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“Lao Ji, what are you thinking so hard on?” Dong Li patted Ji Yan’s shoulder and then sat down beside him.
Silently, Ji Yan stared into the distance.
Dong Li smiled and lit a cigarette for himself before holding another cigarette out for Ji Yan, “You’ve got something on your mind for the past few days …”
Ji Yan took the offered cigarette and put it in between his lips before taking the lighter from Dong Li to light the cigarette. He breathed in deeply and then exhaled slowly as he made a ring of smoke.
“Lao Ji, I haven’t seen you smoke in a long time. Previously, you always smoked whenever you were worried about Xiao Zhuo; however, you haven’t smoked since Tang Tang and Xiao Zhuo moved here. I almost thought you had quit smoking.”
No one would have thought that the outstanding and self-disciplined Ji Yan, who always achieved great results, and was often used as an example by other parents, had actually started smoking at the age of fifteen. Also, he was a heavy smoker who could smoke two packs of cigarettes in a day, which continued until Xiao Zhuo was born. For the child’s health, Ji Yan rarely smoked. He would occasionally smoke one when he was worried about Xiao Zhuo as he couldn’t go back because of missions. When Tang Tang and Xiao Zhuo moved to the military compound, Ji Yan had practically quit smoking. This was the first time he smoked since they moved.
It was clear that something was troubling him.
Ji Yan tapped the cigarette, “It’s nothing.”
Dong Li didn’t believe him. Seeing that Ji Yan didn’t want to speak, Dong Li made a guess, “Did you and Tang Tang have an argument? Did it get particularly bad?”
Ji Yan smoked the cigarette again.
Noticing that his guess seemed to be correct, Ding Li couldn’t help to be curious, “Did you really have an argument? But that shouldn’t be right, ah, the current Tang Tang is so well behaved, and she spoils you like you’re her treasure. How can she be willing to argue with you? I think you’re the one who put on an emotionless face.”
Dong Li didn’t have anything nice to say about the past Tang Tang, but she was just like mochi now. She was virtuous and obedient, and she practically spoiled Ji Yan to the heavens. Would she be willing to argue with Ji Yan? It was impossible.
Ji Yan shot a glance at him and indifferently said, “Don’t make random guesses. It’s not what you’re thinking. We’re fine.”
Naturally, Dong Li didn’t believe Ji Yan’s words. He thought it was most likely that Ji Yan hadn’t truly forgiven Tang Tang’s past actions. Dong Li couldn’t help and advised, “Lao Ji, ah, let go of the past. The present and the future is more important. Since she has lost her memories, you shouldn’t keep hold of the past. She’s very good now and puts her heart on you and Xiao Zhuo. You should be a bit more lenient on her. We, men, shouldn’t bicker with women.”
Ji Yan cast a dull side glance at Dong Li, “Where have you seen me not letting go of the past?”
After thinking for a moment, Dong Li thought that what Ji Yan said was true. Ji Yan wouldn’t fuss over everything with women, but he just didn’t know how to get along with women. Ji Yan always had a scary face on, so even if he had let go of the past, Tang Tang would think that he hadn’t let go.
“Since you’re not going to fuss over the past, then live well with Tang Tang. Treat her better. Women need to be pampered. If you don’t treat her well, how can she devote herself to you?”
Even though Dong Li was not married, he had plenty of experience in relationships. He understood how men and women should get along, and that was why Ji Yan didn’t treat Dong Li’s words like nonsense.
Silently, he breathed deeply and smoked the cigarette a few more times. Just when Dong Li thought that Ji Yan was not going to speak, Ji Yan said, “… I haven’t treated her badly because of the past.”
Dong Li wanted to roll his eyes, “Not treating her badly and treating her well are two separate things. Nevermind, a man like you who hasn’t even dated before probably won’t understand. I’ll tell you, Zhang Cheng treats his wife the best out of all of us. Look at how well Zhang Cheng treats Fang Yu Wei, he does all the housework and gives all his money to her. Also, he warmly sends her off and welcomes her back daily, and he never forgets to get a present for valentine’s day or her birthday. I think that guy even washes his wife’s feet at night!”
As Dong Li spoke, he got goosebumps and shivered, “Nevermind, not many men can achieve the same level as Zhang Cheng spoiling his wife. There is no dignity for us men. It’s fine if we work hard to achieve a third of what he does. Just a third, and I’ll guarantee your wife will be fully devoted.”
Ji Yan took the cigarette away from his lips quietly and stared into the distance as he thought.
Pass all the money? Do all the housework? Tang Tang did all the chores while he didn’t do anything. Their family’s money was in his control.
Warmly seeing them off and welcoming them back? It seemed that it was Tang Tang who did that too. Every day, she would come and greet him when he arrived back home. She would even worry for half-day with just a single sneeze.
Valentine’s present and birthday present? He has never given her a gift before. He just gave her money, and he didn’t even know the date of her birthday.
Washing feet? That was also something that Tang Tang did for him. He has never done it before.
Thinking about it, he hasn’t done anything for her before. There was not even a single time where he had bought clothes for her. All the clothes she was wearing were made by herself. All the money he gave her was spent on the family. She didn’t spend money on herself.
Unless she also thought that he wasn’t treating her well and she wasn’t happy about it and that was why she was like that recently?
Dong Li truly wished that his old friend would receive happiness. He had noticed the changes in Ji Yan ever since Tang Tang and Xiao Zhuo moved here. There was a happy feeling around Ji Yan even though he probably didn’t know it himself. So Dong Li didn’t want his old friend to lose this happiness just because he didn’t understand feelings.
“Lao Ji, ah, I advised you to get a divorce with Tang Tang in the past, but the situation is different now. Tang Tang has forgotten about the past, and her personality has become good and virtuous. All men are jealous of how she spoils you and Xiao Zhuo. Also, she is Xiao Zhuo’s biological mother. If you want to continue living together,you should forget about the past, which would be good for Xiao Zhuo too. Besides, everyone can see that Tang Tang truly likes you now. As long as you’re present, her gaze would always follow you. That type of gaze is upsetting to us, single men. Therefore, you should give her a chance and treat her better. Don’t make her heart go cold.”
Ji Yan extinguished the unfinished cigarette before standing up and patting Dong Li’s shoulder, “I’m leaving.”
“Ah, why are you leaving? Did you listen to what I said?”
On that day, Ji Yan returned home a lot earlier than usual and found Tang Tang sitting on the sofa making clothes. Tang Tangwas astonished to see Ji Yan back so early, “You came back so early today, ah? I haven’t made dinner yet, I’ll start doing it now.”
Ji Yan held her shoulder, “It’s early. Make it later. You can continue doing your things.”
Tang Tang looked at the time and confirmed that it was still early. It was alright to make dinner later. She took a quick glance at him before lowering her head and carried on sewing.
Quietly, Ji Yan sat down on the sofa and watched her quickly sew each stitch for a while. Then he looked down at the clothing in her hands. It was a skirt.
“This clothing looks different from the one you were working on,” Ji Yan suddenly said.
Tang Tang nodded, “The previous skirt was for Wen Wen. It’s already finished, and I have given it to her. The one I’m working on now is for Ji Yue. Last time, at grandma Zhuo’s birthday, Ji Yue said that she wanted an AoQun. I agreed to make her one.”
Ji Yan smoothed his lips, and there was a profound look in his eyes. He remembered that when Tang Tang bought materials for the first time, she said that she had bought fabrics for him and Xiao Zhuo. She also said that she was going to make him a shirt. Xiao Zhuo’s denim overall was completed a while ago, but he hasn’t seen her make his shirt yet.
Did she not want to make it for him?
Ji Yan’s heart suddenly felt uncomfortable, but he couldn’t explain the feeling. This made him feel jittery. He stood up and wanted to find something to do, but when he looked around, there wasn’t anything to do. Tang Tang looked after the house very well. There was nothing for him to do. Helplessly, he went to his room to get a military book to read.
But after staring at the book for a long time, none of the information entered his mind. Ji Yan simply put the book down and closed his eyes to think. After a few seconds, he took out his phone to call Gu Zhang An.
Gu Zhang An was surprised to receive a call from Ji Yan at this time of the day. But Ji Yan’s first sentence was even more shocking, and almost made Gu Zhang An’s chin fall.
“What do you usually do when Ji Yue is unhappy?”
Gu Zhang An almost thought he had heard it wrong, “What did you say?”
Ji Yan repeated it blankly, “What do you usually do when Ji Yue is unhappy?”
After confirming that he didn’t hear wrongly, Gu Zhang An lifted his chin and spoke after a while, “Tang Tang is unhappy, and you want to coax her?”
Ji Yan didn’t reply.
Gu Zhang An had a sudden urge to laugh. He didn’t think that Ji Yan, who was accustomed to having women chasing him, would have a day where he wanted to coax a woman. Gu Zhang An suddenly wanted to share this with everyone. What should he do?
Sharing it was probably impossible. Gu Zhang An restrained his laughter and pretended to be normal, “That’s simple. If Ji Yue is unhappy, I get her a gift. Ji Yue cares about her appearance, so I’ll give her things like pretty clothes, jewellery, skincare products, or makeup and she’ll be happy.”
Speaking up to that point, Gu Zhang An suddenly changed his tone and added a hint of indecency to his voice, “But, brother, those are not the best methods. The best and most effective method is to give her a romantic candlelit dinner. After dinner, there will be a romantic couple’s exercise. Serve her well and comfortably, and her anger will disappear the next day. Let brother tell you the truth, there is nothing that can’t be resolved in bed.”
“… Tell Ji Yue to send me a set of the best skincare products. I’ll transfer the money to her.”
Gu Zhang An clicked his tongue and regretfully said, “You’re really not going to think about the best method? I guarantee that it’s effective.”
Ji Yan decisively ended the call.
As a husband, Ji Yan thought that he had neglected his duty a bit. It had always been her who spent the effort while he hadn’t done anything for her. It seemed he hadn’t been treating her as his wife because of the past. Maybe what Dong Li said was correct, he shouldn’t think about the past anymore. The future was more important. She was currently quite good. This type of family was what he needed.
Didn’t she want to become beautiful? She should be happy with the skin care products.
Ji Yue’s actions were quick. The world’s best skin care products were delivered to Ji Yan on the next day.
As Ji Yan went home, the box of skincare products that he was carrying didn’t match his tough-guy image. He attracted many gazes on his journey home. Ji Yan only looked straight and quickened his steps to home.
Ji Xiao Zhuo was the first one to notice the box in his daddy’s hands. He didn’t recognise it and curiously went to investigate the box. Originally, Xiao Zhuo thought that it was something edible but ended up discovering that it was not food. He was slightly disappointed as he looked up to his daddy, “What is this? It is for me?”
Ji Yan tapped Xiao Zhuo’s forehead and looked towards the kitchen as an indication, “You’re thinking too much, this is for mummy. Help daddy give it to her.”
When Ji Xiao Zhuo heard that it was for his mummy, his eyes instantly brightened and quietly but excitedly asked, “Daddy, are you trying to pursue mummy?”
“… Do you know what pursuing means?” Ji Yan asked back.
Ji Xiao Zhuo thought that he was being underestimated and immediately raised his chin to answer, “Of course. Pursuing is when a man gives gifts to a woman, and when she is happy, they will become boyfriend and girlfriend.”
” …” Ji Yan was speechless and shocked. This three years old child actually knew the meaning, but where did Xiao Zhuo learn it from? It was most likely from TV.
But what he was doing couldn’t be called pursuing. He was only keeping the family harmony and giving Ji Xiao Zhuo a good environment to grow up in.
“Daddy doesn’t need to pursue mummy because mummy is already daddy’s wife. So there is no special meaning in giving mummy a present, do you understand?”
Ji Xiao Zhuo’s eyes turned, and then he secretly looked at Tang Tang in the kitchen before moving close to his daddy’s ear, “But, daddy, a man must give the present himself to show his sincerity. Otherwise, the girl won’t like him. So, daddy,you must give mummy the present yourself, ah.”
“….” Ji Yan suddenly felt like he shouldn’t let Ji Xiao Zhuo watch TV anymore. He was afraid that Xiao Zhuo may bring back a little wife from the nursery.
Ji Xiao Zhuo firmly refused to help his daddy pass on the present. Helpless, Ji Yan could only give the gift himself, but since he was young, he had never given a gift to someone of the opposite gender. It was always the other party who gave him presents. For a moment, he only felt extremely awkward, and no words could come out from his mouth.
And like this, Ji Yan kept delaying it. Dinner and bathing went by, and when it was time to sleep, he still hadn’t given the gift. Ji Xiao Zhuo felt nervous and kept giving Ji Yan meaningful looks, which made his chubby face move and look like a bun.
Tang Tang looked strangely at Ji Xiao Zhuo, “Bao Bao, what’s wrong with your face? Do you feel unwell?”
Ji Xiao Zhuo got frightened and immediately put on a normal expression and cutely shook his head, “No, mummy. TV said this can help to make a person’s face slimmer. My face is chubby. It needs to slim down, so I’ll look more handsome.”
Was it really like that? Don’t think she has heard it before. Tang Tang nodded without understanding.
Ji Yan remained calm as he looked at the quick-witted Xiao Zhuo. Ji Yan gave Xiao Zhuo an appreciative look.
Ji Xiao Zhuo spread his arms to show Ji Yan that he was helpless, and his daddy had to deal with it alone. He couldn’t help anymore.
Ji Yan stared at Tang Tang, who was washing his feet. He noticed that she didn’t look up at him during the foot bath, and there wasn’t even a single smile. Ji Yan thought that this could not carry on. Without any other choice, Ji Yan had to take out the box at the final moment and silently passed it to Tang Tang.
Tang Tang blinked and asked, “What’s this?”
Clearing his throat, Ji Yan expressionlessly replied, “It’s skincare products. Someone gave it to me, but I don’t use it. I’ll give it to you.”
Tang Tang was baffled. Who would give this to a man like Ji Yan? But Tang Tang didn’t question it. She took the box and thanked Ji Yan, “Thank you, I’ll use it well.”
Originally, Ji Yan thought that she would open the box excitedly and then smile sweetly at him, like usual, and say, “Thank you, husband, I like it so much!” But, in the end, she only thanked him and went to the bathroom afterward.
She didn’t look excited at all. Did she not like it?
Until Ji Xiao Zhuo was sleeping deeply and snoring lightly, Ji Yan still didn’t understand. He turned his head. In the darkness, he couldn’t tell if Tang Tang was asleep or not, so he tested it out, “Tang Tang?”
“En, what’s wrong, husband?” Tang Tang was awake as well.
Ji Yan hesitated for a moment before asking, “That thing … do you not like it?”
“Just those skincare products, do you not like them?”
Tang Tang blanked and thought that he was very strange tonight, but she still honestly answered, “That’s not true, ah. I like them a lot. My skin needs those products, and the ones you gave me looked like good ones.”
“It’s good that you like it. Then … then let’s sleep.”
“Oh, ok. I’m going to sleep.”
Ji Yan waited for a while, but he didn’t hear Tang Tang’s usual “Good night, husband.” All he heard was the sound of steady deep breathing.
Ji Yan suddenly really wanted to smoke a cigarette, but he had to endure it since the mother and son pair was with him.
On the next day at night, Ji Yan gave Gu Zhang An a call. This time before Ji Yan could speak, Gu Zhang An asked, “Is it still the same problem?”
Even though Ji Yan could tell by Gu Zhang An’s tone that he was enjoying his misfortune, Ji Yan still had to answer, “She didn’t like it. Tell Ji Yue to help me buy some items that women would like.”
To be honest, Gu Zhang An wanted to say that the problem might not be the gifts. The main point was to find out the reason why Tang Tang was unhappy, but Gu Zhang An swallowed the words as evil thoughts came to his mind.
Gu Zhang An decided that he shouldn’t tell him and let Ji Yan figure it out to let him have a taste of getting frustrated by a woman. Who let Ji Yan always be so cold to women even at his age? Hehe, it was not that Ji Yan wouldn’t get to experience it, it was just that the time hadn’t come yet.
So Gu Zhang An with bad intentions said, “Alright, I’ll tell Ji Yue to buy it for you, but just giving gifts is not enough. Sometimes practical actions are better. Women are emotional people. You could give her a massage or a foot bath. That might be more effective than giving presents.”
Ji Yan, who stayed silent for a long time, ended the call.
After the call ended, Gu Zhang An sat on a chair and laughed out loud. His brain was already coming up with images of Ji Yan, a cold man, giving his wife a foot bath. But after a while, Gu Zhang An felt like that he was thinking too much. Because according to Ji Yan’s personality, he definitely wouldn’t do such a thing.
Seeing her husband being crazy, Ji Yue gave him a kick, “Why are you acting like you’re crazy?”
Gu Zhang An pulled Ji Yue onto his lap and shared the news with her, “I originally wanted to see a humbled Ji Yan washing his wife’s feet. Unfortunately, that is impossible. That guy has always treated women coldly since he was young. He definitely wouldn’t do such a thing even if he was asked a hundred times.”
Ji Yue disagreed with his view. She smiled meaningfully, “That may not be true. No matter how tough a man is, they would usually melt under someone like Tang Tang, who is like warm water. You just wait.”
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.