Book 1 Chapter 204 Calling the Son Home
These past few days there is not much going on in the barracks. Gu Weiting has more free time from work. Today, he suddenly becomes interested and plans to visit Bai Luoyin and Gu Hai's lusty den.
Pushing the front door open, he smells a musty odor in the room. Probably it's due to not having the windows open for a long time. Gu Weiting opens the windows. There is a busy commercial thoroughfare outside. Cars and people keep coming and going continuously. He seems to see a car is driving into the division. Then two people walk out of the car. His heart all of a sudden shrinks. Then he looks again more carefully but sees nothing.
Most of the flowers planted in the balcony have withered. The watering jar is still outside. But after freezing and thawing throughout the winter, it has deformed. All kitchen utensils are still there. Spices and seasonings are sorted and arranged in their own boxes. The one for salt is still open. The salt is now clumpy. A small spoon lies quietly inside. Gu Weiting cannot imagine how Gu Hai's big hand picking up the tiny spoon would look like. He especially cannot imagine he could stand here quietly doing something so tedious.
The green vegetable have long shriveled up. The withered leaves lie by the sides of the basket listlessly. Potatoes are now moldy and full of spots. The eggplants dried up to the thickness of fingers. Only one onion still looks good. But after picking it up, he finds the bottom side touching the basket is now mushy. Inside the refrigerator, cooked food, drinks, pickles,... a lot of stuff but arranged neatly.
Perhaps before leaving, they were planning to cook something for a big lunch. Unfortunately, there was no time.
Luckily the two bathrooms are still clean. The toilet seat was changed not long before their departure. They brushed the bath tub after each use. On the vanity is a bald duck. It was full of feather but someone managed to pluck away all of it compulsively. The cabinet has the skin care products they use. A jar of face wash is still almost full but the other one is almost empty. It suggests the two of them used them interchangeably and didn't differentiate which one belongs to whom. Gu Weiting picks up and looks carefully at a mug for brushing teeth. On the mug is printed a big portrait of Gu Hai's face. He is sticking out his lips, an expression inviting some whacking; the other one prints Bai Luoyin's portrait with the same expression. Gu Weiting put them next to each other and indeed it is showing them kissing each other with their pouch lips.
He really doesn't want to recognize the fact the these two silly boys are his sons.
The bedroom have obviously been cleaned. It's much tidier compared to the last time he came. There is just one really thick comforter. Also there is one really long pillow. Just by looking at the stuff on the bed and the nightstands, one can tell how they sleep usually.
Opening the drawer of the nightstand on the left, one can find a box full of condoms in every color; opening the drawer of the one on the right, there is a box full of lubricants in every kind of flavors.
Gu Weiting sits on the bed and quietly observes this warm little place. His heart has felt every kind of emotions.
They have been in Tibet for nine days. Most of the time, they have been traveling here and there, visiting scenic places. When they got tired sometimes, they also went shopping on the streets, and appreciating the local culture.
When Gu Yang calls, they are on board a lamb leather boat in the middle of Lake Yangzuoyongtsuo looking at the beautiful scenery.
It's very windy on the lake. It gets difficult to breathe if one opens the mouth.
Besides the wind gust, Gu Yang cannot hear anything.
Gu Hai also yells all he can, "Brother, anything the matter?"
"Your dad is not going to meddle in you guys' life. Come back right away."
"What? What did you say?"
Gu Yang is tired of repeating and hangs up the phone.
Bai Luoyin hid half of his face inside the collar. As soon as Gu Hai puts the phone down, he can't wait but asks, "What happened?"
"I don't know. I only heard something about my dad..." Gu Hai puts his phone back inside the pocket, and said defiantly, "Whatever, go ahead if he wants to chase after us here... Rower, please row the boat forward."
Then, two days later Gu Yang calls again.
"Came back to Beijing yet?"
Gu Hai is still half asleep and can't think straight, "What do you mean coming back to Beijing?"
"Don't tell me you two still have not departed on your way back."
"Depart, depart for what?"
Gu Yang's tone sounds cold, "Where are you guys at?"
Gu Hai yawns and sits up.
"You guys have three days. Pack up and take the plane back to Beijing right away."
Gu Hai's sleepy nerves suddenly come back awake, "Back to Beijing? Why get back to Beijing?"
"Don't tell me the phone call I made two days ago was in vain. You didn't hear anything I said, right?"
"At the time you called, I was in the middle of a lake. That day was really windy and there were birds calling around us. I didn't hear clearly. Say it again."
Gu Yang coldly says, "It looks like you're having fun and free time."
Bai Luoyin hasn't waken up yet. Gu Hai's hand is caressing his body here and there and he lastly asks, "What is really the matter?"
"Your dad is not going to interfere about you two. He gave you five days. He must see you then. Now you have wasted two days. There are only 3 days left. Leave as soon as possible."
Gu Hai smiles coldly, "Is this a trick? You just don't have good intentions!"
"Who would play such a trick? No more talking for nothing. Come back soon."
Gu Hai's hand that is traversing on Bai Luoyin's body suddenly stops. His facial expression comes back to normal.
"Are you serious?"
Gu Yang laughs, "Who would enjoy playing tricks on someone with your IQ?"
Gu Hai forgets his hand is still on Bai Luoyin's lower abdomen. Having been provoked, he angrily hits the area. Bai Luoyin wakes up from sleep because of the pain and is about to erupt. Gu Hai quickly moves his hand and pats Bai Luoyin's hair a few times. Bai Luoyin quickly falls asleep again.
By the time Bai Luoyin wakes up again, Gu Hai is sitting on the couch by the bed with a sad and worried face.
"What happened?" Bai Luoyin seems to have heard Gu Hai talking on the phone with somebody on the phone this morning.
Gu Hai sighs, "My dad is not going to meddle with us."
Bai Luoyin just appears calm. Slowly he sits up and gives Gu Hai a quick glance.
"If so, why are you worried?"
"I don't know why." Gu Hai eyes look dispirited. "I just don't feel excited."
Bai Luoyin puts on some clothes and gets out of bed. Then while brushing his teeth in the bathroom, he goes out with his mouth full of toothpaste, looks at Gu Hai and says: "Actually a part of me also doesn't want to go back. Hehe..."
Gu Hai walks to the bathroom door and lazily leans on the door frame. His eyes emits a little devious ray.
"Why don't we just stay here a few more days?"
"Come on." Bai Luoyin goggles his mouth. "Don't you want to go home?"
Gu Hai raises the corner of his lips and throw the word "contradiction," and them walks out listlessly. When Bai Luoyin gets out, Gu Hai is lying and writhing on the bed without illness. Bai Luoyin also lies down. The two best buddies through ups and downs pretend to be crying together. Suddenly they jump up and excitedly starts to pack their stuff.
Going home, finally we can go home!!
As nice as the scenery outside, it doesn't belong to us after all.
Although Bai Luoyin and Gu Hai drive as fast as they can, by the time they arrive home it is already the end of April. After Bai Hanqi heard Bai Luoyin is coming back, he waits and looks outside everyday. It's only when after looking out so often that he almost becomes a giraffe, that his son arrives.
And then, they each return to their own family.
In order to see Bai Luoyin early, Aunt Zhou didn't go to her shop. She shopped for groceries early and put them in the kitchen. Then right away she waits around the front door. She waits until two o'clock in the afternoon when she lays her eyes on Bai Luoyin. Her tears uncontrollably roll down.
"Child, you must have suffered much, right? Look at your small face. It's got a dark tan now..."
Bai Luoyin actually feels ashamed to admit in front of his family that his tan is from traveling.
"Quickly go take a look at the grandpa and grandma. Your grandma didn't see you on Chinese New Year's eve and cried that whole night. She thought something had happened to you. We couldn't make her to stop worrying no matter how much we tried."
Bai Luoyin's heart gets heavy and heads to grandpa and grandma's room in a hurry.
As soon as Grandma Bai lays her eyes on Bai Luoyin, she cries out. She cries like a small child while saying: "Grandma thought you're gone..."
Bai Loyin is not sure whether to cry or to laugh. He quickly consoles her, "Grandma, don't I look perfectly fine? I had some activities out of town during the spring festival. They're very important activities for school. If I didn't go, I wouldn't be able to get into college."
Grandma Bai asks again: "Didn't you think of grandma?"
Bai Luoyin gets sad. He grabs grandma's hands and says: "I did. I thought about you everyday."
Grandma Bai keeps asking again and again as if she didn't hear it, "Didn't you think about grandma?... Didn't you think about grandma?... Didn't you think about grandma?..."
These few words Grandma Bai says very clearly. She must have said it in her head numerous times.
Bai Luoyin's eyes turn red. He gets up to find some towel and comes back to wipe grandma's face with it.
Grandpa Bai's stroke complications have become more and more apparent. At this moment when he sees Bai Luoyin, he only knows to open his mouth to smile but not what to say.
Just as Gu Hai's car enters the subdivision, he sees Gu Yang. Gu Yang is standing right next to the building door. Gu Hai already starts to smile at Gu Yang in the car. But Gu Yang just looks at him showing no expression. Gu Hai gets out of the car and walks to Gu Yang.
"How did you manage to get a tan like this?"
Gu Hai smiles with his teeth exposed, "This tan makes me look sunny."
Gu Yang smiles coldly, "Your teeth are really white."
The two of them walk into the elevator shoulder by shoulder. The elevator lifts up gently. Gu Yang takes a glance at Gu Hai. Gu Hai also turns his head to look back. The two's eyes meet, seemingly a little like water and fire that don't mix. They are probably thinking about Village Chief Gu and the impotent loser.
Gu Yang speaks only when they're already at the unit door.
"Your dad is right inside."
Gu Hai's feet stop and he takes a suspicious look at Gu Yang.
"What? You're already at the door and now you're afraid it's a setup? Where is your courage?"
Gu Hai makes a dismissive sound coldly and then takes big steps inside.
Gu Weiting sits on the sofa in a serious pose. When he sees his son, whom he has been waiting for long, his complexion doesn't change much.
"Dad." Gu Hai blandly says.
Gu Weiting does not respond. It's not clear whether he didn't hear it or he is unwilling to talk to him.
Gu Hai brings his luggage and heads into the bedroom. He puts down his stuff and quickly changes his clothes. Then he comes out, fills a glass full of water and drinks all the water in one gulp.
"I said I won't meddle with you guys. But it doesn't mean I support you. If you want my recognition, wait till your next life."
Gu Hai thinks to himself. I don't need your recognition. Just don't play tricks on me. Even if he is thinking this way, Gu Hai still responds out of courtesy, "Thanks for your understanding, Dad."
After this sentence, Gu Weiting's complexion starts to get better. He takes a look at Gu Hai. Actually since the time Gu Hai came home, he has already been secretly observing Gu Hai the whole time. He just didn't openly stare at him. Gu Hai needs to thank his trip to Tibet. Because of it, Gu Weiting now believes Gu Hai really suffered all this time having had no place to stay and little to eat. If Gu Weiting knew all this time Gu Hai had lived like a honeymoon, he would exile him to the frontier battlefiled in a rage.
"Let me ask you, what is your plan for college?"
"I don't have any plans." Gu Hai tells the truth.
Gu Yang takes a glance at Gu Hai from not far away with a dark expression.
Gu Weiting's eyes shows dismay, "No plans? What are you thinking? Are you just going to take the college entrance exams? With your ability, at best you can only make it into a bottom-of-the-rung college. Aren't you going to be ashamed of yourself?"
About this question, Gu Hai does not want to discuss with Gu Weiting at all. Gu Weiting wouldn't understand anything he says anyways. He would rather shut up and just do what he wants to do.
"Put down the cigarette!" Gu Weiting yells angrily.
Gu Hai places the cigarette he just took out back into the package.
Gu Weiting points a finger at Gu Hai, "I give you a suggestion. Either you join the army, or you go to college as an army reservist. If you stay inside the country, these are your only choices."
"Can you not always give me directions about my life?"
Gu Weiting gets angry, "I already gave you the widest latitude I can give you!"
Just before Gu Hai is about to speak, Gu Yang opens his mouth.
"Uncle, let's wait after the college entrance exam to discuss this. First allow little Hai to rest a couple of days."
Gu Weiting's stingy eyes keep staring at Gu Hai for a long time. Finally, he gets up and heads toward the front door. He makes a short stop at the door. Without turning around, he says: "I took away the two boxes in your nightstands."
It's only after Gu Weiting gets into the elevator that Gu Hai realizes what was meant. He gnaws his teeth.
"Old - Dirty - Thief!"