Chapter 015: They deliberately made things difficult for him
Everyone here was waiting to see Jiang LinZhi’s joke.
However, it was not known whether Jiang LinZhi really didn’t put the Old Lady’s obvious target against him in his eyes, or was really heartless, he ignored the Old Lady’s ridicule and insinuation, and sat down with an indifferent expression, as if nothing deserves his attention.
Pei Cheng took Jiang YanZhi and sat down with Jiang LinZhi, and for the first time, he had a clearer understanding of Jiang LinZhi’s situation in the Jiang family.
Jiang YanZhi was a little scared when he saw so many strangers for the first time. He raised his hand quietly and grabbed the corner of Pei Cheng’s clothes, only then he felt at ease.
Pei Cheng’s heart moved, he glanced at Jiang YanZhi on the side without a trace, and silently comforted him.
The Old Lady shuddered with anger. She really didn’t like Jiang LinZhi very much, but, even if she didn’t like him, she had to maintain the harmony with Jiang LinZhi for the sake of the Jiang family’s face, even if they were already tired of facing each other and could not wait the other party to die.
Pei Cheng raised his head as if he had sensed something, because he didn’t catch the killing intent flashing through the eyes of the Old Lady, so he quickly put aside the discomfort in his heart.
Jiang LinZhi didn’t even lift his eyelids, as if everything here could not raise his interest.
The atmosphere of the entire dinner party was a bit weird.
A woman, wearing a blue dress with an up-do hairstyle, leaned over to Hu XiaYun’s side, her voice was not too loud, and she asked, “Why haven’t Third Master and Qi’er come?”
Hu XiaYun, who had been making a face, had finally recovered. She smiled and replied, “Qi’er insisted on going to the Yamen with Third Uncle to learn things. I couldn’t stop it, so I just let him go.”
*(T/N: Yamen (衙门) - government office in feudal China <from Pleco>)
The woman’s expression was a bit startled; she probably didn’t expect Hu XiaYun to give her this reply. However, the occasion was still wrong; the woman quickly suppressed the unwillingness in her heart, and said with envy: “Qi’er is really fortunate. He can go to the Yamen to learn and experience things from the government officials at a young age. He will have a bright future.”
Hu XiaYun covered her lips as she chuckled, but she didn’t follow the woman’s words. After all, some words could be said, but those words could sometimes be outrageous and turn into weapons that could hurt oneself if one was not careful enough. Hu XiaYun cleverly avoided the pursuit of women and said: “I’ve already sent someone to send the message earlier. It stands to reason that Third Master and Qi’er should be home by this time. Why haven’t they arrived yet?”
The woman’s face was a little bit uncontrollable.
After all, she was the granddaughter-in-law of the Old Lady’s natal family. Hu XiaYun clearly didn’t give her face, even if she had the Jiang family’s support, wasn’t it too much to look down on people like that?
As she was thinking about it, the woman looked at the Old Lady in the main seat with a plea for help, but the Old Lady never looked in her direction. She didn’t know if the Old Lady was intentionally avoiding her, or it was just that she heard it but didn’t want to care about this matter.
It just so happened that just after Hu XiaYun and the woman had discussed Third Master Jiang, everyone saw Third Master Jiang in a light-colored gown, followed by a six-year-old boy who looked exactly like Master Jiang.
Third Master Jiang walked straight in the direction of the Old Lady, then knelt in the middle of the hall, and said, “Mother, I had something to do, so I was a step late.”
*(T/N: he actually used ‘孩儿’ which could be translated literally as ‘this son’ or ‘your son’. But, I’ll simply use ‘I’ which is also one of its meanings.)
The Old Lady’s stern face instantly bloomed with joy. She hurriedly asked Third Master Jiang to get up from the ground, and then the start of the banquet was announced.
The people who had been quiet from beginning to end began to speak, and the atmosphere was finally not as cold as before.
Third Master Jiang stood up from the ground, and when he just turned around and about to walk to his seat, he just met with Pei Cheng’s line of sight, fixedly looking at him. Pei Cheng retracted his gaze, as if it was not him who had just stared at Third Master Jiang.
Jiang LinZhi’s hand holding the chopsticks tightened.
Third Master Jiang just calmly got into his seat. His face was not as sharp as Master Jiang, he had a scholarly and upright aura. Third Master Jiang should have known that Pei Cheng was staring at him in secret just now; he faced towards Jiang LinZhi and slightly nodded at him as a greeting.
Jiang LinZhi did not respond, he lowered his eyelids, not knowing what he was thinking.
Third Master Jiang didn’t take this matter to heart, and walked to his own position and then talked to Master Jiang.
Pei Cheng liked to eat the ribs in front of him, but he just recovered from his illness. So, he only ate two pieces and then stopped eating, fearing that he would feel unwell later.
A steaming little butterfly-shaped sweet cake was put in front of Pei Cheng. Pei Cheng was taken aback, he raised his head and looked up at Jiang LinZhi, but he only saw the man’s pale profile which has no blood color, and could make people tremble inexplicably.
Pei Cheng picked up a piece of sweet cake and put it in his mouth. It was very sweet and fragrant. The most troublesome thing was that it perfectly suited his taste. However, Pei Cheng was uneasy eating it.
After pondering it, Pei Cheng still said, “Thank you, Second Master.”
“This sweet cake, the cook in my courtyard also knows how to make it.” Jiang LinZhi lightly took a bite of the sweet cake, frowned, he raised his head and drank another sip of hot tea, only then he could suppress the uncomfortable sweetness of his mouth, then he continued to say: “If my wife likes it, just order the cook to make it later.” Pei Cheng refused and said: “If I eat too many sweets, I will have a toothache. Just trying it occasionally will be enough.”
Jiang LinZhi tilted his head sideways, with a chuckle at the corners of his mouth, but the smile did not reach the bottom of his eyes, he said: “That’s true.”
Pei Cheng frowned, not knowing what to say.
But in the next second, Jiang LinZhi no longer looked at Pei Cheng. Pei Cheng breathed a sigh of relief, no longer thinking about how to deal with Jiang LinZhi.
Jiang YanZhi was still eating with his head down. He just learned how to use chopsticks. He still couldn’t hold his chopsticks firmly when eating, let alone picking the dishes by himself. Therefore, when eating, it was usually Pei Cheng who put the dishes in his bowl and let him eat by himself.
But this time, didn’t know what was going on, Jiang YanZhi didn’t eat the meat that Pei Cheng had put in his bowl. Instead, he stubbornly used chopsticks to pick the ribs in the plate. The thing was that Jiang YanZhi couldn’t even hold the chopsticks, let alone picking the ribs in the plate.
Pei Cheng watched the ribs fall back into the plate for the fifth time, feeling funny and helplessly, he said: “You really are......”
Jiang YanZhi stopped his movement and looked at Pei Cheng blankly.
Pei Cheng was defeated by Jiang YanZhi, he picked up the chopsticks again, and just about to give him a piece of ribs, but was stopped by a pair of chopsticks sticking out next to him.
Jiang LinZhi’s eyes were resolute, he insisted: “Let him do it.”
Pei Cheng paused. He didn’t quite understand Jiang LinZhi’s meaning, but he didn’t want to fall out with him on this occasion because of this trivial matter. Thus, he put down the chopsticks and continued to watch Jiang YanZhi stubbornly repeating the process of picking and dropping the ribs.
Jiang YanZhi didn’t show a frustrated look, but instead, because of the repeated action of picking the ribs, his fingers holding the chopsticks were a lot more stable.
Pei Cheng’s heart jumped, and suddenly he understood what Jiang LinZhi meant.
Jiang LinZhi was still cold and indifferent; he did not speak or explain anything. And, Pei Cheng was also used to this kind of Jiang LinZhi. So, he didn’t care too much but at this moment, Hu XiaYun’s chuckling voice sounded next to him: “Why? Isn’t YanZhi already four years old and he still doesn’t know how to eat by himself? Then, Pei Cheng, it would be your fault for not teaching him.”
Hu XiaYun’s voice was not too loud, but she succeeded in attracting the sight of people nearby.
As soon as her voice fell, everyone saw Jiang YanZhi put a piece of pork ribs that he had finally picked up in Pei Cheng’s bowl, then raised his head and whispered: “Daddy, eat meat.”
Everyone was stunned, including Pei Cheng.
Hu XiaYun choked on her own words.