Chapter 172 – Jingle Bell
Original and most updated translations are from volare. Please don’t read elsewhere and stop supporting theft.
“Absurd!” Jing Yi denied Jing Rong’s words. He added, “The criminal already signed his confession and even voluntarily disclosed all his crimes. Yet, now you are telling me that he is a eunuch?! Where did that come from?”
Jing Rong remained composed. He stepped forward and spoke to his father, “Your Son is absolutely not speaking nonsense. Although Gan Chuliang already signed the confession document, the fact remains that he is a eunuch. For someone who is castrated, how could he have sullied those victims?”
“That man has an Adam’s apple!” Jing Yi retorted.
Jing Rong stared at Jing Yi and explained, “That’s right. He does have an Adam’s apple, because he was castrated after the age of 16. At that time, his Adam’s apple had already developed. However, it didn’t fully mature because of the castration. Therefore, it is smaller and doesn’t protrude much.” Jing Rong’s explanations couldn’t be clearer than that, but most of the credit fell on Ji Yunshu and her letter.
Jing Yi’s gaze became dispirited. With a wave of his sleeve, he spat, “Impossible!” A final struggle!
“The suspect is still in the Ministry of Justice’s prison. If Prince Yi has any doubts, please feel free to send people to examine him. Only then will you know that I am speaking the truth,” suggested Jing Rong.
Right at this instant, Jing Yi had an ashen complexion. Everything was clearly within his grasp, but why did it veer off to another direction midway? He was extremely unwilling and retorted to Jing Rong, “Even if it is true that Gan Chuliang is a eunuch, it doesn’t mean that he isn’t the murderer. The evidence points at him. Perhaps, this can only be explained by him having an accomplice or even numerous accomplices.”
“Even if your supposition is correct, you didn’t clarify the whole truth surrounding the case and already went to report the case to imperial father. If I didn’t point out the inconsistency in it, I’m afraid that because of your hasty judgment to resolve the case, the true murderer would have remained at large, free and beyond the law.”
“Urgh!” He didn’t expect Jing Rong’s counterattack to be this biting.
Qi Zhen emperor’s expression sank in an instant, and he looked at Jing Yi with anger and displeasure. The hand on his desk clenched into a fist. “Jing Yi, if what Jing Rong said turns out to be the truth, you really overstepped your role.”
“Say no more!” Qi Zhen emperor waved his hand as his face revealed disappointment. Then, he ordered with an angry voice, “For the time being, send people to investigate the authenticity of Jing Rong’s words. Make sure to determine if that man is really castrated or not. If he is, I don’t want you to meddle in this case any longer. Let Jing Rong investigate and quickly find the real murderer.”
Jing Yi turned pale. He was enraged and fiercely glared at Jing Rong. He didn’t expect such a big misstep. He didn’t get to eat the dish, but it was already empty. Thus, he had no other option but to comply. “Yes.”
The emperor sighed. “So early in the morning and our mood is already spoiled.”
Hearing this, an old eunuch standing on the side stepped forward with deep concern. “Your Majesty, the official memorials can be reviewed later. It’s better to drink warm congee and rest a bit.”
The old eunuch immediately ordered someone to bring a bowl of warm congee.
The emperor propped one of his hands on his desk and wearily rested his head on it. With his other hand, he waved at his sons. “Everyone, withdraw.”
Jing Rong and Jing Yi silently nodded and departed from Fuyang hall. When they came out, they walked the same road until they reached the entrance. Suddenly, Jing Yi blocked Jing Rong’s way.
“You deliberately did it?” During the whole way, Jing Yi had held back from asking this question.
“How can you say so?” Jing Rong faintly asked.
Jing Yi’s expression turned unsightly. He restrained the fury within. “When you stopped me at the palace gate, you didn’t mention that Gan Chuliang was castrated. You obviously hoped that I would successfully report this to Imperial Father, and then, you would come in and trap me.”
‘Are you being delusional?’ Jing Rong coldly stared at him. “Jing Yi, I have never thought about taking credit in front of Imperial Father. I also never thought of fighting with you. When we were at the palace gate, I already gave you the chance to turn back, but you were the one who insisted on meddling with this case.”
“As expected, I really underestimated you.”
“I still have something to say. I will not fight with you, but if you persist being this unbearing, leaving others with no leeway, I won’t remain passive anymore.” Jing Rong warned his brother.
Contrariwise, Jing Yi sneered. He hardened his tone, “Right now, you’re the one who is not giving the other leeway. You speak at any turn that you don’t want to fight with me, but everything you do is clearly going against me. You are very clear that all the officials in the imperial court and numerous eyes are attentively watching us because they know in their hearts that the next ruler would either be you or me, but certainly not Jing Hua! If you want a fight, I will fight you to the end!” As Jing Yi’s speech reached Jing Rong’s eyes, the older prince flipped his sleeves and left.
Meanwhile, Ji Yunshu left the prison and returned to the Rong estate. Her heart was in turmoil, caught in a whirlpool of mixed emotions. As soon as she returned to the East courtyard, she saw Wei Yi sitting on the stone stairs holding a dazzling white lantern.
Wei Yi suddenly raised his head, and the haze on his face vanished. He beamed toward Ji Yunshu with a foolish laugh. “Shu’er!” It was obvious that he was incredibly happy from his tone.
Ji Yunshu walked to him and slowly sat down. “How did you know I returned?”
“Did you forget?”
Wei Yi pointed at her ankle and said, “The ankle chain I gave you… I can hear the jingling bell on it from afar.”
‘Wow! What sharp ears!’ Ji Yunshu couldn’t even hear the faint sound of that little bell, but from such distance, Wei Yi could hear it. His ears are as keen as those of a whale.
Wei Yi continued to speak in a proud tone. “If later you can’t find your way home, don’t be afraid because as long as I can hear that bell, I will absolutely find you.”
Ji Yunshu smiled. “Good! If one day I can’t find my way back, you shall come find me.”
Ji Yunshu looked at the lantern in his hands and inquired, “Why are you sitting here while holding that lantern?”
He raised the lantern in his hands and replied, “I was worried that you couldn’t return because it’s very dark outside. That’s why I thought of lighting a lantern, so you won’t get lost on your way back.”
These days, due to the missing girls case, she was overwhelmed with things to do to the point of losing her mind. Therefore, she didn’t have much time to accompany Wei Yi. What’s more, by the time she returned to her residence, it was often very late. Therefore, Wei Yi’s behavior is forgivable.
“Fool…” Ji Yunshu affectionately stroked his head.
Wei Yi let Ji Yunshu rub his head, pulling closer and resting his head on her shoulder. He giggled and asked, “Shu’er, are we always going to stay in the capital?”
“Why are you asking this?” Ji Yunshu glanced at him.
“That’s because ever since we came here, you are always busy. I can’t follow you every day like before. The capital is very big; I can’t recognize the road. Uncle Shu also doesn’t let me go out. Shu’er, I don’t like it… a little bit.”
She felt incredibly sorry for him. “Then, do you want to return to Jinjiang?”
Wei Yi shook his head. Then, he rubbed his head on her shoulder several times before pulling on her hand while saying, “Shu’er, I don’t want to go back to Jinjiang. I only want to be together with you. When mother was still alive, she said that Shu’er is my wife in the future. We can be together forever, right?” Perhaps, Wei Yi had understood the real meaning behind his mother’s words. One thing for sure, he retained that a wife is someone who will be with him forever.
Ji Yunshu felt her throat constrict as her body trembled from too many emotions.
“Shu’er?” Wei Yi called her.
Ji Yunshu recovered her mind and she parted her lips to reply to him. “Wei Yi, I promised your parents that I will always take care of you. Rest assured that I will certainly be with you.”
“Hum!” Wei Yi was extremely happy. They then nestled together in harmony.
Grenn’s Rants Corner
Wei Yi~! My sunshine!