Not Seeing Clearly
In her dream, Yu Youyao remembered having complex feelings towards her husband. She had also made up her mind that she would never want to have anything to do with Song Mingzhao in her lifetime.
At the mention of Song Mingzhao, Old Madam Yu couldnt hide her admiration. “Mingzhao is a good child. He was noticed by Mr. Xian Yun and taken in as a disciple two years ago. It hasnt been long since hes become a Top Scorer, so I heard from that old fellow from the Marquis Residence that there are no plans to let Mingzhao take part this year. Since hes young and still doesnt have a strong foundation, its better to wait another three years.”
Mr. Xian Yun was a famous Confucian scholar of the Great Zhou Dynasty who had great talent and skills. That old fellow was clearly bragging.
Everyone present understood that the “old fellow” Old Madam Yu mentioned referred to the Marquiss wife.
Madam Yao looked envious. “I wonder how the Marquiss Residence has brought them up so well. The two older boys in my family are already 13 years old, but they only became elementary scholars last year, and theres still a long way to go before they can become high scholars. My youngest is already 11 years old, but hasnt even passed the examination. All of them play all day long, never taking their studies seriously.”
Concubine He glanced at Yang Shuwan, then smiled and said, “In three years, Shanyan will also be a high scholar, and maybe even earn the position as a Top Scorer.”
It was rare for anyone to become a high scholar at the age of 16, so it would be rather impressive.
When Madam Yao heard this, she could not stop smiling. “Thank you, I hope youre right.”
Even the Old Madams expression softened. “Shanyan is just like his father. Hes smart and has a bright future.”
These words werent empty praise. They clearly had high hopes for Yu Shanyan. Madam Yao smiled and squinted her eyes jokingly. “Mother, thats too high praise for him.”
But since they were all daughters-in-law, how could there not be competition Seeing that Madam Yao had gained praise in front of Old Madam, the smile on Yang Shuwans face stiffened. She could not help but glare at Concubine He.
It was clear that this little wretch had deliberately praised the second house in order to put her down in comparison.
The next day, they worked all the way until the afternoon, and The Green House was finally completed. Yu Youyao was very satisfied. The servants who had participated were all rewarded with two taels of silver, which made the other servants very envious.
Zhou Linghuai headed to An Shou Hall and thanked Old Madam Yu. As she fiddled with her prayer beads, she said, “Were all family. Im only doing what I should.”
After that, she changed the topic and asked about Zhou Linghuais studies.
He said respectfully, “In addition to the Four Books and Five Classics, Ive also studied the Daoist Canon. In the past, because of my stubborn personality, my father had grounded me, forcing me to study Buddhist scriptures for a while to cultivate my temperament. Ive also briefly read the Six Arts of a Gentleman. In addition, Ive mastered the Four
, and other classics. In particular, Guiguzi was a masterpiece which used many literary techniques. It was intricate, ingenious, and unpredictable.
In recent times, many believed in Daoism but were obsessed with alchemy, ignoring important state affairs and disrespecting court officials. Almost everyone could recite one or two Daoist collections, but merely to please the sages.
Most people wouldnt be able to fully comprehend the Four Books and Five Classics even if they studied it for a lifetime, let alone the more obscure Daoist Scripture.
Zhou Linghuai was not just talented; he was exceptionally so.
The Zhou family had also had high hopes for Zhou Linghuai. Unfortunately, his legs…
Zhou Linghuai lowered his gaze and said nothing.
Old Madam Yu felt pity for him, but at the same time, she also felt rather gratified. “A man reads to learn to be wise, upstanding, and capable. Even though you arent pursuing the path to be a scholar, your studies should never be neglected. Our residence has hired a teacher for you. He is Mr. Hu Shan, who had participated in putting together The Book of Law during the previous emperors time. He is an upright and exemplary man. Itll be good for you to learn from him.”
Even though his legs were disabled, no outsiders would belittle him once they found out that he was a disciple of Mr. Hu Shan.
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Since he understood that this was arranged with his best interests at heart, Zhou Linghuai nodded gratefully.
When the former emperor was a young teen, Mr. Hu Shan had been his mentor but resigned after participating in the compilation of The Book of Law. His reputation was definitely a match for Mr. Xian Yun.
It was quite surprising that the Yu Residence managed to hire him. There was probably more than met the eye to this.
After returning to The Green House, Zhou Linghuai finished the painting he had been working on yesterday and asked Chang An to send it to Yu Youyao.
The way that Yu Youyao had been rash yesterday and almost caused Young Master to fall was still fresh in Chang Ans mind, so he was a little reluctant. Furthermore, although the nourishing cuisine she gave Young Master yesterday had healing properties, she hadnt cautioned them on its extreme effects at all, almost causing a serious issue when Young Master had eaten it all without warning.
Chang An couldnt help but feel a little upset. “Young Master spent a lot of effort on this painting yesterday. Why are you giving it to Eldest Miss Yu”
Out of the many young mistresses in the Yu Residence, why did Young Master just happen to take notice of Eldest Miss Yu
Zhou Linghuai didnt say anything. He looked down at the canvas stand in front of him, which had been changed only yesterday. The sides were rounded and it had no sharp corners. There was an ivory-carved pen holder on top of it, and there were a dozen pencils of various sizes, each of them of premium quality. In addition, these pencils had been meticulously selected, along with the paperweight and inkstone set.
Noticing his gaze, Chang An pursed his lips. “Although she did help Young Master redecorate this place yesterday, it was ordered by Old Madam and has nothing to do with her. I asked around yesterday. Eldest Miss Yu is spoiled and willful. Shes not as well-mannered as Third Miss Yu Jianjia. Young Master should stay away from her in the future.”
At this point, Chang An glanced at the young master and saw that he had already started reading a book. Chang An wondered if he was even listening to him.
Zhou Linghuai furrowed his brows, seemingly displeased.
However, Chang An did not notice that. Worried that his young master would be harmed, he continued, “Why dont you send this painting to the Third Miss of the main courtyard Young Master, you will be staying in the Yu Residence in the future, so you will have to interact with the sisters in the residence. You should forge stronger ties, and you should choose someone who is easier to get along with, so that you will be more at ease in the residence in future.
Since entering the capital, he had specially looked into the details of the Yu Residence, and had heard that Yu Youyao had a spoiled and domineering personality, who often threw her weight around just because Old Madam Yu pampered her.
And seeing as how Yu Youyao had almost caused Young Master to fall, then subsequently beat and sold off a few servants, it seemed this information about her was accurate.
Today, he even happened to hear about Yu Jianjia having a fever for two consecutive days, almost losing her life, and it seemed to be related to Yu Youyao. So, he had become even more annoyed with her.
“Youre not seeing things clearly.” Zhou Linghuai gave him an indifferent glance.
Chang An felt a little aggrieved. Everyone in the residence had said that Third Miss was kind and polite, so why was Young Master saying that he wasnt seeing clearly “Young Master, youve only just met Eldest Miss Yu. Why are you defending her”
Zhou Linghuais grip on the book tightened as he fell into deep thought.
The moment he saw Yu Youyao yesterday, he had felt that she was beautiful and pure. Hearing her gentle voice greet him, he had somehow felt an urge to get to know her better.
Four Arts of the Chinese Scholar refers to the four main areas of artistic and academic talents expected of Chinese scholars in the past.”
Old Madams hand couldnt help but pause in twirling her prayer beads. After a while, she said, “Its rare for Confucian, Buddhist, and Daoist books to be studied together.”
There were a total of nine books in the Four Books and Five Classics. They were classics which detailed how the past distinguished sages conducted themselves and succeeded in the world. It was a must to study these classics.
On the other hand, the Daoist Canon consisted of nine books, including the Book of Morality, Guiguzi[2. Guiguzi refers to a compilation of ancient Chinese texts