Old Madam Shen stared at Housekeeper Cui in front of her. He had bruised eyes and swollen cheeks, his hair messy. He looked utterly battered as though he had just gone through war.
Mama Li called out with shock, “Why are you all bruised up? What happened on the way?”
Housekeeper Cui fell limp on the ground and said, “Old Madam, the blind servants in the village dared to retaliate. This servant told them that I was sent by the Old Madam and before I could say anything else, those women and mamas had beaten this servant out of the village.”
Old Madam Shen’s expression changed as she thought she had heard wrong. “What did you say?”
Mama Li was shocked as well.
Housekeeper Cui raised his head, letting Old Madam Shen see his injuries more clearly. He wore a tragic expression and tears flowed down his face. “This servant went to Liu Yun Village, saying that the Old Madam wants to talk to Lady Meng and the rest. Who knew that when they heard my words, they said that the Eldest Master told them that they didn’t need to bother with anyone else besides him and the Third Miss. If the Old Madam wants to order them, then…then have the Eldest Master tell them…”
Before he could finish, Old Madam Shen slapped the table angrily. “Are they trying to start a rebellion?!”
Mama Li asked with her voice full of shock, “They dared to say that?”
Housekeeper Cui replied, “Before this servant could say anything else, Lady Meng ordered for the villagers to beat me up.”
The more Old Madam Shen listened to this, the angrier she got. Anger exploded from within her heart. “Great! Ziqiao has only stayed there for a while and she already trained those servants and maids to disobey me. As expected, like mother, like daughter!”
Mama Li hurried over to pat Old Madam Shen’s back. “Old Madam, it’s not worth getting mad over those servants. So what if they’re unyielding and tough with now? They’ll learn their lesson and be obedient after a beating.”
“Did they say anything else?” Old Madam Shen panted heavily, her voice becoming sharper as well.
Housekeeper Cui hesitated and lowered his head. He didn’t know how to form his words.
“What are you dawdling about? Quickly say what you have to say.” Old Madam Shen hollered furiously.
“This servant doesn’t dare say it. This servant will be killed.” Housekeeper Cui said in a low voice.
Old Madam Shen glanced at him with a dark and gloomy face.
Housekeeper Cui trembled and said, “During the chaos, this servant seemed to have heard someone say ‘that shameless and ruthless old woman, don’t even think about seizing her own daughter-in-law’s dowry. Heaven is watching you…’”
Indeed, they were asking for death for saying this! Anyone could tell that they were referring to Old Madam Shen.
Old Madam Shen was so infuriated that she wanted to spit blood.
Mama Li saw Old Madam Shen’s unwell expression and how her face was turning more purple by the moment. Thus, she hurriedly patted her back firmly.
Old Madam Shen spat out a mouthful of phlegm.
She coughed hard a few times before her expression became better. Yet, her hands were trembling with anger. She asked sternly, “Who said this?”
Housekeeper Cui said, “This servant...didn’t see clearly.”
Mama Li poured a cup of warm tea for Old Madam Shen and said, “No matter who said it, the cheap maids in the village must have a hand in this. Old Madam, we can’t keep them.”
“I know. But what can we do? Order someone to beat them to death?” Old Madam asked loudly, “Why do you think they dare to hit my people?”
Obviously, only the Eldest Master was able to keep the Pan Madam’s people in the village all these years without the Old Madam’s knowledge. Maybe even the Lord knows about it. If she ordered someone to beat them to death without a valid reason, the Eldest Master and the Lord probably won’t let this go.
Mama Li suggested, “Why don’t we find an excuse…”
Old Madam Shen glared at her before saying to Housekeeper Cui, “You can go and recuperate for now.”
She indicated for Mama Li to hand an exquisite indigo blue embroidered pouch to him.
Housekeeper Cui received the heavy embroidered pouch and happily kowtowed, thanking the Old Madam. Then he lowered his head and walked out.
Mama Li dismissed Cui Liu to wait outside. “Old Madam probably guessed what happened.”
If it wasn’t that they’d guessed Old Madam’s motive, why would they risk everything and act out?
Old Madam Shen’s breathing gradually calmed down. She glanced towards the direction of the Qiao Xin Courtyard through the window gloomily. “Ziqiao probably knows already. But she knows that she can’t do much just by herself.”
Mama Li said, “If she talks to Eldest Master about this, he might ask for the Pan Madam’s dowry back for her.”
“What, Pan Madam’s dowry?!” Old Madam Shen shouted angrily. “Since she married into the Shen Family, her dowry belongs to us then. She’s already dead. Her things belong to the Shen Family. Ziqiao doesn’t even need that much dowry. Her Pan Family doesn’t think about the Shen Family, so I must do things for my children.”
The crucial point was that the Pan Madam’s dowry belonged to the Third Miss, not to others.
Naturally, Mama Li didn’t dare say this. She didn’t want Shen Ziqiao to take back her dowry either. “What should we do now?”
Old Madam Shen sneered. “She wants to wait for the Lord to come back so that he can get the dowry back for her. Well, let’s see if this goes her way!”
Shen Ziqiao didn’t know that Old Madam Shen had sent someone to Liu Yun Village. When she left, she told Lady Meng that they didn’t need to be polite to anyone. They could rely on her and Shen Zikai.
She thought that since Shen Zikai dared to keep the fact that he was hiding Pan Madam’s people in the village from Old Madam, he wouldn’t mind supporting them.
She was forced to stay at home to reflect on her actions, so Shen Ziqiao couldn’t go look for Qi Zheng. She could only pray that the Shen Family’s father and son would come back quickly. They were the backers that she was eager for.
“Third Miss, a whole day has passed. How come the Old Madam hasn’t done anything?” Hong Yu asked confusedly, glancing at her master who was leaning against the bed by the window while fanning herself leisurely. She laughed bitterly.
Her master acted like she didn’t care no matter what happened. According to her master’s words, someone will support the sky if it collapses. She didn’t need to worry that much.
Shen Ziqiao yawned inelegantly. “What could she do? Maybe she already sent someone over to the village.”
Hong Yu was shocked. “How would the Old Madam treat Lady Meng and the rest?” Then she continued, “This maid was referring to Cui Ping.”
Cui Ping was originally the Old Madam’s maid, but she was called over to serve Shen Ziqiao. Now that she was kicked out by Shen Ziqiao, the latter was clearly slapping the Old Madam’s face. There was no way that the Old Madam would do nothing after what Shen Ziqiao had done.
Shen Ziqiao smiled and said, “The old woman might be thinking about killing the maids to silence them.”
“Third Miss!” Hong Yu’s face paled at her words.
“I’m kidding.” Shen Ziqiao smiled and said, “Don’t worry. I already gave them orders. The workers there are all sturdy and strong. Unless the Old Madam sends a troop over, there is nothing they can do.”
The old woman definitely wouldn’t do this because she wouldn’t want to make a huge fuss about this.
Hong Yu glared at Shen Ziqiao unhappily. “Third Miss, you like to scare people too much.”
Shen Ziqiao sighed and replied, “It’s because life is too lonely.”
To a female nerd, life without the internet was too boring. However, someone else didn’t find it boring at all.
Sheng Peiyin had trouble sleeping the entire night. Her heart was itching.
Qi Zheng’s mature and handsome figure was like a shadow, constantly appearing in her mind. Whenever she closed her eyes, she seemed to see his handsome face, his cold and steady temperament, his tall and sturdy body, and his deep and magnetic voice…
While in a daze, she dreamed that she was leaning against his broad and warm shoulders, feeling at ease and happy.
Even the Ninth Prince hadn’t given her this feeling before.
Sheng Peiyin was startled awake and felt vexed that she was constantly thinking about a man who she had seen for less than an hour.
What was wrong with her? He was just a retard.
But Qi Zheng wasn’t a retard anymore…
Sheng Peiyin recalled the scene from yesterday night.
He walked over with his head high and body straight. The afterglow of the sunset sprinkled in his deep and pitch-black eyes, making his eyes bright like stars. His beautiful lips seemed to contain a faint and calm smile. His nobleness and authority made people suffocate.
Her heart skipped a beat when she glanced at him. He was walking towards her.
Yet, he didn’t even look at her before he started talking to Shen Ziqiao in a hoarse voice, his eyes smiling.
There was not a single man who had ever ignored her like this.
Who was Shen Ziqiao? How could she compare to her? Was Qi Zheng blind?
Sheng Peiyin placed the cup firmly on the table, annoyed. She glanced at the street full of people, her brows knitted. She was bored at home so she’d come to a restaurant to get some air.
She was so focused on her anger that she didn’t notice as the door to the private room opened.
A pair of gentle arms pulled her towards their embrace.
“What’s the matter?” It was the Ninth Prince’s gentle water-like voice.
Sheng Peiyin turned around and the anger in her eyes vanished. She smiled gently and glanced at the Ninth Prince.
“Nine, you’re back.”
The Ninth Prince kissed the corner of her lips softly and murmured in a low voice, “Mn, I’m back. Yin’er, I’m always thinking about you.”
“Me too.” Sheng Peiyin’s empty heart was temporarily comforted. Her lips parted as she lightly licked the Ninth Prince’s lips.
“Yin’er.” The Ninth Prince panted and hugged her soft body against him tightly. He kissed her firmly, eager to undo the belt around her.
Sheng Peiyin twisted her body and said shyly, “Nine, Nine, we can’t do it here.”
The Ninth Prince carried her and pressed her against the bed by the window. His burning body was pressed against hers. “Don’t worry. No one will come in nor will anyone hear.”
“But…” Sheng Peiyin’s words blew softly in his ears.
Her words got stuck as the Ninth Prince captured her lips.
His smooth hands slipped under her clothes and squeezed her two mounds. The woman who he had been thinking about was under him right now. How could he control himself?
“Yin’er, Yin’er.” He panted hard and skillfully stripped her clothes before entering his thickness into her and starting to move in a rhythm.
Sheng Peiyin’s empty body was satisfied and she couldn’t help but moan out loud.
She closed her eyes and wrapped her arms around his shoulders.
If it were that man…
His body would definitely be more sturdy and warm.
If it were him…
Sheng Peiyin felt her body burning up even more. She lifted her body, but she didn’t feel satisfied no matter what.