TIGR Chapter 51
The Imperial Guard’s Revenge
Chapter 51 Caught in the Act
Fu Tingzhou was alerted by the Yongping Marquis Prince last month, and suddenly, he became suspicious of Lu Heng. After secretly checking, he found that Qing Qing was in Lu Heng’s hands. Fu Tingzhou was furious. He hated Lu Heng for being shameless, but he hated himself even more for being stupid. He had been deceived by him for so long.
The ambush was done by Lu Heng, and there were no footprints under the cliff, so there was no need to doubt where Wang Yanqing was. He actually believed Lu Heng’s words and suspected that Wang Yanqing wanted to leave him. On New Year’s Eve, when he left the Lu Mansion in a state of despair, he wondered how Lu Heng laughed.
Fu Tingzhou was annoyed but he was also puzzled. One of the biggest reasons he believed Lu Heng, was that he bumped into Wang Yanqing when he came to the door. He called out, but she didn’t respond. Why did she do that? Did she change her mind?
As soon as this idea came up, Fu Tingzhou snuffed it out. Impossible, anyone could betray him, and his mother and sister might be against him under Lu Heng’s bewitchment, but Qing Qing would never. She must have been coerced by Lu Heng. On the day she entered the city, Lu Heng followed the carriage, and on New Year’s Eve, she was followed by maids. These people must have threatened Qing Qing, and she was helpless.
When Fu Tingzhou thought of this, his heart seemed to be tormented by boiling oil, and a sense of guilt almost drowned him. It was his doing that caused Qing Qing to fall off the cliff, and also caused Qing Qing to fall into Lu Heng’s hands. Lu Heng was a lunatic. No one could predict what he wanted to do. He had kept Wang Yanqing by his side for so long, not deciding how to torture her. Counting that time in the Lantern Festival, Fu Tingzhou passed Qing Qing three times. She watched helplessly as he missed her, not knowing how painful it must have been.
He needed to rescue Qing Qing, no matter what the cost.
Fu Tingzhou immediately arranged a rescue. It was absolutely impossible to forcefully break into the Lu Mansion, and it was not realistic to hijack the carriage when Wang Yanqing went out. First, he didn’t know when Wang Yanqing would go out, and second, Lu Heng, an overly cautious old fox, would definitely set up heavy guards around Wang Yanqing. It would be difficult for Fu Tingzhou to get a whole body out. They were in the capital now, and once trouble got too big, they would disturb the palace. If trouble made it to the emperor, with the relationship between Lu Heng and the emperor, Fu Tingzhou would definitely suffer in the end.
He could only find a way to arrange a “coincidence”.
Fu Tingzhou always believed that even if Wang Yanqing had no choice but to feign civility with Lu Heng, she would always want to escape. So she took the initiative to go out during the Lantern Festival to find an opportunity to escape. It was a pity that Fu Tingzhou was held up by Hong Wanqing, and he missed a great opportunity.
This time with the Shangsi Festival, she will definitely find her chance to get out. And with Lu Heng’s false pretense and false appearance-like personality, he would most likely agree generously, leisurely set his line and hook, and then shatter Wang Yanqing’s escape plan at the last minute. What Lu Heng liked to do most was to give hope to his prey, and then crush it little by little.
Fu Tingzhou had been predicting Lu Heng’s thoughts all this time. Based on Fu Tingzhou’s understanding of Lu Heng, Lu Heng would agree to Wang Yanqing’s request, but he would not take her to a crowded place. He would bring her to a place that Lu Heng could completely control, such as this manor with mountains and water. Fu Tingzhou knew that someone else’s name was written on the title deed of this manor, but in fact, it had already belonged to Lu Heng a long time ago.
The manor was built by eunuchs, and it was beautiful, but it was much worse in terms of security. Lu Heng rarely lived here. He didn’t come here two or three times a year, so it was not worth rebuilding. The manor drew upon life from water, the vegetation was lush and the scenery changed with every step, the manor was naturally beautiful, but it was also convenient for hiding in.
Sure enough, the people watching the Lu Mansion reported today that they saw a carriage driving out of the Lu Mansion. Fu Tingzhou immediately guessed that Qing Qing was inside, but there was an unexpected element, Lu Heng also came out. Fu Tingzhou didn’t expect Lu Heng to ask for leave. He asked people to make some noise at the gate of the imperial city to lead Lu Heng away, and then personally came to the manor to rescue Wang Yanqing.
If he missed the third day of the third month, the next festival that allowed women to go out would have to wait for the Double Seven Festival. Today was Fu Tingzhou’s best chance. He must see Qing Qing and bring her back.
So far everything was going well, he successfully found Wang Yanqing, and now he only needed to kill the two maids. Unexpectedly, when Wang Yanqing went to the back to change her clothes, the two maids did not follow. Fu Tingzhou was quite surprised, but this was a good thing. Lu Heng’s maids were all specially trained. Even for him, it would be difficult to silence the two of them without disturbing the guards outside.
When Fu Tingzhou saw Wang Yanqing quietly walking into the inner room, he was immensely moved. She had picturesque eyebrows and a peaceful expression. She was wearing a white jacket and skirt. When she was quiet, she was like a bright moon in the sky, and when she was in action, she was like a flower shining on the water. After being apart for a long time, her beauty had not diminished at all, and there was no trace of torture on her body, instead, she was beautiful and moving.
The feeling in Fu Tingzhou’s heart was indescribable. He thought she was forced to be separated from him, and that she would be thin and depressed, but in fact, she lived peacefully and freely. This was a good thing, at least, she didn’t suffer from flesh and blood.
On this point, Lu Heng was still a man.
Seeing that he didn’t detect anything from the outside, Fu Tingzhou quietly appeared and came to find Wang Yanqing. He expected that she might be more excited, but he didn’t expect her to stab him directly with a dagger.
Fortunately, Fu Tingzhou and Wang Yanqing had been together for ten years. She had learned every move from Fu Tingzhou, and when they fought together, every move was instinct. Fu Tingzhou avoided the vital point in time and blocked the blade with his arm, allowing Wang Yanqing to see his face.
He was afraid that the movement would disturb the maids outside, so he could only cover her mouth with his hand. He stared at those familiar and beautiful eyes and said: “Qing Qing, don’t shout. It’s me.”
Just saying this sentence made Fu Tingzhou tremble all over and his heart ache.
Wang Yanqing’s eyes calmed down, and Fu Tingzhou vaguely felt that something was wrong, but he didn’t have time to think about it. Seeing that Wang Yanqing didn’t mean to shout, he slowly let go of his hand. However, the hug that he expected in their first meeting after a long absence did not appear. After Wang Yanqing was freed, she first took a step back, practiced social distancing, then lowered her hands and greeted him with a thousand blessings: “Marquis of Zhenyuan.”
Fu Tingzhou was confused by this development, and he thought that Qing Qing was angry with him, and said again: “Qing Qing, it’s me.”
The situation exceeded Fu Tingzhou’s expectations once again. Wang Yanqing was not happy, aggrieved, or even angry when he heard these words, but her face became more and more indifferent. Wang Yanqing lowered her eyes, and her calm tone scared him: “Of course, I know you, Marquis of Zhenyuan, Fu Tingzhou.”
Fu Tingzhou looked at Wang Yanqing’s estranged and indifferent eyes like she was treating a stranger and finally realized that something was wrong. He frowned and asked: “Qing Qing, what’s wrong with you? I was wrong about what happened before. If you are angry, let’s go home and we will talk slowly, but now there is no time, you have to go with me quickly.”
Wang Yanqing thought that what Second Brother said was right, the Marquis of Zhenyuan was really crazy. Who did he think he was, why did he speak to her in such a commanding tone?
Wang Yanqing stood motionless, although her head was down, her neck was straight, and her back stretched out a soft and slender line. She was not hunchbacked and weak like other women, but like a willow, with a sense of strength in her silence.
Wang Yanqing remembered that her Second Brother and Fu Tingzhou were both in the capital and that sooner or later she would meet him. She didn’t want to make too much trouble because of her own actions, so she said: “Marquis of Zhenyuan, thank you for your love, but I don’t dare to climb to the Marquis Mansion with the posture of a willow. Even if my family is ruined and I have no father or mother. I will not allow myself to become a concubine to others. Besides, the Lu Mansion is my home, and I won’t leave.”
Fu Tingzhou looked at Wang Yanqing and was stunned for a while. His eyes became cold inch by inch, and even if he comforted himself with the fact that she was speaking angrily, he was really irritated: “Qing Qing, do you know what you are talking about?”
His words were angry, condescending, and questioning and Wang Yanqing couldn’t help being angry when she heard them. Wang Yanqing’s face also froze, and she said coldly: “Marquis of Zhenyuan, I don’t know you well, please call me by my name, don’t call me Qing Qing. Only my Second Brother can use this title, Qing Qing.”
Fu Tingzhou finally understood where this sense of disobedience came from. He stared at Wang Yanqing, his tone uncontrollably rising because of his anger: “Am I not your Second Brother?”
Wang Yanqing couldn’t bear it anymore. Second Brother was right, was there something wrong with this person’s brain? Disdain flashed across her eyes, and she said: “Marquis of Zhenyuan, please conduct yourself with dignity.”
Ling Xi and Ling Luan heard her voice outside and approached the door and knocked: “Miss, is there something wrong?”
Lu Heng’s people were just outside the door, and Fu Tingzhou kept staring at Wang Yanqing, not caring about his own danger at all. Wang Yanqing knew that if Ling Xi and Ling Luan were allowed to break in and the matter reached Second Brother, it would be completely unstoppable. She didn’t want to add another enemy to her Second Brother’s list, so she didn’t make a sound, and said lightly to Ling Xi and Ling Luan: “It’s okay, you both can go back. I’m a little tired and want to rest for a while by myself.”
There seemed to be a momentary pause outside, and then the voice of a woman’s address passed through the door and window into the compartment: “Yes.”
Wang Yanqing didn’t hear footsteps walking away and she knew that Ling Xi and Ling Luan were guarding the door. She didn’t want to waste time with Fu Tingzhou, so she simply said: “Marquis of Zhenyuan, I don’t remember if I told you this before. But since you are here today, I might as well say it all at once. I don’t know when I got into your eyes, but it was only once and the Marquis couldn’t forget. But the twisted melon is not sweet. I don’t want it, the Lu family doesn’t want it, and your fiancée Miss Hong probably doesn’t want it either. Since it is destined for failure, why should the Zhenyuan Marquis bother persisting? Let’s say goodbye. In the future, I will continue to be a commoner woman, and the Marquis of Zhenyuan will marry a sweet wife and rise to the top. Wouldn’t it be better for both sides to forget this? I hope that the Marquis of Zhenyuan will not do anything to embarrass anyone in the future. If there is a next time, I will not be polite anymore.”
Fu Tingzhou stared at her, his voice as cold as iron: “Did he force you to say that?”
Wang Yanqing was stunned: “What?”
“Did Lu Heng force you? Are you being coerced by him, or is there something in his hands?” Fu Tingzhou stepped forward and tried to hold Wang Yanqing’s arm, “Qing Qing, it’s okay. Just go back with me, and I’ll take care of the rest. No matter what happened before today, I will not pursue it.”
Wang Yanqing saw that he still wanted to take action, and immediately took a step back, his face sank suddenly: “Marquis of Zhenyuan, I thought I had made it clear. Please conduct yourself with dignity and stop pestering me.”
Stop pestering me.
Hearing these words, Fu Tingzhou felt like a knife twisted in his heart. But no matter how hurtful the language was, it was not as painful as her indifferent, estranged, evasive eyes. Fu Tingzhou didn’t know what happened to Wang Yanqing. They had only been separated for three months. Why did she seem to be a different person.
What did Lu Heng do to her?
Fu Tingzhou wanted to say more, and if it really didn’t work, even if he knocked her out today, he must take her away. Fu Tingzhou took a step closer, but before he could speak, the voice of a maid suddenly came from outside.
A familiar, calm voice hummed lightly and asked: “Where is she?”
Wang Yanqing’s eyes suddenly lit up when he heard this voice. She glanced at Fu Tingzhou for the last time, following etiquette, and paid her respects, then bypassed him and walked out quickly. When she got to the door, she even trotted a few steps.
Second Brother came back sooner than she expected. Wang Yanqing didn’t have time to accompany Fu Tingzhou and his crazy antics, so she hurried out to stop Lu Heng. The place where Wang Yanqing and Fu Tingzhou faced off was behind the screen, so she was not afraid of being seen when the door opened. But Wang Yanqing didn’t dare to gamble on what Lu Heng would do. If he got close, he would definitely find out. Once trouble arose, it would be completely impossible to end.
Wang Yanqing felt a headache just thinking about that scene. Even if Lu Heng said that he had enemies all over the place, it shouldn’t be so ugly. Being an official in the same dynasty, regardless, it was a good thing to have one less enemy.
Therefore, Wang Yanqing wanted to resolve the matter as privately as possible. She didn’t remember what happened before her memory loss, but she told the Marquis of Zhenyuan again frankly that her words had already been confessed like this, and it would be shameless for Fu Tingzhou to keep being entangled. As for Second Brother, it was best if he did not know.
At least not on the surface.
Wang Yanqing was afraid that Lu Heng would come in, so she hurried out and closed the door behind her as soon as she went out. Wang Yanqing felt that since Fu Tingzhou could come in, he should be able to go out by himself. She kept Lu Heng outside. If Lu Heng still caught him, then Fu Tingzhou should stop messing around, he deserved to be punished.
Lu Heng went to the place of trouble and understood after watching for a while. He thought to himself that Fu Tingzhou was not completely stupid, but it was too late.
Lu Heng immediately left the city and rushed to the manor on the outskirts of Beijing. He came to the water pavilion according to the eunuch’s directions, and as soon as he entered the door, he saw the guards standing outside, and Ling Xi and Ling Luan guarding the door of a room, with strange expressions. Lu Heng understood at a glance and he was so angry that he burst out laughing in his heart. Fu Tingzhou, how great, he broke in.
When will he be dead?
Lu Heng’s tone was calm, and his face was as usual as if he was talking about the weather until they couldn’t see the slightest emotion. But this was often the most terrifying. Ling Xi and Ling Luan hurriedly knelt down, but before they could speak, the door suddenly opened from the inside. A woman with icy muscles and jade bones ran out, as if she was afraid of being seen, and hurriedly closed the door.
Wang Yanqing smiled as if nothing happened, and took the initiative to greet Lu Heng: “Second Brother, why are you here?”
After seeing Wang Yanqing, Lu Heng smiled lightly. He looked at her with a smile, as if he hadn’t found any loopholes in Wang Yanqing’s language: “I’ve agreed to accompany you, how could I miss the appointment?”
Wang Yanqing was afraid that Lu Heng would investigate further, so she tried her best to touch Lu Heng’s arm casually, and lead him out with a smile: “Really? Second Brother, have you finished your work in the office?”
Lu Heng let go of her little trick and walked out with her. When he turned around, the corners of Lu Heng’s eyes seemed to have swept across the closed door behind him, as said lightly: “It was just some small flies, not worth mentioning. Qing Qing, I heard that you stayed here as soon as you came in and never went out. What’s the matter, are you feeling unwell?”
“No.” Wang Yanqing bit the bullet and said, “Second Brother, you are not here, so I am not interested. I was just waiting for you here.”
Lu Heng finally laughed when he heard this, he stopped paying attention to the thin door behind him, held Wang Yanqing’s hand hanging on his arm, and said: “Then if I didn’t come today, would you wait all day long?”
“Of course.” Wang Yanqing did not exaggerate this time, and didn’t want to say it, “I have nothing to look at when I am alone, it’s only meaningful when Second Brother is here.”
Wang Yanqing spoke naturally and did not deliberately hide her voice so that everyone in the room could hear it as long as they paid attention. Lu Heng clenched her hand and said with a smile: “That’s not possible. A beautiful woman and beautiful scenery, how can this be in vain? There is a beautiful flowerbed in the manor, I will take you there.”
|| Author’s Note:
Lu Heng’s heart: This dog.
Fu Tingzhou’s heart: This dog!