Chapter 91: A ‘Parade’ Through Town
Su Shuilian had no objection to Lin Si Yao’s idea of rebuilding their old house into a school.
After confirming the design of the new house, she decided confine herself in the study room to make another sketch to rebuild the old house into a school. She even added a floral arch between her house and the school; it would be more convenient for their kids to go to school later.
Her days of nurshing the babies were originally a little dull. However, because of the new house’s designing and constructing, and the old house’s renovating, Su Shuilian became busier. Of course, her busyness was different from the others. All she was doing was coming up with novel ideas of decorating the house that kept the related carpenters busy.
The middle of the eighth lunar month came again. By the end of autumn, the sky was clear and cool.
Early in the morning, Tian Da Bao and Situ Yun had visited Fan Luo City to catch up with the early, crowded market to buy food and items for the Mid-Autumn Festival. Because of her big belly, Su Shuilian couldn’t go with them.
In the morning, after she had woken up, Su Shuilian had a bowl of chicken porridge together with an apple jam steamed bun. Then, she took a walk around the courtyard before returning to the study room. She sat on the big armchair, reading the current famous poetry in Da Hui Empire to the babies in her belly.
Lin Si Yao had gone to their new house’s construction site early in the morning and came home before noon.
Taking note that Situ Yun would cook a large feast of a dinner, he only cooked two bowls of vegetable and shrimp noodle soup for lunch. He also poached an egg for Su Shuilian and a dish of vinegar-slipped cucumber.
After lunch, Lin Si Yao cleaned the dishes. He heard someone knocking their doors as he was about to take Su Shuilian for a nap.
“A Yao, what’s wrong? Who’s there?”
As Lin Si Yao hadn’t come back from the door, Su Shuilian supported her big belly, curiously walked past Lin Si Yao to look out the gate.
At first glance, she knew it was going to be a troublesome matter. Outside their door, around ten two-horse carriages were lining on the village’s street. A guard with a sword in his hand stood by each carriage.
Along this street, this line of imposing carriages had attracted many people. They stopped to look from a far distance or surrounded the carriages, chatting in low voices. Sometimes, they cast an admiring glance.
Su Shuilian knew that after this event, her family wouldn’t have a peaceful life. Sigh, if she could choose, she wouldn’t want this Prince Jing’s Fourth Young Lady identity at all.
In this moment, a woman in her forties got off the carriage, taking with her seven or eight maids and servants from the other carriages. They came to Su Shuilian, greeting her, “Greetings, Fourth Young Lady!”
“Lady, my family’s name is Liang. The Elder Wangye and Wangfei sent me here to serve you. After they knew you were pregnant, they were extremely happy. If His Highness weren’t sick, they would come to visit you.” The leading woman gave her a curtsy then explained smilingly.
“-Momo*… Liang-momo, you…” Su Shuilian didn’t know what to say.
*(-嬷嬷/ -momo can have several different meanings, which includes elderly lady servant or wet nurse.)
“The carriages contain the items for your labor. Her Highness asked me to prepare them for you. If miss needs anything, please tell me. I will ask someone to buy it immediately.” Liang-momo smiled and explained further as she saw Su Shuilian gawking at the line of horse carriages.
Fourth Young Lady of Prince Jing’s (Elder Wangye) Mansion, who was standing in front of her now, had come to the prince’s mansion as an illegitimate daughter two years ago. And in the following spring, she left a letter and ran away from the mansion. It was then the entire mansion finally realized how important she was to the Elder Wangye.
Otherwise, his heart wouldn’t have ached so much that he got sick. He had sent his men to find her and even punished the Fifth Young Lady, ordering her not to talk for one year before her marriage. Furthermore, Elder Wangye had brought her mother’s memorial tablet into the Prince’s mansion’s Ancestral Hall as per her request in the letter.
Liang-shi* believed that this lady, although she looked soft and boneless, when truffled with, she resembled the Elder Wangye the most.
(XX-shi / XX-氏 – XX refers to maiden name )
The Elder Wangfei (Princess) didn’t have any child, but she had always been nice and generous to the Wangye’s sons and daughters with his other wives. Especially, the Fourth Lady’s mother, who was the Elder Princess’ cousin. That year, it was the God’s will that they were parted. When they met again, her cousin had passed away leaving this poor, little girl in her care.
Unfortunately, the other young ladies from the other wives were jealous of her.
Especially the Fifth Lady, who was the same age but several months younger than her. She had always tried to trouble her, mocking, and disdaining her. There were times even the servants like them couldn’t stand it. However, they were afraid of her status, they couldn’t say anything, and didn’t dare report it to the Elder Wangye and Wangfei.
They had thought that Fourth Miss would go and personally complain, afterall, how could anyone stand all of this insults?
No one had expected that the unyielding Fourth Lady had said nothing, but when she talked, she bid them farewell.
Even though the servants didn’t know what she wrote in her letter, they could guess the content as they saw the Elder Wangye and Wangfei take action: The Fourth Lady only requested Jing Wangye to agree to let her mother’s name be admitted into the registry and she, would leave and never come back.
Liang-momo stopped her train of thought, adjusted her feeling and told Su Shuilian’s the Elder Wangfei’s message. “Lady, the elder Wangfei ordered that we would become your people. We will listen to your orders.”
“What.. What?” Su Shuilian was dumbstruck. She lifted her head to look at Lin Si Yao whose face had turned darker and darker. “But… Liang-momo, I’m married.”
“It is this servent’s mistake. Greeting, Guye*.” Liang-momo followed Su Shuilian’s gaze to look at Lin Si Yao, who had stood there all the time and said nothing. Still, she could feel the cold pressure from him. She had confirmed that this man was the Fourth Lady’s husband, the one they had to serve wholeheartedly. The maids and servants behind her greeted Lin Si Yao respectfully.
*(姑爷/ Guye: son-in-law, word the servants used to address their Lady’s husband.)
“Er… No… Liang-momo, I didn’t mean that. A Yao and I have decided to live here. We have never thought about using maids to serve us..” Su Shulian hesitated then changed her way of explanation, trying to be more carefully
“Lady, it’s our Elder Wangye and Wangfei’s goodwill. They’re afraid that it will be too difficult for you to be pregnant. We will not cause more trouble for you.” Liang-momo insisted that she should receive all the maids, servants and the items in the carriages.
“But…” Su Shulian turned around to look at her small cottage. “Liang-momo, you see, our house has only several rooms… No need to mention you guys, we don’t even have the room for those stuff in the carriages. I receive the Elder Wangye and Wangfei’s favor, but these things…”
“Lady, we are following the Elder Wangye and Wangfei’s order to get here and serve you and Guye. If you don’t want to take us, we can only stay outside. How could we have the face to return to the Prince’s mansion later?” As soon as Liang-momo talked, she left no room for refusal.
Thinking about how they would have to face the Elder Wangye’s strict questions later, and if he were to assume that they didn’t want to stay with the Lady, they would be fired. So, they’d better stay here and beg the Fourth Lady.
No matter what, this time, the Elder Wangfei had given them a bonus amounted to what they would usually have to work half an year for. If they returned, not only would they not receive the bonus, but also be punished by the elder Wangye.
Thinking about that, Liang-momo couldn’t help but shudder. No, as she wanted to ask the Elder Wangfei to help her find a good wife for her son too so, she must not return to the Prince’s mansion.
“But….” We actually don’t have room for you guys! Su Shuilian inwardly sighed. Her house had only three rooms. No matter how hard they could squeeze, they couldn’t arrange room for the eight guards, eight maid servants, and one momo!
“Lady, today, we and the items on the carriages will follow your arrangement. If we don’t have enough room, I will go and ask around to see if we can buy a house in this village. We won’t affect your daily life,” Liang-momo decisively told Su Shuilian.
Before leaving, the elder Wangfei had given her money to use. As long as the expenses related to the Fourth Lady, she could use that money. Thus, now she could use it to find a house to arrange the servants and the stuff.
“The… Liang-momo…” Su Shuilian was astonished. Looking at Liang-momo, she didn’t know what to say.
“Lady, you don’t need to worry. I will arrange the maids to come serve you daily, and I’ll prepare all the items in preparation for your delivery. I will surely arrange every necessity for your delivery and convalescence. Lady, Guye, you can count on us!” Liang-momo smiled, assuring Su Shuilian, who was still very astonished.
The pregnant Fourth Young Lady seemed very different from the other days. Although her face was still pretty and elegant, it no longer look arrogant and cold. Now she had tinges of tenderness and grace. Perhaps it was their Guye’s merit.
Ling-momo decided. They would respect and serve this Fourth Guye the best that they could.
“If so, Si Tou’s house is still empty. You guys can move there and bring those things with you. For the time being, just stay there!” Lin Si Yao finally broke his silence. “Situ, if you’ve watched enough, lead them there!”
Immediately, Situ Yun squeezed through the ground. He gave Lin Si Yao and Su Shuilian an embarrassed ‘hehe’ laugh. Then, he turned to Liang-momo and co, “You guys, follow me!”
Lin Si Yao’s cold command and Situ Yun mischievous guide were like angel’s voice in Liang-momo and co.’s ears.
“Thank you Guye and Young Lady for your approval!” Liang-momo gave them a curtsy then waved at the servants and maids behind her.
They jumped onto the carriages to protect it together with the guards. The drivers wielded their whips, slowly driving the carriages toward the newly built, four-acre house in the west.
The onlookers watched the ten carriages leaving. Subdued by Lin Si Yao’s frosty glance, suppressed their curiosity and went home. They still had some other ways to nose this incident, no?
“A Yao, what are your thoughts?” Su Shuilian leaned against Lin Si Yao, letting him support her to the main room. Standing outside under the dazzling sunlight had worn her out.
“We’ll keep them. We will need them later, perhaps.” Lin Si Yao stooped to look at her. Noticing how exhausted she was, he picked her up and carried her into their bedroom.
“You’re tired. Take a nap first! We’ll talk when you get up.”
“Mmm, Okay!” Su Shuilian let him guide her to the bed. As soon as her head touched the pillow, she drifted away in her sleep.
She fully trusted Lin Si Yao decision to let Liang-momo and co stay. If he said they would need them, then they would need them later. Thus, she just needed to be a happy pregnant woman with simple thought and take her nice, peaceful nap in the afternoon of a dazzling, sunny autumn day.
TL Note: Wow, usually I don’t really leave a tl note at the end of any chapter, but I wanna just say something to clarify any confusion, if any…. So the Elder Wangye is Prince Jing. And in ancient China, ‘prince’ is not just a title for the sons of the emperor, but they are also a ranking. Prince Jing is not the son of the emperor, he’s just noble with a high ranking. Wanye just translates to Prince.
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