GNU sponsored chapters (1/4) by risa and anonymous sponsors at ko-fi. Thank you for your support!
This is the first part of today’s sponsored chapters
All the way, Cheng Yujin frequently stopped the carriage and took detours, so they were delayed a lot. However, she gained a good insight into the market. Cheng Yujin visited several shops that sell fabrics and ready-made garments. She roughly knew how much a bolt of blue coarse fabric cost, as well as the price of linen and brocade. As for ready-made clothes, Cheng Yujin was already familiar. She lived in the inner house, and had to use her monthly allowance to make clothes. Simply by listening to the servant girls chatting every day, she could understand the kind of pattern and fabric that was popular recently.
Cheng Yujin finally got a rough overview of the market situation. The coachman asked, “Eldest Miss, there are two more clothing shops in the front. Do you want to stop?”
Cheng Yujin took a glance and said, “No. Go directly to our family’s two shops.”
The coachman replied: “Yes,” and drove the carriage to another street. After a while, they arrived. Lian Qiao helped Cheng Yujin got out of the carriage. Cheng Yujin stood on the street and first looked around before finding an average-looking shop on the crossroad with a plaque ‘Yunyi Shop’ hanging on it. Because the location was good, the number of customers wasn’t a few. However, compared with those big shops Cheng Yujin passed by, it was still much worse.
This was one of the properties left behind by Old Master Cheng for Cheng Yujin.
Cheng Yuanjing also saw it. He dismounted from the horse and walked several steps forward. Seeing Cheng Yujin not moving, he turned around and asked, “Why are you stopping there?”
Cheng Yujin naturally followed behind and said: “I’m observing the surrounding area. Ninth Uncle, grandfather just handed me this shop not too long ago. I think the shopkeeper still didn’t know that the owner has changed hand. Let’s get in without disclosing our identity. We should pretend to be a customer. This way, we can see its real situation.”
Cheng Yuanjing neither agreed nor refused. He chuckled lightly: “You always have many ideas.”
“Many thanks, Ninth Uncle.”
Although Cheng Yuanjing didn’t agree explicitly, after entering the shop, he didn’t mention that they were from Cheng family of Yichun Marquis manor. The shopkeeper who ran the shop noticed a young gentleman outside. The man’s appearance was very handsome and was surrounded by a majestic bearing. The shopkeeper sighed, wondering which noble family’s master came out on a stroll with his wife. He watched the handsome man stopped in front of his shop, then turning around to help a woman get out of the carriage.
The woman was like a cloud. Although she was wearing a plain white dress, her appearance was so beautiful. Her movements were calm and elegant. She looked like a flower in full bloom, or a moon hanging on the river. Standing side by side, the two was a peerless match.
The shopkeeper was struck dumbfounded. Even the pedestrians passing couldn’t help but look back at the stunning pair. Until Cheng Yujin and Cheng Yuanjing entered his shop’s door, the shopkeeper finally reacted and rushed over to greet: “Miss, Young Master, what are you looking for?”
Cheng Yuanjing’s situation was special, and he rarely appeared in public all these years. The shopkeeper didn’t recognize him. And Cheng Yujin was a girl, so the shopkeeper also never saw her. So, when two members of the owner’s family stood before his eyes, the shopkeeper didn’t notice anything, and greeted them as ordinary customers. This was precisely what Cheng Yujin wanted. She pretended to be at a loss and said: “This is my first time here. I don’t know which fabric to buy. Do you have any recommendations?”
The shopkeeper knew this was a big customer. He smiled more attentively: “Rest assured, Miss. You are asking the right person. Over here, please.”
Cheng Yujin took her servant girls and followed the shopkeeper to look at the fabrics inside while Cheng Yuanjing stayed in the hall. One of the shop attendants was free and came over to wait upon Cheng Yuanjing. The attendant intended to please Cheng Yuanjing: “Young master and miss have a very good relationship, truly a perfect couple. In the future, you will have many children and endless blessings, and will grow old together.”
Initially, Cheng Yuanjing didn’t pay attention to the flattery. However, the more he listened, the more outrageous the words were. Cheng Yuanjing turned around and slightly glanced at the shop attendant. Under such a gaze, the young man’s knees instantly became soft. He had seen many high-ranking officials before. However, none of them were like Cheng Yuanjing. Even if Cheng Yuanjing didn’t yell or use harsh words, people would subconsciously feel an unrebutted reverence.
In his panic, the shop attendant stammered: “Y-young Master, please calm down…is this small one made a mistake?”
Cheng Yuanjing was not angry. He was just surprised: “Why do you think she and I are a married couple?”
Cheng Yujin clearly was dressed as an unmarried lady. People who worked in these kinds of shops dealt with piles of powerful official and noble family members every day, so they wouldn’t make such a stupid mistake. In a rare chance of curiosity, Cheng Yuanjing questioned the shop attendant. If it wasn’t Cheng Yujin, then was it him? Which part of him looked like a married man?
The shop attendant was stunned by this question. He scratched his head and murmured: “Young master and the Miss just now came in together. Although the Miss is still wearing a low bun in an unmarried style, she is of marriageable age, and so does young master. You and her obviously not father and daughter, and also didn’t look like brother and sister. Except for an engaged couple, what else can it be?”
There was another reason that the shop attendant was too embarrassed to say. Supposed they were brother and sister, for a brother to accompany his sister to a clothing shop, their relationship must be pretty close. Therefore, their interaction should be natural and intimate. However, the couple who had just come in didn’t. Both of them were too beautiful to be a mere mortal. But they weren’t close to each other. They were polite, with some kind of aura that deter people from getting closer. They also had a tacit understanding that others couldn’t get it. When standing together, they truly looked like a model couple from a high-ranking family.
Therefore, the shop attendant thought that the couple had a good family identity and have been engaged but not yet officially married. That’s why even though the woman still had an unmarried lady’s bun, the man took her outside, probably to buy wedding supplies.
If not, then what?
The young shop attendant was a little confused. At this moment, the shopkeeper led Cheng Yujin out of the inner room. Cheng Yuanjing lowered his head and glanced at the shop attendant, who suddenly had an epiphany and understood Cheng Yuanjing’s mean.
Stop talking about this topic.
Cheng Yujin didn’t know the thing that had just happened. She saw Cheng Yuanjing standing at the outer hall, looking so prominent that he dominated the whole hall. Cheng Yujin walked to him naturally and called out: “Ninth Uncle.”
The shop attendant’s eyes suddenly widened. His expression was very exaggerated, as if his eyes were about to pop out of the sockets. The young man, who had worked in this shop for many years, had never thought of such a possibility. So these two customers weren’t siblings, nor engaged couple, but uncle and niece?
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