The entire process of development.

Ji Yue was slightly surprised, “You knew?”

As soon as Wei Lian saw Ji Yue’s reaction, he knew that the older man also knew who the real murderer was. 

The shadow guards around the Qin Emperor were not exactly just for show, and Ji Yue himself was no fool. There was no way that he could not investigate the real culprit who killed Princess Chonghua.

When the female medical officer handed the burned letter in the incense burner to Wei Lian, he considered the interests for all the parties involved in the incident. 

Princess Chonghua was poisoned, and the one with the biggest reaction was Prince Huyan Kemu of the Chen Empire. He had been hostile to Wei Lian and had nothing but admiration for Princess Chonghua, this, anyone could see. When the Princess died, that admiration was the reason that Huyan Kemu fought for her justice, questioning Wei Lian, who was from the Chu Empire, so he could make the Chu Empire be held responsible. 

Later, it was revealed that the poison used on Princess Chonghua was chi yan, which directly dragged the Liang Empire into the mess. The Liang Empire and the Chen Empire were feuding. Huyan Kemu quickly shifted his target and aimed his fault-findings towards the Liang Empire, causing the situation to become more chaotic. 

The real murderer had Huyan Kemu’s mentality down to a T, making him stomp in anger very impressively. Later, when the horse milk wine incident came out, it redirected the murderer's name to Huyan Kemu. It could be said that after many twists and turns, this was the final verdict.

Because the Liang and Chu Empires were suspected before, they would not raise an objection to whether the real murderer was Huyan Kemu. It was important to protect themselves by getting rid of the suspicion placed on them. Whether the Chen Empire was innocent or not had nothing to do with them. 

The Chen Empire would only eat this suffering.

But the real murderer also knew that such a ploy could shut the Liang and Chu Empires up, but might not convince the Qin Emperor. He was afraid that the Qin Emperor would secretly continue to track down the real killer, so he left another piece. 

—A letter from Yollıg Dan. 

If the complete letter was found in Ningyue Tower, it would have been obvious that it was planted. Those who could arrange such a series of tricks would not be so careless. But it was a remnant of a letter with only a few words left, which could make anyone fill in the blanks and determine that this was the real murderer. 

Princess Chonghua lost her innocence, and Yollıg Dan just happened to disappear on the same day. At noon, he returned back to Yulong Pavilion to bathe and change clothes, easily pinpointing him as the real killer. 

Yollıg Dan once fought with Huyan Kemu for Myrna in the Royal Palace, which was enough to show that beauty could cloud his judgement. It was absolutely possible for Yollıg Dan to tarnish Princess Chonghua.

Then, out of every empire, Chu, Lu, Liang, and Chen Empires were all dragged into this large whirlpool. The loss of this Princess was even more tragic for the Yan Empire, and as the host, the Qin Empire must also give a statement for this. Careless handling could offend everyone. 

As soon as the plan was play, it accounted for everyone in the game. 

There was only one, who stayed out of the matter from beginning to end, innocently watching the fires burning across the river隔岸觀火 To delay entering the fray until all others have been exhausted by fighting amongst themselves.

The fisherman who watched the sandpiper and clam fight together and reaped the benefits. 

The low-key and rarely seen crown prince of the Xia Empire, Wen Heng. 

Of course, this should be based on evidence. Although the most flawless was often the most suspicious, one could not poison the well for no reason. 

Wei Lian suspected that Wen Heng was not groundless.

In any case, chi yan in horse milk wine could be proved to be slander afterwards. Yang Yang was fine after taking a sip out of the wine , which meant that the chi yan in the horse milk wine was added after the death of Princess Chonghua in order to frame the Chen Empire. 

During Princess Chonghua’s death, almost everyone gathered in the Ningyue Tower, except for ones that did not want to get involved and chose to leave. 

It was none other than Wen Heng, the Xia Empire’s crown prince. 

While everyone was in the Ningyue Tower, Wen Heng was the only one who had time to go to the imperial kitchen and poison the horse milk wine. 

There was also the possibility that this dignified crown prince may not need to do the task himself. But after some thought, this task was extremely dangerous. Once it was found, the Xia Empire was absolutely helpless against the wrath of the Qin Empire. If Wei Lian was in his shoes, he would not trust others to handle this. 

More interestingly, it was said that Heng Taizi did not know martial arts, instead, had deep attainments in poetry, calligraphy and painting. During their earlier meeting, Wei Lian noticed that there was a thin callus in the hollow of Wen Heng’s palm, one that could only be acquired from practising martial arts. Wen Heng’s steps were also light, and he had a steady way of breathing that was hard to cover. 

Both of them were experts in pretending to be weak, there was no way Wei Lian would miss a peer. 

The other party did not act badly, it was just that Wei Lian’s martial arts were higher, so he could detect the clues. 

However, this was only the last accidental evidence. Wei Lian found many suspicious points before that. 

After the letter incident, Yollıg Dan became the biggest suspect. 

Since he bathed and changed clothes, Wei Lian sent someone to inquire about the laundry house and learned that Yulong Pavilion did not send anything there. 

Where were the dirty clothes? Why wasn’t it sent to the laundry house? Something too shameful to be seen? 

Wei Lian traced the clues and went to secretly investigate the palace workers serving the Yulong Pavilion. Yollıg Dan might be able to ensure there was nothing that traced back to him, but he could not guarantee that the palace workers around him would also do the same. In the Qin Empire, he could not afford to silence anyone at will. 

Soon, Wei Lian learned from a trembling palace maid that when Yollıg Dan came back, he was dishevelled and looked terrified. He threw his clothes to her, ordered her to burn them and threatened her not to speak of this to anyone. 

Spotting signs on the clothes, the young palace maid wondered which palace maid Yollıg Dan slept with; she would never have thought it had something to do with Princess Chonghua. But she did not burn the clothes. Instead, seeing that the clothes were precious, she selfishly planned to wash the clothes and sell it for some money. 

Before she did anything, Wei Lian arrived and she immediately told the truth out of fear. 

Wei Lian ordered her to present the clothes, and found traces of yearning incense蝕骨香 The more accurate translate would be invading deep into the bone. on the clothes. 

Yearning incense is a powerful aphrodisiac. 

According to the palace maid, Yollıg Dan came back looking terrified. If he really was intimate with an ordinary palace maid, Wei Lian reckon the other’s face would have been even more terrified. 

Obviously, he did defile Princess Chonghua, but not of his own free will. A prince would not be so antsy to this degree, it was like throwing his life away. 

From the yearning incense on the clothes, it could be concluded that Yollıg Dan also fell for the person’s scheme. 

After eliminating Yollıg Dan as a suspect, the next person in line was the Xia Empire’s crown prince, who was not involved in this at all. 

That night Wei Lian explored the Ningyue Tower, he found something strange in Li Chonghua’s eyes, which gave rise to a guess. 

There were no suspicious green marks on her other than from intimate marks, which made people think that she consumed the poison. 

But what Wei Lian learned was that chi yan entered through her eyes. 

Myrna only checked Li Chonghua’s wrist that day, but did not lift up her eyelids. Physician Xu had checked the Princess’s eyes but was not knowledgeable in chi yan

If Li Chonghua was poisoned from her eyes, it was meaningless to investigate the whereabouts of everyone on that day. It should have taken place two days ago. 

Wei Lian did just that, finding out all the suspects’ whereabouts two days prior and learned that Wen Heng had gone out that day. 

Things started to connect. 

* * *

Two days before Li Chonghua’s death, she slandered Wei Lian at the edge of the Qinyuan Lake, accusing him of pushing her into the water. Wei Lian retaliated on the spot, leaving her crying miserably by the lake. 

No one knew who Li Chonghua met after Wei Lian and the others left. 

According to Wei Lian’s deduction, it was very likely Wen Heng, who went out that day, that met Princess Chonghua crying by the lake. At that moment, he devised a plan and passed the poisoned handkerchief to the Princess for her to wipe her tears. 

That was how Princess Chonghua got poisoned through her eyes. 

Otherwise, there was no way to explain how that kind of poison got there. 

The reason why Wei Lian presumed the plan was formed on the spot was because he was able to inquire about Wen Heng’s whereabouts on that day, which showed that the crown prince did not expect to meet Princess Chonghua during his outing, so he did not cover up his travels. Chang Sheng reported that the following two days, Wen Heng never went out. In fact, Wen Heng definitely went out. It could be seen that Wen Heng had deliberately hidden his whereabouts and made a good alibi for his missing presence at the scene. 

As for having poison on him, no thorough investigation was needed. People of the royal family would always have a means to protect their lives. 

After giving the poison to Princess Chonghua, Wen Heng set up a series of plans. He left yearning incense on Yollıg Dan’s clothes and designed it to tarnish the Princess. When Yollıg Dan was clear-headed, he certainly did not dare to make public statements. There was no doubt that those who defiled the Qin Emperor’s people would be at death’s door. Therefore, he hurried back to Yulong Pavilion to bathe and change clothes, and ordered the clothes to be destroyed. This would have covered up the fact that the clothes were tainted with yearning incense. 

Princess Chonghua lost consciousness after being humiliated. Taking advantage of this, Wen Heng crept into Ningyue Tower and put the so-called remnant pieces of letter in the incense burner, further increasing suspicion around Yollıg Dan. 

In terms of location, Chenshui Fortress, which the Xia envoys were staying at was just behind Ningyue Tower, and Wen Heng hid the fact that he knew martial arts. It would have been easy to travel between the two places in secret. 

Later, when Princess Chonghua woke up, she panicked out of fear and kept the secret. She was afraid to reveal she lost her virginity. The value of her purity was for marriage. If she was not pure, she would be the first to die. 

So she put on her clothes and drank her medicine like nothing was wrong. Unbeknownst to her, it was after her finishing the medicine that the poison came into effect. 

When things came to the light, everyone gathered in Ningyue Tower and pointed fingers at each other, while the real culprit was at the imperial kitchen poisoning the horse milk wine. 

When Yollıg Dan and Huyan Kemu fought for Myrna, the Xia Empire’s envoys had already arrived in the Qin Empire. Wen Heng was watching coldly, learning about their lustful nature and then used it in his plan. 

To pull Chen, Liang, Lu, and Chu Empire into the chaos, to be able to calculate everyone’s actions, making it hard for anyone to talk and playing everyone within the palm of his hand. 

Wen Heng did it step by step. It could be said this was a very exquisite game of chess. 

He calculated everything, calculated all the main characters’ thoughts and actions, but missed the variance that was the nobodies.

If Yang Yang had not taken a sip of the horse milk wine, Wei Lian would not completely rule the Chen Empire out. 

If the palace maid did not keep the clothes out of her own gain, Wei Lian would not have found the yearning incense on the clothes, learning that Yollıg Dan was framed. 

It would not resurface…the Xiao Empire that hid in the deepest part in the water. 

Even the most careful can still make mistakes, in the end, one careless move turned the tables on this game. 

* * *

Wei Lian summarised the entire process of development, while covering some things that he could not say, and told Ji Yue the rest. 

After hearing this, Ji Yue kissed him on the forehead. “Very smart.”

“Less useless talking.” Wei Lian glanced at him. “Are you really going to do nothing?”

Ji Yue was not a person to be plotted against. 

“We knew it was him, and we also knew that he wanted to disturb the peace in the six empires, so that Xia Empire could survive.” Ji Yue chuckled. “Except for one capital, all the rest of the Xia Empire belongs to the Qin Empire. It has long been on the verge of subjugation. Wen Heng might be an impressive man. Unfortunately, no matter how hard he turns the tide, he cannot save his dying country.

“In recent years, the Chen Empire has been making frequent and secret movements, they have long been restless. We want to manage it. This time, we sent troops to the Chen Empire not all because of Wen Heng’s scheme succeeding, but because we had to deal with the Chen Empire. He gave me a reason on a silver platter, we did not even have the time to thank him.” Ji Yue paused. “In contrast, the Xia Empire does not even have the value for us to send troops their way.”

The Xia Empire is too weak, and the Qin Empire would have to cross the Chu Empire to get to them. If the Qin Empire was to launch an attack on the Xia Empire, the Chu Empire in the middle would not just sit and do nothing. 

This was also the reason why Ji Yue left the Xia Empire’s capital state, not completely destroying it. 

If he wanted to destroy the Xia Empire, he would need to take care of the Chu Empire first. 

Otherwise, it would be inconvenient to have this Chu Empire between the large territories. 

This was also the reason why Wen Heng mainly targeted the Chen and Lu Empire this time. Chu and Xia were too close. If one was harmed, the other would soon suffer the same. The Xia Empire would not put the Chu Empire in danger. 

Wei Lian naturally was aware of the stakes. 

If Ji Yue really wanted to act upon the Xia Empire, the Chu Empire would also be in danger. At present, this was not needed to touch the Chu Empire. On the contrary, it was the Chen Empire that was making small movements that were imminent. Why not make the best after a mistake? Just keep the truth of the matter inside. 

“Wei Lian.” Ji Yue said, “To be a ruler, one must never deal with the ones who are in the wrong, but only those who can cause a threat.”

Editor's Corner

Happy Lunar New Year!



  1. MkMzE

    Thanks for the updates, I really like this story

  2. keitodesu

    Everything about the incident is explained now. I wonder what’s gonna happen next? Thank you so much for your translations <3

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