Seeing that Sang Wan could think this way, Shi Fengju knew that things should be fine for Sang Wan for now. He smiled and said, “I will tell Mother and Big Sister about it. Please care for Third Sister more, she is always honest and well-behaved, but who knows how much resentment she had to endure on a daily basis? So please take care of her!”
“Don’t worry, I will.” Sang Wan smiled and nodded.
Shi Fengju smiled after seeing her smile and really wanted to apologize for the incident that happened the other day, but no words seemed to escape from his mouth. It would be better not to bring it up as it would only make things worse. It’d be better if everyone forgot about it!
“Are you hungry? You were really busy the entire morning and haven’t had anything to eat!” Shi Fengju smiled and said.
Sang Wan suddenly felt hungry and looked at the clock on the table. She exclaimed, “It’s already this late!” She hurriedly called for someone to ask if lunch was prepared.
Liu Ya quickly reported that it was prepared and instructed the servants to serve the dishes.
While heading to the table, Sang Wan asked Shi Fengju with a smile, “How is it so coincidental that Liu Ya bumped into you today? Did she interrupt you at your work?”
“Don’t worry about it!” Shi Fengju replied, “I was supposed to meet with the Zhuang family’s young master in the restaurant to discuss about some matters, but we can always do that another day!”
“Young Master Zhuang?” Sang Wan smiled and asked, “Old Mistress Zhuang’s son?”
“Yes,” Shi Fengju smiled and said, “We can be considered childhood friends. Speaking of which, you haven’t seen him before; next time, I’ll bring you with me to meet him.”
Sang Wan found their conversation too personal and did not respond to his invitation. Shi Fengju smiled and did not mention about it further.
After lunch, Shi Fengju went over to Jiao Garden to find Shi Yumei.
Hearing a maidservant announce his arrival, Shi Yumei went to receive him personally. She clapped and laughed, “This is rare, which wind brought you here!”
“Am I not allowed to visit Big Sister?” Shi Fengju smiled and walked into the house with her.
“Of course you’re welcomed to visit me anytime!” Shi Yumei smiled and said, “But who knows if you are here to criticize me!”
“Criticize?” Shi Fengju sat down calmly and laughed in spite of himself, “Big Sister, why would you say that!”
Shi Yumei instructed a maidservant to serve them tea before she held her handkerchief and gave a frigid smile, “Enough, you know your sister hates being indirect, so stop going through the trouble of putting on an act! Surely you should know what I mean? Or have you lived with a particular someone for too long and contracted this bad habit as well?”
“Big Sister, can we speak more civilly?” Shi Fengju smiled.
“Fine, fine! I’ll stop, I’ll stop!” Shi Yumei waved her hand indignantly, “That person’s the mistress of this household, what am I compared to her! Since I can’t afford to offend her, then I might as well just hide somewhere in order to never find trouble for her anymore. Is that alright with you?”
“We’re a family, there’s no need to be so forbidding!” Shi Fengju smiled and said, “In fact, I hope that Big Sister will visit Sang Wan when you’re bored. I’m sure you’ll take a liking to her when you get to know her better.”
“Enough! I know your eyes only have her now! Fengju, just treat it as your big sister being nosy, but Fangzi has invested so much into you; you can’t just forget about her completely!”
“Big Sister,” Shi Fengju spoke indifferently, but his tone became slightly unnatural, “Fangzi has already married into our family, in what way have I let her down? If she remains dutiful, our Shi family will not mistreat her. Big Sister, did you go shopping with Sang Wan and Third Sister today?”
Shi Yumei could only hold back the words she was about to say and glare at Shi Fengju unhappily. I knew you were here to ask about it! She said, “Yes, I normally can’t tell, but your wife gets along quite well with our third sister. I did not want to disturb their quality time so I left first! Did someone complain to you, saying that I abandoned them?” Shi Yumei widened her eyes in shock and straightened her back as she glared at Shi Fengju before snapping, “Why are you here at this time of the day? Did she purposely ask someone to call you back when you were out at work?”
“Now you’re overthinking again!” Shi Fengju said casually, “I just happened to see Sang Wan and Third Sister on the street and brought Third Sister to visit the doctor before returning after that!”
After Shi Fengju spoke, he glanced subtly at her before lowering his head to sip his tea.
Shi Yumi’s expression turned a little dull and she said nonchalantly, “Wasn’t it just a light bump from the horse carriage? Was there even a need to visit the doctor? Third Sister is too spoilt!”
“Big Sister doesn’t know?” Shi Fengju was astonished then nodded with a sigh, “It seems Big Sister really doesn’t know. Third Sister’s foot is fractured. It wasn’t just a bump and the injury is quite serious. The doctor said she has to rest for two months before she’d be fully recovered. Right now, she cannot even walk and has to stay in bed.”
Shi Yumei’s expression changed, “Is it really this serious? I was sure the wheels only touched her foot slightly, how can it be this serious!”
“The horse carriage is very heavy. As a woman, how could Third Sister withstand the pressure of the carriage wheel running over her foot?” Shi Fengju said, “Luckily, the doctor said that with careful recuperation and diligent application of medication for two months, she’ll be fine and won’t stay handicapped. If not, Third Sister’s future would be ruined!”
Shi Yumei was feeling a little ashamed of herself, but after hearing what Shi fengju said, it sounded like he was putting all the blame on her. She said angrily, “My fault then, it’s all my fault! Is this okay for you? If she is fine then good for her. If she becomes handicapped, then I will just compensate her!”
“Big Sister!” Listening to his big sister saying such childish words, Shi Fengju laughed, “I didn’t mean it that way——”
“Then what were you trying to imply?” Shi Yumei sneered, “If that wasn’t what you meant, then what was the point of you coming here to tell me about this?”
“Am I wrong to let Big Sister know about this?” Shi Fengju was a little flustered, and stared at Shi Yumei, “Big Sister, touch your heart and tell me, are you really not at fault? If it was you who were hurt and Third Sister left without turning back, how would you think——”
“How dare she!” Shi Yumei shouted angrily and was instantly put at a loss of words.
Shi Fengju looked at her for an extended period before saying, “So that’s how Big Sister would react as well! In any case, Third Sister is still our sister, if she is involved in any accident, can you ever rest your heart in this lifetime? Third Sister has a good personality and I don’t remember her ever offending Big Sister, so why would you find her a nuisance? I had always thought I understood Big Sister well, but it seems that isn’t the case! Big Sister, I have no idea what you want, but I’m only here today to inform you about Third Sister’s situation. If you’re ever free, please visit her once in a while! And please do not associate our conversation with Third Sister again. She did not get angry about anything nor complained to me, please do not overthink again!”
After finishing the words he came to say, he got up and left Jiao Garden.
Shi Yumei’s lips moved a little, but no words came out.
“How was I supposed to know that she’s so fragile, am I really so wicked?” Shi Yumei mumbled and was feeling sullen deep within her heart.
“Cousin Yumei!” Gu Fangzi slowly came out from behind the partition and held onto Shi Yumei while consoling her, “Don’t say that! Cousin Yumei has always spoken your mind, so how can you be associated with being wicked? This is just an accident, how could you put all the responsibility onto yourself? Big Cousin didn’t mean this too, he was only here to inform you about Third Cousin Shi Lian’s situation and let you rest your worries! Just now, weren’t you telling me that you wished to know if Cousin Shi Lian was injured. Now that you know, you should be feeling more relieved! You had some things to deal with, wasn’t that why you left Sister Sang Wan with Cousin Shi Lian? So this shouldn’t have anything to do with you anymore! And who knows what else might have happened after you left, maybe she was hurt some other way? Sister Sang Wan really is too much, if she was really concerned about Cousin Shi Lian, she should’ve sent her to the doctor without any delay before it became too late. Otherwise, even nothing would become something.”
“Visit the doctor before it becomes too late? She finally found this golden opportunity to find fault in me so why would she give it up? From how I see it, Third Sister’s injury now may even be caused by her tardiness! It really is strange how she managed to meet Fengju so coincidentally!”
Shi Yumei gradually became angrier the more she thought about it and confirmed that Sang Wan was a calculative person who plotted against her.
Of course, Gu Fangzi happy for the development, but she tried to explain on behalf of Sang Wan, “Cousin Yumei, don’t say that! Sister Sang Wan hasn’t been out of the household much so she wouldn’t have experienced such an accident before, much less plan it? It may only be her negligence, but it’s not impossible to say it was unintentional—— Cousin Yumei, Sister Sang Wan isn’t such a person, don’t misunderstand! Why don’t I accompany Cousin Yumei to pay Ning Garden a visit to settle this matter once and for all?”
“I’m not going!” Shi Yumei said angrily, “I’m never bowing down to her! Just who does she think she is! Isn’t she capable of deploying Fengju to speak up for her and teach me a lesson? She’ll be dreaming if she thinks I’ll present myself to her and let her humiliate me!”
Gu Fangzi quickly spoke and said, “We won’t go, we won’t go if you don’t want to! Cousin Yumei, don’t be angry anymore. Anger isn’t good for your body! Forget about it, I’m sure Big Cousin will settle it with Sister Sister Wan. Why don’t we visit Cousin Shi Lian tomorrow? Cousin Yumei, Cousin Shi Lian is still our family!”
Shi Yumei thought about the natural chemistry and intimate relationship Shi Lian shared with Sang Wan, compared it to the constant nervousness and distant feeling exhibited towards herself, and feel even more upset, “She deserved it for siding with an outsider!”
She felt a sense of exhilaration and the little guilt towards Shi Lian disappeared as well. Instead, it was replaced with a feeling of gratification.
“I still think we should go!” Gu Fangzi continued to coax before whispering in the end, “Not for others, but for Sister Sang Wan to see. Otherwise, this may not sound pleasant, but Cousin Yumei may end up being labelled as the antagonist this time!”
Shi Yumei suddenly realized it too. She nodded and agreed, “You are right, then that means I have no choice but to visit her!”
Shi Yumei could not help but sigh as she held Gu Fangzi’s hand, “Fangzi, you are the only one who is genuinely good to me! Ai, I’m looking forward to the day your mourning period ends and for you to seal the deed with Fengju. When that happens, let’s see what other tricks are up that vixen’s sleeves!”
Gu Fangzi felt a sense of jubilation. She lowered her eyes shyly and held Shi Yumei’s elbow coyly. Shi Yumei laughed and made fun of her more; her mood was feeling better now.
At Ning Garden, Nanny Li went up to Sang Wan and smiled after Shi Fengju left, “This old servant will send a servant to the study room to bring back the clothes Young Master brought over two days ago!”
Sang Wan was taken aback for a moment and understood where Nanny Li was coming from. She forced a smile and said, “I don’t think there is any need to. It may even be a good thing to put a few clothes there to provide convenience for Lord whenever he wishes to change his clothes there. Anyway, there are still clothes here! There’s no need to go through the trouble to bring his clothes back!”