Double update! Read the prologue first if you haven’t 🙂
*Da jie = oldest sister / * Xiao mei = little sister
Spring fluttered in like a moth to a flame. The city was lively with festivals, and with the early arrival of so many soldiers back from war, mothers were tearfully joyful, wives were aplenty pregnant, and the brothels were also quite busy. Secret pairs of lovers also enjoyed their reunions.
Regarding Wu Ping Fan’s marriage life however, who was now already eighteen and practically a spinster during the era, it was still undecided amongst the elders. Contrastingly, the favoured Wu Feng had already become the current mistress of the house of Rong as she was, in great celebration, bestowed by the Emperor to the godly General Rong An Qi just by the end of last winter.
The Wu Household had suffered a great loss under flashing smiles.
Although they had hoped for a phoenix to be with a dragon, the Wu elders were not so naive to have such a fixed expectation regarding the Emperor who was widely known to be hot and cold. So, in the end, the snow leopard in the land was also quite good… if not usually put to be in comparison with the Emperor, General Rong was already the best choice for the extravagantly beautiful Wu Feng. He was young, successful, and powerful, only second best to the Emperor…
But Wu Feng did not expect that she was not even ‘Madam Rong.’ Unexpectedly, she was now the General’s consort!
The Wu had lost their secret weapon… but regarding this, the people of Meng’si had quite a bit to say.
At that moment, Wu Ping Fan who was sitting in a corner of a teahouse, ate biscuits and sipped tea quietly, all the while listening to the talks about none other than herself.
“The eldest daughter Wu Ping Fan is also not bad, it is just that her bloodline is unfortunate, so of course nobody would take in a daughter of a maid disguised as a swan!”
‘What disguise, what swan! If I can be like Xiao Ju and freely be an ignorant pig, who wouldn’t gladly take the first offer! Who asked the old Madam to adopt me? Tell the witch to stop disguising herself as a mother first!’ All this, Ping Fan rambled angrily in her head, while looking like a mysterious beauty bearing a smile at a wall.
“It is truly a pity. Her beauty has never been inferior to that Wu Feng. In my opinion, she has more charms!”
“What charms? Like those belonged in the brothel? I’ve seen her, and she is quite vulgar!”
“Ah? Where did that come from?”
“I heard that she quite likes to be beaten!”
Ping Fan sighed. “Xiao Ju, tell the owner to redirect the bills to the Wu Manor. We shall be leaving.”
“Miss, do you actually like to be beaten?!” Sneaking out of the manor would’ve already warranted them a big punishment, sending back the bills would be like a criminal offering the evidences of the crime and handing themselves in to the authority. What was the purpose of trying out the rebellious strike in the first place?
“At least, I prefer to be beaten in private.”
Thus, the young miss who was never allowed any luxury or wealth, and had only lived the life of a pauper under a great surname, left to return home to receive more beatings.
It was an abusive cycle, and Wu Ping Fan seemed to be the only one to understand it.
Thus Xiao Ju could not say that her mistress had even changed a bit after she came back. If possible, Wu Ping Fan became even more Wu Ping Fan—weird, reckless Wu Ping Fan became weirder and even more reckless.
After that day’s beating, Old Madam Wu allowed Ping Fan to be included during dining times, eating the same three meals and no longer leftovers. After hearing this, Ping Fan was quiet for a bit.
“Hmm, but that wasn’t my intention though?” So she ate little of the actual meals, and still scurry for leftovers. When Old Madam Wu found out about this, there were more beatings, and Ping Fan was forced to down every single one of her meals.
This fake mother-daughter relationship was quite complex.
The next day, the newly wed couple visited the Wu Manor. Even the Old Madam rushed out to greet General Rong, and everybody else complimented Wu Feng’s rosy complexion.
“This busy General, actually taking out his time to come visit a little consort’s home… is quite—”
“Filial!” Wu Feng, with a red face, interrupted her big sister’s sentence. “Da jie, have you met my lord husband? Lord husband, this is my da jie, Wu Ping Fan. Da jie, hurry and greet lord husband!”
Xiao Ju mentally wrapped two arms around her head.
“Of course, of course! I, lowly Wu Ping Fan, greet lord husb—” Ping Fan covered her mouth with a shocked expression. “Ah, ah, please forgive me! It is just that xiao mei keeps calling you lord husband that I forget you were actually General Rong! Silly me!”
In that instance, Wu Feng’s “rosy complexion” twisted so terrifyingly everybody thought the phoenix had become a rooster in a cockfight.
General Rong, however, remained the same with his stoic face. Only Xiao Ju noticed that his brows became slightly furrowed with an underlying taut, indescribable expression. On the other hand, it was such a strange sight of the two beauties and a godly handsome general that Xiao Ju had also forgotten to be curious.
One extravagantly beautiful phoenix, who’d become a rooster.
One cold snow leopard, who’d become a coldly frustrated snow leopard.
And there was Wu Ping Fan, a seductive beauty, who was blind to any but herself.
There now only lacks a dragon to complete the show of the century.
Xiao Ju did not know that said dragon had always been ruthlessly hovering the sky over his territory.