Novelette: Aunt Zhao

Xia Tian

PureInsight | July 20, 2007

(Part One)

[] Aunt Zhao is
around 50 years old. Even though she dresses very plainly, she actually
always shows a noble character. From her stature and appearance, you
can tell that she must have been very beautiful when she was young.

One time during one of our chats, I asked her: "Aunt Zhao, you must
have been a beautiful woman when you were young." Aunt Zhao laughed. My
mother said: "Aunt Zhao is not only beautiful, but also comes from a
family of scholars over many generations. Her father was a mayor."

I was very surprised when I heard that. Uncle Zhao was a person who
does his duty and is not handsome. He always does different kinds of
odd jobs in the factory. How did Aunt Zhao marry Uncle Zhao? I felt
that there must be a story behind that.

Aunt Zhao looked at me and laughed again. She said: "You must have a
lot of imagination. There is not much to talk about in my family. Many
Chinese families had the similar experience. It likes listening to Ping
Shu. You will know the result right after you listen to the beginning
of it.

I was afraid that Aunt Zhao would not talk about it. So I said: "Please tell us. I really want to listen to your story."

Aunt Zhao said: "My father was a mayor before the Cultural
Revolution.  From the beginning of the Cultural Revolution
movement, my father was persecuted.  Every day, his reputation was
attacked. Soon after, our whole family was forced to move to a distant
and remote village. It was very harsh over there. After the Cultural
Revolution, my family was moved back to the city. My father was afraid
of being persecuted again. He did not want to be the government
official anymore. He even asked my sister and me to marry factory
workers. In our family, the parent makes decisions. But we do know that
whatever they do is for our benefit.  Now when we look back,
nothing they did not made much difference."

"Why do you say that?" I asked.

"I married a worker. He is neither rich nor poor. He always does what
he is supposed to do.  In theory, he should not provoke the
Communist Party. But he got rheumatism and did not get better after
long treatment. So he started to practice Falun Gong.  Soon he
recovered. Therefore, he kept on practicing Falun Gong. Who knew that
he would become a victim of the persecution started by the evil Chinese
Communist Party? That is why I said that my father still did not see
through the evil Party after so many years of hardship. The evil Party
can attack anyone they want. Things will not be good as long as the
evil Party is in control.

My mother and I nodded our head silently. Aunt Zhao continued:" While
we are talking about the experiences we had when we were young, there
are two things worth mentioning. They affected my whole life."

I become very interested in what she is going to say.

(Part Two)

My mother was a little princess from a big family. She is not only
beautiful, proficient in poetry, but also gentle and cultivated.

When my father was persecuted, my family was in a mess. We did not have
enough to eat. My mother had never experienced such hardship. At that
time, a leader from the rebel group liked my mother. He talked to my
mother and asked her to draw a demarcation line with my father. As long
as my mother accepted his request, my mother would have a same life as
before. My mother rejected it without any hesitation.

Later on, our whole family was forced to move to a village.  At
that time, I was only ten years old. My brother and sister were still
young. We were forced to do physical work.  We did not have enough
food. Instead, we were insulted all the time. Once he received the
order from his boss, the village head would force our whole family to
walk the streets. Therefore, the kids did not play with me. They
laughed at me all the time. My mom held me in her arm and cried many

A government official liked my mother because of her good looks. He
came and talked to my mother. He told her: as long as you divorce your
husband, you can go back to the city with your three kids right
away.  My mother rejected his proposal. That official said:" You
have to think about it clearly. Otherwise, you will be regretful." My
mother said:" If I go with you right now, I will regret it for the rest
of my life. The cloud can not block the sun. When all these things are
cleared up, how could I face my husband? "

When my father heard about this, he was deeply moved. He said that he
always felt hope whenever he thought about this during those endless
dark days.

Many years later, when my mother moved back to city, the first thing
she said was:" Look at us, we have passed those difficult days. It
seems that there is no fire mountain that we could not cross."

In 1999, the Chinese communist party started to persecute Falun Gong.
If you insist on practicing Falun Gong, you will be tortured. In front
of those lies, I was frustrated. That day when the police asked me to
sign the paper, I suddenly remembered my mother. Falun Gong made a very
sick person into a healthy person. Falun Gong saved my life. How could
I do such things to against my own heart just for current benefit? When
the policeman asked me why I did not sign the paper the second time, I
told him my mother's story. In addition, I also told him: 
"Currently I face a choice I have to make, just like my mother. If I
sign this paper, I will regret it for the rest of my life." That
policeman was silent for a while and said:" Please do the Falun Gong
exercise at home. I did not know that you also practice Falun Gong."

There is another incident that happened a few years after we moved back
to the city. My brother and sister had married. One day when I went
home after work, I saw a man who looked like a peasant sitting on the
sofa. He looked familiar. After I took a second look, I realized that
he was the head of the village where we had been banished to. I became
very angry. Didn't he think that he had done enough to hurt my family?
How dare he still come to my home? His face moved with a little bit of
difficulty. Maybe he does not know how to talk to me. I gave him a
quick look with my side vision and then looked at my mother. I
originally wanted to address him with a murderous look. After I saw my
mother's eye, I lowered my head. I heard my mother said: "This is your
uncle. Why did not you greet him? How come you don't have any manners?"
I had no choice but to call him Uncle. I then went to my own room.

In my room, I heard that the village head say:  "I really beg your
pardon.  I did such terrible things to your whole family before.
Now I come here to bother you again. I really have no choice. I sold my
house, anything, which was worth any money. But I still did not have
enough money."

"Please do not talk about that. That's all in the past. Early tomorrow morning, you can check into the hospital."

The next day, the village head left. I started to explore. After I
finished, my mother said calmly:  "When I first saw him it also
hurt me very much. I think that he remembers what he did to us. Only if
he did not have any other choice would he come to our home. After I
asked him, I know. His only son got leukemia.  Heaven has punished
him. Why do we need to do something extra? "

Later I heard that the village head did not save his son's life.
Instead he owes a little money to other people. A few years later, he
died because of sadness. During the Cultural Revolution, this village
head did a lot of evil things to the people who were banished to that
village. He forced them to do heavy work with extended long hours. He
forced them to walk in the street. He held public meetings to criticize
them. He thought that he would be fine as long as he obeyed the command
of upper level officials. But he did not know that there is heaven
above his upper level official. Heaven's law is fair. In the end, his
family was ruined within a few years. This reminds me of those
policemen who were involved in the Falun Gong persecution. If you are
one of those policemen, please wake up. Don't wait until heaven starts
to punish you.

My mother's kindness brought her happiness in her late years. She is
still very strong even though she is ninety years old. She can eat
anything. All her children and grand children are very nice to her. I
think that I should call it a case of "Happiness Comes in late years!"

There is an old saying: Good will be reward with good, and evil with evil. This is really true.

Translated from:

Add new comment