Friday, 31 August 2018

VGAFH 52

52.Start the kiln

"Look what you're saying, Sao-zi! You're acting like a stranger!" Hearing these words, Lian Fang Zhou immediately felt bothered. She smiled, "It was hard on you Sao-zi. You should have left more for yourself!"

"It was no trouble, no trouble at all! It what I should do! Haha, us two families are very close. It should like this; you help me, I help you, right?" Mrs. Zhao promptly laughed.

"That's right, it just like that!" Lian Fang Zhou chattered for a while longer before sending Mrs. Zhao out.

When she returned, Third Aunt continued jabbering. "It's actually a whole half! The thigh and the breast are there. Even the blood and organ! That Mrs.  Zhao is smart, to think of the future!"

"Cook the dinner!" Lian Fang Zhou was very helpless. The Third Aunt right now has changed a lot but she still as unbearable as ever.

Third Aunt didn't care about Lian Fang Zhou not responding to her, she mumbled into the kitchen.

Lian Ze's mind was full of Ah Jian's martial art lesson. After dinner, he impatiently looked at Ah Jian.

Ah Jian didn't understand his meaning, instead, he only detected his nod and a slight smile.

Lian Fang Zhou watched with a secret smile.  She suggested, "Ah Jian, after a few days, you should teach Ah Ze. For a specific day, you two should discuss it."

Lian Ze followed with, "How about tomorrow? Tomorrow is good!"

Ah Jian contemplated for a moment, then looked at Lian Fang Zhou. "I'll explain it to him first and make some preparation. In three we'll start?"

"I have no objection. You should do what you need! Take it step by step, don't injure your body!" Lian Fang Zhou replied.

"Don't worry, I'll keep an eye out, definitely won't let Ah Ze get hurt!" Ah Jian grinned.

Lian Fang Zhou nodded with a smile.

Thrilled, Lian Ze rubbed his hands and promised, "Don't worry Sister, I'll be careful! Big Brother Ah Jian you can be more strict, I can take it..."

The next day, they were busy chopping for most of the day and had all the necessary wood cut up.

In the afternoon, Ah Jian, Lian Fang Zhou, and Lian Ze were responsible for cutting the wood that was brought over to the side of the kiln to one-meter length.  After drying them for a few days, they can then load the kiln up and light it up.

After lighting it up, they need to burn a lot of firewood. Aunt Zhang's family is in charge of getting firewood.

Kiln fire is different to a stove fire. It needs long lasting thick firewood.

Fortunately, the mountain doesn't lack them, just need to spend effort.

So they were busy for another two days before they finally loaded the kiln and lit it.

A raging big fire burned in the kiln's oven. From the chimney, plumes of smoke emerged and get scattered by the wind and disappear into the air.

Looking at the continuously emerging and disappearing smoke, everyone was feeling nervous. Because in the end, it has a lot of connection to whether it succeeds or not.

Whether they have a comfortable and warm winter or a chilling wallet-tight winter depend on this.

As long as this one succeed, then they can dig out another three kiln at the side. When the time comes, with four kilns burning at the same time and burn five to six time, they don't have to worry this winter.

"Next the kiln needs to burn strong for the next days and nights. It can't be interrupted in the middle!  How should we work this out? At night we need someone to keep watch to add wood anytime." Lian Fang Zhou explained.

Uncle Li proposed, "It's enough with San Ge and I taking turns. In the day let your Aunt Zhang and Mei Zi come. You siblings must be exhausted from the last few days. Go rest up!"

"How could that do? If this doesn't change, and by chance, you sleepily feed the fire.  Then fire won't burn strong and all our effort is wasted!" Lian Fang Zhou rushed to point out.

Hearing this, Lian Ze followed up, "Sister, how about we do it like this? Ah Jian, Uncle Li, Brother San Ge and I take turns watching the night shift. In the day, you three and Third Aunt take turns.

Everyone considered it. They felt it was pretty good and had no objection and settle like that.

The first night was Ah Jian's and Lian Ze's turn. In Uncle Li's and others' eyes, Ah Jian was an expert. So they did not fight with them over it.

Ah Jian and Lian Ze took a blanket to wrap around with and went early in the evening to the fire. Lian Fang Zhou felt uneasy and went with them.

They didn't need to bring a blanket because with such a big fire burning in the kiln, it can't be cold in the evening.

Not only is it not cold, but because of the high temperature, they can't be near the kiln.

The three of them chose a spot that's convenient to watch the fire and also not too hot.

Lian Ze couldn't help start pestering Ah Jian with questions about learning martial arts.

Lian Fang Zhou laughed as she chided. "You ah! Don't rush, take it slowly! The future days are long, and there are still two days left. The fire still needs to be watched. Today I'm here, so it's fine. But if I weren't here in the future, you guys would be immersed in talking and mess things up! In every matter, you need to able to prioritize!"

Lian Ze heard his sister's words and deep understood that it was very possible and felt fearful.

As he was going to reply, Ah Jian grinned at Lian Fang Zhou. "Not to worry, I'll pay attention! I promise we won't mess things up.  It's rare for him to have such an interest, may as well let him be."

Naturally, Lian Ze loves to, but he was still uneasy. Only when Ah Jian promise it's okay and Sister didn't say anything did he feel a ease.

Since Ah Jian said it like this, Lian Fang Zhou didn't object anymore. The more they chatted, the more enthusiastic. At the start, she found their conversation interesting, but later she was tired. She yawned a few times as her eyelid start to droop. Unconsciously she tucked up by the pile of firewood and fell asleep.

When Lian Fang Zhou woke up, it was in the middle of the night. The cold blue, cloudless sky had numerous thickly dotted stars, creating an astonishing sight as if was a fairyland. After looking at it for so long, she felt as if she forgot where she is.

"You're awake?" A warm, soft voice sounded out. Lian Fang Zhou slightly tilted her head. Ah Jian was shooting a smile at her.

She swept her gaze around and found Lian Ze who fell asleep at some unknown time.

Ah Jian whispered, "Let him sleep. He's exhausted from the last few days. Don't worry; the fire is still strong!"

Lian Fang Zhou couldn't help laugh and whisper back, "It should you who is tired! I'll keep watch for a while and you nap as well."

"No need, I'm not tired" Ah Jian shook his head.

Lian Fang Zhou continued. "How can you not be tired? Even if you aren't tired, you still need to rest. These days you worked harder than us!"

After pausing, she lightly sighed. "It's all thanks to you, or else..."

Ah Jian laughed. "You guys took me in. I'm just doing what can.  I'm not tired at all. Don't worry; if I need to rest, I'll let you know. "

Seeing that he persist in not resting, she could only leave it be. He pondered for a moment. "In that case, then let's talk! What do you think of Ah Ze- Is his physique suitable for learning martial arts?"

"I don't see anything wrong. Since he has the heart and can succeed in learning, then it's good!" Ah Jian glanced over. He paused before continuing. "I can see that he is learning this for you, right? He wants to protect you and also his younger siblings."

Lian Fang Zhou lightly breathed out. "Actually, it's enough that has that heart. Hmph, it's not going to be easy for those who want to bully me!"

Don't know if Ah Jian didn't understand what she said or if he is pretending not to follow; he nodded in agreement: "With me here, you don't have nothing to worry about! Other matters, I don't understand but at least get robbed, or something won't happen."

Lian Fang Zhou burst out laughing. "What you said is pleasing to hear! I think that one day you'll have to leave!"

"You, you're thinking of kicking me again!" Straight away, Ah Jian became agitated.
 
Again? Lian Fang Zhou felt speechless on the inside. Isn't it just not agreeing to him staying at the start?  Thus becoming a bad guy forever?

"That's not it," Lian Fang Zhou quietly said. " You have your own family and own relative. One day you'll remember everything. When you remember, you'll naturally want to leave. Don't even need me to push you out."


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