Chapter 347 - Two Large Steamed Buns
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The innkeeper began to shake from the shocking revelation.
“What if… What would happen if those men came back?”
Jing Rong spoke before Ji Yunshu could.
“They won’t," he said with absolute certainty.
The innkeeper was not entirely convinced. He glanced at Ji Yunshu again, awaiting her answer.
She nodded at him, dispelling his disbeliefs.“Don’t worry, they won’t come back.”
“How do you know?”
“If something like this happens again, just use the method I taught you, imitate it if you can. That second-in-command doesn’t look like someone who would go back on his words though.”
“Let’s hope so!” the innkeeper said, wiping the sweat from his brow as he heaved a sigh of relief.
Jing Rong pulled Ji Yunshu upstairs. Mo Ruo was still leaning against the handrails, drinking. Half his body dangled over the rail precariously, as if he could fall at any moment. He looked on as the two came upstairs. A guard came forward suddenly, hand still grasping his head in pain.
“There's trouble, Master. Those two men have escaped!” he said, referring to Da Chui and Tie San.
Jing Rong immediately rushed over, Ji Yunshu on his heels. The room where the bandits were held captive was empty. Only their ropes remained, strewn across the floor.
“What happened?” Jing Rong asked.
“This servant doesn't know. I heard a shout from inside and opened the door. Someone hit me over the head when I stepped inside,” the guard quickly answered.
“Anything strange happen before that?”
“Did anyone suspicious come by?” Ji Yunshu butted in. She was already squatting on the floor, picking up a piece of rope.
The guard dug through his memories for a moment.
“No one in particular, but Miss Ji came by with two steamed buns for them so they wouldn't starve to death,” he answered then.
Ji Wanxin? It's fitting for her to bring them steamed buns. She is a very kind lady, after all.
“Did they carry any knives?” she asked.
“Knives? No, we searched them thoroughly.”
She fiddled with the ropes' clean-cut ends, an unbelievable thought taking shape in her head. Why? Why would Ji Wanxin help the bandits escape?
Jing Rong spoke before Ji Yunshu could clear things up.“Forget it," he said, "there’s no use crying over spilled milk. This Prince will submit an official report to Imperial Father tomorrow. They have run wild for far too long. Something has to be done.”
Jing Rong pulled her up from the floor, out of the room, and straight into her own room without another word.
“Rest now. We leave tomorrow morning,” he ordered.
He shut the door, cutting off any chance for her to refuse, then commanded Lang Po. “Watch over her. Don’t let her leave before we disembark tomorrow morning.”
Mo Ruo witnessed everything from where he stood by the rails. He laughed and drank at Jing Rong’s angry expression, and the latter scowled at him “What are you laughing at?”
“I’m laughing at Teacher Ji.”
“What about her?”
“That fact that she was worried, but about the wrong things.”
Mm? What do you mean? Jing Rong’s curiousity was piqued. He walked over and snatched his wine, taking a swig,
“If you have something to say, say it.”
“Think about it yourself.”
Jing Rong shot him a dirty look and left, flinging the jar back at him over his shoulder.
The next morning.
Jing Rong’s men loaded their luggage and were ready to leave by the time the two woke up.
Ji Yunshu finally left her room and found Wei Yi standing right in front of her door, staring at her lovingly with his big, brown eyes and fresh, wide smile. He held two large steamed buns in his hands
“You’re finally awake!”
“How long have you been standing here?”
“Not long, only a while!” he replied.
“A while?" Mo Ruo cut in, "You idiot, you’ve been standing here for at least an hour.”
An hour? How long is that exactly? Wei Yi thought.
Ji Yunshu eyed Mo Ruo - who knew he would actually drink the whole night! The entire landing was stacked with empty wine jugs. Ji Yunshu withdrew her gaze. “You were waiting for me?” she asked Wei Yi instead.
“I brought you steamed buns," he said, showing her his buns again. The large, plump, white steamed buns had the imprint of his fingers firmly pressed into them. They weren't steaming anymore, either.
Ji Yunshu chuckled as she pushed the buns back towards himave them yourself. I’m not hungry yet.”
“Okay!” Wei Yi smiled as he bit into one heartily, stuffing the other into his sleeve.
They headed downstairs together.
Jing Rong was eating with Ji Wanxin downstairs. Ji Wanxin dragged Ji Yunshu into the seat next to her,
“You must be hungry. I ordered some dishes you love.”
“Thanks!” Ji Yunshu said, looked at Jing Rong enjoying his meal, “Where’s Aunty Xie?”
“She’s in the sedan already.”
Jing Rong stood up, dusting his sleeves. “I’ll wait outside. Take your time," he said, marching out of the room briskly.
Ji Wanxin leaned in and turned to Ji Yunshu.
“It was extremely noisy last night - it seems something happened downstairs. I wanted to go and have a look, but Prince Rong’s guards stopped me. Do you know what happened?”
Ji Yunshu shook her head.
“I don’t. Did you go to the bandits’ room last night?”
“Mm, I did. Why?”
“It’s nothing--” she did not continue her thought, nor touch any of the dishes “--Let’s go. Hopefully, we can reach Shanhuai County before nightfall.”
Mo Ruo and Jing Rong were already in the same sedan, but Wei Yi held onto Ji Yunshu firmly, refusing to let go unless they could ride together. Ji Wanxin started coughing.
“I must have caught a cold last night. I’ll sit in a separate sedan. I don't want to get you sick.”
“Take care of yourself,” Ji Yunshu reminded her with much concern.
“Mm,” Ji Wanxin sat alone in the middle sedan, while Ji Yunshu and Wei Yi sat in the last one.
The party headed off. Jing Rong drew back the curtain and peeked backwards in the first sedan for a moment before he quickly dropped the curtain again. Mo Ruo knew of his concerns.
“If you’re worried, you can ride in the back.”
“Who said I was worried?”
“Those bandits that escaped last night will come back for revenge. Your worries aren’t unfounded.”
Mo Ruo really could read minds! He always looked indifferent, even nonchalant, but he saw through everything.
Grenn Rants Corner
Tonight at midnight, it's New Year's Eve.
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