Autumn's Concerto / Next stop, happiness 下一站幸福 Chapter 6.2



Chapter 6.2 - 6th Stop: Hua Tian Village Survivor (2)

“So what is it now? Is it a must that we sell our land?”

The villagers of Huatian Village have all gathered at Aunt Hua’s karaoke shop to discuss about the case of selling their land to Huanyu Constructions.

“It’s all because of the grandson of the village heard, Bin!” A villager cursed. “He actually stole the deed and sold it off to others. Even though the land belongs to the village head, we all rely on it to earn our keep. He should seek our agreement before selling it off to others!”

“Indeed.” Other villager said. “We must write in to the government to let them send someone over to clear this up for us… I thought someone mentioned that they’d be sending a public defender over? Why isn’t he here yet?”

Then the village head said, “The people in charge just called me. They are sending him over tomorrow.”

“That’s wonderful. Huatian Village can be saved now!” The innocent villagers roared with joy once they heard the news that someone would be coming over to save Huatian Village.

“Aunt Hua, are you comforted now?” The village’s matchmaker came up and grabbed Aunt Hua. “After the case is over, we can look for a bride for your son. Do you need me to arrange any blind dates for your son?”

“Blind dates, you say?” Another villager interrupted. “You don’t have to do anything. Aunt Hua’s son already has someone in mind.”

“Who says so?” Aunt Hua rebutted. “My Tuoye is very innocent. How is it possible for him to have someone in mind?”

“Aunt Hua, are you serious that you don’t know? Everyone knows that Tuoye sticks around that Liang Mucheng every day.”

“They are just friends!” Aunt Hua replied angrily, banging her fist onto the table. “The Hua family’s daughter-in-law must be someone who’s chaste. How can that kind of unwed mother be our daughter-in-law then?”

Speaking of the devil; Hua Tuoye appeared with a bag of fertilizer. “Mum! What are you talking about? Please don’t insult Mucheng.”

“Mucheng… Mucheng… She’s all you have to say every day!” Aunt Hua became really upset. “I wonder what that shameless woman fed you with that you are so taken in by her.”

“Mum! She’s not a shameless woman, she’s my good friend.” Hua Tuoye decided to speak up for Mucheng. “I’d not care about our ties anymore if you speak of Mucheng in this way again.”

“You! You’re such an unfilial son!"

Hua Tuoye decided that he didn’t want to continue the conversation with his mother and provoke her further. He turned and walked away. “I’d be sending some fertilizer over to Mucheng.”

***

It all seemed weird. The flowers weren’t doing so well recently and her hands seemed to be really sensitive and itching for no particular reason too.

“Is it a problem with the water?” Mucheng stopped for a moment and looked at her slightly sore hands.

“Mucheng, I’m here!” A voice rang behind her.

She smiled and turned around. “Tuoye, why are you suddenly here?”

“I’m here to deliver some fertilizer to you” He said, pointing to his van that was parked on the side of the road.

“Okay, hold on for a moment. I’ll calculate the amount I need to pay you for it.”

“It’s okay, we’re friends. Why must we be so calculative then?”

“I don’t think so. I’d better give you the money lest Aunt Hua gets upset about it again.”

“It’s really okay. It’d be a miracle if my mother wasn’t angry for a day.” Tuoye signed and frowned as he thought of what his mother had just said about Mucheng.

“Tuoye, don’t quarrel with your mother because of me. It will make me feel bad.” Mucheng said after looking at Tuoye’s expression.

“She’s too much. She’s always bad-mouthing you with all the aunties in the village.” Tuoye replied.

“I’m okay. It doesn’t matter to me what they have to say.” Mucheng felt very open about it. The villagers have been gossiping about her ever since she came to Huatian Village 6 years ago. “The people here are very innocent. It’s hard for them to accept an unwed mother after all.”

“So what if you are one? You’re not causing harm to anyone, right?” Tuoye was still very upset.

Mucheng smiled and persuaded him. “It’s okay. Stop being angry already.”

Her warm smile made him felt much better immediately. He gazed at her. After a while, he took his gaze back and said, “It’s almost time. Let’s go and pick up Xiaole now.”

“Oh yes.” Mucheng said and got up immediately. “Let’s go then.”

***

“Xiaole, I’ve heard that you don’t have a father.”

The newly transferred student Tangtang asked Xiaole with her soft voice.

“Who says so? My father is very brilliant. He’s an alien.” He announced proudly to her.

“Alien? What is that?” Tangtang was caught.

“He comes from outer space. They don’t live on Earth.” Xiaole explained to her. “My mother said that my father has already accomplished his mission on Earth and thus he has to return to his own planet.”

“Does that mean he’ll never be back again?” The little girl asked.

Xiaole paused for a moment. “Of course not! He’ll be back to visit me someday.”

“Someday? Which day are you talking about?” Another boy named Hua Hong teased him. “Just tell us truthfully that your father doesn’t want you anymore. Why must you make up a story that he’s an alien?”

“Who says I made it up? He really exists!”

“Where is he then? Prove it to me!” Hua Hong rebutted.

Xiaole got really upset. Since he was young, he disliked it when people laughed at and called him a fatherless child. He has a father, it’s just his father is in outer space now. Why can’t they just believe him?

“How is it? Speechless, aren’t you? Xiaole is a liar. He loves to lie.”

“I’m not a liar.  I didn’t lie!” Xiaole got really upset. He pushed Hua Hong and the two of them started fighting with each other.

Mucheng saw then fighting when she reached the place. She immediately pulled the two of them apart. “Stop this at once! Stop fighting!”

“Mummy.” Xiaole felt really unjust. “Hua Hong said that I’m a liar. But I’m not. My father is an alien, right? I didn’t lie about it, right?” He immediately questioned his mother for assurance.

Mucheng was stunned for a moment. Her son was actually fighting with someone because of that. Her heart ached as she pinched his cheeks. She felt that she had really let him down for a moment. “Yes, Xiaole, that’s right. You didn’t lie. Xiaole is the most obedient child.”

“See, I’ve told you. Even my mother says so too.” Xiaole stared back at Hua Hong.

Hua Hong made a face back at him. “Both of you are liars. My mother says that your mother has either cheated on a man or has been cheated by a man…”

“You rascal! What are you talking about?” Tuoye’s blood boiled on hearing Hua Hong and he wanted to hit him.

“Forget it, Tuoye.” Mucheng stopped him immediately. “He’s just a kid, why be so calculative about it?” She smiled and took Xiaole’s hand. “Let’s go home now.”

***

That night, Xiaole sat on the bed after his bath while his mother blew his hair dry for him.

He closed his eyes and enjoyed his mother’s warm touch. He was uncertain and decided to assure himself again. “Mummy, I’m really the child of an alien, right?”

“Of course you are.” Mucheng replied without any hesitation. “If not why do you think I’ve to give you shots of crystals every night? That’s because you’re different from the other children on Earth. You are the most unique child.” Mucheng then bend over to kiss Xiaole’s face, causing him to burst into fits of laughter as it tickled him.

“Okay. Your hair’s all dried now. It’s time for your shots then. “

“Oh, YA!” Xiaole screamed in joy. Other children would have cried when they see a needle, but Xiaole anticipated every night’s shot because that was when he knew very clearly that he’s the child of an alien.

“It will hurt a little. You’d have to bear with it.” Mucheng said the same thing as usual.

“I’m not afraid of it.” Xiaole pouted as he stretched his arm out. “I’m the bravest person.”

“Yes. You’re the bravest person indeed.” Mucheng smiled and pinched his nose. She took a swab of cotton dabbed with alcohol and wiped it against his arm. Then, skillfully, she gave him his injection.

Xiaole squinted, but he bit on tightly onto his lips instead of letting out a cry.

“He’s such an obedient child.” Mucheng thought as she stroked her son’s head after giving him his injection. She felt really guilty about it. If it wasn’t because of the fact that she contracted gestational diabetes without knowing it, Xiaole wouldn’t have been born with Persistent Hyperinsulinemic Hypoglycemia of Infancy and had to remove half of his pancreas. Because of that, he now has to rely on getting daily insulin shots for the rest of his life.

She had to make up a story about an Alien Daddy and called his insulin shots as shots of crystals that will help aliens when they battle in order to get him to have his injections. Xiaole might be buying her story now as he’s young but she wondered how long she can still keep him in the dark.  She prayed that he’d not blame her for lying to him when he finally finds out about the truth someday.

After all, it was out of love for him that she lied…

“Mummy, can you please tell me the story of Alien Daddy again?” Xiaole begged with her. “Please tell me how you all met back then again.”

Mucheng smiled and nodded back at him. She started the story again of how she met him. “The first time I saw your daddy was when I took the bus. He was really tall and strong but he had a really bad temper…”

***

Darn! What kind of a place is this?

Guangxi thought as he looked at his surroundings. He saw nothing else other than the flowers on the two sides of the road. There were no vehicles or people around. He knew at once that this place was definitely in the countryside for sure.

How can they send him to such a place to do C.W.O.? Guangxi wondered to himself and he thought he must really be down on his luck. To make matters worse, his newly bought car had to break down in the middle of the road. He couldn’t seem to be able to find the problem himself. He wanted to call for help but his phone’s battery was flat. It was clear that there was no one who could lend him a hand at all.

The sun beamed down on him and it caused him to have a headache. He sweated like a pig and the fragrance of the flowers caused him to have breathing difficulties. 

Ever since his surgery 6 years ago, he lost all of his past memories. His respiratory system also became problematic; he suddenly became extremely sensitive and allergic to pollen.  Because of his allergy, he’d suffer every spring when the flowers bloom. Things seemed even more terrible today, he was actually being sent to Huatian Village where flowers grew everywhere.

This must be a Heaven-sent punishment! He cursed while putting on his sunglasses. Then he started to look for a public phone so that he could call for help.





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