Chapter 17: The Big Assault
Translated by Gumihou
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Once again, Xu Ran Yun was shocked to speechlessness by this audacious move.
However, she was still able to hear Hong Lian’s whisper, “Missy, that is…the beans. Once we’ve sweep them all up, should… should we still sun more of them?” These maids had just realized the true meaning behind ‘sunning the beans’. As expected, no one sane would actually sun beans at their front door, it was actually a trap for Master.
However, she understood her mistress enough to know that she would not be dismayed by such set backs. Therefore, Hong Lian took the time to ask, even though deep down, she disapproved of trickeries like this.
“What?” to everyone’s surprise, Su Nuan Nuan actually shrieked at this suggestion. She jabbed a finger at Hong Lian, and said through gritted teeth. “What nonsense is this? We have already lost 2 catty of beans, you want me to lose more? What if Madam Lan, Concubine Ching, and Concubine Jiang all decided to pay me a visit? Just how much beans do you want me to waste? You’ve followed me for so long, have you not learn how to economise? What a stupid maid. Just give up, give it all up quickly and put everything away. I’ll think of other ways to deal with him. People who waste food will be punished by the heavens. As expected, my two catty of beans are now gone, all gone, wasted, wuwuwu… being punished by heaven is really painful.”
Hong Lian was so ashamed that she wanted to bury herself in a hole, she could not bring herself to look at the enemy troops behind her whose expressions probably looked like they had been struck by lightning several times. She grabbed a broom and began to help Xiang Yun sweep up the beans.
Presently, Xiang Yun lifted her head and said in a careful manner. “Missy, if you still wish to reset the trap, there’s no need to use new beans, we can just spread these out again, right?”
Xu Ran Yun, who had just recovered some of her spirit, staggered at these words, she cast disbelieving eyes at Xiang Yun: If her memory serves her right, isn’t this that weak and useless little maid that used to cower at Xu Ran Yun’s mere presence? Just what happened in Mei Yue Lou? Why hadn’t the spoilt and useless Su Meng Nuan not only not die from starvation, but had grown even more cunning? And just when did the maids around her became this scheming?
Su Nuan Nuan was also surprised, she looked at Xiang Yun with disbelief, “Aiyah, how can I be so stupid? I haven’t been thinking outside the box, I’m so ashamed, so ashamed, ah.” She patted Xiang Yun on the shoulder, and raised a thumb in acknowledgement of her maid’s cleverness. This grand way of admitting her mistakes and praising others once again caused the tens of people outside the gate to suffer more lightning strikes.
You are a noble wife of the lord heir, ah. A servant daring to point out their master’s fault could sometimes be sentenced to death. Just what kind of drugs had she taken today? Not only did she not have the servant killed for showing her up to maintain the illusion of ‘the masters are always right’, she also grandly admitted her own mistakes, called herself stupid, and praised the impudent maid for their intelligence.
Gods in heaven, ah, just what is going on, ah?
Su Nuan Nuan had not expected her little play to shock the ladies of the inner court up to this degree. She did not even bother to look at Xu Ran Yun whose mood was as black as the bottom of a pot. Instead, she merely waved a hand at them, left Hong Lian and Xiang Yun sweep the yard and reset the trap.
The two maids merely exchanged a glance, and began to spread the slightly crushed beans in the yard. Right in front of heaven, Xu Ran Yun and everyone. Very soon, the trap was reset.
They did it, they really did it, they really did remade the bean trap.
Xu Ran Yun felt oddly floaty, as though she was on the verge of fainting. Su Meng Nuan was bold, bossy, vicious and wasteful, but this attitude was only shown to her love rivals and servants. In front of Duan Tingxuan, she was no different from every single womenfolk who had ever tried to win over her husband’s affections. Just what had happened? What made her so damned bold?
Since she had become like this, what could her entourage do? Everyone of them watch as the bean trap was being set up, all of them felt very confused and uncertain.
Once the bean trap was properly set up, Hong Lian and Xiang Yun stood to the side and watched the Madam with the other inner court servants. After waiting for a long time and not seeing them leave, Xiang Yun finally asked. “Madam Yun, this…do you have any other business with us?”
Xu Ran Yun was startled, it soon dawned on her that she had been too shocked by these unusual events and had actually forgotten to leave. How shameful, how embarrassing. Luckily, Feng Xian was a smart one, after a brief consideration, she sneered. “What about yourself? Why are you two just standing there? If there’s something you wish to report to our Madam, quickly do so.”
With these words, Xu Ran Yun’s foolish gaping around was suddenly transformed into a superior supervising a bad subordinate and waiting impatiently for their report. The other servants around Feng Xian also admired her quick thinking in saving their faces. Even Xu Ran Yun gave her a look of approval, which pleased her greatly.
As soon as this prideful feeling rose, however, it was burst by Xiang Yun’s confused tone saying “We? What have we to say to Madam Yun for? Much less to report. We are just standing here waiting for you to scram…ah!”
Xiang Yun covered her mouth exaggeratedly, imitating her own mistress. Then, remembering Missy’s ‘An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth’ lessons, she lowered her hands and smiled cheerfully at the women in front of her. “Apologies, this one has accidentally let out her real thoughts. Madam Yun, if you and your entourage do not wish to scram, what are you still waiting for?”
She had hardly finished speaking when Hong Lian sent her a fierce glare, drying up the rest of her words. Inside, however, she was secretly gleeful: Our madam was almost killed by these group of women, if we don’t take this opportunity to say a few words back, it would be a terrible waste.
Xiang Yun was still quite childish, Hong Lian knew this very well. The bad attitude that An Ping Mansion rules and laws had squashed down suddenly sprang up, if Madam Yun decided to take action against this little maid, even Missy might not be able to protect her. This stupid, bold maid, did she really did not know the saying ‘A loose tongue spells trouble’?
“Y-you, how dare you, a lowly maid like you, how dare you treat me this way?” Xu Ran Yun had had enough, she pointed at Xiang Yun and called to the servants beside her. “Grab that rude, shameless slut, give her thirty beatings and throw her out of the mansion. This wild and lawless creature clearly does not belong in the inner court!”
The replies were fierce and quick, the elder maids clearly still smarting from the earlier insults as they pushed up their sleeves and got ready to step in.
Xiang Yun grew afraid. “You…you can’t come in, this is Mei Yue Lou. You need permission from Missy… and i-if you come in you’ll fall flat on your face.”
The servants ignored her, the beans were slippery, true, but as long as they watch their steps, walking would be fine. The servants kicked the beans aside, rendering this ‘bean trap’ useless. With a grim smile at Xiang Yun, one of the servants deliberately curry favour in front of Xu Ran Yun by sneering. “Little miss, surely you don’t think that hiding inside Mei Yue Lou means no harm would come to you? You think you’re some precious daughter from a big house that Madam Yun can’t touch?”