————————————


In the end, Ji Yan’s hesitation made way for Ji Xiao Zhuo’s request. Ji Yan nodded, “Ok, I won’t mind mummy moving slow. We’ll take her with us.” 


“Oh –” Since his request was granted, Ji Xiao Zhuo quickly climbed down Ji Yan and rushed to get off the bed. In his rush, Xiao Zhuo even stepped on Ji Yan’s stomach, which almost made Ji Yan shout. 


Ji Xiao Zhuo didn’t notice that he had almost hurt his father. He jumped off the bed and dashed out of the room. Xiao Zhuo ran onto Tang Tang’s bedroom and rushed into her embrace. Unfortunately, Tang Tang's slim body couldn’t handle the little meat bullet and almost fell onto the bed when Xiao Zhuo ran into her. 


“Mummy, I have good news. Daddy agreed to bring you with us tomorrow. We don’t mind if you move slow. We can go and play together.” 


“Ah? Your daddy agreed?” Tang Tang was rather shocked because it looked like Bao Bao’s daddy didn’t want to take her with them. Why did he suddenly agree? 


Ji Xiao Zhuo nodded vigorously, “It’s true, mummy. You can walk slow tomorrow, and we’ll wait for you. You don’t need to be afraid.” 


Since it looked like the decision was set, Tang Tang didn’t refuse. Also, it looked like Xiao Zhuo really wanted her to go, so she shouldn’t let him down. Never mind, she would solely go with the flow. 


On the next day, Ji Yan didn’t say anything. He just packed some things and led the mother and son out to set off. They were going to a villa on the seaside. It was Zhuo Ji’s holiday home, and they would frequently go there to play. 


By the time they arrived, everyone else was already there. Everyone was happy to see that Ji Yan had brought Xiao Zhuo with him, but when they saw Tang Tang following from behind, everyone’s expression changed. The atmosphere became somewhat awkward. 


Ji Yan had never brought his wife with him to any of the gatherings before. Also, he had never mentioned anything about the situation between him and Tang Tang. However, all of them knew that there were problems between them, though they didn’t know any details. Ji Yan didn't want to talk about it,so they would not ask. 


But what had happened today? 


Gu Zhang An’s wife was the first to break the awkward atmosphere. She rushed up to get Ji Xiao Zhuo from Ji Yan’s hold and gave him a deep kiss on the cheek, “Little darling, auntie Yue missed you so much!” 


Ji Xiao Zhuo returned the kiss on Ji Yue’s cheek. He spoke sweetly with his baby’s voice, “Auntie Yue, I missed you lots as well.” 


Ji Yue couldn’t take it and directly carried the little one to Gu Zhang An’s side. She wanted to share the cute little meatball with her husband. 


At this moment, Zhuo Ji came over while seated in a wheelchair. He first gave Ji Yan a pat before greeting Tang Tang with a smile, “Sister-in-law, come sit down. You don’t need to be uncomfortable.” 


Tang Tang released a breath. She smiled thankfully at Zhuo Ji before following Ji Yan to sit beside him. 


No one knew how nervous Tang Tang actually felt inside because all of Ji Yan’s friends appeared to be graceful and noble, especially the one who was sitting on the wheelchair. Also, none of them seemed to like her. She could tell that none of them seemed to like the original owner. They probably didn’t think she would be coming today. 


Ji Yan didn’t give an in-depth introduction to Tang Tang, and he just briefly mentioned everyone’s name to her. Once he was done, he immediately went to chat with Zhuo Ji. They were talking about stocks and equity rights. Tang Tang didn’t understand a single word of their conversation, so she could only sit there with a small smile fixed on her face as she listened to them. 


Luckily, Ji Xiao Zhuo came back soon, and directly pulled on Tang Tang’s hand, “Mummy, let’s go over there to eat. There are many delicious foods to eat.” 


Tang Tang released a breath and promptly followed the little one from behind as she let him pull her along. 


When the mother and son were gone, Zhuo Ji looked at Ji Yan and asked, “Lao San, was there some change in your life?” 


Ji Yan watched the pair walk away, and after a long silence, he murmured, “Maybe.” 


Zhuo Ji laughed lightly. He also looked at Ji Xiao Zhuo and commented, “I think Xiao Zhuo has become much happier. I believe it must have been a good change.” 


Ji Yan also smiled as he thought about the little one’s mood and actions for the past couple of days.


On the other side, Ji Xiao Zhuo led Tang Tang to the food area. When Ji Xiao Zhuo noticed that there was even ice cream, he was delighted. A moment later, he was holding one ice cream in each hand. It was likely that he would get even more if he had more hands. 


Tang Tang remembered Ji Yan mentioning something about eating too much ice cream was not good for the body, especially for children. So she quickly reminded Ji Xiao Zhuo, “Bao Bao, did you forget what daddy said? You’re only allowed to eat one ice cream.” 


Ji Xiao Zhuo let out an ‘ah’  with disappointment. He was unwilling to choose one as he glanced at the two ice creams in his hands. Xiao Zhuo looked at Tang Tang pitifully and spoke in a tender voice, “Just this once, mummy. I’ll eat just one ice cream next time, okay?” 


Tang Tang's heart softened. However, eating ice cream in excess could cause people to cough and have a fever. By that time, it would be the little one who suffered, and Tang Tang didn’t want him to fall ill, so she hardened her heart and replied, “No. You can only have one. It wouldn’t be good if you get I’ll.” 


“Wu– All right.” Ji Xiao Zhuo whimpered as he unwillingly prepared to give up one of the ice creams in his hands.


At this moment, Gu Yan Ran came up to them and crouched down to Ji Xiao Zhuo. She smiled as she said, “Xiao Zhuo wants to eat two ice creams? Well, there's no problem if you eat more occasionally. Also, the weather is pretty hot today, so you won’t get ill.” 


Then she spoke to Tang Tang, “Actually, the ice cream was specially prepared for Ji Xiao Zhuo, so the portion size is smaller than usual. Eating two of these is about having one at the shop, so it doesn’t matter if he eats two here. You don’t need to be so strict towards Xiao Zhuo.” 


“That …” Even though Tang Tang also thought that occasionally eating a bit more should be ok, she still wanted to be cautious. If Xiao Zhuo were to fall ill because of eating too much, it would be too late for regret, so Tang Tang didn't want Xiao Zhuo to have more ice cream.


Seeing that his mummy was troubled, Ji Xiao Zhuo stepped out and said, “Auntie Yan Ran, I’ll have just one ice cream. Daddy said I can’t eat too much.” 


Gu Yan Ran didn’t expect Ji Xiao Zhuo to say that. She froze for a moment before stroking the little one’s head, “Xiao Zhuo is really well behaved.” 


Tang Tang was filled with tenderness when she saw Xiao Zhuo being so understanding. She thought for a second before saying, “How about this Xiao Zhuo? Mummy will eat with you. We’ll share so this way you can eat two different flavours.” 


Ji Xiao Zhuo’s eyes brightened as he promptly nodded, “Ok. Ok, mummy. We’ll eat together. We’ll share our ice creams!” 


Tang Tang led the little one towards the sofa and let him sit in front of her. She scooped some ice cream onto the spoon to feed Xiao Zhuo and then scooped some for herself.


The pair ate the ice cream happily together.


Gu Yan Ran smiled and then stood up to make two cups of coffee. She carried the cups towards Ji Yan and Zhuo Ji. The first coffee was passed to Zhuo Ji, and the second was given to Ji Yan, “Brother Ji Yan, this cup has no sugar. I know you don’t like sweet things.” 


Ji Yan accepted the coffee, “Thank you.” 


“There’s no need to be so courteous between us.” Gu Yan Ran said jokingly. Then she sat down next to Ji Yan and joined their discussion about stocks. 


Ji Yue, who had watched the entire scen, discreetly elbowed Gu Zhang An and hinted him to look at Tang Tang before saying, “Look at Ji Yan’s wife. She seems different from before. In the past, she wouldn't  pay any attention to us or Xiao Zhuo, and now, look at how well she is treating Xiao Zhuo. I wonder if something happened.”


Gu Zhang An stroked his wife’s hair and replied indifferently, “Maybe something happened, but these are Lao San’s private affairs. We shouldn’t get involved.” 


Ji Yue’s lips twitched and quietly said, “True, we shouldn’t get involved with Ji Yan’s private matters but your sister’s thoughts . . .”


When he heard her reply, Gu Zhang An glanced towards Gu Yan Ran. He laughed as he thought it was ridiculous and tapped on Ji Yue’s forehead, “What are you saying? Yan Ran sees Ji Yan and the others as brothers, like close siblings. She grew up following us from behind.” 


Ji Yue laughed sarcastically in her mind and rolled her eyes secretly. Men were bad at noticing things like these. No one knew who was correct yet.


Nevermind. Since she had time to worry, she should worry about what to play next instead. 


Then Ji Yue stood up and clapped a few times to get everyone’s attention before announcing, “Let’s take a rest now, we’ll play on the beach later in the afternoon! Swimming trunks and bikinis will be coming up!” 


Everyone laughed. 


So for lunch, everyone ate something light before resting. Ji Yan’s family of three naturally had one room, which made both Tang Tang and Ji Yan feel awkward. However, they couldn’t ask for another room now as that would be strange.


On the other side, Ji Xiao Zhuo was remarkably happy. He climbed onto the bed and rolled around before patting on it, “Daddy, mummy, quickly come over. The bed is so big and comfortable. We can even see the sea!” 


Tang Tang’s face went red and didn’t dare to move. She didn’t know what to do. In the end, it was Ji Yan who got onto the bed first. He laid on Xiao Zhuo’s right side and spoke  to Tang Tang, “Let’s rest now. Otherwise, we won’t have enough energy for later.” 


Tang Tang’s blush deepened. She stiffly walked closer and laid down on Xiao Zhuo’s left side. After that, she placed her hands on her stomach and didn’t dare to move.


Ji Xiao Zhuo rolled to his right and glanced at his daddy, then he turned to his left and looked at his mummy. He was elated as he took both of their hands and spoke with hope, “It would be great if we could always sleep together like this!”


With a red face, Tang Tang didn’t answer. Meanwhile, Ji Yan decided to close his eyes.


Ji Xiao Zhuo assumed that his parents were asleep, so he didn’t speak anymore as he was afraid he would wake them up. Since Xiao Zhuo was feeling sleepy as well, he shut his eyes and soon fell asleep.


When Tang Tang saw that both father and son had their eyes closed, she finally calmed down and slowly fell asleep.


Ji Yan opened his eyes again when Tang Tang and Xiao Zhuo’s breathing had become soft and even. He looked at the mother and son, and an unexplainable emotion filled his heart.


                                             ————————————




In the late afternoon, Ji Yue had prepared swimsuits for everyone, including Tang Tang. It was just that Tang Tang didn’t dare to wear it. Even though she had already gotten used to the clothing style in this world, she still couldn't accept to wear clothes with little coverage. It challenged her bottom line.


Tang Tang dragged the time out. She didn't want to wear it. When Ji Yan and Xiao Zhuo had already changed into their swimming trunks, Tang Tang was still at a loss. 


After waiting a long time, and seeing that Tang Tang still hadn't come out yet, Ji Xiao Zhuo ran to knock on the changing room’s door, “Mummy, are you ready yet? We’re all done!” 


Tang Tang could only open the door while still wearing her own clothes.


“Ah? Mummy, why haven’t you changed?” 


Tang Tang stammered a response, “Erm … Mummy doesn’t want to wear this. It doesn’t look good on mummy.” 


Ji Xiao Zhuo grabbed the swimsuit from Tang Tang’s hands to take a look. Then he lifted his head, “Mummy, are you not wearing it because you’re scared others will say you look fat? It doesn’t matter. Take a look at me. I’m fat, but I’m not afraid.” Xiao Zhuo even sacrificed himself as he lifted his belly for Tang Tang to take a look. 


Even though the little one didn't normally admit it, he actually knew he was overweight.


Tang Tang didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. She wasn’t afraid to be called fat. In fact, she wished to gain some weight. At least that would be better than now where she was only skin on bones. 


Tang Tang really didn’t know how to explain to Xiao Zhuo.


Seeing the situation, Ji Yan came over and picked Xiao Zhuo up, “Alright now. It’s fine if mummy doesn’t want to change. Let’s go down.” 


Since Ji Xiao Zhuo was being carried, he could only wave his arms as he said, “Ok. Mummy can just wear her current clothes. Now let’s go and play in the sea!”


Tang Tang released a breath in relief. She immediately dropped the swimsuit somewhere and followed after the father and son from behind with her crutches.




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