“Wu Yu! As the prince heir, how could you commit such an outrageous and despicable act!”
“You’re the greatest disgrace our kingdom, East Yue Wu, has ever seen! The great and mighty name of the kingdom has been wrecked in your hands!”
“If the Previous Emperor was still alive, he would be angered to death by the animalistic and predatory act you have committed!”
The derogatory and denouncing comments came from everywhere, sharp as whistles, filled with rage and anger. Wu Yu wanted to open his eyes, but no matter how hard he tried, his eyelids wouldn’t open, so heavy it was as if it was carrying rocks. His brain was shaking, splitting apart from the noise, and any attempts at moving his unresponsive body was futile.
“This must be a dream! I remember that tomorrow is the crowning ceremony, for my ascendance to the throne; I must be sleeping, I have to wake up early tomorrow…”
Wu Yu finally managed to prop up his eyes, and looked around with a glazed expression. He seemed to be on a bed; maybe it really was a dream after all.
It was winter, and even with his Martial Ability, Wu Yu still felt chilled to the bone.
Under the pain of the migraine, under the blurry vision, he managed to make out the shape of a woman on the other side of the bed. She was half naked, luscious white skin out for all to see, had an extremely seductive face, and her hair fell down in cascades over her firmly tipped breasts, causing her to look even more attractive.
It seemed that the beauty was on the same bed as himself, but she had shrunk herself to one corner, staring at him fearfully, delicate face filled with tearstains.
Wu Yu was stunned!
Xi Fei was the woman of the Previous Emperor, his father, but he disliked her with a passion. What was she doing in his dream? Also, why was he only in his underwear? His head then started hurting so hard he fainted again.
A cold bucket was of water was upended over Wu Yu, and he woke up with a start. He was no longer on the bed, but on the cold, water soaked ground, dressed in rags. Surrounding him was a crowd, all staring at him with either disappointed, savage or loathful eyes.
“This isn’t a fucking dream!”
The thought exploded like a bomb in his head. Even though he was nauseatic, fatigued and drowsy, he could determine that whatever was happening definitely wasn’t a dream.
“Tomorrow is the day of my coronation as Emperor, so I should be in my bed. But why are there rainbow phoenixes engraved on the side posts of the bed? This isn’t my bed! This is the “Xi He Hall”, Xi Fei’s palace! Why am I here?”
Gazing over the crowd, Wu Yu found Xi Fei mobbed by maids, her once half naked bodice now wrapped in a Leopard Fur Jacket.
The law of East Yue Wu stated that all ministers and vassals are prohibited to enter the Harem Palace, but here they were, surrounding him so tightly that there was no room for him to escape if he had to. Something improbable must have happened for the rules to be so blatantly disregarded, and thinking of what just happened, he knew that he was in big, goddamn trouble.
As he was about to stand up, he found out he didn’t have the strength to. All his muscles were drained of energy, such that even lying down took a lot out of him.
“Wu Yu! Yo-Yo-You! You beast! Xi Fei is your stepmother! How could you try to rape her! If we didn’t discover this soon enough, the dignity of our kingdom would have been completely humiliated!”
“A scandal! What a scandal! Oh Previous Emperor, why has our kingdom been struck by such misfortune! Such shame!”
The ministers and vassals, WU YU’s ministers and vassals, all started cursing him one by one, each and every insult a scathing and savage stab into his heart.
“Like I said many times before, Wu Yu is not fit to be Prince Heir, let alone Emperor. He misuses the military, constantly starting unnecessary wars, is violent, and ignores the laws, doing whatever he pleases. He is lacking in the art of rule, focusing instead on the pursuance of Martial Arts… this would’ve been the Emperor of our kingdom if we hadn’t discovered this scandal today!”
The person who uttered this was a prince, who had a high status in East Yue Wu. He had never liked Wu Yu, so it unsurprising he was slandering him.
Wu Yu couldn’t help but smile coldly in his heart. The truth behind the so called “misuse of the military” was he had to repel the invasions from a neighboring kingdom, and in doing so, counterattacked and took away from them ¼ of their land! He was only 14 at the time, and was dubbed the “Teenage War God”.
And the so called “lack in the art of rule” was because his art of rule was different from others. He would use his Martial Arts to lead his kingdom! Wu Yu was only 15 years of age this year, but he had already become a 5th Heavenly Stage Martial Artist!
In the same age group, nobody in the kingdom or any of the neighbouring kingdoms were able to compare with him. He was the undisputable number 1 genius! He was so talented that some people predicted he would rush all the way up to the 10th Heaven Stage of Martial Arts, “Tong Shen” to become a Martial Sovereign!
In the ten thousand years that East Yue Wu had existed, in the numerous Emperors that had taken the throne, probably only the Founding Emperor (or the First Emperor) had the talent to compare with Wu Yu.
But now, according to this prince, Wu Yu was a great misuser of military.
“Heng (Onomatopoeia)! I too do not feel he is fit to be the Prince Heir. If Prince Heir Rong hadn’t died too early, the role of Prince Heir wouldn’t have been for him to take. Furthermore, his mother was born in the mountains, evidence of her low status. If not for the Previous Emperor’s love, the title of Prince Heir would not have been Wu Yu’s. This Wu Yu has the blood of the wild flowing in his veins, so it is no wonder he is so vulgar, so underbred, and judging from his actions today, so brutish, like a wild animal!
The owner of this voice was a Marshall, but he could not be compared to Wu Yu in terms of Martial Art ability or status.
The Marshall had a son, an incompetent degenerate, who was always fucking around in East Yue Wu. There was one time, by chance, Wu Yu caught him slaughtering innocent civilians and raping women. What he did next was so unthinkable that Wu Yu nearly coughed blood up. The retarded fellow actually tried to gift the woman he was raping to him! And of course, Wu Yu fell into a rage, hanging the fellow on top of the City Gates for three days and nights, to be punished under the baking sun. From then on, all the degenerates in the kingdom were terrified to the balls of their feet. Nobody messed or fucked around in the kingdom ever since.
By now, Wu Yu had already worked out that he had been framed. There must be a perpetrator behind the framing, using Xi Fei to stop him from ascendance to the throne, but who was it? Who had the ability to win against him in this battle of wits and power?
To speak the truth, nobody could surpass Wu Yu in either means or combat ability. Since the death of the Previous Emperor, nobody had the courage to challenge him, because he treated evil people or people who went against him like his life sworn enemies, and because he had great popularity with the commoners.
“Hao Tian Shangxian*!”
The piercing shout of this name caused Wu Yu’s head to rock.
“Hao Tian Shangxian, he….” Wu Yu was startled. He felt that he should have heard wrong, but he hadn’t, because Hao Tian Shangxian was a Celestial human! Over 100 years old, he was the Protector Shangxian of the kingdom.
The difference between a Celestial and a Mortal was like Heaven and Earth. Even if Wu Yu managed to breakthrough to the 10th Heavenly Stage of Martial Arts and become a Martial Sovereign, he would never be able to compare with a Celestial, because Celestial’s were Celestial’s; They were the saviors and messiahs sent from the Heavens to prevent disasters and save the common people!
A Protector Shangxian usually wouldn’t participate in wars between mortals; their role was to protect the people from wicked evildoers, so only in cases such as when a daemon was terrorizing mortals would they appear. Even the Previous Emperor had to be respectful to the Protector Shangxian and listen to as well as take orders from him during various occasions.
To think the Protector Shangxian was here….
Hao Tian’s entrance caused the furious and savage the vassal’s had to turn to respect and sincerity.
Wu Yu lifted his head to look, just to see a body shape appear in front of the gates of the Palace. The appearance was so fast, so instantaneous that he could not perceive any signs of movement.
That was Hao Tian Shangxian, and possibly the only being alive that had Wu Yu’s reverence. Although he was over 100 years old, he still had the look of a teenager with a ruddy complexion, body straight and filled with energy. Even though his hair and eyebrows were blindingly white, it still could not cover his exuberant vitality. This was the awe-inspiring and righteous mannerism that only Celestial humans possessed!
Hao Tian Shangxian was wearing a snow white Daoist* robe, engraved with many intricate Bagua* motifs, and held a duster* on his right hand, to fend off all daemons and demons. His attire was very striking, but Wu Yu found his eyes even more prominent; they shined brighter than the stars in the sky, so bright that no evil could escape his notice.
“Welcome Hao Tian Shangxian!”
All the ministers and vassals, maids and butlers, as well as the vixen Fu Xi kneeled on the ground, bowing low to honor his arrival.
“What happened today, I know already.”
Hao Tian Shangxian’s voice was surprisingly youthful and sonorous, filled with power and a certain kind of hypnotism that caused the human mind to stir. This was the voice of a celestial.
“Shangxian, please punish this evildoer!” cried Fu Xi, with tears streaming down her face and a shuddering body.
“I will. The ruler of a kingdom cannot be wicked,” replied Hao Tian, staring at Wu Yu with a pair of searing eyes, making him feel like he really did something despicable and disgraceful, nearly causing him to confess to the crime he did not commit. “Wu Yu, this time you have committed a grave mistake. The Dao of Celestials finds the act you have committed to be intolerable, so I, with permission from the Heavens, will strip you of the status of Prince Heir, as well as your right to be Emperor. Also, from now on, you will be stripped of your Martial Ability, and will be exiled to walk among the Earth, to learn how to be human again!”
Upon hearing Hao Tian’s verdict, the ministers and vassals all cried “Shangxian, what a wise decision!”
To Wu Yu, the penance was incredibly tragic and brutal, but he remained calm and did not cry nor scream, containing his rage and anger inside his heart. However, the rage and indignation inside his heart were like a volcano waiting to erupt, the lava moving around with increasing momentum. This was hatred deep from the pits of hell.
This is fate! Fate!
Wu Yu could not help but smile bitterly; he knew the truth now.
“In this kingdom, nobody could threaten me to such degree except for him, Hao Tian Shangxian! He must’ve have been the one behind this whole scheme! Ah, I understand now. If Hao Tian Shangxian wants me to die, then this is fate! I cannot not die!”
“Today, God wants to destroy me!” he laughed, causing the crowd to look at him as if he had become crazy.
“Impudent! How could you lose control and laugh loudly in front of Hao Tian Shangxian!”
The disappointment in Wu Yu from the congregation became even greater.
“Sigh… Wu Yu is the misfortune of our great East Yue Wu!”
Insults and slander against Wu Yu permeated the air, but he shook them off like an irritating itch. His world had already collapsed, his life had already ended; why bother with what other people had to say about him?
“Wu Yu, I gift you Soul Severing Powder”
“Gift”? How excruciatingly funny! You have “gifted” me the extinguishment of 10 years of hard work and passion! Tomorrow, I would’ve ascended and become Emperor, ruler of millions, but that reality has become dream, because my “soul” has now been “severed”, my Martial Ability stripped. Useless… Yes, that is what I’ve become.
Hao Tian Shangxian still looked like the paragon of justice, all righteous and bright, but in Wu Yu’s eyes, he’d already fallen off the altar of the God’s.
“Hao Tian was never a God. He was just the strongest man in the kingdom; Ah, I get it now. East Yue Wu, it was never my father’s, never mine. It was always his!”
Under Hao Tian’s watchful gaze, Wu Yu swallowed the “Soul Severing Powder”. 10 years of torturous hard work and fiery passion, all down the drain.
It was time for Wu Yu’s exilement. A prison wagon was waiting outside the Palace Gates for him, to take him to battlefields to act as a meat shield, cannon fodder. With his current Martial Ability, staying alive for more than ten days would be an absolute miracle.
All of a sudden, a familiar and gentle voice broke the silence of the night.
Inside the cold carriage, Wu Yu’s eyes burst open, to see a woman constantly shaking the wagon, her eyes bloodshot, her face full of tearstains.
The dignified woman who was shaking the carriage was Wu Yu’s sister, nicknamed the “No Worries Princess”. Even though they were born under different mothers, Wu Yu both respected and loved her, because she was the only person who understood him in the kingdom. His mother died early when he was still a young child, so Wu You was his only family left, acting as his surrogate mother.
“Why?! Why!!” Wu You cried, whilst shuddering in the cold, windy winter breeze. Her heart hurt from the sorrow as if somebody had just stabbed there and left the knife inside.
“Sister, what happened today was not me messing about; the Heavens wanted to obliterate me, you understand?” Wu Yu stretched his hands out the cage bars, grasping Wu You’s shuddering, pale hand. The winter wind was keen and piercingly cold, the night dark and forgiving, but being able to experience the comfort of human warmth during his final hours caused the calm and resigned Wu Yu to cry.
“I don’t understand, but I believe you.” Wu You sorrowfully shook her head.
“That is enough for me. I have not done anything wrong or awful; It’s just Heaven is unfair, so you do not have to feel so heartbroken. Sister, I hope to be your brother again in my next life!”
“Next life, next life…” pondered Wu You, what did that mean? Then, the meaning behind those words hit her like a battering ram, causing her to stagger and collapse onto the floor in immense agony and melancholy.
And at that time, the soldiers in charge of sending Wu Yu away shouted, grabbed hold of the prison wagon, and started pulling it one step and one step away from the Palace. They were off.
The carriage’s wooden wheels chafed against the rock tiles of the carriage, producing “ka ka” sounds, like the rapid beating of a heart.
Wu Yu looked back, to see Wu You chasing after him, but because she had a weak body, she was quickly left in the dust.
Suddenly, snow started falling from the sky.
Wu Yu raised his head, to see snowflakes, incredibly alluring and bright in the dark. Stars could also be seen in the beautiful winter night, shining and blinking like God’s eyes, watching over the land.
Snowflakes soon started to cake Wu Yu’s body, and like that, he left the capital of East Wu Yu into the unknown.
*Shangxian – A title for Celestials.
*Bagua – The Bagua is a Daoist motif showing the eight trigrams that represent the fundamental principles of reality.
*Duster – The duster Hao Tian was holding isn’t what you think it looks like. It looks like this.