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Published at 7th of December 2016 09:01:04 PM


Chapter 8.2

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Chapter 8 Part 2




 

When the news arrived, several people were joyful and several people worried. Talk about the joyful ones first.

“Mother, why did you ask me to go? Everyone says the Old Madame’s character is disagreeable and her temper is also cold. She does not speak more than a few sentences a year, that house is very simple and crude, nothing good. Moreover the Old Madame never liked you, I will not go and invite a snub.” Molan holed up in the blanket on the heated bed, a maroon and gold rat fur jacket draped over her. In her embrace was a delicate gold hand stove, already blossoming to lucid and elegant refined girl at such a young age.

 

Concubine Lin looked at her daughter, proud of her and also worried “Good child, how can I bear to let you go suffer. However we have no choice but to plan for the future. You can see your Big Sister Hualan getting married, it is really a family’s daughter, hundred families pursue.1 How glorious it is! Wait for a few more years when it is your age of coming, do not know what a scene it will be?”




“What scene?” Molan yawned and yawned, her tone is still that refined “Mother, do not speak of what legitimate and concubine, Father has already said that he will not wrong me. He will treat me like how he treated Big Sister, I will have my glorious days. Moreover Mother you have properties in your hands, what do I have to be afraid of.”

“My child, what do you know? Your Older Sister Hualan can be grand today, firstly it is because of your father’s official career has been smooth and his reputation usually not bad, social interaction is going smoothly. Secondly, our house more or less have properties, not like those poor minor officials. Thirdly it is because Girl Hua is from the legitimate line. She has a hairpin handed down from generations from her uncle’s house. How can you compare to the last point, moreover you and that Girl Ru are only differ in a few months. In the future, afraid that when it is to discuss marriage together, will there be good families left for you?” Concubine Lin took the heater from her daughter’s hands, opened it and using the copper stick to poke the coal, then covering it and returned it.

Even if Molan is usually intelligent for her age, having heard what was she, also cannot help but turn red. “What muddy words is Mother saying? How old is this daughter for you to be saying this?”

Concubine Lin caged her daughter’s pair of small hands, elegant brows appearing strict and lowered her voice “Things from that year I have never regretted, being a concubine for another, offending Old Madame, Madame unable tolerate. Without exceptions, all these I am not afraid. Your Older Brother after all is a young master, no matter legitimate or concubine, he is still able to inherit a piece of family property and has a place to establish himself in the future. It is only you that I am worried about.”

Molan asked in a low voice “Mother, do not take it to heart, Father loves me so dearly. Other than Big Sister, it is me that is the oldest. In any case, he will not treat me unfairly in the future……”


“But he also will not generous to anywhere!” A single sentence from Concubine Lin interrupted the daughter and leaned against the gold python mattress. She closed her eyes and unhurriedly said “You are currently seven years old and also should know things already. When I was seven, your maternal grandfather has lost the family. From that on, I have never enjoyed a decent day, your maternal grandmother did not plan, passing her days relying on pawning. That time she always sighed that she could not marry into a dignified household and was obviously still a play little girl, what draped in gold and high position and wealth. However she was in dire straits until the maiden family also do not like. At least she did a good thing before she passed on, sending me to this Sheng household.”

The room was quiet, only the burner on the floor slowly spitting out smoke. Concubine Lin is slightly lost in thoughts, remembering the first day she entered the Sheng household. That time although Sheng Hong was not a high official but Grandfather Sheng strived for a big property for the children. Old Master is also a Tanhua,2 Sheng household naturally dignified. That kind of exquisite and beautiful garden, that kind of gold and silver plated furnitures, satin clothes for all four seasons. She has never imagined in her lifetime that there is such luxurious days in the world, this kind of days living like a prince. That time Sheng Hong is refined and elegant, she cannot help but have other thoughts……

Molan looked at her mother’s hazily pretty face, suddenly opened her mouth “Why does Mother definitely want be a concubine, is it not good to be properly married out and be a legitimate wife? Provoking gossips from everywhere, saying that you, saying that you…… willing……”

Concubine Lin suddenly opened her eyes, bright eyes look her. Molan immediately lowered her head, she was frightened to the point she dare not speak. Concubine Lin stared for a while and turned her eyes away, slowly said “You are big already, should be mature. ……In every aspect, Old Madame Sheng is good, but there is one factor, she loves to nag about what ‘Easy to seek a priceless treasure, lovers are hard to come by’. This is called poor and lowly couple, a hundred sorrows. The Old Madame is the legitimate young miss from the Marquis household and she never knew the sufferings of a poor family. One government granary a month, merely six seven cups of rice reach up to one tael of money. Our household maids’ salary is already eight taels, this jacket of yours is already worth fifty, sixty taels. The hand stove in your hands is already two taels of fine silver, in addition to your meals and clothing, how many government granaries is needed to provide?”

Molan’s head started to perspire a little, Concubine Lin smiled bitterly “Moreover, do not tell me that poverty-stricken people must be of good conduct? That time, I have an older cousin sister who married a poor student, originally can depend on him to make it big. However that student apart from writing two sorrowful essays, failed the imperial examinations and is unable to do business. The entire family depended on your maternal aunt to raise money, she accompanied her husband to suffer, bearing and raising children for him and still gathered some farmland. That year the harvest is better than usual, that poor thing then wanted to take a concubine. Your maternal aunt did not agree, getting cursed at everyday for not being virtuous and still almost got divorce. She could not stand it and could only allow the concubine to enter the house, just a few years then she was angered to death, leaving behind several sons and daughters for others to trample on. Humph! That student when he first came to propose, also said like a deluge of heavenly flowers, words and conduct of a saint. What properly cherish older cousin sister, in perfect harmony, mutual respect between husband and wife……. Pah! It is all empty talk!”


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Molan listened in entrancement, Concubine Lin’s voice gradually became low and soft. “In this lifetime, the woman is to depend on the man. If the man is a good-for-nothing, no matter how strong a woman, she cannot stand straight. At that time I thought, no matter primary or concubine, the husband’s character must be outstanding, attach importance to affections, talented, able to shelter the family……. following your father, although as a concubine yet there is no need to feel alarmed. At least there are secured days, children are also supported.”

The mother and daughter pair was silent for a moment, after some time, Concubine Lin lightly smiled “At that time, all Old Madame found was some so-called ‘famer scholar families’, she herself was clinging onto destitute living, how can she give me an honourable dowry? Pah! In the end I am a young miss born from a proper official household. If I was to depend on the impoverish life of hardships, what for still enter the Sheng household? Really really funny.”

“Then you still let me go to Old Madame’s place, will she keep me?” Molan cannot resist but to speak out.

Concubine Lin smiled warmly “Silly child, this is your Father promoting you! No matter how honourable I am, I am still a concubine, you are also not raised by Madame’s side. Supposing you are able to stay with Old Madame and learn some rules and etiquette, in the future you are able to gain some respect outside, of a higher rank than the general concubine-born daughters. Master said to let Old Madame pick a child, in fact if you think about it, Hualan is about to be married, Madame cannot bear to part with Rulan, Minglan is a weak and sickly person. Several of the young masters have to study, who is still left?”

Molan is shocked and happy “Sure enough Father loves me, but… I am afraid Old Madame……”


Concubine Lin smoothen the hair on Molan’s temples, her eyes watered and smiled “I still know this Old Madame. Her natural disposition noble and upright, even loving to take pity on the weak. Although somewhat haughty but not hard to serve. Starting from tomorrow morning, you go before Old Madame to pay respects and serve. Remember, must take care to be docile, appearing to be apologetic. By any means must not call me mother outside, must call me concubine. It is okay to speak badly of me sometimes, sweeten your words and be quick-witted. I believe that the Old Madame will not count my debt on you. Ah! Speaking of which, it was me who implicated you, if you were reincarnated in Madame’s womb, you also do not need to go to the extremes to please that old woman already……”

“What words is Mother saying? I am formed from Mother’s flesh, what implicate or not” Molan smiled in displease and snuggle up to Concubine Lin’s bosom “With Mother instructing at the side, this daughter will be able to gain the favour of Old Madame. In the future when there is honour, also able to let Mother enjoy some good fortune.”

Concubine Lin smiled “Good child, in the future when Master promotes to be a higher rank, it is quite possible that you can marry to a more dignified household. At that time, there is enormous fortune waiting for you.”

1. A family that has a beautiful daughter, many families will request for marriage with that daughter for their son.
2. 探花 (Tan Hua): Literally means flower snatcher. A Tanhua is someone who ranks third in palace examinations.

I guess it is just the society where everyone do what they think will help them survive and live in peace. Next up, visiting the Old Madame who has recovered!

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