61 A New Plan of the Fourth Miss

    When Yujia returned to her room, she sat down without making much noise, pouring herself a cup of tea without drinking it.

    Hui'er looked at her, then said, "Miss..."

    "Do you think that it's that maid next to you who's guilty?"

    Hui'er was a bit startled at the sudden question, hesitantly replying, "Manyu?"

    "Is that her name?" Yujia set the cup of tea in her hand down. "I thought she looked suspicious, but it was strange that no one questioned her."

    "It's all because I admitted to knowing of the silver," Hui'er explained, "and she didn't. Now that the taels are proven to be yours, no one will likely chase after the matter- but I saw that she dropped some beads in her hands that belonged to the First Miss."

    "So, you think that she's the true thief?"

    Hui'er bit her bottom lip. "I'm not sure. From what I knew of Manyu, she was never someone who really would do something like that on her own. I would never expect her to steal so many antiques or taels. But then again, that was the Manyu I thought I knew. I never guessed that she would try to put all the blame on me either."

    Yujia nodded slowly.

    Like what Hui'er said, she didn't necessarily think that the situation was as simple as it seemed. Some part of her intuition was telling her that it wasn't likely just a case of a repetitive thief.  Or maybe, instead of her intuition,  it was the logical fact that from what she saw from Manyu, she was almost too scared to dare to do something as dramatic as stealing so much wealth from the villa.

    Oh well. Whatever it was, as long as Yujia was not negatively affected by it, she didn't want to spend too much of her time thinking about it. It didn't concern her if her father continued to lose wealth. It wasn't her money, anyways.

    Her eyes looked back at Hui'er, and in that moment, she saw the glimmer of a tear. When Hui'er saw that she was looking at her, her head tilted away, hiding her emotions.

    "Why do you cry?" Yujia asked, wishing to understand what the girl was thinking.

    Hui'er shook her head."I'm just... disappointed. I thought that Manyu was an actual friend of mine, but seeing her accuse me of the crime just to save her own skin was just so-"

    Her voice caught. In slow motion, she looked back up, her eyes still glimmering but filled with a new realization.

    "The First Miss-" she gasped, "this is how she felt, wasn't it? But she experienced it ten- no, a hundred times, a thousand times worse-"

    Hui'er was right.

    For the first time since what happened, she seemed to finally realize the exact length of what she did wrong. In the past, perhaps she did regret what she did, but she never truly understood the amount of pain she caused the girl who was once her friend. Yet now, after experiencing a similar betrayal involving an old friend who acted for their own benefit, she had a newfound sympathy that she never noticed before.

    "I-" she choked, new tears spilling out.

    Yujia closed her eyes.

    She was glad that her maid finally realized certain things that would definitely benefit her in the future, However, unlike before, where Hui'er likely needed a shoulder to cry on, this was a different situation. It was something where Hui'er needed time to herself to collect her thoughts and to let the new things she learned to truly sink in.

    So, Yujia patted Hui'er's hands and stood up, stretching as she walked to her bed. "I'm feeling in the mood for a nap. All that drama from before really tired me out."

    Hui'er raised her sleeve and wiped away some of the tears. "Then-"

    "You can go do whatever. Just don't disturb me in my sleep."

    After saying that, Yujia laid down on her bed and wrapped herself in the blankets, waving her hand while her eyes were closed for Hui'er to leave. Hui'er, seeing that her presence was not requested, and understanding that this was the Fourth Miss's subtle way of giving her time alone, gratefully bowed and left the room, closing the doors soundly behind her.

    Once Yujia heard the doors close, her eyes flung open.

    Sure, she was somewhat in need of a nap, but time was now precious. She had a month to what she needed to do. In fact, when she recalled the date, the sixteenth, she realized that it was exactly one month from her marriage ceremony.

    Five-hundred taels.

    How was Yujia supposed to accomplish a number to that extreme?

    Five-hundred taels... that was a lot. She didn't even earn that much easily in the modern world, and Yujia definitely didn't want to rely on the idea of a lucky buyer like Bo Zhiyuan to help her along her struggles like he did before.

    She still had twenty-three taels left that were extra from the one-hundred taels she lost without purpose to her father. The twenty-three taels made her happy in the past, but now, the number seemed insignificantly small next to a number like five-hundred.

    Yujia needed to find a quick way to earn taels.

    Her thoughts scattered to all sorts of different places on how she could earn these taels fast. One thought in particular ended up being the merchant selling art supplies when she was first introduced to this world.

    He talked about a place called "Lingxin Pavillion", an art academy. Yujia remembered this conversation out of all the other ones she had because of her curiosity with how the world worked, and it stunned her at the time that there were schools for art.

    What stuck out to her the most was that the merchant mentioned that supposedly, art supplies from Lingxin Pavilion were sold at higher prices, yet there were still more people willing to buy them because the academy was more famous. That led to the thought of whether or not art itself coming from a student of the academy would sell quicker and for more as well...

    Yujia clapped her hands together.

    That seemed like a good idea. She didn't know if it would necessarily work or not, but it wouldn't hurt to ask around and try.

    Now that she had an idea she could carry out, Yujia rolled back over to lie on her side. She might as well catch up on some sleep while she allowed Hui'er to have some time to herself.
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