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As user4092 suggests in the comments, I don't think 顔が立っている is particularly incorrect. It's just not frequently said. Some actual examples from the internet: 彼らの頑張りで、こちらの顔が立っているのだから。 嫁が親戚付き合いを自然にこなしてくれるので、俺と俺の親の顔が立っている。 その芸能事務所のマネージャーがただそのモデルなりタレントの子達にたいしては顔が立っているだけって事でしょう。 顔が立つ is perhaps more like an action rather than a state, similar to the English ...


I guess a phrase similar to "dance to somebody's tune" fits here well too: 彼女にうまく踊らされている。


When talking about children/grandchildren and not romantic relationships, a common idiom is: 目に入れても痛くない{いたくない} (Literal: It wouldn't hurt if I put them in my eye) It's similar to saying that they are the apple of your eye, and you could do anything for them.


This answers the second question "What does the volitional form do that the plain form does not in this phrase?" : Translation of one of the answers found in 知恵袋: 「あらんことを」は祈願文で、“御加護がある”ことは実現してほしいのですが、そうなるかならないかはまだ決まっていません。 それで「あることを」と言わないのです> By saying あらんことを, one wishes to realise the state of 御加護がある. (i.e. to wish that the state transitions from ...


"~ことを" itself is not that idiomatic, but I think "~があらんことを" is idiomatic. 神のご加護があらんことを: This sounds natural to me. You can safely say "Xがあらんことを" is an archaic-sounding idiomatic phrase which means "I wish you X" or "May there be X". This is a fixed pattern used mainly by priests, and I have never wondered what is omitted after it. I think those who don't go ...

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