Yes, your dad is rich, but it is not this dad of yours who is rich.
Lu Ying sullenly washed a pot of cherries to block his son’s mouth and sat next to Zaizai, staring at the cherries in a daze. The cherries in front of him were of good quality, big and round, the kind that the fruit shops imported, and the price… was unmentionable.
Once, he had eaten them every day and wasn’t tired of eating them even for half a year.
Zaizai asked with his mouth full, “Dada wont eat ow?”
Lu Ying shook his head and lifted the box to look for the sticker. The sender’s name was vague, the number was a landline number. The first three digits were familiar and it couldn’t have been clearer which city they belonged to.
“Who are you calling, Dad?” Lu Zaizai saw Lu Ying hold his mobile phone and press a series of digits but without pressing “dial” for a long time.
In the end, Lu Ying exhaled and put the phone down, picked up the cherries and stuffed them into his son’s mouth one by one: “Eat more if you like, I’ll go cook.”
“Oh…” Lu Zaizai ate, looking at his dad from time to time. He felt that his dad’s eyes lit up when he saw the cherries, but now they suddenly turned misty again and even his mood was very low. Even when Zaizai had gotten into a fight with the nasty neighbour’s kid last time his father hadn’t been this upset.
Lu Zaizai slipped off his chair and squeezed next to his dad, his little chubby hands full of cherries, “Dad, open your mouth, you cook for me and I’ll feed you cherries, hehehe~ Come on, open your mouth wide!”
“Ow~” Lu Ying couldn’t resist. He hurriedly lowered his head and opened his mouth wide, like a fierce beast, grabbing the cherry and chewing it: “Mmmm, it’s so sweet.”
“Hee hee~ eat more, eat more…”
Taking one bite after another, the father and son were having a good time, leaving their worries behind.
“Mr. Qin, is there someone?”
In the quiet, quaint private dining room, Qin Zuopu with his secretary sat opposite his business partner. All of them had been acquaintances for many years and could speak casually. Qin Zhuopu always paid close attention to table manners and rarely played with his mobile phone at the table. But today, as soon as the meal was finished, he held his mobile phone for a long time. Moreover, his usually tense expression was unconsciously much softer, which was really surprising.
Qin Zhuopu shook his head helplessly, “Mr. Wang is joking, I am deservedly single. Otherwise, how would I top the list of the ‘Most Desirable Noble Bachelors’ every year?”
“Hahaha! It looks like you’re on the verge of dropping out of the list. You didn’t joke about it before. Today you even know how to joke about yourself, tsk, you’re in a good mood, aren’t you?”
“Mr. Wang misunderstands me too much. I’m a person who has no inhibitions about saying anything in the circle of my friends. But I am in a good mood today indeed. Come on, let’s celebrate our two families’ cooperation moving to the next level.”
“Okay, invite me to drink your wedding wine next year.”
“I’ll take your word for it.”
Back in the office building after the meal, Qin Zhuopu threw off his coat as soon as he stepped into the office. He quickly asked the assistant, “Was there a call to the landline on my desk?”
The assistant nodded: “There was a call from Mr. Qin at 18:05, he only told you to call back.”
In Qixia Town, Lu Zaizai was very happy when he returned home from kindergarten, because he had a three-day holiday for the New Year and his father said that he would take him to the amusement park on New Year’s Day!
Lu Ying, who had decided to quit his job, was also looking forward to the amusement park. The last time he took his child to play was more than a year ago. He was busy working every day, his child didn’t have fun and he didn’t even earn much money. Doing some low-skilled work, coupled with educational restrictions, it was really too difficult to make money. Brother Yang was giving him the opportunity he dreamed of, to learn a skill.
“I want to sleep some more, Dad, I don’t want to get up, ooooo…” On the first day of the holiday, at 7:30 in the morning, Lu Ying had already finished his cleaning job and returned home, and the sound asleep little guy was actually insisting on staying in bed.
Lu Ying sat directly at the head of the bed with the fragrant breakfast and started eating.
The little guy jumped up, grabbed his clothes and put them on indignantly. Lu Ying ignored him and continued to enjoy the delicious food.
“Dad! You’re still eating alone! You didn’t even wait for me!” The little guy was in a hurry.
“Go brush your teeth.”
“You have to wait for me, oh, you can’t eat anymore!”
“Go ahead, go ahead, Dad’s waiting for you.” No, he isn’t.
By the time Lu Zaizai washed up, Lu Ying was already full, wiping his mouth and sitting quietly, enjoying his son’s live “eat and broadcast” show.
“It’s raining outside today, do you want to go to work with me?”
Lu Zaizai shook his head: “I don’t want to go. The shopping mall’s playground is getting more and more boring. There are all little babies playing there, ah, can’t speak clearly and walk wobbly. I’m already a big brother, I don’t want to hang out with little babies every day, it’s too boring!”
“Haha…” Lu Ying laughed out loud and pinched his son’s chubby face, “Okay, big brother, you’re awesome.”
“Can I just play with toys and eat cherries at home?” Lu Zaizai’s eyes drifted expectantly towards the toys and fruits.
“Sure.” Lu Ying got up and fiddled with the rice cooker, filling it with the right amount of rice and slightly stir-fried soup ingredients. Once it was plugged in, you could have “claypot rice” in no time at all.
“When you get hungry at noon, press the button to cook rice and let go when you hear the sound. About one class period of cooking, the rice cooker dings and you can unplug it and eat.”
Lu Zaizai nodded: “I already know how to do it, I’ve cooked it many times, but Dad keeps repeating it all the time. I’m not stupid.”
Lu Ying was reassured by his son: “The phone is on the table, call Dad if you need anything.” He had given his son a Nokia for the elderly people which was used to keep in touch with him when he wasn’t around.
“Remember, don’t open the door to strangers and don’t go out alone.” Lu Ying repeated his instructions even though he knew that his son had been home alone many times and was obedient and sensible.
“I will be very obedient at home.”
As before, Lu Zaizai stayed home alone to play all day, eating, drinking and taking care of himself, without burdening his father in any way.
The following morning, the temperature inside and outside dropped significantly, finally going below zero. The rain was drizzling, mixed with scattered snowflakes and a bit of winter wind, making it bitterly cold.
Lu Zaizai still chose to stay at home. Lu Ying was afraid that he would be bored, so he took out a brand new puzzle box.
“Wow! My favourite Peppa Pig family! When did Dad buy it?”
“It’s a New Year’s Day gift for you. I wanted to give it to you tomorrow but I thought you might be happier a day earlier.”
“Hehe~~ That’s right, I’m very happy! Thank you, Dad! I’ll make sure I put it together properly today.”
“Go for it, I’m leaving. Remember what I said about the do’s and don’ts.”
“Bye, Dad! Dad, be careful crossing the road on your moped and don’t run on the red light, oh~”
“Got it, little traffic cop.”
After saying goodbye to his son, Lu Ying was in a good mood when he left for work today. He rode his moped to the shopping mall in a disciplined and unhurried manner. He changed into his work clothes and greeted the colleagues who came and went. It didn’t take long for him to wait for Supervisor Li.
“Supervisor, here’s my resignation letter.”
Supervisor Li was surprised and stared at the outstanding employee in front of him, “Why do you suddenly want to resign?”
Lu Ying had already thought of what to say: “Today is the last day of the year. In fact, I have wanted to resign for a long time, but I have delayed until the end. This year’s business is over, and I want a new start next year. I hope the supervisor will understand me. As you know, there is no point for me to stay any longer.” Salary is not rising, bonuses are gone for no reason, there is no hope of being promoted and the upper management is looking for fault every day.
The main thing, of course, was that there was a better alternative with Brother Yang.
Supervisor Li sighed, “I understand your meaning. Originally you were my most promising staff… Xiao Lu, have you found a good job?”
Lu Ying nodded honestly: “A friend asked me to go to work in his shop, a cake shop. The salary is more than now.”
Supervisor Li nodded: “That’s good. I know it’s not easy for you. No matter where you go, I hope you can do better and better. I will approve your resignation, but according to the rules you still have to work for a month so that we can find new people. The end of the year is especially busy, you can understand, right?”
“I know, I’ll follow the rules. But I must take New Year’s Day off.”
“New Year’s Day is the last day of the event…” The supervisor was in a difficult position.
Lu Ying shrugged, “My son has to go to the kindergarten the day after tomorrow. I haven’t had a holiday for a long time.”
“Okay, I’ll grant it.”
“Thank you, Supervisor.”
“Hey, don’t be polite. I really can’t bear letting you go. Xiao Lu, remember to keep in touch with me from now on. And if you have any difficulties, you must tell me, don’t be a stranger.”
Both resignation and a day off were approved by Supervisor Li. Lu Ying worked extremely enthusiastically that day. His colleagues didn’t know that he had resigned, and everyone behaved as usual.
“The supermarket has a special offer, 10% off on all purchases over 100, plus a free cabbage! Spending over two hundred is 10% off, plus a free cabbage and a catty of potatoes! Spend 300 or more and get 15% off, plus a free cabbage…”
“Don’t miss out! Buy and get a freebie!”
The event had been going on for two days and the number of old ladies and gentlemen eager to get cabbage and potatoes had not decreased at all. The supermarket staff were busy, and Lu Ying, wearing a mask, could barely catch his breath as a registering clerk. Seeing the queue coiling like a snake, Lu Ying felt a big headache.
“Grandpa, hey, Grandpa, look at how fresh this cabbage is, why do you have to peel off the outer leaves! Oh, you’re still peeling them! What a waste!”
“I just want to peel them and drop them, the outer leaves are not good-looking and dirty.”
“They’re not dirty at all! Now the cabbage has turned into a small cabbage. If you’re so picky, you can only eat the core.”
Old men and women liked to argue and there were always a few aunties who would argue with the staff and with each other, chewing on a small matter for half a day.
Those grandfathers and grandmothers seem to be frugal but they didn’t feel any pain in wasting the seller’s stuff. If they felt that the outer layer or even several layers of leaves were not good enough, they would peel them off and throw them away before weighing. At the end of the day the supermarket employees had to empty large baskets full of cabbage leaves that were disliked and peeled off by those old guys.
The staff and customers clashed from time to time and Lu Ying just endured silently, not daring to say a word. Those people’s fighting ability was strong, they could drown him in spittle.
Well, today he was just the scribe holding the pencil, and even the air was much fresher when he thought about it.
“Lu Ying! Lu Ying! Brother Xiao Lu!”
When Lu Ying looked up at the sound of the voice, he saw a colleague who was in charge of cleaning hurrying up with his piggy mobile phone in her hand: “Your son is calling. I answered it after it rang so many times in the lounge. He keeps crying and doesn’t tell me. Ask him if something has happened to him.”
Lu Ying answered the phone quickly.
The sound of his son’s crying filled his ears and Lu Ying panicked.
Lu Zaizai: I hate playing with little babies, they just cry and cry, not cute.
Lu Ying: Look, this is your younger brother, the little baby.
Mr. Qin: Take your brother to play more often.
Lu Zaizai: Wow, little babies are so much fun (* ≧ ▽ ≧ *)