Chapter 159 – Let’s Be In-Laws
“Of course I like her. Why would I dislike such a well-behaved and obedient child like Nan Nan? I really like her. My husband might be too anxious. But I feel that this matter is feasible.” The ward mate’s wife was in total agreement with what her husband said. She looked at Qiao Dongliang eagerly, hoping that he would agree.
Seeing the look of eagerness and anticipation on their faces, Qiao Dongliang did not know what to do.
If other people were to overhear their conversation, those who did not know what happened might think that he was going to sell his daughter.
“Brother Zhou, this is not feasible.” Qiao Dongliang shook his head. “I have no say in this matter. During these few days, you must have known about our situation at home. My wife is very unreasonable. As her father, I could not protect Nan Nan. She had to endure a lot of hardships and suffer a lot of grievances. This concerns Nan Nan’s whole life. Besides, she is still young and we are not in the olden times where elders have the say in their children’s marriages. I do not ask for much. I just hope that Nan Nan will find someone who loves and cherishes her. Of course, Nan Nan will have to love that person as well.”
With that, Qiao Dongliang shook his head, not knowing whether he should cry or laugh.
He did not know what to do with the Zhou Bing couple.
This ward mate of Qiao Dongliang was called Zhou Bing. Unlike Qiao Dongliang who had two daughters, he had three sons!
Zhou Bing’s youngest son was called Zhou Jun. He was a soldier, twenty-three years old this year. He was older than Qiao Nan by seven years.
Though the Zhou Bing couple liked sons, they were mischievous and naughty. They had been hoping to have a daughter.
But they had three children, and all were sons.
By then, the country launched a national planning policy, and so they gave up on trying for a daughter.
Zhou Bing’s eldest son and second son had been married. They already had children and were old enough to address the Zhou Bing couple as ‘grandpa’ and ‘grandma’. However, the youngest son was still single. The Zhou Bing couple was worried sick about their son and was thinking to find a wife for their youngest son.
Their youngest son was a soldier, so the Zhou Bing couple could hardly get to see their son. If he settled down and got a wife, it might be hard on the daughter-in-law as she would not get to see him often. She would have a harder time than their two daughters-in-law. The Zhou Bing couple was quite apologetic toward their future daughter-in-law.
Most importantly, it was not easy to be the wife of a soldier. It was not easy to find one who was willing as well.
Their village once had a scandal. The son in one of the families went out for business for around three months. Yet, the daughter-in-law was two months pregnant!
The Zhou Bing couple heard of the scandal and could not help but worry for their son. If their future daughter-in-law was fickle and was not willing to stay with their son for her whole life, wouldn’t it be a disgrace to their son?
They were both worried and anxious about their youngest son’s marriage. On one hand, they were worried that their situation would make it difficult for the lady. On the other hand, they were troubled that the lady might not have a good personality and would disgrace their son. If so, how was he going to work in the army?
Zhou Bing ended up in the hospital because of his son’s marriage as well.
They arranged a blind date for their son. Though the matchmaker was all praises for the lady, Zhou Bing was worried, so he wanted to find out more about the lady’s personality and whether she was suitable to be the wife of a soldier.
If she was suitable, it would be good for everyone; if she was unsuitable, it would not be good to force each other together lest things ended up badly for both of them.
Never would they have known that there was something wrong with the lady. She was not the well-behaved girl the matchmaker had said. In fact, she was in a relationship while she was still studying and was expelled from the school as a result.
But the lady seemed to have learned her mistakes. Ever since then, she had made a change for the better. She was just like what the matchmaker described, good and well-behaved. Apart from going to work, she would stay at home and was no longer wild and rude like she used to be.
Still, after knowing what happened, Zhou Bing dared not take in the lady as their daughter-in-law.
Because of the fact that the lady’s family was in a hurry to marry her off, and that Zhou Jun was a good catch, they kicked up a fuss with Zhou Bing when they learned that the Zhou family objected to the marriage, complaining that they were on the losing end. They said that both of the families had already agreed for their children to marry each other, but the Zhou family broke their promise and backed out of the marriage. This was an insult to their daughter!
It wouldn’t do! They had to marry each other!
In the end, both families got into a fierce quarrel. The lady’s family even raised their hands on the Zhou family. During the tussle, Zhou Bing was pushed onto the pavement. He fell to his knees and hurt himself badly. He fractured his knees and was sent to the hospital.
Everyone from the Zhou family was mere peasant, but Zhou Jun had made a mark for himself in the army. Though he was only twenty-three years old, he was already the company commander.
People in the rural might not be knowledgeable, but they knew that a company commander was someone who worked for the government. The highest rank government official whom they had seen was only a mere village chief!
In the eyes of the villagers, Zhou Jun was like a golden phoenix that soared out of the village!
It was because of this that the lady’s family insisted on the marriage. But now that Zhou Bing was injured, they were very frightful. They were worried that they might land in jail and had to fork out a big sum for Zhou Bing’s medical fees. Thus, they said that though their daughter suffered the humiliation of being rejected, Zhou Bing was injured as well, so they would call it quits.
Zhou Bing was relieved that they could finally be rid of such a troublesome family. Although he was injured, he could not be bothered to argue with the lady’s family. He could only blame himself for being unlucky. Once bitten, twice shy, he had learned his lessons.
However, the Zhou Bing couple never thought that it would be a blessing in disguise—that they would find a suitable daughter-in-law candidate during his hospital stay.
In the past, the Zhou Bing couple might not be able to tell whether a lady was good or not, but as there were two daughters in the Qiao family, they could easily tell by making comparisons.
When it was Qiao Zijin’s turn to look after Qiao Dongliang, she would always look around, her attention elsewhere. Most importantly, she could not settle down and give her father full attention. She would chat with the doctors, particularly young male doctors.
The Zhou Bing couple would always frown at her behavior.
On the contrary, despite being more beautiful than Qiao Zijin, Qiao Nan would always stay in the ward whenever it was her turn to look after Qiao Dongliang.
She would be the first person to notice and attend to his needs. If Qiao Dongliang was thirsty, she would pour a cup of warm water for him. If he wanted to use the restroom, Qiao Nan would ask them for help.
Qiao Nan never initiated a conversation with the male doctors. Contrariwise, it was the male doctors who made some small talks with Qiao Nan.
But Qiao Nan would always stay in the ward and only talked about Qiao Dongliang’s condition with the doctors. If the male doctors did not take the initiative to ask, she would keep her silence.
Even if the male doctors struck a conversation with her, Qiao Nan would only talk about her father’s conditions, and she would not appear to be overly eager or earnest.
Qiao Zijin would always look around, finding opportunities to speak with the male doctors, whereas Qiao Nan was calm and focused on taking care of her father. Qiao Zijin could not even take care of herself, whereas Qiao Nan was better than her mother in looking after her father. It was all thanks to Qiao Nan that Qiao Dongliang made such a speedy recovery.
Qiao Zijin paled in comparison to Qiao Nan. The latter stood out more in all aspects.