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

Chapter 28 - ARTTEDSBGT Chapter 28

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Chapter 28 - ARTTEDSBGT Chapter 28

Li Suwan was recuperating in the mansion and didn’t go to the Ming Garden. The gossip about her had gradually subsided. Although the relationship between Zhao Shan’er and Xiao Man seemed unchanged, according to Li Zhizhi’s observation, it was clear that they were not as close as before. It was evident that Zhao Shan’er had developed a sense of wariness towards her good friend, even though it hadn’t reached the point of a falling out.
Zhao Shan’er dared to manipulate Li Suwan mainly because she was an easy target. Li Zhizhi was in no rush to deal with her; she had her own plans. Those who had mistreated her in her past life, one by one, would not escape her.
“Today, I have to go to Shansetang to learn painting,” Su Tangyu reminded Li Zhizhi, “Do you remember the three green dyes I asked you to bring yesterday?”
Li Zhizhi took out a small porcelain round box the size of a palm and gestured, saying, “I’ve brought it.”
“That’s good,” Su Tangyu said as she picked up her bag, “Mr. Zhou is usually easygoing, but when it comes to painting, he’s quite serious. He’s even scarier than Wu’s book teaching.”
As she spoke, there was a crisp sound, and something fell to the ground, catching everyone’s attention. It turned out to be Zhao Shan’er and Xiaoman, who had knocked over a colorful lacquer peony-patterned round box. The high-quality green dye had spilled everywhere, staining Xiaoman’s crimson skirt with a messy mix of blue and red, a pitiful sight.
Xiaoman’s face turned cold, and she frowned at Zhao Shan’er, her tone filled with suppressed anger, “What madness has come over you again recently?”
Zhao Shan’er averted her gaze and didn’t meet her eyes. She replied, “The Wei purple orchid my brother gave me died, and I’ve been in a bad mood these days.”
Upon hearing this, Xiaoman retorted, “Blame the gardener’s incompetence. You can punish him if you want, he’s already been sent to your mansion. You have the power to decide his fate, but what’s the point of taking it out on me?”
“Or is it…” She suddenly looked at Li Zhizhi and said to Zhao Shan’er, “Has someone been whispering in your ear again?”
Li Zhizhi calmly met her gaze. After a moment, she smiled faintly and said to Su Tangyu, “Let’s go.”
Leaving Mingde Hall, they walked along the corridor, crossed a garden, and headed north towards Shansetang. Li Zhizhi, Su Tangyu, and Jiang Ziyu chatted as they walked. Jiang Ziyu suddenly remembered something and asked Li Zhizhi with great interest, “By the way, how is Li Suwan doing now? When is she coming back to the Ming Garden?”
Su Tangyu pulled her back and shook her head slightly, her expression showing some disapproval. However, Jiang Zilu paid no mind to it and said in a carefree manner, “It’s not like I slapped her in the face, and I didn’t write those words either. She’s always been so sharp-tongued and difficult. Now that she’s facing misfortune, countless people are waiting to see her make a fool of herself. Can’t I take pleasure in her misfortune?”
Sutang said helplessly, “After all, she’s Zhizhi’s cousin. How can you easily speak about Suwan like that?”
“Just a cousin,” Jiang Ziyu rolled her eyes. “It’s not like she’s a real sister. There’s nothing to be so cautious about.”
Su Tangyu fell silent, looking apologetically at Li Zhizhi. Li Zhizhi was about to say something when she suddenly heard a familiar voice calling her name, “Sister Zhizhi, sister.”
Li Zhizhi was taken aback. Only one person would call her that way.
Jiang Ziyu nudged her and motioned for her to look to the side. She said, “Someone is calling you.”
Li Zhizhi looked in the direction of the voice, and behind the flowers and trees, not far away, she saw a young girl wearing a light blue gown, waving excitedly at her, saying, “Sister Zhizhi.”
It was A’yang. Her face was filled with innocent joy, like the morning sun, easily captivating hearts. Li Zhizhi instinctively wanted to smile in return, but then she remembered what Xiao Yan had said that day and forcibly held back her emotions. She composed her expression and turned to Su Tangyu, whispering, “Let’s go.”
Su Tangyu was surprised and asked, “Aren’t you going to…”
Li Zhizhi interrupted her with a smile and said, “We should leave now. You said Mr. Zhou is strict, didn’t you?”
The three of them headed towards Shanshe Hall, leaving Xiaoyan behind. Along the way, Li Zhizhi remained silent, lacking interest in conversation. Su Tangyu noticed this and refrained from asking too many questions. However, Jiang Ziyu was persistently inquisitive, asking, “Was that the Seventh Princess just now?”
Her tone didn’t seem very respectful. Li Zhizhi furrowed her brows slightly but didn’t respond. Jiang Ziyu continued, “I heard she’s a natural simpleton, with the mind of a young child. Even the palace finds her inconvenient and rarely lets her meet outsiders. If you ask me, I really don’t understand how this simpleton managed to be born into such a good family, enjoying luxurious living and palaces. It’s a real waste.”
As she spoke, her words became increasingly bitter and sarcastic. Su Tangyu couldn’t stand it and said, “That’s enough, stop saying such things. She is still a princess after all.”
Suddenly, Li Zhizhi spoke, “If you envy her so much, would you be willing to be a simpleton like her?”
Both sisters were taken aback. During their time in the Summer Palace, Li Zhizhi had always been polite and gentle, speaking in a warm and kind manner. She had never argued or shown any aggressive behavior. This was the first time they had seen Li Zhizhi display such hostility and use words that were almost mocking.
Jiang Ziyu’s face turned red, and she couldn’t believe it. She asked, “What do you mean? Are you mocking me?”
“You don’t need to ask.” Li Zhizhi coldly looked at her. “You’ve been pricking yourself with a thorn in your heart. Being born into a good family is someone else’s ability. Maybe she’s better than you. You might want to take a good look at your own face in the mirror and reflect on whether you did something wicked in your past life.”
But Li Zhizhi no longer looked at her and walked away quickly. Jiang Ziyu muttered something behind her and then turned to Su Tangyu, angry. “Did you hear what she said just now? Who does she think she is, making fun of me like that? Does she really think of herself as a big shot, mocking me like that?”
Su Tangyu frowned and said, “Your words are too harsh. Seventh Princess has no grudges with you. What’s the point of talking behind her back? I saw at the Spring Garden Banquet last time that Seventh Princess and Zhizhi seemed quite close. They must be friends. You’re stirring up trouble behind her back, so naturally, she’s not happy.”
Jiang Ziyu seemed to find something amusing and sneered, “My dear third sister, you’re too naive. You can’t even see this? What kind of friends would a fool like Li Zhizhi have? She’s just trying to please others. She usually acts so obedient, and today she finally revealed her true colors, right?”
“Enough! Zhizhi is not that kind of person,” Su Tangyu said with a stern expression. “Even a clay figurine has a bit of its own character. She has a good temperament, but that’s not a reason for you to attack her so recklessly. You’ve gone too far today. I don’t want to talk to you anymore!”
With that, she didn’t look at Jiang Ziyu again and walked towards the direction of Shanse Tang.

Small Study Room.
Inside the room, there were the sounds of a young girl sobbing. A maid in a blue dress stood at the door, desperately knocking and pleading, “Young Mistress, please stop crying. Open the door and let me in, okay?”
Xiao Rulei ignored her, and the room door remained tightly closed. The maid was at a loss, and just then, she heard a woman’s voice behind her, asking, “What’s happened to A’yang?”
The maid turned around as if she had seen a savior. She quickly bowed and said, “Your Highness, Young Mistress locked herself in her room and has been crying for a whole quarter of an hour. No matter what I say, she won’t open the door. I’m at my wit’s end.”
The Princess’s brow furrowed slightly. “What happened?”
The maid explained, “Earlier, Young Mistress kept saying she wanted to find that Miss Li at Mingde Hall. I followed her there, but when she saw that Miss Li, she called out to her, but she didn’t respond and just walked away. Young Mistress was anxious to catch up and accidentally bumped her forehead, and then… she started crying.”
Princess Yongning was alarmed. “A’yang is injured?”
The maid turned pale and anxiously knelt down, saying, “It’s my fault for not taking good care of her. I’m truly sorry, Your Highness!”
Princess Yongning simply gestured for her to get up and walked over to the door herself. Despite the closed door, she could still hear crying from inside, intermittently. She reached out and knocked on the door, softly calling out, “A’yang, it’s your aunt.”
The crying stopped for a moment, but soon resumed. Princess Yongning asked, “Do you want to see your sister Zhizhi?”
The crying stopped again, and there was some movement inside the room. After a while, the door opened, and Xiao Rulei appeared behind it, with red, teary eyes and tear streaks all over her face. She also had a swollen bump on her forehead.
“Oh my,” Princess Yongning touched her head and joked, “Our A’yang looks like a little steamed bun.”
Xiao Rulei was amused by her comment and chuckled. But as she laughed, she remembered her sadness and started to cry again, saying, “Aunt…”
Princess Yongning felt sorry for her and hugged her tightly, trying to comfort her. She offered some pastries and various small trinkets to soothe her. It took some effort, but she finally managed to calm her down.
The aunt and niece sat on the edge of the bed and talked. The window was wide open, and swallows were flying by with mud in their beaks. It was a sunny day with a gentle breeze, and everything felt full of spring’s warmth. Xiao Rulei leaned on Princess Yongning’s lap, took a bite of pastry, and said angrily, “I dislike him.”
“Who?” Princess Yongning gently used her fingers to comb through Xiao Rulei’s long hair, asking, “Your sister Zhizhi?”
Xiao Rulei shook her head, “No, I dislike my brother.”
Princess Yongning looked surprised and asked, “Why?”
Xiao Rulei pouted and said unhappily, “My sister Zhizhi wouldn’t ignore me for no reason. It must be my brother who’s stopping her from playing with me.”
Princess Yongning fell into silence. She knew about Xiao Yan’s unresolved feelings, but she didn’t know how to explain it to A’yang. Children’s thoughts are too simple. They don’t understand the adults’ concerns. They just get upset if they don’t get candy, without understanding whether it’s good for their teeth.
“Will I always be alone in the future, like you, Aunt?” Xiao Rulei asked.
Xiao Rulei’s almost innocent words brought Princess Yongning back to reality. She chuckled and said, “Why would you think that, A’yang? You won’t be alone.”
But Xiao Rulei shook her head and licked the leftover candy stuck to her teeth, saying, “My brother doesn’t let me make friends, so I’ll be alone.”
Princess Yongning lowered her gaze to look at her, her eyes filled with warmth and pity. She gently touched Xiao Rulei’s head and said, “That sister Zhizhi, isn’t she your friend?”
As they talked about this, Xiao Rulei’s expression turned somber, “But she doesn’t want to talk to me now.”
Princess Yongning smiled and said, “Aunt has a solution.”
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