Chapter 80: Connecting North and South
Such a project was too astounding, which required them to tread carefully!
Gong Che kept making guesses and calculations in his head, recalling the books and reports he had a studied in the past. He would smile, then frown, and in the end, he finally sighed in unease.
It still wasn’t good enough. He was worried that construction will cause pressure to accumulate in the middle and lower reaches of the Yangzte River. After all, for the present, there was only one main path that led to the sea without any mishaps; if they build this canal and the flooding season arrives, the city of Xing Cheng will suffer.
“It is still not appropriate. This matter might be feasible, but it must be discussed in detail. We must consider that manpower cannot defy the heavens and the earth, along with the ruthless elements of water and fire. I don’t want to fail in this plan and in consequence, ruin many lives.”
Instead of being blinded by ambition, the Crown Prince always considered every piece of the matter in order to care for the people. Gong Yi Mo nodded approvingly. She patted Gong Che’s shoulder and said,
“Crown Prince Elder Brother, you don’t have to worry, I have thought this plan through! If the prince is afraid that the southern reaches of the Yangzte River cannot bear the heavy burden alone, why not build a waterway that passes through Guangzhou? If you can build a canal, why not construct a second one as well? In order to help the kingdom develop, it is necessary to rely on transportation. If we want to open up a pathway for transport, a number of canals would definitely solve this need!”
Her words caused stunned Gong Che on the spot! A wild ambition seemed to rush like a current in his mind that could not be stopped. What if the Huaihe River could flow straight to the capital? What if the Yangzte River could flow down to Guangzhou? What man in this world would not want to grasp the opportunity to trade and lead a prosperous business? And this project is magnificent! It’s simply astounding! It’s an amazing idea and they haven’t even begun!
Seeing that he was finally moved, Gong Yi Mo just smiled. The next question would be how to implement the plan. Drawing manpower with the use of ancient imperial power was effective. As long as the number of officials and financial resources could keep up with the project, there will be no lack of people who would come to work for the project. If one had such a strong backing, and they had the ability to built a canal connecting the Yangzte River to Guangzhou, then why not?
Unfortunately, the few talented people in this era were too pedantic in their technological advancements. Otherwise, if they had modern knowledge, wouldn’t they have the ability to build the Three Gorges** in the Yangtze River? Gong Yi Mo blushed in anticipation with this idea. With today’s ancient time and space, it was simply a fantasy for someone to hope to build the Three Gorges. Even if all the talents and technicians in this kingdom were gathered to try construct this vast project, they simply won’t have the ability to do it, not to mention their lack of proficiency in purifying iron, copper, and other smelting technologies. In an era where no reinforced cement or oil has been invented, she could only dream of accomplishing such a feat.
(**T/N: The Three Gorges Dam– completed in July 4, 2012; is a hydroelectric gravity dam that spans the Yangtze River by the town of Sandouping, in Yiling District, Yichang, Hubei province, China. The Three Gorges Dam is the world’s largest power station in terms of installed capacity.)
The more Gong Che thought about their previous discussion, the more excited he became. The prince climbed out of bed and paced around over and over again. Once in a while, he would mutter to himself, and his eyes would shine brighter as more ideas emerged in his mind.
“You are right, you’re definitely right! It was because of my narrow-mindedness…This plan is truly…wonderful! It’s beyond compare!”
Gong Che couldn’t find the words to describe his current emotions. He felt as if fresh blood had coursed through his brain and that his vision as a whole had widened!
If this task was handed to him, and if he is able to achieve such a feat, then he will surely gain unimaginable benefits that will outweigh any costs!
It was hard to imagine that all of these ideas came from a twelve-year-old girl; she was much more cunning than any demon. All of these amazing words were enough to make people ignore her gender and only remember her talent!
Perhaps due to his excessive excitement, Gong Che appeared unusually flustered. “It’s just that…building a canal is requires a lot of time and labor. I’m afraid that…” The prince was afraid that before the canal could be completed with its many years of labor, the palace could have already chosen a successor. That was a major reason why many of those ambitious princes refused to leave the capital.
Gong Yi Mo smiled as she plotted out the events in her mind.
“Don’t worry. Father is still young and ambitious; he wants to be famous for many generations to come. As long as he has a deep understanding of the benefits of connecting the North and South, even if he empties the treasury, he will support this undertaking! And…”