Father’s words have other meaning and that is: ‘I’m not educated’. I wanted to answer back, but my words got stuck in my throat and I become speechless.
Then, Father went back to my grandparent’s room. I bit my lips as I prepared another hot water and also went back to my room.
When I entered my room, I saw my Sister was already awake and she was wearing a coat.
“Elder Sister, I prepared this for you.” When I called her sister my heart felt a bit embarrassed and excited.
Sister touched my head and said with a smile: “This elder sister can take care of herself. And because I am your sister, I should be the one taking care of you.”
When she finished saying those, she crouches down in her suitcase and took out a hairpin and carefully put it in my bangs.
“I have a short hair, so it won’t look good on me.” Then I reach out and take down the hairpin.
When I was younger and even up to now, I look a bit boyish because I always keep my hair short. And I’m not accustomed to using such girly things because I think it won’t look good on me.
But my sister who was holding the hairpin said: “You have a fair white skin so wearing a pink colored hairpin is the best.”
“Really?” I was very happy when I see my sister nodded, but I still walked in front of the mirror to take a look.
After she washed her face, we went to the kitchen to eat together.
Usually, we always eat in the living room, but now that grandmother’s body was placed in there, we change it to the kitchen.
“Grandpa, why do we have meat for breakfast?” When I looked at the table there was a chicken soup and braised pork. My face immediately darkens, we shouldn’t be eating meat or any oily foods for three days. People in our village said that if we eat meat, we are disrespecting the dead.
“This meat is for your mother. Your mother’s body is very weak now, just leave out the meat for her and drink the soup ah.” Grandpa said and transferred the big chicken on another bowl.
This time, Mother was leaning on father when they came in. Mother’s hand was holding her belly and her other hand was holding Father’s arm. This posture of her looks like a rich lady in a TV show.
“It’s still early in the morning and yet it’s already noisy.” My mother said as she carefully tried to sit down.
Grandfather immediately pushed the chicken soup and braised pork meat in front of her. And smiled widely with his wrinkled face: “Xiao Xia, dad especially boil this chicken soup for you. Come on try it!”.
Grandfather said diligently, but mother didn’t give him any face: “Yea! Yea! But this soup has too much oil, so how can I drink this ah!?”
“Ok, Ok, I’ll remove them.” Grandpa nodded.
Sister quickly stood up: “Grandpa, I’ll do it.”
Sister took the chicken soup to Grandfather’s hand and carefully began to skim the oil for Mother.
Father began to serve the porridge to Mother. I sat and watch them, but they didn’t say any word to me.
At noon, when Hei Wa finished his classes, his family came to our house again. But this time, his uncles and aunts came with them. And according to grandpa grandmother’s family will come tomorrow.
Some of Grandmother’s family lives in the city and abroad. A few years ago, grandaunt also came and visited Grandmother. She is my grandmother’s second sister and during her childhood, she was sent as a child bride to the bald monk. But later on, her life become prosperous.
One time, when Grandaunt saw Grandmother’s living conditions was poor she bought us a lot of things. And because of that, Grandfather tried to curry a favor to Grandaunt to buy an expensive sofa which looks extremely extravagant to our house.
In the end, Grandmother had argued with Grandfather because she’s very unwilling to receive it.
“Xiao Xi, when your grandaunt came you have to become sweet to her, who knows she might even give you a lot of lucky money.” Grandpa laughs while looking at me with his greedy eyes.
I felt disdain and just turned my head to look at Grandmother who was lying in the coffin. If Grandmother is still alive, she will certainly be unhappy if I will receive it.
“Xiao Xi, come, come here.” I was still standing in a daze when Heiwa’s mother called me and waved her hand for me to come close to her.
I quickly went over and she led me to the kitchen. And then, she handed me a bowl of smelly soup, this smell is very familiar to me. I’m sure that is the yin red soup, but how come Heiwa’s mom can make this?
“Your grandma gave me a bag with full of this ingredients. She told me to boil them and make you drink this until you turn 18-year-old.”Heiwa’s mother said with a sigh: “If not for Heiwa’s sake, your Grandmother wouldn’t die so early. Xiao Xi, this aunt is willing to treat you as my own daughter and take care of you.”
My heart knows the truth more than anyone else, Grandmother died because she tried to protect and hide me. That bald monk must be the one who killed her. “Aunt, Grandmother’s death has nothing to do with Heiwa, so don’t say that.”
I looked at the yin red soup and pursed my lips. I drink them all quickly and secretly think that I won’t waste my grandmother’s effort.
“Xiao Xi, you’re amazing. When I smell this thing, I really want to throw up. But you, you can actually drink them all in a blink of an eye?” She looked at me with her face full of surprise.
I can only show a bitter smile, my grandmother is gone now so no one can really protect me. No matter how hard to drink this red soup, I will drink them without any hesitation.
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