Chapter 658: Suspicion
In another courtyard of the Jiang Residence, Jiang Yuzhi was currently applying medicine on her face out of boredom. She sat in front of her room’s bronze mirror, carefully examining her face.
Thanks to the cold skin cream her brother had given her, the scars on her face had pretty much completely faded over time, which was a relief to her. Her mood thus became much better than before.
“Where’s my brother?” she asked while picking an exquisite accessory from her jewelry box.
Her handmaiden immediately replied, “The Eldest Young Master has something important to attend to today. He ordered people to seal off Wutong Garden early this morning.”
“Wutong Garden? Isn’t it inhabited and remote? What’s he doing there?”
“I-I have no idea either.”
Jiang Yuzhi nodded in satisfaction at her reflection before standing up and walking toward the door. “I’m going to see my brother.”
Her servant was shocked to hear that. “Right now, Fourth Missy?”
“Yes, I’ve been grounded long enough! I didn’t even get to see the clan competition! It’s about time my brother returns my freedom to me!”
She was bored to tears staying at home all day long. On top of that, despite her brother’s promise to investigate Chu Liuyue’s relationship with Hundred Herbs Building, there had been little progress thus far. Hence, she wanted to enter the palace to have a little chat with the Third Princess.
She ignored her servant’s dissuasion and left the room, leaving the latter with no choice but to follow her.
The servant wanted to stop her, but upon recalling that Jiang Yuzhi’s temper was getting increasingly foul and that the latter had punished a number of servants, she decided to keep quiet instead.
After walking some distance, Jiang Yuzhi saw a pageboy running over in a hurry.
The pageboy hurriedly greeted her when he saw her. “Greetings, Fourth Missy!”
She was unhappy to see him in such a flustered manner. “What’s going on? Why are you so flustered?”
“The Third Princess is here, Fourth Missy!”
Jiang Yuzhi was surprised to hear that. “For real?”
“I wouldn’t dare to lie about this. The Third Princess is currently in the guest hall, but both the master and madam aren’t at home today. Plus, the Third Princess is specifically here to see the Eldest Young Master. That’s why I’m in a rush to get the Eldest Young Master.”
What a coincidence. I was just about to enter the palace to look for the Third Princess, but she came instead. “Run along then. I’ll go accompany the Third Princess in the meantime.”
The pageboy knew that the two ladies had always been on good terms, so he thought there was nothing wrong with her order. He said in delight, “I’ll have to trouble you then, Fourth Missy! I’ll go fetch the Eldest Young Master now!”
The pageboy ran off after saying that, while Jiang Yuzhi headed for the guest hall.
Jiang Residence, guest hall.
Jiang Yuzhi spotted Shangguan Wan sitting in the guest hall right away, and a bright smile bloomed on her face as she walked up to the other. “Why didn’t you inform us before coming, Third Princess?”
A hint of disappointment showed in Shangguan Wan’s eyes when she realized that it was Jiang Yuzhi and not Jiang Yucheng. It disappeared very quickly though as she smiled. “I decided to come on a moment’s notice.”
“Just as well. I have something to discuss with you!” Jiang Yuzhi took a seat next to Shangguan Wan.
“Oh? What is it regarding?”
Jiang Yuzhi carefully looked around her surroundings—her action made Shangguan Wan focus on her a little more. After making sure that nobody was eavesdropping on their conversation, she whispered, “Have you met Chu Liuyue, Third Princess?”
“Of course.” Shangguan Wan nodded. I even met her today.
Clutching her sleeves, Jiang Yuzhi continued throwing questions at the other. “Don’t you think that… Chu Liuyue resembles someone a lot?”
The smile on Shangguan Wan’s face faded. “What are you trying to say, Yuzhi?”
Inside Wutong Garden’s room.
Xia Mu hesitated for a moment but didn’t move.
Jiang Yucheng glanced at the skinny man standing in front of him with a frown. The look in his eyes carried authority and a hint of warning that showed he wouldn’t spare anyone who didn’t do as told.
Thus, Xia Mu slowly removed the iron mask and revealed his severely burned face to Jiang Yucheng. The scars spanning across his face made it look contorted and horrendous.
I recall it now—he was burned before… With looks like that, it’s no wonder he has to wear a mask. Jiang Yucheng’s frown deepened as he waved his hand in disgust. “Put it back on!”
Xia Mu—who seemingly couldn’t see the disgust on Jiang Yucheng’s face—obediently put his mask back on. His action was slow and stiff, and he exuded a depressing aura. The only thing that seemed alive about him was his sparkling black eyes.
“I heard from Qi Dahe that the injury on his arm was caused by a beast while coming over earlier. Is that true?”
Xia Mu nodded.
Jiang Yucheng glanced at him and asked, “Is it also true that you lost the ability to speak because you were poisoned?”
Xia Mu nodded once more. His head was hanging low slightly, so Jiang Yucheng couldn’t see his expression clearly.
“…I don’t remember it clearly. How did you get poisoned in the first place?” His voice became harsher. “Was it caused by Messed Yuan Gravel?”
Xia Mu appeared somewhat shocked as he shook his head and waved his hands frantically, indicating that it wasn’t caused by Messed Yuan Gravel.
“Why are you so nervous? It’s just a casual question.” He knew very well that Messed Yuan Gravel didn’t cause people to become dumb, but that wasn’t what he was looking for in the first place.
He asked a few more questions—which Xia Mu answered with a nod or a shake of his head—and found it meaningless to continue interrogating Xia Mu. He lazily leaned back against the chair’s backrest. “You may leave.”
Xia Mu bowed to him before turning around to leave the room.
But just as he reached the door, Jiang Yucheng suddenly remembered something and said, “Wait!”
Xia Mu stood still and looked back at him.
Jiang Yucheng’s eyes were fixed on Xia Mu as he enunciated, “I remember that you were a beginner stage-six warrior a year ago. Why did your cultivation… drop to advanced stage-four?!”
The air in the room seemed to have frozen.