Sure, they did bring food with them, but those were rice balls made out of course grain and wild vegetables, nothing compare to the crispy and delectable shaobing. Gu Ming quickly grabbed the money from his father and started running toward the food booth. As he was running, he turned around and blinked at his sister, “Mei mei, wait there, ge ge will bring back shaobing for you! Shaobing are so delicious!”
Mrs. Gu started chasing after him but was stopped by Gu Qiao’s shouting, “You come back! We are talking about two wen there. Forget it, we have more important business to attend to!”
Mrs. Gu returned while grumbling and reached for Gu Ye with her pig hoof like claws but Gu Ye was able to dodge from her grip dexterously. Gu Qiao grabbed her right away and Mrs. Gu took the opportunity to pinched her hard in her waist a few times before she roughly dragged her to a quite area.
“Where? Somewhere where you will have a better life!” When Gu Ye refused to cooperate with her, Mrs. Liu just grabbed the back to her shirt and picked her up like a young chick. Gu Qiao followed with his hands behind his back.
“Let me go! I am not going anywhere! I am waiting for ge ge here!” Gu Ye shouted out loudly. Unfortunately Gu Ming was too far away to hear her distress calls. And this was a more remote streets with houses on both sides having their doors closed shut. There were nobody in sight at all.
Feeling a small shred of guilt, Mrs. Gu covered her mouth and quickly dragged her into an old courtyard. Inside the yard parked a horse-drawn carriage. One could hear low and suppressed crying noises from inside the carriage. A fat woman with a black mole on her chin scolded with spittle flying all over the place and her hands on her waist, “Oh, stop crying already! It was your luck to be sold to me! When we get to Yan, as long as you are obedient, you will have unlimited supply of good food and drinks! If you dare to run away though – we will break your legs!! Liao Hei, Da Zhuang, watch them closely! …. And what are you two doing here? We don’t allow just anybody to come inside here!”
Mrs. Gu fawned over her and stuck Gu Ye in front of the old woman. Bowing slightly she said to here, “We heard you purchase girls here…”
The fat woman looked Gu Ye up and down like she was examining some merchandise and criticized, “Why is your girl so skinny? Is she sick?”
“No, no, she is plenty healthy! We are poor and have too many kids. She is just skinny because there weren’t a lot of food to go around is all!” explained Gu Qiao hastily.
Gu Ye gave Gu Qiao a deadly scare with her dark, black eyes – how terrible was this father who’d want to sell his own daughter? Was his daughter’s life truly so worthless that he could just so easily walk all over and dismiss?
The fat woman looked at her for a while longer and said, “Okay, she is a bit skinny, but not too bad looking! Especially that pair of eyes, many would probably find that attractive when she grows older! Okay, here’s two taels. Take them and leave her. Now go!”
Mrs. Gu wanted to barter some more but the fat woman already waved at them impatiently and said, “Your girl is skinny like a stick. Even if you are to sell her by weight, how much do you think she’d be worth? It’s two taels, take it or leave it. Stop wasting our time to head out to Yan!”
Gu Qiao tugged at Mrs. Gu who was still feeling unreconciled. The two of them walked back onto the street. Grinning from ear to ear, Mrs. Gu weighted the two taels in her hands, then bit it with her teeth.
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