Merry Christmas and happy holidays!! Enjoy the surprise chapter~
If you aren’t reading on lazysakuratranslations.com then these translations were stolen!
Xu Zhao retracted his long legs to stand next to the bicycle, looking at Cui Qingfeng.
Cui Qingfeng continuously pressed the bicycle’s bell to break up the crowd of people in front of him. He quickly arrived in front of Xu Zhao. Seeing the sad air surrounding Xu Zhao, he immediately remembered that Xu Zhao’s father was still in the hospital and it wasn’t appropriate for him to smile like this. Therefore, he hastily put away his smile, and sternly asked, “Xu Zhao, how’s Uncle Xu’s condition?”
“He got a stroke,” Xu Zhao replied.
Cui Qingfeng’s complexion paled, “A stroke? Is it serious?”
“It’s not too serious.”
Cui Qingfeng thought of a very realistic question and asked, “Will it cost a lot of money?”
“Yes.” Xu Zhao gave Mother Xu dozens of Yuan, but with the hospitalization fee plus medical expenses, it would probably be used up very quickly. They would also need to spend a constant amount of money for medicine in the future. It will definitely cost a lot of money.”
“I have over 200 Yuan saved up. You can take it to use first,” Cui Qingfeng said.
“Your dad still needs his surgery,” Xu Zhao said.
“My dad has my youngest uncle. He definitely won’t be needing my money.”
“It’s not necessary. In any case, we’ll need to find a stream of income eventually. We can’t always depend on others.”
“How will we make money?” Cui Qingfeng asked.
“We’ll find a way.” Xu Zhao glanced at the brand-new bicycle that was under Cui Qingfeng’s butt and asked, “Where did this bicycle come from?”
“I bought it.”
“Where did you get the money?”
Although this year was a bumper harvest, bicycles were still a luxury good. A single bicycle would usually cost about 200 Yuan. An ordinary family wouldn’t be able to afford that. The families who could afford it were usually the business families who would save for a couple of months before finally purchasing one. Cui Qingfeng might have 200 Yuan saved, but he didn’t think Cui Qingfeng would spend 200 Yuan to buy a bicycle, especially since their family already had their youngest uncle’s bicycle.
Sure enough, Cui Qingfeng continued, “I didn’t buy it. My youngest uncle sent it to me.”
“Why did he suddenly send you a bike?”
“Because it was my birthday two days ago. My youngest uncle called home to ask what I wanted and I said I wanted a bicycle.”
“Your youngest uncle is back?” Xu Zhao asked.
“No, it’ll be a while longer before he comes back. His friend was the one who delivered the bike.”
“Then why did you want a bike for your birthday?”
After speaking, the roots of Cui Qingfeng’s ears turned red.
However, Xu Zhao didn’t notice and didn’t think anything of it. “Did you want the both of us to sell popsicles in the countryside together?” Xu Zhao asked.
Cui Qingfeng, “…No.”
“Then was it to lend it to me to ride home? Actually, Xu Fan and I can just walk home.”
“…Yes.” Cui Qingfeng really didn’t know what to say.
“But since it was already bought, once your Dad recovers, he can ride it.”
“Yep,” Cui Qingfeng briefly replied.
Xu Zhao supported Xu Fan who was on the front handlebars and said, “Well then, let’s head to the subdistrict.”
“The one by your house.”
“Why are we going to the subdistrict near my house?” Cui Qingfeng asked incredulously.
“To talk about the matter of selling popsicles by the intersection,” Xu Zhao replied.
“What will you say? Will those people even listen?”
“They will. We’ll say we want to form a contract with them.”
“We’ll form a contract or buy it!”
“Buy the piece of land the intersection is on!”
Cui Qingfeng immediately cried out, “Huh? Are you crazy? What’s the point of buying that tiny piece of land?”
“To sell popsicles long-term,” Xu Zhao said.
“Selling popsicles long-term? We won’t be able to sell popsicles once it gets cold. Wouldn’t that piece of land be useless then?”
“We can sell something else,” Xu Zhao said.
“Do you have any money?”
“Didn’t you say earlier that you’d lend me 200 Yuan?”
“Is 200 Yuan enough to buy land? Don’t forget that your dad is still in the hospital.”
“It’s enough. Sharpening your axe won’t delay the wood chopping. If we sharpen our axes first, earning money won’t be a problem. Let’s go.”
“Where are we going?”
“What a nonsensical question! To the subdistrict office!”
Xu Fan stretched out his long legs over the bicycle and carried Xu Fan away from the hospital.
Cui Qingfeng reluctantly followed them all the way to the subdistrict office. When they saw the clerk and small leader, Cui Qingfeng was still unwilling. He couldn’t understand why Xu Zhao wanted to buy that land. What use would that tiny piece of land have? If he wanted to build a house on it, it couldn’t be a big house, and who would live in a tiny house anyway? Besides, there would be passersby making a ruckus as they walk by all the time. And you couldn’t even plant vegetables on that land! It was completely useless!
But it appeared that Xu Zhao had already made up his mind. They arrived at the subdistrict office and found a small leader to explain their situation. The small leader said that that piece of land already had an owner. If he wanted to sell popsicles there, they had to get the owner’s permission first. Otherwise, they will receive a penalty. Thereupon, Xu Zhao once again brought Xu Fan to find the owner, and Cui Qingfeng could only follow behind them.
The owner of the land was an elderly couple who had two sons. When they heard Xu Zhao wanted to buy that useless lot of land, without saying anything, their two lazy sons immediately brought forth the price of 200 Yuan. In the end, the price for the land was lowered to 198 Yuan, and Xu Zhao immediately took Cui Qingfeng’s money to pay for it. They brought the elderly couple to the subdistrict office to handle the official procedures and sign the paperwork, and as a result, Xu Zhao easily obtained that lot of land by the intersection.
He never imagined that purchased land could be so smooth, so simple, and so cheap!
In the 21st century, each inch of land was worth a piece of gold, and there were even a complicated set of procedures and taxes. It was completely different here. Everyone here hasn’t been enlightened to “trade,” “land,” and “earning money” yet. That was why they all considered this piece of land as useless. Xu Zhao felt that he picked up a huge bargain!
On the other hand, Cui Qingfeng did not think so and said, “It’s too expensive!”
“It’s not expensive,” Xu Zhao said.
“It’s expensive! Take my current house, for example. My backyard is a lot bigger than that intersection. Back then, my dad traded half that area with a basket of eggs. That’s why my house was built to be so comfortable.”
“It’s not expensive,” Xu Zhao gleefully said. “It really isn’t. Tomorrow we’ll be able to officially set up a stand. We’ll set it up for a whole day.”
“Won’t it be very hot if we set it up all day?”
“We’ll build a small building there when we go back.”
Cui Qingfeng wasn’t very happy as he said, “In any case, I don’t understand why you would be willing to spend 200 Yuan on that useless lot of land.”
“It wasn’t 200 Yuan, it was 198 Yuan.”
“That’s still expensive.”
“It really isn’t expensive.”
However, Cui Qingfeng still thought it was too expensive and continued to feel aggrieved. He thought that there wasn’t a need to buy land just to sell popsicles.
In the afternoon, he and Xu Zhao finished making the popsicles ingredients, then Xu Zhao carried Xu Fan away. Cui Qingfeng’s youngest uncle also happened to call at that time. Cui Qingfeng mouth-vomited the incident to him, indicating that he really couldn’t understand Xu Zhao’s actions. However, he heard his youngest uncle say, “He did the right thing.”
“What?” Cui Qingfeng couldn’t believe his ears.
“He was correct in his decision.”
“Why was he correct? Nobody wants that piece of land since there are always people coming and going. Youngest uncle, let me tell you. There’s a noodle store next to that land and in the beginning, the sons of the owner of the land wanted to sell the land to the noodle place, but the noodle store didn’t want it. I really don’t understand why Xu Zhao insisted on buying it, especially when he’s so poor.”
“He won’t be poor for long.”
“Qingfeng, use your brain. Look at the big picture.”
“How do I do that?” Cui Qingfeng was a bit angry.
“If you can’t see the big picture then follow behind that friend of yours, he’ll help you look. By the way, how old is that friend of yours?”
“He’s younger than me, probably 21 or 22.”
“Hmm, he’s young but already has good foresight.”
“Yes, and he’s very handsome.”
“Yes, very handsome.” Cui Qingfeng mentioned Xu Zhao’s looks and couldn’t stop the root of his ears from reddening.
“If you think he’s that good looking, then slowly look. How is your dad these days?”
“Everything’s good,” Cui Qingfeng replied.
“Remember to have him move around as well. I’ll be back soon, then I’ll take him to the hospital for the surgery.”
“I make him move every day to bathe.”
“Mn, that’s good. That’s all, I’m hanging up.”
“Youngest uncle,” Cui Qingfeng called to stop him.
“What is it?”
“Is Xu Zhao really doing the right thing?” Cui Qingfeng asked again.
“He is. Just keep up with him. If you have any questions, you can ask me. You need to listen to your heart. Those who are too intelligent are usually… Forget it. Wait till I come home and meet him first.”
“Okay, Uncle. Come back soon.”
Hanging up the phone, Cui Qingfeng had a face full of happiness. His youngest uncle said that Xu Zhao did the right thing, so that means Xu Zhao definitely made the right move. His youngest uncle said that Xu Zhao wouldn’t be poor for long, then that means he really won’t be poor for long.
However, Xu Zhao was still currently poor and he even had a 198 Yuan debt. Even so, his heart was burning. It was only the pitiful Xu Fan had to follow Xu Zhao out of the hospital yet again, and saw the people on the streets selling bungs, noodles, and eggs. He couldn’t restrain his drool all the way until they returned to the entrance of South Bay Village. It was only then that Xu Fan finally controlled his drool.
Back home, Xu Zhao started cooking dinner. He steamed the multi-grain steamed buns, then poured a tiny bit of oil on the bottom of the pan to stir-fry some salted vegetables. He glanced towards Xu Fan, who was standing by the stove and prodding his small feet towards the pot, his small chin almost hanging off the stovetop.
Xu Zhao couldn’t bear it in the end and pulled out some dried meat from the cupboard. He washed it, cut it into four thin pieces, then placed it in a bowl to steam inside the pot.
Fertilizer wasn’t widespread yet in this era. At most, they would spread some manure. Therefore, regardless if it was vegetables, fruits, fish, or meats, they all had their pure and natural flavors. It was especially rich. Although Xu Zhao only steamed four pieces of meat, the fragrance of the meat was still very alluring.
Xu Fan began to swallow his drool again.
Xu Zhao placed the meat pieces in front of Xu Fan, and Xu Fan immediately wowed.
“Eat,” Xu Zhao said.
“Daddy, I’m bad at using chopsticks. I want to use my hands,” Xu Fan said.
“I’ll let you use your hands for today,” Xu Zhao said with a smile.
Xu Fan immediately grabbed the meat piece with his hand and happily ate it. A layer of oil smeared across his pouting mouth. It was such a good sight. After eating two pieces of meat, Xu Fan ate a multi-grain steamed buns, drank a bowl of mixed porridge, and ate some salted vegetables. One could say that he was a very good eater. Xu Zhao didn’t eat the remaining two pieces of meat. Instead he placed it inside the double tier enamel jar along with the multi-grain steamed bunss, salted vegetables, and porridge, and wrapped it all up in a cloth bag. Afterwards, he gave Xu Fan a bath, smeared on some heat rash powder, then sent Xu Fan to Da Zhuang’s house.
“Daddy, I’m not going to Da Zhuang’s house. I want to go see Grandpa with you,” Xu Fan said as he was being dragged to Da Zhuang’s house by Xu Zhao.
“You can’t,” Xu Zhao said.
“It’s already hard. Children walk outside at night.”
“I’m not walking outside at night, I’m sitting on the bicycle,” Xu Fan said with reason.
“That won’t do either. Stay at Da Zhuang’s house and play with Da Zhuang. Daddy will come pick you up soon.”
“I don’t wanna.”
“Are you not going to listen to me?”
Xu Fan didn’t peep out a sound. When they arrived at Da Zhuang’s house, his head drooped. He stood at the corner of Da Zhuang’s house and ignored everyone.
Xu Zhao and Da Zhuang’s mother said a couple words. He also ignored Xu Fan as he carried the cloth bag and got on the bike, heading towards the county town. He was going to deliver food to Mother Xu. At this time, it was already dark. The surrounding small villages gave off a hazy yellow glow from the kerosene lamps. The night wind finally brought along some coolness. This way, the heat rash on Xu Fan’s forehead won’t flare up again. Thinking of Xu Fan, Xu Zhao couldn’t help but glance back towards South Bay Village. South Bay Village was black, and what was darker than black was the small person on the street. Without making a sound, he wobbled his small legs and ran to follow Xu Zhao.
Ahhh! I’m so conflicted! I kinda want him to end up with Cui Qingfeng, but there’s a part of me that wants him to end up with the youngest uncle instead. >.< Who do you think the ML is?