Chapter 371 - The Skeleton Was Destroyed
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Mo Ruo and Ji Yunshu’s concerns were the same. Even a simpleton could easily guess the amount of chaos that would result from this news reaching the capital. Jing Rong was undecided.
He could not stay in Yufu county for his whole life! Nor could he let Jing Yi take the throne. He had to return to the capital.
Mo Ruo continued saying, “If you attack them now and they decide to kill Miss Ji in retaliation, can you handle the consequences?”
“You’re right. With Yunshu’s life in their hands, I can’t act recklessly. There must be some other option.”
“What do you want to do?”
“Bring some people with me to Gaoshan Village.”
“How can you go in your current state?” Mo Ruo was shocked and tried to hold Jing Rong back.
Jing Rong briefly closed his eyes and said, “After those people caught Yunshu, they could have killed me with the flying arrows in the forest, but they did not. This suggests that we were right in suspecting that they have a secondary objective. But why have they not sent any mail or message? If that’s the case, I need to be there.” He looked determined.
“But aren’t you digging your own grave if you go? You already know that there are traps set up around the Gaoshan Village. What will Miss Ji do if the rain of arrows happens again and you’re not as lucky?”
“I have promised Yunshu, I will never let her get hurt as long as I’m around. ”
Mo Ruo reached out and held Jing Rong’s hand. He tried his best to convince Jing Rong, “I have promised Miss Ji that I will not let you do this. I never break my promises. I can also assure you that she will be fine in Gaoshan Village. We can plan again after you have recovered.”
Jing Rong wrenched his hand from Mo Ruo’s, inadvertently reopening the wound in his chest. The pain was such that Jing Rong immediately frowned and broke out in a cold sweat. Mo Ruo immediately settled him down once he noticed this and pulled out a delicate box from his sleeve. He opened it to reveal a pill and quickly stuffed it into Jing Rong's mouth.
“Look at you now, how do you have the energy to go to the Gaoshan Village. Even if you can be carried up the peak by an eight-person palanquin, you could easily die from either infection from the humid air or from the precarious path. What you should do now is to trust Miss Ji.”
Trust her! There didn’t appear to be any other choice. Jing Rong panted as he swallowed the pill, his condition slowly stabilizing. His weak gaze fixed at the thin green willow dangling outside the window.
After a few moments of silence, he spoke. “Deliver my order. No troops are to make a move, whether they’re from Jing Province or the county yamen.”
Mo Ruo nodded. “Yes.”
Outside the door.
Ji Wanxin had listened to the entire conversation. In her heart, she clearly understood its implications. Her eyes turned red and started welling up with tears. However, her gaze was filled with resentment and bitterness. And worse... there seemed to be a hint of viciousness as well. She took a few steps backwards and left quietly.
It wasn’t long before Mo Ruo delivered the stay order to the county yamen soldiers. A letter from Lang Po arrived soon after.
Marquis Kang had agreed to the request immediately when he heard that Jing Rong wanted to exchange the Golden Woven Armour for his 3000 troops. He even led the troops personally out of Jing Province. He would not stop chattering on about the Golden Woven Armour this and the Golden Woven Armour that and… After all, it was what he had been wanting for his whole life!
After receiving Jing Rong’s order, Lang Po stalled the 3000 soldiers at the border of Shanhuai Province to await further orders.
In Gaoshan village
After a day’s work, Ji Yunshu had sketched the mandible of the deceased according to the bone pieces. However, its accuracy was dependent on the accurate position of the other segments of the skull. She cracked her sore neck and exhaled softly. She then turned her head and glanced at Wei Yi who was sleeping beside her.
He was sleeping so soundly when he suddenly pouted. She was not sure if he was dreaming about food; he still had saliva dripping from the corner of his mouth. Pfft… Ji Yunshu could not hold her laughter. She shook her head briefly and shifted her gaze to the outside, seeing that the sun had set without her realizing.
Perhaps because Gaoshan Village was located at the summit, the round bright moon in the dark sky was facing directly towards the opened door of the house. The silvery moonlight shone like mercury on the ground, like light seen through rice paper. It felt like she had been transported to Chang Er’s palace. [1. 1. Chang Er is the legendary moon goddess.]
Ji Yunshu removed her gloves and walked towards the door. She stared at the lonely round moon. Her plain robe fluttered in the wind like elegant vines.
Moments later, she returned indoors to take a short nap. However, when she woke up, she was met with a rude shock.
The skeleton on the table had been destroyed.
Standing up to take a closer look, she found that all twenty-four ribs, along with the clavicle and hand bones, had all been reduced to a fine powder. The bones which were initially assembled were now piled up to the side like a mess of mahjong tiles.
Ji Yunshu hurriedly summoned the people from the outside and pointed at the pile of bones.
“How did this happen?”
The two bandits looked at each other with wide eyes, shaking their heads. They were just as shocked. They replied nervously, “How… did this happen? We don’t know.”
“Did anyone come in?”
“No! We have been guarding outside this whole time, no one could possibly come in. How…”
Could it be paranormal activity? Ji Yunshu panicked a little, but she remained composed.
The skeleton was destroyed. It was impossible to restore the exact appearance of the deceased anymore.
Very soon, Zhao Huai and Zhao Qing knew about this incident and rushed over as soon as they could. Zhao Huai was enraged. He summoned everyone and questioned, “Who did this?”
“First Master, it wasn’t us! We have never touched the skeleton. There were only Teacher Ji and that idiot in that room.”
“Yes, we know nothing about it.”
Everything was pointed against Ji Yunshu. Numb! That was only word that surfaced in Ji Yunshu’s mind. Why would she destroy the skeleton? She was exhausted mentally.
Zhao Qing interrogated Ji Yunshu, “Weren’t you inside just now?”
“I took a rest. By the time I woke up, it had already happened.”
“That’s weird. The skeleton would not be crushed if no one came in.” Ji Yunshu was curious.
She looked around the room. This room was quite peculiar in the sense that, besides the door, there was not even a window that allowed access to the outside. The only other way she could think of was...
Ji Yunshu turned around and asked Zhao Huai, “First Master, can you order someone to check the roof?”
Zhao Huai contemplated, then sent a signal with his eyes to his underlings. Two of them jumped onto the roof beam. Without much effort, the roof tiles above the skeleton were removed. Moonlight shone into the room and landed right on the skeleton. The people on the roof looked down from the small gap.
Ji Yunshu looked up and asked, “Is there anything unusual on the roof?”
Both of them answered, “Nothing.”
“How about footprints?”
“Is there any trace of people touching the roof tiles?”
“I think… no.”
Did I make a wrong guess? Ji Yunshu contemplated but could not figure anything out. Then she let the two people come down. After the two of them returned, they patted their clothes, and said in disgust, “It was so dirty up there. My clothes are now covered in moss.”
“Yeah, there was much moss.”
ChouFleur Rants Corner
Wanxin oh wanxin... What are you doing??
Do you think she was the culprit?
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