Chapter 108 - : Preparing to Build a House
Chapter 108: Preparing to Build a House
Li Gui returned to the village with just one big bag given that she did not have many things to begin with. As soon as she got down the train with the two children, she heard someone calling her. She followed the voice and realized that Qiao Mei had come to pick her up. Li Gui was very shocked to see that and walked over with the two children.
“Qiao Mei, why are you here? It’s such a hot day and furthermore, you’re pregnant. What if something should happen to you.” Li Gui asked nervously when she saw the bicycle next to Qiao Mei.
“It’s fine, I’m in good health. I came by to pick you up.” Qiao Mei lowered her head to look at the two girls beside Li Gui. The older one was still looking at Qiao Mei warily but the younger one did not seem to know anything. She just felt that the person standing in front of her was a beautiful big sister who looked good and whom she liked very much.
Li Gui gave the two children a little push and said, “This is Zhang Qin and Zhang Miao. Both of you, come greet your elder sister.”
Zhang Qin was stunned for a moment before she said awkwardly, “Hello, elder sister.”
As for the younger Zhang Miao, her eyes were filled with innocence. She hid beside her mother’s legs and did not dare to look up at Qiao Mei. This was because back home, her grandmother said that her mother had a daughter in the countryside who looked like a black bear, and that the person was her elder sister. That elder sister was evil and could eat people up, and she would beat people up for no reason.
Of course, the first part of what she said could be considered to be true, but the second part was a lie made up by Old Madam Zhang to scare the child.
“Sigh, this child seems to be afraid of strangers. I’ll give you a ride back, so you don’t do anything.” Li Gui took the luggage that she was holding and placed it onto the bicycle. She then pushed it forward and walked in front while the two little girls followed behind obediently.
When they reached the village, Li Gui started to feel a little uncomfortable. She had not returned for so many years and did not know what the neighbors would say.
As Li Gui’s house in the village had not been built yet, she had to stay at Qiao Mei’s house for a few days. When they entered the house, Qiao Mei brought the three of them to the west room. The east room was Qiao Qiang’s room.
Qiao Mei went to the storeroom to get some fruits and vegetables, as well as took out three taels of meat to prepare a few dishes. Li Gui helped out at the side while Zhang Qin and Zhang Miao tidied up the tables and chairs in the courtyard. There were now three more people in the house, so they had to wipe down the unused furniture and clean them up.
Not long after, the fragrance of food filled the entire house. Zhang Qin and Zhang Miao had never smelled such a nice aroma before. They crouched at the door and stared at the meat in the pot.
“Zhang Qin and Zhang Miao, come over and eat.” Qiao Mei smiled at the two children as she brought out the dishes.
At the dining table, Zhang Qin and Zhang Miao only focused on eating the rice in their bowls and did not dare to reach out to pick up any of the vegetables and side dishes. At the Zhang family’s house, they were not even allowed to eat at the dining table, let alone eat any meat. Just looking at the meat would get them a beating. Qiao Mei’s heart ached when she saw the two children behaving like this and she kept serving food to the three of them.
After dinner, Qiao Mei brought the two children to the courtyard to look at her family’s fruits and livestock. She plucked a bunch of grapes and placed them in Zhang Qin’s hands.
“Bring your sister along to wash them before eating.” Qiao Mei patted Zhang Qin’s head and went into the house.
Li Gui teared up when she saw the scene outside the window. Before this, she had never dared to imagine that her daughter would acknowledge her, nor had she ever thought that Qiao Mei would be nice to the children she had with Zhang Qian.
Qiao Mei took a bunch of grapes that had already been washed and handed them to Li Gui. She said gently, “Try it. These are fresh grapes and they’re very sweet.”
Li Gui quickly took one and tasted it. The grape was plump and juicy and it was very sweet. Qiao Mei took out a cloth bag containing the 150 dollars that the Qiao Gui couple had given her. Li Gui did not know what had transpired but when she saw that Qiao Mei wanted to give her the money, she quickly waved her hands and refused, asking Qiao Mei to take it back.
“Mei Mei, what are you doing, I don’t want money! Take it back quickly!” Li Gui said anxiously.
Qiao Mei placed the cloth bag in her hand and said, “Listen to me. Your house is still occupied by Qiao Gui and Wang Qin, but they gave me 150 dollars, so let’s just take it that they bought that house. I’ve chosen a site for a homestead near my house. You can go and take a look later, it’s not very big though. As for the wood needed to construct the house, I told Uncle Zhao Liang to use the work points to get them. I also bought mud bricks from the other families in the village and I’ve spent 500 dollars so far. Let’s build the house first and we can talk about other things later.”
When Li Gui saw that Qiao Mei had already made all the arrangements for her residence, she was so touched that she did not know what to say. She did not know how to make it up to Qiao Mei for all these years.