Chapter 145: Every household have their own treasured baby egg 24 END
“Oh, what a rare visitor.”
The old lady had prepared a big table of dishes for her baby grandson’s return. However, before the whole family could sit down and eat, two unexpected guests came over.
Jiang Wangdi cast a look at his grandmother, then at her parents, who had appeared out of nowhere. Then she called out loudly, stood up, and pushed two chairs over to make room for Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua.
When Jiang Zhaodi went to work in the factory a few years ago, Pan Xiuluo summoned her granddaughter to live with her in the small building. Since Jiang Jianjun’s family moved to the city at the time, the old lady was also feeling lonely living with the twin alone. Additionally, she could not bear watching her younger son and his wife neglect her several granddaughters, so she decided to supervise these few children from the second household.
Jiang Xiangdang and his wife did complain about this situation at that time. After all, Jiang Pandi and Jiang Wangdi were already old enough to assist with the family work; however, the couple thought it was in their best interests to have their ageing mother assist them in raising their children, so they agreed.
Jiang Pandi was now in college. Even though Jiang Wangdi was not doing and her sister, she was still a junior college student with a good major. Now that the schools were over, the two sisters went back home for a holiday. Therefore, they mostly did the work at home.
Jiang Xiangdang’s and his wife’s lives have been difficult in recent years. Without a son, neither of them is motivated to earn money. They live in the Jiang family’s old home, and the crops on the field are enough to feed only two people. Compared with other villagers who were full of enthusiasm after the reform and opening up, the two of them were totally useless.
Pan Xiuluo, on the other hand, had long given up on two of them. As long as they were obedient and didn’t cause any trouble to others, she no longer cares about whatever they wanted to do.
Yet, the appearance of Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua today, clearly looking for something else.
Jiang Wangdi, who was standing on the side, naturally called out in response to Jiang Pandi’s acknowledgement.
Jiang Liu, Jiang Chaonan, and Jiang Liunan called out differently from the Jiang Pandi and Jiang Wangdi, two sisters. Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua grunted after staring at the twin daughters for a moment.
As expected of a money-losing good. Just because their uncle’s family has money, they did not even want to recognize their parents.
Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua had never thought of their lack of concern over the twins all these years. They were just concerned about the two children who are being unfilial and rejecting their biological parents. They believed that their daughters lacked was not as good as having a son. If they have a son, for sure, their son will not treat them like this.
“I came here today to talk to you about something. Zhaodi is no longer young. I already found a marriage partner for her. You can ask her to come back and get married another day.”
Jiang Xiangdang’s visit today was primarily for this reason. Jiang Zhaodi was already 25 years old. Even though getting married in the twenties was already common, it was undeniable that she was already getting older.
“Why did you never show me that person?”
Pan Xiuluo vehemently chuckled: “I work hard to raise the flower, yet you wanted to harvest it happily. I am telling you, I will be the one in charge of their marriage. You used to neglect them, so there is no need for you to jump around regarding this matter.”
The old lady was aware of the types of people her younger son would pick for his daughters. Regardless of how defective that man was, as long as there is some money at home, Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua would turn blind eyes about the man’s shortcomings. They would do anything as long as the bride price is enough.
Pan Xiuluo was sure that Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua would marry their daughter to a lame or a fool as long as there is a financial gain.
“What are you saying, Mom? Xiaohua and I are the child’s parents. Can’t we be the master?”
Jiang Xiangdang did not feel ashamed at all, “The man’s family is very good. There have three houses in the county town, two of which they rented out. The family only have one child; therefore, the money will be left to the young couple.”
Jiang Xiangdang decided to omit the fact that the child was mentally challenged. The other party also consider their family due to their relationship with the Jiang Garment Factory’s owner. Additionally, Zhaodi was still working at Jiang’s Garment Factory with monthly pays of more than thousands. So the other party sent a matchmaker to meet Jiang Xiangdang.
The other party claimed that as long as the marriage was finalized, the other party would give a bride price gift of 18,888 yuan.
More than 10,000 yuan was still a large amount of money in 2002. Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua were immediately tempted. Their family consists of five daughters. If they can get those people to pay so much money for each of their daughters, the couple will be able to eat and drink leisurely for the rest of their life.
When the time comes, they will spend some money and leave the rest to their nephew, Jiang Liu. Pretty sure Jiang Liu won’t abandon them in the future.
The couple thought very well, but they forgot that the times had changed. Marriage was no longer the order of the parents where they could force them by using a matchmaker. Besides, Pan Xiuluo herself would not let the two fools spoil her granddaughters’ life.
“As I said before, impossible.”
Pan Xiuluo was also concerned about her granddaughter’s upcoming wedding. She found that Yanan’s daughter could already go out and buy soy sauce. Lainan, the second granddaughter, married a cop last year and is expecting a child this year, despite being younger than Jiang Zhaodi. Jiang Shengnan, an Air Force member, has now confirmed that she has found a suitable match. Yet, her young granddaughter is still single. So, the old lady was also desperate to find someone to help set up a match.
However, her son’s introduction was undoubtedly unreliable. The old woman didn’t want to waste time looking at it, so she killed the choice in her mind.
“Mom, Zhaodi, Pandi, and Wangdi, as well as Chaonan and Liunan, are all my daughters. Is it even impossible for me to manage their affairs?”
Jiang Xiangdang’s face turned cold when the old lady declined to comply.
Jiang Xiangdang was ecstatic when he first discovered such a way of making a fortune. However, the old lady’s reaction now was like pouring a basin of cold water on him, instantly extinguishing the flame.
He had no idea what she was talking about. Isn’t he, her child? Why could not she understand the difficult situation he is in now? Why should she get into a fight with him over a few money-losing goods?
Jiang Xiangdang became extreme the more he thought about it. He assumed that his choice had been rejected because he was a failure for not having a son. With both sons and daughters and so much money, how could he compare to his elder brother? His mother’s heart has long been entirely biased toward his eldest brother.
Not only Jiang Xiangdang, even Lu Xiaohua believed in this.
“We are not your daughters.”
Jiang Liunan was anxious. What, this couple still want to sell her?
“Have you ever raised my fourth sister and me since we were young? If it were not for grandma, uncle, and big aunt, our two sisters already starved to death from early on. If you want to act as parents, you must repay all of our years of help in advance. Oh, and there’s the cost of registering a household, which was 8,000 yuan per child. You shamelessly let your elder brother raise the child while, in the end, still dreaming, wanting the child to remember you as their parents. You think the world revolves around you or something?”
Jiang Liunan has been struggling for a long time and has never found a way to express her frustrations. Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua’s arrival today brightened her mood.
Jiang Liunan has led a very different life as a woman for the past 13 years.
She was the family’s treasure in the palm of their hands while she was still living as Jiang Liu. All of her family members lavished her with attention. Even after the family of misfortune, she also naturally hide behind her sisters, wantonly squeezed them of their worth without feeling any guilt.
Now that she is Jiang Liunan, she begins to understand the difficulties of becoming a woman. With so many people around, why should sisters sacrifice themselves to support their brothers?
In her previous life, Jiang Liunan was happy everything she heard her grandmother instilled the importance of loving their brothers to her sisters.
However, in this life, every time grandma encouraged her to love her cousin, Jiang Liunan could not help but become irritated and frustrated. She was already incapable of taking care of herself. Yet, she still needs to make a sacrifice for others. Even landlords would not be as ruthless as this.
Perhaps this is how the world goes round. After all, the knife that does not cut to your body would not let you feel the pain. However, when she was forced to experience the cutting, Jiang Liunan realized how much bad luck her sisters had to suffer for meeting her in their previous life.
Jiang Liunan’s relationship with her sisters has changed. Particularly now that she is a woman, she could no longer take their goodness for granted.
The period that takes up nearly one-seventh of a woman’s life absolutely teaches her to be a human being, no matter how bitter she was.
“How could you talk like that to me. I’m your father. If there is no me, you think you would be able to appear in this world?!”
Jiang Xiangdang became furious and extended his hand to hit the disobedient and unfaithful daughter.
“Uncle, our family does not like thrashing other people.”
Jiang Liu snatched Jiang Xiangdang’s raised arm and squeezed it tightly; Jiang Xiangdang could not get it free.
“As if I would like to be borne by you.”
Jiang Liunan was so terrified that she closed her eyes. However, when she saw her “former self” detain his uncle, she finally regained her courage.
“Who wants to be you and her daughter? It is so unlucky.”
It used to be nice to be a Man. But now, not only she had a period as a company, there were still a lot of rules and regulations that she needs to follow, such as not getting too close to boys; otherwise, it will look inappropriate; no shouting, jumping about, or just plain being loud. If you are not quiet, you are acting not like a girl. You also have to help with housework. Most people believe that women should do washing, cooking, and cleaning…
Although becoming a male comes with its own set of challenges, Jiang Liunan believes that women are much worse. She cannot handle the weight of her life, especially on her period.
Why does it hurt when your period comes, you say?
“Before this, you are not even willing to take care of us. Now you wanted to sell us sisters for money. Do you think I am a stupid person, ah? Still wanted me to listen to your words and recognize you as parents?”
Jiang Liunan became more and more vehement. Relying on her “former self” to restrain Jiang Xiangdang, she wishes to vent all the pain that came with her period by cursing the couple in front of her.
“I’m your father!”
Jiang Xiangdang was adamant: “My account book does not include you, two dead children. So, I don’t have power over you, but I do have control over these wenches. I’ll sue them and put them in prison for being unfilial.”
“Bah, if you dare to accuse my sisters of being unfilial to you, then be prepared as I am going to sue you for abandonment.”
With her hands on her hips, Jiang Liunan cursed.
Isn’t it just a tiny amount of alimony? In her former life, Jiang Liunan’s son also told him once how much money he had to pay him every month.
Unlike Jiang Xiangdang treatment towards his daughter, in her previous life, Jiang Liunan regards her son as the tip of her heart. Even so, after she got old and unable to move around, her son and wife started to maltreat her. Later, Jiang Liunan was forced to sue this son for being unfilial. Yet, the verdict from the court only required her son to pay her 600 yuan per month in alimony, which was the minimum standard. During that time, how could that much money support her life?
Because of her previous experience, Jiang Liunan was not afraid that Jiang Xiangdang would file a lawsuit. After all, their situation was different. Jiang Xiangdang and his wife are the ones who are at fault first for not looking after their children. Even if their sister were forced to pay the alimony, the amount should not be substantial, especially if they divide it.
As for the crime of abandonment that she uttered just now, there was a fair chance that it will not be resolved. However, it was enough to use this matter to disgust this nauseating couple.
“You, you, you, you, you–“
Jiang Xiangdang had no idea what it means by the crime of abandoning, but that indeed frightened him up.
“All right, Xiangdang, Xiaohua, you can go back on your own. As for Zhaodi’s marriage, let her take care of it herself. I will also help her.”
Pan Xiuluo sighed as she gazed at her little granddaughter. Even though she was right, she was still her parents’ daughter. If her remarks were to be publicized, people would surely drown her in spit.
“Regarding Chaonan and Liunan, I already agreed to help raise them on your behalf at the outset, and I will continue to do so. Therefore, no matter what happens to these two children in the future, it has nothing to do with you. Zhaodi, Pangdi, and Wangdi are all good kids, so they would not starve or freeze you to death. From now on, I hope you two will not act up. If you hurt these children, who will you depend on in the future?”
Pan Xiuluo tried to reassure the couple, but Jiang Xiangdang and Lu Xiaohua were clearly unconvinced.
“If you still wish to intervene in this matter, I hope you will think first about the money that we used to register Chaonan and Liunan’s birth as well as the living expense and the school expense that these children had used over the years. There is also the rental money you did not pay when you lived at the old house over the years. As Liunan said just now, can you pay any of it? I will not ask you to pay for everything. There is also the matter of inflation. After all, as your brother said before, money should not be used to depreciate family relations. As long as you give me 100 thousand yuan, you can do whatever you wanted. I will not interfere with anything.”
Since these people could not accept the gentle approach, then let us go all out. After all, don’t you like selling your daughter, ah? If you want to be fair, yes, then let us first settle the amount of money that had been used to help him raised his children all these years.
Didn’t you say that it doesn’t cost as much to raise a child as renting a house?
Are you joking? Do you think the 100 yuan ten years ago have the same value as 100 yuan nowadays? Ordinary employees in those days could earn sixty to seventy yuan a week, compared to nowadays where it is not rare to make one to two thousand yuan per month. Since their income has increased by more than tenfold, inevitably, the prices had also increased by more than tenfold. Even Pan Xiuluo felt that she had asked way less than the original expenditure.
However, she believed that her second son would not be able to afford such extravagant spending.
“All right, just pretend I didn’t say anything.”
Jiang Xiangdang’s face was livid as he dragged the especially upset Lu Xiaohua to leave.
The old woman sighed again as she looked at the retreating figure of her son.
“Your child, no matter what, both of them are still your parent. They still have the grace for bringing you to the world. Look at your remark just now. If this were to be known to others, you would surely be scolded to death.”
“Don’t think it is okay since you are still a child. Just based on your remark, there will be no people who dare to marry you in the future. Why do you have to unnecessary ruined your reputation?”
Pan Xiuluo put a finger between her little granddaughter’s brows. This notion has been rooted in the minds of previous generations. Regardless of how absurd their parent was, children were not supposed to point at their parents’ nose. Pan Xiuluo could not help but become worried that her granddaughter’s image will be tarnished because of these remarks.
“You have washed the dishes and cleaned the kitchen today. Think about where you went wrong.”
“Okay, let’s eat.”
After saying this, the old lady sighed once again. She picked up her bowl and did not forget to give her baby grandson a piece of fish’s belly.
When Jiang Liunan saw this, she felt a little grievance in her heart as her lips deflated in response. What was wrong with her statement? It would be better if she could not get married. Her period was already torturous. She might as well die if she were forced to have a child.
“Little sister, your words just now are fantastic.”
Jiang Liunan put on plastic gloves and started washing the dishes when his sister Jiang Chaonan entered. “You are on your period; I will wash these bowls for you.”
Jiang Chaonan grinned as she took the bowl from Jiang Liunan’s hand.
Jiang Chaonan disliked her parents as well, but she lacked the bravery of her younger sister because, as the old lady’s concern, she was also scared of ruining her reputation hence didn’t dare to utter those words.
“What do you mean by fantastic?”
Pandi and Wangdi, two sisters, arrived: “Grandma is right. After all, they are our parents.”
“In the future, don’t say such things in front of anyone. Take care not to be scolded by others unnecessarily.”
It was not like Jiang Wangdi, and Jiang Pandi had never been wronged for having such parents. However, this is life. They do not want the little girl to have a poor name and be whispered behind her back because of their irresponsible parents.
Jiang Liunan was ejected from the kitchen after the two sisters took over the job. Since she was on her period, it is best to stay away from cold water.
Jiang Liunan was disdainful of her sisters’ words. She did not need any reputation; however, it was undeniable that the sisters’ upkeep moved her. So, she gladly set aside the work at hand and returned to her room to relax.
Jiang Liu stifled a laugh and patted the shoulder of the little cousin.
Thanks to 001’s heaven-defying move, he did not expect to see the once patriarchal man had become a women’s defender. Although his actions are mainly for the sake of his own interests, this is also a good start, isn’t it?
Jiang Liunan raised her chin. After all, she was not a piece of trash.
Pan Xiuluo was near her death. All her children and grandchildren rushed back as they stood in front of her hospital bed.
She was an elderly woman who has lived a long life. She was now 92 years old. Her mind has been a little jumbled in recent years, and she has trouble recognizing people. Only her baby grandson Jiang Liu was not being misidentified by her.
Jiang Liu was now in his forties and already a middle-aged man. Instead of inheriting the family business as expected by his parents, he was keen on academic qualifications. Directly he has obtained five doctor’s degrees and three master’s degrees. He was currently updating his degree record while teaching at Tsinghua University.
Jiang Jianjun and his wife could not force their son, who wish to become a cultural person, to return to run the garment factory. Finally, Jiang Yanan, Jiang’s eldest child, inherited the family company. At the same time, other brothers and sisters held shares and earned significant dividends each year.
Jiang Yanan and her husband Feng Ping have always had a great relationship without the hindrance from her family like in the previous life. Her mother-in-law was also a lovely woman. She also did not hold any grudges against Jiang Yanan for giving birth to a daughter.
After giving birth, Jiang Lainan resigned from her work. She wanted to spend more time with the family because her police husband’s job was too busy. Fortunately, Jiang Lainan had a large dowry. Moreover, she enjoyed the life of caring for her husband and raising her son very much, and her life was wonderful.
Now Jiang Lainan was a master cook with an extensive repertoire of any home-cooked dish or baked dessert. She shines best when the family gets together.
Jiang Shengnan was a person with a goal. As she wishes, she became one of the few female pilots in China. Her husband was also a male pilot, making them an in-the-sky couple.
Jiang Zhaodi and her sisters also have their own home to return to. Life has its ups and downs, but overall it was a peaceful and smooth journey.
Pan Xiuluo looked around, seeing these sad-looking children and grandchildren. She then tried to pull the corner of her mouth, attempting to smile.
“Good. All is fine.”
As if the light was shining back, the old lady, who had been unable to speak well for a few months before, picked up her spirits and became fit enough to talk normally.
To make her more comfortable, Jiang Jianjun placed pillows on her back before she sat up.
“Baby, my baby boy, he’s married at long last.”
The old lady happily patted her dear grandson’s hand next to her.
“Grandma, it has been over ten years since I married, and your granddaughter-in-law and great-grandson are also here.”
Jiang Liu gestured to the side where his wife and children were.
He married at a very late age. After ten years of urging from his family, he eventually found a wife at 33. The opposing party, like him, was a high-achieving scholar.
In this world, Jiang Liu enjoys this kind of life, being loved and cared for by people very much. He has no plan of starting his own business. He just wanted to take a vacation to relax.
After being exposed to the world of high-achieving students, Jiang Liu, who has since then strengthened his IQ, felt that learning was a simple process. Yet, he would not say it out loud lest he might get beaten up by others.
“Oh, you’re already married.”
Pan Xiuluo grinned happily, revealing two sets of toothless gums, as she showed realization in her face.
“How about the fifth girl. Has she got married yet?”
That hapless child was dumb as a child, and her brain was not bright after she grew up. She could not even find a target to settle down, so the old lady could not help inquired again. The old lady is worried. She is unmarried and has no children. Who will she depend on when she gets old?
“Grandma, I’m perfectly fine on my own.”
Jiang Liunan stood up; she was nearing the age of forty.
Being a woman is extremely difficult. Jiang Liunan believed that it was her choice whether to marry or not. As a result, after she graduated from university, her marriage became a topic of discussion among those gossipy women.
After the age of 30, it becomes much worse. These unrelated people could not wait to introduce her to a divorced man with children or a man with a monthly income of fewer than three thousand dollars. There was also a straight male cancers man who was demanding a lot for women mixed in the bunch as if a woman in her 30s is nothing more than trash.
Her circumstances were obviously not bad. She was also a reborn person. She has her own job, a home, and a car. She was basically financially independent. Yet, others would lose sight of her excellent qualities as she approached a certain age because she was a woman. They often commented that she was too old to have kids. As if her life pursuit should only be that.
Now, as she was approaching her 40, it became even more terrible. She became the object of fierce criticism. Even worse, a pile of news about her infertility and mental health began to circulate among those gossipy people.
If you are normal, why don’t you get married? As a normal woman, why did you not want to give birth to children? Jiang Liunan’s ear was almost filled with cocoon from hearing the exact words all over again. However, this situation makes her aware of women’s problems.
“Foolish, what’s so good?”
“Yanan, Zhaodi, you guys look after this little girl in the future.” The old lady said slowly.
In the Pan Xiu Luo view, it will be difficult for one to live in their elderly life without the help of their children. However, her granddaughter has reached this age, and the hope of having children has all but disappeared. Since she is already dying, the old lady has no choice but to ask her other grandchildren to look after her granddaughter.
“By the way, where is my second child? Where is my second child?”
Everyone stared at each other as the old lady began to pant, but no one could call over Jiang Xiangdang, who had passed away a few years before.
In his entire life, he never lived up to his obligations as a father. His few daughters still raised him in his later years, but they had no relationship with him. Every month, they paid his alimony on time. They will only return to the village during the New Year. However, they mostly stayed in Jiang Jianjun’s small building during those brief meetings. It was simply a matter of meeting with their parents.
People of similar ages had children and grandchildren. Yet, Jiang Xiangdang and his wife had no idea what their grandchildren looked like. The older people get, the more scared of loneliness they became. Jiang Xiangdang and his wife were no exception. At that time, they only have enough money. After all, it was impossible to live extravagantly just from the alimony received. Hence, they still lived in the simply renovated old house. No one could tell whether they regretted it in their later years.
Lu Xiaohua did not have a proper postnatal rest after giving birth to the twin. Hence she died earlier than Jiang Xiangdang due to the deterioration of her body. The old house was totally abandoned after Jiang Xiangdang died a few years ago. The old lady refused to let anyone renovated the house. She said that the house should be left to let as it is a reminder for the Jiang family’s juniors that once there was such a fool in the Jiang family.
“The second child is looking for me, and your father’s look hasn’t changed at all.”
The old lady was murmuring to herself: “I must go over, too, that silly fellow. I must teach him this time so that he will not get confused. I have to allow him to experience what it’s like to be a woman so that he won’t become so foolish.”
The old lady smiled as she whispered and closed her eyes.
Amid the audience’s sadness, Jiang Liunan could not help but think to herself.
Shouldn’t the old lady’s words really come true?
If so, that would be fine. He looked forward to the day when her uncle going to become a woman. She longed to share with him the wonderful experience of having one-seventh of his life being taken up by the period.
In a certain time and space, Jiang Xiangdang opened his eyes and his parents’ faces when they were young magnified in front of him.
“It is a girl. Still looks like a little ugly.”
Jiang Xiangdang quickly closed his eyes as he listened to the words coming out of his mother’s mouth and felt his uncontrollable infant body.
It must have been a dream or a nightmare.
The author has something to say: A slight revision of the ending, not a significant change.
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