The next morning, Su Qingtan went to the main courtyard. Before he entered the door, he saw his father having breakfast with the first mother and second mother.
When the First Madam saw him coming, she gave a slight cough and smiled affectionately and said, “Tan, come and sit down. Today I ordered the kitchen to specially cook bird’s nest syrup.”
The Second Madam was a little confused. Usually, her son never came to the main courtyard for breakfast. How did Zhu Yan know that her son would come today?
Su Qingtan snorted coldly, sat down and said, “Father, I’m coming for—”
“Your first mother has told me why you are here.”
Su Huanli put down his chopsticks, looked up with a pair of dignified eyes, and continued, “This matter will not be announced. It’s ok to take Erya back and I will deal with Zipei. That’s all.”
His father’s words made Su Qingtan incredulous. “Even if my sister comes back, she’s had such horrid accusations launched at her. How is she going to face others? She did nothing wrong. Why?”
The more Su Qingtan said, the more hesitant Su Huanli grew. “Oh,”
The First Madam chimed in at once, “Tan, you can’t say that. If you tell everyone about Zipei, how will she find someone else to marry in the future? Besides, it has been more than a month since the incident happened, and the storm has died down. Perhaps others have forgotten it. If we bring it up again, there will be people who laugh at us.”
Madam Zhu got her point across.
Su Huanli became tough again and yelled at Su Qingtan, “There’s no need to talk about this! Your first mother is Erya’s mother. She doesn’t mind so you don’t need to meddle!”
Su Qingtan felt very angry. Looking at the friendly smile on the first mother’s face, he could not help satirizing, “We all know that you are the mother of the second sister. If we didn’t know that, I would have thought that the second sister was picked up from the garbage.”
First Madam’s face changed at once.
“That’s too much!”
Su Huanli slammed his fist on the table and spilled the porridge. “You come in here early in the morning to contradict us elders? That’s what you’ve learned from your book?” he said angrily.
“Master, he didn’t mean it. Remember, it was because he was angry that he had failed to get the recommendation!”
Madam Cui, the Second Madam who had been watching the scene, hurriedly stood up and whispered, “Apologize to your father!”
Hearing his mother’s words, Su Qingtan took a deep breath. He bowed his head and said sincerely, “Father, I’m sorry. But I hope my second sister can be compensated.”
Su Huanli swung his sleeves heavily. When the Second Madam mentioned the recommendation, his favoritism for the First Madam immediately dropped. He nodded and said, “She can stay with you in the eastern courtyard until she gets better.”
The Second Madam turned to remind Su Qingtan, who was standing still, “Thank your father!”
Su Qingtan knew that this was as good as it got so he saluted in a hurry. This matter was settled before the First Madam had time to object.
The Second Madam flashed a secret smile in her eyes when she heard the words. Although the First Madam still had a smile on her face, her expression was obviously stiff.
In the past, Madam Cui had respected her so much that she dared not to even speak. She didn’t expect that she would suddenly challenge her today.
For her, Erya was like a thorn in her heart. If she couldn’t get rid of her, she wouldn’t be able to relax!
“That bitch girl has given me so much trouble!” she thought viciously.
When Su Qingtan came back, he stood in front of the bedroom, ashamed and afraid to go in.
“Is it oldest brother?”
The soft voice came from the room.
Su Qingtan had a sour heart. Then there a peaceful smile grew on his face. He pushed the door and went in, and asked loudly, “Second sister, did you have a good rest today? I brought you bird’s neat syrup.”
When he entered the room, Su Qingtan was surprised to see that Su Erya was struggling to get out of bed. He hurriedly put down the food box and rushed to the edge of the bed to hold Su Erya, “What are you doing? Lie down!”
“I’m going to chop the wood and draw water.” Su Erya looked puzzled. “If I don’t chop the wood, Mammy Zheng will hit me.”
Su Qingtan shook his eyebrows violently and whispered, “You do not have to chop wood and draw water here. The only thing you have to do is to lie down and get better as soon as possible.”
Su Erya tilted her head and huddled into the warm quilt. Her dark eyes lit up.
Su Qingtan could not help laughing. He touched Su Erya’s forehead and asked, “Second sister, you were bullied so much. Why didn’t you tell me?”
“Because Mammy Zheng didn’t let me tell you.”
Su Erya seemed to think of something, and there was a look of fear on her face, and she said no more.
Su Qingtan could not help sighing. “Silly girl, you are so soft and weak,” Su Qingtan said in his heart. “When I go to the Provincial Office, how can I leave you here?”
He now knew that his First Mother hated Erya very much. The father was absorbed with business, and the First Mother was in charge of all the little things in the family. After he left, the second sister was sure to be beaten and bullied again.
Somehow, Su Qingtan suddenly thought of Dr. Qi of Baicao Tang. Was it really necessary to send the second sister to Baicao Tang? But how could it be done in order to get father to agree with it?
Su Qingtan shook his head. There were still a few months to go before the recommendation period. This matter needed to be discussed in detail. Perhaps his mother would have a way around it.