Li Guanshu leaned forward slightly. "Duke Kang, according to your words, what should I do?"
Kang Chengxun said with a smile. "I don't dare order the Duke. I just think that you can't be humiliated by Li Ye."
Li Guanshu's face slightly trembled. He almost couldn't help standing up. But he restrained himself and bowed to Wei Baoheng who sat in the Host's Seat. "Duke Wei, just let this matter go. This time Yao'er fell into the hands of Li Ye, I hope that he can learn from it. As for the title... I don't want it. In the future, there are many opportunities to deal with Li Ye."
Wei Baoheng looked at Li Guanshu, and there was no change in his look. Then he said, "Have you already decided?"
"There is no other way." Li Guanshu was shamed and resentful.
Wei Baoheng nodded. "Since the Duke has made up his mind, I shouldn't say more. Well, we'll let it go according to your idea."
Li Guanshu was in a bad mood. After the matter was over, he did not stay at the Prime Minister's Manor any longer and left early.
When Li Guanshu walked out of earshot, Kang Chengxun sneered. He felt angry and dissatisfied, and said to Wei Baoheng. "Duke Wei, the title of Prince An isn't going to belong us, which is not a good thing. Originally, if Li Guanshu successfully helped his son inherit the title of Grand Prince, our strength will have expanded. Now the title is going to fall into the hands of Li Ye. It is not important if Li Guanshu loses his face. What is important is that others will look down on you, which will damage your reputation. Wang Duo will spread this matter, and we will be overwhelmed by them in the imperial court during this time."
Wei Baoheng said slowly. "Duke Li doesn't want to cause more complications. I can do nothing."
Kang Chengxun said unhappily, "I didn't realize before that Li Guanshu was so incompetent. He shouldn't have been menaced by a weak youth! Li Xian is already dead. In this imperial court, no one would help Li Ye at the risk of offending Duke Wei. If Li Guanshu was more hard-hearted and made no concessions, does Li Ye really dare to hurt Li Yao? Li Ye, only an Heir Apparent, has no power, how could he compete with us?"
Speaking of this, Kang Chengxun got even angrier. "All the officials know that Li Guanshu is on Duke Wei's side. Now he can't even deal with Li Ye and had to make a compromise. Others will only think that Duke Wei didn't protect him well. The officials of Chang'an city and the commissioners of the vassal states will look down on Duke Wei. And it is possible that they will not be so respectful to Duke Wei in the future. Wang Duo will take this opportunity to expand his team and openly oppose Duke Wei in the imperial court!"
"Never mind!" Wei Baoheng waved his hand and beckoned Kang Chengxun to stop talking. "Duke Li loves his son so much that he made the wrong decision. It's a common occurrence in human relationships. Duke Kang needn't say more... As for Wang Duo..." Wei Baoheng sneered, showing his contempt. "He doesn't have enough power to compete with me. He didn't have it before, and won't have it later!"
"Duke Wei has rare gifts and broad vision. Naturally, you needn't care about Wang Duo." Kang Chengxun quickly bowed to Wei Baoheng and praised him. When he leaned down, he glanced at the position where Li Guanshu sat before and sarcasm flashed in his eyes, as if he were looking at a joke.
Li Guanshu left the Prime Minister's Manor and got on the carriage. When the carriage arrived at the Vermilion Bird Street, he still felt resentful as soon as he thought of Kang Chengxun's words.
Returning to the Duke's Manor, Li Guanshu immediately asked someone to invite his advisor to the study room in order to discuss the following arrangements with him. When he talked about what had happened in the Prime Minister's Manor today, the advisor was very surprised. "Why did Kang Chengxun have that attitude? He should have asked you to compete with Li Ye regardless of the safety of Li Yao."
Li Guanshu snorted. "Yao'er is not his son, of course he doesn't care about the life of Yao'er. Li Ye directly faced my rage today. It is clear that he wanted to fight with me at the risk of losing his life. He didn't care about his own life. And I heard that when he reported his cultivation to the Court of Imperial Clan, he even dared to fight against the officials there. It's obvious that he's mad now. He doesn't take his own life seriously, how can he care about Yao'er? He might be enduring unbearable torture every moment."
"Kang Chengxun is a villain. He likes to contend for power and profit. Although he and I are Duke Wei's right-hand men, because we're at the same level of power, he always wants to suppress me so that he can be Duke Wei's second-in-command. This matter was a good chance, and he certainly will not let it go. In front of Duke Wei, the more he belittles Li Ye, the more my behavior appears incompetent!"
The advisor felt the same, biting his teeth and saying, "This damn Kang Chengxun!"
Li Guanshu sneered. "Kang Chengxun has no talent. He relies on his flattery to succeed." "However, after the battle with Pang Xun, he went to Hedong to take office. He had thought it was a good thing, but he had never thought that there were many arrogant soldiers and generals. These soldiers and generals simply ignored him. The identity of the Hedong commissioner remains in name only. Duke Wei valued him and dreamed that Kang Chengxun could manage the finance and military of Hedong well for him so that he could be praised by his Majesty because he chose the right person. But Duke Wei doesn't know that he chose the wrong person and the result is the opposite of what he wished."
The advisor said, "The former commissioner of Hedong died due to disease. Then the imperial court negotiated the new commissioner of Hedong and originally you were the most promising candidate. However, Kang Chengxun said something to Duke Wei so that he could grab the position which should have belonged to you. Now that everything in Hedong is going awry, we can just look at it and laugh at him!"
Li Guanshu swung his sleeves. "He is doomed to fail sooner or later!"
Wu You returned home. She was called by Wu Hongshan and was severely rebuked, which was not surprising.
Wu You certainly felt aggrieved and defended Li Ye. "Elder Brother Ye has achieved Qi-refining and now he is one of the outstanding young men in the Imperial Clan. Why don't you allow me to have contact with him?"
Wu Hongshan said with a gloomy face. "In the past, Li Ye had no cultivation. He was only a weakling and wouldn't threaten others. But nowadays things are different. He has cultivation, which means that he would make trouble for others. This time he annoyed Duke Xing and detained Li Yao in his Manor... What is Duke Xing like? He tyrannizes ordinary people and seeks revenge for the smallest grievance. Few officials of the Imperial court dare to offend him, let alone me!"
Wu You's nose was red because of her crying. "Father, you're in charge of the Court of the Imperial Clan, but you're so unfair and afraid of others. You really disappoint me!" Saying that, she started to cry. Then she turned and ran out. "I'll call mother to judge!"
"Stop! Come back!" Wu Hongshan punched the table and stood up. Seeing that Wu You was going to cry, he couldn't help being softhearted. He sighed, as if he had become exhausted in a moment, and softened his voice. "You're not young anymore. You should know these things."
Wu You reluctantly returned to the house and still looked at Wu Hongshan indignantly, waiting for him to talk.
Wu Hongshan bitterly said, "When Prince An was alive, he and I were good friends. Although my present behavior doesn't deserve his friendship, it was true at that time. I admire Prince An and want to take care of Li Ye. If only Duke Xing wanted to hurt him, I would not be fearful and retreat."
"But do you know? After Prince An died in Huainan, some of his former trusted subordinates died and some were wounded, almost no one was in good condition. As for those disciples and subordinates who were not Prince An's trusted ones, some were degraded and some resigned. No one is in a high position..."
Wu You stunned and reacted after a long time. She couldn't help but widen her eyes. "How could this be?"
Wu Hongshan sighed. "The imperial court has become unstable over the years. You don't know because you are young and not an official... Do you understand me now?"
Wu You buttoned her lip and nodded after a while.
Wu Hongshan waved his hand. "Go."
Wu You obeyed her father and turned to leave. When she arrived at the door, she suddenly turned back and asked, "What about Elder Brother Ye's title?"
Wu Hongshan kept silent for a moment and said, "If he can ask Duke Xing not to stop him, then the Court of the Imperial Clan would give his title to him soon..."