Fields Of Gold / Fields of Gold Chapter 507
Ning Donghuan signed and lamented, “Why isn’t there a place for men to relax? Miss Yu, aren’t you overly favoring women over men? This won’t do. You should open up a health club for men so that we also have a place to relax.”
Zhu Junyang immediately shot daggers at him and said with a frown, “Xiaocao is a girl, so how can she work with a bunch of men all day long? Don’t cause trouble and make suggestions for bad ideas!”
Ning Donghuan rubbed his chin and said with a crafty smile, “If Miss Yu isn’t interested, then I, Third Young Master Ning, will go for it! But, can you pass on the technique for back massage?”
“You?” Yu Xiaocao looked him up and down, and then said with disdain, “Would someone like you be able operate a high-class club? Don’t make it into a dirty place. As for the massage technique, you and I aren’t related, so do you think that I will generously pass on the secret massage technique to you?”
Zhu Junyang laughed and said, “People should know their own limitations. Just eat as much as the size of your bowl. Don’t always be overly ambitious and take unnecessary risks!”
“I suggested you guys should open a men’s club, but you guys didn’t want to. Now that I decided to open it, you guys are shooting me down.” Ning Donghuan was exasperated.
Yu Xiaocao chuckled and said, “Who said we’re not opening it? The location has already been chosen. It’s a farmstead in the suburb 2.5 km away from the capital. I reckon that it should be completed by next autumn.”
“A recreational place specially for men? What interesting things will there be? Let’s hear about it.” Ning Donghuan, who was full of spirits again, asked with wide and curious eyes.
“It’s a business secret, so I can’t tell you!” Zhu Junyang had bought the farmstead in the suburb by chance. It wasn’t very big, covering an area around 3000 mu. Xiaocao had mentioned to him that she wanted to build an entertainment castle integrating food, entertainment, leisure, and vacation. As soon as they bought the farmstead, they started making plans for it. The construction of the main building had already begun, and the design had already been completed. It was only a matter of time before its completion.
Although Ning Donghuan felt like there was a cat scratching his heart, he still had a sense of propriety. He didn’t continue to ask and just said, “Then I’ll be looking forward to your surprise! Ay…you two have taken up all the money-making businesses in the capital. Can’t you leave a path for others to make a living?”
“Before Xiaocao came to the capital, I didn’t see you come up with any money-making businesses. You’re envious now that you see others making money?” Although Ning Donglan was his second older brother, he couldn’t resist ridiculing his younger brother. He was nearly twenty years old, yet he still wasn’t doing any honest work and just hanging out with a bunch of wastrels all day long. What good prospects would he have in the future?
Ning Donghuan was silent for a moment, and then he went up to Xiaocao with a flattering expression. He said with a grin, “Miss Yu, we’re considered old friends, so do you think…you can help this younger brother a bit? Can you teach me a way to make money?”
Yu Xiaocao gave him a sidelong glance and said with disdain, “Who’s younger brother are you? I’m not that old to have such a big younger brother. My youngest brother is only three years old!”
“Miss Yu, Miss Yu…please don’t be angry! I’m referring to myself as ‘younger brother’ because I’m willing to be your subordinate. This younger brother will listen to everything you say!” Ning Donghuan moved closer in a very fawning manner. Seeing his toadying gesture made Ning Donglan really wanted to kick him away and pretend that he didn’t have such a younger brother.
Yu Xiaocao quickly stretched out her hands to block him and said, “No, thanks. I don’t dare to use the third young master of the Duke Rongguo Household as a lackey. However, since we are acquaintances, I’ll give you a suggestion.”
“Please say it!” Ning Donghuan wished he could honor Yu Xiaocao like she was the God of Wealth. He looked exactly like a servile servant as he nodded and bowed.
Yu Xiaocao couldn’t bear to look straight at him. With a grin, she said, “Aren’t there places for cricket fighting and cockfighting in the capital? Don’t you boast about raising a lot of fierce hounds at home? You can train some fighting dogs and set up a dog fighting arena. Arrange a few dogfights daily and have people bet on them, or you can organize a godly dog competition…”
Ning Donghuan’s eyes grew increasingly brighter as Yu Xiaocao spoke. In the end, he was so excited that he began to dance with joy. Yes, in terms of having fierce canines, was there anyone in the capital who could beat him, Third Young Master Ning? Training fighting dogs really wasn’t a difficult matter for him. Although there were dog fighting games among the commoners, they were just small-scale games. If he could gather a group of like-minded people and make a high-class dog fighting arena, making money definitely wouldn’t be a problem!
After that, Xiaocao taught him about some methods of under-the-table manipulations. For example, dogs that looked tall and strong would appear more likely to win. If they offered high odds, then it would attract people to place bets. Then they needed to use dogs that looked ordinary, but were actually very fierce, as the opponents. In this way, the ‘banker’ would naturally be the one making the money!
Ning Donghuan naturally knew no less than Xiaocao about these matters. The more he thought about it, the more feasible it seemed. Soon afterwards, dog fighting became popular in the capital and Ning Donghuan’s dog fighting arena was full of people for every battle. Third Young Master Ning had earned a pot full of gold, which would be a story to be recounted later.
Under the afterglow of the sunset, the group reached the gate of the capital city. Upon their arrival, they encountered a group of carriages that seemed to belong to the relatives of officials. There were more than a dozen carriages carrying luggage alone. They were also accompanied by a famous escort agency.
An exquisite and elegant carriage among the group stopped in front of Xiaocao and the others. A slender arm reached out from the carriage and pulled away the curtains, which were embroidered with entwined branches and lotuses. A voice, like the tinkling of a spring and the plucking of strings, sounded from inside the carriage, “Older Cousin…”
Older Cousin? Yu Xiaocao looked at the Ning brothers. Could it be that their relatives had returned to the capital to report on their work? Did they not get the news?
In the midst of her thoughts, a beautiful young girl poked her head out of the carriage. She wore a light-colored silk dress inlaid with silver threads. A pale pinkish grey gauze skirt was fastened around her waist, and a moon-white gauze open front cardigan was draped around her. With her every movement, there would be a sense of flowing waves on the gauze cardigan. Her smiling eyes, which looked innocent and naïve, gleamed like black pearls. Her gaze was as clear as the streams under ten-thousand-year-old glaciers. It wasn’t tainted by the passing of time at all. Her long, thick eyelashes were curled upwards like two small fans. Her soft lips had a dewy light pink color and was curled up to a beautiful angle. The elegant Yulan magnolia adorned in her hair buns and the graceful hanging jade necklace seemed to be able to shake the depths of one’s heart as they swayed with the evening wind. With such a fresh and lovely face, and innocent and clean smile, she looked as beautiful as a celestial fairy who stepped into the mortal world. Even Xiaocao, who was of the same gender, couldn’t help but be stunned by her beauty.
Upon making eye contact with Zhu Junyang’s cold and indifferent gaze, that pair of clean and bright eyes sadly dimmed. The beautiful young girl lightly bit her lips and appeared dejected, which caused all the males to have the urge to protect her. (Little Black: Nonsense! This wolf doesn’t have that feeling!! Gets kicked away by the author.)
“Older Cousin, you don’t remember Ling’er? When we were young, you ignored everyone and only liked to play with Ling’er ah!” The young girl’s eyes didn’t leave Zhu Junyang for even a moment. Others couldn’t help but pity her upon seeing her gaze.
A slightly dignified female voice came from within the carriage, “Ling’er, you were only five or six at that time. Now, you have already grown into a young woman. Of course, your older cousin wouldn’t be able to recognize you. Yang’er, we haven’t seen each other for many years. How’s your lady mother?”
Looking at the face in the carriage that was somewhat similar to his mother’s, Zhu Junyang suddenly realized that his maternal aunt’s family had returned to the capital. It seemed like his lady mother had mentioned this matter a few days ago. Later, he had left the capital for an assignment and completely forgot about this matter.
“Aunt, Nephew just came back to the capital last night, so I didn’t know that Aunt was going to arrive today. Please excuse me for my negligence.” Zhu Junyang vaguely remembered that his maternal uncle had been serving as an official outside the capital for the past ten years, and thus his aunt’s family seldom returned to the capital. In recent years, his lady mother had mostly stayed in the residence in Tanggu, so there was very little news about them.
Jiang Meiyun, Princess Consort Jing’s younger stepsister, looked at him, nodded slowly, and asked, “Yang’er, where are you coming back from?”
Zhu Junyang lied with a straight face, “Nephew went to the Imperial Plantation in the outskirts of the capital to inspect the matters of summer planting. I met this group of kids, who went on an outing, so we came back together. Aunt, you must be tired from the travel. You should quickly enter the city and rest. I’ll go pay my respects to Aunt on another day.”
Zhu Junyang wasn’t on close terms with this aunt of his. When he was a child, he had faintly felt an uncomfortable feeling from her. Now that he could perceive her thoughts, he was even more unlikely to be on friendly terms with her. His aunt envied his mother’s noble status and happy family, but she also wanted to cling onto his parents so that they could help her husband get a good position in the capital. How could anyone like someone with such thoughts?
Wu Junling widened her innocent eyes and looked curiously at her older cousin. Earlier, when they were in the carriage, her mother had pointed to the man in black, who was as handsome as a god who descended from the heavens, and said that he was her older male cousin. As a child, her older cousin really liked to play hide and seek with her. She couldn’t help but have her attention be completely taken away by her older cousin, who had a strong figure and enchanting face.
The person that her mother mentioned that most was her aunt, Princess Consort Jing, who was dearly loved by all. Every time her mother mentioned this person, she would always have a sense of envy and unwillingness, as well as a mix of helplessness—a deep sense of helplessness to reality.
Her father’s family background wasn’t as good as her mother’s. Her mother always carried the reservation and pride of an aristocratic family in her speech and manner. Although her father respected her mother, he could never become close with her. Besides the set dates, he always stayed in the rooms of those considerate and gentle concubines.
It wasn’t that she didn’t understand the resentment in her mother’s heart, but she didn’t know what to do other than acting cute and behaving in front of her father so that he would give her face and stay in her mother’s room more often. Her aunt, on the other hand, was able to get the sole favor of Imperial Prince Jing. One must admit that she was really skilled.
People often said that children would more or less be influenced by their parents. Older Cousin looked like someone who appeared cold on the surface but warm inside. Perhaps, if she married into such a family and someone like him, she would be able to avoid making the same mistake as her mother and get her own happiness and life, right? Wu Junling looked at Zhu Junyang with clear eyes mixed with some inexplicable emotions…