Chapter 298 - Do You Resent Me?
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What an obvious threat! Yan Weiyi was dead, Zhang Bo would never tell the truth - it was as if the Crown Prince was handed two locks, but their keys were thrown away so he would have to bear these chains for the rest of his life. Jing Hua glared at him with utter hatred in his eyes, his gaze flickering, and he hung his head in disbelief…
Jing Yi continued, “At present, Imperial Father would never believe you. It wouldn’t matter what you say.” Jing Yi was almost showing off!
“The position of Crown Prince was always yours; you could have just sat and waited for the day Imperial Father passed on, then ascend to the throne as the rightful heir. But you are such an idiot - ambushing the palace, assassinating the Emperor, what a joke.” Jing Yi approached him, an evil smile on his face as he chimed in, “Imperial Brother, don’t blame me for being too cruel. It has been established that the struggle for the throne between princes would either end in your death or mine. You grew up pampered in the palace, but how could you not understand that you would have to consider the dangers around you?”
Then I should blame myself? Imperial Father has always doted on me, the court officials constantly surrounded me, and the eunuchs and palace maids waited on me day and night. Why on earth would I have to consider potential dangers? I’m the Crown Prince, for heaven's’ sake! Jing Hua was furious, only stuttering after a long while, “You dare say my downfall had nothing to do with you, Jing Yi? If not for you and Pan Chong, how could I have ended up like this?”
“You’re an idiot - you can’t blame anyone else for that,” Jing Yi scoffed.
“You-” Jing Hua huffed and puffed from anger, his gaze falling onto a sword on the rack. He quickly unsheathed it, piercing Jing Yi, exclaiming, “I will kill you today! Right here, right now!” But alas, his strength was not sufficient, and the blade missed by an inch!
Additionally, without any martial arts, Jing Yi easily grabbed the sword from him, throwing it to the ground along with Jing Hua himself. Jing Hua shouted hatefully, in pain, “Jing Yi, I will never forgive you!”
Jing Yi laughed as he looked down on Jing Hua cruelly, “You’re no more than a disgraced Crown Prince now; had I not pleaded with Imperial Father, you would already be dead. Of course, now you are no different from a dead man - you’d either wait for your death here in the East Palace, or get chased out of the palace by Imperial Father, living in exile.”
Jing Hua rebutted, “Don’t count your chickens before they hatch; as long as I’m still alive, as long as Imperial Father is still here, I will reclaim my position sooner or later. Then, I will kill you with my own hands.”
“We shall have to see if you live to see the day!” He flicked his sleeves as he stepped over Jing Hua towards the gates.
Jing Yi paused, then turned to look at Jing Hua, “Imperial Brother, I’d like to teach you a lesson today. In this world, you should trust nobody but yourself, not even those closest to you, even if they say they would die for you, they are not worth your trust.” Hence, he didn’t believe even his own mother! With that, he left and the doors closed shut once again.
Jing Hua sat unmoving on the ground.
Jing Rong was released not long after Jing Yi left. The first thing Jing Rong did was not to meet Ji Yunshu, but to return to Rong Estate. He cleaned up and headed straight for the palace. Jing Rong’s sharp features bore an undeniable charisma, his gaze as piercing as any sword. Dressed in dark green official robes, he cut an even more impressive figure, his silver-stitched boots making their way quickly to Fuyang Hall.
He stood outside the doors to the inner chambers for over an hour, until someone opened the doors from the inside. Two guards bowed their heads as they stepped out to guard the chamber, followed swiftly by Zhang Quan, “Prince Rong, His Majesty is waiting for you inside.”
Jing Rong nodded and entered. Inside, Qi Zhen Emperor was already awake and sitting on the bed, dressed in yellow sleeping robes, a silk shawl draped over his shoulders as he coughed into his hands. Jing Rong approached him and bowed.
Qi Zhen gave Jing Rong a once over, “How have these few days in prison been?”
“Did they treat you badly?”
“No, they didn’t.”
“Then do you hate us?”
“Son would never dare!”
“Dare not? Then you do still hate us?” Qi Zhen Emperor said.
Jing Rong replied coldly, without any trace of emotion, “Imperial Father released this son - how could this son be resentful? Son is only thankful.”
Qi Zhen Emperor eyed him; this son of him has always respected him since he was young - although they were father and son, they were more like an Emperor and his vassal. He sighed, “The hate we are referring to, is not that kind of hate.”
Hm? Then what kind of hate is it? Jing Rong had some inkling of what he was trying to say.
“Then, when your Imperial Mother erred, she took her own life out of regret. we did not take this matter well, much less did you - we are aware, for she is your mother.”
Back then, Jing Rong’s Imperial Mother had poisoned the unborn child of Empress Xuanshu, and was evicted to the Cold Palace as a result. She committed suicide the next day. This wasn’t a thorn in just Qi Zhen Emperor’s heart, but also Jing Rong’s! Qi Zhen Emperor had not mentioned Empress Xuanshu all these years, but now that he had, he felt a twinge of regret.
Jing Rong replied, “Imperial Mother had made a mistake, and so she should have borne the consequences. This son understands this, and has no resentment.”
“Son would not dare lie.” He was telling the truth; he had no resentment towards him, but this was his hidden scar, one that he did not want to poke at.
Qi Zhen Emperor did not continue on this topic, only saying, “It has been proven that the fire at Chengqing Hall was not your fault. Holding you in the Imperial Prison was something Jing Yi could not avoid doing, we would have never caused you any harm.”
So, did you want to compensate me? To give me the world? These words would never shake, or move Jing Rong.
Qi Zhen Emperor continued, “Now that Jing Hua has been demoted, the position of Crown Prince cannot remain unfilled. We are also getting old and will die someday, this empire must also be handed over.” What he implied was that Jing Xian could never fill that position, so the position of Crown Prince would belong to either Jing Yi or Jing Rong.
Grenn's Rants Corner
This arc's end is near, and we are also approaching the 300th chapter milestone. ^__^
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