Corrupted by these, He Miao
Corrupted by these, He Miao went in to speak with his sister Empress He and said,
“The General is the chief support of the new Emperor, yet he is no
t gracious and merciful but thinks wholly of slaughter.
If he slays the eunuchs without cause, it may bring about revolution.”
Soon after He Jin entered and told her of his design to put the eunuchs to death.
She argued with him, “Those officials look after palace
affairs and are old servants. To kill the old servants just after the
death of their master would appear disrespectful to the dynasty’s ancestral temple.”
And as He Jin was of a vacillating mind, he murmured assent and left her.
“What about it?” said Yuan Shao on meeting him.
“She will not consent. What can be done?”
“Call up an army and slay them. It is imperative. Never mind her consent!”
“That is an excellent plan,” said He Jin. And he sent orders all round to march soldiers to the capital.
But Secretary Chen Lin objected, “Nay! Do not act without due consideration.
The proverb says ‘To cover the eyes and snatch at swallows is to fool oneself.’
If in so small a matter you cannot attain your wish, what of great affairs?
Now by virtue of the emperor and with the army under your hand, you are
like prancing tiger and soaring dragon: You may do as you please. To use such
enormous powers against the eunuchs would bring victory as easily as lighting up
a furnace to burn a hair. Only act promptly: Use your powers and smite at once,
and all the empire will be with you. But to summon forces to the capital,
to gather many bold warriors into one spot, each with different schemes,
is to turn our weapons against our own person,
Nothing but failure can come of it, and havoc will ensue.”