Twenty years’ banishment for three thousand miles, once implemented, would mean that Jia Yuanling’s life was doomed with no prospect.
But if Jia Yuanling had framed Ling Zhang successfully, Ling Zhang would be the one doomed.
Therefore, everyone present didn’t think that Ling Zhang was cruel. Instead, they were surprised by the sudden change of Ling Zhang.
“Childe Ling!” Suddenly there was a woman’s voice. A noble woman followed by a group of servants walked out from the corner. “Since Yuanling has made a mistake, he should take the consequences, even the banishment. As his mother, I will never screen him. However...”
“Please allow me to stop the farce for the present. Domestic shame shouldn’t be made public. All guests please move to the living room for a while. As our Jia family have troubled you so much today, our Master will definitely make apologies in person after dealing with today’s farce.”
This woman was Jia Yin’s wife and Jia Yuanling’s mother, Fang shi. When Fang arrived, the servants of Jia family seemed to have finally found someone they could fall back on. The fainted Jia Yin was quickly taken away to the doctor. An old maid took a cloth to cover the body of the dancing girl casually, and four or five strong men tied the four unconscious young Childes toughly, including Jia Yuanling.
Fang was quick in action, but Ling Zhang must make sure that Jia Yuanling was convicted today!
“Mrs. Jia is really awesome, and that makes me, a junior, involuntarily admire. But since I am the victim, I should have the right to ask the government to arrest Jia Yuanling for the case immediately. Am I right, Lord Tao?” Ling Zhang looked at Tao Feng.
Fang’s face froze for a moment as the calmness on her face was gradually replaced by a trace of hatred with a pair of cold eyes looking coldly at Ling Zhang.
Ling Zhang wasn’t a bit intimidated.?Fang shi was nothing compared to the demons he had seen. Caught in between the two, Tao Feng felt quite awkward, “This...”
“Lord Tao, you are the biggest magistrate of Tanyang. Although our Ling family is not a noble family, it is not worse than their Jia. Is it true that Lord Tao is biased towards Jia family?”
With his heart missing a beat, Tao Feng looked at Ling Zhang’s sharp eyes.
At this time, Tao Yi behind Tao Feng suddenly said, “Childe Ling has misunderstood it. My father came as a guest today, we need send people to the Prefecture Yamen (public office) to call the yamen runners to arrest Jia Yuanling.”
Ling Zhang turned to look at Tao Yi who looked back leisurely with even appreciation in eyes.
‘Appreciation?’ Ling Zhang felt so puzzled. In his previous life, he and Tao Yi had nothing to do with each other as Tao Yi had been studying in the capital, not in Tanyang all the year round. As far as he had known, Tao Yi didn’t stay long in Tanyang. Tao Yi left Tanyang shortly after what had happened in Jia family, and Ling Zhang hadn’t heard Tao Yi’s return even by the time catastrophe befell Ling family.
In his previous life, Ling Zhang did not have any impression on Tao Yi. And he did not understand why Tao Yi changed his attitude in this life.
Temporarily suppressing this doubt, Ling Zhang said, “I see. It’s okay. This junior is willing to wait. Mrs. Jia has no objection, right? After all, you just said that even if Jia Yuanling was banished you would not try to intervene.”
Ling Zhang’s sharp and indifferent eyes met Fang’s cold and ferocious stare. The two sides confronted each other for a moment, and finally Fang looked away. She lowered her gaze, showing a little weakness, “Childle Ling, of course, I will not eat my words. But Yuanling always treats you as his younger brother. Today, he was drunk and confused, so he did stupid things. I apologize to you on behalf of him. Why must you put him to death?”
“Mrs. Jia is wrong. First, although Jia Yuanling drank some wine today, he could still set a trap calmly with a clear head. And no one here is blind, so we can see that. Second, even if he was drunk, the fact that he committed adultery with his father’s concubine cannot be denied. And he slandered me. Now that these are all facts, it is him who ignored our years of friendship at first. It is undoubtedly logical for me to kick back. Therefore, everything happened today was because of Jia Yuanling’s being shameless and heartless at first and it was not my hope to put him to death. If Mrs. Jia still intercedes for him, you will be the one who throws weight around.”
“You!” Fang was infuriated and raised her head to glare angrily at Ling Zhang.
“Lord Tao, please inform the yamen runners as soon as possible.” Ling Zhang said to Tao Feng.
Tao Feng was helpless that Ling Zhang was reasonable and he was the victim. With so many people looking, it was unreasonable that Tao Feng didn’t accept the case immediately.
陶义悄悄扯了一下陶沣的衣袖，低声对他说:”父亲，您何必苦恼，今日事乃是贾家的错，又是众目睽睽之下，您只管秉公处理，别人断不会嚼舌根说什么，贾家也埋怨不到您头上。您要是再犹豫，反倒是落人口实了。”?Tao Yi quietly pulled the sleeves of Tao Feng, and whispered, “Father, why do you bother yourself? What happened today is Jia family’s fault, and it is under the public gaze. You only need to handle it according to law. Others will not blame you and the Jia family shouldn’t complain about you. If you hesitate again, you will be blamed.”
Tao Feng’s eyes lit up as he whispered, “Father is confused, and you are right.”
Tao Feng immediately sent someone to inform yamen runners to come here. And instead of feeling being thrown in a dilemma, he took a hard-line stance.
Fang’s face suddenly became pale. With her hands squeezing the handkerchief tightly, she looked at Ling Zhang as if she would like to cut a piece of meat from Ling Zheng.
“No, Lord Tao, I was just being silly. And I didn’t really want to slander Ling Zhang.” Knowing that Tao Feng really wanted to arrest him to the Prefecture Yamen, Jia Yuanling suddenly panicked, “Please forgive me, you junior, this time, for Jia family’s sake!”
“Lord Tao,” Fang chimed in, “What about inviting the governor here to help you with this case?”
Ling Zhang’s face turned cold. But before he said anything, he saw Tao Feng pulling a long and chilling face, “Mrs. Jia, it is this officer’s own business to deal with the convict and others have no right to intervene.”
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