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Published at 11th of April 2019 08:27:53 AM


Chapter 67

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Chapter 67: Paragon of Daughter in Law (1)




Translator: Flying-Lines

“Why flying into a temper in such a festal day? Heng’er is a grown-up now, frequently punishing the girls in his room would embarrass him,” said Lord Qi after changing into casual wear and lying on the couch chatting with his wife.

Junzhu Pingning was wearing a green coat of brocade ornamented with filigree and sipping ginseng tea from an exquisite teacup. She pulled a long face upon hearing her husband’s words, “What a useless thing he is! Not assisting in managing general affairs nor seizing the opportunity to get acquainted with uncles and elders on his grandfather’s birthday, he just ransacked his brains for such shameless tricks! Being refused, he then was overwhelmed by sorrows. While we were seeing the guests away, he just put on such a grave face as if demanding repayment of a loan.”

Lord Qi sighed, “Don’t be angry with him. You’ve already sent Chun’er far away without noticed. Truly a girl from a scholar family, Minglan has such a sense of propriety. Just let it go.”

Junzhu Pingning asked out of surprise, “Why you sigh then?”




Lifting his gaze to the cloud patterns carved on the roof, Lord Qi said faintly, “We have only this son who is always sensible, obedient and self-motivated in learning. Back when he was seven or eight years old, he once followed Duke Ling’s young Child out for cricket racing. That time you beat him hard for being playful. However, when I checked him in the night, he was finishing the homework his Teacher left despite the injuries.”

Junzhu Pingning kept silent. Lord Qi continued, “Heng’er is such a good boy never causing any trouble or asking for anything. This is the first time he disobeyed you. I’ve noticed his over attention to the little girl of Sheng Hong, yet I never pointed it out believing that it was only some foolish thoughts of a young boy since he had never met other girls, and he would soon forget it. However, now I found he really loves the girl.”

Junzhu Pingning’s face changed several times. She then managed a smile with the corner of her mouth pulled, “The typical case of a family is a stern father and a compassionate mother, while in ours, it is quite the contrary. I’m the cruel-hearted mother while you the loving father. Yet would you like your son to marry a concubine born daughter of a fifth-ranked official?”

Words failed Lord Qi while Junzhu Pingning stole a glance at her husband’s face and added slowly after seeing him drop his eyelid, “Your nephew, though feeble with disease, is still safe and sound for the present. It’d be too cruel of me to imprecate his death so that our son can inherit the title of Marquis. In that case, we must plan early for the future of Heng’er. I’ve been to the imperial palace to sound out the crown prince. His Majesty favors the third prince but still worries the fact that third prince by far does not have a son. What sixth princess consort has done is quite clear to all yet His Majesty didn’t step out to intervene, isn’t it a tacit permission? Xianzhu Jiacheng is a good girl with both fine features and good nature, is there a better match than her?”

Lord Qi signed again, admitting that he was never as eloquent as his wife, “I only hope that Heng’er can see it clearly as you did.”


Looking at the genial face of her husband, Junzhu Pingning recalled how piteously her son kneeled and pleaded before her, her heart couldn’t help but soften a bit. The couple sat face to face in silence, for a while only the clattering sound of porcelain collision could be heard as Junzhu Pingning stirred the tea with a teaspoon. After a while, Junzhu Pingning softened her face as well as her voice, “How can I not love our son…if…I mean if he does adore the girl, how about we try to make the girl his concubine after he marries Xianzhu? After all, she is just a daughter of a concubine, so she…”

Before she could finish her words, Lord Qi coughed as if choked on his own saliva. Waving his hand, he said, “Stop it and forget such an idea. Putting Sheng Hong aside, his eldest son is a promising one who was once highly praised by His Majesty for his only twice presence. Sheng Hong is a man of schemes and plans. Look at the in-laws he found for his daughter and son, one associated the aristocrat while the other the scholar, how come he would be willing to let his daughter be someone’s concubine? I’ll be too ashamed to even meet him in the officialdom. In addition, he once mentioned that his youngest daughter was brought up by the Old Madam Sheng, whose character I believe you’re much aware of then I do.”

Junzhu Pingning wasn’t convinced, “She is just a daughter of a concubine, what’s so special about her?”

Lord Qi rolled eyes at his wife, “One more word of advice: Don’t feel puffed up by some flattery. If Sheng Hong really planned to let her daughter be other’s concubine, why should he choose our son? Sons of noble origins abound in the capital and other regions of the empire. If he was truly cheeky enough to sell his daughter for benefits, he might even be able to let Minglan be an imperial concubine.”

Junzhu Pingning recalled the moment when she met Minglan earlier this day, even she herself was quite impressed. With the girl’s well manners and pretty face, she was truly qualified for an imperial concubine. As she went far with her thoughts, Junzhu Pingning suddenly chuckled, which led Lord Qi to ask with much curiosity, “What?”


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Gently putting down the teacup, Junzhu Pingning smiled, “You and your son are truly the same. Just now Heng’er pleaded with me, saying everything from good and bad. Fed of his pleading, I suggested taking Minglan as his concubine. He was quite panic-stricken and nearly knelt on the debris of the porcelain, anxiously claiming that it was a bad idea as Minglan was a strong-willed girl…”

Lord Qi snorted, “It is only natural. Old Madam Sheng was so determined that year.”

“Speaking of the three daughters of Sheng, Minglan is the most adorable one who is well-behaved, pretty-looking and quite filial to her grandmother and mother. Pity that she is not the match for our son.”

After quite a while, Lord Qi turned his head to ask as something suddenly crossed his mind, “So I see you’ve made up your mind to be in-law with the sixth prince, but what about the little prince consort Rong? Her brother has sounded me out for several times.”

Reminded of that, Junzhu Pingning was infuriated to the point of shaking, and the pair of bracelets inlaid with jade and phoenix patterns on her wrist clashed together making clang sounds, “Pah! With eight generations being servants for bricklayer, she only sought her way to please His Majesty with her young age and pretty face. Vulgar and rude as this, how dare they ever dream about becoming in-laws with us? Now His Majesty is getting old every day, yet she bares no kid, her good days are about to end.”


Lord Qi said after quite a while of ponderation, “That’ll be great. However, do not refuse too directly. Instead, you can bring it to the Sixth Princesses and put on the act of quite bothered so that the two can strive for our son all by themselves. Only doing thus will you not offend either of them and on the other hand will send the Sixth Princesses a message that we have other alternatives. It’s better that we put on airs or Heng’er might not be able to confront with the Xianzhu in the future. Furthermore, keep it secret about what happened between Heng’er and Minglan.”

“You call the shots,” Junzhu Pingning smiled.

……

That day after getting back from Marquis Xiangyang’s birthday party, Minglan stayed in House of Peaceful Ages for the night and told Old Madam Sheng everything about what Qi Heng said during the day and what she herself truly thought about it. Old Madam Sheng held her granddaughter in arms without saying a word but just heaved a long sign. The grandmother and granddaughter dozed off gradually. However, in her half-asleep state, Minglan heard her grandmother saying gently, “You’re a clever girl and would never take a way that leads to the dead end.”

Swarmed with exhaustion and sleepiness, Minglan felt the corners of her eyes moist thus she leaned her head on her grandmother’s arm to dry her tears as well as her weakness and hesitation. She then said to herself in secret, “When I wake up, I shall live happily and enjoy every day to its fullest.”

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