Part 2, Chapter 3 Summary
As LuLing prepares to join the Chang family even before her official wedding, her aunts begin sewing new clothes for her and preparing her for her new role as a wife. But Precious Auntie spends her time writing. Finally, one night, Precious Auntie hands LuLing a bundle of papers that contains the story she has documented about her life. LuLing reluctantly reads the pages, which relate most of the stories Precious Auntie has been telling her over the years. However, when LuLing reaches the point where Precious Auntie writes that she is about to tell her the truth of why she hates Mr. Chang, LuLing tosses the papers on the floor. She refuses to read anything that will spoil her upcoming wedding and her new life.
Later, when Precious Auntie asks if LuLing has read the entire story, Luling lies. She tells Precious Auntie that she has read it all but nothing she has read has changed her mind about marrying into the Chang family. At this, Precious Auntie leaves the room and runs away from the house. What LuLing has not realized is that at the end of the story, Precious Auntie confesses that she is LuLing’s real mother. Because LuLing did not read that far, she remains unaware of this.
The next morning, Precious Auntie is not present at the breakfast table. She has run away before when she felt angry, but she has never stayed away this long. Then there is a shriek from the ink studio, and the women of the household rush to the room. The studio looks as if a wild animal has ravaged it. There are ink stains on the walls and the floor. Then LuLing hears someone say, “She is dead.” When LuLing sees Precious Auntie lying on the floor, it takes her a while to realize that the woman is dead, the victim of suicide.
Shortly afterward, Mrs. Chang comes to visit the house. She has a letter from Precious Auntie in her hand. In the letter, Precious Auntie curses the Chang family. When Mrs. Chang is told that Precious Auntie is dead, LuLing’s wedding is cancelled.
The next day, one of the uncles comes home from Peking...
(The entire section is 565 words.)