ROHYX Chapter 502 : Taking Sides

This chapter hasn't been edited yet.

Yuxi discussed an idea with Yun Qing: "He Rui, after spring, I want to raise more pigs and poultry on the farms. What do you think?" Although Yu City had an abundance of meat and vegetables, the variety was relatively limited. Most of the meat came from cattle and sheep, with very little pork and a limited supply of vegetables.

Yun Qing was a little confused as to why Yuxi brought up the household matters with him. "You can decide for yourself." He wasn't well versed in household matters and hadn't planned to give it much thought.

Yuxi had a specific reason for bringing up this subject with Yun Qing. "He Rui, the soldiers in the military camps are living a very difficult life. We should think of a way to improve their situation."

Yun Qing himself had worked his way up from the lowest ranks, so he was well aware of what life was like for the soldiers at the bottom. Apart from when they were on a campaign and could get steamed buns and meat dishes, the rest of the time, they could only make sure they were fed, but not necessarily well fed. If the soldiers' meals could be improved, it would be a positive development. Yun Qing asked, "Do you have any good ideas?" If Yuxi could provide a solution to this problem, it would be a great achievement.

Yuxi had a solution in mind, although it was not her own original idea but rather an adaptation of an old method. "There is a lot of young forest around Yu City. We could plant some vegetables and raise some poultry there. What do you think?" Yu City was a water-scarce region, so reclaiming the wasteland was not feasible. That was why they had to adopt this approach.

Yun Qing felt that this method was not very reliable. "Soldiers have to train every day; where would they find the time to do things like grow vegetables and raise pigs."

Yu Xi smiled, noting that Yun Qing had only expressed concern about the lack of time but had not rejected her proposal outright. This meant that there was still room for discussion. "Every year after a war, there are a number of injured soldiers who are discharged from the army. Some of these soldiers have no family left in their hometowns, and returning there would mean a life of loneliness and hardship. I think it would be better for them to stay here and engage in activities such as vegetable growing and pig farming. I believe some of them would be willing to do this. If they are not able to do heavy work like clearing and cultivating new land, we can assign some soldiers from the military camp to help them do it. I think they should be able to manage raising chickens, ducks, and vegetables. Not only would they have meat to eat, but the chickens and ducks would also lay eggs. The eggs could be supplied to the military camp so the soldiers could have some meat to eat every month. Wouldn't that be great?" Were it not for the unsuitable conditions here, Yuxi would have tried to persuade Yun Qing to introduce a tuntian1 system. Then, the crops grown on these lands could be used to feed the army. Unfortunately, the conditions here were not suitable.

Yun Qing thought this was a good idea, but it would be troublesome to implement.

Yuxi smiled and said, "I don't think the issue is whether it's troublesome or not, but whether you want to do it. As long as you want to do it, you will succeed." As the saying goes, 'everything is hard in the beginning'. It would certainly be a bit difficult in the beginning. But as long as we kept on doing it and established a clear process, the difficulties would disappear.

Yuxi's words made Yun Qing feel like a coward if he didn't take action. However, this incident reminded him of the fields and shops that had been confiscated from Kang Donglin, Geng Jichen, and their trusted subordinates. He asked, "What if we don't sell those fields and instead let the soldiers from each military camp cultivate them themselves?" In the past, confiscated land had been sold to raise money to buy other necessities. This time, however, Yun Qing did not want to sell them. They were not short of money at the moment, so it would be better to keep these lands and let the soldiers cultivate them.

Yuxi responded, "It is not a question of having too little, but of ensuring a fair distribution. Are you sure there's enough land for everyone?" She was aware of the drastic measures Yun Qing had taken against Geng Jichen and Kang Donglin, including their execution and the confiscation of their properties. However, she had been busy over the past few days and hadn't inquired about the details of the confiscated assets.

Yun Qing replied, "This time, we have confiscated a total of over nine thousand mu2 of land. We can acquire some more to make it ten thousand mu2. In this way, each of the five military camps can be allocated two thousand mu2. Two thousand mu2 of land should yield hundreds of thousands of jin3 of wheat. By next year's harvest, the soldiers should be able to enjoy two steamed buns every month." Two thousand mu2 of land for a military camp of twenty thousand soldiers might seem a bit small. However, it would still improve their living conditions, and he believed everyone would be willing to accept it.

After listening to Yun Qing's plan, Yuxi agreed that it was indeed a good idea. "Then there's no need to open up new farmland. We can just plant more vegetables and raise more poultry on the existing land." Even if they sent chicken, duck, fish, and meat to the soldiers, they would still have enough meat to eat.

Yun Qing agreed with Yuxi's idea and asked, "Yuxi, the idea is good, but who do you think should take care of it?"

After some thought, Yuxi said, "You should discuss this matter with General Zhao and Fu Tianlei. If everyone agrees, then the farmlands can be divided. As for the farmlands under your name, you can ask Guo Xun for some guidance. As for General Zhao and Fu Tianlei, let them work it out for themselves." While she was happy to offer ideas, Yuxi had no intention of getting directly involved in the management of these farmlands.

Yun Qing nodded.

After dinner, when Yun Qing and Yuxi were taking a stroll in the yard to help with their digestion, Yun Qing said, "Yu Cong came back and told me something. He said that Xu Shi had returned with Cao De. But she didn't come to Yu City; she's waiting in Xinping City." Xu Shi wasn't stupid. Yu City was Yun Qing's territory, and if she set foot there, Yun Qing and Yuxi would find out. So she chose to stay in Xinping City and wait for news instead.

Yu Cong originally intended to capture Xu Shi and bring her back, believing that her return would likely bring trouble. Unfortunately, Yu Cong was unfamiliar with Xinping City and gave Xu Shi the chance to escape.

Yuxi advised, "We need to be careful when going out recently. That woman might come back for revenge." The Xu family has been completely ruined by their actions, and the grudge between them is irreconcilable.

Yun Qing said, "I actually hope that she will come back to take revenge. But she doesn't even dare to enter Yu City, so how could she possibly have the guts to come here and kill me?"

Yuxi believed that it was always better to be cautious. Seeing Yun Qing nod in agreement, she asked He Rui, "He Rui, what do you plan to do with Du Wenshu?" Keeping Du Wenshu around was always a potential threat. However, getting rid of him now would also be very troublesome.

Yun Qing replied: "It's inappropriate to touch him for now. Let him live for a few more days! I have asked people to monitor his every move and prevent him from sending letters out of Yu City, so there shouldn't be any problems."

Yuxi nodded.

Back in Xinping City, Cao De and his party learned from Tan Tuo that the gold, silver and jewellery had been transported to Yu City. They had lost the big opportunity, and now even the smaller gains were out of their reach. Cao De was so furious that his face turned the colour of a pig's liver. They stayed in Xinping City for only two days, quickly regrouped and hurried back to the capital.

The person Tan Tuo had sent to Yu City reported back to him about Cao De's actions there. After finishing his report, he remarked, "That Madam Yun is truly bold! She actually forced the Imperial Commissioner to write a loan note." Fifty thousand taels of silver! She sure had the nerve to demand such a sum!

Tan Tuo replied, "If she wasn't bold enough, would she have survived until now?" Not only was she alive and well, but she was also living comfortably and freely, doing whatever she wanted.

Tan Ming dismissed the person who had been gathering information and then turned to Tan Tuo, wondering, "Daren4, didn't you say that Cao De was skilled and cunning? How did things turn out so badly for him this time?" It seemed to Tan Ming that Tan Tuo was completely incompetent in perception!

Tan Tuo replied, 'Yun Qing is like a snake in its home territory5 in Yu City, and even a mighty dragon cannot overcome a snake when it is in its home territory6. No matter how skilled and cunning Cao De is, he is doomed to fail." Even after teaming up with two prominent generals, Cao De was still unable to subdue Yun Qing, which was a testament to Yun Qing's abilities. In fact, everyone knew by now that the millions of taels of gold and silver belonging to the Xu family were in Yun Qing's hands. If this had happened in the capital, Yun Qing would have been imprisoned long ago. Unfortunately, it happened in Yu City, not the capital.

With this in mind, Tan Tuo muttered under his breath, "Today, things are going to change." Yun Qing was a skilled military leader, while Han Yunxi was resourceful and ambitious. Most importantly, Han Yunxi was a woman with a thirst for power. Therefore, Yun Qing would not be content to simply hold on to Yu City. Once the situation in Yu City stabilised, Yun Qing would inevitably expand his reach, and Xinping City would be the first to be affected.

Tan Ming looked up at the sky, which was clear and blue, with no sign of imminent change. If it wasn't about the weather, then it must be the situation. Tan Ming asked, "Master, what are we going to do?" They had to come up with a plan to leave this troubled place.

Tan Tuo, thinking of his wife and children who were still in their hometown, pondered for a moment before saying, "Tomorrow, you will go to our hometown and bring my wife, the young master and the others here." Though Yun Qing might be ruthless in his methods, he was not one to indiscriminately kill innocent people. As for Han Shi, although she was a cunning and resourceful woman, her heart was upright. These two individuals were worth taking a chance on. Of course, if there were other options, Tan Tuo would not want to take such a risk, but unfortunately, he had no other choice.

Tan Ming disagreed, saying, "Master, the roads are not safe these days. It's too dangerous for me to go alone and bring back Madam, Young Master and Young Miss!" There were bandits and thieves everywhere, and if something happened, how could he face his master?

Tan Tuo, being a decisive person, immediately went inside, wrote a letter and handed it to Tan Ming, saying, "Personally deliver this letter to Madam Yun." Tan Tuo came from a humble background, and his wife was the daughter of an ordinary local country squire without much influence. Since Xinping City was close to Yu City, it was often raided. At that time, Tan Tuo was worried and didn't bring his wife and children with him. Instead, he sent them back to their hometown. Now that Yun Qing was in control of Yu City, he was no longer worried about the northern barbarians raiding the area. Thus, Tan Tuo wanted to bring his family with him.

Indeed, Tan Tuo's decision to have Tan Ming bring his wife and child to him is a precautionary measure. By aligning himself with Yun Qing, if his family were still in their hometown, there was a risk that if Yun Qing did something to anger the Imperial Court, the Imperial Court might seize his wife and child to put pressure on him. In such a situation, he would be in a dilemma.

How could Tan Ming not have figured out Tan Tuo's intentions by now? He was planning to surrender! Tan Ming voiced his disapproval, saying, "Daren4, everyone in Yu City says that Yun Qing is a reckless brute with no strategy. It's too risky to pledge allegiance to him.' If Yun Qing were both intelligent and brave, Tan Ming wouldn't have objected. But with Yun Qing, well, forget it. Allying with him wouldn't bring any benefits and would only put them in danger.

Tan Tuo replied, "Your master has no choice unless he wants to die." By surrendering to Yun Qing, they could at least survive, and if they were lucky, they could even advance further. If they didn't surrender, they probably wouldn't last more than a few months. Even if Yun Qing wasn't someone who killed innocent people, he certainly wouldn't let anyone stand in his way.

Upon hearing Tan Tuo's words, Tan Ming muttered, "It would be better to live freely in Guizhou! His master has really suffered these past few years. On the surface, this promotion might seem like a two-level advancement, but everyone knew how dangerous this place was.

Tan Tuo disagreed, saying, "The signs of chaos are already visible throughout the land. There's no place that will be truly peaceful." The rampaging bandits and thieves were only a prelude to the nationwide turmoil to come. If the Crown Prince could control the powerful ministers under him, he could still restore peace to the land. Unfortunately, during his time as Regent, the Crown Prince did nothing to benefit the country or its people. Instead, he had been led by the nose by Grand Chancellor Yu and the Song family. Under such circumstances, the hope that the Crown Prince would rectify the situation and restore order was nothing more than wishful thinking.

Tan Ming hesitated. "But Yun Qing is known to kill without blinking an eye. Is it safe to surrender to him?" Tan Ming had no confidence in Yun Qing. After all, Yun Qing had a terrible reputation. He had even killed his own guards. Serving such a ruthless person would be too dangerous.

Hearing Tan Ming's concern, Tan Tuo's heavy heart was relieved for a moment. He smiled and said, "Madam Yun has always been well and safe. We won't be in any danger either. Tan Ming, do not blindly believe rumours." Even if Yun Qing really did kill his own guards, there must be a reason behind it.

Tan Ming thought for a moment and then nodded. "Very well, Master, I will go now." He only hoped that his master's analysis was correct, otherwise it would be a terrible injustice.

Footnotes Full List
  1. Have garrison troops or peasants open up wasteland and grow food grain (a policy pursued by feudal rulers since the Han Dynasty. It was first created under the reign of Emperor Wu 漢武帝 (r. 141-87 BCE) of the Han dynasty 漢 (206 BCE-220 CE)[Source]. It was made famous by Cao Cao.

  2. a classification for fields/units of area equal to one-fifteenth of a hectare
  3. a traditional unit of weight, each containing 10 liang (市两) or 16 old liang (旧市两) and equivalent to 0.5 kilograms or 1.102 pounds.
  4. title of respect toward superiors
  5. Chinese metaphor: local bully/tyrant
  6. (fig.) no outsider can afford to ignore the power of the local thug


DISCLAIMER: I don't own the raw novels, images, and videos on this site. But I do own the translations. If you're interested in translating it to other languages, no problem with me. Just link to this site.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post