Minister Yu Mìngzé was the minister of finance under the emperors direct command. His reputation had been untouchable in the past and incredibly infallible. But yet, after his lousy son had been born, the minister had become easy prey for others in the court.

In fact, he had just been taunted by fellow ministers for his sons rough habits in the fighting house. It was at that dying hour, that a messenger from the imperial college arrived with Yu Xiaoguangs letter of expulsion.

”Expulsion? Those scholars are too harsh! My son deserves justice, on what charges exactly? ” Minister Yu, who believed his son would not do anything so foolish to warrant an expulsion was not prepared for what he heard.

”Young master Yu was found harassing an old uncle at a wonton soup shop, wearing the uniform of the imperial college. Scholars say to inform you, his tyranny cannot be overlooked. ”

Minister Yu could not remember what transpired after, but whilst he laid semi conscious on his bed, he made certain that if he ever laid eyes on his worthless son, he would teach him a valuable lesson.

”Fúqīn! ” A familiar voice cried out from somewhere in the room, as the doors bursted wide open, allowing uncalculated footsteps pour in.

The minister felt a hand hold his firmly, as the sound of his visitors voice become clearer to him. Till he recognized the voice belonging to the trash he was just thinking about.

Even in his semiconscious state, minister Yu had lost his composure and retaliated. The old man used his every bit of strength to fight off the youngster, refusing to allow him hold his hand.

”Whats this? Father is awake? ” Mei Deng voiced out his thoughts, struggling against the stubborn old man who refused to be hand held by his notorious son.

Just cooperate with me here, Im trying to mend the relationship between a father and son. Mei Deng bit on his lower lip as he struggled for dominance against his father.

If this is my last dying breath, I won let it be wasted on someone such as yourself! You unfilial brat! the old man argued in his head, reluctant to be swayed by his son.

It was only due to how much stronger Yu Xiaoguang was physically that he was able to subdue his weak father. To make extra sure the old man wouldn slip away, he held him tightly with both hands.

You fool you
e crushing me! Minister Yu lamented in his head, weakly struggling against this sons bear hold.

”I understand father, that you are angry at me after receiving the letter from the imperial college. But this son of yours is here to give you a sound promise. ” Mei Deng announced, putting on a good show for the maids and Chunhua who stood to watch the drama.

”I promise to go to the college tomorrow, and revoke this expulsion! And not just that, I shall rank the highest this year in the scholars ranking! ” He flamboyantly announced without any reserve.

The maids themselves froze in shock, too afraid to make a sound, for the young master was too rough with women. To hear the young master show some interest in education made one even drop the tray in her hand.

That will only happen the day pigs fly! Minister Yu exclaimed, confused as to why his son saw the need to lie such unachievable things. From his state, he still managed to send a disappointed glare at Yu Xiaoguang.

Why is the air thicker all of a sudden? And why do I get the sense these people are looking down on me? this doctor thought to himself. He refocused his attention to the old man laying in front of him.

Just with one look it is painfully clear that this old man is going through a lot of stress. Uncles in this era are supposed to die from diseases and natural causes.

Aish! If this uncle has one more heart attack, its the end for him. Mei Deng concluded, shaking his head inwardly from side to side.

”I shall restore the honour of the Yu family name in the capital and allow Fúqīn raise his head high once more. ” He went on to say, repeating the lines from a famous soap opera.

Enough with this lies! My weak heart cannot take so much false hope. his father scolded, vigorously wriggling his toes, as he battled to regain consciousness.

Young master Yu has also become a seasoned liar. The maids all thought, feeling sorry for the old man who received nothing more but empty promises on his death bed.

”And even as you draw your last fleeting breath… ”

What last breath? Who was it that said I was dying? Minister Yu had just realized that everyone present in the room were of the opinion that this was his last night on this Earth.

Just as he struggled to rise from his unconscious state, he heard more footsteps march into the room, coupled with the sound of crying and wailing.

Voices he recognised, that belonged to his wife, Yu Yīnuò and his loving only daughter, Yu Daiyu. They hurriedly ran into the room and took their place beside Yu Xiaoguang, crying next to him.

”Fúqīn, please don die, this daughter still wants to fly kites with you and make you some hot tea. If you go, then I shall drown myself in a well! ” Yu Daiyu cried into her fathers shoulders, knocking away her brother like it was nobodys business.

”MinMin! ” His wife cried by his other side, sounding more comical than sorrowful as she grabbed a hold of him as well, sobbing into his shoulders.

”I made a sacred vow never to leave your side, tell me now, if I were to lose my other half, what becomes my reason to live? Id rather be buried beside your corpse! ” The woman proclaimed, intensifying her sobs.

”Bury me as well! ” Daiyu exclaimed, gripping tightly unto the old man, enough to choke him.

Mei Deng who had not had the privilege of meeting his mother and sister, felt deeply moved by their level of commitment to his father. Though it did sound a bit too extreme, he assumed his father thought so as well, for tears streamed down the old mans eyes.

Whats this feeling of completion in my heart? Why do I feel so relived after hearing these reassuring words.? As the words from his wife and daughter continued, Minister Yu could see a bright light in the distance, and could feel his soul leaving his body.

No! Come back soul! This isn the time to die! Heavens reject me before its too late! Someone curse me! Yu Xiaoguang, say something vile and trouble me further. the old minister begged, crying for his notorious son to help save him from death.

”Father, if you leave me, I shall worship Buddha for the rest of my life. And spend my days writing good luck wishes for others. ” Yu Daiyu promised, earning the sympathy of the maids.

Youve lived long enough father, please pass away now, my knees are hurting from kneeling too much. The same Yu Daiyu said to herself, as she discreetly brought her fingers to her eyes. The ointment she had applied previously was slowly losing its effect.

”This wife shall sit by your grave each day and read the hundred poems to you, till your soul falls asleep. ” His wife said aloud, intensifying her sobs, to the point that it gave Mei Deng a headache.

I know you hid some money in this room somewhere, pass away quickly and leave me be, you lazy old dog. These onions are starting to hurt my eyes. She brought the onions closer to her eyes, careful not to let its scent spread.

These two really do love me, knowing that I was loved by my wife and daughter allows me to pass away without regrets. Just wished that Xiaoguang would mend his ways. With that being said, the old man relaxed his muscles as he felt his last ounce of strength leave him.

The loud sobs and cries he heard slowly faded into the distance as he felt his soul removed from his body. As he ascended graciously from this mortal world, he managed to pick up one last statement from his son.

”Watch me from the heavens Fúqīn, watch and see how I change the reputation of the family. ”

Oddly enough, that last part was enough to satisfy the small hole which sat idly in the middle of minister Yus heart. A small smile played on his lips as he finally detached himself from his physical body and ascended into the bright light in front of him.

Slipping away on a cold summer night.

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