The Tang Dynasty’s Female Forensic Doctor Chapter 73 Part 2: Blood Drops

In no time, several boats with black awning sailed over [1]. The first to arrive was captain Yang Yong, who looked just like an iron pagoda as he stood on the boat, pressuring the small boat to sink one cun into the water (3,33cm|1,31inch), “We could only find this kind of boat for the moment, please forgive me, Provincial Governor.”

“No problem.” Provincial Governor Liu, Ran Yan and Wan Lu climbed aboard together. The body of the boat sank a bit more again and Ran Yan’s beautiful face darkened as she sat down next to the awning wall.

The old man rowing the boat was extremely enthusiastic. When he saw Ran Yan’s face, he smilingly said: “Miss can be at ease, during busy hours this one’s boat can handle over ten passengers and it has always been extremely stable.”

The boatman rowed the boat and occasionally stole a glance at Ran Yan, until he finally couldn’t endure it anymore and said: “Miss’ beauty is much more worthy of a second glance than that icy beauty, Sixth Miss Qi.”

Riding a boat was much more comfortable for Wan Lu than riding a horse, and when she heard the boatman’s remarks, she giggled and replied: “Grandpa (polite) has seen Sixth Miss Qi’s appearance up close?”

Although Sixth Miss Qi seemed to be as cold as ice, she wasn’t a low-profile person, so it wasn’t strange if other people have seen her. However, every time she goes out, she is surrounded by a crowd, and normally, if it isn’t a special occasion, she will always wear a bamboo hat veil in front of others. The possibility of an oldster boatman to get a meticulous look at her isn’t very big.

“Not from up close, just from afar. Her eyebrows were very thin and sharp, and she had a great nose and eyes. At first, I thought she was extremely beautiful, but after two more glances I felt she was nothing special [2]. Even though this grandpa was shabbily dressed, he was completely earnest in his remarks about Miss’ appearance.

Wan Lu’s interest got even more aroused, “If you feel that Sixth Miss Qi is nothing special, could it be that no woman is beautiful in your eyes?”

“Hey, your family’s Miss is great: a full forehead, brows like distant mountains, eyes as clear as water, an exquisite nose, a shapely yet not fat appearance, and overall lovely!” The grandpa cheerfully looked at Ran Yan again and added one more phrase: “But the forehead is a little stiff and angry, if only you could heartily laugh more often, you could become even more beautiful.”

Liu Pinrang still had the mood to discuss other matters and chimed in with one sentence: “What you said makes good sense.”

Wan Lu pouted in distaste, “I think that there’s no place where my Miss isn’t great.”

The boatman, however, didn’t add any other words and kept on rowing with a big grin. After all, making critical remarks about the face of a Miss from another family is an uncourteous behavior. The boatman also had a lot of restraint, he knew until what point he could go and when he should stop. It would be disrespectful to the young Miss if he continued speaking.  

Yang Yong was at the prow, occasionally glancing sideways at Ran Yan. It wasn’t to appreciate her beauty, rather, he valued Ran Yan’s abilities much more than her looks.

The wind was lightly blowing at the river, the waves on the water surface weren’t big, and the journey by boat was going smoothly.

A good amount of time passed when one of the boats next to them rapidly sailed over, and the bukuai [3] on its prow leaned over to say: “Provincial Governor, we found a suspicious painted boat [4] floating on the water. There was no one in its deck. Shuxia [5] secretly checked over and there was no boatman too.”

“M-hm.” Liu Pinrang pondered for a moment before saying: “Arrest the people on the boat, if we can capture a witness it would be the best outcome.”

In fact, Liu Pinrang has been thinking about this for a long time and hadn’t figured it out yet. Since it is the doing of Third Miss Yin, who could be the person that was killed this time?

As the Provincial Governor, it can already be considered that Liu Pinrang had a very strong sense of responsibility the moment he decided to personally come over to catch the person. He couldn’t, of course, go through the dangers himself, so their boat could only stay over ten zhang (33,33m|36,45yards) from the moored painted boat. It was hard for even Ran Yan’s vision to distinctly see the faces of those on the boat.

A group of people rapidly went to the boat, but a long time passed without them going inside, looking as if they were engaged in a stand-off.

Liu Pinrang observed for a while and felt that there was something not quite right about it. He then said: “Boatman, move closer to that painted boat.”

The boatman knew they were working on a case and did not respond with many words. He immediately rowed the boat forward for about ten zhang. Now they could clearly hear the voices in the boat.

Soon, a yamen runner appeared to report the situation, “Provincial Governor, Qin Shangzuo’s son has been tied up inside the boat. Third Miss Yin said that if we dare to go inside, she will kill Fourth Master Qin.”


[1]

[2] He actually says ‘dull’ but I thought it would be a little weird to write ‘dull’ here, so I translated as ‘nothing special.’

[3] 捕快 [bu3kuai4] – Using today’s terms, a bukuai can be considered an officer from the criminal police, they had many responsibilities such as investigating and catching the criminals. I was thinking of translating as detective/investigator or even bailif, but decided to keep it with its pinyin.

[4]

[5] I had translated this as ‘this subordinate’ before. It’s a form of self-address that a subordinate uses when speaking with his/her superior/boss.

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