Chapter 50: Move Aside, Bad Green Plum*
From the saying “green plums and toy horses” which refers to childhood sweethearts who grew up playing together.
When Song Qingyun and Song Liangzhuo returned from the government office, the sky had become thoroughly dark. Xiaoqi and Mother Song had chatted quite harmoniously, if Xiaoqi’s thoughts which were like a heavenly steed soaring across the skies were disregarded.
After dinner, Song Liangzhuo accompanied his parents and they talked for a while. This night Xiaoqi was naturally also present. Song Qingyun seemed to still be longing for that 《Seventeen Inscriptions》 and he would occasionally drop a veiled remark about it.
Song Qingyun didn’t say it straight out so naturally Xiaoqi couldn’t hear the hidden meaning. Song Liangzhuo just pretended he didn’t know, while Mother Song for some reason also pretended is if she didn’t know and focused just on chatting.
When Song Liangzhuo held Xiaoqi’s hand as they walked back to their courtyard, he still couldn’t hold back his smile. That calligraphy scroll will probably caused the old man quite a while of deep anxiety.
Xiaoqi titled her head. Seeing Song Liangzhuo smile, she also beamed, “Official Song, I saw Lady Zixiao today.”
Song Liangzhuo stopped smiling and looked at Xiaoqi. Xiaoqi pouted and said: “Why does she call you Second Brother?”
Hearing this, Song Liangzhuo couldn’t help but knit his brows. Second Brother? This address was way too distant. It the past it felt as heavy as if he had to use his entire life to bear the weight, but now it felt light as a feather.
Xiaoqi swayed Song Liangzhuo’s arm as she pouted, “Dear husband, in the future I’ll also call you ge(big brother), ok?”
Song Liangzhuo smiled as he shook his head, “What do you need to imitate others for? It’s fine if you just be yourself.”
Xiaoqi happily lifted her little chin. Originally she wanted to proudly show off the agreement she and Mother Song reached regarding taking wives, but after looking at Song Liangzhuo’s side profile she held it back. Xiaoqi thought, this kind of thing is probably classified as one of those narrow-minded things Mrs. Mei says you do behind the man’s back, so the cat has to be kept in the bag. But, making a child should demand immediate action na.
Xiaoqi jumped to the front of Song Liangzhuo and looked up, saying: “Dear husband, let’s go back and make a baby.”
Song Liangzhuo’s foot stumbled. When he looked towards Xiaoqi again his expression was completely peculiar.
He never heard that girls would get to the age of being ruthless like wolves and tigers at around seventeen or eighteen.
Even though last night’s provocation aroused him wildly to the point he could barely control himself, but he had to consider whether he’ll really lose his ability to rise after being stimulated by this kind of intense feeling a couple more times. The area that was almost bit off by Xiaoqi was faintly in pain the entire day. When it rubbed against his clothes it’d make him feel even more embarrassed. He didn’t want to let Xiaoqi see his body of bite scars and love bites. If she saw, how would he be able to have any face left?
Sigh! Song Liangzhuo didn’t know how he should reply Xiaoqi’s gleaming eyes and speechlessly raised his head to look at the sky.
Xiaoqi also followed and looked up. She mumbled: “The stars are really really pretty. But Husband, let’s go make a baby.”
Song Liangzhuo felt like that part of his chest was starting to hurt again, but before he could even think of a countermeasure Xiaoqi had already jumped up and wrapped her arms around his neck.
Song Liangzhuo hurriedly caught her and sighed, “In the future, act like this after we’ve entered our own courtyard.”
Xiaoqi obediently nodded. Cupping Song Liangzhuo’s face she gave him a smack(kiss) on the left and the right, then propped her chin on his shoulder and softly said: “Mom said tomorrow she’ll teach me sitting posture and how to walk first. After I learn it properly I’ll show you.”
“Xiaoqi’s willing to learn?”
“En, en. If I learn I’ll be able to emit an imposing manner. Look at Mom, just by sitting there she makes me scared. After I learn it, in the future I can just sit and also intimidate my daughter-in-law. Hehe, how exciting!”
Song Liangzhuo’s mouth twitched. So it turns out she’s thinking of twenty years in the future, isn’t this calculation a little too far? Song Liangzhuo lowered his head to look at Xiaoqi’s baby doll face. Imagining her sit down expressionlessly at the head of the table and giving a dignified gesture with her little hand, he couldn’t help but feel like laughing.
“Haa, dear husband, today exhausted me to death. Last night I had a dream, haha, it’s embarrassing. I dreamed that ah, hehe, and even dreamed seeing a big rooster bite my butt. Husband, it’s really strange ah. Ever since I was little I’ve dreamed of that big rooster countless times. Every time it always pecks my butt. Dear husband, can I not wash my face?”
As Xiaoqi talked long-windedly, her eyes were already heavy to the point she couldn’t keep them open.
“Oh, Husband, we still have to make a baby ne.”
Xiaoqi added a sentence as if she was talking in her sleep. Song Liangzhuo carried Xiaoqi and rocked her inside the room for another while until she fell sound asleep. Then he gently placed her on the bed.
These days Xiaoqi’s called Song Liangzhuo husband much more and Song Liangzhuo also noticed this change. He felt that Xiaoqi was only starting to drop the guard she had on against him. Even though she never said it, in the past she probably still had some distrust towards him in her heart.
Song Liangzhuo stared at the Xiaoqi that was sound asleep with her mouth pouted and dazed out for quite a while. In his mind, the appearance of a child slowly formed.
The appearance was like that of the currently dreaming Xiaoqi, pouting playfully, mischievous, and sometimes a bit foolishly dazed. Song Liangzhuo shook his head as he thought, having a daughter first wouldn’t be bad. It’s best to wait a few more years until Xiaoqi gets a little smarter before having a son.
Xiaoqi actually woke up very early the next day. After eating breakfast and sending Song Liangzhuo and Father-in-Law Dad off, she went with a heart full of joy to Mother Song’s courtyard.
Xiaoqi was eager to learn, this point made Mother Song gratified.
“When you take your seat you must do it lightly, steadily, unhurriedly. First lightly lift your skirt, then sit down. Sit down from the left and get up from the left.”
So Xiaoqi softly walked over, slowly pulled her skirt, then stuck out her butt and sat down.
“Manner, the manner must be natural. Kept a faint smile on your face. Keep your shoulders straight but relaxed. Fold both hands across downwards and place them on your knee.”
Xiaoqi leaned forward and covered her knees.
“Straighten your chest and lift your head. Keep both knees together. At least encompass half the chair when you seat. You can’t lean on the back of the chair, but you also can’t lean forward.”
Xiaoqi blinked her eyes, “Mom, don’t they say your butt can only sit on the chair a little bit?”
“Who said that?”
“The play scripts say so ah. They all only sit on one corner. When I watch I always feel like the butt must hurt.”
“Those are just actors. You’re the legal wife, how can that compare? Wouldn’t it sully your own status?”
“Alright, let’s connect it all and try once again.”
Xiaoqi got up and smiled with curved eyes as she followed all of Mother Song’s requests and went through the motions again.
“Eyes, open them.” Mother Song used the ferule* to point.
a flat ruler with a widened end, formerly used for punishing children.
Xiaoqi forced wide her eyes until the white of her eyes were practically leaping out, but still kept the smile at the corners of her mouth. Mother Song shook her head and used the ferule to prop up her chin as she said: “Natural, just be natural. Don’t glower with your eyes, but also don’t squint your eyes.”
“En, very good. Just remember not to jump and skip around in the future. Next you’ll learn stance and how to walk. When standing, keep your head straight and slightly have your lower jaw tucked in. Keep your expression mild and natural. Lift up your chest, suck in your stomach, draw up your waist.”
Reality proved that though Xiaoqi was a little slow, when she learn things she was still quite serious. The entire day, perhaps borrowing the fact that it was still new and interesting, she actually didn’t even say a single word about being tired. This made Mother Song have a better opinion of Xiaoqi.
As usually, after the meal they chatted for a while. This time, Song Qingyun and Song Liangzhuo were discussing some matters regarding water management. Song Liangzhuo with a little bit of intentions had Xiaoqi present all the construction strategies she know, earning a sentence of praise from Song Qingyun.
Xiaoqi was overjoyed. The moment they left the courtyard she hugged Song Liangzhuo and dangled off his body. Song Liangzhuo didn’t say anything about it this time and just sped up his pace to head towards his own courtyard.
“Husband, Mother-in-Law said that I’m really studious.”
“Are you tired?”
“I’m not tired.” Xiaoqi giggled ‘heehee’, “I thought when you sit you were only allowed to sit on one corner but Mother-in-Law Mom said you had to fill up the seat. Hehe, it’s just that after keeping my back straight for a long time it’s a bit uncomfortable.”
Song Liangzhuo’s hand ran very anturally to Xiaoqi’s back and massaged it.
“Husband, you’re not going to sleep?” Xiaoqi asked after seeing Qiu Tong bring in a file.
“En, you go to sleep first. I’m going to look at the files for a while.”
“Then I won’t sleep either.” Xiaoqi cutely said to a side. Slightly lowering her eyes, she folded both hand and her two legs under her skirt were closed tightly and inclined to one side.
Song Liangzhuo turned his head and glanced at Xiaoqi, then smiled as he said: “When you’re sitting by yourself there’s no need to be this proper.”
Xiaoqi lifted her head and blinked her eyes as she asked: “Husband, does it look good?”
Xiaoqi happily jumped and sat right onto Song Liangzhuo’s leg. Cuddling into his chest, she asked: “What kind of official are you right now? Do you also have to read these?”
“I’m not any kind of official, does Xiaoqi disdain?”
“No way. Husband only has time to take me to play when you’re not an official, once you start being an official you won’t have time to spend with me anymore.”
“Husband, then why are you still handling cases with Father-in-Law Dad? Ruoshui said she wanted to go see Lovers’ Spring. What kind of spring is Lovers’ Spring? Is it pretty?”
Song Liangzhuo put down the files and softly said: “Dad encountered a problematic case so I’m helping out for a couple days. As for Lovers’ Spring, it’s also a spring. But the legends say it was the place a pair of lovers made a lifelong promise. After the message got passed on a few times, it became a place young men and women often go to pledge their love for each other.”
Song Liangzhuo was silent for a while. Tightening his arm, he said: “Wait until I finish dealing with this first, then I’ll take you to go see.”
Xiaoqi tilted her head and smacked a resounding kiss, “Husband is the best.”
Xiaoqi looked at the files on the table and cutely nested back a bit, “Husband can continue to read. I won’t bother you anymore.”
Song LIangzhuo lightly smile then picked up the file once more and started to slowly read.
Xiaoqi stuck next to Song Liangzhuo’s cheek. Squinting her eyes she also read along for a while, then suddenly cried out in alarm: “There was a murder?”
Xiaoqi reached out to take the file but Song Liangzhuo hurriedly gathered them up and put them to the side.
In the back there was a description of the dead. He didn’t want Xiaoqi to get frightened.
“Who’s murdering?” Xiaoqi widened her eyes as she asked.
“Xiaoqi, don’t worry about so much.” Song Liangzhuo lifted Xiaoqi up and turned her to a different direction so she was directly facing him. He said: “It’s a common murder case, Tongxu has had some before as well.”
Xiaoqi hugged Song Liangzhuo’s neck and was quiet for a while. Swaying his neck she gloomily said: “Husband, don’t run in the front. They’ve already killed someone so they’re definitely devoid of consciousness. Don’t get yourself hurt.”
Song Liangzhuo softly pinched Xiaoqi’s waist. After thinking for a moment he smiled and said: “I’ll tell you about it. After you hear about it, don’t be worried anymore. These are all common occurrences. It’s such a big Ruzhou, for someone to get taken over by greed and commit a crime is also normal.”
Song LIangzhuo simplified the course of events as much as was possible, “The eldest son of the Fu family killed a lady. That’s all.”
“En.” Song Liangzhuo nodded and said: “Right now we’re investigating whether he had conducted any law-breaking behavior in the past.”
“Hehe, this is secret. Xiaoqi shouldn’t know.”
Xiaoqi rubbed Song LIangzhuo’s cheeks as she knitted her brows and asked: “Is his family really amazing?”
“A certain sister is sitting in the guipin concubine seat in the palace. It’s not high or low, but there’s enough power to disperse the threat Fu Dejia faces.”
Xiaoqi tensely clasped Song Liangzhuo’s face as she knitted her brows, “Then what’s to be done?”
“Get evidence to call a criminal charge and deal with it according to law.”
“Husband is really amazing.” As Xiaoqi said this she was a bit depressed, “But Husband, Mom said to hide far away whenever you encounter a fight. If you can’t deal with it you also have to hide away properly, don’t force an encounter. They’ve already killed they’re all, all not good people.”
Song Liangzhuo smiled and said: “I really shouldn’t have let you see this file. I should have brought an ordinary matter. I’m made you worried for no reason.”
“That’s not true ah, I might be able to give you some ideas ne. My dad also knows a lot of people, if anything happens I can let my dad help. In the future if you encounter dangerous situations you’re not allowed to hide it from me ah!”
Song LIangzhuo smiled as he nodded, “I won’t hide it. Xiaoqi must not go out by yourself, understood? Ruzhou is much more complex compared to Tongxu, there’s also quite a lot of influential officials so you must be careful. You also shouldn’t tell others about what we talked about just now.”
Xiaoqi nodded and wrapped her arms around Song Liangzhuo’s back, closing her eyes. Song LIangzhuo once again picked up the files and looked through the rest of them. Then he frowned as he thought for a while.
Song LIangzhuo thought Xiaoqi had fallen asleep. Patting her back, he lifted her up but Xiaoqi suddenly opened her eyes and said: “Husband, do you want me to write a letter to my dad?”
Song Liangzhuo tilted his head surprised and looked at Xiaoqi, meeting her gleaming with worry eyes. He silently berated himself for letting her see these things.
“No need, the case is already concluded.”
“Eh? Concluded?” Xiaoqi asked in surprise.
“En, I was just looking at the files to write a concluding record. After wrapping things up in the next few days it’ll be over.” This time Song LIangzhuo’s lie was satisfactory, with plenty of confidence as he blindly said things without a change in expression.
Xiaoqi released a breath of relief. Kicking her feet she said: “Husband is really amazing.” This time, the tone was light and cheerful as usual.
Song Liangzhuo hooked the corners of his mouth, “After a couple days I’ll take you out to play.”
Xiaoqi happily closed off Song Liangzhuo’s lips and said: “Husband’s really really really really good. Award you a big treat.”
The corners of Song LIangzhuo’s mouth twitched and he happily accepted Xiaoqi’s award.
Young people ah, once they’re ignited must burn. This night had a small fire that was slowly stewing, but it still stewed Xiaoqi to the point she ascended from the mortal realm to the celestial realm and floated around and around.
After Xiaoqi was stewed she drowsily fell asleep but Song Liangzhuo was a little unable to sleep.
The case really had to be handled but right now the person hasn’t even been captured yet. Song Liangzhuo knew that Song Qingyun wanted to collect all of Fu Dejia’s criminal charges and write up the case file so that it’s tight to the point not a single drop of water would be able to leak out. Then afterwards, he wanted to capture Fu Dejia in one full swoop before the Fu family could make any moves using their connections. He wanted to first decapitate then present the trophy later.
Song Liangzhuo also knew that to do this wouldn’t be easy. The Fu family also had some tactics, otherwise this incident of no one reporting the case and the victim family refusing to admit that something has happened to a family member would not occur.
Song Liangzhuo knitted his brows and thought for a long time. At his side, Xiaoqi called ‘husband’ while talking in her sleep. Song Liangzhuo’s furrowed brows instantly unfurrowed. Turning to the side he drew Xiaoqi into his arms. One hand stuck to her stomach and rubbed for a long while before he finally closed his eyes to sleep, his heart feeling satisfied.
Credits: Translated by Chiyomira, Edited by Ocelot
Oh wow, we got from one arc to another in just a week. It feels like we’re moving rapidly, as least for me lol. But looking at the overall picture it’s still going to take another month so it seems rather slow from that view.