Big Boss – Chapter 4

Succesfully called off the engagement

At the critical moment, a loud clang was heard as the tall fruit dish on the table fell to the ground. Everyone watched wide-eyed as the woman, who was deeply infatuated with General Qin, snatched the gold hairpin and twisted it into a pretzel shape.

Qin Wang was the most surprised, his face already flushed from drinking, now looked even more like a cooked pig’s trotter.

“Qingqing, you!”

“Ye Youqing!” A stern voice came, Duke Liang put down his wine cup heavily, his eyes under his thick black eyebrows filled with rage, “Being a legitimate daughter, you arrived late without apology, and now you act petulantly. How can you be so unrestrained on such a joyous day!”

After Duke Liang spoke, everyone quickly fell silent, not daring to say more. Zhao Qingrou, fearing that Ye Youqing would be punished, hurriedly stood up wanting to speak but lost her voice under Duke Liang’s glare.

Ye Youqing watched Zhao Qingrou’s fearful demeanor, and suddenly felt a complex emotion stirring within her.

However, from a seat further away, stood up a woman dressed in a gold-threaded brocade robe. Though no longer young, she still had a graceful figure, with red lips and tender skin. She walked up to Duke Liang’s side in a few steps, clenched her fist to massage his shoulders, and softly said, “Lord Ye, Youqing usually behaves well. Perhaps now that she has a suitor, she’s just showing a bit of temperament. Don’t take it to heart.”

Hearing this, Ye Youqing’s eyebrows slightly raised, surmising that this must be the favored concubine, Xiao Yan.

Although it sounded like she was speaking on her behalf, in reality, each sentence was inciting anger.

As expected, Duke Liang’s frown deepened upon hearing this, about to scold, when he saw Ye Youqing playing with the deformed gold hairpin in her hand, who then indifferently said, “Father, calm your anger. Your daughter is not being petulant, but on this joyous occasion, she can’t bear to see anything inauspicious.”

“What?” Duke Liang almost blurted out in rebuke, but her words stopped him in his tracks. After a pause, he continued.

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“The golden hairpins given for betrothals are mostly engraved with flowers, birds, and butterflies, symbolizing blessings. However, this hairpin is carved with something with thin wings and a long tail, which is a mayfly,” Ye Youqing took Zhao Qingrou’s hand gently, pulling her to sit, “The mayfly, living only from dawn to dusk, represents something ominous. How can it be worn on the head?”

Duke Liang’s brows furrowed even more. He waved his hand, and a maid stepped forward to take the golden hairpin from Ye Youqing’s hand and handed it to him for a closer look.

“Ridiculous!” Duke Liang suddenly threw the hairpin onto the ground, exclaiming loudly, “Who prepared this hairpin!”

Meanwhile, Xiao Yan, who had been smug just moments before, trembled all over and quickly knelt down, panicked: “It was I, I did not know the meaning behind the mayfly, only heard of its feathers, neat and elegant, and thought to seek a good fortune…”

“Foolish!” Duke Liang slapped his thigh, took a few deep breaths, and then calmed down somewhat.

“Take this thing away. The gold hairpin was originally a customary gift, it doesn’t matter if it’s not followed. General Qin, let’s have a few more drinks, and then we’ll directly proceed with the proposal.” Duke Liang waved his hand to call back Qin Wang, took his wine cup again, and gestured to the maid beside him to fill it up.

Only then did Qin Wang shift his gaze away from Ye Youqing and squeezed out a smile again.

Seeing the end of the commotion, conversation gradually resumed in the room, and the singers, whose performance had been interrupted, also began to sing again, with the sound of pipa music flowing gently.

Xiao Yan’s glaring eyes almost pierced through Ye Youqing, but Ye Youqing ignored her, simply focusing on slowly filling her stomach.

In the original work, Xiao Yan has always harbored hatred towards Zhao Qingrou and her daughter, mainly because Xiao Yan, coming from a prominent family herself, could have secured the position of the main wife if not for Zhao Qingrou’s precedence. Furthermore, her daughter, Ye Chengzhu, also harbors feelings for Qin Wang, deepening the rivalry.

The mayfly on the golden hairpin was actually prepared by Xiao Yan to humiliate Ye Youqing. In the original work, Ye Youqing didn’t realize its significance at all. When she found out afterwards, it was too late to do anything but cry in frustration secretly.

As Ye Youqing chewed her food, she recalled these plots from the original work and wondered how Qin Wang could attract the affections of so many women.

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Thinking along these lines, she glanced at Ci Ke, and to her surprise, Ci Ke was already looking at her. Their gazes met in the candlelight, illuminating Ci Ke’s charming eyes, before Ci Ke redirected her inquisitive gaze.

A new songstress took the stage in the hallway, singing a tune from Bianjing, while firecrackers sounded outside, signaling the auspicious hour.

Under the watchful eyes of the crowd, several large boxes wrapped in red cloth were carried into the entrance hall. Qin Wang, not knowing when, stood again in front of Ye Youqing, holding a bronze key in his hand, and handed it to her.

His gaze was burning, seemingly threatening.

Qin Wang regarded himself as handsome and dignified, a rare eligible bachelor in Bianjing, adored by countless, among whom Ye Youqing was the most fervently obsessed. No matter how indifferent he was on a regular basis, she always clung to him.

If it weren’t for Ye Youqing’s illustrious family background, which could be used as a pawn, he wouldn’t want to spare her a glance.

Yet, since several hours ago, after he pushed her down to excuse himself, this woman in front of him had somehow changed, becoming like a mirage, elusive and unfathomable.

It felt as though something held in his palm was about to slip away.

Qin Wang looked at Ye Youqing, who appeared calm and undisturbed, growing increasingly restless in his heart. Suddenly, he grabbed Ye Youqing’s wrist and slowly placed the key in her palm, using great force as if he wanted to crush her bones, yet his face was all gentle.

“Qingqing, accept this engagement gift, and I will never fail you,” Qin Wang said, word by word.

Ye Youqing felt pain from his grip, growing impatient in her heart. Suddenly, she spoke up, her voice gentle yet resounding through the entire hall, “General Qin is being abrupt. Before the engagement, the matchmaker should compare our birthdates as is customary.”

Upon hearing this, Qin Wang’s face changed instantly, and he muttered through gritted teeth, “Ye Youqing, don’t push your luck!”

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Ye Youqing wasn’t upset, and even curled her lips into a smile, distancing herself as she said, “I hope General Qin understands, the golden hairpin has already been passed over just now. There are only so many old traditions; if we don’t follow them, wouldn’t that tarnish the reputation of our Duke’s Household?”

Before Qin Wang could speak again, Duke Liang raised his hand to stop him: “General Qin, what Youqing said makes sense. Call the matchmaker.”

No sooner had he spoken than a few servants brought in an old woman dressed in red. She had white hair and was visibly flustered, holding two red papers in her hand.

Ye Youqing slowly stood up, pulling her wrist out of Qin Wang’s grasp, then took the red papers from the matchmaker’s hand.

Ignoring the piercing gaze of Qin Wang, Ye Youqing compared the birth dates written on them. Suddenly, she slammed the papers down on the table, causing a collective gasp.

At some point, her aura became fierce and terrifying. Although she still wore a gentle appearance, every word she spoke sent chills down the spine.

“General Qin, if I remember correctly, you were born in the year of Ding Hai, month of Jia Yin, and hour of Chou, not as written on this paper in the year of Ding Hai, the month of Yi Mao, and hour of Hai. Why did you falsify your birth time?”

Upon her words, the surroundings instantly erupted into whispers.

Even though Duke Liang, Ye Youqing’s father, and a man of high standing, could barely tolerate such behavior. He immediately stood up, took the red paper, and examined it with a frown, before exploding in fury.

“General Qin, how do you explain this?” He slammed the red paper onto Qin Wang’s chest. Qin Wang quickly dropped his fierce demeanor, stepped back, bowed, and said, “Please calm down, Duke Liang. Perhaps the matchmaker made a mistake with the birth time. I will have it recalculated immediately…”

“No need!” Duke Liang interrupted him, his eyes glaring in anger, “Take this matchmaker to the official yamen1, and let’s calculate the crimes of her deception. As for you, General Qin Wang.”

Duke Liang’s majestic gaze fell on Qin Wang, and he said in a low voice, “As for today’s betrothal gifts, let’s take them back!”

After speaking, he angrily left the room with a flick of his sleeves, leaving behind a group of people looking at each other in dismay.

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Qin Wang’s face turned almost purple with rage. He stood gloomily for a while, then suddenly glared at Ye Youqing with a vicious look, as if he wished he could tear Ye Youqing into a thousand pieces: “Ye Youqing, are you playing me?”

Still wearing a smile, Ye Youqing showed no fear: “Yes.”

The birth date information is usually arranged by the matchmaker, and rarely do people truly care about it. If not for Ci Ke revealing it to her, Ye Youqing would hardly think that Qin Wang would lie about his birth date to marry sooner.

Qin Wang nodded slightly, forcing a hideous smile, and furiously threw the red paper in his hand onto the ground. Bypassing Ye Youqing, he knocked over several tables along the way and stopped in front of Ci Ke.

Ci Ke was looking at Ye Youqing in astonishment. Although she revealed Qin Wang’s secret as a form of repayment, she never thought that Ye Youqing would actually use it to refuse the marriage.

After all, this foolish woman was wholeheartedly determined to marry Qin Wang.

However, as soon as Ci Ke noticed Qin Wang’s approach, she diverted her gaze, practicing eyes on the nose, nose on the heart.2

Qin Wang was evidently furious, disregarding everyone in the room. He suddenly pinched Ci Ke’s chin and whispered hoarsely, “Only you know about this.”

Ci Ke didn’t speak, her eyes reddening and brimming with tears, lifting her eyes in a frightened manner, which even in Ye Youqing’s view seemed utterly pitiful.

Ye Youqing’s heart suddenly tightened.

“Let’s go.” Qin Wang, suppressing his anger, said softly and then turned to leave the hall. Ci Ke stumbled from his push but stood firm, a flash of cold light in her eyes before she lowered her gaze to conceal it, quickly following Qin Wang out.

Ye Youqing’s heart was still tense, although she knew that since Ci Ke dared to speak out, she must have been able to extricate herself from the situation.

However, seeing her like this, if Qin Wang was really consumed with anger, perhaps…

Ye Youqing frowned, turned to comfort Zhao Qingrou a few words, then suddenly picked up her skirt and briskly followed them.



  1. A yamen is a government office or administrative building in traditional Chinese society where officials resided and conducted official business, serving as centers of governance and legal administration within specific regions or districts.
  2. “Eyes on the nose, nose on the heart” is an expression that emphasizes the importance of being attentive, observant, and sensitive to others’ feelings and needs.
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Jer Grant

Thanks for translating! I needed both of those footnotes.

Tripped up on one thing:

In the original work, Xiao Yan has always harbored hatred towards Ye Youqing and her daughter

Is this supposed to be Zhao Qingruo?

anazu

Cant wait for this abusive scum downfall

Last edited 1 month ago by anazu
Little Panda
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