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The Tang Dynasty’s Female Forensic Doctor - Chapter 55

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Chapter 55

Tang Dynasty Female Forensic Doctor Chapter 55: Dream

That voice was not Yin Miao-miao's, but the possibility of her involvement could not completely be eliminated . The things that happened on the day of the tea party seemed logical, but there were a few very odd details . One of them was Yin Miao-miao's actions .

After obtaining these clues, a complete course of events of the murder had already vaguely surfaced .

Someone was targeting Fourth Master Qin . This person did not want to kill him directly . Their objective was to ruin his reputation and while suffering the pain of being spurned by the public, to bear the criminal charge of murder and be sentenced to death .

This person definitely hated him a lot, or perhaps they hated the Qin family . One possibility was Official Qin offended someone but that person did not have any opportunity to deal with Official Qin, thus started by targeting his son first in order to destroy the Qin family step by step . After all, if Qin Musheng really bore the criminal charge of murder, Official Qin's political future would definitely be implicated . There was another possibility, which was that Qin Musheng committed some horrendous atrocity[1] and this was his retribution .

The murderer first poisoned Han Shan . The poison was a slow acting poison . The poisoner was probably a person that was able to come into frequent contact with him . Moreover, they had to have some understanding towards poisons . This person, could it be Cui Mei?

At the Yin residence's tea party, Cui Mei and her Yin residence accomplice conspired to frame Fourth Master Qin . They were overheard by Wan Lu and thus tried to silence her . However, the Yin residence was famous for their strict education towards their daughters . The women from their family could all be said to be model examples of the Four Virtues[2], therefore their thoughts were more conservative . This type of family, why would they allow a prostitute to freely enter and exit their home? If someone was working in collusion with her, than this person definitely had a high status in the Yin residence .

Yin Miao-miao said that for two days before her maidservant's death, Yin Miao-miao had lent her to Miss Wei to prepare for the tea party . In that case, the person who colluded with Cui Mei, could it be Miss Wei?

Miss Wei was partly in charge of household affairs in the Yin residence . If one wished to find out her background, it should not be difficult . Ran Yan had once thought about asking Fourth Master Qin if he had offended anyone, but they had an absurd engagement between them . Right now, it was the exact time to clear up their relationship[3] . If she arranged to meet him again, she was afraid that it would stir up unnecessary trouble .

Ran Yan left Wan Lu's room, deciding to visit Provincial Governor Liu tomorrow morning and inform him of these clues and also ask to examine the corpse . She was a forensic doctor, not a professional investigator . Without a dead body, she was hard pressed to make sense of the whole situation just based on these disjointed clues .

After Ran Yan took a bath, she returned to her bedroom and Miss Xing helped her dry her hair . She then looked for the gifts given by the Lu residence in the daytime and opened them while leaning back on a round-back foldable chair[4] .

As expected, the thing in the box was indeed a medical book titled ’’The Eight Extraordinary Meridians[5]’’ . Ran Yan had briefly researched this area of study in the modern era, so the Eight Extraordinary Meridians was not unfamiliar to her . However, traditional Chinese medicine was wide-ranging and profound, she did not dare say she was an expert . To be content with a smattering of knowledge[6], she may be able to fish in the troubled waters[7] of the medical world in ancient times, but this has never been Ran Yan's way .

With Ran Yan's identity in the Tang Dynasty, it was impossible for her to become a coroner . Properly learning medical skills was something advantageous without bringing any harm to her . Ran Yan was determined to learn traditional Chinese medicine well and so obtain an extra layer of security for her life in ancient times . She knew the methods of treatments developed by later generations for many illnesses that were hard to treat . She was also familiar with the human body like the back of her hand . This was an absolute advantage . If she did not achieve a worthwhile accomplishment, wouldn't it be a pity?

’’Miss, please rest early . ’’ Miss Xing saw that Ran Yan was engrossed in reading and could not help reminding her .

’’En . ’’ Ran Yan hesitated for a while, but still placed down the medical book .

Miss Xing knew that Ran Yan would be woken up by nightmares every night, thus reached out to hold her delicate and cool hands, ’’Miss don't be afraid, this old servant will be sleeping in the outer room . ’’

Ran Yan's heart warmed slightly . She patted Miss Xing's hand and said, ’’I'm fine . ’’

Miss Xing attended to Ran Yan while she lay down on the bed . Her heart ached while she looked at Ran Yan . Miss Xing placed the four-sided lantern outside the canopy, pulled down the bamboo curtains and gauze, before quietly retreating .

Miss Xing sighed internally . Originally Miss was weak and delicate, however now she was strong from inside out . Even if she had nightmares every night, she would definitely never even frown . This was all the fault of the Master and Madam Gao! Thinking of them both, Miss Xing gnashed her teeth . It was fine if it were just Madam Gao . After all, there were very few good stepmothers under the sky . However, the Master was Miss's biological father! This kind of father really made one feel bitterly disappointed .

Even within the Zheng clan of Xingyang, where it was a large and influential clan filled with political marriages, there still was some familial affections between father and daughter .

The fine rain drizzled down, falling on the Japanese banana leaves outside the window . The sound resembled a lullaby, Ran Yan listened to the sound of the rain and gradually fell into deep slumber .

It was water again .

Surrounded by water all around, fine black hair floating and winding in the water, the bright vibrant cherry red in the water looked exceptionally enchanting . There weren't any sounds of shouting, the girl submerged in the water seemed to have already died . Her face was wrapped in layers of white cloth, resembling a plaster statue without facial features .

Ran Yan swam to her her side and reached out to undo the white cloth around her face . Layer by layer, Ran Yan undid the cloth while subconsciously observing the situation of the corpse .

The girl's fair and slim wrists were also tightly bound by the white cloth, her legs tied together with hemp rope . The end of the rope was tied around a large cage . Inside the cage seemed to contain rocks .

’’Ah Yan!’’ Suddenly, someone clapped her on her back . Even though Ran Yan was brave, she was still greatly startled .

She turned around and saw Yin Miao-miao's bright smile . In an instant, the water around her disappeared and she was at the back garden of the Yin residence . The Banks' roses were in full bloom, their white petals falling gently, resembling heavy snow .

Yin Miao-miao frowned and looked at her while saying, ’’Ah Yan, why are you frowning? Did Madam Gao bully you again?’’

Ran Yan shook her head .

Yin Miao-miao said unhappily, ’’Don't try to hide it from me . I know Madam Gao wants to send you to the estate! Your illness[8] requires treatment from a good doctor . Her throwing you to the estate is actually due to ulterior motives . Ah Yan, listen to me, you definitely cannot go . Once you go, both mother and daughter will be able to openly claim the nest for their own[9] . In future, Suzhou City will only know of Eighteenth Miss Ran but not of you, the legitimate daughter!’’

’’I know... but if I don't go, what can I do? In the end, she is the legal wife[10] . ’’ Ran Yan said these words without thinking[11], her mind still playing back the scene underwater, her thoughts in disarray .

Yin Miao-miao's voice still faintly travelled to her ears but Ran Yan could not hear clearly . Gradually, she could not see clearly the scattered and fragmented scene as well .

The light suddenly brightened, Ran Yan abruptly opened her eyes on the bed .

It was already daybreak .

Her body was drenched in sweat yet again . Ran Yan got up and walked out . Miss Xing had long gotten up already and was sewing clothes under the veranda . She saw Ran Yan come out and said smiling, ’’Did you have a good sleep?’’

’’En, I slept very well . ’’ To Ran Yan, as along as she did not dream about her best friend being assaulted, it was a good night's sleep .

Miss Xing placed down the clothes and urged Ran Yan to bathe, ’’Today this old servant will dress Miss up like a fairy . It will definitely make that Master Xiao fall in love at first sight . ’’

Ran Yan smiled helplessly, ’’Even if I was so beautiful that the heavens envy and the people hate me, all will be covered by the veil . Who will be able to fall in love with me at first sight?’’

’’That's true...’’ Although Miss Xing said so verbally, but her hands did not stop moving and kept pushing Ran Yan to the bathroom, ’’Master Xiao does not have the gentleness of Jiangnan men, I feel that he is from the north . He may be unfamiliar with Suzhou . Miss, be his guide today and find an opportunity to take down your veil...’’

Miss Xing planned everything on her own .

The hot water had already been prepared behind the screen . Ran Yan took off her clothes and entered the water . water . She heard Miss Xing ask in high spirits, ’’What does Miss think of my plan?’’

Ran Yan falsely exclaimed in admiration, ’’A very good idea . ’’

’’That's decided then . I will look for Master Xiao and tell him . ’’ Miss Xing delightedly walked out of the door . At the end she even added, ’’Everything is good about Master Xiao . Just that wet nurse of his really has no etiquette!’’

Miss Xing had never had a decisive personality . Ran Yan did not expect that this time, she would be so swift and decisive . It was not until Miss Xing closed the door that Ran Yan was able to react . She (Miss Xing) was for real this time .

Ran Yan still had a bunch of things to do today . Although it was not definite that Master Xiao would agree to Miss Xing's plan, but what if he did? At the moment, she could not care about washing thoroughly and just simply wiped herself a few times before wearing her clothes and rushing out of the bathroom .

Outside, there was no trace of Miss Xing . Ran Yan saw a few maidservants entering, thus asked, ’’Did you see Miss Xing? Quickly, chase after her to return . ’’

That maidservant startled a little, before quickly presenting a letter to Ran Yan, ’’Miss, this is the letter left by the guest . ’’

’’Master Xiao left already?’’ Ran Yan accepted the letter, internally sighing in relief .

’’I heard Shao Ming say, Master Xiao left before dawn . ’’ The maidservant answered . Seeing Ran Yan open the letter, she said, ’’I will go look for Miss Xing . ’’

’’There's no need now . ’’ Ran Yan bent her head and read the letter .

The contents of the letter were simple, it was thanking her for letting them stay, as well as asking her to keep his presence in Suzhou secret .

Keep it secret? The corner of Ran Yan's lips twitched . She did not even know his real identity;did she even have any gossip worth proclaiming? That's right, he said that he was here to secretly investigate Official Yang's case .

A pansi official was not a small position in Suzhou . However, placed in the Tang Dynasty, the death of a mere pansi official shouldn't require such a fuss made over it right? Ran Yan's heart moved a little, Xiao Song said he received orders to investigate the case but did not say that it was an imperial order . Who ordered him to investigate? If she was bored without anything to do one day, it was worthwhile to try to figure it out .

However, she did not have any time now .

Ran Yan said to that maidservant, ’’Come and help me comb my hair . ’’

That maidservant heard Ran Yan's orders, her expression brightened and she immediately answered yes before following her inside .

Ran Yan did not specify any requirements and allowed this maidservant to do as she wished to her hair . As long as it was not too extreme, anything was acceptable .

The results however were outside Ran Yan's expectations . The maidservant gave her a pure and plain makeup look and selected a lime green straight-lapel ruqun, the collar and cuffs were decorated with the pattern of vines . Her black hair was simply twisted up into a bun[12], decorated with a hairpin with two white-jade magnolia flowers with silver around the edges[13] .

This look was plain but did not lose did not lose delicateness and refinement . Miss Xing usually tried to cover Ran Yan's cold temperament, however this look embodied her coldness to the utmost .

’’Why did you attire me so?’’ Ran Yan could not help lifting her head and looking at that maidservant . The young girl was only about 15-16 years old, dressed in a light orange ruqun . Her face was round, her eyes limpid like the eyes of a little deer . She looked lively and clever .

’’This servant heard Miss Xing say that you're going to visit patients these few days . I felt that it's not too appropriate to dress up prettily...’’ Her reply was obviously a little apprehensive, her voice also got weaker and weaker .

Ran Yan asked, ’’What is your name?’’

’’This servant is Xiao Man . ’’ The maidservant said uneasily .

Ran Yan nodded and got up to take her veil . Without saying a word of evaluation, she directly left .

***

T/N: So sorry for the late update T_T my laptop had to be sent in for repairs so I couldn't upload a new chapter . Thank goodness it's all fixed now >_<

Thank you for waiting patiently for my slow and inconsistent updates!

Initially I translated Xiao Man to ’’Little Man’’ because Xiao=Little/Small, but then I realised people would read it as a small male person . . . Which isn't the case at all! Man满=Full/Contented (it's pronounced differently as well)

***

[1]伤天害理: to offend Heaven and reason (idiom);bloody atrocities that cry to heaven/outrageous acts

[2]四德: four Confucian injunctions 孝悌忠信(for men), namely: piety 孝to one's parents, respect 悌to one's older brother, loyalty 忠to one's monarch, faith 信to one's male friends/the four Confucian virtues for women of morality 德, physical charm 容, propriety in speech 言and efficiency in needlework 功

[3]撇清: to say a matter has no relationship with the individual referred to, to emphasise one is innocent or in the clear

[4]圆腰胡床: See picture .

[5]奇经八脉: The collective term for the Du meridian (runs along centre of back), Ren meridian (runs along centre of front), Chong meridian (runs from head to feet), Dai meridian (runs along the waist - like a belt), Yangwei meridian (runs along the side), Yinwei meridian (run along front of body but not centrally), Yinqiao meridian (runs similar to Yinwei) and Yangqiao meridian (runs along the side) .

[6]浅尝辄止: to dabble and stop (idiom);to dip into/to attempt half-heartedly/content with a smattering of knowledge

[7]浑水摸鱼: to fish in troubled water (idiom);to take advantage of a crisis for personal gain

[8]气疾: Here YMM refers to RY's illness as ’’Qi disease’’ - a generic term for illnesses of the respiratory, circulatory and lymphatic system .

[9]鸠占鹊巢: idiom - the dove forcibly occupying the magpie's nest . Commonly used to describe those that tyrannically claim and enjoy other people's achievements .

[10]嫡母: the way to address the legitimate wife by the children of concubines (literally means di mother, di referring to the legitimate status/of the first wife) . Not sure why RY uses this term - maybe this means Madam Gao has changed her status to a legitimate wife (concubines can 'upgrade' their status to First Wife I think? not too sure on the customs then)

[11]冉颜不受控制地说出这句话: raw text says that ’’RY said this sentence without control’’ - I think it means she said the sentence automatically/without thinking about it .

[12]锥髻: see picture

[13]两朵白玉包银边的玉兰花: See picture


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