When Ye Qi came to this world, the keeper had told him, “Your role is to play the first performer at the Fragrant Sky House in Jiangzhou. You are a female singer who doesn’t sell yourself. You are good at the guzheng, pipa, flute and other musical instruments. Your singing is beautiful and there are countless rich young masters throwing money at you. Please play the role well and wait for the case to happen.”
Ye Qi saw the female clothing and almost threw the pipe in his arms.
Was A of Hearts sick? He might be a student at a music conservatory because he liked to sing but there were also men who sang in ancient times. Why let him dress up as a woman and go to the brothel to play a singer who doesn’t sell herself?
If it wasn’t for the fact that failing to break through would lead to elimination, Ye Qi would want to give up on the task.
In the last two days in Jiangzhou, he had been under the control of Fragrant Sky House’s boss, ‘Aunt Qing’ and he couldn’t take a step out of the Fragrant Sky House. Aunt Qing told him that there would be a performance tonight and he would be required to play a few songs and sing to thank the guests.
Ye Qi could only grit his teeth and stay in his room to practice music.
Fortunately, he already had a musical foundation. Combined with the physical memories the keeper forcefully gave him when entering the secret room, he managed to practice the flute, the guzheng, the pipa and other folk music and the songs were ready to be sung.
He didn’t see his teammates for two days and thought the case would happen in the Fragrant Sky House.
Tonight was the performance but as a result, he saw Group Leader Yu, Old Mo and Shao Qingge sitting under the stage. There was also a woman next to Group Leader Yu but the light was too dim to see her appearance. Ye Qi looked down the stage and right into Shao Qingge’s eyes. Shao Qingge sprayed out the tea in his mouth andYe Qi’s ears were red with embarrassment. He wanted to break the pipa on the spot.
Just then, Aunt Qing spoke in his ear. “Xiao Ye, we can start.”
Ye Qi had to brace himself to play the pipa.
The clear and pleasing pipa rhythm was like a pearl falling from a jade plate. The entire Fragrant Sky House quieted down instantly. Not to mention, Ye Qi had real skills. The tune played was long and gently, quickly immersing the guests’ emotions into it.
The original tune was very soft and everyone who heard it was intoxicated. Suddenly, the genre shifted sharply. It was like thousands of troops crossing the border and there was smoke and fire everywhere. The intense melody made people nervous but Ye Qi still remained calm, his long fingers quickly plucking the strings so that the strings of the pipa seemed like they would break.
The second half of the song was very tense. It wasn’t until the end that the pipa’s sound snapped and the melody got its breath back, as if taking the audience through a thrilling battle.
The Fragrant Sky House was silent for a moment, followed by deafening applause. “Good!”
“This is only the first performance but the pipa was absolutely amazing!”
“I heard that Miss Ye also sings well.”
Aunt Qing arranged people holding plates to walk among the guests. There were many rich young masters who took out large pieces of silver and threw it in. It almost couldn’t fit in the plate. It could be seen that Ye Qi’s performance would definitely make the owner of Fragrant Sky House earn a lot.
After the pipa was the guzheng and then he sang a few songs. The applause constantly continued in the Fragrant Sky House.
After the performance, Ye Qi got up and bowed to the audience.
Just then, a clear voice was heard from the crowd. “You played well! It is indeed the first performer of Fragrant Sky House. It is worth seeing.” The master who came out was a rich man in dark red clothes and long hair tied up with a ribbon of the same colour. His appearance was quite handsome but unfortunately, he was full of wine. Ye Qi could smell the wine all the way from where he was standing.
Someone whispered, “Isn’t this Master Lin?”
“The Lin Shaobo who is betrothed to the eldest daughter of the prince’s mansion?”
”Yes, I heard that he often goes in and out of brothels and has an ambiguous relationship with a famous prostitute. I didn’t expect him to change his taste today and come to the Fragrant Sky House to listen to the music…”
”He is too brave. He will get married next month yet he is drinking with female entertainers…”
Yu Hanjiang listened to the surrounding discussion and glanced at Xiao Lou. “It is the fiance of the eldest daughter.”
Xiao Lou looked thoughtfully in Mr Lin’s direction. “It seems that he is indeed like the rumours. His second nature is to be dissolute.”
Old Mo lowered his voice, “People say that Master Lin’s marriage to the eldest daughter of the prince’s mansion was ordered by his parents. He doesn’t like this type of old-fashioned young lady at all and spends his entire day expressing dissatisfaction with the marriage. He said that he is raising several lovers outside.”
Yu Hanjiang frowned. “No matter how much he dislikes it, his fiancee is the eldest daughter of the prince after all. Is he not going to give face to the young lady or even the prince? It is too unreasonable.”
Old Mo replied, “He might be the eldest son of the Lin family but he is a commoner. His mother was a concubine and passed away a long time ago. The marriage was arranged by his father and before his engagement, he hadn’t met the prince’s eldest daughter at all. Perhaps he wasn’t very happy so he used this method to vent?”
Shao Qingge was filled with great interest. “I also heard some gossip about the Lin family. My family had a business cooperation with the Lin family. The Lin family is the richest salt merchant in the Daqi Dynasty. The young master Lin Shaobo doesn’t have any real power and is said to be superfluous. The second and third young masters are better than him. The second young master holds an official post in the capital while the third young master is the successor of the Lin family’s industry.”
Xiao Lo speculated, “So he and the eldest daughter can actually be considered a good match? Both of the eldest but they aren’t born of the legal wife and they actually have no status at home.”
Mo Xuemin said, “The problem is that Young Master Lin didn’t restrain his extravagant and drunken style after his engagement and it seems the prince’s side doesn’t care about him either.”
Xiao Lou’s heart also had some doubts. It was reasonable to say that the daughter of a prince, even if she was the daughter of a concubine, was a royal family member with high status. A group of rich businessmen and officials should be rushing to ask for money. In addition, the prince shouldn’t be short of money. How could he like such a son-in-law? As the future father-in-law, how could he be completely indifferent to this extravagance and bad reputation?
Either the prince didn’t care about his eldest daughter or the Lin family had reached some type of agreement with the prince’s mansion.
Xiao Lou was frowning when he heard a lot of noise.
It turned out that Lin Shaobo directly took out an ingot of silver from his money bag and put it in Ye Qi’s hand with a smile. “Miss Ye is beautiful and talented. It is a pit for you to stay in the Fragrant Sky House. It would be better for me to ransom your body tonight. How about you follow me and become my concubine. I will never treat you badly. How about it?”
Ye Qi, “……”
F*k, do you believe that I won’t smash you to death with my pipe? Ye Qi resisted the urge to sweat and quickly took a step back. “Gongzi must be joking. We sell art here, not ourselves.”
Lin Shaobo took two ingots out and handed it to the boss with a smile. “Aunt Qin, I rarely come to your Fragrant Sky House and didn’t know your girl is so special. I want to get Miss Ye. I don’t know if Aunt Qing will give me face?”
The boss took the money and said, “The role of my Fragrant Sky House is to sell our skills, not ourselves. However, you can be Miss Ye’s noble guest and let her play some songs for you alone.”
“Then please.” Lin Shaobo was about to step forward to pull Ye Qi’s hand. Just then, a fan blocked his way. Lin Shaobo raised his head doubtfully and met a pair of beautiful peach blossom eyes.
The man was tall and handsome, with a slight smile on his face. Once this man looked at Lin Shaobo, his eyes narrowed slightly and there was a startling sharpness in his eyes.
Lin Shaobo asked, “This man is?”
Shao Qingge laughed. “Miss Ye is my friend. Let me have the opportunity to be alone with her tonight.”
As he spoke, he took out a gold ingot directly from his pocket. One gold ingot was equivalent to 10 ingots of silver. It was clear who had more money.
The boss’ eyes were bright and she immediately smiled at Shao Qingge. “Gongzi, what are you called?”
Shao Qingge’s voice was low. “My last name is Shao. I have something to say to Miss Ye so please arrange it for me.”
Aunt Qi took Shao Qingge and Ye Qi upstairs and there was a lot of gossip around them. They didn’t expect to see such excitement tonight when coming to the Fragrant Sky House. They could actually see two rich young masters competing in a dog blood situation. In addition, Young Master Lin lost. It is a good show!
Lin Shaobo was surrounded by onlookers and his expression wasn’t very good. Thus, he simply pretended to be drunk and turned away.
Ye Qi followed Shao Qingge to the second floor box with a complicated expression. The boss left with the words, “Treat Shao gongzi well.”
Ye Qi closed the door and gave a long sigh of relief. He stood on the stool, threw the pipa aside and drank a cup of tea. His voice was dry and he needed to moisten his throat before speaking.
Shao Qingge joked, “Miss Ye, aren’t you going to pour me a cup of tea?”
Ye Qi almost sprayed out his tea. “Are you still in the mood to joke? I have to play the role of a performer and spent two days in this broken place, unable to go out. I’m going crazy!”
At this time, Aunt Qing suddenly passed by the door. Ye Qi stood up like he was electrocuted and took the teapot, pouring tea for Shao Qingge with a smile. His voice was extremely gentle. “Mr Shao, please drink tea. I’m a woman from an ordinary family so please forgive me if I’m not satisfactory.”
Shao Qingge didn’t know if he should laugh or cry. This little guy could also act!
Once the boss left, Ye Qi put away his smile and sat down helplessly, his voice quiet. “I just saw Group Leader Yu and Old Mo under the stage, What is the situation?”
Shao Qingge wondered, “There was Professor Xiao as well. Didn’t you see him?”
Ye Qi reflexively replied, “No, only three of you.”
Shao Qingge smiled. “The beauty sitting beside Group Leader Yu was Professor Xiao. He is just like you. Based on the setting of the world, he is also a woman.”
Ye Qi finally couldn’t bear it and spat out his mouthful of tea. He almost sprayed it all over Shao Qingge’s face. Shao Qingge was witty and dodged fast. Ye Qi coughed a few times before speaking in a disbelieving tone. “Professor Xiao is dressed up as a woman?” He couldn’t imagine it.
Shao Qingge added, “In addition, he is Yu Hanjiang’s wife.”
Ye Qi, “……”
That was even more unthinkable, okay?
Shao Qingge smiled at him. “Do you feel better now?”
Ye Qi thought it over and was indignant. “Aren’t I more miserable? He is playing as Group Leader Yu’s wife and at least Group Leader Yu will protect him. I was directly stuffed into a brothel! I was so confused that I really wanted to quit!”
Looking at the angry expression that said this young man could cut the keeper 100 times, Shao Qingge really couldn’t help laughing.
Ye Qi’s expression was too vivid and he was dressed as a woman, wearing a goose yellow dress and her face was lovely. When he was angry and wanted to beat up people, he looked like a fierce kitten.
Shao Qingge endured his smile and whispered words of comfort, “Okay, it is just a role play. I have to wrong you for a few days. Group Leader Yu thinks that since you are arranged in the Fragrant Sky House, the case might have something to do with this place. Please feel at ease and investigate the clues. We will secretly protect you.”
Ye Qi heard this and calmed down. “Yes, I understand.”
Shao Qingge added, “I am a rich business master from Qing City and I came here to drink with female entertainers. Meeting you alone won’t cause people to feel doubts, which is why the others had me come alone to find you. I’ll give enough money to the boss to monopolize you and will come to you every night.”
Ye Qi’s face suddenly reddened. “This… why does it feel strange?”
Shao Qingge seriously told him, “It isn’t strange since the setting is like this. According to the rules of the Fragrant Sky House, whoever gives the most money can chat to the performer alone. If I don’t protect you, won’t you have to play and sing to strange men?”
Ye Qi’s hair rose when he heard this and he immediately said, “Yes, I’d rather chat to you!” He took a sip of the tea before asking curiously, “What are the identities of everyone else?”
“Group Leader Yu is the new prefectural magistrate of Jiangzhou and Xiao Lou is his wife. Old Mo is an old expert and Long Sen is a guard at the prince’s mansion. We haven’t found Teacher Qu and Liu Qiao Group Leader Yu asked me to see if Teacher Qu is also in the Fragrant Sky House since she is good at dancing.”
Ye Qi immediately shook his head. “She isn’t here. I found myself a singer and thought there was a possibility that Teacher Qu would be a dancer. I went to the dancing area to find her but didn’t see her. After questioning the boss, there is no one with the surname of Qu in the Fragrant Sky House.
Shao Qingge frowned. “It seems that we have to keep looking for her. Yu Hanjiang has the identity of a prefectural magistrate and it isn’t suitable for him to meet you directly. I will be responsible for the transmission of information. We have speculated that this case has something to do with the prince’s mansion.”
Ye Qi suddenly exclaimed, “The prince’s mansion? On the 15th day, the prince’s birthday, we rehearsed a program to perform at the prince’s mansion.”
Shao Qingge smiled. “This is right. We are all going to the prince’s mansion on that day for different reasons. The 15th should be a key date and you should prepare in advance.”
Ye Qi nodded seriously. “I understand.”
Shao Qingge continued, “In addition, you should pay attention to safety on this side. Can the teleportation card be used?’
Yes, all my instrument control cards have been banned and the eavesdropping card can’t be used. Only the teleportation card can be used right now. I can pretend to know a light footwork skill and it is no problem to escape if there is an accident.”
Shao Qingge was relieved. He thought for a moment before saying, “The Rich and Willful card I drew can copy cards. All attack and control cards are banned in this work. If your teleportation card can be used as a footwork skill then it is very convenient. I will copy one and give it to Group Leader Yu to arrange.”
Ye Qi felt some pain. “Copying a card consumes 5 million gold coins…”
Shao Qingge helplessly rubbed his forehead. “There is no way. The cards I drew are like this.”
Ye Qi was depressed. “Didn’t you just give the boss an ingot of gold to meet me?”
Shao Qingge smiled. “Don’t be afraid, this time I carried several boxes of gold to Jiangzhou.”
Ye Qi, “……”
The gold master was the gold master everywhere he went.