Chapter 561: Outskirts of the Capital

Deep fear drenched Li Guanwen’s back with cold sweat. He was crystal clear about what Ji Zeyu really meant. 

Li Guanwen enjoyed the emperor’s great favor. In court, even officials of the inner council showed him respect. He was sometimes sent to complete tasks on the emperor’s behalf, such as questioning Ji Zeyu about the extent of his control. 

Everyone under the heavens knew this. Even the uncouth boors of the Valiant Tigers knew not to offend the supervising official by the emperor’s side. However, they’d hauled him off without the slightest shred of protest or hesitation when Ji Zeyu gave the word.

Li Guanwen had no doubt that if Ji Zeyu had casually ordered him to be executed on the spot just now, his head would’ve separated from his neck in the next second! 

Valiant Tiger obedience to Ji Zeyu had reached a stage in which they didn’t even think before following his orders. They didn’t care if their actions could lead to a charge of high treason, only that Ji Zeyu had given his orders. Wasn’t this a clear demonstration of the authority that the prince consort held over this portion of the army? 

Ji Zeyu had used direct action to bluntly answer Li Guanwen’s question. 

Some things were best believed when seen. Not everyone would believe that the prince consort now exerted perfect control over the Valiant Tigers, but Li Guanwen couldn’t be anything other than a believer now.

The eunuch wiped the sweat off his forehead, cutting a sorry figure as he scrambled up from the ground and pasted a wide grin on his face. 

“Prince Consort Ji is indeed a tremendous hero to sort out the Valiant Tigers in such a short amount of time and with such thoroughness. His Majesty will be very happy to hear of this.” 

Ji Zeyu nodded indifferently, “Anything else?”

Li Guanwen choked. The prince consort was known for treating others in an aloof manner, but the eunuch had just mentioned the emperor! Wouldn’t people ordinarily make some sort of modest remark, exchange pleasantries, then thank His Majesty for his trust and patronage?

Why did it feel like Prince Consort Ji was showing him the door?

“In response to Prince Consort Ji, this servant has nothing left to address. Rest assured, I won’t say anything untoward when I report back to His Majesty. His Majesty will only know that you have taken control of the Valiant Tigers. He is certain to be so pleased that he will lavish you with praise.” Li Guanwen’s smile was so wide that it creased two deep rows of wrinkles by his eyes.

Ji Zeyu’s face was stony from start to finish; he nodded without a single flicker of emotion. “I won’t see you out, then.” 

Li Guanwen hastily bowed and walked outside, finally feeling alive again after breathing in fresh air.

Ji Zeyu was indeed a veteran of the battlefield who’d reaped countless lives; the frosty aura around him was simply too overpowering. It felt like he could snap one’s neck from his stare alone, and Li Guanwen felt that the events of today would give him nightmares for weeks. 

But fortunately, he had good news. His Majesty would be highly pleased to hear that Prince Consort Ji exercised complete control over the Valiant Tigers. The possibility of the Valiant Tigers betraying the throne to support the Faithful Prince of the First Rank was no longer a worry to contend with.

Li Guanwen quickly departed to make his report to the emperor. 

Inside the tent, Ji Zeyu returned to contemplating the map. His slender, powerful fingers tapped a border station, Skyzone Pass, before sliding down to Skywolf Pass, then to Skyaxis and Skygate Pass. The route passed through countless towns, slowly making its way to the capital. 

Pang Xiao was on his way back, he had found Qin Yining. However, the emperor had already prepared a large net and was just waiting for them to rush in. 

The emperor has even given me the Valiant Tigers with complete peace of mind in order to deal with Pang Xiao. His Majesty truly wants to completely eliminate Pang Xiao this time. 

Ji Zeyu narrowed his eyes, tapping somewhere on the map with his fingertips. Only after a long while did he awake from his trance with a sigh. It’s better to not return this time. What are you doing, rushing back here with your wife?


Of course the happy couple couldn’t hear Ji Zeyu’s thoughts. Their pace of travel was hampered by Qin Yining’s severe morning sickness. 

“My dear, are you feeling better?” Pang Xiao fed Qin Yining a piece of dried plum and coaxed it down her throat, “I hear this can help alleviate nausea, try some.”

They were lying together in a soft, cozy carriage. In order to reduce the bumpiness that worsened her nausea and induced vomiting, Pang Xiao had ordered the vehicle’s wheels to be wrapped with a layer of thick cotton. That did lessen the jolting and noisy din, but the decline in speed was unavoidable. Just looking at the modified carriage made Yi Binghu’s stomach churn with anger. 

“I’m fine, really, things are a lot better.” Qin Yining furrowed her brows as she rested against Pang Xiao’s chest, a few tears still glistening on her lashes from when she’d thrown up earlier. She closed her eyes weakly, giving all of her weight to Pang Xiao. 

The prince lowered his head, looking tenderly at her pale face and using his sleeve to wipe her tears away. 

“We’ll arrive at the capital soon. I don’t feel comfortable with your health being like this. I’ll send for an imperial physician to give you a proper examination as soon as we arrive.”

Qin Yining found it funny. “We’re being escorted into the capital as criminals, how will they let you call for an imperial physician? If we really do request one upon our arrival, His Majesty would probably die of apoplexy.” 

Although her tone was very relaxed, her voice was feeble and hoarse.

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