Zhu Yurun tensed up. Underneath the table, she yanked Ji Man's clothes.
Ji Man looked at Qian Yingchen with a completely calm expression and asked, "Sir Qian, are you still not planning on marrying Miss Zhu?"
Qian Yingchen shook his head. "Yingchen doesn't like being forced into marrying someone. Besides, Grand Tutor Peng had personally asked this one to care for Miss Peng. It wouldn't be fair to wrong her like this before she's even married into my household."
As the chubby girl next to Ji Man was uneasily fidgeting, the bluish-green gems dangling from her hair swung back and forth. It was obvious that she was very perturbed by these words. Ji Man looked at Miss Peng next. Although the boat was swaying, she was still able to maintain a proper sitting position, and the dangling ornaments in her hair weren't moving much either.
Comparing Zhu Yurun to Miss Peng was like comparing an unpresentable duck to a graceful swan. No one would be able to like her.
"Our wedding date was originally set for ten days later," Ji Man said, "If Sir Qian hasn't changed his mind by then, this one is naturally willing to welcome Miss Zhu into my family."
Qian Yingchen looked at Ji Man with a slightly astonished look. "Teacher Ji, you have a upright appearance, so why..."
Why do you have such bad taste?
Zhu Yurun was a woman that was rarely seen in this world. When he had happened to meet her by chance half a year ago, she was an attractive young woman instead of the plump figure she was now. However, although half a year had passed, her personality hadn't changed at all. As soon as she saw a man, she would throw herself at him. Qian Yingchen recollected his memories of their first encounter and couldn't help slightly frowning.
His first impression of this young woman hadn't been bad when they had seen each other in the passing in the inn. However, he woke up in her bed the next morning, and this young woman had said with a grin, "You're mine."
Any man would feel that this woman had no sense of shame. She had even dared to boldly proclaim that she had like how he looked, so she had drugged him to become his person.
At that time, he was returning to the capital after receiving a notice that he had been promoted and couldn't afford to ruin his reputation. When he saw her looking for him in inn that morning, he didn't say anything and simply left the inn.
He had wondered if his encounter with this insane woman had anything to do with the shameless people in Xu Province that would want to deliberately harm him. Fortunately, nothing bad had happened in the end. Otherwise, he wouldn't have let her off.
Taking a deep breath, Qian Yingchen swallowed down the rest of the words he had wanted to say. He placed one hand in front of the other to salute Ji Man and said, "This one will offer my congratulations to Teacher Ji then."
Ji Man smiled. Next to Qian Yingchen, Miss Peng seemed to have not heard anything. She was indifferently looking out at the lake.
After they disembarked from the boat, the four of them strolled around the lake. Zhu Yurun seemed to have accepted reality. Her head was drooping, and she wasn't skipping around like her usual self. She just closely walked behind Qian Yingchen and Miss Peng.
Ji Man was walking by her side, so she didn't look that obviously pitiful. The two of them seemed to be walking slower and slower, and the distance between them and the two people in the front were increasing.
Ji Man couldn't resist quietly asking, "Why won't you give up on him?"
She had seen too much of cold logic and too little of sincere feelings in this place. And so, she absolutely couldn't understand a young woman like Zhu Yurun.
Zhu Yurun grinned from ear to ear. "From the time I met him, I keep having the same dream."
"I dream that I'm quietly waiting in a pavilion. There's no one else around. Rain is pouring from the sky, and I feel as if no one is going to come. But, when I've waited until the moment, he comes. He's holding an oilpaper umbrella with one hand and urging his horse to go faster with the other hand. He says that he's going to marry me. And, the rain from the sky suddenly stops. His smile looks so beautiful as he's standing there." As she says this, her eyes start to brighten with little stars.
The corners of Ji Man's lips twitch, and she interrupted her by saying, "If you try holding onto an oilpaper umbrella while riding a horse, the wind will end up tearing the umbrella apart. It definitely wouldn't be as perfect as your imagination."
Why did foolish girls always have a pre-installed beautification function? Their love would embellish a plain rice paddy that was strong with the scent of fertilizer into a fragrant lavender field that stretched out as far as the eyes could see. And then, they would do their absolute best to chase after this false dream. If they saw the reality a bit more clearly, wouldn't that be better?
Zhu Yurun paused. She lowered her head and looked at her shoes as she said, "I've been staying by his side for the past several days, and I tried my best to get him to like me, but the end result was the opposite of what I wanted. Perhaps, what everyone else is saying is right. I'm always making my choices based on the reality I see, and my views are unrealistically optimistic."
"But, still, I don't know why. I just really like him." Zhu Yurun shook her head and stopped walking. She smiled at Ji Man and said, "I'm not willing to give up."
Ji Man was stunned.
Qian Yingchen and Miss Peng had already walked far enough that their figures weren't visible anymore. Seeing this, Zhu Yurun stamped her feet and said, "Aiya, look. They forgot about us again. It's getting late and about time to end our stroll and go back. Yingchen hasn't fully healed from his injuries yet either. Teacher Ji, you can leave first. Let's meet again tomorrow."
Once again, her smile was as splendidly radiant as spring. She jogged forward like a ball of rolling cotton candy and even turned around to say, "Let me keep trying. If it doesn't work out, I'll just marry you. I don't want to have any regrets."
Standing in the same spot, Ji Man watched as that little chubby figure ran farther and farther away. She finally let out a long sigh when Zhu Yurun's figure had disappeared from her sight too.
Why were there so many fools in the world?
And yet, if there were only smart, rational people around, the world would be too boring.