Shen Ziqiao had thought of the consequences of returning to the capital without the Old Madam’s permission, but she couldn’t wait anymore. It wasn't that she didn’t live well here, but that she had a lot of things to do. Even more, Sheng Peiyin came to find her. Looking at her glamorous outfit, she must be living a life of fortune and prosperity in the capital.
If Sheng Peiyin lived a good life, then she, a female supporting character, wouldn’t live a good life. When considering the situation, Shen Ziqiao selfishly believed that she would rather secure a better life for herself than let others live a better life.
Hong Yu advised Shen Ziqiao, “Third Miss, the Old Madam will be mad if you return at this time. Why not return after the Lord comes back?”
“Who knows whether the Old Madam will come up with an excuse to stop Father and Elder Brother from picking me up? I will be able to explain to them about my situation if I go back now and wait for them to come back. If I allow the Old Madam to explain, she’ll definitely say that I’m guilty of ‘crimes.’” Shen Ziqiao said tiredly and her voice sounded sweet and lazy. However, she spoke with a determined tone.
Thinking closely about the Old Madam’s attitude to the Third Miss, they knew that the Old Madam was capable of such a thing. Hong Yu became quiet and stopped trying to convince Shen Ziqiao.
The next morning, there was a slight chill. It was July and the faint fresh wind blew in from the window, making her feel refreshed. Shen Ziqiao rinsed and got dressed under Hong Yu’s assistance. When she was done packing up and prepared to find Sheng Peiyin, a bright figure appeared in front of her.
Sheng Peiyin wore a rose-colored loose coat with dark embroidery patterns with a pink pleated skirt, highlighting her slim figure and making her look extremely charming and moving. She walked in gracefully and smiled before saying anything. “Jiao Jiao, you woke up quite early today.”
After entering the room, Sheng Peiyin observed Shen Ziqiao and her eyes were sparkling.
Shen Ziqiao had Hong Ying bring the breakfast over as she said to Sheng Peiyin, “I have something urgent to do today, so I woke up earlier.”
Sheng Peiyin sat down by the mahogany carving round table and asked, “What urgent matter?”
“Going back to the capital.” Shen Ziqiao took the teacup that Hong Yu brought over and said in a gentle and slow tone.
“Hm?” Sheng Peiyin was slightly stunned. “The Old Madam allowed you to go back?”
Shen Ziqiao stared at Sheng Peiyin’s slender and delicate fingers which were holding the cup. It looked beautiful. Then she looked at her chubby hands. It wasn’t pretty at all. Sighs.
“I’m going back whether she allows me or not. It’s really boring living here.” Shen Ziqiao said.
Sheng Peiyin said that it was fine if she returned and then stopped talking.
Hong Ying brought over the jujube taste cake and two baskets of steamed dumplings that Lady Meng personally made. There were two bowls of congee and a few plates of pickled cucumber. Shen Ziqiao enjoyed eating the food and sighed at Lady Meng’s superior cooking skills. Even Sheng Peiyin’s eyes brightened at the sight of the food. Who knew that there was a servant who knew how to cook great food here?
“You brought a cook here?” Sheng Peiyin asked, believing deeply that the person who made the food came from the capital.
“How could I? She is a cook here and used to work for a rich family.” Shen Ziqiao vaguely answered, not wanting Sheng Peiyin to know that Pan Madam’s accompanying maid was here.
After breakfast, Sheng Peiyin went to pack her things up and Shen Ziqiao told Hong Yu to prepare to head back to the capital.
Lady Meng and Lady Lin came to look for her. They found out that Shen Ziqiao was going back to the capital today and they were extremely shocked, wanting to come over to personally ask.
“My Father and Elder Brother should be back. Last time, I beat the Fourth Master up and he definitely tattled on me to the Old Madam when he went back. If I don’t go back to explain to my Father, they probably will add oil to the fire, making the situation worse and letting my Father get mad at me. No matter what, I should go back to explain.” Shen Ziqiao explained to them and said in a very low voice.
Hong Ying was guarding outside, not letting anyone get close to the room.
Lady Meng didn’t want Shen Ziqiao to go, but she knew that Shen Ziqiao would not live here long-term. “Third Miss, please take care of yourself.”
Shen Ziqiao softly smiled and said to them, “Don’t think that I’ll let you guys go. Once I see my Father, I’ll make sure to pick you guys up and go back with me.”
Tears brimmed in Lady Lin’s eyes. “Third Miss… This servant girl doesn’t know how to thank you. Tie Dan has dragged you down.”
“Don’t say things like this.” Shen Ziqiao knitted her eyebrows and said in seriousness. “After I leave, you guys have to be careful. No matter who tells you to go back, you guys can’t follow them unless you see my token. If someone wants to do something to you… You can join forces and fight them. I will support all your decisions, so just treat them as thieves. It’s fine if you beat them up too.”
“If the Old Madam sends someone over, we can beat them up too?” Lady Lin asked hesitatingly.
Shen Ziqiao sneered. “How do you know the Old Madam sent someone over? No one saw them before.”
Lady Meng glanced at Shen Ziqiao in admiration and gratitude. If the Third Miss had been willing to protect them like that in the past and didn't listen to that old woman’s words, she wondered what the situation would be like today. “This servant girl understands. Third Miss, after you head back, you have to be careful too. Regarding the dowry, please don’t have a fallout with the Old Madam.” Lady Meng said this. “If you startle them, it’ll only be bad for us.”
Shen Ziqiao nodded and said, in a low voice, “I understand this. Don’t worry. I’ll act like I don’t know anything. When Elder Brother comes back, I’ll discuss a plan with him. In short, I must get back all of Mother’s dowry. I can’t let that old thief… The Old Madam take advantage of us.”
Lady Meng responded, “Even if we told the Eldest Master about it, in the end, the Pan Family’s Uncle will have to personally get involved.”
“Therefore, I want to personally go to Minyue.” Shen Ziqiao sighed. “Though I don’t know whether Uncle and them will forgive and recognize our relationship.”
“Third Miss is going to Minyue?” Lady Meng and Lady Lin glanced at each other in surprise.
Shen Ziqiao said, “Don’t make this public just yet. I am planning to, but this will wait until I bring you guys back to the capital.”
Lady Meng and Lady Lin answered.
When the sunlight got stronger, Shen Ziqiao and Sheng Peiyin had already left the village. The horse carriage stayed on the official road and headed straight for the capital.
“...I didn’t bring Sister Sheng around to play nor did I let you stay for a bit before traveling again. Please don’t get angry at me. When we have a chance in the future, I will invite you to come play.” Shen Ziqiao apologized to Sheng Peiyin. She just arrived at the village yesterday night to visit her, but she ended up on the road again without getting enough rest the next day.
Sheng Peiyin smiled and said, “What are you talking about? Us sisters don’t need to be so polite.”
If I don’t be polite to you, who knows how I’m going to die in the future? Shen Ziqiao criticized deep in her heart.
“After you return to the capital, how do you plan to explain to the Old Madam?” Sheng Peiyin asked.
Shen Ziqiao clenched her teeth and said angrily, “I’m not going home yet. I’m going to find Qi Zheng.”
Don’t think that just because she wasn’t at the capital that she didn’t know anything. She had long heard that when Qi Zheng fainted, there were rumors that she was the cause of it. She wanted to know just how exactly she had hurt him.
Plus, she really needed that bastard’s help to avoid having the Old Madam kick her back to the village.
When Sheng Peiyin heard that Shen Ziqiao was going to find Qi Zheng, her eyes slightly flickered. A faint charming smile appeared on her face.
If Qi Zheng wasn’t a retard anymore, then he would probably be Duke An Residence’s heir.