Qiao Anhao deliberately emphasized on the word "calming", while her gaze remained focused on Han Ruchu's face. She could distinctly spot the shock that flitted through her eyes and a hint of anxiousness.
Madam Qiao was aware that Han Ruchu had sent Qiao Anhao the swallow's nest. When she heard Qiao Anhao asking for food, she said indulgently, "Ruchu, you have spoiled her! She's starting to treat the Xu family as her own home, even demanding for food now!"
"My mother loves her for that." Xu Jiamu smiled before turning to face his mother. "Right, mum?"
Han Ruchu's late response attracted everyone's attention. The housekeeper behind her regained her senses instantly, silently nudging Han Ruchu's elbow. In a low voice, she whispered, "Mrs. Xu, don't just eat the cake, little master asked you something. She'll think that you are treating her as an outsider."
Han Ruchu snapped out of her daze, hurriedly lowering her lashes to conceal her anxiety. Her red lips curled into a smile. "What rubbish, I've always wanted Qiao Qiao as my daughter."
Calmly, she turned to her housekeeper. "Auntie Yun, I remember we still have some swallow's nest at home, heat it up and bring some over."
"Yes, Madam Xu." With a turn, the housekeeper headed into the kitchen.
Qiao Anhao took in the entire exchange, a quiet smile etched on her face. Internally, she smirked.
The swallow's nest was heated in an instant, and it was the same as the one given to Qiao Anhao previously.
When the housekeeper placed the swallow's nest in front of Qiao Anhao, the latter's gaze turned bright and sharp as though agitated. Her grip loosened slightly, and the chopsticks in her hand fell to the floor with a small thud.
"Qiao Qiao what's wrong? Too touched by the swallow's nest?" Qiao Anxia smiled cheekily as she teased.
Xu Jiamu bent to pick up the chopsticks, pa.s.sing them to the housekeeper before getting a new pair for Qiao Anhao.
Qiao Anhao lifted her head, her eyes clear of the fleeting emotion. Pouting, as though unhappy from Qiao Anxia's tease, she reached over to grab Xu Jiamu's chopsticks. She replied to him in a tender and sweet voice, "Thank you, brother Jiamu."
But the instant she lowered her head, her eyes frosted over, and she tightened her grip on the chopsticks.
The men at the table didn't seem interested in the swallow's nest, so they didn't touch it. Mrs. Qiao took two bites before turning to praise Han Ruchu. " This is really nice, I can see why Qiao Qiao misses it."
Han Ruchu smiled. "Auntie Yun brewed this personally, the bird nests were also specially picked, they're natural and healthy."
Qiao Anxia said, "Picking bird nests is indeed a skill! Many people have been selling inferior goods which not only do not aid the body but may also cause cancer!"
Ever since the swallow's nest was served, Qiao Anhao had been silent, but at this moment, she added causally, "It may even kill."