Master Cheng’s Dream
Since then, emperor Yuan Sheng thought of countless different ways to send his children away from the capital one by one. He conferred different titles to them, gave them land and then sent them off to their designated locations.
None of the six princes were incompetent. They all had their own skills. Emperor Yuan Sheng was aware that once the dragons would feel restricted and struggle once they left the capital. However, he wasn’t willing to let them stay in the capital and hurt each other as they schemed against one another. The emperor’s three elder brothers died because they fought over the throne. While two tablets for two of his brothers could still be found in the royal family’s cemetery, he knew that the ground below was empty. When his two brothers died, their corpses weren’t intact, so what could they have buried?
After two years of work, he sent the green, teal and blue prince to their designated places just like the yellow prince.
Because the eldest prince, the red prince was the pillar of the nation and his eldest son, he decided to keep him in the capital. He didn’t grant him any land. The only one left was the orange prince.
But it wasn’t so easy to send the orange prince away.
The influence of the harem cannot be underestimated. The most challenging thing for a man to deal with in this world is his lady, or in this case, ladies.
And the most difficult one for him to deal with was none other than the empress.
The empress gave birth to the second prince, the orange prince, and the third prince, the yellow prince. The emperor had planned to send them off to their designated locations, but the empress wouldn’t agree. The emperor and empress were together since childhood and eventually married each other. Since the emperor was someone with the type of personality to treasure old relationships, he showed her the most respect, and usually wouldn’t act against her wishes.
She was the empress of the world who was very strict with herself. While she sometimes goes overboard with her methods for dealing with the other members of the harem, she doesn’t create problems for the overall picture. She always kept the overall picture in mind, and she was daring and decisive, rightfully making her the number one woman in the world.
Back then when the emperor intended to move the capital to Bei Ping, he went there on a tour with just a few men to see what it was like. At the time, one of the generals of the imperial court wanted to revolt and took that opportunity. He led his men and sieged the capital, attacking day and night. He also sent skilled warriors to sneak into the city to assassinate officials of the imperial court. He also tried to open the city gates.
At the time, Nan Jing fell into chaos. The emperor was still very young at the time while the princes were still newborns, and therefore, there was no one to lead in the imperial court.
It was the empress who stepped up alone, managed the harem and put the officials at ease. She ordered the masters within the court to split up into seven directions and risk their lives to ask the three of the seven champion white princes to come and help suppress the chaos. That was how the revolt was resolved.
The traitorous general was a powerful general in the imperial court. He was considered one of the most skilled fighters and brightest strategists. At the time, the traitorous general only had one city which he could defend, and he had what it took to go up against the imperial court. So if he were able to successfully take over the capital, the consequences would be infinite.
If it wasn’t for the empress’s decisiveness, the capital would have been in a crisis.
After that event, aside from his romantic feelings for his wife, the emperor also respected her. Consequently, even when she was harsh with her means when dealing with her sisters that were part of the harem, the emperor couldn’t bear to fault her.
However, after he finished sending the green prince away and was preparing to send the orange prince away, the empress cried and made a scene, threatening to kill herself and whatnot. Don’t underestimate her because she’s the noble empress. She does come from a family that practices martial arts. If she gets serious, there’s a fat chance she’ll actually hang herself.
She clung to emperor Yuan Sheng until he gave in. He tried to approach her in different ways to no avail, forcing him to unwillingly allow the orange prince to stay in the capital. And that is the reason as to why there are two princes in the capital.
The red prince and orange prince lived right under the nose of the emperor. While it looked like everything between them was fine on the surface, they had secretly fought each other countless times. With the empress backing him, the orange prince was able to one-up his elder brother in their battles. But that wasn’t enough to satisfy the orange prince.
He didn’t want to just beat his useless elder brother. His other brothers who had been sent away were no pushovers. During the time he had been stuck in the capital, his brothers must certainly have been growing their influence and power.
The lust for battle the six of them shared seemed to be innate. Every time he thought about how his other brothers were growing stronger, he couldn’t help but desire power.
Being stuck in the capital impacted his ability to grow his power, but with the empress backing him, things were different. Since he was also in cahoots with the evil sects, he quickly gained money, resources and men. If he, Li Chengzhi was given another year’s time, perhaps he would hold power that the emperor could no longer overlook. But things suddenly changed.
The emperor sent his entourage to his manor to conduct a thorough check after Liu Shan Men handed the emperor the records book.
The god-like detective Yan Shisan was no longer around, so the orange prince wasn’t exposed so easily.
While they were unable to find any conclusive incriminating evidence, the prowess of the emperor’s entourage was demonstrated. The orange prince couldn’t sit and wait for his fall. The people who were waiting to arrest him had already surrounded his manor and were thinking of ways to arrest him. Waiting is the act of a fool.
Even if it was slightly early, the orange prince resolved to act first as he believed it to be the superior option.
If the emperor wanted to off him, why not go and become the emperor?!
At this moment, the orange prince was walking in the corridor of the palace. He was on the way to the audience that he would soon rule over, and hence was filled with happiness.
He was in a great mood, such a good mood that was rarely seen.
He wore a smile like he was enjoying spring with excellent wine, as if he could break out into a song.
The servants that followed by his side didn’t understand the reason for the usually violent and brash prince’s uplifted mood. Some of the maids who saw his handsome face couldn’t help but have romantic thoughts about him. They said to themselves: “When he’s not wearing a moody look, he doesn’t look so scary. To the contrary, he looks quite handsome.”
Nobody knew that the orange prince was thinking: “When the old geezer is done for, I’ll be the ruler of all. Hahahaha! My dream is about to become a reality!
The orange prince was different to the other princes ever since they were young. He wasn’t willing to submit to anyone, not even his father. He wasn’t satisfied with being under the rule of another. He grew his powers in secret while putting up with hardships. He quietly grew his powers until he had a power strong enough to strike like lightning with a single strike.
All of the suffering he went through was for his small dream.
When he was young, he was loved deeply and enjoyed the luxury of getting everything he wanted because he was the empress’s eldest son.
He liked his mother most. His mother was very gentle with him and never scolded him. He remembered one time when he was naughty and pushed a maid into a pond and she nearly drowned. He knew he did something wrong and hid under his bed, not daring to come out.
It was his mother, the empress that got him to come out from under his bed by coaxing him like a small pet. She also gave him plenty of delicacies, putting a smile on his face. But on the same day, the emperor came not long after she managed to get him to smile. The emperor looked at the happy prince enjoying his snacks and got furious. He locked the orange prince up in the library for three whole days. His punishment was to copy the “Analects of Confucius” every single day, and he was not permitted to leave. He was only allowed to have plain noodles, mantou and some side dishes.
The orange prince still remembered the humiliation of it. And whenever he did, a fire would light up in his heart. After that, he formed a small dream.
The orange prince’s dream was passionate and just. It was just and noble. It was pure and true. It was elegant and void of insignificant thoughts.
Our orange prince thought of one thing when he looked at his father, the current emperor: “I want him to call me Master Cheng! Wahahaha! Wahahaha! That feels awesome!”
If he successfully takes over today, his old man will have to call him Master Cheng! The thought of it put a big smile on his face like every fibre of his being was brimming with merriment.
If his subordinates could read minds, they’d hang him up, give him a beating and then throw him into a lake. It’d be better than getting dragged into this shit-hole with this fool.
But the world is an unpredictable place. Who would have thought that the idiot was the son of the empress. He just had to be a dragon, one of the successors of the nation.
It looks like the prophecy of the six dragons sealing the nation was looking more and more genuine.
The orange prince was forging forward on the bright path to achieve his noble dream of getting his father to call him Master Cheng. His men had snuck into the palace and his plan was going according to how he intended for it to. If successful, the ruler of the country will change today.
If the six dragons will seal the nation, Li Chengzhi will be the first dragon; an evil orange dragon that will seal off the palace walls.
And the imperial martial arts tournament was the best stepping-stone!
*Cheng (橙) is the word for orange, and is the name of the orange prince
**Bei Ping is the former name of Beijing
***The reference to the empress’s sisters isn’t actually blood-sisters, but rather since because they all share the same husband, they’re considered sisters
****Mantou is like a meat bun without meat, just plain flour