Hand in Hand, Accompanying Each Other for a Lifetime
Translate: Sae | Proofread: anasofi
At seven in the evening, all the invited guests started to enter the venue one after another. This was a pillarless crystal banquet hall that was close to 2,000 square meters with over a dozen meters in height; it could accommodate more than a thousand people. Apart from the two massive groups comprised of the bridesmaids and groomsmen—along with the grooms’ respective friends and relatives— there were also some uninvited public figures of society who had most likely engaged in business collaborations with Gu Hai at one point or another, and some representatives from different charity organizations that had received donations of lights a few days ago. With that as a pretext, they came in order to express their gratitude and blessings.
The wedding venue was beautifully decorated with the stage in the center, and the guest seats fanning out around it, creating a perfectly satisfying atmosphere.
Meanwhile, having arrived at the venue in the afternoon, Yang Meng and the two staff sitting beside him were the designated red envelope collectors. As the number of guests increased, the workload also augmented. Yang Meng was responsible for checking the amount, while the other two were responsible for noting it down. Due to the large sums of monetary gifts, it was necessary to have a row of safe deposit boxes nearby. When one safe was full to capacity, a soldier would escort the box to replace it with another one.
“Zhang Xiaomei, 1688 yuan.”248
“Su Hui, 2888 yuan.”
“Zhang Cheng, 18888 yuan.”
Since Yang Meng had started to check the amount until that moment, countless paper money had casually slipped from his hands, ranging from as little as one to two thousand to more than ten thousand. Even an ordinary office employee would feel shoddy and embarrassed if they did not give a few thousand at this kind of event. Yang Meng had emptied out his pockets and savings, but even then, it was lacking, so feeling ashamed towards his old classmate, he automatically volunteered to help out.
Yan Ya Jing and Tong Zhe came together, and when Yang Meng saw Tong Zhe, he mocked him with a mischievous smile.
“Sister, you’re finally here?”
“If I had known you were in charge of checking the amount, I would have exchanged the large bills to singles.”
As he said that, he handed Yang Meng a bank card, “Charge 131400.”249
“Sister, you’re quite generous! Currently, you have gifted the highest sum.”
When it was Yan Ya Jing’s turn, the latter also took out her bank card, “Charge 131401.”
Tong Zhe was completely dumbfounded as he shot Yan Ya Jing a glance.
Soon, You Qi made a high-profile entrance with his bodyguards at his side escorting him. However, occupied with checking another person’s red envelope, Yang Meng did not see You Qi walk over until his voice sounded near his ear, “521521.”250
Yang Meng did not look up as he spoke, “Aren’t you scared someone will steal your bank card by having such a password?”
“That is the sum of the gift.”
Upon hearing the astonishing amount and the familiar voice, Yang Meng quickly raised his head only to see You Qi’s cool face appear before him.
You bastard… Yang Meng secretly thought to himself. Giving so much, are you deliberately putting me to shame?
“You’re indeed worthy of being his close friend.251 How wonderful!” While praising him, Yang Meng added a few more zeros on the card machine and placed it in front of You Qi.
You Qi smiled faintly. “You know, red envelopes are meant to be given for weddings, and swiping a card is ominous, so I brought cash instead.”
Yang Meng’s face was instantly shrouded with a dark layer of smog.
“I’ll be troubling you to check it clearly!”
With no other choice, Yang Meng found four or five other people to assist him in checking You Qi’s gift amount. Just after he finished, he caught sight of someone going straight toward the honored guests’ table without giving any gift. That injustice made Yang Meng chase after the person immediately!
“Excuse me, may I ask if you have given any monetary gift yet?” he asked bluntly.
When Zhou Ling Yun opened his mouth to speak, Yang Meng could feel a strong sense of power and grandeur.
Hearing that, Yang Meng retorted right on the spot, “Without that gift, you are not allowed to eat!”
Before Zhou Ling Yun even had a chance to answer, Liu Chong ran over to them from not too far away. He gave Zhou Ling Yin a stern salute first and then pulled Yang Meng to the side. “He is a General Major of the Army and Bai Tuanzhang’s commander.”
“A Major General still must comply with traditions and give a gift!” Yang Meng could not stand it when someone did not give some gift money.
Liu Chong added, “He gifted some things already, but it wasn’t money. What he gifted were fireworks and gun salutes.252 They’re worth more than a few thousand, at the least.”
Yang Meng suddenly remembered the several gun salutes he saw in the afternoon; the cannon barrels were large enough for him to squeeze in.
Zhou Ling Yun walked over to Yang Meng, “Do you need me to go and clearly count the ‘monetary gift’ with you?”
“No… there’s no need…”
Yang Meng quickly found a pile of money to bury himself in.
At eight in the evening, with the banquet hall full to capacity, the wedding ceremony officially began.
As the lights dimmed out, the band started to play a series of impassioned music chords while several spotlights from the light show swept across everyone—dazzling magnificently for a full minute for all to feast their eyes on. Soon after, two handsome and smiling faces appeared on the huge high-definition screen and all the guests applaud enthusiastically.
The music softened gradually, and the lights became increasingly blurry before the huge screen started to display the documentary of the two’s love story.
From only being acquaintances, to knowing each other well and then to be separated in life and death; from reuniting to torturing each other and then to picking up the pieces and starting anew. Although it was only a short twenty minutes, everyone present could sense the depth of their love and devotion.
As the end credits music sounded and the lights lit up again, a handsome and confident host appeared in the middle of the stage.
An ebullient applaud broke out once more.
“Honorable guests and friends, thank you for attending Mr. Bai Luo Yin and Mr. Gu Hai’s wedding ceremony. Today, 1314 of us are gathered here to bear witness to their lifetime of love.” After saying those words, Gu Yang mentally spat to himself.
“Next, please welcome our grooms to the stage.”
Gu Yang took a few steps to the side before the center of the stage slowly ascended, revealing a beautiful car for everyone to behold. Then, with everyone unguarded, the car suddenly exploded, putting the guests in shock as they screamed in fear.
However, the fragments that soon dropped from the sky changed into glistening candies as they fell into all the guests’ hands.
The two grooms then appeared brilliantly on the scene.
Gu Yang nearly went over to give someone a big slap on the face. If this segment was in the event, why didn’t you tell me? Unfortunately for him, he ended up consuming a mouthful of powder and his hair was blown into a complete mess.
Gu Hai snatched the microphone from Gu Yang’s hand and spoke with a dynamic tone to all the guests. “The segment just now is called ‘Nirvana and Rebirth’.253 Although we had experienced a tragic car accident, it has also brought us a new life. For this, I would like to express my gratitude to my cousin, Mr. Gu Yang! Hey Ge, you so excited to the point of becoming like this?”
Gu Yang narrowed his gloomy eyes and shot Gu Hai a glance. You fucking did this on purpose!
The wedding ceremony continued.
“Everyone, please look at the groom to my left—you really can’t judge a book by its cover!254 Not to mention his repulsive and dishonest appearance, the things that he has done are even worse than this face! It could even be said to be a collection of different types of ‘strong points’. He possesses the devious nature of a businessman, the despicable behaviors of a gangster, the simple-mindedness of a fool, and the stinginess of a commoner. His greatest pleasure in this life is to wear a green hat255 on his own head and to fantasize that his wife is a slut…”
“Now, please look at the groom to my right. This person is an elite among liars who often uses his gentle eyes to conceal his true nature. He is a commendable, academy award winning performer within the class of ordinary citizens—frequently putting on the image of a simple commoner, a courageous little officer, a conscientious and reserved leader… his greatest delight in life is to brainwash people; no matter how tenacious your willpower is, he can still force you to submit to him.”
Hearing those descriptions, the guests simultaneously burst into a peal of laughter. Oh, they all thought that Gu Yang had a great sense of humor. Oh, he really knew how to create a joyous atmosphere, but in truth, he had just spoken the words from the bottom of his heart!!
“Next, let’s welcome the wedding witness to make his speech.”
As several spotlights drifted towards Zhou Ling Yun’s face, he exchanged a meaningful glance with Gu Yang before getting back to the main topic.
“Mr. Gu Hai, are you willing to cook for Mr. Bai Luo Yin, do the laundry and keep the blanket warm for the rest of your life; get beaten from time to time, feel wronged but still have to apologize, suffer losses but still have to praise that he is kind and honest, and finally tolerate all kinds of jealousies from big to small and simple to downright malicious, every single day?”
Without thinking, Gu Hai said sincerely: “I do.”
Seated at the family designated area, Bai Han Qi was smiling faintly.
Zhou Ling Yun’s eyes shifted toward Bai Luo Yin.
“Mr. Bai Luo Yin, are you willing to let Mr. Gu Hai nag you for a lifetime, control every aspect of your life,256 deal with his random and unreasonable bursts of jealousy, be kicked by a certain donkey from time to time, be stupid with him when he’s drunk, and finally play dumb with him when he’s being impulsive?”
Bai Luo Yin hesitated for a few seconds, but when Gu Hai’s nervous gaze floated toward him, he smiled gently instead.
A trace of uneasiness appeared in Gu Wei Ting’s smile.
Zhou Ling Yun’s gaze flitted off the stage toward the faces of the four parents and the more than a thousand guests before he loudly announced:
“From today on, Mr. Bai Luo Yin and Mr. Gu Hai have formally bonded in marriage. With our most tolerant heart, let us accept these two men who truly love each other. With our heartfelt blessings, let their love last until they are old in this lifetime.”
Once he finished, he won over a splendid round of applause that went on endlessly.
The two mothers’ eyes were brimming with tears.
“Next, our newlyweds, please serve tea257 to your admirable parents and give them your best regards. Thank them for raising you for more than twenty years, but even more, thank them for their great tolerance and selfless love.”
Bai Luo Yin and Gu Hai walked off the stage towards the four parents.
Gu Yang’s dark face shifted over to Zhou Ling Yun, “Are your words worth nothing more than a pile of shit?”
“I changed my mind at the last moment.”
“If you changed your mind, why didn’t you tell me ahead of time? You changed your mind, yet you still give me a meaningful glance?!”
Zhou Ling Yun made an expression that said ‘that’s how it should be’ before he spoke. “I gave you a meaningful glance to tell you that I’d changed my mind.”
Gu Yang, “… Zhou Ling Yun, just you wait, we’re not done yet!”
After they respectfully offered the teas and happily received red envelopes for changing the way they addressed their parents,258 the newlyweds returned to the stage.
“Please say what is the most beautiful thing about each other.”
Gu Hai took the microphone first. Just as Bai Luo Yin was anxious and frightened, he suddenly heard Gu Hai speak out one word.
Bai Luo Yin lowered his head to look at his scar-stricken hands—his heart was suddenly packed with some kind of feelings.
He took the microphone and clearly said: “Everything.”
Applause accompanied by warmth resounded in the entire banquet hall.
“Now, please express your declaration of love. You each can say what you want to tell the other person.”
There were a plethora of emotions welling up in Gu Hai’s mind, yet he could not think of a word to convey all of his feelings.
After a long while, Bai Luo Yin spoke first.
“I love you.”
Just as those three words departed, the hall boiled with an intense sentiment of happiness.
Gu Hai suddenly turned his back towards Bai Luo Yin and used his hands to cover his face…
Gu Yang reminded him, “It’s your turn.”
However, Gu Hai still did not utter a word.
Gu Yang moved closer and saw a drop of tear had slid into the crevice of Gu Hai’s fingers.
At that moment, Gu Yang could not explain the feeling that settled in his heart.
He gave Gu Hai a firm kick and rebuked him, “Look at how useless and pathetic you are. Hurry up, everyone is waiting for you to speak!”
Gu Hai rubbed his face recklessly, then turned around—revealing a mellow and kind smile.
“I love you.”
“Kiss, kiss, kiss…”
Amongst the loud cheers, their lips met, and their fingers interlocked.
From this moment on, we will walk hand in hand for a lifetime.
We’ve finally made it to the ending of Book 2! But wait there are still four chapters of the epilogue left to go! We will see everyone soon for those. HAPPY NEW YEAR!! ^^
248 ¥1688 – $250; ¥2888 – $428; ¥18888 – $2800; In China, it is customary to regard even numbers as being more auspicious than odd ones. So, gifts are given in even numbers for the celebration of all occasions. No. 8 has long been regarded as the luckiest number in Chinese culture. With the pronunciation of ‘Ba’ in Chinese, no. 8 sounds similar to the word ‘Fa’, which means to make a fortune. It contains meanings of prosperity, success and high social status too, so all businessmen favor it very much. Moreover, in some areas of China, people prefer to pay much more money for a telephone number with 8 in it.
249 1314 is one of the most romantic numbers in China. The pronunciation “Yīsān yīsì” is similar to “Yīshēng yīshì” (一生一世 – one life, one world), which means “Forever and ever” or “Everlasting”. (¥131400 – $19481) Give me that money =.=;;
250 May 20th and 21st are both China’s Internet Valentine’s Days every year, which are both phonetically the same as “I (5) love (2) you (0/1)” in Chinese. So, 05.21 = 521
251 相好 xiānghǎo: 1n. intimate friend; 2n lover, mistress – 1v.be on intimate terms, to have an affair; Yang Meng can be alluding to how You Qi had a crush on Yin Zi back then.
252 Gun salute (e.g. 21-gun salute) is the most commonly recognized of the customary gun salutes that are performed by the firing of cannons or artillery as a military honor; the number of rounds fired in any given salute will vary depending on the conditions. Circumstances affecting these variations include the particular occasion and, in the case of military and state funerals, the branch of service, and rank (or office) of the person to whom honors are being rendered2
253 Nirvana 涅槃 nièpán – (in Buddhism) a transcendent state in which there is neither suffering, desire, nor sense of self, and the subject is released from the effects of karma and the cycle of death and rebirth. It represents the final goal of Buddhism. The word next to nièpán is 重生 which means rebirth.
254 人不可貌相 rénbùkěmàoxiàng – you can’t judge a person by appearance (idiom)
255 green hat – a metaphor used in Chinese culture meaning the one wearing it has been cheated on; this was already mentioned in chapter 39
256 吃喝拉撒都受他管制 – ‘control every aspect of your life’, is actually: what you eat, drink and when you shit, will be controlled by him. BAHAHAHA
257 Serve tea – The tea ceremony is one of the most significant events at a Chinese wedding. It’s called jing cha in Chinese, literally meaning, ‘to respectfully offer tea’. It incorporates a very formal introduction of the bride and groom and expresses respect to their families.
258 change the way one addresses sb (as when one marries and starts to call one’s husband’s parents, mom/dad)