Huang Zhong dived into the waters of Million Wines. With the Power of the Sun, he had no problem with oxygen. The oxygen generated from the boiling of water was more than enough for his use. A little more of his spiritual energy was needed but it was not a problem to him at all.
Even though many different types of weird fishes were swimming past him, he felt that they were all too small. Suddenly, a glimpse of light caught his attention and he swam towards it swiftly. The fish was enormous and there was a whisker on its head. At the end of the whisker, it was a shining ‘light bulb’. As Huang Zhong got closer to the fish, the angler fish opened its mouth, revealing its intimidating sharp teeth. And yet, Huang Zhong knocked it out of consciousness with just one punch. He dragged its tail and swam towards the surface. As everyone arrived, they saw Huang Zhong pulling out such an enormous fish. Wu Na shouted, “Uncle! Do you not understand what I said?! How can we finish a fish this big in just one meal?!”
“Not a problem! There are more inside.” Wu Na was speechless at Huang Zhong’s words. This old fella...
“Angler fish…” Staring at the fish, Old Wang felt something weird about the fish. Not only was its size too big, its esca was also giving out an awful glare.
Old Li went straight over and cut a small part of the meat with the small knife he brought everywhere he went. “Hmm...it’s not poisonous, chewy and just a little less smoother than tofu.”
Old Wang plucked a piece of fish scale and put it at his nose. “We can try frying the scale. The doughy texture tells me it’s suitable to be fried.”
“Indeed, soft and chewy… Usually, such an ingredient will be crispy if you fry it but this is still chewy on the inside.” Old Marilyn who was the expert in frying gave her comments after touching the scale.
Old Qin was attracted by the aroma of the wine and so he took a sip of the liquid in the tank. He was completely stunned, “Is this White Vodka?! It tastes exactly the same.”
“Old man, I remember you said that in Russia, you…” Qin San’s words made Old Qin recall the past when he was exiled to Siberia. As a punishment for a mistake he made, the elders of the family decided to exile him to the borders of Russia. It was an uninhabited place, cold and lonely. The only thing that was waiting for him was torture and death. Snow storms and the deadly chill were the only thing accompanying him. Dragging his devastated body, he could only wander around and ponder when death would come. He sat on the frozen pond and had no extra energy to utilize his qi energy to break the pond in search for food. He laid on the surface.
The sky was white and so was everywhere else. Just then, a lady wearing clothes made from a white bear skin appeared before him. She had a white Caucasian Shepherd dog with her. The lady took out a black bread, a wooden cup and poured him some vodka. At that time, Qin Zhong felt that the food was the most delicious food ever despite being a low-class vodka and a bread that was only hours or minutes away from turning moldy. When the food entered his stomach, he felt the warmth and the recharging of his energy. The lady helped him get up and brought him to a frozen cave. Again, there was no one there.
With some knowledge of the Russian language, Qin Zhong managed to get the name of the lady. Shaquila Bowa. Through their conversation, he found out that her family was also exiled here in spring that year. Her parents never came back after going out in search of food. After that, he and Shaquila managed to find her parents' corpses which both looked like they had a peaceful death. They buried them near the cave and the bottle of vodka was the only thing her parents left behind for her. The girl looked like an angel in his eyes when he saw her kneeling and praying for her parents. He who used to be rich never had anyone accompanying him when he was at his lowest. Even his mother did not lay a glance on him but this lady was different, and special. She saved him.
Qin Zhong started searching for food and managed to store some mutated beast skin to exchange for food and beverages at a market far away. Although the days were tough, it was one of the moments he enjoyed the most.
As the days went by, he fell in love with the lady. The two of them had become used to the poor life they had. Relying on each other was the only choice and their love was sincere. Soon, they had a son. Since Shaquila only knew how to pronounce Qin and San in Chinese, Qin Zhong named their son Qin San. They were a loving family and the language barrier did not seem to be an issue. Qin Zhong was satisfied with the life he had. Even though it was snowing and chilling outside, in the cave there lived the beloved couple and their child. He was happy although all he had was some beasts’ skin as his clothes. He sat on the frozen pond where he once fainted and started poking a hole, hoping to fish something for his wife and son.
In the cave, the Caucasian Shepherd was wrapping around Qin San while the two lovely couples were cooking the fish. Just then, the phrase ‘Zhong’er’ got his attention and he walked out the cave to see his mother. After a long conversation, he told her he would never return to the family even if he was the only bloodline of the side branch.
When he returned to the cave, Shaquila happened to be already lying in a pool of blood and the dog was pierced dead on the wall. His mother spoke behind him, “Son, I did this for your own good. When we return, you will be the head of the side branch. This woman has given birth to a boy for the Qin family but she is still a barbarian. It might be troublesome having her going back with us. Even though this child looks like her mother, his black pupils looked determined. I like him very much…”
A myriad of feelings including anger, despair, disappointment and pain surged through Qin Zhong as he saw his mother holding Qin San. She seemed to be quite fond of the child a lot. Tears ran down his cheek as he looked at the bodies of his wife and the dog. “Why...why…”
“To exile you was my idea. Do you really think the mistake you made can be solved if you weren’t killed? The person you killed was the third child of the first direct descendant of the Li family! I thought you would never make it out of here alive but you actually survived and have your own family. Let’s go, what’s so special about a daughter of a criminal…” His mother walked out of the warm cave with the child. Qin Zhong kneeled and bursted into tears as he held his wife’s body. It was the very first time he hated the fact that he had the bloodline of the Qin family. The coldness of the dead body filled his eyes with resentment as he stared at the lady’s back and the snowy scene through the cave opening.
Qin San saw his father’s expression change but did not say anything. On grandma’s death anniversary, father will always drink White Vodka. And he didn’t even attend grandma’s funeral since the very beginning. He even chose to keep her alive when he had the chance to pluck out the ventilator and end her suffering. In that period, father seemed to smile whenever he saw grandma suffering in the ICU.
However, to Qin San, his perception of his grandmother was very good as she took good care of him. Even though he saw Qin Zhong often glared at her, he would obediently stay silent.
Qin Zhong knew Qin San would think that he was hating his grandmother as he did not tell him the truth, the truth that his mother was actually an independent young lady in the most deserted and freezing place of Siberia. Calling her as an angel was total blasphemy. Qin Zhong would never forget that cave till his last day of living in this world. Shaquila...
“Grandpa, why would you want to give me this nickname Shaquila…” ThornyRose asked.
“That’s because it’s a name that even the angels are not fit…” Qin Zhong’s words gave ThornyRose goosebumps . “Omg, that’s so cringy… Why are you saying such cringy stuff even at this age…”
“......” Awkwardly, Qin Zhong drank another sip of the wine.