Chapter 10 National Scholar
One afternoon near the end of the New Year, Shen Wen, who had been thought of by someone, was in her boudoir, put down her pen, and said to Su Wanniang, who was sitting at the door doing some embroidery, "All right, come here for a moment." Su Wanniang looked out and saw that there was no one in the courtyard, so she came over and saw a white silk spread out flat on the bookcase with a black and white game of chess painted on it.
Shen Wen picked up a pen, dipped it in ink and handed it to Su Wanniang, saying, "Use your left hand to write, Ji Wenzhao."
Without hesitation Su Wanniang took the pen and carefully and clumsily wrote Ji Wenzhao's name.
Shen Wen then pointed to the upper part of the board and said, "Here, write 'Black first, white live'."
When Su Wanniang had finished writing, Shen Wen blew away the ink, carefully folded the chessboard and put it with a fan, and took out another small note and said, "Write a few lines and tell him that on the fourth day of the fourth month, at exactly noon, you will meet him at the Moon Watching Pavilion outside the Xiangye Temple in the south of the city."
After thinking about it, Su Wanniang put down her pen and wrote: After thinking about it, Su Wanniang put pen to paper and wrote: "At the end of spring, on the fourth day of April, there are a few peach blossoms left.
If one wants to enjoy spring, one should go to the Xiangye Temple in the south of the city.
Outside the Monastery, there is the moonlight pavilion, where the view is perfect at noon, and the grass is green as far as the eye can see."
Shen Wen said in amazement, "Sister Wanniang, you're really talented!"
Su Wanniang said, "We have to have some style anyhow."
Shen Wen wrapped a few things in a small bag and handed it to Su Wanniang, saying, "Keep it, we will send it to Guangyi Pavilion on the 15th when we leave the Mansion.
Go and ask the proprietor there to hang this game of chess on the wall to allow people to discuss it, and if Ji Wenzhao goes and asks the proprietor who gave him this game of chess, let him give him this fan and this note.
Oh, and you must not let the proprietor know that you are a member of the Marquis of Zhenbei's household"
Su Wanniang knew that Guangyi Pavilion was a teahouse where chess games were regularly set up, a place where many chess players played and watched chess.
She asked, "How did you know that the proprietor would take it"
Shen Wen whispered, "I went to several teahouses that could set up chess games during the night, and after looking around, this is the most suitable teahouse.
The proprietor of this teahouse is a chubby-looking official surnamed Bao, who often has a smile on his face.
He was always in the teahouse and would rather not go home if his mother and wife didn't send people to remind him every day.
It is said that he loved chess as much as his life, but he was a bad player, unwilling to stop when he lost and pestering people to play, which made people dislike playing with him.
But he didn't regret his game.
He relied on this teahouse to attract famous players to play chess, and he was able to watch from the sidelines and sometimes hoodwink anyone into playing a game with him.”
Su Wanniang laughed, "He's funny." She asked, "If he takes it, are you sure that Ji Wenzhao will wait for us on April 4 after reading this"
Shen Wen said, "Yes." But this time there was no more explanation.
Since Ji Wenzhao was a national player, he must have a deep-seated love of Go and could not refuse the challenge of playing it.
TheGo game Shen Wen drew was a puzzle from the Fa Yang Discourse.
The " Fa Yang Discourse" (also known as " Nonstop Sakura") is the world's most recognized work on the dead and alive aspects of Go.
The book was written in 1719 and was written by Kuwabara Michitsune(Inoue Michisuke), the fourth generation head of the Inoue family, the highest leader in the Japanese Go world at the time, in order to train the successors of the Inoue family.
After the book was completed, the Inoue family maintained a strict system of secrecy in order to prevent other schools from "stealing" the "secret martial arts book": not only was the original work kept secret as an heirloom, but even the contents of the book were not accessible to the ordinary disciples of the family.Only a very few young, talented and loyal "successors-in-waiting" were able to study the topics in the book in a step-by-step manner, under the personal tutelage of the family.
In his essay on the book, Michiwa Kuwabara says: "Something like the configuration and structure of chess can be called 'yin', while the means hidden in a chess shape can be called 'yang'." Thus, the term ‘Fa Yang’ is used to discover the 'yang' of a particular chess formation - that is, to discover the hidden and effective means.
The "Weiqi Fa-yang" (also known as "Constant Sakura") is a collection of dead and alive Go questions written by Inoue Michisuke (Kuwabara Michisuke).
The book was written in 1713 and is a selection of more than one hundred and eighty questions out of more than fifteen hundred.
The name "yang" refers to the concealed means in the shape of Go (the corresponding "yin" refers to the configuration and structure of Go), while "sakura" refers to the subtle means in Go.
Igo hakuyo ron (The theory of Go development) is a go book containing go tesuji and tsumego.
It was written by Inoue Inseki (Dōsetsu) IV, a master go player, and completed in 1713 (Shōtoku 3).
Known for its difficulty, also known as 'Fudanzakura' (不斷桜).
Also known as 'Hatsuyōron'.
The book contains many classic puzzles, the astonishing profundity of which has attracted several generations of top Chinese and Japanese players to study and refine them in partial variations.
Finally, it has reached a level of perfection that demonstrates the profoundness of Go that is at the highest end of human intelligence.
In her long and boundless solitude, Shen Wen had watched countless games of Go players; it was, after all, an activity that had been practised in her time.
As the days and months passed, she could feel familiar with fewer and fewer things, and Go was one of them.
In those black and white games, she sometimes imagined herself travelling back in time, watching her third brother and elder brother or second brothers playing Go game.
After a long period of time, even though she was unable to play the game herself, Shen Wen was very familiar with the various layouts and strategies in Go, and had memorized many of the games that had been passed down through the ages.
Once she has the power of consciousness, she also tries to give the player a reminder through the energy of her mind, by concentrating her consciousness and transmitting images or words from her mind to her opponent's thinking area.
Sometimes a sensitive player could receive her ideas and make a move that he did not even know or understand, and then win and be happy.
Shen Wen also took pleasure in this, imagining that she was pointing out the game to her brothers.
Shen Wen knew that Ji Wen Zhao would be in the capital in the early spring of this year.
In the previous life, he had immediately arrived at the Guanyi Pavilion and swept away the chess players in the capital, making a name for himself.
As long as this Go game was hung on the wall, Shen Wen didn't believe that Ji Wenzhao could not see the subtleties of it and could resist the temptation not to delve into the mystery of the game itself and its origin.
Shen Wen knew that Ji Wen Zhao would be in the capital in the early spring of this year, and in his previous life, he had immediately arrived at the Guanyi Pavilion and swept away the chess players in the capital, establishing a reputation for prestige.
As long as this chess game was hung on the wall, Shen Wen did not believe that Ji Wenzhao could not see the subtleties of it and could resist the temptation not to delve into the mystery of the game itself and its origin.
Especially since the game had his name written on it, how could he not ask the proprietor for the details Even if the game wasn't enough to move him to the appointment, then the fan should be.
That fan has a divination hexagram simply painted on its face, the forty-ninth hexagram of the Book of Changes: the Ge hexagram.
According to historical records, Ji Wenzhao, known as Xiuming, has innate talented from a young age and had a high opinion of himself, having studied extensively.
He had few rivals in the Go chess world and spent several years under Yan Jing's tutelage, where he was loved by him.
Yan Jing urged him to pursue an official career and to show his skills in ruling the country and saving the people.
Ji Wenzhao also had high aspirations, but he was a noble man and could not decide whether he should serve the imperial court.
He fasted and bathed for five days and prayed for five days, and finally received the auspicious hexagram Ge.
Based on this sign, which meant "favourable to change", he made his decision and went to the capital alone.
After arriving in the capital, he first made a name for himself at the Guangyi Pavilion.
Soon afterwards, the eldest prince sent someone to ask him to be his advisor.
Seeing that the other princes had not yet come of age, and that the eldest prince would become the crown prince and would be in charge of affairs in the future, he agreed that he would be of use as a counsellor.
In the following years, Ji Wenzhao repeatedly proposed policies for the Crown Prince to adjust taxes, protect the interests of farmers and simplify the bureaucracy.
The Emperor was impressed by the appropriateness and timeliness of his proposals.
Ji Wenzhao was a master of the game and had an eye for the overall situation, and was able to foresee the future.
Moreover, he was an exceptionally agile and meticulous thinker who was able to make instant and unerring decisions, and on countless occasions he advised the Crown Prince and helped him to gain the recognition of the courtiers after his appointment.
His mentor Yan Jing admired his talent and married his favourite first granddaughter to him, which was tantamount to making a statement to his extensive network of people who had operated in the court for many years, and who would have to do Ji Wenzhao a few favours in future.
Ji Wenzhao was so capable and had the support of many civil officials that it was said that he would one day become Prime Minister after the Crown Prince's accession to the throne.
Unfortunately, no matter how much strategizing Ji Wen Zhao did, he was not a pure schemer.
When the Third Prince grew older and became friendly with the sons of the Zhenbei Hou family, the Crown Prince became increasingly suspicious of the Third Prince, and was approached by someone with a plan:To conspire with the Bei Rong.
They would lure the Bei Rong army into the country, cut off the army's reinforcements from the inside and destroy the Shen army from inside and the outside, so as to remove the Third Prince's support.
After that, they accuse the Third Prince and the Marquis of Zhenbei for collaborating with the enemy, so that the Emperor could kill them both and completely eliminate the hidden problem of the Crown Prince's ascension to the throne.
However, Ji Wenzhao, who had always been a man who did not move before the collapse of a mountain, cursed the man for being a fool and destroying his own mountain without knowing it.
But once this plan was put forward, it was supported by other members of the prince's inner circle.
Some said that the Bei Rong and Shen's army were both defeated and would not be able to advance southwards, and that it would not be a disaster for the kingdom.
Others said that if the plan was not a dangerous one, it would not work.
Ji Wenzhao used all kinds of reasoning to state that if Shen's army was destroyed, the Northern Rong would inevitably move south, and that there was no way to avoid it.
Pointing that the other party person is a scourge to the country and the people, drawing wolves into the house where the consequences are unimaginable.
The other side said that Ji Wenzhao was too cautious and had his hands tied.
The third prince's wings are growing and if they are not cut out, they will be a great threat to the Crown Prince.
As a member of the Crown Prince's staff and an official of the Eastern Palace, we should protect our master with all our hearts and not ignore him ......
Ji Wenzhao strongly proves that the Third Prince is only friendly with a military general.
And with his own power, he can call on more than half the group of ministers, not to mention the support of the Crown Prince's foreign family and many others, the emperor will never allow the Third prince to take the Crown prince's place ......
The other side said that if the Marquis of Zhenbei mobilized heavy troops, how many civil officials would not be able to say that the swords and spears ......
Ji Wenzhao said the Marquis of Zhenbei is devoted and loyal, that is, his sons have a thick friendship with the Third Prince, and will not be disobedient because of it ......
The other side said that people's hearts are malicious and cannot be taken for granted.
There have been many times in history when brothers, uncles and nephews mutinied and fought for the throne ......
Both sides argued all night, but neither could convince the other.
When Ji Wenzhao saw that he could not convince the other side, he asked the Crown Prince straight out if he would consider carrying out this poisonous plan.
The Crown Prince's face was as deep as water and he did not say a word.
Ji Wenzhao was furious, so he waved his sleeve and left the room.
Everyone looked at the Crown Prince.
Crown Prince hesitated for a moment and made a gesture to the guards at the door, who drew their swords and stabbed Ji Wenzhao in the back, killing him on the spot.
It is said that the sun was rising and Ji Wenzhao was staring at the east, unable to rest in peace.
The Crown Prince told the public that an assassin had attacked and that Ji Wenzhao had died protecting his master.
The matter discussed was so secret that most of those who knew about it that night were later silenced.
It was Zhang Yunzheng, the second son of the Marquis of Pingyuan who escaped, who sought the truth and found someone who was present at the time and told the story under severe torture.
Zhang Yunzheng had the matter widely publicised, but unfortunately by then the Marquis of Zhenbei, the Marquis of Pingyuan, and the Third Prince had all died, and the Northern Rong was approaching, so the momentum had gone,so it did not help.
On the other hand, the crown prince didn't have much benefit.
The history books comment that the Crown Prince did nothing after his accession to the throne and failed to hold on to half of his kingdom.
This has to do with his character flaws of being unmotivated and despotic once he became emperor, as well as the fact that he had no good ruling officials around him. Later, when he died of illness, he knew that the BeiRong had broken the Yangtze River and would reach the southern capital in a few days, while his children were still young and were unable to stand up to the BeiRong, I wonder if he ever regretted killing Ji WenzhaoIt could be said that the moment he chose to abandon Ji Wenzhao, he was doomed that he might succeed in ascending the throne, but had little hope of becoming a bright ruler.
In this life, Shen Wen would never let the Crown Prince get Ji Wenzhao, a national scholar, not only for her own sake, but also for Ji Wenzhao's sake.