My Daughter's Crown

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She’s Gone

The week passed slowly and strange things happened during the course of the week.

The noble and royal’s children who attended the Coming of Age banquette fall ill, they all had ingested Rou Cherry leaves.

None of the nobles or royals remembers ingesting the leaves and an investigation was led by the health minister, minister Lou Yi Fang by the order of the Emperor.

During the investigation - minister Lou Yi Fang visited all the homes of both nobles and royals. During his visits, after testing and doing minor investigations on each home, he found that the Rou Cherry leaves were infused with the oil inside the lamps in each of their rooms.

Minister Lou went around asking each households servants, how this happened? No one could answer this question. All the oil is kept in one room and everyone has access to the room but barely anyone entered because they would change the oil once a week.

The way they choose oil is also random because those that are lazy would open a new jar and use that oil, most of the homes have this way of conduct which leaves them with half filled jars of oil and some empty houses.

The homes which have an orderly way of conduct and manner do it systematically. All of this, leaving minister Lou Yi Fang in confusion.

After a while, one of his subordinates came to him with a theory. “Minister Lou, young me thinks that the person who did this must have investigated this thoroughly and knew of the different ways that the servants do things in all homes.”

Listening to his subordinates theory, he agreed and reported his findings back to the Emperor, who was astonished and dumbfounded because no one, during his days as Emperor committed crimes or went against the empires laws and conducted such devious plots - what is this person’s goal by doing all of this?

Not knowing that the night when Yu Sheng visited Yue Mian in the cave she gave him a jar full of powder and instructed him to visit all the houses during the night and mix the powder and oil together.

He did so but he did not do it himself. Yu Sheng hired a group of assassins from the Naiad Empire to do it and when they completed their tasks they left the capital and returned to their homes.

It seemed as if no one bothered to put the puzzle pieces together although they had some suspicion that Yue Mian was a probable cause because her mother studied plants and used some to make her refreshments.

Ni Xing, however, thought of this possibility. She knew that her daughter was somewhat able to pull this off because of her knowledge base.

Frustrated at the fact that her daughter wasn’t coming home and is the possible cause of the recent happenings, Ni Xing left her home and went to find General Yu at the army base.

She explained to him that Yue Mian could be a possible suspect and he was astonished but after some thinking, it made sense. The two of them went to find Yu Sheng at the Yu residence.

When they arrived, Yu Sheng was practising his martial arts. Being interrupted by the frantic Ni Xing and his father, he wasn’t surprised at all.

After going back and forth arguing for a while General Ye and Ni Xing convinced Yu Sheng to speak about what was happening.

They returned to the living quarters of the Yu residence and was greeted by Yu Cháhuā

General Yu’s wife and Yu Lauyao their teenage daughter.

Inside the dining hall, General Yu, Ni Xing and Yu Cháhuā were seated waiting for Yu Sheng to return.

When they returned home, he left them and went to his room to retrieve a few items Yue Mian left in his care.

Returning to the dining hall with two silk wrapped letters in his hands, he said, place the letters on the table, sitting down on a seat beside his mother, “Father, aunty Ni Xing, YuMi left the kingdom.”

Ni Xing’s eyes were filled with disbelief. Looking down at the letters on the wooden table that Yu Sheng placed down, her breathing went chaotic.

She asked Yu Sheng if he was lying but he shook his head without speaking another word. Ni Xing stared at him deeply and when it finally registered in her brain what was happening, her eyes widened.

She looked at General Yu who had an unreadable expression on his face. Ni Xing grabbed at the letters and opened the first one, it was addressed to Emperor An. She threw it to the side after reading the first line. Opening the second letter almost ripping it apart, her mouth trembled and her eyes turned red.

“To mama, by now I have already left the Empire.

I am a troublesome daughter and I your daughter know this well.

I always tried behaving but it has become unbearable, I don’t like hiding my true self.

Mama, do you remember the day you told me about how you ran away and met my father? That is the day I realised that my calling was not in the Xiěyè Empire nor in the Jīlěian Empire.

I want to experience the world and travel, I don’t want to be tied up in one place and wait for my fate to unfold.

I want an adventure and if die while experiencing the world then so be it, but mama please don’t be angry or sad.

I love you and appreciate everything you did for me, but I can’t stay with you and continue to bring you so many troubles.

I know that leaving you now is causing a problem, but this will hopefully be the last problem that I cause.

I will return when I have had enough of the adventures that lay before me.

Mama, I’ll send you letters whenever I can, I promise and please do not worry, I am a responsible person and know how to take care of myself.

Please tell grandpapa and grandmama that I love them and I am sorry.”

Ni Xing’s hands were shaking while holding the sheet of paper, gripping on it tightly almost ripping it into two pieces. Her eyes darted from the sheet of paper to General Yu, she wanted to say something but lost her words.

Her eyes rolled back into her head and closed. Her hands dropped onto her lap with the sheet of paper in it and her body fell back into the chair.

General Yu who was sitting beside her quickly grabbed hold of her before her body fell to the side - she fainted.

General Yu and Yu Sheng after calming down from the shock of seeing someone, especially Ni Xing who is a strong woman, faint in front of them.

They moved Ni Xing to a spare room in the main house, then General Yu started questioning Yu Sheng.

After questioning and berating Yu Sheng…[To Be Continued]

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