Old lady Liu looked like she had been slapped in the face. Her smile remained frozen on her stiff face. "You are busy with your work. I mean, when you’re free!"
"Have you eaten?"
"Not yet. I arrived early in the morning without a bite."
Wang Xifeng picked up her mobile phone. "I'll order a takeaway and we can eat together."
"You don't have to spend a lot of money. We can just have a casual meal. In rural areas, we are used to coarse tea and plain rice."
Pingzi laughed, "Aunty, it's easy to order takeaways in the city. You don't even need to pick up the phone to call anyone."
"Oh, it’s so different in the city." Mrs. Liu nodded.
After Wang Xifeng ordered the takeaways, she picked up the remote control and turned on the TV to watch the rerun of the Spring Festival Gala Night. When she laughed, Mrs. Liu followed along, pointing at the TV from time to time and saying that the small-time actor had acted for many years. Wang Xifeng ignored her.
Dog Egg came out of the bathroom and Pingzi beckoned him to come over. She grabbed a handful of small lollies from the sugar box to give him. Although the atmosphere was full of awkwardness and embarrassment, Pingzi’s actions made the young Dog Egg feel like this Sister Pingzi was a good person.
After a while, someone knocked on the door. Old lady Liu was so frightened that she quickly got up from her little foldable chair. Pingzi smiled and motioned for her to sit down. "Aunty, it's the takeaways."
Pingzi brought in the takeaways and greeted everyone for lunch.
The takeaways consisted of an oversized box and a few small boxes of rice. When they opened it to take a look, it was a fragrant grilled fish topped off with red peppers. Old lady Liu said, "Oh, I can’t eat things this spicy. My throat can’t handle it.”
"It's okay, it only looks spicy." Wang Xifeng clipped some meat on the back of the fish with her chopsticks while she kept her eyes on the TV.
Pingzi clipped a piece of meat and gave it to Dog Egg, who thanked her in a small voice. He suddenly spit it out of his mouth and whispered something to old lady Liu. Old lady Liu quickly put down her chopsticks and quickly put her hands up in prayer.
Wang Xifeng glanced in disgust at the bit of fish spat on the coffee table. She asked stiffly, "What? Don't like it?"
Old lady Liu said, "We don't eat black fish. Black fish is filial to the monks. If we eat it, we will suffer."
Wang Xifeng's revulsion rose to the extreme. "I wouldn't have bought such a big thing if it weren't for four people eating it."
Pingzi added, "That's all superstition. Why wouldn’t you be able to eat it? We often eat it and we’re still here."
Old lady Liu smiled and said, "It's all right, I will just eat some pepper."
Wang Xifeng said, "What would that look like? You can eat with peace of mind. It's really okay."
Pingzi said, "We usually eat it as well and we’re all good.
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