I Have A Secret
Chapter 34

Author: 西西特
Source: BluelightTL

Edited and Proofread by: Blu & Bluelight

The witch trembled and after her eyes darted about, she thought of a plan. She crawled up from the ground, flicked her sleeves, pretentiously gave a cold snort and started to bullshit. “Since you mortals can’t comprehend this witch’s supernatural powers, then forget it. I can’t be bothered to argue with you mortals.”

She then turned around and faced the crowd in the square and, with a distressed expression,  continued to bullshit.

“However, the Demon Qi has invaded too deeply into Young Master Song’s body. If the ritual isn’t performed immediately, he will end up harming someone in the future. When that time comes, no matter how heavenly this witch’s powers are, nothing can be done. It will be too late for regrets.”

When the townspeople heard the witch’s words, they panicked; they had an extreme fear for demons. Some people started to quietly criticize Liu Chu.

Currently, Liu Chu’s face was terribly dark and killing intent emitted from his body. It was extremely terrifying.

In the scorching sun, a chill lingered on his sword.

Not to mention the unskilled masses, even the group of martial artists didn’t dare to lightly make a move against him.

Huang Dan was now fully awake, and he glanced at the grey-haired hunchback old woman. He really couldn’t tell from her thin and skinny figure that she was so good at talking nonsense. He had been in the mountains for so long and didn’t even see a single hair of the demon.

A ray of sunlight reflected off the sword and into Huang Dan’s eyes. His gaze swept to the man beside him, who wanted to kill the old woman.

Huang Dan shook his head at the man. He shouldn’t kill people, otherwise, he would end up in prison for murder.

This account could be settled later after everything was over.

Liu Chu’s thin lips pressed together tightly, and his gaze swept toward the agitated crowd. Restraining a belly full of anger, he said coldly, “Everyone quiet. No matter what happens to Young Master Song in the future, currently, he’s still a human. As long as he has not violated the law, he will be protected by the country’s laws. The cauldron set up by the witch would definitely take his life. The moment he dies, the witch will become a murderer, and you people who had encouraged this will be considered accomplices. All of you will be arrested.”

Then, Liu Chu sneered at the martial artists that were moving to surround him, and he looked at the patriarch and said, “Patriarch Song, although Young Master Song is a member of the Song Family, he’s also a citizen belonging to the imperial court. I wonder if it’s your family law that’s greater or the imperial law that’s greater?”

Facing Liu Chu’s question, the patriarch’s expression sank. He couldn’t answer. He couldn’t say that the family law was greater than the imperial law in the presence of a crowd.

“Song Wang is not only infected with Demon Qi but also has a great connection to Boss Dai’s disappearance. Our Song Family will not accept such a person in the family. I’m sure the imperial court would also be unable to tolerate such a person.”

“That’s right, that’s right. The witch had just sacrificed ten years of her lifespan to open her heavenly eye and has determined that this Song Wang is not only a demon but is also haunted by grievances. That must mean he had killed someone,  most likely it’s the missing Boss Dai.”

Seeing Patriarch Song speak, the witch immediately became courageous. She subconsciously stroked the braids on her head triumphantly, but then she remembered that the braids had just been cut off by Liu Chu, and her expression turned awkward.

The townspeople wholly believed in the witch, and everyone had heard her words crystal clear. This Young Master Song was entangled with grievances, and eight out of ten chances it belonged to Boss Dai’s spirit. Otherwise, why would Young Master Song be the only one to return while Boss Dai was strangely missing.

The patriarch cast an approving gaze at the witch, its meaning was ‘your heavenly eye was opened at the perfect timing’. The witch distinctly felt the patriarch’s praise and she blinked triumphantly, wearing an expression that seemed to say that she was unparalleled and opening the heavenly eye was as easy as drinking water.

It’s just that Patriarch Song didn’t seem to have understood her expression. He thought that the old woman was flirting with him. So the patriarch’s face turned a little blue, thinking that the old woman was already in her seventies to eighties, yet she still lacked self-respect.

A pity that no one saw this weird scene.

“Patriarch Song, you’re quite right. Young Master Song is indeed related to the disappearance of Boss Dai.”

Liu Chu suddenly smiled. “I was ordered to investigate the disappearance of Boss Dai, and Young Master Song is the only witness. I need to bring him away now as the government has several questions for him.”

The patriarch didn’t say a word, his face was darker than the toilet pit.

It seemed that he didn’t expect Liu Chu to turn the tables and overturn the matter that was almost settled.

Liu Chu looked at the witch, the warning in his eyes obvious. “As for whether Young Master Song is still human, that will need to wait for the government’s investigation and final verdict. I feel that those who deceive people with tales of demons and cheat their money are people who should be arrested first.”

The witch suddenly felt the situation becoming dangerous and she quickly winked at the male servant. “Eh, Tong’er, the cauldron of Ninth Mysterious Heaven Hemorrhoid Pill at home is almost done. Let’s go back quickly and don’t miss the timing to open it.” [1]

“Yes.”

The male servant and the witch had cooperated for many years and had a tacit understanding. They immediately jumped onto the worn-out ox cart and quickly fled under the bewildering looks of everyone, leaving only a pile of cow dung behind.

Seeing the witch fleeing, Liu Chu did not stop her. What he must do now was to save the person beside him.

“Patriarch Song, the government must bring Young Master Song away today. I hope you won’t get in the way. If some matters end up blowing out of proportion, no one will escape unscathed. Don’t you agree?”

Liu Chu stared at the patriarch, a hint of playfulness in his eyes.

At this time, the patriarch seemed to have thought of something, and his face twitched. After all, everyone had some connections within the government. The witch had also left and the ritual couldn’t be held anymore. He felt unwilling, but he could only relent after considering the overall situation.

“Alright, go ahead and take Song Wang.”

The cauldron and the firewood in the clearing were removed, but the speculations in people’s hearts continued to exist. Rumours began circulating in the town.

As long as Boss Dai didn’t come back, the rumours would not disappear.

The gates of Song Mansion were tightly shut.

Huang Dan took a bath and changed into a long gown. After drinking two sips of hot tea, the feeling of having narrowly escaped death still lingered in his heart. “I almost became a pot of boiled meat.”

Liu Chu had been scared to death. Even now, his breathing still had not stabilized. He slammed a fist on the table. “What I know is that the old woman still has more tricks. You will be taken out of the pot and thrown into the fire to be baked for seven days, and then your bones will be soaked in a jar of chicken blood.”

Huang Dan’s Adam’s apple rolled, and he swallowed the tea in his mouth. “You’ve heard of that old woman before?”

Liu Chu touched the young man’s hand. “I’ve heard a few things.”

“She’s the most famous witch in the neighbourhood. There was a daughter-in-law of a family who gave birth to ten girls in a row. Her biggest wish was to have a boy. When she conceived the eleventh child, the mother-in-law and her husband scraped together money to invite the witch. A boy was then really born.”

“Another was a child in a village who couldn’t stop being feverish, sleep talking and shivering. The family invited the witch over, speculating that something must have caused him to lose his soul outside. The witch threw a few chopsticks into a pot and called for the soul, and the child recovered.”

Huang Dan, “…must have been coincidences.”

Anger appeared in Liu Chu’s eyes. “I won’t comment on those. Today, the old woman said you have Demon Qi, which was obviously a random fabrication. If you didn’t stop me, I would’ve thrown her into the cauldron.”

Huang Dan, “Then you’ll be squatting in prison right now.”

Liu Chu’s low voice sounded. “Whatever.”

Turning his hand over to hold the man’s hand, Huang Dan sighed. The kidnapping this time was actually instructed by the patriarch and not the witch. He had seen them communicating with each other with their gazes.

The patriarch knew that personally stepping up would not be as effective as the witch doing it.

A few random words from the witch could turn imaginary things into cold hard facts.

The townspeople were all led by their noses.

“Why is everyone so easily incited?”

Liu Chu, “In every place, there exist people who entrust their wishes to the gods, and they think that witches are able to communicate with the gods. As long as there are people who need them, witches will always exist, as they rely on this to gain benefits. In the hearts of those foolish people, whatever the witches say and do are all correct. They would rather believe in witches than in their own relatives.”

“I’d dealt with a case where a couple quarrelled all year round. The witch in their village said that there’s a heavy unlucky air surrounding the elderly in their family, which affected the Feng Shui in their family. The couple secretly killed the elderly, and the mastermind was the elderly’s son. ” [2]

Huang Dan shivered.

People’s hearts were more terrifying than monsters.

The so-called witch precisely took advantage of that.

Liu Chu’s gaze moved away from Huang Dan and stopped somewhere empty. “Besides, what’s true and what’s false in this world is questionable. Whatever it is, as long as it’s spread by people, adding on to it the people maliciously twisting and exaggerating the events, the real will become fake while the fake will become real.”

The corner of his lips lifted into a sneer. “Perhaps good people will be treated as evil and be killed, forever unable to move on and reincarnate, while evil people can enjoy respect and love.”

Huang Dan looked over. The man had already hidden away all his emotions. “Those witches must have slipped up before right? Everyone still believes them?”

Liu Chu stroked the young man’s head. “My young master, you and I don’t believe it, but we can’t expect others to be like us, because everyone has their own beliefs.”

Huang Dan thought for a while and agreed with the man’s every word. Not to mention, it was the same in his world.

If you post a thread about superstition on the forum, you might get sprayed to death. [3]

Liu Chu coldly snorted. “I won’t let the old woman go scot-free.”

Huang Dan placed the teacup down. Even if the old woman was killed, there would still be a second and a third one. What must be killed was instead the devil haunting people’s hearts.

After a brief silence, Liu Chu asked him, “What were you doing before you fell into a coma?”

Huang Dan, “I went to sleep after drinking medicine.”

Liu Chu frowned, “Whose hand did the medicine pass through?”

Huang Dan, “Juan’er is responsible for my daily life, same with the medicine. She’s usually the one who serves it to me.”

Liu Chu narrowed his eyes. “Juan’er?”

Huang Dan, “Even if it was a problem with the medicine that got me unconscious, it has nothing to do with Juan’er. She has no reason to harm me.”

Liu Chu clicked his tongue. “Young master, people’s hearts are unfathomable. Even for married couples, close relatives or close friends, they can take advantage of the other party’s guard being down to stab them in the back. Not to mention, you and the maid aren’t even relatives.”

The way he looked at the young man was as though he was looking at a simple-minded and innocent child, full of pity and worry. “You have to understand that benefits can turn someone into a beast.”

Huang Dan looked at the man and said after a while, “I know. However, there are many sides to everything and everyone, and what you’ve said is only one of the dark sides.”

Liu Chu chuckled, “I’m an unrefined person. I won’t be able to understand any principles you say.”

Huang Dan felt that the man’s smile was full of sorrow. “Mr System, Liu Chu must be a person with a story. I want to know.”

The system, “This humble one has checked. It costs 1000 points.”

Huang Dan remembered that he only had around 200 points. “It’s too expensive. Can’t it be cheaper?”

The system, “Mr Huang, I’m sorry. This price is set by the leader so there’s no discount. This humble one has no right to give you any preferential treatment.”

Huang Dan, “It’s okay, I understand.”

He asked the man, “Liu Chu, can you tell me about your past?”

Liu Chu held the young man’s chin. A smile graced his lips, looking very nice. “My past is only for my wife to listen.”

Huang Dan, “Then forget it. I’m a man and can’t be your wife.”

Liu Chu’s gaze was scorching. “If I say can, means can. Young master, are you willing to be my wife?”

Huang Dan, “Not willing. Sounds unpleasant.”[4]

Liu Chu, “…”

With one hand holding the edge of the table, he leaned forward with an aggressive aura, but his words were full of tenderness. “I, Liu Chu, belong to you. You can do whatever you want.”

Huang Dan’s voice was blocked by the man.

The hand holding Huang Dan tightened further and further, and the force between their mouths was so great that he cried.

Huang Dan pushed the man away but was hugged again.

While kissing the salty tears on his face, Liu Chu said, “You can’t scare me like this next time. I’m old and can’t stand the stimulus.”

Huang Dan sniffed, “How old?”

Liu Chu said very very old.

Huang Dan, “…”

He rubbed his face against the man’s palm. It was rough and painful. “Regarding Juan’er, I’ll question her myself.”

“It was such a big incident. Your family’s steward should have already locked Juan’er up.”

Liu Chu gently stroked the young man’s ear a few times. “Before your grandma wakes up, don’t meet Juan’er alone. You’re too soft-hearted, I’m afraid you won’t be able to ask anything and instead get information coaxed out of you.”

Huang Dan, “Okay.”

Liu Chu looked at his tearful appearance and couldn’t help kissing him again. “I’ll stay here for now. We’ll talk about it again when your grandma wakes up.”

Huang Dan, “Then I’ll ask the steward to arrange a room for you.”

Liu Chu bit the young man’s lower lip. “No, I will stay here.”

Huang Dan hissed in pain. “Someone will find out.”

Liu Chu laughed. He sat on Huang Dan’s lap and, with a thick skin, calmly said, “Find out what? We’re innocent.”

Huang Dan, “…”

His legs felt heavy. “Why are you sitting on my lap?”

Liu Chu was a little aggrieved. “I had asked you to sit on my lap a few times but you refused, so I have to do it instead.”

Huang Dan muttered, “You’re already sitting on my legs, yet you still say we’re innocent.”

Liu Chu looked askance at him. “What did you say?”

Huang Dan reached out his hand and squeezed. “I said, you have very upturned butts.”

The tip of Liu Chu’s ears turned red.

In the evening, the steward came and knocked on the door. “Young master, the Old Madam is awake.”

The two people on the bed were sound asleep.

The steward outside the door knocked again, his voice louder. “Young master? The Old Madam wants to see you.”

Liu Chu frowned and patted the young man lying in his arms. “Wake up.”

Huang Dan yawned. When he heard the steward’s voice, his sleepiness disappeared immediately. He sat up and said to the man, “You stay in the room. I’ll go out for a while.”

Liu Chu pulled the young man down and helped him wipe the drool at the corner  of his mouth. “Call me if something happens.”

Huang Dan fixed up his gown and quickly walked over to open the door.

The steward glanced into the room and only said, “Young master, let’s go.”

Regarding what happened today, everyone in the mansion kept their mouth tightly shut, lest they accidentally said the wrong thing and got into trouble. They were just servants and only needed to do their jobs well.

Song Yuan shi sat on the bed. Her complexion was very poor, but she was in a good mood knowing that her grandson was safe. “Ah Wang, the steward told me about what happened today. Our Song Family owes Liu Chu a debt.”

Huang Dan, “It’s two.”

Song Yuan shi, “Same difference. Either way, it’s still owing him. Don’t interfere, grandma will settle it.”

Huang Dan replied okay.

A stern look fleeted through Song Yuan shi’s eyes. “Ah Wang, I know that you have been wronged today. Don’t be afraid. As long as I’m still alive, I will definitely seek justice for you.”

Huang Dan, “The people outside said that I have Demon Qi.”

Song Yuan shi’s voice turned cold. “Don’t bother with those people. They are a bunch of lunatics, and this town will be destroyed in their hands sooner or later!”

Huang Dan stared at the old lady. “Grandma, Boss Dai still hasn’t come back and can’t be found.”

“What does the life and death of others have to do with us?”

Song Yuan shi held her grandson’s hand and said earnestly, “Ah Wang, how many times have I told you that you shouldn’t be nosy and that you should never put yourself in a desperate situation for anyone, even for me.”

She looked gently at her grandson. “Remember, people should be selfish, or else they will be destroyed by heaven and earth.”

Huang Dan was thoughtful. The old lady’s words were self-contradictory. Earlier, she had mocked the townspeople but now, what she said was basically telling him to be like them.

“The patriarch should be changed.”

Song Yuan shi, “Ah Wang, you will be the next patriarch. Grandma will help you.”

Huang Dan, “Grandma, I don’t want to be the patriarch.”

Song Yuan shi’s tone was stern, “You are my grandson and the Song Family’s heir. You can’t do things based on what you like. That position will be yours. Ah Wang, don’t let grandma down.”

Huang Dan lowered his eyes. “Okay.”

After a short silence, Huang Dan asked, “Grandma, where’s Juan’er?”

Song Yuan shi, “She’s locked up in the firewood room.”

Huang Dan asked, “Did you find anything out?”

Song Yuan shi snorted coldly, “Grandma didn’t expect that little girl to be so stubborn. She didn’t respond at all when questioned.”

Huang Dan’s eyelids twitched. He was afraid that torture was most likely used.

Not long after, two servants dragged Juan’er over. The cloth gown on her body was stained red with blood, leaving a bloody trail behind her.

Huang Dan shouted, “Juan’er.”

Juan’er twitched and slowly raised her head. There was blood on her forehead, her lips were cracked and her face was badly swollen.

Huang Dan frowned.

Song Yuan shi asked her personal maid to support her to sit up. She leaned against the headboard, coughed a few times, and then said, “Juan’er, in front of the young master, do you still not plead guilty?”

Juan’er looked up at Huang Dan.

Huang Dan noticed that there were tears at the corners of her eyes.

Song Yuan shi asked several times, and Juan’er shook her head every time. “Since you can’t speak, there’s no point in having a tongue. Might as well cut it off and feed it to dogs. Someone come!”

The steward ordered a servant to go prepare.

Juan’er’s whole body trembled.

Huang Dan stood in front of Juan’er. “Grandma, to cut her tongue off before making sure what really happened, isn’t it too…”

“So foolishly soft-hearted!”

Song Yuan shi was very agitated, and her chest sharply fluctuated. “Your medicine only passed through this girl’s hand, and she is the only one who can freely enter and exit your room. Ah Wang, don’t forget how painful your wound was after it has scarred. Today, if Liu Chu had not arrived in the nick of time, you would have lost your life while I wouldn’t have been able to live with it. The entire Song Family would have been ruined in her hands.” [5]

She scolded her grandson. “Move aside!”

Huang Dan didn’t move.

He felt that he hadn’t treated Juan’er badly, the original owner also thought the same. Juan’er had many opportunities to harm him, but she had no motive to. She’s also not a demon since she could cry.

The old lady had no evidence, but she would rather kill by mistake than let her go.

Song Yuan shi ordered, “What are you all standing around in a daze for? Quickly take the young master away.”

Huang Dan was held by the servants and brought away. He turned his head and asked, “Grandma, when you give your prayers to the Buddha every day, what do you recite?”

Song Yuan shi froze, and then she heaved a deep sigh. She called her grandson over to the bed and spoke in a volume that only the pair of grandmother and grandson could hear. “Ah Wang, your father’s death was not caused by other people’s schemes but by himself. Kindness is not necessarily reciprocated in kind.”

“Have you carefully thought it over?”

Huang Dan, “Grandma, it never hurts to be kind to others.”

Juan’er, who lay on the ground, moved her eyes. Tears slid down her face and diluted the blood on it. She hung her head, her thin body trembling slightly.

Song Yuan shi closed her eyes and repeated ‘forget it’ a few times, then she looked at the person lying on the ground. “Although you can’t speak, you’re not deaf. You should have heard every word clearly. It’s the young master who pleaded for you.”

“You shouldn’t need me to teach you the principle of ‘know gratitude and repay your favours’. Juan’er, I won’t pursue the matter about the medicine anymore, and you should also never show up around Song Mansion again. You’re on your own.”

Juan’er kowtowed to Huang Dan and Song Yuan shi.

Huang Dan inwardly thought that it’s good for her to leave; leave Song Mansion and leave Yueshan Town. Anywhere was fine, just don’t come back.

In the evening, there were three people seated at the dining table in the front hall. Besides Huang Dan and the old lady, there was also Liu Chu.

Song Yuan shi’s intention of ordering servants to prepare this table of wine and dishes was obvious -to thank Liu Chu for helping her grandson and the Song Family.

Seeing the old lady toasting to himself, Liu Chu hurriedly stood up and said, “Old Madam is too courteous.”

Song Yuan shi, “Commander Liu, what you did for the Song Family today is not something that can be offset with just a cup of wine and a word of thanks.”

Liu Chu took a sip of the wine, letting the burning taste spread in his mouth. He moved his hand down and secretly pinched the young man’s waist. “Old Madam, Young Master Song and I are acquainted and we hit it off very well. I won’t watch him get into an accident without doing anything.”

Song Yuan shi signalled with her eyes, and the steward left. When he returned, he held a long wooden box in his hand.

When the wooden box opened, a simple looking sword with its handle inlaid with black jade was seen lying quietly in the box, emitting a faint cyan light.

Liu Chu discerned the origin of the sword. “Old Madam, this gift is too precious. I can’t afford to accept it.”

Song Yuan shi, “I can afford it. My grandson’s life is a priceless treasure.”

Liu Chu had no objections. “I agree.”

Huang Dan’s eyes twitched.

Song Yuan shi asked, “Commander Liu, what did you just say?”

Liu Chu, “Thank you, Old Madam. I will treasure this sword.”

Regardless of whether it’s the grandson or the Song Family, the old lady made it clear that she didn’t want to owe Liu Chu anything, so she used a treasured sword to repay him and clear the accounts up.

Song Yuan shi asked the steward to prepare a room for Liu Chu.

In the middle of the night, Liu Chu avoided the servants in the mansion and secretly went to Huang Dan’s room. He got into the bed, hugged Huang Dan in his arms and kissed him. “Your grandma doesn’t like me very much.”

Huang Dan felt very sleepy. “I can tell.”

Liu Chu pulled the quilt down a little and continued kissing him. “It’s okay. I only need you to like me.”

Huang Dan felt muddle-headed. “Don’t hug me. It’s too hot.”

It wasn’t even cooling at night.

Liu Chu also felt hot and was sweating profusely, but he didn’t let go and held Huang Dan even tighter in his arms.

It was so hot that Huang Dan felt like he was being roasted.

When he woke up the next morning, he was alone in bed, and his clothes stank.

Liu Chu asked Si Mao to head back and find out the situation in the county, while he stayed in the town to investigate the whereabouts of Boss Dai.

Juan’er had left, Huang Dan also didn’t want a new maid. He didn’t want to have any relationship with the people here, not even as master and servant.

After staying quietly in the house for a few days, Huang Dan went to the meditation hall to look for the old lady. After kowtowing to the Buddha, he brought up his main purpose. “Grandma, that day when I was in the pit, Boss Dai told me that she saw you in the hallway on the night Boss Zhang met with an accident. Is that true?”

Song Yuan shi’s eyes lowered to her rosary. “Yes, grandma did go to the hallway.”

Her hand didn’t stop pushing the black rosary beads, one at a time. “At that time, grandma was prepared to sleep when I faintly heard movement outside, so I went out to take a look.”

Huang Dan asked, “Then, grandma, did you see anything?”

Song Yuan shi, “Eyes.”

Huang Dan didn’t understand. “What eyes?”

Song Yuan shi, “A pair of silver eyes.”

Huang Dan froze. Could it be the demon? “Are there only eyes? You didn’t see anything else, or who it is?”

Song Yuan shi said no. “The door to Boss Zhang’s room was only half-open at the time, and it was pitch black inside.”

Huang Dan stared at her for a while, and then pursed his lips. The old lady said before that demons would bring about misfortune. Probably because of that, she felt that she had not long left to live and thus started to eat the food she didn’t like before, so she would have as little regrets as possible before she died. She even chanted prayers here all day long.

When she stared at Ye Lan back then, she was probably measuring her up as a potential granddaughter-in-law.

Huang Dan brought up the ancient book. “It contains a part about demons, which mentioned that demons cannot shed tears and…”

A crisp sound suddenly interrupted him.

The rosary in Song Yuan shi’s hand had fallen to the ground and her expression had changed. “Why is that ancient book in your hands?”

Huang Dan said he previously found it in the teacher’s room.

Song Yuan shi ordered, “Bring the ancient book over now!”

“Grandma, why are you…”

Huang Dan found the old lady’s reaction very weird; her eyes were opened so wide that it almost popping out. He didn’t continue speaking and went back to his room to retrieve the ancient book.

Song Yuan shi placed the ancient book under the incense burner table and pressed it down several times, making sure it was tightly secured. “Ah Wang, the contents here are all fabricated. You don’t need to take it seriously, and you must never read this again.”

Huang Dan, “Kay.”

He concealed his expression. “Grandma, do you have any impression of the grand opening of Boss Dai’s restaurant?”

Song Yuan shi picked up the rosary. “I don’t remember much. Grandma only remembers that during the year when the restaurant first opened, old man Zhao had just moved into the town and already caused a huge ruckus.”

Huang Dan’s eyes flashed. It seemed that it was not Boss Dai, but old man Zhao, who lied.

Was he the demon?

Huang Dan had a headache. He couldn’t find any clues that pointed to the old man being a demon. While interacting with him, he also didn’t seem like one.

Song Yuan shi meaningfully said, “Ah Wang, grandma knows that you are helping Commander Liu with the case, but you have to do everything within your limits. Don’t forget, safety first.”

Huang Dan, “I know.”

At noon, Huang Dan headed to the private school.

Old man Zhao was sunning books again. When he saw Huang Dan, he called him to come and help. [6]

Huang Dan casually said, “Teacher, I told my grandma about the couplet you wrote for Boss Dai. She said you wrote it well.”

Old man Zhao snorted. “Don’t try and hoodwink this old man. Your grandma has been ridiculing me her whole life and has never complimented me once.”

Huang Dan asked Mr System for a picture of a smile and his picture appeared. When he tried imitating it, it turned out looking very fake.

In the eyes of others, that expression was like being embarrassed after their lie had been exposed.

While opening a book and spreading it out in the sun, Huang Dan displayed an expression of suddenly having remembered something. “Teacher, did you remember it wrong? Grandma told me that when Boss Dai first opened her restaurant, you had just moved into the town.”

Old man Zhao stopped stroking his white beard. “Aiya, look at my memory. Why am I so blur.”

“Back then, I did write couplets for a restaurant, but it was not for Boss Dai’s restaurant but another one. Now, that place has long been rebuilt into a brothel.”

Huang Dan, “It’s normal to misremember.”

“On the day of the restaurant’s re-opening, I had blamed Boss Dai for not remembering anything.”

Old man Zhao looked embarrassed. “I’m quite embarrassed now that I’ve properly recalled. When Boss Dai comes back, I should pay her a visit to apologize.”

Huang Dan, “I wonder how Boss Dai is now.”

Old man Zhao sighed and plopped onto the ground. “Good people will naturally be protected by Heaven.”

About the things Boss Dai told him, Huang Dan went to verify them one by one. He followed the trail on the perfume and dug something out: Boss Dai’s friend was closely related to the Ye Family.

Huang Dan speculated whether Ye Lan would also own a bottle of the perfume.

Without hesitation, Huang Dan gave an excuse of missing Ye Lan to enter her room, where he saw a bottle of perfume sitting on the dressing table. He unscrewed the lid to smell it, and his pupils shrank. It was the same perfume smell as the one Boss Dai wore.

Father Ye, “This perfume was bought by a friend of mine. There are two bottles in total. I gave one to Lan Lan and the other to my Second Concubine.”

He sighed. “Lan Lan never listens to advice and has her own ideas. After she saw Second Concubine using this perfume, she never used it anymore.”

Huang Dan, “Uncle, Ye Lan will be back.”

Father Ye’s anger still had not dissipated, and his face turned green. “If she had any conscience left, she would not have done anything to ruin her reputation and shame the entire Ye Family!”

Huang Dan, “Uncle, these are not important. The most important thing is to make sure she’s safe and sound.”

Father Ye sighed. “Nephew’s right. If Lan Lan never comes back, I won’t have the face to meet her mother in the underworld.”

Huang Dan chatted with Father Ye for a while. He wanted to see Ye Lan’s second mother, but the other party did not show up even after a long time. [7]

He had no choice but to leave.

Boss Dai didn’t come back and so the restaurant, which had just reopened, closed again.

After inquiring around, Huang Dan went to look for a shop assistant.

Seeing Huang Dan, the shop assistant politely served tea and anxiously asked, “Young Master Song, may I know why you’re looking for this little one?”

Huang Dan didn’t beat around the bush and directly asked him about the restaurant’s workers.

The assistant thought that Huang Dan was interested in the restaurant, and he immediately became talkative. After all, he was just a handyman. It didn’t matter who the boss was as long as he had work to do and salary to receive.

Huang Dan listened to the assistant talk about trivial matters, who also didn’t forget to add in some flattery, and it was added in impeccably smoothly.

At the end of it, the assistant finally brought up the cook who Huang Dan had been waiting to hear. He said that the other party’s cooking skills were very good, that he was a good person and that there was a period of time where he was especially enthusiastic, firmly insisting on taking over the night shifts.

Huang Dan, “Really?”

The assistant repeatedly said yes, and added that Boss Zhang was originally on night duty the day that incident happened, but the cook had said he was free and thus replaced him for the night shift.

Huang Dan rubbed his fingers together. What Boss Dai told him were all verified.

He should be able to remove Boss Dai from the list of suspects now, right?

Huang Dan hesitated again.

He decided to wait for a while more. It didn’t matter if Boss Dai came back dead or alive, at least that would give some insight into the situation. To just vanish into thin air made everything too confusing. 

On the bulletin board were the portraits of Boss Dai and Ye Lan. There was no news on them.

Si Mao came back from the county and said there were no issues, therefore Liu Chu continued to stay in the Song Mansion.

One morning, Liu Chu received a report from the neighbour of the cook, who said that on the night of the cook’s death, a dark figure had jumped out from his backyard and bumped into him. However, he couldn’t see the person’s face and only smelled a fragrance. The person also felt very skinny, which was unlike a man.

At this moment, a rumour of someone having seen the Second Concubine with the cook appeared in the town. It was unknown where it originated from.

To Liu Chu, it was like God gave him a helping hand.

Liu Chu went to Boss Dai’s residence and took the perfume to let the cook’s neighbour smell, who then confirmed that it was the same fragrance.

After that, Liu Chu began to investigate Ye Family’s Second Concubine.

This investigation revealed that Second Concubine‘s father was a butcher, and she had followed her father and mother to slaughter pigs and peddle meat since childhood.

The Second Concubine was born pretty and didn’t want to continue staying in that poor place, so she left her hometown and finally entered the brothel to sell art.

Liu Chu followed this trail and found a few things that filled him with admiration for the Second Concubine.

After sorting out all the clues, Liu Chu brought several of his subordinates to the Ye Mansion, including the neighbour who reported the incident.

Father Ye took into consideration the negative impact it might have on the family, so at this time, apart from Commander Liu, there were only him, Baiying and her personal maids in the Ye Family’s main hall.

“Commander Liu, I have already allowed you to take people to search Baiying’s room. Can you tell me now why you suspect her to be related to the cook’s death?”

Although Father Ye was the head of the Ye Family, he did not show any attitude and also didn’t put on airs of a big family.

When Liu Chu told him that he suspected Baiying to be related to the cook’s death and wanted to search the room, he agreed without hesitation.

Liu Chu sat in a chair drinking tea. “Lord Ye, please wait for a while more. After the search is over, I will definitely give you a satisfactory answer.”

“Okay, I believe you.”

Father Ye didn’t speak any more and just asked the butler to serve tea to everyone present.

Baiying, who was standing on the side, was dapping the corners of her lips with a handkerchief. Her face was very pale, and it was unknown if it was due to not applying enough rogue or something else.

She was called over just now and learned that Father Ye had allowed the constables to search her room. She had strongly opposed it on the spot, but it was of no use.

The hall was as silent as the grave.

Soon, a constable walked into the hall and said something into Liu Chu’s ear.

Liu Chu’s legs were crossed in a casual posture. “Lord Ye, since there are no outsiders here, I’ll be frank.”

Father Ye motioned for Liu Chu to continue. “Okay, go ahead.”

Liu Chu, “Father Ye must have heard of the case about the restaurant’s cook being murdered in his own house.”

Father Ye, “Yes, I’ve heard of it. It was said that he was killed by a demon, and his lower body is missing.”

Liu Chu nodded, then shook his head. “It’s correct that the lower body went missing, but he was not killed by a demon. He was murdered by someone.”

“What?” Father Ye looked shocked. “Who could be such a lunatic? Did Commander Liu manage to find any clues?”

“To tell you the truth, we did find some clues, but there are still some suspicious points that needed resolving, that’s why we came here today.”

With a faint smile, Liu Chu looked towards Baiying standing on the side.

Baiying lowered her eyes.

Father Ye’s eyes widened. “Oh? Commander Liu is implying that my Second Concubine is acquainted with the cook’s murderer?”

Liu Chu blew away the floating tea leaves, took a sip of the tea and didn’t reply.

Father Ye noticed Baiying’s face turning paler, and he sternly said, “Spill everything you know to Commander Liu.”

Baiying, with an ignorant expression, shook her handkerchief and said, “My lord, I’m innocent. Something that even the government can’t find out, how could I, as a woman, know? The matter of the cannibal demon should be left to the witch. I’m always at home and have never left, so it’s impossible for me to know anything about outside matters.”

Father Ye stared at Baiying for a long time before looking away. He believed that a woman who abided by the Three Obediences and Four Virtues would have nothing to do with this matter. [8]

So he looked at the person drinking tea. “Commander Liu, could you have made a mistake?”

Liu Chu shook his head. Father Ye was shrewd and invincible in the business field, yet he was so dull regarding domestic affairs.

Immediately, Liu Chu told Father Ye about the rumours circulating in the town, about how someone had witnessed the Second Concubine and the cook’s night rendezvous. He also made sure to emphasize that on the night just before the cook was murdered, the cook had secretly gone to meet the Second Concubine.

A shock expression appeared on Father Ye’s face. He was sceptical at first, but after listening further, his expression became uglier and uglier; first it turned green, then white and finally, it became red from anger, like a volcano about to erupt.

Especially when he recalled a past event.

He couldn’t remember when it had started; maybe it was last year, or maybe it was the previous year. There were some rumours in the mansion that the Second Concubine was not accustomed to eating the dishes made by the cooks at home, so she insisted on inviting the restaurant’s cook over to make a few dishes.

He didn’t care about it at the time and just thought that Baiying was being picky. Now, he understood that inviting him over to make food was a ruse and having a rendezvous with the cook was her real purpose.

“You…you…”

Father Ye tremblingly pointed a finger at Baiying for a long time, unable to say anything even after half a day, and finally could only sternly scold, “Kneel for me right now!”

“My Lord, you must not listen to the rumours. I’ve never been unfaithful. I don’t even know that cook or whatever.”

Baiying quickly knelt on the ground, held Father Ye’s calf and begged pitifully. She also secretly  glanced at Liu Chu with a vicious look.

“Shut up. At this point, you’re still trying to deny it. Do you want Commander Liu to bring those witnesses to our Ye Mansion and directly call your bluff?”

Father Ye fiercely slammed on the table and the teacup on it fell to the ground, the porcelain pieces and tea spilling everywhere.

Baiying wailed that she had been with Father Ye since she was a teenager and that even if she had not contributed anything to the Ye Family, she had at least worked hard to produce a son.

Once the child was mentioned, Father Ye kicked Baiying aside. “Is Xiao Bao actually the cook’s?”

Baiying wailing became even louder. “It’s not, My Lord! Xiao Bao is your flesh and blood, the blood of the Ye Family!”

Father Ye heavily breathed and kicked her further away.

Baiying was kicked aside, and she crawled over again, continuously bawling that she was wrong.

The servants in the hall were all Baiying’s people. Among the three of them, one was already scared out of her wits and was shivering.

Father Ye raised his hand.

The steward brought that servant out. He was also a very capable person, otherwise, he would not have become the chief steward of the Ye Family. He soon returned to the living room alone, carrying a strong scent of blood.

“Second Concubine’s personal maid has confessed. She indeed has an affair with the cook, and…”

The steward paused, wondering if he should continue.

“Speak.”

After the furious Father Ye heard the steward’s words, he slumped onto the chair like a deflated ball.

“And they frequently have late-night rendezvous, where they would return home only in the wee hours every time.”

After the steward finished speaking, no one in the hall spoke; even Baiying had stopped trying to defend herself. The air was frozen, and the hall was in complete silence.

After a long time, Father Ye slowly asked, “Since this slut has a secret affair with the cook, what relation does she have with the cook’s death?”

Liu Chu revealed something shocking, “The cook was actually killed by the Second Concubine.”

“What?”

Father Ye was shocked. That surprised him more than learning that his family’s Second Concubine had cheated on him.

The tragic way the cook died came to mind. It was really hard to imagine that it was the work of a soft and weak woman.

“Since this slut has an affair with the cook, why would she want to kill him? Have you found evidence that she’s the murderer?”

Father Ye, who had received too many blows, no longer wanted to dwell on the affair and instead focused on the case.

Liu Chu detailed out the pieces of evidence he had found. He asked Si Mao and a constable to bring in the small box found in Baiying’s room. After it was opened, a black dress was exposed.

Baiying stared at the small box as though she had seen a ghost, and she sank to the ground, her face ash grey.

Liu Chu spoke at a speed that’s neither too fast nor too slow. “A witness said he smelled a special fragrance on the murderer. Later, we confirmed that it’s the same perfume as the one Boss Dai uses. There are only three people in the town who own it: Ye Lan, Boss Dai and the Second Concubine. The perfume fragrance still remains on this black dress that she wore when she committed the murder.“

Father Ye took the dress handed over by Liu Chu and sniffed it lightly. It was indeed the perfume that Baiying always used, which Lan Lan and Boss Dai also owned a bottle of.

The three bottles were brought back from abroad.

Not to mention the town, even in the county, it was impossible to buy it.

Liu Chu looked at the woman who had been on the ground howling for a long time without shedding even a tear. “Second Concubine, we already have conclusive evidence that you killed the cook and shifted the blame to the demon. I hope you can take the initiative to explain how you conspired with the cook to kill the salesman.”

“Salesman? This slut actually has the blood of two people on her hands. One really can’t judge a book by its cover. I didn’t expect that the person I share a bed with has a serpent heart.”

At this point, Father Ye was not angry at Baiying for two-timing him anymore, because such a vicious woman shouldn’t be kept in the Ye Family.

“Slut, I advise you to confess. You should know how an infidel woman is dealt with in the Ye Family per our house rules.”

Father Ye indifferently looked at Baiying, his tone cold.

Baiying, who was kneeling on the ground, seemed to have thought of something. She trembled and a trace of fear appeared in her eyes. Her fate in the Ye Family would be far worse than if she admitted to the murder and was then executed by the government.

For the government, it’s nothing more than beheading, but the Ye Family’s punishment for infidel women was too horrible. It would be a case of wishing for death but unable to die.

When she thought up to here, Baiying’s expression changed, expressing that admitting to the murder was no longer a burden but instead a ladder to ascend to heaven.

Then the expression changed again to unwillingness, and she squeezed the handkerchief in her hand, her fingertips slightly trembling.

Seeing Baiying not speaking, Father Ye smashed the ashtray that was on the table. “Go and bring me the young master!”

Baiying begged in panic, “My Lord, Xiao Bao is still a child. Don’t bring him over.”

Father Ye’s face was gloomy. “If you don’t want him to see your current appearance, then spill all the dirty things that you’ve done.”

Baiying’s lips trembled, and she confessed everything.

She married into the Ye Mansion and became the Second Concubine.

Father Ye has no affection for Baiying, and because Ye Lan hated Baiying, he rarely went to see her. Even if he went, once he had worn back his clothes, he would immediately leave. There were times where he didn’t even take off his clothes.

Baiying was a woman, and she was at the peak of her youth when she had married in, so she couldn’t bear the loneliness.

She thought of ways to attain Father Ye’s affection, but she had never succeeded.

Father Ye was always missing his daughter who had gone abroad to study, and he frequently talked about her. Baiying was also prohibited from entering his daughter’s room.

Years later, Baiying accepted reality. She used to cry whenever she was wronged, but now, even if she were to scream her throat out, she would also not shed a tear.

Baiying gave birth to a son for the Ye Family. She originally thought that with a son, her standing in the family would increase and good days would be ahead, but who knew that Father Ye still didn’t care about the pair of mother and son.

She had no choice but to submit to her fate.

Two years ago, Baiying ran into the cook while eating at the restaurant. At that time, she only thought that the other party’s cooking skills were good, and nothing else.

A few days later, on a rainy day, Baiying and the maid got separated, and she ran into the cook again. At that time, he was being intimate with a lady.

The cook was startled when he saw Baiying.

Baiying couldn’t help looking in his direction, her heartbeat accelerating and her face flushed and incredibly hot.

That day, the cook let the lady leave.

Baiying and he started an affair. It was at first only once, then twice, and then thrice.

Slowly, Baiying and the cook became closer, and they started rolling in the sheets. They were drunk on the sudden happiness, thinking that no one would know about their secret affair, but they didn’t expect to be discovered by the salesman one night.

The salesman was an old acquaintance of the cook, and he promised to keep it a secret for them only if they gave him a sum of money.

Baiying didn’t want to deal with lowly people like the salesmen, so she decided to resolve it with money. Who knew that the salesman would lose all his money in the casino and went to them again to ask for more.

Baiying acquiesced.

When the salesman came for the third time, he changed his attitude and threatened them when she didn’t comply.

Baiying discussed with the cook and said that they shouldn’t go on like this anymore. The feeling of someone having something on her was no different from the feeling of a sword hanging above her head.

Only the dead could keep secrets forever.

Either they did nothing, or they carried it through to the end, so they tricked the salesman over and killed him.

The salesman had no parents and no friends he was close to, so no one asked about him even after he died.

Both Baiying and the cook thought that this matter would be buried completely and no one would know, but they would never have thought that the corpse they had hidden in the restaurant would disappear.

Baiying and the cook panicked.

It didn’t take long for a woodcutter to find the salesman’s carrying pole and a few fleshy bones in the mountains. They became even more frightened.

The cook had personally hacked the salesman to death and hid the body in the restaurant. He hadn’t had the time to smuggle the body out so how did it appear in the mountains?

It wasn’t like the corpse could walk there on its own.

Also, the cook was positive he had only chopped off the salesman’s head and had not cut out the flesh from the bones.

It lasted until someone found Widow Li’s embroidered shoes and a few pieces of minced meat. Everyone said that a cannibal demon had arrived in town, and that the salesman and Widow Li were both eaten by the demon.

Baiying and the cook both thought that since things turned out this way, and the demon had helped them, then they didn’t have to worry about it anymore.

But things were not quite over yet.

The constables paid the cook a visit and learnt about the relationship between the salesman and him.

The cook knew that he was going to be exposed soon, or maybe he had already slipped up somewhere. He was worried that he would be caught, so he wanted to escape with Baiying.

Baiying wasn’t stupid. She wouldn’t quit being the second concubine of the Ye Family to elope with a pauper.

Moreover, Baiying also knew that the cook was being monitored by Liu Chu. If he didn’t die, he would drag her down sooner or later.

The cook noticed Baiying’s hesitation.

Baiying hurriedly agreed and started being intimate with the cook. Later, while she was lying in the cook’s arms, she said they had to properly plan and not be careless.

The cook asked how they should escape out of the town.

Baiying said it was too complicated and needed a safe place to discuss the escape route. She proposed to go to the cook’s house.

The cook didn’t agree at first, saying that there were constables around his house.

Baiying said the most dangerous place was the safest place.

The cook had never read any books before, so he didn’t understand. When he brought up his doubts, Baiying distracted him with her charms.

He lost himself in her charms and ended up agreeing on a time to meet with Baiying. It was decided that a ladder was to be placed in his backyard at that time. Because there was always a constable monitoring him, who would enter his house everyday with the excuse of asking for some water to observe around, the cook couldn’t stay out overnight.

Baiying was the same. She relied on her three trusted maids to cover for her when she returned home.

Before Baiying entered the brothel, she had worked in a theatre troupe, which indicated how flexible her body was.

That night, Baiying smoothly entered the cook’s house, killed him while he was caught unprepared and made it look like it was the work of the demon – because only demons would be able to take human lives without anyone realising, and their methods were known to be cruel.

In order to destroy all traces, Baiying directly fed the cook’s lower body to a dog.

After Baiying recounted everything, the living room fell into a strange silence.

Father Ye didn’t move.

He seemed to have never imagined that his family’s Second Concubine would be such a cruel person. In a sense, Baiying had shown mercy to him over these years.

Liu Chu got up, prepared to leave the Ye Mansion with Baiying who had pleaded guilty.

Baiying grabbed the door frame and pleaded, “My Lord, no matter what this concubine did, Xiao Bao is innocent. He is the Ye Family’s flesh and blood. Please treat him kindly.” When she was wailing just now, she didn’t even shed a tear, but now tears flowed down her face.

Father Ye was indifferent.

Si Mao forcibly pulled Baiying’s fingers off the door frame, then roughly dragged her away.

Father Ye didn’t want the scandal of the Ye Family to spread, so except for the steward, the rest of the servants that were present were silenced. However, the whole town learnt of it that very same day.

The people who had witnessed the events were only left a few, and none of them knew how the scandal got out. It was very detailed, as though the one who spread the scandal had been present from the start to the end.

After Huang Dan heard the scandal, there were no emotional changes. His mission in this world was to find out who the demon was; others’ affairs had nothing to do with him.

Liu Chu was going to take Baiying to the county, and he told Huang Dan to go with him.

Huang Dan, “You’re going there to handle the case. What am I going there for?”

Liu Chu, “To look at me handling the case.”

Huang Dan, “Grandma won’t allow.”

Liu Chu, “I will settle it.”

Huang Dan thought that he wouldn’t be able to convince the old lady, but he didn’t expect the old lady to not have any objections.

He couldn’t figure it out why, so he went to find the old lady. The other party was chanting in the meditation hall and only told him to follow Liu Chu and not cause any trouble in the county. He didn’t get to meet her.

The next day, the prison wagon escorting Baiying passed through East Avenue. People spat at her, threw vegetables and eggs, scolded her for not abiding by a woman’s way and called her snake-hearted, saying that she would go to hell and would die horribly.

Baiying’s head was exposed outside the railing. Her hair and face were messy and there were many bruises all over her body. She laboriously twisted her neck back, wanting to see her son, but she only saw an agitated crowd.

Those people stood on moral high ground and cursed at Baiying.

She didn’t cry. Instead, she chuckled. “Who here isn’t a murderer.”

A stone flew over and caused Baiying’s head to bleed. She shouted like she was cursing them, “What you did more than ten years ago and what you did more than ten years later, God has always been watching. If I will die horribly, so will you all—”

“Hell is waiting for all of you, and none of you will be spared. I’ll be off first…”

It was as though an invisible big hand suddenly pressed the pause button, the people stopped throwing things at the same time. A few seconds later, they all yelled and threw more objects while looking terrified.

The prison wagon was pulled out of East Avenue and out of Yueshan Town, leaving the extremely agitated crowd behind and headed towards the main road.

A carriage followed behind.

The coachman faintly heard a strange sound, and he looked back. The curtain only shifted slightly without lifting.

“That’s weird, the wind’s quite strong today…” The coachman murmured. He did not know that a treasured sword was placed behind against the curtain, preventing the curtain from being blown up.

In the carriage, Liu Chu held Huang Dan’s face and kissed him. “Don’t move away.”

Huang Dan, “I’m afraid you’ll bite me.”

Liu Chu’s breath was warm and ambiguous. “If I don’t bite you, who do I bite?”

Huang Dan paused. He moved back and stared at the man, his gaze strange.

Liu Chu touched the young man’s face and gave a wicked smile. “Why, fascinated by your man?”

Huang Dan grabbed the man’s hand.

Liu Chu raised an eyebrow. “Young master, aren’t you going to say anything?”

Huang Dan, “Touch me again.”

Liu Chu was stunned. Usually, this young master would not let him touch, because he felt that his hand was too rough and it hurts. Now, Huang Dan requested something that he had always wanted to hear even in his dreams, but to suddenly have his dreams turn into reality, he felt a little dazed.

Huang Dan, “If you don’t want to touch, then forget it.”

Liu Chu immediately said, “Touch touch touch, I’ll touch right away. Where do I touch?”

Huang Dan, “Face.”

Liu Chu’s face twitched, feeling very dissatisfied. “Can I choose another place?”

Huang Dan, “No.”

Liu Chu, “…”

Huang Dan’s face was touched by the man’s rough palm, the feeling was like sandpaper polishing it inch by inch. It was not the kind of sharp pain, but instead a lingering pain.

Liu Chu saw the youth’s eyes redden and he was slightly taken aback. “My young master, you told me to touch, but then you cry when I touch.”

Huang Dan sobbed. “Don’t care about me, just touch as you like.”

Under Liu Chu’s gaze, tears dripped from the corners of the young man’s eyes. He pursed his lips, “You’re the one who said it. I really won’t care about you anymore.”

Huang Dan sobbed while nodding.

Liu Chu’s breathing became heavier, and he laughed hoarsely. “In this world, you’re the only one who can easily take my life.”

He wiped the tears from the young man’s face and pressed his lips up.

The dust flew with the clopping sound of horse hooves, covering up the sobs in the carriage.

After a while, Huang Dan wiped his face while catching his breath.

Liu Chu leaned his head on his shoulder. “When I’m done settling the matters in the county, I will bring you to my home.”

Huang Dan sat up straight. “No. Your parents will overthink when they see me. I’ll just stay in an inn.”

“No parents.”

Liu Chu rubbed his stubble on the young man’s neck. “I’ve been living alone all along. It’s deep in the mountains, with no one within a hundred miles.”

Huang Dan, “Then I won’t go.”

Liu Chu, “…”

[1] : “Ninth Mysterious Heaven Hemorrhoid Pill” — Please take this with a pinch of salt. It’s just a mishmash of Chinese characters together that it’s hard to translate it well, because each character can have a few different meanings to it. (↑↑)

[2] : “Feng Shui” — Chinese geomancy. Feng Shui refers to the surrounding energy which is able to affect a person’s energy and cause either a positive or negative effect on luck, relationships, health, money etc. An example: it’s supposedly bad Feng Shui to place a mirror facing the front door because it reflects the energy that enters the house back out. (↑↑)

[3] : “sprayed to death” — By insults, ridicules, etc. (↑↑)

[4] : “Sounds unpleasant.” — He’s saying that the title ‘wife’ sounds unpleasant, not that being his wife sounds unpleasant. Just felt the need to clarify this. 😉 (↑↑)

[5] : “don’t forget how painful your wound was after it has scarred” — Don’t just easily forgive and forget…is what it seems to mean in this context. But the correct usage of this saying is to mean: after suffering and learning their lesson the hard way, don’t end up forgetting it after it has ‘scarred’ and doesn’t hurt anymore. (↑↑)

[6] : “sunning books” —Exposing items to the sun to prevent mildew and gnawing by insects and worms was a common practice in ancient China. Other than books, items like paintings, clothes and furs were also sunned. Don’t sun your books at this day and age though; it’s bad for them. (↑↑)

[7] : “second mother” — The chinese word used here is actually a title for the second wife. Other than the main wife, other wives are known as concubines, unless they are promoted to the position of the main wife when it becomes empty. I previously translated it as ‘second wife’ and have changed it to ‘Second Concubine’. ‘First Concubine’ would be more correct, but it’s easier to just keep the word ‘Second’. Here, I used ‘second mother’ since it fits the context better. (↑↑)

[8] : “Three Obediences and Four Virtues” — A basic set of moral principles and social code of behaviour that maidens and married women are expected to abide by during ancient times. (↑↑)

I Have A Secret
Chapter 34