. But because the Princess urgently pressing him, he said, “Since that is the case, let your servant ask for Duo Zongguan’s instruction. Would the Princess please wait a little bit, as soon as your servant receive the instruction, I will rush back to open the Gate.”
Inside the sedan chair Wei Xiaobao heard the Princess was getting angry, but no matter what Zhao Qixian refused to open the Gate. If he really went to find Dolong, things would turn from bad to worse. In desperation he said, “Zhao Qixian, do you know who I am?”
Zhao Qixian had been following him in various missions for quite some times, naturally he recognized Wei Xiaobao’s voice. Pleasantly surprised, he asked, “Is it Wei Fu Zongguan [deputy chief]?”