Title: Infinite Power Over The World
Original title: 权倾天下[重生]
Author: 叶默凉(Ye Moliang)
Translated by: ~PurpleLy~
The two of them left the secret passage. Murong Heng brought Shen Ci to a sequestered location. The person in his embrace had already calmed down, but when he lifted his face, there were still tears in his eyes. Murong Heng’s heart instantly softened, and he enveloped Shen Ci tightly in his arms.
“Murong, I’m fine.” Shen Ci suppressed the emotions in his heart as he rested against the warm and broad chest of the person before him. Earlier, when he heard Emperor Chongde’s voice, he thought back to the scene when his parents had died tragically. At that moment, he was unable to keep his emotions in check and had somewhat lost his cool.
Murong Heng didn’t speak. He reached out his hand and patted Shen Ci’s back with a gentle gaze. He understood the pain he harboured. It was Emperor Chongde’s own doing that he met the fate he deserved.
Now that Emperor Chongde was dead and the vassal kings had breached the imperial palace, the situation in the world had changed drastically. It was exceedingly dangerous for them to remain within this capital. Murong Heng promised that he wouldn’t allow Shen Ci to leave his side, so he decided to bring him to the outskirts of Suzhou, where the Iron Halberd Army was stationed.
There would be people who could assist when they stayed with the army, and Murong Heng can be at ease to an extent when he leaves to do battle. With this in mind, he hurriedly took Shen Ci with him and made their way out of there.
In the meantime, Yang Zhen slashed the head off the soldier in front of him. The blade in his hand was dripping with blood. He looked around, but there was no sign of Emperor Chongde. He frowned and led a group of soldiers to search for him.
After a long while, they managed to locate Emperor Chongde in a secret passage, but he had been dead for some time. As Yang Zhen stared down at him, he observed that Emperor Chongde was covered in blood, and his bulging eyes indicated that he must have suffered terribly prior to his death. He knelt down to examine the injuries on the body, and upon discovering that there were countless bloody stab wounds all over, he couldn’t help but be a little taken aback.
It must certainly have been an intense amount of hatred for so many sword wounds to have been left on a person’s body like this. Yang Zhen noticed a small bottle next to the corpse. He picked it up and took a closer look. It turned out to be a deadly poison! It appeared that not only was Emperor Chongde brutally murdered, he’d also been acutely poisoned. No wonder his death was so miserable. But it was his own doing, and no one else was to blame.
Standing up, Yang Zhen gave Emperor Chongde’s corpse a kick. It was good that he’d died too; it saved him the effort of killing him. However, this corpse still had some usefulness. With this thought, he stretched out his hand to summon a soldier. He pointed at the corpse on the ground and said coldly, “Hang his corpse on the city wall; the higher, the better.”
“Yes.” The soldier took the order and brought a few people to drag the corpse away. Yang Zhen remained standing in place, eyeing the blood all over the ground and sneering. Although he wasn’t the one who’d killed Emperor Chongde, he’d died in this secret passage. Who knew how Emperor Chongde had died except for the real murderer? Hanging his dead body on the city walls could serve as a warning. This way, the people would submit to him after seeing how horrendously the emperor had died.
After standing for a while, Yang Zhen strode out. He happened upon several soldiers arresting a finely dressed man. He made his way forward, lifted the man’s chin, and suddenly gave a sneer: “Isn’t this the fourth prince?”
The finely dressed man who’d been arrested was none other than the fourth prince, Murong Yu. His chin was being pinched, his eyebrows were lowered, and his body was shaking uncontrollably. He appeared extremely cowardly. Immediately afterwards, he was flung to the ground by the soldier.
“Yang Zhen, you’re here.” Just then, the vassal kings came over. They’d just finished dealing with the affairs on the other side. For all the palace staff, those who were willing to surrender were left alive, and those who were unwilling to surrender were killed on the spot. The concubines in the harem were also placed under house arrest and would be killed at some other time.
Yang Zhen glanced down at Murong Yu, who was trembling on the ground, then said in a cold tone before giving them a nod, “There’s no point in keeping this person; just kill him.” Besides, he’s merely a good-for-nothing prince. It would be a waste of food to leave him around.
Unexpectedly, just when the soldier raised his sword to slash him, Murong Yu, who had been cowering all the time, leapt up from the ground. He pretended to be calm as he stared at Yang Zhen and stammered, “Don’t… don’t kill me! I don’t want to die!”
Upon hearing this, Yang Zhen raised his eyebrows and halted the soldier’s sword. He took a step forward and pinched Murong Yu’s jaw, then asked softly, “But if I leave you alive, will it bring us any benefits?” He definitely wouldn’t do something simple for nothing.
“I…” Murong Yu choked out when he was asked. His gaze swirled all around. All of a sudden his eyes lit up, and he said loudly, “I can be your hostage! As long as you don’t kill me!”
As soon as he finished speaking, Yang Zhen and the people around him exchanged a look. No one would’ve expected that the fourth prince was such a coward who feared death. What an utter disgrace to the reputation of the imperial family! However, what he’d said sounded somewhat reasonable.
They have now seized the imperial palace, but there was no legitimate reason to ascend the dragon throne. If they exploited the fourth prince’s status to support him as the new emperor, control the emperor, and command the nobles in his name, the right to rule would still be in their hands. That way, the public wouldn’t be able to rebut them.
Yang Zhen thought of it like this as he formulated a plan in his heart. He threw a look at the soldier in front of him and instructed him to bring Murong Yu away while he departed with the other vassal kings.
At the same time, Murong Yu was in an undiscovered location out of sight. A sneer appeared at the corner of his mouth. Although it was utterly spineless to have survived like this, as long as he was alive, everything still had room for manoeuvring, didn’t it?
As long as he was alive, there would come a day when he would seize the throne that belonged to him!
In the meantime, Yang Zhen reached the imperial palace hall and realised that there was another prince missing. It was Murong Heng. After mulling it over, he sent soldiers to conduct a thorough search of the city. If he was found, he was to be killed right away.
He had briefly learned about this Murong Heng when he was in the borderlands. This Murong Heng was not as incompetent as he looked, but he hadn’t accomplished any outstandingly impressive achievements either. However, it would be a risk to allow him to remain, and he wanted to be rid of potential troubles.
But by the time he thought of this matter, Murong Heng had already left the capital with Shen Ci. After enduring days and nights of travelling, the two finally arrived at the area where the Iron Halberd Army was stationed. Murong Heng carried Shen Ci off the horse. After patting the dust off his body, he led him into the camp.
Both of them had been on the road for a long time, and their bodies were not as clean as before. Therefore, as soon as Murong Heng entered the barracks, he instructed the soldiers to prepare hot water for them to bathe in. He walked into the tent, and he began to take off his clothes without considering whether or not Shen Ci was still by his side.
“It’s awfully filthy.” Murong Heng removed all his clothes and noticed that Shen Ci was still standing there. So he went over to help him take off his clothes too. Once the two of them were immersed in hot water, Murong Heng sighed in comfort.
When Shen Ci’s clothes were stripped off, his face turned a little red, but he quickly masked it up. The bathtub was not especially big, and their limbs would come into contact with each other’s from time to time. This made Shen Ci a little embarrassed.
“Ah Ci, why are you evading so far away?” Murong Heng watched helplessly as Shen Ci shrank into the corner. He stretched out his long arms and tugged him into his embrace. His large movements caused water to splash all over his face. He wiped the droplets off his face, then dropped a kiss on Shen Ci’s cheek. It was then that he noticed Shen Ci’s face was remarkably flushed, and he quickly asked, “Ah Ci, why is your face so red? Could it be that you are not feeling well?” After speaking, he reached out and touched Shen Ci’s forehead.
“I’m not.” Shen Ci pushed away his groping hands, his face turning even redder. Earlier, when he’d been pulled towards Murong Heng’s chest, a place on that person’s lower body pressed against his leg. The scalding temperature made his face bloom red. He wanted to escape but was hugged by Murong Heng.
Seeing as Shen Ci was indeed not sick, Murong Heng released a sign of relief. He changed his posture, and their bodies separated a little. Only then did Shen Ci’s blushes begin to fade. After they were done taking a bath, Murong Heng sat by the bed, took a dry cloth towel, and helped Shen Ci dry his hair. He smiled softly, and his gaze slowly drifted away.
If there had been no war, it would have been wonderful to have gone through his life in such an ordinary way.
Three days later, those vassal kings supported the fourth prince, Murong Yu, as the new emperor and proclaimed him Emperor Chongyu. Once the news came out, everyone was shocked. No one expected that this extremely pathetic prince would become the new emperor this way.
At this moment, Yang Zhen tossed Murong Yu into the imperial study much like one would a chicken. Seeing the man’s timid and frightened appearance, he sneered in his heart. Utterly useless. No wonder Emperor Chongde didn’t choose him as the heir apparent. But then again, just where had that Murong Heng gone off to? He had yet to locate him.
Yang Zhen’s brows furrowed as he thought about it. Even so, the power is now in his hands. Supposing that Murong Heng wasn’t dead, he wasn’t likely to stir up any major storms. As far as he was concerned, it wouldn’t affect him in the least.
As for the concubines in the harem, they had all been killed by him yesterday. But Empress Xu was just as pathetic as Murong Yu and terribly fearful of death. When he saw her beautiful features, Yang Zhen casually allowed her to remain. It wouldn’t be too late to kill her off once he grew tired of playing with her.
At the same time, Murong Heng was in the barracks when he caught wind of Murong Yu’s ascension to the throne. It didn’t unnerve him at all. He raised his eyebrows before continuing to drill the soldiers’ moves. He retrieved a cloth towel to wipe off the hot sweat from his face. Murong Yu’s proclamation of himself as emperor came as no surprise to him.
Recalling his past life when he was in the mass grave and what Murong Yu whispered in his ear, Murong Heng put down the towel, his eyes darkening. Murong Yu was not as simple as it appeared on the surface. All those vassal kings had been deceived by his superficial skills, but that’s fine as well. Murong Yu wouldn’t allow those people to control him. When they start killing each other, he only needs to act like a fisherman and wait for the fish to get hooked.
Leaving the soldiers behind to practise by themselves, Murong Heng quickly hurried back to the command tent. He lifted the curtain and entered. Then he spotted Shen Ci sitting by the bed, idling and dazing off into space. Both of them had left in haste without bringing anything. His guqin was still in the mansion. Fearing that Shen Ci would be worried about Feng Nan’s safety, Murong Heng sent guards to sneak into the city in advance to fetch Feng Nan. He should now be on his way over.
“There’s nothing around to do; how about going out for a stroll?” Murong Heng walked over to hold Shen Ci’s hand and led him outside. They came upon many soldiers, most of whom had already seen Shen Ci before. One after another, they conveyed their greetings.
“Your Highness, you’re here.” Suddenly, a loud voice sounded not far from where both of them were. Murong Heng looked up and saw that it was Fan Hu, the right guardsman. He had never seen Shen Ci before, so he approached with a puzzled expression and asked, “Your Highness, this person is?”
“I’m Shen Ci.” Shen Ci replied without waiting for Murong Heng to speak.
“So it’s Gentleman Shen.” Fan Hu smiled politely. Based on his scholarly and refined appearance, he should be a military advisor invited by His Highness, right? It’s just that there seemed to be something wrong with this person’s eyes.
Murong Heng observed that Fan Hu was staring fixedly at Shen Ci, and jealousy grew intensely within him. He hauled Shen Ci into his arms, heedless of everyone’s gazes, and let his head rest upon his shoulder. Then he turned his head and threw Fan Hu a look of displeasure.
Fan Hu was taken aback when he saw this. It wasn‘t that there is no precedent for homosexual love in this country; it was merely that he’d witnessed it with his own eyes and was veritably shocked. It took him a long time to process it before he reacted with an expression that said “Oh, I get it”.
It turned out to be His Highness’ beloved. Oh man, did he mess up.