Ch1 – He won’t marry me

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The 30th year of Dasheng, the country was at peace, people live in harmony and happiness.
In his youth, Emperor Sheng Yuangong was brave and excel at war.
In the 18th year, he took back all the wastelands at the border and established 23 trading towns.
From then on, it was a time of prosperity, the country had wealth, the army had strength.
A Golden Age. 

The 31st year of Dasheng, Shu Shi country in Southwest sent an envoy.
Traveling through mountains and rivers for half a year, they finally reached Dasheng’s Royal City – Yongge, to sign an alliance treaty, vowing to live in peace forever, and also present many specialties and rare pets to express their sincerity.

In return, Dasheng rewarded the envoy and announced the treaty negotiations to the ministers.
In the end, both sides reached a consensus: commercial trading between the two countries would be opened, on the condition that, a young prince of Shu Shi would come to stay at Yongge as a long-term “guest.” The treaty was concluded in the following year.



The 33rd year of Dasheng, in early summer, the Ninth Prince of Shu Shi, Du Ci, brought 500 guards and servants, hundreds of horses, and countless specialties of Shu Shi to enter Yongge.

The 35th year of Dasheng, the 14-year-old prince met Qi Nanke, who was five years older than him and the eldest son of Duke of Dasheng, for the first time. 

In a flash, a few years went by, Du Ci, who listened to all kinds of stories about Qi Nanke every day, turned 18 years old.
Emperor Yuangong wanted to grant him a marriage.
As soon as he heard this, Du Ci declared in front of everyone in the study: except for the little duke, he will never marry anyone else in this life.


“Nonsense!” Emperor Yuangong was in his prime age, still healthy and strong.
At this time, he sat in the dragon chair with a cold face and imposing air.
“Qi family’s three generations are all martial generals.
Qi Nanke went to the battlefield at 17, guarded the border in his father’s place at 19.
His marriage must be decided by the Empress Dowager and the Empress, when was it your turn to have a say?”

“But I like him so much, so why not?” Du Ci was Shu Shi’s most favored prince.
And while living in Dasheng in recent years, no one had dared to provoke him.
The nobles tried hard to please him, even the emperor doted on this naïve and straightforward child, indulging and rewarding him by not a small amount.

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Although Du Ci had been staying at Yongge for a few years already, his fluency in Dasheng’s language was still low, his speech was thick with a strong Shu Shi accent.
Flat tone, low tone, high tone, what is that? They’re all the same! With distorted pronunciations, he spoke “I admire him.
I like him.
I love him! Your Majesty, are you going to match him with a princess? That won’t do, I heard he didn’t like girls! Besides, how could a rough general like him know how to care for flowers and cherish jades? Marrying a princess to him is a waste, it was better to give him to me…”


“The more you talk, the more outrageous it is!” The emperor slapped the table, not knowing whether to laugh or cry, “Qi Nanke is the eldest son of the Qi family, how can he give his hand to you in marriage?”

Du Ci thought for a moment, then regretfully said, “Then, I can give my hand to him.” (1)

“Tbe, sbe…” Swqfgbg Vtfcu Tejcubcu qblcafv tlr rtjxs olcufg ja Ge Jl, atfc aegcfv ab atf qfbqif bc atf rlvf, “Obbx, ibbx ja ktja atlr mtliv lr rjslcu!”

C wlclrafg rafqqfv bea jcv ybkfv, “Pc Gjrtfcu, tjnlcu wjifklof lr cba cfk, atfgf jgf wjcs wjlc klnfr ktb jgf wjifr jr kfii.
Dea gbsjialfr jgf ralii rbwfktja tfrlajalcu abkjgv atlr.
Uglcmf, fnfgsatlcu firf jrlvfr, vbc’a sbe kjca ab tjnf mtlivgfc?”

“What do I need those nuisances for?” Du Ci didn’t care, “This prince is ranked ninth in the family, it wasn’t like I could inherit a title, it doesn’t matter!” 

“It doesn’t matter to you.
Do you think it doesn’t matter to Qi family as well?” The emperor said, “It’s still broad daylight, are you daydreaming here?”

Du Ci pouted, his rosy lips had a faint luster, looking very soft and sweet, “Whether it matters to Little Duke Qi or not, only he knows.
What others say doesn’t count!”

The Emperor laughed, “Good, good! Looks like you won’t look back until you hit the wall.
It just so happens that Nanke is coming back to the Royal City to report, you can ask him yourself then.”

Du Ci’s eyes lit up: “What? Your Majesty just said that the little duke is coming back?” 

“A few days ago, I received a letter stating the chaos at the frontier has been subdued…”

The emperor started talking about politics.
Du Ci stood absentmindedly on the side, his mind had long flown somewhere else.

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After the business talk was over, the emperor asked all the ministers to retire, except for one person, Guojiu, Ming Xuanfei.

In the study, the incense tributed by the Western Region was burning.
Its scent was strong but not pungent, and had the effect of invigorating the spirit.
It was the emperor’s favorite incense. 

At this moment, the emperor was leaning against the chair, his eyes slightly narrowed, his finger tapped slowly on the armrests.
Guojiu knew the emperor very well.
When he saw him like this, he bowed and asked, “Your Majesty, are you thinking about the Ninth Prince?”

“After so many years, Du Ci still only likes that kid from the Qi family and obsesses with him.” The emperor rubbed the space between his brows, “The recent internal strife in Shu Shi, does he know about it?”

“From how it looks, it seems like he doesn’t,” Guojiu replied, “The informant by the prince’s side also didn’t report he had received any letters.”

“Mm…” The emperor tapped his finger rhythmically.
After a long time passed, he continued, “If the monarch changed with this internal strife, our treaty with Shu Shi country may cease to exist.
Shu Shi is easy to defend but difficult to attack, and Dasheng’s border has just been stabilized…Keep an eye on him, don’t let him leak our intel to his country.” 


“About this marriage request, what does Guojiu think?”

Guojiu blinked his eyes, “The crown prince lacks motivation.
Prince Xin and Prince Cheng were charged guilty of forming factions and embezzling the national treasury a few days ago.
Currently, the Qi family is very powerful.
Powerful minister is a sovereign bane.
I have some ideas, but I’m afraid it will hurt the harmony between His Majesty and the Dukedom.”

Guojiu understood emperor Yuangong well.
When the emperor was young, he was brave and excel at war.
He stabilized the country and expanded its border, however, none of his children was remarkable; the struggles in harem had been his heart’s sickness for a long time.
And then there was the Qi family that had three generations of martial generals, especially Qi Nanke, who was more outstanding than the other royal children of the same age, and was highly praised by the court and the public.
Outwardly, the emperor looked pleased, but could he really be so? 

Qi Nanke went to the battlefield at the age of 17.
His glorious military achievements only made the bane in the emperor’s heart grew larger.
In the recent years, he had been struggling to find a reason to call this person back.
Ninth Prince Du’s request for marriage was exactly what the emperor needed, but on the surface, he still had to put on an act and refuted him in public.

All these things, Guojiu understood in his heart.

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As expected, his words had just paved a way for the emperor to walk on.
The emperor hmphed and waved his sleeves, “Ridiculous! I am the monarch, Qi family is the minister, how can I hurt our harmony?”

“This minister has made a mistake.
Beg Your Majesty for forgiveness!” Guojiu immediately knelt down. 

The emperor snorted coldly, “Stand up and continue talking!”

The Guojiu obeyed, “The Duke is a sensible person and will be willing to share His Majesty’s worries.
Since that is the case, it will be better to agree to Ninth Prince Du’s request and allow him to marry Young Master Qi.
This marriage will also stabilize the relationship between Dasheng and Shu Shi.”

“Stabilize?” The emperor raised his eyebrows, “Shu Shi is having internal strife.
When the monarchy changes, the little prince will become useless, could the Duke not know this and allow his eldest son to be implicated?”

“How would he know?” Guojiu smiled, “If he knew, it would prove that there was a secret connection between the Dukedom and Shu Shi.
The Duke is a smart person, even if he knew, he would have to pretend he didn’t!” 

“Mm…” The emperor was very satisfied with this answer, “But even if the Duke turned a blind eye to it, Qi Nanke has always been a person with his own opinions, he will not agree.”

“Your Majesty bestows a marriage, will he dare to defy it?” Guojiu said, “Your Majesty, the Qi family’s reputation is overshadowing the sovereign’s, you just want to silence the ministers’ voices and keep their family safe.
As long as these two got married, no one would reproach the Qi family anymore.
I believe the Duke will understand Your Majesty’s good intentions.”


The emperor and the Guojiu understood each other very well.
After an implicit exchange, the marriage was bestowed to Qi Nanke, and this matter was settled.

The Guojiu saw things clearly and knew the emperor had already made a decision in his heart.
All he needed was someone coming out and proposing it, so he could move it forward. 

Sure enough, the emperor looked at his brother-in-law, his finger tapping on the desk, “Truly, only Guojiu understood this emperor.”

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Guojiu hurriedly lowered his head, “It is this minister’s duty to share Your Majesty’s worries.”

The emperor waved his sleeves, “Let’s do as Guojiu said.”

“Your Majesty is wise!” 



Translator’s note:

Unlike the previous novel, this story is a slow pace one.
The plot has a bit of palace scheme theme (although not very deep) and should be a breeze for anyone who’s familiar with palace struggle novels. 

But since it IS palace scheme, there will be some parts with hidden meanings, like the above dialogues.
I wonder if I should put some note with short explanations next to it or a brief summary at the end, although I’m not very fond of putting in notes because they will disrupt the reading flow (and also because I’m lazy) ╮(^▽^)╭

Please leave your comments!


This is a placeholder chapter.
I will work on this SLOWLY. 

The number of chapters is the same as “Today Prime Minister…” but the word count per chapter is more than twice as long (´-﹏-`;).
There will be update at least once a week though, so, to binge readers, this project is estimated to be completed in 1-2 months.

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