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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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Before they left, He shi took the opportunity to secretly pass a string of cash over to He Wenqing. He had been the one who had brought the initial loan, so now, they naturally returned the money to him.
He Wenqing tried to refuse, “The money was originally meant for you and jiefu to see the doctor. We didn’t want or expect you to return it! You have already returned one string of cash to us, keep this string of cash for yourself! What if there is an urgent need? Now, our family’s financial situation isn’t too tight. Ruyu has been able to supplement our income quite a fair bit!”
He shi pushed it back to him insistently. Smiling, she said, “Nowadays our financial situation is also much better. Xu’er is making lots of money, so you should just take it! Your wife has just given you a son, so you should ensure she gets lots of nutritious food so that she can recover smoothly!” She sighed again, “When your wife gave birth, we didn’t manage to come by for a visit. We still owe you a gift…. It’s only because we are siblings – if it were anyone else, they would long ago have held a grudge against us for the slight!”
He Wenqing laughed exasperatedly, “Jie! Can you please stop treating us like strangers?!”
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When Liu Gao shi heard, she was as angry as He shi. She struck the kang and loudly said, “Beat him up! There’s no other way than to beat him up!”
With a troubled expression, He shi said, “Apparently they’ve already beaten him up quite a few times! My younger brothers are also quite sturdy…. It’s just that he’s not afraid of their beatings! Mum, what do you think….”
Liu Gao shi shook her head and said, “Our sayings are right, those who are silly are scared off by people who are unreasonable, but people who are unreasonable have no way to deal with those who are not afraid of death! Since this person isn’t even afraid of being beaten to death, there really isn’t any way to deal with it! Just quickly find another person for your sister to marry!”
He shi’s face was still troubled, “That’s what they planned to do, but isn’t it so strange? My sister has such a good temperament and is such a good catch, but there isn’t a single person coming to propose marriage! My mum said that it’s definitely because of the Mao family! That family must have done something to ruin her chances!”
Liu Gao shi slapped the kang again, “That is definitely it! I’ve seen your sister before – she’s one of the best catches I’ve seen! If no one is coming forward to propose marriage, then obviously someone must have been up to no good!”
Seeing how her nai was praising her xiaoyi, Liu Xu’er immediately got excited. She quickly reminded her nainai. In a crisp, clear voice, she said, “Nai! I think that it would be great if sishu married xiaoyi! Wouldn’t that solve everything? What do you think?”
Liu Gao shi was stunned, while He shi turned and reprimanded her, “What has been up with you these past two days? Why are you always saying that? Did you hear that from someone?”
Liu Xu’er mentally stuck out her tongue. Mum was finally suspicious! She quickly shook her head and said, “No one! No one said anything! I just thought that it would be nice if xiaoyi could be a part of our family! We won’t need to separate, and I wouldn’t need to go so far to get xiaoyi to help me make my clothes!”
He shi obviously bought the excuse. Exasperated and amused, she firmly warned her, “You are not to talk about this again!”
Liu Gao shi quickly asked, “Xu’er…. Where else did you say this?”
He shi said exasperatedly, “Yesterday she said this in front of my mother. Look at this girl….”
Liu Gao shi had a violent bout of coughing. After she stopped, she asked, “What did your mother say?”
He shi was caught off guard. She looked at her dazedly and replied, “My mother…. Didn’t take it seriously. Xu’er was just spouting nonsense…. Mum! What are you thinking? Surely you can’t be taking this seriously. This matter…. Can it even work? Aren’t we all relatives? This isn’t too good is it?”
Liu Gao shi let out an embarrassed laugh. Scratching her head, she said, “Nothing, it’s nothing. I was just asking.”
But she had been too obvious earlier. He shi started to sense something and was solemn. Liu Xu’er sat at the side, observing closely. She thought to herself, does mum really think this is not doable? Do I need to first try and persuade mum?
Right at this moment, something happened.
The women were still warmly chatting with each other when someone called from outside, “Is anyone home?”
Liu Gao shi hurriedly answered, “Yes, yes. Coming!”
He shi had already gone out of the room and saw a forty plus year old woman dressed in indigo blue at the courtyard door. Tidily, she stood there. When she saw them emerge from the house, she immediately smiled.
He shi called out a greeting. “Who are you looking for?”
The woman asked, “Is this the Old Liu residence? Liu Shugen’s residence?”
Liu Shugen was Old Man Liu’s name. He shi quickly answered, “That’s right, that’s right. Please come in.” Since they were guests, they naturally needed to be invited into the house. Liu Gao shi also came out of the room and was courteously greeting the woman.
When they had all sat down in the house, Liu Gao shi asked, “May I know how to address you?”
The woman smiled and introduced herself. “I am from Ximenpo. People call me Matchmaker Su… I am the matchmaker in my village. “
Liu Gao shi and He shi’s facial expressions changed. They quickly smiled and greeted her, while He shi hurried to get her a drink. Liu Gao shi accompanied her in the room as they exchanged pleasantries – how was the walk over? Was it difficult to find the place?
Matchmakers were not to be offended! When people got married, it was said to be at the direction of their parents and with the blessings of a matchmaker. If the matchmaker refused to bless the union, the authorities would not recognise the marriage! Furthermore, in the area, who didn’t have sons and daughters they needed to marry off? But how many people did they actually know?! They needed the connections a matchmaker had to find a suitable match. As such, unless the matchmaker was an an evil person, full of malice who deceived others, they were highly respected.
Matchmaker Su said, “It wasn’t too difficult to find this place! That’s right, who was the young woman earlier?”
Liu Gao shi knew that she wanted to ask if that was a relative or a visitor. If it was a visitor, she wouldn’t say anything in front of He shi, so she quickly smiled and said, “That’s my second daughter-in-law!”
With that, the matchmaker relaxed. When He shi brought the drink over, she smiled and nodded her thanks before saying, “Surely my old sister knows the reason I’ve come? You must have some children who are of marriageable age?”
Liu Gao shi smiled and said, “What a coincidence… My daughter has just been engaged. There’s only my son who hasn’t got a partner. Have you come to propose a match for him?”
Matchmaker Su smiled and said, “Of course! Your son is of such good character, so of course there are people wanting to snatch him up!”
Liu Xu’er sat on the kang, stunned! She had never imagined that someone would come to propose marriage to her sishu! What… What should she do! Originally nai was still worried over having to find a match for him, but now that he’d become a hot ticket item, would she forget about trying to match him with her xiaoyi? After all, there was clear resistance from her mother’s side!
Just as she was fretting, Matchmaker Su started to speak, “I am helping a family from Nanzheng County’s Qianzhuang Village to propose a match….”
She hadn’t finished when both He shi and Liu Gao shi rudely interrupted, “What?!”
Matchmaker Su jumped, “What’s wrong?”
Liu Gao shi smiled and quickly pointed at He shi, “My second daughter-in-law is also from that village! Whose family did you say this was?” She said as she glanced at He shi.
He shi also quickly nodded, “That’s right.”
When Matchmaker Su heard, she smiled and said, “What a coincidence! Then their family should have known. Strange that they didn’t mention it to me…. It’s the family at the entrance of the village, a young girl called Nian Fang. She’s 16 this year.”
Liu Xu’er nearly bit her tongue off! Nian Fang! The person trying to cut between her xiaoyi and sishu was Nian Fang! She must have been dazzled that day by her uncle’s act of heroism and started to have some feelings for him…. No way! Absolutely no way! Sishu was reserved for her xiaoyi!
She gritted her teeth and thought. He shi was surprised into letting out a small laugh. She said, “So it is their family! Nian Fang …. Is already 16?”
Matchmaker Su sized her up in a glance. She could roughly guess her age, and knew that she must have been married out around 10 years ago. So she smiled and said, “That’s right, she’s 16. I don’t know how her father found out, but he said that your family’s Fourth has a good nature and that his character was also good. He mentioned that he’s a hard worker and was a very good man. So he invited me to mention this to you…. What do you think?”
Liu Gao shi and He shi exchanged looks. He shi then went to bring out a plate of melon seeds while Liu Gao shi continued to entertain Matchmaker Su. “Please have some melon seeds. Oh, now that I think about it, there are still watermelon seeds in the kitchen! Second’s wife, why don’t you bring some out for your Aunt to try?”
He shi quickly agreed and went off.
Matchmaker Su was clear about their intentions. She had already explained everything she needed to, so now, it was time for the family to digest the news and discuss it amongst themselves. There was, after all, a due process to follow, so she stopped speaking of this matter. Instead, she engaged in casual conversation with Liu Gao shi, explaining her own village matters, as well as her background as a matchmaker. Apparently, everyone in Qianzhuang Village was familiar with her. Since Second’s wife didn’t recognise her, she must have been married quite a while ago.
He shi and Liu Gao shi very naturally carried on the flow of the conversation, before Matchmaker Su took her leave.
Liu Gao shi and He shi quickly sent her off.
In the room, Liu Xu’er was both stunned and exasperated. She really would never have expected Nian Fang to be so bold as to tell her family members about her sishu and request for them to propose marriage to him!
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Ehhh… what a twist. Noam Fang hah, you have no chance since Shisu was dead serious about Xioayi. Aiyeee~~~ will she become enemy with Xiaoyu once she knew Shisu was only interested in Xiaoyu?
Hahahaha, can’t blame Nian Fang though! Liu Changshi is quite the catch… HAHAHAH