This chapter is action-packed! Lol. I owe a lot to miumiu for translating 9/14 pages of this entire chapter. Thank you so much for helping me balance my translation/school workload (as I’m currently supposed to be working on three novels at a time). Please thank her for her hard work and the time she put into her translations!
We finally delve into the relationship between Qin Sang and all the other characters, but as for what these relationships will result in, only time will tell. We can see that despite himself, Yi Lian Kai has chosen to release Pan Jian Chi for Qin Sang, which goes to show just how much he’ll do for her, no matter how much he ignores her or tries to pretend that she doesn’t piss him off as much as she does. Qin Sang acknowledges that Pan Jian Chi has another identity, and also acknowledges that her friend may have had some kind of a relationship going with him at some point. Qin Sang seems tough, as someone who has grown to adapt to her circumstances, but we don’t know how much she has suffered to become the person she is today- whether that be under Pan Jian Chi’s hands or Yi Lian Kai’s hands.
It seems that Qin Sang’s romance life is not going great, but we don’t know why she doesn’t grasp opportunities for her own happiness. The only happiness/hope she has in her life is the new character who has appeared- Pan Jian Chi. However, much of his character stays hidden and aloof, especially when compared to the other characters whom we already know at least a little about. Pan Jian Chi just seems to screams ‘dangerous territory’ at the moment, especially how he purposefully distances himself from everyone besides Qin Sang. We don’t know his relationship with Yi Lian Kai as of yet, but we can assume it has something to do with Qin Sang based off of her reaction. On the other hand, Qin Sang’s reactions, needs a lot more gauging. Her character usually acts contradictory to what she really feels in the situation, but Pan Jian Chi just messes with her emotions, despite not actually do anything which may consequently mess up some other thing if Qin Sang isn’t careful.
Qin Sang’s whole person had originally been frightened stiff**. She didn’t even know what she was thinking about. When she heard this, she slowly recovered and forced a laugh: “Young Master Gao is too polite.”
- 魂飞魄散: lit. the soul flies away and scatters (idiom) / fig. to be frightened stiff / spooked out of one’s mind / terror-stricken
Gao Shao Xuan said to her: “I do not know when Young Master will return?”
Qin Sang did not know how many thoughts emerged in her heart for a moment, but she only did not understand if everything before her was a dream or a fantasy. If it was real or fake, and as for how all this would end. She forced herself to smile at Gao Shao Xuan: “How about I invite Young Master Gao into my home to rest for a moment? Young Master** may not come back at a definite time.”
- Young Master Gao=Gao Shao Xuan. Young Master=Yi Lian Kai because this chapter is mainly in Qin Sang’s POV.
Gao Shao Xuan saw her standing there, her whole body almost shaking.He thought that she would certainly think his identity was suspicious, but that day with her in the mountains, they had merely chatted a few words, unhindered but within propriety. Why would she be so frightened when she met him?His heart had a strange feeling. Although at first sight, he had felt attracted to Qin Sang, he had never expected her not only to be married, but to also be the wife of Yi Lian Kai. He often heard that Yi Lian Kai was involved in all kinds of romantic affairs- he was a playboy. If not for the strict house rules which banned taking concubines, maybe Yi Lian Kai would never have married. Gao Shao Xuan couldn’t help but feel an unspeakable regret and pity at the thought that he (Lian Kai) did not cherish such a beautiful and gentle wife.To see her so frightened, it was easy to surmise that she was worried that Yi Lian Kai would know of their conversation. It was clear that Yi Lian Kai was ordinarily quite high-handed with her.
While he was thinking this, Qin Sang had already issued her orders. The attendant spoke, “Please master, come in.”
Gao Shao Xuan had come to this villa several times, but never once had he felt as uneasy as he did today. As the maid served tea and withdrew ,Qin Sang seemed to have calmed down a bit. After a pause, she said: “Last time, I did not know the identity of young master. I was too presumptuous.”
Gao Shao Xuan did not expect her to take the initiative to talk about the chance encounter last time. His heart could not help but burst of into wild palpitations. Yet in his confused state, he could not guess her intentions so he only said: “At that time I also did not know of your identity as the Young Master’s Wife. Please forgive me.”
Qin Sang said “Please treat me as before, please don’t regard me as an outsider.”
She put it so politely, but he did not know why her voice was still trembling slightly- perhaps it was because of the cold. When she entered the room, a servant was summoned who took the cloak from her. Now she was sitting on the sofa, the ginger-ale like yellow brocade dress extremely charming. Gao Shao Xuan could see her face. Her eyes drooped, watched the coffee table, where an ice patterned vase sat. Her eyes were as indifferent as an ink painting. But across from the vase, he could faintly see her figure, especially her waist, which was slender. His heart was increasingly confused, but his mouth politely answered, although he did not know what he said . As the two people sat there, Qin Sang was very thoughtful, and asked about the Provincial Military Governor, the Governor’s wife, and talked about a few other things.Gao Shao Xuan felt a little calm, so his mind started wandering.Qin Sang had said a few words, and seeing that he did not answer, she called out: “Young Master Gao.”
As if awoken from a dream, Gao Shan Xuan immediately said: “If Madam has something to say, please speak.”.
That day when Qin Sang met him, although he appeared a bit bookish, but he was still very interesting. Today she didn’t know why he was so stunned, even if he was a nerd. Her mind was pre-occupied ,so she simply did not spend too much thinking about it. She only said: “I do not know why the young master has come at this time, or if your business is an official or private matter. Would you like to eat dinner and go? I’m afraid Lian Kai will only come back at night.”
Although her words were polite, there was a hidden message underneath. Gao Shao Xuan said: “I am but a student, how will there be any official business? Lian Kai asked me to do a little thing. Now that it has been complete, I came over.” He paused, then said: “If it is convenient, please tell him that Master Pan has been released. Please tell him he can rest assured regarding that matter.”
He suddenly remembered that he had not yet introduced Pan Jian Chi to Qin Sang, so He said: “This is Master Pan, he was Lian Kai’s classmate at high school. I do not know if you’ve seen him.”
Pan Jian Chi who had come and stood at the door, had not spoken till then. At this point he only looked up and saw Qin Sang, and then bowed, his voice very light: “Thank you Madam.”
Qin Sang eyes burned, she was almost tearful. Yi Lian Kai had been ignoring her for a few days; she did not expect this. She did not expect such an unexpected result, she absolutely did not expect that Pan Jian Chi, of all people, would be rescued.
She almost burst into tears, but desperately fought back the urge. Her hand gripped the handkerchief tightly, but she was on the verge of a breakdown. At this point, unable to say anything more, Gao Shao Xuan noticed that she looked different. Her cheeks were flushed and a fine sheen of sweat was on her forehead as if she was drunk. Thinking she was ill, he got up and said: “I have disturbed you for a long time, I will go back.”
As Pan Jian Chi walked out, Qin Sang did not know when or where they would meet again. In a confused state, she raised her head, looking at him. He gently shook his head
Her heart was struck with grief. Her tears almost gushing out, she quickly pretended to cough. Facing Gao Shao Xuan she smiled: “Young Master must be exhausted. Just now some fresh food had arrived from the mountain farm. There’s nothing much to eat in the mountains. If young master does not mind, he can have a meal here and then go.”
At this point when she mentioned Yi Lian Kai, she felt as if a needle had pierced her heart. At the same time, a kind of unspeakable panic came over her. She thought that if Yi Lian Kai got back, and saw Pan Jian Chi, he might suspect something.
At present it was imperative that they do not meet Yi Lian Kai. Gao Shao Xuan might even take him to meet Yi Lian Kai . As for how to evade Yi Lian Kai in the future, she could not think more on it -she could only act quickly. Because Yi Lian Kai would only come back at night, maybe they could come up with ways to evade him by then.
But in the end , thinking of all this made her anxious and sweaty. Gao Shao Xuan saw her speechless. She was always gentle and delicate and charming. His heart softened, worried that she really was not in the habit of demanding too much, so he said : “Then we respect your wishes.”
Qin Sang called out: “Han ma.”
She got up and went to make arrangements with the maids . She walked away from the sofa. Although she was wearing high heels , her footsteps were silent as she stepped on the carpet. It seemed as if she had disappeared from his sight in only a moment. Only a faint aroma remained, but it gradually faded. Gao Shao Xuan’s heart felt a sense of loss, but he looked at Pan Jian Chi hoping he would not see the clues and guess his feelings. Fortunately, Pan Jian Chi was lost in thought, his eyes just staring at the vase on the coffee table. (Miumiu: the vase sure gets a lot of attention!!!)
Both of them sat silently. Within a moment, Qin Sang came back. She seemed to have calmed down a bit, even her smile was more natural .To Gao Shao Xuan she said: “Young Master Gao has always been studying abroad. Which country did you go to?”
“America’s music and American art are all very good.” Qin Sang said: “I’ve always heard that the landscapes are also not bad.”
Gao Shao Xuan seized the opportunity to ask: “Madam, why do you not go abroad. Even if the trip is scary, it’ll be extremely interesting.”
Qin Sang said: “My father is here, and he doesn’t travel far….so for the sake of my elders and grandparents…..”
When she got to this part, she began to get sad again, but she laughed: “Look at our old-fashioned thinking. I’m only afraid that I will be laughed at by Young Master Gao.”
Gao Shao Xuan said: “I’m only afraid that young madam is younger than Gao Shao Xuan, so why must you guard old traditions with your words?”
And so they talked freely till Han Ma came to report that the food was ready . Qin Sang asked Gao Shao Xuan to proceed to the dining hall. As she was the host, she was exceptionally polite: “Young master please, Mr. Pan please … …”
As Gao Shaoxuan got up to go to the dining hall, Pan Jian Chin followed him, but he deliberately slowed down his pace a bit. Sure enough, Qin Sang silently took the opportunity to slip something into his hands. Then she proceeded towards the dining hall.
Although their houses were Western-style, there was one Chinese styled dining hall and one Western styled dining hall. Because Yi Lian Kai ordinarily entertained guests in that Western-styled dining hall, the kitchen was also connected to the Western-style dining hall. As Gao Shao Xuan sat down, the maid came up and opened the napkin for him. Qin Sang came to his side : “Today we will eat Chinese food, but we will use Western-style tableware. I ask that Young Master be more casual and do as the Romans do**.”
- 入乡随俗- When you enter a village, follow the local customs (idiom); do as the natives do / When in Rome, do as the Romans do
Gao Shao Xuan listened to her polite speech. She acted as a very competent housewife. He did not know why his heart felt uncomfortable. With a faint smile, he said : “Long ago, I heard the cook here is good, today I will get the opportunity to broaden my horizons.
Yi’s chef was a famous chef of the Jiang Zuo. He cooked steamed black bone fish with only a spoonful of spicy soup. Although the dishes were simple, they were delicious. Although Qin Sang did not drink, she let the servant open a bottle of champagne. She smiled at Shao Xuan: “The Young Master is not at home,and there are no other guests. I ask that Young Master Gao and Mr. Pan enjoy this.”.
The three people ate, but none of them could feel what the food tasted like. Fortunately they were soon finished. The cook brought them coffee in keeping with the Western style .Gao Shao Xuan saw that Qin Sang was still dispirited , so he wanted to leave with Pan Jian Chi . Qin Sang said: “If Young Master comes back, I will tell him you came for a visit. Then, we can see when he’ll go to your Mansion to pay a return visit.”
Thus, Gao Shao Xuan replied: “ I don’t dare**.”
- Since Gao is of a lower rank than Yi Lian Kai he says 不敢 (don’t dare) a lot to Yi Lian Kai as he “doesn’t dare” to ask a higher ranking person to personally visit his house in this case.
No longer courteous, Qin Sang just sent them off and went in.
She went upstairs to her room, but was uneasy. Lying in the bed, she only felt dizzy. Dazed, she felt like she had returned to school, where the large Sycamore trees hid the Western-style old buildings. In the dark shadows, a small face could be seen, covered by the shadows of the tree leaves. In the weak sunshine that filtered through the cracks in the leaves, Li Wangping’s eyes were bright and clean, like the burning sun. He took her hand and whispered to her, “Qin Sang,come with me, let us go abroad.”
But she just shook her head blindly, her tears flowing down unconsciously. She wept and finally woke up, realising that she was simply dreaming, but her pillow was drenched by her tears. She sat up slowly. Outside, the sky was dark but there was a sound of rustling, as if it was raining.
She got up and opened the window and saw it really was raining. A fine drizzle was weaving into the night, surrounded by dark heavy rain. The rain fell on the banana tree, causing a pitter patter sound, but the weather had become cooler. The winds on the mountain were usually strong, but now it seemed that everything was still. Only the rain caused a vast expanse of mist which enveloped the distant mountains and the tree nearby. From a distance, and close up, one could just see the bleak rain.
She felt so cold she was about to shut the window. But then she saw car lights flash. In the vast expanse of rain, the lights looked like bright white clusters, like numerous snow white moths flying towards the lamppost in a circle.The two clusters of light soon rolled under the window corner and disappeared, the sound of the car engine coming nearer. She realised at this late hour, it could be no one else but Yi Lian Kai who had returned.
She only waited for a few seconds, before immediately rushing to the bathroom and hurriedly opening the faucet to wash away the tears on her face. Looking at the mirror, she saw that her eyes were red and swollen, and it would take only a glance to know that she had been crying. The clothes she had slept in were also wrinkled, so she quickly changed into a set of pajamas. In a moment she could hear Yi’s footsteps upstairs. She felt anxious at that the moment, so she simply opened the bathtub faucet again, the sound of the water flowing from the tap could be heard,There was a squeak as the door opened , and she heard Lian Kai call out to her: “Qin Sang?”
Flustered, she spoke hurriedly, “Don’t come in, I am in the shower.”
That day on the pavilion at the mountain peak , Yi Lian Kai had been very irritated with his wife. Since their marriage, Qin Sang had treated him grudgingly. Her attitude towards him had always been lukewarm. Regardless of whether he quarrelled with her or treated her well,she just ignored him. Although he was angry and unwilling, he called Gao Shao Xuan to get Pan Jian Chi out. He never mentioned this to Qin Sang because he was embarrassed. But today, because of the rains, there was nowhere else to go in the mountains. He also did not want to come back. But when Han Ma told him that Qin Sang had been unwell and that she had been sleeping for a long time and did not even eat dinner, he did not want to ignore her. Who would have thought that as he went upstairs, he would see the lights in her room and enter unknowingly. He came in but did not see anyone so he had called out her name. He did not think that Qin Sang would say this. He was stunned. He could hear the sound of water gurgling in the bathroom, steam escaping from the open door. A faint aroma was emitted , he did not know from where. But it was very tempting and he was seized with an eagerness to do something.
Qin Sang was leaning against the door, listening to the sounds outside quietly. She did not realise Yi Lian Kai had not left . As she became uneasy, the door handle suddenly turned, she was shocked, Yi Lian Kai even laughed: “You left the door open. I also want to take a bath. Let ‘s have a bath together.”
Yi Lian Kai laughed. “Well all right. I will pick up my clothes. You come out, then I will have a bath.”
Qin Sang had just released a breath, but she didn’t think that Yi Lian Kai would say this, and would even suddenly bump into the door, forcibly. She was caught off guard when the door had already been bumped open. Yi Lian Kai saw that the tiny hairs on her temples had relaxed. Only clad in some thin, small, silk clothing, at a loss at what to do**, as she stood there, there was an inexplicable sense of pity and adorableness. He could not help but laugh heartily. Without an explanation, he hit her horizontally, and hugged her tight. It was too late for Qin Sang to struggle, as she had already been thrown into the bathtub water. In a moment, all the clothes on her body had already immersed in the water and had been soaked through. The only thing missing was that she had not choked on the water. Right when she was both frightened and angry, Yi Lian Kai had already embraced her, happily saying: “We should still bathe together.”
- 手足无措- at a loss at what to do (idiom). Fig, bewildered
This bath took them about two hours. Qin Sang was originally worried that Yi Lian Kai would see a hole or gap in her clothing. In the end, the two people got in a tangle, and he didn’t say anything more, when he came out and fell upon the bed, immediately sleeping. Qin Sang opened her big eyes wide, without the slightest amount of sleepiness.Yi Lian Kai’s arm was across her waist, heavily preventing her to breathe. Originally, she brushed his hand aside, but a moment had not passed before he flipped his body around and put his arm across her body again.
Qin Sang thought of the distant past, when she had just married. She always had a nightmare every night. At that time, she and Yi Lian Kai could treat each other as an honored guest**. Sometimes, she would wake up from her nightmare, crying. He would also ask her about it. She only said that she missed her mother. He would always get up and pour a cup of hot tea for her, and let her drink until she composed herself before going back to sleep. But a few months had not passed when Yi Lian Kai’s shortcomings were unmasked***. He became more and more mysterious towards her, and she was unable to endure it. The days became unbearable.
- 相敬如賓- treated each other as an honored guest(idiom) / mutual respect between husband and wife
- 原形毕露- original identity fully revealed (idiom); fig. to unmask and expose the whole truth
Even if they were unbearable, she still had to live through each day. After much procrastination, two years had passed. She only didn’t think that she would be able to meet Deng Yu Lin in this life— thin, cold sweat formed on the back of her heart. Deng Yu Lin knew everything, but she had entrusted her with releasing Pan Jian Chi. Deng Yu Lin had obviously known that Pan Jian Chi was Li Wang Ping. But why did she not tell this to herself? Could it be that she was afraid that she would be regarded as dead and unsavable? Or did she have another conspiracy?
She became more and more afraid. Her heart had a feeling of chilliness from her despair. It seemed as if she had stepped into a trap full of layers of layers of schemes. All around her was an ambush from ten sides**, all waiting for her. She only comforted herself in her heart. Li Wang Ping would definitely go away. He would definitely avoid the problem by walking away from it after he saw the piece of paper she had shoved into his hands. If, he really was a revolutionary, would he really wait for death so dumbly? As long as he escaped, then the remaining matters could be handled by herself.
- 十面埋伏- Ambush from ten sides (pipa solo piece) / House of Flying Daggers (2004 movie by Zhang Yimou
If she really couldn’t deal with it, then at the most, she would just die. Living like this, who was afraid of death?
Her heart secretly gave herself some courage. She slowly schemed. If tomorrow, Yi Lian Kai asked about getting up, how should she reply. She was the one who had asked him to save the person, but now, if Pan Jian Chi disappeared the moment he was released from prison, he would probably be suspicious. Luckily there was no evidence. As long as she stubbornly didn’t admit to it, Yi Lian Kai was unlikely to see her as an accomplice and investigate further……
As she thought, she gradually fell asleep.
This time when she fell asleep, she slept very deeply. It felt as if she hadn’t slept for a long time, when she began to dream again. Because she head Yi Lian Kai speaking in the phone, vaguely. Because the distance between them was great, his voice was intermittent: “……No…..look after him well……don’t kill him……”
The moment she heard the word “kill”, she suddenly sat up. The day had already become light. It was only that the curtains had not been pulled apart. Outside, the living room was full of light. The sun always shone in. Half of the living room was bathed in sunlight. Yi Lian Kai wore a nightgown, talking on the phone in the golden colored sunshine. His figure was tall and sturdy. Qin Sang only felt very unfamiliar with him when she looked at his body– Nevertheless, Yi Lian Kai suddenly turned his head. Seeing her sitting on the bed, he thereupon smiled to her. To the person in the phone, he said: “Then, that’s all.” Then, he hung up the phone.
Her heart was alarmed, while her body leaped**. She was only afraid he had already begun to suspect her or arrange some schemes. If so, then she had no hope of reprieve. She looked on helplessly as he walked over, step by step. Outside, the light shone, his whole body opposite the light. She could not see the expression on his face. As he walked closer, step by step, his tone was filled with a rare gentleness as he asked: “Why don’t you sleep for a little longer?”
- 心惊肉跳: lit. heart alarmed, body leaping (idiom); fear and trepidation in the face of disaster
Qin Sang’s instinct was to raise her head and look at him: “Who were you talking with on the phone?”
Yi Lian Kai laughed: “What’s wrong with talking about stocks with a friend?”
Qin Sang turned her head: “Nothing.”
“You were so well. Why are you unhappy again?” Yi Lian Kai sat down at the edge of the bed. The springs were flexible, and the whole bed sank. Qin Sang originally wanted to hide from him, but he seized her waist: “Today is a fine day. Do you want to go out and stroll around?”
“I’m not feeling too well. I don’t want to go out.”
“Why are you always feeling unwell?” Yi Lian Kai softly laughed. In her ear, he asked: “Is it that last night tired you out?”
Qin Sang became ashamed and angry, as she pushed him, and lay down, minding her own business.
Qin Sang’s heart was very resentful, as she grasped the blanket, unwilling to let go. The two people were just pulling at it aggressively, when they heard what seemed like Adjutant Song’s voice outside, lightly knocking on the door, as he called, “Gentleman Master” two times.
Yi Lian Kai couldn’t help but become indignant, and asked: “What do you want?”
Adjutant Song heard his voice, and palpitated with fright. With fear and trepidation, he answered: “Gao Provincial Governor’s Young Master has arrived.”
Yi Lian Kai heard it was Gao Shao Xuan and could only stubbornly suppress his rage and get up to wash his face and rinse his mouth. Afterwards, he changed into some new clothes and went downstairs to meet his guests. Qin Sang’s heart was overcome with worry, and thus after a moment, she quietly also went downstairs. Right when she went downstairs, she could hear laughter from a distance. That laughter came from the reception hall and disseminated. Qin Sang originally wore a pair of soft satin shoes, and there was a thick carpet spread out on the ground
Qin Sang was alarmed at this. This was no small matter. Her heart thought of her taking risks yesterday to pass on a slip of paper to him, but why did he still take advantage of the dimness of the night to escape? He actually dared to strut up to the front door. If Yi Lian Kai made out anything, what should she do? Just at that indefinite bewildered moment, all of a sudden someone called behind her: “Young Master’s Wife!” which made her palpitate with fear.
Translator: Miumiu, Tranzgeek
TL checker: Tranzgeek