Chapter 215: His Majesty's research into the refugees Original and most updated translations are from volare. If read elsewhere, this chapter has been stolen. Please stop supporting theft.
“Next, you can tell me about these farmers raising a righteous army thing,” Ning Xiaoyao said with a serious face after she finished laughing.
“Raising a righteous army?” Lou Zigui echoed.
“Oh, I mean the roving rebel bands,” Ning Xiaoyao elaborated. “Supreme Commander, so you understand?”
Lou Zigui rested a hand against his forehead. When did I start understanding anything?
“You’re not sure why, either?” Ning Xiaoyao asked when he didn’t speak.
Lou Zigui sat a little closer to Ning Xiaoyao and said, “I’ve told you about the refugees before.” It was time for Supreme Commander Lou to start lessons for Ning Xiaoyao again. This time, they would learn exactly what ‘roving rebel bands’ were.
Outside the rooms, Fang Tang was have a staring contest with Imperial Physician Gao.
“You’ve completely recovered?” Imperial Physician Gao was rubbing his eyes.
“Completely,” Fang Tang replied. “His Majesty’s master’s secret arts did it. If His Majesty was a doctor, then all of you imperial physicians could retire to plant fields at home.”
“.....” said Imperial Physician Gao. Doesn’t this man ever think before he speaks?!
Fang Tang stomped his right leg a few times in front of Imperial Physician Gao, who immediately knelt down and said, “Let me look at your wound.”
Fang Tang was quite generous. “Look as you will.”
Imperial Physician Gao examined Fang Tang’s two injuries over and over again for almost an entire hour before Fang Tang grew impatient. Finally, the doctor muttered to himself, “This is impossible.”
Fang Tang fell silent. This is all he has to saw after looking at me for so long? He’s hopeless. He can’t even tell what’s up! This doctor’s nothing compared to His Majesty. (Author: Your Majesty is using her supernormal abilities…)
Inside the palace, Ning Xiaoyao was rubbing her chin in thought. “Mm, I understand now.”
“What do you understand?” Lou Zigui asked.
Ning Xiaoyao jumped off the bed to standing in front of him. “Rebel bands are organized groups of refugees who are armed with weapons. They’re simply raising a revolt.”
Lou Zigui creased his brows. “Rebel bands are traitors who rebelled. You didn’t know?”
Ning Xiaoyao was quite bold and self-assured. “You didn’t tell me that before, ah. Neither did you mention that their big boss’s made it his duty to kill me!”
Do I need to explain such things? Lou Zigui stared at Ning Xiaoyao as he grew speechless once again.
“Don’t be afraid,” Ning Xiaoyao waved a hand. “I have ways to deal with their big boss.”
“What do you even mean by big boss… Forget it,” Lou Zigui rested another hand against his forehead. “Tell me then, how do you plan to deal with him?”
Ning Xiaoyao bent down until her mouth was by Lou Zigui’s ear, then murmured, “He doesn’t know I’m actually a girl, oh~”
Lou Zigui didn’t understand her words. “So then?”
“So if he really does bring his troops into the capital, I’ll take off these dragon robes,” Ning Xiaoyao said smugly. “And put on a dress. Could the big boss realize that I’m the emperor then?”
Lou Zigui’s body shifted to the side and nearly sent him toppling off the chair. This wasn’t an idea that everyone could come up with. “You,” he straightened up and continued, “You’re prepared to give up your kingdom?”
“It’s not giving it, I just can’t defeat them by that point,” Ning Xiaoyao corrected. “If I could, then that big boss would never manage to lead his troops to the capital, ah.”
There was some logic to those words, so Lou Zigui was once again struck speechless.
“So roving rebel bands are made up of refugees,” Ning Xiaoyao remarked as she began pacing in circles around the room.
Lou Zigui said, “No matter how capable Tao Yu is about fighting, he still needs the local military officers’ support. Moreover, he has to bring the troops over the location. As to where we’re transferring them from---”
Supreme Commander, ah,” Ning Xiaoyao suddenly halted. “Do as you see fit for these things. I’m going to discuss life with my uncle, Prince Fu.”
Lou Zigui felt a headache coming on. “You’re going to find Prince Fu---”
Slam! Ning Xiaoyao had already gone out the door. Soon afterwards, Fang Tang carefully stuck his head inside. “Supreme Commander, where did His Majesty go?”
“Shut up!” Lou Zigui snapped at him. Fang Tang quickly withdrew his head and looked back at the blank-faced Imperial Physician Gao.
“What’s wrong with my Supreme Commander?” he asked in a low voice.
Imperial Physician Gao was still staring into space, lost in his own little world. He didn’t pay Fang Tang any attention. With everyone around him acting strangely, Fang Tang didn’t know what to do. When the door behind him slammed again, he turned quickly to catch Lou Zigui walking out of the room. Fang Tang quickly caught up behind him, but kept his mouth shut.
“Stay in the palace and don’t go out,” Lou Zigui urged him. “You can leave the capital after I finish the arrangements with Prince Zhi.”
Fang Tang nodded. “Then what are you doing now, Supreme Commander?”
“I still have things to take care of,” Lou Zigui lightly patted Fang Tang’s shoulders before descending the steps leading to the courtyard. He had brought the Pei brothers and Tao Yu back with him, so he couldn’t leave them waiting. They still had to discuss how to transfer the troops. Lou Zigui felt like his work would never end.
“Hey,” Fang Tang jabbed at Imperial Physician Gao with a finger once he saw that Lou Zigui was gone. “Say something.”
Imperial Physician Gao stared blankly into the distance. Seeing this, Fang Tang had no choice but to go back inside and lie down.
Ning Xiaoyao reached the Hall of Punishments just as Prince Fu was taking his strolls around the courtyard. If Ning Xiaoyao hadn’t checked his bone structure first, she never would’ve recognized the man. Who was this handsome old uncle? ( ⊙ o ⊙ ) As soon as Prince Fu saw Ning Xiaoyao, his satisfied expression took on a gloomy look.
“We servants greet Your Majesty,” the various eunuchs in the courtyard fell on their knees. Despite his reluctance, Prince Fu had to join them in paying respects.
“No need,” Ning Xiaoyao said cheerfully with a wave. “Everyone can get up.”
Prince Fu immediately stopped kneeling.
“Go out and take a walk,” Ning Xiaoyao told the eunuchs. “I’m going to talk with my uncle a bit.”
The eunuchs hurried away.
“Uncle, ah,” Ning Xiaoyao called out to Prince Fu, who only rolled his eyes at her.
“This subject doesn’t dare. Is Your Majesty planning to let this subject go?” Even though he didn’t have to spend all days in his cell now, it was still abuse to keep him trapped in this courtyard.
Ning Xiaoyao sat down on a stone stool and replied, “Come sit, uncle.”
Prince Fu stood there unmoving, his voice cold. “What has Your Majesty found this subject for?”
Ning Xiaoyao examined Prince Fu from head to toe. “My God, so this is what you actually look like, ah, uncle. Look at you! Now that you’re skinnier, you look more human now. So handsome!”
(#‵′)凸, thought Prince Fu. Did I not look human before?!
“Sit,” Ning Xiaoyao patted the empty stool before her. “Let’s have a talk.”
Prince Fu walked to Ning Xiaoyao’s side but still didn’t sit. “If Your Majesty has something to say, why not say it outright? This subject has nothing more to give Your Majesty anymore. That’s right, this subject still wants to ask Your Majesty, when is this subject getting my official salary?”
Ning Xiaoyao blinked. “As long as you don’t mention the salary, we can still stay a good uncle and nephew pair.”
Prince Fu really wanted to beat that wretch to death. Who wants to be a good uncle to you?!
“Forget it, it’s fine if you don’t sit too,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “I came because I have bad news.”
Prince Fu stared down Ning Xiaoyao as if facing his worst enemy. “What did you do this time?”
Ning Xiaoyao took out the emergency missive from her pocket and stuffed it into Prince Fu’s hands. “Uncle, have a look.”
Prince Fu accepted the papers doubtfully. Ning Xiaoyao stuffed a sugar bean into her mouth. Meanwhile, Big Boss Black had slipped in out of nowhere and jumped into her lap before settling down. As Ning Xiaoyao petted his head, she conjured a fish out of another pocket and stuffed it in Big Boss Black’s mouth. Meanwhile, Prince Fu’s hands had started trembling so violently that the paper crinkled in his hands. Ning Xiaoyao knew then that he’d read up to the part where the farmers were rallying to kill their way to Fenglin City.
“How could this have happened?!” Prince Fu shouted after he’d finished.
“I don’t know, ah,” Ning Xiaoyao said innocently.
“Have you sent reinforcements yet?” Prince Fu demanded next.
Ning Xiaoyao hugged Big Boss Black and said, “I have. Tao Yu’s leading them and they’ll start fighting soon.”
Prince Fu sat down in front of Ning Xiaoyao and asked, “Tao Yu? Tao Chen’s brother by a concubine? Is he capable?”
“I think so,” Ning Xiaoyao leaned forward and dropped her voice. “You can’t just rely on the army for these things.”
Prince Fu was panicking already, but now he was perplexed. “Then what else are you planning?”
“Old Gramps Li is dividing up your land as we speak,” Ning Xiaoyao said.
“What does that have to do with the roving rebel bands?!” Prince Fu raged. Does he never get by without provoking my lungs every day?!
“Don’t get excited, listen to what I have to say,” Ning Xiaoyao consoled him. “Right now, the rebel army still hasn’t reached Fenglin City.”
Prince Fu took deep breaths. “Fine, I won’t get excited. You talk.”
“What I mean is, let’s not have Old Gramps Li worry over dividing the land, but just hand it over to the neighbors,” Ning Xiaoyao explained.
Prince Fu leapt to his feet. “Why are you still talking about land?” His wife and children all lived in Fenglin City. He didn’t dare to imagine the city being invaded!
Ning Xiaoyao reached out a hand and pulled Prince Fu back onto the stool. “I’ve looked into it already. Most of the rebel band consists of refugees.”
“And the rest?” Prince Fu asked.
“Oh, Supreme Commander said,” Ning Xiaoyao explained, “The rest are just made up of those good-for-nothings who can’t support themselves, so they’re just shamelessly joining the refugees to get a free meal.” (Author: Is that really how Supreme Commander explained it to you?)
Prince Fu’s voice was filled with hate. “As expected, they’re a despicable lot.”
“Let’s talk about the despicable lot later,” Ning Xiaoyao said. “First we should talk about the refugees. They’re rebelling because their families can’t survive anymore, ah. But if they have land and houses and a livelihood, then uncle, do you think they’ll even consider rebelling?”
Prince Fu finally took in Ning Xiaoyao’s words. “So Your Majesty is planning to…?”
“Spend money to get rid of calamity,” Ning Xiaoyao declared as she slapped the stone table.
“W-whose money are you spending?” Prince Fu was a little lost.
“Your land and your money, ah,” Ning Xiaoyao said boldly. “Uncle, you know that I still owe you salary. I’m really poor.”
“.......” said Prince Fu. So he still wants my livelihood, ah.
“Of course, this scheme will be useless for the leader of the rebel bands,” Ning Xiaoyao added. “He’s not worrying about food, he wants our Yongning kingdom. Supreme Commander told me that the reason we lost East Ji’s 19 cities is because all of the refugees there followed Big Boss Xiang’s summons to raise arms and revolt. That’s one of the biggest reasons for the rebellion.”
“So you want to stabilize what remaining rebels you still can?” Prince Fu’s gaze on Ning Xiaoyao shifted. He’s a shameless wretch with absolutely no virtues, but it looks like he does actually have some ability, ah.
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