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749 Determining Truth and Falsehood 2

 "Eat, but stop eating after you finish this plate. Crabs are cold food. Eating too much of it is bad for you." Huo Shaoheng pushed He Zhichu's plate of crab meat aside as he put his plate of crab meat in front of Gu Nianzhi without batting an eye.

He Zhichu was speechless.

The corner of Gu Nianzhi's mouth went up. She looked at the dining room. She went over to the table by the wall and grabbed a white porcelain bowl. She put the two plates of crab meat in the white porcelain bowl. Then she asked Ma Qiqi for a bag of sliced bread and mayo and made many crab sandwiches. She placed them on little plates and gave everyone in the dining room one.

Gu Nianzhi smiled as she said, "I presented Buddha with a flower from another person. Don't look down on my gift! Huo Shao and Professor He picked out the crab meat. The bread and the mayo are from Qiqi's home. I only moved my hands. Eat them and see how they taste."

Ma Qiqi laughed so hard that her insides hurt. She grinned as she took a crab sandwich from Gu Nianzhi's hand. She took a bite, and it was unexpectedly delicious. The tasty crab meat mixed with the thick mayo wrapped in whole wheat bread tasted so good that she couldn't stop eating. Her mouth was full of the taste of the food.

When Ma Qiqi finished eating the crab sandwich, she went over to her mother while smiling like a monkey. She had a mischievous smile on her face as she said, "Mom, didn't you say that you want to go on a diet? Let me eat that crab sandwich for you!" She snatched the crab sandwich from her mother. That way, she would not give her mother the chance to refuse her.

"The way I remember it, it was you who wanted to go on a diet." Ma Qiqi's mother smiled as she patted her. "The sandwiches Nianzhi made for us are delicious. You should learn something from her."

When Gu Nianzhi saw that, she quickly put her own crab sandwich in front of Ma Qiqi's mother. She said, "Aunty, try this. It's clean, and I haven't touched it yet."

Ma Qiqi's mother turned around and saw Gu Nianzhi's bright and resplendent eyes that revealed an expression of respect. She didn't know why, but her heart ached unexpectedly. Smiling, she took a big bite of the crab sandwich and said, "Yes, the sandwich Nianzhi made is really good. No wonder Qiqi wanted to have mine, even if she had to scream and cry to get it."

"Yeah, it's really good! I would scream and cry to get my hands on it!" Ma Qiqi made a funny face at Gu Nianzhi and finished eating her crab sandwich in two or three bites. She licked her fingers, and her eyes lit up as she stared at her mother's crab sandwich.

Ma Qiqi's mother saw that and purposely teased her as she relished and finished her own crab sandwich. She sighed with a lot of emotion. "Ah, how can this be so delicious? If Nianzhi were my daughter... Too bad she's somebody else's daughter. My daughter doesn't want to make me sandwiches to eat. She only snatches sandwiches from me. It drives me mad comparing her."

Ma Qiqi started to feel bad and stomped her feet. She cried unhappily, "Mom-!"

Ma Qiqi's father laughed as he pulled her hand and said, "Your mother likes other people's daughters. I like my own daughter. We are tied, hahaha!"

Ma Qiqi was extremely happy and hugged her father's neck while jumping and shouting,"You're the best! I love dad the most!" Ma Qiqi's was almost as tall as her father, but she jumped in front of him like a little child.

"You went too far! Stop looking for opportunities to drive a wedge between us, mother and daughter!" Ma Qiqi 's mother grinned reproachfully at her husband.

Ma Qiqi quickly hugged her mother. "Mom, I also love you! I love you all!"

The family of three was very joyous and harmonious, and the atmosphere around them was very good. Gu Nianzhi had never seen a family consisting of a father, mother, and child being so beautifully intimate. She became temporarily sentimental.

She thought, So that's what it feels like to have a mother and father... No need to worry that they won't like you because you did something wrong. No need to be afraid that they will look down on you when you didn't do your best. Their love is from the heart. They don't ask for anything in return. They work hard without complaint because everything they do, they do it for their children.

She just realized that in this world there was a kind of unselfish love, and that love was the love parents had for their children. Everyone had a mother and father, but what about her mother and father? If they were by her side, would they be like Ma Qiqi's parents, spoiling her without her having to ask for it?

While she thought of those things, it looked as though a layer of mist had covered her big, shiny eyes, and they suddenly became hazy. He Zhichu saw it, and his heart was distressed for a short period of time. He walked over to Gu Nianzhi and put his crab sandwich next to her mouth. He smiled and said, "You really want to eat the crab sandwich, too? I ate half of it. If you don't mind, you can have it."

His tone was cool and detached. However, the words that had just come out of his mouth had a kind, gentle, and tender tone. Gu Nianzhi looked up at him, opened her mouth without realizing it, and took a bite. Upon seeing that, Huo Shaoheng brought his own crab sandwich over and said, "I haven't eaten it. Do you want to eat it?"

Gu Nianzhi only came back to her senses after she saw him. She blinked and said, "No, I don't want to eat anymore. I'm full."

"Ok, go home if you're full. It's getting late." Huo Shaoheng didn't take it to heart and ate the crab sandwich in a few bites.

Yin Shixiong couldn't help but cough and say to Ma Qiqi, "Oh? Didn't you say that there is cake? Where is it? You wouldn't only be thinking about plundering other people's crab sandwiches and forget about our Nianzhi's birthday cake, would you?"

"Huh? I didn't, I didn't!" Ma Qiqi jumped. "I will go get the cake! Nianzhi, don't leave," she said as she ran like a streak of smoke toward the kitchen.

Gu Nianzhi quickly said, "Qiqi, don't rush. Slow down!"

Ma Qiqi's father and mother also asked them to stay with sincerity. "Leave after you have some cake. Qiqi put a lot of effort into preparing it."

Ma Qiqi's mother took out another red envelope and put it into Gu Nianzhi's hand and said, "Nianzhi, happy birthday. May you have many more in the future. May you live long."

Gu Nianzhi accepted the red envelope and held it tightly in her hand. She kept on saying, "Thank you, auntie... thank you auntie..."

"You're welcome. From now on, come play at our home more often, ok? We only have her as our only child, and she often said it was lonely at home. It would be livelier with you around!" When Ma Qiqi's mother saw that Gu Nianzhi was a clever and likable person-she even heard that she was very good at studying-her impression of Gu Nianzhi became better than before. They could only relax when she was associating with that kind of friend.

Ma Qiqi quickly brought over the cake she made for Gu Nianzhi. To one's surprise, it was an ice cream cake. The top was covered with a layer of snowy-white whipped cream and frosting with, "Happy Birthday" beautifully written on it.

Gu Nianzhi smiled and winked at Ma Qiqi. "Ah! Ice cream cake, yummy!"

Actually, the one who liked to eat ice cream cake was Ma Qiqi, but Ma Qiqi's mother said that it had too many calories and wouldn't let her eat it. Even though Ma Qiqi really wanted to eat it, she was an especially obedient child and had promised her mother she wouldn't eat ice cream cake. Consequently, even if she was at a place where her mother couldn't see her, she still would not eat it. However, on the pretext of a schoolmate's birthday, she helped herself to it openly in front of her mother.

Gu Nianzhi knew her intentions. She smiled as she picked up the knife and cut the ice cream cake into slices. She gave everyone a small plate of it. Ma Qiqi ate it happily. She and Yin Shixiong were fighting over it with smiles on their faces. The whole room was full of the sound of her and Yin Shixiong laughing and teasing. When they finished eating the ice cream cake, it was already 11 at night.

Huo Shaoheng said to Ma Qiqi's parents, "Thank you for your hospitality today. Thank you for giving Nianzhi a birthday dinner. It was very sumptuous."

"Mr. Huo, you are too courteous. They were only home-cooked dishes that were not worth mentioning. Mr. Huo's crabs were the best of all." Ma Qiqi's father said it with humor. He nodded at Gu Nianzhi. "Nianzhi, from now on, come hang out with Qiqi when you have time. Think of it as your own home."

The rims of Gu Nianzhi's eyes became red when Ma Qiqi's father said those words. She was only able to not expose how she felt with a great amount of effort and answered with a crisp voice, "Ok, uncle."

...

When it was time to leave, Ma Qiqi followed Gu Nianzhi and exited the front gate. Yin Shixiong was forced by Huo Shaoheng to go up and ask Ma Qiqi with a smile on his face, "Qiqi, do you want to ride in my car? I'll take you back to school."

Ma Qiqi's eyes sparkled, and she instinctively nodded and said, "Ok!" She only remembered that she and Gu Nianzhi had come over in He Zhichu's car after the words slipped out of her mouth. It was supposed to be on the way, but she went and troubled Yin Shixiong...

Doesn't seem like a good idea. Ma Qiqi turned and looked at Gu Nianzhi. It was a bit difficult to choose.

Gu Nianzhi knew what she was thinking. She smiled and pushed her. "Fine, you go in Big Xiong's car. I will take Professor He's car." She also purposely said, "It will be quieter without you around. You jabber. You are too noisy."

"What? I'm noisy?!" Ma Qiqi pointed at her in an exaggerated manner. "I heard that a certain someone has been a chatterbug since they were young!"

"Heard? Who did you hear it from? Yi?" Gu Nianzhi smiled as she pushed Ma Qiqi. "Ok, I know you two don't keep secrets from each other! Hurry! Look, Big Xiong's face is red!"

Yin Shixiong didn't know if he should laugh or cry. He simply grabbed Ma Qiqi's hand. "Let's go. My car is on that side." He walked Ma Qiqi to the car, and she sat in the front passenger seat. He sat in the driver's seat, quickly started the car, and drove away like a streak of smoke. Ma Qiqi held the hand that Yin Shixiong was pulling. She thought, He has big warm hands...

Ma Qiqi only came to her senses after the car had driven for a distance. She turned her head and looked. Something was not right. She asked, "Yi? Where's Huo Shao? Didn't you say that Huo Shao had some business to attend to, and he just happened to take you with him?" This is Huo Shao's car. How did we drive off with it?

Yin Shixiong didn't know what to say for a moment. Then he hit his forehead in an exaggerated manner. "Aiya! I forgot Huo Shao at your house. What should I do?!"

Ma Qiqi rolled her eyes and muttered to herself, "Don't know what you are doing. How could you forget something like that?"

Yin Shixiong quickly took out his phone and called Gu Nianzhi. He put on an act as he said, "Nianzhi? Did you leave yet? I'm going to leave with Qiqi now. I'll leave Huo Shao for you to take home. Is that ok?"