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2. This is a fan work and the interpretation represents only the translator’s personal views without any input from the author.
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Seeing that everyone had arrived and it was time, Old Man Liu gave a simple sentence, “Let’s start then.” Liu Gao shi then started to hand all the prepared items over to him.
Liu Changgeng was slightly surprised. In a soft voice, he asked Liu Changshi, “Isn’t Third joining us?”
Liu Changshi’s expression darkened. He was about to say something but resisted the urge. Shaking his head, he quietly said, “I will explain later.”
Liu Changgeng was both shocked and infuriated! The matter of Liu Changgui moving to town without telling anyone was bad enough, but he could let that go. Not returning to pay respects to the ancestors was beyond the pale! Dad must be feeling so angry and disappointed to see his son ignore their ancestors!
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Liu Xian’er quickly ran out. Seeing the spectacle, she quickly pulled Liu Yun’er to her side and shouted at Liu Shu, “What did you want to do?! Wasn’t it enough to beat her once? Are the boys in your family all bullies?!”
Liu Lin had also rushed out. Hearing this, he angrily yelled, “Do you have any brains?! Who attacked who? Who made the first move?! If your family’s Liu Yun’er didn’t beat my family’s Senzi, would Xu’er have fought her?”
Liu Shu furiously said, “Just now, Liu Yun’er wanted to secretly hit Xu’er!”
Liu Xian’er brought out her big sister demeanor. She sternly addressed Liu Lin, “Who did you say had no brains?! Do you still respect your elders? How can you speak like that to your jie?!”
Liu Lin, however, had a smart mouth and was a good hand at quarreling with others! Immediately he stiffened his back and shouted, “In my eyes, I only have my ge, my meimei, and my didi. Where did this jie come from? A shameless person who can bully another family’s one-year-old is definitely not a relative of mine!”
Liu Xian’er angrily said, “You!” Then she switched target to Liu Shu, “Liu Shu! Are you going to mind your didi and meimei or not?”
Liu Shu fiercely retorted, “If I see Liu Yun’er try to hit my didi or meimei again, don’t blame me for retaliating! Relative? I don’t have such malicious relatives!”
Liu Hong ran out from the house and softly called out, “What’s happened? Are you kids fighting?”
Liu Xian’er immediately complained, “Xiaogu, you need to discipline Liu Shu and his siblings. The three of them ganged up on Liu Yun’er!”
Liu Xu’er coldly said, “Truly the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Family members are all alike. I thought that you would be more reasonable, but it seems that I overestimated you.”
Irate, Liu Xian’er turned. “What did you say?!” Her eyes glared daggers at Liu Xu’er and her face was red with rage.
Liu Hong pulled Liu Xian’er away. “What is this? Now that I’m here, I still can’t manage all of you? Do you still want to fight? Let me tell you, your ye is already in a very bad mood. If you go in there and irritate him, be careful that he doesn’t come out and discipline all of you!”
Saying this, she tried to grab hold of Liu Yun’er, but she slipped off and ran toward the main house. “I’m telling mum!”
Liu Hong panicked when she saw that. She wanted to rush forward to stop her. Old Man Liu was in the main house in a bad temper. Liu Changqi and Liu Changgeng weren’t aware that Liu Changgui wouldn’t come, but Old Man Liu had found out just before the end of the year. He blew up when he found out, and had asked someone to help him invite him back but Liu Changgui wasn’t home! During the ritual earlier, Old Man Liu had been strongly resisting the urge to explode. Now, as he was explaining the situation to his two elder sons, his anger started to grow again.
Just then, Liu Yun’er rushed in. Wasn’t this just asking for trouble?
In her rush after her, Liu Hong stumbled on the doorsill, nearly falling. As she was stabilising herself, Liu Yun’er had already gone in, shouting, “Mum! Look at Liu Shu and….”
She hadn’t finished when everyone saw Liu Yun’er suddenly being dragged away by someone!
It was Liu Gao shi!
Liu Gao shi too had been stewing with rage. Last time, Liu Yun’er had lied to her and managed to carry Liu Sen away. Today, all the adults were talking about serious matters, but this silly girl was still making trouble!
Liu Gao shi was originally standing at the doorway. When she saw Liu Yun’er come in, she swiftly grabbed hold of her shoulders and dragged her toward a corner in the courtyard. Raising her hand, she smacked her on the back of her neck. “What are you making trouble for!”
Liu Xian’er had also hurried over, but she didn’t dare to do anything with Liu Gao shi around. She could only watch while Liu Gao shi gave her sister two smacks. Liu Yun’er then started to wail loudly.
Shocked, Liu Hong rushed forward. “Mum!” She tried to stop her mother.
Meanwhile, Ma shi was in the main house. Hearing the commotion she quickly rushed out to see what was happening. Seeing this, she rushed over, “What? What do you want to do?!”
She didn’t manage to clearly see what was going on, and in her anger, she brooked no explanation. Immediately, she gave Liu Hong a vicious push! Liu Hong was only 14, how could she withstand such a blow? She staggered and fell onto the ground. Liu Shu, Liu Lin and Liu Xu’er immediately went forward to help support her.
Liu Shu and Liu Xu’er had helped Liu Hong up, while Liu Lin swiftly picked up a rock and hurled it at Ma shi. “It sure seems like no good deed goes unpunished!”
Unfortunately, the rock smacked Ma shi on the head. Pained, Ma shi turned and started shouting, “This little brat! If I don’t beat you to death today….”
She cut herself off because everyone in the house had already heard the commotion and came out. The first to arrive was Liu Changqi. He stepped forward and yanked Ma shi to the side before starting to rain blows on her!
Ma shi was enraged, “Why are you hitting me?! Why are you hitting me?! Didn’t you see how that brat threw a rock at me? He wants to kill me!”
However, everyone had seen how Liu Shu and Liu Xu’er supported Liu Hong. They had also witnessed Ma shi knocking Liu Hong over!
Originally Liu Gao shi had intended only a couple of smacks before stopping. She wasn’t a ruthless person that would treat her granddaughter badly. But seeing Ma shi’s frenzied appearance – she had even caused Liu Hong to fall – enraged her. In her anger, she gave Liu Yun’er two more very hard smacks!
Liu Yun’er started to cry her heart out, sounding as if she was being beaten to death! This was her habit. Previously, Ma shi had often beaten her to show her grandparents. So she had taught her daughter to cry; she needed to cry loudly! So, at this moment, Liu Yun’er let out an extremely mournful wail.
But this made Liu Gao shi even more livid! She knew exactly how much strength she had used. It definitely shouldn’t have resulted in this level of crying! So she got angrier and gave her another two hard smacks!
At Ma shi’s side, she had started to crazily headbutt Liu Changqi. Without even glancing at her, Liu Changqi immediately beat Ma shi to a corner.
It was only now that Old Man Liu and Liu Changgeng came out. When Liu Changgeng first heard the commotion outside, he had limped toward the door. It was only when he saw that his children seemed fine that he relaxed. Liu Changshi had left first. When he left, he saw a handkerchief dropped on the doorsill. He figured it was Liu Hong’s, so he picked it up. Seeing that the situation was still chaotic, he held onto it while supporting Liu Changgeng.
Liu Xian’er too had started to cry. Liu Chanqi roared at her, “Do you want a beating too?!” That shocked Liu Xian’er into silence.
Old Man Liu asked, “What happened? Why are you beating the children over the New Year?”
It was only then that Liu Gao shi released Liu Yun’er. Vexed, she said, “This girl is just too unruly! All day, she jumps around trying to sow dissension and create trouble!”
Liu Xu’er was impressed! Nai was rather well educated! Just look at her vocabulary!
Liu Yun’er called, “Mum!” Before rushing toward Ma shi.
Liu Changqi roared, “Scram home!” Frightened, Liu Yun’er ran out. Liu Xian’er also hurried after her tearfully. Ma shi too picked herself up and walked out, swearing.
Old Man Liu asked again, “Exactly what happened?
Liu Gao shi was irritated by his repeated questions. She said, “A perfectly good daughter has been completely spoiled by that vicious shrew of a mother! She is so young, but so scheming!”
Saying this, she glared at Liu Changqi.
Embarrassed, Liu Changqi lowered his head. After a while, he saw that Old Man Liu had gone back into the house, so he followed after. He was joined by all his brothers. It was as if nothing had happened.
Liu Hong stood up and patted off her body. Liu Gao shi went over to help dust her off. Angrily, she scolded, “What a vicious shrew. There will be a day when she gets her just desserts! Why did she bother to come over for the New Year! She just makes everyone angry!”
Actually, Liu Hong was fine. She wasn’t hurt in the fall, so she quickly comforted her, “Mum, it’s alright. Don’t be angry. It’s not good to be angry over the New Year.”
She called for Liu Xu’er and her siblings to go to her room. Liu Gao shi went to prepare the red packets for the children. It was then that she saw Liu Tao still asleep on the kang. Earlier, after offering his greetings, Liu Tao was quite tired, so he had gone back to bed and therefore hadn’t gotten involved in the fight. Liu Gao shi slipped Liu Xian’er and Liu Yun’er’s red packets into his sleeves before giving Liu Xu’er and her siblings theirs.
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Love Liu Gao Shi for how she handles things. She’s fair to all grandchildren even tho those 2 didn’t deserve red packets. I’m just afraid Liu Tao won’t give it to his sister 😂
Hmmm, maybe a little note here about Chinese culture – it would be extremely unusual for a grandparent/ closely related elder NOT to give a red packet over Chinese New Year, no matter how much of a brat a child is being. You can think of it like a Christmas present. People don’t withhold Christmas presents because of misbehaviour. Favouritism can still exist though, by giving a favoured child more money than a non-favoured child.
Having said that, Liu Gao shi is a very fair grandparent/ parent. She’s probably one of the most “modern” thinking grandparent/parent’s I’ve read in a Chinese novel in that I don’t recall reading any hint of her favouring boys over girls in the novel.
As to whether Liu Tao gives the packets over or not, the book is silent on the subject 😂.
I’m actually not interested to know about 1st family anyway 😂 feel like it’s a waste of chapter to describe them. You’re right about Liu Gao Shi, I haven’t noticed much, but she’s indeed very open minded for an ancient woman.
HAHA totally agreed. Much prefer reading/ translating about Liu Xu’er and her family instead!