Chapter 68 – Relatives and Friends
Ke Mei Li acted as she did not perceive Zhang Hui Niang’s anger, and she cried even harder. “Dasao*, I’m kneeling for you. I’m begging you and Older Brother, please don’t be angry with me and Da Li.” As she said this, Ke Mei Li knelt in front of the gate to the courtyard and refused to get up no matter how Zhang Hui Niang tried to pull her up. “Dasao, if you don’t forgive me, I won’t get up.”
[*T/N: 大嫂 dasao can mean “older brother’s wife,” “sister-in-law,” or “elder sister” as a respectful appellation for an older married woman]
Lin Da Li also knelt down. More and more villagers came over to watch the show.
Lin Da Zhuang came out and looked at the spectacle right outside of his front door. “All of you come in, ba…”
Ke Mei Li and Lin Da Li knelt down again after entering the house, and Ke Mei Li started to howl again. “Dage, Dasao! Please forgive us. Back then, we were blinded by money…”
“Dage, I know that I am wrong. I know that I was exempted from the family rules and discipline. You guys must be angry in your hearts. Dage, how about you hit me? If beating me will disperse your anger, then beat me fiercely, ba…”
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Lin Da Li took out the wooden stick that he had brought with him. He hit himself hard on the head twice and then handed the wooden stick over to Lin Da Zhuang.
Lin Da Zhuang sighed as he watched the blood dripping from his brother’s forehead. “Why are you doing this…?”
Off to one side, Ke Mei Li also cried, “Our family’s Chun Er is having a hard time. Although things look glamorous on the outside, she is still a chongxi* bride. Her days are… And our family doesn’t have much money, and Chun Er doesn’t have any maternal brothers to rely on…”
[*T/N: chongxi bride – a bride taken into the family in hopes of bringing in good luck, because a wedding is considered an auspicious event. In this case, the Wang family had Chun Er marry into the family in hopes of curing their son who was sick in bed.]
“Dage, lately I have been thinking a lot about the bitter days we used to have. At that time, our parents passed away, and I was still young. It was dage who raised me, ah… For my sake, dage has suffered a lot. I was really seduced by the devil, I really shouldn’t have…” Lin Da Li cried as he spoke.
Lin Da Zhuang listened to his younger brother’s, Lin Da Li’s, words and he could not help feeling somewhat emotional as he reminisced about the past.
“Dage, in the end we are brothers born from the same parents. Even if our parents are buried underground, they certainly wouldn’t want to see us brothers at odds with each other, ah…” Lin Da Li saw Lin Da Zhuang softening somewhat and knelt down again. “Dage, for the sake of our parents, forgive me this one time, ba.”
Lin Da Zhuang didn’t know what to do. He glanced at Zhang Hui Niang and saw that she was maintaining her silence. He sighed, “The two of you, get up first.”
Zhang Hui Niang knew in her heart that even though Lin Da Zhuang said that he would cut off relations with Lin Da Li, he still cared about familial affection, and he still cared for the younger brother that he had raised.
“Get up quickly, Dage has forgiven us…” In response to Lin Da Zhuang’s words, Ke Mei Li immediately put away her crying face and showed a smiling expression. “Dage, Dasao, about the matter before, we were really wrong. Fortunately, your family’s Jia Bao, ah, has a good home in the palace. In the future when you have glory, splendor, wealth, and rank, you must not forget about us, ah…”
Lin Da Li saw Zhang Hui Niang’s expression darken again and quickly nudged Ke Mei Li, “This woman… what are you talking about!”
Lin Da Li winked at Ke Mei Li, “Haha, Dage, Dasao, don’t mind, ah! Your sister-in-law is this type of virtuous person.”
Ke Mei Li also knew how to read the atmosphere, and immediately changed the subject. “Where’s Jia Wen? Why don’t we see…?”
“Jia Wen is studying in his room…” Lin Da Zhuang replied.
“He’s studying, ah… then it’s better not to disturb him. Jia Wen is really hardworking. Our Chun Er’s husband is also someone who likes literature. In the future they can meet and discuss essays or something, haha…” Ke Mei Li said while chuckling.
“Then what about the little grandson? Can we see him? This is the first child of our family’s youngest generation…” Lin Da Li said.
“That’s right, that’s right! Dasao, take a look. I specially went to the county’s best silverware store for this. It’s solid gold.” Ke Mei Li smiled and handed Zhang Hui Niang the longevity lock that she had brought with her.
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One does not hit a smiling person in the face. Zhang Hui Niang could only accept it. She had Xiu Er go and ask Wu-shi to carry the baby out. Originally, she was afraid of disturbing the child, so she had Wu-shi and the others stay in the room without coming out.
In a short while, Wu-shi came out carrying her baby. He was bundled in red and looked like a candlestick. Ke Mei Li started praising as soon as Bo Ge Er showed up.
“What a handsome child, ah… Dasao, you guys raised him really well, ah. Look at how robust and sturdy this child is, ah…”
Bo Ge Ee gurgled happily as if he could tell that someone was praising him.
“Dage, Dasao, ah, your family is different from before, why don’t you buy a few servants to serve you? Then you can save on some labor and live comfortably, ah… Our family has two maids that serve us pretty well. How about I send them over tomorrow…”
“No need, no need, there isn’t much to do in the house. We don’t need any servants.” Zhang Hui Niang did not feel that their family was any different from before.
In the evening, Lin Da Zhuang and them finally saw off Lin Da Li and Ke Mei Li who had been kissing up to them all day.
[T/N: Ugh, I’m hoping that Xuan Yuan Han Cheng will do something about Lin Da Li’s family in the future, so that they don’t keep leeching off of Jia Bao’s family. Or maybe Lin Da Li’s family will actually turn over a new leaf, but my hopes are not high on that front. >_<]