Si Tian Guan Chapter 96

Chapter 96 White Chess

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After joking and the dishes were served, Bai Shilei was driven across to sit with Fang Wuyang.

Qu Chenzhou held the jug, filled the wine for the four of them one by one, and then stood silently behind Liu Zhongming.

Although Fang Wuyang liked to be lively and frivolous, he was not anxious like Ning Wang and can’t think. What’s more, a friend’s item, if he can’t get it, then he shouldn’t think about it.

As usual, he seldom talked about his affairs with others, he only asked what was going on in the capital, and then talked about what he had seen and heard on the road.

Liu Zhongming and Bai Shiyan were fine, only Bai Shilei was angry when Ren Rui was mentioned.

“I just can’t figure it out, how can this kind of person turn things around?” 

Of the few people in the position, he was the only one who had been to Jinnan Prefecture and witnessed the misery of the flood with his own eyes.

“Those rogues have all admitted that it was Ren Rui who protected them, robbed the wealth and people, and took them to Lin County not far away to sell them. If Fengyu hadn’t snatched the person away, I would have killed this dog on the way.”

Fang Wuyang played with the jade pendant in his hand, and directly poured cold water on his head: “Where are the bandits?”

Bai Shilei was stunned: “Last year, they were escorted back to the capital together.”

“Then they were beheaded in the fall,” Bai Shiyan helped him continue: “Now the bones are all ashes, and those who are more impatient are probably already in reincarnation, so how can they go ‘confess’?”

Only then did Bai Shilei understand Fang Wuyang’s question— — This was called dead with no evidence. He opened his mouth, but couldn’t refute anything.

“Not mentioning that there are no bandits, even if there were, it’s not impossible to retract the confession.” Liu Zhongming also spoke slowly.

“I went to check the files of Dali Temple. Rong Jiuan’s head is covered with sh*t. The relief money was embezzled and the treasury was empty. The soldiers are starving, so naturally they couldn’t resist the bandits, and they didn’t have the money to build dams to control the water.”

“Rong Jiuan…” Bai Shiyan sighed, “It’s a pity.”

Liu Zhongming sneered: “You think it’s a pity for Rong Jiuan, and some people think it’s a pity for Ren Rui.”

Now the brothers of the Bai family turned their heads: “Who? What’s there to pity for Ren Rui?

 “There’s someone, I guess,” Liu Zhongming laughed a little: “If no one moved their hand  from behind the scene, how can Ren Rui turn things around?”

For many people, Ren Rui killed people like scything grass and was greedy, unable to be satisfied. However, for others, Ren Rui was a ruthless character who led the army, so whoever dredhed Ren Rui up this time, Ren Rui was his dog.

Reminded by Qu Chenzhou, he secretly paid attention to the case of Chen Fuwei, and sure enough, he saw that the fire had burned to Fengyu before he knew it.

At first, it was just a crime of rape, at best he would be sent to the army and exiled. If things were manipulated secretly, putting him directly in Qi Wang’s garrison outside the city, the matter would be easily exposed.

However, the wall fell on the people and Fengyu, who was once proud and under Qi Wang, offended some people.

Someone soon secretly reported that when Fengyu went to Luo City to suppress the bandits last year, to gain achievements and success, he framed many civilians as being bandits, and included them in the amount of rewards.

What’s more, it was said that witnesses from a long time ago have been dug up, saying that Fengyu killed innocent people indiscriminately and faked military exploits, not just once or twice.

Although these rumors were still just hearsay, and none of them have been brought to light, Liu Zhongming knew that if it was really brought out, it will not only be Fengyu’s military exploits that will be criticized, but Qi Wang’s.

If Qi Wang was smart, he would know how to suppress the rumors, if he was stupid, he would only consider abandoning his pawn to save the carriage after these rumors run rampant.

When he told Qu Chenzhou about this, Qu Chenzhou had no choice but to say – Qi Wang, an idiot, can only be manipulated if without Jiang Xingzhi giving ideas, and Fengyu was unlucky to follow such a master.

Even Jiang Xingzhi can only give up and won’t be able to keep Fengyu this time either.

Qi Wang only thinks that he had many elite soldiers and generals under him, but he doesn’t know that loyalty is hard to find, and he can’t just look at the position above him.

“The imperial concubine is not pregnant yet, so the three-legged power cannot be broken.” On this point, the two of them had the same opinion: “Let’s help the idiot a little bit.” 

But before that… the inside must be settled and secured first.

Liu Zhongming shook the teacup and poured the residual tea into the saucer beside him. Qu Chenzhou wanted to refill it, but he raised his hand to block it.

“Shilei,” he greeted the complaining little guy, “Chenzhou had been serving all this time, and he hasn’t eaten yet, so you take him out to have something to eat.”

Before Bai Shilei could react for a while, he was kicked under the table by his brother. It was only then he woke up like a dream that he realized that he was going to send himself out.

“Oh, okay!” 

The door was gently closed. Fang Wuyang raised his hand to close the window, and turned his head: “You two officials, is there still something of my business here?”

“It’s not a big deal, just listen,” Liu Zhongming downplayed it. This time he poured tea for the two of them himself, and then he said seriously: “Both of you are my best friends, so I won’t keep you in suspense. Now that the court is chaotic and the people are in poverty, the three Wang Ye’s, I don’t think highly of them.”

Bai Shiyan raised his eyebrows.

What Zhongming wanted to do had already been made clear when Qu Chenzhou’s identity was revealed last year but he kept his mouth shut and never mentioned it to anyone.

At this time, Zhongming said it in a serious manner, obviously not for him.

There were some tricks that he couldn’t figure out, but whatever Zhongming did, he would follow, so he just nodded politely and didn’t speak.

Fang Wuyang fumbled with the teacup for a moment, then smiled sarcastically: “Zhongming, it’s not that I don’t have the intent, but I don’t understand all the nonsense you guys are stirring up, so I don’t want to ruin your big plans.”

 In response to his answer, Liu Zhongming was obviously very disappointed, and forced a smile: “Wuyang, I know you are laughing at me in your heart that I am overestimating myself, a mantis trying to stop a carriage.”

“No!” Fang Wuyang immediately denied.

“I know my abilities are limited.” Liu Zhongming sighed and continued on his own.

“Last year, the flood gave me this idea. Recently, I went through the files in Dali Temple and learned about Rong Tanhua* and Ren Rui, so I made up my mind. You and Shiyan are the two people I trust the most, so I will be honest with you.”

* candidate who came third in the Han-lin examination

“I know this matter is important, so I will naturally consider it carefully and try my best not to put anyone in danger, but after all, every step in the future will be on thin ice, if you really don’t want to, I won’t force it, I just hope you won’t tell others.”

Bai Shiyan immediately replied: “Zhongming, no matter what you do, I will help you.”

Fang Wuyang hesitated for a moment, then nodded slowly: “I only have a few incompetent people under my command. If you don’t mind, I will do my best.”

Liu Zhongming finally felt relieved. He first drank a cup of tea with the two of them, and then touched a few chess pieces from the chess box beside him.

“This is Ning Wang, this is Huai Wang, and this is Qi Wang.” He pushed away the dishes, arranged three black chess pieces on the table one by one, then finally placed a white chess piece: “This is His Seventh Highness.”

Wuyang looked at the white chess piece calmly, and asked: “Why is there him?”

Liu Zhongming explained seriously: “His Seventh Royal Highness is an adult, intelligent and gentle, the emperor had planned to crown him a king title before. If he is crowned king, there will be another enemy.”

He tapped the white chess piece.

“The three Wang Ye’s are currently powerful in the court, so my plan is to pick the one to target first.”

Fang Wuyang’s eyes were fixed on the white chess.

Bai Shiyan was a little hesitant: “Zhongming, Jingchen played with us the most since he was a child, and Concubine Xian and Qingru are also on good terms. Would it be not so good to do something to him?”

“Shiyan, the road to becoming the heir is dangerous, so don’t be naive.” Liu Zhongming taught him with a serious face.

Bai Shiyan wisely stopped talking.

“It just happened that there is the matter about Ren Rui recently. If Ren Rui turns around, it would chill the hearts of many people. So I thought,” Liu Zhongming took another black piece and approached the white piece: “We can’t let Ren Rui get away, so we can take this opportunity to pull down Jingchen and Ren Rui…”

“Zhongming,” Fang Wuyang suddenly turned the chopsticks in his hands, picked up the black piece, raised his eyes indifferently and asked, “Why did you suddenly make such a big decision? Who gave you this courage?”

“What do you mean?” Liu Zhongming didn’t understand.

“Is it the slave who can tell fortunes?” 

The investigation in Changshui Town was done by Fang Wuyang.  At that time, Liu Zhongming didn’t expect that there would be a fortune teller who could see everything, thus Wuyang knew about it earlier than Bai Shiyan.

Liu Zhongming hesitated for a moment, then soon realized that this hesitation was acquiescence, and shook his head quickly: “No!”

Fang Wuyang picked up the white piece, put it in front of the tip of his nose, looked at it for a moment, then smiled brightly.

“Thinking about it now, it’s quite interesting. It just so happens that I haven’t thought about what I’m going to do in the future, so I’ll play with you guys—don’t forget to let me know if there’s anything going on!”

“Fang Wuyang, he…” Qu Chenzhou staggered into the carriage, saw Liu Zhongming lying weakly in a slump, and carefully chose his words: “Hearing you say that, he didn’t beat you?

“He didn’t, but I don’t know if he wanted to.” Liu Zhongming looked up at the roof of the carriage, and let out a long sigh: “Don’t let me do such a thing next time, I’m about to puke from my own f*cking stupidity.”

“Sorry, besides Shizi, no one else can do it.” Qu Chenzhou couldn’t help laughing: “When you came out just now and I saw General Bai’s appearance, I guessed that Shizi did well.”

“It’s not very good…” Liu Zhongming tilted his head. He glanced at him and said coolly: “You didn’t see Fang Wuyang’s expression at that time, it basically said—look, there is a fool here who wants to take over as heir.”

Qu Chenzhou knew that he was angry and he shouldn’t laugh too much, he can only pretend to look at the scenery outside.

Seeing his shrugging shoulders with a smile, Liu Zhongming couldn’t help but get angry.

Bai Shiyan wasn’t an object, and when he was about to leave, he deliberately pulled him to ask him quietly if he had quarreled with Little Brother Qu.

He also said that he only looked drunk when he was arguing with Little Brother Qu.

The more he thought about it, the angrier he became, and he shouted: “Don’t laugh!”

Qu Chenzhou stopped laughing: “Shizi…are you angry?

“No, this Shizi is very good,” Liu Zhongming smiled and revealed the sharp tip of his teeth: “I’m happy.”

Qu Chenzhou coughed, and looked around: “I just made a divination for Fang Wuyang.”

Liu Zhongming turned his face as expected.

“He had had a bloody disaster recently.”

Liu Zhongming turned his face away again, ignoring such nonsense, then fondled for a moment with one hand in the drawer under the soft couch, and threw a pouch over.

“Recently, I took the time to find Jingchen. If Fang Wuyang was really nervous, Jingchen will definitely come to me. Then I will delay him for a while to buy you some time.”

At his gesture, Qu Chenzhou took out a booklet from his brocade bag, sandwiched between two seals, on the booklet were written about ten or so passwords.

“Since what happened with Jiang Xingzhi last year, I have mapped out Fang Wuyang’s eight secret halls in the capital. You go to these shops to transfer people. They know the seal and know what to do. You should follow to take a look.”

Qu Chenzhou felt that the things in his hand were a bit heavy.

“Shizi is not afraid of me…doing evil things in the dark?”

“Dare to do evil things, then I’ll take your skin off.” Liu Zhongming angrily asked him not to interrupt: “Didn’t you go around thinking about it in a roundabout way before, wanting to use my people? Why are you so timid?”

“But…Fang Wuyang is also involved with General Bai, and may also be related to Lord Marquis…”

“When I catch him, I’ll go find my father and uncle, don’t worry about it.”

“Shizi, actually their target is me, I can…”

“No! Don’t take risks!” Liu Zhongming had turned over and sat down but got up again: “You obediently go to the shop to transfer the people!”

Qu Chenzhou’s throat was blocked, he looked down at the seal in his hand, and after a while he said in a hoarse voice: “But Shizi still doesn’t know who I am …”

Liu Zhongming leaned forward and grabbed him into his arms with one hand.

“You are Shizi’s… domesticated little fox.”

Qu Chenzhou was stunned for a moment. As if he was irritated by these words, he lost his temper for no reason, threw the brocade bag on the soft couch with a flick of his hand, pushed Liu Zhongming away and stepped down the carriage.

He left three words: “Stupid to death.”

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