The Human Emperor - Chapter 1605
The Human Emperor Chapter 1605
Chapter 1605: The Confucian Sect Moves Out (II)
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
As that thunderous roar resounded through the air, countless Confucian Sect experts and Tang soldiers converged on the Tang cavalry. At the same time, those Confucian Sect experts who had been following the cavalry emerged from the shadows to cut off any path of retreat.
In the blink of an eye, the Tang cavalry were surrounded. Numerous experts had emerged from the shadows, their energies locking onto the horsemen.
The master archers pulled on their bowstrings and nocked their arrows, taking aim at the Tang cavalry in the center.
The Tang horsemen nastily scowled. They had never expected to encounter such a predicament when they were so close to the capital, after all that they had been through.
“Just who are you? What are you trying to do?”
At this moment, the only who had maintained his composure was the white-tasseled general. His eyes were gleaming as he looked at the converging Confucian Sect experts, no fear within them.
A Confucian Sect expert rode forward on a horse and harshly rebuked, “The Great Tang’s Secretariat Advisor, Li Junxian! Don’t tell me that you don’t know what that is. Without a decree from the Imperial Court, you attacked the Western Turks on the border. This has already broken the laws of the Great Tang. Hand over Hulugan and Ashide. This matter is under the jurisdiction of the Imperial Court. Don’t attempt to resist, or else you will be harshly punished!”
“Hmph, we don’t know any Secretariat Advisor. We only obey the orders of His Highness. No one else has any power over us. And don’t forget that we’ve already been dismissed by your Confucian Sect. We’re not regular soldiers, so how can you control us? Moreover…”
The white-tasseled general sneered as he glanced at Li Junxian.
“That border conflict you’re talking about—with what pair of eyes did you see us do it?”
The Confucian Sect expert was startled by these words, then immediately enraged. The other Confucian Sect experts couldn’t help but frown. In the militarist-Confucian conflict, the Confucian Sect truly had disbanded the army en masse, even disbanding many regular soldiers. Since they did not belong to the army, they naturally were not restrained by the army’s laws. Not even the Confucian Sect could find a problem here.
And it was also true that the Confucian Sect and Imperial Court had no evidence that it was them who had attacked the Western Turks.
At this moment, Li Junxian rode forward and asked the white-tasseled general, “What is your name?”
“This one is just an insignificant soldier. There is no need for Secretariat Advisor to concern yourself with me.”
The white-tasseled general faintly smiled, neither meek nor proud in his reply.
Everyone was enraged by these words. Truly, a master attracted subordinates of the same ilk. All of Wang Chong’s subordinates were thorny and intractable.
Li Junxian couldn’t help but crease his brow, but he did not argue with the white-tasseled general.
Li Junxian stared at the general and coldly said, “This is a decree from the First Prince. With the Sage Emperor in seclusion, the First Prince is the regent, so you should understand the significance of this imperial decree. Hand over Ashide and Hulugan. Do not try to resist, and do not try to run with them. If you move even a little, I can have all of you killed. Not even the King of Foreign Lands will be able to do anything to me, and I have a way to explain myself to the Imperial Court!”
With a shake of his wrist, he produced a yellow scroll which had the royal seal of the First Prince.
Upon seeing this decree, the white-tasseled general instantly paled, as did his subordinates. It was obvious that Li Junxian and his Confucian Sect had come prepared.
But Li Junxian cared little about their reaction.
Li Junxian pointed, and the Confucian Sect experts lunged forward like tigers, making their way toward the two Turkic officers. Elder Song moved the fastest, and with a pull of his finger, he broke the ropes and took them down. Whoosh! With a wave of his palm, he removed the bags covering their faces.
The border operation that Wang Chong had accomplished through great cost was finally ended by the Confucian Sect. At this moment, all the Confucian Sect experts found it hard to conceal their excitement. This was the first time they had ever been a step ahead of Wang Chong in their numerous clashes with him.
But when they saw the faces of the two Hu officers, their mouths dropped.
All of them turned ghastly pale, and even Li Junxian lost his composure.
These ‘Hu’ truly were wearing the armor of the Western Turkic Khaganate, but under their helmets were two giggling and derisive Han faces, certainly not Ashide and Hulugan.
“Bastard! Talk! Where did you hide Hulugan and Ashide!?”
A Confucian Sect expert was trembling in rage as he seized a Tang horseman and raised him high in the air.
“Haha, Sir, what are you saying? I have no idea. We were just returning to the capital. Was there any need for the Secretariat Advisor and the Imperial Court to cause such a stir?”
The Tang horseman sneered.
“In addition, I heard that the Confucian Sect emphasized justice and righteousness, and the Secretariat Advisor is all about being selfless and fair-minded. You don’t plan to silence witnesses in front of so many people, do you?”
By now, no member of the Bureau of Military Personnel had a good impression of the Confucian Sect. Four hundred people of the Great Tang had been massacred on the border, an entire village wiped out, and they had traveled far and overcome many difficulties to fearlessly battle against an enemy thirty times their size. From an army of twelve thousand, they had captured the two ringleaders. But the Confucian Sect had decided to make an issue of the matter, hoping to make trouble for the King of Foreign Lands, who had stretched out a hand to seek justice for those villagers. How could they feel any kindness toward such people?
The Confucian Sect expert was enraged, but when he looked around, he saw that a large crowd had gathered, gesturing and chattering.
The capital was the economic and political center of the Great Tang, and countless people went through its four gates every day. This action had attracted the attention of numerous bystanders, which was precisely why that Tang horseman was so unafraid.
But there was no taking back a loosed arrow. Since the operation had begun, they could not falter. Even though so many people were watching, they still needed to find out where Hulugan and Ashide were.
“Talk! Where is Ashide?!”
Seeing that they couldn’t get anything out of the other cavalry, the Confucian Sect experts, including the white-clothed girl, surrounded the white-tasseled general.
“Talk! Where are those two? You won’t be like them and say that you don’t know what’s going on, right?”
Li Junxian waved his hand, ordering the others to withdraw, and then came forward with a cold and aloof expression.
“Heheh, Secretariat Advisor does not need to waste his time.”
The white-tasseled general was much more relaxed than his subordinates.
“His Highness, in his wisdom, long ago predicted that your Confucian Sect and Imperial Court would take action. All of your movements could never escape the eyes and ears of His Highness, and even those messenger birds we released were merely meant to confuse you. As for Hulugan and Ashide, not long after we got past the border, we parted with them. By now, they should have already been sent through the southern gate and into the hands of His Highness!”
Elder Song, the white-clothed girl, all the Confucian Sect experts, and the officers sent by King Qi turned ghastly pale. Li Junxian’s face twisted into a nasty scowl.
“Let’s go! Return to the capital!”
With no time to think, Li Junxian cast aside the Tang horsemen and used a movement technique, turning into a white blur that shot through the city gates.
He had lost this round. Wang Chong’s plans had been far more impressive than he had imagined, but it was still not too late. The Confucian Sect was keeping an eye on everything within the capital. Even if Hulugan and Ashide had already entered the capital, there was still enough time. All he needed to do was stop Wang Chong!
Following Li Junxian’s order, the Confucian Sect experts and the soldiers of the Imperial Court kicked up great trails of dust as they withdrew, leaving faster than they had come.
“Hmph, in the end, the people of the Confucian Sect don’t understand military strategy. Compared to His Highness, they’re lacking by more than just a single level.”
The white-tasseled general watched Li Junxian and the others leave with a sneering smile on his lips. Afterwards, he turned around and led his men off in another direction.
As the Confucian Sect was enacting its plan, a horse was riding into Wang Chong’s residence.
“Hulugan and Ashide have been delivered! Your Highness, please pass judgment!”
All the people in the study turned their attention to the scout.
“Your Highness, it seems like Li Junxian and the Confucian Sect took the bait.”
Xu Keyi turned to Wang Chong.
“What of Old Eagle?”
Wang Chong was rhythmically tapping against his desk, a bright and wise light in his eyes. The unperturbed expression on his face seemed to convey that all of this had been within his expectations.
Cheng Sanyuan bowed and reported, “Your Highness, Old Eagle ran into a small incident on the road. A group of martial artists intentionally ran into him, even provoking Old Eagle into lashing out by preventing him from coming in to report. But all of this is under control and Old Eagle is in no danger.”
The more of the truth of this situation he understood, the more he admired Wang Chong.
The Confucian Sect had thought very highly of their own operation, but whether it was the interception of the birds in the sky, the dispatching of men to intercept Old Eagle, or the watching of that cavalry force, all of it had been within Wang Chong’s expectations. One could only sigh over the fact that the Confucian Sect had believed that they had been acting surreptitiously.