“My lord, my lord! Good news!” said the housekeeper when he returned.
Su Huanli looked happy and asked, “Is it done?”
The housekeeper clapped. “Squire Li really liked the delicacies, and he agreed at once.”
But Su Huanli sneered and whispered, “This dish will definitely be a huge profit in the restaurant. He is raised by Li Shanbao. If he didn’t agree, there would be something wrong!”
Su Huanli couldn’t help but sigh. “If the Su family didn’t focus on the cloth business, I wouldn’t give Li Wei the chance to make money on this. What a pity.”
The housekeeper suddenly understood Su Huanli’s words. No wonder Li Wei made his decision without hesitation.
“My lord, that recipe...”
“You take the pen, ink, paper and inkstone and go to Erya,” Su Huanli said, then frowned. “It’s a huge matter… Just find a good excuse and take her to the study.”
In a small courtyard, Su Erya sat quietly in the sunshine with her eyes closed, as if she were asleep.
She opened her eyes when her ears moved slightly, then put her hand gently on Dahan’s calligraphy on the stone table.
At that moment, the housekeeper pushed the door and came in. Seeing Second Miss, whose face was red under the sunshine, he couldn’t help laughing and then said, “Second Miss, the lord wants to see you in the study.”
Su Erya seemed scared, so the housekeeper explained, “It’s about the zongzi.”
Su Erya was relieved. She stood up, patted her cotton-padded clothes, and trotted into the kitchen with her long hair flowing.
The housekeeper shook his head and squinted his eyes on the delicate book on the stone table. His face turned dark immediately.
“Mr. Li, I am ready!”
Su Erya came with a basket, but didn’t expect the question waiting for her. The housekeeper asked her, “Second Miss, where did you steal this book? Is it from your older brother’s study?
Su Erya shivered slightly with her face turned white and tears welled in her eye, “Mr. Li, I’ve never stolen anything. I didn’t steal the night-luminescent pearl.”
The housekeeper sighed. He didn’t expect his words to remind Second Miss of that miserable experience. He said softly, “Then tell me, where did you get the book?”
“My old brother gave it to me.” Su Erya blinked her bright eyes. “He said that he’s leaving, and the book might remind me of him.”
Hearing that, the housekeeper sighed deeply. That’s absolutely what the master might say. Second Miss was illiterate. It was impossible for her to say such cultural words.
“It’s my fault that I misunderstood you.” The housekeeper patted her head gently and was afraid to scare her again. “But don’t let the lord see it. He’ll not be happy about it.”
Su Erya nodded and then said, “But I do not understand any of the pictures in it. I have no idea why he gave it to me.”
That made the housekeeper mind race:
“Did the young master hope the girls of the family would learn to read?”
As he was lost in thought, Su Erya took out a zongzi from the basket and handed it to the housekeeper and smirked while saying, “Here, you haven’t tasted the zongzi I made!”
The housekeeper came back from his thoughts and immediately pushed it away. “How can I eat such a valuable delicacy. Keep it for yourself, Second Miss.”
Pressing her lips together, Su Erya put the zongzi into his hands. She said quietly, “It’s a gift. You work so hard.”
The housekeeper didn’t know if he should laugh or cry. He grinned and put the zongzi into his arms. Again he was lost in thought:
“Why is Second Miss so considerate to me? I scared her, and the little girl didn’t hold it against me at all.
“Third Miss treats me like a slave Even if I did everything perfect, she would never be satisfied... It seems that I should think more about Second Miss in the future.”
The housekeeper saw the book on the stone table again, and made a plan.
As soon as Su Erya left with the housekeeper, the West courtyard received the news from Zhu’er. Zhu Yan sat nervously at the bed with cold sweat on her forehead and panic in her eyes.
“Does the lord find something?”
Zhu Yan thought a lot. And the more she thought, the more she was afraid. Apart from that incident, she could not think of any other reasons for the housekeeper to take Erya to the main house.
“No, I should calm down! What would Zipei do if I were gone?”
Zhu Yan stopped packing her bags, gritted her teeth, walked to the dresser, and opened the concealed draw under the table. She groped for a moment and took out a white jade.
The jade became warm in her hands, pure and innocent. Even a fool could see that this jade was extremely precious. The pattern on the jade seemed like the lower body of an animal. However, Zhu Yan studied the pattern for many years and still didn’t know what it was.
Zhu Yan stared at the jade, and soon she calmed herself down.
This piece of jade was obtained from Erya when she adopted her.
She has never seen such a valuable jade. Erya’s family must have been very extraordinary. But she checked her and the girl had no birthmark on her body!
And Zipei had no birthmark, either!