Fangirling Chinese Novels

You Are Still Here (原来你还在这里) – Chapter 43 [FINAL]



You’re still written in the scars on my heart.
We’re not broken, just bent. Can we learn to love again?

We began this story exactly two months ago to the date so I thought it fitting to publish the final chapter today. The long epilogue will be coming out this weekend so do stay tuned. Did I mention its monstrous length?

Chapter 43

Yun Jin returned to her home in the county. Her mother’s arrangements had been more or less attended to. They didn’t have many relatives but now that her mother had departed from the world, what did it matter if the funeral was grand or not?

Uncle observed that Yun Jin was not holding up too well and he advised her to rest while he sees to the funeral arrangements. He was absolutely right – Yun Jin was truly weary.

The eve of the funeral, she suddenly thought of some important matters she had to discuss with uncle. He was in the kitchen making a phone call. Yun Jin was wearing home slippers and even when she entered the kitchen, he did not notice her presence.

Uncle was a simple and straightforward man who usually answered his calls in the living room. Most of the time, Yun Jin could make out eighty percent of the conversation. However, here he was speaking in a low voice in a corner. Yun Jin found it highly unusual.

“… Yes, the arrangements are almost complete … No no I still have to thank you … Back in the hospital, if it weren’t for you … She’s holding up well … She doesn’t know … That child is just so stubborn …”

Yun Jin quietly retreated to her bedroom. She knew who was on the other end instinctively. After all these years, she still needed his timely assistance. He had come to her aid, but didn’t want her to find out.

She poured herself a cup of tea and took a sip – there was a touch of sweetness in the otherwise bitter taste. She would not tell Cheng Zheng that she had seen him in the hospital. It was a coincidence on her part really – one day, she had seen him hurrying out of the oncology ward. That very afternoon, the consultant brought news of the vacant room. Since Cheng Zheng didn’t mention it, neither would she.

So this is what it felt like to depend on someone. She had once thought that she didn’t need to rely on anyone but now she finally understood – the more she tried to resolve her issues on her own strength, the more tired she felt under the weight of her burdens. Why should she forsake his genuine concern for her because of her pride? He wasn’t giving her charity; it was simply his way of loving her. In the presence of certain people, she needn’t put on a strong façade.

She finally had a breakthrough.

That night, her uncle summoned her to the living room. When her mother was still alive, their stepfather-stepdaughter relationship was a respectful one although there was a certain formality to it.

Uncle pushed a small box towards her and said “Yun Jin, I know deep down you’ve never truly regarded me as a father. I’ve always wished that you were my own flesh and blood. Now that your mom is no longer around … this is something she left behind. She would want you to have it. Do you remember the old house you lived in when your father was alive? Your mother could never bear to sell it. A few years earlier, she had changed the title deed to your name. It’s yours now. Take it as a token of your parents’ love for you and something for you to remember them by.”

Yun Jin opened the box silently. There was an assortment of things inside – a few pages of document concerning the title deed, her mother’s earrings that she wore on a daily basis, two bank books which amounted to only a few thousands, and many old photographs. There was a family portrait that had been taken when her father was still alive and many photos that depicted her growing up. Most of the photographs had yellowed with age and even had creases at the edges. This was all her mother had.

Yun Jin didn’t cry. She caressed the old photographs gently; she could almost imagine her mother’s lingering warmth on them.

“Do you know, I used to hate you? Despite knowing that my mom made the right decision in choosing to be with you, I simply couldn’t forget about my dad. I hated that you took a portion of her love that was only meant for daddy and me. I even started to give my mom the cold-shoulder … I’m not a good daughter. Maybe I will never be able to call you daddy but there’s still something I have to get off my chest … thank you. For all you’ve done. Whether mom is here or not, you’ll always be family.

When Yun Jin had finished speaking, the man who was more than half a century old started to cry.

After all her mom’s funeral arrangements had been seen to, Yun Jin made her way to her old home. This was where her parents had met and fallen in love. Yun Jin walked over every square foot of the place; she could almost relive the memories they had as a family. Her parents had finally reunited in heaven.

Some of her relatives on her mother’s side still lived in the county. Yun Jin stayed in her mother’s cousin’s place. Although it was a distant relative, his family treated Yun Jin very well and didn’t mind that her mother had only just passed away which was a social taboo for the superstitious crowd. Yun Jin stayed for a few days and she passed every one of it by taking long, lazy naps. When her uncle returned from tending to the fields, he would even play Go with her. She couldn’t remember a more carefree period in her entire existence.

On the last day of her leave, she dragged a reclining chair to the yard. The warm sunshine this winter day was just right. She was only halfway through a romance novel she had found in her cousin’s room when she was overcome with sleepiness. She placed the opened book on her abdomen and shut her eyes. In novels, the rich male lead always had a nasty mother. In this one, the mother had pushed a check towards the pregnant female lead and sneered “Isn’t this what you want? Here’s the money. Leave my son alone.”

That day, she had woken up next to Cheng Zheng and had set about tidying the bedroom and kitchen before making a move. She had not gotten very far when she met the returning Zhang Jin Yin. And just like in the fictional world, Zhang Jin Yin had invited her to her car to “have a chat”.

Her first sentence had been “Yun Jin, I once assumed you were going to be my daughter-in-law …”

The “conversation” would have been more appropriately described as a monologue because Yun Jin remained silent throughout. Zhang Jin Yin wasn’t overbearing; her upbringing had taught her to be cultured and thoughtful so she paid much heed to Yun Jin’s feelings and never went overboard with her words. But Yun Jin knew her past with Xu Zhi Heng and her inability to get pregnant had reached Zhang Jin Yin’s ears. This wasn’t in the least bit unexpected. There were no secrets that could be kept hidden forever. Moreover, Zhang Jin Yin was a powerful person with wide connections.

“I’m just an ordinary mother. I hope you understand.” Zhang Jin Yin sighed.

Yun Jin smiled “You don’t need my understanding because what you’ve recounted are all facts. I know what you mean.” She was grateful to Zhang Jin Yin for not offering her money because then she would’ve felt more ashamed.

“Actually, I’m not forcing you to leave Cheng Zheng. I know my own son. He’s a silly kid; when he’s set his mind on something, nothing can get him to change course. But Yun Jin, even if we were to discount what has happened in the last four years as well as overlook the issue on children, you’ve seen for yourself what it’s like to be together. Neither of you were happy. My only wish is for my son to live a blissful life so let me ask you this, can you guarantee my son’s happiness?”

Yun Jin mulled it over before lifting her head to look Zhang Jin Yin in the eyes “I cannot.”

Just as Yun Jin was about to drift off to sleep under the warm glow of the sun, someone picked up the novel from her abdomen. That same person read the title of the novel aloud in an exaggerated manner “My Sweet Horrible Teenage Years … Tsk Su Yun Jin. What should I say about you? You’ve run all the way here to read such lame stories?”

Yun Jin wasn’t surprised by his abrupt appearance and she calmly reached out to grab her novel back before shutting her eyes again. Cheng Zheng reached out to slap her face repeatedly albeit gently “Stop pretending! Spill, why did you escape to this god-forsaken place?”

Yun Jin swatted his annoying hand away “Then why are you here?”

“I … I’ve come to retrieve what belongs to me. Return me my chain!” He demanded.

“But you gave it to me.” Yun Jin reminded him.

“I don’t care!” This was his typical response whenever he found himself at the losing end of an argument. “What is the meaning of you leaving while I slept? Even if it was an escort, one also has to pay you know!”

Yun Jin sat up lazily “Then how much are you asking for? Your service truly wasn’t worth much.”

Cheng Zheng gritted out through clenched teeth “Whatever. I want you to give me a good reason.”

Yun Jin studied him quietly before turning to walk back into the house. Then, she emerged with a Go set. She placed the board in the middle of the yard before saying “Cheng Zheng, let’s settle everything with this.”

Cheng Zheng stared at her incredulously. Is she insane?  When he observed that Yun Jin wasn’t budging, he realised that she wasn’t joking and he started to bargain “Why can’t we try other things? Say a race? … Come on, I should have some say in this right?”

“You can choose to play, or not.” Yun Jin replied without skipping a beat.

Cheng Zheng hesitated as he weighed his options mentally. “Alright, then I’ll play the black pieces.” Since he couldn’t avoid it, he might as well take every advantage and begin first.

“As you wish. Let’s begin.” Yun Jin seated herself down.

When they were together, he had refused to learn how to play even though Go was a traditional game in his alma mater. Yun Jin was surprised to discover that Cheng Zheng had improved remarkably. Cheng Zheng’s style of play was similar to his character – he was aggressive and he claimed the board section by section. Soon the board was dominated by the black pieces. In contrast, Yun Jin was steady and calm; she didn’t get flustered one bit. She knew that victory was not guaranteed until the game had concluded.

Black had gained 65 pieces and was leading. Cheng Zheng smirked on seeing Yun Jin knit her brows in concentration. She couldn’t have known that he had been studying the game in the past four years and that he was now quite a competent player. So even when the white pieces gained ground at 67, he did not panic. When black countered and rose to 73, Yun Jin couldn’t help but smile in admiration. With victory within grasp, Cheng Zheng tried hard to temp his feelings of complacency. This woman, see if she ever tries to bully me like this again. He looked forward to what she had to say when she lost eventually.

Yun Jin pondered over her subsequent moves carefully and the tide turned. Soon, Cheng Zheng’s pieces became vulnerable on all sides and he started to break out in cold sweat. The more he panicked, the more he couldn’t focus and his winning advantage was slowly but surely whittled down. When white was 94, Yun Jin’s position was unshakable. Cheng Zheng knew that if her 96th piece was put down, most of his black pieces would not survive. So when Yun Jin picked up her 96th piece, he grabbed her hand and pleaded “Wait, this doesn’t count. I made a wrong move earlier.”

Yun Jin smiled gently “Cheng Zheng, be a good sport like a gentleman.”

“I’m no gentleman. Let’s start over.” Since it came to this, he would rather be openly shameless.

Yun Jin couldn’t be bothered with him as she removed his grip with her free hand. The white piece landed on the board and she proclaimed “You’ve lost Cheng Zheng.”

With lightning reflexes, Cheng Zheng messed up the board and demanded “So what if I’ve lost?! You must be joking. How can my future be determined by some stupid game?!”

“Be a good loser. Like I proposed earlier, this game determines everything. You didn’t reject me and played. So, from now on, you’ll be handling all the household chores because I need some time to find a new job.”

Cheng Zheng couldn’t believe his ears. What … what did she say? Did he mishear?

A long while later, Yun Jin heard a strange voice reply enthusiastically “I’ll learn!”

When she rested in his embrace, Yun Jin thought back to the rest of the conversation she had with Zhang Jin Yin “… I cannot. No one can guarantee happiness. But what I can say is, if Cheng Zheng isn’t happy, I’ll hurt even more than you.”

Then, Cheng Zheng broke her reverie as he said slowly “I’ve never regretted parting with you Yun Jin because I believe no matter how far apart we are, I’ll be able to find my way back to you eventually. Su Yun Jin, I’ve finally found you.”

Cheng Zheng didn’t know how long he held her in his arms. Sometime later, they heard children laughing. He looked over and saw a few children, covered half in mud, staring straight at them as they pointed and giggled. It was indeed an uncommon sight for children of the countryside.

“Um … Yun Jin? Can we please get up now? My feet’s kind of numb.” He was still in the same seated position he took while playing chess. Yun Jin got to her feet before offering him a hand “Come, let me bring you to see someone.”

In the doorway of another of Yun Jin’s uncle’s place, Cheng Zheng saw Yun Jin’s great-grandmother once again. It had been many years since that wedding and now she was nearing a hundred although she didn’t look too different. However, her eyesight was now completely gone. She was currently seated on a stool as she felt her way around as she tried to pluck vegetables.

Cheng Zheng suddenly remembered his promise all those years back when he had pretended to be Yun Jin’s boyfriend at her mother’s wedding. He had promised granny that if they were to get married, he would relay the good news to her personally. At this memory, he clutched Yun Jin’s hand more tightly.

Yun Jin pulled gently at him such that he came to squat by her great-grandmother’s knee.

“Granny, I am Yun Jin. Cheng Zheng and I have come to see you.”

Granny halted whatever she was doing as she grinned toothlessly “Yun Jin, you’re here. Your mom was just here earlier.”

“Granny, I am Cheng Zheng. Do you still remember me? I’m the guy who fought the Japanese?” Cheng Zheng asked hopefully with one hand rested on her knee.

Granny racked her brains for a long while “The one who fought the Japanese … Oh you must be our little Yun Jin’s boyfriend.”

“That’s right.” Cheng Zheng didn’t care if granny could see him as he nodded his head vigorously.

Yun Jin chuckled inwardly before saying “Granny, Cheng Zheng and I are together once again.”

Granny resumed her plucking of vegetables as she replied “Haven’t you always been together?”

Both of them stared at her dumbfounded before they gripped each other’s hand in unison “Yes granny, you’re right.”

“When your great-grandfather and I were still young, we always bickered. Now fifty years later, no one argues with me anymore …”

Granny continued to ramble on as the warmth from the setting sun caused Yun Jin to feel drowsy. She rested her head on Cheng Zheng’s shoulder.

We were separated in our youth but thankfully after bumbling around and losing our way, you’re still here.

37 thoughts on “You Are Still Here (原来你还在这里) – Chapter 43 [FINAL]

  1. 😥 😥 😥 😥 It is THE end .. So sad .. At least they are together!!!! Yayyy!! To Yun Jin for not continuing to be stubborn and let Cheng Zheng into her life, FOREVER !!!! And yayyy to Cheng Zheng for not giving up on her and their love !!!! ^.^ !!

    Thanks a lot Yingniang for your translation!! I love your speedy posts!! Ty ty!!

  2. Yingniang thanks for the translations 🙂 hope to see you in other c.novel translation 🙂

    • Hello! Haha thank you for continuing to keep up with the story ^ ^ aww haha while I loved my time here, and I mean it, I can’t cope with school getting busier. Hopefully I can make a reappearance one day but I won’t hold out for that happening 😡

  3. Thank you for your translation, I’ m sad to say good bye to the characters.

    • Me too. I felt bittersweet at the conclusion and felt an emotional jolt when Yun Jin thought ‘We were separated in our youth but thankfully after bumbling around and losing our way, you’re still here.’ The title just becomes that much more meaningful though yes, we all saw it coming a mile away haha.

  4. Ahhh thank goodness! They are finally together. It was still touch and go towards the end but glad they made their way towards each other. Super thanks yingniang for sharing your time and talent!

    • I know right! I loved how Xin Yi Wu teased us even towards the end. I thought the twist on the meeting with Zhang Jin Yin and the consequence of losing the game was really clever. 🙂 Xin Yi Wu has my admiration!

      Thank you for your kind words! 🙂

  5. Gosh, I stared at the screen for so long pondering on what to write. I’ve got mixed emotions at this time. First is happiness that finally Cheng Zheng and Yun Jin are finally together and that Yun Jin wasn’t selfish this time around after her self realization that she won’t be happy without him. And then second, sadness because this is the end. How can it be?!! It’s as if time flew by so fast that I felt we’ve unknowingly reached the ending. So sad! Sad! Sad!😭😞

    Yingniang you have been the best. You inspire me to read more and start writing. I know that is not an easy task specially that you have tons of other things to do. Great job and THANK YOU!!! Here’s 5 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 for U‼️

    Ps: “Stoked for the upcoming epilogue!!”😍

    • Yeah I know right! When I finished the epilogue (a momentous task that), I felt so surreal. Like, how can it be that I began publishing about two months ago?

      You don’t know how much it made my day to know that you’ve been inspired to read more and write. They are two of my favourite hobbies and I know it’s a great privilege to be able to post on this platform. If you’re interested, please feel free to apply to be a translator here (subject to auditions)! Then I can read more wonderful works 😉

      Thank you so much for reading! 🙂

  6. Three cheers for Yingniang! Thank you for spoiling us with your super speedy translations. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel and am sad to part with the characters, but so happy to get a happy and satisfying resolution. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

    • I know many people might not think much about it, but I like that not everything is perfect ie regarding having children. It makes their journey that much more impactful as a reader and it doesn’t feel as fictionalized as when happiness is served on a platter. 😡 But yes when Ju An was no longer in the picture, I knew Cheng Zheng was the only one for her and I’m very glad for their reunion. 🙂

      Thank you for reading!! 🙂

  7. First of all thank you for sharing this wonderful novel with us yingniang you have spoiling us rotten with churning out the chapters at such a bullet speed.

    I’m happy Yun Jin let down her pride and realise all Cheng Zheng has done is a form of love. But by no means is he trying to look down on her.

    I’m sad to see these characters leave our screen but I feel like a proud mother seeing our “children” mature. Haha

    Can’t wait to read the elipogue to have an even better closure to a wonderful ending.

    I hope in the future you’ll decide to share more wonderful translation if time permits. xx

    • Haha thank you for your kind words but I dare not claim all the credit; Peanuts has been a great and much appreciated help 🙂

      Your point on seeing them mature brought to mind that their growth though certainly present, was not too incredulous. I like that they still retained shades of their former self which makes it all the more believable 😉

  8. Yay! Happy ending! Gongxi gongxi gongxi laa.. I love CZ’s words : no matter how far apart we were, i’ll find a way back to you..
    Aiyoooo.. So sweet!

    Thank you so much! Cant wait for your next project! Jiayou!!!

  9. Thank you for the translations! 😀
    I like how the setting was at the countryside : it depicts a warm and relax mood for a sweet ending.
    Can’t wait for the monstrous epilogue 🙂

  10. Thanks for working so hard on this complicated story!!!!! You have done an awesome job!!!!

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this really touching story! I am so glad for the happy ending. Hahaha and just give me a reason keeps playing in my mind too when i was reading it. At the end of the chapter however the lyrics for this song called yu dao (meet) from it started with a kiss ost somehow pops up too. Part of the lyrics ‘Wo men rao le zen me yi quan cai yu dao, wo bi shui dou geng ming bai ni de zhong yao, zen me jiu le, wo jiu jue ding le, ni de shou wo le bu hui fang diao” reminds me so much of cheng zheng’s persistence towards yun jin and how after everything they went through, they finally found each other. Thanks again for finishing this story, the journey was simply amazing and will always be one of those stories that i hold dear 🙂

    • Hello Myohmee!

      Haha lyrics are my go-to brief introduction when I don’t want to give anything away yet feel uninspired in churning out another rhetorical question. I try to refrain from it because too much will be overkill but I thought this was especially fitting with a little tweaking. ^ ^ And since we’re on the topic of suitability, the beginning “Right from the start, you were a thief you stole my heart. And I your willing victim.” really applies to Cheng Zheng doesn’t it!

      I didn’t catch the drama but I went to youtube the song. Thank you for the recommendation! 🙂 For the benefit of other readers who may be interested, I’ve translated the lyrics that Myohmee posted:

      We took a great roundabout to finally meet
      And I, of all people, am aware of your importance
      It’s been such a long time, I’ve decided
      I’ll grab on tightly to your hand and never let go

      Haha do you read Mandarin by any chance? I strongly recommend you to read the original Chinese text if you do! 🙂

      Thank you so much for reading!! 🙂

  12. I keep coming back and re-reading various chapters of this story. It’s very moving and I deeply appreciate your translation so that I could enjoy it.

    • Hello there!

      Not many people comment on YASH threads anymore since the live posting was back in 2014 so it’s always a nice surprise to know I’ve received a new comment. I’m so sorry for the belated response and thank you so so much for reading and commenting. 🙂 It’s very humbling to know that you’ve enjoyed it. I truly appreciate the encouragement, it’s made the experience worthwhile 🙂

  13. really really thank you from the bottom of my heart this story is very emotional and i couldn’t hold my tears back many times thanks a lot for your great translation

  14. Yingniang, thank you so much for your translation. You are very good at it. I hope you get to translate another book again. You have made me very happy with this story. Life is sometimes hard and to read interesting characters makes life bearable. I am very grateful.

  15. I read this & I loved the storyline. Tbh it’s emotionally exhausted because of the characters of Yun Jin & Cheng Zheng. However, it’s great to know they are back together at the end & live a happy life.
    Thank you so much Yingniang for translating this novel. What a great job! Thumbs up for you.
    Now, I’m looking forward for the movie to come out in cinemas next year…

  16. Of the many stories posted here, this is one of my top favourites…….I just like Cheng Zheng and YJ despite the latter’s stubbornness and wilful pride. I think that they are perfect in their imperfections….with hurting each other knowingly and unknowingly……needling the other to get love and attention which CZ inevitably ending up doing umpteenth times.

    CZ has a special place in my heart as he is flawed in that he didnt save himself (as he did get himself a girlfriend and was intimate with XT) whilst wending his way back to YJ. The same way for YJ too as both needed someone to hold them and comfort them in the abyss of loneliness and despair after their breakup…..(hence no surprise He Yi Sheng’s character is much loved by all cos he kept on hoping where there was no hope present)

    Like everyone else, Im so glad that YJ finally emerged from her cocoon to be able to see thru CZ”s actions; helping her parents when they are in need of job, arranging for her mum a place to live out her last days at the hospital, as his way of loving and caring for her.

    Im quite a romantic at heart, thus despite what the doctor told YJ about her not being able to have children in future, the story would have crested its peak if the epilogue included a miracle for both of them, a child as a testimony to the unwavering love CZ has for YJ……….

    The writer seems to have a good grasp of human frailties and weakness in the process of loving!

    Thank you for translating does not adequately covers our joy and delight in being able to read this wonderful love story…..yet this is all I can do and will get more to read this translated work of yours as an expression of my heartfelt thanks. Keep up the good work, yingniang!

  17. I just finished this story last night. It left me with very mixed feelings. I read “wipe clean” first, then “silent separation” and “come and eat, Shan Shan”. The male leads in both “wipe clean” and “Shan Shan” were aggressive, but fit within in the story. C z on the other hand … yikes. I get that he had a hard time getting y j attention, but more than once I wanted to give him a good shake, and tell him that that was bad behavior! Y j wasn’t so good to the people around her, eitheR. Sometimes I thought she needed a good shake too! But then they were apart so long, and finally found a way back to each other. The change for me came when c z broke down and cried. As if to say, he finally realized the consequences of his actions. And y j walked off! Grrrrr. But they had their bittersweet ending ans I am glad.
    Thank you SOOOOOO much for translating!

  18. Pingback: [SPOLIER] For Those Interested in Reading the C-Novels Kris is Adapting in Movies | Exo(tic) Planet

  19. Wooow!!! Those novel took a realistic point of view. There was no prince-charming, the lead characters had their ups and downs, and one can very well relate with them.

    Thank you thank you thank you Yingniang for translating this book^^

  20. has anyone watch the movie? was attached to this ever since i read this translation, but i heard the movie is not too good? someone fill me up with review pls!!

  21. Watched it and it was already one time too many 😡 in the written text, we are privy to their thoughts/emotions so we’re more sympathetic to their plight. However, the movie was too rushed, jumping from one “important” scene to the next. There was poor story development so I don’t feel for any of the characters. In fact since time was such a limiting factor, it would have benefited the movie to drop the accessory characters ie Meng Xue/Song Ming and yes even Yu Hua/Zhou Ziyi/Shen Ju An [which 😦 ] and focus on the central romance instead of being so ambitious and trying to cover all these plot points. The story is much better off as a drama (Wei Wei Yi Xiao Hen Qing Chen anyone?)

  22. Wow I really do admire Cheng Zheng’s love for Yu Jin it’s very rare and the unique ways of loving her . What a great story I loved it .

    Thank you yingniang for translating this novel .:)

  23. 👏👏Bravo Yingniang . You translated this story so beautifully, I marathon through it in 2 days. So glad I stumbled onto your translation only now so need not wait for next installments like many readers. Feel so smug haha.
    The film interpretation didn’t do this story justice and I am so excited that a tv drama is being filmed.
    Your translation read so well especially it’s a labour of love with only the adoration of your readers to encourage you. So proud of you my fellow Singaporean 🙆🏻‍♀️

  24. Despite the twists and turns , the decisions the characters made that i couldn’t support, and the behaviours on display that i couldn’t condone, i still think this novel was good. In truth… truth i don’t know what to say exactly, but I’m glad i finished it. It was a good read.

    Thank you so much Yingniang. Your translations were well thought out and superb. Thanks for seeing it through to the end. Bravo, really. Hope to read another one of your translations soon.

    Xie xie.

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