Yü-ts’un had had no idea that it was he. Hastily taking his hand in his, he smilingly observed, “You are, indeed, an old acquaintance!” and then pressed him to take a seat, so as to have a chat with more ease, but the Retainer would not presume to sit down. “Friendships,” Yü-ts’un remarked, putting on a smiling expression, “contracted in poor circumstances should not be forgotten! This is a private room; so that if you sat down, what would it matter?” The Retainer thereupon craved permission to take a seat, and sat down gingerly, all awry. “Why did you, a short while back,” Yü-ts’un inquired,Read More →

When Yü-ts’un heard their appeal, he flew into a fiery rage. “What!” he exclaimed. “How could a case of such gravity have taken place as the murder of a man, and the culprits have been allowed to run away scot-free, without being arrested? Issue warrants, and despatch constables to at once lay hold of the relatives of the bloodstained criminals and bring them to be examined by means of torture.” Thereupon he espied a Retainer, who was standing by the judgment-table, wink at him, signifying that he should not issue the warrants. Yü-t’sun gave way to secret suspicion, and felt compelled to desist. Withdrawing fromRead More →

Hence it was that, though this Li Wan still continued, after the loss of her mate, while she was as yet in the spring of her life, to live amidst affluence and luxury, she nevertheless resembled in every respect a block of rotten wood or dead ashes. She had no inclination whatsoever to inquire after anything or to listen to anything; while her sole and exclusive thought was to wait upon her relatives and educate her son; and, in addition to this, to teach her young sisters-in-law to do needlework and to read aloud. Tai-yü was, it is true, at this period living as aRead More →

An ill-fated girl happens to meet an ill-fated young man — The Hu Lu Bonze adjudicates the Hu Lu case. Tai-yü, for we shall now return to our story, having come, along with her cousin to madame Wang’s apartments, found madame Wang discussing certain domestic occurrences with the messengers, who had arrived from her elder brother’s wife’s home, and conversing also about the case of homicide, in which the family of her mother’s sister had become involved, and other such relevant topics. Perceiving how pressing and perplexing were the matters in which madame Wang was engaged, the young ladies promptly left her apartments, and cameRead More →

“Miss Lin,” interposed Ying Ko smirkingly, “has been here in an awful state of mind! She has cried so to herself, that her eyes were flooded, as soon as she dried her tears. ‘It’s only to-day that I’ve come,’ she said, ‘and I’ve already been the cause of the outbreak of your young master’s failing. Now had he broken that jade, as he hurled it on the ground, wouldn’t it have been my fault? Hence it was that she was so wounded at heart, that I had all the trouble in the world, before I could appease her.” “Desist at once, Miss! Don’t go onRead More →

Nurse Wang, Tzu Chüan and other girls entered at once upon their attendance on Tai-yü in the green gauze rooms, while Pao-yü‘s wet-nurse, dame Li, together with an elderly waiting-maid, called Hsi Jen, were on duty in the room with the large bed. This Hsi Jen had also been, originally, one of dowager lady Chia’s servant-girls. Her name was in days gone by, Chen Chu. As her venerable ladyship, in her tender love for Pao-yü, had feared that Pao-yü‘s servant girls were not equal to their duties, she readily handed her to Pao-yü, as she had hitherto had experience of how sincere and considerate sheRead More →

As she uttered these words, she speedily took the jade over from the hand of the waiting-maid, and she herself fastened it on for him. When Pao-yü heard this explanation, he indulged in reflection, but could not even then advance any further arguments. A nurse came at the moment and inquired about Tai-yü‘s quarters, and dowager lady Chia at once added, “Shift Pao-yü along with me, into the warm room of my suite of apartments, and put your mistress, Miss Lin, temporarily in the green gauze house; and when the rest of the winter is over, and repairs are taken in hand in spring inRead More →

“This is just another plagiarism, I fear,” observed T’an Ch’un, with an ironic smirk. “Exclusive of the Four Books,” Pao-yü remarked smilingly, “the majority of works are plagiarised; and is it only I, perchance, who plagiarise? Have you got any jade or not?” he went on to inquire, addressing Tai-yü, (to the discomfiture) of all who could not make out what he meant. “It’s because he has a jade himself,” Tai-yü forthwith reasoned within her mind, “that he asks me whether I have one or not.— No; I haven’t one,” she replied. “That jade of yours is besides a rare object, and how could everyRead More →

Pao-yü, having concluded his scrutiny of her, put on a smile and said, “This cousin I have already seen in days gone by.” “There you are again with your nonsense,” exclaimed lady Chia, sneeringly; “how could you have seen her before?” “Though I may not have seen her, ere this,” observed Pao-yü with a smirk, “yet when I look at her face, it seems so familiar, and to my mind, it would appear as if we had been old acquaintances; just as if, in fact, we were now meeting after a long separation.” “That will do! that will do!” remarked dowager lady Chia; “such beingRead More →

But one wild, howling waste his mind within: Addled his brain that nothing he could see; A dunce! to read essays so loth to be! Perverse in bearing, in temper wayward; For human censure he had no regard. When rich, wealth to enjoy he knew not how; When poor, to poverty he could not bow. Alas! what utter waste of lustrous grace! To state, to family what a disgrace! Of ne’er-do-wells below he was the prime, Unfilial like him none up to this time. Ye lads, pampered with sumptuous fare and dress, Beware! In this youth’s footsteps do not press! But to proceed with ourRead More →