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TIS Chapter: 5

Homecoming

“You are playing chess with me and you fell asleep?” Chi Can asked lightly.

Qiao Zhao jerked up at the sound of his voice; her hands rose up and fell, making a crisp sound.

 

“You misunderstand. I was just thinking of my next move.” The girl’s voice was soft and sweet.

 

“I looked at you just now and your eyes were closed.” Chi Can said with a smile, but his tone made her shake a little with fear.

 

“If you don’t believe me, look, did I make a mistake?” The girl’s fingers were pointing at the white pieces on the wooden chessboard.

 

When she and her grandfather were in seclusion, time was slow and playing chess was just right to do to pass time. She used to play against her grandfather, and now, she couldn’t go wrong even with her eyes closed.

 

Thinking about it this way, it felt a little bit like bullying.

 

Chi Can’s eyes subconsciously looked at where the girl’s finger was pointing, and after seeing how Zhu Wu had suffered heavy losses to her, he doubted his own judgment for the first time.

 

‘This girl probably couldn’t have been asleep just now, right?’

 

“Pack your things quickly, we’ll be docked soon.” Yang Er interrupted the conversation between the two with a smile.

 

Not long after the boat had docked, as Yang Er had said previously, they did not enter the city; rather, Chi Can found a stable outside the city and picked out three strong horses.

 

He patted the horse’s back and said to Qiao Zhao; “It won’t be convenient for any of the three of us to ride with you. I’ll take you into the city and find an inn for you to stay and wait.”

 

“I can ride a horse.” Qiao Zhao said.

 

Chi Can was stunned for a moment, looking down at the little girl who wasn’t as tall as the length of his legs, gave a smile and picked out a horse; “Since you can ride, we will take you with us.”

 

“Thank you.” Qiao Zhao said, breathing a sigh of relief and showing a big smile. She walked towards the reddish brown horse that was picked for her.

 

Yang Er couldn’t help whispering to Zhu Wu; “When did Xi Xi suddenly become so easy to talk to?”

 

Zhu Wu glanced at Qiao Zhao’s stature and guessed innocently; “Probably thinks the little girl can’t ride and wants to see her fall from the horse.”

 

“I think Xi Xi may be disappointed. That little girl is very mysterious. She could beat you at chess at her age. Maybe her equestrian skills are even better than mine.”

 

Zhu Wu looked straight ahead with a strange expression.

 

Yang Er looked in the direction and saw the big red horse throwing the little girl aside and then running off.

 

The little girl fell to the ground, eating a mouth full of dirt, and coughed violently.

 

“That was really superb riding.” Zhu Wu laughed.

 

Looking at the running horse, Qiao Zhao was a little confused.

 

‘She could indeed ride a horse.’ She thought to herself.

 

“Wait for us at the inn.” Chi Can said with a smile, not hiding the joy in his eyes.

 

‘He just can’t wait to get rid of her, right?’ Qiao Zhao lowered her eyes in thought.

 

She and the three of them had met by chance and she should be grateful for their willingness to reach out and save her.

 

“I want to be with you. Brother Chi, please take me…”

 

“No! It isn’t proper.” Chi Can categorically refused.

 

‘How can this girl have such thick skin?’ He asked himself.

 

“I do not mind.” She replied to him.

 

Chi Can rolled his eyes and said politely; “I know you don’t care, but I do!”

 

She didn’t blame him for being ruthless. If he was any gentler, he would not have dared to go out to the capital.

 

Hearing Chi Can’s straightforward answers, Qiao Zhao chuckled instead.

 

That year, this person was so cheeky and entangled in front of her grandfather, and now it’s a bit of karma for her to be entangled like this in front of him.

 

“What are you laughing at?” Chi Can frowned.

 

This girl was a bit evil and he couldn’t treat her like any ordinary thirteen-year-old girl.

 

“I’m laughing because if you don’t take me on this trip, I’m afraid you won’t be able to get what you want.”

 

Chi Can’s eyes suddenly became sharp and he met the girl’s eyes that were half-joking and half-serious. He then began to laugh; “You like to play tricks, thinking that your threat will convince me to take you there? Haha, it’s okay, I’ll take you, only if you tell us where we’re going.”

 

“Xi Xi, stop teasing Li San.” Yang Er couldn’t bear it anymore.

 

Zhu Wu added; “Yes. If you don’t want to, I’ll take her with me.”

 

Chi Can raised his eyebrows.

 

Zhu Wu was the prince of Taining Hou Shizi, not to mention much about his honorable status, but he also had outstanding talent to go with it, and he was selected by Juren at a young age. He usually looks mild-mannered, but he was actually quite arrogant, and now he is willing to take a little girl with him, which was really strange.

 

Zhu Wu was embarrassed by the look on Chi Can’s face and coughed lightly; “Don’t think about it much. I just think it’s okay to bring her.”

 

Chess was a way to judge a person’s character, and a woman who could beat him by such a large skill difference, would be able to do anything to gain power. What’s more, this was really just a little girl who hadn’t grown up yet.

 

“Xingzilin Qiao’s family.” Qiao Zhao opened her lips and replied Chi Can.

 

Three pairs of eyes suddenly looked at her.

 

“How do you know?” Yang Er blurted out.

 

Qiao Zhao felt slightly relieved.

 

Chi Can came to visit her grandfather more than three years ago, and although her grandfather was no longert here, her father and brother had returned to Jiafeng. She really could not have imagined that the son of the dignified princess came to Jiafeng club just for fun without fear of being seen around.

 

They were probably here to visit her father.

 

If she had guessed right, Chi Can would definitely bring her with them, whether out of curiosity or precaution.

 

If she had guessed wrong…

 

If Chi Can and the others weren’t going to her house, of course she wouldn’t have followed them.

 

In the end, she knew she didn’t have anything to lose.

 

Chi Can forgot what was ‘proper’ and immediately grabbed Qiao Zhao’s wrist; “How do you know? Who are you?”

 

“I guessed.” Qiao Zhao smiled; “I am the daughter of Li Xiuzhuan in the capital, and I live in Xingzi Hutong on West Street.”

 

Speaking of this, Qiao Zhao was slightly startled.

 

Xingzi Hutong…

 

Her home was in Xingzilin, Li Zhao’s home was in Xingzi Hutong…

 

‘What a coincidence.’ She thought.

 

“Don’t say you guessed. You knew.” Chi Can looked at Qiao Zhao seriously again.

 

The first time he had looked at her like that, he felt that this little girl was a little too smart.

 

But now, his mind was telling him that this girl… was really fucking evil!

 

Qiao Zhao blinked, trying to show the little girl’s innocence to the fullest; “It’s not as complicated as Big Brother Chi thinks. I just…”

 

She paused for a moment, and then continued; “I just admire Mr. Qiao, so I guessed that you three brothers came to Jiafeng to go to Mr. Qiao’s house.”

 

Mr. Qiao Zhuo, who was recognized as the number one talent by scholars all over the world decades ago, certainly deserved the respect of all scholars.

 

With such a superb level of chess skills, the little girl standing in front of the three would naturally be hard to read.

 

“Mr. Qiao is… already gone.” Chi Can’s tone was inexplicable.

 

Qiao Zhao felt a pain in her heart, raised her eyes and looked at him; “Yes, but Mister Qiao is still there.”

 

Mr. Qiao was her father, the former censor of Zuoqidu. After her grandfather passed away, he brought his family back to Jiafeng Dingyou.

 

Different from her grandfather’s unrestrained temperament, her father’s temperament was only serious when it came to piano, chess, calligraphy and painting. Really speaking, he was very talented, but the world did not know this.

 

“Did you really guess that?”

 

“Jiafeng is not famous for its mountains and waters. You came here from the capital and the reason is not so hard to guess.”

 

Chi Can stared at Qiao Zhao for a long time and then asked; “How can you be so sure that I won’t get what I want without you?”

 

Qiao Zhao smiled and said playfully; “Wait until we get to Xingzilin, Brother Chi will know.”

 

Chi Can got on his horse and stretched out a hand to Qiao Zhao; “Come up.”

 

Qiao Zhao handed him her hand, only to feel a strong pulling force, and then her whole body, in an instant, was on the horse’s back.

 

As the horses galloped forward, the sound of the wind could be heard, and the man’s low and lazy voice came from above her head: “The two of them are obviously better at talking than me. Why didn’t you ask them to take you?”

 

Qiao Zhao smiled and replied; “Naturally, I didn’t want to bother the two masters.”

 

She was someone who repaid any kindness shown to her. She had already written down the kindness she owes to Chi Can, so she didn’t want to owe another.


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