The next day, the bride had to visit her new in-laws. Shen Ziqiao drank wine yesterday so she felt her head throbbing when she woke up. She drank a cup of concentrated tea before feeling slightly better.
Qi Zheng came back from training to see Shen Ziqiao lying on the table feeling strengthless. He walked inside and smiled helplessly. “Let’s see if you dare to drink so much wine anymore.”
Shen Ziqiao hugged his arms and rubbed her face against it. “How was I supposed to know that I was going to get dizzy after drinking a few glasses of wine? Didn’t you see my aunts? They drank glass after wine, and they still remained expressionless.”
“You never drank wine before. How can you act the same as your aunts?” Qi Zheng smiled. “We still need to go to the Shen Family.”
“Right, the bride needs to visit her new in-laws today. Let’s hurry back. We’re waiting on you.” Shen Ziqiao immediately became spirited as if she recovered from her headache immediately.
Qi Zheng looked pampering at her. Her personality didn’t change at all. Even if she married him, she still acted like a child in front of him.
His biggest wish was so she can be unrestrained like a child and stay happy forever.
The two came to the Shen Family. The relatives were already waiting in the lounge.
Old Madam Shen sat on the master seat and she seemed to be in a pretty good mood. She was talking to Shen Xiao who was sitting on the other side. Shen Ziqiao greeted them before sitting on her seat.
The other relatives in the lounge weren’t familiar with Shen Ziqiao besides the second household, Second Master and his family, as well as a few people that she didn’t know from her memory, but they should be close relatives to her.
Not long later, Shen Zikai arrived with Nee Zhu.
Shen Ziqiao carefully observed the newly married couple. Everyone could tell that the couple was happy with the marriage seeing how Shen Zikai considerately supported her hwen Nee Zhu got on her knees to greet her in-laws and how he was careful with her. Not only that, Nee Zhu had looked thankfully and bashfully at Shen Zikai when he was helping her out.
That’s...great! Shen Ziqiao felt her eyes souring up for some reason.
It seems like her elder brother liked her sister-in-law a lot. Her sister-in-law was also a gentle and refined woman. She stood next to her elder brother like a little bird relying on people. They were truly a perfect match.
Shen Ziqiao was happier than anyone that Shen Zikai got to marry a wife that was suitable for him. Her dearest brother wouldn’t be ruined by Sheng Peiyin anymore. Shen Ziqiao felt most accomplished of this.
She was happy about changing Shen Zikai’s fate the most.
After they greeted each other, Shen Xiao called Qi Zheng and Shen Zikai to the study. Shen Ziqiao held onto Nee Zhu’s hands intimately. “They have their own matters to attend to. Sister-in-law, we can talk to each other.”
Madam Zhou watched as the two held onto each other dearly and she exclaimed faintly, “Third Madam First Madam, I still have matters to attend to so I won’t stay with you guys.”
Shen Zixin wanted to stay but Madam Zhou pulled her away.
“Third Madam, we…” She wasn’t mad or anxious seeing that the women didn’t place the First Madam in their eyes as Madam Zhou left. Nee Zhu still smiled at Shen Ziqiao.
“We don’t need to be so polite to one another. I’m going to get a cup of tea to drink at sister-in-law’s place, okay?” Shen Ziqiao was unhappy with Madam Zhou’s action. Even more, she thought that her relatives were opportunists. They thought that Madam Zhou’s future son-in-law was a prince so they hurried to kiss up to her.
One of us? Nee Zhu wore a smile in her eyes. This was a good description. She knew that Shen Ziqiao was telling her to ignore the outsiders. “Sister, what do you want to drink?”
“Don’t call me that. Just call me Jiao Jiao.” Shen Ziqiao smiled. “Like elder brother, I don't know much about tea. Sister-in-law, just bring out whatever good tea you have.:
Nee Zhu chuckled softly and she didn’t feel nervous anymore.
She had long heard that her husband had a great relationship with his sister. This was the truth. “Husband had told me about this in the morning as well.”
Shen Ziqiao laughed out loud. “Then what did you give my elder brother to drink?”
“I brewed Maojian tea for him. Yet, he said that this Tieguanyin tea tasted clear but it smelled nice.” Nee Zhu covered her mouth and said this in a small voice.
The nanny behind Nee Zhu kept on giving her a look however.
How could she tell someone else about the embarrassing moments of her husband? Even if Shen Ziqiao was his sister, what if he starts blaming young miss for telling someone about it? What if he becomes unhappy as a result?
Shen Ziqiao saw the nanny’s gaze but she didn’t place it in her heart. She laughed and exclaimed, “My elder brother grew up in the military camp. He doesn’t care for drinking tea, admiring flowers or paintings. But that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t understand anything. Don't expect him to know the different types of tea and whatnot. However, he does know some trivial things.”
Nee Zhu smiled and took this to mind. Shen Ziqiao was teaching her how to find a common language with Shen Zikai.
The two arrived at the reception pavilion. Nee Zhu had someone brew tea.
Shen Ziqiao knew nothing about tasting tea. However, she could smell the sweet scent of the tea that Nee Zhu had someone bring over.
“I think I drank this before.” Shen Ziqiao smiled. “But I don’t know what type of tea this is. I won't make a fool out of myself by saying the wrong name.”
“It’s Tieguanyin.” Nee Zhu smiled. “I like drinking tea.”
Shen Ziqiao said embarrassedly, “I enjoy eating. My elder brother calls me a little foodie.”
Nee Zhu couldn’t resist the urge to laugh. Before getting married, her mother had specially ordered her to not offend Shen Zikai’s only sister. The siblings were interdependent. Not only did the late Pan Madam treat Shen Ziqiao as her treasure, Shen Zikai also pampered his sister. He didn’t even complain about Pan Madam leaving all the dowry to Shen Ziqiao. As her sister-in-law, she mustn’t act unhappy at all.
People even said that Shen Ziqiao had a crafty personality. She didn’t even place her grandmother in her eyes so don’t mention her, her sister-in-law. But seeing her today, something seems off with the information she found out.
Shen Ziqiao didn’t act like what the rumors claimed her to be. Instead, she appeared honest and cute. She truly wanted to get close to her sister-in-law.
It must be because of Shen Zikai that she was really close to her.
Nee Zhu looked at Shen Ziqiao full of kindness. Since her husband adored his sister, then she was her sister too. No matter what people said, seeing is believing. Her feelings were the most genuine.
“Next time, I’ll cook some dishes for you to try.” Nee Zhu smiled.
The maid next to Shen Ziqiao said, “Our madam makes delicious food.”
Shen Ziqiao’s eyes brightened. “Then I’ll be sure to enjoy. Elder brother is lucky.”
Nee Zhu’s face turned red.
The two chatted happily together.
In the study, Shen Xiao looked at his son and son-in-law solemnly.
“Yesterday, the emperor had scolded the crown prince. I just found out today.” Qi Zheng’s expression turned grave. The situation in the palace became more and more worrying.
“The crown prince is normally careful so what did he do to get the emperor to scold him?” Because Shen Xiao had already retired, he didn’t receive the palace news that promptly.
Qi Zheng said, “His Highness planned on stopping the emperor from going to the Tianxuan Mountain.”
Because the crown prince had stopped the emperor, he was scolded for being unfilial and trying to stop him from cultivating, and preventing him from being immortal. He claimed that the crown prince wanted him to die so that he could succeed the throne.
The crown prince always respected and admired the emperor. He must’ve been really hurt this time after being scolded by his dearest father.
“If this continues, it might...” Shen Xiao was worried. “What has the third prince been up to lately?”
Qi Zheng’s face darkened. “The third prince has been really close to Spiritual Master Zhou.”
Everyone knew that if this continued, the sky would change colors.
“The empress hadn’t made up her mind?” Shen Xiao asked in a deep voice.
She didn’t make up her mind in the past but after the crown prince was scolded by the emperor yesterday, it might not be the same anymore. “I’ll go to the palace again tomorrow.”
Shen Xiao didn’t mind the change in the court originally. Even more, no matter which prince would become the heir apparent to the throne, his heart was with the emperor. Nothing could’ve gone wrong. But since coming back from the northwest, his thoughts started swaying.
The emperor wasn’t the emperor he was in the past.
If the third prince successfully ascended the throne, Dazhou would probably be over.
Who was the third prince? He was ignorant and incompetent, arrogant and conceited. He cursed out the officials in court without a care and respected no one. He was completely different from the crown prince and the reason why the officials in court did their best to protect him.
They couldn’t let Dazhou be destroyed by someone like this.
Yet, if it weren’t the Spiritual Master Zhou by the emperor’s side, it was Ma Beirong then. The empress had someone lock Ma Beirong in the hidden prison. If it weren’t for the emperor suddenly mentioning that he wanted to go to the Tianxuan Mountain, the empress wouldn’t have been unable to attend to her. As a result, she got an opportunity to escape. The Sun and Ma Family colluded together right now. What for? Everyone knew.
The three discussed some more. Shen Xiao stayed silent in the last moment before saying that he was going to get a drink with Grand Secretary He. Then he left the study.
Shen Zikai pulled Qi Zheng to his study to talk.
Passing through the garden, they heard some whispers by the tree. Shen Zikai smiled. “Jiao Jiao might be there. Let’s go greet her.”
“...You’ll be the emperor’s relative in the future. That makes us really envious of you. No wonder you have control of the Shen Family.”
“You flatter me. They haven’t gotten married yet.”
“The imperial decree had been announced already. Could there be any changes?”
“The fourth miss is different as expected. She’s born to marry into the royal family…”
Before Shen Zikai and Qi Zheng could walk over, they heard all sorts of flatteries by the tree. However, they didn’t hear Nee Zhu or Shen Ziqiao.
The two men looked at each other and then stopped.
“The Shen Family will have to depend on you in the future to bring glory!”
“That’s right...that household requested a decree to retire and that has dragged many people down too!”
Shen Zikai was furious. If Qi Zheng hadn’t stopped him, he probably wouldn’t be able to control himself to curse them out.
“Let’s head back first!” Qi Zheng said in a low voice. They didn’t need to look to know that Shen Ziqiao and Nee Zhu weren’t there.