Suddenly, Wei Chongrong heard someone calling him, not “Wei Chongrong”, but “Yi Yin”.
He was wondering how someone still could call him “Yi Yin”, hadn’t his father changed his name for him? Then he felt that someone patted him on the shoulder from behind.
Wei Chongrong turned his head and saw Wei Yang standing in front of him, smiling and saying, “Ah Yin, I called you so many times, why didn’t you answer? Are you angry with me?”
“This humble servant doesn’t dare,” Wei Chongrong bowed down subconsciously. He had followed Wei Yang since the ascension to the throne, and his obedience to Wei Yang was almost instinctive.
Immediately afterwards, Wei Chongrong reacted. No, hadn’t he already died? After his death, he went back to his childhood, returned to Wei Zhao, and the two of them fled back to Yujing together. At that time, Wei Yang should not have been born yet. And he, Wei Chongrong, was sleeping next to Daddy…
Where is Daddy? Where is Daddy? Wei Chongrong looked around in a panic, but saw no one. Where was Wei Zhao? He looked at himself again, and it was clear that he was an adult, not a little child nestled in Wei Zhao’s arms.
While he was at a loss, Wei Yang’s voice sounded again. He was still smiling, but his smile sent a chill down Wei Chongrong’s spine, as if the cold was seeping out from his bones and simply wouldn’t go away.
“Ah Yin, I know you are the best. Even if everyone betrays me and leaves me, you won’t, right?” Wei Yang walked up to Wei Chongrong at some point and cupped his cheek, saying word by word.
Wei Chongrong nodded silently. He did say something like this to Wei Yang. He said that no matter what Wei Yang did, he would never hate him or betray him. No matter what Wei Yang wanted, he would help him, even if it cost him his life.
Because in his dark and lonely teenage years, Wei Yang was the only beam of light that shone in. Even if the light was faint, it was enough to make Wei Chongrong yearn for it, just like a moth that flings itself to the fire, dying nine deaths without regret.
Wei Yang’s smile grew even wider, but also colder. He said in an undulating tone: “The Shangguan family has collapsed. Wang Yong’an and Gong Qi have been replaced. Great General Huo has also been relieved of his armour and returned to his hometown. From now on, there is only one person left as my confidant. Ah Yin, are you willing to help me get rid of him?”
“Who do you want me to kill?” Tearing off the mask of warmth, Wei Chongrong discovered that what he meant to Wei Yang was a sharp blade without any need for an independent will, killing a Buddha when meeting a Buddha and killing a god when meeting a god.
Wei Yang curbed a smile and sighed half-heartedly: “Ah Yin, do you know how reluctant I am to let you go? Without you, I will have to do a lot of things in the future by myself, which will be very inconvenient. But I can’t help but do this. I have no choice, do you understand?”
Wei Yang’s tone was very flat, but there was a touch of cold murderous intent, which made Wei Chongrong’s heart tremble. He could feel that this murderous intent was directed at him.
Wei Chongrong had no habit of resisting Wei Yang. His subconscious reaction was to escape, but he was weak and unable to move.
Wei Chongrong was taken aback for a moment, and then remembered. Last night, Wei Yang asked him to drink at Dinghu Palace and slipped him a medicine to block his strength, so the internal energy of his whole body couldn’t be condensed and he could only be slaughtered.
Wei Yang gave Wei Chongrong a gentle push, and Wei Chongrong fell to the ground, his eyes fixed on Wei Yang. Wei Yang squatted down, holding a jasper wine bottle in his hand. The wine bottle was translucent, and the liquid in the bottle was blending with the bottle, the refreshing fragrance reaching his face.
“Is it Jasper Jelly?” Wei Chongrong blinked, surprised, with disbelief written in his eyes.
Jasper Jelly was a secret brew made by Wang Changning’s family. The brewing process was extremely complicated, and there were only two or three jars a year. After Ji Xin’s death, the secret recipe for brewing Jasper Jelly was lost, and ten or so jars that remained in the world became the last of its kind.
Wei Yang was willing to use Jasper Jelly to send him on his way; he wasn’t stingy. Wei Chongrong smiled mockingly and reached out for the jasper wine bottle.
Wei Yang avoided his gaze and smiled indifferently: “’No return’ is colourless and tasteless, and there will be no pain…” His voice became lighter and lighter, fading to almost inaudible. It wasn’t known whether he was saying it for Wei Chongrong to hear, or was talking to himself.
Before Wei Yang could finish speaking, Wei Chongrong picked up the wine bottle and drank it all in one go. He had to admit that Jasper Jelly was the best wine he had ever drunk, and if it was possible, he would want Wei Yang to give him another glass.
Wei Yang didn’t seem to expect that Wei Chongrong would drink the wine so quickly. His face changed, he knelt on the ground suddenly, and murmured: “Ah Yin, don’t blame me, I don’t want to be like this, but… You are the son of the Fourth Prince. Wang Yong’an and Gong Qi, or even General Huo… each of them was helping you. I had to deal with the Shangguan family but they all remained on the sidelines. And as soon as you stepped in, they all changed their attitudes… I know that they disliked me, they thought my mother was of low birth, they disliked me for not being the descendant of the Ji family… Ah Yin, if one day, you also betray me, what should I do? You are also the descendant of the Wei family. With the blood of the Ji family in your veins, will they make me abdicate and let you ascend to the throne…”
Wei Yang’s expression became more and more hideous, his usual gentleness and elegance gone. Wei Chongrong wasn’t afraid, but felt that his heart was terribly empty. He never knew that Wei Yang actually saw him this way. He actually regarded him as his biggest threat. Was it possible?
Wei Chongrong heard his own cold laugh.
Wei Su refused to give him the surname Wei and had never added him to the jade plate. He wasn’t even a member of the Wei clan, and he could threaten Wei Yang’s throne? What was it if not a joke?
Didn’t Wei Yang know that everything Wei Chongrong had was given to him by Wei Yang? If he wanted to take it back, it was just a matter of saying a word. The help from Wang Yong’an and Gong Qi was not only because he was Wei Zhao’s son, but also because he was working for Wei Yang.
Wei Yang’s appointment as the Crown Prince was a very hasty one, as he was named the Crown Prince only three days before Wei Su’s death and all ceremonies were kept simple.
However, in any case, he was the hand-picked successor of the previous emperor, and he was the supreme ruler of the Great Yan. Wei Chongrong didn’t understand where Wei Yang’s gloom and suspicion came from.
“Your Majesty, I don’t hate you…” Perhaps, it wasn’t Wei Yang who made the mistake, but he himself. He mistook a firefly for the Golden Crow and prayed to it for the warmth that he himself didn’t have. No wonder that he failed. He recognised the wrong person.
Wei Yang was stunned, as if he couldn’t believe his ears. The expression on his face instantly froze in a smile that was not a smile and finally turned into nothingness as he turned around and fled.
Wei Yang left, the hall was empty, and Wei Chongrong lay on the cold ground, waiting for the arrival of death.
“Your Majesty’s wish has been fulfilled, should this humble servant say congratulations?” The God of Death didn’t come, but Jun Hua’s sarcastic voice came from outside the hall.
“Why is Official Jun here? Is it to see Ah Yin one last time?” Wei Yang’s tone had long since regained its calmness, “Unfortunately, until his death, all he had in mind was me, so Official Jun is probably going to be disappointed?”
Jun Hua didn’t answer, and the heavy hall door was pushed open. Jun Hua walked in, limping, his posture looking a little funny.
Wei Chongrong turned his head and looked at Jun Hua with apologetic eyes. Jun Hua had warned him a long time ago that Wei Yang wouldn’t trust anyone. He didn’t listen and ended up getting himself killed.
“Idiot!” Jun Hua spat out one word coldly. Wei Chongrong was shocked when he heard this word. Did he hear what Jun Hua said correctly? How could he?…
“It doesn’t matter if you die, but I want to avenge you… What you owe me, you can’t repay in your next life!” Jun Hua’s tone was full of indignation, but his expression in Wei Chongrong’s memory was sad.
The scene in front of him suddenly changed. Wei Chongrong saw Wei Yang spitting blood and collapsing on the imperial table…
Seeing the overwhelming white, he knew it was a national mourning…
The owner of Zichen Palace changed, replaced by Wei Chongrong’s cousin, Wei Ruo, the eldest son of Wang Lu Wei Xiao…
Jun Hua, dressed in white, stood on the high palace wall with the new emperor in a dark-colored imperial robe…
“Your Majesty, you helped me avenge, and I helped you seize the throne. Now that the goal has been achieved, we are even.”
“Huaixi, can’t you stay? I… where am I not better than…” Huaixi was Jun Hua’s courtesy name, given to him by Wei Su himself.
“You are better than him everywhere,” Jun Hua smiled. “But you are not him.”
With these words, he took a step forward. Wei Ruo stretched out his hand to stop him, but he missed and his grip was empty.
Wei Chongrong didn’t care where he was, he rushed forward without hesitation. He couldn’t just stand by and watch Jun Hua die.
It was a pity that he didn’t catch Jun Hua either. Their hands met in the air and passed through each other.
“Jun Hua!” Wei Chongrong shouted out his name and followed him into the void.
Opening his eyes again, Wei Chongrong found himself lying on the footrest in front of the bed, his back aching badly. The first thing that came into view was Wei Zhao’s enlarged worried face.
In the middle of the night, Wei Zhao noticed that his son was sleeping very restlessly, kicking his hands and feet violently. He guessed that Wei Chongrong was having a nightmare and wanted to wake him up. Unexpectedly, Wei Chongrong rolled in a circle and tumbled straight off the bed, catching Wei Zhao off guard.
He hurriedly sat up, picked up his son who had woken up, and asked hastily, “Rong’er, did you hit anything? Does it hurt anywhere? Quickly tell Daddy…”
Wei Chongrong rubbed his eyes, still a little confused. Was what he saw later what happened after his death?
Wei Yang died, and Jun Hua avenged him; Wei Ruo ascended the throne, and he and Jun Hua cooperated; Jun Hua fell from the palace wall, and no one held him back…
Wei Chongrong trembled all over, plunged into Wei Zhao’s arms, hugged his waist and refused to let go.
Wei Zhao just thought that his son was frightened by the nightmare, and asked softly: “Rong’er, what did you dream of, tell Daddy.” No matter how scary the nightmare was, it would be fine if you talked about it.
Wei Chongrong rubbed against him, raised his head and said, “I dreamed that that bad woman hit you…” He didn’t want to lie to Wei Zhao, but no one could know what he dreamed of tonight.
It turned out to be an old incident in Fuyu. Wei Zhao breathed a sigh of relief when he heard this, stroked Wei Chongrong’s back and said softly: “Rong’er, don’t be afraid, we have returned to Yujing, and no one can bully us anymore.”
His voice was clear and pleasant, and as Wei Chongrong listened, he was unconsciously reassured that what was supposed to happen had not happened and wouldn’t happen, so there was no need for him to scare himself.
The palace maid who was keeping the night watch replaced Wei Chongrong’s sweat-soaked clothes. Wei Zhao carried him to the bed and said with a chuckle: “Daddy will sleep on the outside. No matter how you toss, you won’t be able to roll on to the ground.”
Wei Chongrong smiled embarrassedly, resting on Wei Zhao’s arm, holding onto him with both hands, wanting to sleep but a little afraid to sleep.
Wei Zhao leaned over, looked at Wei Chongrong and said softly: “Rong’er, go to sleep, Daddy will be by your side, nothing will happen.”
Wei Chongrong closed his eyes and fidgeted for a long time before falling asleep, but he never had another nightmare again. Wei Zhao didn’t close his eyes until his son was asleep.
Wei Chongrong didn’t sleep well at night and in the morning of the next day he got up later than usual, but Wei Zhao didn’t blame him. He also said that the time in Shanglin Park these days was considered a holiday for him. Let him have fun and think about what Wei Ming had said that day.
Who knew that Wei Chongrong had a strange temper. When Wei Zhao forced him to study, he dealt with things every day just completing the task. Now that Wei Zhao didn’t force him anymore, Wei Chongrong became diligent. Not only did he take the initiative to review what the teacher had said, but he would also consciously preview what he hadn’t learned for the time being. When he encountered something he didn’t understand, he went to ask Wei Zhao. The two daily large characters also became four, and they were meticulously written. Although the handwriting was a little childish, some future style could be vaguely seen.
Seeing Wei Chongrong’s performance, Wei Zhao only thought it was Wei Ming’s words that touched him. He was thinking in his heart that his imperial brother was really good at teaching children. Look at the children in his family. Except for the youngest Wei Mao, who was not yet sensible, which one was not knowledgeable and reasonable, humble and level headed, really enviable?
He didn’t know that Wei Chongrong actually understood all the truths Wei Ming said, but he just lacked motivation. On the contrary, that nightmare completely awakened him. The crisis had not been resolved; what right did he have to be proud and complacent?
When he was in Fuyu, Wei Chongrong was intent on protecting Wei Zhao even though there was little he could do. His whole mental outlook was positive. He had to do everything he could to be able to seize the fleeting opportunity and then change their fate.
Back in the Great Yan, due to Wei Zhao’s return, Wei Chongrong faced a completely different situation from his previous life.
No matter what those people thought in their hearts, in front of Wei Chongrong no one dared to treat him without respect. So what if he was not liked by the emperor? As long as Wei Zhao was favoured, no one would dare to treat him as coldly as they did in his previous life, not for the monk’s sake but for the Buddha’s sake.
As a result, Wei Chongrong lived an unprecedented stable life with peace of mind, and unknowingly, he lost his original vigilance and self-motivation. If there was Daddy to do everything, why should he worry?
He forgot that Wei Ming was the Crown Prince Wei Su had been looking forward to for many years. He had been in the position of the Crown Prince for more than twenty years. He was born with intelligence and a cautious personality. In the end, he was still brought down. It could be seen that the opponent’s methods were so profound that they couldn’t be underestimated. Even if there was Wei Zhao, he had to be very careful.
He also forgot that Consoft Xin had been favoured for many years and had once been a rival of the empress. If it weren’t for Wei Xu’s illness, he could have confronted the Eastern Palace head-on. After Consort Xin, Wei Su’s favourites were Concubine Yun and Zhao Ji, and these two women were inextricably linked to the Shangguan family. With them being able to grasp the emperor’s mind to such an extent, it was easy to imagine how early the Shangguan family’s plan began. At present, Concubine Yun was already gone, but Zhao Ji was biding her time and was about to reveal herself. The Eastern Palace didn’t know of her ties with the Shangguan family, despised her, and paid a heavy price for it.
Wei Chongrong was able to learn about these palace secrets thanks to Wei Yang’s fight with the Shangguan family. In order to avenge his mother, the young emperor turned everything related to the Shangguan family upside down, which was a bargain for Wei Chongrong, allowing him to get a head start against the Shangguan family.
Now, the Shangguan family’s planning had already begun, and the Eastern Palace and Wang Qin’s residence were in danger. Instead of thinking about how to turn the situation around, Wei Chongrong was deluding himself about his future freedom. Wouldn’t that be putting the cart before the horse, picking the sesame seeds and losing the watermelon?
At this point, how could Wei Chongrong afford not to work hard? Wei Ming and Wei Zhao were brothers born from the same mother, and the Eastern Palace and Wang Qin’s residence were together in prosperity and defeat. If Wei Ming’s position as the Crown Prince was not secure, Wei Chongrong simply couldn’t bear to think about the fate that awaited him and Wei Zhao.