Rebirth on the Doors to the Civil Affairs Bureau - Chapter 60
Thank you for K.Samel and Anonymous for donating! Because of your generosity, I give you the last two chapters! Enjoy everybody.
My name is Xia Yang, nickname QiQi, a boy. As to why I emphasize the fact that I’m a boy, it’s mainly because my nickname sounds too feminine.
It is said that when I was nothing but a single cell, the first to know of my existence wasn’t my Mother, not my Father, not a pregnancy stick, not even a doctor, but my Grandma. It was because one night, she dreamed I of me wearing a red dùdōu. Grandma is always saying that I look exactly like the baby she dreamed, but no one but herself knew what the baby she dreamed look like, though I seriously suspect that she dreamed of the Golden Boy next to the Goddess of Avalokitesvara, because she has a statue at home.
Of course, I think I’m cuter than any Golden Boy. After all, my clothes look way better than any red dùdōu.
(T/N dùdōu is those undergarments that look like a diamond.)
My Mother is a TV host, and although I often see her on TV, I’ve always felt that the Mother on TV doesn’t act like the Mother at home. Because the Mother on TV looks very smart, but in real life, Mother doesn’t even know how much an apple costs.
My Father is a very busy person, often coming home long after I’ve gone to bed. He also has the awful smell of disinfectant on his clothes.
But whenever he comes home, he never failed to go to my room and see me.
I don’t know if it’s true, but Grandma said that I was born from a golden light in her dream. She said I was a promising child, so I remember things a little earlier than others.
I remember every time Father came to my room, no matter if I’m upset or not, he’d always kiss me. Back then I couldn’t talk, only scream. I would often call out for him to pick me up, but Father would just laugh, so back then I thought he didn’t like me.
Usually when I cry Mother would come. I thought Mother still loved me very much, but as soon as I see Father I would be ignored…
For countless nights my Father would kiss me, my Mother would kiss me, then the two would turn and kiss each other on the mouth right in front of me.
Hum…you think I’m young and wouldn’t know? Kissing on the mouth means that you two definitely like each other more than you like me!
By the time I turned four, while sister was still playing with Barbie dolls, I had already learned a lot of words and could count up to 100. One time, Mother and I went to Auntie Xiaoyue’s studio. Auntie Xiaoyue handed us a small jar of stars and told us that if we counted 99 stars, she would buy us white rabbit candy to eat.
I don’t like to eat sugar though, I prefer to play with jigsaw puzzles.
“What are you doing sister Bell?” I watched sister Bell counting, surrounded by scattered stars.
“I’m going to count then exchange the stars for candy.”
“Do you like eating candy?”
“I do!” Sister Bell nodded.
“Then count slowly.” Grandpa always said that we have to do the work in order to enjoy the harvest. Since I didn’t want any candy, I couldn’t let sister Bell get the candy without working for it, so I didn’t help.
But after a long time passed, after I had finished my puzzled, the stars still haven’t been counted.
“Haven’t you finished counting yet? “I couldn’t help asking.
“The stars all look the same. I counted, but I don’t know which stars I’ve already counted and which ones I haven’t…”Sister Bell looked like she was about to cry.
I sighed, then put all the stars back into the jar. Then, I took one star and put it on the ground.
“There. Now you have 99 stars to exchange for candy.”
Wow, QiQi, you’re too awesome!” Sister Bell didn’t doubt me for a second as she took the jar and ran to Auntie Xiaoyue.
Alas, that girl was too stupid. The jar clearly said that there were 100 stars in it. Taking all the stars out and counting them one by one would take too long.
In the evening, Mother took me to Father’s laboratory to have dinner with him. I told them about the stars and sister Bell.
Father said I was smarter than other children, but I shouldn’t act proud. But I didn’t act proud at all, yet Mother still knocked me on the head and said I bullied sister Bell. When did I bully?
I was so angry, but Father said that boys can’t be compared with girls. Is Mother a girl too? But sister Bell can only count to 20, and Mother doesn’t know how much three pounds of apples cost. So Mother is probably just jealous of how smart I am and knocked me on the head.
Oh, did I mention? I’m very dissatisfied with my nickname. I am a boy. Why call me QiQi? Many of the girls in my class are called KiKi. When the teacher yells, I often don’t know who he’s calling.
So one night, I seriously discussed this with my parents.
Mother said that July 7 was the day Father and Mother married. I know it must have been a very happy day, but why should your happiness be built on my pain?
(T/N Qi Qi is 77)
Uncle always said that Mother and Father like to show off their love. Is my nickname just a part of their scheme to show off?
Father originally agreed to change my nickname, but Mother gave him one look, and he immediately backed down. Really, no courage and manliness at all. I was small, so I knew I couldn’t win against Mother in a fight, but Father’s so big, why can’t he…stand his ground.
I asked my grandparents to complain on my behalf, but Grandpa always listens to Grandma, and Grandma would never take my complaints seriously.
But I know my Mother’s nemesis: my Mother’s Mother, my very dear Grandmother. Grandmother doesn’t live in the city, but every once in a while she would visit us, sometimes with Grandfather, sometimes alone.
I was Grandmother’s favorite, so I plan to ask her for help. I poured a glass of mild then went to my Grandmother’s room.
“QiQi, ah, good boy.” Grandmother happily patted my head.
“Grandma, can you not call me QiQi, but Yang Yang instead? QiQi sounds like a girl’s name. My classmates often laugh at me.” I took this opportunity to say.
“Alright, I won’t call you QiQi in the future, I’ll call you Yang Yang.” Sure enough, Grandmother is the best person to ask.
“Grandmother is the best.” I went to the tip of my toes and kissed her. Sister Bell said that old people always cave in with this trick. As long as you kiss them, they’ll promise you anything.
Sure enough, Grandmother smiled so widely and called me a precious treasure.
“Grandmother, you have to go talk to Mother and Father, tell them to call me Yang Yang in the future.” I continued, “They can’t call my QiQi just because they married on July 7.”
“No, your mum and dad married in May.”
“No, May was the wedding, but they got their certificate on July 7.” I remembered this very well, Grandma told me many times.
“You probably remembered wrong, your parents came to visit me then got the certificate after the New Year when they came back here. Then probably in February, your mum got pregnant with you, then got married in May.”
As a child who grew up smarter than others, I wanted to prove to my Grandmother that I remembered correctly. So I went to my parent’s room and took out their little red book. Heh…who asked them to refuse my right to change my nickname every time. I took the book and pointed to the date written.
I handed the red book to my Grandmother who was smiling. I don’t know why, but after she saw the date, her face turned ugly. Is it because Grandmother’s memory wasn’t as good as mine, so she got angry?
I don’t think Grandmother is a happy anymore, so I don’t dare mention my name change again. I went back to my room obediently.
After a while, I heard the sound of Mother’s high heels, signaling her return home. I was worried that Mother would find out that I had upset Grandmother. But suddenly, I heard Mother cry out in pain. I was curious, so I peeked out the door and saw my Grandmother fiercely pinching Mother’s ear, and Mother screaming and screaming.
“Say…what exactly happened between you and Xia Feng?” Grandmother threw the little red book at the table.
It seems I did something wrong, although I don’t know what it is that I did.
“Mom, mom, I was wrong, I’ll explian…ah, ow, ow, ow…”
I head Mother’s anguished cries and stealthily took out my cell phone to call Father.
“QiQi, what’s wrong? Do you have a question for dad?”
“Father, come back soon. Mother is being beaten up by Grandmother.”
“Grandmother? What’s wrong? ”
“I don’t know. I saw Grandmother pinching Mother’s ear, oh…there’s also a little red book on the table…”
I wasn’t long before Father came back. It was only 8:00, dad had never come back so early before. Even during the time Mother got fierce, when I called Father to complain, he didn’t come back early. This was another bit of proof that Father liked Mother more than me.
I didn’t know what happened after. All I know is that Grandmother was mad for a couple of days, then Mother betrayed Uncle and gave up his address, making Grandmother finally smile.
Speaking of my Uncle, I like him a lot. He’s the only one who would help me deal with Mother when she bullies me.
But whenever Grandmother came to visit, Uncle would disappear. They never showed up in one place at the same time, which makes me upset.
I once eavesdropped on my parents and found out that Grandmother was angry with Uncle because he doesn’t have an aunt for me. It seems that Grandmother prepared lots of aunts at their house, but Uncle doesn’t want to choose one and left home.
Every time I see them talk about this, Mother would always have a happy face: “Oh…how the tables have turned…he’s the one not married…oh, oh, I’m going to get back at him and ask if he’s the one with a hidden disease.”
I didn’t quite understand what she said, so I asked Uncle. After listening to what Mother said, Uncle smiled and kissed my head, then put half a bag of salt in Mother’s favorite soda.
My Grandma and Grandpa knew that Mother and Father are always busy. So they were the ones who would drive me to the various competitions I participated in. Writing, drawing, playing Go, from neighborhood to neighborhood, even to the district competitions, I accidentally took first place in the city children’s calligraphy contest.
At the vehement request of my grandparents, my parents were forced to accompany me to accept the award, saying that they should witness my moment of glory. But actually…I know the award ceremony was on the same day as my grandparents’ elderly dance contest.
It seems that the presenter knew Mother.
Because after I accepted the award, the man kept pulling Mother to chat.
“You’re Fish Jelly, I can’t be mistaken.”
“Yes, that’s me.”
“I don’t know if you still remember me? I called your program once.”
“You’re…a Mr. Strong?”
“You really remember me. All my achievements are thanks to you, ah.”
“Ha ha…I dare not be so presumptuous.”
“Don’t be so shy, if you hadn’t encouraged me to start a business, I would never have been such a successful real estate boss. I listened to your suggestion, and now my sales office is full of beautiful women! Oh, beautiful women with degrees.”
“However the rich have their own rich problems. When I had no money, no one liked me. Now that I have lots, too many people want to date me. But I don’t know which person likes me for me and not my money. Do you have any advice for me?”
“Ha ha ha ha…”
“It’s certainly a conundrum, so I thought of a countermeasure. Every time I go on a date, I go to food stalls with meals that don’t exceed 20 yuan. If a girl can bear with this for a year, then I think they might like me for real…”
“Has that worked out for you?”
“See that long-legged beauty over there? That’s my tenth girlfriend. I like her a lot, I hope she can hold on…”
“Ha ha…I wish for your success.”
“By the way…I recently opened a new apartment building in the suburbs, magnificent views. I’m planning on building a few villas, and I wanted to give you one, ah.”
“Oh my, that’s too expensive to give away…”
“Without your help, the billions of yuan that were used to build it wouldn’t even have existed. The whole property is mine anyway, what’s a single villa…”
Anyway, in the end, our family didn’t live in the villa.
In 2017, I was in primary school. Many of my classmates were worried about their Mothers having a second child because it would mean their status in the family as the spoiled child wouldn’t be guaranteed. I don’t worry about such things though.
This was because my Grandmother often talks about how Mother is always so busy, how it wasn’t easy to give birth to me.
But one day, Father happily ran home and told Mother that his experiment was successful, how he wouldn’t be so busy in the future.
Was having a second child so important that even Father, who seldom comes home even when I get sick, actually decided to stop working?
It didn’t take long before our family went abroad.
Mother said that Father was getting an amazing award that could save a lot of people. So our family was going overseas to accept the award.
It’s really too unfair. I won so many awards, yet it was always my grandparents who came with me to receive the trophies. My Father only one a single award after so long, yet we needed to dress up specially.
When Father took the prize, Mother cried so hard her eyes turned red.
Later, when we returned to the hotel, Mother was still crying while she hugged Father. I’ve never seen Mother cry so much, she’s been crying longer than any of my female classmates.
As a man, my grandparents and Father taught me to be considerate to girls, so I went over and tugged at Mother’s sleeve.
“QiQi?” Mother finally looked at me.
“Don’t cry, I’ll agree and let you regenerate another one.” I said, helpless.
(T/N He uses the word (再生) which means to regenerate or to be reborn. I’m guessing child + genius = weird idea of how babies come about)
“What? regenerate?” Mother was supposed to be happy now…I’m going to have to say it again…
“You can make a brother or sister…whatever you want,” I repeated, promising: “I won’t be jealous of them.”
I thought Mother would be happy, but the result was a slap on the head.
I was exasperated. Women are so fickle, hitting people whether they’re happy or unhappy, ah.
However, Aunt Xiaoyue always did say: the words of men can never be fully believed. Just look at Father, he clearly said he wouldn’t be so busy. And I even agreed on a second child because of this! But he still stays out all day.
But at least he was still in the same city. Mother would bring me to find him in his labs to get dinner. Now, I don’t even know which country Father is in. I can only see him on TV, like Mother.
He brings me gifts every time he comes back, but now I have to help Father take care of the balcony plants. The bright flowers were Mother’s favorites, why should I have to take care of it? But I still do it in the end.
And summer was the worst. There are so many mosquitoes, I already have so many bites. I also have to check the weather forecast every day before school. When I see rain, I have to open the canopy.
Once I went to a summer camp, just for one week. When I got home, all the flowers were half dead. Mother actually video called Father to cry about it.
I knew I shouldn’t have let Mother water the flowers, maybe they wouldn’t have gotten so withered then.
“Don’t be sad, I’ll be back after this lecture. Let’s go buy a house with a yard when I come home and plant lots of flowers, even your favorite ivy.” Father was busy comforting Mother.
“You still remember.”
“I remember everything I ever promised you.”
“Then come back soon.”
I really wanted to tell them that we millennials don’t act so embarrassingly lovey-dovey anymore.