Jing Rong was still as elegant as ever, with his sword-like brows and star-like eyes. His steps seemed to pluck one’s heartstrings, causing everyone to feel nervous. However, that originally flirty face was now filled with seriousness.
Entering the court, his gaze met Ji Yunshu’s. His eyes were brimming with warmth though they seemed to have frozen over from her stare. Little scholar, even though you’re still cold to me, I’ll warm you up like a summer’s day.
Shifting his gaze, he walked until he stood next to Madame Jiang. His eyebrows were raised as he spoke to Madame Jiang, “If I give the order that you are not allowed to bring back the corpse, I would like to know, would you lodge a complaint against me to the Supreme Court?” His tone brought an inexplicable solemnness with it, causing Madame Jiang to remain stunned and unable to react.
Magistrate Liu turned into a bootlicker as he gave his greetings, “Greetings, Prince Rong.”
“Prince Rong?” Madame Jiang mouthed. She had lived in the capital for two years, so of course, she knew who he was. It was just that… Didn’t he leave the capital half a year ago? Why of all places is he here?!
She could only continue, “This one didn’t know Prince Rong was present. Please forgive this one.” She was just about to give a formal greeting but was stopped by Prince Rong.
“When I am outside the capital, formalities are unnecessary.”
“Many thanks… Prince Rong!”
Madame Jiang and her younger brother exchanged glances. It looks like we’ve encountered someone troublesome!
Jing Rong smiled coldly as he spoke with a serious face, “Madame Jiang, your maiden family is Old General Li’s family. He is a senior member of the court for three generations of the Lin dynasty Emperors and received the title of Zhangqing General from the late Emperor, as well as, getting my imperial father to pay his respect to him. In addition, the Li family has produced numerous virtuous officials for the court for generations; thus, Madame Jiang, this Prince doesn’t understand why you are so peremptory? You have truly widened my horizons!” His voice contained veiled mockery.
Meanwhile, Ji Yunshu and the magistrate’s thoughts were, No wonder she was so arrogant, she had a strong backing!
Madame Jiang’s features stiffened. This Prince Rong actually knows about my maiden family in such detail.
"This lowly one was rude just now. It’s just that my husband’s matter…”
“I understand your feelings about your husband’s death, and I am sorry for your loss. However, regarding the matter of his remains - since I am one of the witnesses, how can it be returned to you before the case is closed? Since it is a murder case, then it has to be investigated until everything is completely clear.”
“Your Highness, all that’s left of my husband is a pile of bones. All I wish is to give him a proper burial as soon as possible. I beg you to grant me this wish.” Madame Jiang’s tone had clearly softened, and she actually managed to squeeze out a tear from her eye.
Go on and continue to pretend!
“I have already spoken. This is a murder case, and hence that body will not be returned to you.” It was quite apparent Jing Rong was not buying any of that as he spoke with iron-willed decisiveness.
“Prince Rong, don’t listen to their nonsense. My husband couldn’t possibly have been murdered. The wounds on his body were self-inflicted in his madness. Prince- ”
Jing Rong suddenly raised his hand, interrupting her from yammering on! Following which, he gave a cold laugh. “I heard everything when I was outside, so you need not repeat yourself. Moreover…”
As he spoke, he swivelled his body and stepped toward Ji Yunshu. Looking at her, he spoke in a sincere voice, “The only one this Prince trusts, is Teacher Ji!”
Huh?! Ji Yunshu felt her heart quivering. She was quite sure she didn’t mishear.
“If he says it’s a murder case, then it’s a murder case. If he says someone told him who the murderer was, I would believe it too. As long as it is spoken by Teacher Ji, I will believe it.” At that moment, those words, that gaze, they all seemed to burn her till she was tingling on the outside!
She had once heard someone say that the most romantic declaration that one could make was not “I love you” but “I believe you”!
Jing Rong’s lips formed a gentle smile with a warmth that reminded her of sunlight at dawn on a spring day, pleasant and comfortable. As their gazes met, it was as if they were in a world of their own! This caused Ji Yunshu to feel a bit panicked and nervous inside!
Yet at this exact moment...
“Your Highness, you mean to say that you won’t allow Madame Jiang to bring the body back, right?” A rude interruption by Liu Qingping who butted in shattered the harmonious atmosphere that had just formed.
Oi oi oi, how can you be so insensible? Don’t you have eyes? Stupid Liu, this prince will sort you out later!
Ji Yunshu immediately snapped out of it as she shifted herself and avoided Jing Rong’s gaze.
Getting back to the point, Jing Rong turned around and continued speaking to Madame Jiang, “I have already given the order for the yamen to investigate this case clearly and find the killer. I would suggest that you and your entourage do not leave Jinjiang city in the meantime. After all, if your younger brother does turn out to be the killer, then it would be more convenient for the yamen to do their job.”
Though his words didn’t surprise Madame Jiang, it did end up startling her younger brother, Li Zhao. Li Zhao’s pupils dilated as he hid his hands in his sleeves, “I’ve already said it wasn’t me! The day my brother-in-law died I- I wasn’t home!” Li Zhao spoke in a weak voice.
Madame Jiang joined in, “That’s right. My younger brother would never do such a thing. This young sir has already said that it was an old servant of the Jiang family that told her this, and it is most likely Seventh Uncle. But his words are clearly flawed, and especially now that he is dead, you can’t just make accusations without any evidence.” Her tone was as lofty as ever, though it lacked a bit of her previous arrogance.
Ji Yunshu planned on speaking, but Jing Rong spoke first, “Whether or not it really is true, everything will be clear once it has been investigated. If Master Jiang had truly been killed, then I believe that Teacher Ji will definitely be able to find the murderer. At that point, I won’t be lenient on account of Old Man Li.” His authoritative tone and words shocked Madame Jiang and Li Zhao who looked to each other.
Only after a short while did Madame Jiang relent, her voice trembling, “Since Prince Rong has given the order, I shall not speak any longer. Lord Liu, please do your utmost to finish investigating as soon as possible.”
The magistrate replied, “But of course.”
Before leaving, Madame Jiang did not forget to glare hatefully at Ji Yunshu, her heart filled with rage. In the end, she couldn’t help but unwillingly leave with Li Zhao and her two maidservants.
I have to say, she was really tough to handle! I admit it; Being a prince is pretty useful in times like these! If he hadn’t shown up earlier, that corpse would have probably been taken away by her.
The magistrate wiped off the sweat on the back of his hands before waving powerlessly and sighing, “I have long heard of Madame Jiang’s domineering ways, but today I’ve experienced it for myself. I can’t do anything to her either because of her maiden family.”
“That’s because you’re useless.” Jing Rong tossed this sentence at him, slapping his face! ... metaphorically of course.
Jing Rong looked at Ji Yunshu, speaking in his low and warm voice, “Teacher Ji, I have ordered that this case is to be investigated, so it’s under my jurisdiction now. I will have to trouble Teacher Ji to find the killer, posthaste.”
She lowered her head, “Yes, I will do my utmost in solving this case quickly.”
He was staring openly at her, yet he was not getting any reaction. She seemed to be in deep thought about something else so he asked, “What’s wrong?”
“I am thinking about that Seventh Uncle. Two days prior he had indeed come to look for me to tell me that he saw Madame Jiang and her younger brother burying the corpse.”
“But… he is already dead.” Jing Rong spoke.
Grenn's Rants Corner
The case is getting complicated with lack of witness and evidence.