“Uncle…” As soon as he picked up the call, he heard Tangtang’s sad voice. “Are you free now?”
Yang Chen stunned. “Yes, what is it?”
“I’m at the commercial street beside the crossroad of Third Central Road. Can you come and pick me up?” Tangtang asked.
Yang Chen didn’t know to cry or to laugh. “What show are you putting up now? Did you leave the house again?”
“It’s not like I wanted to do it… Uncle, I’m very cold and don’t have any money with me. Quickly come and save me.”
“You should learn from your mistakes after so many times. Why do you always leave the house without bringing money with you? Also, why did you call me? You should’ve called Yuan Ye!” Yang Chen said, displeased.
Wronged, Tangtang replied, “I… I had a fight with Brother Yuan Ye…”
Yang Chen felt a headache. I thought this kid grew up a bit, I must’ve judged wrongly!
Without any choice, Yang Chen drove out of the house and sped up to the place Tangtang mentioned.
In the cheerful night, both sides of the commercial street were filled with lustrous glimmers. Beside the lively street, Yang Chen saw Tangtang who was standing alone beside a chair and waving at him excitedly.
Although she wore a down coat and had the hood put on her head, under the night of less than zero degree celcius, having sat outside for a long time, she still felt cold.
Seeing Tangtang’s red nose, Yang Chen couldn’t help but to push her forehead with a finger. “Are you addicted to leaving the house already? Haven’t I lectured you not long ago? You have to be appreciative, don’t always think of picking on your mother.”
Pouting, Tangtang said, “Uncle, don’t lecture me for now. I haven’t even had lunch today. My chest is almost touching my back already, bring me to something i can eat first.”
Gloomy, Yang Chen said, “I think I’m not your uncle, but your dad instead.”
“Hehe, I’m fine with that as well, as long as you feed me,” Tangtang said before sticking her tongue out.
Yang Chen felt really helpless towards this odd girl. Looking at the surroundings, he brought Tangtang to the nearest dumpling restaurant from the northeast. At such a chilly night, eating boiling-hot dumplings was considered a good choice.
After the aromatic and white bowl of dumplings was served, Tangtang started chewing away regardless of how hot they were.
Frowning, Yang Chen asked, “Aren’t you afraid of getting burnt?”
As she chewed, Tangtang replied, “It’s best to eat dumplings when they’re still hot, not to mention I’m very hungry now.”
Yang Chen didn’t continue to disturb this kid who had starved for half a day. After waiting for Tangtang to devour the big bowl of dumplings, she burped before he asked, “Tell me, why did you leave the house this time again?”
Tangtang blinked her eyes a few times as she expressed sorrow on her face. “Uncle, you mustn’t know that my dad has been coming to meet my mom these two days for whatever reason, and accused my mom of simply looking for guys. He even said more terrible things after that. My mom got really mad and argued with my dad. At last, the two of them stayed in a bad mood…”
Yang Chen knew that Tangtang’s father was Fang Zhongping, but he didn’t expect him to have such a side. Yang Chen wondered what kind of man Tangtang’s mother found, that she pissed Fang Zhongping this much.
“What does that have to do with you leaving the house?” Yang Chen asked.
Tangtang snorted. “Of course it’s related to me. I live with Mom, once she gets into a bad mood, she’d see me as if I was her enemy. I only made a small joke with her earlier, and she said I acted like my dad who always told nonsense and gave her trouble…”
Frowning, Yang Chen asked, “Can’t you bear with it when your mom isn’t in a good mood?”
“I did, but I can’t always tolerate! I called Brother Yuan Ye after that, he’s now treating my mom better than Aunt Yang, much more intimate than his own mother. I asked him to rescue me, but he suddenly went on my mom’s side, and helped my mom say that I was wrong…” Tangtang explained angrily.
Yang Chen quickly understood the situation. Yuan Ye is really interesting, he’s trying to please his mother-in-law this early in the game.
“So you left the house?” Yang Chen asked with a smile.
“Yeah… I don’t want to see Mom nor do I want to entertain Brother Yuan Ye. All they know is to bully me,” Tangtang said as her eyes got wet. One would feel heartache when her pitiful look was seen.
Yang Chen didn’t know how he could persuade her. After paying the bill, he brought Tangtang and walked around the street.
When they reached the end of the commercial street at a mini park, Tangtang suddenly stopped moving and asked, “Uncle, can we go in and sit there?”
“Are you tired?”
“No, I just want to sit here for a while.”
Yang Chen looked at the time, it was eight o’clock at night, rather early for him to return home. So he agreed on the lost girl’s request and looked for a wooden bench in the park to sit on.
Tangtang moved closer to Yang Chen. Since it was winter, the temperature at night was very low..
Seeing her upsetting look, Yang Chen felt rather compassionate. He removed his coat and put it around Tangtang.
Tangtang immediately rejected, saying, “Uncle, you yourself would catch a cold this way.”
“I won’t catch a cold.” Yang Chen was actually being honest.
“Why won’t you catch a cold?” Tangtang didn’t believe him and pushed the coat back to Yang Chen. Smiling, she said, “Uncle, just let me lean on you. I won’t feel as cold sitting with someone.”
Yang Chen thought for a while and opened his coat wide before using it to cover both his and Tangtang’s body as he allowed her to lean on his shoulder.
Tangtang enjoyed it very much. Leaning her head onto Yang Chen’s shoulder, she yawned.
Smiling bitterly, Yang Chen said, “Kid, you better not fall asleep. You’ll really catch a cold that way.”
“I’m not sleeping for sure, I’m looking at the stars,” Tangtang replied before pouting.
Yang Chen raised his head to look. The sky of tonight was rather clear. Although there weren’t many stars in the galaxy, there were still some scattered around. In the city, such a scene was incredibly rare.
“At such a romantic moment, you’re wasting your time with an old man like me. It should be more appropriate for you to ask Yuan Ye here,” Yang Chen said jokingly.
Tangtang wrinkled her nose and said, “No way, a lover is a lover, and an uncle is an uncle.”
Yang Chen chuckled lightly and kept quiet.
“Uncle, I used to come to this park with Mom often. She wasn’t as busy back then, I haven’t walked here with her for a while already,” Tangtang said softly.
Yang Chen silently lowered his head to look at the girl. No wonder she suddenly said she wanted to sit here for a while.
“How long more do you plan to sit here for? I’ll send you back a short while later,” Yang Chen said.
“No, Uncle, can I stay at your place tonight? I don’t want to go home. I’d get upset when I see Mom,” Tangtang begged.
Yang Chen frowned and sighed. Pointing at the stars in the sky, he said, “Kid, do you know what I always think about when I look at the stars?”
“I think of the term ‘miracle’,” Yang Chen said. “In this vast universe, we humans coincidentally live on this planet called ‘Earth’ out of so many stars. Every one of us is as small as dust when compared to the universe. However, dust like us would still meet in this enormous universe, to become husbands and wives, sons and daughters, teachers and students, friends… Every single relationship between people is a type of miraculous fate. The fact that your mom gave birth to you and you became her daughter cannot be changed nor can it be replicated.
“Think about it, the matter took place despite having such a small possibility. Isn’t this a miracle? You told me you were upset, but just how significant do you feel it is, when it’s put in the scale of the entire universe? Will it be as precious as your relationship with your mom? See yourself less significantly and look at the stars in the sky. Don’t you feel that your behaviour is very childish?”
Tangtang kept quiet. After a long time, embarrassed, she said, “I know that I’m wrong now. Uncle, please send me back then…”
Yang Chen reached his arm out to pat on the girl’s head, saying, “Get up quickly then. I bet your mom is looking for you anxiously now.”
The two stood up from the bench and turned around as they prepared to leave the park. On the small walkway of the park in front, an evidently restless and slender figure walked towards them.
With her long and curly hair stretched to her back, she wore a brown cotton wool coat and a pair of high boots made of sheepskin. Dressed in a stylish manner, the graceful lady with a busty and curvy body arrived in front of the two people.
A familiar, delicate and charming face entered Yang Chen’s vision. She was the lady he met two days ago at the banquet—Tang Wan!
Tang Wan’s face displayed anxiety. When she saw Yang Chen unexpectedly, she stunned for a while. As she felt surprised, she looked down and saw Tangtang who was clinging to Yang Chen.
Having Yang Chen’s coat on her, TangTang leaned closely to Yang Chen. When she saw Tang Wan’s sudden appearance, she panicked for a while. Softly and cowardly, she said, “Mom… why did you come here…”
Yang Chen violently turned his head to look at Tangtang as he suspected that he heard something wrong. However, Tang Wan’s angry and loud voice soon followed!
“Why are you guys together?!” When Tang Wan saw that Tangtang was together with Yang Chen and had his coat on, she got reminded of Yang Chen’s flirty behaviour and instantly thought that Yang Chen had something going on with her daughter. Her maternal protective sense immediately rose to its peak!
Did this man intentionally get close to me, and secretly do something to my daughter?!
Tangtang felt that it was unbelievable. Curious, she asked, “Mom, you guys know each other?”
Before Yang Chen could speak, Tang Wan struck with another question. “Why are you wearing his clothing?! Kid, I don’t want to lecture you for leaving the house now. How can you simply lean on a man’s body?! Do you want to piss Mom off to death?!”
Tangtang quickly panicked and didn’t know what to say.
Yang Chen knew that Tang Wan must’ve misunderstood the situation. “Tang Wan, it isn’t what you think.”
“Then what else can it be?! Yang Chen, my daughter is merely a senior third-year student, and you still lay your hands on her?! How can you do this! You… you really disappoint me…”
Tang Wan was feeling extremely emotional. Her eyes were filled with flames of anger. Walking forward, she forcefully pulled Tangtang’s arm, causing Yang Chen’s coat to fall onto the ground.
“Go! Follow me home immediately! Just wait for me to ground you for three months!”
Ignoring Tangtang’s cry and explanation, Tang Wan who wasn’t able to control her volcano-eruption-like anger and sorrow immediately brought Tangtang out of the park.
Yang Chen stunned for a long time before picking his clothing up from the ground. Sigh, such bad luck. I really didn’t expect Tangtang’s mother to be Tang Wan. No wonder I met her in Li Jingjing’s office a while ago, and Tangtang is coincidentally Li Jingjing’s student, he thought. He finally understood why the girl felt so similar to Tangtang when Tang Wan talked about her daughter.
Yang Chen smiled bitterly. He was greatly wronged this time. No matter how calm and dignified Tang Wan usually was, she looked like a completely different person when she acted like a caring mother.
Why not put it this way? In this world, except men and women, there’s a third type of human—mothers.
However, Yang Chen didn’t plan on giving Tang Wan a call to explain. She must still be pissed at this time. When she finally calmed down, she naturally could distinguish the truth from the falsehood.
Wandering around alone was dull and boring. Yang Chen picked up his coat and quickly walked back to the parking area. It was Monday tomorrow, it was more practical for him to go home and sleep.