As the Wang family situation became even more tumultuous, the villagers were once again astonished by the disgraceful behavior of this family. For the sake of his son’s future, Wang Dali was determined to divorce his wife. Despite her strong-willed nature, Old Lady Wang was helpless when it came to the prospect of divorce. Wang Zhisong’s support of his biological father’s decision, coupled with his mother’s fiery temperament, led to a heated confrontation. Old Lady Wang slapped Wang Dali and Wang Tianyan cursed their father for showing favoritism, but Wang Dali was insistent on dividing the family.
Wang Dali’s strong determination to divide the family and divorce his wife left his family members astounded. Old Lady Wang and Wang Tianyan gave in to his demands, albeit reluctantly. Wang Zhisong’s future hinged on this decision. If the family didn’t divide and Wang Dali didn’t divorce his wife, there would be no chance for Wang Zhisong to participate in the imperial examination. For the sake of his own future, he could afford to lose anything.
The ugly faces of this family once again shocked the villagers, who were forced to revise their understanding of the Wang family. Wang Dali was willing to divorce his wife for his son and Old Lady Wang had no choice but to accept it. She quarreled with Wang Dali and Wang Dali even fought back. Wang Tianyan, as a son, could argue with his parents, but he couldn’t fight his father. When Wang Dali insisted on dividing the family, Wang Tianyan’s protests were in vain.
His wife, Wang Guo also could not hit her father-in-law. She could dare to quarrel with her mother-in-law because they were both women, and because Wang Dali and Wang Tianyan did nothing to stop her. However, if she struck her father-in-law, Zhao Lizheng could charge her with unfilial conduct and take her directly to the authorities.
Wang Dali shouted loudly that he wanted to divorce his wife and divide the family, while Wang Zhisong stood there crying without trying to stop him. Old lady Wang held onto Wang Zhisong, crying, and pleaded for her son’s intervention. Wang Zhisong replied, “Mother, as long as you are here, Master Cen and Master Kang won’t write a recommendation letter for me. Without their letters, I can’t participate in the imperial examination and all the years of studying and the money spent on it will go to waste. Master Cen is in the capital and now only Master Kang can write a recommendation letter for me. What should I do?”
Hearing this, Old Lady Wang shuddered uncontrollably, unsure whether it was from anger or being struck. After Wang Zhisong finished speaking, he started wailing. “If I can’t participate in the imperial examination, I might as well die! I don’t want to live anymore! I’ll die with my mother!”
Suddenly, Old Lady Wang let out a loud cry. “That cursed star! It’s all that cursed star’s fault that my son is suffering!” Then, she widened her eyes and yelled, “He’s a wicked beast! A wicked beast! He’s the one who brought that cursed star into our lives! It’s all his fault!”
Wang Zhisong shuddered as his mother released him, turning around and running out with her hair disheveled, looking like a female ghost from behind. While running, Old Lady Wang continued to shout: “Wicked beast! Wicked beast!”
Wang Zhisong realized something and hurriedly chased after her, saying, “Mother! Come back! Don’t go there!” For Wang Zhisong, Wang Shijing’s residence was a forbidden place. Stepping foot inside would surely lead to his punishment. He had considered seeking help from Wang Shijing and Shao Yunan, but he didn’t dare.
“Wicked beast! Wicked beast!” Her shouts could still be heard from a distance. Thinking of the guest in the village, Zhao Lizheng was alarmed. “Yuande, Yuanqing, quickly stop her! Bring her back! Don’t let her cause a commotion!”
Zhao Yuande and Zhao Yuanqing abandoned the grapefruit tea and rushed to pursue her. Wang Dali was in hot pursuit as well. Wang Guo with her hair disheveled just like her mother-in-law, tugged at Wang Tianyan, and the two of them followed suit.
This time, the villagers gathered around the Wang residence once again. Zhao Lizheng sought out Wang Wenhe and Wang Shiping. As soon as they heard that something had happened, they rushed to the Wang residence. Old Lady Wang, that madwoman, was likely to say something offensive and she didn’t know what punishment she might receive. Given Shao Yunan’s temperament, if Old Lady Wang dared to utter something unpalatable, it could easily result in a divorce. Additionally, no one close to their family wanted any damaging words about Wang Shijing and Shao Yunan to circulate from Old Lady Wang’s mouth.
In the drawing-room, Shao Yunan, King Rong, Kang Rui, Jiang Moxi, and Nizi were seated on the carpet. In the center of the carpet were cookies, candies, freshly baked cream puffs, and most importantly, a teapot filled with this year’s new Longjing green tea. The first batch of Longjing green tea was barely ready to drink, so Shao Yunan opened a packet of third-grade tea to match the occasion. He personally found it lacking in flavor, but for King Rong and Kang Rui, who had been ‘thirsty’ for too long, this tea was already excellent.
“Ah…” After taking a sip of tea, King Rong let out a contented sigh and someone couldn’t help but laugh. King Rong stared at him. “Zimu, why are you laughing?” Guo Zimu quickly lowered his head and shook it, “I’m not.”
“I saw you laugh!”
Guo Zimu laughed and it was an absolutely enchanting smile, leaving Nizi completely mesmerized. However, someone quickly covered Nizi’s eyes and scolded Guo Zimu in annoyance. “Uncle Zimu, don’t laugh.”
Guo Zimu immediately covered his mouth and received a disapproving rub on the head from someone. “You don’t like to smile and you don’t allow Uncle Zimu to laugh. With a smile so charming, you should smile even more. Ignore him, Uncle Zimu.” Shao Yunan chuckled. “Little Guo, it seems like Moxi is jealous. Nizi is only looking at you laughing and not at her big brother.”
“Nizi is still young!” Guo Zimu shot Shao Yunan with a glance filled with charm, devoid of any former self-doubt. Jiang Moxi removed his hand from Nizi’s eyes and Nizi’s face was already blushing. However, Shao Yunan teasingly said, “Nizi isn’t that young. She has Moxi, her big brother, to pamper her.” With a satisfied expression, Jiang Moxi embraced Nizi and declared, “Mine.”
“Hahaha…” Everyone burst into laughter. Guo Zimu laughed too, and immediately, Jiang Moxi covered Nizi’s eyes again, revealing his possessiveness, which made everyone laugh even harder.
At that moment, a person rushed in, looking anxious, and said, “Young Master! Wang Zhu’s wife is outside, shouting and causing a scene. Several people couldn’t restrain her.” The joyful atmosphere in the room dissipated instantly. Nizi clung to her big brother, burying her face in his embrace. Jiang Moxi’s face grew cold and he was about to stand up.
“I’ll go see if she’s trying to cause trouble again.” Shao Yunan stood up.
“Yunan, I’ll go with you,” Kong Rong also pushed himself up and Guo Zimu quickly helped support him. Kang Rui said to Qin Niang, “Take Moxi and Nizi back to their rooms.”
“I want to go!” Jiang Moxi refused to leave. Wang Nizi raised her head from her big brother’s embrace and gathered the courage to say, “I want to go too.”
“You two can go later. I’ll go first.” Shao Yunan said and left quickly. King Rong asked Qin Niang, “Do you know why she’s causing a scene?” Qin Niang replied with an unhappy expression, “She’s been shouting outside, using foul language that I can’t repeat.” King Rong frowned, “Let’s go and see. This is completely unacceptable!”
Shao Yunan rushed to the front gate, Uncle Zhou, Aunt Zhou and Yan Fusheng were all at the door. Yan Fusheng drove the others away to do their own business, not allowing them to gather around at the gate. As soon as Shao Yunan appeared, a tearful Aunt Zhou who was so anxious (angry) that tears came out pulled Shao Yunan and said, “Granny Wang Zhu is really crazy, Yunan, don’t be angry.”
“Wicked beast! Wang Shijing, you wicked beast! Why didn’t I strangle you when you were born? You married an unlucky star and it’s harming my son!” Shao Yunan’s eyes turned cold.
Aunt Zhou’s tears were streaming down and she was almost ready to shout back at Old Lady Wang. Shao Yunan pulled her back and Aunt Zhou was furious. “She’s intentionally trying to damage Shijing’s reputation!”
Old Lady Wang was still outside yelling and there was a commotion when Wang Shuping’s voice was heard, trying to get someone to cover her mouth. Shao Yunan grasped the door latch with both hands and forcefully opened the door. The outside noise immediately fell silent as several women pinned Old Lady Wang to the ground. The dirt-smeared Old Lady Wang, who was almost overcome by anger, shrank back as soon as she saw Shao Yunan and then went completely mad, disregarding everything.
“Cursed star! You’ve caused my son to be unable to take the examination. I wish you nothing but ill fortune!” Wang Zhisong, who was hiding in the crowd, saw Shao Yunan coming out and felt his legs go weak. Taking advantage of the lack of attention, he secretly moved backward, slipping out of the crowd. He was about to make a run for it.
“Wang Zhisong!” Wang Zhisong’s body froze and he looked bewildered. The crowd immediately began searching for Wang Zhisong and as soon as Shao Yunan, who had come out, spotted him, he shouted, “Wang Zhisong, your mother says that our family has caused you to be unable to take the examination. Come here and explain how we have harmed you!”
“Wang Zhisong! Your family’s troubles are all because of you. Come and clarify what’s going on!” Wang Shuping walked over, grabbed Wang Zhisong’s collar, and dragged him over. At no moment had Wang Shuping been as disgusted with this person as he was now. To borrow Shao Yunan’s words, he was a despicable scoundrel!
As soon as Old Lady Wang saw Wang Shuping ‘bullying’ her son, she immediately scolded. “Wang Shuping! You’re just a dog raised by Shao Yunan! You bully my son and your whole family deserves nothing but misery!”
Wang Shuping’s face turned purple as Shao Yunan took a few steps forward and delivered a vicious slap. Shocked gasps filled the air. Shao Yunan’s fierce reputation was well known throughout the village and even in Yongxiu County. He was known for his unyielding words, but he had never resorted to physical violence, especially not against a woman and not against his supposed mother-in-law.
Edited by: Jaisland