Medical Princess Chapter 204
The thing that happened with Dong Xiu’er was simple to explain.
Qing Xue sent her the hairpin but told her that her master gave it to her as a reward. She also told Dong Xiu’er that though she was a principal maid in Zhifang Pavilion, she was not in the master’s good graces. In the past, Second Miss did not truly regard her as a trusted maid. Now she sent the hairpin to Dong Xiu’er because she not merely would like to make good friends with her, but also wanted Madame Dong to put in a good word for her.
Dong Xiu’er saw the situation of Qing Xue in Zhifang Pavilion clearly, so she felt that what Qing Xue said was true. Dong Xiu’er finally accepted the hairpin after Qing Xue repeatedly implied that it was okay.
Dong Xiu’er met the man when she accompanied Qing Xue to do something at Madam Di’s place. Originally, Qing Xue was with the servant girl Qu’er, but the moment they were about to leave, Qu’er got a stomachache. So she asked Dong Xiu’er to go with Qing Xue in her place. With pleasure, Dong Xiu’er left with Qing Xue.
It just so happened that Qin Wanru was not in the mansion on that day, and Shui Ruolan called Nanny Yu away. Dong Xiu’er was so careful when she left with Qing Xue that no one noticed that she had left.
On that same day, she saw a handsome man. When they accidentally bumped into each other, the man gently pulled her up and then asked her name with languishing eyes. The man told Dong Xiu’er that he had never seen such a woman like her before. At first sight, he had already lost his heart to her. He was going to ask her parents to marry her to him.
Nanny Dong protected Dong Xiu’er very well since she was born. Hence, she had never seen such an affectionate gentleman. At the moment, she blushed, but she still told him her name. After that, the man gave her a jade pendant as a token and left.
When Qing Xue came over, the man was saying goodbye to Dong Xiu’er. Then, the man asked her to take good care of Dong Xiu’er because he would come to the mansion to propose to Dong Xiu’er as soon as possible.
Although Dong Xiu’er was not very young, she had never encountered such a thing. At that time, she certainly felt frightened and uneasy. But then, Qing Xue repeatedly told her that this man was quite good. He was a cousin who was related to Qin’s Mansion. Besides, the man was a Xiucai who had small family property. Both his reputation and talent were excellent.
Qing Xue told Dong Xiu’er that if she could marry this person, she would no longer need to work so hard!
Qing Xue said a lot of nice things about this man, talking all about the benefits he could offer Dong Xiu’er, whose desire for marriage was then aroused. Immediately, she hid the jade pendant and came back with Qing Xue.
After that, Qing Xue would bring a letter to her from time to time. She said that the Xiucai secretly sent a letter to her when he came to the mansion and asked her to bring the letter to Dong Xiu’er. Gradually, Dong Xiu’er had her heart set on this talented Xiucai and waited to marry him.
Qing Xue added that since the Xiucai had given her a jade pendant, she should also show her love. Also, Qing Xue hinted that the jade pendant was worth a fortune, so Dong Xiu’er should give him something of equal value. Previously, Qing Xue wanted to make friends with her. She also wanted Madame Dong to say something nice about her in front of the master. Hence, she gave Dong Xiu’er the hairpin. Now, it was the only valuable thing that Dong Xiu’er had.
Then, Qu’er went to send the hairpin for her. As for the place, Qing Xue had discussed with Dong Xiu’er and made the final choice for her.
“A cousin? A Xiucai?” Qin Wanru looked at Qing Yue for an answer. Compared to Yujie, Qing Yue knew the things in the mansion better.
“There is no such a man like that. Qin’s Mansion has just moved to this place. Madam Di’s maiden home is Duke Yong’s Mansion. There is no other cousin unless this man is from Duke Yong’s Mansion!” Qing Yue thought about it and replied very affirmatively.
“Where does this person come from then?” Qin Wanru narrowed her eyes and asked.
“Miss, I will go to inquire about it.” Qing Yue turned around and was about to leave. However, Qin Wanru stopped her. “Xiu’er, how long ago did you see him?”
“About a month ago!” While biting her lips and lowering her head, Dong Xiu’er gave them a clear answer.
“It happened a month ago. I am afraid that it will be challenging to find out who the man is!” after a brief moment of silence, Qin Wanru said. After all, it had been too long.
“But did you say that the man kept sending you letters later on?” without knowing why, Qing Yue asked. “Since letters came constantly, we can certainly find out who came over frequently. We can always find a man who had come to the backyard.”
“But, he did not have to show up in person to deliver a letter!” Yujie shook her head and said.
Dong Xiu’er bit her lips, and her tears fell one drop after another. By this time, how could she not understand that she had been tricked?
On the very first day, she ran into the man. Qing Xue must have specially arranged it.
“Second Miss, I… I brought trouble to you!” With a thud, Dong Xiu’er dropped down on her knees. She covered her face with a handkerchief and began to weep.
Qin Wanru frowned and looked at Yujie.
Yujie hurriedly went to help Dong Xiu’er stand up.
“Xiu’er, could you recognize the man if you saw him again?” after giving it some thought, Qin Wanru asked with the same composure.
“I… I can recognize him!” Dong Xiu’er said, wiping her tears.
“Qing Yue, go to check who has come to the mansion first. It should be a man, a young man with decent looks and elegant manners,” Qin Wanru ordered.
“But Miss, didn’t you just say that we could not find out who the man was?” blinking her eyes blankly, Qing Yue asked.
“Go to check it out first. It is okay if you cannot find out,” Qin Wanru said indifferently. After all, she did not count on this.
“Yes, Miss!” Qing Yue left in a rush.
After making a detailed analysis of all the things, Qin Wanru had got some ideas. A trace of a deep and complex expression flashed across the bottom of her eyes. She said a few words to Dong Xiu’er and let her go back. After that, she asked Yujie to bring Qu Le over.
“Has anything happened with Qing Xue recently?” Qin Wanru asked after Qu Le saluted her.
“I found nothing unusual about her. Mostly, she spent her time with Dong Xiu’er. If there was something to do, she would help us do it for you. But when she was free, she also behaved quite well!” Qu Le said. Qin Wanru gave her the task of keeping an eye on Qing Xue.
“Did you see anything out of the ordinary?” Qin Wanru asked.
“Nothing unusual!” Qu Le shook her head with certainty. “She was well-behaved and always kept her nose clean. She did not like to talk to me. Sometimes, I tempted her to talk more, but she was constantly on guard against me!”
“On guard?” Qin Wanru’s long eyelashes flicked twice, and her watery eyes showed a glimmer of a smile. “She had nothing unusual only because everything was normal. But what if something unusual happens?
“What a coincidence! The thing happened today was so unusual that even Madam Di could not sit still and went to denounce people of Duke Yong’s Mansion for what they have done…”
Sitting by the window, Qing Xue looked out of the window restlessly. She looked calm and was doing embroidery with needle and thread in her hands, but she actually stretched her attention outside the window.
She heard that Madam Di took Qin Yuru to denounce people of Duke Yong’s Mansion for what they had done, and she also heard people say that Duke Yong’s son seemed to have an affair with his cousin. All those words made her more and more restless.
When she spotted Dong Xiu’er running out from Qin Wanru’s room with red-rimmed eyes, Qing Xue found it hard to remain seated. However, she did not come to her at once. Instead, Qing Xue waited for a longer time. Only when she saw Qu Le walk into Qin Wanru’s room did she put down the needle and thread in her hands and go to Dong Xiu’er’s room.
Qing Xue pushed the door open and walked in. Then, she saw Dong Xiu’er’s red eyes, which showed that she must have been crying. Hurriedly, Qing Xue went up to her with concern. “What’s wrong? Did Second Miss reproach you?”
“Yes, she did!” Dong Xiu’er lowered her head and wiped her tears with a handkerchief.
“Why would Second Miss blame you when you have done nothing wrong? You are the one who acts the most dutifully and properly in this courtyard. Usually, you stay in the mansion and spend most of your time doing some toggle-and-loop buttons and embroidery. What more does Second Miss want from you?” Sitting next to Dong Xiu’er and holding her hands, Qing Xue spoke angrily after lowering her voice. But after that, she added with disappointment, “Second Miss likes clever maids, not us, who do not have a sweet tongue!”
It seemed that her words went into the heart of Dong Xiu’er, who nodded repeatedly. She was choked with sobs and could not even utter a word.
“Well, cheer up. Can you tell me why Second Miss would reproach you?” Qing Xue asked softly, stretching out to pat Dong Xiu’er’s shoulder.
“She just asked how many pieces of embroidery I had made. After I told her, Second Miss was dissatisfied with the number. Not merely did Second Miss blame me, but even Qing Yue and Yujie said that I could not compare with my mother, and I was a drag on her!” With this, Dong Xiu’er bowed her head and began to wipe her tears again.
“On what basis could they say that? Whenever you were free, you went to make these exquisite embroideries and toggle-and-loop buttons. As long as you have finished and displayed them in the shop, everybody has to praise you. How could they speak like that?” Out of anger, Qing Xue’s face went pale. She instantly stood up and made two turns around the room.
“I… I also have told them that it would take a lot of effort to make these things…”
“They went too far. In their eyes, you were a soft touch. That was why they let you make these things. Xiu’er, do not be afraid. You have Madame Dong. Even if they said so, Madame Dong will always be your supporter, so it doesn’t matter,” Qing Xue said, gasping out in anger. Her delicate little face seemed to be full of rage when she defended Dong Xiu’er against the injustice.
“Qing Xue… can you tell me… when will he marry me? I… I really want to leave this place.” While biting her lips, Dong Xiu’er flushed. She whispered in a voice as small as a mosquito’s.
“Who? Oh, don’t worry. Soon, he will marry you soon!” At first, Qing Xue did not get it. But then, she understood and hurriedly promised. After that, she went to sit beside Dong Xiu’er.
“But I… I cannot stay here a minute longer! This place… makes me so depressed!” Dong Xiu’er said with a sad face, lowering her head and flushing.
“Don’t say these demoralizing words. Second Miss dislikes you, but you have Madame Dong. She will not blame you too much even for Madame Dong’s sake, right?” Qing Xue asked gently.
“But I… I feel not at ease. I want to see him!” Dong Xiu’er cried again, tears falling one drop after another. Immediately, her face was covered with tears. She turned her palms over and held Qing Xue’s hands instead. “Sister Qing Xue, can you help me? I… I just want to meet him. If not, I’ll feel anxious.”
Qing Xue hesitated as she said, “But… I’m afraid that it is not a good time to see him.”
“Even if I cannot see him, I’d like to read his letters. Sister Qing Xue, please help me. Otherwise, I… I really cannot wait for him any longer. I… I am going to tell Second Miss about this and ask her to let me go because someone will marry me!” Wiping her tears, Dong Xiu’er made her last desperate effort.
“No, this plan will not work. As soon as Second Miss knows about this, I will be finished!” Qing Xue said anxiously.
“I do not care. Otherwise, I cannot wait any longer!” Dong Xiu’er leaned over and said willfully.
“Then… I will go and have a look.” Dong Xiu’er’s request brought Qing Xue a headache. She knew that man, of course. But aside from the first time they met when the man showed up, she had never seen him again. Those letters were from Madam Di, but she was not in the mansion at this time.
Even so, Qing Xue dared not refuse Dong Xiu’er because she feared that Dong Xiu’er might disregard all the consequences and tell everything to Second Miss. Clenching her teeth, she had no other choice but to say yes!