Chapter 62: The Unexpected Visitor
Just as Su Shuilian was immersed in embroidering the <Drunken Beauty>, the gossip loving Aunt Lao and Aunt Tian appeared at their house with some news. It was neither big nor small news, however it was fresh gossip: Hua House’s daughter, who married the richest man in the city, had come back to visit their maternal in-laws with their own daughter.
“Shifu, I’m telling the truth. The visiting Hua House’s pretty daughter had asked me about you.” Tian Dabao jumped and skipped along the river as he picked the wild mushrooms by the river bank. He continuously swore to Lin Si Yao that he was not lying.
“What’s the point of asking about me?” Lin Si Yao said in a disapproving tone.
If Dabao hadn’t emphasized that it was a woman, he would have suspected that the person was a spy sent by Feng Yao Court. If it was a woman…ha…unless Feng Qingya had changed the system, then from his knowledge, of the 500 or so people, there was not a single woman in Feng Yao Court.
“That, I don’t know. Eh? Shifu, what if she had found you pleasing and wanted you to marry her, as an inverted door*? Ahahaha…Uh Shifu mercy…mercy ah! I don’t dare anymore… Okokok…I’ll go stand on the piles then…”
(倒插门 inverted door – to marry and live with the bride’s family. If anyone’s read Adorable Consort, it’s mentioned quite often there haha)
Poor Dabao, just as he got the courage to repeat the things he had heard from the gossiping women to his handsome and stoic Shifu, he got hit by his Shifu’s Xuan Feng palm and pushed onto the quincuncial piles that he had hated the most.
Plaintively standing on the piles, Tian Dabao secretly swept a glance at his expressionless Shifu who was flipping the mushrooms and quietly complained, “It was just a joke, I know Shifu already has Shi Niang… But that woman is pretty, just not as pretty as Shi Niang….”
“Concentrate! Unless you want to stand there all afternoon.” Lin Si Yao had heard his mutter and coldly responded.
“I understand Shifu….” Dabao grunted. Going to Xuifeng was much more fun than practicing on the quincuncial piles. Tian Dabao immediately started to focus his mind and qi. He stood on his toes as he moved around the piles practicing the Xuan-yi footwork.
Knock knock knock
It was rare for people to come on a windy afternoon, so it took Su Shuilian a while before she was sure there was someone actually at her door.
During this time, Lin Si Yao was out with Tian Dabao practicing swordwork. As for Aunt Lao and Aunt Tian, although they enjoy coming over to gossip, they knew she had accepted a big project and only came when necessary. And if it was them, the sound of knocking would be louder and it would also be accompanied with them calling her name…Then who could it be?
“Miss?” Su Shuilian opened the gate and greeted with a smile. In front of her was a girl who had been slightly disoriented by the strong wind. Su Shuilian recognized this girl, she had met her three times before: it was Lu Wan’er. Both were surprised to see each other.
“Eh? Wasn’t this Lin Si Yao, Lin gongzi’s house?” When Lu Wan’er saw it was the delicate girl who had been by her desired man’s side, she felt her heart freeze. However, she still asked on.
Those two bastards just took my money without making it clear! Oh, well, I was also too eager to find his address and just rushed here without inquiring about this (married) woman’s identity. Was she Lin Si Yao’s wife or someone else?
“Is this lady looking for A Yao?” Su Shuilian asked. Her heart suddenly surged with an indescribable, weird feeling. This Lu Wan’er really did like A Yao; she had even chased him to their house. However, did she not know he was already married? Or maybe she didn’t care, she didn’t care what status, whether she was the main wife or a concubine….
Su Shuilian thought back to her mother. Her father had never paid any mind to her mother…. She herself, was she going to have a tough rival just like her mother? And Lin Si Yao, would he be just like her father? To choose a woman who could only wait in bed over the main wife?
Ha, that’s right, mother had the backing of her large maternal family. So even if her father wanted to, he could not divorce her. But she, she was a helpless girl in this foreign world. How could she defeat such a glamorous girl from a large, wealthy family? Ah! What kind of nonsense was she thinking?! A Yao would never be like that! Su Shuilian shook her head and cleared the inexplicable speculation that had flashed through her mind.
It seems that her mother’s experience had left a large influence on her. If A Yao found out that she had compared him with her unscrupulous father, he would definitely use this as an excuse to ‘punish’ her.
Once she thought about Lin Si Yao’s punishment, Su Shuilian’s ears reddened.
She recovered from her thoughts, tidied her clothes and looked up at Lu Wan’er. Smiling, Su Shuilian said, “Miss Lu, the wind is strong, if you don’t mind, come inside and talk. ”
“Cough* cough*….. You…. you recognize me?” Lu Wan’er snapped out of her daze, she cleared her throat and awkwardly asked.
“Yes, we have met a few times before, right?” Su Shuilian found it laughable as she looked at her. She remembered it clearly; the first time Lu Wan’er had confronted Lin Si Yao, she had revealed her full name.
The customs of Dahui Country was strange. Just like in the Republic of China, along with conservative traditions, there were also some bold actions that were also accepted. For example, women were allowed to attend poetry clubs. And if a woman were to meet a man that she favored, she could take the initiative to court them. Of course, there were prerequisites, the said women were misses from wealthy and influential families.
As for daughters of ordinary families, they were busy caring for their family and scraping enough for their dowry. They had no such time to go to poetry clubs, paint, or drink tea. They did not have the confidence or time to one-sidedly pursue a man they had only met once without knowing their family background.
“Oh yeah. I am Lu Wan’er from the Lu House in the city. You are…” In front of Su Shuilian, who looked to be of her age, but already a madam(married woman), Lu Wan’er did not know how to continue.
“I am A Yao’s wife, Su Shuilian.”
Su Shuilian took the initiative to finish her sentence. She admitted she had deliberately added extra information to dispel Lu Wan’er’s motives.
“Come in and warm yourself up.” Su Shuilian smiled as she politely invited Lu Wan’er who was shivering in her single layer purple dress.
She herself could not stand in the bone chilling wind, however, the other person showed no intention of leaving, so Su Shuilian could only invite her in to talk. Thinking back to the <Drunken Beauty> project, it seemed she would have to delay it for a while.
When Lu Wan’er entered the main room, she could not help but be surprised.
From the outside, the house seemed nothing more than simple and neat, but once inside, it was…Uh… very grand and welcoming!
Although the house was smaller, but it was refurbished with high quality items. The Jichi* wood furniture in this house, in Lu Wan’er opinion, was comparable to the mahogany furniture in her house.
*(First mentioned in chapter 31)
The embroidery pieces on the Kang, couches, and chairs were of superior quality. Besides the bright colored embroidery, the large ‘喜’* word on top of the bedroom door was blinding; it left Lu Wan’er breathless.
(喜/happiness: Was mentioned many chapters ago, but as a quick recap: Su Shuilian learned to cut out a ‘喜’ from a red paper. Here’s what it looks like.)
How was she so sure before that, with just her beauty and Lu House’s prestige, she would be able to bring Lin Si Yao home with her?
“Sorry Lady Lu, I only have some homemade wild flower tea to serve you with.” Su Shuilian came back with a pot of tea. Although it was homemade, from the mellow smell, one could tell the tea was comparable to the tea served in the city’s tea houses.
“Many thanks.” Lu Wan’er took a small sip. It was indeed good tea. It was unexpected that she could have such pleasant and clean tea from a small village.
She then looked up at Su Shuilian. Her countenance was warm and beautiful; her every gesture noble and elegant.
“Inquiring which House Lady Su is from?” Lu Wan’er suddenly had a ridiculous illusion. This Su Shuilian, she couldn’t be a young miss from a noble family, right? Though, immediately, with flatten lips, Lu Wan’er dismissed such an impossible possibility.
When Su Shuilian heard her question, she was shocked. Not because Lu Wan’er had asked for her background, but because she had called her ‘Lady’. That title is used for unmarried women… Was she(LW) unwilling to admit that she was A Yao’s wife? Or was Lu Wan’er sure that she was able to win Lin Si Yao’s favor?
Ah! Su Shuilian internally reprimanded herself, how could she doubt Lin Si Yao again!?
Just as Su Shuilian was thinking of how to answer her question, Xiao Chun’s bark sounded from outside. This meant that Lin Si Yao and Dabao are also back!
Su Shuilian smiled at Lu Wan’er and said, “It seems my husband is back.” She once again subtly reminded Lu Wan’er that Lin Si Yao was her husband.
Lu Wan’er did not take the hint. Her mind and heart became chaotic from excitement due to the single ‘he’s back’.
She looked down at her thin winter clothing and tried to tidy her hair that had become somewhat messy from the wind. She put on an enchanting smile that had never failed to impress other men; she was ready to meet the man that she had longed for six months.
Su Shuilian coldly watched as Lu Wan’er ran out to open the gates. At Lin Si Yao who had put down the goat grass and was washing his face in the river wash, she called out “Lin dà gē*!”
*(大哥, big brother – I forgot if I made a note for this before, but big brother is a intimate way of addressing an older male. Kinda like how koreans would use the word ‘oppa’)
Very good! She previously called him Lin gongzi, now it was Lin dà gē, soon after, was she going to replace her and call him husband? Su Shuilian thought as she massaged her temple. Following Lu Wan’er, she walked out from the main house.
She internally sighed and thought: she had wasted a lot of time today and now she had to do a lot of catching up on her work tomorrow.
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