Wasn’t the Way that Ended Slightly Strange?
Jia Yunfeng follows the prince, but he didn’t expect Su Xiao to play that card in front of the emperor. Before he realised it, Su Xiao was threatening the Orange Prince once again. He couldn’t face the prince anymore so he could only play the loyal servant card: “What are you doing? You insolent wretch! Do you realise what the penalty is for frightening his highness?!”
The emperor frowned and said: “How ridiculous! What are you doing?”
Su Xiao widened his eyes and replied in a terrified tone: “But… But isn’t this what you wanted me to do?”
The emperor angrily replied: “I told you to recount the event, not to threaten the Orange Prince!”*
Su Xiao became even more distressed and asked in a slightly panicked tone: “N-no, isn’t this what you meant?”
“You can just tell me. The penalty for assaulting a prince is serious.”
But in the end, the emperor couldn’t hold it in and burst out laughing: “You’re such an honest kid, and I know you didn’t mean it. How about this, if I find that you’re innocent, I won’t punish you, and I’ll even promise to stop him from harassing you.”
Come to think of it, the current emperor doesn’t make a fuss out of small issues. Martial arts are flourishing these days and the emperor himself is surrounded by martial artists. So naturally, he’s quite candid.
The emperor likes Su Xiao’s simple-mindedness and therefore let him off for threatening a prince.
The Orange Prince was furious. He was still angry about getting hit and yet Su Xiao was forgiven?!
Su Xiao retold the entire story, but he only mentioned how the Orange Prince was in the wrong, how he forced Liu Shan Men to hand over the thief and how he ordered Jia Yunfeng to attack Shen Yiren and co. He skipped over the part where we obtained the records. I commend him for that. At least he knew that it wasn’t something he could just blurt out. He was stuttering throughout, but that actually made it sound more genuine to the emperor.
The emperor turned to face the Orange Prince and with a cold look in his eyes said: “Cheng’er, you promised me just a few days ago that you were going to change for the better and not engage in conflict with others impulsively. What’s with today’s surprise? You assaulted a government office? Heh, my son sure is amazing.”
“F-father, I didn’t assault the office, th-these people, th-they…”
In the distance, I pulled the book out, and raised it up high…
“…They didn’t do anything wrong. It was just a misunderstanding. I was a bit too intolerant…”
The Orange Prince got depressed again. If I handed the emperor the records, he’d be a goner from today. Seeing the look on his, Shen Yiren and I looked at each other and couldn’t help but smile.
The emperor spotted me stealing the spotlight in the distance. He got a bit suspicious, so he pointed at me and said: “You. You cut me off multiple times. You’re quite the daring one. Come over here and speak.”
Ah shit, it’s my turn now.
I took a stride forward and greeted him: “Greetings, your majesty!”
However, I was still trying to come up with lines.
What shall I do?
If I hand the book over in front of the prince, he’ll hate Liu Shan Men forever. Attracting trouble isn’t a good long-term strategy for staying afloat in life. But if I hold onto it, the prince might start on us again.
How should I deal with the records…?
“My name is Ming Feizhen. I am a normal constable at Liu Shan Men.”
The emperor focused his gaze on me but stopped speaking half-way through.
Huh? What’s wrong?
I blinked out of confusion. I couldn’t figure out what the problem was… Wait, shit! I suddenly remembered that I spoke with him face-to-face before.
Shit. Shit. Shit… He doesn’t remember me, does he? That was many years ago, but the emperor is wise. Could he have photographic memory? If he recognises me, I won’t be able to run my concession scam. I can’t believe my retirement plan is going to be ruined by the emperor himself!
The emperor, however, didn’t look like he met someone he knew. To the contrary, he wore a frightened expression and asked: “A-are you alright?”
“I am fine. Thank you for your concern. You are too kind, your majesty, to be caring about us. Your generosity and benevolence knows no bounds, it extends beyond the four seas, may you get wealthier by the day…”
As I was kissing up to the emperor, Shen Yiren suddenly asked: “No, are you sure you’re alright, Ming Feizhen?”
Captain Song who stood to the side also asked: “Ming Feizhen, are you sure you’re alright?”
I was baffled after being asked by them. What did they see to be posing that question? I checked left and right, and myself, but there was nothing out of the norm. Could they have realised I secretly drank the stashed wine?!
Tang Ye quietly walked over, handed me a mirror and said: “You’re welcome.”
I unwillingly exclaimed: “You’re welcome my ass… For fuck sakes!”
I checked myself in the mirror. My handsome face was swollen like hell. There were purple and green bumps all over. I realised I lost my sense of feeling on my face when I went to touch it. No wonder I didn’t realise, it was completely numb.
Was I poisoned? When did I get poisoned?
Everybody looked at me alarmed. I looked around once. It doesn’t look like I can hold a normal conversation like this. But I still have to resolve the matter with the book.
My thoughts became muddled. I suddenly thought of a plan and shouted loudly: “I’m poisoned!” I then looked up at the sky and fell down. As I fell to the ground, I tossed the book in a random direction. Those around me rushed over to catch my fall and call for a doctor. A lot of them also yelled “be careful to not get infected”. Your family’s virus is contagious too…
The book flew over in the direction of the Orange Prince like a white pigeon. The Orange Prince was gleeful and extended his hand out to catch it. However, he never expected there to be a force that’d prevent him from grabbing it, so it bounced off his hand and flew into the air again.
The Orange Prince’s face turned pale because the book flew towards his father. But that was caused by his mysterious hand, so he couldn’t do anything but curse his own hand.
The emperor is trained in martial arts so he managed to catch it. The emperor was baffled. He looked at the book in his hand and then at the enraged Orange Prince who was cursing his own hand. He then opened the book.
The contents were incredible.
In memory of the Orange Prince, destroyed at twenty-five years of age…
Keke, not yet.
The depressed prince ran over to his father and put on his filial son act: “F-father, I… I…”
“Heh, what a great prince you are.” The emperor couldn’t stop laughing coldly, but he didn’t look angry either.
“Return home, right now. Get lost!”
“What are you still here for?! Do you want me to read the contents out loud in front of all these people?”
The Orange Prince grit his teeth, shot me a hateful glare and said: “I understand that I am wrong. I shall return home now. I will not leave my residence. I shall reflect on my mistakes! Yunfeng, let’s go.” The Orange Prince left with Master Jia.
I was also lifted up and sent off to be treated.
The last scene I saw as I was carried out on a stretcher was the emperor watching the Orange Prince leave and him throwing the book to Eunuch Nan. He didn’t take another look. His benevolent eyebrows made it look like he was smiling, but at the same time not smiling.
What the heck?
Well, this ended weirdly…
*The emperor used a form of speech only he’d use. When he said “recount”, it’s the same characters as “return to the original” or in this context “resume what you were doing”. Su Xiao thought he meant “resume what you were doing”, as opposed to “recount”, so he went and shoved the blade up against the prince’s neck again.
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