Chapter 142 Where did the white arsenic come from?
What old madam asked was something everyone present
wanted to know.
Gu Xuan was locked up in the woodshed and Gu Xiren was punished at the ancestral hall. There were people keeping watch on them. They simply didn’t have the personal freedom. It was impossible to put white arsenic in Fang shi’s food unless they have a spy inside of Red Cloud Yard to help them.
Yingluo also obviously thought about this. She sobbed while answering, “After my miss went back yesterday, she only drank a bowl of medicine and half a bowl of lotus seed soup. Aside from these, she hasn’t eaten anything…The medicine and lotus seed soup had been made by Shixiang. After, she brought it over, I fed miss…I have asked Shixiang. She didn’t leave when she was making the medicine and soup. Also, no one had entered the small kitchen…I also don’t know where this white arsenic came from…”
Gu Xihe’s mind turned quickly. When he listened till here, he blurted, “The white arsenic wouldn’t have grown feet and walked into eldest sister-in-law’s belly. From what you said, if the person who put the poison isn’t you, then, it is Shixiang!”
“Fourth young master, we are innocent!” Yingluo kept kowtowing. “I’ve followed my miss from since I was young. How could I have this kind of thoughts…? After I harmed my miss, what benefits will I get…?”
The status of a dowry maid was usually higher than ordinary maids. Their food and clothing wouldn’t be much worse than their master’s. Yingluo was also Fang shi’s confidante. As long as Fang shi had a good life, she (Y) would be able to live well. From the usual reasoning, she truly had no motive to harm Fang shi.
Gu Xihe scratched his head somewhat embarrassed and said, “Then, it must be Shixiang! Bring her here and beat her to see whether she would admit or not!”
“Don’t speak more nonsense!” Old madam immediately reprimanded him. “Shixiang had followed your eldest big brother ever since she was young. She also wouldn’t have such thoughts!”
“Then…,” Gu Xihe was at his wit’s end and closed his mouth.
Shu Huan asked, “Can you be sure that there is no poison inside the medicine and the lotus seed soup?”
“I don’t know if there is any in the medicine,” Yingluo said as she shook her head. “But there was a lot of the lotus seed soup left. It would be a waste if it was thrown away. We have split it and eaten it. No one else was poisoned.”
“What about the dregs of the medicine?”
“I already let doctor Ji have a look. There was no problem with it.”
At this time, Shu Huan’s mind turned very fast. She asked, “Were eldest young mistress’s cutlery only used by her?”
Yingluo went blank and said, “Yes! Second young mistress is saying…”
“I don’t know,” Shu Huan was only guessing. She shook her head and said, “It’s useless if we go check it now, right? It must’ve been cleaned already.”
“No!” Yingluo suddenly said, “The cutlery that eldest young mistress usually used came in a set…”
That was to say that if someone wanted to put poison on the cutlery, that person couldn’t be certain which one would be used. To ensure that everything would go well, that person must poison all the cutlery…
Old madam’s eyes revealed ruthlessness and said, “Investigate!”
“Ay!” Yingluo wiped her tears, stood up from the ground and wanted to rush out.
“Wait…,” Gu Xiran who had been silent this whole time suddenly opened his mouth. “The white arsenic wouldn’t be placed on the cutlery. It’s useless to check.”
Shu Huan was a bit surprised. Old madam also looked at him with confusion.
Gu Xiran didn’t answer but instead asked, placing poison on the cutlery could only have been done by Red Cloud Yard’s maids. However, how likely does old madam think that it was a maid who placed the poison?”
At this time, old madam had recovered a bit from the blow of her grandson being murdered. She could calmly think about this matter. After a short while, she shook her head and said slowly, “Eldest had been an amiable person and rarely offended people. He even treated the servants well. Who would have the mind to harm him? Besides, he had already died. Even if someone hated him, it was unlikely for him/her to go so far as to even not let his posthumous child off the hook. This was also probably done by little third.”
Gu Xiran obviously knew that the mastermind must be Gu Xuan, but he didn’t reveal it at this moment. He said, “Since you said that. Little third hasn’t set a foot in Red Cloud Yard these few days. Even if it was little Xuan, she didn’t have a reason to go to the small kitchen there. Hence, this grandson thinks that the both of them didn’t have the opportunity to place poison on the cutlery. Then, there couldn’t be any poison on those utensils.
Shu Huan sighed in secret. She, a non-professional, could truly not be compared to sir lawyer who came in contact with such matters all the time! However, with this, questions arose again. Since, the food that Fang shi had eaten didn’t have poison, then, how did the white arsenic go into her stomach?
Old madam was obviously also thinking about this. After being silent for a while, she asked Yingluo, “Think carefully. Did she really not eat anything else?”
Yingluo shook her head and sobbed, “Answering old madam, she didn’t eat anything else.”
A light flashed in Shu Huan’s head. She suddenly said, “Tea!”
After a maid that served behind old madam heard this, she thought that Shu Huan wanted tea. She hurriedly brought tea over.
“I don’t mean this.” Shu Huan took over the tea and put it on the small table. She remembered that yesterday, after Fang shi had vomited, she used tea to rinse her mouth. She quickly asked Yingluo, “Before being poisoned, did she drink tea?”
This time, Yingluo nodded and said, “She drank. She drank the usual gyokuro tea that steeped for a long time. The tea leaves…”
Old madam interrupted her and said, “Bring it over!”
The remaining tea leaves of Red Cloud Yard had immediately been brought over. They let Ji Danqing check it, but the answer was still disappointing.
There was no problem with the tea!
Gu Xihe became a bit fretful, “Wouldn’t everything be clear if we bring third big brother over and ask him?!”
For the first time, Gu Yun took over from him and said, “When the incident happened at Red Cloud Yard, he was still kneeling at the ancestral hall. If you don’t investigate well and go interrogate him, with only the sentence ‘unable to do two things at the same’, you wouldn’t be able to refute that.”
“This…” Gu Xihe was stumped for words, but he was unwilling to admit defeat and muttered, “Anyway, he had admitted with his own mouth that he had harmed eldest big brother and left no room for a leeway. If this was also done by him, he would feel so proud. Why wouldn’t he not admit to it?”
After listening to him, old madam felt that it was reasonable. She quickly let someone bring Gu Xiren over.
After they had waited for a long time and when that staggering white figure stepped over the threshold, everyone present sucked in their breathes.
Was this still the clean, indifferent and unearthly elegant Gu Xiren?
The long body wasn’t as proud as it used to be. Instead, he even needed people to support him while walking. The white clothes on his body were also stained with mottled blood stains and were very dirty.
His hair was loose. His lips were cracked. His face was so pale that it was almost transparent. Only those eyes still burned with an unyielding light and stubbornness. When he entered the hall, he swept over everyone present with hatred.
This was not Gu Xiren. This was a beast that had been surrounded by desperation!
Shu Huan knew a bit more than the others. She knew that Gu Xiren wasn’t as vicious as everyone had thought and she could imagine the psychological suffering and grievances that he felt. Hence, she couldn’t bear to look at his state after he had received the punishment. She turned her head and happened to see old madam reveal a bit of heartache and sad tenderness. However, it was fleeting. In the next moment, this old madam was expressionless and used an abnormally calm voice to ask, “Little third, was it you who poisoned your eldest sister-in-law?”
Gu Xiren instinctively went blank. His gaze revealed some puzzlement and asked, “Eldest sister-in-law?”
“Right!” Old madam leaned on Gu Xihe and tried to straighten her old body. She let herself sit straighter and stared at him as she said word for word, “You put white arsenic in her food, caused her to have a miscarriage and indirectly killed your eldest big brother’s offspring!”
Hearing this, Yingluo could no longer suppress the hatred for Gu Xiren. She completely disregarded the rules and etiquette. She rushed over while crying, grabbed his clothes and asked, “Why?! Why?! There are no grudges and hatred between you and my miss. It was already enough that you caused eldest young master’s death. Why do you not even let her, a weak woman off the hook? You even have to poison her to harm the child in her belly and drove…drove her crazy…”
Yingluo’s sudden raise of difficult questions caused Gu Xiren to be caught off guard and he stumbled backwards. However, his body was weak. He lost balance and fell on the ground. He was in a very sorry state.
When the others saw this situation, they hurriedly stopped Yingluo. After that, some maids came forward and forcibly dragged Yingluo out.