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Xu Fan’s tender, milky voice was loud and powerful. Not only did it shake Mother Xu out of her daze, it also reminded Mother Xu that—Cui Dingchen was hugging Xu Zhao.
Mother Xu was suddenly shocked out of her wits. She looked at Xu Zhao and Cui Dingchen, who had quickly pulled apart, and couldn’t help but ask, “What are you guys doing?”
Xu Zhao’s face was red, and he didn’t know how to answer.
Since things had come to this, there was no point in hiding it. Cui Dingchen confessed, “Auntie Xu, we’re dating.”
Dating with the Cui family’s youngest uncle?
Xu Zhao and the Cui family’s youngest uncle were dating?
The Cui family’s youngest uncle also changed the way he called her to “Auntie Xu?”
These questions twirled in her mind, making Mother Xu overwhelmed. In such a short period of time, it was difficult for Mother Xu to accept all of this at once. Her conflicted expressions were clearly seen by Xu Zhao and Cui Dingchen.
Cui Dingchen’s heart squeezed.
Now wasn’t the time to have a conversation, so Xu Zhao whispered to Cui Dingchen, “Youngest uncle, you should head back first.”
Cui Dingchen looked at Xu Zhao.
Xu Zhao didn’t speak, but Cui Dingchen understood what Xu Zhao meant. At this time, Xu Zhao needed to have a talk with Mother Xu, so he didn’t stay any longer. After bidding goodbye to Mother Xu, Xu Zhao, and Xu Fan, he reluctantly left.
It wasn’t until then that Xu Zhao finally looked at Mother Xu and Xu Fan.
Mother Xu questionably looked at Xu Zhao as well.
Xu Fan was stunned and asked, “Daddy, why was Second Grandpa Cui hugging you?”
He asked again!
This baby wanted to dig a pit for his father!
Xu Zhao bent down and picked up Xu Fan, then said to Mother Xu, “Mom, let’s go home and eat.” He then carried Xu Fan and went home together with Mother Xu. As soon as he arrived home, Da Zhuang’s father came over to call Xu Zhao and Xu Fan over to their house to drink fish soup. Xu Zhao didn’t go. Xu Fan, who loved eating, ran over. And so, there was only Mother and Father Xu at their home’s dining table. Xu Zhao took this opportunity to confess all the matters of his heart to the two elders.
At this moment, even Father Xu froze. After a moment, he put his chopsticks down and fell silent.
Mother Xu furrowed her brows. She looked at Xu Zhao and asked, “When did it start?”
Xu Zhao honestly replied, “Last year.”
Mother Xu was silent for a while before asking, “Is it serious?”
“I mean, is the Cui family’s youngest uncle serious?” Although Mother Xu said the “Cui family’s youngest uncle,” she knew that Xu Zhao and Cui Dingchen didn’t take the generational gap seriously. She was concerned about whether or not Cui Dingchen was serious toward Xu Zhao.
If Xu Zhao didn’t have children and was a single man, then Mother Xu wouldn’t be as worried. Xu Zhao was an educated man, after all. He had the looks, very good looks, and money. He didn’t lack anything.
However, those who had children were usually disliked—especially considering that Cui Dingchen was a one in a million kind of man.
“He is,” Xu Zhao replied.
Xu Zhao understood Mother Xu’s worries. After having Xu Fan, he learned the worries of a father. And so, he patiently told the two elders the process of how he got acquainted with Cui Dingchen and how they got closer. Although it comforted the two elders a bit, it didn’t completely reassure them. The two elders felt that Cui Dingchen was too exceptional.
Mother Xu pointed out the key problem, “The Cui family’s youngest uncle doesn’t like children. You can clearly see that he is indifferent toward Xu Fan, and Xu Fan isn’t close to him either. How will you guys get along in the future?”
Xu Fan said, “He’s trying to get along with Xu Fan.”
Mother Xu asked again. “Then what if they can’t get along?”
Xu Zhao carefully thought for a second then said, “Mom, Xu Fan and I are bound together. As long as Youngest uncle doesn’t reject Xu Fan and treats me genuinely. He’ll respect me and be attentive to Xu Fan. He won’t be like Zhou Xiangqian, who his first thought was to abandon Xu Fan, no?”
Mother Xu nodded. “That’s what you say, but I still don’t feel at ease.”
Xu Zhao smiled and said, “Mom, your son is also very exceptional. Don’t always think that I’m not suitable for others.”
Mother Xu said, “I’m worried that you’ll suffer a loss.”
Mother Xu’s words were actually a compromise. Xu Zhao said two words, “he won’t,” before turning to Father Xu and asking, “Dad, what do you think?”
Father Xu didn’t say as much as Mother Xu. As Xu Zhao and Mother Xu were talking, he kept silent, thinking about all sorts of things. Such as Cui Dingchen’s behavior, ability, responsibility, family members, as well as Xu Zhao’s weaknesses, and Xu Fan’s existence…After he put it all together and considered it, he said, “Since you like him, let’s just see, then we’ll know.”
“Mn, thank you, Dad.” Xu Zhao’s heart moved.
Although Father Xu believed Xu Zhao’s judgment, he was still a bit worried. However, he couldn’t prevent Xu Zhao from getting married just because he was worried. He sighed in his heart and said, “Let’s eat.”
“Okay.” Xu Fan stretched out his hand to Father Xu. Mother Xu picked up two pieces of meat, then started eating with Mother and Father Xu. After they finished eating, Xu Zhao went to Da Zhuang’s house to see Xu Fan. He saw Xu Fan and Da Zhuang paying with paper airplanes, so he didn’t call Xu. He turned to the studio and picked up the phone to call the Cui residence.
The person who answered was Mother Cui. Hearing that it was Xu Zhao, Mother Cui asked about Xu Fan’s matters and told Xu Zhao to bring Xu Fan over to the county town to play when they were free. She then called Cui Dingchen over to take the phone.
“How did it go?” Cui Dingchen anxiously asked on the other side.
This was the first time Xu Zhao heard Cui Dingchen sound so serious. He didn’t know why Cui Dingchen was so anxious, so he asked, “How did what go?”
Cui Dingchen said from the other side, “What do your parents think about us?”
So he was talking about this!
The corners of Xu Zhao’s mouth gently rose. Learning from Cui Qingfeng’s tone, he acted mischievous, which was rare for him. “Guess.”
Cui Dingchen had already discerned the answer from Xu Zhao’s relaxed tone and asked with a smile, “Then when can I officially come visit them?”
Xu Zhao hurriedly stopped him, “Don’t for now.”
“Let’s take care of things first.”
Xu Zhao asked in a relaxed tone, “Also, do you actually like Xu Fan?”
Cui Dingchen replied from the other side, “I do.”
“But my parents think that your attitude toward him is neither hot nor cold.”
“What does hot or cold mean?” Cui Dingchen deliberatly ridiculed.
Xu Zhao laughed and said, “I don’t know.”
Cui Dingchen continued to ask, “Then how about you leave Xu Fan to me for a few days? I’ll fatten him up then show your parents?”
Xu Zhao laughed. “You don’t need to raise him. He’ll fatten up in a few days.”
“Mn, so does that mean your parents object to us?”
“They’re not objecting,” Xu Zhao replied.
Cui Dingchen breathed a sigh of relief. “That’s good. You worked hard.”
Xu Zhao held the phone and hummed softly and asked, “You’ve been very busy lately, right?”
The Cui family’s relatives have frequently stopped by recently, so Cui Dingchen needed to deal with him. Cui Dingchen replied, “A bit.”
“Then you do what you need to. Let’s go to the movies on the sixth.”
“Okay, I’ll pick you up then.”
After hanging up the phone, Xu Zhao felt extremely relaxed. The haze from the past few days was swept away and he was finally in the mood to clean up and tidy up the studio. Not long into organizing, he saw the time from the clock on the wall. It was time to feed Xu Fan his medicine.
Xu Zhao walked out of the studio, prepared to go to Da Zhuang’s house to call Xu Fan to take his medicine. Just as he opened the courtyard gate, he saw Xu Fan padding his small legs, running out of Da Zhuang’s courtyard into the village without even looking back.
Xu Zhao called out, but Xu Fan ignored him and continued to run away. Xu Zhao was bewildered. He saw Mother Xu exit Da Zhuang’s courtyard holding a packet of medicine in her hand as she asked, “Where’s Sanwa?”
“He ran into the village.” Xu Zhao asked, “Mom, what are you doing?”
Mother Xu raised the medicine packet in her hand and said, “I was trying to feed Sanwa medicine, but who knew that as soon as that child heard the word ‘medicine’, he would run away faster than a rabbit.”
It turned out he didn’t want to take medicine.
Without waiting for Xu Zhao to speak, Mother Xu hurried toward the village with the medicine packet. When she saw Father Xu, she called him over to search for Xu Fan together.
Seeing this, Xu Zhao followed them, then saw Mother and Father Xu calling out Xu Fan’s name in the village. Xu Fan looked back while running. His small mouth cried out in a milky voice, “I’m not sick no more. I don’t want medicine. Don’t need medicine.” After shouting, he continued to run, following along the main road, along the twisty roads, and even along the edge of the gutter. His legs were short, but his speed wasn’t slow.
Mother and Father Xu tried to intercept Xu Fan like they were catching a little chicken. They were shocked when they failed.
Xu Zhao couldn’t watch anymore, so he shouted, “Xu Fan,” as he chased him.
Seeing his daddy, Xu Fan knew that a threat was coming, but he didn’t dare turn back now. He used all his energy to run, but after taking another few steps, he was grabbed by the collar of his thick cotton coat by Xu Zhao and picked up.
Xu Fan fluttered his short arms and legs and screamed, “I won’t take medicine. No medicine. No medicine!”
He fluttered very vigorously.
However, Xu Zhao, Mother and Father Xu still brought Xu Fan back home. Knowing that Xu Fan would use any method to avoid taking medicine, Xu Zhao and the other two adults pressed down his arms and legs and poured the bitter medicine down Xu Fan’s throat. Xu Fan started crying again after he took the medicine. His face, nose, and small lips were bright red as he cried.
He looked very pitiful.
Xu Zhao held Xu Fan in his arms, coaxing and kissing him. He stuffed a rock candy in his mouth, and Xu Fan finally slowly stopped crying. He leaned in Xu Zhao’s arms and whispered, “Daddy, I don’t want medicine. I-I won’t eat medicine in the future.”
Xu Zhao asked, “If you don’t take your medicine, you won’t get better. What will we do then?”
Xu Fan replied, “I won’t get sick.”
Xu Zhao gently discussed, “Okay. Let’s take medicine again tonight. Once you get better, we won’t fall sick again.”
Xu Fan’s milky voice said firmly, “I won’t take medicine!”
“Let’s just take it one last time.”
Xu Zhao deliberately said, “If you don’t eat it, I’ll pour it down your throat.”
Xu Fan straightened his body. He glared at Xu Zhao and said, “If you pour id, I-I’ll…”
Xu Zhao smiled and asked, “You’ll what?”
Xu Fan’s little face was very serious as he said, “I-I’ll be eer mad!”
Hearing “eer” mad, Xu Zhao couldn’t hold back his laugh.
Xu Fan wasn’t smiling at all as his milky voice forcefully said, “Don’t laugh! Daddy, don’t laugh! Daddy, you can’t laugh!”
Xu Zhao forced back his expression and said, “Mn, Daddy won’t laugh.”
Xu Fan softened his tone and said in a consultative tone, “Daddy, I won’t eat medicine.”
Xu Zhao simply loved such an energetic and naughty Xu Fan. He kissed him, then imitated Xu Fan’s milky tone and said, “We won’t eat medicine.”
Xu Fan: “…”
Xu Zhao smiled and said, “Xu Baobao, Daddy wants to discuss something with you. If you take your medicine one last time, you’ll get better and Daddy will take you to watch a movie on the sixth. We’ll watch a military film about fighting evil. Afterward, I’ll take you to eat pig trotters, mutton, fish, and egg soup. What do you think?”
Hearing that he could eat so many things, Xu Fan was shaken. His little lips pouted as he said, “Daddy, there’s pig trotters?”
Xu Zhao nodded. “Mn. There’s pig trotters, mutton, fish, and egg soup.”
“Wow, so much.” Xu Fan patted his small meaty hands on the group.
Xu Zhao continued to tempt Xu Fan with food. “That’s right. Take your medicine one last time and Daddy will take you to the county town. You can eat and drink whatever you want, okay?”
Xu Fan tilted his head and said, “I-I-I want to eat rice crispy treats.”
Xu Zhao quickly said, “Sure.”
Xu Fan was still unsatisfied as he said, “And roasted sweet potatoes too.”
“No problem. Then can you be good and drink your medicine tonight?”
“Yes.” Xu Fan nodded.
Hearing this, Xu Zhao immediately breathed a sigh of relief.