Chapter 295 “Royalty”
At the moment Prince Son’s voice sounded very soft and delicate, exactly like the romantic prince from back then that has yet to grasp full authoritative power.
“Du Wei, I know it too. I may be high and mighty right now, but it’s inevitable that someone will talk behind my back, saying I’m a traitor who killed my own brother and is bullying father. Big brother may have started a rebellion, but he did die in the end. And as promised, I did not deprive him of his royal identity after his death and gave him a royal burial according to his last wishes. It’s just that, regardless of my grace, people are bound to feel sympathetic towards the dead. Besides… Although I may seem to be basking in glory as the Regent, but my status right now is still a little awkward…. And my father, humph! My father hasn’t been all that restless either in the palace these past two years. I know public opinion of me isn’t unanimously good out there, and there’s bound to be those that wishes to cause trouble using this, but what else can be done? That day it was either I die or my brother, and who’s the one that pushed us into that situation? Its father I tell you! I may not have personally killed my brother that day, but I know there’s blood on my hands and it’s all because father never did anything to mitigate it, in fact, he pushed it even harder for his own wishes!”
The last remark made Du Wei’s face take on a different shade… What? Is there some kind of secret in the royal family again?
According to the current normal logic, the coup from two years ago in the capital has already come to a verdict.
The mainstream view was: Although Augustine the 6th have already crowned his eldest son as the crown prince early on in his years+, but then as he aged, he suddenly wishes to change it to his youngest son. This eventually threatened the crown prince’s position, forcing the eldest son into a coup.
Can… Can it be that wasn’t the case?
“Indeed, that wasn’t the case!” Prince Son began laughing hard at Du Wei’s surprised expression: “Du Wei, I can probably guess what you are thinking. How can I not know about the sayings out there? Unfortunately, whether it’s me, or my big brother, we’re both nothing but victims of my father!”
Speaking up to here, Prince Son suddenly swings around and calls out to the palace guards over in the distance: “All of you go down. I and the Duke have some private matters to talk about in the garden! Whoever eavesdrops will be killed on site!”
Making a salute, those golden armored knights obediently left the premise.
Then making an exhaustive face, Prince Son directly plops to the ground and sat there on the spot. Because the season was still technically winter, the greenery in the palace had all withered away, leaving nothing but cold hard dirt. Watching the ruler of the empire sitting there on the withered greens, Du Wei blinked out of hesitation before sitting down next to the Regent.
“Du Wei, want to hear a story?”
The remark causes Du Wei to make an extremely awkward smile.
Damn it … What the heck? These days I seem to be constantly listening to others telling me stories. First was Maximos, then QQ’s different version of himself, and now this?
But whether Du Wei’s willing or not, this story must be heard: how is one supposed to refuse the Regent of an empire when he demands to tell you a story?
Besides, Du Wei’s curious too…
Making a small sigh, Prince Son stretches out his hand and plucks a thorny vine from the bushes. Then using those slender fingers, he removes all the thorns before slowly starting his story: “I was ten back then….
From a very young age, I have always thought that I am the happiest person in this world.
The glory and honor of being born in the royal family, the noble blood and status of a prince…
Those around me would always boast to me about my intellect, saying I’m a genius prince with wisdom and looks. Truth be told, I’ve always known those words were merely hypocritical compliments.
And I, was merely a child that became sensible at an age earlier than the rest.
Everyone thought father favors me very much…. Hmm, I guess you can say he favors me. I am after all his youngest son, a son he got at fifty years of age, so it’s only to be expected I’m a little more precious than usual. According to the stories, my father had always wanted another son, but the royal concubines could only give him princesses, he even killed one of his concubines out of rage after the baby turns out to be a girl…. Ha!
Finally, when my mother gave birth to me, she was relieved.
But…… When I was little, I didn’t know why, but I’ve always had a strange feeling, this feeling…. It’s from my dearest father!
Yes, my royal father!
I became sensible early on so my wisdom showed itself earlier than the rest. It was also because of this reason that I was lectured so young. Whether it was the court scholars, star readers, or court magicians, they would always compliment me about my ingenuity and how gifted I am.
But, maybe it was my imagination? Because every time those people praise me in front of my royal father, those eyes he made, it’s strange… It’s not like that of a loving father’s looking down at his favorite son.
That look, it’s more like … more like a gradually aging lion looking down at a cub that’s about to grow old enough to flex its claw! He saw me as a threat, a potential threat of the future.
That kind of look, I felt danger, an instinctive unease like someone’s life was being threatened!
Although … Father hid those eyes deep, deep inside himself, but I have already vaguely understood one point by then:
Truth was, father doesn’t favor or dote on me as much as everyone makes it out to be.
Perhaps, his fondness of me was merely an act he intentionally did for appearance sake.
When I was little, I didn’t understand why.
But at ten, I finally understood!
That year was father’s sixtieth birthday.
Though he’s the supreme ruler of the Empire, the emperor of the continent, the most powerful man on the continent, but he’s sixty by then. A person will inevitably grow old, the world is like that. Yet people never change. When they age, they tend to hold onto things even harder and refuse to let go!
That year I was only ten when my mother came to my bedroom at evening after father’s birthday dinner. She was so full of joy when she told me the news: father have indicated he wishes to change the crown to me!
The only thing was, father only leaked a little bit of his intentions when the nobles present that night fiercely opposed the idea. The matter was then strictly forbidden to be aired around the capital so very few knew about the incident.
Circulating outside right now is that father intended to transfer the crown to me at age seventy and me twenty, but in truth, he had long wanted to do that even back when I was but ten.
Alright, let me continue what happened that night when I was ten…
Mother, she’s not a wise woman. She just instinctively thought that if I could be the crown and become the future emperor, it would be a great thing. So she was very happy, after all, if father had this meaning, then perhaps this will come to fruition in the future. Also, mother isn’t a scheming woman. Because of how happy she was, she couldn’t resist the urge and immediately sought me out to tell me the news that night.
But that night, that’s when I truly felt the danger!
It’s the kind of chill that runs thoroughly inside the body!!
Everyone was correct in calling me smart because compared to my peers, I was sensible earlier than the rest.
At that time, I have already understood one logic: this world will never give you something without reason!
Yes, I was very young and wise, and my teachers praised me for it. Even a lot of the aristocratic ministers in the banquet would praise me for my youthful wisdom….
However, no matter how smart or talented a ten year old child was, would a father change his mind and replace a crown prince?
You know, at that time my big brother was already over thirty that year. His means of doing things were good and he also participated in the early years of the war in the Northwest. Although his performance can’t be called stunning, he does deserve come credit. And in those years, he had already begun to gradually gather a group of loyal followers under his team befitting a crown prince. Considering all things, my big brother did well for his age. He handle the state affairs well, he dealt with matters thoroughly, and….
A ten year old boy, even if I was more gifted back then, my performance only circles around my studies. How can a never before tested young boy overwhelm a thirty year old man who have honed himself within the ruling ranks?
Others may believe it’s possible, but I personally don’t!
Would father let go of a thirty year old son that have proven himself over the years and pick a ten year old child that’s still wet behind his ears? I say not! No normal person would think that!
Funny part was, my mother still thought that the news of father’s intent was a good thing! But I knew it then… danger was coming!
From that day forward, everything changed.
My attendants and maids, as well as the court tutors, their attitude towards me became much more respectful. In their eyes, I wasn’t just the same old ‘Prince Son’; I was the Prince Son who might possibly become the next emperor!
More importantly … Even my dear brother the crown prince, his attitude towards me also took a drastic change!
When I was young, my eldest brother once hugged me. I even remember clearly that when I was little, he taught me how to ride a horse. He held me atop of the white steed, and then said to me, ‘Our Augustine family is the master of this land. As a man of the Augustine family, we must have the spirit of a warrior because our family gained all that we have through military means!’
At that time, he was like a real brother. After all, father may have a lot of children, but he only had two sons. For that, big brother was in fact very close to me.
But it was because of my father’s intentional leak of attitude on that birthday party that my big brother changed towards me.
Never again did he teach me how to ride a horse, never again did he accompany me in learning martial art, and never again did he come see me…. I still remember my brother’s promise back then. He said he will bring me out of the palace a month from then and have a drink with me. But that promise never came to be… Not even until he perished on that day outside the palace!
And the one responsible for all this change was father!
It was because he revealed his intent to change the crown, forcing big brother to take me as his enemy!
But are things really that simple? Father, does he really want to make me the crown prince?
I say not! Since that very day, I’ve been doubting that saying!
I say, no normal person would give up a mature thirty year old for a merely unadulterated child. This logic should’ve been obvious to anyone with a bit of brain.
Therefore, I was certain father had ulterior motives behind his move.
Of course, the ten year old me back then wouldn’t be able to figure out something that complicated. But I also understood I can’t just waltz up to my father and ask something so dangerous… More importantly, I had an instinctive fear of father at the time. Although I didn’t understand at the time why, but it’s there, I guess it’s my natural instinct telling me so.
Since I couldn’t think of the answer myself, I can only go ask someone else.
I remember three month later after that incident, a chance finally came. My court tutor was telling me of some interested news around the capital at the time. There was a scholar named ‘Blue Ocean’. The scholar was smart and knowledgable. It was said there’s nothing in this world that he doesn’t know. Geography, astronomy, medicine, biology… He seems to know everything.
And at a gathering of various scholars around the capital, he used his great wisdom to utterly make his peers speechless by overcoming all debates.
After my court tutor told me this story, I became very curious and wanted dearly to meet this legendary scholar.
Finally, that day my teacher revealed to me there will be another debate gathering because the various scholars around the capital lost so hard to Mr. Blue Ocean that some remains unconvinced and called for other famous individuals across the various provinces.
I admired that Blue Ocean and begged my court tutor to bring me along. Fortunately my teacher was also very interested, so in the end he took me with him…
Back then I was still young so leaving the palace was very inconvenient. By the time my teacher managed to bring me over to the debate gathering, Mr. Blue Ocean had already utterly made his opponents speechless. I saw how the crowds were cheering from the outside. Civilians in common clothes, scholars and wealthy individuals, they all looked at Mr. Blue Ocean with admiration.
Then as I lay sight on this outstanding scholar, I knew then he was no ordinary man.
This world is like that. Many pretentious people would desperately dress themselves in gorgeous clothes to hide their shallowness, but Mr. Blue Ocean wasn’t like that. He had no need for fancy clothes to make his wisdom shine.
Later … After the gathering, I ignored my court teacher’s objection and secretly followed Mr. Blue Ocean home with several of my people.
Then ordering the rest to wait outside, I alone went up to the door and knocked on Mr. Blue Ocean’s door.
I did not conceal my identity, nor was he surprised by my identity. I can feel that his calmness wasn’t fake, but his true emotion.
Blue Ocean is that kind of person… When standing in front of him, you will feel like you are facing a vast ocean with unfathomable knowledge and wisdom. As for yourself, your instincts will tell you how small and insignificant you are in the presence of that man.
At that time, the young me made a request to him, I wanted to ask a question but needed him to keep it a secret.
Mr. Blue Ocean thought for a while, then said to me ‘If it was five years later, I would’ve have refused your request. But since its now, I will promise you.’
It wasn’t until later did I understand the meanings of those words: If it was five years later, I would’ve had become an adult, an adult that would be at the stage where I can be cruel for power. I might’ve have killed him right after he gave me the answer. But luckily, I was still ten back then, an age still innocent enough to not do something so cruel.
That day, I raised the question that’s been hidden within my heart:
Father him, why would he suddenly want to make me the crown prince? Does father really think a ten year old child is more suited than a thirty year old adult?
Scholar Blue Ocean pondered the question for a while after listening.
Then he finally gave me the answer.
And that answer, after hearing it, that’s when I knew what a bone chilling cold was inside your bones!
For the first time in my life, I found that being born in the royal family wasn’t necessarily a blessing!
Blue Ocean’s answer wasn’t difficult to understand, only a sentence: if you must find something to blame then you can only blame on your father’s body being too good and your brother growing up too fast.
I didn’t quite understand his meaning when he said that to me, nor did he elaborate. And by then I was running out of time and needed to return to the palace immediately.
That entire night, I brooded over the answer inside my room. I thought about father’s love towards me, the eyes he made at me while in public, and the frustration my brother occasionally revealed….
Finally at daybreak, I figured it out!
Blue Ocean is absolutely correct! The biggest reason for all this is that father’s body is too good and big brother is growing too fast!!
Father, Augustine the 6th, is an emperor who has a near radical possessive desire for power. What father and son affection? In his eyes there are only the throne! The throne is his all, his heart! To him, there’s only the power that comes with the supreme throne to the continent, that’s all there is in his eyes!
So, despite being sixty years old, he still seems energetic without any means to let go. He’s that type of person. He even wants to launch another war against the northwest… His mind only has room for those kind fanatical thoughts. He wishes to become the greatest emperor of the Augustine dynasty. To him, there are still too many magnificent plans to carry out and many more wishes not realized.
In times like that, how can he be willing to let go of his authority?
He still thinks he’s not old, he still thinks he has many things to do. If he gets his way, he would likely want to be the emperor for another hundred years if he could, humph!
But the problem is … Realistically, he’s already sixty years old. Sixty is more than old. And his son, his legal heir, my big brother, is more than 30 years old by then!
Thirty years old, is a man’s peak, the most mature and energetic part of their life!
And men of this age, no doubt, are eager to vent their energy in the cause, to achieve their own great legacy…
But this is where the contradictions lie!
In those two years, big Brother already had a considerable team at his side. Among the royal army of the capital, there are brother’s own men inside. And in the military, there’s his young friend Earl Raymond. It can be said, big brother’s hand has reached into every major part of the court and military, a must for a crown prince. You can even say he had his own organization going by then.
A political organization like that was quite mature already…. Mature enough to be able to take over the succession of the crown!!
Big brother was waiting for father to pass him the throne; in fact he was urgently waiting for the throne.
But father was still too energetic, too ambitious without any intent to let anyone have a single coveting thought against the throne. This includes his own sons!!
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