After Mr. Song's interruption, they didn't dare to let their guard down for the rest of the journey.
Old Yuan didn't even dare to return to the third-class carriage. For safety's sake, he continued to hide in the cargo compartment and whispered to the old lady all the way until the train arrived in Beijing.
When the train pulled into the station, everyone breathed a sigh of relief.
From the heart-stopping events in Fengtian City to the nerve-wracking journey, they had finally fulfilled their mission.
The Deputy Mayor Jin had some connections in Beijing, and after writing a few letters, two professors from Youzhou University personally came to pick them up.
They escorted Old Yuan and the others to the Jin family's old manor, where the boxes were then sent to the treasure escort team for southward transportation in batches.
The two professors knew the true purpose of this trip and how difficult it was to bring these things out from the northeast. They bowed respectfully to Old Yuan and the others.
"Gentlemen, you have brought great treasures from a thousand miles away in the northeast, risking everything to preserve our nation's cultural gems. Your noble actions are truly admirable. When our country is prosperous and our people are safe, our national treasures will see the light of day again. The people of our country will remember your contributions and merits!"
Old Yuan couldn't stand this flowery language. All the words he usually spoke became useless at this moment. He waved his hands and stepped back, pushing the eloquent Ling Shu forward.
Ling Shu pondered how he should be polite and humble, and said, "The national treasure is something that even a commoner would protect. You two gentlemen don't have to be polite. Let's quickly settle the old lady and send the boxes back. We can all rest assured once everything is properly arranged."
Professor A sincerely exclaimed, "Truly, women are not inferior to men. Madam's demeanor is admirable!"
Ling Shu: ???
Only then did he realize that he was still wearing a cheongsam and had his hair in a bun.
Despite his rough and bold voice, it seemed to confirm that he was indeed a heroine among women.
Beside him, Yue Dingtang coughed abruptly and twitched his eyebrows twice.
Professor A was confused by the situation: Did he say something wrong?
Professor B quickly stopped him, "You're wrong. This lady's act of kindness came from her own conscience, not because she's following her husband's lead. It's precisely because of this self-awareness that her actions are even more commendable. She should be a role model for women of our time!"
Ling Shu couldn't help but laugh, "Gentlemen, I'm actually a man. I dressed up as a woman for convenience during my travels."
The two professors were stunned and quickly apologized for their mistake.
Old Yuan couldn't hold back his laughter any longer.
After this little incident, the two groups naturally had to part ways.
Old Yuan and his companions were tasked with escorting the treasure down south, and who knows, they may even settle down there and continue to protect it.
For the rest of his life, Old Yuan would be tied to these treasures. Ling Shu and Yue Dingtang had to return to Shanghai.
Old Yuan looked at his lifelong friend in front of him, patting his shoulder with a sigh.
"I thought we would never see each other again in this lifetime, but here we are reunited in Fengtian. Seeing you so lively and energetic, I can finally rest easy. I'll go first, my old brother. Take care of yourself and who knows when we'll meet again!"
Ling Shu replied, "Once you settle down, it's time to consider getting married and having children. We can't keep running around like this forever. I hope that the next time we meet, at least two little ones will call me godfather and pour me a drink!"
Old Yuan was feeling sentimental, but as soon as he heard what was said, he perked up and exclaimed, "Great! That's settled then. You two, me two, plus Old Yue's two, we'll make a big family. If I have a son, you better have a daughter so we can arrange a marriage for them."
Ling Shu sneered, "It's a new era now. Parents no longer have the power to arrange marriages. Don't get your hopes up. Unless you marry a goddess, otherwise, if you have an ugly son, you can forget about trying to pursue my beautiful daughter!"
Old Yuan lifted his foot to kick Ling Shu, but Ling Shu was quick to kick him in the injured area, causing him to almost fall to the ground.
"Just you wait, I'll settle my business first, then I'll come to Shanghai to settle the score with you!"
"Alright, alright, just go already. You talk too much!"
Old Yuan laughed and cursed a few words before waving goodbye to Ling Shu and Yue Dingtang, dragging them away.
"Let's go, let's go home!" Ling Shu waved his hand and walked away quickly.
Knowing that they were going back to Shanghai, the two professors had arranged for someone to buy them train tickets in advance.
However, there was no direct train from Beijing to Shanghai at the moment. They had to first return to Tianjin from Beijing, then take the Jinpu Railway from Tianjin to Nanjing, and finally depart from Nanjing to Shanghai. It was a long and winding journey.
But now that they had passed through Tianjin, it was unlikely that they would be "lucky" enough to run into Mr. Song again, which was actually safer for them.
Just as they had taken a few steps, Yue Dingtang dragged them back.
"You're still wearing women's clothing. Be more discreet. It's not a good thing to be recognized here, is it?"
Looking around, Ling Shu noticed that quite a few people were staring at him. Perhaps they thought the woman with him was pretty, but not very refined in her movements.
"I want to change back into my original clothes," he protested unhappily.
"There's no time for that. The train to Tianjin is about to leave. Get on first and we'll talk about it later. You can change when we get there," Yue Dingtang said, pulling him along.
They changed trains and headed south without incident. Everything was smooth sailing.
The only small surprise was when Ling Shu got off the train at Tianjin station and encountered someone with an unfriendly look in their eyes.
The person approached Ling Shu eagerly, greeting him warmly for a long time.
It was only then that Ling Shu realized that this person had mistaken him for the famous female writer Su Qianjun. Su Qianjun was currently very popular, with a sharp and incisive writing style that excelled at satirizing society and exposing human nature. Her plots were intricately woven and captivating, causing readers to both love and curse her work. Despite the criticism she received from some in the cultural sphere, there were also many who supported her.
Although Su Qianjun's works were mostly published in Beijing and Tianjin, her reputation had even reached Ling Shu's ears.
The person was a loyal reader of Su Qianjun's, and upon hearing that the talented writer had arrived in Tianjin, he waited for her at the train station with a black and white photo in hand. Mistaking Ling Shu for her, he pestered Ling Shu for an autograph and a few words of commentary on his bookmark.
To make matters worse, Yue Dingtang just stood by and watched, not bothering to clarify the situation.
Unable to tolerate it any longer, Ling Shu bluntly told the person to leave.
"My writing is not meant for someone like you to read."
Taking advantage of the person's momentary confusion, he pushed them away and quickly left, finally getting rid of the annoyance.
In light of this, he insisted on changing his entire outfit before continuing the journey.
Yue Dingtang had a narrow-minded mentality and hypocritically said, "We can wait until we reach Nanjing to change, after all, Mr. Song is already settled in Tianjin."
Ling Shu remained expressionless and said, "Mr. Yue, pregnant women have bad tempers. If you can tolerate me throwing cups, cursing, and even using my little fists to vent my anger on my husband along the way, then I can accompany you for the rest of the journey."
Yue Dingtang glanced at his "little fists" and pondered for a few seconds.
"Let's find a nearby hotel first, take a shower, change clothes, and then continue the journey."