Fields Of Gold / Fields of Gold Chapter 493
The wet nurse came in holding Fang Haolin, who was wearing so many clothes that he resembled a little ball. When the little kid saw his older sister, he struggled to be put down. As soon as he reached the ground, he staggered over to Xiaocao like a fat little ball.
Xiaocao stepped forward a couple of steps to support him and lifted him up with a bit of effort. When Zhu Junyang saw her struggling, his eyebrows slightly furrowed and he reached out to grab Little Linlin instead.
Fang Haolin had just been able to snuggle into his older sister’s warm and fragrant arms. Before he could enjoy the feeling and grin happily, he was suddenly taken out of his sister’s arms and held by another person. He stupidly raised his head and saw Royal Prince Yang’s cold and indifferent face. The little boy’s face immediately creased.
“You’re not allowed to cry!” Zhu Junyang truly was the stuff of nightmares for little children. After hearing the youth’s soft reprimand, Little Linlin’s eyes filled up with tears but not a single one dripped down. He had a wronged expression on his face that was enough to melt anyone’s heart.
Zhu Junyang looked at the little fellow’s adorable manner and suddenly the thought came up into his mind whether his future children with Xiaocao would be as cute. Would they also be chubby and soft and so adorable that you didn’t dare to make them sad? His voice softened perceptively as he explained, “Your older sister is too skinny and is unable to support your weight. You’re a boy and in the future you need to protect your older sister, so you can’t just start crying for any old reason.”
Fang Haolin nodded as if he didn’t quite understand the youth’s words and then turned his head around to see his father and mother smiling at him. He hurriedly reached out his hands. His eyes had a look of yearning in them as he stared at his parents——this uncle is too scary, save me soon!
Fang Zizhen noticed that his son looked a bit wilted and grinned foolishly at the side. He even said to his wife, “Have Junyang continue to hold him ah! In the future, Lin’er will become a general and he can’t be too cowardly. The more time he spends with Junyang, the more he can practice!” Was this something a biological father should be saying?
Fang Zizhen turned towards Xiaocao and had a completely different reaction, “Cao’er, it’s cold outside so you need to wear more. Otherwise, you might get chilled! In a bit, when you go look at the colored lanterns, there will be a lot of people so all of you servants need to be careful and make sure to protect your young miss. Prevent her from being squeezed through the crowd. Do you all hear me?”
Fang Haolin’s inner thoughts: ‘Linlin was picked up at the side of the road, only Older Sister is their biological daughter…Linlin wants to leave home and find my true biological parents!’ The little fellow hung his head down dispiritedly and was resigned to his fate being carried by his future brother-in-law. He looked withered and would, from time to time, glance at his older sister in a pathetic manner.
Fortunately, when they left, his older sister spent the entire time next to his future brother-in-law who had an icy cold face. With his older sister by his side, Fang Haolin very quickly stopped being unhappy and regained his cheerfulness.
Dazzling lanterns filled the sky and people wound through them like the tide. The streets were illuminated brightly by the lights and citizens of all ages, men and women, old and young, young matrons leading their children, were in the streets calling merrily to their friends. Zhu Junyang was afraid that Xiaocao would be squeezed unceremoniously by the giant crowd, so he used his strength to boost Fang Haolin onto his shoulders. He left one hand to support the little boy’s legs while he used his other arm to monopolize Xiaocao. When people squeezed by, he pulled Xiaocao towards his chest and tightly protected her.
This was the first time Fang Haolin had ever been up so high. He was stunned for a moment before he became excited. He observed everything from high above and saw people below him who were shorter than him by a head and the bright and colorful beautiful lanterns in the not far distance. Sweet lisps of laughter burst from his lips and occasionally he would let out a few screams in delight.
The whole family walked together at first. As more and more people filled the streets, they were slowly separated from each other. Fortunately, none of them were far from the others. With Fang Haolin high above the crowd and also letting out a few squeals of excitement here and there, no one in their group was lost from the others.
The shops on both sides of the streets had been open since the fifth day after the New Years. In order to attract customers, all of the stalls were decorated festively and almost every single one of them had colored lanterns hanging in the front. The types and variety of lanterns in front of the stores seemed to advertise their popularity and wares to the people. Thus, all of the shopkeepers did their best to get their hands on the most beautiful and interesting lanterns. There were lanterns shaped like flowers, birds, fish, and people. They were all painted bright colors, such as red, yellow, green, blue, purple, and bright white. It made a gorgeous and bewitching sight.
Some lanterns were large, others were small, some were shaped like rectangles, while others were round…many different shapes were available. Red ones, yellow ones, green ones, purple ones…the colors were unmatched and brilliant. There were silk lanterns, paper lanterns, glass lanterns, bamboo lanterns…multitudes of materials were used. The most beautiful lanterns were the ones that were crafted from the Imperial Palace. There was one shaped like two dragons holding a bright pearl, one shaped like the fortuitous three goats, one shaped like the four auspicious flowers of the seasons, one shaped as the five blessed and lucky bats, one shaped as the eight immortals crossing the sea…they were made so beautifully that they looked realistic and made people gape in admiration.
With Zhu Junyang as her escort, Yu Xiaocao was always able to stand in the spot that was best for admiring the lights. She felt like she was almost lost in the beauty of the lanterns.
What Fang Haolin found most interesting were the lanterns that the other children were holding. Even though their hands had turned red from the cold, their noses had mucus dripping down, and their heads were covered with snow, those children were still incredibly happy to have a lantern on hand.
“Fish, horse, rabbit…” Fang Haolin pointed out the types of lanterns each child was holding. Yu Xiaocao also looked towards where he was pointing and watched as the small children played with their lanterns and sang nursery rhymes cheerfully. In the festive atmosphere, the pure and innocent smiles of the children seemed incredibly precious.
The children who didn’t have lanterns in their hands stood in front of the stalls selling lanterns, looking at them pitifully. Towards the end of the New Years celebrations, any family that had a bit of spare cash on hand couldn’t resist fulfilling their children’s wishes to have a lantern. Even being given the most crude paper lanterns would cause a child to smile broadly.
They stopped in front of a shop selling various lanterns. Yu Xiaocao looked over the variety of wares being sold there. The simplest lanterns had a bamboo skeleton that had white paper pasted over. These came in shapes of the twelve animals from the zodiac, such as rooster, horse, ox, sheep…the entire roster was there. The ones that the children liked the most were the lanterns that had wheels on them, such as the horse, sheep and rabbit lanterns…as such, these were more expensive. Whichever child had a lantern in wheels on it would always have a bunch of his or her friends behind, looking at it enviously. Those children were incredibly proud and happy as they strode forward with their wheeled lantern.
“This prince will buy whichever lantern that you like!” Zhu Junyang had noticed that the little lass was staring at the children who were pulling along their wheeled lanterns. Didn’t that mean she wanted one?
Yu Xiaocao rolled her eyes at him and said, “I’m not a little child, so how could I shamelessly hold a lantern around? Don’t come up with these silly ideas!”
“Why are these silly ideas? You’re only thirteen and haven’t reached your age of majority, so it’s perfectly fine for you to hold onto a lantern. Do you like the ones with wheels on them? I will buy you one…how about this monkey? Or this dog with its tongue out?” Zhu Junyang enthusiastically helped her to pick lanterns out.
Yu Xiaocao wasn’t very interested but that didn’t mean that Fang Haolin, who was currently being ignored, wasn’t. He pulled on Zhu Junyang’s ears forcefully from side to side and hollered, “Tiny! I want the Tiny lamp!”
From the moment Fang Haolin saw the Yu Family’s pet roe deer, he cried and wailed that he wanted to bring the creature back home. Yu Xiaocao couldn’t bear to let the kid cry during the New Years so she lent Tiny to him for a few days (Author’s note: Hopefully the little roe deer wasn’t too scarred by this). Yu Xiaocao looked over at where the little fellow’s plump hand was pointing and saw a lantern shaped like a deer made out of thin, reinforced paper.
His future younger brother-in-law had spoken. Although Zhu Junyang wasn’t very pleased that the kid was pulling on his ears, he still took out some money to buy the deer-shaped lantern. The little boy held the lantern that was lit up with a candle in his hands and returned to his inquisitive and sweet manner. His dark round eyes stared at the lantern in delight. Because he was young, Fang Zizhen and his wife rarely took him out of the residence. This was the first time he had seen so many people around and so many lights in such a lively setting. The little fellow was incredibly delighted by all of this.
Zhu Junyang persevered until Yu Xiaocao finally picked out a glass lantern that turned to reveal different images of the eight immortals crossing the sea. When the lantern was lit, the contraption turned around and around, showing different types of scenes. There was Han Xiangzi blowing his flute, then there was He Xiangu holding a lotus, and then there was Zhang Guolao riding his donkey…even Fang Haolin, who was on Zhu Junyang’s shoulders, was fascinated by the changing images. He held onto the prince’s head and leaned over to stare at the lantern.
Yu Xiaocao was afraid he might fall down and reached up to let him hold onto the glass lantern. Unfortunately, the little fellow’s hands were too weak to hold onto it so he could only pout unhappily and watch as his older sister held onto the lamp.
However, he was soon distracted by the sugar painting stalls. His older sister had once told him the story of the monkey king, Sun Wukong, wreaking havoc in heaven. Thus, he ended up choosing a sugar painting made in the shape of a monkey. After playing around with it a bit, he finally couldn’t resist the sweet smell of the sugar and bit off the monkey’s head. He chewed noisily on the treat in utter delight.
“You be careful up there. If you get this prince’s hair dirty, your little butt will feel the pain!” Zhu Junyang was somewhat of a clean freak and was slightly disgusted by the little fellow’s saliva. He hurriedly brought the boy down from his shoulders and held him in one arm while the other took the offered handkerchief from Xiaocao. He patiently wiped the saliva that had congealed on Little Linlin’s chin.
The cold and arrogant Royal Prince Yang actually had such a patient side to him. Although his expression looked impatient, his hands were quite gentle. He was like a strict father who treated his kids seriously but still loved them as much as their mother.
In the future, he was probably going to be a good father right? Yu Xiaocao watched their interactions and the dimples on her cheeks became slightly visible.
“Eat…you eat some candy.” After spending an entire evening with him, the little fellow Fang Haolin no longer seemed scared of Zhu Junyang. He presented the sugar painting that didn’t have a head anymore towards the other person’s mouth.
Zhu Junyang dodged the boy’s clumsy attempts and didn’t even bother to hide the disdain in his voice, “Who wants to eat a sugar painting that has your saliva all over it? It’s alright, you can eat it yourself. This prince doesn’t need your good thoughts!”
When Fang Haolin saw that the other person was not grateful for his generous offer of something he really liked, he puffed up his cheeks and took the sugar painting back. With another ‘crunch’, he bit off half of the monkey’s body and noisily chewed on the treat. His saliva continued to drip out of his mouth. Zhu Junyang had a helpless look on his face as he helped to wipe the little boy clean. When had he ever served someone else since he was born? As expected, children were truly annoying!
“Do you want to eat some?” Yu Xiaocao had bought a stick of candied hawthorn fruits and had bitten off half of one fruit. It was so sour that she scrunched up her entire face.
“Eat!” In actuality, Zhu Junyang didn’t like to eat sour foods one bit. However when he saw half of the red fruit with bite marks on it, he stretched out his neck and gobbled up the remaining half. He chewed on it with relish.
“You ate something that has Older Sister’s saliva on it!!” Fang Haolin had an outraged expression on his face. ‘You eat Older Sister’s food but you don’t eat Linlin’s. You’re truly humiliating this baby!!’
Although Zhu Junyang still had his usual frosty expression on his face, he replied in a roguish manner, “This prince just likes to eat your sister’s saliva, okay? Isn’t it right and proper for men to eat a woman’s saliva? Leave your saliva for your future wife to eat!”