Chapter 165 On a windy night with a dark moon
This day had passed very fast.
Shu Huan thought that since they didn’t bring many clothes with them when they left Gu residence and now they had to also wait for the clothes to be made, so, when they came out of the tailor shop, they stopped by the shop with ready-made clothes and everyone choose one set.
After doing all these things, it was almost noon. They had found something to eat at a restaurant and then went to buy other daily necessities. Naturally, the most inevitable thing was the beddings that were needed for them to sleep at night. After all kind of things were bought, they then bought some cooked food like roasted chicken and such. They wrapped it in dry lotus leaves and went home.
At home, Shang Xin had already cooked and had boiled water for the bath.
After Shu Huan had eaten and soaked in the bathtub, she finally felt that the fatigue on her body was washed away by the hot water. Her whole body felt comfortable.
Money was spent like running water when one lived independently and was the head of the family. Just on this day, she had already spent about twenty silver liang, but this couldn’t be helped. It naturally cost money to make a new home. Not to mention the majority of these liangs were spent on clothes. Moreover, her brushes, inks, papers and inkstones were also very expensive. If they settled down in the future and she had to just consider meals, it wouldn’t cost a lot of money.
It was tiring, but she felt happy. It had been such a long time that she was able to stroll so freely on the street.
It was just that she kind of missed Gu Xiran.
It would be so nice if both of them had left Gu household and could be together…
The bath was so comfortable that she was about to fall asleep until Meijing knocked anxiously outside on the door and in a somewhat tense voice, she (M) asked, “Second young mistress, are you done with bathing already?”
Shu Huan was awakened by the sound. For a moment, she was at a loss, thought that she hadn’t left Gu household yet and all this was just a dream. An unspeakable disappointment rushed to her heart, but after she woke up completely, she found that Meijing used the old way to address her because she had panicked.
“Almost done. Is there anything,” She asked, hurriedly dried herself up and put on her clothes.
Meijing waited until she (SH) opened the door, then reported in panic, “Just now when Shang Xin was washing her feet and went to throw the water away in the yard, she saw a figure flash by on top of the wall.”
Shu Huan was stunned. “Did she see wrong?”
Meijing twisted her handkerchief and said, “That’s what I said too, but Shang Xin said she had lived in the mountains. She could see things without much light at night. The figure was by no means a cat. It was like a human being, laying on top of the wall and looking into our yard. When she saw him, he retracted his head.”
“Did she go out to check it?”
“She didn’t. She was afraid that if it was a real thief, he would get in if she had opened the door.”
Shu Huan frowned slightly, looked over Meijing’s shoulders, and looked at the moon in the sky.
It was probably already haishi (9-11 pm). Ancient people went to bed early. Most of them had already rested at this time around. It was reasonable to say that there were thieves.
When Meijing saw her (SH) being silent, she (M) could feel a cold sensation in her spine, and from time to time, she had to look back.
She couldn’t help it. The front yard was very small and one could finish walking in just a few steps. Therefore, the position where she (M) stood was actually very close to the wall. She was really afraid to see a human head standing outside the courtyard wall as soon as she looked back, but if she didn’t look back, it felt even more intolerable to think that someone was staring at her from behind.
Fortunately, Shu Huan wasn’t silent for long and said, “I’m afraid we were targeted by thieves when we moved here and when we went shopping.”
That wasn’t impossible. In this age, the neighbors were all familiar with each other. When unfamiliar families suddenly moved in, they (neighbors) would naturally talk about it behind their backs. Perhaps it was heard by some malicious person. Moreover, they were four women living alone, making it more eye-catching.
Meijing shuddered and asked, “Then…what do we do?”
“Where is Shang Xin and Liangchen? Call them all out.” As Shu Huan said that, she went to the kitchen. She rummaged through the kitchen, found a kitchen knife, rolling pin, ladle and such, and distributed it to the three maids. She herself carried a fire tong and said, “Don’t scare yourself. Maybe Shang Xin saw it wrong. Let’s all calm down. Just be alert when we sleep at night. I’ll keep watch the first half of the night. You three take turns to keep watch the latter half of the night.”
Liangchen hurriedly said, “Just having us three keep watch is enough. You go to bed.”
Shu Huan shook her head and said. “It’s no problem. I might just wake up later tomorrow at the most.”
There was no need to pay respect to elders anyway, and no one dared to scold her even if she slept until dark.
Shang Xin looked at the rolling pin in her hand and said, “I’m eighty percent sure I didn’t see wrong, but with only these stuff, can we withstand them if real thieves do come?”
“In that case, it depends on how many thieves there are. If only one comes who don’t know much martial arts, then it isn’t scary. Four against one is enough. Moreover, we can also yell!” Shu Huan thought about it and said, “I’m just afraid there’s an accomplice, or the thief is good at martial arts.”
Meijing got an idea and said, “Why don’t we go to doctor Ji’s and let master Du come to spend a night here?”
Shu Huan shook her head. “Aren’t we in a perilous position if we go out now? Besides, it isn’t convenient for him to come and live here.”
She really regretted that she forgot to buy a dog and only cared about buying daily necessities.
The four of them gathered in the kitchen and spoke quietly, making the atmosphere tense.
Shu Huan felt that they couldn’t continue to just wait like this. Perhaps the thief might not come and they were just scaring themselves. It was better to find something to do and strengthen their security. Therefore, she took the three maids with her and took down the wooden bolts from the doors, leaving only the front door as it was.
If necessary, these were also weapons.
“If only there were something sharper.” As the four of them gathered in the main room, Shu Huan stared at the mud under the wall and murmured to herself.
Meijing didn’t understand and asked, “Something sharp?”
“Well, just like a nail….” As Shu Huan said that, suddenly she thought of something. There were no nails, but she had needles!
Liangchen thought the same. “Needles! We have bought a large bag of embroidered needles in the street today!”
Shu Huan hurriedly called them to look for them. Afterwards, she crept close to the wall of the yard and stuck all the needles densely on the mud at both sides of the gate, leaving only half of the needle tip outside and covered it with weeds. It couldn’t be seen in the dark at all. If anyone tried to jump from the wall, no matter which direction they were going to jump in, they would inevitably fall into the trap.
After doing these things, the four of them were slightly relaxed. However, Shu Huan was still not at ease and asked, “Shang Xin, how much water and firewood do we have left?”
Since Shang Xin did the cooking, she naturally paid attention to this kind of things. She answered without thinking, “There are three water tanks in the house. Before master Du left that day, he filled them full of water. Now, there are still two full tanks of water. As for firewood, he employed some people to bring a whole load here. I think it will be enough for three days.”
After hearing this, Shu Huan’s eyes looked bright under the moonlight and the corners of her mouth raised into a strange arc. “Good, very good!”
Meijing didn’t know what she (SH) was going to do and wondered, “Miss, why do you suddenly ask about this?”
Shu Huan didn’t answer and only ordered, “Heat up the two pots in the kitchen; one pot to boil water and the other to boil oil!”
The three maids were slightly stunned. They only came to understand her intention now and immediately became spirited. Their face also showed a joyous look. After agreeing to do it, they went to do as ordered.
This night, if the thief didn’t come, then it was fine. However, if he did come, he wouldn’t be able to walk away so easily.