Chapter 36: Palm Prin
Chapter 36: Palm Print
While Chen Yuan seethed, Chen Gongrang, who had expedited his return, smiled on the side with tolerance and generosity. “Why are you getting so worked up over one marriage of a daughter?”
His influence in the family was great, and at his words, Chen Yuan immediately bowed and replied, “Brother, you’re right.”
Chen Gongrang stroked his beard saying: “This man Ran Min is fearless, smart, and ambitious. Such man does not like being led by the nose. It’s only a marriage between our house and him, why are you all so hasty?”
Thus said, he cast a glance at Chen Yuan.
Chen Yuan bowed his head in shame, naturally perceiving that Chen Gongrang was talking about the fact that he was too aggressive when it came to his daughter’s wedding. As long as Ran Min married a Chen lady, it didn’t matter which one they gave him provided that her status was suitable.
Chen Gongrang waved and closed his eyes, listening to the courtesans’ music.
His silence implied that this matter had come to an end. Chen Yuan withdrew his gaze.
He noticed Chen Rong again at this time and at once beckoned her to come closer.
He stared at her and scowled. Because he was already feeling offended, it couldn’t be helped that he would become irritated at Chen Rong’s sight. When he spoke, a slight chill was heard in his voice: “Ah Rong, do you know why I’ve called you over?”
“Do you? Then tell me.”
Chen Rong slightly pressed her lips, saying: “Are you referring to last night’s affair, uncle?”
“So you do know?” Chen Yuan sneered and clapped his hands. He then thought of something. “I really don’t know how your father has taught you. How can you do something so shameless! You! If Qilang had been less generous, the Chen house would’ve lost our face last night!”
Chen Rong kept her head low while Chen Yuan barked at her. At this point, her face betrayed a hint of a sneer, but she did not talk back.
Chen Yuan roared for a while and finally gasped for breath. His tone softened to say: “There is a dinner at the Nan’yang Prince estate tonight. You’ll go with me.”
“I won’t go!”
Everybody froze. Even Chen Gongrang opened his eyes to look at her.
Chen Yuan’s thin face scrunched up. “What did you say?”
Chen Rong slowly raised her head. Looking at Chen Yuan, she deliberately said, “I won’t participate in anyone’s dinner with you.”
And then she slowly got up.
This translation belongs to hamster428.wordpress.com
Chen Yuan didn’t expect she would talk back to him like this, furthermore doing so while standing. Furious, he slapped on the table and was about to explode when Chen Gongrang gently interjected on the side: “You’re speaking to a child. There’s no reason to be so angry.”
Chen Yuan suppressed his ire at once. He stared at Chen Rong and barked: “Repeat that again.”
Chen Rong’s back was very straight though her eyes were looking at the ground. “On this trip to the south, I’d first warned the Wangs about the refugees and in the time of a drought had reacted faster than ordinary men. When we stopped by the City of Pu, not many men could do what I did to stock up on food. I dare say I have both uncommon wits and beauty and as such am perfectly suitable to marry young men of talents.”
Silence all around.
Chen Yuan pointed at her in shock and was about to scold her when Chen Gongrang laughed: “This lass has quite the confidence.”
“All right,” he said to Chen Yuan, “don’t get angry with a youngster.” Then he turned to Chen Rong: “You may leave.”
After leaving with her back rod-straight, she followed the green path, stepping on the yellow leaves on the ground, as she bit her lips thinking: On the way here, Chen Yuan had accepted me into his household. It can be said that unless my father and brother return, he is now my father and can directly decide all of my matters. Chen Gongrang will not interfere with whatever decision he makes. He’s so determined to take me to the Prince of Nan’yang, what should I do?
Suddenly her mind turned to Ran Min: Ran Min is being very strange. Listening to his tone, one would think he isn’t very pleased with this marriage! Yes, in the past, Ran Min had come to the estate several times but never settled his marriage with my cousin. I wouldn’t have gotten my opportunity had they not dragged it on like that.
In the middle of chasing her running thoughts, a shadow suddenly obscured her sight out in front.
Chen Rong looked up and was surprised to see a tearful Chen Wei.
While the pair of cousins stared at each other, Chen Wei suddenly lifted her right hand and slapped across Chen Rong’s face.
Chen Wei’s slap was both resounding and precise. Instantly, a swelling palm print appeared on Chen Rong’s left cheek.
After Chen Wei threw a slap in her face, she did not wait for Chen Rong’s reaction to suddenly burst out in tears. She covered her face and took a turn into a pebble trail.
Chen Rong recovered from the shock and anger and clutched her left burning cheek as her dark eyes stared in the direction Chen Wei had gone. After some time, she coldly smiled and quietly thought: I know you like Ran Min. Though I hated you, I wasn’t determined to take revenge. But now… hmph!”
At the time she turned around, the servants on either side of the road diverted their prying eyes to the ground.
Chen Rong did not care; she strode to her courtyard.
Along the way, passersby would turn to look at her and notice the palm print on her face, their eyes becoming curious.
Without knowing, everyone stopped to watch her. There were a few idle ones who followed behind her to laugh and jest.
Nurse Ping rushed over the moment Chen Rong got into her courtyard entrance. She had heard noises outside and, now at a closer look, exclaimed: “Miss, miss, what happened? Who hit you?”
She darted to Chen Rong and reached out to her face.
Unlike her usual self, Chen Rong grasped her hands and tearfully said, “Nothing. It’s just that General Ran came by a moment ago and… I-I was just standing there.”
She abruptly shushed.
Sudden realization dawned on everyone’s expression.
Behind Chen Rong’s closed courtyard, a few gossips had given sound and made the rounds:
“I heard General Ran rejected Ah Wei.”
“Then why did Ah Wei slap her?”
“Could it be that General Ran had fallen for Ah Rong and changed his mind? Not to mention, Ah Rong is rather bewitching with that slender waist of hers. If I were General Ran, I would choose Ah Rong too.”
“What nonsense are you saying? What kind of status does Ah Rong have? We’re not talking about taking in a concubine, how can General Ran leave Ah Wei for her? I think that Ah Wei is just taking it out on Ah Rong because she is unhappy about her matter with General Ran.”
“I suppose that’s possible. With Ah Rong’s status, anyone here can take our anger out on her. She’s the only one Ah Wei dares to bully, in any case.”