The early winter winds in Imperial City were strong and cutting.
Outside the city, the soldiers of both sides were at an impasse.
As time passed, the 5,000 elite soldiers stood under the evening sun, a heavy, lethal tension in the air.
If one stared any longer, one could practically smell the mixture of sand and blood in the air.
The imperial guards on the city walls were fully armored, and a tall man in black armor was standing right in the middle. He was the second in command of the imperial guards—Zhao Ming!
Since Chu Ning was not around, he was now in charge of the imperial guards.
He stared straight ahead as he called out, “Where is Lieutenant Wei Lin of the Northwest Army?!”
His low, powerful voice spread instantly!
A man in red armor stepped forward. “I’m here!”
This was an extremely muscular man. He looked about 30 years old, and he had a beard on him. He looked extremely intimidating.
Zhao Ming took a deep breath, his eyes cold. Wei Lin is famous in the Northwest Army. He’s temperamental, but he is strong! Furthermore, he is a stage-five warrior born on the battlefield. Just him alone can take on a hundred people, not to mention the thousands of intimidating soldiers behind him! Rong Jiu came completely prepared this time!
“According to Country Yao Chen’s laws, a lieutenant cannot leave their army without written orders from His Majesty! They’re not to bring soldiers into the Imperial City! Wei Lin, are you rebelling?”
Wei Lin laughed out loud. “Zhao Ming, it’s one thing that you’re weak, but I didn’t know that your brain wasn’t working either! I’ve already said it: This is not a rebellion! It’s just that His Majesty’s treatment of the Third Prince is not reasonable! He has broken the heart of the Northwest Army! We’re just here to get some justice for the Third Prince!”
Zhao Ming was about to refute when he saw a commotion occur in the crowd across from him.
The sea of soldiers suddenly split cleanly down the middle!
A man walked out from the back! Dressed in armor, his face was somber, and he looked authoritative!
It was Rong Jiu!
Zhao Ming’s heart sank. Rong Jiu managed to escape in the end!
After the riot on the execution grounds, the imperial guards had searched the entire Imperial City for Rong Jiu’s whereabouts, but they never found anything.
Rong Jiu had taken advantage of the chaos and left the Imperial City!
The shackles and his prison uniform were long gone and replaced by his armor, complete with an air of violence!
“Welcome back, Your Highness!” Wei Lin greeted him with cupped fists, and the soldiers behind him followed suit.
“Welcome back, Your Highness!” The shouts were deafening!
Rong Jiu raised his hand, and the crowd immediately quietened down.
Zhao Ming and the imperial guards were stunned by the scene before them.
The fact that Rong Jiu was able to control the army with the raise of his hand was clear evidence of his authority amongst the soldiers!
No wonder he had the guts to do this!
Rong Jiu looked at Zhao Ming expressionlessly. “Zhao Ming, I don’t want to hurt the innocent, so I’ll give you one chance. Open the city doors, or else… Don’t blame me for taking drastic measures!”
But how could Zhao Ming do that?! “Your Highness, such treasonous acts will be frowned upon for generations! I advise you to turn back now! Come ask for forgiveness with me!”
Rong Jiu laughed coldly. “Since I’ve already been accused of being treasonous, why don’t I just make that true!”
A sense of uneasiness welled up in Zhao Ming.
“I joined the army when I was 14, and I’ve killed countless enemies. I have 23 scars on me, all fatal! I’ve put in blood, sweat, and tears for Country Yao Chen, and all I’ve gotten in exchange is prison and crimes pinned to my name!”
How could I be satisfied with that?! Ask for forgiveness? The person sitting on the throne no longer has the right to give orders from there!
Zhao Ming said somberly, “Your Highness! You…”
Before he could finish, Rong Jiu raised his hand up high!
He then waved! “The first person to break through the city gates today will move up three ranks and receive 1,000 taels of gold!”
His low and powerful voice echoed!
The Northwest Army behind him was excited and cried out in excitement! “Kill! Kill! Kill!”
Wei Lin looked up and laughed. “Hahahaha! Didn’t you fools hear His Highness? I’m not giving you all the chance! I’ll take the city gates!”
With that, Wei Lin rushed forward!
Thousands followed suit!
Seeing that Wei Lin headed straight for the city gates, the people behind him followed right after!
Rong Jiu suddenly pulled out the knife he carried on him, and the knife reverberated in the air!
The winds were blowing!
The next instant, he stood on his toes and rushed forward himself!
He was giving back all the insults and torture that he had received during his time in the Imperial City!
Zhao Ming immediately spoke up. “Release the arrows!”
The imperial guards hidden behind the walls drew their bows!
Chu! Chu! Chu!
Countless black arrows flew across the sky!
Rong Jiu was agile and fast as he avoided the arrows without a single scratch!
He had been on the battlefield since young, and he had been on the brink of death countless times. This was nothing to him!
Before Zhao Ming and the others could see how Rong Jiu was moving, he had arrived at the city gates!
He leaped up, intending to go head to head with Zhao Ming!
Zhao Ming cried out, “Activate the city gates’ defensive Xuan formation!”
He refused to believe that Rong Jiu could make his way inside!
But after waiting, there was no response from the city gates.
“Assistant commander, bad news! The Xuan formation is damaged and cannot be activated!” said a soldier panickedly as he ran up.
Zhao Ming was stunned and grabbed the soldier by the collar and picked him up. “What did you say?”
The Xuan formation is a major formation. Inspections and restorations have always been done on it, so how could it suddenly be damaged? Zhao Ming froze. It was Rong Jiu; they had come prepared!
Both sides broke out into battle!
While the city gates were caught in a battle, it was chaos within the city gates as well.
Even though part of the imperial guards was in charge of security, the people were worried.
The streets were a mess, and everyone was hidden in their homes.
After Rong Jin was deposed, everyone thought Rong Jiu would naturally become the new Crown Prince. Little did they expect him to start a rebellion instead!
But anyone who knew anything could tell that Rong Jiu had come prepared. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have been able to summon the Northwest Army on such short notice.
In an instant, the people couldn’t tell if Emperor Jiawen had wronged Rong Jiu first, or if Rong Jiu had planned the rebellion first.
But Chu Liuyue didn’t have time to pay attention to these things because Mu Qinghe had arrived at her residence!
Inside the room, Chu Liuyue widened her eyes. “What? Leave now?”