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Chapter 169: I’m sorry, Prince, Her Majesty has given more!
At this moment, Li Yuxin was still massaging Lin Beifan’s head.
Looking at Lin Beifan’s handsome face so close, she could feel his breath and warmth. She couldn’t help but feel a little joy, and her heartbeat quickened. A blush quietly flew up to her cheeks.
“Sir, you seem very tired, is it always like this?” Li Yuxin asked softly.
“Yes, I have too many official duties to handle!” Lin Beifan sighed with his eyes closed. “I am the Principal of the Imperial Academy, responsible for managing thousands of teachers, students, and workers in the school. The responsibility is not light! In addition, I have been entrusted by Her Majesty to oversee the production of the ari balloon and the air cushion boat! I also have to attend early morning court every day and take care of other affairs! I am truly a brick of the court, moving wherever needed!”
“For example, before this, I was responsible for handling the matters of the two grandmaster’s battle, as well as going to Tangzhou to persuade the rebel army to surrender. These are not my original job, but I took care of them, and fortunately, I completed the missions satisfactorily, not disappointing the grace of the Empress!”
Li Yuxin said with pity, “Sir, you’ve worked hard!”
“This is not considered hard work, it is also a way to share the worries for Her Majesty and seek justice for the people!”
Lin Beifan said, “If I don’t oversee the production of the air balloon and the air cushion boat, there will definitely be people who take advantage of the situation and betray the national interests, putting Great Wu in a disadvantageous position!”
“If I am not responsible for the grandmaster’s battle, they will bring the battlefield to the capital, even directly to the Forbidden City. The capital will inevitably suffer countless casualties and deaths!”
“If I don’t go to persuade the rebel army to surrender, war will surely break out, causing displacement and destitution among the people!”
“Therefore, I have no choice but to do these things!”
Li Yuxin’s eyes were filled with admiration and admiration. “I heard about these things when I came to the capital! If it weren’t for your tremendous efforts, Great Wu would have been in chaos long ago! Sir Principal, you are amazing!”
“Oh! It’s good that you understand!”
Lin Beifan sighed, “However, the most tiring thing is dealing with the court officials. They all wish for my death! As long as I make a single misstep, I will meet my demise! I have to compete with them in wit and courage every day, which is especially exhausting!”
Li Yuxin felt even more sorry, “Sir, you are truly too hardworking! You are so young, yet you have to take care of so many state affairs! How about this, I will come regularly to give you massages and help you relax!”
“Ah? How can that be appropriate? I don’t deserve any reward without merit!”
“Sir, I beg you not to refuse. This is the only thing I can do for you! Thanks to you, my grandfather’s hard work could be published, and you even revised medical books and taught us invaluable remedies. I don’t know how to repay you, this is the only way I can show my gratitude!” Li Yuxin said sincerely.
Lin Beifan was moved by her sincerity, “Okay, thank you for your hard work!”
“Sir, you’re too kind,” Li Yuxin smiled slightly, feeling full of joy in her heart!
She would be able to see him more often in the future!
Half an hour later, the massage finally ended.
Lin Beifan noticed that Li Yuxin’s delicate jade fingers were trembling slightly, indicating her effort during the massage.
So, Lin Beifan asked her to stay for dinner.
Afterward, he asked Mo Rushuang to send her home.
At this time, in the Northern Hebei, Advisor Zhuge, hesitated at the door for a long time, pondering over it repeatedly, and finally gritted his teeth and walked into Prince’s study.
Bowing with both hands, he said, “Reporting to Your Highness, we still haven’t found the real murderer behind Mula. Please punish us!”
(Tln= Mula is Old Mu who was murdered by Lin Beifan)
Prince of Northern Hebei became furious, “You worthless thing! I gave you such a long time, why can’t you find a single person? I raised so many of you, what are you doing?”
Zhuge nodded his head lowly, enduring the scolding with bitterness in his heart.
In these past few months, Prince’s temper had gotten worse and worse!
The Royal Mansion was empty, there was not much wealth!
The production of the air balloon and air cushion boat consumed a significant amount of manpower and resources, but they still couldn’t be produced!
Many experts died in succession, even innate experts suffered two deaths and one serious injury!
The military force disguised as bandits was wiped out by someone else!
It could be said that… the fortunes were not in favor!
Therefore, Prince was extremely angry, either scolding or beating!
And as his trusted confidant, the person responsible for many matters, Zhuge bore the brunt of his anger!
It could be said that his body suffered, but his heart suffered even more!
After scolding, Prince felt more relieved in his heart and asked, “How much money is left in the Royal Mansion? Give me a sum of money, around 500,000 taels. I was planning to entertain important guests!”
Zhuge lowered his head and said, “Prince, there is not that much money left in the Royal Mansion!”
Prince became angry again, “How can there be no money? Where did the money go that we robbed before?”
Trembling, Zhuge said, “Prince, although we had robbed over 3 million taels before, more than 1 million taels were spent on manufacturing the air balloon. Another 1 million was used for the expenses of the army and the martial arts experts in the mansion! The remaining 500,000 taels were sent to the top scholar in the capital city! So, now there’s less than 500,000 taels left!”
Prince was once again enraged, “If there’s no money left, then go and rob again!”
Zhuge panicked, “Prince, we can’t rob anymore!”
“Why can’t we rob?”
“Prince, we have already robbed everything that can be robbed. The common people don’t have much wealth anymore! Furthermore, due to rampant banditry, many people have fled from Northern Hebei, no longer working in agriculture! Merchants no longer come to our region for business, and the economy has already declined. The tax revenues have also decreased significantly! Therefore, we should rest, recuperate, and work to restore the economy as soon as possible!”
“But how can we do without money?” Prince angrily exclaimed, “How can we support the army without money? How can we support the martial arts experts? Don’t be fooled by their obedience, each and every one of them is an experienced expert. If we run out of money, they will leave faster than anyone else! We have worked so hard to establish a good situation, shouldn’t it all collapse?”
“Your Highness’s words are very true! But we really don’t have much money…” Mr. Zhuge wiped his sweat, feeling helpless.
“Since there’s no money, then you find a way to get money for me!” Prince shouted.
“But I don’t know how…” Mr. Zhuge helplessly smiled.
He was an advisor, good at planning and advising, but if it came to quickly making money, he truly had no way.
Prince also knew that this was a difficult task, calmed down, and said, “Since we can’t rob in our territory anymore, we can send people to other provinces and let them rob there!”
Mr. Zhuge was shocked, “Your Highness, this is very dangerous! Without our secret protection, the casualties will multiply!”
“Why don’t you have another solution?” Prince said angrily.
Mr. Zhuge lowered his head.
“Just do as I say!”
Thus, the bandits who were once confined in the northern Hebei region seemed to break free from their cage and spread out in all directions.
While bringing back great returns, they also brought back massive casualties.
The other provincial governments and military forces were not lenient towards them. Once they discovered the bandits, they immediately took action and dealt with them accordingly.
And this matter finally alarmed the imperial court.
The Empress became enraged, “How can this be! The problem with the bandits has become so serious before it was reported? What were you all doing before?”
“Your Majesty, these bandits come from the northern Hebei region, it may be related to Prince of Northern Hebei! As this matter is of great importance, the officials dare not act without orders. Please forgive us, Your Majesty!” an old minister said.
“F*ck the Prince! If I find out you’re involved in this matter, I won’t spare you!” the Empress exclaimed loudly, “My esteemed ministers, do you have any good strategies to solve this bandit problem?”
“Your Majesty, we can request other provincial governments to send troops to suppress and eliminate them!”
“But the bandits move quickly, appearing and disappearing without a trace. How can we send troops to suppress them? By the time the troops arrive, they might have already fled!”
“In that case, what other solutions do you have, Sir Wang?”
Everyone had their own opinions.
The Empress wasn’t very satisfied, and her gaze drifted to Lin Beifan, who was standing there, idly fishing.
She smiled slightly, “Sir Lin, do you have any good strategies?”
Lin Beifan stepped forward and said loudly, “Reporting to Your Majesty, this humble servant does not have any good strategies. Please examine it carefully!”
In his heart, he silently thought, Prince, rest assured, I will never betray you!
I am your most loyal subordinate, unwavering in poverty and misfortune, never yielding to power and prestige. You can trust me completely!
The empress still had a smile on her face, “Sir Lin, if you propose a good strategy, I will grant you a three-day vacation!”
Lin Beifan immediately said loudly, “Reporting to Your Majesty, I have just come up with a method that might solve the bandit problem!”
Silently shedding tears in his heart, I’m sorry Prince! It’s not that I want to betray you, but the Empress has given me too much!
The Empress smiled internally.
I knew it, if I don’t give you some benefits, you won’t budge, you lazy person!
“Sir Lin, what is your brilliant plan? Speak up quickly!” the Empress asked expectantly.
“Your Majesty, the reason why it’s difficult to eradicate the bandits is because they move quickly and disappear without a trace. They are also highly scattered. It is laborious and inefficient to surround them with regular military forces. To deal with these cunning bandits, ordinary soldiers won’t do. So, can’t we change our approach and use martial arts experts to fight them?”
Lin Beifan smiled and said, “Martial arts experts also move quickly and disappear without a trace, and they are even more powerful. They are perfect for dealing with bandits! We can publish a wanted list and offer a reward for the bandits’ heads, ten taels of silver per head. Let them kill the bandits for us, and we can distribute the money from behind!”
“This idea is good!” the Empress’s eyes brightened.
“But, ten taels of silver per head is too little, it won’t attract powerful experts at all! And if their strength is insufficient, they won’t be able to deal with the bandits! Shouldn’t the reward amount be higher?” an old minister asked.
Lin Beifan shook his head and smiled, “No need! In addition to the wanted list, we can also release a hero list for recognition! According to the number of bandit heads killed, they will be ranked. The more they kill, the higher their ranking! Most of these martial artists are fame seekers. To rank higher, they will definitely actively kill bandits and strive to make the list, to become heroes!”
“This hero list is great!” the Empress’s eyes became even brighter.
“In addition, we can promise that the person ranked first on the hero list will be granted a reasonably fair condition by our court! This way, won’t we attract real experts?”
Lin Beifan proudly smiled, “This group of bandits is at most four to five thousand people. We only need to pay a mere forty to fifty thousand taels, plus a reasonably fair condition, to easily solve the bandit problem. Your Majesty, is this plan feasible?”
The Empress shook her head and laughed, “Sir Lin, it had to be you. You came up with such a brilliant strategy! I think this plan is good. My esteemed ministers, do you have any objections or anything to add?”
The officials looked at each other, unanimously saying, “We have no objections, Your Majesty!”
“Good! We will proceed according to the Sir Lin’s plan!”