Tea of Summer Part 1.1
“Ah Liang, come down, lunch is ready!”
Xia Liang was sprawled on the sofa watching a soap opera when she heard her grandmother. She lept out of the sofa immediately and ran downstairs.
It was July. Cicadas were singing outside the window. It was much cooler inside the brick house in the peaceful countryside than in the city. The air felt fresh and cool without the need of an air conditioner.
Grandma Lin had already set the table on the mahogany square table. Though there were a few simple dishes in celadon bowls, they looked absolutely appetizing.
“Where’s grandpa?” Xia Liang filled up two bowls of rice beside the stove before carrying them to the table. Then she pulled out the long bench and sat down.
“The old man ate an early lunch and went out to play mahjong.” Grandma Lin took a rice bowl, “We grow all these vegetables in our own field. Eat more. You’ll get a cold very easily. You haven’t moved at all, even when I asked you to. You just hide upstairs every day.”
“Hehe……,” Xia Liang guiltily touched her nose and grabbed a chopstick full of vegetables.
As a matter of fact, she hadn’t fully recovered from her cold for the half month since she had come back to China. She first got sick from the poor air quality. When she had almost recovered fully, she then got sick because she stayed in the air conditioned room every day. Her mom simply sent her to the countryside with the words, “Breathe the fresh air of the countryside.”
The air indeed was fresher than inside the city of Shanghai. But unfortunately, it was in a remote area, only an old couple lived here. So there was no internet. Her phone didn’t have good reception here either. Xia Liang’s only entertainment was watching TV every day.
“Delicious!” Xia Liang exclaimed with grains of rice around her lips.
Grandma Lin raised her chin. “Of course, the rice and dishes cooked on an old fashioned stove tastes much better. The electric rice cooker in the city could never produce any guoba!”
Xia Liang quickly nodded in agreement……Umm, it was alright as long as she had good food to eat.
After her meal and washing the dishes, Xia Liang sat on a small stool at the corridor of the main door. There were wisp of cool breeze in the corridor’s shadow. The cicadas sang in rhythm, especially so in the afternoon. Her head started to droop down, sleep slowly encroaching upon her.
Something cold brushed over her face as she was half awake and half dreaming. She also seemed to hear granny talking to somebody. She was in a daze……until her head fell down, then she woke up finally.
She yawned. Her eyes floated through a layer of mist. She badly wanted to rub her eyes but just as she lifted her hand up to her eyes, another hand grabbed hers.
A thick, wide and slightly cold hand.
She looked up in shock. She looked through her misty eyes and saw a tall handsome man shielding her from the glaring sun. She looked at him foolishly.
The man watched her in tender bemusement. He crouched down, placing his bag down on the floor. He stroked her face with one hand and in a low, magnetic voice spoke, “Awake sleepyhead?”
Xia Liang blinked her eyes for a few times. After a while, she outstretched her little hand and stabbed his face. She muttered, “It’s alive……”
Song Qiyan laughed lightly. He could not resist pulling the little girl that he had not seen for half a month into his arms.
He had patiently waited for an entire year in the past but this half month was intolerable. He wanted to see her every morning. He remembered the soft little hand which tied the apron for him when he was cooking. He remembered her voice, sometimes crisp and sometimes soft, when he was recording for games in the studio……
The most difficult thing to forget was that ancient poem. Lovesickness was most contemptible.
That was from a song he listened before. He deeply agreed. He thought that he, with his cold, quiet personality, would probably never like somebody so strongly. But it was like his nemesis. He met her. This girl brought color and a dash of style into his life, which he had been living on a schedule for 20 years of his life.