Chapter 3: Examining closely the delicate heart’s grievances
Long Er was still angry, but Li Ke has something more to report.
The venerable Master Ba Yin qin case at that time was originally handled by the Ministry of Justice which meted out a severe punishment, vice-minister Yun Qing Xian personally investigated the trial from beginning to end, then took part in the punishment of the musician, also to verify and ascertain his identity Yun Qing Xian got an invitation to watch his execution from the rear. As for Yun Qing Xian, he’s also a person fond of qin, he plays the qin very well. After the execution of the qin master, he established contacts with some musicians, forged friendships with them, among them is Ju Mu Er.
Long Er eyes lit up when he heard this: “You mean, Yun Qing Xian, that annoying, obnoxious guy colluded with Ju Mu Er?”
Li Ke rubbed his forehead, sure enough when it comes to old enemies, his house lord master is very much interested. He quickly went on to speak.
Ju Mu Er had originally a fiancé, whose family name is Chen. The marriage was arranged since she was young. Ju Mu Er and the Chen family’s son are childhood sweethearts, their affection for each other deep and sincere, but perhaps due to her obsession with the qin, the marriage dragged on, they intended however to marry when she turned eighteen. Unexpectedly before her eighteenth birthday, Ju Mu Er went to the qin master’s execution, afterwards came back with the qin obsession, later suffering from an eye illness, so finally she had no other choice but to withdraw from the marriage engagement. And Yun Qing Xian since then has frequently showed his goodwill to her, his real intentions though is well known to everyone.
Long Er laughed heartily: “That guy, but there is a Yun Qing Xian madam, is he not Ding Yan Shan’s brother-in-law, Minister Ding’s lucky son-in-law. Unexpectedly he still hangs around with young ladies outside, and not only that, but also with a blind person.” He found it more and more interesting: “This is something really interesting.”
Yun Qing Xian, just what kind of person is he?
He is the Justice Minister Ding Sheng’s trusted deputy and at the same time son-in-law, not only a favored person of the emperor, but also a favorite disciple of the Minister Shi Ze Chun of the Ministry of Appointments, he who executed Master Ba Yin. In the past Shi Ze Chun hand-picked Yun Qing Xian for promotion, highly recommended him to the emperor, today this talented Yun Qing Xian has his power and position. He and Shi Ze Chun treat themselves like father and son, thus on Shi Ze Chun’s execution case, Yun Qing Xian exerted his best, was meticulous about every detail, and finally in the end commanded the execution of Master Ba Yin.
Yun Qing Xian is good-looking, an upright man, handles affairs with scrupulous attention to details, however not at all flexible. No matter what he is the vice-minister of the Ministry of Justice, while Long San*, the youngest son of the Long family, mingles in the martial arts world, therefore has countless encounters with all sorts of murder cases in the martial arts world, regardless of the explicit or implicit hints of the Justice Minister and the Emperor, Yun Qing Xian always causes Long San trouble.
You know, causing trouble to Long San, is tantamount to making Long Er unhappy. This Long Er of the Long family, where is it ever heard that he lets anyone bully a member of his family? As a result, the two men kept a certain distance between them, and the more the distance, the more complicated is the knot between them.
Long Er resents Yun Qing Xian because he puts on acts, he’s rigid and obstinate, self-serving, everywhere taking aims against the Long family. On the other hand, Yun Qing Xian resents Long Er’s cheap tricks to curry favor, his devious ways, and bribery of connections. They happen also to be of similar age, one an official, the other a businessman, both outstanding, so they constantly encounter each other in the affairs of the city and always get compared with one another, each though has his own group of supporters. Both parties of the supporters are baffled as to why the two extremely loathe each other.
As soon as these two men meet, they’ll clash. So dignitaries and noblemen in the capital have reached a consensus, in any banquet or gathering activity, when one of the two is invited, the other one is not.
Today, Long Er heard Yun Qing Xian had actually done this and under such shameful circumstances, his heart is pleased, said: “Ding Yan Shan must be aware that her brother-in-law and Ju Mu Er are involved with each other, this is already one offence, that today Ju Mu Er was extremely rude to me in her presence and spoiled her plans, this is the second offence, these two offences added together, according to her temperament definitely she’ll not allow Ju Mu Er to go scot-free.”
Li Ke rubbed his forehead, his heart sighed, a weak, poor blind young lady is about to be bullied, why is his good Er Ye feeling proud?
“Li Ke,” Long Er looked at him coldly: “What is it, do you feel sorry towards Ju Mu Er?”
“Your servant does not dare.”
Long Er stared at Li Ke’s expression, said: “you only met her once, but you immediately liked her?”
“Your servant does not.” Li Ke was dripping cold sweat, Er Ye ah, stop this nonsense, he’s a very serious, loyal subordinate ah.
“Ah, you see, to put on a pitiful act is really a woman’s effective weapon.” Long Er got up, patted Li Ke’s shoulder, smiled and said: “Even Yun Qing Xian fell for her act, and if you feel pity towards her, isn’t that also quite understandable?”
Er Ye is trying to say, he is too clever, this trick will not work on him, right? But these words Li Ke only dared to keep in his chest.
Long Er’s smile lingered on his face: “within this city’s work places the truth is hidden, ah it is really interesting, very interesting!”
Li Ke pursed his mouth, restrained himself from saying anything further, out in the streets it is a widely known fact that his lord master is greedy, holds grudges, and is also petty, that until now he hasn’t married yet surely he must have an unspeakable disease. However, these cannot be spoken, must not be spoken, he does not wish to be sent to brush the toilet.
Long Er was still absorbed with his clever plan: “If that Ding Yan Shan will really deal with Ju Mu Er, she’ll certainly not have too much time to bother me again, Ju Mu Er being bullied, that will put Yun Qing Xian in a bind, but if he intervenes, how can he justify it to the Ding family? If he doesn’t intervene, Ju Mu Er will suffer, this will also be hard for him to take.” Long Er imagined Yun Qing Xian finding it difficult to satisfy both sides and the situation embarrassing, and his heart really felt happy.
“If he cannot bear it, secretly hinders Ding Yan Shan, then angers his wife and sister-in-law, the two sides will fight again, then this thing is really too wonderful.”
Ding Yan Shan, ah Ding Yan Shan, do not disappoint me, do it quickly. To kill three birds with one stone, to dispose people makes him laugh, makes his whole body feel relaxed ah.
Long Er is indeed not wrong with his estimation, Ding Yan Shan recognized Ju Mu Er, indeed also intended to give Ju Mu Er a lesson. After Long Er went home that day, she sent for the palanquin bearers to bring her to the Yun Residence.
Ding Yan Shan’s elder sister, Ding Yan Xiang, married Yun Qing Xian three years ago, the couple’s relationship is harmonious, but Ding Yan Xiang has not gotten pregnant until now, even though Yun Qing Xian always comforted her not to worry, but in her heart she still has a knot.
Ding Yan Shan’s personality is intense and aggressive, but Ding Yan Xiang is gentle and gracious, typical of a genteel beauty.
Ding Yan Shan arrived in the Yun Residence, confronted her sister, and bluntly said that today she met the blind seductress**. Ding Yan Xiang was shocked, asked Ding Yan Shan what she was talking about.
“Shan Er, in everything you must give some allowances, show people more tolerance for the sake of propriety.”
“That’s depends on the person,” Ding Yan Shan said angrily: “Today I went to the Sheng Long Tea House, was having a nice chat with Er Ye, then came this vixen, she seemed to have something to request of Er Ye, but Er Ye did not agree to it, she actually spilled hot tea over Er Ye’s body, and now you’re telling me, I should graciously save this woman’s face, she who has no sense of shame at all?”
Ding Yan Xiang frowned and asked: “What did she ask Er Ye?”
“I do not know.” Ding Yan Shan curled her lips, asked: “Elder Sister, did you talk with your husband? What does he really want to do?”
Ding Yan Xiang had a faint anxious look on her face, in all respects Yun Qing Xian is good to her, but she’s afraid that Ju Mu Er changed his sincerity. Husband and wife, are two people who are most intimate to each other, but his thoughts, naturally he hides the truth from her.
Ding Yan Xiang said these things, Ding Yan Shan then jumped up: “Bah, he really wanted to marry that vixen?”
“My husband told me the young lady declined,” Ding Yan Xiang remembered at that time the expression on Yun Qing Xian’s face when he spoke about this, the memory made her heart ache. If he’s not really sincere towards that blind young lady, his face wouldn’t be so sad.
Ding Yan Shan was madly hopping around the entire room: “That vixen’s scheme must be thwarted, I have asked around too, originally she cancelled her marriage to her childhood friend, did everything to attract brother-in-law’s attention, everyone knows brother-in-law is fond of qin, she took advantage of this, she’s blind and she pretended to be pitiful, most men swallow this act and now she refused to marry, I’m afraid that she’s just unwilling to be a concubine, secretly wants to compel brother-in-law to ill-treat you, or she wants to be a wife of equal level with you, or wants to have brother-in-law entirely for herself. Really despicable! She doesn’t even consider her own status! Elder Sister, you absolutely must not allow her, if you don’t speak, I’ll tell father and mother. She’s a commoner blind woman, even if brother-in-law’s heart is captivated, she even dares make an Imperial Court Minister’s Residence to lose face.”
“Shan Er, you must not bother father and mother, I can take care of this matter myself.”
Ding Yan Shan refused to listen: “Elder Sister, you are too soft-hearted, originally if it were not for father who recognized his talent and backed him, brother-in-law where would he be today, he was able to marry you, afterwards was able to climb the social ladder. Now that he has everything, he started a cunning plot to look for another woman outside. If today, in the light of this, he makes a mess of things, afterwards how will the rest of your days be spent then?” Ding Yan Shan grew more and more angry: “It won’t do, I must tell father, and that fox, I will not let her off,” she said, turned around and walked out of the house.
“Shan Er!” Ding Yan Xiang got anxious, she held her, and raised her voice: “This is something you must refrain from meddling.”
“Elder Sister!” Ding Yan Shan stamped her feet in anger.
“Shan Er, this matter is difficult to contain from spreading in the imperial court, do you honestly believe father is unaware of it? If he wanted to get me out of this predicament, why would he wait for you to look for him?”
Ding Yan Shan was shocked, opened her mouth to say something but no words came out.
Ding Yan Xiang moreover said: “Father, himself, has three concubines, mother is quite a capable person, if not for the support of our maternal grandfather, it would not be possible for father to have done that, when I married my husband mother talked to me privately and told me, father at that time considered my husband’s ability, expected his career as an official will ascend in the future, so he got him working in the Ministry of Justice, I fell for him, so father prepared, so long as my husband preserves my position as his wife, he can ask father’s support. If he has other women, as long as they do not give birth to his flesh and blood, threatening my position, it is fine by father.”
Ding Yan Shan bit her lips, slumped into a chair, muttered: “Father? Mother? Father and mother, how can they do this?”
Ding Yan Xiang held her hand: “Shan Er, even if she’s a commoner, her family is wealthy, to take a concubine and raise children, besides like father, my husband as an official has the power and right. Since I’ve known the plan of my husband, I pondered a lot, actually my husband treats me well, at the very least he did not make me feel troubled, he has promised that if I do not give my approval, he will absolutely not marry and bring another woman to enter our household, and never let the other woman bear his children.”
Ding Yan Shan waved her arm: “Humph, as if that’s something, if he’s really sincere to you, he will not look at other women with half eye. When I get married to Long Er, I will forbid him from taking another woman again.”
Ding Yan Xiang smiled, stretched out her hand to pat Ding Yan Shan’s cheek: “Look at you, you ought to be ashamed, still elder sister will say this, I’m looking forward to the marriage.”
Ding Yan Shan blushed, but raised her head confidently: “I want to marry him, the other girls, they’re certainly inferior to me.”
Ding Yan Xiang smiled and embraced her: “Yes, my younger sister is the best.”
Ding Yan Shan leaned her head on Ding Yan Xiang’s shoulder, overflowing with tenderness, then asked: “Elder Sister, brother-in-law said this matter will depend on you, what are you intending to do?”
Ding Yan Xiang sighed: “I’m still mulling over the matter.”
Ding Yan Shan kept silent, but was actually intending in her heart: “No way can I let that seductress have an easy time.”