Chapter 77: Tenacity
Shi Fengju returned to the study room, and before he could place down the accounts book in his hand and several other items, Lan Xiang had appeared.
“Young Master, our Missy has been thinking of you the entire afternoon! What happened between Young Master and Missy just now was only because of her bad mood. She didn’t want to fume at you intentionally! Missy really is pitiful. Young Master, please go and see her!”
In the past, whenever Lan Xiang were to say those, the thought of Gu Fangzi’s pitiful state would always melt Shi Fengju’s heart. But not today. Hearing so only irked him even more. He had traveled extensively and had seen many pitiful people under the heavens. In contrast, Gu Fangzi was already considered fortunate enough as even a Missy from a rich family could not compare to her! How pitiful could she be?
“Is that so?” Shi Fengju said rather nonchalantly, “Then you should accompany her more since I don’t have the free time to do so!”
Lan Xiang was shaken by the sight of Shi Fengju’s rejection, but she quickly smiled as she coaxed, “Yes, nubi shall return now to accompany Missy and persuade her! Then, then maybe later at night, can Young Master come over to have dinner with Missy? Missy has been remorseful the entire day for treating Young Master as such, and she kept talking over and over about how she would really like to apologize to Young Master!”
“An apology won’t be necessary!” Shi Fengju said with a faint smile, “Just pass on the message to tell her to be more cautious when she speaks and acts! I don’t have the time today. When I’m free, I’ll go to see her! Enough, you may go!”
Lan Xiang did not dare to say anymore as she acknowledged his order before taking her leave.
Gu Fangzi felt disappointed after listening to Lan Xiang. “Not free? I do not know when Big Cousin has become so busy! Go, go and fix your eyes on him and see if he will go to the small garden!”
Lan Xiang gave a distressed look at Gu Fangzi which was met with a firm glare instead. Without a choice, she had to brace herself yet again.
Sure enough, as Gu Fangzi had expected, Shi Fengju really went to the small garden.
“I knew it! I knew it!” Gu Fangzi was so furious that her lips trembled as she paced about the house.
Lan Xiang clasped her hands together as she watched silently. She thought to herself, The small garden is where the young master and Ma’am lives. Isn’t it normal for the young master to return to the small garden? It seems Missy has become foolish to be even mad at such a thing!
Lan Xiang sighed to herself, If she’s going to be mad at something like this, then how mad will she be for other matters to come! Becoming a concubine after marrying into the household, there’s no way she can remain as the same Miss Gu anymore. Why can’t Missy face the reality!
“You go back again,” Gu Fangzi suddenly stopped moving and said, and Lan Xiang nearly collapsed on the floor.
“Big Cousin will usually return to the study room in the evening, so go and see if he does. And if he does, report back to me!”
“Yes, Missy!” Lan Xiang’s heart finally relaxed. She had almost thought that she was going to be sent for a death sentence, but who knew it’d really be that!
Asking her to inquire from the darkness was still alright, but if Missy was sending her out again to invite the young master over, the young master might really punish her severely!
Not too long after Lan Xiang left the study room, Shi Fengju returned to the small garden.
He saw Sang Wan sitting by the ledge of the window sewing something. Her white and slender neck looked delicate and beautiful under the faint light. From his direction, the side of her face was soft and gentle, and her red lips looked tender as their edges rose a little. She was extremely lovely yet pitiful at the same time. Under the faint light, she exuded a tranquil and elegant disposition.
Shi Fengju’s heart fluttered for a moment before calming down. His dejected heart was wiped clean in an instant. The subtle warmth and calmness gradually filled his heart as if spring water was slowly being released into his heart. Such a sensation gave him the feeling of warmth and reluctance. Is this how it feels to be home?
Having lowered her head for quite some time, Sang Wan gently looked up and stretched her arms back for a while. Her eyes were like a pair of gems as they glistened under the faint light, and upon seeing Shi Fengju who was standing there without moving, she quickly got up to walk towards him. She then called out to him, “Sir, you’re back!”
“En!” Shi Fengju walked up and smiled, “What were you sewing?” He was extremely happy to hear those three words she said to welcome him back.
“It’s a headwear for Mother,” Sang Wan smiled, “My craftsmanship isn’t that good. I’ve been making it for several days, and it’s still not yet complete!”
Shi Fengju could not help but want to feel the headwear. It was purple, and embroidered on both sides was a chrysanthemum pattern. The middle was not embroidered, so that it could be embedded with a jewel or a jade. The bright satin material felt very comfortable with the cotton as the inner lining. The headwear was soft to the touch, causing no abrasions on the skin.
“You’ve worked hard, so Mother will surely like it!” Shi Fengju smiled and placed it down, but his mood turned a little sour. She seemed to never have thought of sewing something for him!
“Then that’s good!” Sang Wan smiled before saying, “Oh yes, I’ve already divided the things that Sir brought back into several categories. There are things that I don’t know whom to give to, so Sir, why don’t you have a look for yourself!”
As Sang Wan spoke, she took several pieces of paper over to him and handed them to him. The others were fine, but as for Gu Fangzi, she was sure that woman would have a comment for her regardless what she gives, so might as well push it all cleanly to him.
Shi Fengju was somewhat unhappy and also helpless. Since he had already given everything to her, then shouldn’t it mean that he had let her assume responsibility? Regardless of how she distributed the items, he would have no opinion. But in the end, the decision was still on him!
But that’s fine, there will still be many days to come!
Shi Fengju encouraged himself and received the paper. But upon seeing that everything was written neatly in order with all the names and quantities of the goods, all he had to do was correspond the goods with the paper.
She ah, is just being too careful!
But thinking of her difficulties while standing in her position, Shi Fengju could entirely empathize with her.
Shi Fengju smiled. “I already had someone send a prepared set for Mother and the Seconds. It was my bad for not being clear. The majority of these are for you, but you can pick a few and gift them to a few sisters and nannies!”
Sang Wan’s eyes widened, and she looked at Shi Fengju in disbelief.
Shi Fengju’s dark eyes gazed into hers, almost as if his gaze could dive deep into her heart. “Of course they are, you’re Ma’am Shi. There may occasionally be people coming to visit, and there’s also the need to reward the people in the household. Since these goods are of good quality, you can keep them to reward others and maybe gift some away.”
With that said, he pulled out the piece of paper before pointing at it to mention, “These few pieces of lynx and red fox fur, as well as those brocades, gems, cosmetics, a scholar set from the capital, and a few jade porcelains, are yours. As for the rest, you can just gift them to others however you like.”
His suddenly becoming so good towards her made her somewhat surprised, sending her into a daze. After a while, she smiled back at him. “Then I’ll have someone put those aside! Once I have everything settled, I’ll have someone send the gifts to their respective recipients.” After some thought, she continued, “But I’m not sure what Sister Gu would like! How about Sir seeing it for himself!”
Since these were for her, then she would accept them wholeheartedly! Unfortunately, the prices of all these gifts were difficult to gauge due to their rarity! It would’ve been better had they been silvers! Sang Wan secretly sighed to herself.
As for anything to do with Gu Fangzi, Sang Wan had made up her mind to not get involved with her!
Hearing her address Gu Fangzi as “Sister Gu,” Shi Fengju felt somewhat uncomfortable, and he said carelessly, “It’s fine to just let Nanny Li pick out the jewelry and fabrics.” After giving it another thought, he added, “From today on, she’s a concubine. Things will be different now; it should be her who shows you respect! If there’s anything you’re unhappy with, you can just discipline her by the rules.”
Sang Wan could not help but secretly roll her eyes. Discipline her and handle her? Before you or mother-in-law can say anything, who knows what else that woman will have already said! Unless I’m foolish enough, I wouldn’t even want to provoke her! In the event that I’m not the one managing the household, that woman might have already torn down this place! Since you’ve already said so today, are you trying to tell me that if she were to make an even greater ruckus, you won’t come forward personally?
“I understand.” Sang Wan grinned and nodded, but her heart was determined not to do anything.
Shi Fengju just took it that she understood the reason he had done so was to protect her, and he smiled.
After the two had dinner, they sat to chat idly for a while before Shi Fengju finally stood up to return to the study room. “I still have some things to handle, so I’ll be back a little later. The lighting at night isn’t good, so don’t do your needlework now. Also, read a little less. Maybe have a chat with Nanny, Zhide, and the rest of them. If you’re tired, you can go to sleep first. You don’t need to wait for me!”
Feeling a sense of warmth, Sang Wan rose to see him off as she smiled. “Then when I’m tired, I’ll really head to bed before you! Do you want me to have the small kitchen prepare some supper for you?”
“Anything!” Shi Fengju smiled and left. A wife is no doubt the best, she is so gentle…
Shi Fengju could not help but nudge his head. He must have been truly blind in the past. A pearl was right in front of his eyes, yet he couldn’t see it. Instead, he went to grab the fisheye bead and treated it as his precious!
What a pity. Now that he wanted to treat that someone as his precious, that person wouldn’t accept him.
“Aiyo, Lan Xiang, you’re here again ah!” In the study room, Shi Fengju could hear Zhang Huan’s voice sounding from outside, and he frowned. Again and again!
“Brother Zhang Huan, is the young master inside? I’m here to pass a message from my Missy. Can Zhang Huan please inform the young master!” Lan Xiang smiled.
“Oh, then please wait a while,” Zhang Huan gave a few glances at Lan Xiang, and his heart had the same thought as his master. Miss Gu had become more clingy than she used to before, and in just a day, she had already sent her servant over so many times. Seriously, she was still in her mourning period…
“Sir, Miss Gu’s servant Lan Xiang has come to pass a message. Should I let her in?” Zhang Huan said bluntly.
“Just say that I don’t have the time. Tell her to say what she wants to you and leave if there’s nothing else.” Without even looking up, Shi Fengju continued to flip through the book in his hand.
Startled, Zhang Huan stood motionlessly.
In the past, the young master wasn’t like this. Just what had happened? Or did he not hear what was said?
Zhang Huan felt the necessity to inform his master accurately, and so he gave a cough before raising his voice slightly higher than before, “Sir, Miss Gu’s—”
“Are you done?” Shi Fengju raised his head and glared at him coldly. “Get out now!”
“Yes, yes!” Zhang Huan shrunk his neck and left in fright.
Lan Xiang was placed in a difficult position, and she was helpless. Without a choice, she returned unhappily, but she smiled as she reported to Gu Fangzi, “The young master seems to be busy and has no time at the moment! Missy, why don’t you try again tomorrow…”
Just when Lan Xiang thought that Gu Fangzi would give up, she was ordered to bring Gu Fangzi her coat. “I’ll go and take a look!”