Ban Xiang proceeds to pack up as fast as she can.
As Ban Xiang is busy packing, the imperial physician sends the freshly brewed medicine over.
Mo Qi Qi tells him to retreat first as she wants to wait for it to cool down before drinking it.
The moment the imperial physician left, she pours the medicine out.
Ban Xiang looks at her confused, “Why did you pour it out, Your Ladyship? His Majesty ordered the physician to brew that for your head injury.”
Mo Qi Qi does not share the same appreciation, “My head is fine now. Don’t you think it is suspicious that Jun Qian Che suddenly asked the physician to give me medicine? Didn’t you say that me going to the brothel embarrassed him? What if he is taking this chance to slip poison in my medicine?”
Ban Xiang covers her mouth in shock, “His Majesty wants to kill you?”
“Very possibly. Come on, let’s go and join Jun Qian Che outside!”
Both of them walk out of the room.
After Mo Qi Qi boards the carriage, Jun Qian Che orders his people to continue the journey.
Not long later, the carriage stops again. Jun Qian Che suddenly says, “Get off.”
Mo Qi Qi gets down from the carriage with a question mark hovering above her head. She discovers that they are standing in front of Qing Shui County’s Government Office. “I thought we were going to continue the journey? Why are we stopping here?”
“The purpose of this trip is to see how local officials usually conduct their business. The official in charge of Qing Shui County is irresponsible and corrupted. He harms the common people, rapes the womenfolk, frequents the brothel and colludes with the local thugs to oppress the common people. He has drawn the ire of the common people. If we let this go on, the common people will direct their hatred towards the court. He needs to be taken care of.”
Mo Qi Qi puts two and two together, “So, you really went to the brothel for a business? You were trying to catch the official in the act?” Although she is asking, she pretty much knows the answer deep inside.
Jun Qian Che looks at her coldly, “What do you think?”
Mo Qi Qi laughs awkwardly.
Jun Qian Che walks towards the building. Bai Jiu follows him from behind and hits the gong for a very long time, but no one bothers coming to tend to them.
(TN: There were gongs placed in front of Government Offices back then. The common people usually hit the gong if they have something to report.)
Han Yi Xiao then brings a couple of people with him to the back courtyard to see if anyone is there. What greets them is the sight of the official having fun with beauties.
Han Yi Xiao drags him to Great Hall and flings him in front of Jun Qian Che.
The official is very angry at them. He keeps shouting at them, asking who they are and threatening to chop their heads.
He even dares to say that this land is far from the capital and from the court. No one can stop him from doing anything here. In here, he is the emperor.
When Han Yi Xiao takes out the imperial token, the official is scared witless.
Han Yi Xiao lists his offences one by one and even brings forth a couple of local people as witnesses. He even catches the trashy friend that accompanied the official to the brothel last night.
All evidence are pointing at him, the official cannot find it in him to defend himself. Jun Qian Che orders him and his entire family to be beheaded, as even his family members are very corrupted.
The common people personally watch the official getting his head chopped off. They repeatedly chant ‘long live the emperor’.
When Mo Qi Qi sees all these with her own eyes, she finally realizes how big the power the emperor possesses. Just one word and lives are immediately lost.
But no matter how she thinks about it, chopping the head of the official 100 times is still not enough to pay for what he did. So many women had been harmed by him. Many of them had to sell their bodies to the brothel in the end.
Now that this trash has been killed, better days are awaiting those who live in the county.
Jun Qian Che instates a new magistrate. Although he has not been here for a long time, Jun Qian Che is very efficient. He personally hears the common people talking about the magistrate’s atrocities as well as a lower staff of his that has been helping the common people in the dark. That official is very talented and exceptional, just he used to be oppressed by the previous magistrate and could not showcase his full skills. Now that Jun Qian Che has made him the new magistrate, the common people are very happy.
Because of that, the entourage leaves very early the next morning, as to not alert the common people. When the sun has risen, the common people gather in the Government Office, wanting to thank the emperor and to present him with local delicacies. When they find out that he has left, they all sigh in regret.
Back then, under the former magistrate’s oppression, they thought that the emperor and the court were useless. Now that they have seen how upright the emperor is, their hearts are in peace. They are now able to anticipate their coming days, under the rule of the kind ruler.
Mo Qi Qi who had to be woken up before the sun was even up is very unhappy at the moment. She glares at Jun Qian Che as she sits opposite him inside the carriage, “Your Majesty, I know that your power is very big, but did you really have to wake people up before the sun is even up! I am so sleepy!”
“Zhen does not want too many people to know about our trip this time. Now that the problem in Qing Shui County has been resolved, we should leave as quickly as possible.”
“Yes, you are the emperor, whatever you say goes!” Mo Qi Qi says in irritation. Even if they are on a trip, they do not have to be so hasty to resume the journey..
To tell the truth, Jun Qian Che wants to take this chance to go to as many places as he could to help as many people as possible. Only then, will he be able to sleep in peace at night.
As the ruler, there are a lot of things that he is completely helpless to do. He wants to personally do so many things, but he knows that it is physically impossible. He is stuck at the court. Now that he has the chance to see everything with his own eyes, he wants to see as many things as he can. But how could Mo Qi Qi understand the heart of an emperor?
“If you are sleepy, go on and sleep,” he calmly says. He can understand where Mo Qi Qi is coming from. She has been spoiled ever since she was born, it is natural that she cannot endure hardship.
What he does not know is that rather than unable to endure hardship, Mo Qi Qi simply hates it when other people disturb her sleep.
They are sharing a carriage and the atmosphere is completely quiet. He is silent in nature while Mo Qi Qi does not want to risk saying anything that could anger him. After seeing the extent of his authority, all the previous memories of her antagonizing him comes flooding back. She is so scared of him now. Even though she has a lot of things to say to him, she keeps everything to himself. She closes her eyes and the sleepiness kicks back in. In the end, she falls asleep despite not planning to.
Her body sways with the movement of the carriage. At one point, she almost fall.
Jun Qian Che quickly swoops in and sits next to her, resting her head against his chest, so that she can sleep better.
His chest is broad and comfortable. She unconsciously buries herself deeper against his chest, sleeping comfortably.
Her fresh scent reaches his nose and he looks down at the sleeping Mo Qi Qi, smiling lightly. He hugs her tighter. His heart feels so full, so warm.
How good would it be if she is not Mo Chang Xiao’s daughter? He would have treated her really well. Unfortunately, that is a fact that cannot be changed.
Mo Qi Qi continues sleeping soundly. Even her dream is a good one.
When she wakes up and discovers that she is in another person’s embrace, she slowly looks up and locks eyes with Jun Qian Che’s deep eyes. She awkwardly puts some distance between them and fixes her hair, “How did chenqie end up sleeping next to you, Your Majesty?” Wasn’t he sitting opposite her? Don’t tell her he was trying to take advantage of her while she was sleeping? Wuwuwuwu, this pervert!
Jun Qian Che knows that she is currently thinking nonsense, but he does not want to tell the truth, “Zhen saw you sleeping and the carriage was rocking. Zhen was just steadying you, lest you fall and then blame zhen for waking you up so early in the morning.”
Mo Qi Qi laughs awkwardly, understanding his meaning.
They reach Hong Yang County at the end of the day. They rent a courtyard before investigating the current magistrate of the county. The official in this county seems to be very capable and upright. They can see that from the way of living of the common people here. Their houses are so clean and the people are dressed beautifully. The streets are very lively and there are hardly any beggars.
The result of their investigation is indeed satisfactory. The common people are full of praises for the official, he is very well-loved. Jun Qian Che is very pleased when he hears that, seeing his officials so close to the common people is exactly what he wants!
They stay there for three days before leaving for the next destination, Chang Ming County.
The magistrate here is not that bad as well, just, he has a little affinity towards alcohol. Despite that, his relationship with the common people is not bad. When he is sober, he will do his best to help the common people solve their issues. Because of that, the common people have some kind of mixed feelings towards him.
When Jun Qian Che hears that, he sends some people to cosplay as merchants. They invite him drink to wine and purposely lets him get drunk. Once the official is drunk, he sends people to beat the gong in front of the government office, telling the official that there are bandits pillaging through the city.
The official laughs when he hears that, and then, promptly falls asleep.
On the next day, when the official wakes up, he finds his resident completely ransacked. There are dead bodies littering the floor. He staggers outside and walks out of the gate, only to find more dead people on the street.
He collapses to the ground and cry, blaming himself for causing the death of the common people. Had he not been drunk, he would have been able to order people to properly subdue the bandits. He picks up a sword, planning to end his own life.
It is then that Jun Qian Che appears in front of him. Jun Qian Che informs him of his identity.
When the official realizes that the emperor is standing in front of him, he kneels on the ground and admits his crime, “This is all this official’s fault, Your Majesty! There were people coming to the office yesterday to report that bandits were robbing the city, but this official was drunk and thought that it was a joke. This official did not do anything to stop the bandits and caused the death of so many innocent people. This official deserves to die! Please grant this official the death penalty!”
“You finally understand how dangerous it is for a magistrate to have a muddled mind? Chang Ming County is a very important county to the kingdom. Not only is it the economic hub of the eastern part of the kingdom, it also borders another kingdom in the west. It’s northern part on the other hand, stations a battalion of soldiers. If anything happens to it, it will affect our economy as well as our troops. Your responsibility is very heavy. What if our enemy figures out your weakness and takes advantage of it to invade? Regretting it will be too late, by then,” Jun Qian Che calmly reproaches him.
The magistrate admits his fault while crying, “This official was wrong. If only this official can turn back time. Unfortunately—– Please sentence this official to death, Your Majesty!”
“Get up! This is just a lesson from zhen. You better fix your drinking issue. Zhen hope you can learn from this.”
The official looks at Jun Qian Che curiously, “This official committed such a big crime, are you not going to punish this official, Your Majesty?”
At that moment, all the people who are playing dead get up.
The official is shocked senseless, “W-What is going on?”
Han Yi Xiao steps forward, “This is His Majesty’s lesson for you. His Majesty knew that you love drinking and always messed things up when drunk. Lucky you have not messed up anything big yet. After seeing your dedication towards the common people when you are not drunk, His Majesty decided to give you another chance. His Majesty arranged all this to give you a lesson.”
The official smiles amidst his tears before he kowtows, “Thank you for giving this official this lesson, Your Majesty! From this day onwards, this official will not drink anymore! This official will do his best to serve the common people! If this official touch any drop of wine again, this official will personally end his own life!”
The common people who are listening to them are very pleased, “Sir, you are good in everything, except when you are drunk! If you will not touch wine anymore, we will no longer have any worry!”
“Yes! I agree!” the crowd agrees.
“Do not worry, my beloved people! I will not touch wine anymore!” the official promises them.
“Acknowledging one’s fault and aspiring to change it is a good trait. Remember this day. Although everything is just a set-up today, what you saw earlier might really happen one day if you do not stop drinking.”
“Do not worry, Your Majesty. This official dares not drink again after this,” he promises Jun Qian Che.
Jun Qian Che nods in satisfaction, “Since this is so, zhen will give you another chance. Zhen will send people to secretly watch you. If you do not change your way, zhen will punish you heavily.”
“Yes, Your Majesty! This official will not disappoint you!”
After this matter is settled, Jun Qian Che does not stay for long and quickly leaves for the next destination, Bing Shui Town.
This is a very old town, with history and culture of it’s own.
The people here are very hardworking and hospitable.
They stop to stay in this town.
Although this town is fine in it’s own right, there are ‘mice’ that are causing trouble here.
After staying here for a few days, Jun Qian Che personally witness those thugs bullying the common people.
Jun Qian Che orders his people to capture those thugs and exiles them up to the north.
As for Mo Qi Qi, she really likes this town. It has that old and ancient charm that archeologists like her likes.
What is even more coincidental is that she actually encounters grave-robbers here. They have been arrested by the authority.