Martial King’s Retired Life - Volume 11 Chapter 151 Homeward
Volume 11 Chapter 151 Homeward
Prime Minister Li, beaming, came to see us in super-high spirits. “This one’s respects to Your Majesty. Long live Your Majesty. This old one is sincerely happy to see you again. He has missed you dearly in the time you have been gone. Have you been well, Your Majesty?”
Emperor Yuansheng immediately pulled Prime Minister Li up by the arm, as elated as he was baffled. “Come on. Get up. I’ve also missed you in the last sixth months. How come you came all the way here?”
“Oh, because you have not been back in so long, Her Majesty ordered this old one to come check on you.”
Emperor Yuansheng released his hold on Prime Minister Li. “You should return, in that case.”
“Is this old one not welcome?” Prime Minister Li wore on a mask of shock.
“Of course you are welcome. I am here for business. What would a woman know? Prime Minister Li, are you going to support their outrageous endeavours? Hmph… Who was it?”
“Her Majesty Empress and all five of them.”
“Absolutely unacceptable! They know nothing. Come speak with me in the adjacent hall.”
Tianhu and I were the only ones allowed into the hall, while everyone else waited outside. Tianhu was there as His Majesty’s security detail, while I was obviously there to speak on the quest in the south. As Prime Minister Li wasn’t abreast of the campaign’s details, he was prone to misunderstanding that the journey was a vacation. My perspective was a lot more objective than His Majesty’s words. Given my earnings were my top priority, I would have to recount the story in a way that depicted us as hard-working people toiling for the sake of the kingdom.
Still nodding after I had relayed everything, Emperor Yuansheng boldly asserted, “Hear that? You hear that? We never did and still aren’t playing! Tell them not to worry.”
“Even if that is true, when do you plan to return?” Prime Minister Li didn’t bat an eye.
“I’ve prepared for my return trip long ago. I will set off in the next ten to fourteen days. We can’t rush this. I haven’t even had time to feast my eyes on the scenery. On the way back, I want to go hunting, touring and so forth.”
Me: “Your subject concurs.”
Tianhu: “Your subject also concurs.”
“Hohoho, how about we go a little further, then? From memory, people from Fusang often stop by East China Sea. If we are in the mood, we can take a ship out to see to Tianzhu for some of their naan bread.”
“Your Majesty, please pardon your subject for being frank,” voiced Prime Minister Li.
“You are a little high.”
Emperor Yuansheng fixed his clothing. “Ahem, didn’t I say I’m not going back yet? I’ll be going back soon.”
“How you deal with your harem and vice versa are beyond the jurisdiction of this old one and his interests. We are fortunate that no debilitating issues have arisen during your absence. Howbeit, your prolonged absence may galvanise an eventual problem. His Highness Red Prince is still too young to carry the burden, after all. If you do not return, the nation will not be a nation.”
Emperor Yuansheng deployed a nod whilst yawning. Either he hadn’t had enough fun or his wives were too overbearing. Or, it was both. Whichever it was, Prime Minister Li had enough experience to know that he should stop trying to defy His Majesty. Hence, he deployed a tactical smile and said, “Your Majesty, this old one also has another vocal decree from someone else.”
“Her Majesty Empress Dowager.”
Emperor Yuansheng straightened up as though slouching was fatal. “What was that? Mother has…”
“Indeed, she has returned from Mount Zisheng now. She was furious when she learnt you had left. Nobody was shown any lenience.”
“She knows everything?! Oh no, oh no…” Emperor Yuansheng bit down on his lip.
Damn, this man doesn’t just haves to worry about but even a mother…
“D-did she say anything else?’
“This old one is here on her orders. Your Majesty, please listen to her decree.”
Emperor Yuansheng offered up a hand salute. “Present, Mother.”
“Ahem. Your Majesty, have you enjoyed your long holiday?”
“No, that’s not, not…”
“No, what, disappointment?!”
Emperor Yuansheng looked up, stupefied.
“Ahem, it is Her Majesty’s decree. It is exactly what she said. This old one shall continue: while you have been having fun, your poor vassals have been without a leader. What do you expect of them?”
“You are right, Mother.”
“It is my fault for managing the harem poorly, driving you away from home. My heart aches every time I think about it. I must publicise this to repent.”
“Wait! Wait! Wait! Why are we publicising it? Mother, what wrongs do you have to speak of? Are your wrongs not my wrongs?!”
As soon as Her Majesty Empress Dowager confessed “her mistakes” to the world, everyone would know His Majesty left the palace and refused to return. In no time at all, I guarantee people would start claiming he was picking up girls.
Head hanging, Emperor Yuansheng stole glances in Prime Minister Li’s direction in intervals, reproaching the latter for not supporting him.
“Your Majesty, your subject sent you an extremely urgent letter last month to return, did he not? Had you responded, things would not have come so far.”
“I wanted to go home, you know?! It was all because of Ming Feizhen! He, he, he wouldn’t wake up!”
“You need not manufacture any more excuses. Your subject does not understand. There are three more lines in Her Majesty Empress Dowager’s decree: if I do not see you on 6th June this year, I will organise a public conference with the retainers. I have but one question: are you coming back or not?”
Emperor Yuansheng jumped straight out of his seat. “I’m on my way back now! Tianhu, have everyone pack up to leave today. Actually, forget packing. We’re going now! Actually, you don’t have to come. I’ll go myself!”
So much for intervening when the meeting goes south…
In His Majesty’s defence, he deserved sympathy. There was quite a bit to gain from the expedition that he never would’ve gained from being complacent in the capital, although he did worry everyone left behind.
With Tianhu gone, Prime Minister Li said to me, “Earl Ming, you have rapidly climbed the ranks in the last sixth months I have not seen you.”
“You speak too highly of me, Prime Minister. I look up to you.”
As we headed out together, Prime Minister Li asked, “I saw a whole group of people in the main hall when I came through. Who are they?”
“Oh, they are the eleven states’ leaders. They are complaining we are involving ourselves in Nanjiang’s affairs too much and objecting to Morcher’s revival. This is the problem His Majesty referred to when he said he had no solution. Truthfully, we do have our hands tied.”
Prime Minister Li tugged up the corners of his lips. “Oho?”
You know, I genuinely felt a little sorry for the elven of them.
Side hall – refers to the hall either side of a palace or monastery.
Fusang (Dongying) – In case you forgot, it’s an archaic term for Japan.
Tianzhu – An archaic name for India.
Emperor Yuansheng offered up a hand salute: “Present, Mother.” – Vocal decrees, as the term suggests, is a decree passed on via word of mouth. When you listen to a decree being read out, you are to salute the reader as though they are the person who reads it to you.