Noble Daughter | Chapter 2: Love between Ancestors and Granddaughter

However, Wei Xuan was even more formidable than her mother. Throughout her life, she always outshone Wei Heng by a wide margin.

Wei Xuan, blessed with extraordinary talent, excelled in everything she pursued. At the age of twelve, she effortlessly entered the women’s academy. On the other hand, Wei Heng fought tooth and nail, managing to enter the women’s school through the “grace and favor” of her aunt, the Queen.

To say this, Wei Heng simply didn’t want to remember it. Wei Heng was not admitted to the women’s academy, and the He family felt like the sky was falling. Later, Wei Xuan saw that Wei Heng was pitiful, so she secretly went to beg her aunt, the queen. Queen Mu gave Wei Heng the back door, and the women’s academy admitted her. But the circle in the capital is so big, and everyone knew that Wei Heng entered through the back door. There is a nickname for people like them, that is, “same-girl students.”

For example, a wife, a Jinshi, or a female student are all regrettable things that make people beat their chests and beat their feet.

Later, Wei Xuan married Lu Zhan, Duke of Qi, who was equally talented, civilized and martial, and could be called the son-in-law of the state. The two had a deep love for each other, and Wei Xuan even managed to keep all the concubines in submission. . Wei Xuan’s fertility was commendable. She gave birth to a son in the first year after entering the house, and then she gave birth to five sons in a row before she could rest.

As for Wei Heng, she married Wei Xuan’s cousin, Yongping Hou Fanyong. However, Fan Yong harbored a lifelong unrequited love for Wei Xuan, and in his own words, marrying Wei Heng was a way to stay connected to the same bloodline as Wei Xuan.

Thanks to Wei Xuan’s blessings, Fan Yong treated Wei Heng relatively well, avoiding any scandals of favoring concubines over his wife. However, Wei Heng’s journey to motherhood was arduous. It took a lifetime of struggle, and at the age of thirty, she finally gave birth to a son. Unfortunately, this took a toll on her health, and in her thirties, she passed away. When she closed her eyes, she found herself back in the present. At that time, Wei Xuan was still alive and well. Wei Heng, in comparison, had a shorter life than Wei Xuan.

Throughout her previous life, Wei Heng couldn’t surpass Wei Xuan in any aspect. However, there was one exception—her appearance. Wei Heng blossomed into a breathtaking beauty, often described as enchanting and captivating. Unfortunately, her beauty became a burden in a Great Xia Dynasty that valued talent over looks. In an era where intellectual prowess was celebrated, Wei Heng’s beauty was often mocked as lacking substance or being all form and no substance.

As for Wei Xuan, her delicate face was lifted to the sky by the group of admirers, and she became a fairy daughter from heaven and descended to earth, leading the aesthetics of a generation. Her slightly narrow and not too large phoenix eyes became the “windows of the soul,” setting the standard for beauty. In contrast, Wei Heng’s eyes were criticized as lacking vitality.

At that time, women were all proud of having narrow phoenix eyes and flat chests, as if these were necessary signs of a talented woman.

When Wei Heng was young and ignorant, he even lost his temper at He Shi and asked her why her eyes were so big.

Therefore, when it comes to appearance, Wei Heng is not actually better than Wei Xuan.

Having Wei Xuan as a formidable opponent made Wei Heng constantly struggle. Although Wei Heng enjoyed a life of prosperity and wealth, she couldn’t shake off the dissatisfaction in her heart. Disappointing her mother, and with the constant reminder of Wei Xuan’s success, Wei Heng contemplated ending her life to spare her mother from further disappointment.

However, the will to survive is deeply embedded in every individual. Forced to eat and take medicine by her mother, combined with her young age and resilient constitution, Wei Heng’s complexion recovered in just half a month, looking as radiant as an apple.

Now able to eat, drink, run, and jump, Wei Heng had to pay a visit to Ruiyun Hall to greet Old Madam Zhang and then resume her studies.

Upon entering Ruiyun Hall, Wei Heng, holding her mother’s hand, was immediately called by the Old Madam, “Zhu Zhu’er, come to your grandmother.”

The Old Madam doted on Wei Heng greatly, an exception to those who favored Wei Xuan due to her outstanding achievements. According to the saying, “The emperor loves the eldest son, and the common people love the youngest.” Wei Heng’s father, Wei Jun, was Lady Zhang’s youngest son. Lady Zhang had faced difficulties with pregnancies before Wei Jun, expecting that he might not survive either. However, to everyone’s surprise, Wei Jun was born healthy and plump, becoming Lady Zhang’s beloved son.

Love the house as much as the bird, so the old lady inevitably had a preference for Wei Heng. What’s more, Wei Heng also had a difficult life. When she was born, she was as weak as a kitten. The old lady specially paid a large sum of money for her to hire an eminent monk from Fahua Temple to recite sutras for seven days to pray for her and ward off disasters. Another traveling Taoist priest said that Wei Heng had a light life and was easily invaded by evil spirits, so she had to stay with someone with a long life for a year.

After all the calculations, the old lady had the oldest fate in the house, so Wei Heng stayed with the old lady for a year when she was a child. But He Shi missed her daughter very much, and the old lady was not the cruel mother-in-law who separated mother and daughter, so Wei Heng finally returned to He Shi, but the old lady’s feelings for Wei Heng were particularly special.

However, in the past two years, due to her mother’s strict control, Wei Heng couldn’t express her usual playful and charming self around Lady Zhang. 

Today was the first time Wei Heng saw the old lady after her rebirth. It was nothing before, because in her heart, the old lady was someone who had been gone for decades. She had not yet clarified her own thoughts, and was confused and refused to accept rebirth. But now when she heard the old lady calling her “Zhu Zhu’er” and saw the old lady’s people, she couldn’t contain her excitement. Breaking free from her mother’s grip, she rushed into Lady Zhang’s arms, shedding tears of mixed emotions.

“Ah, my good granddaughter, why are you crying so sadly? Who has bullied our Zhu Zhu’er? Tell your grandmother, and I’ll seek justice for you.” Lady Zhang embraced Wei Heng, comforting her.

Wiping away tears, Wei Heng looked up and sobbed, “No one has mistreated me. I just miss my grandmother. Why doesn’t Grandma come to see Zhu Zhu’er?”

These were the words of a child, but they unintentionally pointed out Lady Zhang’s shortcomings. Nevertheless, Lady Zhang couldn’t bear to blame Wei Heng, overwhelmed by the intense longing displayed by her granddaughter.

Lady Zhang’s attendant, Guiyun, quickly explained, “Third Miss might be blaming Grandma wrongly. When she was ill, Grandma did go to see her, but the doctor said to prepare for the worst, so Grandma was advised not to see her, fearing it would make Grandma sad. We all had to persuade Grandma to keep her away.”

In fact, when Wei Heng was ill and confused, the old lady went to see her. However, the doctor told her to prepare for her funeral. The old lady almost fainted after hearing this. Everyone was so frightened that they helped her leave. She went to see Wei Heng.

Wei Heng, rubbing her eyes, said, “Sister Guiyun, it’s Zhu Zhu’er who doesn’t understand. I just miss Grandma so much.” Wei Heng hugged the old lady’s waist and buried his head in her arms.

How could the old lady not like such a pitiful little thing? She couldn’t help wiping her tears while hugging her and said: “It’ll be fine, it’ll be fine. Bodhisattva bless you. This disease of yours has broken my grandmother’s heart.” 

Everyone hurriedly persuaded the old lady to take a rest, and finally managed to stop the tears of the grandmother and granddaughter.

These were childish words, and it shifted the focus from Lady Zhang’s actions to Wei Heng’s emotions. Lady Zhang, feeling sorry for her, couldn’t bring herself to reprimand Wei Heng.

Lady Zhang cupped Wei Heng’s face and remarked, “You’ve become thin, too thin. This time, you must take good care of yourself. Don’t let yourself fall ill at such a young age.”

“That’s right,” the eldest daughter-in-law, Madam Jiang, added, pulling Wei Heng’s hand. “You used to be plump, resembling a jade maiden under the Bodhi tree. Now you must regain your vitality.”

Madam Jiang then turned to Madam He and said, “Second Sister-in-law, my family just sent two pieces of old mountain ginseng. Let’s give them to the Third Miss to nourish her body.”

Madam Jiang managed the household affairs of the Marquis’s residence. She was skilled in managing relationships, and everyone in the family liked her. Although Madam He had a rich dowry and received annual dividends from the He family, she appreciated Madam Jiang’s gesture. Madam Jiang’s words were a show of goodwill, regardless of the practicality of the expensive gifts in Wei Heng’s current state.

As soon as Madam Jiang’s words came out, the two sister-in-laws of the first house also quickly said that she had high-quality deer antlers, and He Shi smiled and thanked her. In fact, Wei Heng was so young that she couldn’t stand taking supplements such as ginseng and velvet antler. This was just a matter of not caring about what was right.

Only Wei Heng’s direct sister-in-law, the Third Young Mistress, looked red with shame and was speechless. But it turns out that the two young ladies in the first house, the Jiang family and the Gu family, are both from noble families. Their dowries are quite generous and families are also very capable. They can give them some mountain ginseng, deer antlers, etc., but to them, it’s just a drop in the bucket. Not worth anything.

But the wife of the eldest son and daughter-in-law of the second wife, Ge, was the one she liked. She was born in a female school, and her family had been scholars for generations. Unfortunately, she had little talent, and the highest official was the county magistrate.

Normally, the Ge family would not be able to marry into a family like the Jingning Marquis Mansion, but as we have seen before, once a woman enters a women’s school, her worth will be a hundred times higher, and she will not have to worry about marrying at all. What He Shi adheres to is the eternal truth, “Marry a daughter from a high family, marry a daughter-in-law from a low family.” The He family was reduced to merchants, and their family was not prosperous. If they married a daughter from a noble family, He Shi’s waist would inevitably be hard to maintain at times, so he simply chose Ge, a poor girl student with both talent and beauty, and an innocent background.

Although this Ge Shi was a leader in women’s studies, after getting married, she had to wash her hands and make soup. Although she could not lose her ability to talk about poetry and compose poems, it was not her main job after all. It is inevitable for sisters-in-law in a family to compare themselves with each other, just like the He family and the eldest wife Mu family have been competing for a lifetime.

Naturally, this Ge Shi will inevitably be compared with Jiang Shi and Gu Shi, and she herself will inevitably compare with them in her heart. At this moment, the two sisters-in-law in the next room all took out things to give to Wei Heng. However, Ge’s direct sister-in-law was short of money, and her little dowry was as good as nothing. As for the little salary of the third young master Wei Yue, it was not enough for his own entertainment, so there was no spare money for Ge Shi. Ge Shi also wanted to get something to supplement Wei Heng, but where could she get it?

Wei Heng accidentally caught a glimpse of Ge Shi’s blushing face and couldn’t help but sympathize with this sister-in-law. In her previous life, she also looked down on Ge Shi. She only felt that she was from a small family and was not generous at all. It would usually only embarrass her, which was usually the case like this.

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