Chapter 492 - Lantern Festival Pt . 1
Although winter in the capital was cold, it was still quite lively . Snow started falling during New Year’s Eve, and, while there were some breaks in snowfall, it continued to snow now and then until the sixteenth of the first month .
This was the first time the Yu Family celebrated the New Years at the capital . Zhu Junyang no longer acted as aloof and cold as before . Instead, he had morphed into the ideal son-in-law around his future wife’s family . He was warm and considerate to them as he took them around the capital to take in the sights .
On the fifth day after the New Years, there was a temple fair at Baiyunguan Temple that was located in the suburbs of the capital . The whole group of them went to attend the fair to sightsee and participate in ‘sacrifices to the gods’, ‘sacrifices to the ancestors’, ‘hitting the golden coin to ask for wealth’, ‘touching the stone monkey’, and other common temple activities . On the eighth day after the New Years, there were festivals and plays at some of the more wealthy suburbs around the capital . Zhu Junyang asked around and found the suburb with the most festive activities and brought the Yu Family there to watch performers on stilts, parade floats, festive drumming, folk dancing, banner dancing, lion dancing, small carts, bamboo horses…they were all able to participate and enjoy the celebrations . Everyone had loads of fun . The most festive moment, of course, was the lantern festival on the fifteenth day .
That evening, before darkness fell, Zhu Junyang ate a bowl of glutinous sweet dumplings with his parents, eldest brother, and eldest sister-in-law before he hurried out . Imperial Prince Jing swallowed his final bite of glutinous dumpling as he frowned at the sight of his youngest son leaving in a rush . He stated casually, “This youngster’s heart seems to be elsewhere lately . He hasn’t even calmed down during the New Years . Where is he going now?”
Princess Consort Jing had a smile flickering on her lips as she remarked with slight jealousy, “Isn’t it obvious that his heart is elsewhere, ah? He is always thinking about that little sweetheart of his, so he doesn’t have any time to spend with his old father and mother . Instead, he’s off to spend time with his future in-laws! They didn’t even need to ask before he volunteered to escort them off to enjoy the lanterns! Everyone always says that girls will leave the nest but our third son is also leaving the nest too!”
“Yang’er truly has his eye on Yu Xiaocao?” Imperial Prince Jing asked in a manner that didn’t show his thoughts on the matter .
“I’d bet gold on it!” Princess Consort Jing took the offered cup of warm water from Meixiang’s hands and took a sip as she gently washed her mouth . She looked at her husband and asked back, “What? You don’t agree with his choice?”
Prince Jing glanced at his wife and replied cautiously, “My opinion isn’t important . What’s important is whether you see eye to eye with that young maiden! As a father-in-law, how many times in one day can I encounter a daughter-in-law? Don’t you spend the most time with the daughters-in-law instead? The most important thing is that she’s able to get along with you and make you happy!”
His casual remarks had unintended effects . The wife to Prince Jing’s heir had a somewhat unnatural expression appear on her face . Ordinarily, she didn’t spend much time with her mother-in-law . Other than greeting her husband’s mother in the morning, she rarely had the time to chat and interact with her . In fact, she wasn’t the type of person who was good at worming her way into other people’s good graces . In addition, her mother-in-law also had no interest in managing the household . There were a lot of things to take care of at Imperial Prince Jing’s estate, and all of these matters had fallen onto her once she married in .
Luckily, while she was still an unmarried young lady, her mother had often taken her along when she was managing household manners . Furthermore, she had experienced stewards and senior servants helping out too . After working hard for half a year, she was finally able to make things run smoothly at the estate . Usually, she was busy managing all of these things so she naturally had very little time to spend with her mother-in-law . Based on what the imperial prince was saying though, she truly wasn’t an ideal daughter-in-law…
Princess Consort Jing had noticed the awkward expression on her eldest daughter-in-law’s face and secretly glared at her husband as she said, “From what you’re saying, our sons’ wives aren’t for them but for me ah? If this came out, who would be willing to marry their daughters to our sons?! Try to be a bit more serious . Our son naturally has to marry a wife that he likes . After all, the two of them will be spending the rest of their lives together!”
“I’m usually quite busy, so I was only afraid that you’d be lonely presiding over such a large courtyard by yourself!” Imperial Prince Jing also thought that his earlier words were not quite right so he hurriedly tried to explain himself .
Princess Consort Jing slanted another annoyed look at him, “What kind of eyesight do you have that you think I’m lonely ah? I spend my time raising flowers, walking around the garden, and playing with the dogs and cats . I’m quite pleased with my life ah! Don’t you know that odd temperament of your youngest son ah? Let’s not talk about the fact that I already like that lass Xiaocao . Even if I didn’t, he would still marry her . Unless you want our youngest son to be alone, like a monk, for the rest of his life, it’s going to happen!”
Imperial Prince Jing naturally knew what his youngest son was like . From his subordinate’s reports, Miss Yu looked weak and delicate on the outside but she was still able to reign in that tiger of a son of his . In fact, she was even able to stop his son from breaking out into one of his monstrous tantrums . This truly showed that each pot had its own lid to match and that the gods had ordained this from the get go .
Furthermore, the little lass was incredibly skilled at crafting and making medicinal cuisines . The medicinal cuisine she made completely healed his wife’s previous weak and broken body . From that alone, the little lass was the whole residence’s lucky star!
“Ah . . . my Zhu Family is truly an affectionate group . From this aspect, Yang’er took after me…” Imperial Prince Jing saw that his eldest son and daughter-in-law had tactfully left the room and decided that he no longer needed to hold back . He scurried over to curry favor with his wife .
Princess Consort Jing glanced at him and had a faint smile on her face as she rebuked, “My son is much better than you! At least Yang’er has never had any fluttering birds or butterflies around him . As for you, how are you considered affectionate? If it wasn’t for those rotten peach blossoms around you, do you think our family would have turned out like this? Zhu Xiaole, let me tell you, if our Yang’er hadn’t encountered Yu Xiaocao and gotten back to normal, I wouldn’t have forgiven you in this lifetime!”
“See here, you’re bringing back that old stale stuff again? Do you think as his father I also didn't feel bad about this? That I didn’t regret this?” Imperial Prince Jing noticed that his wife seemed a bit angry again and hurriedly apologized . He pretended to seem a bit lost and lonely as he sighed, “Meijuan, you also said earlier that parents, siblings and children are just passing moments in one’s life . In the end, the person who accompanies me for the rest of life is my old partner! How can you quarrel with me for the sake of our children?”
Princess Consort Jing pushed away his face and playfully spat, “Go away! Who’s your ‘old partner’ ah? Just where do I look old? Lady Fang is only younger than me by a couple of years yet she just had Lin’er ah . How can I be old ah?”
“My bad, it’s all my fault!” Prince Jing looked at his wife’s tender and glowing skin that seemed to be more beautiful than a young maiden’s . In the past, there were some fine lines at the corners of her eyes but they had all disappeared after she had consumed the specially crafted medicinal tea that the Yu Family’s little lass had made . Now, she was someone in her forties who looked like she had just entered her thirties . He hastily flattered her, “Meijuan, I just discovered that you seem to be getting younger with every passing day . When you go out with our son, you look like siblings . . . that’s not okay, I need to ask Miss Yu if she has any tea that is suitable for me . Otherwise, in another two years, I’m going to look like your father…just thinking about that makes me shiver with fear!”
“Hmph hmph, weren’t you trying to fight for favor with our children? How come now you feel like you're getting old eh? However, men become more attractive with age . The older they get, the more flavor they have! I don’t mind you looking like this, so why do you want to become younger looking ah? You want to seduce some young maidens?” Princess Consort Jing was quite happy after being complimented by her husband . However, she deliberately didn’t show her pleasure and instead deliberately asked her husband this .
All of the maidservants and senior servants in the residence knew that the imperial prince didn't like having people around him when he was alone with his wife . Thus, there was no one around to witness the two of them playfully bickering and flirting with each other .
Imperial Prince Jing swept a look around the room and discovered that there were no people around! Thus, he became more ‘dishonorable’ . He pulled his wife onto his lap and started to stroke her slim and soft waist . The look in his eyes became gentle and sweet, “Other than you, I don’t want to seduce anyone else! Weren’t you envious of Lady Fang having Lin’er earlier? Looks like I need to work a little harder and take the attention from that guy, Fang Mingzhe! How about we give Yang’er and the others a little sister, eh?”
“You old, shameless fellow…” Princess Consort Jing didn’t get to finish her scolding before she was suddenly quieted . Her entire body had also been lifted up in the air . By the time she got her senses back, she discovered that she was being carried princess-style by her husband and they were walking out of the reception hall towards the bedroom .
The maidservants, who were waiting outside, were all surprised by this sight and hurriedly lowered their heads to pretend that they didn’t see anything . Princess Consort Jing was simultaneously embarrassed and angry, so she forcefully scratched at her husband a few times as they entered the bedroom . The room quieted down for a moment and then intimate noises soon followed . The maidservants were all immediately embarrassed by this but they also envied the prince and his wife for their close relationship . The two of them had already been married for a couple of decades yet they were still so——passionate together…
Zhu Junyang, who had left the residence, didn’t know that his parents were currently undergoing an embarrassing mission of ‘making another human’ back at home . He was currently headed towards the Yu Residence . By the time he got there, the Yu Family had already finished eating their sweet glutinous dumplings and gotten ready . They were just waiting for him now!
At first, Little Shitou was a bit wary of this man who was trying to snatch away his second sister . However, after romping around for a few days with his future brother-in-law, Little Shitou was now a die-hard fan of his ‘second brother-in-law’ . It wasn’t because he was valuing benefits over his sister . It was because he could tell after these few days just how much Royal Prince Yang cared about his sister . Although the prince had a horrible reputation as a beast, in front of Little Shitou’s sister, he became as loyal and obedient as a large dog . He not only took care of his second sister’s every need like she was a precious princess, but he also treated their entire family with courtesy and respect and made sure they were all doing well .
Little Shitou naturally had a very close relationship with his second sister, so he obviously wanted her to be able to obtain happiness . In his eyes, none of the men in the world were worthy of his second sister . Only Zhu Junyang barely met his high expectations . After staying in the capital, he had been taken along to a few scholarly gatherings with Headmaster Yuan . While he was taking in these new experiences, he also heard a few rumors regarding his second sister .
The children of the wealthy and powerful in the capital all had their eyes on the tops of their heads . The vast majority of noblemen were chauvinistic to the extreme . His second sister had always been hardworking and innovative . Even his master said that if his second sister had been born a boy, it was likely that she would be no worse than the Zhou Family in Tanggu Town .
When his second sister arrived at the capital, she not only showed her strength but also came up with the blazingly popular greenhouse vegetables . Now, all of the wealthy families needed to have her vegetables on the table . Some people praised her in an effort to get a connection with her but there were plenty of others who derided her for being a woman who usurped authority, disturbed the societal norms, and acted beyond her status . Furthermore, the Yu Family didn’t have an illustrious background, so trying to find a man who truly loved, cherished and respected his second sister would be difficult .
Fortunately, Royal Prince Yang had long established his intentions and was doing his best to pursue his second sister . From the looks of it, the prince was a barely acceptable match, so Little Shitou was able to reluctantly acknowledge him as his ‘second brother-in-law’ . However, if his second sister didn't like the prince, no matter how good he was, Little Shitou would not agree to this match . However, it looked like his second sister currently didn’t reject Royal Prince Yang’s attempts to get closer to her . . . regardless, he needed to keep an eye on this!
“Older Sister! Linlin missed you a lot! Linlin loves Older Sister the most! Linlin also wants to go out with you to look at the colored lanterns!!” When he heard a childish and sweet little voice pipe up, Little Shitou rolled his eyes inwardly——Bah, another person was here who was trying to steal his second sister away from him!