The Plough – Chapter 61

You’ve woken up with amnesia after a night's sleep?
Knowing that she had exposed a crack in her story, He Youan immediately stopped talking and wouldn’t say another word.

Yue Dingtang was not in a hurry, he sat opposite He Youan, in the seat that Mr Cheng had just been sitting in.

He sat with his legs crossed and hands cupped together, completely calm and unfettered, upholding his elegant demeanour.

From head to toe, one could only use the words ‘university professor’ to describe him, and from just one glance, one could tell that he was a university professor who had studied abroad. Because scholars who were born and bred locally were usually wearing a Changpao. They were as separate as the Jing and Wei rivers1泾渭分明 jīng wèi fēnmíng = entirely different, without a slither of doubt.

He Youan had seen many handsome men.

Those who had played the male lead opposite her, for example, Wei Hongxuan, who was the cream of the crop in terms of extraordinarily handsome men. Otherwise, his wife, Su Tao, would not have been so hostile towards all other women, in fear that Wei Hongxuan had an affair with any of them.

Even if this was the case, whether it was Yue Dingtang, or Ling Shu, they could still be considered exceptional in these parts.
The handsomeness of Ling Shu versus Yue Dingtang was entirely different.

The difference was that the latter had not one hair out of place, whilst Ling Shu was rather casual and carefree, wanton and unrestrained. His peach blossom eyes could inadvertently attract a whole bunch of peach blossoms2桃花 táohuā peach blossom; (fig.) love affair, in this case basically the ladies – left it as peach blossoms because author is trying to do the peach blossom eyes + peach blossoms thing in this sentence, deliberate repetition.. So it did not matter whether he was wearing a Changpao or a duffle coat, they were still completely different styles.

But, He Youan was not in the mood to think about this.

She was feeling incredibly anxious and she had no way of interacting with Yue Dingtang like she usually would – being able to hold her own in a conversation with him.

“Mr Yue, I’m a little tired, I’m afraid I’m unable to entertain any longer, perhaps you could come back tomorrow.”

” “Your maid, Miss Qian, it seems in reality, her relationship with you wasn’t actually that good.”

Yue Dingtang spoke very slowly and calmly, whilst adjusting his position in the chair, getting into a more comfortable position.

“I sent someone to investigate. Miss Qian was not so innocent. During her time as your maid, she had stolen from you several times. You also wanted to fire her, but in the end, you didn’t. So you are not without suspicion in regards to her death.”

“Ling Shu has a great impression of you, and doesn’t suspect you at all. Whatever you say, he believes, so he continues to investigate the case using the information that you provided, however, I was not the same.”

“I believed that in this case, you acted too innocently, too perfectly, making it seem so fake. Whilst Ling Shu was helping you to find the culprit, I was investigating from another angle, trying to find the truth.”

“Changing positions, perhaps there is merit to becoming a target of death threats. But you, Miss He, excuse my frankness, those people who hate you, could kill you directly, and those who cannot kill you, could only ever carry out some insignificant threats, and have no way to actually get to you and repeatedly cause you trouble.”

“Since these two possibilities do not exist, then there is only one reason that remains, all of those death threat letters were all fabricated by you.”

He Youan listened to him quietly without interrupting.

Until Yue Dingtang stopped talking, she finally replied: “I thought that Mr Yue had come to visit me to ask about my injuries, I would never have believed it’s actually to condemn me. I’d like to ask Mr Yue, if I am behind everything, why would I hurt myself? I barely escaped with my life today, and now I have injured my head and my shoulder. You can ask any doctor to come in order to prove the severity of my injuries, so why are you accusing me so maliciously?”

Yue Dingtang: “This is something that you must ask yourself. It’s like what I just said, you and Miss Qian were clearly at odds, but after she died, you clearly concealed this from us, what was the meaning of that? I have every right to suspect that you did all of this to kill Miss Qian.”

He Youan frowned: “According to what you have said, since Miss Qian is already dead, why should I injure myself now?”

Yue Dingtang: “Perhaps you wanted to completely get rid of all suspicion, since the incident was regarding Miss Qian, it was a little obvious, the trick of injuring oneself to fool the enemy should always have a beginning and an end, one should also carry things to their end.”

He Youan sighed.

It seemed that she was feeling a little dizzy, so she closed her eyes to rest for a moment before opening them once more.

“Mr Yue, I see you as someone who is calm and rational, and shouldn’t be someone who is so eager to dish out blame. Miss Qian was indeed someone who was not innocent, and I had also wanted to fire her, but she begged for forgiveness. I pitied her family background, and her difficult childhood, so in the end, I didn’t have the heart to send her away. Plus, Mr Shen also put in a good word for her.”
Yue Dingtang couldn’t help frowning: “Mr Shen? Shen Shiqi?”

He Youan: “That’s right.”

A person like Shen Shiqi, why would he plead for a maid?

Not to mention the fact that this maid was not very attractive and had nothing special to offer.

If He Youan hadn’t told him that, Yue Dingtang would never have thought of such a backstory.

“Why would Shen Shiqi plead for your maid?”

“Because Miss Qian was sent by Shen Shiqi to watch me.”

He Youan’s expression was unperturbed, as calm as before, as if she did not realise that she had revealed something quite shocking.

Even Yue Dingtang couldn’t help looking astonished.

He Youan laughed.

“Why are you, Mr Yue, so surprised? Haven’t I always been Shen Shiqi’s exclusive property? Isn’t that a known fact?”

Yue Dingtang: “Well, what about Chen Wendong?”

He Youan was silent for a short while.

“I can tell you some of what I know.”

Yue Dingtang: “Let’s hear it.”

“My relationship with Mr Shen was obvious to everyone. But Mr Shen was also incredibly controlling, not only did he want me, he also did not allow me to go anywhere out of his reach. So regarding Miss Qian and Chen Wendong, on the surface, one was my maid, and the other was my driver, but in reality, the two of them were sent by Shen Shiqi to watch me closely.”

“In my line of work, I am obliged to come into contact with a lot of people. In the beginning, I just thought that it was because Mr Shen did not trust me, but afterwards, I discovered that there were many things that he could not do personally and he asked me to do it in his place. For example, giving me a document and asking me to pass it to someone else, because my status was enough to conceal what he was doing and didn’t attract any suspicion from others. And Chen Wendong and Miss Qian were there to make sure I didn’t put a foot out of place.”

Yue Dingtang: “What document? Isn’t Shen Shiqi just a businessman?”

He Youan said quietly: “I don’t know and I didn’t ask. I think you know as well as I do that the less one knows, the safer it is.”

Yue Dingtang: “Then why are you suddenly telling me this?”

He Youan: “Because Chen Wendong is missing?”

Yue Dingtang: “Since when?”

He Youan: “He was still there during the day, but after the incident happened on set, he disappeared.”

Yue Dingtang: “What is odd about it?”

He Youan: “To be honest, I did write that note. Back then, I had already found Chen Wendong to be strange, he was not only watching me but he also wanted to kill me. But at that time, I didn’t have any proof, I could only write that anonymous slip of paper to remind you both to be careful. Who knew that, following that, the incident on set would happen. At the time, Mr Cheng had come to see me, and he was standing exactly underneath that collapsing beam, he had just left when the beam collapsed and he escaped with sheer luck, whilst I and another person were injured. So they suspect that Chen Wendong is the culprit behind the threatening letters. On the surface, it seems like he is trying to target me but his real target is Mr Cheng.”

Yue Dingtang: “I don’t understand. Mr Cheng is just a businessman, even if he has connections and knows a lot of people, but what could he have done to make Chen Wendong go through all this trouble? If Chen Wendong wanted to kill him, whilst you two were in his car, he could just shoot you both in the backseat and be done with it.”

He Youan: “This is not something you should ask me. I only know that Chen Wendong’s plan has failed, and he immediately fled, disappearing without a trace. Mr Cheng has ordered everyone to look for his whereabouts, I imagine that if he is found, we will have an answer.”

“That’s not right.”

Yue Dingtang did not stop thinking about it just because of what she said.

“When you received the first death threat letter, you hadn’t even met Mr Cheng yet. So the theory of Chen Wendong using you to kill Mr Cheng is contradictory.”

“There’s no contradiction at all. In the beginning, Chen Wendong’s target was Mr Shen, and then he changed to Mr Cheng. If he wanted to kill Shen Shiqi and Cheng Gong, it would be relatively easy, but if he wanted to get away with it without suspicion then it is much harder, and he’d need to find a roundabout way to do it. As you said, I am just an actress, if I die, I die, there is no need for anyone to go to such lengths.”

He Youan shook her head, as if she was berating the dark side of humanity.

“Mr Yue, I know that you and Mr Ling have done a lot for this case, and I truly feel somewhat guilty, and I should give you both a reward for your efforts. When I leave the hospital, I will definitely prepare something substantial to offer to both of you. Regarding this matter, since Mr Cheng has become aware of it, Chen Wendong will not do anything to me again, therefore, I would like to ask you both to stop the investigation.”

Yue Dingtang: “Everything that you’ve told me, is what you’ve heard from Mr Cheng?”

He Youan: “Yes, after Mr Cheng found out that I was being plagued by those threatening letters, he asked someone to investigate, and finally found out that it was Chen Wendong. And then Chen Wendong was like a cornered dog that jumped over the wall3狗急跳墙 gǒu jí tiào qiáng = to be driven to a desperate action, organising the incident on set. Prior to that, he had even tried to ambush Mr. Cheng’s car in the street, but fortunately Mr. Cheng was astute and nothing bad happened.”

Yue Dingtang was deep in thought.

“It seems that Mr Cheng treats you very well. At the beginning, when we saw you with him, Ling Shu had even spent some time worrying about you.”

He Youan forced out a smile: “Could someone like me have any true freedom of choice? I already consider myself very lucky to be able to meet someone like Mr Cheng. Mr Ling also treats me very well, I know that. There are many people who like me for my looks and my fame. But Mr Ling has always treated me like a true friend, an equal, he has also been so thoughtful of me. Talking with him is like bathing in a spring breeze4如沐春风 rú mù chūn fēng = easy to get along with, comfortable etc, it’s just a shame that I’m a lowly actress who is undeserving of such a good friend. Please could you apologise to him in my place and also tell him that from now on, he no longer needs to worry about this matter.”

Yue Dingtang said coldly: “If he heard what you just said, he’d definitely want to come and help you find the culprit, he would never leave you like this.”

He Youan sighed: “Well then don’t say anything then, just let him know that I no longer want to investigate any further and leave it at that.”

……

When Yue Dingtang returned to Ling Shu’s hospital room, the latter was still sleeping soundly.

The light was still on, shining brightly. It was a little hard on the eyes, but he had his quilt covering over his eyes and half his head buried underneath, so naturally he could sleep very soundly.

Yue Dingtang walked over there and pulled out Ling Shu’s hand that was covered by the quilt and put it on the bed, in case he accidentally pulled out the IV needle in his sleep.

He wasn’t sure what Ling Shu was dreaming about but he was muttering something from the corner of his mouth, completely innocent without any link to reality.

His forehead was still a little hot, but not as much as previously, it seemed that he should be able to get out of hospital in the next few days.

The most important thing was that he didn’t treat himself in this way again.

Yue Dingtang thought that, with Ling Shu’s personality, he’d probably be up and jumping about by tomorrow, and it would be impossible to stop him going to see He Youan to find out the truth. In order to avoid him bumping into Mr Cheng and drumming up some more trouble, Yue Dingtang decided to stay over at the hospital to watch over him.
He occasionally had the thought that he’d inadvertently picked up an orphaned son out of nowhere, and it was that son was the particularly worrying kind.

It was just that his “son” was already a full grown man, who was full of energy but with poor health, a complete contradiction in this one person.

With these helpless thoughts in his head, Yue Dingtang leaned against the chair and fell into an uncomfortable sleep.

After a night of grotesque dreams, he opened his eyes again when the light started streaming through the gap between the curtains.

Yue Dingtang discovered that he was lying on the bed, and he even had the quilt over him.

His western suit was still on him – neat and tidy, the only thing missing was the shoes on his feet and Ling Shu who had originally been lying there.

Ling Shu was missing.

Yue Dingtang rubbed his forehead, trying to wake himself up properly.

It was at this moment that the door opened and Ling Shu swaggered in.

He had a coat on but he was still wearing hospital garments underneath.

“Oh, Lao Yue, you’re up?”

He even greeted him, as if Yue Dingtang was the patient.

Yue Dingtang: “…… Where have you been?”

“To buy breakfast!” Ling Shu signalled to the soy milk and fried dough stick in his hands, “I was just thinking about you guarding me the entire night, you’d probably be hungry and when you woke up you’d want to have breakfast.”

Yue Dingtang: “I really need to thank you. You do remember how you got sick right?”

Ling Shu was baffled: “I had a fever, what is it, you’ve woken up with amnesia after a night’s sleep?”

Yue Dingtang took a deep breath, he realised that the one surnamed Ling had always had the innate talent of making someone so angry that they’d want to die.”

“If you remember then you should also know that when you are ill, you shouldn’t go out into the cold, it will aggravate your illness.”

“That you for Yue Sir’s concern, but I’m all better. Did you know,” Ling Shu leaned in mysteriously, “something huge has happened!”

Yue Dingtang replied: “Chen Wendong has fled after trying to kill her, did He Youan tell you that?”

Ling Shu was stunned: “Chen Wendong is missing? What did He Youan say? I still haven’t seen her, I didn’t have a gift so I didn’t feel right going over there, I will go see her later.”

Yue Dingtang: ……… He shouldn’t have spoken so quickly.

“So what’s the big thing that has happened then?”

Ling Shu: “Shen Shiqi is dead!”

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2 thoughts on “The Plough – Chapter 61”

  1. Thank tou for this update. I am just loving Ling Shu and Yue Dingtan’s interaction. Yue Dingtan is so sweet and I Hope Ling Shu figures that out .

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