Who Cares – Chapter 4
Chapter 4 Conspiracy
Guan Suyi picked and chose among the many posts, Zhong shi would then introduce the sons of families she picked up. It could be seen that she had already sent someone to inquire about it clearly. In her life, she had only one daughter, Guan Suyi, naturally she dare not take her daughter’s marriage lightly.
However, how could the news from the matchmaker or neighbors be accurate, most of them were untrue or inflated praises. As Guan Suyi listened carefully, she sighed in her heart: Among the seven or eight men of the right age, according to her last life, at least six had a large numbers of concubines in their house and the back house was chaotic; also one died before he reach twenty. And their family status were comparable to the Guan family, with neither power nor wealth. However, even so, they have to accept concubines one by one, as if they were competing something, really poor choices to entrusted a lifelong event with.
Nowadays, women still have some status that was difficult to block. After four or five years, Xu’s Neo-Confucianism would completely prevailed. His thought ofhad spawned a large number of hypocrites, and pushed the oppression and cruelty towards women to the extreme.
Guan Suyi had really experienced it once. She already viewed marriage as something dangerous, so how could she dare to jump into the fire pit? But she couldn’t tell her mother about her experience. After thinking about it for a moment, she replied, “Mother, when it come marriage we still need to know their roots and their family, lest daughter will be wronged but have nowhere to complain after marrying. Grandfather and father have students everywhere, there will be a few disciples that will come to Yanjing, you wait and see. After all, marriage is a life-long event, we must be cautious. Daughter will rather shelved for another three years than have to pay for the mistake.”
Zhong shi would also hate if her daughter suffer a hardship. At home she was a precious young lady, when married she would become someone else’ daughter-in-law. In private, didn’t know how she would be treated by her parents-in-law and husband. Instead of marrying someone with unknown background, it would be better to marry her husband’s disciple. As the saying goes, he wouldn’t dare to treat her too badly.
Thinking of this, Zhong shi hurriedly retracted the post, planning to write refusal letters one by one in a while. She thought for a moment, then smiled, “Fortunately, you reminded mother. Mother remember that your fourth senior brother will be entering the capital in a few days. Although his family’s circumstances is a bit embarrassing, his talents and character are first-class, and his parents are both honest person. I just don’t know if you are willing to suffer from poverty.”
How could poverty be regarded as suffering? Guan Suyi immediately smiled, she was about to nod and agreed but stopped in time. The fourth senior brother was indeed a rare good man in the world. He had a good character and was full of learning, he would be single-minded and loyal toward his wife. If she marry him, even if she eat unappetizing vegetables every day, it would be more comfortable than staying in Marquis Zhenbei Mansion and enjoying exotic delicacies, or wearing beautiful and magnificent clothes.
But the problem was that in her previous life, his wife was another person. The husband and wife were in perfect harmony, and they were loving until their hair turned white. If she was agreeing at this time, it would seem to steal other’s fate. If she takes away other’s fortunes because of her own misfortune, Guan Suyi couldn’t pass the hurdle in her heart. In her memory, men like fourth senior brother who could be relied on with one’s life were rare in the world. If she miss this time, she might fall into another quagmire. Guan Suyi was thinking deeply but inevitably shook her head and sighed, “Mother, daughter doesn’t want to marry.”
”As a woman, how can you not marry? Yiyi is shy, right?” Zhong shi embraced and patted her daughter.
Guan Suyi also knew that she was a little silly, so she changed her words, “Mother, the fourth senior brother’s family is poor, afraid daughter cannot bear the suffering. Please look at another.” Next time, she would continue to find excuses to push it away. In her life, she would rather become a nun than marry.
Zhong shi squeezed her daughter’s tender little face, and thought to herself: Can’t bear the hardship, dislike the poor and love the rich is not like Yiyi at all, wouldn’t this child have a sweetheart but too shy to open up? She hinted over and over again for me to look at husband’s disciples, which one should I see? It’s not the little four, is it the little six? I should ask Minglan and Mingfang carefully to find out.
When Zhong shi was busy taking care of her daughter’s marriage, Madam Ye handed out the sign to enter the palace. In Ganquan Palace, mother and daughter dismissed the servants to have a private conversation.
”Where is Guan Suyi worthy? Actually make His Majesty thinking of her?” Ye Zhen’s eyes were full of stern expression.
”Your father has checked it out. Guan Suyi is the granddaughter of Confucian master Guan Qiguang. She had fate to meet His Majesty at Jueyin Temple that day, perhaps he had taken fancy to her at that time.” Ye mother said anxiously, “Now the emperor has announced to the world, canonized Kong Ming as the sage Confucius, the teacher of the world, and praised Confucianism as the emperor’s enlightenment, and built a Confucian temple in the suburbs of the capital, wanting to go to worship in person. Nowadays, Confucian scholars have been reused one after another, as the master of Confucianism, Guan Qiguang is expected to be in a high position. Your father has received definite news. In two days, his majesty will call Guan family father and son to become officials. Guan Yunqi will be promoted as the Chief Minister of Ceremonies, Guan Qiguang is even worse, he will serve as the emperor’s teacher, the rank salary of ten thousand stones. Before this, they were just common people, without power and influence.”
After she finished talking, Liu shi showed a gritted expression, showing that she was extremely unhappy about the sudden wealth of the Guan family.
Ye Zhen was also greatly shaken, and said in surprise, “Chief Minister of Ceremonies? That is one of the Nine Ministers, in charge of the ancestral temple ceremony, the position is very precious. And the official position of the emperor’s teacher is even more unprecedented, the rank salary is ten thousand stones, and the power is noble and comparable to the prime minister. How can they be called common people?”
Liu shi quickly agreed, “Yes, your father is the emperor’s father-in-law, but he only sealed a Grand Scribe deputy with a salary of four hundred stones, and he can’t even support his family. Before Guan Suyi entered the palace, the emperor lifted Guan’s family to such a high position, does he want to canonize her as the empress?”
Ye Zhen immediately denied, “There is empress dowager, it’s not yet the turn for Han woman to be the empress.”
”But there isposition, did you forget?” Liu shi reminded worriedly.
Yes, there was Zhaoyi above Jieyu, who was the “Vice Empress”, who was also powerful enough to overwhelm her. If the emperor wanted to promote Confucianism, he would naturally elevate the Guan family, a position of Zhaoyi, he would definitely be willing to give it. Ye Zhen’s eyebrows wrinkled tightly, she was pondering, “How is Guan Suyi’s talent?”
Liu shi‘s eyes flickered, she was about to modify her words, but listened to her daughter’s sharp command, “Be honest! If you deliberately belittle her, This Palace will underestimate the enemy, you should know how underestimated the enemy will end.”
The back house was full of swords and shadows, intrigues and deceit, let alone the palace where the dirt was hidden? If her daughter was a little careless, she would lose everything, and the Ye family would surely fall. Thinking of this, Liu shi did not dare to conceal it anymore, and said anxiously, “That Guan Suyi has followed Guan Qiguang to study literary characters since childhood. Guan Qiguang is proficient in all nobleman’s Six Arts, poems and songs, no one can compare. Even Han Xinfang, the leader of the Legalist school, also praised him as this generation’s literary giant, his talents and learning are evident… “
How could Ye Zhen be patiently listened to Guan Qiguang’s achievement, and was about to wave her hand to interrupt, but heard her mother’s next words. “Someone once said that Guan Suyi is the student that surpasses the master. Her talent is not under Guan Qiguang. A modest and prudent person like Guan Qiguang also nodded and smiled. It can be seen that he agrees with Guan Suyi’s talent. Niangniang, in the aspect of talent, afraid you cannot compare to her.”
Ye Zhen gently curled the corners of her lips, and then asked, “What about the face?”
Seeing her daughter’s conceited look, Liu shi dared not hide it. “Do you remember the poem ““? Guan Suyi’s appearance is about comparable .”
Ye Zhen stunned for a while before speaking with a trembling voice, “Shou Ren appearance… the hands are like catkins, the skin is like condensed fat, the collar is like a grub, the teeth are like rhinoceros, the eyebrows are like crests, with a beautiful smile, beautiful eyes look forward to it. Is that true? Someone really grows up like this?” ( T/N : of course the English translations of the poem is rubbish, but it’s beautiful and rhyme in Chinese, you can take my word for that, lol)
Liu shi nodded heavily, “Your sister-in-law and I have both seen her secretly, and it is true. You and her… you are still a little bit inferior to her.”
Ye Zhen heard the jealousy and helplessness in her mother’s voice. Afraid that it was not only “a little bit inferior”, but a lot, right? She always flaunt her beauty, she couldn’t imagine what a woman who was more outstanding than herself should be like? She couldn’t compare with her talents and her looks. Now even her family background was overwhelmed. When Guan Suyi enters the palace, how could she survive? In recent years, she had offended the Empress Dowager and other concubines many times. Seeing her fall out of favor, these people would surely throw some stones and leave no room to come back.
When Ye Zhen was frightened and uneasy, Liu shi counseled her, “Niangniang, don’t think about it, things may not be so bad. His Majesty has no heirs now. As long as you give birth to the first prince, you can be promoted to Zhaoyi. His Majesty has favored you alone for several years. Is his deep affection comparable to others? At this time, you must be steady.”
Speaking of offspring, there was a quick flash of bitterness in Ye Zhen’s eyes, but she hurriedly covered it up, for fear that her mother would see some clue.
Liu shi didn’t notice, and continued, “Although recently Zhong shi is looking at other people’s families for Guan Suyi, but the Empress Dowager will soon call the beauties into the palace for the selection. This marriage will definitely not going to happen. Your father and I have plan to take drastic measure to deal with the situation, first ruin her innocence.”
Ye Zhen pondered for a moment and waved her hand, “No! This Palace and His Majesty have been together in the border for two years, although could never guessed what he thinks, but still more or less understand his behavior and ability. Since he has decided to put the Guan family’s father and son in important positions, he will definitely send someone to watch them at all time. If something goes wrong with Guan Suyi at such a critical juncture, His Majesty will definitely investigate to the end. Are you sure you can avoid His Majesty’s eyes and ears?”
Avoiding Huo Shengzhe’s eyes and ears? Afraid only ghosts and gods dare to answer this question. In the world, there were things he didn’t want to know, even disdain to know, but there was nothing he couldn’t know.
”What should I do then? Let Guan Suyi smoothly enter the palace right away?” Liu shi’s tone was anxious.
”She must never enter the palace!” Ye Zhen closed her eyes firmly, and powerlessly waved her hands, when she opened them again she said, “You go back first, don’t let Dad act rashly. He is a little Grand Scribe deputy, what big things can he do?”
”He is indeed a low-ranking official, but you are Jieyu niangniang anyway. You often blow pillow breeze to the emperor. Why our family cannot go up there?” Liu shi wanted to say more, but was invited out by two grand palace maids.
Ye Zhen pondered for a long time, and finally slowly unrolled a piece of rice paper, and raised a brush to ask someone for help. Guan Suyi couldn’t enter the palace, so let her get married. She would pointed out to a rare good marriage under heaven, who knows, maybe she would kowtow in gratitude to her in the future.
After making the last stroke, Ye Zhen smiled briskly.