Author: Chai Jidan
Translator: chiangyushien, Renkun27
Please welcome our new proofreader, Zeraphiel25! (((o(*ﾟ▽ﾟ*)o)))
Eunuch Tai An heard the Third Prince’s directives. He was very surprised in his heart. In this small courtyard, no one had ever been disciplined before. If someone were to offend the Third Prince, then that someone would lose their life immediately. There was no sense of getting a beating while alive.
This so-called punishment by flogging — the equipment that was used to flog the servants within the courtyard was readily available to be picked out in the storehouse. Each stick was constructed from high-density solid wood. Its handle was similar to a saber’s hilt. On top of that, the exterior of the solid wood was coated with a layer of silvery lacquer. It shone brightly in the air and was quite dazzling.
Mu Xueshi was unable to take his eyes off as he gazed at the punishment chair outside, and at the servant who had a calm face as he knelt beside the chair. Mu Xueshi felt that he was even more nervous than that servant. He could not help but to swallow hard. His nerves were stretched to the limit.
The Third Prince, however, could not be as relaxed as Mu Xueshi. A servant had just reported that Ning Yue escaped. There was still a person who could escape from this heavily-guarded Courtyard of Exuding Harmony. This absolutely could not be accomplished because that person was bound by a rope completely so he could not budge, unless someone secretly helped him. Thinking of this, a figure flashed through the Third Prince’s mind, then went into a boundless and indistinct dark state.
This servant was obviously not Ning Yue. In terms of his appearance and what he wore, there was a very big difference between him and Ning Yue. If Mu Xueshi would face him to look, he would easily figure out that person’s identity.
The Third Prince had long been feeling Mu Xueshi out. He just deliberately emphasized the pronunciation of the two words ‘Ning Yue.’ Not only did he want to see Mu Xueshi’s reaction, but he also wanted to know more whether Mu Xueshi could speak out our not.
Ning Yue was obviously not the Third Prince’s servant. There was that master who would call out the servant’s name. Moreover, all of the servants in the palace used a standardized appellation registered before their names, while removing their surnames, forming completely new names. With regard to this matter, each and every person in the world knew; however, Mu Xueshi did not make a fuss about it. He only continued frowning, with a deeply-worried-and-sick-at-heart look.
At the moment, the Third Prince tried to find a replacement, apparently to feel Mu Xueshi out. If he had remained sane, he would have heaved a big sigh of relief, and replaced it with an attitude that did not concern him; If he had been confused, he would have bluntly said to the Third Prince that this person was not Ning Yue.
The servant’s mouth was stuffed with a piece of soft Floating Heart stalk. While the prisoner was being beaten, he would be force to bite into it. His teeth would sink deeply into the soft Floating Heart stalk making it difficult to pull out. This would block the airflow, and stop the sound from going out
He obediently sat on the punishment chair. The servant’s expression had been quite calm, and he even looked like he felt lucky. He knew Eunuch Tai An chose him as a substitute in order to win the Third Prince happiness. If one would get all the honors after a beating, he would rather be chosen by himself. On the other hand, those upright servants standing beside him, each and every one of them had envy in their eyes.
Ruthless, suppressive, perverted… These were the words that Mu Xueshi could think of in his mind to describe the Third Prince. He felt sorrowful for those servants. He also felt sorrowful for this dynasty. If the Third Prince would become the emperor in the future, how far worse would the people be oppressed? Thinking that those who appeared in the history books did not run out of the scene, Mu Xueshi, from head to toe, broke out in cold sweat.
“Third Highness, this worthless commoner has something to say, I don’t know if it would be improper to say this?” Mu Xueshi put forth his trembling hands toward the Third Prince and cupped his fist in his other hand before his chest, wanting to ask something.
“Hm?” The Third Prince had an indifferent look on his face as he looked at Mu Xueshi.
Somehow, Mu Xueshi made contact with the Third Prince’s eyes. There was an unspeakable sense of panic. His heart beat fast, his tongue was tied in a knot, and the little courage that he had built up came tumbling down.
“This worhtless commoner doesn’t have anything to say anymore… Haha…” Mu Xueshi laughed awkwardly a few times, concealing the uneasy look on his handsome face.
The Third Prince cast a sidelong glance. His face slowly became sombre. He made a gesture toward the window and the penalty began immediately. He then coldly swept his eyes over Mu Xueshi, with a commanding tone, he said: “Speak!”