When Cheng Yujin returned to her room, her face was frighteningly cold. Lian Qiao, who rushed out happily to greet Cheng Yujin, was shocked by her expression: “Miss….what happened?”
Cheng Yujin took a deep breath and covered her face with her hand. After a while, she put her hand down, and her expression has completely returned to normal: “Nothing. I’m fine.”
Lian Qiao dared not say more. Cheng Yujin could bend and stretch according to the situation, and her control over her emotions was extremely good. As far as Lian Qiao knew, only one person could make Cheng Yujin’s emotions so out of control that she showed such an obvious emotional fluctuation.
——Madam Ruan from the second branch.
Lian Qiao stepped aside and silently poured tea for Cheng Yujin. Du Ruo followed behind, and slowly waved the fan. Cheng Yujin sat quietly for a while, and suddenly said, “Bring the Old Madam’s lacquer box here.”
Du Ruo was the one who brought the box all the way, and she never let it out of her sight. She quickly took the box over, gently put it in front of Cheng Yujin, and silently stepped back.
Cheng Yujin stared at the exquisite carvings on the lacquer box. Pearls, gems, jades, and other precious materials were encrusted on its surface. Red and green, it looked so luxurious. Cheng Yujin lightly pressed on the leave-shaped button, and the lid opened gently.
Suddenly, the brilliance from the jade covered the whole box. Even when looking closer, she couldn’t find any blemish on the bracelets. Warm but cool, clear but not transparent, with thick and beautiful color. It was an excellent jade.
Cheng Yujin casually took one of the bracelets and put it on her wrist. Gold and silver would eventually look old, but jade never got out of date. Such a jade bracelet with a first-rate aqua color made the wearer’s hand looked much fairer. No matter what kind of clothes it was paired with, the bracelet would look beautiful.
Du Ruo saw Cheng Yujin fiddled with the jade bracelets. She thought that Cheng Yujin didn’t like it. After all, this pair of bracelets caused Cheng Yujin to have a conflict with Ruan-shi. Du Ruo carefully asked: “Miss, do you not like it?”
“Don’t like it? How come.” Cheng Yujin took off the bracelet and put it back into the lacquer box. “Why I don’t like an item that worth almost five thousand taels?”
“But the Old Madam…”
Cheng Yujin snorted softly, “What kind of person my grandmother is, even if others don’t know, don’t I already understand a long time ago? I already made the second Madam unhappy. Now I got a pair of priceless bracelets in exchange for attracting Ruan-shi’s resentment. It’s actually a good bargain.”
“I’m alright.” Cheng Yujin closed the box lid and said: “What kind of luck did I have these days? One fortune fell after another. First, it was grandfather’s box of gold, and now it was grandmother’s jade bracelets.”
Cheng Yujin pondered for a moment. Then she said again: “Ninth Uncle’s one thousand mu of land can barely be counted along. It seems that I have to take the time to pay my respect to the god of wealth and ask him to help protect my money. Otherwise, it might be taken away.”
Du Ruo asked: “Miss, do you want to visit a temple?”
Cheng Yujin chuckled. Her tone was full of meaning: “Why should we go to the temple to pray? There is no more powerful Buddha than the one in our house.”
Du Ruo didn’t understand the meaning of Cheng Yujin’s words. Cheng Yujin smiled, but didn’t explain further. Du Ruo’s degree of acceptance was very high. Since she didn’t understand, then just forget it. She asked Cheng Yujin again: “Miss, what about this lacquer box?”
“Put it away.” Thinking about this matter, Cheng Yujin had a headache. Within one day, the whole manor would know that the Old Madam had given away her most precious dowry to Cheng Yujin. Cheng Yujin wanted to make money in secret, but she didn’t know how long she could hide. In any case, she had to keep a low profile as long as possible.
Cheng Yujin’s eyes fell on the lacquer box. The peonies carved on the wooden surface looked so luxurious, yet also mysterious. Cheng Yujin naturally liked beautiful jewelry. But she couldn’t wear these beautiful bracelets. At least, not now.
Sure enough, it was very important to marry a rich and powerful husband. With her husband’s backing, let’s see who still can control her!
The fact that Old Madam Cheng gave her most precious dowry to Cheng Yujin really caused a lot of commotions. But the Old Master’s 49th day of passing soon arrived, and everyone was busy preparing for the ceremony. Since the Old Madam has given her words, Cheng Yujin took the funeral rites very seriously. Getting the same privilege as the eldest grandson to stay at home and observing the mourning rituals was not a small matter. Cheng Yujin didn’t know how many people were dissatisfied and secretly waited for her mistakes. For Cheng Yujin, this matter is very critical for her future marriage, so she would never allow herself to make even the smallest mistake.
Cheng Yujin’s nerves were very tense. She must do every ritual perfectly. In the mourning hall, the guests had heard that Old Master Cheng’s last wish was for Cheng Yujin to observe his mourning according to the eldest grandson ritual. They immediately looked at her with admiration. Under the public’s gaze, Cheng Yujin’s movements became even more careful and solemn.
All members of Cheng family burned the incense for the Old Master, gave a full kowtow, and then went back to their room to remove mourning clothes and put on their usual attire. Although they no longer had to wear mourning clothes, they still had to avoid festive colors. During the full mourning period, the mourners had to wear light and plain color. As time went by, the colors gradually changed into brighter ones, symbolizing the passing grief. But because Cheng Yujin had to be careful of her reputation, she put even more attention to everything she wore.
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