Novel Name : After Rebirth, the True Eldest Daughter Starts Brewing Green Tea

Chapter 5 - ARTTEDSBGT Chapter 5

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Chapter 5 - ARTTEDSBGT Chapter 5

After Li Suwan finished speaking, she realized she had spoken carelessly. She immediately glanced at the door and found no one else there, so she breathed a sigh of relief and said, “I didn’t mean it that way. I was just a little surprised, after all, what happened last night…”
Even though Li Zhizhi had promised in front of everyone yesterday that she wouldn’t move to Ziteng Court, why did she change her mind after just one day? Li Suwan felt anxious and suddenly realized that if she continued pretending to be sick in bed, she might miss out on many things. What if Li Zhizhi managed to win their parents’ favor? And there was also her elder brother…
Li Zhizhi gently chuckled and said, “I don’t know either. It’s just that Father suddenly mentioned it today.”
“But you…” Li Suwan wanted to ask further, but the words couldn’t come out, leaving her feeling uneasy.
Li Zhizhi kindly continued, “Am I going to agree to it?”
Li Suwan looked at her, feeling somewhat anxious. She was still young now, and her ability to pretend was not as skilled as in her previous life. Li Zhizhi’s expression seemed playful as she said, “Why don’t you guess?”
As she spoke, Li Zhizhi turned around with her hands behind her back and looked around the room, admiring the landscape embroidered screen, the peacock hanging curtain, the Yunyan incense burner, and the green-glazed beauty vase…
All these things were personally arranged by Li Suwan, exquisite and beautiful. Li Zhizhi deliberately acted as if she had never seen such things before and exclaimed, “They’re so beautiful! What about this big jar? Oh, what is this?”
She picked up a small cracked blue-glazed porcelain cup and asked, “Is it a bowl for eating porridge? It’s all cracked on the surface.”
Li Suwan looked at her back and a look of disgust appeared on her face. “That’s a pen holder with ice crack patterns, not cracks.”
It was a birthday gift given to her by her elder brother, Li Xingzhi. She couldn’t bear to imagine what would happen to these treasures if Li Zhizhi really moved in. Giving her this place to live would be like feeding pearls to pigs.
Li Suwan cursed maliciously in her heart.
Before she could finish her curse, she heard the clear sound of porcelain breaking. Tiny pieces of blue-colored porcelain scattered around, and Li Suwan hadn’t reacted yet when she heard Li Zhizhi apologizing, “I’m sorry, Sister Wan’er, I didn’t do it on purpose. You won’t be mad at me, will you?”
Old Lady Wang was the first to rush in upon hearing the commotion. She saw Li Zhizhi standing there with a guilty expression, continuously apologizing to Li Suwan, “Sister, I really didn’t mean to… I’m sorry, can I compensate you?”
Li Suwan was so angry that she could barely maintain her weak facade, “Compensate? Do you know that these are the last batch of brush washers from the new kiln? They were a gift from my brother!”
Li Zhizhi pouted, her eyes filled with mist as tears swirled in her eyes, “I… I didn’t know, I’m sorry… Sister…”
The constant address of “Sister” irritated Li Suwan; it was like a constant reminder of her embarrassing identity. Moreover, she had clearly seen that Li Zhizhi let go of the brush washer, causing it to fall to the ground.
She was so angry that she trembled all over, clutching the blanket tightly, “You… You did it on purpose…”
Old Lady Wang didn’t like this accusation and retorted, “Miss Wan’er, Little Miss already said she didn’t do it on purpose. Why do you keep holding on and not letting go? Besides, it’s just a plaything, and it’s already broken. If you really want it, I can ask someone to get another one from the storeroom. After all, Little Miss is the legitimate young lady of the mansion. You can afford to replace a brush washer, can’t you?”
Her words were full of sarcasm, striking at Li Suwan’s sore spot. Li Suwan nearly spat out blood, pointing at Old Lady Wang in a trembling voice, “You—”
The maidservants in Ziteng Courtyard couldn’t bear to watch their young mistress suffer and immediately started clamoring, saying they would report to the master and mistress. Old Lady Wang wasn’t afraid and raised her voice even louder, “If you want to go, then go! I don’t believe it. Little Miss is the legitimate daughter of the family. Even if she accidentally breaks a cup or a plate, will the master and mistress send her off to an official?!”
With this statement, the maidservants hesitated. Old Lady Wang continued her tirade, “You little bitches think I don’t know what you’re planning? You’re eyeing Little Miss now that she’s back and unaware. You’re bullying the young master, doing all these despicable things. I still haven’t settled yesterday’s accounts with you, but I’ll deal with you all one by one. I’ll sell you all out of the mansion, and let’s see which family will dare to hire you?! I won’t even accept you as chamber pots!”
She finished her scolding, even spitting on the ground. Then, she turned to Li Suwan and spoke with a sweet smile, “Today, the master mentioned that there were some rebellious servants in the mansion, doing some things to take advantage of their positions. He asked me to investigate and punish those who deserve it, to uphold the family’s reputation. I can see that there are quite a few rebellious servants here in Ziteng Courtyard too. Little Miss Wan’er has a good temper, but I’ll advise you not to let them take advantage of you. They’re really insufferable!”
Old Lady Wang had a sharp tongue and used vulgar language, pointing fingers at everyone. Li Suwan’s face turned extremely ugly for a moment. She wanted to argue back but felt it would be beneath her to do so. Instead, she covered her mouth and coughed.
Just at this moment, Li Zhizhi cautiously asked, “Sister, you don’t blame me, do you?”
Li Suwan’s face turned red with anger, and she rolled her eyes in exasperation, fainting on the spot. The maidservants gasped, shouting, “Someone come! Miss fainted!”
Old Lady Wang muttered, “She was full of energy just now. But she fainted so easily, how amusing.”
Li Zhizhi wanted to laugh but held back. She watched the busy scene in the room, then tugged at Wang Pozi, and the two of them went out together. Wang Pozi held a lantern to lead the way and comforted her, saying, “I can tell she’s fine. Don’t worry. The doctor’s clinic is just across from the Li Mansion. The doctor makes three trips to the mansion every day. How could she possibly die from an illness?”
Li Zhizhi looked at Wang Pozi’s not-so-generous figure and remembered her imposing manner when scolding someone earlier. She couldn’t help but smile and whispered, “Thank you, Granny.”
Wang Pozi sighed and waved her hand, saying, “It’s because the master and madam are being foolish. Not to mention two living people, even two grasshoppers would fight when put together. But, I believe a person should have self-awareness. If something is yours, it’s yours; if it’s not, don’t snatch it. Only wild dogs steal food! One should not degrade oneself and harm others.”
“Yes,” Li Zhizhi said, feeling enlightened. As she thought about her past life and all the efforts she had made to please the Li family, she realized what did she gain in the end? She wasted her life and probably nobody would feel sorry for her.
Li Zhizhi murmured softly, “Not to degrade myself…”
Instead of going directly to Shuyue Pavilion, Li Zhizhi went to see Li Cen first. She explained to him about accidentally breaking the pen holder and lowered her head in guilt, saying, “I’m sorry, sister. I just thought it was so beautiful and wanted to take a look. I wasn’t careful and dropped it…”
Li Cen, upon hearing this, couldn’t help but smile and said, “I thought it was something serious. It turns out you just dropped a pen holder. Is it worth coming out here in the middle of the night for that? You didn’t do it on purpose. Your sister has always had a gentle and tolerant personality; she wouldn’t get angry over such a trivial thing.”
Li Zhizhi bit her lip and explained further, “Sister said that pen holder was a gift from my brother, and she liked it very much.”
Li Cen remained unconcerned, “It’s okay, we can ask the storeroom to bring her another one just like it tomorrow.”
Li Zhizhi hesitated and said, “But sister—”
“What’s wrong with her?” asked Li Cen.
Li Zhizhi replied in a low voice, “Sister seems to be very angry and fainted. They said they called the doctor.”
Hearing this, Li Cen furrowed his brows. He couldn’t imagine that Li Suwan would faint because of such a small matter. It seemed like she was making a big fuss over nothing, starting from the issue of her birth and now extending to her illness that had been going on for over half a month. She was really too delicate.
At that moment, Li Xingzhi hurriedly came over and the first thing he said was, “Father, Suwan fainted just now.”
Li Cen furrowed his brows and said, “I know.” He put down the pen in his hand and stood up, “Let’s go and see. Did you call for the doctor?”
“Mother has already sent someone to call him,” Li Xingzhi followed him and suddenly remembered something. He looked back at Li Zhizhi, displeased, and asked, “Why are you following us?”
Li Zhizhi was somewhat afraid of him, and she shrank back, softly saying, “I, I also want to go and see sister.”
“No need!” Li Xingzhi frowned tightly, disgustedly saying, “I heard from the servants that you made Wan’er faint. Don’t follow us.”
Li Zhizhi pouted, feeling wronged, and said, “I, I really didn’t mean to…”
Li Xingzhi wanted to say more, but was interrupted by Li Cen’s rebuke, “Why are you taking your anger out on her? Just because of accidentally knocking over an inkwell, could that really make someone faint? A true gentleman treats others with kindness and is strict with oneself. Did you throw all the teachings of sages into the garbage? Is that how I’ve taught you?”
Walking by Li Cen’s side, Li Zhizhi listened as he scolded Li Xingzhi until he couldn’t lift his head. She couldn’t help but hide a hint of schadenfreude behind her sleeve, concealing a smirk.
Li Cen became angrier as he scolded, “Furthermore, I didn’t ask you to study in the study room. Why did you come out again?”
Li Xingzhi defended himself, “A servant came to report that Wan’er fainted, and I…”
“Are you a doctor? Just take a look at her, and that’s it?” Li Cen’s tone held concealed anger. “With your lazy attitude towards studying, how will you participate in the imperial examination next year?”
After receiving a thorough scolding, Li Xingzhi returned to the study to study with a sullen mood. Li Cen shook his head, frustrated, “He’s really an incompetent fellow.”
Li Zhizhi tried to console him in a low voice, “Brother is just too worried about sister.”
Li Cen frowned and said, “Wan’er occasionally falls sick, and he doesn’t even need to study. He might as well move to Ziteng Garden to keep an eye on her. Back when I was preparing for the imperial examination, not to mention running around like him, I didn’t even pay attention to the world outside the window. How can he be so restless all day long and not study at all? When he fails the exam, everyone in the capital will laugh at him.”
As he spoke, he grew more and more angry, even starting to blame, “And this illness of Wan’er’s, it’s been so long, and there’s still no improvement. Sigh…”
Li Zhizhi lowered her gaze and softly reassured, “It will get better eventually. Father, don’t worry too much. As for Brother’s studies, you can have the matters in Ziteng Garden handled through you, so Brother won’t be distracted.”
“That’s a good idea,” Li Cen agreed. “I’ll give the orders tomorrow. There’s no need to make the whole household uneasy over every little thing.”
Li Zhizhi smiled lightly. With Li Cen’s temperament, if Li Suwan dared to come looking for trouble, she would be asking for trouble herself. After all, Li Cen wasn’t like Li Xingzhi, who kept thinking about her all the time.
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