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Chapter 8 Temporary Truce with the Unexpected Visitor

Long Er battle with Ju Mu Er starts now.

But he would never use such method to deal with her.

Furthermore, he wasn’t like Ding Yan Shan to call local thugs to come and lay their hands on her; he himself absolutely haven’t even harm a single thread of hair on her head. He didn’t even take over her father’s wine shop, nor has he cut off her precious flower-selling girl’s livelihood. He also didn’t destroy her reputation of teaching the town’s commoner’s children how to play the zither.

See, he really didn’t faced her seriously, he only…eeuun*, only slightly tease her a little bit, that’s all. (*TN: literally right there it says “groaning sound”, and I don’t know the exact onomatopoeia for groaning sound)

But this Ju Mu Er can’t tell the good from the bad, not only does she return to retaliate every time, right now Ju Mu Er still dare mocks him. She acts with the status and position of men, so Long Er felt if he left her alone this woman won’t know her place and that will cause his ancestors to utterly lose all their face.
He has to show her something amazing, lest she think he has admitted defeat.

Thus he had to quickly arrange the appropriate “medicine”** to send to the Ju’s family wine shop, specifically for Ju Mu Er to eat. There is no other food to send but fish. Steamed, simmer-fried, fried, stewed……in other word all fish, he already bought a pile of bony fish to give to Ju Mu Er to eat, he knows she will definitely get the meaning.

(**TN: no idea what it meant here by “medicine” as it wrote 仙味楼. All I can get from google is a location, but base on the context of the sentence I assume he meant a type of “medicine”.)

He, Long Er, is not the best person to provoke, he definitely want to make her choke on fish bones, suffering by neither being able to spit it out nor swallow it down. In the end, not even a few days has pass when Ju Mu Er sent two bamboo cane over. Long Er also understood the meaning behind it, she is clearly saying, “Don’t be angry, didn’t you really want a bamboo cane? I sent you two to play with.”

Long Er was not to be outdone, he definitely wanted to steal her bamboo cane, but how? He personally went to Ju Mu Er’s court, sneaking inside in order to snatch all three of her bamboo cane in her room.

On the second day, Ju Mu Er had Su Qing (TN:the little girl that sent message for Mu Er, in case you forgot) give Long Er a zither score, the most basic music score that one would give a child to practice with, along with a message pass on through Su Qing: “Elder Sister said, if the household’s child is bored, it is better for him to learn the zither, then.”
Long Er received the zither music score, emitting steams of anger from the top of his head, but he haven’t figure out how to deal with this blind girl’s new provocation. Because he realized this type of game of sending gifts back and forth have no meaning, there is no point.

Last time when he went to go steal her cane, he overheard Ju Sheng asking Ju Mu Er why the fish weren’t sent to his house [court, probably his part of the house]? The tone sounded like it was pitiful. Originally, Ju Mu Er received the fish and gave it all to her father to enjoy with wine, saying that they were from one of the student she was teaching zither to as a reward. Ju Sheng already ate a good deal of the fish, when he unexpectedly thought of this.

Ju Mu Er once again left an impression in Long Er’s heart. She made him spent hundreds of silver even though he was reluctant to. He even felt this girl, who would lie even to her own father to get out of trouble, was not charming at all.
Once Long Er gets free time, he’ll seriously think how he wants to go about humiliating Ju Mu Er. But this time he also heard a rumor. The whole town’s people now know about Long Er Ye feeling ashamed towards himself for not knowing about the musical art, and lately secretly wanting to learn and practice the zither in order to change his image as an only loving account book kind of vulgar merchant.

This rumor made Long Er very unhappy, because he never even for a moment felt ashamed for not knowing any musical art. In addition, because of this rumor, Long Er started receiving various types of gifts relating to practicing the zither, even every rich young ladies started finding him to passionately discuss anecdotes of playing and practicing the zither. Even worse is there was volunteers who wish to come personally to instruct Long Er Ye in the art of the zither.

This cause Long Er to be so angry he couldn’t eat or sleep.

With his heart this harsh and unreasonable, he could not stop now that he has started this, since this is that blind girl’s underhanded doing, then don’t blame him for using such unsightly method.

Not many days later, there was a new rumor in town, talking about the blind girl, Ju Mu Er, currently madly chasing after the Long’s family second master. Saying despite being poor and blind, she energetically call on Long Er Ye to tea shops and restaurants, even as far sending zither, zither scores and her bamboo cane to Long Er Ye.

These three items are considered Ju Mu Er’s most beloved items. Giving all of her most beloved things as gift to Long Er, like this, is an extremely bold confessions.

When these rumor spread, everything about Ju Mu Er was found out. She loves zither and love books, she accidentally join a cult causing her to go blind*, and is a crazy witch. She is snobbish, used force to gain influence, abandoned her childhood sweetheart fiancé, and seduced Jing city’s most charming married man Yun Qing Xian. She wanted to marry into an influential family, but because the first wife objected it, it was too late to marry. Thus she changed her target, so she went after Jing city’s most popular and wealthy candidate, Long Er. Truly shameless and fearless. (TN: yes, I am assuming it means cult base on the word “accidentally”, “become a member/enter”, and “magic/devil”. Also this paragraph is the rumor going around)

Not even half a month and Ju Mu Er already became Jing City’s most talked about person. She became unable to take even a step outside, everyday hiding at home.

When Long Er first heard about the town rumor circulating he was quite happy, knowing Ju Mu Er unable to take a single step outside he was even happier. But later hearing about those rumor became even more annoying, Long Er’s heart was feeling discomfort. For himself to be place together with that hated Yun Qing Xian in a conversation, this also made him considerably displeased.

And Ju Mu Er seem to be really hurt by these rumors, afterward there was no news of her again, and no sign of any retaliations. This made Long Er really disappointed, so much that even the account book didn’t feel so good to look at. And those stealing cane and sending fish little game also didn’t have that fresh exciting feeling, there was no point anymore.

Long Er felt these few passing days were really boring, but New Year is coming closer and closer. With official affair growing heavier, pressuring his whole body, he decided to temporarily throw Ju Mu Er to the back of his mind and handle the money making business first. This was the proper thing to do.

And Elder Yu recently these days been busy with household affair—handling the New Year celebration— so she is no longer so free to bother him. Of course most importantly, she understood this time of year second master is awfully busy, so she did not dare trouble him with picking a wife.

Thus Long Er’s day was recuperating with only account books and files accompanying him, but he occasionally will also think about that tea splashing blind girl. He hope for this year to pass quickly, that way he will have time to carefully mull over how shall he continue to bully her.

With Long Er being this peaceful, of course Ju Mu Er was relaxed.

Want to know how the town rumors became annoying to listen to? Ju Mu Er’s household naturally took the rumor really hard. Ju Sheng was angrier than anyone else, so much that he wanted to take a stick to the city street and beat anyone who speak of these rumor.

Ju Mu Er tried her best to persuade her father, blocking his way, to not be so angry.  She advise her father that the speed of his stick is not faster than the speed of these people’s mouth. He can hit one, but he can’t hit the entire city’s mouth. She also said, to take action would only make people say that their actions is out of humiliation and anger, only further proving the rumor be true.

After Father Ju (TN: no, he is not a pastor or minister, it is just how Chinese address him as a father) heard his daughter’s word he sighed repeatedly. To let those terrible big mouth person go like this, his heart was most definitely not willing, but what his daughter said was logical, he was also afraid of making this situation even bigger, bringing even more discomfort to his daughter.
Thus the father daughter duo simply closed their doors and didn’t take a step out, the father’s wine shop also closed it store. Originally with the New Year being so close, this time around being the most profitable time for selling wine. However when Father Ju think about those terrible people drinking his family’s wine and speaking ill of his daughter, he wanted to make those people drink until they’re weird. (TN: don’t ask me that is literally what it said, my only guess is something like he wanted to drown them in wine or something like that). He refused every restaurant’s business, saying he’ll wait until his mood is better then he’ll start selling again.

These days, Long Er hasn’t tried to find Ju Mu Er for trouble, Yun Qing Xian also hasn’t shown up, making Ju Mu Er pass these days in peace. She did some self-reflection and found that she shouldn’t fight with Long Er Ye anymore. She thought about after becoming blind, her temperament became a lot better. She is able to keep her composure, without really having to hold herself back that much.

That day when she went to Long Er to request he build awnings for the market, his arrogant manner of speaking left a bad impression. He somewhat ridicule her goodwill towards her flower selling girl. Ju Mu Er’s most dislike person are influential people who take unfair advantage of people, so at that time she was a little hotheaded so she deliberately deceived and cheated him by clearly splashing tea on to his body.  This unreasonable troublesome provocation, has now become a problem.

Now New Years has quickly come, Ju Mu Er plan to continue staying inside, waiting for everything to clear over. She’ll admit her defeat and won’t confront Long Er again.

She thought about being the person who runs away from confrontation, but there is someone who won’t let her be this way so easily.

That day, an unexpected guest came——Ding Yan Xiang.

Lady Yun’s arrival was completely out of Ju Mu Er’s expectation, it was absolutely even more unexpected for Father Ju.

Originally the external rumor about Ju Mu Er and Yun Ying Xian fooling around, even Mu Er’s father of course heard about it. Even his neighbors came around to ask whether or not his daughter would marry into the Yun Family Estate. That Yun fellow would come pay a visit from time to time, even be polite towards him, even Father Ju nearly believed the rumor. But his daughter said that she and Sir Yun have no such relationship, so he can rest easy.
Father Ju of course believed in his daughter’s word. She resembles her mother so much, be it appearance or personality or her intellect and strength, all of it was the same as her mother.

Previously all the household affair was handled by Mu Er’s mother, he only need to care for his wine-brewing craft. It was such a shame that she died so early, causing Ju Sheng to be deeply heartbroken. Fortunately Mu Er was such a sensible and lovable child, intelligent and cute, this help Ju Sheng gradually to move on and return back to his everyday life.

Ju Mu Er was sensible at an early age, decisive, and there was some affair that arose that compared to her father Mu Er was much better at dealing with. So Ju Sheng had a lot of trust in his daughter.

If she said there was no problem, than there was definitely no problem.

But lately the rumors in the street have become vicious and at this critical moment Yun’s wife came to pay a visit, Father Ju felt that this was absolutely not a good thing.

He thought he had to be careful, leading Ding Yan Xiang into Ju Mu Er’s courtyard.

Ding Yan Xiang had the maid and attendants withdraw, saying she wanted to have a private chat with Ju Mu Er. Father Ju thought he wasn’t as low as the servants, so he didn’t think he needed to withdraw. He is after all Mu Er’s father, so of course he can stay by his daughter’s side to watch over and listen. If he couldn’t, then he will just stand in the front.

Ding Yan Xiang saw that Father Ju had no intention of leaving, her face displaying nasty look. But she herself in the end came as a guest, so it wouldn’t be good to start complaining. So she kept her mouth firmly shut.

Ju Mu Er waited quite a while without hearing Ding Yan Xiang speak, thinking for a moment she called out: “Father.” Then as expected Father Ju heard this call.

Ju Mu Er pursed her lips a bit, and said: “Father, please go first, in a while when we are done talking I’ll call you.”

Ju Sheng was reluctant, looking at Ding Yan Xiang and then looking at his daughter, in the end he complied, but also said: “I shall be in the court taking in some sunlight.”

Ju Mu Er smiled in response, Ju Sheng just slowly left.

After waiting to hear Ju Sheng leaving out the door and the room’s door was close, Ju Mu Er plainly ask: “I didn’t know Lady Yun would come on this day, for what reason have you come?”

Ding Yan Xiang looked at Ju Mu Er for a few moment, softly asking:” I heard the before Lady Ju’s body wasn’t feeling too well, but now don’t you look well?”

“I am already better, thank you for your concern.”

Ding Yan Xiang then said:” Lady Ju’s mother pass away early, so you have to entirely depend on Uncle Ju to care for you, right?”

“Yes,” Ju Mu Er, seemingly not to understand her intention, plainly replied back.

“Uncle Ju also have to run the wine shop, while taking care of you, it seems getting by is not easy.”

“My eyes are inconvenient, so I certainly have burden my father.”

Ding Yan Xiang was silent for a moment, then asked about her daily life a little. Her tone was gentle and soft, even cordial, but Ju Mu Er actually react with more and more caution.

Yun Qing Xian have confessed his true feeling towards her, but she refused. Afterward he started coming less and less, but every time he comes he is all sweet and soft with his words, his feeling bleeding into his speech, his feelings clearly have not died. Ju Mu Er’s heart was distressed, but there was no way to cut off his feelings. Now the rumors outside even are hard to hear, now this Lady Yun has come, there is definitely no way for it to be just be about asking about her daily life.

Sure enough, after Ding Yan Xiang talked about a few trivial matters, she finally went straight to the point. “Lady Ju, may I be as so bold to ask you a question, my house’s lord have favorable feelings towards you, so much that he wish to take you as a wife, correct?”

In Ju Mu Er’s mind after thinking what to say through, she replied back like this: “I am but a poor blind girl, unworthy of being with Sir Yun, so I ask the lady to be at ease.”

Ding Yan Xiang’s voice was still very gentle and soft, she ask: “You are unworthy, but are you not willing to be a concubine?”

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