Chapter 112: Heavy Losses


Consort Lian’s conspicuous expression unveiled inexplicable enmity.
She completely abhorred the Jiangs! That’s right, she was the real orphan of the Murongs, the last Murong lady that survived back then.
Two years ago, the Da Li emperor intended to subdue He Zhe Microstate.
Murong already knew that they couldn’t defend themselves against the powerful and prosperous Da Li and consequently, handed the general Jiang Nan their surrender letter.
To Da Li, they didn’t have to use a single soldier to subdue He Zhe so the Emperor would certainly be delighted.
But to Jiang Nan, this was a great opportunity to establish his military career.
He had already led the army out of the city.
If he was able to triumph against the Murongs in this bloodied battle, he can achieve success and win recognition.
However, if Murong just surrendered like this, then the reason behind their surrender wouldn’t be because of the impressive general Jiang Nan but instead because of the grand authority of the Da Li emperor.

As a result, the young and domineering Jiang Nan hid this from everyone, killed the ambassador, and destroyed the surrender letter.
Without the slightest hesitation, he broke through Murong’s city gates; this wasn’t even enough that he also captured all of the Murong royalties as prisoners, telling everyone that he was escorting them into the capital.
Murong royalties thought they’ve escaped death so they all didn’t put up a fight.
Back then, Consort Lian, Neng You Lian, no, at that time, she was Murong Xin, was amongst the prisoners being escorted back.
Of course it wasn’t just her.
The people being escorted back included the Emperor, concubines, princes, princesses, royalties, and nobilities.
Behind them were the Murong royalties’ centuries-old valuable treasures.
They were returning home with fruitful results.
The most terrifying was when tents were set up at night for rest and Murong Xin could hear the sounds of wild laughters of the soldiers and the cries of the women passed off as military prostitutes from afar.
She knew these soldiers were doing this to the noble women as a way to vent.
At those times, she and her sisters would tremble and embrace each other.
Since their statuses were rather honorable, those soldiers wouldn’t touch them with the general’s order so Murong Xin escaped this by sheer luck.
Unfortunately, her fourth sister Murong Hua was accidentally raped by the soldiers and Murong Xin witnessed it.
Once they found her, she had already died but her eyes were still opened; they were filled with fear, pain, and despair.
Her body was cloth-less with greenish purple bruises and wounds.
As evident, it was easy to imagine what this noble princess had gone through.
Each time Murong Xin recalled this, an unbearable enmity began to rise from the bottom of her heart, causing her sleepless nights and never-ending nightmares.

Originally, the Murong emperor thought they were waiting for a decree for pardon from the Da Li emperor.
After all, they’ve already sent their letter of surrender.
But he would’ve never thought that what awaited them was Jiang Nan’s massacre order.
These thousands of people weren’t actually heading to Da Li; on the contrary, they were heading to their dooms.
Ultimately, Jiang Nan bought them to a desolated and inhabited mountain valley and killed and buried them all.
It was such a cruel experience that Murong Xin didn’t wanted to look back but she could never forget this.
Once she roused from her sleep, she felt her fear stemming from realization that she was buried in the ground.
At that time, all of her family had already been killed except for her because her Imperial Mother covered her face with blood and was passed off as dead.
As a result, she escaped death.
Luckily, she was casually thrown on the topmost layer of bodies so she only had a layer of soil on top of her …… she desperately dug her way out, becoming the survivor of this massacre.

She found out later on that Jiang Nan was worried that the Murong royalties would divulge that he destroyed the letter of surrender and had falsely reported his military achievement.
So he said Murong rather die than surrender and even colluded with the surrounding microstates to revolt against Da Li.
The angry emperor ordered the killing of the Murong royalties and that was the reason why the massacre occurred.
Murong Xin desperately wanted to seek aid through He Ze’s old ministries but she sadly realized that besides a few royal dead warriors, she had no ways to move anyone.
This was because right after Jiang Nian advanced into He Zhe, he didn’t hurt a single civilian and didn’t even kill, frighten, or rape them.
Moreover, after killing countless He Zhe soldiers, Jiang Nan even paid the family members of these deceased soldiers a hefty compensation and consolations.
Therefore, He Zhe civilians even believed that it was Murong’s fault for not surrendering early on to avoid a war of weapons …… so, when Murong Xin wanted to seek aid for her revenge, she realized the Murongs have become the common target for scorn and had become the sinner that had caused the civilians pain.

As for Jiang Nan, because of his achievement, he suddenly went from a nobody to General Wei Wu, a third-ranked hero with a long impressive and meritorious military record.
Perhaps it’s because for so long, the extravagant hopes that lived in her heart were mercilessly shattered, the current Neng You Lian, Consort Lian could feel something flipping inside her.
It was burning and tattered as it emitted a very concentrated scent of blood that make others nauseous.
What was that seed that was suddenly taking roots and sprouting as it grew? That’s fearful vengeance, vengeance that wants to destroy everything.
She was standing right next to the Emperor with a very gentle smile on her face while secretly swearing to kill the entire Jiang clan!

From the start, she was following Li Wei Yang’s plan.
Even yesterday, she was going to adhere to her plan where the young dancer bring the accusation against the Jiangs before the Emperor.
But she felt that Li Wei Yang’s plan was too childish.
The Emperor wouldn’t care and she believed she must let the Emperor suffer.
She wanted him to know that it was all because of the Jiangs that someone attempted to assassinate him.
It’s only letting him feel the pain of cutting his flesh that he knows the crime the Jiangs committed and how huge of a crime they’ve committed in wrongly killing the Murong clan!

In fact, Li Wei Yang was waiting for the turning point, one that will topple the Jiangs forever.

The Jiangs’ direct line of descent was very prudent so it was difficult to find evidence especially in the government administration.
Originally, Li Wei Yang wanted to use Tuoba Yu to forge an evidence of treachery but eventually she realized this was very difficult because she couldn’t think of a way to acquire Duke Jiang’s personal seal.
Forgery could also easily come to light.
Once you claim that the Jiangs are betraying the country, then you must have authentic evidence.
A mere letter with a few words can’t gain the trust of the Emperor and the entire country.
Moreover, the Jiangs have secured the borders for years with a good track record and have a family of multiple generations so why would there be the need to collude with the enemies? It would be hard for others to believe so Li Wei Yang decided to attack on the collateral branch of the family.
A giant tree with deep roots is difficult to move but once the branches are prospering, there would be many parts the tree won’t be able to take care of.

Afterwards, she finally waited until an opportunity came.
A month ago, she received news that the Jiang clan was constructing a luxurious and extravagant mansion at their hometown in preparation for Duke Jiang to live in retirement.
Even though this mansion wasn’t built by Jiang’s direct line of descent but the people who built it are part of the clan.
Moreover, this mansion was built like the palace with golden dragons embellished all over, jaded beastly statues guarding, windows that invite winds, and a high visibility of the moon and sun that it’s incomparably glamorous.
Besides that, they’ve used fifty pounds of golden phoebe zhennan wood, which a thousand tael is barely enough to buy a pound.
The luminous pearl on the apex of the mansion was even bigger than the eastern pearl on the Emperor’s crown.
The Emperor’s Palace of Prosperous Jade hadn’t been repaired ever since a fire that destroyed it a year ago because the national treasury had spent a large amount of money on the army and the disaster for the past two years.
So the Emperor was thinking about rebuilding it in two years but now the Jiangs actually built such a luxurious mansion …… to the Emperor, his subject has the money to build a large mansion, he would recall how dilapidated and broken his Palace of Prosperous Jade was.
He would think about how the eastern pearl on his crown isn’t even as huge as the Jiangs’.
From that, he suspected that the Jiangs have stolen that money from the army and would think the pearl that they own signify other intentions.

Not only this, after Li Min De found out that this mansion was built by the Jiangs’ relatives as a way to brownnose Duke Jiang, he bribed a design artisan to construct an ordinary pillar at a concealed corner.
Once you break the external layer, then you’ll find a creature on the pillar and right outside the palace door, there is an exact replica.
It’s a king crab with its head facing the court to signify awaiting the Emperor’s return.
It’s to admonish the Emperor to not be unwilling to part with the commoners’ glamour during excursions and return to the palace early.
Outside the palace, there is one on the Purple Longevity Hall which signify watching the Emperor leave.
It’s to remind the Emperor not to always stay in the palace and should go out to understand the commoners more.
You can imagine if it’s discovered that in this huge mansion there lives a statue of a king crab which only appears in the palace, it’s easy to know what people can imagine.
With this actual huge mansion, it’s even better, substantial, and easy to check than any fabricated evidence.
The Emperor just have to send someone to investigate and he’ll see this mansion and would eventually feel that the Jiangs are disloyal.
Even if the Emperor doesn’t immediately slaughter the entire Jiang clan, he would take back the military power.
At that time, everyone would know how the Jiangs would end up.

But no matter how great the plan is, without a person of much influence by the Emperor’s side, the plan wouldn’t have worked.
So after Li Wei Yang and Li Min De meticulously discussed, they’ve chosen Neng You Lian, who was a woman that hated the Jiangs’ guts and would risk her own life.
Only this type of woman can act without any hesitations to hatefully stamp apart the Jiangs who seem like an indestroyable backbone.
But no matter how well-calculated the will of a person is, there would always be a part uncontrollable.
Consort Lian detested the Jiangs and she was very impatient so she thought a luxurious mansion could only be evident of their corruption but couldn’t completely shake the Jiangs.
Of course, this was also due to the fact that she wasn’t completely aware of the full plan or moreover, she lacked sufficient sensitivity in political matters …… so, she personally changed the plan.
She switched the commoner girl that was sent to bring up the accusation to a loyal dead warrior of the Murong royalties.
She believed that as long as an assassination is attempted on the Emperor, he would eventually blame the Jiangs.
Once he investigates into the Murong royalties’ deaths, he would certainly charge the Jiangs for the crime of deceiving him.
At that time, the Jiangs would be completely annihilated and this would be the true way to avenge the Murong royal household.

Li Wei Yang watched as the eunuchs in the hall handled the corpse.
She watched the expressions on the people as if they were survivors of a disaster.
Her gaze even fell on Li Chang Le’s body.
Amidst the chaos, Li Chang Le hid behind Jiang Hai and escaped her doom.
However, the misses by her side all met an untimely end.
As for Jiang Main furen, she was sheltering Lady of Han and hid beside Jiang Xu.
She was actually safe and sound but her face turned pale white.

Li Wei Yang lowered her head as glanced at a eunuch dragged the young girl who attempted assassination out from the court.

Originally, this young girl didn’t have to die.
In the first place in order to build the mansion, the Jiang clan not only used up their own lands, but they also expanded the surroundings of up to a hundred acres.
Among the lands they’ve expanded into was a household of surname Zhou who was unwilling to sell their lands to them and conflicts arose between them and the guards sent by the Jiangs.
Their family of fives was “accidentally” burned to death and only left behind two daughters who survived by hiding in the water vats.
An actual case traveled from afar to the capital to bring up the accusations would persuade the Emperor to listen to her entire accusations no matter how ruthless he could be.
But the Zhou sisters were actually replaced by Consort Lian’s dead warriors.

Li Wei Yang thought about this and could actually understand Consort Lian’s state of mind.
The enmity of clan destruction would always lingered on her mind.
It would be painful and tormenting so restoring the Murong clan’s honor and dignity was the most important to Consort Lian.
But, could everything go as she planned …… 

On the throne, the Emperor showed unprecedented fury and fear.
Within an hour, after receiving the imperial edict, the corpse examiner and the Court of Judicial Review have found results.
The assassinators’ identity is from the long disappeared Murong royal household.
Her waist had a secret totem that identifies her master.
This type of totem was one specifically used by the Murong royalties for their dead warriors.

Now, the Emperor had to believe that these people were from the Murong royalties, who he ordered to execute back then.

Jiang Nan immediately stepped forward and kneeled.
He said: “Your subject is guilty that he was unable to destroy all evil supporters of the Murong royalties and actually allow them to assassinate Your Majesty.
Your subject will certainly investigate this and annihilate the Murongs completely!” He wouldn’t have known that the true blood descendant of the Murong royalties was gently standing right next to the Emperor.

The Emperor’s eyes erratically watched Jiang Nan.
At that moment, Consort Lian and Li Wei Yang’s hearts suddenly rose up.

The Jiangs was known to be Da Li’s first nobles.
Back then when Da Li was being established, they had already followed the Emperor and earned military accomplishments.
After hundred years of development, they’ve established a solid foundation especially in the past ten years.
The Jiangs held control of the military and what was rare was that they were still guarding Da Li’s borders, which made the public view the Jiangs as Da Li’s strong, protective screen, causing anxiety in the Emperor.
But Duke Jiang and his son Jiang Xu had never showed a single trace of arrogance, had always acted grateful, scrupulously abided to subject’s manners, and did things in a low-key manner.
They’ve never colluded with the princes and even maintain a distance from the subjects of the court.
As a result, the Emperor thought the Jiangs could still be used especially before he nurture someone that can take over the Jiangs’ power, so he must keep them.

But what happened today went beyond the Emperor’s expectations.
He coldly said: “You are guilty.
Your biggest crime is misreporting your military achievement! Deceiving the Emperor! It won’t be too much to kill you!” As he spoke, he was intolerably raging that he lifted a jade vase and threw it towards Jiang Nan with force.
Jiang Nan didn’t dare to dodge it and accepted the blow.
His forehead was pounded by the jade vase as blood flowed downwards but he didn’t dare to wipe it away.

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