Chapter 371: Father, Is That You? (2)
Xiao Ziyue knew that she was coming and had already gotten someone to wait at the entrance of the manor. When the maidservant saw the four carriages, she guessed that they belonged to the Young Master Manor. She hurriedly walked forward with a smile. “I, Lingzhi, greet the Princely Heir Consort!”
Jiang Hai stopped the carriage and took a wooden stool to place it properly. Fu Ling alighted first and helped Yu Wan off the carriage.
Yu Wan looked at this smart little maidservant. She was Xiao Ziyue’s personal maidservant, whom she had seen at Prince Cheng Manor last time. She had even sent her trusted aide over, which showed Xiao Ziyue’s sincerity.
Yu Wan smiled and said, “Don’t be so polite.”
Lingzhi chuckled and greeted Fu Ling. “Sister Fu Ling!”
Fu Ling said seriously, “You’re older than me.”
The maidservants had long exchanged names and ages in the Prince Cheng Manor. This girl only looked petite, but she was a year older than Fu Lingg. The reason why she addressed her that way was because she respected Fu Ling.
Why couldn’t this silly girl understand? Besides, looking at her size, Fu Ling was two to three times bigger than her.
The stocky Fu Ling protected her Princely Heir Consort and entered the manor, leaving only the confused Lingzhi behind. “…”
Yu Wan instructed Lingzhi and first went to the main courtyard to visit Shangguan Yan. Shangguan Yan’s relationship with Eldest Mrs. Xiao was neither cold nor indifferent, but she was quite close to Xiao Ziyue. She knew that Xiao Ziyue had invited Yu Wan.
Shangguan Yan was looking at this month’s account book in the room when she saw the little maidservant, Xingzhu, run in excitedly. “Madam! The Princely Heir Consort is here!”
Shangguan Yan put down the account book. “Invite her in.”
“I did!” Xingzhu said with a smile. She opened the curtain and Yu Wan walked into the room.
Shangguan Yan smiled at her.
Yu Wan went forward and bowed. “Mother.”
The word “mother” stunned Shangguan Yan. Fortunately, she did not really lose her composure. Shangguan Yan smiled happily and pulled her to sit down on a stool. “Xingzhu, go get a basin of water. Also, bring two more basins of ice from the room.”
“Aye!” Xingzhu left happily.
This was not Yu Wan’s first time entering the Xiao Manor, but it was her first time entering Shangguan Yan and Xiao Zhenting’s courtyard. She originally thought that it would be as golden and resplendent as Shangguan Yan’s carriage, but she did not expect the folding stones, water, and bamboo pavilion to have a different feeling of elegance and tranquility.
Shangguan Yan looked behind Yu Wan. “Where are the children? They didn’t come with you?”
Yu Wan said, “It’s hot in the Capital. They went to the countryside to avoid the heat.”
Shangguan Yan knew of a summer resort, but she understood that her son would not be at ease with her taking the children away. Shangguan Yan did not want to complain to her daughter-in-law, so she smiled and said, “Are you and Cong’er well?”
Yu Wan said, “Pretty good. The Princely Heir attends court every day and is very diligent in the cabinet.” It was unknown if he was diligent in handling official business or diligent in feeding the ministers sweetness.
In the past, Shangguan Yan only wanted her son to survive. Now that her son had survived, she wanted her son to come and see her more often. Of course, she also understood that this was an extravagant hope. From the moment she married Xiao Zhenting, the relationship between the mother and son could never return to the past.
However, it was not bad to have a considerate daughter-in-law.
Yu Wan placed the brocade box on the table.
“What is it?” Shangguan Yan asked.
Yu Wan opened the lid of the box. It was a portrait of the three little fat boys. They had gained weight again. Shangguan Yan burst into laughter. Under the portrait was a high-grade purple jade. Yu Wan did not know what kind of jade it was. She only knew that it was warm in winter and cold in summer. It was very suitable to carry around.
Other than these, Yu Wan also brought a few sweet melons from her own house. The Xiao Manor did not lack food, but her melons were really sweeter than the ones sold outside.
Xingzhu brought the water over. Yu Wan washed her face and Shangguan Yan picked a melon for Xingzhu to cut.
As the mother-in-law and daughter-in-law ate the sweet melon, Shangguan Yan suddenly said, “Do you know how the orchard in the Young Master Manor came about?”
Shangguan Yan smiled and said, “His Highness planted it.”
“His Highness… planted it?” Yu Wan had never heard Yan Jiuchao mention it. In fact, Yan Jiuchao rarely mentioned Prince Yan. Yu Wan was afraid of touching on his sad matter, so she did not take the initiative to ask.
A trace of reminiscence appeared on Shangguan Yan’s face. “The Young Master Manor is the original Sixth Prince Manor. Before he was conferred the title of Prince, His Highness lived there. At that time, Cong’er was still young. His Highness asked him what he liked. His Highness’s original intention was to plant whatever flowers and plants his son liked. Unexpectedly, what that child said was all food, His Highness simply changed the garden into an orchard.”
She couldn’t tell that Yan Jiuchao was also a glutton when he was young. This time, she couldn’t blame her for the little fatty’s gluttony!