Fangirling Chinese Novels

Life: A Black and White Film (一生一世,黑白影画) — Chapter 13.1


My apologies ahead of time. I will be absent from the blog for a short while and very likely not replying to comments. I am saying goodbye to my doggie and fur baby of 15 years. Will be back when ready. The next several posts have been pre-scheduled, so you will not miss anything. Cheers all. Every day, remind the ones you love just how much you love them.

Sometimes, the things most taken for granted by ordinary people are some of the most precious and longed-after things to other people.

Chapter 13.1 — The Dream and the Ones in Sleep (1)

At midday this day, while Fu Yiming was sitting beside the sunflower field, contemplating whether he should continue walking forward or simply go back and ask those people who had interrogated Cheng Muyun earlier for a vehicle to use as transportation, Cheng Muyun had already brought his little woman out from that sunflower field that stretched as far as the eye could see. Cheng Muyun wanted to kiss Wen Han.

The person sitting beside the field looked down and searched about everywhere for some pebbles, wanting to throw one over there to disrupt that suggestive scene. Catching sight of him, Wen Han immediately nudged Cheng Muyun away.

Despite never having had a girlfriend due to his dangerous identity, over all these years, there was not much Fu Yiming had not seen before. The look in Wen Han’s eyes as she gazed at Cheng Muyun was even identical to the one his own older sister had once had. However, Wen Han was much luckier, for in a certain sense, she did get to have Cheng Muyun.

Was it because she had a clean background? Or was it for some other reason?

Who knew? Who would even try to delve into this?<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

The ones who like to explore the questions of “Why did you fall in love?” “When did you fall in love?” or “How much can you love?” are all people who have plenty of life to squander away. But for people like them, the things they most lacked were life and time. Nobody understood better than them the deep, profound meaning of “this moment.”

In this moment, if one still possesses living, breathing life, then it is already extremely wonderful.

Anything else remaining that is in addition to being alive is a bonus gift.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.

He did not know what views this man, Cheng Muyun, had on the word “love.”

In Fu Yiming’s eyes, love is a very difficult thing to find, but it is very easily lost. You can never have any way of knowing whether the one you have fallen in love with is an enemy, or perhaps a potential future enemy. Instances are too commonly seen where one moment, you are staying by one another’s side through life and death, and the next moment, life and death have separated you.

At the end of the field, a rundown jeep came chasing toward them. They were the three men and one woman who had the responsibility of surveilling Cheng Muyun. The driver hopped out and, in English, quietly expressed, sorry, the higher-ups had requested that they do this.

Fu Yiming had no real complaints. After all, having a vehicle to take him back was better than walking back.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.

Very soon, the vehicle had driven into a bustling street. Looking out at the people sitting along the side of the street, Cheng Muyun asked Wen Han, “If you were given an entire day, where would you want to go?”

Inside this vehicle, there were four strangers, the ones responsible for monitoring him, and there was also Fu Yiming, who was sitting in the front passenger seat. All of them could hear their dialogue.

“Me?” Wen Han answered softly in Russian, “Kathmandu, I suppose.”

That was the place the two of them had first met. Even though the he in that place had not shown even hints of having any sort of religious convictions and had been very shameless, looking back upon that time now, it seemed that place had actually been the most wonderful.

Whether it was the burning Indian incense, the little inn that hung a small wind chime in its doorway, that small Western restaurant with the awning that leaked rainwater, or that crude henna shop at the corner of the street, it was still so vivid in her memory, even carrying with it the dampness of Nepal’s rainy season.

If time could turn back, she absolutely would not avoid him in that very beginning. They had only ever had that tiny bit of time that was peaceful and calm. She would grasp every minute, every second to try to know and understand him.

Wen Han’s eyes stung slightly, and trying to cover this up, she bowed her head. And then, she heard him chuckle also as he told her in languid and somewhat resigned Russian, “But, whether it is from a time or a distance perspective, there is some difficulty in us going back to Nepal. I must rush back here by noon tomorrow to take part in this grand monastic induction ceremony. How about Varanasi? It only takes one hour to get there.” Completely disregarding the gazes of the three men in the backseat, Cheng Muyun tilted his head to the side so that his warm breath feathered from her forehead to her ear. “In that room that is completely occupied by only one bed, was I not able to make you sufficiently happy?”

From the front passenger seat, furious coughing resounded. Fu Yiming truly had choked on that.

Wen Han, however, could not concern herself that someone had heard. She had utterly lost the awareness that she should blush.

Her eyes were filled only with astonishment. She even forgot to reply and simply made random guesses. Could it be he was going to give her one entire day? That nothing would happen, and it would only be the two of them?

“Go to Varanasi.” Making the decision, Cheng Muyun gave these instructions to the driver of this vehicle.

“I wish you two a pleasant time in the next twenty-four hours.” Directly opening the door, Fu Yiming jumped out of the still-moving vehicle, and in that instant when the driver reflexively decelerated, he took advantage of inertia to back up several steps before coming to a firm stop by the roadside.

After deducting the time that they would be spending on the road, there were already only less than twenty-four hours.

This was perhaps the last bit of time that Cheng Muyun could give her.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.

The jeep hurtled along the entire way.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

It was as if they were racing against the clock to go rescue someone.

Cheng Muyun would only speak when he needed to give directions, instructing the driver in simple words how they should go. Just as he had said, ten years ago, he truly had lived in India for a long period of time, so he was very familiar with each road here. In the end, when she saw a familiar-looking street, she discovered that they really had come back to that very first place they had stayed in when they initially arrived in India.

Hopping out of the vehicle, Cheng Muyun extended his right hand to Wen Han, who was still in the jeep.

The small eateries on both sides, as well as that little yellow dog that meandered back and forth in front of the shop, were all still here… But this thought was actually very silly. It had only been a few short days. Why wouldn’t they be here?

Wen Han stepped out of the jeep and followed him.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

The last time she came here, she had fumblingly found her way to this place based on Cheng Muyun’s description of the surroundings.

At the time, a white-garbed Indian man selling souvenirs in the alley had keenly stood at his doorway and smiled in greeting to Wen Han. Wen Han still remembered that door. Turning her eyes in that direction, she saw that the white-garbed, uncle-like man was sitting inside the shop, dozing.

“What would you like to buy?”<>Please support the original translation at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com 

She shook her head. What would she buy? This was obviously not a vacation. She had even lost her luggage.

“Did you not say you would like to buy incense?”<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

It seemed Cheng Muyun was very much trying to fulfill his duty as a boyfriend. When your girlfriend is in a foreign country and pauses her steps in front of a small shop, you must immediately fish out your wallet and satisfy all her demands. Whether it is jewelry, souvenirs, or even items that are completely unnecessary, you should still buy them all.

Wen Han shook her head once more. “Are we going to your Indian friends’ home to stay the night?” She looked at the metal staircases not far away and also the house after house that rose tightly next to each other.

“If you want to stay there, then we will.”<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

“You have the key?”<>This is an UNAUTHORIZED copy, taken from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com

Cheng Muyun’s gaze fell on Wen Han’s lips, lingering there for several seconds as he gave a mysterious smile. “Is a key such an important thing, my love?”

A giggle spilled out from Wen Han’s lips.<>Please support this translation at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com

He wasn’t going to pry open the door, was he?<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

Fortunately, Cheng Muyun did no such a thing. From a crack at the bottom of the concrete landing, he found the key, and opening the door, he led her into this small, unoccupied home.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.

After exchanging a glance, the four people behind them decided still to follow them inside.

This was, after all, a three-level house. While it was no big deal to stand guard outside for a night, the worry was that they would be unable to totally monitor Cheng Muyun’s every action.

The result when they stepped inside was that they discovered those two people, surprisingly, had gone into the kitchen.

What were they going to do? The way this former Moscow operations team leader did things, was it always this mystifying? Composedly, those four people sat in a circle on the rug, waiting quietly in the living room.

Throwing a glimpse into the living room, Wen Han softly asked, “Are they your people, too?” She did not know what had happened inside that interrogation room and also did not know that Cheng Muyun was already under surveillance.

Cheng Muyun’s smile was a little… strange. “Yes, you could say so, and also, not really.”

She gave an “oh,” and then, in the kitchen, began digging over here and rummaging through there, looking to see what could be used. There were lots of spices, and she needed to one by one open the lids to identify what types there were, which ones she needed, and which ones she did not need.

Cheng Muyun saw that she had pulled out many spices and also tomatoes and carrots. Picking up a tomato, he weighed it in his hand. “You want to cook?”

“Mm-hmm.”<>This is an UNAUTHORIZED copy, taken from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com

“Do not bother going to such trouble. We can go anywhere to have some good food.”

Wen Han put the last of the vegetables that she had found onto the concrete countertop. “But I don’t want to go that far.” Reaching out her hand, she slowly closed it around Cheng Muyun’s hand. “We would need to spend time finding a restaurant, looking at the menu, and choosing what we want to eat. Those are all such a bother and waste a lot of time. Let me cook for you. That way, you can keep me company in the kitchen.”

Companionship. And in this place that was the kitchen. This was the most normal of everyday life of ordinary people.

It was such that no one would even find this romantic.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com 

But for him, Cheng Muyun, to set down everything and wholly and completely belong only to one person—this was a life he had never before lived.

Seeing the scorching heat in his eyes, Wen Han’s cheeks burned slightly. “You are the first man I have ever had, although I know that’s a little strange coming from someone who grew up in Moscow. But I really just want to spend one most ordinary day with you.” That way, every time she thought back on all of this, it would not simply be a romantic fling and sex, as well as a continuous journey of peril and the heartache of never-ending separation.

The dangerous air that Cheng Muyun emitted had, right now, completely vanished. Bringing his hand onto her shoulder, he took one stride forward. Her back bumped into the concrete counter.

His lips were right above the bridge of her nose, about to make contact.

“So, my love, what would you like to make for your beloved to fill his belly?”

Wen Han wanted to reply that she would leave him in a little bit of suspense, but he had already first sealed her lips in a kiss that was very much not gentle and was actually a little bit rough.

Engaging her tongue directly with his own, he pressed his slender leg against the side of her thigh. His hand glided down until it was below her waist, and with one arm, he lifted her onto the concrete countertop, allowing their eyes to be at the same level. “This morning, before I left that little building, I was wholly regretting things. Why did we have to waste away the entire night’s time last night by being in the cold wind? If I had ended up dead, then those six hours last night would have been so dull and boring.”

After saying this, another vicious, deep kiss came down on her. He was ravaging her.

Silent and direct. Scorching and deep. Her head collided heavily into the corner of a cabinet up above, and she let out a muffled sound. Cheng Muyun cupped the back of her head in his palm, cushioning her head for her and using his rough, burning palm as a barrier between her and the cabinet corner… Wen Han’s mind was in a muddled state. When she was released from his hold, she was breathing heavily, her mouth open wide. With a palm pressed against her chest, she coughed, feeling both embarrassed and wanting to smile.

The blush colouring her cheeks was because the door was not closed at all, and those strangers undoubtedly must have witnessed this entire scene. The smile she wore had come from the bottom of her heart, simply because she wanted to smile.

Cheng Muyun wanted to take things a step further, but she resolutely pushed him away.

She still needed to cook.<>Please support the original translation of this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com 

However, this matter did not go as smoothly as she had imagined. You see, so long as Cheng Muyun was there in the space, she could only prepare things a little at a time. When it was time for everything to be put into the pot, she suggested that he go out to wait. “Look. Your friends are still waiting for you. They must be feeling so awkward, just sitting there and not saying a word.”

Cheng Muyun threw an amused glance outside. He wondered what she would think if he were to tell her that those people were legally carrying guns at their waists, and the instant they detected that he, Cheng Muyun, had any intentions of endangering the safety of society or another person’s life, it was only a matter of the blink of an eye that they would draw their guns and fire directly at his fatal points.

In the end, that large, fragrant pot of red soup, which smelled as if it was rich in flavour and spices, yet was somewhat different from Indian food, actually was a surprise to Cheng Muyun.

“See? You don’t eat meat, and it so happens that there is no beef here, either. There were no beetroots, only tomatoes, but the colour is right.” With her face against the side of his neck, Wen Han softly asked him in Russian, “Do you remember this? Red borsh.” Moscow’s red borsh.

Borsh. Борщ. A very popular soup in Eastern Europe.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com 

Regardless of the number of variations of this soup and how many countries in Eastern Europe it had spread throughout, it was always a thick, bright red soup that brimmed with the rich flavours of spices and onions.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.

Cheng Muyun’s fingers caressed her chin as he gazed upon that steaming, thick, red, vegetable soup.

Ten years.<>Please support the original translation of this story at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com instead

Moscow. It truly was a homeland that left people nostalgic for it.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.

This story was translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the copy is unauthorized and has been taken without consent of the translator.


1 of 1 Prologue
38 of 50 Chapter segments
0 of 1 Epilogue

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15 thoughts on “Life: A Black and White Film (一生一世,黑白影画) — Chapter 13.1

  1. So sorry for the loss of your furry family member.

  2. some wheels, must have to stick around this couple

    take care

  3. So sorry about your loss😔

  4. Sorry for the loss, and thank you for the update

  5. I am sorry for your loss ☹️. Take your time and take care. As always, thank you for the chapter.

  6. Sorry for the loss… RIP🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻.

    Thanks for the chapter and take care! 😘😘😘

  7. Truly sorry for your loss. I understand your feeling as we too lost our furry company of 18 years. It was very hard for the family at that time. She gave us some precious moments in her lifetimes. I pray you will be comforted in your time of grief and loss.

    • It is absolutely heartbreaking. My heart goes out to you for your loss, too.
      Our little doggie came to my right after my mom passed away. His cute little antics brought such healing at the time. Then when I got married and moved out, he came with me. My kids love him, and even though he’s gone, they still say he’s a part of the family, and when we do a “family count” (my son is really into counting right now), they still remind us not to forget to count him.

      Thank you for your kind thoughts.

      • Children have their own way of overcoming grief. What a joy they are! I love children, my own and others. 🙂

        Since our dog passed on, we have not thought to get another as replacement. She is still very much a part of our memories. 🙂 We watched her grow from a new born pup to full grown adulthood.

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