Chen Jiao seemed to be heading towards some distant corner. She had been driving southwards for over twenty minutes without any sign of stopping soon. Xiaojin followed her unhurriedly. Holding the steering wheel with one hand, she even managed to touch up on her makeup with the spare one.
Dotting her face several times with an eyeliner and dusting a thin layer of powder over the top, she only put away her makeup bag with satisfaction after checking her reflection in the rearview mirror.
On the passenger seat, Long Qiu was burying her head in her phone when she suddenly said, "Why, Brother said they'd finished over there. He thought it went well. They seemed to have a good impression of him."
"Of course they did! Who in the right mind would say no to an immortal son-in-law landing at their doorstep? Where are they now… damn it! Bi*ch!"
Xiaojin hit the brakes hard—a car in the front had deliberately got into her way.
"Gosh, no swearing."
Being one year older, Long Qiu naturally took up the role of the big sister. She added, "I think they're at Sister's place. Shall I ask them if we're going back today?"
"No need. They're probably savoring the moment rolling around in bed! Just tell them we're having fun out here and will be back soon. Let them hurry up and be done with it."
"Be done with it? With what?"
Long Qiu blinked with bewilderment, apparently not yet having enough insight into certain expression specific to the region.
"Just pick your favorite term—love-making, mating, conjugal sex, illicit sexual relation, having sexual intercourse, carnal knowledge… f**k! Hahaha, you bi*ch!"
Fixing on the car she cursed earlier, Xiaojin finally saw an opening. She pressed the accelerator hard and overtook it with a whoosh, showing the latter a long middle finger in passing.
Another half-hour drive and they finally stopped outside a courtyard.
Chen Yu had been waiting for long outside. His posture relaxed on seeing his sister's car, but after noticing another car in the wake of Chen Jiao's, his brows furrowed up.
Chen Jiao ran happily towards him. Pulling her aside, Chen Yu lowered his voice. "Didn't I tell you to come alone?"
"Why, it's only Jin Jin, not some random stranger. Don't make it such a big deal!"
Chen Jiao did not think much of it, for she never believed in some hidden master. What mattered to her was not to appear stingy in front of her BFF.
"Yo, Bro Yu! It's been half a year, hasn't it? Still looking sharp!"
Xiaojin also got off her car at that moment and replied to that on purpose. "Jiao Jiao and I finally got to get together and I couldn't just let her leave me. I hope I'm not making it difficult for you?"
Under usual social circumstances, one could never say yes to that question no matter how unwilling they were. However, Chen Yu was behaving rather strangely today. He even hesitated for a while before saying, "I'm not driving you away, but please wait here. I need to go inside and ask for permission."
With that, he promptly went back in, shutting the three girls outside.
Chen Jiao was mortified. Feeling utterly humiliated in front of her friends, she made a forced smile and explained, "Don't mind him. My brother's probably, probably, um…"
"That's ok. Masters are hard to approach like that. We can wait."
Holding Long Qiu by her shoulder, Xiaojin giggled out her reply, her eyes frighteningly bright from all the fun she was getting out of it.
Meanwhile, inside the courtyard, Chen Yu went to the back to report. By now, all disciples had left—except Xue Zhao. Chen Yu explained the situation briefly and asked, "Old Immortal, do you still wish to see them?"
"Hoho, since fate has brought them to me, let them in, please."
Li Daoyu was indifferent to the extra attenders. To him, anyone from their circle was as rich and influential as the next one. He had no problem with the extra income—who would turn the ready money away?
Thus, Chen Yu went outside again and brought the three girls in. The courtyard had a bigger front section and a smaller back one, with the main hall and the lecture room in the front and the living quarters at the back. In total, it was even slightly larger than a rural homestead.
Xiaojin took in the surroundings on her way in, secretly amazed. The Chen Family was no fools. The fact that they were willing to give away such a house was proof enough that this man must be somewhat capable.
She was not the least flustered, though. With two bosses backing her up, she was ready to challenge anyone!
The four of them soon reached the meditation room at the back. Xue Zhao looked up and saw three girls of similar age, all looking spectacular. The one on the left was the least impressive among the three; the one in the middle had the perfect features... if not for the freckles, which significantly reduced her attractiveness; as for the one on the right...
Even an experienced womanizer like himself could not help but gasp in admiration, for the girl had such a unique arua about her that she did not seem to belong to this secular world. Li Daoyu was also observing Long Qiu inconspicuously. He was suddenly took over by a strange feeling, but could not pinpoint what it was.
"Jiao Jiao, this is old Gentleman Li and this is Xue Zhao, my good friend."
They greeted one another in turned and took their seats. With the presence of the newcomers, Chen Yu changed his way of addressing Li Daoyu as he asked with a smile, "Venerable Sir, what do you see in my little sister?"
Scanning Chen Jiao with his eyes, Li Daoyu commented, "The under-eye areas are smooth; the ears are well-shaped; the mouth is small and angled. All of the above are the facial features indicating respect brought by statusful offsprings, which means much fortune will come to you with the coming of your children and grandchildren. On the other hand, you have slightly expansive cheeks with protruding cheekbones and hollow temples. It's called the 'face of white tiger', a sign of hindering your future husband, so be aware of that."
'What the heck?'
Chen Jiao was utterly baffled. Chen Yu had grasped the main idea, though, which was that despite having successful children and grandchildren, she'd have an abominable relationship with her husband. He said at once, "Thank you, Sir! Jiao Jiao, thank the gentleman, quickly!"
"Um, thank you, Sir."
Fighting back her disapproval inside, Chen Jiao awkwardly expressed her limited gratitude.
With the Chen Family being the Xue Family's top-one foot soldier in the Northeast, Xue Zhao was compelled to show his attitude, which led him to saying, "The old gentleman is no ordinary man. Come often in the future, it'll do you good. Don't let your brother's thoughtfulness go to waste…"
With that, he then turned to Long Qiu. The fellowe had had his eyes on Xiao Qiu from the beginning and was waiting for an opportunity to flirt. He had yet to open his mouth when certain person's interjection stopped him.
"Oh my, Master Li, isn't it? I was told you are a fantastic fortune-teller, the real deal. I guess today's my lucky day."
Inserting herself into the conversation abruptly, Xiaojin hopped forward and with an earnest face, she said, "Master, will you have a look at me?"
Li Daoyu felt the corners of his eyes twitching. How come that word sound so malevolent in her mouth?
If things had gone as he planned, he would use Xue Zhao and his group as a beachhead and slowly expand his influence. Chen Jiao was Chen Yu's own sister and an acceptable member. Her BFFs should have come from the same circle and with similar characteristics, but where did this creature come from?
He couldn't refuse at this point and had to take a brief look. He then said with a smile, "From what I see, you have rosy and round earlobes, small frame and exquisite skin, all of which are signs of abundance and affluence. You must be from a fine family and have been on the fast track ever since you were little with no bumps on the road. Your philtrum is deep and straight and your lips are red as vermillion, indicating the presence of an honorable member of the society. However…"
"However what?" Xiaojin was a little anxious.
"Please forgive my bluntness."
Li Daoyu paused and went on. "Your face says a lifetime without worry, if not for the moles. There are moles along your hairlines and on the tip of your nose, which are the signs of career setbacks and tendency to run into vile characters. That is to say, despite the help of the honorable person, it will not last. You will have a carefree youth but start getting into troubles when middle age arrives. The calamity will keep coming. If by chance your fate is shifted by other fortune, you might die a natural death in the end."
With the speech, the atmosphere immediately fell awkward.
Chen Jiao was the first to react, yelling, "Hey, what the hell are you talking about? Jin Jin is perfectly fine!"
"Shut up! I will not allow you disrespect the gentleman!" Chen Yu chided right away.
Fearing her brother, Chen Jiao kept her silence in grievance.
Xiaojin also put on a gloomy face and asked helplessly, "Master, can you help me, then? I don't want to live my last years in despair."
"I'm afraid not." Li Daoy shook his head.
"Really? Like, really?" She would not give up.
"Sigh, I could only suggest you to treat people with sincerity and be kind in attending to your affairs. Maybe a blessing will come to you as a result at an old age."
Xiaojin sighed. Then out of the blue, she dashed back to her chair, grabbed her handbag, and fumbled out a makeup removal cloth.
Wiping it carelessly around her face, she revealed a fair, smooth, and tender little face bouncier than a boiled egg.
"Master, have a look at me again, will you?"