Chen Xiuxiu wasn’t afraid of blowing this matter up so she told Madam Wu the whole story and even included some embellishments of her own.
Madam Wu had been having a bad year so far. Ever since her brother, Wu Yong, had gotten into an accident, she had always been very busy working and trying to make money. Moreover, with Wu Yong injured, she had lost her reason to go to town, so she really didn’t have any way to know what was happening in town recently.
Thus, Chen Xiuxiu telling her just now was actually the first time she had learned that Su Tang had sent her brother to the academy to study. The Su family wasn’t very wealthy, so most children from the Su family never got the opportunity to go to the academy and learn. She herself had been planning to save money privately so she could send her own son to learn, but her son was still very young so that was a matter for the far future in her mind.
Therefore, suddenly hearing this news from Chen Xiuxiu was actually very unsettling for Madam Wu. Probably what she was most afraid of was the idea of those two brats rising up and becoming even more successful in the future. Moreover, Madam Wu had begun to have a vague feeling that her own luck had been somehow affected by that pair of brats. After all, in the past when the siblings had been having a hard life, her own life had been very smooth. But now that the siblings had escaped her control and moved away, their life had been getting better and better while her own life had been getting worse and worse.
Because of that feeling, Madam Wu was determined to do anything she could to make those two brats suffer. But, unfortunately, in both the times she met them after they left home she was the one who ended up suffering worse. Plus, she had too many things on her plate recently so it hadn’t been convenient for her to try to do anything to them.
Fortunately, Chen Xiuxiu had come to tell her this news, or else she wouldn’t have been aware that such a good opportunity even existed!
Madam Wu laughed off Chen Xiuxiu’s words and said, “There are so many people who study, but how many of them are actually able to pass the imperial exams? How could it be so easy for that brat to succeed?”
“That’s true. A real genius like my family’s Xiaotian is harder to find than gold.” Chen Xiuxiu bragged shamelessly. She was completely speaking as if Wang Xiaotian was her own child, even though the matter of him marrying her daughter was far from decided.
Madam Wu ignored how Chen Xiuxiu incorrectly called Wang Xiaotian a part of her family and even went along with her boasting: “My good sister, the son-in-law that you’ve chosen is obviously the best. But back to that brat, does she really have a lover? If she doesn’t…”
Chen Xiuxiu felt very comfortable in her heart when she heard Madam Wu calling Wang Xiaotian her son-in-law, but she was also annoyed at how Madam Wu kept doubting her and asking questions. Suppressing her annoyance, Chen Xiuxiu said, “How could I lie to you? What good would it do me?”
“I personally saw her approaching the carriage of a rich young master at the entrance of the town that day, and the little servant outside the carriage was very attentive to her.”
“Otherwise, just relying on that dead girl alone, where could she get the money to buy such fine clothes? You don’t actually believe that she really fished up a bunch of fish and sold them to pay for it, right? In the first place, the Qing River hasn’t even thawed yet!” Chen Xiuxiu spoke very confidently.
At the same time, Madam Wu was reminded of what her brother had told her. He had also seen Su Tang with a rich young master and even heard that she was living in a large courtyard in town. From what he heard, the rent for that courtyard was several hundred copper coins every month.
Maybe Su Tang could barely make enough money by fishing to rent such a courtyard, but there was no way she could earn enough to buy such nice clothes on top of that. Madam Wu had often sold embroidery before, so she was somewhat familiar with how much those kinds of clothes would cost to buy.
Chen Xiuxiu stated that there was no way Su Tang could earn enough money to afford such things and, after thinking about it, Madam Wu believed her.
“But, after all, she’s only…” Madam Wu muttered thoughtfully.
She was still doubtful. After all, even if she had developed early and was a bit precocious, Su Tang was only nine years old. Moreover, she had always been nearly mute when she had been living with Madam Wu, but she suddenly found a rich lover as soon as she left home? Was finding a rich lover so simple?
“Heh, you think everyone else is like us, virtuous women who are committed to living with our men? But that’s not true at all. Madam Liu wasn’t such a woman. You’ve never seen her yourself, but I saw her with my own eyes, so I know it’s true.”
“She would always act pitiful and delicate, like a gust of wind might blow her down at any second, and how knows how many men were lured in by her.”
“Su Dafu only saw her once before he immediately went to her parents and asked to marry her. And now, that little brat is truly Madam Liu’s good daughter. You still haven’t seen her these days, but I think she might be even better than Madam Liu was back then. What ‘just nine years old’? She can still serve a man.”
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