Fanatical

Fangirling Chinese Novels

The Road Home (归路) — Chapter 35

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Please stay safe, everyone, and take care of yourself. There are no riches greater than health.

Yay! There is no fanfare, but the sweetness still is evident in a mundane way. And I love how precocious Qin Xiaonan is.

Chapter 35 — Loyalty and Faith (3)

This story was translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only. All forms of reproduction, redistribution, or re-posting are not authorized. 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.

 

That night, when Lu Yanchen was packing Elder Shen’s belongings, his fingers brushed over the touchpad of that laptop computer. A password had not been set for the computer. Once the blue screen disappeared, what popped up was that American television series targeted to young people, which had been paused last night. All the emotions that he had repressed the entire day now swelled upwards, but he had no outlet to release them. So, yanking over a chair, he sat down in front of the desk and, in silence, watched that television series for most of the night.

On this journey back, he first travelled by car, then took a plane before finally, after landing, delivering Elder Shen’s body.

A leading officer from the military base was present, and after a brief exchange with Lu Yanchen, he handed over a document envelope that contained what Lu Yanchen would need to complete the marriage registration process.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com.com only 

Gui Xiao’s father was in a spot not far away, offering his condolences to Elder Shen’s family members. Normally, as Lu Yanchen was not a family member and was merely escorting the body back and there were also several levels of leadership between himself and Gui Xiao’s father, there should have been no opportunity for interaction between them.

However, prior to stepping in through the glass doors, he still brought his gaze onto Gui Yuanshan another time, since, after all, he was marrying the man’s daughter today.

Gui Yuanshan seemed to detect this, and lifting his eyes, he cast a glance at Lu Yanchen.

“I never would have thought that the one you’re marrying is my old superior’s daughter.” Smiling, Lu Yanchen’s direct supervisor gave a pat to Lu Yanchen’s shoulder. “Go now. The car is waiting outside. There are no issues from your father-in-law’s side. He signed off on the approval himself.”

This was something Lu Yanchen had not expected. Gui Xiao must have done or said some things in this period when he was away.

But presently he had no time to mull over those. The most pressing matter at hand was to hurry to the Civil Affairs Bureau and register their marriage.

Gui Xiao was still waiting for him.

<>The translator would sincerely appreciate it if you would read this translation only at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the actual site of posting. Thank you.

Gui Xiao had arrived very early.

Ever since becoming pregnant, she had not dared to drive anymore. Today she had taken a taxi here.

This July weather was so hot it left people seeing stars. At first Gui Xiao had had lots of perseverance and stood outside, feeling that she absolutely needed to wait for him at the entrance and walk in together with him through those large glass doors in order for there to be commemorative significance. Alas, sweat continuously formed on her, and unable to bear it, she went inside to let the air conditioning blow on her. There she waited from when there were still other people around to when there was no one, until at last, aside from the staff and the security guard, only she remained.

With one hand on her slightly protruding belly, she looked outside, then glanced at her watch. The minute and second hands were ticking along. Five o’clock was quickly approaching.

Over at the table for premarital medical check-ups, two older women were starting to pack up…

Gui Xiao slowly spun her thermal mug in her hands, waiting. When she glimpsed a vehicle pulling over on the side of the road, her heart abruptly soared. The vehicle’s door slid open. Lu Yanchen stepped out in a single stride, pulled down the brim of his hat, and lifted his head to look at the sign over the door of the Civil Affairs Bureau. Right after he had confirmed that this was the correct place, Gui Xiao, clothed in a white dress, appeared in his gaze.

He had never told her before that she was most beautiful when she wore white, just like that summer day, when a simple white blouse had already sufficiently set off her beauty.

As he had been escorting back Elder Shen’s body, Lu Yanchen’s attire was quite proper and formal. His jacket in his hand, he had only, in just a few strides, stepped in through the main entrance before Gui Xiao was slipping her arm through his. She murmured, “Good thing you came. Otherwise it would have been so humiliating if I had to leave all sad and alone when everyone was getting off work.” This figure that he had not seen for several months was now so near him. Everywhere around him was her scent.

Lu Yanchen took off his hat and handed to Gui Xiao the envelope containing his documents. “I ran into your dad.”

“Oh.” She grinned, “No need to be scared. I took care of him. Hurry up.”

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com.com only 

The two stepped up to the counter. The older woman in charge of doing the registration process was already waiting impatiently and kept reproaching Lu Yanchen for Gui Xiao. “Your wife sat there for three hours, and what’s more, she’s expecting. If it weren’t for the fact that I saw how hard it was for her to wait like that, I should just make you stand outside the door and learn a lesson. You’re getting married. How can you not even show that you care?”

Gui Xiao was already over the moon with happiness from seeing him, and now that someone who was not clear on the situation was helping her chastise him, she even more so was unable contain her wide smile. Opening her own document envelope as well as his, she poured out their contents and slid those forward. “He’s on assignment and is getting a hard-to-come-by chance to come home.”

The woman took a look at the cover of his document folder and also his personal details and profile, and then she comprehended.

The staff at the Civil Affairs Bureau would be getting off work in another half an hour. They became the last couple today to go through the registration process.

All the people involved in the process keenly led the way for the two and, after bringing them up onto the platform, got ready to take the marriage photograph for them.

Gui Xiao tucked herself a little closer to him again. When she touched her hand to his right one, he immediately folded it into his palm, holding it tight. In passing, he rubbed the back of his hand against her protruding belly. This was Gui Xiao, the girl who was always on his heart and mind, the one who was carrying his child.

The shutter button was pressed. A little stack of photographs was brought out. In the photo were he, dressed in a deep-green camo vest, and she, clothed in a white dress.

While Gui Xiao was holding it in her hands, looking it over, a staff member asked them if they wanted to do a premarital medical examination.

Once that person finished asking this question, though, she immediately laughed, “You two already have a baby. You can save this step. It’s not mandatory anyway.”

Gui Xiao shook her head. “Yes, we need to do it! He needs to do it.”

She pointed at Lu Yanchen. This was the one and only time she would ever be getting married. Of course she wanted the “whole meal deal.” If not, she wouldn’t have the chance again in the future.

Smiling, that person handed her two forms and told the two of them to head straight upstairs.

<>Please support the translation by only reading it at its actual site of posting, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com.  Thank you.

For the premarital medical examination, the man and woman were sent into separate rooms and assigned a male and female doctor, respectively. When the female doctor saw that Gui Xiao was pregnant, she only did a few simple checks on her and then let her go. As for Lu Yanchen, in order to satisfy Gui Xiao’s thirst for knowledge, he also stepped into the room, with Gui Xiao’s stare following him.

Sitting on a white wooden bench, Gui Xiao rummaged through her bag for the yogurt that she wanted to drink. The laboratory test results had already been placed into the little plastic basket on the windowsill. She stabbed a straw into the box of yogurt and went to look at the lab results. Mainly she looked over Lu Yanchen’s, and after finding that there were no issues, her mind was set at ease. That door was still closed. It seemed she would need to wait for another while.

As she roved around, Gui Xiao’s eyes skimmed over the posters taped up in this second-floor hallway.

The room farthest down the hall was dark, with no one in it, but a video was still playing inside. She selected a chair in the very centre, sat down, and began to watch in earnestness. It was an animated film, The Journey of Life, and the picture that was showing depicted something along the lines of a tadpole looking for its mama… When Lu Yanchen found his way to where she was, this animated documentary had just reached its end, so he could not tell what Gui Xiao had been watching. However, his eyes landed on the dozens of boxes of Durex on the cabinet next to him, and he therefore conjectured that this room must be for pre-marriage sex education for soon-to-be married couples.

Seeing that he was out, Gui Xiao walked up to him. “What did you get checked?”

“Just a general medical check and an external examination.”

“Anything else?”

“No.”

Gui Xiao stared dubiously at his eyes, trying to see if he was fibbing. “I read online that they check to see if there are any issues with that part of yours… Did you get it checked?” Reportedly, they even needed to do stuff like measure the length, examine the outer appearance, determine if there were any defects, etc.…

Merely thinking about this made her want to laugh…

Ignoring her, Lu Yanchen grabbed the blood test results and meticulously looked over every item on hers. Though he knew the things tested in the blood work here were simple and there was not much value in referencing them, he still carefully read it all once through.

“Did you get it checked?” Gui Xiao would not let him off the hook.

“No.” Lu Yanchen folded up the results papers and slipped them into his pocket, planning on going online and doing some research when he got home.

Still not believing him, Gui Xiao threw a sideways look at him.

Lu Yanchen returned her gaze. He had known she would want to press him for any insight or knowledge that he had gained from this experience. Alas, he did not fulfill her wish. “When the doctor saw that you’re pregnant, he asked what I even needed to check. I said, ‘My wife has always been full of curiosity ever since she was young, and she said I have to come in.’ Didn’t get checked. Just chatted in there for a bit.”

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com.com only 

✻ ✻ ✻ ✻ ✻

<>Your support by reading this story only at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the actual site of posting, would be greatly and sincerely appreciated. Thank you.

By the time everything was done, it was already five o’clock.

They literally became the last husband-and-wife couple today to complete their marriage registration. A staff member handed their marriage certificate booklets into her hands—brand new, hot off the press.

She ran the pads of her fingers over the gold words written on one of them, then touched the national emblem. A sudden, inexplicable feeling rose in her that this national emblem and the row of words “People’s Republic of China” written over top of it in a slight arc matched his occupation especially well.

Chinese marriage certificate

In reality, every person’s marriage certificate comes from the same template. However, she still thought the one belonging to her and Lu Chen was special.

Watching this silly little action of hers, Lu Yanchen nudged his palm against the back of her head and told her in a low voice, “We’re going now. I still need to make dinner when we get home.”

Giving an answer in agreement, Gui Xiao slipped the marriage certificates into a red envelope that she had prepared ahead of time, then sandwiched that inside a book before finally putting all of it into her backpack-style purse. Then they turned and left.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com.com only 

Prior to boarding the airplane, he had instructed Gui Xiao to prepare and get the ingredients for the dishes that she wanted to eat.

When he arrived at home, he did not delay even a moment and, rolling up his sleeves, went straight into the kitchen. He discovered, however, that there actually was not much stuff inside there at all. That woman who, before he came back, had chattered on every day on the phone that she had a list of more than a hundred dishes that she wanted him to make for her, now, when he had actually returned, ended up unable to bear making him do all that work. Not only was the number of dishes small but the ingredients had also all been washed and pre-cut and put on four plates beside the sink.

Because of her limited skills, the vegetables and meat she had selected were all ones that did not require any technique to cut. Lu Yanchen picked up a few stalks of the garlic chives on the plate and, looking them over carefully, discovered they were not tender. It would seem that sending her to buy groceries by herself did not have very reliable results.

The two of them would just have to make do and eat what they had.

The three dishes and one soup all came out of the pots and pans. After setting the dishes out, he also opened a bottle of baijiu for himself.

Though this wedding-night meal was not sumptuous, its winning point was that Lu Yanchen was the one who cooked it. The grown-woman-and-child pair, whose taste buds had previously been spoiled by Lu Yanchen’s cooking skills for almost half a month, now at last got to enjoy those familiar tastes again, and they were terribly satisfied. Even the broth-like sauce left over from what had once been the dish of garlic chives stir-fried with egg was divided between them and mixed with rice to eat.

Lu Yanchen, in contrast, had not eaten very much. Gui Xiao was not merely unskilled when it came to selecting green vegetables; she also had no concept of how much they reduced in volume once they were stir-fried and cooked through.

The stir-fried vegetables filled only half a plate, so he did not even dare to really pick any up with his chopsticks, for fear she would not have enough to eat.

<>Please support this translation by only reading it at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, its actual site of posting. This would be greatly appreciated by the translator.

As Lu Yanchen took small sips of his baijiu, his gaze never left her, inconspicuously taking in her every movement. Gui Xiao nudged the plate of guo bao rou right up in front of him, feeling a little guilty. “… It’s the last piece. Saved it for you.”

Guo bao rou is a type of sweet and sour pork dish, but with roots from Northeast (Dongbei) China. (Image credit: Baidu Baike)

Lu Yanchen poured for himself his umpteenth cup of baijiu, saying, “If you want to eat it, then eat it yourself. If you don’t want to eat it, toss it out.”

“Ungrateful,” she muttered, as under the table she stepped on the back of his foot. “Then I’m going to have it now, ’kay?”

“Mm.”

Qin Xiaonan continued burying his head and shovelling down his rice mixed with garlic-chive broth, not uttering even half of an unnecessary word. Actually, the boy missed Lu Yanchen, too, but once he thought of the fact that this man would be leaving tomorrow, he truly did not want to disturb these two for even one second.

When Qin Xiaonan finished eating, he disappeared from there without any prompting.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com.com only 

Lu Yanchen’s alcohol tolerance had always been quite good. He simply did not drink very often.

Tonight he had let loose, but still he only consumed until he was half drunk since, after all, he did have to fly out tomorrow and could not hold up proper matters. Seeing that Gui Xiao had eaten until her heart was content, he rose and began tidying away the dishes. After washing and scrubbing until the kitchen was clean, he finally took out from his backpack the seven little clay dolls that he had brought back from the South, went to the study, and one by one set them neatly onto the shelf.

Gui Xiao trailed after him. Wherever he went, she would go as well.

While he arranged the dolls, she leaned against the bookcase and watched him.

“What did you say to your dad?” He straightened the hat of the last doll before asking this.

Gui Xiao recollected, “The general idea was that I told him, don’t think that Lu Chen is scheming to get something from me. Even though I’m the one who bought the house, in this more than half a year that he and I have been together, he’s lived in the place for a total of less than two weeks. And even though I’m also the one who bought the car, he has only done some maintenance work on it for me twice and hasn’t even really driven it… The only thing Lu Chen wants is me, the person. And that’s been true since we were young.” She had said a lot of other stuff, but she did not want to repeat those. Time was precious; she did not want to waste it on that.

Gui Xiao touched her hand to his chin. His stubble that poked through scratched across the pads of her fingers.

Slowly, Lu Yanchen captured that hand of hers into his own, brought his head down, and kissed her palm. Then he lifted his gaze slightly to let it fall on her lips. Gui Xiao unconsciously leaned forward, bringing herself a little closer to him.

His kiss landed on her lips. To say he felt as if a lifetime had passed already would not at all be an exaggeration.

This person whom he had not seen nor held in his arms for three to four months was now so close, was right in front of him. Control over the kiss was completely lost. Their tongues entwined passionately. All he could think of was scene after scene of the times when they had engaged in the closest form of intimacy between a man and a woman. So, without a word, he pulled open her garments and placed kisses onto her from top to bottom. Gui Xiao’s back was against the shelves, and a flush rapidly rose into her ears and cheeks…

When Lu Yanchen brought his head back up again, Gui Xiao gazed for a while at him with eyes that seemed as if they held pools of moisture. Then burrowing her head against his chest, she used the material of his shirt to nuzzle her own cheek.

Sensing no movement from him for a long time, Gui Xiao tilted her face up. Her gaze collided once more with his, those eyes of his able to sweep her soul into a reverie.

She murmured, “Tonight is special. We can’t really do it, but we can still do a bit of other stuff…”

Lu Yanchen was looking at her so very carefully, as if he wanted to inscribe her into his bones and meld her into his blood.

In the end he noiselessly picked her up into his arms.

The two stepped out of the study, through the living room, up the stairs, and into the bedroom. In this short distance, he had already contemplated through the ways and techniques that he would use in a moment to enjoy some tenderness with her on the bed.

And also, he had already determined at what time he would need to leave here tomorrow morning.

This story was translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only. All forms of reproduction, redistribution, or re-posting are not authorized. 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.

 

Completed:
1 of 1 Prologue
35 of 43 Chapters
0 of 1 Epilogues

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12 thoughts on “The Road Home (归路) — Chapter 35

  1. Lu Yanchen and Gui xiao 💗💗💗

  2. Thanks Hoju..
    Congrats newlyweds GXiao Lu Chen💞💞
    GX already 4++ months pregnant
    She already past her first trimester..and safe for doing that too.

  3. Thank you for the update Hoju….

  4. hmmm… Another sweet chapter. Thank you!

  5. LYC no longer allows GX to be a virtuous wife in the kitchen if possible XD
    thank you

  6. Congratulations! Actually, all of MBFB novel, they are my favourite couple along with Ji Yi and Ji chengyang!

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