Chapter 244 – Starting from now, falling into enemy hands
“Ran’er, I will test you on your recent classwork.” Western Xuan emperor suddenly said while stroking his chin.
Hearing this, Xiao Ran nodded with the appearance of listening with respectful attention.
“Since ancient times wishing for the highest virtue under the heavens, what’s after this?”
“Since ancient times, person wishing for the highest virtue under the heavens, first rule the country; person wishing to rule the country; first organize the family neatly. Person wishing to organize the family neatly; first cultivate the body. Person wishing to cultivate the body, first straighten the heart;…Straighten the heart after that cultivate the body. Cultivate the body after that organize the family. Organize the family after that rule the country. Rule the country and afterwards, the world would be at peace.”
Xiao Ran didn’t even think before reciting this from memory. His tone was bright and clear, it gave people a very energetic feel.
While Western Xuan listened, he nodded in satisfaction and in the end said. “Do you understand the meaning of these words?”
“Know it, the meaning is if you want to manifest virtue that everyone in the world loves, you must first rule well over your own country. If you want to rule well over your own country, you must first manage properly your family. If you want to manage the family properly, you must first improve yourself. If you want to improve yourself, one must first straighten one’s heart. Wait until the heart is straight, then one can improve oneself. If one’s self is improved, then the family will be orderly. Once family is orderly, then the country will be stable and prosperous. Once the country is stable and prosperous, then the world will be peaceful.”
“Father Emperor, is what this son said correct?” Xiao Ran mischievously blinked his eyes at Western Xuan emperor.
Western Xuan emperor couldn’t help but extend a hand to pat him on the head. “What you said is good Ran’er, now you need to learn how to straighten your heart. In the future you need to become a wise and witty person.”
“Ran’er knows.” Xiao Ran replied earnestly.
“Ran’er, Father emperor wants you to understand one thing, this world is where the weak are preys to the strong. And as long as you grasp supreme power, then you can do what you want to do.”
Xiao Ran nodded. “This son will keep it in mind.”
“Good, you should withdraw first, Father Emperor still needs to deal with the affairs of the country.” Western Xuan emperor intimately rubbed his head.
Hearing this, Xiao Ran frowned. “Father Emperor, you should rest first, otherwise if you continue to work hard like this, no matter how sturdy the body is, it still can’t endure such exhaustion.”
“The matters of the nation are very numerous. Moreover now is troubled times, if not handled in a timely manner, afraid big trouble will occur. You should feel assured, if there is time, Father Emperor will go and rest.” Western Xuan said, not allowing any objections.
“En.” Knowing that saying more will not be good, Xiao Ran turned to say to Eunuch Cao. “Eunuch Cao, take proper care of my father the emperor. Remind him more often that he needs to rest. If I find out you aren’t being diligent, this prince will not let you off easily.”
Eunuch Cao heard Xiao Ran’s words and with trepidation said. “This old slave will remember fourth prince’s instructions.”
Western Xuan emperor smiled lightly. “Okay, you threatening Cao Zhi is useless. He has being by my side for so many years, he is the most clear about my temperament. You’d best worry about your lessons instead!”
Xiao Ran couldn’t help but sigh. He had the appearance of being older than his age. “Father emperor, you are old and not young anymore, how come you always make other people worry?”
Western Xuan Emperor was choked by this, in the end he was provoked into laughter. “You this little joker!”
After Xiao Ran left the imperial study, a faint smile still remained on Western Xuan Emperor’s face. “Cao Zhi, did you notice that starting from half a year ago, Ran’er’s temper seems to be a lot more lively than before? Now he would say strange things that provoke a person’s liking, but this change, I the emperor like it very much.”
Cao Zhi thought a bit, half a year ago, didn’t it so happen to be when Fourth Prince would eagerly go to Prince Ying’s manor?
It seemed there were faint rumors that Fourth Prince and the little consort princess Ying’s friendship wasn’t shallow.
But Cao Zhi felt it was best not to say this kind of irresponsible and groundless accusations.
As a result, he said in agreement. “That’s right, this old slave feels that Fourth Prince is becoming more and more sensible.”
Western Xuan emperor somewhat proudly said. “Imperial concubine Yue birthed a good son for me! He is considerate, filial, intelligent and always moves forward, maybe among these children only Ran’er really cares about me.”
Cao Zhi nodded, but another peerlessly talented person appeared in his mind.
His Highness Prince Ying from ten years ago, one could also use these words to describe him. Only it is a pity that after that large fire, he became reticent and went into self imposed exile.
After Xiao Ran exited the imperial study, the palace maid Yu Tu was already waiting at the door. Seeing him come out, she went up to welcome him.
“Your Highness, Imperial Concubine Yue Niang Niang wants you to go to Moon Palace hall.”
“En.” Xiao Ran followed her toward the Moon Palace hall.
Xiao Ran entered the Moon Palace. When Imperial concubine Yue saw him, she immediately ordered the palace made to bring the bowl of soup she took great care to make.
“Mother concubine, don’t make people drink this every time this son comes. This son is almost tired of drinking it.” Although Xiao Ran said this, he still obediently drank the soup.
Concubine Yue gave him an angry glance. “Right now your body is in its growth period, adding more nourishment is good.”
Xiao Ran smiled but didn’t say anything.
“Today you went to the imperial study to look for your father the emperor?” Inside the palace the stove was ignited, breaking up the bitter coldness of winter days. Concubine Yue lazily leaned back into the chair as she asked, as if unintentional.
Xiao Ran nodded, then told her everything that happened in the imperial study. Only he hid the matter of him wanting to go find First Royal brother.
Concubine Yue straightened her body slightly, with a proud of oneself’s expression. “You must study properly, you have to live up to your father emperor’s expectations.”
“This son knows.” Xiao Ran nodded.
Saying up to here, Concubine beckoned him with her hand. Xiao Ran obediently walked over. “Mother concubine, what’s the matter?”
Concubine Yue looked at his eyes, that pair of normally tender and soft as water pupils was now like a one sided mirror. It showed his handsome appearance but one couldn’t see his mood inside.
Xiao Ran somewhat unnaturally said. “Mother Concubine, is there something you want to say to this son?”
“Ran’er, more than half a year has passed. Do you still keep thinking of that girl from Chu family?” Concubine Yue narrowed her eyes to look at him.
Xiao Ran denied flatly. “Mother Concubine, you are thinking too much.”
But that all knowing gaze looking at him made him feel like there was no place to hide. Xiao Ran somewhat unnaturally lowered his head.
A cold light flashed through Concubine Yue’s eyes, but that beautiful and graceful smile still remained on her face. “Knowing one’s son is basic to a mother. You came out from my stomach, what you are thinking about, how could Mother concubine not know?”
An look of obscured meaning appeared on Xiao Ran’s face. “Mother Concubine, this son still couldn’t put down Qing-Yan.”
Having gotten the confirmation, Concubine Yue’s face became ugly, but Xiao Ran with his head lowered didn’t discover this. However, Concubine Yue’s thought changed and she felt this was also an opportunity. An imperceptible, sly smile appeared on her face.
“Ran’er, you have already grown up. Mother Concubine won’t control you too much, but there is one principle you must understand. If you want to obtain something that doesn’t belong to you, then you must have sufficient strength. You must stand taller than anyone else, grasp more in your hand than others. Only after becoming the person with power that everyone fears, only then can you protect the people you want to protect.”
Xiao Ran half understood, saying. “Must have the power and position that other people are unable to reach?”
“That’s right. So now you must aim for that target and strive with all your might.”
Xiao Ran nodded seriously. Okay, for Qing-Yan then he will strive for it with everything he had.
Seeing this, Concubine Yue revealed a smile of having prevailed.
This son of hers, everything was good, just that he didn’t have the heart to strive for power. Anyway, It doesn’t matter if he didn’t have it, then she would just impart it to him.
She didn’t believe that after her teachings have accumulated for a long time, it won’t change his way of thinking. Her lifetime’s desire was to groom this generation’s sovereign emperor.
As a result, in the following days under Concubine Yue’s subtle teachings, Xiao Ran, from a honest and considerate youth, slowly grew to become a heavily prejudiced person. Of course, this was something to be talked about in the future.