Chapter 160: Framed with Planted Evidence (3)
“There was something off about the corpses at the cave entrance.” Ye Jiuge gave the Crown Prince a glance, seemingly implying something.
She said it to ruffle him, wanting to see what kind of reaction he would have.
As expected, the Crown Prince’s eyes shifted.
When Su Junqing had told him that he wanted to make use of Gong Hongyu to deal with Ye Jiuge, he’d had no idea that the Sorcerers would be involved.
Truth be told, he was frightened by the sight of so many corpses.
But there was no way to back out now. He could only grit his teeth and see it through to the end—until Ye Jiuge was dead.
After all, he would deal with Wan Ziyang and the rest, so it didn’t matter if they found anything.
The Crown Prince became calm. He turned to Li Zijun and said, “Zijun, leave those corpses to Lord Wan. Let’s bring Ye Jiuge back quickly to prevent anything from cropping up again.”
Li Zijun looked at Ye Jiuge questioningly.
Ye Jiuge calmly said, “I have two things to instruct Big Brother Wan. We can leave after that.”
“No, that cannot happen,” the Crown Prince objected fiercely.
“Alright!” Li Zijun nodded in agreement.
“Tell me!” Wan Ziyang swiftly made his way to Ye Jiuge’s side.
“The first thing…” Ye Jiuge told him why she’d appeared at the ruins. Using the purple scorpion as an excuse, she made a vague comment about how Hua Die was acting weird.
“The second thing…” She hoped that Wan Ziyang could send some men to protect Ye Ruyi and Yu Die.
She knew that this trap had been set in advance by the Crown Prince and the Sorcerers from the Bloodthirsty Sect. She feared that the people around her would be implicated too.
“I’ve already sent people to Soaring Frost Hall.” The moment Wan Ziyang had gotten wind that Ye Jiuge was in trouble, he’d immediately sent soldiers to protect Ye Ruyi and the rest.
“Thank you!” Ye Jiuge heaved a sigh of relief. Wan Ziyang was genuinely reliable.
But the expression on Wan Ziyang’s face was hesitant.
Ye Jiuge’s heart skipped a beat, and she asked, “What’s wrong? Did something happen?”
“It’s nothing serious. It’s just that, your Medicinal Pill Tester has gone missing. My men searched high and low for him, but he was nowhere to be found.”
Although Wan Ziyang did not think that the Medicinal Pill Tester’s disappearance was important, he still had to inform Ye Jiuge.
“It doesn’t matter. Just leave him be.” Ye Jiuge did not care that the Medicinal Pill Tester was missing.
After all, saving the Medicinal Pill Tester would only be for morality’s sake.
“Humph! I think he isn’t missing—you ate him!” The Crown Prince continued maliciously, “I wondered why you were so kind as to save someone with a Medicinal Pill. Now we know. You were just using him for practice.”
“Your Highness, please be prudent with your words before everything has been investigated. It would not be good if word got around to the Emperor.” Wan Ziyang’s sharp eyes gave the Crown Prince a poignant look.
“Wan Ziyang, are you threatening me?” The Crown Prince was furious.
“I’m merely stating a fact.” Wan Ziyang had never thought much of the Crown Prince in the past. He wasn’t afraid to talk back to him.
“Wan Ziyang, you sure have guts insulting the Imperial Family. Do you really think that I won’t touch you?” The Crown Prince’s face swelled red with anger.
He was about to order Wan Ziyang’s arrest when Li Zijun stopped him, “Please calm down, Your Highness. The most important thing now is to fully investigate the murders committed by the Sorcerers.”
Li Zijun was trying to be the peacemaker. But, to the Crown Prince, it was as if Li Zijun were slighting him.
Furthermore, Ye Jiuge added lightly, “Big Brother Wan, Senior Li is right. The most important thing now is to investigate the Sorcerers. If the mad dog wants to bite, just let him be!”
The expression on the Crown Prince’s face turned frightfully chilly. His fists were clenched so tightly that his nails sank into his flesh.
When he ascended the throne, he would make sure all these people paid.
Li Zijun never noticed the change in the Crown Prince. Resigned, he turned to Ye Jiuge and said, “Eldest Miss Ye, since your affairs are in order, let’s get going!”
“Sure!” Ye Jiuge was very cooperative and followed Li Zijun out.
Wan Ziyang stood where he was, silently watching Ye Jiuge leave.
Her green-clad and graceful figure stood out like a sore thumb among the soldiers surrounding her. Looking at the scene made him feel a little desolate.
Ye Jiuge is strong. She will be fine!
Wan Ziyang took a deep breath, reigned in his emotions, and led his men to the underground cave entrance.
He searched the ruins but was unable to find the purple scorpion that Ye Jiuge had mentioned.
But this outcome was expected, so he wasn’t too discouraged.
He continued to search through the corpses in the cave.
The Spiritual Roots had been removed from the Spiritual Practitioners’ bodies.
Besides Gong Hongyu, who had been flayed, the others had died because their cultivation and blood had been sucked dry.
Gong Hongyu’s cadaver was still fresh, and the wall beside her was still spotted with fresh blood. It was likely that the blood had been spilled not too long ago.
The splatter was very uniform, and it seemed like the deceased did not put up much resistance.
Wan Ziyang’s preliminary deduction was that Gong Hongyu was killed at a different location. The body was then brought here, after her death, to be flayed.
As for the corpses whose cultivation and blood had been sucked dry, the stiffness of each body differed. So, they’d not all been killed at the same time.
Wan Ziyang searched the corpses carefully for quite a while. Finally, on the sole of one of the corpses’ shoe, he found a thin layer of red mud.
He found the same mud on Gong Hongyu’s shoe. This meant that the two had been in the same place before.
Once they found the source of the red mud, they would be able to find the place that the victims had visited before their deaths.
To verify his conjecture, Wan Ziyang decided to head out of the City to investigate.
Before heading out, he wrote down everything he’d found in a letter and gave it to Li Ziyang to pass to Ye Jiuge. During this time, Ye Jiuge was held up in Medicine Refinery City’s innermost hall—Nine Pills Hall.
Although the Crown Prince had vehemently requested that Ye Jiuge be locked up in jail, after Li Zijun sought advice from his teacher, Ye Jiuge was placed under house arrest in Dongfang Yao’s private area, the Nine Pills Hall.
The Crown Prince was furious with this decision. He endlessly made a fuss over wanting to meet personally with Dongfang Yao to set things straight.
Unfortunately, ever since Dongfang Yao had publicly chased the Crown Prince away back to the Capital, he had not been seen in public.
Now, the excuse was that Dongfang Yao’s recurring headache ailment had relapsed, so he was unable to receive guests.
The Crown Prince had no way of redeeming himself. He could only seek out Li Zijun every day, pestering him to be impartial and punish Ye Jiuge as soon as possible.
Li Zijun was so frustrated by the Crown Prince’s pestering that he was about to tear his hair out.
Recently, there had been a string of unfortunate incidents in the Medicine Refinery City. Even the tournament had to be halted. Normally, in such situations, teacher should be the one holding the fort.
However, he despised his Eldest Disciple for being too engrossed with Medicine Refinery—to the point that he’d almost became an idiot.
But, with the excuse of training Li Zijun, he’d left everything to him.
Using the name of Dongfang Yao, Li Zijun gave an order forbidding anyone to visit Ye Jiuge.
Be it the Crown Prince, Ye Shanshan, Ye Ruyi, or Wan Ziyang—no one could visit.
To get Li Zijun to help him send a letter to Ye Jiuge, Wan Ziyang had to plead and pester for quite a while.