Chapter 75

Translator’s notes:

These long chapters are here to stay for a while….

Not going to allow sponsored chapters for the moment. It’s a bit of a struggle, especially with the cold freeze. Stay safe everyone!

***

This prostitute had fair skin and cherried lips. Her figure was lithe and her chest that was barely covered by the wrap was full and bulging. It completely didn’t match her slender body.

It was clear this prostitute was a lot shyer than the others. She at next to Yan Ting and didn’t dare approach. She was most likely inexperienced. Seeing Liu Xi smile at him warmly, Yan Ting didn’t refuse. He exerted a little strength with his hand and the prostitute fell into his arms.

She let out a chirp, her jade face slightly reddening. He lifted her chin, “What’s your name?”

“Your servant is called Qiong Lan.”1

Yan Ting lifted his brows and smiled, appearing very frivolous. “Qiong Lan. Good name!” He lifted his glass towards Liu Xi. “Thanking the heir for the treat.”

Liu Xi laughed loudly and downed his alcohol: “Bro you’re being too polite. Just an exchange of favors.”

He clapped three times and several beauties dressed similarly to the prostitutes present came in. These girls didn’t come over, and instead entered the hotspring pool one by one. They started washing themselves and playing around in front of the crowd.

This was the “Fuxiang Pavilion’s” special purpose. They could eat, drink and make merry. They could hold one in each arm and watch beauties in the pool. Those who were interested could also join them inside for a bit as well. This was better than paradise!

This Liu Xi had always known how to play around. Those who interacted with him were birds of a feather. They all drank with prostitutes while their eyes continued to roam. Normally they would have gotten to the good part already but today was unusual. They were all clearly impatient yet remained in place.

Yan Ting knew this was because the guest of honor had yet to come. He looked around at the seated people. There were only a couple he had seen before. The rest were all unfamiliar.

Across from Yan Ting sat a sturdy man with black facial hair. He held a prostitute wearing a pink chest wrap in his arms, giving Liu Xi the thumbs up: “The heir’s place is truly wonderful. Imaginative, daring, and knowing how to play. This old Zhao admits to being inferior!”

Liu Xi smiled smugly and waved his hand. “This isn’t much.”

This swarthy man was surnamed Zhao, and his name was Chang. He was the vice commander of the five cities military department who was in charge of the city’s northern part. He didn’t have major issues with his character, but was just lecherous. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be mixed up with Liu Xi. This was actually his first time being invited to this Fuxiang Pavilion. He was gasping in amazement, and seeing the beauties revealing their curves in the pool, his eyes were about to fall out.

The prostitute in his arms got jealous. Her slender hand traced over his exposed chest and she said coyly: “Lord Zhao, you’re only looking at those beauties. Is this servant not beautiful?”

Zhao Chang chuckled and nibbled on her jade hand. “You are also beautiful. Everyone’s beautiful.” His hands kneaded wildly, making that prostitute pant and her face turn red. Water seemed to be ready to drip from her eyes.

“Hotspring manors have been rather hard to set up these years. This wonderful place of the heir is truly hard to come by. Please don’t mind if your bro comes disturb you here in the future.” Zhao Chang said.

“Of course I won’t. This place is precisely for making merry. I’ve already instructed the managers downstairs. As long as it’s my friends, make sure they have enough fine wine. Fine women as well.”

The crowd laughed in unspoken unison at his words.

“If Commander Zhao wants to set up a hotspring manor it isn’t difficult. For some people it’s hard since this Mt. Xixia’s land has all been more or less occupied. But—–” Liu Xi put his glass down and dragged it out. “For others, this isn’t something difficult.”

“Who? If I had something like that, this old Zhao would be able to show off someday as well.”

Liu Xi looked at Yan Ting. “A large portion of this land was purchased by your old father-in-law prior to the discovery of hotsprings. The price of land continuously rose afterwards but he never sold any of it. Instead, he gave it to your wife as dowry. But that makes sense. Why would the Zhenguo Duke Estate need to sell land? Why not discuss with your wife and get some land for our Commander Zhao?”

His joking tone held a hint of admiration. Those who could speak with such a tone were naturally close.

Some people at the scene knew of Yan Ting, but others didn’t. Those who didn’t saw Liu Xi’s intimate relationship with him and knew he shouldn’t be trifled with. Hearing the Zhenguo Duke’s name, they all understood. The Zhenguo Duke only had a single daughter and a single son-in-law. Many people in the capital knew this was the Weiyuan Marquis.

But there weren’t as many who knew who Weiyuan Marquis was and what he looked like.

Some people who didn’t recognize him before now looked at him in a different light.

Yan Ting merely smiled and didn’t say anything.

Old Zhao lifted his cup and admitted some fault. “Old Zhao is just speaking randomly. I wouldn’t dare have your noble wife split off her dowry. What sort of person would that make me? Bro, old Zhao is a crude person and doesn’t know how to speak. Let me give you a toast. If you’re willing to think highly of old Zhao, just ask if you need anything in the future.”

“You flatter me, you flatter me.”

Yan Ting smiled and downed his glass. Countless people came over to toast him as well. In this moment, Yan Ting was in the spotlight.

Yan Ting knew that Liu Xi wanted to use a special method to introduce him and raise him up. Of course, he was also taking the opportunity to show off his own connections.

Look, the Zhenguo Duke’s son-in-law is a good friend of mine.

They both used each other and were well aware of it.

But Liu Xi didn’t know that this method made Yan Ting feel humiliated.

That’s right, humiliated.

Whenever he was out, Yan Ting would never take the initiative to mention his identity as the Zhenguo Duke’s son-in-law. But this never lasted long. There would always be a few indiscreet people or “helpful” people trying to flatter him and make this announcement for him. Then he would have to accept everyone’s admiration using the identity of the Zehnguo Duke’s son-in-law.

“Ah—–” Qiong Lan cried out softly.

Yan Ting lowered his eyes and concealed the ripples within. He withdrew his hand. “I accidentally hurt you.”

Qiong Lan’s face blushed and she bashfully lowered her eyes. “Lord Yan, it’s fine.”

Lord Yan?

Not Lord Marquis, and also not the Zhenguo Duke’s son-in-law.

Yan Ting suddenly felt this form of address was very pleasing to his ears. He smiled and had Qiong Lan feed him a glass of alcohol. He rubbed her back. Qiong Lan’s delicate face presed against his smooth and sturdy chest, her nose full of his masculine scent. Her entire person went limp.

At this time, the doors suddenly opened and someone walked inside.

This person was around thirty years old and wore an indigo blue robe embroidered with dark lines. Although his appearance wasn’t outstanding, his exuded an air of arrogance, making it clear he wasn’t ordinary.

Liu Xi stood up from the seat of honor and hurriedly welcomed him. “Brother-in-law.”

Xu Xiang Rong gave him a glance, looked around at the crowd and gave an inaudible scoff.

Liu Xi had always understood his brother-in-law’s personality. To put it nicely he was full of arrogance. To put it harshly, he was a hypocrite. Despite being the same type of person, he insisted on acting more upright than anyone else.

He put on a smile. “Brother-in-law, this way please.”

Xu Xiang Rong went to the seat of honor, and sat with a swish of his robes.

No one present was fully clothed. Since they were all this way, no one felt unusual. Now that there was an exception, everyone couldn’t help but feel a little awkward. Only Yan Ting seemed to be at ease. Apart from giving Xu Xiang Rong a glance when he entered, Yan Ting continued to focus on his alcohol.

After Xu Xiang Rong sat down, Liu Xi spoke a few words by his ear. He lifted his glass and gave Yan Ting a toast. Their eyes met and they both smiled.

*

Yan Ting only left that manor around noon the next day.

He had long since heard that Xu Xiang Rong was someone sanctimonious on the outside yet wild on the inside. Yesterday, Yan Ting had seen what wild meant. Of course, he wasn’t there just to have fun. He had successfully gotten connected with Xu Xiang Rong.

The Chengen Marquis Estate was very interested in him. More accurately, they were very interested in the Zhenguo Duke Estate behind him. Yan Ting knew he was scheming while wearing a tiger’s skin but he already had no other options. Regardless, it wasn’t like he promised anything. They were all just using each other.

It wasn’t like Yan Ting hadn’t considered lighting the crown prince’s stove before. However, he had thought it over. Even if he could get connected with the Xiao household, they weren’t lacking in people under them.

Especially since his majesty was currently in the prime of his life. The crown prince was already grown, but there was still some time before he could ascend the throne. Once the father weakened and the son grew strong, could his majesty truly not have suspicions in his heart?

Wasn’t his majesty more and more distant towards the crown prince?! This matter was never a secret. Everyone could tell.

Instead, it was Senior Concubine Xu who was firmly favored. Even the empress had to give way. The second and third princes were both the perfect age and had always been favored by his majesty.

Therefore, the final winner has yet to be determined.

Senior Concubine Xu’s origins were humble and her foundations weren’t firm. This was when she needed help the most. Sending charcoal in the snow was better than adding flowers onto a brocade. Yan Ting had always preferred being the head of a chicken rather than the tail of a phoenix. This was why he chose the senior concubine’s side.

After getting back to the estate, the old madam’s servant invited him to the Rongan Hall.

These days the old madam was sickly and extremely frail. Her previously full cheeks were now a little withered. With less of her flesh to prop up her skin, her face seemed to have become covered in wrinkles overnight.

She had a towel around her head as she half leaned against the purple cushions embroidered with the longevity character. Her expression was listless. At her age, illness came quickly and left slowly. Especially since she was also unsettled and anxious, making her look sickly.

“Has Shen Yi Yao returned? If she’s back, have her make a trip to the Zhenguo Duke Estate.” The old madam spoke after seeing Yan Ting.

Actually, Yan Ting going to Shen Yi Yao’s manor this time was mostly due to being forced by the old madam. The old madam saw Matron Zhao return in defeat and ended up falling ill the next day. While she was sick, she didn’t forget to curse Shen Yi Yao. She cursed night and day, and cursed a few times whenever she thought of her.

Although she was cursing, she still had to ask her for help. Thus the old madam sent her own son out.

She also knew Shen Yi Yao was very susceptible to this move. Women needed men to coax them a little when they got upset. She thus had her son go coax his wife back so she could get reinforcements from her maternal household. Yan Ting couldn’t convince her otherwise and could only agree. He also wanted to verify Shen Yi Yao’s thoughts, so he made a trip.

Unexpectedly, this trip did not go according to their wishes.

The old madam saw her son remaining silent and glanced at his expression. “She didn’t return?”

Yan Ting frowned and shook his head.

When Shen Yi Yao was brought up, he recalled the matter of the Zhenguo Duke forcing her to leave him.

The old madam immediately started cursing. “What a lot of face she has. My son personally went to ask her to come back and she still refused?! Then have her die up there. If she’s so capable, she doesn’t have to come back ever again!” After cursing a few more times, she paused. “Really not coming back?”

Yan Ting sighed and nodded.

“You tell me, you tell me, what’s the use of marrying a wife like this? When she’s needed, she’s gone….” The old madam jabbered on, getting angrier the more she thought about it: “This time you must get rid of her for me. We aren’t able to use the Zhenguo Duke Estate anyway. What’s the use of having them sit there looking pretty?”

This was truly the case. The Zhenguo Duke’s side had fallen out with the Yan household to the extent that they disowned Shen Yi Yao. The reason Yan Ting put in effort to marry Shen Yi Yao back then was for the sake of the Shen household’s influence. Now he had the identity but it came with no benefits. He even had to suffer hidden oppression. It was impossible for him not to be resentful.

The old madam’s idea wasn’t bad, but how could it be easy to get rid of his wife? Especially since he was using the Zhenguo Duke Estate’s name to make connections.

“Things aren’t so simple….”

To put his mom at ease, Yan Ting slowly analyzed the situation for her.

“Son, you mean to say, you got connected with Senior Concubine Xu?”

Yan Ting nodded.

The large amount of effort he spent on Liu Xi wasn’t in vain. Xu Xiang Rong was current the helper for his senior concubine sister. Now that he was connected with him, he wasn’t far from the senior concubine and the second and third princes.

“That’s good then. For the sake of your important matter, we won’t get rid of her for now. But you must remember to properly deal with her if she’s no longer of use some day. You don’t know how angry your mom’s gotten because of her. That Zhenguo Duke Estate as well!”

As she spoke, the old madam looked worried once again. “But what can we do about your uncle? He’s your uncle you know?”

When this was brought up, Yan Ting spoke: “Uncle will be fine. He just won’t be able to keep his position.”

This was something Xu Xiang Rong accidentally revealed to him yesterday. His tone seemed a little apologetic as though the Chengen Marquis Estate was somehow involved. Yan Ting didn’t ask too many questions and acted like he was already aware. Xu Xiang Rong thus felt this person wasn’t simple and became even more intimate with Yan Ting.

Of course, this was going off topic.

The old madam looked at her son doubtfully. “How do you know?”

This mom of his had an annoying habit: she spoke too much. Yan Ting was never one to speak much. Often times, if it wasn’t for the sake of various goals, he wasn’t actually willing to speak. Perhaps he had said too many things he didn’t mean. He remained very taciturn when he didn’t need to respond.

Yan Ting stood up. “You don’t have to worry about this matter. Just take care of your health properly.”

The old madam thought her son definitely got the news from Senior Concubine Xu’s side. Thinking of her influence, she couldn’t help but say: “Is it possible to keep his position? Your uncle has finally reached this third-ranked official’s position.”

Yan Ting gave his mom a glance.

If it were up to him, it was fine to forget about this uncle of his.

Although he was mom’s brother, he was completely useless normally. Back then he even looked down a little on their household, and felt the Weiyuan Marquis Estate was in decline. He forgot that he himself was just a fifth-rank minor official when he first came to the capital, and was extremely eager to marry his sister off to Yan Ting’s sickly dad.

After moving up in ranks, he had gradually started looking down on his in-law’s household, which looked strong on the outside but was dried up on the inside. Everytime they met, he would arrogantly give them some pointers. It was only after Yan Ting married Shen Yi Yao that his attitude changed, and even sent some of his concubine born daughters over as concubines.

Thinking of this, Yan Ting’s anger flared up.

Shen Yi Yao, Zhenguo Duke, these names had become Yan Ting’s unshakeable nightmare at some point!

“Don’t bother with this matter. There are many things involved. Uncle probably realizes this as well. It’s already pretty good he can keep his life.”

Hearing this, the old madam no longer spoke.

Right after Yan Ting left, Xue-shi came over.

While the old madam had been bedridden, the household’s finances were left to Xue-shi to manage. The old madam had wanted to let Chen-shi handle it, but unfortunately she wasn’t up to the task. But with Concubine Pei’s previous example, the old madam now kept an extremely tight watch. Xue-shi had to report everything that required money, and could only proceed after obtaining her approval.

She was unwilling to relinquish any authority despite being bedridden. Xue-shi became extremely busy.

Xue-shi helped the old madam eat a bowl of swallow’s nest before saying: “Mom, did second brother tell you? He brought a woman back.”

The old madam froze.

Xue-shi spoke again: “That person is currently in the Ziyu Pavilion. Your daughter-in-law only knew after the servants reported it. What do you think….”

The old madam glanced at Xue-shi and harrumphed: “What’s wrong with old two bringing a woman back. If Shen Yi Yao is allowed not to come back, then isn’t old two allowed to bring a woman back?!”

This was her pushing the blame onto the absent Shen Yi Yao.

Xue-shi was a little startled. “Sister-in-law isn’t coming back? Why is that?”

The old madam shook her hand off and glared at her. “Who cares if she’s not coming back? If she wants to recuperate at the manor, then let her recuperate the rest of her life. What are you asking about her for? Are the two of you close?”

The old madam was venting her anger. She was still fine in the past, but with the many matters and worries popping up these days, along with her illness, her temper was extremely poor. Xue-shi suffered quite a lot under her.

“Then if sis-in-law isn’t coming back, what should we do with their allowance? Should we have the servants send it over?”

The old madam was thoroughly infuriated. She pointed at Xue-shi’s nose and started cusring, “Do you have too much money or what? Why don’t I see you worrying about me so much? You seem to be worrying about Shen Yi Yao a lot. If you want to send money over, send your eldest branch’s over….”

Xue-shi was scolded until she couldn’t raise her head.

She didn’t want to provoke her anger, but she was currently the household manager. This mother and son pair was one way today and a different way the next. They flipped faces faster than flipping through a book. How did she know she wouldn’t attract trouble one day if she played deaf and blind? It wasn’t like there weren’t previous examples. Others might not know the old madam but Xue-shi knew her very well. She would secretly curse Shen Yi Yao and then put on a good mother-in-law’s appearance at the turn of her head.

She wants her to be the villain while she plays the good guy?

Also, did she think she wanted to mind other people’s business when she mentioned the woman who was brought back? Since someone was brought in, food, drink and housing had to be arranged. Didn’t this cost silver? This old woman was so stingy with money. Xue-shi had no intention of making up this difference!

After the old madam vented her anger, she still made arrangements for the woman who was brought in.

“She has no name or status. Just give her half of a concubine’s dues. We can see what old two says later!”

The woman who was brought in was that Qiong Lan.

Qiong Lan had been a virgin and her first time was given to Yan Ting. Since she was also gifted by Liu Xi, Yan Ting naturally couldn’t easily refuse. When he returned, he thus took her back as well.

Xue-shi returned to the Yusheng Pavilion with a stomach full of anger.

Yan Zhi was off work today. He was standing in the walkway teasing a bird inside its cage. Seeing Xue-shi’s gloomy expression, he couldn’t help but ask: “What’s wrong?”

Xue-shi gave him a glance and indicated for them to go inside before speaking.

The couple entered the bedroom and sent all the servants away.

After summarizing the matter, Xue-shi asked: “What do you think is wrong with those two? One doesn’t come back after going to the manor and one changed his nature and brought back a woman.”

Yan Ting was the embodiment of a good husband. Having been married with Shen Yi Yao for over ten years, he had never taken the initiative to take a concubine or sleep with maids. Concubine Pei was for the sake of blessing the old marquis. Concubine Wu was suggested by Shen Yi Yao after she showed no signs of getting pregnant for several years after giving birth to Yan Yan.

Yan Zhi squinted his eyes in a smile. “You worry needlessly quite a bit. Don’t bother about others. It’s fine to just take care of yourself.”

Xue-shi pinched him. “Shouldn’t I be worried?”

“Worried about what?” Yan Zhi harrumphed. “The two of them probably just had a falling out. The matter that day was such a mess, it would be weird for them not to fall out.”

“Then you think second sis-in-law really isn’t coming back?”

Yan Zhi gave her a glance. “I told you that you don’t use your brain enough but you don’t believe me. Second sis-in-law doesn’t have to come back, but can Ah Yan and Ah Mo not come back? Don’t forget, Ah Yan isn’t young anymore.”

That’s also true. The girls of major households started discussing the matter of marriage when they turned thirteen. Of course they wouldn’t marry that early, but they needed to evaluate and consider partners. This all needed to be considered. They started discussing around twelve or thirteen and arranged the matter prior to coming of age. After the marriage was arranged, they could take it slowly. After all, it wasn’t that easy for a girl to be married off. Just the dowry needed a lot of preparation.

“Don’t concern yourself with the Rongan Hall’s thoughts. You can show some goodwill towards your second sis-in-law when appropriate.” Yan Zhi hinted.

Xue-shi frowned and said doubtfully: “What do you mean?”

Yan Zhi gritted his teeth, hating how iron couldn’t become steel. “And you still argue when I call you dumb. Our oldest daughter is about to start discussing marriage. Do you expect mom to take you networking? Does she know any influential families!? Having been born in a low-ranked official’s household, she married in the moment she got to the capital before she got any experience. Her mother-in-law was also someone who loved offending others. After so many years, do you see mom having any connections? Are there any households who get along well with her when she goes out? She’s a frog in the well who thinks highly of herself. She squats on her own turf thinking she’s the most powerful. In reality, she’s nothing outside of these walls!”

Yan Zhi spoke a lot in his anger. His mouth was dry and he was panting. Xue-shi hurriedly passed him a teacup. He took a sip and spoke again: “If you rely on this household, our oldest daughter is fated to marry someone like me in the future. Take a look at second sis-in-law. What sort of background does she have? She’s from a tried and true major clan, a wealthy merit-based noble household. The Zhenguo Duke Estate’s daughters never enter the rear palace. Otherwise, they could even become empresses! Second sis-in-law has a virtuous nature and doesn’t like going out and socializing like other women. She also doesn’t need to do so. With just the hereditary title of Zhenguo Duke alone, there is no need for the Shen household’s descendents to worry about marriage! Even though Yan Yan is their maternal granddaughter, just based on how much the Zhenguo Duke cherishes her, do you think her marriage will be poor? If you properly coax second sis-in-law, she can also help keep an eye out for our daughter when she’s considering people for Yan Yan’s marriage. That would be more than enough for us!”

Xue-shi’s eyes had already started glowing, and they became brighter and brighter.

She circled around the room several times in excitement, but suddenly came over and grabbed Yan Zhi’s clothes: “Sis-in-law isn’t a problem, but Ah Yan isn’t easy to deal with.”

“No matter what, she’s still a child. I’ll leave the rest up to you.”

Yan Zhi stood up, brushed his clothes off and left.

**

Xue-shi has never been a foolish one. Her experience was just limited as a woman who remained in the rear residence. She didn’t understand as much as Yan Zhi. Since she had the intention of getting in Shen Yi Yao’s good books, she started pondering how to proceed.

She definitely couldn’t do it openly unless she wanted the old madam to swallow her up. It wasn’t impossible to secretly show some goodwill.

Before two days had passed, Xue-shi had her trusted aide Matron Qian make an excuse to leave the estate. She headed towards Shen Yi Yao’s manor with a carriage of things.

Since Xue-shi was the household manager, no matter how tightly the old madam kept watch, it was no problem to secretly line her pockets. She had initially planned on saving it up for her daughter’s dowry, but sending it over now to Shen Yi Yao wasn’t a loss either.

Of course, Xue-shi definitely felt heartache about it. But thinking of her daughter’s future marriage, and since these things really belonged to the estate, it was no longer as painful.

Shen Yi Yao had heard someone from the estate had come and wasn’t planning on seeing them. Only after hearing it was the eldest madam’s person did she go.

Ultimately, Xue-shi wasn’t very close with Shen Yi Yao, but their relationship wasn’t bad either.

Xue-shi was good at conducting herself. She would always have a smile. Shen Yi Yao was also soft natured so Xue-shi’s relationship with her was better than the third branch’s Chen-shi by a bit. Chen-shi was taciturn, and would either avoid things or leave things hanging. Shen Yi Yao also remembered that Xue-shi was the only person who spoke up for her that day.

Matron Qian was around forty years old. Her hair was pitch-black and tied up neatly in a knot. She was dressed simply and neatly, her attitude extremely respectful. She first paid her respects after entering before speaking.

“Our madam still has the second madam in mind. Seeing second madam not return, she had this servant come send second madam some things. These are all inexpensive. The madam also doesn’t want second madam to treat her as a stranger and also made some clothes for the third miss and fourth young master. This was personally made by the eldest madam. She said her skills cannot compare to the second madam’s so please don’t despise it.”

Shen Yi Yao was naturally a little moved. Without saying anything else, when the others, including Yan Ting, had come, none of them had brought any gifts over. Even if Xue-shi had gifted a rock, it would still be the thought that counted.

“Help me thank your madam.”

She then chatted with Matron Qian a little, mostly asking if the eldest madam was doing well and if the young master and misses were well. Shen Yi Yao had Cui Qiao bestow some money before sending Matron Qian on her way.

To be escorted by the madam’s senior maid showed that Shen Yi Yao had accepted Xue-shi’s favor. Cui Qiao also chatted quite a bit with Matron Qian on her way out. She learned a lot about matters back at the estate.

Some things weren’t convenient for someone of Shen Yi Yao’s status to ask a granny. Matron Qian also didn’t have the status to be able to say these things to the madam. This was why Cui Qiao had sent her off. They both understood.

Prior to leaving the Peaceful Garden’s gates, Matron Qian hesitated but still gritted her teeth and whispered a few things into Cui Qiao’s ear.

After Matron Qian left, Cui Qiao seemed a little dazed.

On her way back, she thought about it over and over yet still couldn’t make up her mind.

“The old madam is ill. Currently, the eldest madam is in charge of the household finances. However, according to Matron Qian the old madam is watching very closely. The eldest madam complains every day, and doesn’t want to be this household manager. Furthermore, the eldest madam had reported to the old madam that you took the third miss and fourth young master to the manor to recuperate. In theory, the estate should still send over your allowances. However, however—-” Cui Qiao forced herself to continue speaking. “However, the old madam didn’t allow it. The eldest madam felt a little cold inside and thus took the silver herself and sent a few daily necessities over. She said even if the madam isn’t lacking, it still represents some goodwill. She is truly powerless and hopes the madam can understand.”

Shen Yi Yao wasn’t surprised by this. If the estate was going to send it, they would have long since done so. She and the children didn’t need to rely on it to spend their days. Her own dowry was plenty for the three of them to live well.

At this point, Shen Yi Yao recalled her mom saying “the wealth of a dowry represents how tall a daughter can stand in the future”.

Putting it another way, it was lucky her parents cherished her and gave her such a large dowry. Otherwise, wouldn’t she and the children have to return to the estate and suffer under their noses?

She was naturally full of gratitude and shame. Shen Yi Yao saw Cui Qiao’s unsettled expression and asked: “What else is there? Just say everthing at once.”

Cui Qiao snuck a glance at the madam’s expression and let the words out in one go. “The lord marquis brought a woman back to the estate. She’s currently living in the Ziyu Pavilion. The eldest madam originally thought to keep it from you, but after considering felt this matter shouldn’t be concealed. As a woman herself, she understands your heart. She couldn’t bear for madam to be in the dark.”

Shen Yi Yao let out an “oh” and lowered her eyes, continuing with her needlework.

Cui Qiao wanted to get some clues from her expression but there wasn’t anything there. She was still full of worry when Shen Yi Yao let her leave.

Shen Yi Yao knew what the maid was worried about.

But since the coldest winter day had already passed, why would she be afraid of some rain in spring?

As she thought this, a crash of thunder sounded and rain started falling.

Spring thunder causes countless things to grow.

It was also about time for the weather to get warmer.

Author’s words:

Ah Yan will probably grow up tomorrow. It’ll be in a couple of chapters. This author also wants Ah Yan to grow up quickly, but some things have to be clarified.

The fatty should also grow up, and start worrying about getting his wife.

Yan Ting is right. Shen Yi Yao and the Zhenguo Duke’s names have become an unshakeable nightmare. No matter where he goes, there’s someone to introduce him as the Zhenguo Duke’s son-in-law. People would comment and say this fellow is truly lucky to have married the Zhenguo Duke’s treasure…haha, all sorts of internal injuries.

  1. Fine Orchid.
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Y.E.
Y.E.
7 months ago

Hahahahaha Yan Ting having to become a drunkard & slut 😆 With lots of Duke related internal injuries 😏
Thanks for the chapter 🥳

Meme
Meme
3 months ago

Well didnt he wanted the backing of the duke? Cant have your cake and eat too bro

Bookwormie
Bookwormie
3 months ago

That’s why I considered Yan Ting as the dumbest character here. He seduced/manipulated the sheltered Duke’s daughter to got a powerful backer… He was peacefully livinv his life and moving upwards but self-destruct himself bc he hated them when people acknowledged their relationship. Hated them despite giving him position but also became revengeful when the Duke don’t care abour him 😑😑😑 What did he expect? No matter the Duke’s move, they can’t please this kind of ungrateful mongrel.