Chapter 906: The Living Can Lie, but the Dead Will Not
Zu An looked hesitant.
“Wouldn’t that be troubling you all It’s no problem at all; it’ll be the same if I start my investigation from the outside.”
“It’s not troubling us, it’s not troubling us at all! Sir Zu, please come in!” Han Fengqiu had a smile on his face, but he was swearing profusely inwardly. Won’t you seal up the whole freaking manor if you investigate the outside
Han Fengqiu kept on inviting Zu An inside generously, but Zu An continued to turn him down.
He was really about to cry. The gatekeeper could’ve offended anyone else; why did he have to offend this damn little devil!
I mean, if you guys insist.
I wouldn’t be giving brother Han here face if I don’t come inside now.” Zu An finally agreed.
Han Fengqiu forced out a smile with great difficulty.
“Sir Zu, please come in, please!”
You have successfully trolled Han Fengqiu for 233 233 233…
Zu An strutted in only after feeling he had gotten a sizable amount of Rage points from the ordeal.
His subordinates exchanged looks and saw the admiration in each other’s eyes.
They had been left helpless just a moment ago by King Qi Manor, and yet now, Sir Zu had easily dealt with the problem! No wonder this man had been able to accumulate so many contributions so quickly.
The group was brought to the rear garden.
Han Fengqiu pointed toward a certain spot and said, “This is where her highness drowned.”
Zu An noticed that the pond was actually pretty large.
It was actually a small lake! It wasn’t all that shocking that someone had drowned there.
He pointed at the railing by the shore and said, “There are so many railings here.
Why did King Qi’s concubine drown here”
Han Fengqiu said, “These railings were newly constructed after the matter as a preventative measure for the future.
If Sir Zu looks more closely, you’ll find that the paint on them hasn't even dried yet.”
Zu An was speechless.
“Then doesn’t that mean that the scene of the crime was already completely destroyed by all of you”
If craftsmen had come and gone to install the railing, even if there were any clues, they would have long been erased.
“I don’t really understand what Sir Zu is saying,” Han Fengqiu replied.
“Her highness’ case was clearly an accident.
What clues could there possibly be”
Zu An harrumphed.
“Whether it was an accident or not isn’t for you to decide.
We’ll only know after the investigation.”
Han Fengqiu wanted to say some things to knock Zu An down a few pegs. What, are you questioning King Qi Manor’s decision about our own matters Are we supposed to listen to your opinion instead But he had just been through a horrible experience, so he held it in. Forget it, I won’t argue with this kind of petty person.
Zu An had his subordinates look around and check to see if there were any clues that had been missed.
They had all been specially assigned to this task, so they were experts.
If there really were any clues, they wouldn’t escape their eyes.
But unfortunately, they all shook their heads toward Zu An after searching several times.
King Qi Manor had clearly prepared properly in advance.
The scene of the crime had already been thoroughly destroyed.
Zu An didn’t bother with that matter anymore and asked, “Where is the concubine’s palace” Han Fengqiu was a bit hesitant.
Zu An asked with a smile, “What’s wrong Is it inconvenient for us to go there”
Han Fengqiu shivered.
He didn’t know what kind of nonsense this kid was going to start next and quickly said, “There’s no real inconvenience.”
Soon afterward, they arrived at a courtyard.
It was quite sizable, and the details were also elaborate and exquisite.
This was definitely a concubine that had received quite a bit of favor.
But many dried leaves had now fallen onto the floor.
The large courtyard now had a strange aura of neglect.
Furthermore, there wasn’t even a single person there.
As if guessing Zu An’s thoughts, Han Fengqiu explained, “This courtyard was abandoned after what happened to her highness.
The servants didn’t dare to come anymore, for fear that it had become haunted.”
Zu An remarked with a smile, “Perhaps haunted by a vengeful spirit”
Han Fengqiu’s expression changed.
“Sir Zu, please don’t say such things! Those ignorant maids are just instinctively scared of things like ghosts; there’s nothing more to it.”
Zu An chuckled and didn’t continue.
He went inside and began to look around.
Han Fengqiu became expressionless.
There was nothing shameful inside, so Zu An could just look all he wanted.
Zu An gave orders to his subordinates, then entered the concubine’s chambers alone.
There was still a faint fragrance in the room.
As King Qi’s concubine, the perfumes she wore were all quite extravagant.
The scent was deep and refreshing, but unfortunately, the beauty was already deceased.
He opened up the wardrobe to the side and saw all kinds of pretty dresses.
He couldn't help but say in amazement, “She had so many clothes.”
“She was King Qi’s concubine after all, so he wouldn’t treat her poorly,” Han Fengqiu replied.
Zu An nodded, then asked nonchalantly, “What did she wear the night she went out Did she wear her own clothes or civilian clothes”
Han Fengqiu replied, “Her own clothes.
But I believe they were comparatively plainer than usual.”
Zu An gave him a look and remarked, “From the sound of it, she seems to have worn clothing that wasn’t that eye-catching to attend some meeting in the middle of the night…”
Han Fengqiu exclaimed in alarm, “I didn’t say that! Please don’t put words in my mouth! This matter is related to her highness’ reputation, so Sir Zu must watch what you say!”
“It was just a joke.
You don’t have to be so nervous, Sir Han.” Zu An patted his shoulder, then escorted him out like that.
Han Fengqiu’s entire body went rigid.
He wasn’t used to having another man’s arm around him like that.
He was also worried that he might suddenly be ambushed, as he wouldn’t have any chance of fighting back then.
And yet, if he pushed Zu An away, wouldn’t the two of them become completely hostile It would be very annoying if Zu An used that as a pretext to make a fuss again.
After thinking about it for a bit, he decided that there was no reason for Zu An to do something like that in their manor.
He thus gradually calmed down.
While he was carrying out his internal struggle, however, he didn’t notice that Zu An had picked up a set of King Qi’s concubine’s clothes and stored it into his Brilliant Glass Bead.
When they left the courtyard, Zu An asked, “What about the maids and servants who personally served the concubine”
Han Fengqiu said with a smile, “I’ve already prepared all of them for Sir Zu.” He gestured toward the outside.
A group of maids and nurses walked in.
This was a king’s concubine, so there was obviously no need for any men to be present.
Zu An had a pensive expression as he thought, It looks like these guys were already fully prepared. He had his other subordinates talk to the servant girls.
Meanwhile, he called the maid whose uniform clearly indicated a higher level into the room to question her alone.
Han Fengqiu waited outside, seemingly to avoid suspicion.
“What’s your name” Zu An asked.
“Qiu Yue,” the girl said with her head lowered.
“You were the head maid of King Qi’s concubine”
“Since you’re the head maid, why didn’t you follow her that night She ended up drowning without anyone being there to help her.” Zu An’s voice became cold.
The maid replied in alarm, “My mistress snuck out in the middle of the night! She didn’t call for us…”
Zu An retorted with a sneer, “As her personal maid, you didn’t even know anything when your mistress got up in the middle of the night”
The maid quickly replied, “I don’t know why either, but I was in a very deep sleep that night.
Normally, I’d wake up from even a bit of activity.”
“Oh” Zu An raised his eyebrows.
“Then were you perhaps drugged that night, or did someone strike your sleep acupoint”
The maid said, puzzled, “I’m not sure, but how could there be a bad person who’d do something like that in a place like King Qi Manor”
Zu An thought to himself for a moment, then suddenly asked, “Who was your mistress normally close to That is, apart from King Qi.”
The maid turned pale with fright.
“Sir, you really shouldn’t speak so carelessly about such things… My mistress was fully devoted to the king; why would she get close to anyone else”
Zu An said with a sneer, “I only asked you who she was close to.
I didn’t even say whether it was a man or a woman, but your first reaction was to assume it was a man.
Aren’t you basically confessing willingly”
The maid quickly explained, “Sir, even though this king manor can’t compare to the imperial palace, the concubines often struggle for the king’s favor, so maybe… Maybe…”
“Are you saying there might be some internal competition” Zu An was getting annoyed with the way she kept speaking and trailing off.
The maid’s expression changed.
“This servant doesn’t dare to speak rashly about the other concubines… But in this kind of situation, my mistress would never get too close to the other women.”
Zu An then asked, “Who did she not get along with Who hates her the most in this manor”
The maid shook her head.
“There might be some conflict between the concubines, but it wouldn’t go so far as for them to go after each other’s lives.
Even though the king is tolerant, he’s also wise and brilliant.
He would never tolerate anyone doing this.
That’s why the other concubines wouldn’t take such a risk.
Furthermore, my mistress rarely left the residence all these years, and her nature was gentle and kind.
Rarely did others dislike her.
It’s hard for me to believe that someone wanted to kill her.”
“Then do you also think that her death was an accident” Zu An stared into her eyes.
“Our king looked into this matter before as well, and he determined that it was an accident.
Could it be that there were other ulterior motives” the maid asked in confusion.
Zu An began to think quietly to himself.
A while later, he gestured for her to leave.
When she reached the doorstep, however, he suddenly stopped her.
“By the way, did your mistress treat you well”
“The mistress was gentle and kind in nature, and she always treated her subordinates extremely kindly.
She was even more like a sister to me.
But… but…” The maid’s expression was full of grief.
She began to sob quietly.
When he saw that he wouldn’t be able to get anything else out of her, Zu An indicated that she could leave.
Then, he walked out.
The other guards finished their interrogations shortly afterward.
They shook their heads slightly toward him when they saw him.
They hadn’t obtained any useful information either.
It looked entirely as if the concubine had accidentally drowned.
Zu An thought to himself for a while, then left the courtyard.
He said to Han Fengqiu, “I’ll have to trouble Sir Han to lead us to her grave.
We need to examine her remains.”
The living could lie, but the dead would not.
Han Fengqiu’s expression instantly changed.
“No, absolutely not! Even though she isn’t King Qi’s main wife, she’s still the king’s woman.
How can we let others defile her!”