Chapter 346 – I Did It, Suit Yourself
Original and most updated translations are from volare. Please don’t read elsewhere and stop supporting theft.
Ji Yunshu was not stupid enough to just give him the antidote. She spoke with a crafty glint in her eye and a quirk of her lips.
“I can give you the antidote, but this humble one doesn’t believe you will not create trouble here in the future. If you hold on to grudges and take it out on the inn’s young and elderly, wouldn’t we have lost out?”
Zhao Qing resisted the urge to scratch his full-body itch.
“I, Zhao Qing, never go back on my word,” he thumped his chest and answered resentfully.
“Good,” Ji Yunshu said, reassured. She drew a small bottle from her waistband and tossed it at Zhao Qing.
“You’ll be fine once you give this a good sniff,” she said.
Zhao Qing sniffed the antidote himself first, then passed it to Ba Hu, who took a sniff and passed it along in turn to the other bandits. The itch and rash faded quickly as each took a sniff, and vigor quickly returned to their bodies.
Someone in the crowd inevitably turned his attention, and discontent, on Ji Yunshu.
“Let’s kill them, Big Brother!”
“Kill! Kill! Kill!”
The bandits hefted their weapons, ready to charge at the slightest nod from Zhao Qing.
Ba Hu strode to Zhao Qing’s side.
“They’re just here to seek death, Big Brother. Give the word and we’ll kill them all.”
Zhao Qing let out a huff of laughter, staring unblinkingly at Ji Yunshu. He reached back, drew out the knife tied to Ba Hu’s waist and swung it at the unmoving Ji Yunshu.
However, Jing Rong took two steps forward and pulled her behind him. In the same motion, he drew Lan Po’s sword with his other hand .
The knife and sword clashed. Metal rang, sparks flew. The two were evenly matched.
“If you dare harm a single hair on her head, I’ll kill you.” Jing Rong growled, shoving his blade forward with ever-increasing force. His normally cool gaze blazed murderously. There was no leeway allowed when it came to Ji Yunshu’s safety.
Zhao Qing’s resistance faltered visibly against the additional pressure. His feet inched back slowly. He had never faced such a powerful opponent before, and his effort was apparent on his tightly wrinkled brows.
Zhao Qing twisted his wrists and deflected the blade to the left, finally breaking the deadlock.
Looking at the frail figure behind Jing Rong, he said disdainfully, “I didn’t expect there would be someone so dedicated to a little scholar.”
“If she’s hurt in any way, this inn will be your final resting place.” Jing Rong answered.
Zhao Qing gave a bark of laughter.
“An expert indeed. Even your words cut like a fine blade. No wonder those wastrel followers of Zhao Huai were killed so easily.”
“If you don’t want to end up the same way they did, take your people and leave now!”
“Fine. We will go. I, Zhao Qing, have always been a man of my word. I said we wouldn’t come back, so we won’t.”
“Big Brother, are we really leaving like this? We–” Ba Hu began.
Zhao Qing gave Ba Hu a smack on the head as he turned to his subordinates..
“Listen up, all of you! From this day forward, if I catch any of you making trouble at this inn, I will peel off your skin and feed it to wild dogs.”
No one wanted to follow his order, but their big brother had already made his decision, so they could only obey.
Zhao Qing picked up a jar of wine and poured out two bowfuls. He walked with them to Ji Yunshu, thrusting one at her.
“This gentleman is skilled indeed. He’s most certainly not an idle good-for-nothing. If you don’t mind, why don’t we become friends?”
Friends? With bandits?
The novelty of this concept amused Ji Yunshu . Both in dress and behaviour, Zhao Qing very much looked the part of a bandit leader, but he undeniably exuded a carefree sense of righteousness, incongruent with his reputation as a cold, ruthless killer.
Ji Yunshu stared at the bowl in his hand, conflicted.
This miss can’t drink! But she can’t reject the drink either…
Zhao Qing raised his bowl in a toast.
“It’s your choice. I’ll drink mine in the meantime.”
The entire bowl of wine vanished down his throat without further ado.
Before Ji Yunshu could decide what to do, Jing Rong took the bowl instead and drained it in a single gulp, before throwing the bowl back onto the table.
Zhao Qing laughed.
“Good! Today we’ve become friends through our fists. Let’s wipe the slate clean now that this unpleasantness is over..”
“Let’s go!” he commanded with a wave of his hand.
He walked past Jing Rong without hesitation, but halted beside Ji Yunshu. He leaned towards her and spoke softly.
“Little scholar, if we have the chance to meet again, we must have a couple of drinks together.”
The whole group left without another word. However, the same could not be said for the furniture. As they left, the dissatisfied bandits wrecked the furniture and smashed several jars of wine.
The inn was in shambles by the time the last man walked out the door.
Jing Rong tugged Ji Yunshu’s arm lightly once the bandits were out of sight.
“Didn’t I ask you to stay in your room?” he asked.
Ji Yunshu lifted her chin and met his gaze steadily.
“Did you mean to have me rest tranquil while you killed everyone?”
“Who said I would kill everyone?”
“Would you not?”
Of course he would! They were bandits, for goodness sake.
His adam’s apple bobbed up and down as he thought and finally let go of Ji Yunshu’s arm.
The innkeeper finally came closer, bowing all the way, his eyes red with gratitude.
”My sincerest thanks to the two gentlemen on behalf of my whole family!”
He descended to his knees as he spoke, but Jing Rong stopped him with a hand on his elbow.
“This is not the capital.”
Oh? What did that have to do with anything?
The innkeeper was confused but continued bowing and sobbing. Once he was done, he approached Ji Yunshu and asked, worried.
“Who knows if they’ll come back again. Gentleman, why don’t you tell me the secret recipe for the antidote, just in case?”
“There isn’t any antidote” Ji Yunshu replied.
“No antidote? What about the poison?”
“There was no poison either. It was just a colourless gas that causes a rash. It would have faded soon(in the time taken to drink a cup of tea), anyway.”
Grenn’s Rants Corner
Lol! Ji Yunshu’s bluff… I wonder if she could own everyone in a game of Poker.