Translator: Momoe Pom
First Published on Ainushi.
There are two new tombs.
However, amongst the forest of tombs in this graveyard, they do not attract attention.
What would attract attention would be the little boy crouching in front of the gravestones. He is about five or six years old, but his face revealed maturity exceeding his age.
He knelt there as if his legs had become part of the muddy ground.
The sound of delicate and light footsteps came from behind him.
A boy his age carrying a small bamboo basket walked steadily towards him.
“Fan JiJing, my dad told me to bring you your meal.” The little boy who just arrived put down the basket in front of the other boy.
“Fan JiJing, did you hear me?” The little boy gently pushed the shoulder of the kneeling Fan JiJing.
Fan JiJing suddenly raised an arm, pointed at the tomb on the left and said, “This is my dad.”
The little boy’s hand froze.
Fan JiJing then pointed to the right side. “This is my mom.”
The boy stood aside, speechless.
Fan JiJing put down his hand and continued to kneel in silence.
The little boy suddenly knelt down and threw an arm around his shoulder, then spoke in a loud voice, “The Master said, ‘No one was ever immune from death… New knowledge can be gained by reviewing the old, eh, we also know that… that… love can run deep, but the boat will anchor.’  Anyway, this saying tells us that everyone will eventually die. Parents eventually die too. Eh, we “review” them, but we also need to take care of ourselves. My dad always says that new things will never come if old ones don’t go, so don’t be too sad.”
After he finished speaking, he saw Fan JiJing staring at him wide-eyed. His face could not help but blush suddenly. “I’ve only said what my teachers taught me. What they’ve said is what the Saint  taught them. All of these make sense.”
Fan JiJing continued to stare at him without a word.
The boy was stared at so much that his embarrassment became anger. “If you don’t believe me, then go read the books yourself! My dad said reading is what makes people smart. Only fools solve things by force.”
“Cough cough.” Coughing sounds came from behind him.
The boy looked back towards where he had come from, and then dropped his head immediately. He carefully poked Fan JiJing’s shoulder and said, “My dad and your shibo  are here.”
Fan JiJing’s body started to tremble.
“What gibberish were you saying?” Hua YunHai’s handsome face was tense.
The boy answered with a whisper, “I was just comforting him.”
“Is that so-?” Hua YunHai dragged out the last syllable.
The boy nodded his head furiously.
Hua YunHai turned to Bu LouLian, who was next to him, and sighed, saying, “My idiot son is misbehaving. I have incurred Bu Zhangmen’s  ridicule.”
Bu LouLian replied indifferently, “Hua Daxia , you are too polite.”
Hua YunHai did not mind his indifferent attitude. Instead, he called out towards Fan JiJing. “JiJing, come.”
Fan JiJing slightly lowered his eyelids, then slowly stood up and turned around. He kept his head down.
Hua YunHai said, “I’ve discussed it with Bu Zhangmen. Although you are YunXi’s son, a married woman should follow her husband. YunXi married into the Fan Family. She has belonged to the Fan Family ever since. Therefore, you should go back to Jiuhua Sect with your shibo.” He saluted Bu LouLian by cupping his fists and continued, “I‘m sorry, but from now on, I’ll have to trouble Bu Zhangmen to care and discipline him for me.”
“It’s fine.” Bu LouLian’s face relaxed a bit. He said to Fan JiJing, “Although your father and I are mere shixiongdi , our relationship is closer than the relationship between real brothers. From now on, I will raise and educate you as my own son. Your parents’ souls won’t be disappointed . However, don’t cry like this again in the future. You are a man, and a man should live a life free from guilt. You need to learn how to be an indomitable and upright person.”
Fan JiJing pressed his lips together and slowly raised his head. There were no traces of tears in his eyes.
“JiJing will obey shibo’s teachings.”
- He was trying to quote the famous sayings from Confucius but ended up with fragmented pieces, some from other authors and some self-written, with no consistent meaning.“No one was ever immune from death (人生自古谁无死)” comes from a poem by Wen Tianxiang (文天祥).“New knowledge can be gained by reviewing the old (温故而知新)“ was said by Confucius and recorded in Confucian Analects.The last part was made up by himself. [back]
- Referring to Confucius. [back]
- Shibo: Sect Uncle (Senior). The Senior Fellow Disciple/Shixiong of someone’s Master. In this case, it refers to the shixiong of Fan JiJing’s father. [back]
- Zhangmen: The Head/Leader of a Sect. [back]
- Daxia: A polite suffix that shows respect to martial artists who are famous, righteous, and skilled. Like “Sir.” [back]
- Shixiongdi: Sect Brothers. Bu LouLian and Fan JiJing’s father studied under the same master before. They were fellow disciples.
- In ancient China, the belief is that after people die, their soul will remain in this world and watch over their family from sky.