Chapter 18 A Shrew ComesLin Luoran feels terribly upset. Li Anping’s mother falsely accuses her as expected and makes up a lot of rumors to malign her, even getting her mom filled with anxiety.
“Mom, I’m raised by you. Why do you think I go astray? Why do you believe outsiders but not your own daughter? I make money on my own. Absolutely legally. I’ll talk to you when having dinner. Is it ok?”
Mrs. Lin still worries a lot. Lin Luoran does not get angry. She explains it and makes a promise initiatively.
Mrs. Lin wants to say more, but Mr. Lin, after moving the last pack of beef, says impatiently, “Our daughter has been driving for a long time to come back. She’s tired. Let’s talk after dinner!”
Mr. Lin is the head of the family at a crucial time and Mrs. Lin stops. The three go to cook in the kitchen together. Mother cuts vegetables, father cooks, and Luoran makes a fire, as the definite division as usual.
Mr. Lin is different from other men in rural areas. He never thinks that wives must do all the housework. Actually, he is better at cooking than his wife.
Looking at the vegetables Lin Luoran brings back, Mrs. Lin babbles, “We have everything at home. Why do you waste money?”
These vegetables are from the space, but Lin Luoran can’t tell them frankly now. So she has to lie to them, “Mom, this is a new species. It is difficult to buy outside!”
Mr. Lin picks a stick of celery into her mouth. It tastes crunchy, a little tingle and refreshing. He nods constantly:” The vegetables our daughter brought are really better than what we grow. It’s her love toward us. Why do you keep blaming her?”
Lin Luoran sees dad blink his eyes just like what he did when she was a child. It is easy for them to form a joint front “against” Mrs. Lin. Mr. Lin is dull and ineloquent in the eyes of outsiders, but he is quick-witted only in front of his daughter.
Looking at dad’s wrinkles and gray hair when he blinks, Lin Luoran is going to cry. Her father, only in his fifties, has been tortured by a hard life. She must keep them from suffering.
Lin Luoran lowers her head to make fire, hiding her rolling tears, and secretly determines to protect her parents from toiling days!
Pouring oil into the pot, Mr. Lin takes the celery cut by Mrs. Lin, and is ready to cook “stir-fried beef with celery”. The courtyard is full of noise, so Lin Luoran and her parents involuntarily stop.
The Lin family lives in a single courtyard surrounded by walls made of fences, so they can see it straight if something happens.
During the cooking time, so many people come to their yard.
Li Bajie, with her own two children and other children in the village, seven or eight in a pile, is around Lin Luoran’s car to touch it curiously.
There are also countless onlookers sneaking outside the fence. Do they have some bad ideas or just want to enjoy the farce?
The old woman standing in the yard, short-statured and inconspicuous, is Li Anping’s mother!
When seeing Li Anping’s mother stand in the doorway with her two daughters, a son-in-law and several brothers, Lin Luoran laughs cynically. Do these people want to bully the Lin family just because their surname doesn’t belong to Li’s village and even force them to capitulate?
“In-law, what are you doing? Let’s talk in the room.” When noticing there are many people in the yard, Mrs. Lin is afraid that the controversy will be upgraded and eager to make a reconciliation.
Mrs. Li clears her throat and spits, “Who is your in-law? We don’t have such a shameless daughter-in-law! She gets rich but doesn’t support the family. Probably, she spends money on some other man. But then again, who knows where she gets so much money? Ask your daughter if she finds a sugar daddy and dumps my son. Even the engagement bracelet has been taken back by her!”
Mrs. Li remarks with jeers, causing a wave of hisses among the surrounding villagers.
Mrs. Li is pleased with herself, “You Lin family came to our village to flee from famine. Who knows what you are that you can raise such a shameful girl. Like mother, like daughter!”
Mrs. Lin doesn’t know how to retort her, and looks at her daughter unbelievably.
Lin Luoran gets blank for a moment. The woman in front of her has given birth to several children, but only Li Anping succeeds in study. Her other children are girls. The whole family sacrifices for Li Anping’s prospect.
She was kind before, and told Lin Luoran face to face, “It is the same thing whether Anping or you receive education. Don’t worry. If he dares to hurt you, I will break his leg.”
Now, however, Lin Luoran recalls when she just broke up with Li Anping, she called his mother “auntie” on the phone, but Li’s mother screamed, “Who is your auntie? Don’t try to sweet-talk me! I warn you, girl, don’t try to stick to my son. He is a graduate student now. Do you think you can deserve him?”
Lin Luoran has forgotten how she felt when hanging up. All she knows now is that she’s really, really… well, furious.
She is extremely furious for many matters: for she was too young and too naive at that time; for she is too softhearted; for her parents are often embarrassed by the so-called “reasons”; for the different attitudes of Mrs. Li and for Li Anping’s cheating… However, the one Lin Luoran is angry with is herself. Her misjudgment leads her parents to today’s humiliation.
Lin Luoran drags away her parents protecting her and hints at dealing with it herself. Gazing at Mrs. Li gabbling on and on, she said, “What do you want?”
Mrs. Li finds the Lin family is gentle, so she thinks they are pushovers. Before Mrs. Li talks, Li Anping’s eldest sister steps, “What? Give your bracelet back. You can go back on your engagement, but the bracelet is ours!”
Li Anping’s sister has been coveting that silver bracelet for a long time. But she doesn’t dare to snatch it from her brother. Otherwise, she will be beaten to death by her mother. Hearing this bracelet is worth thirty thousand yuan at least, she even becomes green-eyed!
Li Anping’s sister looks at Lin Luoran proudly, but she is suddenly pulled by her mother and nearly falls down.
“Bracelet is on the one hand, but on the other hand, we have been engaged for so many years, and you just call off it as you like. What do you take the whole Li’s village for? I hear you’re rich now. We want money. You must compensate for our loss!”
That’s what Mrs. Li thinks. Since her son called back in the morning to tell her that Lin Luoran had made a fortune, she has determined not to let her go easily. She must fleece Lin Luoran of her money.
She premeditates it well. The Lin family has no roots in Li’s village and no one will help them. After all, Lin Luoran is a girl and is thin-skinned, so Lin Luoran will certainly grant her requests.
The villagers outside the fence are watching with relish, and only Aunt Li worries about the Lin family. Mrs. Li’s nephews and sons-in-law are eyeing covetously. There is a flash of sarcasm in Lin Luoran’s eyes and she laughs with anger, “Who says I’m breaking off the engagement?”