Cheng Yujin’s good marriage plan was interrupted. After returning to her courtyard, Lian Qiao waited for Cheng Yujin to change into her room clothes and asked, “Miss, do you want to practice calligraphy?”
Cheng Yujin really hated this reminder. But she was a sensible person, and never lost her temper when dealing with problems. She only cared about how to solve it and maximize her benefits. Anyway, tonight she was bound to stop her plan of nurturing some feeling with Xu Zhixian. If now she became angry, wouldn’t she get even less?
She might as well practicing calligraphy a bit. Catching a good husband was about spreading nets and aiming for the fish. Although she couldn’t slack off with Xu Zhixian, she should also put her effort into the Emperor’s longevity feast.
Cheng Yujin said: “Prepare the brush and ink. I will practice calligraphy.”
Lian Qiao was secretly speechless. Eldest miss got up before dawn. First, she paid respect to old Madam Cheng and then went to the ninth master’s courtyard to practice calligraphy for half a day. After one day of hard work, she returned to her boudoir, and still going for more practice. Such perseverance, afraid that even the scholars who were preparing for the imperial exam wouldn’t be able to compare?
While Lian Qiao was admiring Chen Yujin on the side, Du Ruo had prepared the rice paper, put clear water in the inkstone, and retreated silently.
Cheng Yujin didn’t like having people nearby when she was studying. Her servant girls all knew her rules and retreated quietly. Cheng Yujin lived alone in a courtyard ever since she became sensible. When Qingfu Junzhu started raising Cheng Yujin, she had no children. Smelling the milky scent on a baby made her disgusted. As soon as Cheng Yujin could move on her own, she threw the child outside. This wasn’t bad. Cheng Yujin has been in charge of her own servants and money since she was a child. Compared with other girls in her peers, she matured early.
Her courtyard might not as large as Cheng Yuanjing’s, but still complete in every detail. The main building sat on the north and faced south. There were two side rooms on the east and west. The main entrance was on the south, with a row of reverse-facing rooms on each side. A decorated veranda was connecting all the separated areas inside the yard. From the entrance to the main building, there was a cross-shaped bluestone paved pathway, with flowerbeds on the side. A tall flower tree was also planted nearby, which was particularly lively in the spring. On the four sides, there were corner doors. When they were opened, the yard was part of the marquis manor’s inner courtyard. But after being closed, it was a separate, individual space altogether.
Cheng Yujin’s main building consisted of typical five rooms, but they were not as spacious as the rooms in either old Madam Cheng or Cheng Yuanjing’s courtyard. Cheng Yujin used the westernmost room as a bedroom, partitioned by a moon-shaped wooden lattice door that obstructing the outside sight. Curtains of various colors and motifs decorated the wooden partition according to the season. On the outer room, there was a luohan couch and a set of elaborate mahogany chairs to receive close guests. The most central room was the main hall, where normal visitors were welcomed, and for the master of the yard to receive the servants’ kowtow during the New Year. The east side was Cheng Yujin’s personal space. The innermost room was the study, and next to it was a room for doing embroidery and other needlework.
Cheng Yujin’s rules were strict. Low-ranked grannies in charge of sweeping and rough servant girls could only move outside the main building. Second-ranked servant girls could enter the main building, but only for wiping the seats in the main hall and running chores. Her bedroom and study could only be entered by first-rank servant girls.
Cheng Yujin sat at the table for a while and suddenly remembered the bottle of wound medicine given by Cheng Yuanjing today.
She remembered that Du Ruo put it away at noon, where is it now?
Cheng Yujin went to the many treasures shelf and searched for a while before finally finding the porcelain bottle inside a small drawer. Her words today were simply a joke, but she never expected that Cheng Yuanjing actually gave her something, and it was a wound medicine.
This kind of medicine wouldn’t be given randomly and usually has to be prepared in advance. Cheng Yujin felt a little curious and a bit implausible. Would a person like Cheng Yuanjing prepare medicine for others?
She was not so convinced. Cheng Yujin opened the bottle and sniffed gently. She was initially skeptical, but the medicine’s scent made her even more puzzled.
How did she feel that this scent was similar to the medicine given by Cheng Min last night? Cheng Yujin took out the other bottle and compared the ointment inside. Cheng Min was a duke manor’s madam, she wouldn’t and didn’t need to lie to Cheng Yujin. This was a genuine wound medicine from the imperial family, given by Shu Consort. So why did the medicine given by Cheng Yuanjing had a similar scent?
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