Chapter 13 – Inquiry

 

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Li Man returned to the West house. She wanted to take a nap at noon, but her quilt was still basking in the sun.

[Oh yeah, are there any needles or thread in this house? Forget it, I’ll wait for the older brothers to leave, and then I’ll go ask the little one.]

So Li Man didn’t do anything, she didn’t dare to wander around in the yard. She sat down and played with her hair.

_____

After Li Xiaowu brought Li Man to the West house, he returned to the kitchen.

Upon returning, Li Shu patted his head and asked him up front. “What is she doing?”

“Sitting.” Li Xiaowu replied tilting his head.

“Sitting?” Li Shu was puzzled, “Hasn’t she done anything else?” For example, has she secretly inquired about any of us? Like who she thinks is the best looking in the family?

Li Xiaowu shook his head. When he left, Li Man was just sitting on her bed.

“Then go find out.” Li Shu encouraged his younger brother.

“Li Shu.” Li Mo looked sullenly at Li Shu. “Don’t always make Xiaowu do such things. There is nothing left to ask that woman.”

“Big brother, she is also my wife.” Li Shu was not satisfied.

Li Mo rubbed Dahei’s large furry black head and fed it the remaining fish bones. He listened to his brother and looked up to warn him, “Until she is willing, she is not our wife, you should not act with a crooked mind.”

Lee Yan finished washing the bowls and chopsticks. He wiped his hands, patted Li Shu’s shoulder and earnestly said, “Listen to big brother.”

“I just want to know what she’s doing?” Li Shu felt wronged. “Don’t you care about her?

“Well… come with me to the fish pond, let’s go fishing this afternoon.” Li Yan replied.

Li Shu shouted, “Oh, good! Xiaowu, want to come with us? I’ll pick a few muddy games for you.”

“Oh!” Li Xiaowu excitedly clapped his hands, but he shook his head in a blink of an eye. “I won’t go, third brother will be enough help. I’ll stay home.”

“Why don’t you come? Didn’t you like to play these past years?” Li Shu was baffled.

Li Yan understood where the little guy’s mind was set, “Forget it, let Xiaowu stay at home, he and the woman will be fine.”

In the end, Li Xiaowu was left at home, and the three brothers went out to work again.

Li Man did not expect to fall asleep. She woke up confused. [For how long was I asleep?] She opened her eyes to see Li Xiaowu lying on the door frame, cutely smiling at her.

“What time is it?” She rubbed her eyes and asked, but she quickly remembered that the little guy couldn’t understand her words. So she smiled and waved at him. “Come closer.”

Li Xiaowu’s delicate thin face was handsome but unnaturally pale. Through the pair of his black eyes appeared  his spirit.

Li Man didn’t know whether he was malnourished or ill, but facing him, she began to spread her maternal love without any reason. Seeing that he had entered her room, but did not go any further then the wall just to keep watch over her made her heart soften.

Walking forward, Li Man slightly bent down, rubbed his little head and laughed, “How long have you lying over there? Why didn’t you call me? By the way, do you know if there are any sewing materials at home?”

Knowing he couldn’t understand her. When she finished speaking, she took his little hand and brought him to the yard. She pointed at the sheets and the futon on the wall, and made the gesture of sewing with a needle.

Li Xiaowu was very clever, and he immediately grasped her meaning. He rushed to the East House, and then took out a small basket wich was equipped with needlework, scissors, and a few rags.

“Oh, you’re really quick.” Li Man fondly ruffled his hair.

Li Xiaowu couldn’t hold himself back, and his face lighted up in a full bright smile. When he saw the figure behind Li Man, his smile grew even bigger. “Fourth brother.”


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