GNU sponsored chapters (1/5) by Lala at ko-fi. Thank you for your support!
This is the first part of today’s sponsored chapter.
That evening, Old Master Cheng distributed the family’s properties. That night, he has gone.
After the servant came out to report the Old Master’s death, cries broke out in the courtyard. Whether it was the madams or the young misses, they all bowed their heads and wept. Old Madam Cheng’s body shook heavily, and she almost fell backward. The womenfolks were stunned and hurriedly shouted: “Old Madam!”
Old Madam Cheng’s servant girl immediately supported their mistress. Cheng Yujin walked over and held the old Madam’s arm: “Grandmother, are you alright?”
Old Madam Cheng calmed herself down and started to walk inside with the support of her cane: “We have been husband and wife for more than half of our life. Now he has gone. I should send him off for the last time.”
Cheng Yujin helped the Old Madam inside. The inner room already full of people kneeling. When the Old Madam entered, they immediately opened the way: “Old Madam.”
Cheng Yuanxian and Cheng Yuanhan also got up: “Mother.”
Old Madam Cheng went straight inside, and the people who surrounded the bed stood up and gave her way. The Old Madam sat on the edge of the bed. After quietly seeing the Old Master’s body, she closed her eyes and let out a long sigh.
“When you were alive, you didn’t want to look at me. But I never expect that even when you die, I didn’t see your last side.”
The Old Madam looked up and saw Cheng Yuanjing nearby. The young man was calm and cold, standing tall like a bamboo.
Just by standing quietly, people could see how different he was from others. Truly a bright jade, elegant and profound. When the Old Master was at his last breath, he could see this son, so he must close his eyes in peace.
At this time, both inside and outside the courtyard was full of people. Qingfu Junzhu, Ruan-shi, and other family members were standing at the door connected to the outer hall, holding their handkerchief and waiting for the Old Madam in silence. Old Madam Cheng quickly recovered. She was about to get up, and Cheng Yujin immediately stepped forward to support the Old Madam.
Old Madam Cheng said: “Eldest girl, second girl, Enci, Enbai, Enbao, come and kowtow to your grandfather.”
Old Master Cheng has passed away. This was the last time the grandchildren would be able to kowtow to their grandfather. Cheng Yujin held her skirt and knelt down, silently giving a full set of kowtow.
After kowtowing, Cheng Yujin hurried back to her courtyard to change clothes. When she went out, she wore a plain garment. But now that the Old Master has passed away, she had to change into a mourning dress.
There were many rituals in the funeral, and it wasn’t a happy event, so the whole Yichun Marquis manor was in chaos. Both servants and family members were very busy. However, the tasks weren’t arranged properly, so everything looked messy.
When Cheng Yujin arrived, the courtyard at the back of the mourning hall was empty, and not even a single servant could be seen. When Cheng Yujin walked along the outside corridor, she passed through the wing room and heard a faint voice from inside.
“…Before, Madam Huo said that she wants the wedding to be held as soon as possible. Now we have to observe the mourning for father-in-law, what should Mo’er do?”
“Observing mourning for an elder is a matter of course. If Huo family cannot even tolerate this simple thing, then it’s better if this whole marriage never happens!”
The woman’s voice became louder: “Second Master, please calm down. If you shouted like that, others might come! Of course I know we are in mourning, and I’m also very sad that father has gone. I wish I could share my lifespan with father, so he didn’t have to pass away so early. Mo ‘er’s feeling is also the same. You watched her grow up. You should know what kind of child is she.”
Cheng Yujin’s steps paused. She immediately recognized this voice as Ruan-shi’s. Then, the man just now must be Cheng Yuanhan.
Inside the room, Ruan-shi continued to speak: “It’s just that the situation isn’t good. Marquis Jingyong is twenty-one. Most men at his age have long hugging their sons. But because of the problem with the marquis title, his marriage has been prolonged. Afterward, he went to the battlefield, and the matter was once again delayed for several years. Originally, we and Huo family has agreed to hold the wedding ceremony in six months, but now we suddenly have to observe the mourning. Why cannot the Old Master wait for another year? Mo’er already has to face a difficult mother-in-law, and now there is this problem. What if she uses this reason to give Marquis Huo concubines?”
Listening to his wife’s complaints, Cheng Yuanhan was very puzzled: “How can Huo family dare to? Taking concubines before the main wife entered the gate, won’t they afraid of ruining their reputation?”
“Why don’t they dare!” Ruan-shi’s voice became anxious: “People from reputable families don’t accept concubines before taking wife, first is to honor the wife, and second is to prevent the concubines from giving birth to the eldest son. All are to instill the difference between di and shu. But Marquis Jingyong is no longer young. After all, children are important. If the wife still cannot enter the house, even if Marquis Jingyong accepts concubines to give birth to children, others won’t criticize. Maybe they will even praise the marquis for respecting his wife and letting her observe her grandfather’s mourning in peace.”
Cheng Yuanhan fell silent. Ruan-shi pushed further and said: “One full year. If they don’t use child avoidance medicine, it’s impossible to guarantee that no shu children will be born during this period. If daughters, it still okay. But what if a son born? What should Mo’er do?”
Cheng Yuanhan could no longer rebut. Ruan-shi lowered her voice, and said something. Their conversation gradually became too small. Cheng Yujin had heard enough. She quietly took two steps back, then started to walk again, this time deliberately making her footsteps louder. The couple in the wing thought someone was coming and immediately stopped talking.
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