170 Chapter 170 Revert Back
"A secret room and a beautiful woman's painting?" Liu Yeyin reacted to the black clothed man's report. Her hand also halted from inserting an acupuncture needle in Xing Baihe's body. She is currently at Xing Baihe's courtyard inside the imperial palace doing a series of treatment to fix Baihe's chaotic internal energy.
Xing Baihe's body also stiffened hearing the report. There is no doubt that the woman in the painting must be Lin Xulian. Although she finds this information irritating, she tried her best to hide it and didn't utter a word.
But of course, her effort didn't fool Liu Yeyin. "The emperor you chose is surprisingly devotional. No wonder you find it hard to control him. Even emperor Feng couldn't escape your control. Your taste in men is commendable. Right, Baihe?" Liu Yeyin teased.
"Naturally, sister-in-law. But in emperor Feng's case, I had the Gu poison maturing for four years inside him before awakening it. For the fifth prince. I had no choice but to use the young ones. By feeding it with external supply of internal energy, I could do it in no time. So don't worry sister-in-law. That devotion will soon be directed towards me." Xing Baihe explained and confidently stated.
But all of Xing Baihe's boasting and confident remarks were actually a way to hide her inner doubts. No one knows it but her initial plan was to have Feng Jun Yi kill Lin Xulian with his own hands. With that, he will have no choice but to expose Lin Xulian as an adulterous wife to justify his actions. Then Lin Xulian's reputation will be ruined aside from her own death.
Unfortunately, that didn't happen. If not for the assassination, Xing Baihe is certain that all their plan will be ruined. But she wasn't satisfied because even after Lin Xulian died, everyone still admired her. A whole country grieved for her loss. That seriously infuriates her even more.
"Don't forget the state of your body, Baihe. We'll have to deal with your unnecessary victims first." Liu Yeyin warned her. "Also, I had the time to wander around the capital earlier today and found some young ladies and madams poisoned with Gu. Could you enlighten me why?" She added in a threatening tone.
With her face down since she is lying on her stomach during the treatment, Xing Baihe couldn't see Liu Yiyen's expression. But she could pretty much guess that her sister-in-law is angry. Nonetheless, she believes that she won't be punished anyway so she admitted her fault.
"I had to do it sister-in-law or else those noble household will not favor me to assume the throne of the empress. They are wary of my origin as the previous enemy's empire's princess. And also because they think I cannot fit the previous empress's shoe." Xing Baihe defended.
Liu Yeyin already figured out that in some way, Xing Baihe's reason includes Lin Xulian. If not because she needed this overly insecure lass's skill, she would've crushed Xing Baihe's annoying head long ago. Her insecurity and jealousy are causing her to be reckless and stupid. And it is affecting Liu Yeyin's plan.
Still, Liu Yeyin quelled her anger and assumed an understanding tone. "It can't be helped then. But I can't deal with them just yet. If we touch the nobles, everyone will get suspicious. Worst, we might get the Qiangdu country's suspicion. For now, your priority is the fifth prince.""Yes, sister-in-law." Xing Baihe replied in a docile tone. The treatment then continued and the black clothed man left without a sound. But in Xing Baihe's eyes, the man looked like he vanished in thin air.
Inside the emperor's imperial study, Feng Jun Yi has a solemn expression as he listens to Xu Yichen's report. The report is actually trivial for Feng Jun Yi's position. It is about the palace servants and guards. But since there is no crowned empress as of the moment, the emperor need to handle these matter himself.
"According to the head servants, the four servant girls left a letter saying that they are running away with their men. Coincidentally, there are four are also four missing imperial guards. As this subject could see, this matter although showed disrespect to the palace, is not a matter to fret about. This subject will just send some men to find them and give their due punishment." Xu Yichen concluded.
"These servants and guards, where were they assigned?" Feng Jun Yi asked catching Xu Yichen by surprise. But he dismissed it as maybe the emperor is just curious.
"Replying your majesty, the servant girls are Imperial Noble Concubine Xing's previous main servants. It is said that she replaced them because she met some servants who managed to win her over with flattery which is not uncommon in the back palace." Xu Yichen answered truthfully. He genuinely thinks that these things are normal.
While Xu Yichen is nonchalant, Feng Jun Yi's expression changed slightly hearing Xing Baihe's name. At first he also thinks that this matter is not serious. But now he can't help but think that it is not that simple at all. Especially if it Xing Baihe is connected in some way. "What about the imperial guards?" He added.
Finally, Xu Yichen noticed the direction of Feng Jun Yi's thoughts. But he still continued his report without interrupting the emperor. "Replying your majesty, they were posted in Imperial Noble Concubine Xing's Courtyard.
Feng Jun Yi turned silent. There is a possibility that he is just looking too deep on the matter. But knowing that the Xing imperial family is trying to harm the Gonglu country, no one could blame him for overthinking their little actions. If not for the warning from whom he thought was Lin Huang, he would've acted long ago. However, he will keep his faith on the Lin clan and wait for their signal.
"Forgive this subject for prying, but does your majesty thinks that Imperial Noble Concubine Xing had a hand on the matter? As this subject remembered, Empress Lin acknowledged and adored the Princess. Does your majesty think otherwise?" Xu Yichen asked curiously.
Feng Jun Yi's fist clenched hearing Xu Yichen's words. It pains him to think that Lin Xulian was deceived by Xing Baihe and eventually caused her death. He also blames himself for being careless. If only he had been more insightful and not put all the work on Lin Xulian.
He was never really able to tell a person's inner intention so he always goes for what Lin Xulian wants. That's because he can see that she could do it. He only managed to live up to this day because he never fully trusted anyone.
As to why he trusted Lin Xulian, it was pure blind trust driven by his heart's desire. Later on he could already tell what she wants. But that's because he is always observing her. Never tearing his eyes away from her whenever she is around.
Thinking up to this point, Feng Jun Yi realized that he probably fell in love with her the first time they met. He was just stupid for not admitting it earlier and wasted their years together. 'If it could bring you back, I will gladly throw away this useless throne as the emperor, Lian'er.'
Returning to the matter at hand, Feng Jun Yi shook his head. "Don't mind Zhen, adviser Xu. Just Zhen's old habit. Without Lian'er by Zhen's side, Zhen cannot help but revert back to those lonely times." He answered in a defeated tone. Feng Jun Yi decided not to inform Xu Yichen about Xing Baihe's transgression for the moment. Knowing that the enemy uses Gu poison and experiencing it himself, he cannot trust anyone. Even his close allies.
Luckily, Xu Yichen accepted Feng Jun Yi's excuse. He had seen how Feng Jun Yi handles everything during those times. He viewed everyone as enemies and allies as chess pieces. Never fully opening his bare self to anyone. He was constantly on the edge.
Only Lin Xulian managed to drag him out. But her death put him back on that cage. And Xu Yichen has no power to set him free. "Then this subject will look things up deeper and act accordingly, your majesty." Xu Yichen ended then left the imperial study in a down casted mood.