The Tyrant’s Cannon Fodder Male Empress Chapter 66

Chapter 66

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Faced with the chubby cub’s seeking gaze for approval, Xue Yao struggled to speak, “Your Highness… is… the most…”


It was really impossible to say the word “handsome” to the chubby cub!

Although the Seventh Prince’s facial features were indeed exquisite, but…

The cheeks were really chubby!

Unable to receive a definite response from Yaoyao, the Seventh Prince squinted slowly and dangerously.

Xue Yao clenched his fist, forcing himself to flatter, “Your Highness is the most…”

The Seventh Prince nodded repeatedly, encouraging Silly Yaoyao to keep talking!

Xue Yao: “The most…”

“Seventh Brother is the most handsome!” the Sixth Prince boldly proclaimed, committing the “crime of deceiving Long Aotian” on Xue Yao’s behalf.

The Seventh Prince’s chubby face brightened up, immediately turning to look at Sixth Brother with approval.

Xue Yao breathed a sigh of relief.

“Don’t tease!” The Fifth Prince chuckled. “Though Seventh Brother is good-looking, but…”

Both the Sixth Prince and Xue Yao nervously glanced at the Fifth Prince.

They gave him a warning look as if to say, “Don’t shatter the chubby cub’s confidence!”

“But he’s also my most handsome brother…” The Fifth Prince reluctantly compromised.

The atmosphere between the brothers returned to warmth and harmony, and the palace maids served fresh tea snacks.

Seeing that it was almost time for martial arts practice, Xue Yao noticed that the Crown Prince hadn’t returned yet. He got up and went outside the reception hall, casually asking a young eunuch by the door, “When does the Crown Prince usually return to his sleeping quarters at this time of day?”

The young eunuch replied, “Most of the time, it’s around this hour. Occasionally, when official matters delay him, he won’t return to his quarters for meals.”

Xue Yao wanted to ask where the Crown Prince had gone for his business, but then thought that the Crown Prince was probably in the Yangxin Hall discussing matters with the Emperor. Asking wouldn’t bring him back, so he let it go.

Just as he turned to walk back to the reception hall, a timid eunuch suddenly darted out from around the corner, colliding with Xue Yao.

“Aiyo! This lowly servant is at fault!” The eunuch repeatedly lowered his head in apology.

“It’s alright,” Xue Yao adjusted his attire, not too concerned, and reminded the eunuch, “The princes are all in the reception hall. Walk a bit more slowly, and be careful not to bump into them.”

The eunuch bowed and acknowledged.

Xue Yao waved it off and walked back to the reception hall.

As he entered, he saw the Seventh Prince handing a teacup to a palace maid.

The palace maid looked puzzled, taking the Seventh Prince’s teacup but not daring to ask what the young master wanted.

Xue Yao hurried over, took the teacup from the palace maid, and turned to comfort the chubby cub, “There’s no sweet milk in the Crown Prince’s hall. If His Highness doesn’t like bitter tea, how about a bowl of snow pear soup?”

The Seventh Prince nodded.

Xue Yao turned to instruct the palace maid to prepare the sweet soup.

This wasn’t Qingqiong Hall, hence as the Seventh Prince’s attendant, ordering other palace maids required a customary tip. After instructing the palace maid, Xue Yao reached into his pocket to find his purse.

It was only when he reached inside that Xue Yao realized his pocket was empty.

“Huh?” Xue Yao, looking perplexed, rummaged through his other pocket, but found nothing.

Odd, he usually carried some silver and coins on him for convenience within the palace. There was no reason to forget today.

Could it have been lost?

Xue Yao felt somewhat annoyed. His purse not only held spare change but also a twenty-tael silver note.

“A’Yao?” The Sixth Prince noticed Xue Yao’s concern. “What are you looking for? I can give it to you.”

“No, no,” Xue Yao muttered, clearly frustrated. “It seems like I’ve misplaced my purse. Ah, I’m so absent-minded. It was there just a moment ago…”

As he spoke, Xue Yao suddenly remembered the eunuch who had bumped into him. Upon closer thought, during the collision, his right sleeve had been lightly tugged.

He hadn’t paid much attention at the time, but now he realized that the eunuch had probably swiped his purse!

In the Crown Prince’s hall, of all places, how could a young eunuch dare to pilfer?

Xue Yao furrowed his brow, thinking that the eunuch most likely assumed he, as a reader-in-waiting, wouldn’t dare to confront the Crown Prince over a small purse.

Moreover, this was the Crown Prince’s territory, and readers-in-waiting of other princes wouldn’t dare to investigate such a trivial matter. In case they couldn’t find any evidence, wrongly accusing a servant in the Crown Prince’s quarters could lead to serious trouble. Most readers-in-waiting indeed wouldn’t dare to pursue it.

But Xue Yao wasn’t just any reader-in-waiting. He was the future guardian of Long Aotian.

If twenty tael of silver were lost, so be it. He couldn’t allow a potential threat to remain near the Crown Prince, no matter how minor it seemed. He absolutely couldn’t let it slide!

Xue Yao’s expression darkened. He bade the princes farewell and exited the reception hall, heading toward the young eunuch at the door to inquire.

“Did you see where the eunuch who bumped into me earlier went?”

The princes, curious about Xue Yao’s intentions, followed him outside to see what he was up to.

The eunuch at the door, seeing the princes had gathered around, became visibly nervous, his forehead breaking into a sweat. He replied in a trembling voice, “This servant just lowered his head respectfully to see escort you back, and did not see anyone bumping into you!”

“What’s going on?” The Fifth Prince, hearing that someone had bumped into Xue Yao, thought he might have been mistreated by an inconsiderate attendant earlier and promptly approached. “Who dared to mistreat you?”

Xue Yao took a step forward and quietly recounted the events to the Fifth Prince.

“What!” The Fifth Prince’s face registered shock. “Who has the guts to do this? In Eldest Brother’s hall!”

The loud exclamation sent shivers through the surrounding palace maids and eunuchs, with a few nearly dropping to their knees.

“Stealing?” The Sixth Prince stepped forward in surprise. “Who is it? A’Yao, don’t be afraid. Point them out. Even if Eldest Brother is here, we won’t tolerate such behavior.”

When the eunuch had bumped into him earlier, he had been pleading with his head bowed. Xue Yao had only seen the standard black veil three-hilled hat that all eunuchs wore. He hadn’t seen the person’s face at all.

“I didn’t get a good look at his face either,” Xue Yao said, looking frustrated.

The Fifth Prince acted decisively and ordered the two eunuchs standing by the side courtyard gate, “Close the gate! Temporarily restrict the entry and exit of palace staff into the side courtyard!”

“Yes!” The two eunuchs promptly pushed the gate closed.

“Big Brother,” suddenly the Seventh Prince spoke up from the rear.

The Fifth Prince turned to look at his youngest brother. “What is it?”

The Seventh Prince raised his hand and pointed to the east wall of the side courtyard.

The Fifth Prince followed the direction of his gesture and was astonished to spot a person dressed as a eunuch silently scaling the high eastern wall!

“Stop!” The Fifth Prince quickly closed the gap, rushing to the base of the wall, but he realized that the wall was too high to leap over.

Even for the dignity of a prince, he couldn’t allow a little eunuch to outjump him!

The Fifth Prince quickly surveyed his surroundings, then climbed onto a nearby artificial hill, using it as leverage to leap onto the wall.


“Big Brother!”

“Big Brother!”

Amidst the exclamations of the Sixth and Seventh Princes, the Fifth Prince, who had failed to jump the wall and tumbled from the artificial hill, got up, brushed himself off, and casually waved his hand, “I’m fine!”

The Sixth Prince rushed to his side and supported the Fifth Prince. “You’re bleeding from the nose! Did you hurt your nose?”

The Fifth Prince hastily wiped away the nosebleed with his sleeve and feigned indifference. “Ate too much mutton last night, got a bit heated.”

The Seventh Prince, with a stoic expression, watched the Fifth Prince’s nosebleed and advised, “Send for the palace physician, Big Brother.”

“No need!” The Fifth Prince turned to leave the embarrassing scene. “Quick, go after them. Don’t let that thief escape!”

The Seventh Prince raised his hand to stop his brother and calmly reminded, “There are about ten duty eunuchs in total, and they have their time cards. He won’t get away.”

“Why didn’t you say so earlier!” The Fifth Prince couldn’t hide his frustration.

As the Seventh Prince had mentioned, the head eunuch had gathered all the eunuchs on duty that morning and lined them up in the side courtyard for the princes to search and apprehend the thief.

The Sixth Prince whispered to Xue Yao, “Can you recognize the thief? The stolen goods are likely already moved by the thief.”

Xue Yao stared at the row of eunuchs back and forth, but he couldn’t recognize their faces. He had to listen to their voices one by one.

However, the thief was quite cunning. When he had begged for mercy from Xue Yao, he might have intentionally altered his voice. Over a dozen eunuchs took turns speaking the words of plea as ordered. Surprisingly, their voices all sounded different, making it impossible to identify a similar tone.

Xue Yao grew increasingly frustrated.

The fact that such a crafty thief had infiltrated the Crown Prince’s quarters was maddening. He not only stole his silver but also caused the Fifth Prince to fall. If they couldn’t find the culprit, it would be infuriating!

The head eunuch approached the Fifth Prince and whispered, “I’ve searched their bodies one by one, but we didn’t find the young master’s leather purse as he mentioned.”

The Fifth Prince, with cotton stuffed in his nostrils to stop the bleeding, persisted and went behind the line of eunuchs, attempting to recognize the wall-climbing thief from behind.

However, the eunuchs’ uniform clothing made it difficult to discern their body shapes from behind.

“How infuriating!” Even the Sixth Prince couldn’t tolerate the injustice and sternly said to the row of eunuchs, “Daring to steal in Eldest Brother’s quarters! Don’t think you can get away with it this time. We’ll keep an eye on the stolen goods. If you have the guts, come and take them. We’re not afraid of exposing your crime!”

In reality, this was meant to intimidate the little thief, making him hesitate to retrieve the hidden stolen goods, thus emptying his effort like fetching water with a bamboo basket. It was also a way to vent their frustration for Xue Yao and the Fifth Prince.

However, lacking evidence, the Sixth Prince could only wave his hand to disband the eunuchs.

“Hold on.” The Seventh Prince handed the bowl of snow pear soup to a palace maid, then, with a serious expression, walked up to the group of eunuchs. “Failing to catch the thief is not the end of it. At the count of three, all of you will run. But you’re not allowed to leave this courtyard. Whoever your grandpa catches will take the blame.”

The eunuchs turned pale as ghosts!

This was completely unreasonable!

“Seventh Brother…” The Sixth Prince attempted to stop his younger brother from throwing a tantrum, but the Seventh Prince had already started counting.

“One, two, three.”

As the Seventh Prince finished counting, the eunuchs scattered in fear, rushing to the four corners of the courtyard!

In an instant, the Seventh Prince closed his eyes, focusing his attention on sensing the changes in the air around him.

Time seemed to slow down.

The footsteps of the fleeing eunuchs gradually became more organized and rhythmic.

The sounds of their feet hitting the ground varied in intensity.

“Where are you trying to hide? Get out!” The eunuchs huddled in the corners, desperately trying to retreat, none of them willing to stand in the front. They all had pale, frightened faces, staring at the Seventh Prince in the center of the courtyard without moving a muscle.

Although the Fifth Prince also wished to catch the thief and let out his frustration, he couldn’t be as aggressive and unreasonable as the Third Prince.

Without evidence, how could they just arrest people to vent their anger? He could only walk over to advise his youngest brother, “Old Seventh, don’t scare them like this, this time…”

“It’s him,” the Seventh Prince interrupted the Fifth Prince, raising his hand and pointing to the southwest corner.

The three eunuchs huddled in the southwest corner immediately scattered to the sides, trying to avoid the Seventh Prince’s pointed direction!

The Seventh Prince didn’t lose his target just because the three of them had spread out. He kept his fingertip raised and followed one of the eunuchs as he moved.

The Sixth Prince glanced at the eunuch who had been singled out and turned to his younger brother. “How did you know it was him?”

Xue Yao also eagerly awaited an explanation.

“Because he’s the only one who knows lightness technique.” The Seventh Prince looked up at his brother. “Even better than the first-rank guards in the Seventh Defense Formation.”

The astonished Fifth Prince immediately turned to look at the eunuch who had been identified.

Xue Yao’s heart skipped a beat.

In the novel, the Fifth Prince would slip away to a secret location every night before leading troops into battle to learn martial arts from a mysterious individual.

Although the novel didn’t reveal the name of this mysterious person, the description indicated that this person had always disguised himself as a eunuch from the Directorate of Palace Maintenance.

In the subsequent chapters, this mysterious person also revealed the Sword Saint’s place of seclusion to the Seventh Prince, which could be considered a crucial guiding factor for Long Aotian to become his disciple.

And now, a sneaky little eunuch, who had just silently scaled a wall over ten feet high, was identified by the chubby cub as having superior lightness skills compared to the palace’s elite…

Could this eunuch be that mysterious person?

Xue Yao found it nearly impossible to believe!

Why would a mysterious martial arts master be a shameless thief?

At this moment, being pointed out by three princes in person, even if he wasn’t beaten to death, his relationship with the three princes would be shattered.

How would he continue to guide the Fifth Prince in martial arts in the future?

How would he help Long Aotian find the Sword Saint’s location?

“Lightness skills better than a first-rank imperial guard?” The Fifth Prince was utterly perplexed, staring at the eunuch pointed out by his youngest brother. “You! Come here!”

The eunuch was of average height, with an ordinary appearance and slightly rougher skin than the other eunuchs. He might have been flushed from the shock.

“Your Highness,” Xue Yao immediately stepped forward, “Could you allow me to ask him a few questions privately, to avoid any wrongful accusations?”

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