Chapter 114 Reveal
Ye Zhen’s hope of returning to the palace was completely shattered, so she changed her "kind and weak" persona and became stronger. She knew that if she couldn’t get a footing in the Zhao family, there would be no place for her anymore. The Ye family was dead, and only she and Ye Fan were left. Originally, it would have been a great help if she could won over the other person, but she did not expect that Zhao Luli had expelled her and Mingfang for blabbing their mouth and ruined Guan Suyi’s reputation, and both of them had already been sent to Cangzhou.
Ye Zhen thought left and right, in the end had to give up. While Guan Suyi and Zhao Luli were not at home, she gave the old madam some medicine, made her sick in bed and unable to manage the house, and while she suppressed her daughter and took advantage of her son, she quickly took control of the Zhao mansion from top to bottom, rehired her dowry servant.
She took back Mr. Lu who were dismissed by Guan Suyi, publicized the fact that her stepson was sent to a dilapidated village school, and then signaled the few dowry servants who had been driven away to lurking outside the door, waited for Guan Suyi to return home today, pounced on her, stopped her from making noise, and publicized the fact that she occupied the dowry of the first wife. With the two-pronged approach, Guan Suyi would definitely be beaten, and it would be much easier to negotiate with her about being equal wife again. In the future, if she was given sterilization medicine or something, this Zhao Mansion would still be her territory after all. She had a son and a daughter, so what if she didn’t have her husband’s favor?
But her idea was just an idea after all, and it was doomed to fail. Several dowry servants waited for a whole day without seeing Guan Suyi, but they were caught by Zhao Chunxi who was strolling, and they were immediately pulled into the house for interrogation, which what happened at this moment. Zhao Chunxi was trembling with anger, and felt even more ashamed after looking at her stepmother.
However, all explanations were blocked by this sentence from the gatekeeper. Reconciliation, in the end it came to this step.
Baifu walked in with Old Master Guan and the others, holding a scroll of imperial decree and several documents in his hand. It was rather a long night, he carefully obeyed His Majesty’s order and went to the government office to change the household registration first, now Madam Guan had become Miss Guan again. He came to the Zhao family this time only to inform Zhao Luli, and brought back Miss Guan’s dowry in passing.
Because reconciliation was not a good thing, the Guan family did not want to make a big fuss, so they came quietly and waited outside. Master Lu, who planned to have a good argument with Madam Guan, was very frightened and hurriedly covered his face and ran away.
"Madam, you are so cruel!" Zhao Luli took the letter and said in a trembling voice, "Even if you want to reconcile, you should tell me in advance."
"I thought you should have guessed it long ago." Guan Suyi reached out to Ye Zhen, "I’m leaving, it’s not too much letting me hug little Huai’en, right?"
"Of course." Ye Zhen handed the child over to her, but she didn’t expect that he would burst into tears when he was just hugged into her arms, no matter how she rocked and tempted, the cry wouldn’t stop, it was as if he had run into a ghost.
Seeing the child’s red nose, Guan Suyi couldn’t bear it, so she had to retreat reluctantly and said sarcastically, "It’s really hard on you, even racking the brain to win over a child and make him get used to the smell of your body. Alas, Huai’en is the di son of second house, you will not dare to treat him harshly. Then I can leave with ease."
When the child reached Ye Zhen’s arms, sure enough, after a few sniffs he stopped crying and slowly fell asleep. In just three months, the Zhao family had changed beyond recognition, the people had changed, and their hearts had also changed. Guan Suyi could let go of Zhao Huai’en, but not Mu Mu. Zhao Huai’en was useful to Ye Zhen, but Mu Mu was useless to her, she was afraid that he would be abandoned in a corner unattended like before. She could not want anything today, but she could not do without Mu Mu.
Just thinking of this, she saw Mu Mu running in from the door with his short legs, bypassing Ye Zhen, who looked ugly, and threw himself into the arms of his adoptive mother. The little face was buried in the hem of her skirt, rubbing left and right, then said with milky voice, "Mom, everyone said you want to leave, take me with you, okay? I only want mom and second aunt, not Madam Ye."
"Alright, mom is here to pick you up today!" Guan Suyi picked up Mu Mu and pressed him tightly in her arms. Mu Mu was also a child she saved with her own hands, a responsibility she could not shirk and could not bear to shirk.
"Zhao Luli, let’s talk! Mother, you go and help me pack my things, sort out my dowry, and stop by to see the old madam. I just heard from the housekeeper that she is ill. If the situation is serious, you can use my post to invite an imperial physician, don’t delay. Grandfather, father, wait for me here, I’ll be right back."
She handed Mu Mu to Jinzi and Minglan, and left to have a private conversation with Zhao Luli in the study.
"If you want Mu Mu, you can, but only if you stay. Reconciliation still can remarry, only need to hold one more ceremony." Zhao Luli had completely calmed down and showed a hint of determination.
Guan Suyi knew that he had grasped her weakness and would not let go easily at this time. However, when she learned about the painting that were given by the Empress Dowager, she seemed to have realized one thing – no matter how strong a person is, they will still have the most vulnerable heartstrings, just pinch it and exert force on it, then people can easily control them, easily intimidate them, or even destroy them.
"Zhao Luli, who is Mu Mu to you? Do you still care about his life and death?" She slowly pinched this heartstrings.
"Mu Mu is the son of my comrade, and also my adopted son. I regard him as my own, and of course I care about his life and death."
"Since you care about his life and death, you should hand him over to me, and don’t add another sin to yourself."
"Did I leave him alone without caring for his life and death? Suyi, what do you think of the Zhao family? Dragon pool and tiger’s den?" Zhao Luli refused to give in an inch.
"You said that you care about Mu Mu, but did you ever take care of him? Did you ever discipline him? Have you ever put him in the household registration? All you did was throw him in the house and give him a bite to eat. What qualifications do you have to compete with me for the right to raise him? The Zhao family may have been calm in the past, but Ye Zhen has return. For Mu Mu, it was the Dragon Pool and Tiger’s Den. Do you know what Ye Zhen did? She instructed Zhao Wangshu to go spying on the imperial place of worship, he was caught by the imperial guards and almost killed on the spot! In any case she is also from a big family, so she should know that is a crime to spy on the emperor’s trail. If she wants to see her twin sister, she can find you, she can find me, she can even bribe a few eunuchs or palace maids, why did she order Zhao Wangshu to go? She doesn’t even care about her own son, how can I expect her to take good care of Mu Mu?"
Seeing Zhao Luli’s shocked expression, she continued, "Only Zhao Wangshu is not stupid enough, he knew how to give my name, so he can save his life. He cried and begged me to let Ye Zhen see Ye Cainu, so I had to help him arrange it. Guess what, after the two met, she actually went crazy, saying that she was Ye Cainu, she should be a noble person in the palace, and then she ran crazily to the Main Hall to see the emperor. If it were not for Zhao Wangshu throwing her down and dragging her back, a crime of ‘offending the Saint’s face, with bad intentions‘ could make everyone in the Zhao family be buried together. How can I hand over Mu Mu to a lunatic? Mu Mu has never been registered in the Zhao family’s household register. I take him away today, whatever you say I’m not afraid of breaking the sky, at most we will go face to face in the court!"
After speaking, she flung her sleeves and left, hurriedly went outside, and whispered, "Jinzi, quickly send Mu Mu back to the Emperor Teacher mansion, I will come back after sorting out the dowry." At this moment, Zhao Luli had lost his soul, afraid it would take half a day to recover.
He thought that Ye Zhen was powerlessly forced to enter the palace, and thought that she would definitely care about the Zhao family and the children, but through what was said just now, it’s impossible for him not able to guess the truth. Ye Zhen definitely didn’t leave the palace voluntarily, in order to go back, she couldn’t care less about Zhao Wangshu’s life and death, then she wouldn’t care about the Zhao family. After seeing another Ye Zhen, she suddenly went crazy, crying and calling for the emperor, what this meant was self-evident.
How many of those so-called sacrifices and giving up were true, how many were false, or all of them were false, the answer had vaguely emerged in Zhao Luli’s mind. He was desperate because of this, and then he was immersed in the emotion of losing his love until he couldn’t extricate himself; he wasted years in remembrance of the past, and finally lost his present and future.
The facts only revealed the tip of the iceberg, but it was enough to destroy his beliefs. If he could regain his senses immediately, he would not be the overly susceptible to overthink Zhao Luli. Those few words were enough to trouble him all day and night, when would he go if he didn’t leave now?
Guan Suyi went to see the old madam, invited an imperial physician for her, and returned the key of the warehouse and the matching card to Ye Zhen, who had been waiting for a long time, and said slowly, "You can’t check the warehouse without the key. Judge other by one own’s measure, you must think that I have taken away the silver from your account and coveted your dowry, right? Zhao Chunxi and the old madam have the dowry list, you should also keep a copy yourself, feel free to open the warehouse to count it, if there is even one piece missing, you don’t need to come to Guan’s house to ask for me, you can directly report it to the government. However, if you slander, I will send you to prison."
She looked at Zhao Wangshu with a magnanimous smile, "I’ve always known that you are gullible and easy to be used by others. In the future, you will open your eyes to see who is good and who is bad, and time will prove everything. I just hope that you don’t have to pay a painful price by then." At the end, she patted Zhao Chunxi on her shoulder and sighed, "Look after your brother, let’s say goodbye and cherish each other."
The dowry has been taken care of, and the group of people left the Zhao Mansion in a mighty way. Originally, only Zhao Chunxi was sending them off, but the old madam woke up from her coma and used a cane to chase out the door, with tears running down while bawling without end, shouting "Daughter-in-law, come back", making people’s heart felt sore.
Guan Suyi wiped the corners of her eyes, looked back to take a glace, and then boarded the carriage and galloped away.
Passers-by had already guessed that Madam Guan would reconcile, and after watching for a while, they slowly dispersed. But a girl wearing a veil hat stood in front of the Zhao Mansion and did not move for a long time. Her maid reminded in a low voice, "Miss, it’s getting late, it’s time to go home. Isn’t it just reconciliation? Madam Guan has a prominent family background, but Mr. Zhao is only a commoner, the two should have reconciled long ago. Speaking of which, Madam Guan is really an amazing talent. The last time she took the child by cutting open the stomach, I thought she would be drowned by everyone’s spits. But unexpectedly she would turn it over with just one sacrifice eulogy. Now her fame is so high, even almost reaching her father’s fame. After reconcile this time, perhaps she will able to get a good match and marry into a powerful family."
The voice of the girl wearing the veil hat was mellow and clear, but it contained a lot of disdain, "Amazing talent? Do you really think she turned it over by talent? It’s just a stroke of luck, just a coincidence. How can such a shocking act be wiped out overnight, leaving only praise? If there was no force from the palace behind this, Guan Suyi would lose a layer of skin at the very least. In the blink of an eye, her article spread all over Yanjing, and everywhere there were Confucian students reciting the article, and some women followed behind while weeping, setting off the atmosphere to the extreme. Most people are ignorant and easily deceived. The scholars all said yes, and they naturally said yes, where would they have their own ideas, so they even laid a good reputation for Guan Suyi. How many scholars do you think there are in Yanjing City? Who has the capability to make them willing to run a campaign for a woman?"
"Miss, are you saying that Madam Guan’s reputation was built with the help of the emperor? What kind of virtue is that?"
"That’s why I said that she is lucky. The act of cutting open the stomach to take the child was like the late Empress Dowager, thus helping the emperor to justify her name. To build momentum for her is to build momentum for the late Empress Dowager, the emperor only doing it in passing. Although the article is good, but it praised too much, it’s really stealing a name by deceiving the world." The girl shook her head and sighed, her tone contemptuous.
"Yeah, this servant has read her sacrificial eulogy, it’s not on par with miss’ article." The maid flattered.
The girl smiled and turned to leave, "Not on par? You this girl doesn’t seems like flattering. She is as talented as me, exactly on par. She can do that kind of sacrificial eulogy, and I can do it too. However, if I face the pain of life and death, I would rather never use it for an article."
"Miss is simply benevolent and filial!" The flattering voice of the maid gradually disappeared on the street corner.
As soon as that master and servant left, a group of people arrived at the gate of the mansion. The leader handed a name post, demanding to see eldest master Zhao, and the gatekeeper took it to take a look, on it written the word "Hunnar".