Reborn After Widowhood – Chapter 16
Hua Yang woke up from her nap and learned that Chen Jingzong had been sent by father-in-law to inspect the back mountains to see if there were any signs of landslides in the mountains. He would then lead people to find a flat area to build some sheds in advance, in case the people in town needed to move, they could also have a place to rest from the rain.
Not long after, her mother-in-law, Sun shi, came in person and explained to her that the whole town had to prepare for flood avoidance. She also asked Siyi Hall to collect valuables in bamboo trunks. If it was convenient, they could carry it when they relocate, if it was inconvenient, it should also be moved to the table and tied up to prevent them from being flooded.
“Princess, don’t worry. We are just being prepared. There may not be a real flood.”
All of these were similar to her previous life.
Hua Yang knew the outcome, so she was not afraid, but Chao Yun and Chao Yue were different. The two maids who also grew up in the palace turned pale when they heard the word “flood”.
“Princess, why don’t we go to Lingzhou City to hide while we can still cross the river now?”
Chao Yun walked around the room several times like an ant on a hot pot. She was really not in the mood to pack, so she went to her master’s to make some suggestion. She was afraid of death, and even more afraid that something happened to the princess.
Hua Yang leaned on the couch, holding a storybook in her hand.
She had already read all the books she brought from the capital, and now she was reading the new books that Chen Jingzong bought over from other towns in exchange for his game a while ago. Most of them were shoddy works, such as a story of a family’s servant who save the young lady and became a son-in-law, or a scholar from a poor family who became a Zhuangyuan and marry a princess as a wife.
Hua Yang purely regarded these as jokes to pass the time.
Seeing that Chao Yue and Chao Yun were equally anxious, Hua Yang explained: “The town is just doing flood control, the flood may not come. If we leave now, the people will be panicked when they see, and panic will easily lead to chaos.”
Chao Yun asked in a low voice: “What if the flood really coming?”
Hua Yang smiled and said: “There is a mountain behind, no matter how big the flood is, it cannot be flooded. Cabinet Elder and the local people have rich experience. Let’s just follow their command and don’t cause trouble.”
Because her master was too calm, Chao Yun and Chao Yue seemed to find a pillar and gradually calmed down.
“Princess is truly amazing. The saying ‘even if Mount Tai collapses at the front, the face won’t change’ is exactly like you now.”
Chao Yun really admired her master.
Hua Yang smiled and said nothing.
In her previous life, she was more panicked than the two maids. Her father-in-law also suggested that she be sent quietly at dusk to live in Lingzhou City, forty miles away. But Hua Yang was so proud that she was afraid that the flood would not come and she would be laughed at by everyone in the Chen family, so she rejected her father-in-law’s kindness.
“Each person brings a change of clothes, shoes and socks, and toiletries. Move other valuables to the table in the east wing, lock the door and take away the key.”
Hua Yang instructed them how to pack.
Chao Yue asked in surprise: “How about the silver, banknotes, and jewelries?”
Hua Yang remembered that in her previous life, Siyi Hall packed up four bamboo trunks and asked the guards to carry them up the mountain, wasting a lot of manpower, and finally carried them down again in vain.
“No, lock them all in the east wing.”
The whole family would not start moving until tomorrow afternoon. If everything was piled up in the central house now, it would be an eyesore and a hindrance.
Chao Yun and Chao Yue were busy with Zhen’er and Zhu’er, while Hua Yang sat by the window peacefully and read another unpopular storybook.
When it was getting dark, Chen Jingzong finally came back. He was not wearing a raincoat, so his whole body was soaked by the rain. The thin summer fabric clung tightly to his body, outlining a tall and strong military attache body.
He walked in dripping water, and Chao Yun quickly retreated.
Chen Jingzong’s whole body was wet and cold, plus he was not a very particular person. As soon as Chao Yun left, he closed the door to the inner room and began to take off his clothes regardless of Hua Yang watching him from the side.
Hua Yang looked away and only glanced quickly when Chen Jingzong walked to the closet.
After being soaked in the rain for so long, his light wheat-colored skin seemed to have turned a bit lighter.
After Chen Jingzong wiped his body and put on a white middle coat, he sat on a chair to wipe his head with a towel. Hua Yang frowned and asked, “Why aren’t you wearing a raincoat?”
Chen Jingzong: “The rain is too heavy. The raincoat is useless and is in the way.”
He had to lead people to transport wood onto the mountain. Whether it was going up the mountain or building a rain shelter, he had to have his hands and feet free to work.
Hua Yang looked at his clothes that were still pattering and dripping casually in front of the washstand, and asked, “Did Father arrange errands for Eldest Brother and Third Brother?”
“Hmm, Eldest Brother is responsible for checking the families in town who are inconvenient to move, and Third Brother is responsible for collecting dry firewood and pots of food. If we really go to the mountains to avoid floods, we have to make fires to cook food and medicine.”
A trace of mockery flashed across Hua Yang’s face.
Although the three brothers all received errands, Chen Jingzong, the youngest brother, did the most dangerous and hard work.
The whole family despised Chen Jingzong as a rough martial artist, but when it was time use him, didn’t he was still used the most?
At first Chen Jingzong still focusing on wiping his head, but after wiping for a while, he suddenly raised his head, looked at Hua Yang and asked, “Why are you asking about Eldest Brother and Third Brother?”
His eyes were bright. Hua Yang avoided him with a guilty conscience. After all, in her previous life, before Chen Jingzong died in battle, she was the one who despised him the most.
“I’ll ask the kitchen to make you a bowl of ginger soup.”
Without giving Chen Jingzong a chance to ask further questions, Hua Yang turned around and went to the main room.
Chen Jingzong looked at the hanging curtain, paused, and continued to wipe his head.
A quarter of an hour later, Chen Jingzong tied up his hair, and Chao Yue also cooked the ginger soup and brought it over. A large bowl was filled with steam.
Waiting for the soup to cool down for a bit, Chen Jingzong asked Hua Yang: “All the courtyard are packing up bamboo trunks, why is there still no movement on your side?”
Hua Yang: “It’s all packed up and locked in the east wing. I will only bring the key with me when the time comes. With Father’s reputation in the local area, there should be no thieves taking the opportunity to steal, right?”
Chen Jingzong: “No one dares to come except those who dislike their long lives.”
Hua Yang smiled.
It was already evening, the light was dim, and the maids lit the lamps in advance.
The light was soft, making that beautiful face look like a dream.
But even if Chen Jingzong dreamed before, he had never dreamed of such a beautiful woman.
“Aren’t you afraid?” Chen Jingzong still felt that she was too calm, which was beyond his expectation.
Hua Yang said in a relaxed tone: “What should I be afraid of? There is Father here to take charge.”
From the moment she got married, he had discovered how much she disliked him and how much she admired and trusted the old man!
In story book, many princesses would marry Zhuangyuan scholar. Chen Jingzong suspected that if Hua Yang and the old man were from the same generation, when the old man won the Zhuangyuan title, he would probably be snatched by Hua Yang to become her prince consort!
Speak of the devil. Zhen’er trotted in with an umbrella and said that the old master and the old madam were here.
Hua Yang had already expected it, so she got up and went to the door to wait.
Chen Jingzong didn’t move. His fingers rubbed the soup bowl, it was still very hot.
“Father, Mom, why are you here at this time?”
Hua Yang stepped aside and invited the two elders to come in.
Chen Tingjian waved his hand, pointed at his raincoat and said, “It’s too troublesome to take off and put on, I’ll just stand and talk here.”
Hua Yang was all ears.
Chen Tingjian glanced at his youngest son who was still sitting inside, snorted, and then respectfully told Hua Yang about going to Lingzhou City to take shelter from the rain.
No matter whether the flood come or not, or whether it was serious or not, Chen Tingjian and his family would not leave the people and flee by themselves, but the princess was different. He could not let the princess took any risk.
Hua Yang smiled and said: “Father loves the people and is willing to advance and retreat with them. Could it be that I, the princess, have to run away from the battle?
“What’s more, I am also the daughter-in-law of the Chen family now. There is no reason to leave my family behind and leave on my own. If Father tries to persuade me, he will force me to be that villain who is greedy for life and afraid of death.”
In just two sentences, Chen Tingjian was successfully silenced.
Cabinet Elder Chen, who had been in the officialdom for more than thirty years and respected the princess just because of her identity, never thought that the eighteen-year-old princess could say such a thing.
He bowed in shame: “Princess understands righteousness, it’s this minister who thought oneself clever.”
Hua Yang falsely helped him up, looked at Sun shi and said, “I heard from Prince Consort that Father has been running around outside all day. Mom, please help Father go back to rest. Our side is ready. You two elders don’t have to worry about it anymore.”
Chen Tingjian’s heart moved slightly. Did the Old Four mention his actions in front of the princess?
He looked towards the main room in surprise.
Chen Jingzong, however, interpreted that sentence as Hua Yang’s roundabout way of complimenting his father, snorted, and ignored his parent who was trying to curry favor with Hua Yang at the door, directly picked up the soup bowl and cautiously took a sip.
It scalded his mouth a little, but not wanting people to see a joke, Chen Jingzong took another sip with great enjoyment.
Chen Tingjian’s brows were about to twist into the Chinese character “川”. The more the princess understood righteousness, the more vulgar and rude the Old Four seemed!
“It’s getting late. We shall take our leave first.”
It was difficult to get angry in front of the princess, so Chen Tingjian could only suppress his anger and leave side by side with his wife.
As soon as he walked out of Siyi Hall, Chen Tingjian couldn’t help but criticized his son’s impoliteness to his wife: “Even if he doesn’t respect me, he still has to respect you, right? Other people’s princess is standing at the door to welcome us, but he is good, his eyes are basically blind, he still has the nerve to drink soup!”
Sun shi pretended to be confused: “Yes, where did he get the ginger soup?”
How could Chen Tingjian not understand, he paused and then said: “It’s just that the maids are careful. With such heavy rain, they are worried that Prince Consort will catch cold. It’s normal to make a bowl of ginger soup. It doesn’t mean that the Princess really cares about the Old Four.”
Sun shi: “You have your reasons, and I have my eyes. Anyway, the way I see it, the Princess and the Old Four are no longer the same as when they first got married.”
Chen Tingjian snorted softly in return.
If the princess is a phoenix and the Old Four is a wild boar in the mountains, can the phoenix fall for the wild boar?
In Siyi Hall, Hua Yang also gave Chen Jingzong a lecture: “The elders braved the rain to come here, why didn’t you come over to greet them?”
Not to mention that he used to study, even ordinary people who were illiterate would not treat their parents like this.
Chen Jingzong looked at her with a hint of irony and said, “They came for you. Wherever you stand, it pleases them more than if I were to go there and kowtow to them three times. Why should I go and be an eyesore?”
The Chen family’s new and old Zhuangyuan and Tanhua couldn’t win against his mouth. Hua Yang wisely shut her mouth and refused to waste words with him.
It rained heavily at night, and every household in town had trouble sleeping.
Hua Yang slept soundly, but she vaguely felt that Chen Jingzong had been up a few times.
By noon the next day, the flood really flooded the town just like in the previous life.
Chen Tingjian made a prompt decision and together with the village chief directed the people to move to the mountain.
Hua Yang brought two sets of oil coats from the capital. The oil coats were made of silk and coated with grease, light and rainproof. It was much more convenient than bulky raincoats, and especially popular among high-ranking officials and nobles.
They were all women’s styles. Hua Yang wore one set herself, and asked Zhu’er to give the other set to her mother-in-law.
According to her observation, her father-in-law and mother-in-law were relatively frugal people and rarely use these fancy things.
“Really filial, even compared to me, her own son.”
Chen Jingzong went outside and came back, just in time to hear her order to Zhu’er.
Hua Yang ignored his sarcasm, pulled the person aside, and asked in a low voice: “Now do you believe that the old lady entrusted me with a dream?”
Chen Jingzong was silent, just looking down at her.
He was obviously an unruly rough man, but once he stared at someone seriously, his eyes were quite sharp, as if he could see straight into people’s hearts.
Hua Yang was nervous inside. She was very afraid that Chen Jingzong just refused to believe her, and if even the first step couldn’t be done, how could she use the old lady to order him to do other things?
“Go up the mountain first.”
This was not the time to study this in detail. Chen Jingzong took the lead in changing the topic.
There were not many things that Siyi Hall had to take away. Each of the four maids could carry a bundle wrapped in oil paper and set off.
The most precious thing and the one that needed the most careful care was Hua Yang.
The oil coat could prevent her hair and body from getting wet from the rain, but as long as she stepped on the ground, her shoes, socks and trouser would definitely get wet.
Hua Yang watched Chen Jingzong step out and stood at the foot of the doorstep. He turned around and called her: “Come here, I’ll carry you.”
He was a rough and tough guy, and his tone was not gentle. He looked at her with a bit of disgust, as if she was a burden.
Exactly the same as her previous life.
This day was also the day she remembered the most after his death.