Chapter 15: Scheming

When Da furen returned to her Fu An Yuan, she silently sat down and unhappily drank her tea.

“Li Wei Yang, that insolent! She has become a lot bolder! How dare she go against mother?!” Li Chang Xi exclaimed impatiently, filled with resentment.

Da furen lifted her eyes to Li Chang Xi as the corners of her mouth tilted down but she didn’t say anything.

“Wu meimei, how could you say such things about San mei? It is very disrespectful.” Li Zhang Le furrowed her brows.
Even though she thought Li Wei Yang deserved a lesson or two, but in front of others, she still wanted to protect her kind-hearted and compassionate image.

Li Chang Xi rudely scoffed and said, “Da jie, didn’t mother tell you to investigate her background? Saying that she’s talentless and a coward, but look at her now.
Not only is she tactful, but she didn’t look like a coward at all.
It’s nothing like what the investigation said.”

Da furen angrily glared at Chang Xi and asked, “Chang Xi, what are you thinking?”

Chang Xi looked at Da furen and gently replied, “Mother, from the way I see things, it’s time for the maid we sent over to finally show us her capabilities.”

Da furen paused for awhile before laughing out loud.
“You are right.”

The expression in Chang Xi’s eyes changed into a colder look.
“Right now, she has Lao furen’s protection but what if the person she angered was father? Everyone will remember she’s a misfortune born in February and then.
.” She trailed off vaguely but stared fixedly at Da furen, a huge grin on her face.

“You are indeed clever.” Da furen’s smile deepened.
“This is definitely not a bad idea.”

Li Chang Xi’s happiness was more than obvious as she hurried over to brownnose Da furen.
“Mother, today you gave her a bracelet!”

Da furen grinned as she gave instructions to Lin mumu to bring over a pair of phoenix brooch made of jadeite.
She gave it to Li Chang Xi.
“One is for you, the other is for your Si jie.”

What did Si jie do? Nothing! Li Chang Xi had always been annoyed by this blood-related sister of hers.
She decided to keep the two brooches for herself instead but said thank-you to Da furen anyway.

Li Chang Xi wasn’t extremely stupid but neither was she extremely smart.
However, Da furen liked this about her.
She needed a Li Chang Xi who would obey her orders, a hot-headed Li Chang Xi who would jump out and do all of the underhanded tricks.
This way, it would allow her and Zhang Le to stand and watch on the sideline while keeping their hands clean.

After awhile of gossips and conversations, Li Chang Xi left.

“Mother, you are very tolerant towards her,” Li Zhang Le commented, staring at Li Chang Xi’s silhouette.
“If you continue like this, I’m afraid she will become unruly and cocky.”

“Silly child, that’s exactly what I want.” Da furen laughed coldly.
“On this side, there’s Erfang who’s narrowminded, then there’s also the scheming Lao Wu, and last but not least, the simple-minded Lao Si, only this way will they be of help to you.”

Li Zhang Le understood the implication behind her mother’s words and gently smiled as she sat down beside Da furen.
“Mother, isn’t there also the addition of a clever San mei now?”

Da furen lifted a corner of her mouth.
“Wei Yang is definitely not stupid but very soon, she will make a mistake.”

Ever since Wei Yang’s incident in front of Lao furen, the clothes were instantly delivered.
It didn’t even take up a day for the clothes to be delivered.
There was a pair of clothes for each and every season.

Wei Yang chose the light and soft outfit.
It was red and silver with flower imprints.
On the inside was a thick layer of cotton that is very warm and could be worn in the middle of winter.
All of this meant her plan was successful.

Li Wei Yang was sitting in her bedchamber.
She was drinking tea and wondering what to do with the silvers that Lao furen had gifted.

Hua Mei rushed in from the outside, holding a pair of beautifully sewn shoes.
“San xiaojie, I noticed your shoes have been worn out and saw that Da xiaojie had a pair of shoes that were delicately sowed with a phoenix pattern so I have sowed one for you too! Xiaojie, look, do you like it?”

Li Wei Yang briefly glanced at the shoes.
The shoes were made out of a crimson coloured brocade with golden phoenix designs.
Each line of thread was intriciately sewn.
Clearly a lot of effort and time have been spent on the shoes.

Hua Mei carefully examined Li Wei Yang and repeated, “Xiaojie, do you like it?”

Li Wei Yang tried on the pair of shoes right in front of Hua Mei.
A smile immediately crawled across Wei Yang’s face as she nodded her head, looking like an innocent girl excited by her favourite gift.

Hua Mei silently sighed in relief as she lowered herself to fix Wei Yang’s shoes.
As if unintentionally, she said, “Right now, everyone’s been commenting on how elegant and beautiful San xiaojie is.
Compared to Si xiaojie and Wu xiaojie, you’re so much prettier!”

Knowing not to mention Da xiaojie, whose beauty was like a fairy, it seems this girl wasn’tthat stupid.
Li Wei Yang pretended not to hear Hua Mei’s comment as she carefully inspected her shoes instead.

“Nubi is new to the estate but has heard all the mumus saying how San xiaojie was born from Qi yiniang and that Qi yiniang was also very beautiful in her youth!” Hua Mei exclaimed, as if she couldn’t hold it in any longer.

Suddenly Wei Yang lifted her gaze to Hua Mei.
Under Wei Yang’s gaze, Hua Mei felt nervous and immediately lowered her head.
She proceeded to slap her own face and said, “Nubi is wrong! Nubi has spoken too much!”

Unexpectedly, Wei Yang giggled and said, “Hua Mei, this pair of shoes is indeed very beautiful!”

Seeing that Wei Yang wasn’t angry, Hua Mei was relieved and continued, “It’s good that San xiaojie likes it.
Aiya, xiaojie must be so lonely without your biological mother at your side, unlike Si xiaojie and Wu xiaojie.
They have Si yiniang to take care of them.
At the very least, they could lively happily each and every day.”

Li Wei Yang blinked and purposefully replied, “Hua Mei, what are you trying to say?”

Hua Mei knew how to read people’s expressions and words.
“Nubu has heard from the others that, for these past two days, Qi yiniang’s illness have worsened.”

Upon hearing Hua Mei talking about Qi yiniang, Wei Yang unknowingly touched the pendant she was wearing underneath.
When she was about to leave Ping Cheng, the Lis in Ping Cheng had helped her retrieved this pendent.
The pendant was the only gift she had from her biological mother.

Qi yiniang, also known as Tan shi, was originally a servant beside Da furen who was in charge of washing feet.
One time when Li Xiao Ran was drunk, he had impregnated Tan shiwith Wei Yang who was born in February and eventually forced to leave the estate.
To show off her benevolence, Da furen allowed Tan shi to become a yiniang.
In the Li’s estate, all the other yiniangs had a proper background, had beauty or had a child who was respected.
They were able to use those factors to strengthen their position in the estate, all except for Qi yiniang.
She had no background and had given birth to a child in the unfortunate month of February.
Thus, she had angered Li Xiao Ran.
In the previous life, she had passed away due to an illness half a year before Wei Yang returned to the estate.
However, in this lifetime, Wei Yang had returned to the estate one year earlier so Qi yiniang was still alive.

In the past month, Li Wei Yang had used every means to find out news regarding Qi yiniang but all she had found out was that Qi yiniang was not favoured by Li Xiao Ran, had no reputation or status, had a weak body and was sent to live in the isolated Nan Yuan by Da furen.
Nan Yuan was far.
It was separated from the main courtyard and located right beside the servants’ bedchambers.

Not only was Qi yiniang the poorest out of everyone, she was also the one who everyone else stepped on.
The thought of it was painful to Wei Yang, like a needle pricking at her heart.
But then Hua Mei was Da furen’s people and right in front of Wei Yang, she was talking about Qi yiniang.
There has to be a catch.

Wei Yang laughed on the inside, but on the surface, she calmly stared at Hua Mei.
Since they have already taken the first step, she couldn’t sit still and do nothing either.
However, it is still unsure who’s going to be the actual loser in this game of chess.

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