Chapter 1

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EMBROIDERY HOUSE

Republic of China, Year 1923, Spring. Suzhou City.

It was the morning of March during spring. The continuous rain in the last few days had finally dispersed, revealing colourful hanging branches glittering in the sunlight.

“Chirp chirp”, the birds sang. A flowery aroma followed the wind and breezed by, bringing with it people who were heading to the morning market. At Suzhou City Center’s outer perimeter located a courtyard decorated in the style of the previous time period. Inside, servants were busily going about their duties. From the kitchen, the delicious scent of food being cooked flowed out, signaling the start of a new day.

Overlooking Suzhou City was the famous “Embroidery House” — the Su Family. The Su family dwelling was distributed into many small courtyards divided by curving paths. Interspersed between them were elegant pavilions and lakes, flanked with lush blooming flowers and shrubbery. It had to be said that the Su Family’s head really knew how to enjoy their wealth, causing others to feel appreciative.

“Where is your Young Miss?” The Su Family Eldest Young Master Su Tingyi did not pay any attention to the polite greetings from the surrounding servants as he walked through the exquisite courtyard. He made great strides towards the large room facing the direction of the rising sun and asked the two maids cleaning inside it.

The two maids glanced at each other strangely. The tall skinny maid hurriedly replied in a polite tone, “Dear Eldest Young Master, earlier today Young Miss was woken up and told to go to the Patriarch’s courtyard. The one who sent for her was you.” Speaking up to here, her voice slowly got weaker and weaker. Based on the young master’s expression, it seemed like someone else had used his name to get the Young Miss to go outside.

Su Tingyi’s frowned. He immediately turned around and left. His destination was Su Family’s most prestigious area – the Patriarch’s courtyard.

Before he even made it to the courtyard, there was a loud scream that echoed from afar. Su Tingyi’s frown deepened, his pace quickening.

“A Fen, quickly inform Master and Eldest Young Master, I’ll get the Mistress.”

“Yes!”

Following that were the succession of rapid footsteps from the two panic-stricken maidservants as they ran towards the Patriarch courtyard’s direction.

“What happened?” Su Tingyi called out to the oblivious maidservant who was too busy running along to even notice their surroundings.

“Ah! Eldest Young Master!” The two maidservants seemed like they had just met a savior, and began to weep hysterically.

“What’s going on? Have you seen the Young Miss? Did that old man…” Su Tingyi quickly asked, not paying mind to their rudeness as they clung to him tearfully.

“Eldest Young Master, it’s… it’s the Young Miss… the Young Miss, she…” One of the maidservants was still too upset to speak, while the other one was just rambling on.

Su Tingyi gave up in getting anything useful from them. Instead, he pushed them off and ran towards the Patriarch’s Courtyard. Damnit! He could only blame himself for being careless. If something happened to Shuilian because of this, he would definitely not forgive this mother and daughter pair, no matter how much that man loved them.

While consumed in fury, he finally arrived at the courtyard of the Patriarch. Su Tingyi pushed the main hall’s door wide open and rushed in while hurriedly calling out: “Shuilian! Shuilian!”

Not in the main hall, not in the side hall, and not in the left hall. Su Tingyi had looked all over the place in a short period of time. When he reached the right hall curtained entrance, he immediately detected a putrid scent, causing him to hastily enter inside. As the curtain behind him crumbled, a scene appeared in front of his eyes that made him weak at the knees.

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