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22 Master of Imitation: the Fourth Miss

    Yang Yujia was in a tranquil mindset.

    She pictures herself within the painting she created the day before, amidst all the mountains and fog, sitting inside the quaint pavillion, slowly taking a sip from the cup of tea in her hands. Although she was calm, she reminded herself that she was still aware of the world surrounding her, taking note of every cricket chirp and rustle of wind whistling by her ears.

    Yujia took a deep breath, then opened her eyes. The image of the painting vanished, and she was back in her small bedroom with Hui'er looking at her. Without changing her attitude, she moved her hand in slow but steady movements to set the cup of tea that she was previously drinking to the center of the table, next to the teapot and another cup.

    Yujia tilted her head while looking at the tea. "Hui'er, what sort of tea is that?" Every word that came out of her mouth were quiet in volume yet spoken with clarity, lacking even the faintest hint of a mumble or stutter.

    "Fourth Miss, that is Huangshan Maofeng Tea. The tea is just in season, since the leaves are picked by the newly formed buds. Do you like it?"

    "Yes." Yujia reaches forward and takes another small sip. "The tea is very clean and has a bit of a floral fragrance. The flavor is light and enjoyable. For this spring, let's keep it at this type of tea, as long as it's in season."

    Hui'er nods, then looks at Yujia. Yujia looks back into her eyes. Silently, she begs that this time, her acting was decent enough for the maid's standards.

    Putting a wide smile on her face, Hui'er claps her hands. "You're getting it! You sound just like her. I would've thought that you were her if I hadn't known. Your imitation is perfect!"

    Yujia relaxes, taking another deep breath of relief and letting a smile appear on her face.

    Finally!

    Finally!

    Finally!

    The two of them practiced all night long, going over things that Yujia thought were actually important, such as greetings and societal structures, then going over things that Yujia thought were barely needed, like tea etiquette that she happened to struggle with up until morning came.

    As someone who barely drank tea in the modern world, Yujia had no clue how to differentiate between green tea, white tea, and black tea. The good news was that by this time period, black tea, white tea, and all those other types of tea had not been discovered yet, so it was just green tea. The bad news was that there were millions of types of green tea that Yujia had no clue about, and that Hui'er insisted that she would need to know of in the future.

    Tea etiquette wasn't just learning how to differentiate the types of green tea either, as Yujia soon discovered. There were so many rules that Yujia had no clue about until last night, such as being limited to taking small, small sips to "sample the true aroma of the tea" instead of gulping it down without tasting it. Drinking tea was also something for leisurely enjoyment, though Yujia was, at the same time, not allowed to doze off while she was drinking it.

    By now, where Yujia was dead tired and in need of sleep, all these rules had already mixed in her head and she could barely separate them into their individual rules. Gaining Hui'er's recognition was purely coincidental.

    Yujia rubs her eyes and looks out the paper-covered window. Judging by the amount of light that was shining into the room, it would be early in the morning.

    She didn't transmigrate to stay up all night long to learn about being some Fourth Miss!

    For a split second, Yujia regrets transmigrating. If everyday was going to be like this, learning about green tea and how to be another person, she would rather return to her old life...

    ... or would she?

    Yujia reminded herself that there were positives in this life that outweighed her previous one.

    She had Hui'er as a companion. She had knowledge of painting that would be crucial in the world for success. She had a new identity to live by. She had a pretty face to carry for the rest of her life.

    By all means, she was given so much already! All she had to do was to work a little harder, and hard work was something Yujia shouldn't be afraid of.

    Just a little bit more of hard work, and she could end up with her name in history as the best painter. She had trust in her own skills.

    Right.

    With this goal in mind, Yujia smiled lightly, turning back to Hui'er. "I sound like your Fourth Miss now?"

    "You sound, look, and act exactly like her." Hui'er agreed enthusiastically. "Training last night paid off." Pausing for a moment, Hui'er gestures to the bed in the back of the room. "Since you didn't sleep last night, would you like to sleep for a few hours now? It's still early in the morning. People won't be suspecting."

    With a longing look, Yujia stared at the bed, thinking of how comfortable it would be to bury herself in those blankets and to never get out again.

    Though, then again...

    Yujia reminded herself that now was not a time for laziness! She needed to work hard! Things in life were not going to come free! Her previous motivational speech about working hard wasn't going to actually have a purpose if she didn't follow suit and work!

    Swiftly, Yujia made her decision and shook her head. "Hui'er, we have too many things to do and too little time. Get me a basin of water and fresh clothes- I want to prepare myself."

    "Are you going outside, Miss?" Hui'er asked with a confused tone.

    "Yes."

    "Where are you going?"

    "Is there... hm... a river nearby? Somewhere I can go by walking?"

    Hui'er shook her head, although she was still slightly confused. "No, although if you go a little south of the marketplace, there is a forest. I've never been there myself, but I heard that there is a creek around there that is similar to a river."

    "Ah. Good enough." Thoughtfully, Yujia nods her head.

    Hui'er was becoming worried again. This new Fourth Miss had too many bizarre ideas. First, she wanted to sell her paintings for fifty silver taels. Next, she was carving some wooden stick that she called a "pencil". Now... now she was looking for a river?

    "Fourth Miss... what is this for?"

    Yujia put on a smile. "Do you really want to know?"

    "Yes!"

    "I figured that mixing the graphite powder the vendor promised me yesterday with water won't solidify it to the hardness I want it at. You need something to bind the two together, you see?" Yujia made strange hand gestures to attempt to convey the "binding" part. "And that is where the river comes in. Does that make sense?"

    Hui'er shook her head. She still didn't understand where the other girl was going.

    The new Fourth Miss... how many strange ideas are in your head? Why are you such a peculiar and unclear person?

    Hui'er knows that her old Fourth Miss was most likely happier now that she wasn't stuck in this villa, but why was her twin so eccentric? The two were too way too different. Way too different.
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