So spoke Li Ru, and the words pleased Dong Zhuo mightily.
So the next day Dong Zhuo spread a feast and invited many
guests. As all the officers went in terror of him, no one
dared be absent. Dong Zhuo himself rode up to the garden
last of all and took his place with his sword girded on.
When the wine had gone round several times,
Dong Zhuo stopped the service and the music and began to speak.
“I have something to say. Listen quietly all of you！”
All turned towards him.
“the emperor is lord of all.
If he lacks dignity and behaves in an
unseemly manner, he is no fitting inheritor
of the ancestral prerogatives. He who is now on
the throne is a weakling, inferior to the Prince of Chenliu in
intelligence and love of learning. The Prince is in every way
fitted for the throne. I desire to depose the
Emperor and set up the Prince in his place. What think you？”
the assembly listened in perfect silence,
none daring at first to utter a word of dissent.
But one dared； for suddenly a guest stood up
in his place, smote the table and cried.
“No！ No！ Who are you that you dare utter such bold words？
the Emperor is son of the late Emperor and has done no wrong.
Why then should he be deposed？ Are you a rebel？”
the speaker was Ding Yuan, Imperial Protector of Bingzhou.
Dong Zhuo glared at Ding Yuan, roaring,
“there is life for those who are with me,
death for those against！”
Dong Zhuo drew his sword and made for the
objector. But the watchful Li Ru had noticed