EIF - Book 04 Chapter 189: One Step Too Late
Major Metropolitan City:
Several days before Imperial Emperor Xi Yu killed himself, a group of men stood in a small hut near where the small hole would open in the barrier. The leader was Meng Tai, the envoy commander of the Han Royal Dynasty’s Embroidered Uniform Guard.
Meng Tai leaned against the corner and looked up at Gu Hai in the sky while taking a deep breath. The look in his eyes was no longer that of a refusal to submit. Now, they glowed with deep reverence.
A group of Embroidered Uniform Guards stood at the side. Some of them appeared slightly anxious.
“Milord, will His Majesty end up swinging down the Heaven Splitting Ax?” one of the Embroidered Uniform Guards asked worriedly.
“Shut up and just do your job!” Meng Tai said coldly.
“However, Milord, the stray dogs in the cages have been restless. Might the Heaven Splitting Ax’s aura and the shock waves from Imperial Emperor Xi Yu’s continuous attacks scare them to death?” one of the Embroidered Uniform Guard asked worriedly.
Meng Tai’s expression changed. “The stray dogs? Go calm them down. Quickly!”
The stray dogs were a crucial part of the plan. Gu Hai got him to take charge of it personally, so nothing must go wrong with this.
Everyone tried to calm the stray dogs in the cages.
After six days passed, Imperial Emperor Xi Yu stopped attacking the barrier. Then, a small hole suddenly opened in the barrier near Meng Tai.
“Milord, a hole opened in the barrier!” The eyes of one of the Embroidered Uniform Guards lit up.
“Hurry! Let the dogs out! Quickly!” Meng Tai glared.
The Embroidered Uniform Guards immediately opened the dog cages.
Woof! Woof! Woof!
The stray dogs seemed flustered, rushing to that hole in the barrier.
Soon, the dogs were all out.
“Milord, is that all?” One of the Embroidered Uniform Guards appeared slightly confused.
“Shut up. No one is to say anything!” Meng Tai glared, and everyone immediately kept quiet.
After a while, the Embroidered Uniform Guards and Meng Tai goggled in the Great Sigh Palace Hall’s direction.
“Imperial Emperor Xi Yu committed suicide? With just a few stray dogs?” one of the Embroidered Uniform Guards said in shock.
Meng Tai’s eyelids twitched wildly. That was an Upper Heavenly Palace Realm cultivator. Yet, His Majesty managed to force him to death by pushing him into a corner?
At the imperial prison, before Imperial Emperor Xi Yu committed suicide:
Qin Zibai and the secret guard commander’s battle was noisy. However, the thunder from Imperial Emperor Xi Yu’s relentless attacks over six days and six nights was too loud. Even when the secret guard commander called out to Imperial Emperor Xi Yu, Imperial Emperor Xi Yu could not hear him.
After fighting for four days and four nights, the secret guard commander swung his sword forward with a ferocious expression. As he did so, he roared, “Chop!”
“Kill!” Qin Zibai thrust his bamboo cane forward with a ferocious expression.
A loud report rang out as the sword struck Qin Zibai’s shoulder. The bamboo cane stabbed the secret guard commander’s heart.
The two finally stopped fighting.
“Why? Why are they not out yet?” the secret guard commander said with despair on his face.
Right now, injuries covered Qin Zibai, putting him in an extremely weak state. He had already expended all his strength with the earlier strike with the bamboo cane.
“Cough! Cough! Cough! Secret guard commander, you lost! Cough! Cough! Cough!” Qin Zibai said with a miserable smile while coughing blood.
The secret guard commander looked at Qin Zibai. As he heard the miserable cries coming from outside, he showed a bitter expression. “Lord Qin, you live up to your reputation. Hah! Hahahaha! Your Reverence, this old servant has already done his best!”
The secret guard commander fell while vomiting blood.
Qin Zibai pulled out the sword in his shoulder and collapsed as well.
Blood completely covered Qin Zibai. He no longer had any strength left as he lay on the ground and watched Imperial Emperor Xi Yu attack the barrier.
After some time, Imperial Emperor Xi Yu stopped attacking.
Just at this moment, Qin Zibai suddenly noticed Mo Yike trudging out of the imperial prison.
“Mister Mo? It’s good that you are fine,” Qin Zibai said weakly.
When Mo Yike walked out and saw the blood-covered Qin Zibai lying in a pool of blood, he bowed deeply to Qin Zibai. “Many thanks, Lord Qin!”
“Hah? Thank me? It was my father who told me to protect you at all costs. I am just obeying my father’s instructions,” Qin Zibai sighed while shaking his head.
“Qin Yun?” Mo Yike frowned slightly, appearing slightly shocked.
“A group of secret guards entered the imperial prison earlier. They were targeting you. How are you fine?” The puzzled Qin Zibai eyed Mo Yike.
Just at this moment, Chang Ming walked out from behind Mo Yike.
“It’s you? Chang Ming!” Qin Zibai said in shock.
Chang Ming nodded before sighing softly, “Lord Qin, unexpectedly, the descendants of our three clans meet under such circumstances. His Majesty permitted me to bury Uncle Qin’s body beside my father. They were brothers while alive. Let them be next to each other in death as well.”
“Gu Hai did not destroy Father’s body? Hah! Haha! It looks like I will have to thank him. Mister Mo, did I judge you wrongly? You… Did you ally with Gu Hai long ago?” Qin Zibai glared at Mo Yike.
At the side, Chang Ming shook his head. “Mister Mo is devoted to the Yuan Nation. His Majesty just could not bear to let Mister Mo die an undeserved death, so he sent me here to protect Mister Mo.”
“Oh?” Qin Zibai felt slightly startled. After that, he felt much better about the situation.
At the very least, Mo Yike had not betrayed the Yuan Nation.
“Hah! It looks like I didn’t have to come to the imperial prison? Gu Hai planned everything; there was no point in my coming here,” Qin Zibai said with a faint, bitter smile.
Chang Ming shook his head. “No. I could deal with the ordinary secret guards, but I couldn’t have dealt with the secret guard commander as of now. It would be hard to avoid harm to Mister Mo. Fortunately, you came.”
Qin Zibai frowned as he nodded.
“The officials? Why are there so few officials in the Great Sigh Palace Hall’s plaza? Where is the minister of war? The minister of rites? The deputy minister of works? There are many other officials as well?” Mo Yike raised his eyebrows.
Qin Zibai turned his head and looked. Indeed, the officials at Great Sigh Palace Hall’s plaza were fewer than expected.
“The atmosphere was too tense earlier, so we did not notice. At first, I felt somewhat suspicious, thinking that the Qian Nation army scared them away, so they did not attend the imperial assembly. I did not think too much about it then,” Qin Zibai said weakly.
However, Mo Yike turned his head to look at Chang Ming.
“Half a month. Mister Gu delayed coming to Major Metropolitan City for half a month so that you could seek out the officials? You are very familiar with the officials, so you can find them quickly. Half a month? That is sufficient for you to bribe them or threaten them? That’s why all of them betrayed His Reverence?” Mo Yike looked at Chang Ming coldly.
Chang Ming did not deny it, a tacit admission.
“You turned those you could threaten or bribe into vampires. Did you turn their family into vampires, too, so that you could threaten them into obeying? What about those loyal officials? They did not show up at the Great Sigh Palace Hall. What did you do to them?” Mo Yike glared at Chang Ming.
“Mister Mo, there’s no need to worry. I will not kill innocents. They are in a safe place for now. After this is over, they will naturally regain their freedom.” Chang Ming shook his head.
Qin Zibai looked at Chang Ming, and his eyelids started twitching wildly.
“All this is…all this is Gu Hai’s scheme?” Qin Zibai’s expression changed as he struggled back to his feet.
“Don’t! Your Reverence, don’t!” Mo Yike suddenly yelled.
Qin Zibai turned his head to look.
Qin Zibai saw Imperial Emperor Xi Yu suddenly point his saber to his neck and commit suicide in the Great Sigh Palace Hall’s plaza.
Commit suicide? His Reverence committed suicide?
Qin Zibai goggled, dumbstruck at this moment. He stared incredulously at the Great Sigh Palace Hall’s plaza. The entire Major Metropolitan City seemed to have gone silent.
“Gu Hai forced His Reverence to death?” Mo Yike showed a horrified expression.
In the distant surroundings of Major Metropolitan City:
Many flying ships converged on Major Metropolitan City from all directions.
On one of the flying ships, a man accoutred like a general appeared very anxious. “Hurry! Hurry!”
“General, we are doing our best. Our flying ship is already traveling at its fastest speed,” one of the subordinates said anxiously.
“His Reverence has used the power of the nation for a few days already. Something major must be happening in Major Metropolitan City. Are you sure that Lord Li brought soldiers to Major Metropolitan City?” That general looked at that subordinate.
“Yes. This subordinate did not notice previously. I do not know why Lord Li suddenly left with soldiers. Furthermore, they were his clan’s private soldiers. However, I’m sure they headed for Major Metropolitan City,” that subordinate said anxiously.
“Are you sure? Lord Li is a Qian Nation spy?” the general said while glaring.
“Yes. At first, I was not sure; however, now, I am. Lord Li left with his clan. His residence is mostly empty. We managed to capture a few people and interrogated them. The Li Clan is the Qian Nation’s spy. Furthermore, they have been sleeper agents for centuries. Not long ago, a letter suddenly arrived, telling them to go to Major Metropolitan City. We were tricked. If not for their sudden departure, we would not have known,” that subordinate said with a bitter expression.
“The Qian Nation’s spies? It was not just Lord Li. I heard that quite a few Qian Nation spies in several places left with soldiers and headed for Major Metropolitan City. What are they doing? If they turn out in full force, won’t they all be exposed?” The general could not understand.
“I don’t know, either. All the Qian Nation spies took action long ago, heading for Major Metropolitan City. They must mean harm to His Reverence!” that subordinate said with an unsightly expression.
“Qian Nation spies? It must be the Qian Nation’s people telling them to go to Major Metropolitan City. Why is the Qian Nation exposing them? Right now, they are in Major Metropolitan City. I wonder if they harmed the Major Metropolitan City citizens? We need to hurry!” that general shouted.
It was not just this general. The soldiers coming to aid Major Metropolitan City felt incredibly anxious as well. The exposure of the Qian Nation spies proved that something major was going to happen. No one knew what it was, but they had a bad feeling.
The soldiers rushed as fast as they could. Finally, they approached Major Metropolitan City.
They could already see the scene outside Major Metropolitan City from a distance.
When they saw the Qian Nation army, they also saw the army that the spies led stationed extremely respectfully behind the Qian Nation army.
Fortunately, they have not broken into the city yet.
No, Major Metropolitan City seems to be trapped in a barrier.
The incoming soldiers could vaguely see Major Metropolitan City and the Great Sigh Palace Hall’s plaza.
Imperial Emperor Xi Yu stood there. Then, he stabbed his saber into his neck, committing suicide.
“What?” The expressions of all the commanders who came to aid Major Metropolitan City changed.
“No!” the soldiers loyal to the Yuan Nation simultaneously roared in despair.
The blessings cloud sea above Major Metropolitan City exploded, and the blessings scattered. Imperial Emperor Xi Yu had died.
We are too late. We are one step too late! The many soldiers coming to reinforce Major Metropolitan City showed expressions of despair.
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