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57 Fourth Miss, Do You Paint?

    Yujia arrived in a rush.

    Once she heard of what happened from a servant sent over by the Old Master, she couldn't help but almost run over to the location where everyone was.

    How could something like this happen? As many scenarios as she could think of, she definitely could not imagine Hui'er being accused of something ridiculous as thievery when the one-hundred taels were clearly all her own.

    By the time that she arrived, everyone, the servants and masters alike, was completely ready to hear what she had to say. After all, to the maids and other servants, this was an excellent new source of gossip. For the Old Master, madam, and young misses, they wanted to know the truth of what exactly happened so that they could get all of their losses back.

    Once Yujia saw the current scene, with Hui'er and another maid kneeling on the floor, she wasn't quite sure of how she should behave. The young misses were all seated, but they were not key suspects or witnesses in this case either.

    So, was Yujia supposed to join the maids in the front of the floor or sit next to Yang Qingxia and Yang Xiaoyi by the side?

    She decided to walk a little closer to the front and then stop right next to Hui'er, keeping herself in a standing position instead of a sitting position.

    With a slight bow, Yujia raised her eyebrows as if she knew nothing of the entire situation at all and completely confused over the situation. She purposely scanned her eyes across the entire room, then extended a hand out to Hui'er, offering for her to stand.

    Hui'er looked at her hand with extreme hesitation.

    The Old Master, her father, also looked at the situation, stating, "This maid is possibly a thief. Is it not correct for her to kneel here?"

    "A thief?" Yujia repeated after him, feigning ignorance. "Why, where does that even come from? I simply know of Hui'er as a good- and the only- maid of mine."

    Madam Zhang decided to get to the point and cut in, "Yujia, this maid was discovered with a box of a hundred silver taels. She claims that they belong to you."

    "They do." Swiftly and surely, Yujia admitted to it. She could not afford to display even the slightest bit of hesitation at the moment.

    "Then, where do they come from?" Madam Zhang continued with her interrogation.

    Right now, the best thing to do would be to probably admit to the truth. Yujia wasn't sure that she could come up with a reasonable lie to cover up what she had been doing to earn this large sum of money. Telling the truth was the best option.

    So, Yujia blinked, answering, "I've been interested in painting lately, and I had quite a few spare works that I didn't have a use for. Because of that, I sold all of them and earned the money through my own work."

    "Painting?"

    Everyone present was slightly surprised at what the Fourth Miss just admitted to.

    Firstly, the Fourth Miss was known for being skilled with embroidery, not painting. The Old Master did allow her to sell some of her embroidery anonymously before, but even so, all she really earned were one or two taels for a complex piece of embroidery. As far as public knowledge went, they didn't know that she was interested in any of the Four Arts, much less being skilled in such a difficult activity like painting.

    Secondly, paintings were hard to sell for much when the seller and artist were both anonymous. People enjoyed buying paintings by skilled masters who have painted for decades. For anonymous beginner artists, which the Fourth Miss likely was, the most that she could earn would be one to three taels per painting, if it was a lucky day. Therefore, the idea that she earned one hundred taels through only selling paintings was a ridiculous idea.

    How many paintings would the Fourth Miss had to have sold to earn one-hundred silver taels? Thirty? Fourty? Even fifty or more paintings was a believable idea.

    The thought of a young miss of a family busily painting so much that she had "quite a few spare works" lying around to sell was a strange one. Even if the Fourth Miss was illegitimate and that the Yang family wasn't the richest, why would the Fourth Miss feel so inclined to work so hard to earn so much money, especially when she was about to get married into a family where she wouldn't have to worry about her financial security for the rest of her life?

    That was why people didn't quite believe the Fourth Miss when she claimed that she earned so much from painting. Many automatically assumed that she must have been lying to make up some excuse to save her maid.

    "Daughter," the Old Master unconvinced as well, began, "when did you start painting?"

    On the inside, Yujia wanted to answer with six years ago, which was when she entered art school, but she knew that absolutely no one would believe that she started painting when she was twelve in this body. Thus, she chose to answer with the time she began painting in this world, which was pretty much the day of transmigrating over.

    "A week or so ago."

    A week or so ago?

    A week or so?

    A single, short week?

    This response made the crowd speechless. They were already beginning to suspect that what the Fourth Miss said about painting before to be a lie, but they didn't think that she would follow it up with such an obvious lie.

    How would it be possible for her to earn one-hundred taels over the course of a week? The Old Master barely earned fifty taels a month! If you want to lie, Fourth Miss, at least be a little more reasonable, alright?

    At this point, no one in the room believed in Yujia, and she noticed that. Quickly, she came up with some reasoning that might make the situation better.

    "I've embroidered for my entire life, and a week ago, when I suddenly woke up with a desire to paint, I found that embroidery and painting actually share quite a few similar traits. That was why I was able to learn so quickly on how to paint."

    "Yujia..." The Old Master shook his head.

    Even if painting and embroidery both required a similar artistic skill, painting really wasn't something that could be learned in a day or a week. It was something that even those who spent years and years on it were still considered beginners.

    "What?" Yujia raised her eyebrows again. "Do you not believe in the truth that I speak of? Do I need to do a live demonstration to show that I paint?"

    The spectators from the side nodded to themselves.

    Yes, Fourth Miss, we would love to see what you can do with only a week of experience! Perhaps before you even embarrass yourself, the Old Master and Madam would be ashamed of what you do!
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