The Houdie family’s master had personally left for Shilolin in order to attend the Supreme Court of the Star Alliance. Hints regarding this matter could already be found on Xingyou as well as other platforms on the starnet.
However this was not a leak, but due to Houdie family’s exclusive work. The purpose behind it was to pave a way for the following events once they win the trial and take the cub back. At that time they intend to take advantage of the fact that the cub had developed a variant ability and showcase this to the public in order to boost their reputation and status.
Xie Luan calmly sat down in his seat. The interstellar court was very different in many aspects when compared to the court of the 21-century earth. However, for the past few days, he had frantically studied and exhausted himself to the bone in order to mend this part of his common sense regarding this world.
The sound representing the beginning of the trial had already echoed throughout the building and from now on everything happening in the court was being recorded. After the trial, a permanent recording would be kept and filed at the Supreme Court of the Star Alliance.
The recording would also be shared with all the courts of the races who were part of the Star Alliance. If a plaintiff was not fully confident, they would generally not dare to stand here directly.
Of course, the same went for the advocate who would fight their claim and present evidence on Xie Luan’s behalf. Once the trial began, the people sitting opposite Xie Luan on the platform were the first to speak.
Tapping the black cane against the floor, the Houdie family’s master seated at the table appeared very collected and did not make any remarks. The man standing next to the other presented the case and gave an overview of their standpoint.
Not thinking of this trial as especially difficult, the man stated and pressed the simple core points once he finished presenting their stance, “In this case, the evidence clearly shows that the cub belongs to the Houdie family, but despite this, the other side still insisted on refusing to cooperate. This behavior is absolutely unreasonable according to Star Alliance law. In other words, it’s a violation of the laws of the Star Alliance itself.
The evidence was sufficient to prove the other side’s standpoint. After confirming that the documents presented as evidence did not contain any signs of forgery, the 12 judges seated above in the circular venue had a slight bias in their hearts.
The trial required fairness, however, even though the trial had only just begun, the judges present already also felt that the trial would not have any suspense. It was a very simple and direct case.
On the Houdie’s side, the man who had spoken felt that there was completely no need to listen to the other side’s speech. No matter how much the other debated, it was impossible to dispel his rational explanation.
Although the judges and the grand judge had not yet made any statements, their attitude could faintly be seen from the inadvertent nodding of several judges, as well as the change in their expressions.
But either way, both sides still had the right to speak. When they received the indication that it was their turn to speak, Xie Luan stood up from his seat.
“A nursing club needs to be responsible for all cubs in the club. Based on this principle, I can not let the Houdie family take the cub back.”
Xie Luan sincerely and calmly declared this. Standing upright under all the judges’ scrutinizing gaze, he did not show an ounce of hesitation.
If only looking at his expression, the judges really could not say the other seemed to be in even the smallest of disadvantage. The young man on the right side of the hovering platform appeared very calm from beginning to end. Very calm and convincing.
After simply stating his standpoint, Xie Luan entrusted the rest to the defendant by his side and shifted his eyes to the closed wooden door below the hovering platform.
There was more than one witness behind that door who had followed them to Shilolin.
“According to Star Alliance law, families who intentionally abandon their cubs will lose custody of their cubs. This action also violates Article 39 of the Star Alliance Law and is a vile deed requiring punishment.”
When the defendant said this, not only did the faces of the other side slightly change, but all the judges present also suddenly became more serious when they heard the two words “intentionally abandon”.
Realizing that there unexpectedly might be some more to the situation, the twelve judges took back their previous weak biases.
However, the defendant had not submitted any substantial evidence to support the claim. His words alone did not hold any power and would not hold up as a defense.
Just as if hearing what the judges were thinking, the defendant standing beside Xie Luan made a request for a witness to appear in court.
Witness? There were several people from the Houdie family present in the court and when they heard the other party wanted to call a witness, the hearts of the ones who knew the truth speed up. They had finally begun to feel a little unsettled.
At that time, they had handled the matter very neatly and had not left anything behind for others to find.
There was only “that one” who had been paid off in order to complete the task for the family and after the work was done they had agreed that that person would hide far away.
Even they couldn’t find where that person was now, it was even more impossible for the other party to find that man… Convincing themselves with this, the few people in the courtroom had barely settled down when they caught sight of the person walking out of the dark brown door and were thrown into disorder. They forgot themselves for a split second and their faces became incomparably stiff in an instant.
Even the Houdie family’s master, who even before the trial started had acted as if they had already won, now had no choice but to tighten his grip on the cane.
They were in the Supreme Court of the Star Alliance, even though the Houdie now wanted to kill the one who walked out of that door, they could do nothing but throw threatening glares at the other.
The middle-aged man, who entered the courtroom under their eyes, trembled in fear as he walked up to where he was supposed to stand. He did not dare to have any eye contact with the Houdie family.
As a witness, Ogie first stated his identity and then told his previous experience of working as a servant for the Houdie family. This directly pointed out the connection between the two.
“About two years ago, my master gave me a lot of money to abandon the cub on a distant planet and told me to never return to Hailumite after I finished the task, preferably that I stay as far away as possible.”
Ogie told the group of judges seat above about the incident. One could tell from his voice that he was still in a state of panic, “I was blinded by money at that time, and I regretted it many times throughout the past years, and… And that is why I’m willing to testify today.”
“Our family has never hired such a servant.”
The Houdie family’s master seated at the prosecutor’s table struck his cane against the ground, making a dull noise. His eyes were fixated on the person who had just spoken.
The wittiness seat was very close to the prosecutor’s table. As soon as Ogie lifted his eyes a little, he came into contact with the oppressive stare of the Houdie family’s master, the power behind it almost made him feel like it would poke a hole in his body.
“The cost of perjury is very heavy. I advice you to not harm yourself on impulse.” 
He did not know how the other party managed to dig up a witness which even their family was unable to find. But the Houdie family’s old master basically did not have any intention of admitting that the other side had once worked for their family and insisted that the other was perjuring.
Mentioning the word “cost”, the Houdie master was clearly making a threat. As long as the other was not an idiot, he would be able to catch the hidden implication of revenge in that sentence.
Hearing the threat, a chill went down Ogie’s back. Under the old man’s sharp eagle-like eyes, Ogie swallowed down his saliva and with difficulty just barely managed to stop himself from running away before the battle. His forehead had long been dotted with cold sweat due to excessive fear.
If asked if he was not worried about the Houdie family’s retaliation- of course he was afraid of it. If he hadn’t been caught by those Star Alliance investigators and learned the identity of the one who caught him which gave his courage a boost of 10 000, he would never have dared to appear in court as a witness.
Those who caught him assured him that he would not suffer retaliation from the Houdie family and said that if he was willing to attend as a witness, they would slightly lighten his punishment as an accomplice in the abandonment of the cub.
“First of all, should the witness be unable to prove that he has in fact worked for the Houdie family, then this is merely a groundless accusation. Under this premise, the witness’s testimony holds no validity. “
The prosecuting attorney next to the Houdie family’s master immediately killed his claim by directly accusing the middle-aged man standing at the witness stand of perjury.
How could the other party possibly come up with evidence that proved he had once worked for the Houdie family? After thinking about it for a while, the Houdie people were sure that the other side would not be able to find any.
What evidence can there be for that kind of thing? Everything was cleaned up a few years ago. It was simple, they only needed to insist that he absolutely hadn’t worked for them, and then he wouldn’t have.
At that time, they shouldn’t have given the other money in order for them to hide. They should have gotten rid of all connections to this matter from the start. This was the only thing the Houdie family regretted now.
A man had all of a sudden appeared saying that he had a relationship with the Houdie family and that he was a man who had disappeared completely a few years ago after handling their dirty work. As a witness, the credibility of his statement was indeed limited.
But just as the judges were about to acknowledge the prosecutor’s remarks, the middle-aged man in the witness stand once again opened his mouth.
“I have proof.”
Facing the dangerous eyes not far away, Ogie said this sentence under immense psychological pressure.
He had evidence, but it had not been obtained by him. He did not have the ability to do so. The evidence at hand was all attributed to the people from the army’s investigation department who had found and caught him.
When they had pursued him, they had actually discovered that the Houdie family’s personnel flow of recent years was recorded on their connector. The investigation team had then naturally preceded to get their hands on that information.
The evidence was presented and its authenticity confirmed. To think that valid proof for this would actually be presented… Everyone at the scene, including the grand judge, all showed a dumb expression one after another.
That man had really not made any irresponsible remarks regarding his connection to the Houdie family and the latter had still been so anxious to deny this fact just now, the amount of information feedback from this seemed a bit large.
A big family who had unexpectedly deliberately abandoned their cub, now all of a sudden wanted to recognize and take him back? The judges who touched the truth at this time had a kind of absurd feeling.
Ogie did not bring up the reason why the Houdie family had abandoned the cub. This was because Xie Luan had told him to not mention it. The fact that the mermaid cub could not speak was now a thing of the past. Needless to day, Xie Luan hoped that this matter would be buried.
Cubs with speech impairment were bound to be despised in the mermaid race, even if he wanted to, Xie Luan could not change this. By burying this matter, he could at least ensure that the cub would not be discriminated against when he grew up.
“If the judges still have doubts about my statement, I can also submit a lie detection report. I hope it can serve as a reference.”
Standing at the witness stand, Ogie knew there was no way back. Hence he once again clenched his teeth and said this.
In the interstellar court, the presentation of a lie detection report was a very commonly used method. The lie detection report could not be used as solid evidence on its own, but it could be used as a reference to increase the credibility of the statement in the jury’s eyes.
The lie detection report was at last presented with a high score marked on it. The judges had already begun to weigh the situation in their hearts.
Who would have thought that the other party would still be able to provide evidence?! That worm had even seemed indifferent to their hint at revenge. The Houdie family’s old master squeezed the cane in his hand to the point that the top almost broke off.
The first witness appearing in the court had already thrown the Houdie family into a state of chaos, but this first round of attacks was not over yet. Soon, the second witness was summoned to the courtroom.
The one who emerged from behind the door was from the sevilla race. No one in the Houdie family knew who this second witness was.
But their nerves were already stretched taut. Now facing the seemingly unrelated witness they did not dare to take this lightly.
“I was the one who brought the cub to Yunbao Branch and the one who found the cub at the abandoned field on Gaia. For one thing, I can prove that the cub was abandoned with malicious intentions.”
The sevilla man standing on the hovering platform did not show any signs of hesitation and when he opened his mouth to testify, he spoke in a steady voice. “When I found him on that field, the mermaid cub was very severely dehydrated. I immediately put the cub back in water and took him to the cub hospital. The hospital’s medical records can serve as evidence to confirm the truth of this statement.”
When the witness finished his testimony, Xie Luan pressed a button and presented two pieces of evidence.
One was the identity record of the person who brought the cub to Yunbao Branch. The other was the medical record mentioned just now. It was one of the most important pieces of evidence and Xie Luan had personality run to that cub hospital in order to get it on the other’s behalf.
Proving the cub had been deliberately abandoned and that the circumstances were so serious that it almost led to the cub‘s death, Xie Luan did not intend to give the Houdie family even the slightest chance to justify their actions in the Supreme Court.
After they read the medical records presented, most of the judges’ expressions immediately became grave.
According to the medical records, the severely dehydrated mermaid cub had almost been on the verge of life and death at that time. It was only thanks to the fact that the person who found him had quickly placed the cub in water that he was able to survive.
For a cub to have to go through that… it was just too cruel. Even merely thinking about it sent chills down one’s back.
“I have a video, it may not be solid evidence, but it can be used as an additional reference.”
With the permission of the jury, Xie Luan put the chip he had brought into the opening in the table and the video appeared on the virtual screen.
The scene shown was from the Yunbao Branch.
A mermaid cub swam up to the edge of the pool. The human youth standing by the pool squatted down and touched the cub’s hair, he then slowly lifted the cub out of the water with both of his hands and held the cub in his arms.
The video was very short, it took less than 20 seconds before it reached the end. Xie Luan rewound and paused the video only a few seconds in, he then said. “Because the cub almost died from dehydration, he became very afraid of leaving the water. The situation has improved a lot, but from the cub’s reaction in the video, I believe it can clearly be seen that the cub still suffers from the trauma he experienced.”
The cub’s instinctive response would not deceive. Although the mermaid cub in the video no longer struggled as desperately when he was picked up, his fear and slight stiffness at the moment he left the water were not completely gone.
One thing was very intuitive. After leaving the water, the mermaid cub instinctively sought security from the youth and then slowly relaxed after spending a long time in the youth’s arms.
“The prosecuting party’s deliberate abandonment of the cub has had irreparable consequences. I do not think such a family has any right to claim the cub again. They have done nothing to fulfill their responsibilities of caring for and protecting the cub, they have only done harm.”
Xie Luan also had a temper, but he restrained the emotional impulse and ended his statement.
Being ruthlessly criticized directly in front of one’s face, coupled with the sufficient evidence provided by the other, every member of the Houdie family present felt as though they had been stripped and thrown on the ground.
There was still time for another round of debate between the two sides, but after seeing the youth’s witnesses as well as the evidence they presented, the people on the Houdie family’s side were now completely speechless. This made the whole jury able to see the outcome of the trial.
The judgment of the interstellar court was decided by a vote among the judges and the grand judge, after a final discussion with the jury.
The judges each held one vote, the grand judge had two. The side with the most votes would win the court case.
The number of votes was directly displayed on the virtual screen. After the judges submitted their votes one after another, the numbers on the virtual screen began to change.
1, 2, 3 —— The numbers on the screen blinked very fast and it only took a few seconds for the final outcome to be determined.
13:0, it was indeed a trial without any suspense. It was only that the outcome was completely reversed from what the Houdie family had imagined, they had become the losers.
Truly seeing this result, the Houdie family’s master who had tightly been squeezing the cane for so long that the veins on his hand were now protruding, seemed to suddenly lose all his strength. The hand resting on the black cane let go and the cane fell to the floor.
Following the sharp and clear sound of it hitting the ground, the cane rolled several times in a circle, just like the Houdie family’s current state.
After the trial at the Supreme Court of the Star Alliance, the Yunbao branch got custody of Gale, this was already a satisfactory result for Xie Luan.
As for what punishments awaited the conspirators and accomplices who intentionally abandoned the cub, Xie Luan was not very concerned about this.
Instead of finding a place to temporarily stay on this planet, Xie Luan returned directly to Gaia on a starship.
But even though Xie Luan did not care about what would happen to the Houdie family, due to the latter’s previous“preparation”, some people on the Starnet had been paying attention to the Houdie family’s movement at the Supreme Court of the Star Alliance.
There were no impenetrable walls in the world. The fact that the Houdie family had gone to the Supreme Court and lost, as well as the specific reasons as to why the Houdie family lost, gradually spread during the days Xie Luan spent on the commercial starship.
It was especially big on Xingyou, it was one of the most participatory discussions among the members of the mermaid race.
No matter if it was forwarding or commenting, no one excused their actions, there was no exception, not one sentence. Deliberately abandoning a cub was extremely vile. The other party was a big and wealthy family, this made it even more impossible for the public to understand their actions.
Originally, the Houdie family had already been in terrible shape. The old master faced the risk of having to stay in the Star Alliance’s prison for several years.
Now that their family’s affairs had made it onto Xingyou, the reputation of the Houdie family had dropped a thousand zhang in one fall. For the Houdie family to try to save and build up their reputation again would be very difficult.
Not to mention fixing their reputation, they feared the people in their family would, for the unforeseeable future, have to hold their tails in shame and behave.
The Houdie family finally got what they deserved!
So satisfying… (о’∀’о)
The only thing missing from this chapter is some fluff! I can’t wait for Xie Luan to return to the club, he has been away from Gale and the cubs for all too long.
So, to fill up your cuteness quota, take a look at this adorable fanart made by Rahzel and Eithran! ☆*:.｡. o(≧▽≦)o .｡.:*☆ (My pitful drawing worked!)
Btw, Rahzel is currently working on something even more awesome for the next chapter so we all have something to look forward to~~
 – Perjury is when you lie or make a misrepresentation in court when you have promised to tell only the truth.
 – 一落千丈 (yī luò qiān zhàng), “to drop a thousand zhang in one fall” is an idiom and means to suffer a sudden devastating decline.