Chapter 22: Gold and Silver
She pointed to one of the blot of brocade and said, “Then this one will do.”
That was a blot of lotus purple material and generally most unmarried females would not choose this material. This was mainly because the lotus purple colour was picky and normal females would easily look old fashion when wearing this colour. If one did not have the aura of extravagance, the colour cannot be suppress and would make one look extremely ugly.
Chen Rou Qiu’s eyes slightly flashed as she smiled, “Why Little Five choose such a colour? A young lady should wear fresh and bright colours, like your two older sisters. I’m afraid such a dark colour would look somewhat old-fashioned.”
“Exactly.” Ren Wan Yu followed up with her words. Although she also loved to see the First household making a fool of themselves but this lotus purple colour was just too special. If outsiders were to see it, they would think that their Shen family’s daughters are all old-fashioned. Qing-er still need to show off her skills at the Chrysanthemum banquet, how can Shen Miao drag her down?
But Shen Yue and Shen Qing snickered. Shen Qing said, “I see that this lotus purple is also good. Fifth Younger Sister don’t not know how to wear this dark colour before? It would be good to try it out. I heard that this colour also look extravagant.”
“If I haven’t picked a material, I will too want to try wearing that lotus purple colour.” Shen Yue said smilingly.
Li Liang looked at the two Di daughters of the Shen family with honeyed words and hearts of daggers before looking at the calm Shen Miao and she sighed in her heart. Shen family’s First household Shen Xi’s Di daughter was foolish and ignorant and no one the entire capital not know about it. But who knew that these two Tangjie who look gentle and kind in the outside would actually have such vicious hearts? They actually change their plans to make Shen Miao look like a fool.
She has some sympathy for Shen Miao. General Shen was defending the country but his own Di daughter was being schemed by his relatives and it was rather pitiful. Thinking about that, she politely said, “This lotus purple colour is indeed too solemn. If it was the Chrysanthemum banquet, why not choose some lighter colours. Why not choose this jade white colour?”
Shen Miao glanced at Li Liang, she was indeed a rare sincere person. In her previous life, she also warned her like this but at that time Shen Miao believed both TangJie and Shenshen wholeheartedly and thus did not listen to her words. Hearing what she said, Shen Miao politely thanked, “No need. I like these blot of lotus purple coloured material.”
Her replied made Shen Qing’s and Shen Yue’s just tighten brows loosen as they were relieved. Shen Yue smiled, “Fifth Younger Sister indeed have an good eye. Like this, we would need to bother Li Liang to help us to tailor make the clothes.”
Li Liang’s heart sighed but she did not say anything more and started to take the measurements of these young ladies.
From the beginning to the end, Old Shen Furen sat on the reclined couch with her eyes close, pretending to be asleep as though as she did not hear anything in front of her. For matters that deal with money, she was always happy to pretend not to know. The fabrics and tailoring cost would all be out from the common fund and the money from the public funds would be handled by Ren Yan Yun.
After taking the measurement for the clothes, Li Liang left. Ren Wan Yun then smile and said, “These children are all ladies already and one must not underestimate the our Shen residence’s young ladies. I have gotten some jewellries for you young ladies and they can be used during the Chrysanthemum banquet.” As she spoke, she instructed Xiang Lan behind her to take the boxes out and headed one to Shen Qing and one to Shen Miao.
Shen Miao’s box was rather heavy. Ren Wan Yun looked at her and spoke in an exceptionally loving tone, “Second Shen saw that you are busy for the past few days for Guang Wen Tang’s acedmy examinations and got the jewellery made when I was shopping. They are all made with the best styles and hope that you will like them.”
At the highest seat, Old Shen Furen’s brows wrinkled and she seemed to want to open her eyes but then paused and continue to pretend to be asleep.
“Thanking Second Shenshen.” Shen Miao also return her thanks. Shen Qing and Shen Yue could pick their own jewellery and get it sent back but when they went shopping, they did not take her along and still call it with a glorified name of unwilling to disturb her. Finally to complete the entire act, they gave her some which would be too late to be changed.
“Then lets’ go back first to take a look.” Shen Yue pulled Chen Rou Qiu as she winked at Shen Miao, “Fifth Younger Sister’s jewellery must be the heaviest.”
Shen Miao smiled and did not say anything.
Returning back to West courtyard, Shen Miao drew the box aside without taking a look inside. When Jin Zhe saw it, she curiously asked, “Why does Young Lady not open and look?”
“Why is there a need to take a look? Would there be any difference?” Shen Miao answered without even looking back.
Jing Zhe was hesitant with her words. Every time when jewellery was received from the Second and Third household, her Young Lady would love it so much but even them servants could also see that these jewellery were just too vulgar. Shen Miao had been lead around by the Second and Third household and thus love all these tacky cold and silver stuff.
Shen Miao thought for a bit before reaching her hands to open that box up.
When it was opened, the golden light shone out. What was place inside was a gold and silver bracelet and collar necklace and there was even a hairpin with a big ruby mounted at the time but the quality was very poor.
Jing Zhe could not help but reveal a trace of anger.
Shen Miao lost her smile. Before she got married, all her jewellery were like these. This kind of golden and silver collared necklace, even the young ladies in the villages would not wear them. Every time she would wear brightly coloured clothes and then put on these golden jewellery, looking like a moving box. In the presence of the gentle and graceful Shen Yue and the bright and magnanimous Shen Qing, she looked just like a feet-washing maid.
Now Shen Miao felt the things in front of her was just ridiculous. Jing Zhe observed her own Young Lady and was surprised that she did not reveal the same excitement that she had in the past. In her surprise she saw Shen Miao closing the box and pushing it to Jing Zhe, “Pawn it away at a pawnshop and buy any silver hairpin on the way back. It need not be too good. Just some flower carvings would do.”
“Young Lady…” Jing Zhe said surprisingly, “If the people from Eastern courtyard found out that it was pawn away, it would inevitably use as a case.” Even though she was happy that Shen Miao finally did not love these gold and silver thing as before, but such actions were indeed to bold.
“These jewellery already cannot be worn so what is the point to keeping it? It would be better to pawn it for money as it would always be more convenient for things to be done normally.” Shen Miao lightly answered. Everything should be done practically and that this her principle when she was the Empress. Shen residence would provide a monthly allowance accordingly and each Young Lady would get two liang taels a month. However how much subsidies does Shen Yue and Shen Qing actually get? Shen Miao did not know but one thing can be certain was that she did not have any share of subsidies at all.
She was clearly a lady from the General’s residence but was not as generous as her two older sisters. Previously she used to think that it was Second and Third Shens who were willing to supplement their daughters but how about now?
The common fund was controlled by Ren Wan Yun but because of the need to put things in order in Shen Gui’s and Shen Wan’s work and their salary was barely enough, how would there be excess money?
It was Shen Xin’s. Because he used his own life, blood and sweat to fight in the battlefield, His Majesty would bestow rewards and Shen Xin never misappropriate these rewards and gave all to the common fund.
Holding on to the money from their household but treating her like this. Such shameless people can only be found in that Old Furen’s family.
She must find a way to separate the family out.