PROOFREAD BY AFREANA
Priestess Jing Yuan returned to Mount Xiu with the morning light. She did not enter through the gate but walked around the Jing Xin Temple. In the back courtyard, she saw Mr. Xie standing under the date tree next to the vegetable garden while smiling.
“Master has returned.”
Jing Yuan said coldly, “It’s done. Pay the money.”
Mr. Xie said, “Master has worked hard, and I have also waited here for a night. You should at least be polite to me before mentioning the money.”
“You’ll give more money after a few words of courtesy?”
Mr. Xie choked.
“I don’t want it even if you give me more.”
Mr. Xie couldn’t keep his smile any longer.
“After I finished my business, I had to wait until the guards retreated and defenses were loosened. I could only come out in the middle of the night when the guards of the Governor’s Mansion become lax. The city’s gates open at dawn, so that’s about time I can return to this place, and only a fool would wait here for the whole night.” Priestess Jing Yuan coldly continued.
Mr. Xie pursed the corners of his lips due to mockery and kindly said, “That’s why I say that Master doesn’t know how to be polite.”
“It’s just hypocrisy. What’s the point of pretending to be polite.”
Fine, then he would not be polite. Mr. Xie coldly lowered his face and said, “Why did Huo Mingshan commit suicide?”
“The main thing is that he died.”
“Not good. It’s not the outcome I wanted.”
“What result did you want? You asked me to kill him, and I did. If it was not a suicidal situation, the Governor would have sensed there were assassins. I’m not comfortable with that. Who knows if there was someone in there who knew about the underlying details of our arrangement, and who would then clamor that there must be assassins hiding inside, wanting to search the courtyard and find out where I’m hiding. Then wouldn’t I have to perish as well?” Priestess Jing Yuan stared at Mr. Xie, “Does this result sound better?”
“Of course not.” Mr. Xie secretly clenched his fists, embarrassed at being poked.
“Then where are you dissatisfied?”
Mr. Xie suddenly smiled and said, “It’s not that I’m dissatisfied. It’s just that I’m slightly surprised. I thought Huo Mingshan’s murder by an assassin would give rise to a big fuss, causing Yao Kun and the others to have their hands full. Our South Qin would have a good result then. Now that it’s a suicide, it’s harder to spin.”
Priestess Jing Yuan laughed coldly, “There is nothing to worry about. You are used to the appearance of a righteous man, and you think you are a gentleman. Plotting dirty things is something you guys should be very good at. Is it that just because Great Xiao said it was suicide, then he indeed committed suicide? Even if he did, why did he kill himself? If Great Xiao didn’t force him, why would he do it? If one wants to accuse someone, one won’t have to worry about finding a crime. Only a fool will feel bad to talk.”
Mr. Xie pretended not to understand this ridicule and unable to think of anything else to accuse her with, only said, “You can confirm that you didn’t leave any effects, right?”
“I made no mistakes here. There was a suicide note, a body, and a murder weapon, and everything is clear. One cannot pick a problem. If there is a problem, it’s someone else’s problem. You should find someone else to ask.” Her tone showed confidence that Mr. Xie still had underlings placed in the Governor’s mansion. Mr. Xie didn’t refute, took out his money pouch, and threw it to Priestess Jing Yuan, “That’s good, take it.”
Priestess Jing Yuan took and weighed it. Without checking inside, she turned around and unlocked the backyard door to go in. She pushed the door, glanced at the backyard, and called Mr. Xie, “Wait.”
Mr. Xie was about to leave, but stopped at the word.
Priestess Jing Yuan said, “You entered my temple.”
Mr. Xie blinked and said innocently, “Although you don’t believe me, I did wait all night. The spring was cold and dewy in the middle of the night, so I went in to take shelter.”
“I said that I don’t like other people’s disturbances. If you can’t abide by it, there will be no more dealings.”
Mr. Xie spread his hands, “Do you want to steer clear of us just because of the small matter of me borrowing a place to take shelter from the cold, Master?”
“Yes.” Without beating around the bush, Priestess Jing Yuan asked, “You don’t feel at ease and intend to kill me to silence me?”
Mr. Xie laughed, “Master, you must be joking. You are someone the king respects.”
“Then tell King Hui that poking around my residence makes me unhappy. I want you all to stay away. If you’re not satisfied, then come and kill me.” After finishing her speech, Priestess Jing Yuan entered the courtyard without waiting for him to reply.
The courtyard door closed loudly, and Mr. Xie’s face sank. He stood there for a while before finally going down the mountain.
When Mr. Xie returned to his residence, someone was already waiting inside. Seeing him return, he asked, “How was it?”
Mr. Xie thought before saying, “Find me a few people to accompany me to the Jing Xin Temple tomorrow.”
The man froze, “I heard that she is the number one expert in South Qin.”
“That’s why you must find people highly skilled in martial arts.”
“That is her place, after all. I didn’t even have a chance to deal with her in the Governor’s mansion, let alone at her place. I can’t find such a high-skilled expert.”
“Of course, it’s not to fight against her. You have to be wise to deal with her. Tomorrow, I’ll go and investigate first. It’s not to make a move. Bringing someone along is just to ensure safety.”
“You are afraid that she will act ruthlessly and take action against you? If she dares to do so, could it be that she had something to do with Young Master Min’s disappearance?”
“She’s the most suspicious person at the moment. Furthermore, she’s on guard against me. When she killed Huo Mingshan, she didn’t follow my expectations.” That’s why the people he arranged didn’t come in handy. They couldn’t just come out in the middle of this suicide scene and insist that there was an assassin. Suggesting that the Governor should order a search of the courtyard in this situation would be too suspicious. This move was wonderful, just like Li Mingyu breaking his neck after falling from the horse. The mission went wrong, but you cannot pick a fault.
The man mused, ”If we can’t use this nun anymore, it’s a big loss. It’s not easy to find one as good as her.”
“She has a quirky personality and was never meant to be used. It’s better to find a way to deal with her before something goes wrong. There’s war coming up soon, and there’s still a lot of things to come afterward, so we need to confirm that this person won’t become a problem for us.”
“Okay.” The man agreed in a single breath. “I’ll go to Zhonglan tomorrow to stay for a few days and help you look at the situation in the city, and if it has calmed down, I’ll find you a place to stay. Fu’an County is some distance away, and it’s inconvenient for you to do your business.” He changed his words and added: “An Ruochen’s side, what are your plans?”