Chapter 534: A Crisis

The maid quickly stepped in to stop him. “Lord Prime Minister, the king and queen are currently resting.”

“This is a military emergency! There will be serious repercussions if there is any delay!” A middle-aged man replied in panicked tones.

“Lord Prime Minister, we’ll be punished severely if we disturb the king now…” The maid was about to cry.

Zu An was speechless when he heard what was happening outside. Right now, he was holding Pei Mianman in his arms and sharing words of love. The last thing he wanted was to be disturbed.

However, Pei Mianman quickly pushed him away. “Hurry up and invite him in already. We can’t hold up important matters. I don’t want to be known as a beautiful woman who caused the downfall of this country.”

Zu An laughed. He finally knew why there were so many incapable rulers throughout history. When there were gorgeous imperial concubines all around you, getting out of bed early to hold a morning court session really wasn’t easy.

He let Pei Mianman get dressed. There was no way he could invite someone in while she was still lying in bed. He didn’t have any NTR fetishes, and preferred to enjoy his women on his own.

As Pei Mianman sat up, her chest rippled, driving Zu An berserk.

“Have you not seen enough yet?” Pei Mianman teased playfully.

Zu An swallowed. “I’ll never grow tired of this sight for the rest of my life! Even ten lifetimes is not enough for me to have my fill!”

As the words left his mouth, he couldn’t help but lunge at her, reaching his hands out greedily.

Pei Mianman huffed in dismay and pushed him away. With important people outside, she was in no mood to play around with him.

She finally eluded his pursuit and found some clothes to put on. Her expression grew a little strange. “These clothes… is that all to them?”

Zu An had seen how the maid had been dressed earlier on, so he had a rough idea what she meant. But when he turned around, he almost vomited blood.

As a queen, her clothes were made of more material than the maid’s, but there was still no way it could compare to what could be produced using the spinning and weaving technology developed in later periods.

Her clothing was considered bold, even by the standards of the brothels in later periods!

Just like the maid’s, her outfit comprised an upper garment and a short skirt. Because Pei Mianman’s chest really was a bit too large, though, her top was rather short, which left her fair waist exposed. Together with her well-proportioned thighs and long legs, she was the perfect example of a wild and primitive beauty. The visual impact of her was just too staggering.

Pei Mianman was also rather uncomfortable with the amount of skin she was showing, and backed away subconsciously. However, her brows drew together suddenly, and she subconsciously bent over.

“What’s wrong?” Zu An was alarmed by this, and quickly rushed over to check on her.

Pei Mianman rolled her eyes at him. “Have you forgotten what you did to me earlier?”

Only now did Zu An realize what was going on. She had been a virgin until not too long ago, and she had just gone through such a wild experience. It would have been more surprising if there weren’t any consequences.

“Stop laughing!” Pei Mianman said in annoyance. Something else worried her more. “There are people coming in. Do you think I’m revealing a little too much?”

Zu An chuckled. “Nope, it looks great on you. This is in line with the customs of this period. Don’t worry about it.” This sort of outfit was a little too revealing in Brightmoon City, but dressing up like this was completely normal during summertime in his previous world, and many girls wore things that were even bolder.

Every period had its own treasures.

His heart blossomed with joy as the thought crossed his mind, and he gave the order for the one outside to enter.

In moments, the door opened, and a middle-aged man strutted in. “This subject, Fu Shuo, pays my respects to the king and queen.”

His expression was pure, and he did not give Pei Mianman any unnecessary looks. Zu An nodded in approval. This was an honest man. Moreover, he could tell from his appearance that he was a loyal subject who cared about his country.

“Fu Shuo?” Some information quickly entered Zu An’s head. Wu Ding had been given a dream by the deities, which led him to begin searching the world for the one subject sent to him by the heavens. Eventually, he found him.

This middle-aged man used to be an ordinary slave working as forced labor. He was building a wall along the side of the road when Wu Ding showed up and chose him.

This was mentioned in both books ‘Mencius’ and the ‘Book of Documents’.

After being chosen by Wu Ding, he rose up the ranks rapidly. Eventually, he became the prime minister of the Shang Dynasty, someone with tremendous authority.

Zu An obviously did not believe the nonsense about him receiving a dream from the deities. What were the chances of a random slave picked off the streets growing into someone capable?

More likely than not, Wu Ding had grown up among the common people during his childhood, and he probably already knew this Fu Shuo from back then. He then deliberately concocted this ‘dream from the deities’ as a reason.

When Wu Ding rose to power, he didn’t have enough experience, prestige, or manpower. That was why it was recorded in history that he did not say anything for three years, spending the time silently observing the workings of the court. Later on, he found Fu Shuo, someone he knew, to strengthen his foundation.

Zu An knew full well that this was someone under his personal command. As such, he quickly returned the greeting and said, “Lord Prime Minister, what is the matter?”

In ancient times, the position of prime minister was very significant. It allowed whoever held the position to converse with the monarch directly. Only after feudalism developed later on was the role of prime minister reduced. Eventually, even they had to bow down before the emperor.

“We’ve received news from the front line that the troops we sent to suppress the Qiang Faction have been entirely wiped out!” Fu Shuo said with a grave expression.

“What?!” Zu An had already begun to slowly assume the role of Wu Ding.

Even though he didn’t quite know what was the purpose of this trial, since he and Pei Mianman had taken on the roles of Wu Ding and Fu Hao, making decisions that benefited the Shang Dynasty would definitely be the right choice.

Information poured into his head. The Qiang Faction was a powerful tribe to the northwest of the Shang Dynasty. Their range of influence extended roughly over the present Gansu and Shanxi provinces. They would send their forces to plunder the common folk of the Shang Dynasty from time to time.

The word ‘faction’ in this case had the same meaning as country. The people of the Shang Dynasty called all the countries around them ‘factions’.

This time, the Qiang Faction had launched a great invasion along the borders of the Shang Dynasty. Although the Shang Dynasty dispatched a general to stop them, their army had been completely wiped out.

This put the Shang Dynasty in a perilous situation. After all, the Qiang Faction was an old enemy of the Shang Dynasty, and were far from weak. The slightest carelessness would lead to utter destruction.

Zu An fell deep into thought. Is the purpose of this trial to see if we could resolve the Shang Dynasty’s crisis?

“Who has the most wisdom in the art of war in our country?” he asked.

Fu Shuo replied, “That would be you, my king.”

Zu An wanted to slap the man.

“Think about the situation before us! Stop buttering me up and tell me the truth!”

“Buttering up?” Fu Shuo was confused. He clearly didn’t understand this phrase. “I am speaking the truth. You are our dynasty’s greatest general. The second-best general was sent to deal with the Qiang invaders, and he has already been killed.”

Zu An took some time to silently process this.

Finally, he sighed. “It looks like I can only make the trip myself.”

Given how the situation was, there was no other choice. After all, he had thousands of years of history as reference, and he’d played a crap ton of strategy games too, so it wasn’t like he stood no chance at all.

Fu Shuo quickly tried to dissuade him. “My king, you mustn’t leave Yin Capital!”

Zu An was stunned. “Why is that?”

Fu Shuo looked at him in confusion. “Respectfully, my lord, please tell me that you haven’t forgotten about the dangers you are in! You tried to seize back the authority to make appointments, angering many of the older nobility. Trouble is brewing, both inside and outside Yin Capital. You are still safe within these walls, but if you leave, something bad might immediately befall you!”

What a pain in the ass. “Do you have any suggestions, then?” Zu An asked.

This dude is supposed to be a well-known and capable subject, right? I hope his reputation isn’t undeserved...

Fu Shuo looked at Pei Mianman and said in a serious tone, “We might need the queen to set out this time. We absolutely cannot lose this battle, so we must send out the rest of the capital’s military! There are too few people around that we can trust. If we place this responsibility in the hands of anyone with ulterior motives, there will be terrible consequences. Only the queen will not betray my king. Furthermore, she will be leading three thousand elite troops, who are going to join up with the king’s army. I believe that she will definitely be able to defeat the invading Qiang Faction!”

Zu An immediately turned pale with fright at the suggestion that Pei Mianman would have to fight on the battlefield. “No, absolutely not!”

Previous Chapter Next Chapter