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South of the south

It has been raining since the beginning of spring, and the rivers and rivers are rising.

This is an ordinary small town in the south. It rises from the river and is surrounded by mountains. When the weather is fine, you can see the layers of the mountains. film. Right now, the spring tide is flooding, and the ochre-yellow mud water is rushing down from the upstream. In addition to weeds and trees, there are occasionally calves and piglets in the water, and they neigh away all the way. Every morning and evening, some idlers stand on the bridge with their hands behind their backs to watch the scenery.

At that time, I just got divorced, and I returned to my mother in the small town from the provincial capital. Apart from taking my cub Gulu to the kindergarten, I had nothing to do every day, and I became an idler.

At noon, the rain fell again, and I was sitting under the shed eating Mala Tang, and the sound of the rain above my head was deafening. This area is full of food stalls. The waterproof tarpaulin with red and blue strips on a white background protrudes from the storefront. Below is a specially-made long table. An induction cooker is embedded on the table, and a large stainless steel basin is placed in the basin. Bamboo skewers are inserted into the vegetables, and they are pouting in the red oil soup; coriander, noodles, and noodles have to be boiled by the boss, and there are also pork lungs, crab steaks, fish balls, beef louver, braised chicken feet, etc. Eat and pick up, pay after eating. The boss will look at the mark at the end of the sign, two pieces painted red, five pieces black, and one piece that is not painted.

I like to eat fungus, bamboo shoots, konjac tofu, quail eggs, day lily and the like. When the spicy food is too spicy, I drink a sip of herbal tea slowly. He was sweating when he was eating when he heard the horn on Linhe Road, a Jetta car with “Qingxi Driving School” printed on the door, and slowly rolled down the glass. ? Go to see the cherry blossoms.”

I shouted back at him: “Are you afraid that your brain has been hit by lightning? The heavy rain will make you cold. Look at the cherry blossoms? Why don’t you come down and slap two strings of beef tendons.”

He turned off the engine and got out of the car, shot like an arrow into the shed, and sat down in front of me. I threw a tissue to him, he wiped his face, and said, “I didn’t say it, you woman, how can you speak so rudely, how can you be blinded by lightning, and if it goes on like this, you will be afraid of marrying again. Difficult!”

“Which son of a bitch wants to remarry.” I used the lottery to stab him in the mouth, “Boss, have a beer!”

“I can’t drink, I have to drive.” Zhao Nanfang waved his hand hurriedly. “On the Internet, if you go 30 kilometers to the south, the land is hot, and the cherry blossoms bloom early. I plan to take my daughter to see the flowers when the rain stops, how about today? Son, go and step on it first.”

Zhao Nanfang got married early and has a daughter, but the child was awarded to her mother during the divorce, and the college entrance examination is almost here. His daughter doesn’t kiss him, but he always likes to lean forward. He is a coach at a driving school, and he also works as a black car driver during his breaks. The last time he ran in Changsha, he heard that there was a shopping mall next to the old train station. The basement floor sold all Adidas and Nike shoes. When I came back with two pairs, my daughter told her that her classmates were wearing limited editions, and he bought some outdated items, and he didn’t think it was a shame. He hung his head and asked me what size I was wearing and asked me to help him stock up. I didn’t help him, I just wanted to see how dark his face would last for a few days.

I quickly persuaded him to let it go, saying, “My daughter is going to take the college entrance examination, so how can I look at flowers, don’t put a cold butt on your face again.”

“You’re wrong about this,” Zhao Nanfang picked up a lot of fat intestines and poked it in his mouth, “It’s a big mistake. Xinxin told me well, he was going to see the cherry blossoms by name, and he also made a few appointments. Good classmates, take my car and go with me.”

I sighed at his smug, smug look.

After eating Mala Tang, Zhao Nanfang rushed to pay the order. It’s raining a little less, but it’s getting darker. Amidst the gloomy clouds and mist, a flash of lightning suddenly split the sky in two, and a hidden thunder rolled past.

“Why don’t you go today,” I hesitated, “I’m afraid there will be heavy rain, Gulu still…”

Zhao Nanfang said nothing and put me in the co-pilot: “I’m afraid, I will have an old lady to watch for you.” Then he said, “Are you afraid that I will molest you in the wilderness? Take it easy, I only like eighteen. Young girl, you are so old now, I am afraid that you will harm me!”

two

Due to the falling rain, before leaving the city for half an hour, the cars came one after another, with red buttocks, pretending to be snails in the rain. Just anxious, Gulu called and complained, it was nothing more than grandma chasing him to feed, and the water cup fell in the kindergarten, can you watch another episode of Ultraman or something like that. Hearing that I was going to be late, instead of asking, I was filled with joy. This stinky bastard!

“You said that you were in a hurry to have a baby at the time. If you were single, you might remarry; now you are dragging an oil bottle, which ghost would want you…” Zhao Nanfang made fun of me.

I was so angry that I scolded my mother and twisted his arm. He bared his teeth in pain, his hands shook, and the car slid diagonally forward. At this moment, a figure flashed in front of the windshield, and he stepped on the brake with one foot, but the car stopped abruptly due to the slow speed.

“I…” He rolled down the car window, leaned out and scolded the man crossing the road, scolded half a sentence but then shrank back.

In the rain, the guy not only didn’t leave, but stood upright, stretched out his arms, gestured to passing vehicles, and shouted something, but he couldn’t hear it clearly.

I saw that he was wearing an orange vest with reflective stripes, but not a big cap, so I asked, “Assist the police?”

“Ghost,” Zhao Nanfang slowly drove the car, “it’s that lunatic who picked up the cleaner’s clothes and put them on.”

Having said that, I turned to look at the man again. He was thin and tall, like a mast stuck in the traffic. His hair should have been soaked through by now, and a lock of hair was lying on his forehead. He was still grinning, stopping, turning left, turning right… His uncompromising movements looked funny under the light of passing traffic lights.

“You recognize him?” I asked.

“Which driver in our city doesn’t recognize him?” Zhao Nanfang glanced at the rearview mirror and shook his head. “Originally, he was the factory manager of a state-owned enterprise. He was reluctant to delegate power during the restructuring. He led the workers to make trouble, and his head was broken! When he was awake, he could recite a large number of ancient books and write well; .”

“Is there no one in the house who cares?”

“My wife and I are separated. Earlier, there was an old lady who was chasing after feeding and dressing. I haven’t seen it for two years. I guess she went to Gali.”

“Hey, is it fun to direct traffic? It’s raining so hard, what’s wrong…”

“At that time, he was a man who called for wind and rain. He lost his power and could only point fingers at the car. Power…”

“I heard that driving school instructors also have great power?”

“Of course,” Zhao Nanfang laughed, “Look, I’m a diaosi now. When I get to the driving school, get in the car, and sit on the coach’s seat, which student doesn’t nod and bow respectfully and shout ‘Master Zhao’? My name is When they wash the car, they don’t dare to let one fart; if I scold them for their pig heads, they never dare to talk back; please put aside the food, every time you take an exam, there are red envelopes and cigarettes… Are you happy?”

“I heard that when you meet a beautiful girl, the coach will pinch people’s thighs?” I joked.

“What’s wrong?” Zhao Nanfang replied confidently, “You teach your cub to do homework, teach you ten times and make mistakes ten times. If you don’t pinch him, you will die of anger?”

“Stolenly change the concept, guilty?” I stared at him. “You probably pinched the girl’s thigh, right?”

“you guess?”

“Hmph, men don’t have a good thing!” I said, covering my heart, “As you put it, I wouldn’t dare to learn to drive.”

“Want to learn to drive?” The car finally moved to the entrance of the expressway, and Zhao Nanfang took the card. “There is no need to waste money at the driving school. I will teach you, and the tuition will be free of charge.”

I don’t want to find someone to call me a pig head. He snorted, ignoring him.

When you get on the high-speed, you are happy, and the car slides out like ice cubes on the mirror. There are small hills on both sides of the road, with soft lines; the old red brick houses look better than the villas covered with tiles; there are peach and plum trees by the pond, and they are all silent in the rain before they bloom.

In December, it snows heavily,

Carry the burden and go to Hubei.

There is a good guest in Hubei,

Play rouge water red,

Watch without rouge…

It seemed that I was in the water, and the singing was on the shore, hazy and erratic. It turned out that Zhao Nanfang was humming the song by himself. With his broken gong voice, smoking and sipping betel nut, he never imagined that singing folk songs would be quite tasteful.

I sat up: “Anything else?”

“Yes, yes,” he said with a smile, “but it’s colored underneath.”

I called him Mo Lasso, he was in his 30s or 40s, what color has he never seen before?

He cleared his throat and really sang again:

Get up early in the morning, go to the river,

There are sailboats on the river.

Men take a boat with silver taels,

Women don’t need money for boat rides…

As he sang, he tapped his fingers on the steering wheel. The tune is a country slang song, and the lyrics are local dialects. I thought he would sing a legendary story about running a boat and having an affair, but he stopped and said, “I don’t sing anymore, I don’t sing anymore, we are alone and widowed. If we sing again, we’ll be hooligans.”

When I asked him why he made such a cliché, he said that the old people in the yard used to invite the opera troupe to sing when cooking tofu rice. Remember, I am a pig head.”

So, when talking about his studies, he said that he never made progress in studying since he was a child, and he envied me the most for a good student. As a result, when I went to university, he could only work hard under the steering wheel. I thought to myself, what’s the difference? I failed to start a business, and my husband ran away with the third child; as for him, his wife gave him a “green hat” and was single for more than ten years – we are all abandoned by fate, and we are also in the same fate.

“Stop talking about this shit, I just swallowed dead flies after being happy.” I complained.

“I just want to talk, talk every year, talk every month, talk every day. They can do everything. Are you afraid to talk? It’s worth it when you’re bored in your heart, so mad at yourself?”

The car got off the highway and turned onto a county road, and the rain had completely stopped. There were no cars and no one on the road, the wet asphalt road was shiny black, and two rows of maple and poplar trees greeted each other all the way. I shook down the glass, and the damp wind filled the car all of a sudden, bringing the fragrance of spring plants, and there were three or two dog barks in the distance, which were exceptionally crisp.

“I was running a long distance outside, I just wanted to save a few cents more, and I was reluctant to buy and drink water. As a result, I went back to the house in the middle of the night and found that my mother-in-law was with someone else, curled up on my bed! Thanks to her, how old is her daughter, Put them in the cradle next to them, and cover their faces with their pickled clothes… I’m so angry that my eyes are black!”

I followed in anger and asked, “Did you do it?”

He was bored for a long time: “I originally wanted to beat them. Adulterers and prostitutes will be beaten to the death. It’s a big deal to lose their lives, but I still have to make money. Later, my daughter cried, thinking about what to do to beat them, don’t make me dirty. hand.”

It’s a soft egg for a long time! I also thought, people are doing it, and the sky is watching, people like them must be the present world, and they will come quickly. This is what my mom said.

“How long will it be?”

“Come on,” Zhao Nanfang glanced at the navigation, “Fifteen minutes.”

The car climbed up the winding mountain road, elbows bent one by one, quite cramped. There was a small four-wheeled vehicle that rushed down the mountain road, almost rubbing the rear-view mirror when meeting the car. Zhao Nanfang stopped chatting with me and focused on steering the wheel. It is estimated that there are paddy fields in the valley. After Xiao Si Lun went far, he could hear the sound of chirping frogs, one after another.

Just when I wondered if I was going the wrong way, he said.

“I’ll go check it out, and you’ll get out of the car, too.” Zhao Nanfang parked the car in the ping and walked towards the hillside.

While he was far away, I quickly got out of the car and drenched in wild urine, which instantly lifted my spirits. When I got up and looked around, the mountains were crisscrossed, silent, and people were among them, and there was a feeling of being coerced.

Zhao Nanfang and I are both people who are caught up in life.

Think about yourself, it seems more useless. It’s only been a month since I returned to my hometown to take care of my mother, and Xiaosan entered the house and deliberately left the stockings on the sofa. I called to ask, and they not only acknowledged the bill, but also hurled a bunch of swear words, drenched me with blood. Thoughts have not been sorted out, the man has quickly filed for divorce. Just leave, but he transferred all the property at home in advance, and he had to go through the formalities on the child’s birthday, which made me almost cry blind at the entrance of the Civil Affairs Bureau…

Just thinking about it, Zhao Nanfang came down from the hillside with great interest, waving something in his hand, and the wind was like a tiger.

“Budding, really budding!”

Stuffed into my hand is a bunch of cherry blossom branches, buds, budding.

“Take it back and insert it into the bottle, and it will be fully opened in two days!”

three

It was almost ten o’clock when I got home. Gulu jumped up and down on the bed and refused to sleep, so I found a mineral water bottle, cut off the mouth of the bottle, and planned to use it for flower arrangement.

My mother asked, “Which one did you hang out with?”

“Which one is there, Zhao Nanfang?” I was the most impatient of her questioning like a thief.

My mother let go of her voice and scolded: “I don’t care about the business in the store, and I don’t bring cubs. I also expect you to find someone stronger than before, mad at that flat-haired beast, why are you running back and messing with a driving school driver? Son? Where do I put my old face? I worked so hard for you to read so many books, all of which went into your ass!”

Tired of hearing it, I turned my head and closed the door.

My mother raised the volume and shouted angrily in the hall: “Tell you, get up early tomorrow, get dressed up, and Auntie Wang introduced you to a person who works in the detention center…”

I got angry with no name, and yelled at her through the door: “Oh, I’m too little to have you guarding me. I want to marry a detention center? Could it be that someone in the house will be imprisoned in the future to find a relationship?”

“Don’t roar,” my mother rattled something, “they work as accountants in guards, civil servants, and they’ve never been married, so I’m afraid they don’t look down on you! You’re not too young. I have a formal job, I owe a lot of money, and I have a cub, which one wants you? Mo Liangxin’s beast, expect me to live for a few more decades, and raise you and your cub forever?”

Tsk tsk, as if I and my cub became her burden.

I remember the last time, my mother tried to marry me to a painter in Taiwan, saying what’s wrong with the painter? Earn more, die earlier – anyway, you get married first, settle down for a period of time, and bring your children there. If you really can’t find a better one – this is what many people do. Listen, it turns out that women are just machines, and it’s good to operate like this.

I didn’t say a word, she started to cry herself.

“Why is my life so bitter? I just took your housekeeper away, and I have to serve you and your cubs, one, two or three, and none of them need to worry about it. I don’t know which one of your weird tempers looks like. Grandpa said if you want to get married, you are not allowed to marry, but you want to get married, and now you come back to hurt people. If you can’t say anything, you will slam the door. My old bones are about to be crushed by you! I was born to serve Human life? I don’t know if I can go out and dance in the square to find someone? I don’t know how to enjoy it?…”

I undressed and took the cub to hide under the quilt, covering his ears. His little ears were soft and his little cheeks were hot, and he couldn’t help kissing and kissing again, making him laugh out loud.

“Mom, are you going to find a stepfather for me?” Although Gulu was only four or five years old, he knew that the stepmother didn’t have a good thing, and the stepfather was definitely not much better.

“Don’t listen to grandma talking nonsense.” I lowered my voice.

“Then are you going to find me a stepfather?” He was still worried.

“Do you want me to look for it?” I teased him deliberately.

“I think again, but I don’t want to.” The little brows frowned, looking very embarrassed. “I want him to play with me and take me to kindergarten. The other children have fathers. But what if the stepfather loses his temper and beats me? What if my mother has another cub and doesn’t like me anymore?”

Think really long term. I hurriedly hugged him: “Don’t worry, grandma is right, a divorced person like me with a cub can’t get married if he wants to, who would want me? So my mother will always be with you until you grow up and leave your mother. …”

“Ah no, I don’t want to leave my mother,” Gulu shouted, kicking his legs under the quilt, “I want to grow up quickly, and marry my mother when I grow up!”

The guard wore a pair of black-rimmed plastic glasses, with two crab eyes behind the layers of circles, an acrylic sweater with balls, and dandruff on his shoulders. As for the age, it is not like forty or so, I am afraid that it will be fifty or zero. Maybe it is for this reason that he has been single all the time.

The meeting time was about four in the afternoon, at a corner cafe. It is estimated that it has been carefully calculated. If you have a good chat, you might as well continue to make an appointment. If you don’t have a good chat, you will break up with one shot and two.

When I saw him scooping coffee spoon by spoon, like drinking chicken soup, I lost interest and asked for a glass of lemonade, free of charge.

“You have a high degree of education. I heard that you started a business in the provincial capital?” Right from the beginning, I went straight to the topic.

I kept calm and said, “The advertising agency is catching up with the regulation. Several clients have left, and they can’t make any payments. In addition to those swept away by my ex-husband, I lost about 2 million before and after.”

“You didn’t tell them?”

“I sued and won the case, but it is just a verdict in favor of the case. The property has been transferred long ago, and people are hiding and not returning home. It is difficult for the court to enforce it. Or you can borrow a few brothers to help, find someone, tie them up. Get up and beat yourself to death?”

“Cough, do you have a house in the provincial capital?”

“There were two small units before. In order to pay the employees, they were sold one after another, but they didn’t catch up with the big increase.” I felt that the abacus in his heart was cracking and calculating my worth.

He subconsciously bit the coffee spoon.

Ding – End of the first round.

Seemingly aware of my harsh tone, he reached out and scratched his greasy hair: “Uh… This coffee is good, free refills, why don’t you have a cup?”

“Thanks, I’m allergic to caffeine and I’ve lost sleep after drinking it,” I held up the lemonade. “That’s good.”

“What do you live on now?”

“Old man!” When I finished speaking, I was speechless. When did my face become so thick? I still look down on him, and I don’t want to look down on him, so let’s pretend to be ugly.

“I heard that your mother opened a shop?”

Those little eyes were shining bright, how dare he still expect to inherit the inheritance?

“Well, in the antique market, I specialize in making coins, Jianguo banknotes, dragon banknotes, and smashing my hands with one knife and one knife for more than ten years. I am reluctant to sell it, and selling it is a blood loss. Oh, I also sell silver yuan for silver dollars, big head, small head, boat. Version, Jiachen… After my father passed away, my mother had bad eyesight and often received fake goods. What, are you interested in taking care of the business?”

He put on his glasses and said, “Then… what are your plans next?”

“Plans?” I annoyed others to ask like this, as if it was up to me to get promoted and rich, I simply told him, “I’m in bad health, I broke down in the years of advertising, and now I want to find a long-term meal ticket to retire. ”

Suddenly, the door of the cafe was pushed open, the door squeaked timidly, hesitantly, and a squeak-squeak-squeak-a filthy figure was about to squeeze inside the door.

The store manager was agile, rushing past like a thunderstorm, blocking the door with one hand, and pushing the man out with the other: “Get out! Get out! I’ve been rushing in all day long, how many times have I talked about it, is this a place to beg for food!”

The man was probably used to being bombarded, so he muttered something, didn’t insist, and turned away slowly. When he came down the steps, crossed the sidewalk, and walked across the road, through the glass, I recognized it was the lunatic who was directing the traffic.

The store manager returned to the bar, raised an alcohol bottle and sprayed it all over his body, still resentful: “Something that a mother gave birth to without a father!”

That’s all, that’s all, I thought it wouldn’t look good to be mean as a person, so I said to the guard opposite, “If the guard wants to advertise later, you can call me.”

He rolled his eyes, which is not easy to detect, meaning, is the detention center still used for advertising?

Ding – End of the second round.

“Well, can I ask, why do you want a divorce?”

I’ve already asked, can I still ask, exposing other people’s scars is a fake. I take offense as defense: “Then why don’t you ever get married?”

“Uh, don’t… don’t have to meet the right one.” His eyes dodged.

“How do you know if it’s the right fit?” I chased after the situation.

“Try it, try it a few times and you’ll know.”

“That’s it – I tried it, and I found it didn’t fit, so I left.”

“But you have a cub…”

“Yeah, it’s almost five years old.” I straightened my spine, if he dared to attack my cub, I would make him look good.

“What about alimony?”

“Mod.”

“Mo alimony?” He was surprised that his eyes fell.

“For a suite in the provincial capital, alimony is paid in one lump sum. Now that it is rented out, it costs a few thousand yuan a month, which is just enough to pay the mortgage, and I have to earn extra for living expenses.”

“Now the cub is still young, and it will cost a lot of money in the future. I won’t be able to afford the optical expenses, let alone grow up, buy a house and a car to ask my wife…” He obviously gasped.

Ding – End of the third round.

“Is there anything you want to ask me?” He scooped another spoon of coffee and put it in his mouth.

“You must think that the blind date, family background, appearance, education…

Everything has to be in the right place, right? Just like when a pet store breeds cats and dogs, they first ask how old they are, what breed they are, and how their physical fitness is, and then whether they see the right eye or not, they will be matched on the spot. Very tasty, very evil! ”

I didn’t want to entangle with him any more, I drank the last sip of lemonade, got up and left without even saying goodbye.

Four

After leaving the cafe, I turned into a fly restaurant and sipped a bowl of rice noodles. There is nothing outstanding in the small town, but this rice noodle makes people miss it. Beef tendon meat is cooked in advance, not hard or rotten, full of toughness, cut into thin slices with a quick knife, stir-fry in an oil pan, add soy sauce and refined salt; the powder is rice noodles with physalis, thick round, scald in boiling water before eating, immerse in beef bones The broth, covered with beef, covered with a large piece of red oil, sprinkled with chopped green onion, fragrant to the ecstasy. There are also fried tofu and black fungus toppings. The tofu is soft and the fungus is crispy. It is also freshened with broth, covered with red oil and chopped green onion.

As he was eating, WeChat lit up and it was Zhao Nanfang.

“Hi, what are you doing?”

“Hafen,” I held the chopsticks in my right hand and typed back to him with my left hand, “I just finished dealing with a fool, which is very physically exhausting.”

“Hahaha,” he laughed and cried, “Xiao Yiming is back, he is organizing a dinner party for his classmates, are you going?”

“Which Xiao Yiming?” I couldn’t react for a while.

Perhaps he thought the typing was too slow, so Zhao Nanfang sent a voice: “It’s the one who was recommended to the University of Science and Technology of China. You are in the liberal arts class. You may not be familiar with him, but you should also know that the school’s famous person! Later, I went to the United States to study at Mozi University. To a postdoc. Damn, if driving is also graded, I promise to be a postdoc…”

Oh, I remembered it, and a silly face of a schoolmaster appeared in my mind.

Zhao Nanfang asked, “He asked everyone to eat and sing. If I go, I can sign up for you?”

“No.” After picking out the last few stalks, I took another gulp of soup and burped with satisfaction, “When people are unlucky, they don’t want to be proud of others.”

Zhao Nanfang replied: “It makes sense, then I won’t go.”

I ignored him, settled the bill, and walked to my mom’s antique store.

It was rare that the rain stopped for a while, and when I was walking on the road, I found that the sycamore trees by the roadside had sprung up a little, in the warm and humid air, like the eyes of the afterlife.

After a while, the phone rang again, it was Zhao Nanfang.

“Hey, everyone is talking about Xiao Yiming’s crush on you in the past.” He added, “He doesn’t seem to be married yet, and maybe American devils are open-minded, and it’s okay to divorce and bring cubs. .”

fuck your mother. I made a cracked expression. If he was in front of me right now, I would definitely slap his face with two big ears.

When the day of the reunion came, I somehow decided to go to that class reunion. Maybe I just want to see what kind of disillusioned look the legendary man who had a crush on me would have when he saw me now. Hehe, I’m really bad, I can’t find people happy everywhere; and then I think, why am I like a hammer, looking for nails everywhere? But the thought cheered me up, and at the same time I started to figure out which dress to wear without looking pretentious; with or without makeup, light or heavy…

The party took place in the city’s most exclusive hotel.

As soon as he got out of the car, he saw Zhao Nanfang, he said, why didn’t he come? I said, yes, why are you here too, and you clean up like a dog? He sneered back, you are not inferior, just in this outfit, the male classmate’s eyes may not be protected. In fact, I just wore a floral dress, a small coat and leather boots; he also wore a less wrinkled coat, and seemed to have deliberately trimmed his face and put half a catty of hairspray on his hair. I said, we can’t embarrass the Chinese people. He said, that is, such a high-end hotel, delicious food can not be cheaper than others.

When I entered the hotel, I asked him if he had gone to see the cherry blossoms. With a bitter face, he said that he was going. Before he went, he specially asked the students to wash the car, but Xinxin still thought his car stinks. A few children chatted about them all the way, completely using him as a coachman. The flowers were also sparsely blooming, and the children were not interested, but just took a few pictures with scissors. As compensation, he invited them to a farmhouse.

“Children, it’s all like this. Isn’t our own adolescence the same way?” I said.

“Also, it was said on TV that the so-called growth is the process of constantly discovering that the past self was purely stupid.” Zhao Nanfang shook his big head like a rattle.

The place where the rich spend is really different. Entering the door is a wooden bridge, with clear water gurgling underneath, facing a natural stalactite screen, decorated with a few ferns, surrounded by clouds and mist, very freehand. Going up the stairs, I walked through the long corridor covered with thick carpets, and then entered the box.

The decoration in the box is also very particular. There are huge genre paintings on the wall. It depicts a man walking around the streets selling candy, and three or two children in red jackets and black cotton trousers. , holding a hammer in one hand and a chisel in the other, along the edge of the golden maltose, knocking down; there are two other babies next to them, their hair is tied into the sky, cute and gratifying, and they are covering their ears and firing guns. . Under the painting is a chicken-winged wooden frame, and some pottery, porcelain, and bronze ware are placed high and low. Although it is antique, the shape is still simple.

After years of neglect, many students do not recognize him. Zhao Nanfang volunteered to introduce them one by one for me. The others are not bad. It turns out that Xiao Yiming is not the stupid person in the impression. On the contrary, he looks quite normal, wearing jeans, a suede jacket, a plaid shirt, and a pair of rimless glasses on the bridge of his nose. Spirit, there is no greasy middle-aged uncle.

At this time, Xiao Yiming was standing in front of the window, pointing at the rivers and mountains, and exciting the words: “Empty hand, a play of autumn and a moon; the lingering sound, half into the river and half into the cloud…”

Looking out from the floor-to-ceiling windows, it is exactly where the two rivers meet, with red walls and black tiles, a Ming Dynasty water temple winding down, and the ancient stage built for the gods, with carved beams and painted buildings, is spectacular.

“When I was studying, I passed by the Water Temple every day on a bicycle. I can still recite the couplet on the door. In a blink of an eye, I have left my hometown for more than 20 years.” Xiao Yiming said with emotion.

Zhao Nanfang snorted: “Ha, it’s been more than 20 years, I still remember it so clearly, I really lived up to your name, it’s a blockbuster!”

“Ashamed, ashamed, the name was given by my mother and father, it’s just a little hope.” Xiao Yiming glanced at me, “I have been abroad all the year round, but I feel close to Chinese. Maybe this is the root of our Chinese people.”

While talking, they took their seats and raised their glasses.

“Your mother and father must be ecstatic, right?” Putting down the cup, Zhao Nanfang said with a sullen face, “Raising such a good cub, the ancestral graves are smoking!”

“That’s not true. My uncle and aunt’s cubs are all developed in China, and now they are all worth tens of millions; and you, all of them are promising.” Xiao Yiming smiled slightly, ” What’s so good about America? My parents often complained that the United States is a big rural area, and it takes 20 to 30 kilometers to go to the supermarket, and you can’t even see a person on the road.

“Yi Ming is humble, everyone lives in villas in the United States,” said a classmate.

Xiao Yiming smiled lightly: “It’s not really a villa, it’s called a townhouse, there are such houses over there. It’s very far from work, if you don’t drive, you have to take the train, enter the city and change to the subway, every three hours a day. On the road. Thinking about it, it’s better to be home, and it’s convenient to go anywhere.”

“Come back when you get homesick!”

“Yes, the motherland welcomes you!”

Several students said in unison. They all seemed unintentional about eating and drinking, and they talked to Xiao Yiming about some of their parents’ shortcoming, some asked about green cards, some asked about buying a house, some were going to travel, and some wanted to exchange foreign currency… all kinds of voices. Xiao Yiming was very patient and answered one by one, with a smug look on his eyebrows; he also said that if he really wants to return to China, he has to wait for marriage and childbirth, and the cubs will all get American status.

Zhao Nanfang bit my ears, and my true face was revealed. I still felt that the moon in the United States was full, and the foreigners had a face. I couldn’t help laughing, and the laughter became louder, which attracted Xiao Yiming to look here.

In the cold dish, there is a mustard soaked snail, the aroma of mustard, the spiciness of millet pepper, together with the first-class light soy sauce, the snail meat is completely soaked, which is spicy and delicious; toothpick beef is sliced ​​beef shank, skewered with toothpicks , stir-fried with sesame oil, it tastes like a miniature skewer; there are also steamed egg dumplings with red dates, plasma duck, fried pork intestines with sour radish, and steamed cured fish with tempeh.

Zhao Nanfang pulled a piece of bone from his mouth, sucked the fanghuazi, and said in a low voice: “Don’t you think I’m jealous of this kid? Tell you, it’s useless for him to act like an American, I can’t see this fake foreign devil. appearance!”

Such a big man, with self-esteem at work, ridiculous and cute.

“Come on, Master Zhao will eat another big pig’s trotter, just to cover your broken mouth.” I put a large piece of pig’s trotter into the plate in front of him.

When he was full, Xiao Yiming proposed to sing again, and everyone responded. But I was in despair and just wanted to escape, but had no choice but to be carried by a few boys and came to a KTV by the river.

The boss with swollen eyes saw the business and personally led us to the most luxurious box. It was said to be a luxurious private room, but the wallpaper had already turned yellow, the black polyester carpet exuded a strong musty smell, and on the bulging and peeling ceiling, there was a gecko that penetrated into the gap of the wallpaper like lightning.

Everyone just went with the flow, but I couldn’t help but gag, and let the two girls pull it and take a seat on the PU sofa: “Come here, order a song!”

After a few ghosts and wolf howls, Xiao Yiming took a bottle of mineral water, sat beside me, and said, “I still remember that before the third grade, we sang songs together like this.”

“Really?” The laser light shook my mind, “I really can’t remember…”

“I’ve always been brooding.” The music was so strong that he had to get closer, “Remember that I ordered a song of “Heart Rain” to invite you to sing, and you won’t save face.”

“No way, I’ve been a boring gourd since I was a child.” I shrugged.

“Where, you were circulating your novels in high school, the manuscripts, you are the idol of many boys.” He took a sip of water, “Any new works?”

There was an unexplained sadness in my heart. I sighed and said, “I haven’t written a long time ago, and I haven’t read a lot of books. It’s all mundane things that are busy every day.”

“How can people be free from the common world?” He seemed to be deliberately comforting, unscrewing the cap, and handing a bottle of water, “What you really love will never be thrown away in your life. I hope you can write again, and someone will definitely want to read it. ”

“Writing?” I spread my hands.

“Recording the affairs of our generation!” He pondered, “Our story is quite worth writing. If everyone is busy with life and anxiety, it would be a pity not to leave any records and proofs. ”

My heart is sour, others have stories, but I only have accidents. At this age, I haven’t been able to live a personal life, and I don’t care, I’ve made the old mother’s cub sad and disappointed in vain. Suddenly I had a premonition, a very bad premonition. In the next second, I was afraid that I would cry in front of this old classmate I didn’t know well, so I hurriedly pretended to go to the bathroom and left the box.

As soon as I came out of KTV, I felt a gust of cold wind, and I couldn’t help shivering.

Zhao Nanfang chased after him from behind: “I love it so much, I cry from the cold, do you know it’s cold now? Hurry back and bring the cubs, don’t catch a cold.”

I turned my head and looked at Zhao Nanfang steadily, thinking that compared to Xiao Yiming, this guy is more real.

Seeing that I didn’t move, he added another knife: “Let’s go, I won’t wait for me to take off my clothes and put them on for you? Hehe, I’ve watched too many Korean dramas, and my head is stupid!”

I was so angry that I beat him.

When I got home, my mother was nagging as usual, and my cub kept jumping as usual. I ignored them and dragged out an old suitcase from under the bed. The black book was still there, densely recording stories made up in high school. Because it has been circulated by many classmates, it is not mentioned in the corners, and there are comments in various colors.

On the spur of the moment, I shouted at my mother and Gulu: “Tell me, if I start writing novels from now on, is it possible to become a writer?”

“Write it! Why didn’t you think of this road earlier?” My mother was so happy that she forgot to support the broom when it fell to the ground. “The girl from the Su family next door writes novels on the Internet, and she can earn seven or eight thousand a month! Her mother said that she does nothing every day, just plug in a network cable and sit in the room to write! She only has a high school degree, you Could it be that she is not as good as her? Anyway, I don’t need capital, I will start writing today, earn 10,000 yuan a month, and see how arrogant her family is!”

“What if… what I write doesn’t make money?” I protected the black paper, and my expression became humble.

“Don’t make money to write a ghost? Waste of electricity!” My mother was suddenly frustrated.

“Writing about ghosts makes money, but I can’t write about ghosts.” I felt like my balloon had been pricked by a needle.

“It’s the same sentence, go out to work early, and I’ll bring Gulu with you. You, find another one when you’re working, don’t tell it first, get married and then pick up Gulu, that’s the serious business!” My mother picked it up! He picked up the broom and walked away angrily.

“Mom, so you can write stories!” Gulu opened his eyes like cowbells, “Then, can you write fairy tales?”

“Write a ghost, I didn’t hear my grandmother say I can’t write a ghost.” I grinned.

Knowing that I can’t write fairy tales, and that there are neither fairies nor Ultramans in the black book, Gollum turned around in disinterest and continued to play with his Lego minifigures.

At this time, Zhao Nanfang sent a message: “Hey, do you think Xiao Yiming is fine?” A thief peeping at the back.

“It’s fine, what’s wrong?” I deliberately angered him.

“Then let me tell you the bad news. Xiao Yiming will be leaving tomorrow. He will go directly to Changsha, then Shanghai, and take a plane to the United States.” He was too lazy to type, so he simply sent a voice, gloating over the misfortune.

“It’s none of my business to let him go. Who wants you to talk nonsense? A big man with such a long tongue will be cut off sooner or later!”

“Haha, I just want to see you unhappy, so that I can be happy, hahahaha…”

five

When the season falls into summer, the roof of the building on a hot day is the most suitable for drying jars of vegetables. My mother went to the river early in the morning to buy 10 catties of eggplants and came back. She said that they were grown by farmers in the suburbs. The side dishes they eat at home do not use pesticides or fertilizers. very strong.

She cut off the eggplant shank, washed it, steamed it in a large pot, and the color changed from jade purple to pigeon gray. We first use chopsticks to cut the skin of the cooked eggplant, break the two sides, and then divide it into two, and then cut and pull the flesh a few times, spread it on the large sieve, and arrange them one by one.

In the same way, there are also green peppers, steamed and dried to become white peppers, rubbed with salt, and placed in a jar; as for cowpeas, green beans, and watermelon rinds, they are directly chopped and dried, and put into the jar together with the peppers. Grab a handful when cooking in winter, and fragrant. When making tempeh, you have to cook the soybeans, let them cool, spread them in a sieve, cover with straw and wait for it to ferment. When the mycelium grows, it is ready to be put into the altar. Add salt, preferably a little more. High liquor, tempeh will be more moldy…

My mother told me the same, never had the patience.

“Ma’am,” I wiped the sweat that almost flowed into my eyes, “What are you talking about? Can’t you do it yourself? I can’t use it if I learn it.”

My mother sneered: “Your mother will live forever? When I die, you can’t do it yourself if you want to eat it?”

I rolled my eyes, “As long as you have money now, what can’t you buy on the street?”

“Just be lazy!” My mother glared at me and left. There was still a pot of steam in the house, she had to bring it back.

On the top of the building, more than half of the residents have set up vegetable fields. They built squares with bricks, filled them with soil, and planted loofah, peppers, green beans, carrots and green onions, which grew vigorous in the sun. There was a bamboo cage with two chickens, unable to bear the loneliness, and pecking at each other’s feathers. There is also a plastic bathtub that someone doesn’t want, and they are also placed here. It’s really daring, and I’m not afraid of leaks in the house. But the upright leaves are quite graceful, like small jasper swords, holding small flowers with white petals and yellow stamens, attracting scarabs and butterflies to visit from time to time.

In order to eat in one bite, people are really full of tricks! With a sigh, I spread out the rest of the eggplants and placed them on the edge of the roof together with the sieve, lying there looking around.

In just twenty years, things have changed a lot here. The surrounding old buildings have been demolished and built into office buildings and shopping centers. The glass curtain wall reflects the sunlight, making people unable to open their eyes. My mother’s building had less than ten floors, and I still climbed on two legs when I went upstairs. Most of the people living in this building are middle-aged and elderly people, laid-off workers, and retirees, so they have the time and mind to grow vegetables and feed chickens. It seems like some kind of resistance from the old days.

In the boredom, he took out his mobile phone and saw that Zhao Nanfang had posted a new circle of friends. On the edge of a small pond, he was fishing for crayfish by tying lines with branches and pig livers. I thought that he might have a rest today, so I posted a comment: “Master Zhao is so elegant!”

In less than a minute, he made a voice call, saying that he had already caught a big bucket, he couldn’t get it, and he planned to send it to my mother’s shop. “Buy a piece of konjac tofu, pour a bottle of beer, and cook it with star anise, cinnamon, fragrant leaves, and dried chili. If you don’t want to drink it, you can find me!”

I thought about it, my mother had an opinion on Zhao Nanfang, and just as she was about to reject it, he shouted, “Ouch! I’ve bit the hook again…” and hung up the phone.

When I was going to call again, my mother brought up another pot of eggplants and urged me to go to the antique market to open the shop door. She packed up the eggplants herself and went. The crayfish thing had to be put aside for the time being.

Said to be an antique market, the scale is not large, and it is not full of antiques. There are dozens of door faces on both sides of the aisle of more than 100 meters. There are antique shops, coin shops, oil painting rooms, some people sell old books, the four treasures of the study, and the tablets of ancestors. There are cross stitches and glass frames, as well as tea houses, massage rooms, small clinics… and so on. The market business can fade out, often ten days and a half without customers coming to the door, and the old farmers in the suburbs come to sell with dustpans every day. Because the corridors nearly two meters wide swayed out from the second floor, these door faces had eaves, and every household set up briquettes under the eaves, and those who chop meat, wash rice, boil water, wash dishes, and live a fireworks life. It is said that the business of antiques is closed for three years, and it has been opened for three years. The merchants never seem to be in a hurry. They guard the stones and water tanks collected from the countryside, fetch some aquatic plants and duckweeds from the river, and catch two in the flower and bird market next door. The three-tailed koi, sometimes with a “crashing” sound from the golden scales, are actually alive; they also raise asparagus, clivia, lark, lark, and budgerigar; Su San left Hongdong County…”

My mother’s “Baoquan Coin Zhuang” is in the corner of the market.

Speaking of which, she is also a young lady from a big family. Her grandfather owns a south goods store in a small town, and the business seems to be not small. When my grandfather came, he could only read, recite poetry, and sip flower wine. He also got cigarette smoke, and soon lost his family business. However, it was also a blessing in disguise. During the “land reform”, a middle peasant element was rated as an object of solidarity. Helpless, there are groups of younger brothers and sisters, and the family is full of apprentices. My mother went to girls’ high school for nothing. She went out to repair the reservoir at the age of fourteen, earning work points, and married herself casually at the age of eighteen… She has been in the ancient coin business these years. her family background.

I diligently reached the market, and from a distance I saw a figure squatting in front of the store, and when I got closer, it was Zhao Nanfang. The faucet was turned on thinly, and he didn’t know where he found an old toothbrush, and he was brushing the black and red crayfish in the bucket. After brushing one, throw it into the basin next to it, pick up the other one, and brush it vigorously.

I rushed up in two steps in three steps, grabbed the brush in his hand, and tugged at the collar trying to lift him up.

Zhao Nanfang looked back and smiled with a sullen face: “I haven’t met for a few days, but when I saw a man, I started right away?”

I was a little out of breath, and when I sent my toes, I turned the pony he was sitting on to the top: “Who asked you to be courteous, and also provide after-sales service, what’s the matter?”

Zhao Nanfang almost fell into the lobster pot, but thanks to his hands, he held the edge of the pot: “I won’t see you for a long time, so I washed it first. Did you buy konjac tofu and beer?”

“Buy your head, how do I eat at home, but I want you to care?” I yelled at him angrily.

At this time, my mother has arrived at the door of the store.

Zhao Nanfang immediately got up, wiped the water stains from his hands on his jeans, and put on a harmless smile: “Hello, Auntie! I’m Zhu Xiaoyun’s classmate, Zhao Nanfang.”

“Oh, that’s the driving school driver…” My mother didn’t catch her breath, and looked him up and down with wide eyes.

At this moment, I hurriedly pushed and shoved him: “Let’s go, each go back to his own house, each find his own mother, hurry up! Hurry up!”

Zhao Nanfang still smiled naively: “Auntie, you are criticizing, how have you seen such a person? I caught such a bucket of crayfish early, washed it here, and wanted to try Auntie’s craftsmanship, she It’s good, as soon as you come, you will blow me away.”

My mother took out the key to open the shutter, and suddenly turned around: “I’ll say this voice is familiar. It was you who called my house in the past, right?”

Zhao Nanfang didn’t answer the phone, and hurriedly helped lift the shutter: “Aniseed cinnamon and fragrant leaves, Auntie, do you have them in your store?”

“There are these, but this shrimp has to open its back, otherwise it won’t taste good.” My mother responded slowly.

I was confused, my mother had already entered the door, and she poured a glass of water for Zhao Nanfang for the first time in the world, and then whispered to me: “What do you know, don’t slap people with smiles. Besides, everyone in the street puffed up their eyes. Look at it, a man came to the door, and when others want to bully us, they have to weigh them up. Quickly, go buy konjac tofu!”

Maybe my mother has her reasons. In this market, the market is usually crowded and crowded with each other. If my family’s business is going a little better, some people get pink eye disease, and they scramble for business behind their backs. Zhao Nanfang looks like a ruffian. It’s hard to say anything else, but it’s more appropriate to be a security guard. However, before my mother clearly disliked Zhao Nanfang in every possible way, could it be that she was really in love with each other?

I carried a piece of konjac tofu and walked back all the way. Zhao Nanfang has finished brushing the crayfish, and the water has passed through it again. He is busy again, opening his back and pumping his intestines. After finishing his work, he leaned against the glass case and looked at the silver circles, copper coins, banknotes from various countries, copper pipes, medals, jade pendants, agate strings, silver chains, wooden unicorns sawn from the old-fashioned carved bed, and Shanghai brand watches that had long since stopped… At the same time, he kept shouting: “Hehe, are these real guys? Auntie, your family is really rich!”

My mother didn’t answer, but she looked proud. Burn the fire, set up the oil pan, and start to stir-fry the crayfish – wow, put the main and auxiliary ingredients in the pot together, turn the spatula back and forth a few times, then sprinkle all the seasonings together, and finally turn the spatula two more times, the beer lid is on the stove Take a shot along the top, pour it in, and cover the pot. Across the glass pot lid, watch the shrimp tails slightly bend inwards, forming circular arcs, and slowly begin to turn red, and the red is even, full, and gorgeous. The gray konjac tofu slurped in the red oil soup, and a touching fragrance instantly made me forgive her poor cooking skills.

The crayfish is out of the pot, and the rice is cooked. The three of them were about to start their meal when they heard an “Ouch” sound, and a big fat man broke into the backlight and said, “I have a good meal today, and it’s just in time—”

Before he finished speaking, his hand was already on the plate, not afraid of being hot, he picked up a crayfish and sent it to his mouth, with the crunching sound of chewing, two lines of red oil dripped down the corner of his mouth.

“Mr. Liu is here, sit down!” My mother winked at me, “Hurry up and add the pair of dishes.”

I was reluctant. The store was originally small, except for the containers, shelves and a small cupboard. On weekdays, the small square table was folded up and leaned against the back of the shelf. It was only unfolded when it was time to eat. Now, two more people would not be able to turn around.

“No, no, I’ve had my meal, and I came here after seeing guests coming to your house.” That teacher Liu was also a good person. Seeing my face, he quickly waved his hand. “Is the new son-in-law coming?”

Dogs bark. I hurriedly explained: “Mr. Liu, don’t talk nonsense, this is my classmate. It’s your old man who shakes your phone every day, and a lot of beauties appear. They sit in your shop and refuse to leave. Why, my classmates come to join us. A door, but you have to get a certificate?”

Zhao Nanfang was so embarrassed that his face turned purple, but after hearing me say this, he laughed.

Mr. Liu couldn’t hang his face even more, and said, “Oh, my old eyes are dizzy… This little brother, don’t blame it, don’t blame it!”

As he said that, he raised the back of his hand to wipe off a mouthful of oil, and went out.

“My old lady, do you call such a person to eat? It’s disgusting!” I was still angry.

“In business, all three religions and nine streams must be approached. You are polite and polite, and you can’t suffer any loss.” My mother sat back and touched my nose with chopsticks, “Just like your temper, everyone has offended you, go drink the northwest wind. !”

“Don’t be angry, don’t be angry, no one will take care of you when you get angry. Come, eat and drink.” Zhao Nanfang hurriedly unscrewed the cola to smooth things out.

“You know how to eat, eat, and you’re happy to be the son-in-law of others for no reason.” I kicked him with hatred.

After a meal of overeating, my mother suffered from the old problem of gallstones, which was urgent and fierce, and the pain never waited for two hours. Fortunately, Zhao Nanfang had a car and was sturdy, so he took her to the hospital and carried her back in and out. He made a few phone calls to his friends to resolve the hospitalization, otherwise everyone said there was no bed. This is the case in small places, and everything depends on connections.

My mother finally hung up the anti-inflammatory and analgesic medicine, and said that the operation will be performed three days later. When I heard that there was going to be an operation, my mother was so frightened that she grabbed me, teary-eyed, and talked over and over again—do you really want an operation? Must not be life-threatening? Will it be like your father, when you get on the operating table, you can’t get off? No wonder fortune-tellers say that I will cover a white quilt this year, and a white quilt is not a hospital quilt…

Zhao Nanfang gave her reassurance: “Don’t be afraid, Auntie, Micro-Invasion, the chief knife doctor has also greeted her, and I promise nothing to do.”

“Then what about Gulu, who cooks for him? There is no one guarding the store, and in the middle of the night, I’m afraid everything will be stolen…” She was polite to everyone, and would only scold me, “If you are good enough, There is an object… Hey, it’s really old, I don’t have to use it anymore, and I put such a thing on it, so that Tian Tian should not be able to make it, and the ground is not working, how can I get it?”

I rolled her eyes at her and said, “You’re already like this, don’t say a few words. Without you, Gulu and I will not be able to live? Even if I can’t cook, it’s alright to order takeout, right? We’ll take care of you this week. Sleep in the store and make sure your babies are safe.”

Zhao Nanfang also said: “Auntie, you have to be really worried. After work every day, I go to the store to help you around, and then bring the meal over by the way, how about it?”

She just calmed down a little, two lines of old tears still crawling down her face. After a while, the medicinal power might have played a role, she crooked her neck and fell asleep.

After sending Zhao Nanfang out, it was time to pick up Gulu from the kindergarten. Zhao Nanfang said that it is convenient to go with me by car.

“My mother is like a tigress on weekdays, but I never imagined that she would be frightened like this when she entered the hospital. After all, she is a paper tiger.” I couldn’t help complaining on the way.

“It’s my fault, I knew that I wouldn’t be fishing so many crayfish.” He shook his head, “Don’t dislike her, it’s the same with old people, and it’s the same with us. It can be seen that your mother actually loves you very much. .The generation of theirs can be regarded as a characteristic of the times, because they themselves grew up like this.”

I knew in my heart that he was right, but I didn’t want to admit defeat and said, “You didn’t see me when I just got divorced and brought Gulu back when my mother scolded me so much that I almost jumped into the river. It seems that I stole someone and caused the family to break up… …”

“Listen to my advice, don’t be angry with your mother, you will hate yourself when your mother really goes,” he said while driving.

“Hey, why are you always talking for my mother? You don’t really want to be her son-in-law, do you?” I tapped his arm.

“During my third year of high school, my mother passed away with a cerebral hemorrhage and left suddenly.

I lost my backbone overnight, and everyone was floating… My dad, who didn’t deal with my wife in front of me, went to my sister in Changsha. When he passed away, he couldn’t even see him for the last time. So you…” “I understand, I understand, Master Zhao has taught me a lesson, and I have benefited a lot. “I said with a smile.

Zhao Nanfang stopped the car with a “quack”, and he looked at me. For the first time, there was no hippie smile, and his eyes were a little wet, “Do you understand me? I don’t understand…”

six

When my mother was hospitalized, Gulu and I slept in the store at night, guarding her treasures.

That day, when Gulu came back from kindergarten, without saying a word, he leaned into the cot, and he was sullen at first, and then began to cry. In the past, when I was wronged in kindergarten or got into a fight with a child, I would come back crying. However, after a sleep, I would be fine. The next day I was still playing like crazy, but this time I didn’t scream like I used to, just lie down. Heartbroken in the cot. I went up and tried his forehead, and there was no fever; I looked all over again, and I was not injured, only to find that the sheets were wet with tears.

“Who bullied us Gollum? Tell Mom, I’ll fetch that little bastard back and apologize to Gollum!” I tried to comfort.

Gulu didn’t answer, his little hands grabbed the quilt tightly, and the tears poured out more and more urgently.

“Speak, what’s the matter?” I was both distressed and anxious.

Just as he was jumping in a hurry, Zhao Nanfang came. Recently, he had to go to work at the driving school during the day. Before returning home at night, he would come to the store to take a look. He even went to the hospital to see my mother when he had time. He lost a lot of weight and his face became darker. I couldn’t help feeling a little pity.

“What’s wrong with Gulu?” Zhao Nanfang asked.

I shook my head and sighed.

Zhao Nanfang winked at me, and I quickly stepped aside.

“Gulu, let’s see what I brought for you?” He pressed it across the transparent plastic sheet on the outer packaging, a red light flashed, and then the slogan sounded: “You can’t sit still when something happens!”

It turned out to be a box of Ultraman, arranged in order from largest to smallest. This is a toy that is all the rage. I only know that they are a family with dozens of members. I only know Taro, Seven, and Dijia. I can’t tell who is who. Anyway, they all wear red tights and wear Silver helmet, ugly, stupid and expensive, I don’t understand how children would like this kind of brain-dead stuff.

Gulu rolled over and sat up, hugged the toy, and said, “Thank you, uncle…”

“Why do you have to spend so much money…” I was very sorry.

“Let the cubs be happy. It won’t cost you a few dollars. When they grow up, they will endure hardships more.” Zhao Nanfang raised his index finger and wiped away the tears on Gulu’s face, “Tell uncle, what’s the matter?”

Gollum said, “They scold me…”

Zhao Nanfang picked up Gulu and put him in his arms: “Who scolds you? Don’t be afraid, I will support you.”

Gulu started to cry again: “They called me no daddy, I understand, that is, I don’t have a father…”

Zhao Nanfang hugged Gulu tighter: “Damn, who said you didn’t have a father? They’re just idiots!”

“Everyone has a father, but I just don’t have one…” Gulu lay on Zhao Nanfang’s shoulder, twitching in grievance.

No wonder he kept crying like that and ignored me. In the end, he was still young and didn’t understand the whole story. He also blamed me for not wanting to get back with his dad.

“Then…” Zhao Nanfang glanced at me quickly, then turned back and said to Gulu, “I can play your father, I will send you to kindergarten tomorrow, and I will introduce them to them like this, and see who dares to refuse!”

“Bastard, dare to take advantage of my mother!” I raised my hand and punched.

Gulu, this kid who is eating and crawling, actually waved the Ultraman in his hand to help block: “Mom, we are acting, don’t make trouble!” Turning around and asking Zhao Nanfang, “Uncle, did what you just say count?”

“Of course, with a gentleman’s words, it’s hard to chase a horse!” Zhao Nanfang winked at me.

These two guys even started an alliance, they laughed like a father and son, it really made me vomit blood.

It was already dark, and some lights were cast on the promenade, and the concrete floor was wet and dark, reflecting the faint light. It was early after dinner time, and the kettles on the coal stove were boiling one after another.

My mother was discharged from the hospital after the operation, and Gulu was also on summer vacation. I’ve started to write some gibberish. Because I haven’t written for a long time, the beginning is very difficult, like towing a rusty old boat from the shore into the water, the strength of sucking is exhausted, but not a few words come out of the pen. There was really no way to take care of their grandparents and grandchildren at the same time, so he had to ask Zhao Nanfang to help take care of Gulu. Zhao Nanfang was quite happy, so he took Gulu to the driving school to play. Without my discipline and restraint, plus Zhao Nanfang’s pampering, the cub always comes back dirty every day, like a coal digger, but he is very excited, and the little mouth babbles and talks non-stop, saying that the students in the driving school like it. He, buy him snacks, and play “Glory of the King” with him… I know that the students treat Gulu as Zhao Nanfang’s cub, and use Gulu to curry favor with Zhao Nanfang.

“I know you’re a big kid,” I secretly told Gulu, “Next time, pay attention to see if your Uncle Zhao pinches the female student’s thigh.”

“I didn’t pinch my thighs, but Uncle Zhao scolded people very fiercely, even more fiercely than kindergarten teachers.” Gulu reported to me.

“Then did he ask your mother about it?”

Gulu immediately saw through my thoughts and asked, “Mom, are you interested in Uncle Zhao?”

“Little kid, you know what’s interesting!” I pinched his ears.

“Of course, Uncle Zhao has told me that girls who are interested in me will peek at me in the toilet to pee and ask me to observe secretly. So, you asked me to observe Uncle Zhao, isn’t it interesting to Uncle Zhao?”

In the blink of an eye, it was Gollum’s fifth birthday. I suggested asking Zhao Nanfang to drive us out to play. We invited him to dinner as a thank you. Gulu immediately became happy, and immediately called Zhao Nanfang.

The weather in midsummer is getting hotter and hotter, the sky is high and blue, and although there are traces of clouds, there is no shadow of a drop of rain; the big rivers and small rivers are all restrained and quietly creeping in the river; the shore grows half a person high. The dog’s tail grass, the fishermen only dare to hide in the shade of the trees, while the cicadas hide among the branches and leaves, hoarsely calling: “Heat to death – heat to death -”

Zhao Nanfang drove the Jetta with the words “Qingxi Driving School” on it and drove us all the way up the river. The river surface opened up, and the blue water plants covered the river bed. When the sun shone, it was covered with black jade sprinkled with gold, and the still water flowed deeply. Gulu sat in the passenger seat and said to Zhao Nanfang, “Uncle, I want to hear your story.”

I reached out and tapped on the back of Gulu’s head: “Uncle is driving, do you think it’s a point reader?”

Zhao Nanfang said, “If you want to beat you, beat me. I have rough skin and thick flesh. After being beaten, don’t break Gulu.”

I gave him a chestnut: “You can get used to him.”

Gulu was delighted, and slapped his hands and sang a jingle he had learned from somewhere: “Hit is kiss, scolding is love, don’t beat, don’t scold, don’t love each other, love to the depths and kick with your feet!”

“Gollum!” I growled, afraid that he would sing something worse.

Zhao Nanfang really told a story. He said that he didn’t go to college after graduating from high school, and he was fishing in this river with his friends during that time. Drive a boat with a small motor and cast a net upstream. The water in the upper reaches is clear, and there are the most Diaozi fish, which are thrown down in a net, with silver scales jumping all over their eyes. A friend of mine has an old mother who specializes in picking up fish on the shore. They sell fish at the pier when they come back from fishing. If they can’t be sold out by noon, they take them back and sprinkle some salt and oil. They fry them until they become crispy. One bite will make your jaw drop.

At night, the bed was as hot as a teppanyaki, and I didn’t want to go home, so I stayed on the boat for the night. One night, when I was sleeping in a daze, I suddenly heard the sound of the board of the boat, slap—slap—at first, the person was not awake, only the sound of water; turned over and was about to fall asleep, the sound was closer, huh – 咻咻 – seems to have climbed out of the water and reached the stern…

“Ah, there’s a ghost—” Gulu yelled, covering his eyes, but peeking out from between his fingers. “Uncle, is it a water ghost?”

Zhao Nanfang was complacent and shook his head: “I suddenly remembered that I heard from my friend’s mother in the past that there are water monkeys in this river, and those drowned children were dragged down by the water monkeys and sucked their blood. Gulu, do you know? The water monkey looks similar to you, it’s red all over, with a layer of fluff, and when it gets into the water, it’s so powerful that it can’t drag a cow!”

“I’m afraid…” Gulu kept shrinking his neck.

“Don’t listen if you’re afraid.” I said, poking Zhao Nanfang’s finger again, “Don’t be a ghost, change the channel.”

“No, uncle, you tell me, I still have to listen.” Gulu cried.

Zhao Nanfang continued: “I was completely awake from a drowsiness, and then I thought, the water monkey got on the boat, and when it left the water, it became a dry monkey. I was still afraid of it? I secretly reached out and touched the oar, and suddenly sat up, Shout out, who! At this time, I only heard “Plop” and “Crash”—a dark shadow flashed by, and before it was clear what it was, it had already fallen into the river from the stern, and slipped away like an arrow.”

After the story was told, Gulu was no longer afraid, but instead made a fuss for Zhao Nanfang to tell another story. I got goosebumps. “Hey, Zibuyu’s strange powers are confusing, don’t talk about these spirits and monsters that are scary.”

Zhao Nanfang scratched the back of his head: “I wanted to borrow this story to educate Gulu to study hard and get into a good university, hey! It’s just that my level is limited and I went astray…Aren’t you writing a novel, or should you tell it instead?”

After a stretch of golden rice fields, we finally stopped on a chain suspension bridge. This place is already a high mountain and a bank, the water is rushing in the deep valley, the mountains are full of phoenix-tailed bamboos, the bamboo shadows hide scattered huts, and the white walls and black tiles are as beautiful as a paradise. refined.

Zhao Nanfang said that the destination has arrived.

Gulu came to the spirit and got out of the car in a jiffy, like a deer having fun on the bridge. Under the bridge, dozens of meters high, is a river channel, with craggy rocks, white waves, and the sound of the water is shocking. I hurried forward to try to pull him back, but Zhao Nanfang laughed and said that there was barbed wire blocking him, and if he couldn’t fall, let him let go and play, the boy should be a little wilder. I thought it made sense, so I just followed.

Suddenly, the running Gulu’s center of gravity was unstable. Before I could help him, he was already lying on the ground. This is really happy and sad, the little guy’s palms and knees are torn skin, although there is no blood, he bared his teeth and looked like he was about to cry.

Zhao Nanfang said: “No matter what, how can a man not fall, after this fall, Gulu will grow up, and it’s time for preschool.”

Gulu’s face was bitter for a few times, and finally broke into a smile.

We took Gulu along the gentle slope to the river bank and washed his hands and face. The river water comes from the mountains, which is cool and refreshing, making people feel refreshed. With sharp eyes, Gulu pointed to the distance and shouted, “Look, what is that?”

On the opposite bank, there are large swathes of sagebrush and salt-skinned wood, under the shade of green moss that turns black, there is actually a green stem with no leaves on the stem, only a group of bright red, delicate petals radiating. It spreads out in all directions, and then retracts slightly at the end, like a warm little torch, with infinite tactility and low return. The sound of the water and the loneliness of the four fields seem to be just to set off this flower.

“It’s the other side flower.” I saw it in the botanical garden before.

“I want it!” Gulu ignored Zhao Nanfang’s arm and shook it, “Uncle, I want that flower!”

“Okay, okay.” Zhao Nanfang responded, his eyes were already looking at the riverbed, and it looked like he was going to pick it up on the rocks. Although the river water is not deep, the flow rate is very amazing. Those stones that protrude out of the water are full of thick silk algae, how can they fall?

I hurriedly grabbed him: “Don’t listen to Gulu’s nonsense, that is the flower of the dead. It blooms on both sides of Wangchuan, and it is specially designed to attract the dead. You can’t pick it.”

“Dead Flower? Then I don’t want it anymore…” Gulu was a simple cub after all, and after a little fright, he immediately surrendered.

Zhao Nanfang froze, looking down at his hand – it turns out that I was in a hurry, so I tightly clasped his wrist and never let go.

“Look at me, people are afraid that you will be washed away by water and don’t know good people!”

I quickly let go.

He chuckled, but for the first time he didn’t reply.

After the trouble for a while, I felt hungry, and saw a restaurant on the middle of the mountain, with a few simple characters written on the log signboard. So, along the stone steps, go there.

A peasant woman greeted us with a smile, led us to sit in the courtyard, and asked us what we wanted to eat and drink. Zhao Nanfang chatted with her for a while, and the peasant woman said that there was a stone frog today, and reassured that it was caught in the mountains in the morning, and one foot weighed a pound. He turned around to ask for my opinion, and settled on four dishes: steamed stone frog with rice noodles, stir-fried tripe with shredded pickled radish, garlic and sweet potato leaves, and mussel shell and loofah soup. juice.

While waiting for the food to be served, Gulu pestered Zhao Nanfang to play with his mobile phone. He didn’t want his children to play games, so he searched for a video about the history of spaceflight and watched it with Gulu. Elon Musk, who sent a Tesla to Mars. That is China’s “Chang’e 5″, the one who went to the moon and collected lunar soil… just like a good and loving father.

When I was bored, I looked into the yard. In the twilight, the fence was covered with pumpkin flowers, and fireflies were flying around. Apart from the humming of the store’s TV and the sound of three or five donkeys nibbling on melon seeds, there were only the chirping of crickets, the murmuring of running water, and the occasional wind. The rustling of the bamboo forest is over.

Soon, the dishes came on the table one after another, and I was welcome, and I was the first to try the chopsticks. Oh my god, it was completely natural and fresh, accompanied by the breeze, bright moon, and the sound of water and mountains. It was so delicious that my lips would stick to it. The emperor can’t get on the boat when he calls!” In a blink of an eye, I had eaten two bowls of rice with loofah soup. Zhao Nanfang didn’t eat much, so he just picked the meat clips on the frog’s legs for Gulu, and then picked up a small bowl of vegetables for him.

After eating, Gulu slipped off the table and went to play with the puppy raised by the store. I was really holding on, and I had to digest and digest, so I suggested to Zhao Nanfang to go for a walk on the trail on the mountainside.

The light of the sky darkened every inch, and the red clay trail that had just been clearly defined, but now it is full of water. On the contrary, the morning glory flowers all over the mountains and fields have attracted countless fireflies, lighting a small lantern, as if guiding us. We walked up to the front, and the fireflies scattered in a flash, and when we walked over, they immediately gathered again. Walking through it is like walking on a galaxy.

“What a beautiful night!” I exclaimed from the bottom of my heart, “Thank you for bringing us to such a wonderful place.”

“Speak with bare lips, don’t have any sincerity, how can you thank me?” Zhao Nanfang’s voice was filled with a smile, floating in the warm night.

“That’s right, Master Zhao has been driving all day, it’s been hard work. Why don’t I give you a massage?” As I said that, I slammed his shoulders and back with two punches.

Zhao Nanfang cried out in pain, and quickly jumped away: “You are a girl, why is it that you always move your hands and feet, do you do this casually with other men?”

“Knowing that I don’t want a man… Both are single dogs, why is it too urgent to fry each other? I’ll ignore you, hum!” I turned my head and left.

“Are you angry? Are you really angry?” He hurried to catch up, “I, Zhao Nanfang, are a rude person with a stupid mouth. I said the wrong thing. I’m sorry…”

I was so angry that I wanted to hit him again, but I grabbed him by the wrist: “Don’t hit me now, I told Gulu to see it, it’s time to sing my dear again.”

I blushed, but fortunately I couldn’t see it in secret, so I quickly looked for a topic to avoid it: “To tell the truth, I’m dragging a cub, there’s no way to do it. Look at yourself, it’s good to be alone, you’ve been away for so many years. , why don’t you find another one? If there is someone you like, I’ll help you with the matchmaking?”

After a while of silence, Zhao Nanfang said, “There really is one…”

I didn’t expect him to be so sincere, I was startled, and grabbed his cuff: “Which one? Tell me, tell me quickly!”

After a while of silence, Zhao Nanfang said, “You know, what’s the best thing to eat?”

Before I could speak, he continued, “Drumsticks. Yep, drumsticks.”

When you say you like a girl, why did you get involved with chicken legs? But I didn’t interrupt. I was afraid that if I did, he wouldn’t talk again.

“When I was young, my family was poor…” He suddenly brought the topic back to when he was a child—

Zhao Nanfang’s father used to be a driver of a foreign trade company. After he was laid off, he took out a loan to buy a second-hand truck and started long-distance freight. During the summer vacation of the fifth grade of elementary school, he was clamoring to go out to play with his father, so his father took him and went to Guangzhou to deliver goods together. The Jiefang brand truck had no air conditioning, and when people entered it, it was like entering a steamer, and they didn’t dare to sit down completely. Along the way, I went to eat roadside restaurants when I was hungry, and scooped the water from the ditch when I was thirsty.

It also deserved bad luck. The car went to the mountains in Jiangxi, ran over a chicken, and was surrounded by a large group of villagers, clamoring for his father to lose money. If you pay, you can pay. A chicken is only ten yuan or eight yuan, so you can afford it. But the villagers say that the chicken is easy to raise and will lay eggs. The egg is to hatch the chick, and the chick will lay the egg when it grows up… In this way, the chicken produces the egg, and the egg produces the chicken. One hundred and fifty dollars! don’t give? If you don’t give it, don’t want to leave, break your brain and talk about it!

After paying for the chicken, the father and son could only eat dry steamed buns for three meals a day. We arrived in Guangzhou three days later. Because the road was unfamiliar, I went around the city for a long time, and I couldn’t find a place until it was dark. He remembered that the trees in Guangzhou were very tall and strange, like torn paddle fans, clack-clack-clack fans. But the weather was very hot, and my father was reluctant to spend money to live in a hotel. He lost the chicken, and he didn’t get any money, so he slept in the car at night. It was so hot that I had to get up and go to sleep on the eaves. Mosquitoes in Guangzhou are very powerful, like they want to eat people, but it rained again in the middle of the night, and the two of them were drenched in soup… The next afternoon, they found a place. The supervisor shouted that the fellow was working hard, and while letting people unload the goods, he called them two lunch boxes, one of which was a chicken leg…

“This is the best chicken thigh?” I asked.

“Not yet. The best chicken drumsticks are in the back.” This guy was talking about him, which made me scratch my heart.

“Come on, that’s the best chicken leg.” I urged him.

“That’s why I feel inferior. When I meet someone I like, I never dare to open my mouth.” The guy went elsewhere again. “Do you remember, when we were in high school…”

At this moment, Gulu shouted and ran over: “So you guys are playing here, and you don’t bring me!”

“Oh, I’m sorry, we forgot about the young master. I’m sorry.” Zhao Nanfang let go of the drumsticks and took Gulu to catch fireflies, suspending my curiosity abruptly.

On the way back, Gulu quickly fell asleep. I was worried that Zhao Nanfang would be sleepy, so I tried my best to help him see the way. Occasionally a big truck came roaring in my face, and I held my breath, so nervous that I clenched my fists.

Zhao Nanfang felt it and said, “Don’t worry, I’m the coach, so I don’t have to worry about anything. You also need to sleep for a while, and I’ll call you when you get home.”

But I remembered the unfinished topic and asked, “How was it when you talked about our high school days?”

He snorted and said with a smile, “You still remember that chicken leg, so I’ll tell you about it.”

It’s an ordinary love story. When he was in high school, he fell in love with a girl. At the sports meeting, he ran wildly and spit blood from his nose, in order to attract the girl’s attention. After school he was like a stalker, riding his bike far behind people until the girl walked in. He worked hard to create an opportunity to meet, and every time he thought about his lines, but every time he backed out, he couldn’t let out a fart. When the classmates sang K when he graduated, he mustered up his courage and shouted, “I love you, how clear and firm faith, how warm and brave strength I love you…” But he saw her and the others laughing into one. group……

I have no impression of what Zhao Nanfang said. It was all twenty years ago. Besides, it has nothing to do with me.

“And then?” I was still a little curious.

Later, the girl went to a university in the south, but Zhao Nanfang failed. He worked odd jobs and saved money just to see her at the university in the south. On that kind of green-skinned train, standing tickets, crowded like sandwich biscuits, when he got tired from standing on his left foot, he changed his right foot, and when he got tired from standing on his right foot, he changed his left foot, and he learned the golden rooster independence without a teacher. It took more than ten hours to train, then change the bus, and cross the street, just to sneak a glance at her. Her hair has grown, she has learned how to dress up, she has won a scholarship… He knows everything. Finally one day, at the McDonald’s next to her school, he found the girl and a boy eating a roasted chicken leg together. He was so jealous that he wept, and he knew that it was impossible for him after all, and he got married soon after returning.

“This is the best drumstick you’ve ever had?” I asked.

“Yes, unfortunately I don’t know the taste…” Zhao Nanfang sighed.

I was silent, and he was silent for a while. Only the sound of the car’s engine rumbled in the night. A headlight flashed by, went away in a hurry, followed by another.

“You don’t even know, you don’t understand…” He sighed softly.

Who said that, now I know everything, understand everything. Love is a belief, I stopped singing half of it, and he sang the other half. Everyone is laughing, laughing at our secret music. Of course I know these embarrassing things.

At this moment, the synchronous satellite is transmitting data in the atmosphere, and the Mars rover is traveling, digging, analyzing, and comparing in isolation. “Voyager 2” has already left the solar system and is heading for a farther interstellar space… And the one on Earth Somewhere, he and I, going around in circles, actually rode in a small broken car together again, thinking back to that time…

After entering the city, Gulu suddenly woke up and said, “Mom, I had a dream that I went to school in the provincial capital.”

I said, “Why, can’t wait? Okay, when the summer vacation is over, let’s go to the provincial capital for preschool.”

Zhao Nanfang braked abruptly, turned his head and asked, “Are you going to the provincial capital?”

“Yeah, after all, big cities have better conditions and more opportunities.”

“Oh, also…”

Zhao Nanfang said half a word and drove again. Until the downstairs of my house, I didn’t say a word again. I looked very tired. I put one hand on my forehead, and I was a little weak when I said “goodbye”.

“Are you uncomfortable?” Honestly, I feel distressed.

“It’s a little dizzy, it’s old, it’s okay…don’t worry about it.” His voice was obviously soft, and even a little trembling. An ordinary greeting moved him, how could a person be so humble!

“Sorry, I……”

“Don’t,” he hurriedly stopped, “don’t talk about it, at least not today, I’m tired, good night!”

I know that he was afraid of being rejected, so he tried desperately to dodge and hurriedly pushed me away. However, it was he who said it first. Did he not know that once the words were spoken, they would never be taken back? Such a strong and hopeless feeling, still unwilling to dissipate, what should I do with it? What can I do with it?

seven

For several days, Zhao Nanfang and I had no contact, and seemed to be carefully avoiding something. Gulu called and asked him why he didn’t come to the store to play. He said that his friend was building an ostrich farm and lacked manpower, so he went to help every day after get off work. As soon as he heard the ostrich, Gulu’s eyes popped out, and he shouted that he was going to ride the ostrich. Zhao Nanfang promised to come to pick him up when the ostrich garden was built.

An electric tricycle printed with “China Post” drove to the door of the store, and the courier shouted, “Zhu Xiaojun? Is Zhu Xiaojun this?”

I said my name was Zhu Xiaoyun, and I pronounced “Yun” instead of “Jun”. The courier ignored it and shoved a big blue envelope into my hand: “Sign for it, the court summons.”

My first reaction was to open a lawsuit between an advertising company and a developer. However, that was my farewell, and there was no reason for me to receive a subpoena. Before I could understand, my mother jumped out, grabbed the envelope and slammed it into the courier’s arms: “Wrong, wrong, there is no one named Zhu Xiaojun here, the court must have made a mistake, we won’t accept it!”

The courier reported the phone number according to the envelope. My mother’s face turned purple, and she scolded through gritted teeth: “That flat-haired beast, are you coming to grab Gulu?”

The back of my neck went numb for a while, and my hands didn’t follow me. I pulled the envelope a few times before I ripped open the envelope. I hurriedly read the summons again, and realized that it had nothing to do with Gollum. It was the car that my ex-husband bought and owed the bank. The car loan was not repaid, and the bank went to court and sealed up my house in Changsha.

“It’s none of your business if he owes a car loan? The divorce agreement states clearly that the house belongs to you!” my mother yelled.

I just coaxed my mother back into the store, and the phone rang again. She is the tenant of that house. She rented my house to open a beauty studio. Now the house is sealed, I am very excited: “I came to work early in the morning. , but there is a seal on the door, and they are not allowed to do business? This is to be seen by my guests, who dares to recharge the card? Who will pay for my losses? ”

If you think that it is the end of the month, it will be the rent collection day once every quarter. If the rent is not received, the mortgage payment will be cut off. My heart trembled, I nodded and bowed, apologized, and promised to contact the court immediately.

“It’s been a year since the divorce. He’s a flat-haired bastard. He doesn’t pay back the money he owes, so he’s on your head? We don’t need a man in the house. Is it easy to bully him?” My mother scolded again, “No matter what Eleven, if you say it is sealed, it will be sealed, what kind of law is this?”

Cursing and cursing, she squatted on the ground and cried.

I called Zhao Nanfang and told me about the subpoena.

“Don’t worry, don’t worry, I have a student who is a lawyer, please ask him before talking about it.” While comforting me, he gave me an address, saying that he would go there and let me take a taxi there.

The lawyer’s answer is clear: the car loan borrowed before the divorce is considered a joint debt of the husband and wife, and naturally must be jointly borne. I said it was very clear in our divorce agreement that his debts were borne by him personally and had nothing to do with me. The lawyer said that the agreement is correct, but the divorce agreement is an agreement between the two of you, and the bank, as a third party, is not bound by your agreement.

“So if he doesn’t repay the car loan, the bank can seize our house?” Zhao Nanfang asked.

“There must be a legal basis for the bank to do this, and the subpoenas have been issued, which also supports this,” the lawyer said.

“Then why didn’t the bank seize his car first? Did the persimmon pick it up softly?” I changed my voice because of the grievance. “He owes the bank more than 190,000 yuan. Where can I get the money?”

“It’s up to you to negotiate.” The lawyer spread his hands, looking helpless. “I just think it’s strange, didn’t the bank contact you before suing? It’s impossible to seal the house directly, right?”

I remembered that I had received several calls before, and the other party claimed to be a bank employee. Regarding my default on the car loan, I immediately put the phone away, thinking to myself, how can the scammers think about it now? Don’t get one, where’s the car loan? Also ignored.

“That’s it. The bank has fulfilled its obligation to inform. If you refuse to do so, they sued for the seizure.”

“then what do I do?”

“You have two options, either help him pay off the car loan first and negotiate the rest yourself; or wait for the court to auction your house, deduct the car loan from the auction proceeds, and the court will refund the rest to you. However, the auction price is often much lower than the market price, which is equivalent to 60 to 20% off.”

“Is there any chance that Mo won won the case?” Zhao Nanfang was still unwilling.

“Mr. Zhao, I can tell you responsibly. Basically, you don’t have to. You don’t even need to pay for a lawyer. You just need to write your response and appear in court.”

When I came out of the law firm, I was completely blinded. When I walked, I stumbled on the front and the back, as if my legs were about to leave me.

Although the autumn has already begun, the power of the autumn tiger has not diminished in the slightest. Only in the evening, people poured out of the house and came to the street in twos and threes, eating and drinking, talking and laughing, and slapsticking. The tide hit me like a tide. However, their vitality did not infect me, on the contrary, there was a huge sadness that enveloped me tightly – I lived in my thirties, I am nothing, and I am nothing, why is it so difficult to be a human being!

“Zhu Xiaoyun, you have nothing to worry about, right?” Zhao Nanfang gave me a hand.

I don’t know what’s wrong with me, I just want to hug him. He is tall and tall, with thin eyebrows, thick lips, and the shape of the bridge of his nose. Also, he has lost weight and his jaw line has become clearer. It’s not very handsome, but it makes people feel safe and warm.

I want to hug him like hugging a tree. In this world, only this man has been silently watching me, he should understand, how could he not understand! But will he run away? I have said it several times before, saying that a woman like me who is divorced and has a baby, no one dares to touch it, is afraid of trouble, and is afraid that she will not be able to get rid of it… Is this what he really said? But why is he still looking for me? Why do you tell me those past events, if you want to leave, but also refuse, is it fun?

The setting sun shines in the west, pulling our figures closer and further away, and pushing them farther and closer.

“The car must have a way to the front of the mountain, don’t think about it so much.” Zhao Nanfang comforted me, “In any case, I still have to go to court, don’t be afraid, I will accompany you.”

Court day has come. With Zhao Nanfang by my side, I didn’t feel nervous at all.

As the lawyer said, there is absolutely no possibility of winning this lawsuit, it is just a cutscene. Therefore, after reading the indictment and the response to the lawsuit, even the mediation was omitted, and the court ruled that I should repay the loan with the principal and interest within a limited time, and the house will be auctioned if it is overdue. The plaintiff and the defendant had no objection and signed the case to close the case.

When I came out of the court, I saw my ex-husband waiting at the door. He had a ghost in his heart, and when he saw me, he leaned forward with a sullen face: “This is really not my intention. I only found out when I received a subpoena. I swear on my mother’s lifespan…”

During this period of time, I did not contact him. Although I was resentful in my heart, I thought that I would meet in court anyway, and I was too lazy to talk to such a person. How could I think that he did not appear in court. When I heard him say this, I sneered: “I auctioned off my house and paid off your loan. You have a good abacus! Now Gulu’s household registration can’t be relocated, let alone a place to live, and you don’t need to study in Changsha anymore. Are you satisfied?”

Seeing this scene, Zhao Nanfang hid in the distance and smoked.

“Listen to my explanation,” the ex-husband took out his phone, “I know you won’t believe what I say. There is a repayment record on it, and it is indeed impossible to turn around for a while. It was only two months in arrears, and the bank gave it to me. I was told to repay 500,000 yuan first, saying that it would help me eliminate my bad credit record, and the money would be paid in installments. I believed them and went to borrow a small loan. Let me pay off the rest of the one-off. I was so angry that I blocked them, thinking that it would be a big deal to drag the car away, how could I think of their idea of ​​​​hitting the house!”

What I heard from him really didn’t look like a lie. He said, “Micro-loans are bottomless pits. Can you borrow them?”

“Yeah, I thought that I could move away, and I will pay it back soon. Who knows that now the profit has been doubled, and the car has been detained by them…”

Yes, I thought that he would still have a car to sell if it didn’t help, but who would have thought that he would be so self-contained and fell into an infinite loop. I couldn’t help but get anxious and asked, “What about the 200,000 yuan from the bank?”

“You can pay it back for me first, you can’t auction the house anyway.” The ex-husband said with a sullen face, “But don’t worry, I’m collecting money everywhere, and the advertising fee owed by the developer is also applying for enforcement, I must not It will cost you.”

Looking at his cheeky appearance, I want to cry without tears.

My ex-husband looked at me, and suddenly knelt down. In front of the pedestrians coming and going, he slammed his knees on the floor tiles with a thud: “I was wrong, I’m sorry for you, give me another chance, we’ll get back to you. To the past, together with Gollum, start from the beginning…”

I quickly took a step back: “Impossible, it’s too late.”

“Why is it impossible, I’ll change my past…” Still not giving up, my ex-husband leaned forward and put his arms around my leg, “Please, have pity on me, without you, I really can’t live… …From now on, I am willing to listen to you forever, you have the final say!”

He was completely out of control, not ashamed, and burst into tears on the spot. Only then did I understand that poor people must have something to hate. But hate to hate, he is just one of the many living beings, neither better nor worse, neither all black nor all white. Therefore, I have neither ruthlessness nor hatred for him, only deep sympathy.

“You’d better save yourself some face,” I paused, “there is no other way at the moment, I will try my best to find a way, but you have to write an IOU, and you must pay me back at the agreed time, no matter what method you use, give up your face Sell ​​your ass, or you’ll never see Gollum, ever!”

He dropped his hands and nodded tearfully.

After dealing with the lawsuit, appeasing the tenant, and returning to the suburbs of the small town, it was already dark. Zhao Nanfang stopped suddenly and said, “There is a small shop nearby that sells slaughtered pork noodles. The taste is very good. I don’t read much, so I can’t describe it. It’s been many years, and I still remember the taste. I only sipped it yesterday. I brought it with me. You go and sip that powder, okay?”

It’s over, it’s over, I’m really about to cry – he can be so gentle, what if the whole world is against me, at least I still have him!

Seeing me like this, Zhao Nanfang laughed: “Isn’t it 200,000 for such a big deal? I happen to have this number. Take it and keep the house first.”

I was stunned and asked, “Aren’t you going to invest in the ostrich farm?”

“Go to his ostrich farm,” he patted me proudly on the shoulder, “that is to catch a rabbit on New Year’s Eve, celebrate the New Year with it, or celebrate the New Year without it, you can take it to emergency first.”

“I… If I keep not getting on with you, or take the money and run away, what will you do?” I was still hesitant.

“I believe in you, don’t you believe in yourself?” He snorted as usual, “Don’t talk to your mother and Gulu, lest they worry.”

I was completely moved by him. Although I didn’t have any appetite at all, I still accompany him to sip the extremely good slaughtering pig powder.

Eight

Autumn in the south, compressed between summer and winter, is extremely thin, like paper, like human affection, it shatters when touched, and disappears suddenly. However, people’s state of mind is still unavoidably infected with a layer of sadness.

That day, on the way to the antique market, I saw a person in front of me, lying on the sidewalk, groping for something. When I got closer, I realized that it was the maniac who was directing traffic in the rain that day. His kneeling posture was like that of a devout pilgrim on the ground. This is a steep slope with tall French plane trees planted on both sides. The leaves have turned from green to yellow, but they have not fallen, and the sky is not visible. Only the sun shines through the branches and leaves and sifts down.

The madman was wearing a sweater close to his body, but a shirt was covered over it. The buttons were twisted and twisted, and the color was blurred. Underneath was a pair of army green woolen trousers with holes in many places, revealing mottled flesh, which was also very dirty. . He was lying on the ground, holding a piece of chalk in his hand, and was writing quickly on the ochre-red floor tiles. His handwriting is very well written, all of them are clear and judicious, and the stippling draws the strings, flowing like clouds and water.

“If you live high in the temple, you will worry about the people. If you live far away from the rivers and lakes, you will worry about your ruler. It’s a matter of advancing and worrying about retreating…”

Looking closely, it was actually “The Story of Yueyang Tower” by Fan Wenzheng.

Alas, this lunatic, who is begging in the streets every day, and being chased by people everywhere, has long been abandoned by society, and still has the world in his heart, and he is worried about the country and the people. Thinking of the story of the madman that Zhao Nanfang told, and thinking of how honored and proud he was when he led a factory with ten thousand people! Even if he was directing traffic in the rain that day, he was so calm and calm, and his advance and retreat were well-founded. I also feel that he is different from many abandoned people. Some people are easily overwhelmed by time, while some people, although they have already quit the arena, still have his legends on the rivers and lakes.

The madman wrote all the way down, almost never looking up except for chalk. A passerby passed by, pointing and watching, but didn’t stop, only I watched in awe.

At this time, two chengguan came and beat him away with sticks. He seemed to be very familiar with the city management, and he was used to such scenes, so he didn’t resist very much, got up and looked around, and threw the rest of the chalk at me. I was taken aback and jumped away. He bared his teeth and laughed out loud.

I took out my mobile phone and wanted to take a picture of the text left by the madman. I accidentally saw that there were dozens of unread messages in the group of classmates, so I opened it and read it – Zhao Nanfang’s name suddenly jumped into my eyes:

“Zhao Nanfang has had a stroke!”

“He called 120 himself and called an ambulance.”

“What about his family?”

“Divorced early, my daughter is with his ex-wife…”

Wu Yang Wu Yang, cursing, sighing, pity, emotion… and many more.

My hands swayed, and before I could take a closer look, my legs ran wild on their own accord.

Ran into the store and almost knocked over the counter. My mother lifted her eyelids and scolded me for being chased by ghosts. I told her that Zhao Nanfang had a stroke and was admitted to the hospital. She was also shocked, she was not even forty years old!

After all, it is someone who has come here. My mother has more ideas than me. She comforted me and said that if you can call an ambulance by yourself, it is not a serious problem, and you should go to the hospital to see it. I just remembered that I didn’t know which hospital Zhao Nanfang lived in. I took out my mobile phone to dial, and made several calls before asking for the hospital Zhao Nanfang lived in.

My mother urged me to hurry up and said, “Zhao Yingzi is very nice, I owe him favor. You go to the hospital and tell him that tomorrow auntie will go to the hospital to see him in person.” Then she told me to buy some fruit milk along the way, and said, “Don’t think so. It’s heavy, if you buy it at the door of the hospital, everything will cost a few dollars more…”

I don’t know what’s going on right now, it seems that people are very fragile, very bad, and very easy to get sick. The hospital is overcrowded all the year round, and even the corridors are full of sallow-faced patients, ooh ooh moaning, walking slowly against the wall, staring at the hanging water bottle. I was in a daze… I sighed, the world is not benevolent, and everything is a dog, it is not easy for anyone these days!

There is a nurse at the nurse’s desk, who looks at the computer for a while, organizes medical records for a while, and then goes to help people pull needles, like a spinning top. I asked several times and she didn’t answer, so I had to look for each ward ward by ward.

When I found Zhao Nanfang’s ward, before entering, I saw two women. One can only see the back, wearing a long woolen dress with dark red and green stripes, a pair of shiny leather shoes under his feet, his hair hanging high on the top of his head, a white PU bag on his back, and his hand against the iron railing at the end of the hospital bed, like a She was resisting something, but her nails were painted brightly; the other was a teenage girl, dressed in Korean sports style, her hair had been highlighted, she had combed her left and right buns, her face was facing the door, and she was sitting On the bench, immersed in the phone. It must be Zhao Nanfang’s ex-wife and his daughter Xinxin.

They were all silent for a while, Zhao Nanfang closed his eyes and didn’t see me.

I subconsciously turned around and left, went into the bathroom of the hospital, first wiped my sweat in front of the mirror on the wall, took out the air cushion cream that I haven’t used for a long time, patted my face, put on my lipstick, pursed my lower lip twice, and wiped off the excess. I put some perfume behind my ears and on my wrists. I took two steps back and looked at my whole body. I was wearing too plain clothes. I had to put down the tied ponytail and loosen it with my fingers. Pick up the fruit and return to the ward.

Before entering the door, I shouted loudly: “Ouch, Zhao Nanfang – you!”

At that moment, the mother and daughter both stared at me with wide eyes.

I smiled politely, walked past them, placed everything on the bedside table, found a bench, and sat down near Zhao Nanfang.

Zhao Nanfang seemed to be fine, but he was frightened by my shouting. He opened his mouth and didn’t know what to say.

Before I got dressed, I quickly held his hand that was exposed outside the quilt: “Did the test result come out? What did the doctor say? It scared me to death, and my mother jumped to see you!”

Zhao Nanfang shook his hand and instinctively wanted to withdraw, but I was secretly pulling him tightly.

“What’s the matter? Don’t tell me if you’re uncomfortable. When we were together last night, wasn’t it okay? You can’t open the door yourself, so you should call me… I’m dying of anxiety, do you know? know……”

These words are half true and half false. We were not together last night, but it is not true that I am anxious and distressed. Especially when I think of what happened during this period, I can’t help it anymore. I put my face on the back of his hand and take it seriously. Clap shed tears.

“Don’t cry, don’t cry,” Zhao Nanfang said softly, thinking that his right hand was inconvenient, so he raised his left hand, which was being injected, and tried to comfort me, but I held it down. “Nothing to worry about, just a little high blood pressure and a cerebral infarction. I stayed for a week and went back. I don’t want to scare you.”

I took out a tissue, blotted the tears on my face, sniffed, and said, “I told you not to work too hard, but you didn’t listen. My mother said, don’t rush out of the hospital, and don’t hire a nurse, a nurse is worse than a nurse. Your family is well taken care of, we just take turns to accompany you, do you hear?”

“You are busy with you, I really have nothing to worry about.” Zhao Nanfang’s eyes were filled with tears, and he exerted force on his hands, holding me lovingly.

His ex-wife felt a little uncomfortable. She put down her hands that had been holding up against the railing, and her left and right feet also shifted their weights uneasily. The daughter was not happy. She put the phone in her trousers pocket and shouted, “Mom, let’s go back!”

I looked at them apologetically and said, “I’m sorry, I was in a hurry to patronize, and I forgot there were guests. Nanfang, these two are…”

It should be said that his ex-wife is indeed quite beautiful, with phoenix eyes and eyebrows, and the corners of her eyes are windy, but the two lips are very thin, like blades, revealing sharpness. “Zhao Nanfang, you have someone to say hello, why did you ask us to come?”

Zhao Nanfang murmured, not knowing how to answer.

I remembered the fruit and quickly got up: “There are bananas here, shall I peel one for you?”

He helped him sit halfway, the pillow was tucked high, and An An leaned against him: “You don’t move, I’ll feed you.”

“It’s disgusting, Mom, let’s go!” The daughter couldn’t stand it any longer, she stood up with a sigh, and the bench slammed to the ground, making a blunt sound – bang!

The ex-wife dragged out a few large pink bills from the bag and threw them onto the sheets: “Zhao Nanfang, don’t call us again after you’re alive, call us tofu rice when you’re dead!”

After hesitantly said this, the mother and daughter walked away.

Zhao Nanfang’s brows flicked, his eyes were full of soreness, and his face was uncertain.

I don’t know if I’m doing the right thing, I just want them to know that Zhao Nanfang is not someone who doesn’t want anyone who doesn’t want anyone, and who treats them whatever they want. However, am I ignoring his feelings? Is it a bit too much? Why bother putting on a show for this?

I smiled bitterly: “I’m sorry, did I screw up?”

Zhao Nanfang closed his eyes weakly: “No, that is… you can go back too.”

I lifted up the bench that had been kicked over and sat next to him again: “If you can help me, can’t I help you?”

He turned his face away: “No…you’ve said more, let’s go.”

Deep pity rose in my heart, so I took his hand and gently stroked: “Don’t think too much, isn’t it just sick? If you are sick, let’s treat it, if it can’t be cured, I will serve you…”

“But I’m a man! I don’t want your sympathy and pity!” Zhao Nanfang grabbed his hand back and waved it wildly in the air, “You go! Hurry up!”

His eyes were bloodshot and full of tears, which was heartbreaking and bewildering, and I was stunned for a moment.

“What’s wrong? What’s wrong?” A nurse came in with a medicine bottle, carefully inspected the needle in Zhao Nanfang’s hand, made sure there was no blood returning, and then set it up again, then looked at me seriously, “The patient can’t be excited, you don’t know ?”

“I’m sorry, I…” I didn’t know how to answer for a while.

“The patient needs to be quiet, please go out.” The nurse issued an eviction order.

I had to stand up silently, bowed my head, and walked towards the door. Before leaving the ward, she was already in tears.

Nine

After a few autumn rains, winter has come. The winter in the south is dank, cold and gloomy.

The business of the antique market is as cold as the weather, and people are seriously preparing for the winter, such as waxed duck, bacon, waxed rabbit, smoked fish, smoked sausage, and smoked pig blood meatballs… At this time of year, every household in the old city will burn a stove of sawdust. You can see blue smoke everywhere you go.

My mother is fond of making pig blood balls. Since Gulu and I both like to eat, she always wants to cook more. The water tofu was pre-ordered, and the people in the countryside delivered them to the store, along with freshly killed pig blood. My mother cut the pork belly into small pieces, added salt, mixed it with water tofu and pig blood, and turned it into a big pot of pink mud. She dipped her hand into the pot of mud, scooped up a ball, and beat it back and forth until the inside became solid, forming an oval ball. The door panels have been padded with straws, which are placed on the straws one by one, neatly arranged, and brought to the sun to dry. After the skins are dry and the color turns slightly brown, they can be put in. Start a pot of charcoal fire, cover it with sawdust, let it smolder and emit smoke, surround it on all sides, and lay the pig blood balls on it, smoke it day after day, until it is completely black and shrunk to half its original size. When eating, wash off the soot on the surface with hot water, cut them into slices, steam them when cooking, or fry chopped peppers and green garlic sprouts.

In the past, my mother always thought I was lazy, but today I was about to step up to help, but she drove me away: “Go, I don’t want you to be a disservice here, you go and see how that Zhao Nanfang is doing.”

“Don’t you look down on others, why do you always say what he does?” I said.

“For example, the food in the market has to be discounted after a few points. How good do you think you deserve?” The weather was cold, and my mother’s nose froze.

“Don’t talk like that, maybe some rich man is blind and will take me away!” I deliberately angered her.

Chiliu – my mother took another snort: “Don’t have a good dream, if you don’t sell it at a discount, I’m afraid it will only be lost.”

I stopped arguing with her, went back to the house, filled the boiled chicken soup with a thermos cup, filled it with chicken legs and wings, and opened the door to go to the hospital.

My mother shouted from behind: “If he is inconvenient, feed him, do you hear me?”

In fact, these days, I don’t go to the hospital less often. After all, Zhao Nanfang is a good person, sincere, enthusiastic, down-to-earth, reliable, and he has always liked me silently. Although he was deliberately indifferent to me and seemed to ignore me, I only regarded him as a patient and didn’t care about him.

However, when he arrived at the hospital, he was told that Zhao Nanfang had been discharged.

This guy didn’t say hello when he was discharged from the hospital, I was a little angry. On second thought, maybe he still couldn’t let go of that knot, so he forgave him. I just didn’t know where his family lived, and he hesitated for a while. He called his driving school again, was interrogated for a long time, carried out Gulu, and then got the address.

Zhao Nanfang’s family lives in the old city. In the early years, the overhaul factory, auto parts factory, paper factory, and thermal power plant were all there. As the factories closed down and relocated, many red brick buildings and gray roads were left, as well as some huge metal The pipe extends itself in mid-air. I walked for a long time without seeing a figure, and time seemed to freeze here.

I searched endlessly all the way, and finally saw an old dark red building. Downstairs, there are electric cars and bicycles randomly placed; the upstairs balcony has iron wires pulled all over the place, and scattered clothes are hanging on the air. Suddenly I heard a cough, and I saw an old man sitting by the wall to get warm, wearing a military coat and a dark brown flocked hat, with a stale smell on his body. I went up to ask, the old man watched me vigilantly for a long time, and finally pointed upstairs; when I reached the doorway, I heard an old voice behind me: “Sixth floor, east gate.”

Before going up a few steps, someone’s dog barked wildly. If it wasn’t for an iron gate, it would probably have torn people alive. The stairs are narrow and filled with all kinds of debris. There are abandoned baby carriages with flat tires and plastic horns on them. Several pairs of forgotten old cotton shoes have lost their appearance. “Bah”, a drop of water dripped into his neck, looked up, it was a freshly washed bra, with black lace on the red bottom, the sponge thicker than the city wall… Fortunately, at least it proves that there are still living people in this building.

Finally, I went up to the sixth floor and saw a cactus stubbornly alive with three or four eggshells in the basin. Hey, there are smoked pig blood meatballs, just like my mother, surrounded by a stove of sawdust, and the smoke is overflowing. …and then I saw Zhao Nanfang. In this blue smoke, leaning against the railing, he was staring at me, as if he had waited for a long time, and he had become a statue. Except for the dim red light from the cigarette butt at the corner of his mouth, there was not a trace of heat in his body.

“They… told me,” I stuttered, as if I had done something wrong. “If you don’t come again, I’m afraid it will snow…”

I walked up to him, put down the thermos, removed my gloves, sighed, rubbed my hands warm, and reached over to straighten his splayed collar.

“I always like to move my hands and feet…” He resisted weakly, threw the cigarette butt at his feet, and ran it out.

I stroked the cool skin on his neck, stood on tiptoe, and hugged him recklessly.

He hurriedly pushed it away as if it would be hot, and said indifferently, “Someone, don’t let anyone see…”

This is a typical bachelor’s home, with one bedroom and one living room, a kitchen, but no bathroom. It was obviously remodeled later, but the walls were not repaired. The layers of bricks, cement, and lime were exposed and gloomy; Wood-grain floor leather, there are a few big holes in several places; the hall is very small, with few pieces of furniture, a log square table, two chairs, on the table are medicine boxes and bottles and cans, and An old and old couch with clothes piled up on the sofa and chairs; there is a bed and a cabinet in the middle, the light is dim, and the scene inside can not be seen clearly.

Zhao Nanfang rolled the things on the sofa to one end to make room for me as big as my butt.

Just now, my head was hot, and I hugged recklessly, now sitting on the sofa, I feel a little embarrassed. He doesn’t look at me, and I don’t look at him either.

In order to avoid embarrassment, I muttered, innocently cold, got up and went to the kitchen to boil water and wash the cups. While waiting for the water to boil, I opened the refrigerator, and the expired tempeh chili sauce, hard steamed buns, shredded vegetables, half-rotten apples… all were packed up and put into a plastic bag. The water boiled, I poured two cups of hot water and walked back into the hall.

When he came out, Zhao Nanfang was inside, packing the things on the bed.

I went in and said, “You rest, I’ll come.”

The bed was laundered and sun-dried, piled up in a mess, and I sorted them one by one and put them on the bedside table. It was done quickly and went to the table. There is a book on the table, and there are words on the book, which are crooked, and it might be better for Gulu to write Zhou Zheng. It should be Zhao Nanfang’s handwriting, stroke sequelae, writing is the need for recovery.

“As a person, I will persist in whatever I do for a long time…” Zhao Nanfang mocked himself.

“What did the doctor say?” I asked.

“Rehabilitate at home first, and then go for a review after a while,” he said.

There are several books on the table, a plastic atlas, an outline of vehicle driving and maintenance, and a photo album. Opening the photo album, the first photo was a group photo of Zhao Nanfang and his sister when they were young. He was riding on a wooden horse, his sister put her hands on his shoulders, both of them were bulgingly dressed, pursed their lips, stared straight at the camera, there were two cracked blushes on their faces, and Su was in the background. Hangzhou landscape painting. It was impossible to take pictures that year. I also had such pictures myself. The colors were very bright, and they looked rustic and friendly.

It’s a class photo from high school. He stood on the edge of the last row, his hands behind his back, still pursed his lips, staring straight at the camera. As for me, I was still heartless for decades. At such an important moment, I closed my eyes. There were forty-six students in the class, and I was the only one who was blind. I should have one of this photo too, but I’ve moved here and there over the years and I don’t know where I lost it.

There is actually a novel, “The Legend of the Hulan River” by Xiao Hong. The book is very old, and the title page is covered with the purple stamp of our high school library. When you flip it over, a smell wafts from the yellowed pages.

“Why do you have this?”

“You forgot, this is what you borrowed. I borrowed it, but I didn’t return it.” He opened the back cover of the book, and sure enough, a small kraft paper pocket was pasted, with a library card inserted in it.

I took out the card, and in the middle of a row of names, neatly written “Zhu Xiaojun” and scribbled “Zhao Nanfang”.

“Ganqing, you are also a literary youth!” I tried to make a joke, but I didn’t even laugh at myself.

“When I saw you read this book at that time, I wanted to know what was written in the book, and hoped that I could have something in common with you, but I won’t get a chance until graduation…” Zhao Nanfang smiled.

My heart was hot, and I leaned towards him with a smirk: “If that’s the case, then let’s exchange the feeling after reading it now?”

Getting so close, he could clearly see his pupils shrinking and dilating in the center of the golden-brown iris. He instinctively ducked. He came again, obviously wanted to approach, but wanted to escape, as if I would eat him.

“Understood, you just think I’m troublesome, have no money, no prospects, and drag Gulu…” I lowered my eyelids.

“Shit!” he roared, “I’m Zhao Nanfang like that?”

“Then why?” I asked.

“I, I’m bankrupt…” He sighed heavily, “The ostrich is gone, big and small, all stolen.”

“Didn’t you invest in an ostrich farm?” I asked.

He said that after he lent the money to me, he didn’t want to invest at all, but he couldn’t stand his friend’s push, so he borrowed more than 200,000 yuan from various places and invested it in his friend’s ostrich farm. The two workers hired foreigners. Within three days, the people ran away and the ostrich disappeared. When I went to the police, I found out that the ID cards of the two were fake. He already had high blood pressure. He smashed in more than 200,000 yuan at a time, and he didn’t hear the sound.

“I’m sorry, South, it’s all because of me…” The whole thing started because of me, and I suddenly felt like a sinner.

“It’s not your fault, it’s got nothing to do with you. Even if the money is not lent to you, it still has to be invested. Isn’t the result the same?” He smiled wryly.

“But that’s your own money, and now you’re in debt…”

“Forget it, your debt is the same as mine. Besides, I’m a man, and my shoulders are always stronger than yours.”

“Don’t worry, I’ll carry it with you no matter what. Gulu’s father gave the money, and I’ll pay you off the debt right away.” I stepped forward and put my arm around his shoulder.

“Don’t come again…” He subconsciously tried to break free.

I got really angry and let go: “You didn’t dislike me just now!”

For a long time, Zhao Nanfang didn’t make a sound or move, and used all the strength of his body to stretch. When he spoke again, it seemed like a century had passed.

“You don’t understand at all, I don’t dislike you, never have. I fantasized about being with you in high school, but you went to college and went to the south. I chased the south again and again, just to look at you, until You have that man. You came back a year ago, and when I saw you, I realized that it was a waste for so many years. I think I finally have a chance. This time, I must not just look at you and do nothing. , as long as I work hard, I will definitely have a chance.”

I listened to his talk silently, with mixed feelings in my heart.

“Remember the night of Gulu’s birthday? When I came back, I didn’t want to park at all, I just wanted to keep driving, driving southwards, out of Hunan, through Guangdong, we took a big steamer to Hainan Island, and then south, south of the south, Going to a deserted island in the Pacific Ocean, you and I will never come back. However, you have Gulu and your mother, you said you want to take Gulu to the provincial capital to study, yes, you are so smart, Gulu Also smart, you deserve a better life, and I… I’m disappointed again.”

I remembered that when I returned that night, I said that I would take Gulu to the provincial capital to study, and finally understood the reason for his sudden silence.

“Later you filed a lawsuit and the house was going to be auctioned off, and I was secretly happy, thinking, if you don’t get the house, you won’t go to the provincial capital, and we can be together forever. But, seeing you like this again Sad, so desperate, I softened my heart, and felt that I couldn’t be too selfish, so I lent you the money. Later, I borrowed money to invest in the ostrich farm, and I also wanted to make a difference, so that you and Gulu would have a good life in the future. Who knows me When I carry it like this, the ostrich is lost, the money is lost, and I am like this again… I can’t, I can’t drag you down…”

At this moment, I squatted beside him and couldn’t help but burst into tears: “You are such a big fool! Big ostrich! You always just bury your head in the sand and think about things with self-righteousness. Why don’t you ask me? You ask I, I will say, you ask! Ask!”

He was just silent.

I stared at his face and asked, “Zhao Nanfang, do you want to sleep with me? Tell the truth!”

“No,” he panted, but said decisively, “Don’t be like this, we are friends, and we will meet again in the future.”

“What’s wrong with sleeping?” I was still stubborn. “You know what? When we slept, we gave the world a middle finger.”

“You think I haven’t thought about it, so many years, I…”

I finally understand that he still thinks I sympathize with him and pity him, but I don’t know how precious he is in my heart. Who is to blame, for the cover-up of my hippie smile on weekdays, or because he cherishes this relationship too much?

After a long pause, I put my hand on his shoulder and neck and started massaging it very slowly and gently. I said, “We’ll be together, it won’t be too far. I’ll cook for you, do the laundry for you, and make money for us. When you’re developed, we’ll go to the south, the south of the south, and do what you said. That little island in the Pacific Ocean, I will give you the little Gulu that fills the island!”

Zhao Nanfang smiled childishly and said, “As an old driver, no matter how many wheels I have, I can make them spin!”

“Okay, let’s eat now? You can be a good driver when you are healthy.”

He nodded obediently.

I opened the thermos cup, scooped out half a bowl of chicken soup, then a chicken leg, and put it on the table. His right hand is not very flexible, but I still let him eat it by himself, which is beneficial to his functional recovery.

Zhao Nanfang fished out the chicken leg first and took a big bite.

“Is it delicious?” I asked.

“Delicious,” he answered vaguely.

“Better than the best chicken drumsticks you said?” I asked again.

He stopped chewing, looked at me, and burst into tears. After a long while, he nodded and said, “This is the best chicken leg, I finally got it…”

At this time, the night fell, and the snow also fell, a large piece, a large piece, clean and light. After one night, this small southern city, from the road to the roof, from the river to the forest, from one person to another, will be covered with pure white fleece blankets. I loved the night with him more than anything in the world.

The small alarm clock was ticking, and the sound was particularly crisp, and our restless breathing gradually subsided.

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