As Zhou Xiaocao spoke, her cheeks flushed red with shyness, but there was also confidence deep in her eyes, showing some of the beauty of a young girl. Indeed, Zhou Xiaocao really couldn’t be called an ugly girl, or else Wang Xiaotian would not have pulled her out to use as a shield in the first place.
The fact that Zhou Xiaocao could say these words showed that some of the rampant little girl Su Tang had met back then had really returned, causing Su Tang to smile. Su Tang said, “En, this is the Xiaocao I know!”
Su Tang looked around. They were standing in front of the Dessert Cafe and customers were already starting to line up, moreover, it wasn’t good to let her guests stand around outside while they spoke, so she said, “Anyway, it’s not too convenient to talk here. Let’s go inside first.”
Zhou Xiaocao seemed to be more confident after Su Tang talked to her last time, and she quickly nodded to agree for her family.
Thus, the Zhou family all followed Su Tang deeper into the residential part of the courtyard. One of Su Tang’s maids, Ms. Zhang Cuilan, was washing clothes as they walked by. When she noticed Su Tang’s group, she quickly stood up, saluted, and said, “Young miss.”
Su Tang nodded and replied, “We have guests, prepare some tea.”
Ms. Zhang nodded and quickly left to go to the kitchen to carry out Su Tang’s instructions. Zhou Dazhu saw how Su Tang casually ordered her maid around and couldn’t help but exchange glances with his wife.
They had heard that Su Tang was planning to build a new house, and it was going to be a very big house, so they had already known that Su Tang was rich. However, they hadn’t realized that she was already so rich that she could have her own maid! Moreover, that maid was dressed up very nicely in clothes that were even better than what their own family could wear. They couldn’t help but sigh internally.
Zhou Xiaocao was also impressed by Su Tang’s rich and beautiful lifestyle, but it just made her feel more encouraged. After all, in terms of having a bad reputation, wasn’t Su Tang’s even worse than her own? If Su Tang could rely on hard work to live like this, why couldn’t she do it as well?
The Zhou family all followed Su Tang into the main room quietly. Although no one used this main room on normal days, Ms. Zhang still kept it neat and tidy because Su Tang would occasionally meet people here.
“Everyone, have a seat.” Su Tang said calmly.
Slightly dazzled by this large courtyard, Zhou Dazhu and Madam Yang sat down slightly formally. They looked over at Su Tang and said, “We came here today to thank you, Tang’er. If it wasn’t for you that day, I really don’t know when our little Xiaocao would have figured things out.”
Madam Yang spoke with reddened eyes. At the same time, she fidgeted a bit unnaturally. She had originally wanted to give Su Tang a simple gift to express their gratitude, but now she felt a bit embarrassed to take out the basket she had brought along. After seeing how Su Tang was living now, the gift she had prepared suddenly seemed rather shabby by comparison.
“Is that for me?” Su Tang saw through Madam Yang’s embarrassment, so she stood up and took the basket over herself. She looked inside and found that it was filled with homemade peanut candy, made from nuts and sugar. In this era, sugar was a precious thing, so it could be seen that the Zhou family were being really sincere in their gratitude by sending over such a gift.
“Wow, did you make this peanut candy yourself, auntie? It looks delicious. In fact, I had been craving some candy like this recently, I really never expected you to send me some today.” With that, Su Tang took out a piece and took a bite. The crisp taste of peanut and sugar mixed together and produced a great taste.
When she saw that not only did Su Tang not despise her gift, but even seemed to enjoy it, Madam Yang said happily, “It’s good that you like it. This was made from last year’s nuts, when some more are grown later this year I’ll make you some more.”
Su Tang shook her head and replied, “All I did was saw a few words. It’s not enough for uncle or auntie to give me such precious gifts over and over again. I’ve already received this gift that shows your thanks, you don’t need to give me any more.”
In fact, whether Zhou Xiaocao’s parents gave her these kinds of thank you gifts or not was of no significance to Su Tang. After all, only when a person wanted to save themselves could they have hope. In the final analysis, it was all thanks to the fact that Zhou Xiaocao was willing to work hard and try to improve herself. This was the fundamental premise that everything was based on. Without this foundation, it would be useless no matter what Su Tang said or what opportunities she provided.
Of course, if she didn’t accept this gift, she knew that it would make the Zhou family feel uncomfortable, so she still received it.
Soon Ms. Zhang brought Jiang Hong’s little daughter, Jiang Nian, inside to deliver the tea Su Tang had ordered earlier. Su Tang accepted the tea and had her take the basket of peanut candies away, then turned back to the Zhou family and said, “Since Xiaocao is here today, have you all made a decision?”
When they last spoke, Su Tang had told them that she would give Zhou Xiaocao an opportunity if she wanted to take it. So, since they were here now, she just directly asked if that was what they were here for with zero ambiguity.
Zhou Xiaocao looked up, met Su Tang’s eyes, and said, “En, I’ve thought things through. I will follow you.”
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