Chapter 301 - A Petition For An Appeal
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Ji Yunshu turned towards the source of the scream. Her eyes fell on a woman with messy hair and dressed in plain clothes. Her aged face was haggard and wet from the rain. She was picking up in a flurry the papers that had fallen into a puddle.
“No! It must not. It absolutely cannot…” she kept muttering.
Ji Yunshu recognized she was the one at fault, so she squatted down and helped the woman to pick up the papers. Due to their collision, the papers were scattered everywhere and were almost completely soaked from the rainwater. As if the situation weren't bad enough, some of them were being mercilessly stepped on by passersby.
After collecting a few, she glanced at the content out of curiosity. She accidentally found out the stack of papers was a petition for an appeal. However, before she could read through the details, the woman interrupted her.
“Give it to me.” The woman angrily grabbed back the papers and pushed Ji Yunshu away.
She then roared, her voice choked with emotions. “This is meant to save Ye’er, but it’s all been ruined by you! You ruined it. Now, what am I going to do? It’s all your fault!”
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean... I…”
“Get out of the way!” she pushed Ji Yunshu’s shoulder ruthlessly and ran to pick the papers which flew further away.
Ji Yunshu got up and chased after her, but she quickly lost sight of the woman.
Suddenly, someone else bumped into her back. The force made her stagger to the side. Fortunately, she collided into another person's chest, or she might have had to kiss the ground. Being pushed around left her in as much a mess and she cut quite a sorry figure. Then, an umbrella appeared above her and blocked the rain.
“Shu’er, are you alright?” Wei Yi’s voice sounded in her ear.
She lifted her eyes and met with his pure ones. He looked at her and his eyes glowed with distress. She was completely drenched, but he didn’t let go of her as he tightly hugged her.
“Shu’er, why are you drenched like this? Aren’t you cold? Don’t worry! I’ll hug you so you won’t get cold.”
Wrapped in his arms, she felt his warmth wash through her. She couldn’t restrain her body from trembling.
She soon freed herself, pushing him away lightly. “Why are you in this place?” she asked.
“Big Brother Mo Ruo is not here, so I went out.”
Ji Yunshu shivered from the cold. She knew she would need something to support herself if she went on. Her teeth chattered as a natural reaction. “Wei Yi, can you piggy-back me home?”
“Sure!” he answered without hesitation.
Then, he bent down to allow her to climb on his back; her hands fastened around his neck, and her head rested weakly on his broad shoulder. Although she was weak, she could still give him directions. Seeing them like this was like déjà vu.
Wei Yi walked towards Bamboo Creek Garden, accelerating his pace when remembered how drenched Ji Yunshu was. Yet, despite his worries, he could still chatter along the way.
“Shu’er, it’s been a long time since I've seen you. You have not visited Big Brother Mo Ruo’s place for a long time. I thought you had forgotten about me, so I cried a lot at night.”
“Shu’er, I can now examine sick people. Big Brother Mo Ruo said people, whose faces have a yellow tint and who have a white tongue suffer from a liver deficiency. People whose foreheads are pale, and have sunken cheeks with discomfort in the chest could have lung problems, and…”
“Yesterday, Big Brother Ah Si gave me a brush. He said my writing was ugly. He also taught me some words. I can now write better the words you taught me. When you come to see me the next time, I’ll show you.”
Ji Yunshu listened to him patiently, never interrupting him or responding.
His stride was fast and steady. When he looked back, he saw Ji Yunshu drowsily nodding on his shoulder. He whispered, “Shu’er, let me sing something nice for you, alright?”
Ji Yunshu nodded. Wei Yi gleefully started singing “The Ideal Man.”
“In the past,
the gentle breeze blew,
The young Zhao returns,
Eyes filled with Puyang’s landscape.
From young, he was a man of books,
When he left,
The winds and snows tempered him,
Through months, after months…”
After their return to Bamboo Creek Garden, Ji Yunshu broke into a fever, and she lied on her bed, her mind all muddled. A maidservant hurriedly left to find a doctor. After many visits, her temperature lowered under their care.
Finally, she fell into a deep slumber.
Sometimes, Shi Zijin would change her clothes. If it wasn’t for her, Ji Yunshu’s real identity would have long been exposed. After a long rest, Ji Yunshu was awoken because she was burning up.
She glanced around and saw Wei Yi sleeping at her bedside. His head was resting on her bed, revealing his nape. At that time, the red petal shaped birthmark was in full view. She stretched out her hand and poked it.
The sensation of Ji Yunshu’s finger against his skin roused him from his sleep. He raised his head and looked at her with drowsy eyes.
He grabbed her eyes and rejoiced. “Shu’er, you’re awake. You really scared me. Next time, you can’t get wet in the rain. Mother says soaking up all the rain will get you sick.”
“I’m fine now.”
“That’s good then. Shu’er has to listen to me obediently.”
She hummed in agreement.
Wei Yi blinked, remembering something. He fished something out from his sleeve in a hurry. It took him a moment, but he finally pulled out a red blood jade. “Shu’er, I give you back your jade. When I carried you back, it fell out. Fortunately, I picked it up for you.”
The fine, smooth jade laid flatly in his palm.
She reached for it. “That jade is a memento your father left for you. It’s better if you keep it.”
She placed the jade pendant back into his palm.
However, before she could complete her action, he hid his hands behind his back. He clearly disagreed with her.
“I don’t want it. I'm giving it to you, so it’s now yours. I don’t want it back.”
Ji Yunshu propped herself up and sat on her bed. She examined the jade pendant in her hand.
It was blood jade of the finest quality. Her fingertips lightly stroked its uneven surface. She had never seen up close that kind of jade.
On the refined jade, there was a lifelike carving of a tiger’s upper body with a moon crescent on its left side. When she flipped the jade, she could see a big “Xu” carved on the back.
She had to admit Lord Wei’s jade was pretty tasteful. It could be seen this was a one-of-a-kind object.
“Wei Yi, your father wanted you to have it. It should be kept by your side.”
“No!” Wei Yi was adamant. “I gave it to Shu’er. Could it be that you don’t like it?”
“Of course not.”
“Then, please accept my gift. It’s yours anyway!” He beamed at her a naive smile.
As they argued over the jade, a maidservant entered with a sheet of dried paper. She walked over and said, “Teacher Ji, is this yours? I found it in your wet clothes.”
She handed over the paper.
Ji Yunshu took it and gave it a glance. She recognized it as the piece of paper she had picked up for that woman she bumped into before.
Without this page, the petition for an appeal would remain incomplete. Unfortunately, due to the water, the ink on it had been smeared and lots of details had been lost. She could only make out the general meaning of its content. The object of this appeal was a girl called Ye’er who was involved in a homicide case three years ago. The rest of the paper was unintelligible.
Since this was a request for an appeal, anyone who did not live in the capital had no option but to travel all the way there with the proper documents to request a reinvestigation.
Ji Yunshu felt a pang of guilt when she recalled the woman’s nervousness and panic as she picked up the ruined document.
Grenn's Rants Corner
An arc has ended and a new one begins.
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