When Xiao Xu returned to the manor, senior servant girl Hong Yi promptly stepped forward to welcome him, "Your Highness." After greeting him in a warm tone, she smoothly received the cloak that Xiao Xu took off and turned around to set it on the coat rack.
"Did anything happen in the manor today?" Xiao Xu asked faintly after sitting down in a chair.
Hong Yi, having heard what was said, thought for a moment before smiling at him and shaking her head, "Everything is well in the manor. There were no major issues."
After responding, Hong Yi saw His Highness raise his eyebrow slightly, and her heart couldn't help but wonder. She usually never saw His Highness taking interest in the affairs of the manor. Why would he suddenly ask about it today? And just at this moment, a young maid appeared in the doorway, signaling to her. Hong Yi glanced at His Highness and saw that he didn't pay attention to the matter at her side, only then did she leave.
"What do you have to report?" Hong Yi asked after she walked to the end of a corridor with the young maid following her. She looked back at the young maid; if she didn't remember wrongly, this maid worked for Housekeeper Bai.
The little maid immediately reported back, "Housekeeper Bai sent this servant to notify Older Sister Hong that Chu Family's Ninth Miss has been settled properly and doesn't need to bother Older Sister Hong."
Only from this did Hong Yi recalled that today was the day the Chu Family's Ninth Miss would enter the manor. Perhaps because everyone in Prince Ying's Manor didn't attach much importance to this marriage, so that's why she accidentally overlooked this matter!
"Do you know where Housekeeper Bai has placed Chu Family's Ninth Miss?" Hong Yi couldn't help but ask.
"Hidden Song Courtyard." The young maid responded.
Hong Yi waved, signaling for the young maid to return, and then carefully thought about this matter. Hidden Song Courtyard, that was the courtyard farthest from the main courtyard. The wheels in her head turned. Was Master asking about this matter earlier?
She turned around to head back to the room, then slightly bowed towards the person at the master's seat, "Your Highness, Housekeeper Bai just sent a servant to report that Chu Ninth Miss has already been properly placed."
With a book grasped in his hands, he paused, his gaze tearing away from the book and landing on the person in front of him, "Where was she placed?"
Hong Yi immediately reported the name of the courtyard the young maid had mentioned. She carefully observed His Highness's expression but didn't see any changes. She couldn't help but suspect, was it possible that it was His Highness who had ordered Housekeeper Bai to arrange this?
At this moment, the maid Huang Yi, dressed in yellow clothes, came in and bowed to Xiao Xu, "Your Highness, it's already time for dinner, would you like to have it sent now?"
"Uh-huh." Xiao Xu replied faintly.
As a result, while Hong Yi stood at the side, Huang Yi returned to the kitchen and ordered the servants to bring the meal.
Xiao Xu sat at the dinner table and had just raised his chopsticks. He suddenly paused and placed his chopsticks down, and with an emotionless tone, said, "Go invite Chu Ninth Miss to come and dine together."
Hong Yi originally thought that the matter with Chu family's Ninth Miss was over, but never expected that His Highness would once again bring it up at this time. She immediately complied and ordered the servants to summon her with a heart that couldn't help but be anxious. After all, this Hidden Song Courtyard was in the south, while the main courtyard was in the north. She hoped the servants would walk faster and wouldn't delay His Highness's meal.
Inside the Hidden Song Courtyard.
Chu Qing-Yan and Xi Ning had finished tidying up the entire courtyard and were about to drop down from fatigue.
It was obvious that nobody had resided in this disorganized and messy courtyard for a long time. Housekeeper Bai arranging for her to live here was a clear message that she was being sent to the cold courtyard to know her place. Otherwise, her ending——
But Chu Qing-Yan was happy with her freedom, she didn't need to face the mutual deceptions of the back court. She was more than willing to be a rice weevil.
But this little rice weevil was about to starve to death.
"Xi Ning, what time do you usually have your meals?" Chu Qing-Yan asked with a pained face.
Xi Ning, having heard what was said, put down the quilt in her hands and thought for a moment, "It should be around this time, but our courtyard is very far from the kitchen, getting from there and back will take an hour."
Chu Qing-Yan choked down a mouthful of blood. Oh my god, that far? Even eating a meal required so much effort!
Xi Ning saw her master's crumpled grieving expression and couldn't help but laugh with a 'pfft' sound and said, "Master, you wait a bit, this servant will now go and get your meal."
Chu Qing-Yan rubbed her famished flat stomach and was just about to nod when a servant knocked on the courtyard's door. Then came an order that the ghostly-faced prince had asked her to eat dinner with him.
Once she heard this news, Chu Qing-Yan's heart sank. This wouldn't be a meal with the intention of killing the guest, right?
A guess was still a guess, seeing the servant's impatient expression, Chu Qing-Yan, based on her newcomer status, couldn't adopt a pretentious attitude and immediately brought Xi Ning along with her to go over there.
Chu Qing-Yan never expected that her thought just now of living like a rice weevil would be nipped in the bud. She wanted to cry but lacked the tears.
On this walk, Chu Qing-Yan finally realized how far her own courtyard was from Prince Ying's courtyard. She walked until her legs almost broke! This couldn't be blamed on her for being delicate, after all, this body was still a ten-year-old doll's. Her legs were short and she didn't have enough strength.
With hurried and short footsteps, she finally arrived at the main courtyard.
Without time to look at the architectural layout, Chu Qing-Yan was brought into a spacious room.
On the way here, her stomach was already rumbling from hunger and her eyes blurred. Then, what entered her eyes were extremely beautiful dishes of meat and vegetables with an aromatic odor that pervaded through her senses. Immediately, Chu Qing-Yan's pair of eyes shone with light.
And the moment Chu Qing-Yan entered the courtyard, Xiao Xu had already sensed her presence. Only, he didn't anticipate that she would come in with that kind of expression of drooling with desire at the food in front of him.
"Back to Your Highness, Chu Ninth Miss has arrived."
Hong Yi's voice momentarily snapped Chu Qing-Yan back to her senses. With self-awareness, she recomposed her expression and put a naive and innocent look on her face, smiled towards the person seated to say, "Qing-Yan pays her respects to His Highness Prince Ying. "
Whoever saw Chu Qing-Yan's lovable smiling expression would feel their hearts helplessly soften. Even Hong Yi thought that this Chu family's Ninth Miss looked smart and lovable; but Xiao Xu didn't buy it.
"Uh-huh. Sit." Xiao Xu didn't even cast her a glance before lifting up his chopsticks.
So cold? Then why did he even bother calling her over here?
Chu Qing-Yan silently criticised him in her heart, but she still obediently sat down. She accepted the chopsticks a servant handed her. Clearly, she was starving but she didn't dare make a move.
Being with such a powerful mobile block of ice, she was cold to the point of freezing to death, how would she even be able to eat like this?
But Chu Qing-Yan didn't know how shocked Huang Yi, who had brought in the meal, was at seeing this scene in front of her eyes. Her family's Highness always ate alone. Even if he ate outside at a banquet, he would never dine at the same table with a female. Today, just for Chu Qing-Yan, he didn't just break one rule, ah. She eased her mood and carefully looked at the seated girl. Aside from being cute and charming, she couldn't find any point that would be His Highness's reason for breaking so many rules. She couldn't help but be secretly amazed. Could it be that Chu Qing-Yan's age was too small? So His Highness's heart gave birth to pity for her? But this didn't seem right either, ah!
Xiao Xu himself didn't know the maid's stunned thoughts and only saw Chu Qing-Yan awkwardly sitting there. He couldn't help but frown. Was eating with him causing her to be wronged?
"Why aren't you eating?"
A cold tone, in addition to her gloomy mood, made Chu Qing-Yan's heart tremble to the extent that her hold on the chopsticks became unstable, and with a "bang" sound, they fell onto the table.
Chu Qing-Yan stared blankly. She was done for!