Edited by Tnyhy
Chapter 97: Evil Sao Arrived Again (Part 1)
In this wintery new year of Ming Qi’s sixty ninth year, there was an entire night of snow. The timely snow indicated a year with bumper harvest ahead, making the ordinary folks to be filled with joy as they prayed for the harvest of the coming year.
However to the General’s residence in the Ding capital, this must be a special year.
The Second household of the Shen family had lost a Di daughter, and their family matriarch also went crazy. Moreover the most powerful Eldest household seemed to be in discord with the other two households and was not as close as in the past, and there were even signs of obvious estrangements.
The Huang family that was previously engaged to Shen Qing became total enemies with the Shen family because of Shen Qing’s matter, but since Shen Xin and couple were not in the Ding capital all year, they were not furious with them. As for the Wei family who was engaged to Shen Miao, because Luo Xue Yan personally stepped in, they also verified that it was all a misunderstanding. The Wei family was considered honest and did not make things difficult for her, add that Shen Xin promised to help Wei Daren more in the future during court, the Wei family was naturally happy to sell this favour.
With regards to Shen Miao, this new year was considered quite good. No Fu Xiu Yi, no Prince Yu and even no Ren Wan Yun and Shen Qing. Some things were after all changing a step at a time.
However even though she was happy, there was someone who was not happy.
In Rong Jing Tang, Old Shen Furen sat on her seat as Shen Yuan Bo crawled around her but she was somewhat impatient. There was also a resentment look in her shrivelled face.
“The Eldest family now do not attach importance to me, and did not even give more money to the public fund this year. The few chests of valuables that the Palace bestowed were all locked up in their own courtyard! What are they thinking about? Do they even put any importance to me!”
Whenever Old Shen Furen mentions about the matter she would get angry. Previously Shen Xin would put all the things that were bestowed from the Palace to the public fund every year, because both husband and wife were often not in the Ding capital, other than leaving some little playthings for Shen Miao, most of the things were useless to them. Old Shen Furen had benefited from this numerous times but now that there were unforeseen changes between Shen Xin and the rest of the Shen family, Shen Xin did not even send over any money and on Old Shen Furen’s eyes, this was simply outrageous.
“Old Furen must not be angry. Perhaps after these few days, Eldest Master’s anger will dissipate and will sent the stuff over.” The Zhang Mama beside comforted, “It is assumed that it was because of the matter of Fifth Young Lady’s treatment, that made Eldest Master discontented and unwilling to send the things over.”
“What Fifth Girl’s treatment?” Old Shen Furen fumed, “For these years, I have provided for her food and drinks and raised her up, and the Eldest family is still not satisfied? I see that he does not want to recognise me as a mother! A white eyed wolf (aka ingrate)! And that Luo Xue Yan, now even that Fifth Girl is so deadly smart, who knows if there was someone behind teaching!”
When Zhang Mama saw that Old Shen Furen was that angry, she stayed silent for a while before she spoke, “Now that Fifth Young Lady had grown up, her mind also became serious. But Fifth Young Lady was brought up by Old Furen, and previously Fifth Young Lady would obey Old Furen’s words, so it is seen that she respects Old Furen in her heart. It would be good if Old Furen call Fifth Young Lady over someday and coax her, since she is a little young lady, it would definitely be easy to coax. Fifth Young Lady is most cherished by Eldest Master and Eldest Furen so if one can control Fifth Young Lady, does not it mean that one can control Eldest Master’s family?”
This Zhang Mama was also one who was very scheming. In fact, Old Shen Furen was at the end a woman amidst winds and dust (meaning a woman in the prostitutes’ quarter), and her means and tactics were shameful thus when talking about being the family matriarch, it was more like she did not have the resources even though she wanted to do it. For so many years if it was not for Zhang Mama giving guidance, one did not know how much jokes would have been made.
Old Shen Furen sneered, “I still have to coax her? Seeing that girl reminds me of that slut who still possessed Master’s heart even after being dead for so many years. Everything was biased towards their First household, and now you still want me to please her? I feel disgusted looking at her!”
Zhang Mama was somewhat helpless and wanted to persuade more but heard the maid at the door said, “Second Young Master, you are here.”
Shen Yuan strode in.
“Yuan-er.” Seeing Shen Yuan coming in, Old Shen Furen’s attitude warmed up quite a lot. When Shen Yuan Bo who was on the couch saw him, he also looked at his own Second Older Brother with a joyous smile.
Shen Yuan did not reach his hands out to carry Shen Yuan Bo and only smiled, “Came over to take a look at Grandmother.”
“What is there to look at.” Old Shen Furen rebuked but she had a happy expression. Among these grandchildren, her favourite was Shen Yuan. Shen Yuan’s studies were outstanding since a young age and also entered an official career, making everyone to praise him and also growing her reputation. Naturally he was valued the most by Old Shen Furen.
“Was lucky to get a bottle of jade snow cream and specially brought it over to Grandmother. Grandmother must not belittle this grandchild’s good intentions.”
Shen Yuan smiled as he handed the bottle in his hands over to Old Shen Furen.
Old Shen Furen was somewhat surprised, following which she feign anger, “How old I am already to be using this. Are you deliberately angering me?” Even so, there was a look of unable to part on her face.
Old Shen Furen background after all originated from a songstress, and thus powder and rouge were used non stop even if one was old. Shen Yuan knew how to adapt to other’s taste and was immediately able to sweep her hazy mood away.
“Grandmother is young so this kind of good stuff should be use on Grandmother.” Shen Yuan flattered without any change of expression. Afterwards the grandparent and grandchild said other things. Shen Yuan was shrewd and Old Shen Furen originally liked him, in addition he purposely chose topics that would make Old Shen Furen happy, thus Rong Jing Tang’s atmosphere was incomparably harmonious that even Shen Yuan Bo who was on the couch was treated indifferently.
After talking for a while, Shen Yuan suddenly seemed to have remembered something and said without intention, “Speaking of which, Grandmother it seems that after a few days Biao Younger Sister and Biao Younger Brother will be coming over.”
Old Shen Furen was startled before speaking with a cold voice, “What Biao Younger Sister? What Biao Younger Brother? They will only stay for a few days before leaving.” Before Old Shen Furen was a songstress, she also had a family. Perhaps it was the family that sold her to the brothel house, and that Old Shen Furen’s ancestral home was in SuZhou. After Old Shen Furen was brought over by General Shen to be his Furen, naturally she severed all ties with that family. It was just that this year do not know how but that family heard news about Shen Old Furen, and let their pair of grandchildren to come over to the Ding capital saying it was to take a look at Shen Old Furen, but everyone was clear that this was to seek gratuitous help.”
With Old Shen Furen kind of person who acts with mercenary considerations and after so many years of not seeing, naturally one would not have any feelings for that family. Thus when Shen Yuan mentioned the matter, naturally she was not willing to talk more about it.
Shen Yuan said, “I have never seen this pair of Biao siblings and thinking of this, their age would be similar to Fifth Younger Sister’s.” He sighed, “Speaking of which, Eldest Older Brother’s return to the Ding capital this trip, I heard that Eldest Bo and Eldest BoMu are selecting Young Ladies that caught his fancy. Most likely they are worrying about big matters for him.”
“Shen Qiu is selecting a wife?” Old Shen Furen suddenly sat straight up, “I did not know of this matter. Yuan-er, do you know which family’s young lady did they pick?”
“That, one do not know.” Shen Yuan thought a little, “But with Eldest Bo’s and Eldest BoMu’s family status, naturally they would select young ladies with families that have larger power in court, then it would be adding flowers on brocade. With Eldest Brother’s current prospects, one believe that with Eldest Sao’s residence support, he would only be like a powerful tiger and go up to the next level.”
The more Shen Yuan said as such, the uglier Old Shen Furen’s face became. After a long period of time she then said sourly, “One have to see if the other Young Lady take a fancy of him!”
Shen Yuan only put on an unknowing look and said with no intentions, “But the most important thing is that it is to Eldest Brother liking. If Eldest Brother fancy, then the Eldest household would not matter. If one were to say, it might be our little Biao Young Sister who Eldest Brother fancy and at that time it would be cementing the ties by marriage.”
“What kind of nonsense are you speaking about?” Old Shen Furen frowned and subconsciously refuted Shen Yuan’s words, “What kind of identity does she have. How would that Eldest one’s family be interested?”
“I only casually speak about it, Grandmother need not be concern about it.” Shen Yuan smiled and changed the topic. After a few more words he then took his leave but when he was leaving he quietly gave a look at Zhang Mama.
After Shen Yuan left, Old Shen Furen kept thinking about what Shen Yuan said before. On one hand, she knew that Shen Yuan’s words were outrageous as even if Shen Xin and wife were open-minded, they would not be able to fancy that family’s low born identity. Moreover Shen Qiu was not one with lust, so this matter was as difficult as to ascend to the Heavens. But on the other hand, Old Shen Furen’s heart was moved by Shen Yuan’s words. If Shen Qiu found a noble family’s young lady, his influence would increase by another level. Old Shen Furen could not stand seeing Shen Qiu doing well, so how could she just watch as his wings grew plump. If he were to marry her family’s grandniece, not only it would not be better for him, it will also pull the Shen family’s Eldest household down and would be Shen Qiu’s hindquarter. This is then good.
As Zhang Mama pounded on Old Shen Furen’s shoulder, she softly said, “Old Furen, actually this old servant also felt that there are some truth to Second Young Master’s words.” After pausing she then said, “Think about it, if Eldest Young Master married Biao Young Lady, old ties will be cemented by marriage. Biao Young Lady is on Old Shen Furen’s side so things would be easier to do.” She whispered, “If the marriage is successfully done, in the future matters of money would be easy. Is not Biao Young Lady’s money your money?”
When these words were spoken, Old Shen Furen’s eyes brightened. Correct. If Shen Qiu married the grandniece from home, naturally the grandniece would be her people. Controlling Shen Qiu means controlling the Eldest household.
Zhang Mama continued, “If would be even better if Biao Young Master and Fifth Young Lady get also together. In the future all the wealth of the Eldest household would belong to Old Furen.”
Old Shen Furen’s heart moved as Zhang Mama’s every words nipped into her, and made her so happy that her heart was like flowers in full bloom. Thinking of being able to wrest the wealth from the Eldest household and also secretly create chaos within the Eldest Household, made Old Shen Furen very happy. But after a moment she started to get worried, “Speaking about it is easy, but that grandniece and grandnephew of mine are all from small families. It is not like the Eldest household had never seen the outside world, how would they look up on them?”
“My Old Furen,” Zhang Mama laughed, “You had forgotten the past tactics. How complicated can the matters be between man and woman. One only need to slightly use one brain and nothing is impossible.”
Her words had hooked Old Shen Furen to be lost in wild and fanciful thoughts. In a moment later, Old Shen Furen also smiled, most likely she wanted to smile charmingly but because one was old, it looked weird. That old state of spring made her look especially ugly as she said, “That said, when a man enjoys and female loves, it is just those little matters.” Finishing she gave a look to Zhang Mama and when both of them saw the deeper meaning behind each other eyes, Old Shen Furen said, “Someone come and bring the box in my room. One had not yet seen my grandniece and grandnephew and one should give them a present for the first meeting.”
Outside the room, Shen Yuan looked at the low laughter from Rong Jing Tang, and a trace of a cold smile appeared in his eyes as he slowly walked out of the courtyard.