Edited by Larkspur
Chapter 9: Older Biao Brother, Younger Biao Sister (Part 2)
Chu Jin Miao’s smile froze. Ever since Chu Jin Yao came, her identity had become more and more awkward. Things that she had originally thought were hers, were slightly changed now. And as there were many people in this large household, it was inevitable for her to hear some gossip. And now Chu Zhu still instructed her to stand with Chu Jin Yao to compare…
It did not matter to Chu Jin Yao as she had long been accustomed to being looked upon. However, when Chu Jin Miao almost reached Chu Jin Yao and was two steps away, she refused to go any further.
There was a saying that one did not fear of knowing goods but one feared of comparing goods. Because Chu Jin Miao was a daughter of a farmer family, her features had always been inferior to that of a proper young lady of the Chu family. Now standing next to Chu Jin Yao, the gap was more obvious. Chu Jin Yao was a head taller than her and even though she was slightly darker in complexion, her facial features were crushing hers. The only advantage that Chu Jin Miao had was that she was slimmer than Chu Jin Yao but her type of slim was the boney type and did not look as comfortable as Chu Jin Yao’s natural figure.
Even Qin Yi, who was quietly waiting to watch the show, felt embarrassed.
Obviously, the other Furens had the same feeling and tactfully did not continue on this topic. Chu Zhu did not expect that her kind intentions had spoilt the matter and thus could only call Chu Jin Miao over and patted her hand quietly.
Chu Zhu thought with regret that Chu Jin Miao was slimmer than Chu Jin Yao and had a better temperament. At first glance, she looked like a child that was raised by a wealthy family and had an air of scholar. The only shortcoming was… Chu Jin Yao was so much more beautiful than her. Even though Chu Zhu was biased towards Chu Jin Miao, she was unable to say, against her conscience, that Chu Jin Yao did not look good.
Chu Zhu initially wanted to let Chu Jin Miao stand together with Chu Jin Yao so that everyone could take a look. Even though Chu Jin Miao still remained at the Marquis Residence, but her birth parents had done such things so it was inevitable that some shallow people of the Marquis Residence would look down upon her. Chu Zhu did this to remind everyone that a noble lady that was raised by the Marquis Residence was not comparable to a random village girl.
In the end, it was her that was embarrassed.
Although Chu Jin Yao was the true Young Lady of the Chu family, to Madam Zhao, Old Chu Furen, and Chu Zhu, Chu Jin Miao was the one that grew up under their eyes and they truly loved her over the years. When Chu Jin Yao suddenly appeared, and it was said that they had cherished the wrong person, Chu Jin Yao was the real noble lady, while Chu Jin Miao was the fake one, who could accept it? When Chu Zhu received the letter, she felt baffled.
Chu Jin Yao was the real stranger to her. Chu Zhu had originally thought that since Chu Jin Yao grew up in the farmer family, she must be vulgar and greedy, and now that the sparrow had turned into a phoenix, she would show her greed, selfishness, and love of money. How could she be compared to Chu Jin Miao’s cultured and educated self?
Even after seeing Chu Jin Yao in person and even though Chu Zhu did not see the scene that she had originally expected, she still felt that a person who was raised in a poor family would be a poor person from the root. Even if it could not be seen now, there would be some inkling of it in the future. Chu Zhu thought regretfully that if Chu Jin Yao’s face were to be on Chu Jin Miao’s, how perfect it would be.
Old Chu Furen watched the entire scene sullenly and waited till Chu Zhu stopped before saying, “It is getting late. Set the meal.”
With Old Chu Furen present, the rule of avoiding the other gender from the age of seven was not required. Lin Xi Ning and the Chu family’s Young Masters and Young Ladies all accompanied Old Chu Furen to eat. Naturally, Old Chu Furen sat at the center, Chu Zhu brought Lin Xi Ning to sit on the right side of Old Chu Furen while Chu Jin Xian sat on Old Furen’s left. Madam Zhao and the rest of the Daughter-in-laws could only stand and serve her meal.
The seats at both sides of Old Chu Furen had always been for the most favoured people. Her preferences were like the wind and such people were the most popular in the inner courtyard. Currently, on one side was Chu Zhu and Lin Xi Ning and the other side was Chu Jin Xian. Chu Jin Yao could understand the arrangement, and as for her… She sat at another table.
A table could only sit eight and with the few Young Masters present, how could she sit at the table with the highest-ranked Old Furen…
Halfway through the meal, Old Furen said to Madam Zhao, “You all have stood for a day. Sit down and rest.”
Madam Zhao and the rest declined it once before putting down the chopsticks that were used to serve the dishes. The maids immediately brought the stools over and waited upon the three Furens to sit.
After dinner, Chu Jin Yao returned to her courtyard and secretly spoke to Qin Yi, “In such a solemn scene like today, we the younger generations could sit down to eat but Mother and the rest had to stand and serve dishes as per the rules. They could only have the meals after standing for half a meal. Even so, a lot of people said that ZuMu is compassionate towards the Daughters-in-law. Everyone was a papered guest before marriage, so why is it like this after marriage?”
“This is the etiquette regulation. Nothing can be done.” Qin Yi sighed, “It is better in TaiYuan. The Capital has strict rules and if one encounters an old-fashioned Mother-in-law, who talks about regulation for everything with you, then that is distressing.”
Qin Yi was the Crown Prince. Although he spent most of the time in court, he had also heard about these things. The life of a new bride was not easy and when he thought about the day Chu Jin Yao would have to live like that, he started to feel worried for her.
She was of a one-track mind and also trusted people easily, so if she were to really encounter a mean Mother-in-law, what could she do? He thought of mentioning to her that she should pay attention to the male family side when she is engaged but felt that he was an external male and had to leave sooner or later and the other party would be her husband’s family. Instead, he might be complained to by Chu Jin Yao after he mentioned it.
He should not be mixed into these matters.
When Chu Jin Yao thought that she would also serve her Mother-in-law like this in the future, she felt that there was no light in her life. After being sullen for a long time, Qin Yi saw that Chu Jin Yao was just too dispirited and took the initiative to speak and divert her attention, “I saw you secretly taking a few glances at Lin Xi Ning. Do you…”
“No!” Chu Jin Yao blushed and said in embarrassment, “What are you doing? Why speak of such things without reason?”
In fact, Qin Yi was right. It was rare for females in the inner courtyard to see external males and Lin Xi Ning’s age was right, looked good, and was a Gentleman in the Residence of a Second-Ranked Prince. During the entire meal, there were young ladies that kept stealing secret gazes at him. It was Chu Jin Yao’s first time seeing a noble male around her age and he was a gentle, considerate, and handsome young Gentleman. It was normal for one to develop good feelings and secretly look a few times.
Qin Yi snorted softly and said, “You still slander me. From ten years old, I was able to understand those Palace… Females’ thoughts. These little careful thoughts of yours are as incomparable to their little finger.”
“I already said that I did not!”
“If you haven’t, then why are you yelling at me?”
“You are sure annoying.” Chu Jin Yao took the jade pendant off in a fit of anger and placed it on the table outside the canopy bed and drew the curtain close with a humph, “I want to sleep. Don’t bother me.”
After a while, Qin Yi leisurely said, “They are right. Females are indeed unreasonable.”