Let Me Pursue You – Chapter 34
Zheng Yun had repeatedly probe her with unclear motives, naturally she didn’t like this person very much. But she would never look at her with prejudice and ignorance because of this, and instead let the real assassin slip away.
After she finished saying this, Lu Shi Qing didn’t comment, and seemed to be thinking about something else.
Yuan Ci Xian thought that he had doubts about Zheng Yun, stared at him and explained: “Assistant Minister Lu, it can’t be Shaohe. First, you have seen the methods of those people last time. Such style can already be called dead soldier. What ability and courage does a princess have to cultivate such soldiers under His Majesty’s nose? If that is the case, it would show that she’s not a simple role. But if she’s not a simple role, why is she so stupid to take such a big risk for a trivial matter? Once His Majesty found out the truth and suspected her intentions of raising dead soldiers, she may even lose her life.”
“Secondly, if Shaohe is really hostile to me, it’s nothing more than love entanglement because of you. In that case, she should wish that I would just disappear. But the purpose of these assassin is clearly to capture me alive. How to explain this? Third, as you said, unless these people have broken their brains, how could they escape in the direction of the capital? Vice Governor Liu too, I would rather believe that he was hit by a boulder falling from the sky and broke his toe, rather than think he that could ‘accidentally’ discover their whereabouts.”
“Fourth, you also said that you suspect that they are foreigners,” She seemed to find it very funny when she said this, “This is even more strange. Is romance between a man and a woman? Who would commit treason for someone who’s unknown whether she can be counted as love rival or not, could it be Shaohe State Princess really loves you to the point of obsession?”
She spoke with reason and her words were clear, but Lu Shi Qing just sat quietly on the opposite side of the long table, looking at her indifferently. He didn’t know how Shaohe State Princess were, and he didn’t want to know, but he knew that Yuan Ci Xian was not obsess.
When he was already unable restrain his sadness and joy because of her casual words, she was still as free and comfortable as she was now.
The reason why she could analyze so detailly without having to think much was because she looked at it from the outside, calm and clear-headed. Shaohe State Princess couldn’t stir up any ripples in her heart, and neither could he.
But of course, she was right. Obviously, this matter had nothing to do with Zheng Yun.
After a long time, Lu Shi Qing pulled the corner of his mouth and said, “I know it’s not her.”
Yuan Ci Xian looked at him strangely. Since he knew it a long time ago, why did he still pondering about it for so long with a look of bitterness and hatred.
Before she could figure it out, Lu Shi Qing suddenly dismissed Cao An and Shi Cui, and when she was the only one left in the room, he said slowly, “Yuan Ci Xian, answer me a question.
His expression was solemn, so Yuan Ci Xian confusingly said: “You say.”
“Since the crown prince was abolished, there have been no di princes in the court. The courtiers have always been had a high hope for the older second and third sons to become the next heir to the throne. Among them, the third prince is the only one in Great Zhou who has been conferred, who acts on behalf of His Majesty in Huainan, and in there, the products are rich and the people are happy. Apart from the current flood disaster, he has been stable for many years.”
“The second prince has made great military achievements. In the past he cooperated with the Huihu to defeat the Turks, eliminating a piece of His Majesty’s heart disease for many years. It was just that a while ago, he privately manufactured and smuggled arrowheads, and had close contacts with the Huihu, so his ulterior motives disappointed His Majesty. In the end Sixth Prince, who had always been unknown, was promoted.”
These were well-known facts. Yuan Ci Xian listened carefully, but the more she listened, the more confused she became, and finally couldn’t help asking: “Assistant Minister Lu, what exactly do you want to ask?”
Lu Shi Qing said with a half-smile: “I want to ask, the second, the third, the sixth, what is your Yuan family’s attitude towards these three people? In other words, among the three of them, who is closer to your Yuan family?”
Yuan Ci Xian didn’t know if she was wrong, she always felt that when Lu Shi Qing asked this question, a strange…expectation faintly appeared in his eyes.
But she didn’t care what he expected, because right now, the most trusted courtier around the emperor threw a curveball question to her. When she opened her mouth, she didn’t know whose ears this answer would reach.
She hurriedly answered resolutely: “My Yuan family has never participated in these intrigues. No matter who is the crown prince, as long as Great Zhou is prosperous and the people of Great Zhou are good, all is fine.” After saying that, she raised her palms to make an oath.
Lu Shi Qing glanced at her snow-white palm, and the corners of his mouth twitched slightly. She seemed to be addicted to swearing in front of him. Probably every time she swore before, it was as fake as now.
He was silent, looked into her eyes and continued to calmly say: “If you believe me, tell me the truth.”
Yuan Ci Xian felt guilty when he looked at her, and turned her head quickly.
What’s the matter? Could it be that her elder brother in Chang’an done something wrong, making Lu Shi Qing suspicious of the relationship between the Yuan family and Zheng Zhuo? Or was he simply trying to extract information from her?
She couldn’t think of a reason, mulled it over, and said affirmatively: “Assistant Minister Lu, of course I believe you, but I have already told the truth.”
Lu Shi Qing blinked twice, stood up from the desk, and walked to the window. He put his hands behind his back for a long time before saying, “Got it.”
After all, in Yuan Ci Xian’s dream, Lu Shi Qing finally ended up assisting the Thirteenth Prince, so she was afraid that if he knew something, he would have political conflicts with the Yuan family in the future. When she wanted to test out with a few words, he turned his back to her and said: “You don’t have to worry about the assassin for now. I have something to discuss with the county magistrate, you should go back.”
When Yuan Ci Xian listened to his indifferent tone, he did not seem to be angry, so she had no choice but to put the matter on hold for the time being, and left the room.
This place was the mansion of County Magistrate Zhu in Tanghe County. Since Lu Shi Qing had some matters to deal with in this area, he agreed to stay here for two to three days. Yuan Ci Xian lived in the courtyard adjacent to him, separated by a low wall in the middle.
Coming out of his courtyard and stepping through the moon gate, at a glance she saw Shi Cui standing at the front, as if waiting for her for a long time.
Seeing her coming, Shi Cui looked around, and said in a low voice: “Young lady, I have some news for you.”
Yuan Ci Xian nudged her chin to signal her to speak inside, went back to the main room, closed the doors and windows, and asked “What’s the matter?”
Shi Cui said, “Jian Zhi has return to Chang’an.”
Yuan Ci Xian froze for a moment, subconsciously pulled her sleeve and asked nervously: “There’s a result about Mr. Xu’s identity?”
Jian Zhi was sent by her to Jiangzhou to visit Old Teacher Xǔ, a former great expert, in the early of Seventh month. It was reasonable to say that she should return in the early of Eight month. But a few days ago, she sent back a message saying that something happened temporarily and further investigation was needed, so she had been delayed until now.
Because it was not safe to put it in letters, Yuan Ci Xian didn’t rush to ask her blindly what happened.
Shi Cui nodded, and said: “Jian Zhi has lived up to the entrustment. She met Old Teacher Xǔ, and after some roundabout testing, she’s more or less convinced that what Mr. Xu gave you was indeed the chess score of the battle with Old Teacher Xǔ on the banks of the Xunyang River that year. Jian Zhi then go home after getting such a result, unexpectedly she was invited back by the Xǔ family on the way.”
Yuan Ci Xian frowned: “Why?”
“Do you know Old Teacher Xǔ’s granddaughter Xǔ Sanniang?”
She shook her head: “Never heard of her.”
“This Xǔ Sanniang is a well-known talented woman in Jiangzhou, well-verse in the Four Art (zither, go, calligraphy, painting), poetry and song, and of course under her grandfather’s influence, her chess skills are quite high. Xǔ Sanniang is twenty-four now, but she has never been married. She usually likes to travel. This time she returned from home for several months. After listening to Old Teacher Xǔ’s story about the chess records, she hurriedly sent someone to pick Jian Zhi to inquire about Mr. Xu’s whereabouts.”
Yuan Ci Xian seemed to have guessed something, but she didn’t speak, motioning her to continue.
“According to Xǔ Sanniang, she had a relationship with Mr. Xu, but one day three years ago, Mr. Xu suddenly left without saying goodbye, and there has been no news since then. She has been looking for him for three years, and has searched all over the country without finding any clues. Therefore, she begged Jian Zhi, if Jian Zhi know the whereabouts of Mr. Xu, be sure to show her the way.”
“Without your permission, Jian Zhi didn’t dare to make decision. Both afraid of missing the golden opportunity to confirm Mr. Xu’s identity, and afraid that the matter would become a big mess and offend him, so she didn’t say anything. She just told Xǔ Sanniang that the chess record was obtained by accident, and she didn’t know where the so-called Mr. Xu was. Xǔ Sanniang insisted on following this clue to investigate further. Jian Zhi took her back to Chang’an for the time being, and found her a house in the city to settle down, and planned to stabilize her first, and make a decision after you return. You see, how should we deal with this matter?”
After Shi Cui finished explaining, seeing Yuan Ci Xian’s eyes glazed over, as if wandering away, she hesitated for a while, and asked tentatively: “Young lady?”
Yuan Ci Xian suddenly came back to her senses: “Oh, what did you say? She has been looking for him for three full years. Then what?”
Shi Cui was taken aback. What’s wrong with the young lady, she missed such a long sentence. But Shi Cui didn’t dare to ask, so she repeated what she had just said.
Yuan Ci Xian was still a little absent-minded, and after listening to the silence for a long time, she slowly said: “Since we are old acquaintances of Mr. Xu, let’s ask him what he means. But it’s not appropriate to ask directly, it has to be in a roundabout way. I’m not in Chang’an, and I don’t feel reassured with my brother handling this.”
“What are you going to do, young lady?”
“I’ll go to the courtyard next door and find Assistant Minister Lu.”
She hesitated for a while, then turned back to the outside of the courtyard, and when she arrived at Lu Shi Qing’s study, she knocked on the door three times.
Lu Shi Qing was talking to County Magistrate Zhu, when he heard the sound, he asked “Who?” After identifying her voice, he personally went to the door, saw her, raised his eyebrows, and asked, “What?”
Yuan Ci Xian felt that he was still strange. He actually opened the door for her himself, and his eyes were burning, as if he was about to burn through her face, she didn’t know whether he was still probing which side she was on.
She paused for a while, then said hesitantly: “Assistant Minister Lu, when I went back to my room I was thinking, although Chang’an has arrested the fake assassins, but no matter how fake, they are still caught. It just so happens that I have been gone for a long time, and my brother and sister-in-law must be missing me so much…” When she said this, she felt that Lu Shi Qing’s eyes were a little cold, and inexplicably made her a little weak, “That…so I want to say goodbye to you and go back to Chang’an.”
After Yuan Ci Xian finished speaking, she looked up at him, only to see that his face seemed to be covered with frost.
She thought about it, and quickly made amends: “I’m not only doing it for my brother and sister-in-law, but also for you. I see that you are very busy with everything, and it won’t be good if I always bothering you.”
Lu Shi Qing fixed his sharp gaze on her for a long time, until it was enough to make her face hurt, then he sneered and said: “Yuan Ci Xian, in your dreams!”