title

Custom Search

 

[ Correct English | Common Errors | Words Differentiation | Sample Letters | Glossary of Correct Usage | Common Sentences | Q & A ]

[ English Compositions | Movie Reviews | High School Vocab | Advertisements ]

Sponsored Links

<<Prev

Stories

Next>>

   
TOEFL Vocabulary
English Conversation
English Grammar
American Idioms
English Comprehension
English Summary
English News
Business Idioms
 

The rat wife (2)

When they reached the house the old woman, after lighting the lamp and setting food before him, proceeded to speak as follows: - "Knowing, sir, that you would shortly arrive, we sold all our grain except about twenty piculs. We cannot take this with us so far; but a mile or so to the north of the village, at the first house you come to, there lives a man named Tan Erh-chuan, who often buys grain from me. Oblige me by taking a sack with you on your mule and proceeding thither at once. Tell Mr. Tan that the old lady of the southern village has several piculs of grain which she wishes to sell in order to get money for a journey, and beg him to send some animals to carry it." The old woman then gave him a sack of grain; and Hsi Shan, whipping up. his mule, was soon at the place; and, knocking at the door, a great fat fellow came out, to whom he told his errand. Emptying the sack he had brought, he went back himself first; and before long a couple of men arrived leading five mules. The old woman took them into the granary, which was a cellar below ground, and Hsi Shan, going down himself, held the measure and grasped the smoothing-bar, while the mother poured the grain into the measure and the daughter received it in the sack. In a little while the men had got a load, with which they went off, returning altogether four times before all the grain was exhausted. They then paid the old woman, who kept one man and two mules, and, packing up her things, set off towards the east.

After they had traveled some seven miles, day began to break; and by-and-by they reached a market-town, where the old woman hired animals and sent back Tan's servant.

When they arrived at Hsi Shan's home he related the whole story to his parents, who were very pleased at what had happened, and provided separate apartments for the old lady; and after choosing a lucky day, A-chien was married to San-lang. The old woman prepared a handsome trousseau; and as for A-chien herself, she spoke but little, seldom losing her temper, and if any- one addressed her she would only reply with a smile. She employed all her time in spinning, and thus became a general favorite with all alike. "Tell your brother," said she to San-lang, "that when he happens to pass our old residence he will do well not to make any mention of my mother and myself."

In three or four years' time the Hsi family had made plenty of money, and San-lang had taken his bachelor's degree, when one day Hsi Shan happened to pass a night with the people who lived next door to the house where he had met A-chien. After telling them the story of his having had nowhere to sleep, and taking refuge with the old man and woman, his host said to him, "You must be mistaken, sir; the house you allude to belongs to my uncle, but was abandoned three years ago in consequence of its being haunted. It has now been uninhabited for a long time. What old man and woman can have entertained you there?" Hsi Shan was very much astonished at this, but did not put much faith in what he heard.

Meanwhile his host continued, "For ten years no one dared enter the house; however, one day the back wall fell down, and my uncle, going to look at it, found, half-buried underneath the ruins, a large rat, almost as big as a cat. It was still moving, and my uncle went off to call for assistance, but when he got back the rat had disappeared. Every one suspected some supernatural agency to be at work, though on returning to the spot ten days afterwards nothing was to be either heard or seen; and about a year subsequently the place was inhabited once more."

Hsi Shan was more than ever amazed at what he now heard, and on reaching home told the family what had occurred; for he feared that his brother's wife was not a human being, and became rather anxious about him. San-lang himself continued to be much attached to A-chien; but by-and-by the other members of the family let A-chien perceive that they had suspicions about her. So one night she complained to San-lang, saying, "I have been a good wife to you for some years, but now I am no longer regarded as a human being. I pray you give me my divorce, and seek for yourself some worthier mate." She then burst into a flood of tears; whereupon San-lang said, "You should know my feelings by this time. Ever since you entered the house the family has prospered; and that prosperity is entirely due to you. Who can say it is not so ?"

"I know full well," replied A-chien, "what you feel; still there are the others, and I do not wish to share the fate of an autumn fan.

At length San-lang succeeded in pacifying her; but Hsi Shan could not dismiss the subject from his thoughts, and gave out that he was going to get a first-rate mouser, with a view to testing A-chien. She did not seem very frightened at this, though evidently ill at ease; and one night she told San-lang that her mother was not very well, and that he needn't come to bid her good-night as usual. In the morning mother and daughter had disappeared.

More >>>

 

   
 
 

Sponsored Links

 

 

The fisherman and his friend (1)

The fisherman and his friend (2)

The flower nymphs (1)

The flower nymphs (2)

The flower nymphs (3)

Football on the Tung-ting lake

The King

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (1)

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (2)

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (3)

The Lo-Cha country and the sea-market (4)

The Lost Brother (1)

The Lost Brother (2)

The Lost Brother (3)

The man who was thrown down a well (1)

The man who was thrown down a well (2)

Miss A-Pao : - Or Perseverance rewarded (1)

Miss A-Pao : - Or Perseverance rewarded (2)

Mr. Chu, The considerate husband

The painted wall

The picture horse

Playing at hanging

The rat wife (1)

The rat wife (2)

The rat wife (3)

The resuscitated corpse

A supernatural wife

The talking pupils

The Taoist novice

The Taoist priest

The three Genii

The tiger of Chao-Cheng

The trader's son (1)

The trader's son (2)

The virtuous daughter-in-law (1)

The virtuous daughter-in-law (2)

The virtuous daughter-in-law (3)

The wonderful stone (1)

The wonderful stone (2)

The young and of the Tung-Ting lake (1)

The young and of the Tung-Ting lake (2)

 

Stories 1

Stories 2

 

Sponsored Links

 

 
 
American Slang
English Proverbs
English Exercises
Common English mistakes
Ancient Chinese stories
Junior English essays
High School English essays
Lower Secondary English essays