Chapter 362: First Meeting

Su Zi Ji smiled bitterly: “I also mentioned this in the beginning but they refused.”

Lian Fang Zhou nodded: “I will talk with them.”

Relieved, Su Zi Ji smiled: “Miss must have a way to convince them! They are waiting in the sitting room, Miss please follow me!”

After finishing pouring the tea, Madam Li had stepped outside to wait.
Seeing Lian Fang Zhou and Su Zi Ji coming, she hurriedly smiled and called out: “Miss, Steward Su!”

Inside, Su Jin and the others heard her voice and immediately started tidying their hair and clothing, pulling and straightening each other’s sleeves and collars.
They all looked towards the door and waited to see Lian Fang Zhou.

Along the way, Steward Su had not held back his praise of Miss Lian and everyone was curious to see this female master.

When Lian Fang Zhou and Su Zi Ji appeared at the door, what they saw was a beautiful girl with hanging bangs on each side of her face, a silver hairpin, and a pea-green dress.

Their first thought was: How small!

All of them were taken aback.
Eyes wide, they forgot to take back their gaze and sat there in a daze.

Just looking at the girl’s age and appearance, how could someone like Su Zi Ji be a subordinate of her family?

After hearing Su Zi Ju praise Lian Fang Zhou for her ‘competence’ and ‘kindness’ as well as boast about her ‘excellent treatment’, they had all taken it for granted that Lian Fang Zhou would at least be as old as Steward Su.

However, unexpectedly she was only a young girl, obviously only fifteen or sixteen years old, and as delicate as a flower.

Lian Fang Zhou smiled at them.
Looking at Su Jun, her smile deepened and she gave her a gentle nod.

Su Jun had not expected that Lian Fang Zhou would be able to pick out the differences between her and the other women at a glance and felt a sense of emotion in her heart.
Unconsciously, she felt her confidence raise.

Looking at Lian Fang Zhou’s bright and clever eyes, Su Jun’s smile also deepened.

“These sisters have come very far and have worked hard, please sit down!” Lian Fang Zhou entered the room at an unhurried pace and smiled at them.

The other five weavers were in a daze.
If before she had seemed like a green flower bud but her speech and movements were like a blooming midsummer rose, bright and enthusiastic.

Quickly, the women withdrew their gazes.
Chatting lightly between themselves, they smiled and sat down together.

Lian Fang Zhou looked at Su Jin and smiled: “So this is Sister Su! Steward Su told me the simple details in his letter, I have wronged Sister Su!”

Immediately, Su Jin stood up and saluted her: “Miss Lian is too polite!”

Before she finished, Lian Fang Zhou got up and raised her hand to Su Jin: “Sister Su doesn’t need to be so polite, just sit down!”

Su Jin thanked her and sat down again.

After chatting with the women for a short time, Lian Fang Zhou glanced around lightly and smiled: “You must be tired after such a long journey, I will be brief!”

The five women couldn’t help but look at Su Jin while Su Jin felt her impression of Lian Fang Zhou rise another three points in her heart.
She hadn’t expected Lian Fang Zhou to be such a refreshing and sensible person.
She smiled: “As Miss Lian says!”

“The reason my family has invited these few sisters to come, I think Steward Su has made clear to you.
The cotton has not finished ripening yet but it will be soon.
You should rest well these next few days and if you want to see the cotton, go and take a look! It’s fine if you don’t want to, of course.” Lian Fang Zhou explained.
“Although there will be no work for a while, you will still receive your wages as stated in the contract.
After the cotton has been harvested, I will buy a few more female workers.
At that time, I ask these sisters to teach them attentively! You can talk to Madam Li if you have any requirements during the weekdays.
I believe you have seen the conditions here.
If its possible, your requests will not be refused.
However, if you work half-heartedly, please forgive me if I ask you to leave!”

Finished speaking, Lian Fang Zhou stood up and gave them a salute.

Everyone got up to return the courtesy.
Su Jin smiled: “Miss Lian is polite! You are our employer.
After paying our wages and arranging lodging and board, you have done your duty.
Of course we should do our part, this is natural!”

Hearing her words, Lian Fang Zhou felt more confident that this was a good group.
If everyone could work peacefully with each other there would be less trouble in the future.

Glancing at Su Jin, she smiled appreciatively: “That said, you have all come a long way and will take some time to get used to the living habits here.
This is human nature, don’t force it! You have to give yourself time to adjust.”

“Thank you, Miss Lian!” Su Jin said.
The other women laughed, saying that Miss Lian was thoughtful, and their hearts felt warm.

With the pleasantries out of the way, Lian Fang Zhou’s expression became more serious: “This is the first time I have planted cotton.
Not to mention anyone else, this is also the first time I have seen it grown! Our cotton looms were originally used for silk weaving and we won’t know what will need to be adjusted until we start.
However, I can see that my sisters are good workers and I think there won’t be any problems.
Steward Su is quite talented in making tools and appliance.
If something is not suitable, he should be able to solve the issue, my sisters can rest assured!”

As she spoke, the women’s expressions shifted and then became relieved.

Su Zi Ji smiled: “Don’t worry, Miss! I do not expect any major problems with the changes.”

Hong Hua couldn’t help but ask curiously: “Miss Lian, you say you have never seen this cotton before?”

“That’s correct!” Lian Fang Zhou smiled.

Hearing this, Hong Hua was speechless.
Smiling, she said: “Miss Lian is so brave!”

Lian Fang Zhou laughed: “Don’t you have the same courage?”

The women looked at each other and, thinking about it, couldn’t help but laugh and agree.

Looking at them, Lian Fang Zhou continued: “Although this cotton has never been seen before, if no one was willing to be the first to try then we would have never learned how to raise silkworms or reel silk and there would be no silks and satins.
Since you sisters have come, I hope you will sincerely try this with me! Even if it fails, you sisters will be the first weavers in the cotton textile industry to try.
I believe this will only be good for you, never bad!”

Her words made them feel their blood heat with excitement as they nodded to each other.
Su Jin’s heart was moved.
She obviously couldn’t return to Nanxun again so if she could make some achievements in this new field of cotton spinning, she would be able to regain her lost glory.
No, she could gain even more!

“What Miss Lian said!” Su Jin agreed.
She glanced at the other weavers and said slowly: “Anyways, we are already here, we can’t just leave like this! Since Miss Lian trusts us, we will try with the Miss! Let’s give it a try!”

The other five nodded, all smiling and indicating that they were willing to give their all.

Lian Fang Zhou smiled at them and expressed her gratitude.
“I am happy you are willing to be my sisters! Sisters can think about whether you want to stay or not.
If you don’t want to, I will have someone escort the sisters back and each will be given twenty taels of silver for travel expenses.
If you are willing to stay, then we will have to renew the contract!”

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