Chapter 5.2: Heartbroken

A table of delicacies sat in front of him. There was lamb, steamed fish and green leaf noodles. They were dishes that could forever raise Sheng Chumu’s appetite and get him to dig in, but they did not work this time.

Wine jars were strewn all over the place.

Du Ning’s head ached as he looked at the drunk Sheng Chumu. Ever since he met Fu Rou, this old friend of his was behaving out of the norm. He was actually drinking his sorrows away because of a girl.

“Tell me, what did I do wrong? She wanted a painting, so I gave her a painting. She wanted me to write, I wrote. For her, I willingly let myself get tortured by my uncle who is the king of hell. I learned military tactics, how to ride and shoot. I got scolded and beaten and barely got out alive. Was it easy for me? In the end, as soon as she is not happy, she completely ignores me.”

“How did you offend her?” Du Ning thought about how Fu Yin had seen Sheng Chumu’s writing. He comforted himself as he thought that it shouldn’t be a problem.

“I don’t know. Winning over a woman’s heart is like trying to dig a needle out from the ocean. Even if I was the Thousand Hand Bodhisattva, I still won’t be able to dig hers out. I asked her and she won’t tell me. She just pulled a long face and stared at me with eyes as big as my fist.” Sheng Chumu got angrier as he spoke. He lifted his hand and smashed one of the cups. Pointing to the sky, he called, “Fu Rou, do you think you’re the only woman in this world?! Don’t think that I am easy to bully! I won’t serve a tigress like you!”

“That’s right, there are many other women in the world, why bother with one so difficult? Second Lady Fu has a very strong personality and is not gentle. It is not easy to get along with her. Her fourth sister, on the other hand, is a lot more obedient.” Du Ning believed that Sheng Chumu should go for someone easier.

“How do you know that Rou’er is not gentle and she is not easy to get along with?” Sheng Chumu was suddenly unhappy. “Du Ning, you are not allowed to badmouth Rou’er. I won’t let you off if you dare to say anything bad about her. Huh? Where’s my wine?”

Du Ning gave up. “You’re completely bewitched. You are suffering so much yet you refuse to give up. I think you’ve gone overboard and turned crazy.”

Sheng Chumu answered stubbornly, “I am not crazy.”

Du Ning shook his head, “You don’t even know that you broke your cup. How can you say you are not crazy?”

Sheng Chumu remained obstinate. “I broke it on purpose. I like smashing things, so what? I will smash another for you to see!”

Sheng Chumu suddenly went into a drunken frenzy, smashing anything he saw, causing a huge disturbance.

In the guest room beside them, an old friend of the Sheng family, the Lu family, had reserved the room. Lu Yunji’s nephew, Lu Hanxing, was currently having a social gathering with other local officials when he heard the commotion. He sent people to investigate and found out that it was Sheng Chumu throwing a drunken rage. No one dared to stop him because he was from the Duke Lu Residence.

Lu Hanxing’s mother had raised Lu Yunji’s children. After Lu Yunji became successful, he brought Lu Hanxing to join him. Lu Hanxing was a malicious person. In order to gain an important position from Lu Yunji, he was willing to do anything.

Lu Hanxing was happy. Previously, Sheng Chumu had beaten up the messenger from the Lu family but his uncle did not want to cause trouble. He even took special care to ask the people from the Lu family to be more generous towards this young lord. Although on the surface his uncle pretended not to care, he had always been secretly competitive towards Sheng Xiaojing. Deep down, Lu Yunji hoped that the Sheng family would have no qualified successors, unlike the outstanding young lords of the Lu family.

Therefore, Lu Hanxing personally went over to show concern, asking Sheng Chumu what the problem was. Sheng Chumu was so drunk he could not think straight and did not notice Lu Hanxing’s ill-intentions. He even asked Lu Hanxing to help him get Lady Hui’s embroidery. Lu Hanxing agreed as he asked his men to find a way. The other officials then mentioned that Xu Youtong’s wife had an embroidery house. 

Throughout the entire thing, Sheng Chumu did not realize that he had given the task to the wrong person.

 

Lu Hanxing had ordered Xu Youtong to produce an embroidery from Lady Hui within three days. If not, he would be beheaded. Fu Jun knew that Fu Rou had one artwork from Lady Hui. However, she also knew that it had been passed down to her by their grandfather and held a special meaning to Fu Rou.

Nonetheless, this concerns her husband’s life and Fu Jun had no other choice.

Fu Rou never thought that even after Yan Zifang, the Lu family would try to take away something that she cherished once again.

“The Lu family is too obnoxious. Second Sister, how about we ask Brother Chumu for help. After all, he is from the Duke Lu…” Fu Yin stammered.

Fu Rou’s face darkened, “You are not allowed to mention him or tell him about this.”

Fu Yin muttered, “Then what should we do? This concerns Brother-in-law’s life. If we don’t ask for help, then we have to hand it over.”

Fear lingered in Fu Jun’s heart. “Back then, the Yan family had also refused to give the King Eagle they had to the Lu family. Didn’t Lord Yan resist, causing their entire family to be killed?”

“Elder Sister, don’t worry. I understand the severity of this matter.” Fu Rou was no longer her weaker older self. “The Lu family wants an embroidery from Lady Hui, right? Okay, I will give them a fake one.”

Fu Jun and Fu Yin exclaimed simultaneously, “A fake one?!”

Fu Rou said no more as she ordered Ziyun to take out Lady Hui’s embroidery. She started to examine where the threads were, where the needle started. She was so focused she did not notice when Fu Jun and Fu Yin left.

The glow of the lamp was replaced by sunlight. Sunlight was then replaced by the light from the lamp once again. Fu. Rou did not budge from her embroidery table. Stitch after stitch. Even when she was eating, she was staring at the embroidery. When she could no longer take it, she would lie on the table and take a nap.

Ziyun accompanied Fu Rou and went without sleep. When she finally couldn’t take it, she would lean against the couch by the window to sleep. She looked at Fu Rou sluggishly. She suddenly heard Fu Rou cough and rushed to pat her back. As her eyes drifted to the embroidery table, she exclaimed in surprise.

“The embroidery is beautiful. Even if Lady Hui comes back to life, I am sure she won’t be able to tell the difference.”

“I finally managed to rush it out.” Fu Rou was completely drained of energy. “Go. Elder Sister must be extremely anxious.”

As she finished speaking, she walked towards her bed, catching up on much needed sleep.

“In the three days that you did not go out, Young Lord came every few hours to check on you. As per your orders, we did not allow him to come in.” Ziyun was about to walk out the door when she suddenly remembered this and brought it up.

Fu Rou froze for a moment before turning and heading to her study desk. Flipping a book open, there was a torn piece of paper inside. She had smoothened each piece out and stuck them back together.

Maybe she was too tired physically, so she did not want to be emotionally drained as well. Even if Sheng Chumu was a liar, she wanted to give him another chance.

 

When Fu Rou woke up from her sleep, it was already afternoon. There was no one in her residence and Ziyun had not come to report anything to her. Fu Rou felt a bit uneasy and wanted to go to the main hall to take a look.

The moment she stepped out into her courtyard, Sheng Chumu walked out from the side. It looked like he had been waiting for her for a while. He smiled meekly as he took out a brocade box.

Facing his smiling face, Fu Rou said, “I hate liars the most. Do you dare to say that you have never lied to me?”

“I…” Sheng Chumu hung his head, “have lied to you before.”

“No one is perfect, and we all make mistakes. But I can forgive you as long as you acknowledge your mistake and are willing to change. Will you lie to me ever again?” Fu Rou was relieved that he had at least admitted to his mistakes.

Sheng Chumu swore, “I won’t lie to you again, never again. If I ever lie to you, I will get struck by lightning.”

“Okay, I will trust you one more time.” She did not want to fight with her own emotions.

Sheng Chumu was overjoyed as he stretched out and took Fu Rou’s hands. “Really? Rou’er, you are the best.”

Fu Rou shook his hands off. “You are back to your mischievous self already.” As expected, she felt a lot better forgiving him.

“I am extremely happy. You don’t know how tortured I have been feeling lately. Oh right, your birthday is just around the corner. I have prepared a gift for you.”

Fu Rou was curious. “What gift?”

Sheng Chumu placed the brocade box into Fu Rou’s hands. “Quick open it! I promise you will like it!”

Earlier this morning, Sheng Chumu had received the embroidery from Lu Hanxing. He was quite surprised that the Lu family was so attentive to his request and was even slightly curious as to how Lu Hanxing had managed to get his hands on the embroidery. However, he would beg an enemy as long as he could make Fu Rou happy.

As soon as Fu Rou opened the box, her face paled.

In the brocade box, it was the counterfeit embroidery of Lady Hui’s art that Fu Rou had spent three whole days working on tirelessly.

“Lady Hui’s…” Fu Rou’s voice trembled, “How come?”

Sheng Chumu misunderstood Fu Rou, thinking that she was overwhelmed with joy. “As expected of an expert, you recognise it right away. This is an embroidery by Lady Hui. There aren’t many pieces in this world and each piece is precious. I spent a lot of time and effort in order to get this.”

“In that case, I will have to thank you.” Fu Rou wore a frigid smile. Sheng Chumu was the same as the people from the Lu family. She must be blind to develop feelings for someone like him.

Sheng Chumu was beside himself in joy. “You don’t have to thank me. I will be satisfied if you give me a kiss.”

“Okay, I will give…” A kiss? If this person isn’t a hedonist, what is he? Fu Rou raised her hand and slapped him. “I will give you a slap!”

Sheng Chumu was stunned, as a bout of anger rose within him. Fu Rou spat in anger, “You are shameless and despicable!”

am despicable?” Sheng Chumu has had enough. He had never been insulted like this before. “I have been so understanding and caring towards you, giving you whatever you want. But what have you done? Depending on your mood, you ignore me, scold me and even slap me! Do you think you are a princess? Even the Princess does not dare to slap me!”

Fu Rou yelled out furiously, “Leave! I don’t want to see you ever again!”

“Fine, I will leave! I won’t put up with a tigress like you!” Sheng Chumu spun around sharply and left.

Fu Rou’s eyes were red as tears flowed down her cheeks while she covered her face.

A few moments later, Fu Yin and Fu Tao ran over.

Fu Tao shouted, “Second Sister!”

Fu Yin continued, “Did something happen to Brother Chumu? He suddenly dashed off angrily with his luggage—”

Fu Rou forced herself to sound indifferent as she interrupted them, “I don’t wish to hear that name anymore. In the future, no one is allowed to mention anything about him in front of me.”

Fu Yin immediately fell silent. 

Fu Tao frowned as his hands slowly curled into fists. He immediately sided with his sister. His second sister hardly cried, was hardly unreasonable and hardly disliked anyone so much. Therefore, it must be Sheng Chumu’s fault. When Sheng Chumu brought him to the brothel to drink, he should have thought of it then. Only someone experienced would behave so naturally. Looking at his brother-in-law and Sheng Chumu, he decided that no man in this world was reliable. He was going to train and protect his sisters by himself. See if anybody dares to bully them then!

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