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The Rebirth Of An Ill-Fated Consort
Chapter 11

Hello peeps! I have been missing from action for quite some time and I’m finally back from my vacation. Hope everyone is doing well and a very happy Chinese New Year to all the lovely readers..
As promised, to make up for the missing post on Monday, here’s a new and complete chapter. Enjoy!!
P.S. – have to meet the creep Chen Zhao again in this one…ugh!!

Chapter 11 : Spew Out Everything of Mine That You Devoured

Early in the morning, the air in the residence was extremely refreshing. Grey-winged sparrows pecked their meals from the top of tree branches. As it had snowed just the night before, the sunlight seemed brighter and the accumulated snow draped thickly over the grass and branches. The atmosphere of the New Year was palpable within the residence.
Jiang Ruan woke up to an early start. After she consumed a simple breakfast, she took a stroll in the pear blossom garden with Lian Qiao. As it was not their flowering season, dense, lush foliage adorned the branches. Lian Qiao was slightly regretful, "It is not their time yet. When the weather becomes warmer, the pear blossoms will bloom completely. That will truly be a sight."
Jiang Ruan smiled faintly. As plants, they merely compete to be the one with the most vibrant, beautiful colors and nothing else. In her past life, she had seen abundant trees of full-fledged plum blossoms in the palace blooming overnight when the spring breeze blew across hundreds of flowers of not only plum blossoms, but also peonies, water lilies, lotuses and chinese roses. The flourishing blossoms in the palace were akin to a rich, woven fabric with raised patterns. It was a pity that the scenery was only admired by a single person. Afterwards, she thought that there was someone who would accompany her through thick and thin. However, it was only at the time of her death that she discovered that it was merely a mirage.
The flowers resembled her own life, in the sense that they appeared to be bright and beautiful but when they wilted, they did not even have a place that they could call home. Once withered and fallen into the mud, they decomposed before turning into dust. Even if they exuded a faint fragrance, it had a bitter undertone.
Lian Qiao felt the depth of Jiang Ruan's gaze, but she did not know what she was thinking about. Yet, her cool expression was full of sorrow. Stunned, she asked in concern, "Miss?"
Jiang Ruan recollected herself and shook her head, "It's nothing. Let's move on."
As the duo walked around, they did not notice the person that had already been standing for a long time in the midst of a dense thicket behind them.
That person wore a lake green silk jacket with gold-threaded sleeves, secured by a multi-colored eight treasures pearl and jade corset, and light green boots. Dressed extravagantly, his leer glued onto Jiang Ruan's silhouette, completely infatuated.
It was the young son of Zhang Lan's family, Chen Zhao.
Usually, Chen Zhao loved to sleep beneath the pear blossom trees. Today was not an exception. Caught off guard by a female voice, he was no different than a cat getting a whiff of fish. He immediately followed the source of the sound. Unexpectedly, he was entranced.
Jiang Ruan was dressed similarly to the previous day. The difference was that Bai Zhi did not style a dumpling-style hair bun on her. She parted some of Jiang Ruan's frontal hair into the shape of a lotus hair bun. The rest of her tresses rested casually on her shoulders. It made her look more mature, with a touch of gorgeousness.

The pear blossoms in the garden had not bloomed yet, but the tip of the tree branches were heavy with a layer of snow as if they had blossomed into flowers. Jiang Ruan's skin was paler than the white snow, and her facial features, even brighter than the pear blossoms. With a stoic expression, her eyes swept through the depth of the branches indifferently, like a cold and raw spring water rippling one's heart gently. Hooked, he felt an insatiable desire in his heart. He could not hear her voice clearly as she was some distance away, yet he could imagine that crisp and stirring sound. She raised her head slightly to admire the ice crystals which hung from the branches, exposing her neck like an elegant swan.
Chen Zhao swallowed his saliva as he casted his eyes on Jiang Ruan's thin frame from afar. Her very loose jacket concealed her slender waist. Although she was younger and her figure still looked like a young girl, from a glance, she possessed a certain liveliness, as if both a mature woman's playful allure and the tenderness of a child were present in her alone. He had never noticed her appeal in the past, but after a terrible illness, she had such beautiful quality. She was really a natural-born rarity.
If he was able to claim an extraordinarily beautiful woman of this class, having his way with her every night, it would truly be a wonderful matter in the world. He stood on his spot with a pair of restless eyes, deep in his unfathomable thoughts.
Not far away, Lian Qiao finally discovered Chen Zhao's presence and pulled a face, "Miss, let's head back earlier. There is a filthy being in this garden. Please be careful so that we will not invite trouble onto ourselves."
Jiang Ruan followed her stare. She curved her lips lightly into a smile, "Alright."
Captivated, Chen Zhao watched Jiang Ruan in a daze as he received a sudden smile from the little beauty. That smile contained a feeling of indescribable meaning, it was not the naivety or bashfulness that a little girl should have, but a kind of light enticement. It was like a faint, fragrant epiphyllum, temporarily aloof but lovely in the night.
Despite himself, Chen Zhao became foolish. Until Jiang Ruan and Lian Qiao departed from the pear blossom garden, he did not reclaim his senses from that breathtaking smile.
This matter was very quickly relegated to the back of Jiang Ruan and Lian Qiao's minds. Three days of peacefulness passed. Over these three days, Jiang Ruan would walk casually around the residence every day. She would bump into Chen Zhao sometimes, but against her expectations, he was more well-behaved than in the past. He did not foist himself upon her like a pesky fly circling around them. This caused Lian Qiao to be more assured. However, there was a worrying matter. The day that they had to hand over the embroidered handkerchiefs was arriving soon, but Jiang Ruan had not started on even one of them.
After Jiang Ruan fell into the water, and since Zhang Lan temporarily did not mention the embroidered handkerchiefs, they thought of stalling for a while before sewing. However, a few days ago, Chen Fang brought it up on purpose, stressing both Lian Qiao and Bai Zhi out.
Now, Jiang Ruan had not yet recovered fully so naturally, the two of them would not let her perform this task. They could overlook how Jiang Ruan refused to embroider, but she did not let the two of them embroider either.
"Miss," Lian Qiao looked at Jiang Ruan who was reading by the window disagreeably, "Soon, we will have to hand the embroidered handkerchiefs in. How can you be so relaxed?"
"You do not need to worry," Jiang Ruan flipped a page.
"How can I not be worried," Lian Qiao replied with a long face, "If we do not give them the embroidered handkerchiefs, those people will find a reason to restrict your allowance."
Jiang Ruan sighed and closed her book. When she first came to the residence, she brought three chests with her. One of them contained clothing, another had money and accessories, and the last one was filled with volumes of books. All these were personally bequeathed by her deceased mother to her. At first, she thought of bringing them with her to commemorate her mother, but it was as if she entered a wolf's den. The Zhang Lan family was greedy and unkind to her, taking her belongings away as if they had a right to it and stealing them in the dark. In the end, the only remaining item that was not taken away was this chest of books.

"Before the day comes when they distribute the allowance to us, we shall be back in the manor," Jiang Ruan caressed the title on the book cover, "Don't worry."
Lian Qiao furrowed her brows, wanting to speak further. Bai Zhi pushed the door open and walked in, "Miss, Miss Fang is here."
Lian Qiao was startled. A pink silhouette appeared behind Bai Zhi. Chen Fang smiled, "Miss."
Today, she wore a pink jacket with an embroidered butterfly. On her lower body was a skirt of matching color and red boots. Her hair was fashioned in a delicate drifting cloud hairstyle. There was a pair of golden carved flower earrings on her ear, while a gold enamel hairpin adorned her hair.
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Drifting Cloud hairstyle

Lian Qiao chuckled coldly as she observed Chen Fang with despise. From head to toe, everything belonged to Jiang Ruan. Only she had the face thick enough to overtly wear these items and appear in front of their original owner. She was truly fitting of the title 'crook'.
Jiang Ruan propped her chin on her hand and smiled thinly. The crooks felt secure with the knowledge that they had the backings of their superior so they had become more and more impudent recently. But it did not matter, since she was here to reclaim her debts. She would force those, who had asserted their claim over her things, to return everything back to her.

Translated by: togekiss
Edited by: Anks & Ely