[TYCDTN] – Chapter 98 Part 1
Translated by: Oinkoink
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Names mentioned in this chapter (which can also be found in the glossary):
-永乐侯府 (Yǒng lè hóu fǔ)- Marquis Yongle manor
-老太太 (Lǎo tàitài) – Old Madam
-馬嬤嬤 (mǎ mó mo)- Old Madam’s personal maidservant
-虞妙琪 (Yu miao qi) – the original fl of the novel and Yu Pin Yan’s Di younger sister
Yu Pin Yan tucked Yu Xiang under the quilt, placed two hot water bottles on her belly then covered her with the quilt before touching her bulging abdomen and left with a smile on his face. The smile, however, disappeared completely as soon as he stepped into the main courtyard hall remaining merely the terrifying ruthlessness.
Yu Si Yu entered the door one step behind him then hastily rushed forward to console Old Madam once she saw her unsightly look.
As Old Madam could not say anything, she grasped her wrist and mouthed out, “You’re late, what had happened?”
“The wheel of the carriage broke and took an hour to repair.” As if wanting to speak but paused, Yu Si Yu shot a quick glance at the peasant women standing outside the hall. Following her line of sight, Old Madam looked over too and stunned for a moment before pointing at one of them and asked, “Isn’t that Zhong Shun’s wife?”
Yu Xi Yu tried to identify the words she mouthed and nodded, “It’s precisely Uncle Zhong Shun’s wife.”
There are also several other peasant women who are family members of the Old Marquis Yongle’s former subordinates. As their husband had braved through untold dangers in the battlefields with the Old Marquis and returned with either sickness or missing limbs, they had no choice but to leave the military and return to civilian life. As the Old Marquis was someone who valued sentiments and attached importance to righteousness, he settled all of them in the country estates of the Marquis Yongle manor with a monthly allowances of five taels until they laid to rest.
These people generally only call to visit during the New Year or other festivals but this time, they came back with Yu Si Yu and looked distraught. Something must have happened.
Another layer of ominousness bound Old Madam’s heart as she quickly beckoned them in.
As soon as they entered, they all knelt down successively and kowtowed, “Old Madam, Marquis, if it is not because it’s impossible to make a living, this humble wife would not dare to beg Eldest Young Miss to bring us into the Marquis manor. It’s the insolence of this humble wife. Begging Old Madam and Marquis for forgiveness.”
“What happened?” Yu Pin Yan asked in a deep voice.
The few people wiped their tears as they narrated, “Reporting to Marquis, it was originally the Old Lord Marquis who gave words for us to make a living in the countryside. Who would have thought that once Second Young Miss came back, she said we are not able-bodied who only freeloaded and dismissed us all. In order to make a living, my family Zhong Shun had no choice but organized everyone to go hunting in the mountains. The other day, they came across a tiger and without exception, without exception, they were all killed but only a few beyond recognizable bodies were brought back. Old Madam, Marquis, we can’t even afford to pay for the burial and have no one to depend as only the elderly and children are left at home. That’s why we boldly went to ask Eldest Young Miss. Old Madam, Marquis, considering our husbands had risked their life and limbs for the Old Marquis, please grant us a little silver to purchase a few meagre coffins, begging you please!”
Dull kowtowing resounded one after another. Old Madam looked at Yu Miao Qi and Lin Shi in disbelief while Yu Pin Yan’s face was even suffocatingly gloomy. They can’t even properly settle these former subordinates who braved their lives and limbs for them. Should words of this get out, who else would have confidence to pledge their loyalty to the Marquis Yongle manor?
Old Madam was speechless. She raised her hand to overturn the kang table, tremblingly pointed at both the mother and daughter with flames of fury flaring on her face.
Yu Miao Qi hurriedly kowtowed and pleaded her case, “Grandmother, please understand. Granddaughter does not know at all that they are the former subordinates of grandfather. If I had known, I would not have done so! It’s all my fault, I’ll pay for all the silver you want!”
 炕桌 (Kàngzhuō) – a low table placed over heatable brick bed