Who Cares – Chapter 193
Chapter 193 Extra (16)
The dowry that Guan Suyi brought in that year had long been sold out and used to subsidize the family one after another. The remaining jewelry and brocade clothes were all the property of Marquis Zhenbei Mansion, and she did not intend to take that with her. After gathering all her possessions, she only collected one single box, which mostly filled with books.
From the bottom of the box, she pulled out a copy of “Records of Noble Family” and wrapped it in silk. She walked to the main hall and handed it to Zhao Chunxi, “Thank you for your care over the years. This is a parting gift, you can take it.” At the end she knelt down in front of the old madam, heavily kowtowed three times. There were thousands of words hidden in her heart, but in the end, she couldn’t say it.
“Old Madam, please take care.” She wiped away the tears from the corners of her eyes, looked at Ye Zhen who had a jealous expression, and then turned to leave.
After putting an end to the serious troubles in his heart, Emperor Sheng Yuan was no longer interested in watching the drama in Marquis Mansion. He pointed to the anxious Song shi and said, “Take her down to investigate, slandering the court officials is a capital crime. Zhen want to see how she, as a commoner, come with such courage.”
Song shi was so frightened that her legs went weak, and she immediately shouted, “Your Majesty, please spare this life! This humble one only acted on the instructions of Ye yiniang. She gave this humble one a thousand taels of silver…” She told the conspiracy of the two like pouring beans into a bamboo tube, all in an attempt to exonerate herself.
Ye Fan couldn’t hold on any longer, hurriedly knelt down and cried out her grievances, she then went to Zhao Luli to hug his legs, begging him to save her. Zhao Luli kicked her away and told the emperor to let him do according to the rule.
“How can you take care of the world without taking care the house? Marquis Zhenbei, your back house is really chaotic. Leave the errands alone and organized your family properly.” Emperor Sheng Yuan stood up and said, “Take these two away together, and thoroughly investigate.”
Several guards immediately stepped into the hall and took away Song shi and Ye Fan, who were in tears. Zhao Chunxi was in a panic, and her face couldn’t help but turn pale. She repeatedly recalled her every move and made sure that she was only guiding behind the scene and not leaving any handle behind, only then she felt relieved.
After respectfully sent off the emperor, she invisibly let out a breath, and saw her daddy was pulling her mom, seemed to have something to say, so she said goodbye and went back to the room, and opened the book that Guan Suyi gave her. Turning to the page of the Zhao clan of Tianshu, her fingertips trembled slightly, and she was horrified. She quickly told herself that it’s fake, it’s all fake, and Guan Suyi made up this book just to get revenge on her. With her background, was she worthy of having “Records of Noble Family”?
However, she didn’t burn this “fake” book after all, but only pressed it at the bottom of the box, and not allowed it to see the light of day.
Guan Suyi was forcibly invited into the carriage by the guards of Emperor Sheng Yuan, and sat for a while before she saw him striding out of the mansion, followed by tied up people behind him, describing the wretched Song shi and Ye Fan.
“What will happen to the two of them?” She asked in a low voice when Emperor Sheng Yuan got into the carriage.
“Everything is according to the law. Whatever crimes they committed will get the corresponding punishment. What? Madam wants to intercede for them?”
I’m not stupid enough to spare my enemy and make things difficult for myself. Guan Suyi’s heart was cold, but she didn’t show anything on her face, she only shook her head slightly. She was silent for a moment, then sincerely said, “Thank you, Your Majesty, for your timely help.” No matter how he watched the whole thing with a cold look while having his own plan, it couldn’t hide the fact that he saved her life. For this alone, Guan Suyi also had to say thank you, not to mention that she also got back her poem collection and the love letter written for her by her senior brother, although the love letter became a bag of white ashes when it arrived in her hands.
“Madam should know why I saved you. You can pretend to be confuse, Zhen can afford to wait.” Emperor Sheng Yuan took out the mandarin duck jade pendant again and stuffed it into her hand.
“The person in the jade shop is really you. Why your eyes changed color?” Guan Suyi couldn’t refuse, so she had to change the subject.
“How did Madam recognize Zhen?”
“The bone structure.” Guan Suyi gestured on her face, “No matter how the facial features change, the bone structure will never change. According to the fixed distance between your eyes, ears, mouth, and nose, I can reconstruct your original face.”
“So that’s why. But if don’t have extra keen observation skills, ordinary people will never be able to find out, right? Madam seems to be very sensitive to numbers.”
Guan Suyi nodded, not wanting to say more. She waited for a while, and when she saw that the man did not say anything further, she couldn’t help but ask again, “Your Majesty, you haven’t told me why your eyes changed color.”
Emperor Sheng Yuan leaned on the soft pillow and looked at her with interest, “You really want to know?”
“Really want to.” More than just want, it simply scratching her heart and lung! Guan Suyi secretly grabbed the hem of her skirt, rather eager.
“When you come to Zhen’s side, Zhen will tell you.” Seeing the stunned expression on Madam’s face, he couldn’t help but laugh.
The topic was pulled back again, and Guan Suyi had to face the biggest problem, “Your Majesty, you said that you will not force this minister wife, is it true or false? Can this minister wife refuse to agree?”
“Just say ‘I’, you are no longer a minister wife.” Emperor Sheng Yuan said generously, “Zhen will not make things difficult for you. You only need to go home, whether you answer yes or no will be up to you.” As soon as he finished speaking, the carriage slowly stopped on the side of the road, it turned out they had arrived at the Guan mansion. He jumped out of the carriage first, and without saying a word, he hugged Madam that was standing on the rim of the carriage, then whispered, “Zhen will wait for you.”
Guan Suyi hurriedly broke free from his embrace, ran up the steps and knocked on the door with red face, not daring to look back at all. Emperor Sheng Yuan smiled helplessly, and waited for the gatekeeper to open the door and welcome her in, before quietly leaving.
Seeing her daughter came back with all her belongings, Zhong shi was startled and asked anxiously, “What happened to you? Did you quarrel with son-in-law?”
“We reconcile.” Guan Suyi took out the reconciliation letter.
Zhong shi held her forehead and staggered a few steps, her voice trembling, “Why did you two reconcile? What serious thing happened, that you come to this point. He just came to the door today and said he will treat you well, how can he send you back in a blink of an eye…” She started crying as she spoke, for fear that her daughter’s reputation would be damaged and it would be difficult for her to survive in the capital.
“His ex-wife Ye Zhen didn’t die, and now she has been found.” Guan Suyi took out a handkerchief to wipe her mother’s tears, both her tone and expression were very calm.
Thinking of her son-in-law’s infatuation with his deceased wife, Zhong shi also understood that it was quite normal for him to make such a choice. People have been dead for so many years, and he still couldn’t forget her, let alone find her alive? In order to make up for the pain that his ex-wife had suffered outside, and to give an account to the children, the position of the main wife must be returned to the original owner. In this way, the existence of her daughter was very embarrassing. Those with conscience might give her the position of equal wife, while those without conscience, such as Zhao Luli, would he not just send her home?
“But you’ve just given your official title! If he wants to reconcile with you, he has to see the official. How can he be so careless? No, I have to get your father and go to marquis mansion to ask for an explanation! They deceive people too much!” Zhong shi was so angry that her liver hurt, but at the same time she was relieved. As long as the reconciliation was not her daughter’s fault, it wouldn’t hurt her boudoir reputation. Otherwise, those old Confucian scholars in the clan might come and demand to sunk her.
Of course, now that her daughter was being treated so unfairly, she didn’t expect the clan would stand up for the Guan family, and for them not to say some slanderous words was already very good.
“I’ve already seen the official.” Guan Suyi took out the document stamped with the official seal and sighed, “Mother, let’s not make trouble with the Marquis Mansion, just close the door and live by ourselves. I’m hungry, you accompany me to eat, okay. Where’s grandfather? I don’t know what to tell him yet.”
“Your grandfather drank the medicine and just fell asleep. Us mother and child will discuss it first, and then tell him slowly, to avoid him not be able to accept it. When the Zhao family came to propose marriage, I felt that this marriage was inappropriate, and now it is true.” Knowing that there was no room to turn things around, Zhong shi led her daughter back to the main hall, raised an index finger and whispered, “Shh, don’t speak loudly, your cousin is also asleep.”
“Which cousin?” Guan Suyi walked into the hall and saw a four to five-year-old girl curling up in the soft couch, her face was pale, her body was thin, and tears hanging from the corner of her eyes.
Zhong shi gently tucked the quilt for her, and sighed, “This is also a child with bitter life. She was hugged by the servant at home and was given a piece of cake to eat, but your second great uncle bumped into her, saying that she didn’t understand the rules and broke the female precept, actually locked her in the firewood room for several days and nights, intending to starve her to death. I learned about this and ran to dissuade him. Even after I broke my mouth, your second great uncle still didn’t change his mind. So I had to buy someone and quietly bring her back. As matter of fact, as soon as she entered the door of our house, you also came back, this is really a miserable person meeting a miserable person!”
“Mother, you brought her back secretly, aren’t you afraid that second great uncle will make trouble for you?” Guan Suyi frowned.
“Just look at it, it’s a human life after all, since I know about it, how can I just let it go? Your grandfather also said the same thing, let our family raise this child and not send her back. Your second great uncle is greedy for money, if he comes to the door, our family will give him a few hundred taels of silver to buy the child.”
Guan Suyi fondly touched the child’s withered hair and whispered, “Then she will be my little sister from now on. How old is she this year? Why I have never seen her before? What’s her name?”
“She is five years old this year, her name is Guan Miao. She is the shu granddaughter of your second great uncle, her mother died early, and falling into your aunt’s hands, what good thing can she get. She’s never been seen by others, and had never been brought out to see the guests, so of course you don’t recognize her. Guan Wenhai is the most precious in their family, and the rest of the children seem to have been picked up.” Zhong shi sighed indignantly, “You didn’t see her when she first arrived, she was so hungry that she couldn’t open her eyes. So Minglan’s mother and I had to pinched her chin and poured porridge and water into her mouth, but we didn’t dare to let her drink too much, for fear of bad things. And just like this we poured two tablespoons every once in a while, only then she’s able to breathe evenly. If we’re late for another day, maybe she would be gone. She is only five years old, and she didn’t provoke anyone, only the servant saw that she looked cute, hugged her, and fed a piece of cake, why should she be sentenced to death? Ever since the Empress niangniang wrote the “Rules for Women”, these old Confucian scholars in the city have become more and more unruly, drowning this one today and starving that one tomorrow. As long as there’s a woman who loses a little bit of reputation, they will shout to beat and shout to kill, absolutely will not forgive. Where is this Empress niangniang cultivating virtue, rather doing evil! The “Lesson for Women” she wrote is not to teach the women of the world, but to destroy the women of the world. So when you reconcile and return home, mother was forgetting my manner. Mother is worried that you will also have a bad reputation and will not be able to live in the future.”
Zhong shi‘s grief came from it, and it was inevitable that she would cry again.
Guan Suyi pulled her gently to comfort her, but a deep resentment arose in her heart, not for those who had hurt her, but for the current world. When Minglan heard the news, she hurried back, hugging her master and cried.
TN: So the story about the little cousin is based on a legend from Ming Dynasty. There’s an honest official Hai Rui (wikipedia). It’s said that when Hai Rui saw his 5-year-old daughter eating cake one day, he asked who gave the cake. When he learned that it was given by a certain servant, Hai Rui was furious and reprimanded his daughter, “How can a woman just accept something from a male servant. You are not my daughter! If you can starve to death, then you are my daughter!” The little girl was so frightened that she cried, after that she didn’t drink or eat. It was useless for her family to coax and persuade her. After 7 days, she finally died from starvation. — Hai Rui is a real figure but the story itself is debatable, it’s not recorded in any official history.