Chapter 264: His lordship is willing to lose face
Tianning's Duke of Qin has arrived?
The announcement caused everyone to suddenly quiet down. No one expected Tianning Country's Duke of Qin to show up at Medical Academy, much less at a time like this! News had already spread of how Han Yunxi and Gu Beiyue had misdiagnosed the crown prince and been sent to the imperial prisons. Supposedly, His Highness Duke of Qin had not only gone to the imperial prisons at the earliest opportunity, but refused to protect Han Yunxi as well. Instead, he told Official Ouyang to do things according to official principles without allowing any special cases. Clearly, he was casting her aside to protect himself so that Han Yunxi's mess with the crown prince wouldn't implicate himself. He hadn't appeared when Luo Zuishan cried injustice for Han Yunxi and Gu Beiyue either, so why now?
It was already midnight, so Han Yunxi had already lost and landed on the blacklist for Medical City. Wasn't he disgracing himself now by showing up? Although Han Yunxi was the one being accused, she was also bearing the title of Qin Wangfei and Long Feiye's woman. Even if they were only linked by name, a husband and wife bore respect and dishonor equally. He was an intelligent man, so why didn't he understand that the best choice was to wash his hands of the whole affair and not take a stand?
Qinwang Rong immediately rose to his feet. He was the most surprised of all. Just yesterday, he had exchanged letters with Emperor Tianhui to discuss Long Feiye's attitude towards Han Yunxi. Emperor Tianhui had given up on Han Yunxi back then, instead of tormenting her, precisely because of Long Feiye's actions. Otherwise, how could Han Yunxi pass her days in prison without being tortured? After all, as soon as that Official Ouyang got the go ahead from Emperor Tianhui, he'd start persecuting her without showing any face for the Duke of Qin.
Amidst the silent stares of the crowd, Long Feiye walked in alone. He was dressed in elegant brocade robes, his expression icy as he looked on loftily. Every step he took affected the hearts of all those present. There were people like him in this world whose mere existence made the very moon dim and fade away.
"We are honored by the presence of Your Highness Duke of Qin. Please excuse me for not going out to meet you, it's my wrong!" Fourth Elder immediately yielded his seat. Though Long Feiye's seniority ranked below that of Qinwang Rong, he was a far more weightier figure. Qinwang Rong might treat the three Elders politely, but Long Feiye had no such habits. Although the extent of this duke's power was unclear, there were enough facts to prove that anyone who slighted him, both in and out of Tianning, were destined for a bad end.
Third Elder and Fifth Elder rose to greet him politely as well. "Your Highness Duke of Qin, long time no see."
But Long Feiye words went beyond their expectations. "I heard that your lordship's wangfei disappeared from Medical City, is this so?"
Third Elder found himself at a loss, along with all the people around him. Had this man really come to look for his wangfei? Did he know that Han Yunxi had made a bet with Third Elder, or that Han Yunxi had lost now that it was midnight?
Nobody could figure him out. Third Elder had no grounding upon which to speak; of course, he was experienced enough to calm down easily and smile. "Your Highness Duke of Qin's words are a little off. Qin Wangfei didn't disappear, but...escaped to avoid punishment for her crimes!"
Long Feiye wasn't in a rush to reply, but coolly sat down on a high seat as if this was Tianning, not the medical academy, and he was the master instead of a guest. His voice was cold and severe as he slowly asked, "Third Elder, what is Qin Wangfei's crime?"
Third Elder paused in surprise at these words. He was sure now that Long Feiye had bad intentions! Though he didn't know why he showed up now of all times to protect Han Yunxi, he did know that midnight had already passed. Han Yunxi had lost! If that was the case, she had to pay the price. There were no exceptions in the medical academy, especially with all these eyes watching. Tianning's Duke of Qin might have a large presence, but he wasn't planning to give him face this time. Instead of explaining, Third Elder looked towards Qinwang Rong. It was Tianning's emperor who had determined the crime, which had nothing to do with the medical academy.
Qinwang Rong never expected Long Feiye to really show up and defend Han Yunxi either. Now that things had gotten to this point, Long Feiye couldn't be allowed to have his way. He'd have trouble explaining things to Emperor Tianhui otherwise when he returned.
"Duke of Qin, the crown prince narrowly lost his life at Han Yunxi's hands. Both her and Gu Beiyue misdiagnosed him, and she even had the gall to gamble with Third Elder here. She's lost face for our Tianning. Now that midnight's passed, what else could she be but someone who escaped to avoid punishment for her crimes?" Qinwang Rong said indignantly.
But Long Feiye's voice was as cold as before. "These are simply your conjectures. Who can prove that she escaped to avoid punishment instead of being kidnapped instead? Stand out and explain things clearly to your lordship!"
No one dared to speak up in front of Long Feiye's icy visage. Truly, Han Yunxi and Gu Beiyue's mysterious disappearance could be attributed to trouble meeting them instead. Nobody dared to stand out and claim otherwise. If they were wrong, they'd have to shoulder the consequences. Finally, it was still Qinwang Rong who replied.
"Duke of Qin, the crown prince's illness is the best proof. She clearly lied, what with using needles to expel the poisons. That was all a play at most."
"What, did Han Yunxi tell you that Long Tianmo recovered fully?" Long Feiye asked as he arched an eyebrow.
Qinwang Rong was momentarily speechless. When he thought back carefully, he recalled that Han Yunxi hadn't claimed that Long Tianmo's poison was cured, much less that he had fully recovered. They'd just assumed the poison had been treated based on their subjective judgment. Han Yunxi had said she'd re-examine him in three days' time, which meant he hadn't fully recovered yet. Everyone present three days ago felt a twinge of guilty conscience. All of them were afraid to give Long Feiye a straight answer.
By this point. Lady Lianxin stepped forward to change the topic. "Your Highness Duke of Qin, no matter what, Qin Wangfei didn't show up on time for the examination. Neither did she explain why the Tianning crown prince's old ailment flared up again. In this case, she can count to have lost the bet against Third Elder."
No matter what? What did Lady Lianxin's words mean? That whether or not Han Yunxi had been kidnapped or ran away, she still lost?
What a 'no matter what!'
A cold smile crept onto Long Feiye's features as he rose to look disdainfully at Lady Lianxin. "No matter what, your lordship will blame your medical academy for her disappearance!" So speaking, he looked towards Luo Zuishan. "Director Luo, if your lordship remembers correctly, you were the one who told Qinwang Rong that everything associated with the case would be escorted by the medical academy."
Luo Zuishan was at a loss. He never expected Long Feiye to attack him. While he was still figuring out how to reply, Long Feiye's icy voice revealed traces of anger. "If Director Luo cannot answer your lordship's question, then please call out the Head Elder!"
The Elders who'd just sat down simultaneously rose to their feet. Long Feiye's words signified that he'd placed the Council of Elders in his sights. But even if he had the voice and advantage, his skills still weren't enough to bypass the Council of Elders and seek the Head Elder directly, even if his reasons were justified. When Long Tianmo had first been kidnapped, Emperor Tianhui had given Cloud Realm Medical Academy a deadline of days to present an explanation. This time it was the Duke of Qin making demands. Emperor Tianhui was still the sovereign of an entire nation, so he'd have scruples against offending the medical academy. But the Duke of Qin was different. Even though he represented Tianning Country, its throne didn't belong to him. His current relationship with Emperor Tianhui was strained as well, so it was very possible that he'd offend the medical academy and force Emperor Tianhui to clean up the mess.
Thinking up to here, both the Elders and Qinwang Rong grew tense. When Qinwang Rong was about to coax him, Luo Zuishan suddenly blurted out, "Your Highness Duke of Qin speaks rightly. Qin Wangfei would never escape to avoid punishent for a crime. She must have been kidnapped. The Elders should hurry and send people to search in case something happens to Qin Wangfei. The medical academy would be hard-pressed to explain things to Tianning then."
Beneath the scrutiny of multiple eyes, Luo Zuishan forced himself to finish his words. How could he have a chance to speak otherwise with the Elders present!? Still, he had to say something so the Elders could have a way to get off their stand. Things had developed until it was a problem between the medical academy and Tianning's imperial clan. Even though the medical academy was strong, the Head Elder wouldn't be pleased if they antagonized Tianning Country.
Third Elder's bet could be laid aside for now. It was more important to recover Han Yunxi when faced with a personality like Long Feiye's. Otherwise, he'd make things more serious if he did an investigation. Third Elder knitted his brows. Though he was neither willing or pleased, he still didn't want to disturb the Head Elder.
For now, he retreated and said, "Since that's the case, someone come, hurry and send people to search!" Following that, he sought to console Long Feiye. "Your Highness Duke of Qin, there will definitely be a way to save her if kidnapping was involved. There should be news within a few days, so don't be too worried."
He was certain that Han Yunxi hadn't been kidnapped, but it was better to follow along with Long Feiye for now. The medical academy's influence was wide enough to cover the world. He couldn't believe that Han Yunxi and Gu Beiyue could hide away for the rest of their lives. Once they were found, he wouldn't spare Han Yunxi no matter how long their bet was delayed. Tonight was supposed to be his chance to wash away all his previous humiliation. But in the end, he was still the one who lost face! Third Elder was making mental calculations, but he was completely ignorant about Long Feiye's true motives for appearing tonight.
Long Feiye sat back in his chair and said, "Since Qin Wangfei was kidnapped, she shouldn't be counted as tardy even if midnight passed."
Third Elder widened his eyes as he quickly recovered his senses. Fifth Elder was even more gloomy. Long Feiye had come tonight simply to act shamelessly for Han Yunxi's sake! Fifth Elder was about to explode when Third Elder held her back. Endure! Han Yunxi had already ran away. No matter how much time passed, she still wouldn't be able to save Long Tianmo. Long Feiye simply sat without speaking, looking into the distance as if waiting for someone. Since he wasn't planning to leave, Third Elder didn't mind keeping him company. Everyone else was stuck here as well, none of them knowing what would happen next.
In a nearby building, Duanmu Yao was standing by a window as she surveyed the courtyard full of people. She could spot Long Feiye at first glance. They had waited in the secret chambers for a long time before the flesh-eating rats dispersed. Long Feiye had then grabbed Duanmu Yao, escaped the Sky Pit, and left first, his speeds shockingly fast. Even Gu Qishao didn't have enough time to react. By the time he started chasing after them, it was already too late. Fortunately, she'd managed to tail Tang Li until she reached this place. She couldn't believe that this man would stand up for Han Yunxi's sake. She always thought that woman was just an excuse for him to refuse the marriage alliance from Emperor Tianhui. At most, Han Yunxi had to be a woman who could simply treat his poisons. But not only did he protect her multiple times in Tianning Country, but kept to it even outside of Tianning.
Long Feiye, have you turned serious about her?
"Hey, you're still not leaving?" Tang Li had a helpless look on his face. After dealing with Mu Linger, he now had to face Duanmu Yao. All he had to do was lock Mu Linger up until Long Feiye dealt with her, but Duanmu Yao wasn't so simple.
"It's not easy to find Jun Yixie. Moreover, the poison beast is missing. Even if you guys can save Han Yunxi, she'll lose face for senior brother all the same." After teaming up with Jun Yixie, Duanmu Yao naturally knew of the Bone Poison.
As soon as Long Feiye had left the Sky Pit, he'd assigned all of his nearby subordinates to hunt down Jun Yixie. Now that he'd added on the medical academy's men as well, it'd be hard for Jun Yixie to escape with Han Yunxi in tow under less than a day. Tang Li wasn't stupid enough to reveal all that, so he simply smiled.
"Maybe the Duke of Qin came precisely to lose face. He's willing to."