Higher Level Wife – 129 – Crushing One’s Foot with a Rock (2)

Chapter 129: Crushing One’s Foot with a Rock (2)

Author: White Pear Flower

Raws: https://book.qidian.com/info/2386994/

Translated Gumihou

Proofread by Pill Bug


“You… you…” Jiang Wanying pointed at Fu Qiuning with a trembling hand.

However, before she could say anything to implicate herself further, Madam Jiang barked, “That’s enough.” Then, she swiftly turned to Jiang Wanying and slapped her across the face. She snapped, “As the mistress of the house, to think that you would cause such a fuss over a few rumours made by servants with nothing better to do but carelessly chew on their tongues. Go back to your courtyard and stay there, you have a month to properly reflect on your frivolous actions.”

Jiang Wanying was so angry she nearly spat up blood. However, she also understood that this slap from Madam Jiang could not be avoided. It was the only way to transfer the responsibilities of her actions onto some random servant’s head. It was also the only way she could avoid drawing more of Jin Fengju’s ire and blame and evade a more severe punishment.

“Yes, this daughter-in-law knows her guilt,” Jiang Wanying stroked her slapped cheek. She gritted her teeth so hard that she nearly ground her molars to powder. Tears rolled down her cheeks as her body shook like a leaf in the wind. However, no matter how much she did not want to, she had to turn, faced Fu Qiuning, saluted deeply and said through gritted teeth, “Today, this younger sister was too rude and impetuous. On a mere few words of a servant, this younger sister had formed unfound suspicion against Elder Sister. This younger sister deeply apologizes to Elder Sister, and hopes for Elder Sister’s benevolence in forgiving this younger sister for being young and ignorant.”

Fu Qiuning could not help but admire both Jiang ladies, privately thinking: women who grew up in this kind of perverted household are really not ordinary. Just look at this person’s incredible skill. If it were me, even if you beat me to death, I probably can’t change my face so quickly.

On the surface, her lips curled into a sneer as she said softly, “Young and ignorant? I fear that this is not the case. Although my dear Younger Sister is three months younger than I am, your abilities vastly outstrip mine. Now that you have all achieved your purpose in this place, from now onwards, Night Breeze Pavilion is where I shall spend my last years. Now that I have this mark on my arm, I no longer have the face to see anyone outside.”

“How could matters be so grave? It’s just my daughter-in-law and Wanying being recklessly led by a servant with a loose mouth. Even so, the fault is on their side, there is no need for you to feel wronged. On the contrary, you have been punished for something that is not your fault,” the Old Madam finally opened her mouth. She leisurely set down her cup to say, “Today’s matter is not known by many. Should it be known outside, they could only commend you for your generosity and kindness. Qiuning, ah, there’s no need to brood over this. Otherwise, if you continue to blame your mother-in-law, it is also the same as blaming this old woman.”

Fu Qiuning turned a resentful glance at Old Madam Jin, thinking: Old Ancestor, ah. It’s rare for me to receive such a great advantage, can you please not ruin this good thing for me? For the sake of this scene, [1a] I even sacrificed my v to your precious grandson. Do you think I’d let you take my opportunity away so easily?

With this thought in mind, she lowered her head and wailed tragically, “Although Old Ancestor said so, this granddaughter-in-law still felt she had lost all face. This granddaughter-in-law begs Old Ancestor to please show understanding for this granddaughter-in-law’s feelings and allow at least a few days to calm this granddaughter-in-law’s unease. So long as this granddaughter-in-law can feel her life is safe in this estate, this granddaughter-in-law shall have no other wishes.”

On Madam Jiang’s side, in addition to the anger nesting snugly in her belly, she could not forget the love and favour that Jin Fengju has for this Fu Qiuning. Because of this, guilt and fear treaded through her anger and resentment. She thought: If this matter reaches the Old Master’s ears, even I would also be implicated and scolded, ah. Aih, if I had known, I would not have trusted this gullible Wanying girl. Didn’t she also pat her chest and promised me a foolproof scheme before this? What was the result? I was reprimanded by my son and nearly dragged him into something worse instead. Instead of learning from the folly of my actions, I went along with a second foolhardy scheme and ended up with a face stained with soot. Isn’t this the very definition of courting disaster?

I fear, from now on, Wanying’s future would be even more miserable. It’s not worth it. It’s just not worth it. Just… how did matters come to this? Was it that Wanying’s eyes had always been this poisonous, or, could it be that Fu’shi had seen through us from the beginning and baited us into this trap? If that is the case, surely this woman’s ability to scheme is just too terrifying?

Madam Jiang had really wronged Fu Qiuning with this assumption. Her mind had been so perverted by the noble family schemes that caused her to imagine tricks at every corner when in fact, Fu Qiuning’s principle was simply: Refrain against harming others, yet guard against those trying to hurt you. [2] As Fu Qiuning had also taught the twins, it was fine to endure for the sake of peace, but if the wind and sea continued to storm against her, there was no need to tolerate it any longer.

This was why she had retaliated so fiercely this time. [2] It was already a second attempt at her life since being kicked out of the estate would almost mean death, this was also why she refused to take it anymore. Madam Jiang, [2a] being unable to understand Fu Qiuning’s ‘survival mode’ way of thinking, underestimated her too much. By thinking that Fu Qiuning was merely another woman out to rise in the ranks for favour and status, [2a] she could not have imagined the despair and desperation behind Fu Qiuning’s decisions.

No matter what, there was no getting around that Madam Jiang and Jiang Wanying had suffered a great loss over that scheme. They stormed in arrogantly, believing that they would be able to sweep Fu Qiuning out with one swift kick at their leisure, never thinking that they would come out as losers in this plan, losing credit with the Old Madam as well as their faces. When they stiffly stepped out of Fu Qiuning’s house, they found Xu’shi and Huo’shi huddled far away from the building. However, from the smirks on their faces, both knew that these people had somehow found out about everything that went on inside the room.

Ling Long trailed behind Madam Jiang, not daring to even say a word, knowing that she was the one who had turned a blind eye when the other women attempted to eavesdrop. She had meant to show those people how powerful her mistress was, yet unexpectedly, Fu Qiuning had turned matters around so thoroughly that she had inadvertently allowed others to witness the Jiang women’s blunders instead. Fortunately for her, Madam Jiang was too busy wracking her brains for ways to appease her son and control the rumours in the estate to pay too much attention to Ling Long’s slip-up.


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Jin Fengju escorted the Empress Dowager back from the Buddhist Temple safely to the palace. He had to listen to the old lady prattle on and on for half a day. After finally making Jin Fengju promise to bring Old Madam Jin and his mother etc to the palace for a visit, she was finally willing to let him leave. He was about to escape the palace when someone informed him that the emperor was waiting for him in the study, therefore, he hurried over there instead.

Within the emperor’s study were several feudal princes and a few senior courtiers close to the emperor. It turned out that, due to the increasingly scarce land at the Central Plains, plans were being made to explore and open up the thousands of miles of fertile land beyond the borderlines. Unfortunately, not many people dared to venture beyond the frontier, not because they feared the work that goes into opening up new lands, but because they were afraid of invasions from the Northerners and people from other countries. Therefore, the emperor had called them all there to discuss the logistics of moving people beyond the borderlines and sending military aid to assist in guarding the new settlers.

This was indeed a very important matter. Everyone began to offer ideas and suggestions. After a long discussion, a tentative strategy began to take shape. However, more discussion would be needed before any firm plans could be established. Seeing that it was already noon, the emperor ordered everyone to stay for a banquet to ease their tiredness and reward them for their contributions. This was indeed a great honour and all of the courtiers readily agreed. Jin Fengju alone was thinking of Fu Qiuning at home and really wanted to see her, however, he dared not refuse the emperor’s banquet.

Even so, the emperor’s eyes were still sharp enough to notice his restlessness. With a smile, he said, “Is there some pressing matter awaiting Fengju? If there is, you may go back. Things that should be discussed have already been discussed for now. This is not something that can be decided in one meeting. We shall discuss it further at morning court tomorrow.”

As though he had received a royal pardon, Jin Fengju hastily knelt and gave thanks. After bidding farewell to the other courtiers, he rushed home, leaving Prince Rong to stretch out his neck curiously, wondering: Just what is my brother-in-law rushing around for? I had not heard of any major events happening at my father-in-law’s place. Why is this fellow in such a rush? Tch, you still owe me a drink.

When he finally reached the gates of the Duke’s mansion, he overheard some clanging sound from the former Xiangyang estate next door. Jin Ming smiled and said, “The renovations for the estate have started under Master Feng’s supervision. It is estimated that it would be completed in two to three months’ time. Once completed, the Second Master’s family would move in. Does Master wish to pay a visit?”

“En, some other day, ba. Where would I find the inclination to go and supervise such things?” Jin Fengju said with a smile as he hurriedly entered the gate.

Beside him, Jin Ming laughed and said, “I must say, Master’s footsteps were so light it was as though you were floating. It is clear that Master has his heart set on speeding home. Should we first go pay respects at Old Madam at Health & Longevity Court or go straight to Night Breeze Pavilion?”

“From the way you speak, if I do not visit Health & Longevity Court, would I be an unfilial child?” Jin Fengju grinned as he attempted to kick Jin Ming. Suddenly, he frowned, “What’s this? You look at the servants, why are they all looking at us with such eyes? Did something happen at the estate?”

“Indeed, it is very odd,” Jin Ming also scratched his head. He pointed at one of the low-level servants and shouted, “Young San’er, stand there. You little brat, stand still for me, if you dare move another step, I shall break both your legs.”

At his shout, Young San’er who was on the verge of running away, had no choice but to stand still. With the master standing next to him, if he said that he did not hear the order, he must be deaf. Since he could not run away, he could only stand in place obediently.

“You sure are a daring little bastard. With the master here, you still dare treat my words like the wind?” Jin Ming was so angry that he kicked Young San’er before saying sharply, “Speak, why did you run away? What happened in the estate? If you dare speak even half a word of lies, I shall have your skin peeled off before breaking your hands and feet and throwing you out.”

Naturally, these were idle threats, but Young San’er also knew that even if he did not lose his skin, he could still be driven out of the estate. But, how could he dare to reveal Madam Jiang’s ‘good deed’s with his own mouth? Therefore, he could only throw himself to the ground and cried until tears and snot mingled and wailed, “Master, please spare this lowly one, ba. This lowly one dare not say, dare not say. Master would know if Master visits Night Breeze Pavilion.”

This single line immediately caused Jin Fengju’s expression to darken. In a solemn voice, he said, “Very well, I shall not ask you about this anymore. However, answer me this, how is Second Madam now? Speak.”

“Second Madam Ning is very good. This lowly one dare not lie. She is indeed very good,” Young San’er then began to kowtow again and again. Jin Fengju saw that it did not look like he was lying and nodded. In a low voice, he said to Jin Ming, “Let him leave. He really dared not speak of the matter. Let us go to Health & Longevity Court.”

“Master is not going to Night Breeze Pavilion first?” Jin Ming inquired.

Jin Fengju shook his head, “No, let’s visit Health & Longevity Court first. We must understand the ins and outs of the matter before we could do anything about it.”

Thus, in the end, they made their way towards Health & Longevity Court.


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Let us speak of Fu Qiuning’s side.

After sending off Madam Jiang and the others, she stood at the entrance of the house for a long time before finally letting out a long sigh of relief. A small smile crossed her face as she returned to the room. Within the house, there were only her, Aunt Yu and Yu Jie.

[3] She sat in place for a long time until Yu Jie said in an overly loud voice, “W-wasn’t that exciting? I swear, I have never seen such performances!”

[3] Fu Qiuning looked at her, “Indeed, it was a great performance. Elder Madam and Second Madam Wan spared no effort. One has to wonder, how long they have been practising to become so adept at changing their faces so completely.”

[3] “Indeed, Second Madam Wan’s skills are too great,” said Aunt Yu. “But Madams’ skills are greater. Elder Madam’s slap just now was so loud, that it still rings in my ear.”


[Gumihou: The ending was all the ladies gleefully mocking Jiang Wanying. I mean, it’s fine if the maid does it, but FQN? Also, are we supposed to feel amused by JFJ being stopped by all these random events from seeing his ‘beloved Qiuning’?]


[1] Add grief

[1a] Make Old Madam’s awfulness more apparent.

[2] Reasonable reasons, instead of making Fu Qiuning into something like an enlightened and brilliant person with great principles, give her more human-like qualities

[2a] Switch ‘Madam Jiang unable to understand her personality’ to ‘Madam Jiang unable to understand her reasons

Deleted ‘a lowly person could not understand a lofty person’s heart, because FQN is far from lofty. Her reasons were baser than that.

[3] Add awkwardness. Instead of ‘ahahah we won~ I’m so clever~~ tee hee~~’ give a more solemn reaction.


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