During Mingxia's confinement, Zong Ching used this time to organize his thoughts. Mingxia's accident and his second brother's heroic act made him remember of his goal, his assignment. He confesses that he only wanted to use Mingxia at first, but she enticed him, there was something in her that he found interest in. However when he saw how Zong Qiu jumped into the water to save Mingxia he felt as though he lost. He had seen Mingxia's accident but his mind did not immediately react to it he stood where he was and watched her fall in and struggle in the water.
A part of him told him to move but another part of him pulled him back from doing so. When he finally chose to save her he was too late. His brother has already beat him to it.
The scene of watching the women he liked saved and in another man's arms sparked jealousy inside him. To know that, that man is his brother, his enemy? Even more so.
This only reminded him of how weak he is and the little power he has.
He is meant to have nothing, if he likes something that his brothers also like, then he would have to admit defeat.
The day after the banquet, he was informed that Mingxia will stay in Zong Qiu's courtyard for a couple of days. One would think that he would be shocked and his already jealous heart would be even more jealous but he was not. In fact, he felt nothing towards this news.
His jealousy reminded him of his task that he vowed to obtain.
He will take back all that belonged to him and would be the emperor over the land.
Those that once looked down at him and his mother would suffer and pay for what they did.
Zong Ching has woken up from the spell called love.
His hatred and anger only feeds to his growing want for revenge. Zong Ching knows that deep down he still harbors feelings for Mingxia but right now she was not his. In order to have what he wants he needs to grow more powerful. And to achieve that, he would need the Wei family's help to push him to the top. The family connections and relations they have would give him to money, status and army to destroy anyone that tries to stand in his way of sitting on that throne.
At this moment, the ninth prince Zong Ching has been completely taken over by revenge.
Zong Ching chose to use the next three days to carefully think out his plan again and what actions he would need to take. He spent the next three days either in the imperial library or in his courtyard reading and writing.
"Ching! Whatcha' doin'" Zong Li barged into Zong Ching's courtyard and slapped him on the back.
"Nothing much." He merely responded.
Zong Li looked over his brother's shoulder and saw that he was reading about India and the royalties that lived there.
"So you're interested in India now?" Zong Li asked.
Zong Ching nodded his head.
"But why though?" Zong Li was confused.
Zong Ching set down his book and looked up at his brother.
"India is very interesting and abundant. The amount of trade that India makes with the western empires are beyond what we can imagine. They have the spices, trade, money and power. Who wouldn't find it interesting." Zong Ching replied.
Zong Li let out a sigh and sat down in the seat next to Ching.
"I get that but you do know of how hard it is to establish a stable trade relation with India right now, right? Father has sent multiple messengers over to discuss and create trade but each time they would end the trade relation after they have obtained what they want. The language barrier is the least of our problems, India is unknown territory and they might not have the same values as we do."
"I know that but I am confident that I will be able to create a stable trade relation with them. I have to." When Zong Ching said the last sentence Zong Li was able to see Ching's dire want for power. He got up and said his farewell, claiming that he had other things to attend to. As he walked out the door he did not look back, for he knew that his brother was no longer there. He understood Ching's pain and hatred, after his mother's dealth his innocence also died with it. And right now the one that is standing in Ching's place, wearing his clothes and harboring his body was revenge.
Ching had already died with his mother.
After Zong Li left, Ching got up and closed his book. He was now ready to start the first part of his plan.
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