Real Empress from a Noble Family - Chapter 298
Chapter 298 I Will Be the One Who Benefits the Most!
Qiu Yelan prepared herself angrily that others would persuade her to be generous. She wasn’t in the mood to ask about the Dou Family’s matter. Jiang Yashuang told her voluntarily when he had the chance, “The Dou Family was found to trade with tribes of the western savages stealthily. The amount is huge, and they have been trading weapons. They are definitely ruined this time. They may end up worse than the Tao Family!”
The Tao Family ended up like the Duan Family. The main members of their family were beheaded in public. Others were exiled far away. Empress Dowager Gu sent her grandnephew to help the Duan Family as a reward for Duan Jin’s loyalty since he killed himself to keep the secret. However, the Tao Family was ruined because they betrayed the Jiang Family. No one dared to help them, including Madame Tao. Few of those spoiled ladies might be able to arrive at their exiling destination alive!
Jiang Yashuang said that the Dou Family might end up worse than the Tao Family at that moment. Qiu Yelan couldn’t help being surprised, “Will their whole family be beheaded?”
“And their family members and servants who aren’t old enough to be beheaded can’t be redeemed!” Jiang Yashuang said flatly with a poker face, “If you run into people from the first branch in our branch these days, don’t talk too much in case getting in trouble!”
Qiu Yelan was stunned for a while and then said, “Colluding with the western savages… How did they be accused of this?”
She couldn’t fully understand the account book He Shuijin gave her. But according to He Shuijin, those were just records of the Dou Family’s corruption, bribery, and blackmail! How could the Dou Family be accused of colluding with the western savages? This kind of accusation could easily implicate the Jiang Family. Then it would be a big problem!
After all, the Jiang Family had been controlling the Northern Army for decades. If the Jiang Family also colluded with alien nations, then Darui’s line of defence…
“Did Qiu Dian find something when you made a fuss about the account book? Did he frame the Dou Family because of it?” Qiu Yelan speculated, “But how didn’t grandfather and others refute?” And they actually let the Empress Dowager’s party convict the Dou Family! It was not something importunate Empress Jiang would do!
Jiang Yashuang smiled. His smile was apathetic and ironic, “It’s the truth. How could it be a false accusation?”
Seeing that Qiu Yelan was shocked, he explained calmly, “Empress Dowager Gu colluded with Kuang Shihan to frame your father and the Ruan Family. Empress Dowager has been controlling the Western Army ever since. We couldn’t stop it back then. So, we thought we should let the western savages mess with Kuang Shihan! However, we were afraid that we might have taken a crocodile as a pet. So, we didn’t give them many weapons. The western savages weren’t fools. They weren’t willing to attack aggressively unless they were absolutely sure. We began to trade salt, cloth, tea, and other things with them afterwards. I heard the profit was high.”
“You guys… you guys let the Dou Family do business with the western savages in order to go after Empress Dowager Gu. And you guys sold them weapons!” Qiu Yelan was too shocked to speak fluently!
As the hordes, the western savages and Beihu both needed Darui’s sophisticated technologies and rich natural resources in their lives and in wars. Darui opened border markets in order to restrain them and profit from them. But rules of the border markets were very strict. In short, the price was high, and the variety was small! Besides, arms export was strictly forbidden!
Under this circ.u.mstance, it gave rise to smugglers who would die for money.
But the official was involved. And as the “Defender of the State” who made his name by fighting the invasion, he was the mastermind. It gave Qiu Yelan a new perspective of things again.
But then Qiu Yelan’s perspective of things got changed again. Jiang Yashuang smirked, “No… Our father suggested it in the first place. He wanted the third uncle and the sixth uncle to do it. And we would get ten percent of the profit. However, the eldest uncle found out about it. He managed to get grandfather and granduncle’s support. They gave it all to him! He and his sons surely didn’t have time to do it themselves. The eldest aunt didn’t know how to do it. And she didn’t want us to do it. So, she asked her maiden family for help… humph!”
Smuggling business was surely very profitable, especially with an important official backing it up. How could Jiang Tianao who was used to having a special treatment in the Jiang Family let this kind of profitable business go?
But he would never think that his hogging all the benefit would be Jiang Yashuang’s advantage when Jiang Yashuang went after him. After Empress Dowager’s party found out that the Dou Family had been selling weapons to the western savages, Marquess Qin chose to cast the Dou Family aside without hesitation in order to let his nephew off the hook!
Besides, only the Dou Family was ruined at that time. None of the Jiang Family’s members was involved. Even if Marquess Qin found out that Jiang Yashuang was behind it, he wouldn’t do anything to Jiang Yashuang! After all, Marquess Qin could value his nephew more than his sons and grandsons. But he couldn’t value his nephew’s in-law more than his grandson!
Qiu Yelan thought for a moment and then said, “With this kind of catastrophe in the Dou Family, even the first branch could get out of it, they would suffer a great blow. However, everyone knows that the Dou Family is one of the most important in-laws of our family. They are accused of colluding with the western savages. Our family will be implicated, won’t we? The target of Empress Dowager’s party is never the Dou Family. It’s us! Weren’t you afraid of getting burnt while playing with fire? When it came to political struggle, the result was never known until the end!”
Especially, Empress Dowager’s party and Empress’s party had drawn all these years. Clearly, they were about equal!
Jiang Yashuang said flatly, “Have you ever thought about what will happen after Jinglan kills Kuang Shihan and his son?”
Qiu Yelan was stunned by his sudden change of topic. She pondered and then said, “How could I know? He should have made a deal with you guys before he left, right? But he told me nothing. How could I know?”
“Like our father, the eldest uncle has three sons. But his eldest son is much older than Yadan. And our eldest nephew is just a few years younger than me. He is already 15.” Jiang Yashuang said calmly, “Our cousins of the first branch and our eldest nephew don’t seem so talented. They even seem a little mediocre. But they are actually very sophisticated! Especially Yayue!”
“So, the first branch will definitely have a finger in the pie if our father doesn’t have such deep root in the Northern Army. Since they can’t take advantage of our father, how could they let the fruits of our brother’s victory slide?” Jiang Yashuang looked at her, “Our brother put his life at risk in order to succeed. Of course, our family helped him. But it was our whole family’s effort and the first branch didn’t contribute the most. It’s unreasonable for us to help the first branch to get what they want again, right?”
Qiu Yelan muttered, “You don’t want the first branch to seize the fruits of our victory. Then who do you think should have it? There is no one capable in our branch, is there? You will definitely go to the Northern Army, not Yadan. I heard that Yazhu had been working hard recently. But he is too young and still has a lot to learn in order to lead an army…”
Jiang Yashuang interrupted her calmly, “Your brother of course!”
“Are you sure?” It was what Qiu Yelan had hoped for. The Ruan Family and the Qiu Family had been taking turns to lead the Western Army since the founding. As the heir of both the Qiu and the Ruan Families, Qiu Jinglan was the right person to lead the army. But accepting Marquess Qin and Xue Chang’s help meant that Qiu Jinglan needed to hand over the Western Army.
Qiu Yelan couldn’t believe what Jiang Yashuang said. She chuckled, “You sound like you can control it. Don’t worry. Although my brother is sophisticated, he is a man of his words. Besides, I’m married to you. You should know how much he adores me. He will keep his promise just for my sake.”
Jiang Yashuang shook his head, “Do you think I’m testing you? How could I do this to you?”
He said with a smile, “It’s true that I don’t have the authority to give the Western Army to our brother. But now, the Dou Family has been declared guilty of colluding with the western savages. With Empress Dowager Gu in the picture, how could she not take advantage of this? Not only will she take advantage of this, she will also stick to it! So, Our Family can’t dip our fingers in the Western Army when Kuang Shihan and his son die. In this case, who else is better than our brother in taking over the Western Army? It’s worth taking a little risk with a reward like this. There is no such thing as something for nothing!”
According to what he said, it was really possible for Qiu Jinglan to take over the Western Army. But Qiu Yelan was still worried, “But my brother is too young.” Being a man in his early twenties, Qiu Jinglan was suspected that he got the Prefectural Governor position through connections, let alone be the commander.
Besides, the western savages would be the fair judge of the ability of the Western Army’s commander. They would test the commander’s competence via war!
Qiu Yelan had faith in Qiu Jinglan’s talent and shrewdness. However, a capable politician wasn’t necessarily a capable strategist!
“Grandfather will take care of it. Prime Minister Xue surely will help, too!” Jiang Yashuang seemed relaxed. He didn’t feel guilty for tricking those two powerful officials stealthily. He looked at his wife with a faint smile, “So, have you got the picture? Families like us seem wealthy. But once we lose our power, we’ll end up hundreds of or even thousands of times worse than those ordinary families. Sometimes, a trifle will lead to a catastrophe! For example, when the Duan Family prepared for Princess of Cai’s wedding, they definitely only thought of giving her a glorious wedding. It would be even better if her wedding was more glorious than Princess of Lu’s. They didn’t think that others would use it against them! Also, the Dou Family profited tremendously selling weapons to the western savages. Now they are found guilty. Even women and babies in their family can’t survive. Aren’t you really going to tell me the deal you made with Shuijin?”
So, that was why he said all those. He still wanted to know He Shuijin’s request!
Qiu Yelan frowned tightly. She said after a long while, “It has nothing to do with the politics. Since I’ve already promised Shuijin, I’ll keep my promise. I can only tell you that it’s personal and Shuijin’s privacy.”
Jiang Yashuang wasn’t quite satisfied with that answer, “Shuijin has always been nice to people. With her status, how could it be personal? Besides, she controls a team of our secret guards. They can do things for her. Why does she need your help?”
“…” Qiu Yelan was silent.
Sensing that he couldn’t get her to talk, Jiang Yashuang let it go after some thinking. He just asked, “Are you sure it won’t affect the affairs of state? That’s not something to be joked with!”
“Even I don’t know politics. But it’s an undeniable fact that Shuijin is shrewd, right?” Qiu Yelan puckered her lips, “Do you think she is that kind of person who puts personal grudge above family interests? She’ll be the first one preventing things that will harm our family!”
“In that case, fine, I won’t ask you anymore,” actually, Jiang Yashuang still didn’t quite believe what Qiu Yelan said. In his opinion, any trifle at that moment might change the situation. It only depended on whether it was noticed or by whom it was noticed. For example, although he was responsible for the Dou Family’s catastrophe, He Shuijin providing the account book without doubt accelerated the event and made it a big deal.
So, no matter what deal Qiu Yelan made with He Shuijin, just the account book itself had already affected the overall situation.
“Lanlan and I have just got married. She knows little about the politics because she was kept in the backyard. She doesn’t know better!” He let it go because he was thinking, “I still have a few cards in my hand. We should be safe even if accidents occur. It will be nice if this teaches her a lesson.”
Qiu Yelan didn’t know that her husband let it go so easily because he wanted to teach her a lesson via her possible failure. She thought he had moved on. She was relieved. And she was happy and worried thinking of his promise to give the Western Army to Qiu Jinglan. After thinking for a while, she couldn’t help grabbing his sleeve and confirming, “Will my brother really be in charge of the Western Army? Then he is going to stay in Shazhou, isn’t he?”
“Yes. Although you guys will be separated, it will be good for him,” Jiang Yashuang had been waiting to educate her about politics. He reminded her immediately, “The Kuang Family and Empress Dowager Gu are threatened by Jinglan’s origin. Just think about it. If Jinglan doesn’t take over the Western Army, others will. Won’t they be threatened as well?”
He sneered, “Especially, Jinglan is my brother-in-law!”
So, the first branch mustn’t take over the Western Army. Otherwise, they would kill Qiu Jinglan in order to avoid problems in the future!
Qiu Yelan mused for a moment. She suddenly asked, “But my brother is Prime Minister Xue’s favourite student. You know how much Prime Minister Xue values him! If Jinglan controls the Western Army, with Prime Minister Xue’s support, aren’t you afraid that he will be out of your family’s control or even stand up to you guys as an equal?”
“Why should I be afraid?” Jiang Yashuang was stunned and then laughed out loud. He hugged her and gave her a big kiss, “His precious sister is my wife. And I’ve been faithful to you. When Jinglan is full-fledged, he will only help me for your sake. How could he harm me?”
He said gloatingly, “When the time comes, I’ll be the one who benefits the most!”