Chapter 56 – Dispelling suspicion
“You opened it?” Gu Yue Bo frowned deeply.
“That’s right, at this point, I shall not hide it any further!” Fang Yuan acted as if he was risking everything, speaking urgently, “I bought six pieces of purple gold rock at the gambling den, but because I did not have enough primeval essence, I only opened five on the spot. The last one, I brought back to the hostel and after opening it, I found a Liquor worm inside. I was overjoyed as I had searched up information on it before, and knew that the Liquor worm is a rare Gu worm that could supplement my lack of talent, thus I refined it on the spot.”
“Wait, you said that you bought six gambling rocks and opened a mudskin toad as well as another Liquor worm?” The clan elders upon hearing this, could not help but ask in an unbelievable tone.
“So what?” Fang Yuan answered as a matter of fact, then pointed at the female Gu Master, shouting, “She can be my witness!”
Everyone on the scene were momentarily stunned before turning to look at the female Gu Master.
The female Gu Master felt the pressure from all the gaze and did not dare to lie, so she honestly said, “It is indeed true, Fang Yuan bought six rocks and opened the mudskin toad on the fifth. He brought the sixth piece away, but I do not know what he opened inside.”
“Buying six purple gold rocks and getting two Gu worms consecutively, isn’t this luck way too good?” The clan elders mumbled.
“What’s so hard to understand? It’s luck, who knows, heh, back in the days when I gambled rocks I also…”
“Wait, Gu worms are hard to refine, why did it sound like Fang Yuan easily refined it?” Some of the family elders asked suspiciously.
“You’re muddled. Don’t you know that when a Gu is extracted from a fossil, they’re extremely weak, tittering on the brink of death? Even refining then from a lower Rank is possible. What’s so peculiar about him refining the Liquor worm?” Someone immediately answered.
Fang Yuan continued, “I refined the Liquor worm and went to the stores on the second day, I indeed went to a wine shop in the afternoon and bought a cup of monkey wine. At night, I went again and witnessed a scamming scene, Jia Jin Sheng was selling a smelly fart fat worm as a Black Boar Gu to someone in my clan. Next, Sir Jia Fu appeared and resolved the dispute.”
“I went to the wine shop again, but I did not expect to see Jia Jin Sheng drinking wine in a poor mood. I had just obtained the Liquor worm and was extremely happy, so I asked him how many primeval stones I could sell it for. Who knew that Jia Jin Sheng upon hearing my Liquor worm, wanted to forcefully buy it. I obviously rejected him, I had no intentions to sell it, only wanting to know its value. Even if I wanted to sell it, that would have to be after I am Rank two, thus I left on the spot.”
Fang Yuan’s words had brought out the matter of Jia Jin Sheng and Jia Fu’s conflict, causing the clan elders to see Jia Fu in a different light.
Under these pressuring gazes, Jia Fu coughed and asked Fang Yuan with shining eyes, “Then did my brother chase after you?”
Fang Yuan nodded, half lying, “He not only chased me, but also added an extra fifty primeval stones. But I did not want to sell it, so he was furious, claiming that the Gu Yue clan was no big deal, asking me to watch out. After saying that, he walked away. I never saw him again.”
Jia Fu nodded internally. With his understanding of Jia Jin Sheng, he definitely would have chased after Fang Yuan and gave threats as that was his style.
If Fang Yuan said he did not chase after him, that would be a lie.
But since Fang Yuan said so, this led Jia Fu to a predicament. His investigations led up only to this clue. Did Jia Jin Sheng really not search for Fang Yuan after that? Maybe he found Fang Yuan again afterwards, and as the two could not agree on the matter, he was killed by Fang Yuan —— This is entirely possible.
‘Speak, was Jia Jin Sheng killed by you!” Thinking of this, Jia Fu interrogated fiercely, attempting to pressurize Fang Yuan with his aura.
Fang Yuan denied once again, claiming that he did not see Jia Jin Sheng anymore.
Jia Fu had no other evidence, and while one side questioned intensely, the other denied. At this point, it had become a stalemate.
As Gu Yue Bo listened to their conversation, he turned displeased. That Jia Jin Sheng actually dared to threaten the Gu Yue clan on Qing Mao mountain, this was not giving the Gu Yue clan any respect! Now this Jia Fu dared to interrogate a Gu Yue clan member so intensely in front of all the Gu Yue clan higher-ups. Nevermind if he had evidence, but now that he has no evidence or proof, if this matter spread out, what would happen to the Gu Yue clan’s honour?
“Brother Jia, it’s not that I want to speak out of turn.” The clan leader interrupted his interrogation and continued, “ Jia Jin Sheng has gone missing for so many days, hope is bleak. The culprit who caused this crime definitely left behind some traces. Did brother find anything yet?”
Jia Fu stared fiercely at Fang Yuan before raising his head and sighed, “I understand brother’s words! If there were any traces, I would not have come here to find the culprit. That criminal is obviously experienced with vile methods and meticulous handling. To speak the truth, all the clues are at a dead end, and on the day we left, there was a huge rain that could have washed away all the possible blood traces.”
Gu Yue Bo smiled faintly. “Brother Jia, I heard that your Jia family has a tracing Gu worm called the Underworld Path Butterfly. It can emit soul fragrance and be implanted on Gu worms. The scent is colourless and odourless, and never fades. Your Jia family member’s Gu worms all have this scent. As long as you use the Underworld Path Butterfly, following the fragrance, you’ll be able to find the Gu worms and thus your brother.”
Jia Fu solemnly said, “I used the Underworld Path Butterfly long ago, but there was no effect. I’m sure you’ve heard that once the Gu worm dies, the fragrance dissipates. Evidently the murderer killed all of the Gu worms in my brother’s possession.
Gu Yue Bo’s words turned, “That’s strange. The murderer harmed your brother, but he did not go for the Gu worms, or for extortion to get primeval stones. The murderer killed this tiny Rank one Gu Master, what was the motive?”
Indeed, what was the motive?
Regardless of whether Jia Jin Sheng was dead, there had to be a motive, right?
If not for Gu worms nor primeval stones, then was it for love?
But if it was a crime of passion, it had to be a long term process, and Jia Fu would not have come to the Gu Yue clan. The caravan members and clansmen would fall under greater suspicion as they have a long relationship with him.
At once, the hall fell into silence.
Fang Yuan followed everyone’s gazes, and suddenly said to Jia Fu, “Maybe Jia Jin Sheng was killed by you. I heard before that your family is splitting assets, now that one brother is dead, wouldn’t you get more inheritance?”
“Baseless accusation, do not slander Sir Jia Fu.”
Immediately the family elders erupted.
Fang Yuan kept quiet immediately, his gaze shining obscurely, but his objective had been reached.
His earlier words were like a pebble that was thrown into the elders’ sea of thoughts, causing waves of ripples.
The clan elders followed this train of thought, and started to think, “Jia Fu cannot kill Jia Jin Sheng, this causes more harm to him than reward. Wait, even if he won’t do it, that does not mean others won’t……”
“The Jia family’s internal dispute!” A certain elder had a flash of inspiration and lightly muttered.
His volume was not high, but in the silent hall it could be heard clearly.
At once, the elders’ gaze shone.
“Finally, they have thought of this.” Fang Yuan’s mouth twitched, his eyelids drooping, hiding away his cold gaze.
The Jia family’s clan leader wants to split the assets and impart the role of clan leader, and because of this his children underwent intense competition, especially Jia Fu and Jia Gui, both being Rank four Gu Masters and having their own supporters.
In these few years, the Jia family situation is somewhat known by many of the mountain villages.
Jia Jin Sheng’s misfortune was too strange. Currently there was no evidence showing that Fang Yuan was the killer. It was obvious that the motivation for murder was not enough just based on the theory of killing just because of a Liquor worm. At the same time, the murderer’s actions and methods would not be so meticulous and secretive.
But if Jia Gui was the one acting in the shadows, then it could be explained.
Everyone present was a higher-up, and as someone in a position of power, there had to be something capable about them. At least for political schemes, they had great intuition and perception.
The Jia family dispute, this gave everyone’s imaginations a pair of wings.
The Jia family clan leader had arranged Jia Jin Sheng to join the caravan. One reason was to test Jia Fu’s nature, to see if he was a good brother, and only suppressed but not bully his brother.
Now that Jia Jin Sheng was in trouble, Jia Fu would be implicated, and who is the true winner?
Obviously Jia Fu’s greatest competitor — Jia Gui!
The criminal’s actions were so fluid, causing all clues to come to a dead end, this showed how experienced the criminal was. How could this be done by a fifteen year old like Fang Yuan?
All the answers were revealed at once!
The discussion hall was still silent, but the elders exchanged gazes full of meaning.
“To make someone believe in something wholeheartedly, it is not through convincing, but directing.” Fang Yuan’s keen observation allowed him to see these glances, and he laughed coldly in his heart, but his face still showed an expression of indignance and stubbornness.
Jia Fu’s face was so dark and gloomy it could drip water.
The matter of the Jia family internal dispute caused him to think of Jia Gui.
At that moment, his soul shook!
Who else had a greater motivation than Jia Gui?
“I understand now, I understand everything.” The academy elder stood behind Fang Yuan, looking at him. His eyes shone, “Fang Yuan is both lucky and unfortunate, meeting Jia Jin Sheng at the last moment. With his age of just starting to attend school, how can he get rid of all the evidence? If he had such scheming abilities, how can he show this expression of indomitability. He denied it earlier just to hide the existence of the Liquor worm.”
At this point, everyone had dispelled their suspicious towards Fang Yuan!
“Getting rid of the suspicions on me is just the first step, what happens next is crucial.” Fang Yuan was in grasp of the situation, and at this point, everything was going according to plan. He sighed internally and looked at Jia Fu.
Jia Fu looked at him too, the unfriendliness in his eyes growing obviously more intense.