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   Chapter 85 A Secret Letter From Qingsu

Eight-year-old Princess: Phoenix Reborn By Lan You Ruo Characters: 21178

Updated: 2018-08-29 18:15

"My Lord." Someone stood outside the tent requesting a presence. Yun Shang was startled as she was lying on the bed. Fortunately, she just only recently dozed off and hadn't taken off her clothes. So, she jumped out of bed and stretched to where her shoes had been placed. But before she could get them, she heard Prince Jing speak, "You are tired from the long journey. You must rest now. As there are men in every corner of the camp, it is not convenient for you to stay in other tents. Spend the night here. I have ordered that no one will come and disturb you."

It seemed that Prince Jing could read her mind even with a screen between them. Yun Shang was at a loss at his thoughtfulness and flushed. She uttered a gentle "yes, " but still went out after putting on her shoes.

Prince Jing could not help curl his lips at the sight of the drowsy Yun Shang. He smiled as he spoke, "Soon it will be time for supper. Our food is limited. So, please make the best of it."

Yun Shang returned his smile and said, "Uncle, please don't worry for me. As this is the border area and it is far from the inland, such little hardship is within my expectation."

Then she recalled the question that had come to her mind earlier, and continued, "Uncle, I have noticed that our camp is flanked by two mountains. This would be to our disadvantage if the Yelang army launches a surprise attack against us. We could even suffer tremendous losses if they do something as simple as throw stones and rocks at us from the mountain."

Yun Shang spoke as if she knew a lot about military tactics. This, of course, had come to Prince Jing's attention. He walked nearer to the table and pointed at the map. He said to Yun Shang, "Come and have a look."

Yun Shang walked nearer and studied the map carefully. The map were circled with many drawings, which confused Yun Shang. To give Yun Shang a clue, Prince Jing pointed at one of the circles on the map and said, "This is where we are, and this is Yelang's camp."

Yun Shang bent forward to get a closer look of the densely dotted markings and curves. Prince Jing watched her in silence. At last, he heard Yun Shang speak, "I know."

"Oh? What do you know?" Prince Jing asked, raising his eyebrows slightly.

Yun Shang pointed at a vast flatland far from the circles and said, "This is the country of Yelang, which is typically flat. I think Yelang soldiers must be comfortable while fighting in flat areas, and there is a greater chance for them to win in flatlands. However, they would have a disadvantage if the war takes place in mountainous areas. There are only two mountains around us. Yelang soldiers would never think of launching an attack from on top of the mountain. But we can."

Prince Jing felt delighted that Yun Shang could get to this point without his help. He said with a nod, "I have sent soldiers to study the land. The two mountains are shrouded in heavy fog. No one can see beyond five steps once in the thick forest. I don't think Qingsu would take such a risk."

Yun Shang understood the situation after hearing Prince Jing's explanation. In terms of military strategy, she was, of course, no match for the Prince who was an experienced general after having fought in many battles. However, she knew what had happened in her previous life. That was her only advantage. Qingsu was by no means a weak opponent in the previous life. Even the Prince had suffered defeats while fighting him. Yun Shang lowered her head as she tried to figure out how could she warn the Prince about this in a way that would not arouse his suspicion.

"How I wish to know what Qingsu behaved during a battle." Yun Shang murmured, as if speaking to herself.

Prince Jing's eyes swept across Yun Shang swiftly. "He is a rushed man. Aggressive. But that is not all. He is also treacherous and good at trickery."

Yun Shang tried to recall something useful about this battle from her previous life. She had barely finished her wedding before the battle started. Mo Jingran began to reveal his nature as a playboy shortly after the death of Hua Jing's husband. He was involved in romantic affairs wherever he went, and even committed adultery with Hua Jing. She was so upset with Mo Jingran's unfaithfulness that Yun Shang had shut herself in her room. Her focus had been on finding methods to regain Mo Jingran's love. So, Yun Shang had paid no attention to anything else, including Prince Jing's battle expedition.

However, amidst the blur in her mind, she vaguely remembered something from the time she had gone to visit the Empress. Hua Jing had been crying at the Empress's Palace and airing her grievances to the Empress. She said she was a poor woman and should not have had to marry a general who was destined to die on the battlefield. She also mentioned Prince Jing, who had been trapped by Qingsu on a mountain after the Yelang Prince had set fire to the mountain. Prince Jing had managed a narrow escape from the fire but had been badly hurt.

The mountain... Yun Shang took a closer look at the map, and was quite sure that there were no other mountains within a hundred li* radius.

(*TN: li, also known as the Chinese mile, is a traditional Chinese unit of distance. One li is usually about a third as long as the English mile.)

Were the mountains...

After pondering for a short moment, Yun Shang said in a soft voice, "People who are good at trickery often disguise themselves as reckless. There are only two high mountains within a hundred li radius, but you chose to camp here. Qingsu must know why you made such a decision. Though our soldiers can march in the fog with some safety measures, a fire would land us in great calamity. If Qingsu also thinks of setting fire to the mountain..."

Prince Jing burst into a smile at Yun Shang's words, and praised her. "That's right. It doesn't matter if he is truly reckless or not. It will be to our advantage if we takes some precautions."

The Prince's approval relieved Yun Shang. Then she continued, "I have heard that Qingsu has been challenging us repeatedly with a group of soldiers. But, when you pick up the gauntlet and are ready to fight with him, he withdraws. I believe that would be one of his tricks to deceive you into thinking it is his weakness. If you believe that he is a coward, you will relax y

o paint a picture of sister and present it to His Majesty. And please tell His Majesty that there is a woman in the enemy camp, who resembles Hua Jing very much. She is in the company of Prince Qingsu almost every day. You should also tell His Majesty that you've heard that Princess Hua Jing came to the border to save her husband. You dare not launch an attack, as you are unsure whether this woman is Princess Hua Jing or not. So, you have to report this to His Majesty and wait for His Majesty's order..."

Prince Jing burst into a fit of laughter upon hearing Yun Shang's plan, and exclaimed, "Excellent! I will spread the story of Hua Jing and Qingsu among the populace. Then the story will spread to the Imperial City, and will be heard in every alley and every street in the Imperial City..."

"That would be wonderful. Thank you very much, Uncle."

As they spoke about Hua Jing, Yun Shang suddenly thought of another woman. She said to the Prince, "Uncle, I have heard that Lady Zhao, mother of the Emperor's Son-in-law, has also come to the border. But I haven't seen her..."

"Lady Zhao heard that her son had been attacked in Linguan Town, so she went there with some men in search of him. She said she would not give up searching her son until she finds him alive or dead." Prince Jing continued after pondering for a moment, "Is your maid prudent in running errands? In order to get information about her son, Lady Zhao would have turned Linguan Town upside down. It would be bad if she finds out that you are involved. Though she is just a lady with an official rank that could not be deemed high, His Majesty respects her very much as the Zhao family has always been loyal for many generations. It would be troublesome if she finds out that you arranged this."

Yun Shang was quite confident of Ning Qian's abilities. So she replied, "There is no cause for concern. She won't find out about my involvement."

"Is Zhao Yingjie dead?" Prince Jing asked with his eyebrows raised.

Yun Shang pondered for a moment and said, "No. He is in Xiyi Town, which is quite nearby. I planned to send him back to the Imperial City in case he would be of help in the future. The check on the borderline is very strict, so we have been delayed from taking any action. But, I have changed my mind as Hua Jing is here too. I think Zhao Yingjie might be more useful here, so I hid him in Xiyi Town."

Prince Jing nodded, "I understand. I think you'd better set him free as soon as possible, if you are well prepared. At any rate, Zhao Yingjie is a good general. He is not stupid. If he gets suspicious we cannot let him go."

Yun Shang nodded at the Prince and said, "I know." While speaking to the Prince, Yun Shang was still devising her plan. She was also planning how to spread the Hua Jing scandal in Xiyi. Then, she would relax the guard on Zhao Yingjie on purpose thus offering him a chance to escape. The rumor about his dissolute wife would be the first thing Zhao Yingjie would hear after his escape. Then he would, of course, go to the Yelang encampment and challenge Qingsu to a fight. If Qingsu brought Hua Jing to the battlefield and Zhao Yingjie saw her even from a distance, he would know that the woman by Qingsu's side was Hua Jing. After all, they had been married for several years...

No man would accept the unfaithfulness of his wife. And Hua Jing was by no means a gentle woman. She must have treated Zhao Yingjie arrogantly in their daily life. As their marriage was arranged by the Emperor, Zhao Yingjie dared not refuse. However, as long as there was evidence that Hua Jing was immoral as a woman, she would be despised by all even though she was the Princess of Ning.

Prince Jing glanced at Yun Shang and was aware of what she was thinking. He said to her with a smile, "Zhao Yingjie is stubborn and very loyal to the Emperor. He would not divorce Hua Jing just because of her adultery with Qingsu. But he is a filial son to his mother. Lady Zhao has sacrificed a lot to educate him and see him grow to the position of a general. So, he would bear anything except for the maltreatment and disrespect towards his mother..."

On hearing the Prince's words, Yun Shang's eyes sparkled...

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