Apologies for long absence >.< Relatives from halfway across the world popped up. Had to take them around for site seeing for last two weeks.
48. Don't let there be a next time
Two liang? You can buy several sets of those teapots and cup. Unbelievable, she actually dared to say it. What an idiot!
Lian Fang Zhou had a 'have you become stupid?' look. And snorted, "I'm warning you, the next time you dare to spread malicious rumors, I won't be smashing teapots and cups! Believe it or not, I'll beat you up with all I got."
With a blink, Lain Fang Zhou's eyes deepened. Any retort from Mrs. Qiao was choked back by her gaze. She could only blankly watch Lian Fang Zhou and Ah Jian leave.
Only when their figure disappeared from her sight, did Mrs. Qiao regain her breath. She then spat out, "You're just bluffing! As if anyone is afraid of you!"
Before she finished speaking, her face received another slap from Lian Li. Enraged, Lian Li shouted, "Will you stop it! You only know how to cause unnecessary trouble!"
Mrs. Qiao started screeching again. Initially, her cheeks were already stinging. Now, this slap made her head spin from the pain. Immediately she was also annoyed. In addition to Lian Li's scolding, she felt infuriated. With a roar, she jumped on Lian Li; she wailed, cursed and hit him.
Flustered and exasperated, Lian Li dodged and retaliated as he bellowed, 'STOP.' But why would Mrs. Qiao listen? So the two of them got into a scuffle.
After Lian Fang Zhou and Ah Jian left Lian's first branch, Lian Fang Zhou lightly sighed out in relief. Hopefully that gossiper, Mrs. Qiao learned her lesson. Or else, she won't let her off next time! Although she doesn't care about the rumors, it didn't mean she liked to be harmed by someone out of nowhere.
Under the faint moonlight, the two of them didn't speak. They just moved with light steps.
She tilted her head to peek at Ah Jian. Suddenly she felt a bit troubled. She coughed and gently spoke out. "About that... Ah Jian, I was hasty. So what I just said, don't take it to heart..."
"Huh?" Ah Jian questioned. "What words?"
After saying this, the phrase about she and him being unmarried popped up in his mind. His face immediately reddened slightly and had no courage to look at her. Luckily the moonlight was very weak, so she didn't see any change in him.
However, Lian Fang Zhou didn't remember those words. Feeling uncomfortable, she replied, "About-- indenture!"
Afraid that he would misunderstand her, Lian Fang Zhou rushed to continued. "I just said those words to anger them two. You have helped us a lot. We'll remember that at heart!"
These few days, Ah Jian accompanied them to the mountains to gather mushrooms. He's very quick-witted, or more likely he has a talent in this area. He became familiar with Mount Xian Teng's terrain and surrounding faster than the Lian siblings.
With him leading, they would have a fruitful return every day.
He also recognizes a vast amount of medicinal herbs. That day Lian Fang Zhou plucked some bupleurum tenue and said that she wants to save it to treat cold and fever. He then happened to find a variety of other herbs and explained each one to her; handles stomachache, headache, dispel poison, stop bleeding, knife wounds, burns, and others. Just from a casual talk, you can tell how skilled he is.
Even though he doesn't remember when he learned it, but he knows. And also when he said it, instinctively nobody would doubt him.
Not just Lian Fang Zhou, even Lian Ze, Mrs. Zhao and Li Juan admire him greatly. Lian Ze became even more close to him like a diehard follower.
Without anyone noticing, he already has already become part of this family.
So it was that!
Ah Jian couldn't help become disappointed. But he immediately cast aside that feeling and grinned. "I know. I'm not bothered by it all!"
From his tone, Lian Fang Zhou knew he didn't take it to heart. She broke out into a grin. "That's great. I can be at ease then."
Ah Jian nodded and turned to look at her thoughtfully. He asked, "They always bully you and your siblings, right?"
Lian Fang Zhou sighed. With a sense of mockery and helplessness, she murmured, "Made you see a joke! Those are my blood-related uncle and aunt!"
Contemplating for a second before Ah Jian comforted her. "You don't have to feel sad. That kind of people exists but not often seen. It's not worth being depressed over that kind of people."
Lian Fang Zhou made a sound of agreement. "I won't be depressed over them. It's not going to be easy for them to bully me!"
Thinking of her actions tonight, Ah Jian grinned. All of a sudden he seriously asked her: "Miss Lian, don't chase me out alright? Next time you want to settle matters with them, I'll come with you!"
Lian Fang Zhou froze. Naturally what he meant was supporting her when he said he'll accompany her. Her heart felt warm and chuckled. After giving it some thoughts, she sincerely nodded. "Yes, what you say is reasonable! Next time I come without your support, it won't do."
"So, so you won't chase me out?" Ah Jian was surprised as well as delighted. His eyes lit up.
Slightly embarrassed, Lian Fang Zhou dare not meet his gaze. She quietly responded: "Actually, since you came to my home, you have helped us a lot. Really! If you don't hate it, then stay!"
"Of course I don't hate it." Ah Jian became elated and beamed with joy. His heart finally settled down and relaxed.
Lian Fang Zhou also smiled. Then in a flash, she recalled something and mentally sighed. She thought, 'if one day you regain your memory, would you still stay here?'
Definitely won't! The things you know isn't something an ordinary man would understand. So where are you really from? What kind of identity?
In short, definitely won't be ordinary at all!
I don't know if letting you stay is a right choice or not...
Although Lian Fang Zhou didn't say it out loud, her expression subconsciously reveals a bit. Ah Jian acutely detected it and blanked out before dejectedly asked. "Am... I putting you in a spot?"
"Huh?" Lian Fang Zhou came back to her sense. Stupefied, she asked. "Why would I be in a spot?"
She couldn't help look at Ah Jian in puzzlement. A moment ago he was on top of the world. But in a blink of an eye, his mood drop down?
Ah Jian looked like he had something to say but stopped for some reason. In the end, he asked. "Is letting me stay... causing difficulties?"
"What?" Lian Fang Zhou's mind came to a halt. It took her a while to realize that he misunderstood. She quickly denied with a laugh. "Not at all! How could it be!"
"Okay!" Ah Jian responded, but he still doesn't believe it.
His expression made Lian Fang Zhou's heart softened as if she has don't something to hurt him. She also found it funny that she would have this kind of feeling. She continued. "Really, no difficulties! Just now I was thinking of another matter!"
Fine. Since we already encountered each other, it counts as fate. Then in future, let's meet and depart on a good note!
Thinking like this, Lian Fang Zhou found the weight in her heart lightened.
"So it's like this!" Ah Jian grinned again and sheepishly said, "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have wildly guessed!"
Lian Fang Zhou sook her head. "It's nothing at all. Not something you have to apologize for."
The two of them had already reached the entrance when they grinned at each other.
Before they entered the house, the two of them saw Third Aunt pacing around the house like ants in a hot pot. They also heard Lian Fang Qing clear voice comment. "Third Aunt quickly sit down. You flashing to here and there is making me dizzy."
"Shoo, you're just a kid, what would you understand! Go over to one side!" Third Aunt halted her steps and indignantly spoke. Then with a lift of her head, she saw Lian Fang Zhou and Ah Jian. She rushed over and anxiously questioned. "How was it? How did it go?"