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Chapter 96 - Changing Variables

Dinghai Fusheng Records


You and I, hand in hand, shall have accomplished a feat that will not be forgotten for tens of thousands of years!


Translator(s): moon, Ice
Editor(s): juurensha, namio

“Explain everything clearly!” Xiang Shu roared. “Just what is going on with Feng Qianyi?!” 

“Wait!” Chen Xing cried out. “Let me explain… this… this messenger, what do we do about him?” 

Outside the city of Chang’an, Chen Xing half-carried, half-dragged the messenger stuffed inside a burlap sack into a stone house of a deserted village. This place was the imperial tomb of the late Jin people. After the nobles had migrated south, the Jin peoples’ imperial mausoleum had yet to be changed, and Fu Jian naturally wouldn’t be so bored as to appoint people to guard the tomb of the former dynasty’s imperial family. Thus, the Feng Mausoleum as well as the nearby camping grounds where the groundskeepers were to live were completely empty. 

Xiang Shu saw that Chen Xing was struggling, so he turned around, lifted up the messenger, and tossed him in front of the mausoleum. 

Chen Xing had sent Sima Wei to this place because, one, no ordinary civilian would come near here, and two, even if he were to be discovered by accident, he could pretend this place was haunted. After capturing this messenger, they couldn’t just easily bring him back to the palace, so they could only drag him here. 

“Sima Wei! Are you there?” Chen Xing shouted, but soon noticed that the area had actually been cleaned up quite nicely. 

Sima Wei had even pasted white paper over bamboo strips collected from the mountain to make quite a few small lanterns, and he also stuck candles around so the place was completely illuminated. Hearing Chen Xing, he walked over and looked at the two of them. 

“Explain everything clearly!” Xiang Shu yelled in displeasure. “Otherwise I’ll beat you up!” 

Chen Xing thought to himself, that temper is still as violent as ever, and pondered for a moment. Finally, the only thing he could do was to honestly explain. 

“Fine.” Chen Xing began, “Actually we… always suspected that you wanted to find Kjera… that is, the Wang Ziye by Fu Jian’s side.” 

Xiang Shu: “...” 

Chen Xing knew that if he didn’t tell Xiang Shu the truth now, he would most likely really have to endure a beating. 

“Listen to my explanation.” 

“Then explain ah!” Xiang Shu yelled. 

Chen Xing took a deep breath. He was left with no choice but to honestly confess to him the entire story of what happened, starting from when Shi Hai attempted to resurrect Chiyou. But just as he began, Xiang Shu’s expression unexpectedly changed, and he hurriedly signalled for Chen Xing to stop. Many details in his mind now began to become linked together. 

Sima Wei listened at the side as Chen Xing explained to Xiang Shu in detail about the Feng family, Princess Qinghe’s vengeance, and the abnormality of the Yin Yang Mirror after being refined. Xiang Shu only frowned in silence. Chen Xing continued, “It’s rather complicated to explain. Actually… Feng Qianyi… is one of Wang Ziye’s subordinates, and the reason why I didn’t bring it up before… is because… fine, Feng Qianyi is Feng Qianjun’s older brother. I didn’t hide this from you on purpose. It’s just… he wants to rely on his own strength to solve it first.” 

Chen Xing and Feng Qianjun had discussed it before, about whether or not they should tell Xiang Shu of this matter. However on one hand, Xiang Shu had just come out of prison, and to immediately explain to him a situation where the details were not only many but also convoluted, they couldn’t be sure that he could accept it immediately. On the other hand, considering the grudge he held over his father being killed, they had feared that Xiang Shu wouldn’t be able to control himself and would go confront Wang Ziye the moment they arrived in Chang’an. If they didn’t manage to get a hold of the Yin Yang Mirror and Wang Ziye was alerted and managed to escape, things would become even more difficult. 

Feng Qianjun had also hoped to rely on his own efforts first to persuade his elder brother to turn back. After all, they had to consider how this all looked to Xiang Shu: said person had an elder brother who was a lackey for Shi Hai, which would more or less incite Xiang Shu’s distrust and suspicion. 

Xiang Shu fell silent after hearing everything. 

Chen Xing didn’t think that Xiang Shu would accept everything so quickly, and even seemed to fully believe everything he was saying - it was as if he was a completely different person from before. From beginning to end, he was waiting for Xiang Shu to ask, “how did you guys discover all this?”, and as long as he asked this, Chen Xing would then tell him. Before this, they had already experienced many of these things, living and dying together. 

“I felt that since it was related to… what you were investigating, I was afraid you wouldn’t be able to keep it secret and let Wang Ziye discover our identities… After all, right now we’re…”

“It’s not like I’m a mad dog.” Xiang Shu brows furrowed in frustration. “Whatever, I’ll settle the accounts with you after we get back!” 

Xiang Shu contemplated things for a moment before stepping forward, undoing the messenger’s headgear, and sitting down to the side. As he sat down, he radiated a intimidating aura, and the messenger suddenly woke up in fright. 

Cheng Xing caught sight of his visage, and was instantly stunned in place. 

Yuwen Xin!

Previously, they were hurrying through the alleyways, and everything was dimly lit. Now that the light of lanterns shone nearby, Yuwen Xin’s face was immediately illuminated. 

Chen Xing: “You… you…” 

Xiang Shu: “You know him?” 

Yuwen Xin scrutinized Chen Xing suspiciously. After so many years, they had met again under such circumstances, and he was already no longer able to recognize Chen Xing. Naturally, he also wouldn’t be able to recognize Xiang Shu who had come to Chang'an for the first time. For a while, the three of them remained silent, and the atmosphere became very strange. 

Chen Xing replied, “No… I don’t.” 

Chen Xing forcibly calmed himself, let out a sigh, and walked to the side. He needed a while to calm down. Xiang Shu noticed Chen Xing’s abnormal behavior, but didn’t ask any questions, instead turning to coldly address Yuwen Xin. “What did Feng Qianyi tell you to do?” 

Just when Yuwen Xin was about to wail that he was wronged, Xiang Shu saw his expression, stepped forward, pinched his wrist with two fingers, and exerted a little pressure. Yuwen Xin suddenly screamed even more miserably. 

“Who are you people?!” Yuwen Xin cried out pitifully, “Let go! Let go ah!” 

Xiang Shu continued to exert more force. He had only used his middle and index fingers, yet he was already nearly breaking Yuwen Xin’s wrist. He said darkly, “I am very busy right now, and I don’t have time to talk nonsense with you. If you don’t spit out the truth, I’ll just break your hands and feet and leave you here.” 

Yuwen Xin realized that the person before him was a ruthless character. He hurried to beg for mercy, “I’ll speak! I’ll speak! Feng Qianyi wanted me to personally go to Chi Le Chuan! To tell Zhou Zhen that the plans have been adjusted! And for him to stop caring about Carosha-! We don’t need the antlers anymore! And to first make the Rouran people…” 

Xiang Shu suddenly stopped in his actions, and Chen Xing was instantly stupefied. He whipped around. 

“What?” Xiang Shu and Chen Xing exclaimed at once. 

What shocked Xiang Shu was that these matters actually had something to do with Chi Le Chuan, and that the already deceased “Zhou Zhen” was brought up! What shocked Chen Xing was that Shi Hai had actually adjusted his plans! 

Yuwen Xin panted as he continued, “Feng Qianyi said that daren would need more drought fiends later on, the more the better, and to let Zhou Zhen immediately take action and to no longer wait for the White Deer’s death!” 

In an instant, Wang Ziye’s careful and complicated plans from the last time they arrived at Chang’an all connected together in Chen Xing’s mind. 

“What does Zhou Zhen look like?” Xiang Shu uttered icily. 

Yuwen Xin cried, “I don’t know… I never met him, I only know his name… Ahhhh-” 

Yuwen Xin let out an ear-piercing scream. Unknowingly, his wrist had been snapped by Xiang Shu in his mental shock. Chen Xing hurriedly shouted, “Stop!! Quickly stop!!” 

Yuwen Xin wailed as snot dribbled down his face, about to pass out from the pain. Chen Xing anxiously cried, “You broke his wrist!” 

Yet Xiang Shu only murmured, “Zhou Zhen… he’s still alive?” 

Chen Xing held Yuwen Xin’s wrist and set it for him. Yuwen Xin, with a face full of tears, repeatedly bowed his head, “Thank… thank you. You’re a good person.” 

Xiang Shu stood up and Chen Xing asked, “Feng Qianyi’s superior, who is it?” 

Yuwen Xin responded with a pained expression, “I don’t know. I only… receive and carry out orders. Princess Qinghe told me to listen to Feng Qianyi’s orders, and after everything’s done, they wouldn’t treat me badly…” 

Xiang Shu asked coldly, “What is your name?” 

Originally, being a mere messenger, Xiang Shu didn’t have the slightest interest in his identity. However, upon seeing Chen Xing’s current appearance, he immediately felt that something was amiss. 

“Yu… Yuwen Xin,” Yuwen Xin stammered. “I am of the Yuwen family.” 

Xiang Shu remembered - according to what Fu Jian had said that day, Yuwen Xin was the one who was responsible for the deaths of Chen Xing's parents. Yet when Chen Xing heard this name, he was not at all surprised; presumably, he already knew.

Chen Xing asked, “So what do we do now?”

Before, when Xiang Shu had brought the messenger to Jinling, he had already thought of an arrangement: they would leave Yuwen Xin in Sima Wei’s custody and ask him not to kill Yuwen Xin. However, he mustn’t let him go, and he especially mustn’t let him send any messages outside. Then he took Chen Xing back to the palace.

In the palace, Xiang Shu brought Chen Xing into a room. When Chen Xing saw Yuwen Xin again, his feelings were very complicated. He met Xiang Shu's gaze, and with his thoughts in turmoil, he said, "I'm sorry, I haven't told you many things... But I have no ill intentions, I just felt... that maybe it would be better if you didn't know..." 

Xiang Shu's gaze was filled with hostility, and he sized Chen Xing up. 

"Like this matter of Yuwen Xin?" Xiang Shu asked. 

Chen Xing recalled that it was like this the last time as well. After learning about the grudge of his father’s murder, Xiang Shu came to the Songbai Residence to look for him and was met with an assassination attempt along the way. When Xiang Shu had returned to the palace, he hadn’t even spoken a word, instead grabbing him by the collar and severely scolding him.

"If you want to beat me up, then just do it," Chen Xing uttered tiredly.

Xiang Shu frowned and said, "It was just something I said in a moment of anger, what’s the point of hitting you?" 

Chen Xing sat down on the couch, depressed. After a while, Xiang Shu sat down side by side with him as well.

Chen Xing whispered, "Xin-ge and I... used to be childhood friends... Actually, I don't know Tuoba Yan..."

Xiang Shu didn't speak as Chen Xing continued in a low voice, "When I found out about this matter, I couldn't believe it, that it was Xin-ge who caused my father’s death."

Xiang Shu remained silent and looked sideways at Chen Xing - Chen Xing’s eyes were filled with desolation and grief. He then raised his hand, rested it on Chen Xing's shoulder, and gently hugged him. 

Chen Xing couldn't hold back anymore at this point, so he turned around and buried his face in Xiang Shu’s chest, choking up. 

"Back then, my father died because of that matter with Kjera," Xiang Shu murmured. "My parents and family were dead. From then on, I was left all alone in this world. Who wouldn’t care? When I heard what Fu Jian said that night, I knew that you must remember it in your heart all the time, but you were just forcing on a smile."

Outside the door, Tuoba Yan's voice sounded. "Great Chanyu, have you returned?"

Xiang Shu: “...”

Xiang Shu was sitting on the couch, hugging Chen Xing and speaking to him in a low murmur, but he had forgotten to close the door. So just as he had started, Tuoba Yan came in with the leash of the dog that had been entrusted to him in his hand. Chen Xing immediately returned to his senses and raised his sleeve to wipe at his eyes.

“Get out!” Xiang Shu yelled angrily. 

Tuoba Yan let go of the dog’s leash, bowed, and bade him farewell. The puppy rushed in with his tail wagging and looked at Xiang Shu before turning its gaze to Chen Xing suspiciously. It jumped a few times, leapt into Chen Xing's arms and began to lick him, causing Chen Xing to smile again. 

“Tomorrow, I have to talk to Qinghe.” Xiang Shu fell into a brief contemplation before continuing, "Have dinner first, then head to sleep ba.” 

Chen Xing remained silent, but thought that Xiang Shu had always been very reliable. When he heard Zhou Zhen's name today, he was shocked for a brief moment before immediately regaining his composure. He must have realized something, and thus he had stopped asking any more questions. The only thing that made him feel a bit off was not having managed to contact Feng Qianjun. However, the location of the Yin Yang Mirror had already been ascertained, and Feng Qianjun had the information at hand, so presumably there should be no major issues. Everything would remain the same even tomorrow, so he let himself quickly drift off to sleep. 

When he woke the next day, there was another noisy commotion going on outside. Chen Xing, his eyes still blurry with sleep, heard Xiang Shu outside speaking long-winded passages in Tiele to the people outside. Though his talking speed was very quick, his pronunciations were very clear, and the rise and fall of his cadences were very pleasant to listen to. However, when he spoke this quickly, Chen Xing could never understand it.

He came out from behind the screen, only to see that the entire hall was filled with noble Hu clan members who had come to propose marriage. Xiang Shu had only gotten about halfway through what he was saying when he was interrupted by Chen Xing, and everyone’s gazes traveled at the same time to land on Chen Xing’s face.

Chen Xing: “???”

In the Tiele language, Xiang Shu said, “Just… deal with it like I said, have all the pictures taken… taken back, and this tea won’t be, en, won’t be drunk. Thank you for your good intentions… but please… choose another son-in-law, all of you.”

Chen Xing could tell that when he himself had appeared, Xiang Shu had actually developed a rare stutter, and he was filled with suspicion. Following that, all of the people in the hall looked at Chen Xing, their eyes filled with hostility, before they all took their leave.

Xiang Shu said to one of the attendants, “Send the tea and the portraits back for them!”

The attendant lifted his eyes and appraised Chen Xing before he turned his gaze back to Xiang Shu. He then bowed and cleared away the things on the table.

When the sun had risen to the height of three bamboo poles, Chen Xing and Xiang Shu sat facing each other across the table. Xiang Shu was wearing a royal robe, holding a brush as he wrote a letter, and Chen Xing was eating breakfast as he noticed that Xiang Shu was using a brush of sheep wool as he wrote out Tiele characters. Xiang Shu’s Tiele characters were written in a very well-formed and neat hand, nothing like what was expected of someone who practiced martial arts, and Chen Xing was very surprised at that.

“You can read it?” Xiang Shu asked.

Chen Xing knew how to speak but not how to read, and he only recognized a small number of words. He said, “You write really prettily, all neat and organized.”

Xiang Shu responded, “My Han characters don’t look good.”

Chen Xing drank some milk tea and continued, “The way you use the brush is very good, so whatever words you write will all look good.”

Xiang Shu replied, “My mother taught me.”

At that, Chen Xing nodded and asked, “Who are you writing to?”

“It’s to be sent back to Chi Le Chuan,” Xiang Shu said easily. “To the tribe leader Shi Mokun, telling him to be wary of Zhou Zhen.”

Chen Xing originally believed that upon hearing these two words “Zhou Zhen”, Xiang Shu would immediately rush back to Chi Le Chuan. He hadn’t expected that Xiang Shu would be able to keep his cool, and though Chen Xing already knew of Zhou Zhen’s identity, he still asked that question, as was expected of him.

“Who’s Zhou Zhen?” Chen Xing wondered.

Xiang Shu said, as lightly as the wind, “You’ve finally begun to think of this matter.”

Chen Xing immediately explained that he wanted to ask last night, but Xiang Shu indicated that there was no need for him to elaborate. He answered casually, “My anda’s lover, a man that has been dead for several years already.”

Chen Xing: “...”

Xiang Shu sealed the letter and pressed a wax seal to it before he saw Chen Xing’s expression. Chen Xing hadn’t expected that Xiang Shu would be this direct, not hiding anything from him, but Xiang Shu mistook what he meant. Thinking that Chen Xing was questioning the relationship between the two men, he responded easily, “Yes, both of them are men. Us Hu people are not like you Han people, we like whoever we like.”

Chen Xing immediately said, “No, no, that wasn’t what I meant… Your anda, aren’t you worried for him? After all, he was his lover.”

“I believe in him.”

Xiang Shu answered thus, before he waved an attendant over and told him to hand it to Tuoba Yan, who would then dispatch people to send it. With this, aside from walking the dog, Tuoba Yan also had to act as an errand-boy. Chen Xing was originally worried about anything happening on Che Luofeng’s end, but since Feng Qianyi let Yuwen Xin go to Chi Le Chuan and Yuwen Xin had been intercepted by them, then Zhou Zhen’s side would definitely be unaware of what had happened in Chang’an. For a while, there wouldn’t be any unexpected movements.

Last time, they had stayed in Chang’an until autumn had arrived before they had returned to Chi Le Chuan. This time, they still had a lot of time; as long as they took care of Wang Ziye, then nothing would happen to Chi Le Chuan.

As Chen Xing mused over this, he found that Xiang Shu was watching him.

Chen Xing: “?”

Xiang Shu gestured for Chen Xing to look at the other letter on the table, and upon tearing it open, Chen Xing saw that it was Fu Jian who had sent it, requesting them to head to the imperial study for a chat. Coincidentally, Xiang Shu also had to go see Princess Qinghe the same day, so the two of them came to an agreement. In a little while, if Chen Xing was able to take his leave, then he would go find Xiang Shu.

“Fu Jian isn’t anything good,” Xiang Shu warned Chen Xing. “Don’t just blindly agree to his words.”

“Don’t worry,” Chen Xing said, smiling.

In the imperial study, things were exactly the same as last time, but this time, Wang Ziye didn’t appear.

Dimly, Chen Xing had begun to sense that it was exactly as the phoenix Chong Ming had said. The great wheels of fate and divine and earth veins did truly hold some sort of strange power in the midst of this dark chaos. Even if destiny had been forcefully twisted by the Dinghai Pearl, they were still unrelentingly self-correcting events. Many things that were destined to happen were slowly returning to their original progression.

To create changing variables, countless tiny changing variables, as if they were piling sand up into a tower… Chen Xing mulled over Chong Ming’s words again and again, and his thoughts went to that phoenix that had disappeared ever since they had arrived in Chang’an.

“I hear that today, the Great Chanyu finally rejected all of the noble clans who came forth to propose marriage,” Fu Jian said, revealing a playful smile to Chen Xing. “There’s no time like the present, so why doesn’t Zhen let you two marry and carry out the qinglu ceremony properly?”

Chen Xing thought, even after re-living this life, you’re still so leisurely, with nothing to do, and you still like to play matchmaker. He responded, “It’s alright. It’s rare for Your Majesty to call me over, was it just to bring up this matter?”

As he spoke those words to Fu Jian, his gaze was fixed on those two pennants hanging in the imperial study behind Fu Jian’s back -- the Zouyu Pennant and the White Tiger Pennant. He needed to figure out some way to ask for them from Fu Jian, to prevent them from landing in Wang Ziye’s grasp.

Fu Jian said, “Shulü Kong and Zhen are also like brothers, and I’m most familiar with his thoughts, heh.”

Chen Xing thought, you understand absolutely nothing. If you understood, then you wouldn’t have been thoroughly besieged, and cut off from any chance of escape by Xiang Shu under the shadow of the yique. But then he heard Fu Jian say, “You know that half of the blood that runs through the Great Chanyu’s veins is Han, right?” 

Chen Xing en-ed and drank the milk tea, but his thoughts were not on Fu Jian. He glanced now and then at the pennants hanging behind Fu Jian.

Fu Jian continued, “Four years ago, when Shulü Kong took up the role of the Great Chanyu, Zhen personally went to Chi Le Chuan to congratulate him. At that time, Zhen also asked after Shulu Kong’s plans of finding a partner and getting married, but his response at the time was something that Zhen, even to this day, still remembers clearly… why are you constantly looking behind Zhen?”

Chen Xing immediately smiled. “Are these two pennants the Jin people’s? I thought of that suddenly, so I couldn’t help glancing at them a few more times.”

Fu Jian oh-ed. Chen Xing couldn’t decide on a plan of action - if he let Xiang Shu come to ask for them from Fu Jian, then they could probably get their hands on them, but Wang Ziye definitely knew how to use them. If he found that the artifacts were gone, he would immediately grow wary, which would make things difficult to deal with.

He then heard Fu Jian say, “He said back then, ‘The kind of person that Guwang wants to spend his life with, he has an idea of in his heart, he does not need you to worry about that.’”

En.” Chen Xing was still thinking.

Fu Jian continued, “Zhen then asked him, ‘Then what kind of person do you want to be married to?’ Shulü Kong didn’t say, but Zhen imagines it must be a Han person like you.”

“Like that, huh.” Chen Xing’s attention was distracted, and he finally said, “Your Majesty, may I ask for something from you?”

Fu Jian said, “Did you listen to Zhen’s words at all? You want these two Jin period national treasures, right? How about this, if you agree to one thing of Zhen’s, then Zhen will…”

“The Great Chanyu has arrived,” Tuoba Yan said from outside.

The two of them stopped their negotiations. Xiang Shu came in, and foregoing any greetings, he immediately took a seat.

Xiang Shu: “?”

Xiang Shu gestured for the two of them to continue, so Fu Jian did so. “If you want Zhen’s things…”

Xiang Shu interrupted at that, asking Chen Xing, “What do you want?”

“Well…” Chen Xing said. “It’s just those two ragged pieces of cloth… it’s really nothing.”

Xiang Shu: “Pull them down and give them to him.”

Chen Xing was afraid that the two of them would fight, and he hurried to say, “Don’t, I don’t want them anymore!”

Fu Jian’s expression immediately grew unpleasant, but upon remembering that he wanted to ask Xiang Shu for the Purple Scroll, he couldn’t afford to offend him just yet. After all, compared to the Golden Conferment of the Purple Scroll, two ragged pieces of cloth weren’t worth much, so he could only say, “Take them, take them.”

“Thank you --!” Chen Xing immediately blossomed with happiness at that. “Though I can only take these things back to hang on a wall, they are still very important to me… Sorry, Your Majesty, I did not mean to be offensive… You are really too good, and if anyone says that you’re not anything good, I definitely won’t agree!”

Fu Jian called Tuoba Yan in, who rolled up the White Tiger Pennant and the Zouyu Pennant as one and placed them into a box, which he then handed to Chen Xing.

“Your Han people’s imperial jade seal wasn’t even something that Zhen cared about,” Fu Jian said solemnly. “If, with these few things, you can protect your country and your people, then Zhen imagines the Jin people would not have needed to flee south in such a panic.”

Chen Xing felt that these words were very jarring to hear, but the items had already come into his grasp, so it was no matter for Fu Jian to gain a small advantage with his words. He stowed the box away.

Xiang Shu continued. “No need to thank him. Since you are so generous, Guwang doesn’t want to take your things in exchange for nothing. Guwang will gift you 3000 Barkol Gales, which are noble colts taken from the wild horses of the mountain ranges that mate on moonlit nights. Later, send your people to Chi Le Chuan to retrieve them ba.”

Fu Jian had wanted these horses for a long time, and he almost couldn’t hold himself back at that. He had to use all of his skill to suppress that wild joy, and he said, “Why does it sound like Zhen’s still managed to gain an unfair advantage? Whatever, there’s no harm in Zhen helping fulfill another couple’s happy affairs…”

Chen Xing said, “Then, we’ll take our leave now to go walk our dog? Your Majesty, we beg your pardon.”

But Fu Jian said, “Wait.”

Chen Xing could only sit down again, and for a while, none of the three spoke.

Xiang Shu said unhappily, “Jian Tou, what do you want to do now? Whose happy affairs are you fulfilling now?”

Fu Jian smiled again. “Before, we were discussing those words we exchanged back when you took charge of the position of the Great Chanyu.”

Xiang Shu: “That day, every person came to speak with Guwang, so I don’t remember what you said then.”

Fu Jian said, “Zhen cannot recall the words that the bystanders spoke that day either, but from beginning to end, Zhen only discussed the matter of the Han people with you, don’t you like Han…”

Xiang Shu: “Hey!”

In Xiang Shu’s eyes was impatience, as if he was condemning Fu Jian for that slip of the tongue.

Upon hearing these words, Chen Xing’s heart was suddenly moved. He recalled Tuoba Yan’s attitude before, and the Five Hu with Fu Jian as their leader, and even the attitude of the Hu people outside of the pass towards the Han people. It seemed like everyone held some respect for the Han people. This point was something that he had discovered as early as the last time he had come to Chang’an.

The only person who he hadn’t asked before earnestly was Xiang Shu. Did he also once think longingly of the Han people’s ancestral land? A long time ago, Chen Xing thought wholeheartedly that Xiang Shu found Han people annoying, but after thinking about it in more detail, that wasn’t correct either. His mother was a Han person, so why? That shouldn’t be the case… As of today, after Chen Xing had interacted with Xiang Shu for this long, he suddenly, dimly, sensed those complicated emotions of Xiang Shu that he had never given voice to:

Before, Xiang Shu had wholeheartedly treated the place where the Han people were as his own ancestral land, and he had once been proud of the Han blood in his veins.

But, just when he was traveling down south, he was instead captured by his mother’s people without a reason, only to be tossed into a jail cell to await death. That was why he was so angry, to the point of transferring his anger onto Feng Qianjun and Chen Xing.

With this reminder of Fu Jian’s, Chen Xing suddenly understood Xiang Shu’s conflicting emotions.

Fu Jian then lightly said. “I’m preparing for a southern campaign. Shulü Kong, do you want to go to Jiangnan?”

Xiang Shu’s brows immediately furrowed at that, and he responded, “Jian Tou, you have this perfectly fine position as the northern ruler that you don’t cherish properly. This is just bringing more trouble on yourself.”

Fu Jian responded, “Wang Meng did in fact strongly dissuade Zhen from this southern campaign, but not long ago, Zhen had a dream.

“In this dream, Zhen saw that across a broad river, Zhen led an entire army in crossing the river. Behind him was the whistling wind, and the army that was millions strong crossed the river right here. A single river’s distance away were the small, weak armies of the southern dynasty…

“...The heavens and earth themselves bowed before the might of Zhen’s great army. If these millions of armored riders used the horse whips in their hands to strike the surface of the water, they would be capable of stopping even this raging water. Think about that scene, Shulü Kong!

“How grand of a scene would that be?” Fu Jian strode to the midst of the imperial study, facing the map of the Divine Land that had hung there for decades. He said, in a self-satisfied manner, “North to Karakorum, south to Baiyue, all of that land will be our territory. You and I, hand in hand, shall have accomplished a feat that will not be forgotten for tens of thousands of years!”

“That…” Chen Xing asked, very carefully. “Your Majesty, please permit me to ask an inopportune question. In the huge million man army you saw in your dreams, were the Great Chanyu’s forces also there?”

Fu Jian’s words suddenly dried up upon hearing this question.


Translator's Note:

moon: and just as a heads up, dinghai novel tl will be on break next week! thank you all for your support so far, and we’ll return with 97 the weekend of the 16th-18th of April


This chapter is migrated and/or formatted by our fellow chicken enthusiast(s), moon.

Contributors

moon

Translator, writer, avid reader. 吃刀群众.

Jiejie enthusiast.

namio

gege simp

juurensha

Fic writer, editor, and translator for GHOFD, PUBG, BOW, and Fanservice Paradox.

Ice

Translating: Poyun (破云), Tunhai (吞海) | Co-Translating: Saye (撒野), Dinghai Fusheng Records | Please check out my other projects on my site! (._. )

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Rhy
Rhy
5 days ago

ah thank you for your hard work, have a splended break! 🙂

Angela
Angela
6 days ago

Xiang Shu immediately getting whatever Chen Xing wants 🤣

Thanks so much for the chapter! Hope you enjoy the break!! 💖

Mel T
Mel T
7 days ago

Thank you for the chapter, and have a great break!

Arwah
Arwah
8 days ago

Xiang Shu stuttered 👀👀👀

Thank you for the update, stay safe & healthyyy \(๑╹◡╹๑)ノ♬

Veihakase
Veihakase
8 days ago

Hoho ❤️ XS is just lively isn’t he CX? Hahaha and fightooo!!

Thank you so much for the chapter!!~ ❤️❤️ 🙇🏻🙇🏻🙇🏻🙇🏻🙇🏻