Si Tian Guan Chapter 93

Chapter 93 Mei Dai*

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* eyebrows with makeup

After the Shangyuan Festival, the yamen soon resumed their bustling popularity.

When Liu Zhongming went to Dali Temple to file for a sign, the head bookkeeper on duty was already waiting at the door. When they saw someone coming, they immediately stepped forward to lead his horse for him, and led him to the door graciously.

Although the positions of the two were not far apart, everyone knew in their hearts that the Second Young Master Liu, who was well-known in the capital, was just passing through in this position.

“Bookkeeper Yang is too polite.” Liu Zhongming followed the man to register in the official registrar hall, received a waist token, and was led to greet the officials everywhere.

Dali Temple officials were frequent visitors to the Liu residence. Knowing that Liu Zhongming was coming today, they made an exception and sent him to see him, and chat warmly for a while.

After going out, Bookkeeper Yang’s attitude became even more enthusiastic.

Liu Zhongming also felt helpless. He had attracted so much attention on the first day of his arrival, he didn’t know whether it was good or bad.

When he entered the Chengxuan Hall, Bookkeeper Yang pointed out his seat to him, then walked to the west corridor, went to the criminal department first, introduced him one by one to those who stood up to say hello, and finally pointed to the one furthest back.

Liu Zhongming nodded to everyone with a smile, exchanged greetings one by one, and said, “I recognize this person, Master Ling.” 

Ling He was still holding a document in his hand, and he was not very enthusiastic, but apart from his usual indifference, Liu Zhongming felt that he seemed to be seeing a little panic, the other party didn’t seem to expect him to appear at this time.

Bookkeeper Yang also saw that Ling He’s face was colder than usual, obviously he didn’t welcome uninvited guests to disturb the Criminal Division, so he hurriedly smiled and led Liu Zhongming away.

“Shizi, please go this way, the east side is the civil affairs department you are going to.”

Liu Zhongming nodded, and as soon as he went out with the man, he heard the sound of an iron chain dragging on the ground behind him, and then the iron chain hit the threshold, and entered the house again. 

It was perfectly normal to bring prisoners here to verify their identity before going to court, but he still couldn’t help but look up.

“It’s him?”

Bookkeeper Yang carefully asked from the side: “Shizi knows him?” 

The two stopped at the door and looked into the room.

Two jailers stood in front of Ling He with a young man between them.

The man was probably a few years older than Liu Zhongming, wearing shackles, looking straight ahead, with a calm expression, as if he was not in Dali Temple, but just at a friend’s appointment.

“Rong Jiuan?” Ling He flipped through the files without raising his head as if he was doing business.

“Replying to Daren, it is Rong Jiuan.” The jailer at the side responded quickly.

“En.” Ling He closed the file and put it under his arm: “Come with me.”

When passing by Liu Zhongming, Ling He didn’t look sideways, as if he didn’t see anyone, but Rong Jiuan, who was between the two jailers, turned to Liu Zhongming. Zhongming nodded, as a greeting.

The four of them turned around the corner and disappeared from sight. Then Liu Zhongming asked, “Why is Rong Tanhua* here?”

* cam third place in Han lin examination

Bookkeeper Yang took him a few more steps, and then said softly, “Shizi, the floods in Jinnan Prefecture were serious last year. You must have heard of it, it spread to the capital, and it had been raging for a while.”

“I know.”

“This matter started from Rong Jiuan,” Bookkeeper Yang said in a low voice, “I heard that at first, no one knew that there was a disaster in Jinnan Prefecture, and all the papers said it was safe.”

“In the end, Rong Jiuan happened to be released, and he worked as a county magistrate in Jinnan Prefecture. Several times, the account books couldn’t be handed over, so they knew something was wrong.”

“If he hadn’t brought some disaster victims to the capital to file a complaint, it’s unclear how many more people in Jinnan Prefecture would have died.”

Liu Zhongming’s heart moved, and he suddenly remembered that he had indeed heard about it before. Flood victims went to the capital to file a complaint. At that time, he secretly admired the courage of these people.

It turned out to be Rong Jiuan, no wonder.

“That’s when the next thing happened. Qi Wang asked to govern Jinnan Prefecture.”

“But…” Liu Zhongming was puzzled: “In this way, Rong Jiuan should have done meritorious service, why is he still trapped in Dali Temple?” 

“This…” If it was to someone else, Bookkeeper Yang would not have said as much but to Liu Zhongming, he can ask anyone for this inside information, so it can be treated simply as a favor.

“It was said that he was indeed summoned by the emperor at the beginning, and when things were seeing an improvement, Ren Rui reversed the case halfway and bit him into the water. I don’t know the crime, but it must be related to the flood. Who can say the right thing within officialdom? The wind blows and the rain falls, looking at it like this, it won’t be possible for him to appear for a while.”

Bookkeeper Yang sighed and led the way forward.

“This case should be handled by the civil affairs department, but Master Ling insisted on dealing with it. You see, it had been a few months, and even Master Ling was still helpless. There are some things that cannot be handled.”

Liu Zhongming looked back. The corridor where no one can be seen reminded him of Ling He at the Mid-Autumn Festival banquet.

Everyone knows the relationship between Ling He and Rong Jiuan. Rong Jiuan filed a complaint. If Ling He didn’t help build a bridge, he might not be able to file the complaint, but who would have thought of what would happen afterwards?

No wonder…he thought, no wonder Ling He was going crazy.

On the first day of filing, there was nothing serious after that scene. Before he stepped into the carriage, there was another servant waiting there, who respectfully handed over a small box, reported the owner’s name, and greeted a few words before leaving.

He didn’t even look at it, just threw it aside, and went to the blacksmith’s shop by detour.

He had never taken a fancy to the blacksmith’s business before, and he didn’t expect that the “losing business” that Qu Chenzhou bought at the beginning would be of great use now.

Qu Chenzhou’s flying thorns had not been found after. The ordinary flying thorns cannot be retracted, and they cannot be installed in the newly made slave ring, so a new one needed to be customized.

In addition, they also needed a more special thing to catch the “beast”, which was not convenient for people to see, and it was most convenient in their own shop.

He asked Qu Chenzhou: Did he think about doing bad things from the very beginning.

Qu Chenzhou replied solemnly: In this world, good things and bad things, good people and bad people are all equal. Instead of waiting for others to do bad things, it is better to act first.

He couldn’t help but smile bitterly, and asked where he learned this. Qu Chenzhou said it was taught by his former teacher.

Liu Zhongming really wanted to meet this teacher for a while, the little fox’s personality was already crooked enough, why can’t he teach something better?

Chores can wear people down. After coming out of the blacksmith shop, he walked around, and when he got home, the sun was already setting.

He asked the servant first, but before he had time to take a sip of water, he went straight to the reception pavilion.

The window of the reception pavilion was slightly open, and the person inside casually threw a noodle into his mouth, then laid down in front of the bronze mirror, facing him obliquely, doing something.

Liu Zhongming felt a little panicked in his heart, and suddenly felt that he was just running errands, and the person sitting inside was the master.


He coughed forcefully. Qu Chenzhou turned around, only then did he see that Qu Chenzhou was holding a tube of snails in his hand, most of his unknown anger in his heart was extinguished, and he was a little shy.

“What are you doing?” he asked knowingly.

“Drawing my eyebrows. Shizi is right, my eyebrows seem to be thinner.” Qu Chenzhou dragged his chair away, and after calling for someone to serve tea, he picked up the things on the table again: “Shizi, I’m sorry, but I’m not very good at doing it.” 

After thinking about it for a while, he asked again: ” I saw this on the table when I got up in the morning. Was it left by Shizi?” 

“En.” Liu Zhongming stared at him without blinking, his cheeks were red as if he seemed to blame him: “Why can’t you even know this?”

Qu Chenzhou frowned and looked in the mirror: “This is too thick, it’s hard to hold it.”

Liu Zhongming looked at him from the edge of the teacup, the left eyebrow had already been drawn. After drawing a line, the sharp eyebrows added a bright and heroic look to this flawless face.

It’s really strange, people often boast that being perfect was like adding a point or subtracting a point, but this person was different, adding or subtracting gave a different flavor.

Stop painting, he murmured in his heart, if he painted again, Ning Wang will really die.

“It’s for you.” The palm-sized brocade box was thrown on the table.

Qu Chenzhou couldn’t draw the other side well, so he wiped his eyebrows, glanced at the box out of the corner of his eye, and chuckled, “Or Ning Wang?”

“There’s a few more,” Liu Zhongming laughed: “It’s just Ning Wang losing face. If I don’t let it go, is he planning to stay sick forever?”

The bet with Liao Guangming had already been won by more than half, and he was in a good mood.

Since the second day of the Lantern Festival, people in the market have been making a lot of fuss, saying that they saw a little fairy coming down to earth at the lantern festival. Although the posture of descending to the world was not that pleasant, they were blinded by the little fairy.

Casting a glance with tears in his eyes, and walking through the water, even those who were not good at this can come up with dozens of dramas on their own.

Soon someone spat on this rumor – what kind of little fairy, you can tell by looking at those eyes, isn’t it little brother Qu from the former Qisheng building? After being raised by Shizi for more than half a year, he had been adjusted to become a fairy, as if he was a different person.

Before waiting for the rumors to spread, Ning Wang heard about it early in the morning, hurriedly came to the door, blocked the door and scolded Liu Zhongming for being unkind.

Liu Zhongming was scolded for no reason, and he made up his mind to whet people’s appetites—looking is okay, but he cannot touch a single finger.

He wrapped the sleepy little fox tightly with a quilt, and then carried him out to show off in front of Ning Wang.

Poor Ning Wang drank the tea eagerly, climbed into the carriage in a daze, and never went out after returning. Counting today, he had been ill for five or six days, but he remembered to send someone to deliver things every day, and rewarding Qu Chenzhou.

When Ning Wang fell ill, word spread even more in the marketplace. Now, even if Liao Guangming denied it stubbornly, he still would lose.

Qu Chenzhou opened it and took a look. It was a red coral pendant the size of a longan. He closed the box again and pushed it towards Liu Zhongming: “Treat it as if it was bestowed to Shizi.”

This item was not given by the buyer, so he couldn’t take it to exchange for money.

“One copper coin!” Liu Zhongming slammed down the price with ease.

“Done.” Qu Chenzhou immediately made a decision, and added: “No IOU.”

Liu Zhongming was annoyed.

He obviously didn’t need to play this kind of trick with others, Qu Chenzhou even belonged to him – the life contract in black and white, it was clear.

“I won’t renege you.” After all, he couldn’t bear to mention that identity, so he could only get up and snatch snail dye, and look at it carefully.

Speaking of eyebrow drawing, it was also his first time.

Qu Chenzhou’s chin was pinched by him, and when he raised his face to see that he hadn’t made a move, he thought for a moment, and asked, “Shizi knows how?”

“What can’t I do? Don’t move.” Liu Zhongming had a stubborn mouth. The mist on Zhongyuan Mountain made him lose his mind for a moment, and he could only reluctantly come back to his senses. He lightly dotted the snail dye meticulously, and talked about business: “I went to Dali Temple in the morning. Guess who I saw?”

Qu Chenzhou answered quickly. “Rong Jiuan.”

Liu Zhongming tilted his hand, and drew a line of eyebrows to the corners of his eyes.

“Ah…it hurts…”

“Sorry,” he frantically wiped his eyebrows, and asked in surprise, “How did you guess it was Rong Jiuan?

“Divination—I saw Ling He after the new year and gave him one. A close relative who is imprisoned, isn’t that talking about Rong Jiuan? Since Shizi asked this, I guess Rong Jiuan should be in Dali Temple.”

Liu Zhongming lost his thoughts on eyebrow drawing.

The seal was opened after the new year, and the case that had been put on hold was reopened. It was no surprise that Chen Fuwei’s case was involved with Fengyu. According to the information that can be inquired so far, Fengyu’s hands and feet in Jinnan Prefecture were not so clean.

And as long as Fengyu was at a disadvantage, Ren Rui will naturally have a chance to stand up. If this happens, Rong Jiuan may be in danger.

Although he didn’t have much of a friendship with Rong Jiuan, he just felt that many things should not be like this – the loyal, brave and sincere people were wronged and the flood victims leaving their homes, cheap as ants.

For some reason, he remembered on the Mid-Autumn Festival night, his father’s face hidden in the shadow was not so much depressed as sorrowful.

Suddenly, he regretted that he had blamed his father so capriciously for being indifferent.

In the past, when he was the only one in the courtyard, he didn’t think about what happened to his father. Influencing them from birth to have nothing to worry about, they were always a cut above others without anything lacking.

But after meeting Qu Chenzhou, he realized that life is truly enjoyable when there is someone by his side who he can talk everything about.

This New Year’s Eve, when he went back to the Marquis Mansion and saw his parents who had nothing to say, he couldn’t help but feel sympathy for his father.

He kept the rest of the words in his stomach, and only told Qu Chenzhou about Rong Jiuan, Ren Rui, and Fengyu in detail.

Qu Chenzhou naturally also recognized Rong Jiuan.

Due to his personality, this ambitious young man had even worse luck in his last life. Although he did not suffer from the disaster of Jinnan Prefecture, and was only one step away from Zhongshu Sheren, he encountered him.

At that time, he would not show mercy to anyone.

After Rong Jiuan died, Ling He turned into a mad dog that would never let him go.

In troubled times, everyone was crazy.

He couldn’t help but caress his hand on the front lapel again, gently stroking the things inside, and replied calmly: “Shizi, even if Ren Rui can escape and wants to save Rong Jiuan, there is no way out, it depends on his luck.”

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