Regardless of place and era, anything that was new and exciting, anything that could attract eyeballs, would always be the talk of the town. Sometimes, you had no idea how news of it even got out in the first place. It was as if the information had wings and it could fly, so it went wherever the wind brought it.
It didn’t take long for even more people to come to the room.
This time around, there were all sorts of people. Some were worshippers, some were odd job laborers, some children stuck their heads out without any adult accompanying them, and some were even monks. More and more people filled the place, and the entire yard was full of people.
Those who got to the front saw the bloody scene in the middle. Their faces paled, and their legs trembled as they stumbled out of the room, leaned a hand against the wall, and puked. Those who couldn’t get in could still smell the stench from inside and felt nauseous. Few of them could stand the stench and instinctively pinched their noses.
The smell was really terrifying. The crowd of cowards couldn’t stand it and even got dramatic about it, lurching back and forth as they puked and made so much noise while they were at it…
And goodness knows what in the world they ate before coming. Their puke smelled putrid and stank so badly. It was so gross!
The smell of that made the rest throw up too.
As a result, one after another, they stood along the wall and puked their guts out as though they were lining up to vomit.
It was…quite a sight to behold.
There was one man nearer to the front of the crowd who stood out.
He was very tall and was at least half or even one head taller than most people. His skin was bronze, his jawline was sharp. His brows were wide, and the ends were as sharp as a sword. His eyes shone brightly and were as black as the sea at night. His body proportions were perfect. His shoulders were broad, his waist was strong. His muscles were obvious, and he looked like he could burst out of his clothes.
It was clear that this was no ordinary man just by the way he carried himself.
He was very handsome and gave off an aristocratic air. But the first thing that anybody would notice about him would be the arrogance written on his face, as well as the overbearing sense of masculinity emanating from his entire body.
Every person around him was either vomiting or moving away from the room with pale faces. He was the only one whose expression did not flinch as he stood with his arms folded. He didn’t even frown, never mind covering his nose and mouth. He stood as straight as a spear and certainly stood out among the frantic masses around him.
The beautiful young lady in the room had such a pretty face and supple skin. Yet, this same gorgeous woman had cut and sliced through a dead man’s abdomen to pull his stomach right out. The whole thing was so terrifying, yet…he looked like he was used to this sort of thing.
It was as though this was something that happened all the time, and it wasn’t anything to shout about.
Those who were done with vomiting and felt more level-headed again started to guess who this man could be. At the same time, they gave him a big thumbs up. This man was definitely someone outstanding!
After Song Caitang sliced the abdomen open, she confirmed once more that the victim had been beaten to death and that there were no other possibilities. She put the stomach down on a table next to her.
“I’m going to begin.”
Her expression was calm, and her eyes were bright as she gave the remaining people in the room a kind warning.
Qingqiao immediately turned away and didn’t dare to look. Governor Zhang and Wen Yuansi nodded their heads, “Miss Song, please go ahead.”
Song Caitang nodded slightly. The scalpel in her hand reflected the light as she brought it down and sliced the stomach open.
The things inside were exposed…along with the smell.
It was filled with sticky liquids, squirming maggots, and some hardened, unidentifiable objects. The rotting stench from the stomach was even worse than the smell from before!
Before this, Governor Zhang had a slightly uncomfortable look on his face, but he was still able to maintain a stately pose. But now…he couldn’t take it anymore. He ran to the door and started puking.
The people at the door didn’t dodge in time and ended up getting his puke all over the hems of their clothes and shoes.
Governor Zhang threw up and rolled his eyes at them inwardly at the same time as he cursed silently at them.
You people deserve it!
That’s what you get for coming here with ill intentions!
It’s your own fault for packing this place so full, I couldn’t get out!
I’m going to gross all of you out!
I’m going to make all of you sooooooo angry!
Actually, Governor Zhang wasn’t the only one with such a violent reaction. After the stomach was sliced open, the effect of the visuals and that disgusting stench was enough to linger for at least the next three days. Those closest to the body immediately started puking. They couldn’t run outside in time, so they squatted down and threw up where they were.
Those who couldn’t take it fainted.
“There’s…there’s so much…blood…”
“That’s…that’s someone’s stomach…that’s a dead man’s stomach…”
“She actually made a cut! She..she…she…really sliced the body open!”
“I’ve…oh my god! I…I saw the man’s…intestines!”
A fearful air instantly spread far and wide. Everyone had terrified expressions on their faces.
Only a few people were still able to stand properly on their two feet.
Song Caitang was in the midst of the dissection herself, so she was clearly alright. Qingqiao had taken the pill and had cleverly turned away earlier so she avoided having to see the disgusting sight of a rotting stomach. She patted her chest and exhaled deeply. She was so glad that she managed to hold it together! She hadn’t let her Young Mistress down!
Wen Yuansi had managed to stay strong until now. His expression finally flinched, and he began to cover his nose and mouth. His brows were furrowed as he used all his might to keep himself from throwing up.
As for the arrogant, muscular, aristocrat-looking man…he was still watching with his arms folded. His expression hadn’t changed a single bit.
He looked intently at Song Caitang quietly for a long time.
Meanwhile, Song Caitang knew well that anybody who hadn’t been part of an autopsy would find it hard to keep it together. She didn’t force Qingqiao to help her anymore and retrieved the tools she needed from the box herself. She started looking through the insides of the stomach carefully, digging out a small remnant of food, washing them with water, picking out the pieces that were useful, and lining them up nicely…
After a long time, she finally spoke again.
“Our stomach is in charge of digesting food, so in general, once one is done eating, the food will remain in the stomach for an hour, where the food will slowly soften, but the exterior will remain fairly intact. Two to four hours later, the food will move toward the intestines. Four to six hours later, the stomach and intestines will be only left with some remnants of food. Nine hours later, the stomach will be completely empty.”
Of course, if the victim was suffering from some illness, his stomach might not work as well as a healthy person. Or, if he had eaten a lot of meat and oily foods, his digestive system might take a longer time to digest everything.
“Magistrate Wen, please take a look.”
Song Caitang turned her body slightly to show her findings to Wen Yuansi, “The stomach is still full, and the food has only softened. There are peanuts, pork ribs, and other deep-fried foods left behind that were not able to be digested before he died.”
“Based on Ma Sanniang’s statement, I can confirm that this man is Ximen Gang. He died within three hours of his last meal.”
Song Caitang’s facial features were relaxed, and the corners of her eyes were slightly lifted. Her gaze shone brightly with confidence and resolve.
Wen Yuansi put his brush and paper down, then took a step forward to look at the items on the table carefully, “You’re right. These are fried peanuts and pork ribs.”
According to Ma Sanniang, only Ximen Gang liked this sort of food. The pork ribs, in particular, were placed in front of him, and he was the only person who ate them. This man had to be Ximen Gang!
He looked at Song Caitang, and his gaze flickered slightly, “Thank you, Miss Song, for helping me to identify who this dead body belongs to. If we are able to crack this case, as a result, you get the biggest credit!”
Governor Zhang had just returned from puking and heard these words. He chimed in, “That’s right! If we manage to crack this case, Miss Song gets the biggest credit!”
“I didn’t really do much,” said Song Caitang with a smile, “Do you need anything else from the body for the case?”
Wen Yuansi and Governor Zhang exchanged glances, then shook their heads.
“Alright then,” Song Caitang turned around to get some thread and a needle, “The dissection ends here, I will sew the body back together.”
Wen Yuansi and Governor Zhang exchanged glances again. Did she just say she was going to sew the body back together again?
They didn’t manage to get the question out, and Song Caitang didn’t bother explaining. She bent over the body and got to work.
First, she sewed the stomach back together. She sewed it back the same way she cut it open. She did her best to sew the broken spleen and liver back together again so that they were one piece again. Then, she put each organ back into the victim’s abdominal cavity carefully where they ought to go.
Each organ was returned correctly to where they were positioned within the body.
She did not stop there.
Besides putting the organs back in place, she sewed them back in place as well. She also continued to sew up the layers of skin and tissue she had cut through earlier. It was troublesome and a lot of work, but she patiently went through the whole process…
In the end, she wrung out warm water from a handkerchief and used it to wipe the abdomen area down.
Besides an additional, neatly sewn seam across the abdomen and the unique smell in the air that one could smell but couldn’t see, the victim’s body looked just like it did when they first arrived.
Those bloody and gross images seemed to be nothing but a dream!
The crowd was done throwing up and had regained their senses by this time. They all stared at Song Caitang as though they had seen a ghost.
After she had wiped the body, Song Caitang cleaned up the blood on the table, then proceeded to attend to herself.
She removed her gloves, coat, and face mask, then washed her hands. She was back to being that beautiful yet confident, clean and pure young woman with those almond-shaped eyes and pearly whites.
She smiled brightly as she stood in the sunshine, which gave her a glow that could blind the crowd watching her!
Everyone stared at her unblinkingly as they watched her clean everything up, then use her clean hands to pick up the cloth used to cover the dead body and pull it neatly over the corpse once more.
When she did this, she stopped smiling. Her expression was serious. She looked very solemn. But everyone felt that she looked even more beautiful than when she smiled as she stood in the sunshine when she first arrived.
This woman’s slim and fair hands…were magical!
This moment was silent and lasted a long time. The impression left behind on each person was deep but different for everyone.
Some remembered clearly that the tassel on Song Caitang’s hairclip reflected the sunshine like ripples in the water and tinkled softly as they blew in the wind.
…remembered a faint fragrance that was completely different from the awful smell of the dead body earlier.
📢 Donation section launched! Help us translate earlier chapters of some series. Check it out
We're looking for Korean translators, you will be PAID per chapter.
You can use these forms to apply:
This translation is made by fans and while the chapters on our website are free, they cost money to produce. Thus, any form of support would be much appreciated. Also, join us on discord to get release notifications and chat about our series.
Enjoying the series? Rate or review it on Novel Updates