Chapter 1 – The Settlement in Lingquan Town

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Lingquan town is famous for its porcelain, which originated from the Dayan Dynasty.
Merchants from all over the world enter the town relentlessly to acquire porcelain every day.


The price of the local properties deed has also gone up, but it won’t stop people from coming here to settle down and make a living. 


This day, in the spring breeze of February when grass grows and Orioles fly, another carriage comes to the stone road on the North Street of Lingquan town.


In the neighborhood of North Lingquan Town, women of thread and needles gathered and looked with curiosity, wondering what kind of family had moved to the green-tiled house that had been idle for a long time.


The carriage stopped in front of some old townhouses.
A thin-looking black-faced woman took down a small stool that had plum blossoms as the design from the back of the carriage and then reached out to help a woman dressed in a light smoke silk outfit out from the curtain.
She looked as young as an 18-year-old lady.


For some reason, the woman was holding on to a bamboo stick that is used for mountain climbing.
With the help of the female senior servant, she slowly got off the carriage.


After the lady got out of the carriage, she naturally scanned the streets and observed the behavior of those around her.
This action has made people on the streets have a clearer vision of her dedicated eyebrows and her bright mesmerizing eyes.


With a glance, people can’t help but gasp in admiration! They didn’t think that such beautiful women like her still exist in the world!


Lingquan Town, located in Jiangnan, has been rich in beauty since ancient times.
However, the beauty of this lady is different from the soft and gentle beauty contained in the water-bound town of Jiangnan.
Instead, she has a thin waist, long legs, and a bright and delightful appearance that amazes them.
Especially her black bun hair that set off her looks ever brighter.


But, looking at the style of the bun, it should be that she has been married.


Although she is beautiful, people can’t seem to feel close to her when they see her.
They just thought that a charming lady like her, should either be raised in the deep palace under the sun or the golden house in the jade hall.
How will someone like her arrive in such a town that is known for its marketplace culture?


Yin, who had raised her head to join the crowd most of the time, was still immersed in the scene even after the lady led the two female servants and the coachman into the yard.
She couldn’t help but whisper to the woman sitting on the side: “Oh my gosh, this is the first time I’ve ever seen such a beautiful lady in my life.
The official of this lady must have saved the entire Galaxy in his past life to be able to have the ability to marry such a beauty!”


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The wife of the Zhang’s household disdained and said, “What else can we do? Nine out of ten foreigners who come here to buy houses are merchants selling porcelain.
Any ordinary craftsman can’t afford to buy the entire residence on the street.”


After hearing what Mrs.
Yin said, the others that have a little cleverness immediately joined this topic of gossip: “If the official of this mansion is a businessman, he is also a short-sighted one.
He is carried away after earning some money from the business.
How does he even dare to marry such a beautiful woman? If he often goes on a business trip and leaves a beauty like her alone at home, how can he have the confidence that she won’t be cheating on him!”


She said this with an allusion.
There are many merchants’ homes on Lingquan North Street.
Most of the men travel for profit from all over the world and most of those merchants like to marry some of the prostitutes they met outside as concubines.
Every merchant will stop over here on their business trip thus, most of the women whom these merchants bought over for settlement are usually the concubines.


It’s hard to guarantee that these retired officials will be able to stand the loneliness after their retirement and result in approaching these beauties.


Therefore, when one cannot ensure the walls of the mansion are high enough to detain the loyalty of a person, and with the opening of the gates and windows during the night, an affair between married women and fickle men is a common sight in town.


The mere rustle of leaves in the wind that hides under the night, cannot escape the eyes of many gossipy women in the alley.
In the daytime, they can get together at leisure and talk about the good and bad sides of their family and some ambiguous affairs in the neighborhood.


Over time, the eyes of these women have become more and more crafty.
The accuracy of their eyeing for people is barely wrong!


Although they’re unsure of what’s the origin of this new lady that has moved in today, it seems that she is also the root cause of trouble that can easily result in being a “femme fatale”.
Just wait and see, which dissolute child in Lingquan town can knock on the back door of the green tile house and become the person who poaches the lady…


For one moment, these local women began to sigh again, denouncing the bad practices of North Street brought by the foreign merchants and their family members.
At the same time, these local women were glad that their husbands had developed a sharp eye for discovering and married a virtuous wife like themselves by boasting of their chastity.
For a moment, their conversations were at the hype of chatting with each other.


Not to mention the garrulous group of women in front of the neighborhood, looking at the newly renovated mansion, the beautiful lady hesitated and frowned after entering the house.


It seems that only the outer wall and mottled gate of the house have not been repaired.
After entering the yard, there is a small pool filled with flower beds and the surroundings are all built with sandalwood furniture that looks extremely exquisite.


Liu Miantang couldn’t help but look up again at the green tile courtyard that has an individual door.
She frowned slightly and hesitated: “Didn’t the official deficit a lot in business and had to move out of the capital? Why did he buy such a nice mansion, here again, he…”

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Before Miantang finished speaking, the female black-faced servant standing at the side slightly interrupted her bluntly: “The master is a wealthy family for generations.
As the Chinese proverb says, ‘A skinny camel is still bigger than a horse’.
We are still able to afford such a small house like this.
Madam, you are overthinking.”


Miantang didn’t reply, but gently rubbed the walking stick she was leaning on with his slender long finger.


Servant Li has impertinent answers to herself many times.
She doesn’t remember how she took charge of the family before she was ill, but she always feels that she can’t seem to tolerate this way of doing.


However, a serious illness not only emptied her body but also burned most of the memory in her brain.


She doesn’t remember many things well enough and only remembers that her name is Liu Miantang.
She is the youngest daughter of the Liu family which has been a distinguished family in Peishan in the past years.
She lost her mother at the age of 10 and has a brother five years older than her.
Because the Liu family had been extravagant for several generations and hollowed out the family assets, her father had arranged a lucrative marriage for her to make money.
The deal is to marry the Cui family of the merchant far from the capital and they will receive a huge amount of betrothal gifts for the wedding.


Still remembers how unwillingly she was when she got married.
She just felt that her father had sold her away.


It’s indeed a far away marriage, but she can’t seem to remember what happened after she got married.
That memory is like being wrapped in layers of thick cocoons and she has no idea where this memory is hiding.


Fortunately, her husband was of good temperament and did not dislike her because of the panic attack when she first woke up.
Instead, he hired a doctor for diagnosis and treatment.
The precious medicinal materials of wild ginseng have not been interrupted.
He gave up most of his family’s wealth and thankfully, saved her from death.


But she was lingering and ill for a long time, and even cost tons of money for treatment.
After a year of effort to cure her illness, her husband’s financial resources were much lower than before.


Her husband sent a message to her, saying that the store in the capital had been paid to others.
Now that the family business has now moved to Jiangnan, she needs to get her luggage ready and settle down in the town of Lingquan.


Ever since she fell ill with amnesia and lost her memory, taking a one year time has been enough for Liu Miantang to stabilize her clueless self and not feel helpless after losing her memory.


According to my husband, the Liu family was implicated in the case of Daishan academy three years ago.
Their father was convicted and beheaded, and their brother was also unjustly imprisoned and sent to Lingnan.

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She was not surprised when she heard the bad news.


The decay of the Liu family showed signs long before she got married.
Although her father always neglected her, he is blindly pampering her brother and even the bribery of officials, which resulted in laying a hidden danger for the misfortune of the Liu family.


Although it was three years ago, it was still a heavy blow to her who lost her memory over the past few years.
After hearing about her father’s tragic death and her brother’s experience, she was so miserable that she couldn’t eat for several days.


Later, the husband held her chin and forcefully poured half a bowl of soup into her, and said coldly, “This matter has happened a long time ago, it’s merely just that you just lost your memory and had a hard time.
The dead are gone, and there is no reason for the living to follow the steps of those who are dead? The family members of the scholars who were killed by Liu’s family did not seek death either.
Are you going to starve yourself to make amends for your father?”


The words were like a sharp knife, which made her unable to resist, but it was also like enlightenment that pulled her out of her uncontrollable grief.


The famous Liu family has long ceased to exist.
Those who are alive must live on.


My husband is not good at words.
He doesn’t have many conversations with her either, but he is a man who can be relied on.
He didn’t despise her because her parents’ family was ruined.


In this case, she can’t use the excuse of being sick to distract her husband.


Especially after listening to servant Li’s words, telling her that to treat her illness, her husband was distracted and the business was not operated properly.
He loses a large amount of money, which made Liu Miantang feel even more guilty and determined to do a good job for a good wife so that her husband could operate the business at ease and not lose all his possessions.


Now, she has finally settled down in Lingquan Town, which is her future home.
But this servant Li always seems to treat her badly, as if she used to cheat on her husband.


Although the old slave was tricky, Liu Miantang did not act upon it.
The Cui family is not as good as before, and the people who are willing to stay are all the older loyal servants.
It’s not a good idea to take the title of the mansion lady and tell servant Li off for the first time here, and it may chill the hearts of the other servants.
But it’s always a matter of hindsight.


Else, I can also propose the idea to send servant Li to work in the shop of my husband.

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She was relieved that she had come up with the solution.
The days in the future may be like the spring breeze in February.
After the chilly cold season, there will always be endless warmth.


Although Liu Miantang had just arrived here, the boxes and luggage were all delivered early in the morning.
It’s just that the clothes and quilts are a little out of order, and they are scattered all over the suitcase.


Liu Miantang called upon servant Li into the house to tidy up the box.
Instead, servant Li’s voice came from the small kitchen not far away: “The master will be coming home later.
I have to prepare some food and drink, and the clothes can be cleaned up tomorrow!”


Servant Li answered impertinently again, but it was reasonable.
She couldn’t ask her husband to come back and still have to wait for food to be prepared.


Liu Miantang is surrounded by only two servants, one is servant Li, and the other is a mute who does heavy labor.
Now both of them are chopping firewood and cooking in the kitchen thus, she has to do it herself.


After being ill, her legs are not durable enough to stand for long, so she simply moved a chair and sat under the window, unpacking the luggage by folding them one by one.


These clothes and skirts are a little old after washing.
Most of them were bought by her husband a year ago.
Since then, no new clothes have been added.


However, it’s a difficult time for her husband to do business now.
The clothes here are good enough.
She’s not picky about these.


But…The clothes in these boxes are hers, and there is not even a single piece of clothing that belongs to her husband Cui Jiu.


Hasn’t my husband’s luggage been brought in yet? Cui Miantang couldn’t help but have some doubts.


Just as she was thinking, the sound of the carriage rolling over the slate came from the front gate of the mansion, and the sound of the mansion door being pushed open came next.


Liu Miantang was sitting by the window and looked over.
Not long after, a tall man bypassed the shadow wall in front of the house and entered the mansion.

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