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Chapter 8: Just and Righteous Lin Beifan!
“Right, right, right! These were all arranged by my wife, I had no knowledge of it at all!” Yao Zheng knelt down with his wife and cursed angrily, “What’s going on? How did these things end up in my house? Tell me the truth in detail!”
“My Lord, it is true that I arranged these things, but I didn’t know they were so valuable!” Yao Zhangshi said in a panic, “They were all given to me as gifts by others! But I remembered your teachings and didn’t accept any of them. I only bought them when I saw they were cheap and good. I never expected…”
“You’re being foolish!” Yao Zheng lamented, “My reputation for a lifetime has been ruined by you!”
“My Lord, I did wrong!” Yao Zhangshi cried.
“It seems everything is now clear!” Lin Beifan laughed and said, “Sir Yao and his wife didn’t actually act greedy, they just didn’t know the value of these items. But they couldn’t resist the temptation when the gifts were presented to them. Even if they didn’t mean to be greedy, they ended up as such!”
The Empress snorted, “Yao Zheng, since you were unaware, we will not remove your official hat. But you will be fined for one year and let this serve as a warning to others. Also, all of these items will be confiscated. Remember this and don’t make the same mistake again!”
Yao Zheng and his wife were relieved and quickly kowtowed, “Thank you, Your Majesty’s mercy! Thank you, Your Majesty’s mercy…”
After handling the matter, the empress looked at Lin Beifan in amazement: “Sir Lin, you have truly impressed me! These items are difficult for ordinary people to recognize, but you can see through them at a glance and accurately estimate their value! You are amazing!”
“Your Majesty overpraises me, I am unworthy,” Lin Beifan replied humbly.
“Sir Lin, how did you do it?”
“In response to Your Majesty’s question…” Lin Beifan respectfully said, “I have read extensively since I was young, swallowing all kinds of knowledge. At the same time, I am curious about anything new and pay attention to observation in my daily life. Over time, I have learned a lot. These are just some minor skills and not worth mentioning.”
In fact, it was all thanks to his system. He bound the system for corrupt officials, which included a scanning and identifying function for antiques. Anything that passed his eyes could be identified, along with its value. This prevented him from missing any treasures.
“This is not just some minor skill, but a very effective one if used properly! I hope you will continue to maintain it!” the empress said.
“I will follow your orders!” Lin Beifan replied.
The empress was even more satisfied with Lin Beifan. Not only did he care about the people, but he was also quick-witted and had the ability to turn danger into safety. He was well-read, sharp-eyed, and had the ability to identify treasures.
In the imperial court, it’s rare to find someone as talented as him! But he’s a bit cunning and a bit bad! Even someone as old as Yao Zheng fell for his trickery! He’s also thick-skinned and can spin lies without batting an eye.
However, his strengths outweigh his flaws! The empress pondered and said, “A bronze mirror can reflect one’s attire, history can reveal the rise and fall of a nation, and people can reveal gains and losses. As a censor, you are a mirror of the imperial court. Through this mirror, we can see the filth and shortcomings of the court and make improvements. Therefore, as a censor, you must lead by example and set a good standard!” Everyone nodded in agreement.
The empress sighed, “But now even the usually righteous Yao Zheng has succumbed! Who knows how many censors are compromised in our system? Their harm is too great, and I am deeply concerned! Thus, we must carry out a thorough investigation.”
Everyone bowed their heads, afraid to speak. In truth, raiding someone’s home is a lucrative task where one can pocket some valuables.
However, raiding a censor’s home was an act of making enemies! A censor holds the power to monitor all officials and can impeach anyone from the emperor to the lowest-ranked official. If you offend them, aren’t you afraid of being impeached in the future?
“I’ll assign this task to…” The empress scanned the officials and prepared to pick someone. At this moment, Lin Beifan stepped forward and loudly said, “Your Majesty, please assign this task to me!”
“You?” The empress was puzzled.
“This task is not suitable for anyone else, only me!”
“Because if others investigate, they may protect each other and it will end without result! But I don’t have this problem. I’m a newcomer to the officialdom and not familiar with anyone. I won’t protect anyone! Moreover, I have the ability to appraise treasures and won’t miss any valuable items!”
The empress smiled, “Aren’t you afraid of offending people?”
Lin Beifan shook his head, his eyes very firm and righteous, “No! I’m grateful for your grace and have already put life and death aside! I’m willing to devote myself to your service and repay your great kindness!”
The empress exclaimed, “Good! It’s rare to have such loyal officials. I’ll assign this task to you!”
“Thank you, Your Majesty!” Lin Beifan exclaimed, “I’m willing to work hard and die for Your Majesty!”
1. Censor, in traditional East Asia, governmental official charged primarily with the responsibility for scrutinizing and criticizing the conduct of officials and rulers.
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