Chapter 60: In the Prime (Part One)
Fang Jie had no idea that he was involved in a bloody conflict inside Great Sui, even though he was only a small figure on the edge of the storm. Of course, the Emperor of Great Sui who was controlling the storm didn’t even pay attention to Fang Jie who was an insignificant soldier from the border.
The Emperor started this storm to raise his prestige to the maximum before waging war to expand the territory of Great Sui. He was making all the officials pick up the respect and fear that they should have toward him, and he wanted the officials to know that once the Emperor made a decision, no one could stop him. As officials, they should try their best to assist him.
Therefore, the death of Hou Junci, the Deputy of the Ministry of War, was only the beginning. It was the beginning of the Emperor’s path to establishing dominance.
If the Emperor didn’t do this and announced that he planned to launch a military operation in the northwest, many people would try to stop him even though many would also support him.
Then, it would be a long and tedious process for the officials to talk back and forth. The Emperor wasn’t interested in watching these officials go from arguing about principles to calling each other names.
Killing a few important officials would make all officials close their mouths.
Since the Emperor hadn’t killed any officials in recent years, he felt like his prestige was lowering. Once the war began, he needed Great Sui to unite and tightly encircle him with everyone contributing wholeheartedly toward the war.
After Huai Qiugong got off Yu Donglai’s horse-drawn carriage, Yu Donglai knew what to do now. Also, now he finally understood why the Emperor asked him to reflect at home for a day. If Huai Qiugong didn’t remind him, he wouldn’t know what the Emperor truly meant.
He needed to reflect and come up with the list of people who should be executed.
The names on this list shouldn’t be too important but also not insignificant. Therefore, Yu Donglai needed to think.
Yu Donglai realized that even though this incident would harm him in the short-run, the benefit that he would gain from it in the long-run could far outweigh the loss.
The Emperor wanted to make changes to the Ministry of War, and Yu Donglai was in charge of creating the list of people who should die.
The Emperor wanted those who would hard oppose this military operation dead. Now demoted to the Deputy of the Ministry of War, Yu Donglai had to stand with the Emperor, and he would need to fill the empty positions in the ministry with people who would support the Emperor’s decision; he could select those people who were close to him.
Hou Junci and Yu Donglai looked friendly on the surface but were opposing each other. The Emperor didn’t want any governmental organizations to be too united as they could try to fool him for personal interests, so he was glad to see heads and deputies of ministries and departments fight in secret.
However, the situation was different now. The Emperor wanted the Ministry of War and the central government to be united. By using this opportunity, Yu Donglai could tightly control the Ministry of War, getting more than what he would lose.
After returning home, Yu Donglai ordered the servants to close the gate of his residence and refused to see anyone. The light was on an entire night in Yu Donglai’s study, and he only came out of the study on the evening of the second day.
Red-eyed, Yu Donglai seemed like he had just run a 25-kilometer race, but he looked relieved for some reason.
After leaving the study, he didn’t wash up or eat; he directly went to his bedroom and slept.
When he got up in the morning, he threw on his causal clothes instead of his official uniform and dashed toward the Royal Palace. He was holding a small box that contained a memorial to the throne.