You are currently viewing Higher Level Wife – 088 – Pressing On, Step by Step
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Higher Level Wife – 088 – Pressing On, Step by Step

Chapter 88: Pressing On, Step by Step

Author: White Pear Flower


Translated by Pill Bug

Edited by Gumihou


“Well? Has your Madam gone to Night Breeze Pavilion?” Jin Fengju did not look surprised at all as he went straight to the main point the moment he opened his mouth.

“To reply to Master, Madam did not go to Night Breeze Pavilion. Elder Madam was the one who sent someone to the Night Breeze Pavilion, and had someone invite Second Young Madam Ning (aka Fu Qiu’Ning’) to her courtyard,” replied Yan Xi with a respectful salute. He observed his Master from the corner of his eye. After many years as a servant boy, he understood that something vital must have been happening within the marquisate. Moreover, it looked like the Young Marquis intended to display his power.

“The Elder Madam?” Jin Fengju frowned. He said in a low voice, “Looks like mother intends to intervene? Not bad, this is indeed a very dependable mountain to lean on.” He quickened his pace and called for Jin Ming. “Come, we must return quickly.”

“Yes.” Jin Ming and Yan Xi answered as they hastily followed Jin Fengju.


Please read this at kitchennovel dot com ~


At that time, contrary to Jin Fengju’s expectations, Fu Qiuning was not at Madam Jiang’s place. She was, instead, visiting the Health & Longevity Court along with the two children.

“This humble woman pays respects to Old Ancestor.”

“This grandchild pays respects to Great Grandmother.”

The group of three, mother and children alike, paid their respective greetings to Old Madam. The old lady was so happy that she could barely close her mouth as she laughed and crowed, “Good! Good! Good! Rise, all of you, we are all one family. Why such formality?”

She called for a maid to bring a chair for Qiuning and have the two great-grandchildren sit by her on the kang. After settling the children down, she looked at Fu Qiuning and said, “You have never liked coming to the inner court. Why are you here today? It snowed heavily yesterday and the roads are not good for travelling. I have already sent maids to each house to let everyone know that they need not come to offer their greetings today. I was certain you would not come, and had not sent anyone to inform you thus. Who would have thought I’d see you here today?”

“Indeed,” Fu Qiuning smiled warmly. “Lord Husband chided this humble woman last night for not paying my respects to the Old Ancestor for a long time and bade this humble woman visit today. I believe Elder Madam and Second Madam shall be here shortly, therefore, this humble woman shall return first…”

“Why would you return? It is so rare for you to visit and yet you wish to conveniently leave right after? “The Old Madam laughed jovially. “Did you not hear me just now? No one would be coming today. I happened to be bored and you appeared at just the right time. Come, since you are here, have a look at my plants and tell me if I am looking after them right.”

“Word has it that Old Ancestor paid great attention to them day after day. It is their blessing to be taken care of by Old Madam. If Old Madam wishes it, when New Year comes and the flowers start budding, this humble woman will bring a few more pots over. As plants that can be made into spices, their flowers will smell especially good.”

“Yes, I know. That woman was the best at making incense when she was alive,” said Old Madam Jin, clearly thinking back to the past. “Aside from flowers, her garden was filled with herbs and spice plants.” There was a hint of a sigh in her voice.

Suddenly, the sound of hurried footsteps came from beyond the courtyard. Old Madam Jin looked up curiously [a], “Who could it be? Did I not already inform everyone there’s no need to pay their greetings? Why is it that more people appearing today?”

“Old Ancestor has very good ears. This humble woman heard that most older people lose their hearing quickly. To think that Old Ancestor could still hear the sounds of footsteps from the courtyard, how exceptional.” Fu Qiuning said with respect and a moderate amount of flattery.

Cheered by this flattery, Old Madam laughed out loud as she protested, “No need for such compliments. I’m already at such an age, even if I wish to do something, I am constrained by this old waste of a body. You say my ears are good, but I shall tell you now, my eyes are sharper still. I am very good at telling the good from the bad at just a glance with eight or nine times accuracy.”

“If that is so, isn’t Old Ancestor’s talent wasted here? The Grand Inquisitor should enlist your help to examine their prisoners and tell the wronged from the guilty. Wouldn’t the marquisate achieve great merit that way?” Fu Qiuning teased with a smile.

[a] The Old Madam howled with laughter at that, “You dare to tease me? You certainly know how to flatter. I had been wondering why Fengju had been so lively lately. I dare say it is all due to you.”

As the two continued to speak, the people in the courtyard finally arrived at the door. The servant girl pushed the curtain apart to announce, “Old Madam, Elder Madam, and Second Madam have arrived.”

“Yo, did I not say that there’s no need to give your greetings today? Why are you here now?” Old Madam Jin looked a little surprised to see Madam Jiang and Jiang Wanying enter, still wearing their cloaks. Their eyes fixed upon Fu Qiuning’s person immediately.

Fu Qiuning stood up and saluted respectfully to Madam Jiang, saying, “Greetings, Elder Madam Jiang.” The two children also got off the kang and earnestly greeted their grandmother.

“I dare not receive your salutations, just how capable are you, ah? Do you still need to salute the likes of me?” Madam Jiang unexpectedly sneered. She immediately turned to Old Madam Jin, “Old Ancestor, your daughter-in-law needs to speak with this Fu’shi. We cannot have her remain with Old Ancestor. This daughter-in-law shall play cards with Old Ancestor on a later date to make amends.”

The astonishment on Old Madam Jin’s face had disappeared by then. She leaned back on her cushions and leisurely said, “What can be so urgent, to not even have time to play cards with me? I can see from your face that something unpleasant has happened. Has Qiuning done something?”

Madam Jiang’s voice was filled with hatred as she said, “Old Ancestor, this kind of matter would only anger you in vain if spoken out loud. This daughter-in-law shall report the matter to you personally at a later date. For now, I shall take this slut back and question her to her face.” With that, she turned to Fu Qiuning, clearly about to order the servants to drag Fu Qiuning to her courtyard.

“No need for such words. You believe I’m too old to take charge of household matters, is that it?” Old Madam slowly sat up, her eyes fixed on Madam Jiang, a hint of anger rising from her countenance.

Seeing that the situation was getting out of hand, Jiang Wanying hastily interrupted, “To reply to Old Madam, Elder Madam has no such intentions. She is afraid that Old Ancestor’s health will suffer a blow if angered. Elder Madam intends to thoroughly inquire into the matter before making a succinct report. In truth… in truth, what Fu’shi did was so heinous that when this granddaughter-in-law first heard it, my world nearly spun out of place.”

“Is that so? Very well, Ming Yu, Luo Cui, you two stay behind. The rest of you leave this room and stay far away,” Old Madam Jin ordered. After the various maids and servants had shuffled off, she turned to the people standing before her. “I have already lived up to this age and experienced many things. What news cannot enter my ears? Even if Fu’shi had done some heaven-defying sin, you may give me the details. If she has sinned, I shall not go light on the punishment. However, she had also raised two motherless children on her own, proving her heart of gold. Moreover, they have also been fatherless until recently.

I shall not allow others to slander or frame her either. You have always been cautious in your conduct. I believe that you would not have created such a great fuss unless you have ironclad evidence. If that is so, let me hear your case. I shall be the judge. No matter what, I am still the Old Ancestor of this household. I am neither deaf nor blind, nor am I senile yet.”

Her voice sharpened by the end of her speech.

Jiang Wanying secretly gritted her teeth. She had long known that Old Madam Jin favoured Fu Qiuning. However, she never imagined that on the very day they decided to persecute her, Fu Qiuning would suddenly visit Health & Longevity Court to pay her respects. She and Madam Jiang had discussed the matter together, and, fearing that Jin Fengju would protect Fu Qiuning once he returned from court, they had no choice but to press forward.

As women of the family, they had to obey the so-called “three obedience and four virtues” [1]. Although they were the mother and wives of the Young Marquis, they could not overrule him. However, they had solid evidence for Fu Qiuning’s case. Thus, after discussing the matter, the mother-in-law and daughter-in-law pair decided to take their chances and went straight to the Health & Longevity Court.

Meanwhile, Concubine Xu and Concubine Huo, who loved to gloat over others’ misfortune were more than eager to join in the fun when they heard that Fu Qiuning was about to be driven out of the marquisate.

“To reply to Old Madam, this… this cheap slut, this slut of a woman had hidden the fact that she had been selling the fruits and flowers within Night Breeze Pavilion for years! Perhaps counting on the fact that no one inquires after the place, these three outrageous women tarnished the reputation of the marquisate by selling not only the produce of the courtyard but also their embroideries. In fact, a large number of embroideries have been made and sold every year!

Right now, everyone within the Capital knows that the wife of the Young Jin Marquis has been treated harshly by the marquisate to the point that she had to secretly sell her embroideries to make a living, causing the marquisate to lose face…”

Madam Jiang’s eyes looked like they were about to spit fire as she pointed at Fu Qiuning and hatefully spat, “You cheap bitch, you slut, when you married into our marquisate, your despicable old father was the hateful one, pushing a slut like you into our house to humiliate us. Unexpectedly, your heart is even more vicious than your old father’s. How dare you use such a disgraceful method to ruin the reputation of this marquisate?

You… you did this, how do you expect my son to hold his head up before his peers and the emperor in the future? You… you have nothing but snakes and scorpions in your belly!” she howled, tears rolling down her face.

Beside her, Jiang Wanying stood with her head raised, a pillar of dignity and calm as she added venomously, “Fu’shi, you still have the cheek to stand before Old Ancestor and Elder Madam. Do you not know shame?”

The words were so shocking that even Old Madam Jin had to sit up with a start. She stared at Fu Qiuning and asked sternly, “Qiuning, are they speaking the truth?”

Fu Qiuning lowered her head. [b] She knelt down before Old Madam. The two children scrambled to kneel behind her as well. After a moment, Fu Qiuning said, “It is true.”

Old Madam Jin nearly choked on her breath. She stared at Fu Qiuning with shock and anger. [c] Dimly, she thought: What happened? Was I wrong about Qiuning after all? Am I wrong to encourage Fengju to pursue her?

Just then, the twins cried out and crawled forward on their knees, “[d] Great-grandmother! Don’t blame Mother! It’s us, it’s our fault. Punish us instead, if not for us, mother would never have… never have done any of that!”

“Feng’er, Jiao’er, come here,” Fu Qiuning ordered. [b]

Her stern voice shook Old Madam Jin out of her runaway thoughts. [e] She looked at the frightened children before her and had a sudden terrible premonition. If Fu Qiuning had intended to plead for leniency, she would have let the children continue to cry and beg in her place, maybe even adding her voice into the crying and pleading. Instead, she had called the children back sternly after admitting her sins.

Obviously, the matter was more complicated than meets the eye.

“Since the children had shown filial piety by pleading on your behalf, you may stand up and speak,” said Old Madam Jin dispassionately.

Jiang Wanying appeared dissatisfied and was about to argue when Old Madam Jin glanced over to say, “Wan girl, do not be impatient. Your husband was at Night Breeze Pavilion last night. Therefore, he more than likely knew about the matter. I want him to give me his account of the matter. For now, I wish to hear what Qiuning has to say.”

Jiang Wanying felt as though her hands and feet had gone cold. She had not expected the Old Madam to protect Fu Qiuning to this extent. She turned and saw that Madam Jiang’s face was practically blue with anger, with flames still flaring in her eyes, obviously chafing for this opportunity to rid herself of this thorn in her flesh. Jiang Wanyin’s fist unclenched a little at the sight.


[Gumihou: …why you ladies so drama?]


[a] Deleted all superfluous little details ‘before could finish speaking’, ‘could not help but’.

[b] Prevention of OOC: Adjust text to show only action and zero emotions because, come on, she had to be acting. Don’t fake up emotions in to muddy the chapter and make Fu Qiuning look weak.

[c] Additional Details re Character: Dude, why downplay Old Madam’s reaction? Come on, let’s make more of her outraged and affronted ‘I’m wrong?!’ behaviour. The payoff will be good, Gumi promises

[d] Prevention of Obvious JFJ Ass Polishing, Deleted: Great grandmother, don’t scold Mother, don’t beat her, and don’t make her kneel. We are her children, just let us kneel for Mother. Even Father did not let Mother kneel last night. The ground is wet and cold, Mother’s legs will freeze

This does nothing but shows just how shiny JFJ’s ass is.

[d] Prevention of More Obvious JFJ Ass Polishing, Deleted: However, Old Madam Jin immediately picked up the key points from the two children’s words 

Why is this MOJFJAP? Because Old Madam Jin is an extension of JFJ. She’s basically an old, gender-bent version of him. Also, deleted some stuck-on reasons for more plausible reasoning on the Old Madam’s part to why FQN did what she did


Pill Bug TL Notes:

[1] Ancient China was very patriarchal.

The Three Feminine Obediences

A woman is obligated not to act on her own initiatives and must submissively obey or follow:

  1. her father at home, before getting married
  2. her husband after getting married
  3. her sons after her husband’s death

The Four Feminine Virtues

  1. Feminine Conduct
  2. Feminine Speech
  3. Feminine Comportment
  4. Feminine Works


Gumihou: Yeah, you know what? If I ever transmigrated to this godforsaken era, I’ll just become a prostitute. It’s not like there’s much difference anyway. Once I save up the money, I’ll move to the suburbs, marry a stupid man with no familial connections and open a snack shop or something. has a new Membership System!!

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Although… it’s, um, you only get half the benefits… but, the decision is in your hands!

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Eiri Tezuka

    As expected. Now to see how much power can this so called husband show at home when it comes to protecting the female lead and the children. He is the one who threw all of them away in the pit. So he should be the one to clean up his mess.

    Or he can do the typical thing in these kind of aristocrat families. Shift blame to someone else.

    1. Gumihou

      Ah, well, the author thinks she’s subtle, but…

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