Transmigrator Meets Reincarnator
Chapter 455: Returning Home (2)
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As they reached the five kilometre mark outside the capital, Chu Lian bid goodbye to He Changdi and followed He Erlang back.
As for He Sanlang’s party, they would have to head straight to the palace to attend the ceremony before they would be allowed to return to their estates.
In the afternoon, Chu Lian finally reached the entrance of the Jing’an Estate.
They had already sent some of their family’s soldiers ahead to report their return. Just as Chu Lian’s carriage stopped, the sound of a group of excited female voices carried in from outside.
“Third Young Madam, you’re finally back!” Xiyan had been trying to put on the steady air that a handmaid should have, but who could have thought that she would lose control of her emotions even before seeing Chu Lian in person? She was nearly sobbing.
Wenqing, who had been seated in the carriage with Chu Lian, leaped out to lift the curtains covering the entrance of the carriage. She shot a speechless look at Xiyan before deciding to tease her. “You missed Third Young Madam that much? What are you blanking out for? Come and help Third Young Madam out!”
It was only then that Xiyan came to her senses and looked up into the carriage. As expected, she was met with the sight of Chu Lian trying to hide a warm smile.
Xiyan quickly wiped her tears from the corners of her eyes and reached out to hold Chu Lian steady. “Third Young Madam, please excuse this servant.”
Chu Lian let Xiyan help her out of the carriage. Filled with affection, she said, “Alright, that’s enough. I’ll forgive you this time.”
Once she was out of the carriage, Chu Lian spotted the group of people standing at the entrance.
The one in the lead was the kindly Matriarch He. Her mother-in-law, Countess Jing’an, was standing right next to her with the help of Miaozhen. Chu Lian’s gaze slid down to Miaozhen and she noticed that her clothes were loose, while her belly seemed to have swelled a little.
A brief wave of emotion passed through her. She hadn’t expected Miaozhen to have gotten pregnant with her brother-in-law’s child so quickly.
Her gaze shifted again, only to be met with two strangers.
A middle-aged woman was standing to Matriarch He’s right. Her face was rounded and she was dressed richly. However, that unbridled, measuring look she had on her face only drew dislike. If she looked a little closely, the middle-aged woman’s features were a little similar to Matriarch He.
Standing behind the middle-aged woman was a tall young lady.
The young lady seemed to be about her age. She was dressed in a bright pink dress with a vest on top. An exquisite fox fur-lined cloak was wrapped around her. The strings of pearls on her golden hairpin shook gently in the breeze.
Her outfit seemed strangely familiar to Chu Lian’s eyes.
The girl seemed a little timid as she shied away from meeting Chu Lian’s eyes directly. She darted glances at Chu Lian from underneath her lowered lashes from time to time.
Xiyan noticed the misgivings in her master’s eyes and whispered, “Third Young Madam, those two are Eldest Madam and Miss Pan. They returned to the estate right before New Year’s.”
Eldest Madam? Miss Pan?
Chu Lian thought back to the events described in the story, but it seemed like those two had never been mentioned at all. However, she had heard her mother-in-law mention that the matriarch had a daughter who had married far away.
Why had they suddenly been brought back to the capital?
Although Chu Lian had some doubts in her heart, she didn’t show them on her face.
She smiled sweetly and quickly walked towards Matriarch He.
When she was right in front of the matriarch, Chu Lian curtsied respectfully before saying, “Granddaughter-in-law hopes Grandmother is well. Granddaughter-in-law has returned.”
Following that, she bobbed towards Countess Jing’an and the rest.
Matriarch He held on to Chu Lian’s arm and said, “It’s good that you’re back. Good, good. Quick, come into the estate. Look at how thin you’ve gotten, you must have lost so much weight.”
In the time it took to enter, He Ying had already said, “Mother, this must be Ah-di’s wife. Why don’t you introduce us? It’s my first time meeting this child!”
Matriarch He smiled. “What are you in such a hurry for? Lian’er has just returned. You have to let her take a sip of hot tea first at the very least. You’ll have all the time in the world to chat with your niece later on.”
Since the matriarch hadn’t acquiesced to her demand, He Ying pouted and followed Matriarch He closely.
Pan Nianzhen’s eyes hadn’t left Chu Lian once, even as she continued following behind her mother.
Now that Chu Lian was in front of her, she didn’t have to meet those piercing eyes that made her feel ashamed. She could rest easy and look her over all she wanted.
She hadn’t expected Chu Lian to be so young. She looked about the same age as her, although she was much shorter. Chu Lian was also dressed very casually. There was only a single dark green jade hairpin on her head and a lovely jade ring on her left thumb. She wasn’t even wearing a single bangle.
Pan Nianzhen felt that her own looks weren’t that bad and could be considered above average, even in the capital. In the past, her face had been her pride. However, upon seeing the unadorned, fine features of Chu Lian, she suddenly felt inferior.
Even though Chu Lian wasn’t wearing any makeup at all, her face was still as beautiful as a flower. Pan Nianzhen trembled at the thought of comparing her looks with Chu Lian now.
Pan Nianzhen crumpled the handkerchief in her hands and took in a deep breath. A thread of dissatisfaction wound around her heart.
When she had heard that Chu Lian and He Sanlang would be returning to the estate today, she had specially ordered her maidservant to pick out the best outfit and accessories to dress her up. However, she couldn’t even match a Chu Lian dressed in plain and simple clothes, never mind if she actually dressed up.
What Pan Nianzhen didn’t understand was that some things couldn’t be earned with outer appearances alone.
The jealousy in her heart grew until it was nearly spilling from her eyes. She had visited Chu Lian’s Songtao Court before. When she had inadvertently glanced at the book that one of the servants had been writing in, there had been lines of accessories recorded there that were all more valuable than whatever she had on now. However, Chu Lian hadn’t worn any of those beautiful, lavish accessories and had dressed simply instead. Was she trying to humiliate her and her mother?
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