----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----
----- THIS TRANSLATION BELONGS TO konila.com -----
----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----
----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----
As Xiao Jiu roughly awakened from his beautiful dream, his eyes were bewildered.
Until meeting that pair of cold, mocking eyes, he suddenly sat up at once.
"What you can rely on is only yourself forever."
Looking at that cold back, Xiao Jiu clenched his fists and his small mouth opening and closing. Only when Shen Xiangwan disappeared at the gate of the courtyard did he flopped down. "I...can't believe you're so cold..."
However, thinking of those cold eyes and her unhesitating departure, Xiao Jiu slumped and smiled, "What I can rely on is only myself forever! Rely on...myself!"
Eight-year-old Xiao Jiu, this year, tried to get close to someone who was pleasing to his eyes, and he was comfortable with.
But he was rudely rubbed awake by the hope he saw. This cold fact made him understand that the way to survive was only by relying on himself. No one else's shoulder could be relied upon. However, he was still puzzled as to why the lady rescued him and now treated him so indifferently...
Although perplexed, he still looked forward to her quiet approach every day.
Perhaps, that young lady gave him hope of life. Therefore, it also made him want to live well, to see the sweet smile from the bottom of her heart.
On the third day, Steward Li, who had never cared much for him, actually sent a small boy who was as thin and weak as him.
"Steward Li said, this little boy will be your companion and permanent attendant from now on. The side maid and other maids will be assigned when the ninth young master is older."
Looking at the skinny little boy with the same eyes as that of the young lady, Xiao Jiu was secretly pleased.
Numbly, Xiao Jiu waited until those people left. Only then he slowly walked towards that skinny little boy.
"Greetings... Young master..."
Facing that pair of humble and timid eyes, Xiao Jiu seemed to see himself.
He raised his chin slightly and granted his name, "From today onwards, you'll be called Xiao Hui."
"Yes, thank you...young master for giving me a name. " Shen Congnan knew that from now on, he would no longer have the big name, Shen Congnan. Xiao Hui would be his newest name in this house.
Looking at his trembling little body, Xiao Jiu stretched out his hand and slowly led it towards him, "Don't be afraid, I'm still here!"
Just a simple sentence made Xiao Hui almost cry. After coming to this house, for so many days, he was either kicked by the steward or scolded by Mamas.
Even the little boys and girls would seize the opportunity to beat and scold him. When was it like today that he had been pampered and pitied by his master!
His eyes reddened, and his tears began to fall.
"From now on, you and I will survive together." Xiao Jiu swore to himself. At this moment, although the hand holding him was as thin and weak as him, Xiao Qi still felt that this hand was very powerful!
It was night when Shen Xiangwan was stunned to learn of this from the gossip that was intentionally or unintentionally leaked from Steward Li. Such a coincidence! It really was their sealed fate.
She only took pity for a moment and took action because she was trying to take someone's wrist beads. Now, because of that set of wrist beads, Xiao Qi was close to the Ninth Young Master.
Making the excuse to take a walk in the courtyard, Shen Xiangwan was talking quietly with her mother. Her mother, who was now renamed as Mama Yi, seemed aloof as she stood in the gazebo.
"Wan'er, for the sake of Xiao Qi, pay more attention to the Ninth Young Master. Mother is useless right now, and can only do some insignificant things in the backyard." Mama Yi’s tone was astringent. She was useless as a mother, but in turn, she had to turn to a few years old girl to help her equally young and sickly son.
‘For the sake of Xiao Qi.’
Therefore, this Ninth Young Master was also the object that she should pay attention to now.
However, how to pay attention to it?
At this moment, Shen Xiangwan and Ru Yue, as well as Mama Yi, were all clearly aware.
Without authority in this backyard, the lives of all the little people could be taken at any moment.
The masters were terrifying, and a bad mood could provoke their anger on the servants.
However, those stewardesses, and the older slaves who were senior in qualification, were the most frightening.
Without a certain level of deterrence, these people could pinch little people like them at will.
Opportunities are always for those who are prepared.
At this time, the struggle for the position of the head steward became more and more intense. It seemed that the Deputy Head Steward Lin would soon be promoted to the head steward position.
On this day, Shen Xiangwan was called to serve Steward Liu, the former head steward. It was said that Head Steward Liu used to act swiftly and resolutely. She was the right-hand person of the current in-charge of the backyard of the mansion, the Second Lady.
It was said that this person was brutal and ruthless and had no facial expressions all year round. It was also heard that her words and actions were cold... Mama Liu had always been single, and even her relatives at that time were killed by her... Shen Xiangwan heard that after Head Steward Mama Liu fell ill, no one was willing to serve her. It was because her entire body exuded an air of surliness and even more of a coldness that lingered. In short, now Deputy Steward Lin would not send her own people to serve Mama Liu because Mama Liu was about to die.
The ones who could be picked to serve now were all some newcomers who had only just arrived. Originally, such an errand couldn't fall on Shen Xiangwan, who had gotten a good reputation and favor at the concubine’s side. This errand was originally given to the Li girl who lived with her, but she took the initiative to take over it. It allowed Li girl to be a substitute in place of Shen Xiangwan and run for errands for the concubine. For this, Li girl thanked her to no end.
When Shen Xiangwan stepped into the former head steward’s front yard, she felt a cold wind coming to her face. For no reason, she felt a shiver run through her whole body. Shen Xiangwan frowned by looking at the undulating hilly courtyard. Coincidentally, she recalled the legend that once existed in Steward Liu's courtyard. It was said that Steward Liu buried the man she loved the most, as well as her son here. Even more, the countless slaves who died at her hands were all buried in this courtyard...
Therefore, the courtyard was full of dark wind and perennial gloom all year round. ‘Quack…’ An old crow flapped its wings on the tree and flew away, harshly blowing the dead leaves by the wind of the fluttering of its wings. She didn't have the guts to go inside. However, for the sake of Xiao Qi and her family to live safely and peacefully under the sun, Shen Xiangwan stepped into the courtyard with a smile.
When she entered the room, she paid her respects and looked up to meet that person's dusky, old eyes that could close at any moment. Shen Xiangwan was terrified inside, but still sweetly came forward to greet that person.
The old person slowly raised her skinny, withered hands.
Her hands looked like the bones wrapped in tree bark. She gently and slowly put the raised hands to touch the little one’s face. The coldness of the old breath accompanied with the withered touch kept passing to Shen Xiangwan.
"It's so tender and delicate skin. I've heard that people can borrow yang when they are with some strong, lucky little children. Girl, from tonight onwards, you will sleep at Mama’s place."
The small neck was suddenly pinched tight. Shen Xiangwan forcefully suppressed her fear and still smiled sweetly before saying softly, "Yeah, I'll accompany Mama to the bed."
"Haha..." Phlegm blocked in the throat of the old Mama. With such a laugh, Shen Xiangwan always felt that she would lose her breath at any time.
But Shen Xiangwan still maintained her ease. After serving water to Mama Liu, she wiped her body and carefully trimmed her nails.
Lying on the bed, Mama Liu, who was on the verge of extinction, peered at the little one.
The little one was piously, half kneeling on the ground. The little one carefully pruned her nails and wiped the body for her. When she choked on the sputum, the little one also reached out to pick it up. Even still, the little one did not hate to suck the phlegm… From the start to finish, the girl was respectful without any hint of disdain.
Since her illness, it seemed that even the apprentices she brought out in those years had all abandoned her.
As for those whom she supported to become the bed-maids of the master, as well as those who were already master's concubines and the lady who became the main wife, didn’t give more than a glance. And after hearing from the doctor that her days are numbered, they never came back again...
After narrowing her eyes, Mama Liu quietly closed her eyelids.
"Mama, this is the pear soup I asked for from the in-charge Li Fu. It is said that this soup helps clear the internal fire, and removes the heat of the lungs. Mama, you have some."
Actually, Mama Liu didn't want to eat much. Her chest and lungs were clogged tightly, and her whole body was even more flabby and weak than ever. However, looking at the little girl's eager eyes, she conceded. Eventually, her hand trembled while signaling the little one to send it over.
"Here, you eat slowly, slowly eat it! Wait until the body is well. In the future, Mama can also accompany this girl to go outside to look at the lotus flowers, ah! We will also go to buy the golden hairpin, eat some snacks and the like."
When the little girl talked about food, her cheeks were red with excitement, and her eyes were bright. Yet, she was also a little bit aggrieved and made a cute pout. She was so lovely even when she was feeling wronged. It made Mama Liu relaxed and comfortable.
Mama Liu slowly and gently asked, "Which one is it that makes you so envious?" and smoothly drank the soup that the little one passed to her mouth.
"Isn't it Mama Lin? She took her little apprentice with her. I heard that they have gone out to pick a golden hairpin and a lot of food. Most importantly, her apprentice still got a face in front of the second master. In this mansion, what Mama Lin says, can be regarded as something important."
Mama Liu's expressions turned cold.
Mama Lin, in the little girl's mouth, was her first apprentice who followed her while always pleasing and flattering her in every possible way. But now, when she was about to lose her power because of her illness, the only one who was waiting in front of the bed was a little girl who had not been in the mansion for a long time. While her apprentice was so good that she was busy seizing power in front of the second master and second daughter-in-law. In this mansion, people from the second house were in favor. Therefore, for gaining power, naturally the second house was the most important.
As the steward working for the second house, she was so sick that she really took advantage of people's needs...
Sister Liu sneered even more, and finished the whole bowl of pear soup without realizing it.
The little girl sighed to herself.
When Mama Liu fell asleep, the little girl quietly hid some things under her pillow, and then she turned to leave.
"Mama, you need to get well soon, ah. Seeing you makes me think of my grandmother."
After finishing her muttering, the little girl lightly left the room.
Mother Liu felt a piece of paper and took it out from beneath her pillow. The paper was a talisman signed for safety and prosperity.
Unexpectedly, the little girl even went to ask for a safety charm for her.
Her heart seemed to be touched by something. At this moment, Mama Liu had only one desire: to live! Live and let that girl also have a golden hairpin to buy and take her outside for a snack...
----- This translation belongs to konila.com -----Awesome!