Seeing that their husbands were so impatient, as if they wanted to settle everything today, Madam Zhou and Madam Qin couldn’t help but interject.
After all, today was New Year’s Eve and the first day of Spring Festival. Plus, this matter wasn’t something that needed to be settled right away, so it would be better to talk about it slowly after the holiday was done.
Su Yongqiang and Su Yongshun were shocked back to reality by the words from their wives, and they sheepishly agreed to finish discussing the matter at a later time. After that, Su Yongshun and Madam Qin went home.
Not too long after the two of them also left, Madam Lu came out with an uncertain face, “Mom, dad, the things Aunt Tang and Uncle Nuo sent are a little…”
Originally, Madam Lu and Madam Luo had thought that the tribute offering Su Tang and her brother had brought over were mostly meats like chicken and duck that the siblings couldn’t eat anyway, so they accepted them without too much thought. At most, they just thought that they could repay the favor after the new year when Su Tang was rebuilding her house by helping out a little more.
However, when Madam Lu opened the box and looked at what was inside carefully, she discovered there weren’t just a few different kinds of meats, but also candies and cakes. As soon as they saw this, Madam Luo and Madam Lu were both a bit worried. It seemed they had received quite a weighty gift.
Thus, the two of them hastened to head out to tell Su Yongqiang and Madam Zhou about the situation. When Madam Zhou heard that there were toffees and cakes inside, she picked up a piece of toffee and asked curiously: “Is this toffee?”
In fact, Su Laiwang had gone into town to work and make some money recently, so he had also heard that there was a new candy that seemed to be popular in town right now. Of course, after asking around a bit he found out that these new delicacies were expensive and even the cheapest toffee cost five copper coins a piece. But, in the end, he was ruthless to his own wallet and bought a few pieces to bring back for the children to try, and even until now they all still remembered the milky-sweet taste.
“Yes, these are the toffees sold by a shop called Dessert Cafe in town, and this is a cheesecake, which costs fifteen copper coins for one.” When Madam Lu had seen these snacks, she found Su Laiwang to take a look and he had confirmed that the things in the box were the very expensive snacks from the Dessert Cafe at a glance.
Of course, although it was true that the villagers of Sujia Village would send things back and forth as gifts during the holidays, most of the time they would just be simple things that their own families produced and they wouldn’t be worth very much. For instance, even though the fish Su Tang had sent them as a gift last time could be considered too expensive to accept as a gift, they were also things she had fished up herself from the Qing River. What was more, fish only cost around three copper coins per jin, so what Su Tang had sent them back then was only worth around ten copper coins at most, which was within the acceptable range for a gift.
But today Su Tang gave them a lot more than that. There were eight pieces of toffee on a small plate and also three pieces of cheesecake. That was to say, not even mentioning the chicken, fish, and duck, just the sweets alone were already worth nearly a hundred copper coins.
Su Tang had delivered it so casually, so they hadn’t thought much at all, but now that they had discovered it was actually such a weighty gift, how were they supposed to reply?
Madam Zhou remembered that Su Laiwang had bought these toffees only one single time before he had declared that they were just too expensive. After all, to only get one small piece of candy for five copper coins, there was no way he could afford it no matter how delicious it was.
So when she saw the three cakes in the box in front of her and heard Madam Lu say ‘fifteen copper coins for one’, she couldn’t help but suck in a breath of cold air. She murmured, “What kind of snacks are so expensive!”
Su Laiwang hastened to explain, “Niang, I also don’t know. It seems that some time ago a place called Dessert Cafe opened up on East Street in the town. People say that all of the products made by Dessert Cafe are created using milk, which is why they are all very expensive. Moreover, there is a strange rule that only female guests can eat inside the cafe itself. When I heard about it, I was curious so I went over to take a look and ended up buying a few pieces of candy.”
Even Su Tang, the boss of the shop, didn’t know that her Dessert Cafe was already the object of heated discussion inside the town. The food was very delicious, but also very expensive. And even though Su Tang never said anything too explicitly to the customers, her attitude was clear for all to see: This was a high-end shop and not a place that poor families could think of frequenting.
Because of that, the people of the town were already starting to use gifts from the Dessert Cafe as a sort of status symbol. After all, if you could afford to give one of their cakes away, that also meant that you could afford to buy the cake in the first place.
Su Laiwang continued: “Aunt Tang was really generous this time. This thing should cost at least a hundred copper coins. According to what I’ve heard, ever since the Spring Festival started to approach a few days ago, all of the gift boxes from the Dessert Cafe have been in short supply. Thanks to that, even the cheapest ones cost a hundred copper coins.”
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