I think the title says it all.
This chapter has been provided to you by me, orormunroe90, vivie and leecherleechleech.
Chapter Eighty Don’t Dirty Ben Wang’s Place
The Duke of Chang De held a teacup for fifteen minutes. Looking at the silent door leading to the hall, it stirred up memories of the cold receptions he had received in other homes. He had endured it then. Now that he was at his daughter’s place, he still had to sit on the bench. His face instantly darkened and he heavily slammed the teacup to one side, ranting: “I’ve raised such a good daughter. When her own father comes, she still acts like a wang fei. It was a waste raising her all those years!”
Liang Hong’s heart jumped. He looked at the servants in the room who didn’t react at all. He appeased: “Yifu, Duan wang fei has to take care of such a wang fu. She wouldn’t be as free as she was before her marriage. We’ve only just arrived, don’t be angry. If Duan wang fei heard what you said, she would be hurt.”
“What does she have to be hurt about? After she’d married wang ye, she’s never even seriously looked at her father. She came to my birthday banquet and threw a tantrum in front of the whole fu,” When the Duke of Chang De thought about the contents in Tian Jin Ke’s censure memorandum, his face flushed, “How is she my daughter? From the looks of it, she shouldn’t be named Qu. She should’ve been named Tian!”
Liang Hong listened as his words became increasingly nasty and felt frantic inside. Right now, they had come to ask for aid, not to throw around their temper. How yifu had treated Duan Wang Fei these years, he had personally seen it. If wang fei was willing to help, that would be a blessing from the Heavens. But yifu had to maintain the face of an elder. If wang fei saw, even if Duan wang fei’s personality was gentle, she wouldn’t stand for yifu’s attitude.
He was anxious but didn’t dare say more in case he provoked yifu to get even nastier. He carefully looked at the servants in the room. These people were like statues. No matter how nasty yifu’s words were, they didn’t even move an inch. It was as though he and yifu didn’t even exist. The conduct of these servants made Liang Hong feel the strictness of the protocol of the wang fu.
“Duke Qu, are you angry because this fu’s tea and pastries aren’t suited for your appetite?” Xiao Gan Zi asked scornfully as he came in with a lower-ranked taijian into the hall. He glared furiously at the yahuan serving in the hall, admonishing: “Useless beings! Remember what kind of place this is. You don’t even know how to serve people. Go switch Duke Qu’s tea!”
Liang Hong hurriedly interjected: “This gonggong is too courteous. The tea and pastries are all good. There’s no need to trouble anyone.” How could he not detect that this taijian was pointing at the mulberry but swearing at the locust tree? But they had come here to seek aid. Furthermore, the pattern on the robe of this taijian was different to that of a normal taijian. His position in the fu wouldn’t be low. The saying was that “the gatekeeper of the Prime Minister’s gate was a fourth-pin official.” How could he even dare to offend the taijian who had some status in the wang fu?
Xiao Gan Zi turned to look at the young person in front of him. He mockingly raised his hands in a fist to Liang Hong as he said: “This gongzi must be Duke Qu’s son. This one greets you two.”
“I don’t dare receive gonggong’s greeting. This student is Liang Hong, and yifu’s nephew.” Liang Hong returned a bow and tried to hand a pouch to Xiao Gan Zi.
“Liang gong zi doesn’t have to be this courteous. This one is insignificant and doesn’t dare to take gong zi’s gift,” Xiao Gan Xi unhesitatingly pushed aside Liang Hong’s pouch, “Please sit, our wang fei will be here shortly.”
“Hong’er, sit down. Today, I’m going to see when this good daughter of mine will arrive. I’ve waited this long and she’s just sent a taijian to brush us off. Once she became a wang fei, her airs have become arrogant enough that she won’t even attend to her own father.” The Duke of Chang De impatiently looked at Xiao Gan Zi and Liang Hong, his actions and tone of voice showing just how much he looked down upon this taijian named Xiao Gan Zi.
Xiao Gan Zi smiled instead of getting angry. He came forward and bowed, saying: “Duke Qu, don’t be furious. Our wang fei isn’t as idle as Qu san xiaojie. Every day, she has to manage the fu and all the matters of the different estates. That’s awfully busy work. After hearing that the duke had come today, she went to dress and groom herself in a rush to see you. One can see just how much she respects you.”
Upon hearing this, Liang Hong’s heart became even more bitter. What was not as idle as Qu san xiaojie? On the inside, he blamed yifu for his fiery personality and improper manner of speech. He also was angry at Qu Qing Ju for not respecting them. But he also knew that the current circumstances were disadvantageous to them. If yifu kept acting like this, when Duan Wang found out, the matter would be even more difficult to diffuse.
The Duke of Chang De snorted icily: “If she respects me, why would she let me wait for so long?”
Just as he’d finished speaking, the half-closed door to the hall was suddenly pushed open. The hall was instantly saturated with light. The Duke of Chang De and Liang Hong turned to look and saw Qu Qing Ju wearing a red floor length dress as she stood expressionless at the doorway. Behind her were more than ten yahuan and taijian. Without even speaking, they made others feel intimidated.
Qu Qing Ju looked indifferently at the Duke of Chang De who sat still on the chair. She held Mu Jin’s hand as she walked into the room. Once she’d sat on the center seat, she then lifted her chin slightly to look at the standing Liang Hong and the still seated Duke of Chang De.
This was the first time that Liang Hong saw the married Qu Qing Ju. Last time, he had heard that she came to yifu’s birthday but he didn’t have the chance to see her. Seeing her today, he finally understood what was called “the world turned upside down.” The woman in front of him wearing the majestic clothes hadn’t changed in appearance but he felt that something was different. He began to feel intimidated now that he was standing in front of her.
Barely suppressing the fear inside, after Qu Qing Ju sat down, Liang Hong came forward to raise his hands in a greeting: “This student Liang Hong greets Duan Wang Fei.”
Qu Qing Ju barely glanced at him. She took a sip of the tea that was on the table, then frowned and criticized: “Today’s tea is too bitter. Change it.”
“Yes,” Mu Jin bowed to take the teacup. She turned to give it to the second-rank yahuan behind her. Very quickly, a yahuan handed a new cup to her. She turned again to place it on the table beside Qu Qing Ju.
Liang Hong obediently bent his body as he stood, too afraid to even move.
“Liang gong zi doesn’t have to be so courteous. Please sit.” Qu Qing Ju raised the teacup once again. She raised her eyelids slightly to look at the Duke of Chang De, “Why have the two of you come today?”
“You are a wang fei now. Don’t you know what has happened to your paternal family?” The Duke of Chang De accused in a heavy voice, “Or is it that you don’t even care about your paternal family at all?”
“Oh?” Qu Qing Ju raised an eyebrow, “Are you talking about how Liang shi took advantage of the status of Chang De Gong Fu to let the Liang Family abuse the people of Lan Cheng county, or that you took a new wife before your first wife’s bones had even cooled, or how exactly did ben wang fei’s mother die?”
She spoke slowly, her tone was very calm but it made Liang Hong, who had been sitting restlessly, feel a chill on his back. He looked at how Duan Wang Fei’s red-nailed hand slowly caressed the teacup. The strings in his brain were so tight that they almost broke. He was now regretting the fact that he’d accompanied yifu to Duan Wang Fu.
“Is this the attitude that you, as a daughter, should have towards your father?” The Duke of Chang De was a bit shaken, but seeing that even the daughter who had once been so submissive to him dare talk like that to him, the anger inside erupted. He stood and pointed at Qu Qing Ju, cursing, “If I knew that this would happen, in the beginning, I would have choked you to death and not let you live to anger me today.”
Upon hearing this, Qu Qing Ju gave a sweet smile to the Duke of Chang De. Then she threw the teacup in her hand onto the ground. The expensive government-kiln teacup instantly shattered into pieces, the crisp sounds frightening the Duke of Chang De, who shrank back in response.
She spread out her hand and looked at her nails which had been dyed red. She looked at the Duke of Chang De from the corner of her eye: “Why aren’t you cursing? Weren’t you so happy cursing right now?”
The Duke of Chang De unconsciously took a step back. He opened his mouth but found his throat had turned wooden and couldn’t say a word.
“I’m the kind of person that has a bad habit. That is, I hold grudges,” Qu Qing Ju lowered her hand and smoothed her dress. From Mu Jin’s hand, she took another teacup. She smiled cheerfully as she spoke, “Liang gong zi, in all those years that you’ve lived at Chang De Gong Fu, come say how the fu has treated me?”
Liang Hong’s face was full of sweat but he couldn’t say a word. He might be a member of the Liang Family but he also knew that yimu had not treated Duan Wang Fei well before her marriage. Now that Duan Wang Fei was asking him, he couldn’t say well, but couldn’t say not well, and could only remain silent.
“Take a look, even the people of the Liang Family can’t say a word. It can be seen just how well Chang De Gong Fu treated me,” Qu Qing Ju sneered, “Coming here today, were you hoping that I could persuade wang ye to help Chang De Gong Fu?”
She saw the Duke of Chang De nod his head and the smile on her face became even more visible, “But why?”
The Duke of Chang De’s tone warmed greatly. He carefully looked at the broken teacup on the ground, “I know that the fu had been lacking in some aspects with the way they treated you, but no matter what, it’s your paternal home. If a scandal came out of your paternal home, you would be dishonored as well. Would Duan Wang still regard you well?”
If He Heng treated her like He Yuan treated Qin Bai Lu, then this matter would have really impacted her. But right now in Jing, who didn’t know that Duan Wang Fei wasn’t close to Chang De Gong Fu? Who didn’t know that Duan Wang and Duan Wang Fei were deeply in love? Thinking about it, Qu Qing Ju suddenly wondered what He Heng was after, since he treated her so well.
The Tian Family? But the Tian Family were only ever loyal to the Emperor, that was the mantra passed down from their ancestors. Would they even support He Heng just because she married him?
He Heng wouldn’t neglect her because of the Tian Family. When he had just married the original, he kept her in good food and comfort but wasn’t even close to her. The original’s personality had been weak. Other than what Tian Luo shi had taught her in the rare occasions they had met, there were no other elders to teach her the dark secrets of the houyuan or how to treat marital relations. That’s why after her marriage, the shiqie were able to sneak in and cause her to lose her life.
The tragedy that was the life of the original had all come from the Duke of Chang De. It was amazing that he was still shameless enough to come here to yell and holler. The fact that this kind of man could live until now, it was really by the virtues of his ancestors.
The Duke of Chang De saw Qu Qing Ju’s head had lowered in thought and assumed that what he said had moved her. He continued: “Don’t believe what the Tian Family said. You have to know that we are of one family. Can you believe what outsiders say?”
Qu Qing Ju, who was so disgusted by his words that broke her train of thought, sarcastically responded: “Even outsiders were willing to add so much to my dowry when I married, but why was it that this family of mine wasn’t willing?”
“It’s all shameless and dishonorable!”
Qu Qing Ju heard the words and suddenly lifted her head to look. She saw He Heng with a dark face come striding in from outside.
This time, the Duke of Chang De didn’t dare remain seated. He and Liang Hong obediently performed a greeting and stood in the center of the hall, but they didn’t dare to look at He Heng’s angry visage.
When He Heng heard the Duke of Chang De say that he would not regard Qu Qing Ju the same because of Chang De Gong Fu’s scandals, the fire in his heart couldn’t be suppressed any longer. He looked at the broken teacup on the floor and walked to sit next to Qu Qing Ju. He patted her head as he said, “Anger harms the body, there’s me for all matters.” He glanced at the Duke of Chang De, furrowing his brows as he asked, “Duke Qu, you weren’t satisfied with making your wife die from anger, so you came here today to ben wang’s place to show-off your might! Who gave you the guts?!”
“Wang ye, please understand that this lower official only said it out of anger,” the Duke of Chang De wasn’t sure if Duan Wang had heard what he had said before. He raised his hands and cautiously responded, “The matter of my wife, it is purely Tian Jin Ke slandering this lower official. Wang ye cannot trust that person.”
“Ha,” He Heng raised an eyebrow as he looked at the Duke of Chang De, “That there’s a person who is as shameless as the duke in this world. It has really broadened ben wang’s knowledge.”
“Wang ye……” The Duke of Chang De didn’t think that Duan Wang would speak so mercilessly and couldn’t help but look at Qu Qing Ju.
“Someone come and see off the guests!” He Heng smiled icily and snorted with disdain: “Don’t dirty ben wang’s place.”
Qu Qing Ju looked at He Heng’s state and couldn’t help but burst into laughter.
Some rough-labor taijian “saw off” the Duke of Chang De and Liang Hong. Xiao Gan Zi stood at the gate and from high up, looked down at the two people at the bottom of the stairs. He slowly drawled to the people beside him: “In the future, clean your eyes when you receive a card. Don’t accept just anyone. Otherwise, some will think that they are worth something and yell and shriek at wang ye and wang fei. If one didn’t know better, they’d think that he was the wang ye.”
He clapped his hand, and in front of the two, he closed the gate to the wang fu.
Liang Hong looked at the tightly shut gate of the wang fu. He suddenly realized that from beginning to end, Duan Wang Fei hadn’t called yifu father once. He looked at the man whose face was full of discontent and anger, and cold sweat formed on his palms.
If yimu had treated Duan Wang Fei better in the beginning, maybe it wouldn’t be like this.
This time, if biao mei couldn’t persuade His Highness Rui Wang, he was afraid the Liang Family would be finished.