Who Cares – Chapter 140
Chapter 140 Lesson For Women
The father and daughter sat silently, waiting in despair. At noon, the di eldest son Xu Tao, who gone out to inquire about the news, finally returned, with mixed joys and sorrows, “Father, you will be fine, the emperor did not care about you, only said that you will not be allowed to step into the official career in the future.”
Xu Guangzhi was happy at first, then stiff again, with a look of resentment and unwillingness in his eyes. What’s the difference between cutting off his official career and killing him? Was he had to waste all his talents and learning like this?
“Father, don’t think too much, saving your life is the most important thing, where there is life there is hope. I heard that Emperor Teacher made a suggestion to the emperor to create a Confucian treasure book and Hundred Schools of Thought collection, and invite the literati from the whole world to work on this. He is now in the Wencui Building discussing this with all the great scholars, you have written a “Subset commentary”, although there are mistakes and omissions, but there are also points worthy of recognition, as long as you ask a few well-known scholars to defend you, or you can find a position as a writer, after a long time, you can redeem your reputation. The emperor only said that you will not be allowed to enter the official career, but he did not say that you will not be allowed to write books.”
“Let me think about it, don’t be in a hurry now, let’s wait until the storm subsides.” Xu Guangzhi finally deeply understood a saying –. If it weren’t for him being too eager for quick success and instant benefits, instead joined force together with all the great Confucians to publish the article, there would be no such misfortune like today.
Xu Tao glanced at his sister, hesitantly said, “I also heard another piece of news. Today, the princes urged the emperor to establish the empress. The emperor said that he will marry a woman with the most beautiful appearance, the most noble family background, the most outstanding talent, and the best virtue in the whole Wei Kingdom. I don’t know what other people think, but our family’s Yan’er, except for her family background, have those three standards above, so she should be able to compete. Didn’t Yan’er have a good friendship with the second daughter of County Prince Jing, Linxiang County Princess? In the future, you should walk around with the county princess more, maybe you can meet the emperor.”
Xu Yayan’s heart was beating wildly for a moment, but she quickly calmed down and said with a bitter smile, “These words seems to pointed out to that Guan shi woman.”
Lin Shi, who had been listening for a long time outside the door, suddenly barged in and snorted coldly, “Yan’er, don’t belittle yourself, that Guan shi woman is a reconcile woman, just some broken flowers and withered willows, how can she be compared with you?”
Xu Guangzhi’s mind moved slightly, but he waved his hand and whispered, “It’s hard to say. The customs of the Jiuli people are very different from Han people. It is very common for a son to marry his stepmother, a younger brother to marry his sister-in-law, and a sister-in-law to marry her husband’s brother, it’s all very common. Marrying a reconcile woman is nothing for them.”
“But that’s the empress! The mother of the country! How can you let a woman who had married before get that position? Besides, the emperor has all the power in the world, he can do whatever he wanted, if he wishes to marry a wife, how many clean and pure women can he get? Why insist on picking up a broken shoes that was worn by others? That Guan shi woman wants to be an empress, keep dreaming!” Lin shi hated Guan Suyi to the bone, naturally did not have a good word, then she was pondering about something, feeling overjoyed, “If that Guan shi woman can write a book and become famous, so can our family’s Yan’er. Yan’er, go and take out your manuscript for your father to see, let him help you correct it and post it, then fight for the reputation of outstanding talent.”
“But mother, you were so angry last time that you threatened to burn the manuscript, so I stopped writing. Now I have only written three or four pages, and it is still far from being able to be published.” After reading Guan Suyi’s article and learned that she was the Innkeeper, Xu Yayan’s self-confidence was almost gone, she didn’t want to take out the manuscript and make people’s laugh.
“Go get it, father will help you see.” Xu Guangzhi suddenly opened his mouth, and even his brother looked over with hope.
Xu Yayan had no choice but to take out the few pages and spread them out on the table one by one. Xu Guangzhi read a few paragraphs, clapped his hands and praised, “Good article! Although the writing is still immature, the idea is very profound. After the book is published, it may be passed down as heirloom! You continue to write, after you finish, father will polish it for you, it will definitely spread out a good reputation for you for having integrity and talent, let all the women in Wei Kingdom know that there is someone like you!”
“Thank you father!” Xu Yayan was overjoyed.
“It’s father’s fault that make you alienated Linxiang County Princess and almost ruined your future. If she sends another invitation in the future, you should accept it.”
“But her shu brother is a greedy ghost, I’m afraid…”
“Don’t go to the County Prince Jing Mansion, just invite people out to play. You can even inquire about the movements in the palace.” Xu Guangzhi hinted.
“Daughter understands. Daughter will definitely not disappoint father.” Xu Yayan’s eyes lit up, and she became very excited. Father’s official career has ended, but she still has infinite possibilities. She asked herself whether she have beautiful appearance, outstanding talent, and high morality, except for her humble family background, from head to toe she could hardly find any faults. As for this Guan shi woman, so what if her conditions were better? After all, it’s just a broken flower and withered willow. The emperor was so honorable, how could he look up to her? As long as this “Lesson for Women” was published, all women in the Wei kingdom would take it as the guiding principle, and all the men in the Wei kingdom would praise her for having virtuous character, and even if it did not attract the emperor, she still could find a good family.
Thinking like this, Xu Yayan felt a sense of pride, and immediately took her leave and went back to her room, quickly writing.
Because the previous article offended Xu Guangzhi, Old Master Guan led his granddaughter to personally apologize, and invited the other person to participate in writing the Confucian Treasure Book. His generous attitude attracted countless praises and Guan Suyi’s literary name was extremely flourishing for a while. But in the eyes some conscientious people, she was the worst daughter-in-law, either causing this matter or causing that disaster, seemingly without end, no different from a calamity star.
The people who originally interested in marrying the Emperor Teacher Mansion gradually retreated, only Master Yun came to the door to ask for marriage for his direct disciple Ji Chengyue. Zhong shi was overjoyed and unreservedly agreed, and was preparing to send a post to invite Madam Ji for a meeting. However she first received a booklet sent by the other person, a total of several thousand words, and it could be read in a quarter of an hour, but it almost made Zhong shi vomit a mouthful of old blood.
“What do you mean is that if want to marry into Ji Mansion, we have read this book first? Do you want to let Yiyi follow what is written in this book and only after completing it that she can marry into her family? What is this be humble first, regard husband as heaven, faithful unto death? Is this asking Yiyi to be a mistress or a servant for her family? That old bitch is too deceiving, people still haven’t passed the door, already played the mother-in-law’s arrogance, then how about after passing the door!” Zhong shi even scolded some dirty words which showed that she was furious to the extreme.
Guan Suyi gave Minglan a wink and asked her to take Mu Mu to play in the garden. After the two people and one monkey had gone far, she crossed the threshold and picked up the small book that was thrown to the ground. The word “Lessons for Women” stung her eyes firecly, making her short of breath, and violent hatred surged, “Where did you get this?”
Zhong shi said vaguely, “I don’t know which maid brought it in, don’t look at it, it’s all nonsense!” She made up her mind not to let her daughter marry into the Ji Mansion, and naturally she would not tell her the origin of this booklet.
But Guan Suyi was so sharp, she could guess it right away, “Is it sent by someone from Ji Mansion? Has this book spread all over Yanjing?”
“It cannot be said to spread all over Beijing, it only spread among the upper circles and Confucian families.” Zhong shi had heard about this book before, but it was the first time she saw it with her own eyes, and sneered, “For those big men, this book is indeed a good thing, just give it to the women in the family to study, and it won’t be long before they can train a bunch of fools who obey their orders.”
Guan Suyi hastily turned two pages, said while her mind was wandering, “It’s not only used by men to teach women, women can also use it to grind women. If the mother-in-law asks the daughter-in-law to act according to this book, she would really have to endure for decades before she could get out. Where is this a book, this is a shackle, a big mountain, its purpose is to detain and suppress all the women in the world, and they will never be free for the rest of their life!”
Seeing the inscription on the last page, Guan Suyi sneered, “Caiwei Sanren, Second Miss Xu? She must be the hottest choice for a good daughter-in-law in Yanjing now, right?”
“Yes, I heard that several noble families one after another have proposed marriage to her, saying that Second Miss Xu can be regarded as a model of female virtue, and marrying her will surely make a prosperous husband and prosperous son, and make the lintel shine.” Zhong shi rubbed her temple and sighed. Other people’s daughter was sought after by many families, why her daughter was so good, but no one showed interest?
“She must have rejected it, right? Where is she willing to marry a common people now? She’s staring at the one in the imperial city. Not only her, but now a noble girl with a little family background, which one will be willing to marry at this time? The beautiful people can do their utmost to dress up; talented people can do their utmost to write poems; talentless and unassuming people just simply live in temples to cultivate, and occasionally donate porridge to help the refugees to show their high morality. A perfectly fine young lady is completely distorted just because of this first sentence. It’s ridiculous and sad!” Guan Suyi threw “Lessons For Women” into the brazier and burned it, her eyes were soaked with coldness.
Zhong shi was also very dissatisfied and complained, “They can make troubles by themselves, why do they have to run to you again and again? Every one of them have poison in their eyes, as if they have a deep hatred for you. If you are not a reconcile woman, you’re bound to be tear down to the bones. The emperor’s four conditions are clearly talking about you!” Like Old Master Guan, Zhong shi naturally believed that her daughter was the best in the world deserved to be favored by the emperor.
The coldness in Guan Suyi’s eyes retreated a little, her cheeks were flushed with a thin layer of red, and she said angrily, “Mother, please speak quietly, don’t let others listen, otherwise our family will be drowned by people’s spits.”
“Let them spit, who the lover you talked about last time, you know, I know, heaven also know. I am reluctant to send you into that man-eating place to suffer, otherwise how can I let that evil madam of the Ji family bully you? Nowadays all the noble daughters in Wei Kingdom are unwilling to get married, they just want to aim for the heavenly riches and honor. I want to see when our family refuses this marriage, when Ji Chengyue can marry a wife!”
After cursing fiercely only then Zhong shi felt comfortable. She was about to make her daughter doing some embroidery with her, but saw Minglan running in while panicking and shouting, “Madam is not good, the young master is gone!”
“What did you say?” Guan Suyi’s face changed greatly, and before Zhong shi could react, she ran out and ordered calmly and decisively, “When and where did he disappear, take me to see? Why didn’t you stay with him? Forget it, it’s no use blaming you now. Jinzi, hurry up and help me find him, it’s only a short while, it shouldn’t be go far. By the way, Hunnar has people around me, right? Get them all out to help, just say that I’ll owe their master once, and I can repay it with anything!”
Jinzi didn’t dare to delay, and hurriedly went to find people, she blew the beast flute hanging around her neck to summon the dead soldiers who were hidden in the dark. The young master disappeared in the mansion, and these people didn’t find any abnormality. It would be fine if he just hid by himself, but if it was because some people playing dirty tricks, then the other person’s background would not be simple.
TN: This novel doesn’t have many cliffhanger but this one is a big one. Anyway, characters in this novel are definitely fictional, but most of literary works mentioned here are real, including book that supposed to be written by the character, like this “Lesson For Women” book, which is based on Lesson for Women (wikipedia) that is written by Han Dynasty’s female intellectual Ban Zhao.