Chapter 197: Tremble, Scumbag 6
“I heard many acupoints on one’s feet, and many of them are connected to the brain. Since the physician said there are blood clots in his head, maybe, if we soak his feet in hot water more often, the blood clots in our lucky star’s head will disperse.”
It was unknown from where Jiang Miaoshi got this remedy, but the first thing she did when she got home was to boil water.
People in the countryside don’t bathe frequently because it is costly to use firewood to boil water when it can be sold for money. As for the households without a well, they could only go to the river to fetch water, which takes a least four or five round trips for each bath.
Due to this, villagers will take a bath once every two to three months in winter and once every one or two weeks in summer. Men are better off. As long as the weather is not too cold in spring, summer and autumn, they can swim in the river anytime. But it was less convenient for women. Hence, they just wipe themselves with a wet cloth when they can’t stand it.
Because everyone is like this, no one will dislike the sweat and body odour of others, nor will they think that this kind of lifestyle is unhygienic.
The Jiang family did not have the habit of soaking their feet before. It was only today that Jiang Miaoshi heard someone chatting about the benefits of soaking their feet, which led to this incident.
“Lan’er, Mom knows that your husband’s illness is causing you a lot of hardship. However, as the saying goes, when you marry a chicken, you follow the chicken; when you marry a dog, you follow the dog. Now, the two of us can only work together to care for the lucky star’s illness so that our life can be better.”
Now, Jiang Liu’s intelligence is similar to that of a four or five-year-old child. He can no longer make decisions about their household’s serious matters. The only labour force left in the family is Jiang Miaoshi and Bai Lan.
If they plan to soak Jiang Liu’s feet every morning and night, the family will need more firewood, and the burden of fetching water will also increase. These are things that Jiang Miaoshi and Bai Lan need to bear together.
Jiang Miaoshi is also a woman, so she naturally knows how difficult it is for a woman if her husband develops a mental illness. If it was any other fierce women, they might have chosen to abandon their child and leave to return to their parents and remarry. It might be different from Bai Lan, who has a weak personality.
In rural areas, many men cannot afford to marry, so it is not uncommon for widows or divorced women to remarry. With Bai Lan’s appearance, some rural men with better conditions would be willing to marry her.
Because she was worried that her daughter-in-law would run away, Jiang Miaoshi’s attitude towards her daughter-in-law has improved a lot these days. She speaks reasonably and doesn’t boss her around like she used to.
To be honest, Bai Lan doesn’t have too much resentment towards her mother-in-law. Although she is sometimes harsh on her daughter-in-law, this is common for most mothers-in-law in rural villages.
Although her mother-in-law was a little unhappy, she resisted Jiang Liu’s pressure when she accidentally caused the death of Meng Jiao-niang and Jiang Liu’s first child. She did not allow him to divorce her. She even only recognized the two children that Bai Lan gave birth to. In addition, when Meng Jiao-niang gave birth to her second child, her mother-in-law mocked Meng Jiao-niang as a chicken worse than a secret prostitute. She swore that she wouldn’t allow children born to such a woman to enter the Jiang family’s gate. Because of her mother-in-law’s words, Meng Jiao-niang became the biggest laughingstock in the village.
Although Bai Lan understands that her mother-in-law didn’t want Meng Jiao-niang to enter the family because she knew about her character, she still remembers her mother-in-law’s protective sentiment.
After listening to Jiang Miaoshi’s words, Bai Lan just smiled, but in her heart, she disagreed.
She would rather Jiang Liu remain stupid forever, as he is not reliable when he is clear-headed. But when he becomes silly, he is naive and innocent, which is more pleasing to the eye.
“The water is boiling; take it and soak lucky star’s feet.”
Bai Lan remained silent, making Jiang Miaoshi assume she agreed with her. In Jiang Miaoshi’s opinion, how could any woman want her man to always be a little fool? Bai Lan must also hope for Jiang Liu’s early recovery.
Bai Lan took the wooden basin handed over by Jiang Miaoshi and walked towards the room where she and Jiang Liu shared it.
It was unknown what the people inside were doing. When they heard her opening the door and entering, they quickly lifted the blanket to cover themselves and wriggled around like a silkworm in the cocoon.
After a while, a small slit was opened in the blanket, and the person inside secretly glanced at her through the slit, then covered the blanket again.
Bai Lan placed the hot foot-washing basin beside the bed and quietly watched him fooling around.
The thick and heavy cotton quilt was too stuffy, and the person inside couldn’t bear it. With a loud “whoosh”, the blanket was lifted, and his face turned red from suffocation. He pouted and looked at Bai Lan unhappily.
He shouted heavily, with a fierce yet cute tone.
“Why aren’t you playing with me?”
Apparently, he was frightened by Bai Lan’s stern face, and his tone softened again, his voice gentle and sounded a little aggrieved.
Since he had hidden in the blanket, he expected his wife to come over to lift the blanket and say that she had found him.
At this moment, Jiang Liu was playing hide-and-seek. Yet, obviously, Bai Lan did not want to cooperate with this childish man.
Bai Lan pointed to the wooden barrel on the ground. Jiang Liu quickly shifted his attention and obediently removed his socks to soak his feet.
“You help me soak my feet.”
Bai Lan pointed to herself. She had decided to teach Jiang Liu to be a selfless old ox who would dedicate himself to her and their children. Why would she help him soak his feet?
Jiang Liu felt amused in his heart. After all, Bai Lan’s heart was still too soft. Helping her soak her feet was just a way of revenge. Of course, he pretended to be innocent and didn’t understand why he should help Bai Lan soak her feet.
“Mother said that I am your wife; shouldn’t you help your wife soak her feet?”
Bai Lan sat on the edge of the bed, saying it as a matter of course. In the previous life, she had poured water for this man to bathe for decades, and in this life, this man should compensate her.
Jiang Liu tilted his head. “See, having a wife is so troublesome. When will I be able not to have a wife?”
Bai Lan knocked on Jiang Liu’s head with her knuckles. “Can you not have a wife just because you don’t want one? If you don’t want to listen to me, be careful that I’ll beat you next.”
Bai Lan threatened Jiang Liu fiercely while trying to imitate the fierce expression of the stewards in the Hou Mansion when they scolded the little servant girls.
“Wives are so fierce.”
Jiangliu touched his head, feeling a little wronged. His small expression was pitiful.
His appearance was exquisite. Because he didn’t do much physical labour, his skin was white and delicate, as tender as tofu. His features were also outstanding, handsome and delicate. His clear and clean eyes added a lot of brilliance to his face. If the previous arrogant and domineering Jiang Liu was rated 6 points, the current Jiang Liu could easily get 8 points.
Looking at this face, Bai Lan couldn’t help feeling a little guilty, as if she was bullying a four-year-old child.
“Don’t you dare tell your mother, otherwise…” Bai Lan gestured with her fist, avoiding Jiang Liu’s gaze. In her heart, she comforted herself that she hadn’t done anything wrong. Jiang Liu wasn’t a real child, so she didn’t need to feel any psychological burden.
Seemingly frightened by Bai Lan, Jiang Liu squatted down and washed her feet with a look of grievance.
Bai Lan’s feet were not small. Due to years of working in the fields, she had several thick calluses on the soles of her feet. She was only 19 years old, but her skin was rough, and she looked like a middle-aged woman in her thirties.
On the other hand, Jiang Liu’s hands were white and slender. Bai Lan looked at Jiang Liu’s slender, white hands holding her yellow, skinny feet with some resentment and some inferiority. She turned her head and closed her eyes.
From that day on, Jiang Miaoshi burned water every day to soak her son’s feet, but she didn’t know that all of this foot-washing water was enjoyed by Bai Lan. Her precious son became Bai Lan’s foot-washing assistant.
And Bai Lan found a sweet spot in all of this. She felt she had finally found the best way to get “revenge” against Jiang Liu.
“Little brother, is it delicious?”
Because her third child has turned into a childlike mentality, Jiang Miaoshi makes some daily snacks for Jiang Liu to satisfy his cravings. However, she doesn’t know that these snacks never reach Jiang Liu’s mouth and benefit her grandson, Jiang Dahu.
“It’s delicious. Grandma’s cooking is so good.”
Actually, Jiang Dahu has lived for two lifetimes and is over fifty years old. He has long passed the age of enjoying snacks, but these snacks are all snatched from his trashy father’s hands, making them taste especially good.
Seeing his father drooling from craving, Jiang Dahu enjoys his snacks even more.
“Little brother, can you give me some? This is what Mom gave me.”
Jiang Liu looks pitifully at his son Jiang Dahu and says, “It’s so tiring being an older brother. Can I be a dad instead?”
Mom said he was this little bean’s father, so he’ll be the dad instead of the older brother.
“But if you’re my dad, you should give me more of the good stuff. Look, your dad never snatches food from you. He always saves the good stuff for you.”
Jiang Dahu used this reason to trick his trashy father out of snacks before. His father was easy to fool when he was a child.
“Well, I won’t be your older brother or dad. Can I be your little brother?”
Jiang Liu is just a child now. He doesn’t care about face for the sake of snacks.
“No, you’re my dad. If your mom finds out you want to be my little brother, she’ll definitely punish you.”
Jiang Dahu is ecstatic. His trashy father is finally getting his comeuppance.
“She won’t. Mom is so good to me. She won’t punish me.”
Jiang Liu murmured softly, his eyebrows furrowed tightly, and all his facial features seemed to be squeezed together. It appeared that he lacked confidence in his heart. He dared not call this Xiaodouding “big brother” in front of his mother. Previously, she would cry sadly when he called this Xiaodouding “little brother” in front of his mother. If he were to call him “big brother,” his mother would probably pass out in anger.
Jiang Dahu naturally saw through Jiang Liu’s thoughts. He couldn’t help but chuckle. He didn’t expect that this four-year-old son was still a child with some filial piety. At this time, it seemed his trashy father hadn’t been entirely spoiled yet, had he?
This was good. He would teach his useless father well in this life and let him know how to be a good son, husband, and father.
“Third Brother Jiang.”
Bai Lan and Jiang Miaoshi had left Jiang Dahu and Jiang Liu in the courtyard. Meng Jiao-niang didn’t know when she had come over. She approached the Jiang family’s yard quietly and without a sound.
She had heard about Jiang Liu becoming stupid after falling down. However, she didn’t quite believe that a fall could make someone stupid. Hence, she came over to investigate the news.
She didn’t care about the two-year-old Jiang Dahu. Children at this age couldn’t speak clearly, let alone complain to their mothers.
“Little brother, she smells so bad. Let’s stay away from the stinky bug.”
Before Meng Jiao-niang entered, Jiang Liu pinched his nose and shouted loudly. He also picked up his son, Jiang Dahu, and ran back into the house, slamming the door shut.
Meng Jiao-niang, who had used her most expensive powder, felt she had turned to stone because of Jiang Liu’s words. “Stinky bug!” This man, who used to act like a lapdog, called her a stinky bug!
Jiang Dahu couldn’t help but laugh aloud and happily watched his useless father pinch his nose. He generously gave his father a piece of sweet potato jerky he had coaxed from him earlier.
“That’s right, stinky bug; stay away from her.”
Jiang Dahu patted the shoulder of his squatting father to encourage him. He felt it was the best thing that his father had become stupid.
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