Chapter 737: Return it Tenfold
A bit of a filler chapter here, and also the introduction to a new addition to our team! Please welcome Iris, who was the translator of?Adorable Creature Attacks! It's a lighthearted and cute story, so go check it out if you haven't already read it!Translator: Iris, Editor: Choufleur
Jing Rong stood in front of a large shelf, his hands crossed behind his back as he admired the small clay animals that decorated the shelf.
It was a complete set of the Chinese Zodiac, where each animal was made in such detail that they almost looked like they could come to life.
Wei Yi might not be the brightest person but he undeniably does have some talent in handicrafts. In the future, he might even be able to set up a stall, sell something like pulled sugar figurines and make a living out of it. This kid would survive just fine!
He continued to admire the clay animals with the hint of a smile on his lips as he thought about how Wei Yi had held these animals in his arms as he slept. It was quite cute.
During this time, it had gotten quieter without Wei Yi around. He kind of missed the bustle.
“Wei Yi had so much fun when he made these clay figurines.” A voice called out from the door.
Jing Rong turned around and saw Ji Yunshu standing in the doorway.
She stepped into the room and walked to his side, her eyes focused on the clay animals on the shelf.
“He loved these little creatures and treasured them dearly. We spent an afternoon making them. The moment the sun came out, he would carefully bring each one of them into the sun. He refused any help and wouldn’t let anyone else touch them. The maids laughed and complained about how stingy he was. But he just carried on happily, bustling around all on his own. I still remember he accidentally broke a rabbit. He was so sad that it took him a couple of hours to collect himself. He even buried the rabbit. I don’t think there would be anyone else in the world that would be more naïve and kind than him.”
Ji Yunshu’s lips would always curl into a smile whenever she talked about Wei Yi. Jing Rong listened to her quietly.
She continued, “By the time we left Jinjiang, he could already recite poems and had learned so many words. It’s been months since then, I wonder how he is doing? Has he memorised more poems? Did he learn to read more words? Is his handwriting still as messy as before? Did his teacher teach him anything else? Would he still be so naïve about the world?”
Her voice grew softer and softer as she began choking up. Her eyes reddened as she pictured how much Wei Yi has grown and changed. How is he right now?
“Good people would always be rewarded in the end,” Jing Rong said.
“Definitely.” He answered firmly.
Ji Yunshu picked up a small pig figurine from the shelf and cupped it in her hands, stroking the pig again and again as if she were patting Wei Yi’s head.
Jing Rong turned and stared at her. His mouth opened and closed, as if words had gotten stuck in his throat. After a while, he finally said, “Wei Yi is fine.”
Hm? Ji Yunshu’s hand tightened around the clay pig. “How do you know?”
“Jing Yi told me.”
“Jing Yi? Please elaborate.”
Jing Rong explained, “Just as we thought, Jing Yi was the one who kidnapped Wei Yi but we don’t know where he has hidden him. All I know is that he’s safe and that nothing will happen to him for now.”
For now? Ji Yunshu only heard the key words. She set down the clay figurine, grabbed his arm and asked anxiously, “For now? What do you mean ‘for now’?”
Jing Rong lowered his eyes and continued with a serious tone. “In short, Wei Yi is now one of Jing Yi’s hostages. He would only return Wei Yi unscathed when I leave the capital and remain outside until the day he ascends to the throne.”
Argh! She understands now. Jing Rong had not agreed to that condition then. Of course, she could understand why.
“We all know what Jing Yi is capable of. For Wei Yi’s sake, I should leave the capital. But if we wait for the day that he ascends to the throne, Jing Yi would not release him. The first thing he would do is kill either Wei Yi or me.”
“I know.” Her brows furrowed as she went silent, her hand slowly released Jing Rong’s arm and she turned away. “Here in the capital, you have your father, your brothers, and people would put their lives on the line for you, even a roof over your head. But Wei Yi only has me.”
The air between them went still. Only the soft drizzle of the rain and the sound of the wind remained.
After some time, Jing Rong answered with a steely gaze in his eyes, “I promise you, I will rescue Wei Yi. If he has a millimetre long scratch, then I would let you cut a centimetre in me. Anything that happens to him, I would return it tenfold. You have my word.”
Return it tenfold!
She lifted her eyes from the ground and turned around to see his cold but determined eyes. Their eyes met but neither of them continued the conversation.
That night, Jing Rong stayed in Zhuxi Court.
No matter how much she tossed and turned, Ji Yunshu could not sleep. The drizzle outside had grown into a downpour and the rain sounded almost as loud as thunderclaps.
She laid on her side, squeezed her eyes shut, and tried to sleep. But moments later, she would open her eyes again. The instant she closed her eyes, she would recall the dream she had in the study.
The dream itself was not scary, but the possibility it showed terrified her. A dream like that seemed to have been haunting her since they were at Yufu and burned itself into her mind.
The next day, Jing Rong left early in the morning.
Ji Yunshu woke up in the early morning, got dressed and stepped out of her room.
A maid was sweeping the courtyard. “Good morning, Teacher.”
“Where’s His Highness?”
“His Highness seemed to have something urgent to do and left in a hurry first thing in the morning. Since Teacher was still sleeping, he did not wake you.”
Something important? That should be something to do with Jing Yi.
It had rained throughout the night, and the courtyard was covered in sloshed mud. The flowers and plants had all drowned in the downpour, so the maids had been cleaning up the area since morning. They finished the work in no time, and even sprinkled some chamomile water in the courtyard, filling the air with a refreshing fragrance. Within moments, the courtyard looked like it had not been ravaged by the rain at all.
Ji Yunshu sat in the courtyard after breakfast, as she sorted through her thoughts. Then, she found a gourd ladle, scooped some water and washed her hands before she headed to the room where the coffin was kept.
Just when she began examining the bones she retrieved from the coffin, the Lord Mayor arrived.
And just like before, he was very courteous to Ji Yunshu. As soon as he stepped in, he bowed slightly and patted away the raindrops on his robe. “Good morning, Teacher Ji.”
Dude, it’s hardly morning by now.
But she was not surprised to see the Capital Magistrate..
He wouldn’t be the Capital Magistrate. if he didn’t show up.
Besides, he still has to ask about the ‘Lin Capital Case’!
“Capital Magistrate. What brings you here?” She asked out of courtesy.
The Capital Magistrate was about to approach her, but when he noticed the bones held in her hand, he paused in his step, then moved back instead. He replied with a smile, “I heard Teacher Ji had returned to Zhuxi Court. Initially, I had planned to come by and visit yesterday, but there was just so much to do now that the Imperial Court is in a complete mess. So I came by today instead.”
There was a slight grumble in his voice.
“Oh? The Imperial Court is in a mess? How so?” She asked.
Even if it’s in a mess, how bad could it be?
The Capital Magistrate sighed...