This was supposed to be longer since my original plan was to split the chapter in 3 parts, but I went on the rag at the worst time and it’s really hot outside, so I have absolutely no energy or willpower left and every time I look at the Japanese text my brain goes to smush. So it’s a miracle I even managed to translate this much.
But on a happier note, did anybody else see the first two episodes of Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation? Lan Zhan!!!!!! All the BL got cut out as I thought (darn censure), but it was still really cute. Didn’t mind how they cut out other parts of the novel, they were pretty fillerish anyway, and you have to make allowances for animated adaptions. I’m really looking forward to future episodes.
Anyways, enjoy the beginning of the last Chapter~
Just as he thought the smell of rain was hanging in the air, raindrops began to fall. Right in front of his eyes a strong rainfall started and a white mist rose over the bodies of water.
Just as he was feeling more depressed than usual, again came rain. Standing in the corridor and gazing at the garden, Sekka sighed a little.
It had been three days since Kishoh had departed for the front. The rain had continued as if trying to expedite Sekka’s gloomy mood. It seems that during this period before summer in Yoh there were long spells of rain.
Once he had received confirmation of Prime Minister Bu’s location, Kishoh had departed for the front personally leading the troops early the next morning. The Prime Minister had called Kishoh an usurper, and putting up a candidate from a subsidiary Royal Family had raised an army in a provincial town that was nearby Einei. The number of men was roughly ten thousand.
Considering it’s a rebel army lacking a just cause, a large amount of soldiers had assembled. He had probably recruited the soldiers by using the private funds he had amassed up to now with illegal means. However, after all, it was nothing but a mob.
Against the rebel army, Kishoh was leading a large army of twenty thousand. Naturally, the one with bigger numbers wins. But be it as it may, the amount of soldiers did not always decide the outcome. It was a battle where one did not know if something bad would happen.
In concord with Prime Minister Bu’s forces that were marching towards Einei, there were probably people who would join up en route. Kishoh who mercilessly purged those who defied him, Sekka couldn’t think the count of his enemies was low.
Although it had been shallow, it was clear the wound he had received a few days ago had not healed yet. Would it not get worse because he had departed for the front? Acting rashly, would he not get injured again?
Above all else, there was also the possibility of assassins. The aim of their enemy that had fewer soldiers from the start would probably be Kishoh’s neck.
“What was he doing right now? Is he safe?” after Kishoh had departed for the frontier, he had been passing his days in a restless fashion. He had probably been thinking about that man more than he had back when he had been ordered to attend to him every day.
Getting injured, or losing his life would be just desserts for Kishoh who had overcome Eishun’s and other’s objection and departed for the frontier himself. It would probably be poetic justice as a recompense for his past misdeeds.
But no, it was clear that the man whose luck was strong enough to escape all trouble he caused would not kick the bucket so easily. The fact that he, born as the Third Prince, without certain backing had won the succession struggle with only his own ready wit, and ascended to the throne was proof enough of that.
In one way or another, he tried to divert his anxious feelings, but unconsciously he just thought about such unrelated things. In the midst of serving as Eishoh’s playmate too, he wound up thinking about Kishoh.
What is happening with me…?
No matter what he did, Kishoh would not leave his mind. During Kishoh current absence, he should be contriving to slip away from the Inner Palace. And yet, far from escaping, he could not even feel more relaxed.
Why…no, he had noticed this. The fact that his feelings towards Kishoh were no longer just pure hate.
He had realized this when Kishoh had suffered an injury protecting him from Talented Person Chou’s dagger. He did not desire this man’s death.
Despite his country and family being destroyed, this body’s secret being exposed, the limit of his shame being exhausted, and even having momentarily thought he wanted to kill him with his own hands.
Sekka himself also did not know since when had his feelings towards Kishoh changed. Despite it not meaning his resentment and hatred had been cleared away, something different from that lived within his heart. It was not such a simple thing as feeling a debt of gratitude because he’d been saved.
This feeling, what is it?
Separated from Kishoh, unable to not be anxious about his state, waking or sleeping he thought about that man. Sleeping alone at night, recalling the nightly intercourses piled up by the many nights up until now, again and again he was also tormented by the heat of his shameful body.
Since he had been severely tormented because of the incident with Sai, that person had not ordered his attendance. This has been the first time since his body had been stolen by Kishoh that he’d continued to sleep alone  for so long.
 Just a fun note, the word used here is 孤閨 whose definition is ‘the room wife sleeps in alone when the husband is absent for a long time’.
The strength of the arm embracing him, the hot body temperature, had been vividly engraved in this body. As the days passed, he began to even think of those things dearly.
Because his lust had grown worse, was he misapprehending his own feelings? Although Sekka wanted to deny that he was such a wretched human being, but if that was the case what sort of feeling was this, his being was seized by both of these thoughts simultaneously.
This was clearly different from how he lovingly thought of his mother and sister. It was also different from the love he felt for Eishoh and Tensei. The feeling that had settled deep in his chest was more acute and vivid, and held a burning heat.
Up till now he had never felt such a feeling. Perhaps this was the feeling of yearning for someone?
If Yoh had not invaded, it was a given Sekka would have spent his entire life in the Moon Palace serving as the Moon Emperor. Separated from earthly life, he would not have the chance to become close to someone or share his heart either.
Born in the Li Royal Family, he had resigned himself to such a fate since he had been a child and had realized his own body was vastly different from the bodies of most people. It had been lonely to some extent, but better than letting the secret of his body to be known. `
After his sister had died, and his mother had taken to her bed, Sekka’s life had not changed. Serving as his dead sister’s substitute had been a major change, but he was cognizant it was just a stopgap measure till Shungetsu’s death was proclaimed officially.
He now understood. Every of those gentle, calm days, was also a day towards destruction.
For the sake of Ka’s preservation, such a thing as a decisive reform that replaced the matrilineal line was necessary. However, in spite of Shungetsu dying without a chief successor, voices requesting a reform in the governmental system did not rise from the Royal Family or the courtiers.
Everybody was used to the peace brought about by Yougetsu’s reign, and let it be washed away in indolence. Sekka who was the Prince was also one of these people.
Ka’s downfall, was it fate…?
Even if Yoh had not invaded, and Sekka had continued to serve as Shungetsu’s stand-in, the possibility that his country eventually would have ceased to be able to maintain itself was high. Even if by any chance Sekka succeeded Yougetsu and was enthroned, it was impossible for him to govern the country.
Balking at change, they indulged in false peace. Those days that were quiet, but filled with omens of destruction were smashed by Yoh’s invasion.
The figure of Kishoh appearing riding a black horse as he had that day, was even now vividly etched in Sekka’s memory.
Despite appearing as sinister as a jet black tempest, and being unbearably terrifying, he had somehow stolen his attention. In the gentle, dull world Sekka had lived in up till now, Kishoh was the only one carved out in a jet black tone.
Had he been captivated by that man?
Had he not only stolen his body, but also tamed his heart by means as such as pleasure?
When he remembered the conversation and the sweet kiss he and Kishoh had shared gazing at the fireflies together, he couldn’t stop the quiver of his heart. Helplessly, moved by the slightly sweet feeling, it could not be still even for a moment. Perhaps, if he lost that warmth…even just imagining it, he could not bear it.
“When this case is solved…”
Kishoh had probably wanted to say something at that time. After that with the war council and the preparations for the departure for the front, he had not been able to find time enough to speak with Kishoh.
At any rate, Sekka wanted him to return safely. He was not used to being honest in front of Kishoh, but those were his true feelings.
Hearing Ryuu Kouki’s voice, the lost in thoughts Sekka returned to reality.
Led by Shohen and Baigyoku, Kouki was coming towards him from the direction of the hallway. These days, the Imperial Court was, of course, for the sake of arresting the Prime Minister Bu’s forces within the capital, dressed in battle garments.
“You’ll catch a cold, standing in such a corner of the house.”
In a gloomy, rainy day as this, Kouki’s beautiful face looked all the more cheerful. Folding his arms with a flowing movement, he got right down to business.
“Moments ago a fast horse arrived with the information that the rebel army had been suppressed. Kishoh’s party will most likely return tomorrow.”
“…safely, I assume?”
“It seems that way. Since I heard Kishoh personally took command of the troops in battle, the previous injury seems to not have been a problem.”
That was wonderful… He realized strength had left his whole body. Despite the fact that the dark rainy skies had not changed, it was like light had shined through instantly.
Noticing Kouki gazing at him with a smile, Sekka’s cheeks reddened. Knowing Kishoh was safe, he’d let his relieved face be seen.
“Being worried about by the Honorable Consort, that guy is a lucky man.”
Kouki’s warm gaze made him all the more feel like running away.
Although Shohen and Baigyoku looked a bit mixed, he sighed in relief that it had not developed into a large domestic conflict. There was no reason to think their enmity towards Kishoh had disappeared, but it seems they appreciated him protecting Sekka from Talented Person Chou’s dagger by volunteering his own body.
“There’s also Eishun’s labor, he’s eradicated Prime Minister Bu’s forces in the Inner Palace. The Prime Minister had used the antagonism of the eunuchs to bring them in as allies, and it seems as his own pawns, ears and eyes.”
The eunuch Sai Bunsei who had assaulted Sekka and his cohorts had also probably been enticed by the money, women and wine the Prime Minister Bu was providing. After they had confessed it had been directed by Blessed Consort Bu, they had meekly testified about the run of the events up till now.
“He not only purged the ones opportunistically involved in this case by Prime Minister Bu, but also those other rebellious elements. Hereafter there shouldn’t be any more scheming groups emerging. Since Kishoh’s reign is increasingly becoming more and more secure.”
“And Your Lordship is fine with that?”
He inquired unintentionally, bothered by the fact that while Kouki as the High Steward held the duty of commanding the mopping up of Prime Minister Bu’s faction, he spoke of it like it was somebody else’s problem.
Kouki raised his eyebrows in surprise. Far from thinking of Sekka’s words as unpleasant, he seemed to be amused by them.
“What the Honorable Consort wanted to ask, being rival that fought with Kishoh for the throne, am I fine with the continuance of his reign, is that it?”
“I am sorry. I asked such an improper question.”
It had been an impolite question. It probably sounded like he was doubting Kouki’s loyalty. “I don’t mind,” Kouki cheerfully laughed at Sekka who was apologizing for his impoliteness.
“Be the events as they may, I and that guy have that sort of relationship where we fought putting our lives on the line, don’t we? It isn’t impossible for the Honorable Consort to find my current circumstances strange.”
It seems to have been a fierce war halving the country in two, but from Kouki’s careless expression, he couldn’t catch even a tiny glimpse of any ill-feeling towards Kishoh.
“Kishoh ordered me who had been defeated in the last battle, had lost his right eye and had only death waiting for him, to serve him. At that time I had thought ‘what the hell sort of harassment is that?’ Humiliating me by making me bend my knees, and survive by my enemy’s pity, right?”
“I contrived I will shortly glance a chink in his armor, and will dispense with Kishoh,” he frankly spoke of such a dangerous thing. He could probably say as such since he was no longer interested in that. Shohen and Baigyoku as well, listened to Kouki’s story with riveted expressions.
“Unexpectedly I was transferred to the sticks, and when I thought I’ve finally returned to the capital I was pushed into being the High Steward and worked hard very well by Kishoh. Furthermore, it was a station where problems only splendidly formed into huge piles. Things like needlessly incurring someone’s enmity and having my life targeted also have happened not just once or twice.”
“Well, there was that time where I once died…” Kouki smiled wryly, gazing like he was recalling the past.
“While pursuing the solution to this and that problem, one moment I noticed it that all my thoughts of usurping the throne had ceased to exist. Irritatingly, Kishoh is not a foolish ruler. There is probably no one who possesses more talent adequate for the role of the Emperor of Yoh than that man. Before I was aware of it, I began to think it wouldn’t be so bad being by his side, and looking at that guy’s way of life.”
There was no hesitation in Kouki’s gaze. Probably because he had buried his desire for revenge against Kishoh a long time ago.
“That guy has a mysterious charm. To an unfair degree even. People that meet him, be they rebellious or blindly obedient, all become swayed by Kishoh.”
Certainly, Kishoh had a power to fascinate and not let go of people. It was a magical, hard to resist power. Sekka himself was also probably taken by him since their first meeting in the depths of the forest.
“The Honorable Consort is probably well aware of this as well.”
“…something like that.”
As admitting it was embarrassing, Sekka spoke vaguely. However, the owner of the same penetrating eyes as Kishoh, Kouki, probably understood him. There was no mistake that both Shohen and Baigyoku who served close by him too, had sensed the change in Sekka’s sentiment.
“Oh, it looks like the rain is letting up. It seems it was a shower.”
Kouki turned towards the eaves and glanced up at the expanding sky. Although the majority of it was still covered in rainclouds, on the west side there was a light brightly shining through.
With these conditions, will it be clear tomorrow? Clear azure blue sky would be appropriate for welcoming Kishoh’s and his army’s triumphal return to the capital.
“It would be good if tomorrow was a clear day, right?”
Sekka who had thought the same thing smiled faintly at Kouki’s words.
Kouki is wingmaning so hard for his bro, good for ya man~
So, as I said, right now I’m in a super crappy state, but I should be better in a few days, and get back to translation, so there should be an update next Sunday.
The Poll is also still one, so there’s still time to vote, the fight between the top 2 choices is actually pretty fierce.
In the meantime I’m going back to re-reading Legendary Master’s Wife (Just got past 200 chap mark, and the place Boss finally gets to eat Momo for the first time) and slowly dying on the inside. See you next week~
If you like this novel and want to see other’s like these in the future, consider supporting me on ko-fi, every bit counts~