Thank you Dragon_Reader, Ainslee, ensaymadaroll, Tamasaga, Apples and Oranges, and Kurobito so much for writing reviews and providing different views about this novel! I really appreciate it. I was worried that no one would like this novel because it’s too different.
Title: The Dreamer in the Spring Boudoir
Chapter: 016 out of 513 – Household punishment of five-rods thick rattan (2)
“Yes.” There wouldn’t be a good result even if she continued to argue. This man clearly hated Nie Sangyu and wanted to protect Wen Wan, so what was the use in her struggling? The sooner she was punished, the sooner the matter would be settled.
Marquis Moyu was silent for a while. He seemed somewhat surprised. But, there were several people here, so he didn’t show much of his thoughts or feelings. He only said, “Since it’s like that, Steward Qian, take her away and punish her in accordance to the household rules.”
“Understood.” Steward Qian nodded. Two rough servants came forward and took her outside.
Muxu was so frightened that she lost her wits. She was shocked that her master would so calmly accept being punished. If it weren’t because of her, her master wouldn’t have left confinement courtyard!
When she thought of it that way, tears came rushing out from Muxu’s eyes. With all of her strength, she repeatedly kowtowed to Marquis Moyu. “My lord, my master already has poor health. Let this servant take her place! Please!”
Ning Yuxuan ignored her. Everyone else in the room, including Wen Wan, didn’t say a single word. Feeling hopeless, Muxu raised her head to glance at them. Then, she turned around and ran outside.
Ji Man had been very calm, but when she saw Steward Qian bringing the rattan, her heart felt hollow.
Hey, why was the marquis’s household punishment so harsh? Normally, wouldn’t it only be a one-rod thick rattan? That rotten fellow, the household punishment was actually five-rods thick rattan! If she had known this early, she would have tried struggling more!
Even though she felt endlessly remorseful about her early choice, Ji Man felt worse when she saw Muxu’s pitifully crying on the side. She could only pretend to be utterly fearless as she comforted her, “Muxu, don’t cry. It won’t hurt that much. I’ll be fine after resting for a few days.”
Muxu shook her head. Tears were still streaming down from her face. Her forehead was red from kowtowing ealier.
Ji Man couldn’t bear to see her like this. She had never been good at comforting people, so she simply closed her eyes.
Ning Yuxuan, Wen Wan, and Mu Shuiqing had also come out. The two people in the front had complicated expressions while the third person came out to watch the excitement. Moreover, she seemed to be rejoicing in Nie Sangyu’s misfortune.
Marquis Moyu’s household punishment was ten strikes of the rattan. Ji Man felt that it shouldn’t be that difficult to endure.
But, she hadn’t expected that the servant dealing out the punishment would hate her that much. When the servant fiercely struck down, her kneeling position wasn’t stable and she fell forward. Her back felt numb for a moment before it was replaced by overwhelming pain.
As a modern day person, Ji Man had never suffered such a punishment. The tears that Ji Man hadn’t wanted to shed came out. She clenched her jaw and went back to the kneeling position again. She took the rest of the beating.
Ning Yuxuan looked at her with cool eyes of a bystander. He saw her clenching her fists and even saw the cold sweat from her forehead fell down, but she still clenched her jaw and didn’t let out any sound. In the past, she would have never accepted this punishment.
By the seventh strike, Ji Man’s head wasn’t as clear anymore. She unconsciously opened her eyes and glanced at Marquis Moyu.
That man looked at her without any emotion as he stood next to his new wife.
At the very least, Nie Sangyu had been with him for six years. For him to be this heartless towards her, he truly didn’t have the slightest feeling towards her.
Ji Man heard a voice in her head say with a heart-wrenching cry, “I hate him.”
“En. I hate him too.” Ji Man quietly replied. “I’ll help you get your revenge.”
Ning Yuxuan watched Ji Man until she finished receiving her punishment. He didn’t say anything and only waved his hand to indicate for the servants to bring her back. Her eyes had become cold. They no longer looked at him with their previous warmth.
Muxu had cried so much that her voice had become hoarse. She rushed to Ji Man’s side, but she couldn’t do anything to help. She could only continue to cry.
“It’s okay. Older sister Jiang and little radish had suffered much more than me.” Ji Man opened her eyes and smiled at Muxu. “Sacrifices always have to be made for the revolution.”
(T/N: Older sister Jiang and little radish are characters in a novel called, Red Crag. The novel is partially based on historical people from the Chinese Revolutionary War like Jiang Zhuyun. Little radish was a child that was brought to prison when he was one year old with his mom and he died eight years later.)
Muxu didn’t understand her words and the sound of her crying got worse.
When they returned to the confinement courtyard, Wen Wan sent people over with medicine. Muxu carefully undressed Ji Man and applied the medicine. Ji Man was in so much pain that her face was deathly pale. Her back was very swollen.
“It was this servant’s fault.” Muxu couldn’t help crying again. “This servant wanted to come back earlier, but Master Shuiqing wouldn’t let me.”
“It’s not your fault. It’s my fault for being too foolish.” Ji Man grimaced in pain and said, “If I hadn’t acted so rashly and left the confinement courtyard, nothing would have happened. Or, if I hadn’t gone to Qiangwei Courtyard, I wouldn’t have angered Ning Yuxuan that much. But, I couldn’t control this body and it somehow led me there."
Muxu’s crying became more terrible. “That’s your courtyard. You lived there for six years.”
Ji Man was silent for a moment. There was mournful feeling that rose in her heart like billowing clouds.
When Nie Sangyu felt bad, she had to feel bad along with her. When Nie Sangyu felt heartache, she had to feel heartache too. Right now, Nie Sangyu’s body was in so much pain that it felt as if it would split apart. She had to bear this pain along with everything else.
She had wanted to peacefully live in this world as a bystander, but unexpectedly, this world didn’t want her to have good days.
Since she was Nie Sangyu, she should properly behave like the real Nie Sangyu. She should listen to what Nie Sangyu had to say and seriously act out her role.
After she finished drinking a bowl of bitter medicine, she gritted her until the taste of the medicine passed. Ji Man decided. She would listen to Nie Sangyu’s heartfelt wish and ask her what she wanted her to do. They had to have a proper discussion. Otherwise, if Nie Sangyu used this body to choke Wen Wan to death, she would be punished along with Nie Sangyu again.
T/N: I went back and forth between whether or not I should say this… This will be the first and last time Ji Man is punished by Ning Yuxuan. If he had known in advance that she would accept the punishment, which is really out-of-character for her, maybe, he wouldn't have said it. The real Nie Sangyu would have threatened him with her maiden family.
Ning Yuxuan and the other concubines really do have good reasons for why they’re so biased against Nie Sangyu. This is also why Wen Wan, the only person who hasn’t directly experienced interacting with the past Nie Sangyu, genuinely doesn’t think badly of her. You’ll see the reason in the next chapter.
Unlike other transmigrators, Ji Man doesn’t have the luxury of starting with a clean slate. She has to live with the consequences of Nie Sangyu’s past actions when she doesn’t even know everything that Nie Sangyu had done. But don't worry, Ji Man will very quickly learn how to use Nie Sangyu’s reputation to her advantage.
“But, I couldn’t control this body and it somehow led me there.” Do you remember when Ji Man suddenly felt her knees hurting at the end of chapter 5, so she ended up pouring hot tea over Wen Wan? I’m pretty sure that was Nie Sangyu’s doing.