When Miss Jun woke up, Old Lady Fang was already eating breakfast several courtyards away.
As she was eating, the sounds of hurried footsteps came from beyond the door, followed by servant girls greeting Lady Fang.
Old Lady Fang took a spoon from a servant girl and swallowed what was on it.
"This tofu was made pretty well," she said.
The servant girl waiting on her smiled and scooped another piece of tofu from the plate.
Lady Fang entered quickly, the maidservant who was left in Beiliu yesterday behind her.
"Mother, let's clear everything up," Lady Fang hastened to say.
Old Lady Fang gave her a look.
"Have you eaten yet?" she asked.
Lady Fang was momentarily stunned, but she quickly realized that Old Lady Fang was not pleased with her lack of manners.
"I have eaten," she hastened to say. She calmed her emotions. "Mother, let's clear everything up, whether she really rejected the marriage."
Old Lady Fang took another spoonful of the tofu, then looked at the maidservant.
"Yes, she really did have a marriage contract, and the Ning Family has it now. The three madams of the Ning Family were there, and they also reported it to Old Madam Ning," said the maidservant hurriedly.
As expected, Miss Jun had backed out. Everything had been settled.
Old Lady Fang let out a breath and put the tofu into her mouth.
"Only," the maidservant hesitated for a moment, "Miss Jun extorted 5000 taels of silver from the Ning Family."
The tofu went down the wrong way, and Old Lady Fang started to cough violently.
The room immediately descended into chaos.
"Can this even be called extortion?"
Seeing Old Lady Fang standing in front of her, accusing, Miss Jun who was eating breakfast put down her bowl and chopsticks, wiped her mouth, then spoke in a soft voice.
"The Ning Family was unable to fulfill what they had promised, so they should make up for the debt in cash. If you want to talk about real extortion, it was the Ning Family who extorted the Jun family."
"That's right, Old Master Ning used marriage in order to deceive our Old Master into treating his illness, spending much of our family's money. He also used our more expensive drugs, right, Young Miss?" Liu'er said, off to the side. "It was worth a thousand jin total, absolutely invaluable. Then they became hostile toward us, and refused to acknowledge the agreement. They were the ones who extorted our family."
Old Lady Fang snorted.
It wasn't strange that the Ning Family had said that they didn't know about the marriage. As the in-laws of the Jun Family, the Fang Family were in the same category. However, in these ten or so years they didn't know that their granddaughter Zhenzhen had a marriage with the Ning Family.
So, if her son-in-law and daughter had never said anything, obviously, it was startling when her granddaughter came out saying that she had an engagement with the Fang family.
When Old Lady Fang had asked Jun Zhenzhen for details, she wasn't able to shed much light. She only said that when her father was on his deathbed he had told her. Because Jun Yingwen's sickness had progressed fast, he hadn't explained everything before passing.
Miss Jun hadn't even know many details about the marriage, so what costly treatment fees, what precious drugs! This was something she just made up right now.
"Stop talking nonsense, how do you know what happened back then?" Old Lady Fang asked
"Nobody knows about the things that happened back then. So, how could you say that we are talking nonsense?" retorted Miss Jun calmly.
Her meaning was that Ning Family was also talking nonsense.
The two old masters were no longer here. What had happened for the two to write a marriage a contract? The two old masters had never spoken of it during their lives, so no one else knew the particulars.
"Ning Family said they had made it after drinking, and that the marriage contract was something that the Jun Family had forced them to write. Could it be that they aren't speaking nonsense?"
The Ning Family wholeheartedly refused to acknowledge the engagement, so of course, they would not answer the question. This kind of evasive speech was advantageous for them, so who would care whether it was true or not. So the Ning Family would speak ambiguously, and the Jun Family would, of course, say what was convenient for them.
Doing this was understandable.
Old Lady Fang fell silent. Lady Fang standing behind her was worried.
"Zhenzhen, it is too excessive of them to talk about your grandfather like that," she said gently. "But before you had really wanted the marriage. Even if now, when there is no more marriage, you do not want to incur their hatred."
Old Lady Fang had the same idea as Lady Fang. Before, the Ning Family had been cold to them and had privately spoken virulently about the Jun and Fang Families. However, Miss Jun had been wholeheartedly trying to curry favor with her 'husband's' family and did not care about that. She even hated her maternal family as merchants because they were a burden to her, and went as far as to humiliate her older cousin in public.
Right now, the Ning Family claimed that the Jun Family had forced them to write up the marriage contract, and on the other side, Miss Jun said that the Old Master of the Ning Family had used an expensive drug from the Jun Family to save his life and owed him money for it. The two sides were obviously tearing into each other.
If no marriage, then we will have a feud. If you will not let me off, then I will not let you off.
Miss Jun did not have anything to care about and staked everything against the Ning Family, so it would lead to mutual destruction.
Though Miss Jun could freely engage in the mutually destructive behavior with the Ning Family, the Fang Family could not. They knew that if she started something, the Fang Family would have to bear the consequences.
It was like she was blackmailing the Fang Family to vent her anger.
Old Lady Fang's face was once again cold. Miss Jun smiled.
"Aunt, it's too late to tell me not to incur hatred," she said. "From the moment they said there would be no marriage, the hatred already started."
Lady Fang sighed.
"Zhenzhen, there are many things in this world you cannot control. Even if it's not the Ning Family, we can still find you a different marriage. There is no need for you to insist on the Ning Family; you are a good girl, so you do not need to garner other people's contemptuous treatment," Lady Fang said. "If you let go of this, then there won't be any complaints."
"Aunt, I have already let go of the marriage contract, but the Ning Family won't let go," said Miss Jun softly.
The Ning Family wouldn't let go?
Lady Fang was somewhat stumped for words.
"Half a year ago, the moment I visited them and talked about the marriage, I had already become an enemy in their eyes," said Miss Jun. "I was an enemy who would wreck their family's son's future prospects and destroy their reputation. Even if I backed out of the marriage in the end, and it was no longer valid, every day that I live reminds them of its existence. Except for us actually marrying, there is no way to resolve this problem."
This Miss Jun had a predilection for starting trouble, so the Ning Family wanted to take precautions against it. Who knew when she would start jumping into trouble again.
Lady Fang naturally knew that, so she was thinking of a way to help the Ning Family be at ease.
"Zhenzhen, you're overthinking this," she said kindly. "Since you have already let go of the matter, then discussing what happened with the Ning Family will resolve it. It is better to squash enmity instead of keeping it alive. There is no marriage, but there also should not be hatred. If only…"
"If only I lower my lowly self and speak deferentially, right?" said Miss Jun, interrupting her aunt.
Her voice was soft and gentle, sounding like that of a sweet-tempered beauty.
After speaking with Miss Jun for so long, Lady Fang noticed that she was different from before. Previously when she saw them, she would be irritable and raise her voice to a screech, making people jittery.
Now, she used a modulated voice, speaking at a constant speed. no matter whether it was persuasion or retorts, there was no urgency or anger, just calm. Until now, there was only slight changes.
But her voice did not become impatient, but rather more calm.
However, the words 'lower my lowly self and speak deferentially' indicated that she was angry and wanted to cause a commotion.
Lady Fang pursed her lips.
"Zhenzhen, not having enmity is not necessarily lowering yourself," she said, her voice somewhat helpless. "There are many things that are not that simple in this world…"
Miss Jun cut her off again.
"Aunt, I know that there are many things that cannot be categorized as right or wrong, black or white. But this isn't one of them," she said, her voice still gentle and soft. "What happened isn't my mistake, and it isn't the Jun Family's mistake. It's the Ning Family's."
When she said this, she smiled.
"Everyone has probably forgotten this point, but I haven't."