Author: Chai Jidan
Translator: chiangyushien, Renkun27
From the moment Mu Xueshi entered the study, the Third Prince’s eyes had not left Mu Xueshi. Seeing that the Third Prince was still staring at him, Mu Xueshi could not help but feel scared.
“Why was Wu Cai looking for you just now?”
Mu Xueshi was dumbstruck. He felt anxious. Actually, it was all right to tell the Third Prince about this matter, but Mu Xueshi’s instinct made him feel that the Third Prince would get angry. He glanced at the Third Prince several times from the corner of his eye and did not say anything. In the end, under the Third Prince’s interrogating gaze Mu Xueshi found a reason with the intention to beat around the bushes.
“Actually, he thanked me for helping him yesterday… Uhm, by the way, let’s continue discussing the case. You said that Ning Yue was dead. I think Ning Yue’s death must be related to this case. Perhaps he knew who the murderer was, so he was killed to prevent that secret from being divulged. It’s been too long since my father’s death. It’s too difficult to find clues from my father’s body. Let’s start to investigate the case from Ning Yue.”
The Third Prince was aware that Mu Xueshi’s serious expression was all pretense. Usually, he holds his hands together only when he is nervous. The Third Prince sneered a few times and did not expose Mu Xueshi. In his opinion, whether Mu Xueshi’s mistake was big or small, the end result would still be the same. If Mu Xueshi committed a serious offense because he was too naughty, then the Third Prince would have a reason to punish him.
“Yes, we must start with Ning Yue.” The Third Prince nodded.
Mu Xueshi thought that he had dodged disaster and laughed in his sleeve. When he saw the Third Prince staring at him, he quickly withdrew his smile. “When did Ning Yue die?” he asked.
“It was two weeks ago,” replied the Third Prince.
Mu Xueshi suddenly remembered something. His complexion changed. Housekeeper Wang and the Third Prince thought that Mu Xueshi had found something, so both of them looked at Mu Xueshi.
In the end, Mu Xueshi cried with a woebegone look on his face. He pulled the Third Prince’s arm and said, “Didn’t you hit Ning Yue two weeks ago? I remember that that servant was called Ning Yue. Did you hit him severely enough that he died?”
The Third Prince did not expect Mu Xueshi’s memory to be so good. At that time, in order to test Mu Xueshi, the Third Prince ordered someone innocent to pretend to be that servant and be flogged, receiving many strokes as punishment.
The Third Prince had not yet answered Mu Xueshi, but Mu Xueshi had already become anxious. He paced back and forth in the room. “I regret so much that I killed such an important witness.”
After that, Mu Xueshi pounded his head with his small fist several times. He felt so regretful that his intestines turned green .
( An idiom which means “to be completely consumed with regret.”)
Looking at Mu Xueshi’s unbridled action, the Third Prince did not know if he should laugh or cry. At first, he did not want to pay attention to Mu Xueshi, but he looked like he was about to run into a wall. With a few big strides he came over and pulled Mu Xueshi to stop him.
“Don’t make a scene…”
When Mu Xueshi heard the Third Prince’s rebuke, he immediately behaved himself. His big eyes opened and closed as he looked at the Third Prince. He seemed to be quite lonely.
“I’m really useless!”
“The person who was flogged that day wasn’t Ning Yue.”
“What!?” Mu Xueshi gulped. Dumbstruck, he asked the Third Prince, “So, that time you played a trick on me?”
The Third Prince did not answer. Mu Xueshi was staring at him, ready to raise his head, scream loudly, and avenge himself. In the end, before he could even open his mouth, the Third Prince had already disappeared. Mu Xueshi looked around the entire room, but the Third Prince was no longer in it.
“Huh, why was my head hit so many times for nothing? So to speak, I did it myself to begin with. I’ve got to go back too…” After he finished talking to himself, Mu Xueshi galloped out of the house like a steed, leaving behind a layer of dust.
Housekeeper Wang stared blankly at the empty room and kept at it for a long time. The Third Prince who talked to him and the Third Prince who talked to the young master were simply two different people. The Third Prince was so cold a moment ago that he had made people tremble in fear. When Mu Xueshi came in, the Third Prince’s countenance turned 180 degrees. He still could not really believe that his Young Master had the capability that great.
“Come out! Come out here!” Mu Xueshi circled the residence several times and still did not see the Third Prince. He was so angry that he shouted at every corner and asked the servants, but no one saw the Third Prince. On the other hand, all the servants in the residence kept their eyes on Mu Xueshi who was rarely seen going out of his room in the residence in the past. There were many servants who had never heard him talking. When they saw Mu Xueshi’s action, they were all dumbstruck. They thought Mu Xueshi had been tortured in prison for a long time and that lead him to insanity.
Being cautious, Mu Xueshi ran to the horse shed and found that the horse the Third Prince had ridden had disappeared. In a split second, he became angry. The Third Prince did not even notify me! So he played a trick on me and ran away! Wouldn’t that be equivalent to adding one more to his sins? Mu Xueshi gritted his teeth. Usually, it was him who did something wrong and the Third Prince would punish him. Now that the Third Prince had done a thing to be sorry for, he should be blamed by him.
With this in mind, Mu Xueshi rushed out of the imperial tutor’s residence with rapid strides. He ran relying on his memory of the path by which they came here. Even if he had to run back, he had to do it, not only for revenge but also for something more important. Today was the fifteenth day of the month. If he will not be back to keep watch and miss the oriole orchids bloom, the Third Prince would have to continue to bear the pain.
(Translator’s notes: Just a reminder, the oriole orchid had bloomed when Mu Xueshi fell asleep and missed it. The Third Prince saw it, but he didn’t tell Mu Xueshi about it. Mu Xueshi’s such a darling. He keeps worrying about the Third Prince even when he’s angry with him.)
Mu Xueshi muttered as he ran along the road and soon was out of breath. The root cause of it was a stabbing pain from below . It would be all right if he had walked slowly. However, as soon as he started to move fiercely like this, Mu Xueshi felt like he was going to split in two.
( This is pertaining to his butthole since it was still painful. lol)
Finally, he could not stand it anymore. Mu Xueshi stopped at a place that looked like a small garden. Because of his discomfort, he could not sit either. He could only stand there stupidly while looking around. The setting sun was about to recede on the horizon, and droplets of sweat on Mu Xueshi’s forehead fell off one by one. While looking at the pleasant scenery around him, he suddenly felt fear for no reason.
“What kind of place is this? Have I lost my way?” Mu Xueshi could not help but think that he had been wandering in the garden for a long time. Beside him were thick and dense wildflowers as tall as half a person, and various butterflies were flying among them. It was a warm and peaceful place, but Mu Xueshi felt uneasy.
Clenching his fist tightly, Mu Xueshi shouted at the flowers, “I curse you, Xi! You’ll be overthrown by the horse on the way back!”
“Is that so?”
All of a sudden, a familiar voice came through. Mu Xueshi turned around and saw that the Third Prince was smiling. Suddenly, Mu Xueshi felt angry yet happy at the same time. He pulled the Third Prince and shook him with all his strength. He said angrily, “Did you do it on purpose? You made me run in vain so far while you have been following me all along!”
The Third Prince snorted coldly. He did not have any intention to apologize at all. Instead, he said sarcastically, “This is just the back garden of the tutor’s residence. Although it’s built separately on the mountain grasslands, it’s only a hundred steps away from the residence.”
“Oh…” Mu Xueshi looked embarrassed at once. He stretched his neck and looked back at the road. Then he curled his lips and made an uproar, “Don’t talk nonsense! You’re doubting my ability!”