C10 Flowersnake Village 1
As soon as they got off the bus, Su Hong took his two daughters and walked down a village road.
"What kind of broken road is this, it's the same as before!" The eldest daughter, Su Qin, was complaining impatiently.
Su Qin was fifteen this year, and would soon graduate from junior high.
Su Miao, the youngest daughter, followed obediently behind and used a branch to brush the weeds on both sides of the cliff.
She was eight years old, much younger than her sister, but the two sisters were very compatible.
This was the only path to the Flower Snake Village. The grass and trees were lush, and there was even a certain slope, so it was not easy to take.
While walking, Su Qin saw a few ginkgo trees in front of him and asked Su Hong:
"Dad, look at those big trees, they should be arriving soon, right?"
Ginkgo biloba was a large symbol of Flower Snake Village and was planted in and around the entire village. Especially the few stalks of ancient ginkgo in the village, whose trunk was big and thick.
"Mm, soon." Su Hong replied.
Flower Snake Village was the home of Su Hong's wife, Zheng Huiling. It was also the place where Zheng Huiling had grown up in.
Su Hong still remembered that when they went back to the village, Zheng Huiling was still alive. The family of four happily returned back to the village.
But who knew that only one year had passed since Zheng Huiling's death?
Until now, Su Hong still felt that this matter had happened extremely suddenly. That day, Zheng Huiling said that he wanted to go home and do some work, then he went by train by himself. In the end, not many days later, his father-in-law told him over the phone that Zheng Huiling had died from misfortune and his corpse had already been cremated. When Su Hong hurried over, he did not even see Zheng Huiling's body, and only picked up her ashes.
After that, Su Hong and his two daughters had lived under the shadow of Zheng Huiling's death for a long time, so the burden on Su Hong had become heavy. Fortunately, after a few years, everything had slowly gotten used to it.
Just like last time, it was still New Year's Eve. Su Hong reckoned that it had been a long time since they last returned to the village, and the two elders in the village probably missed their children, so he brought his two daughters back to their hometown for a New Year.
Very quickly, the three of them successfully arrived at the Flower Snake Village. The moment Su Miao arrived, he exclaimed: "Those trees are so tall!"
Indeed, there were many ginkgo trees planted in the Flower Snake Village. Su Hong had heard Zheng Huiling mentioning that the locals had a special belief in ginkgo.
Another characteristic of Flower Snake Village was that every house's roof was made of tiles that were as black as ink. Once it became night time, it would become especially dark.
The three of them walked around the village together. Su Hong was looking for the old house based on his impression of the village.
After all, he hadn't been here for a long time, and he wouldn't be able to stay for much longer in the past, so he and Su Hong were very unfamiliar with each other.
"Dad, what are they looking at?" Su Qin asked.
"Don't worry about it."
Just then, they passed a shop that had its walls painted black. The shop was filled with various kinds of birthday clothes, when Su Hong casually glanced inside, he felt that it was strange, why did the birthday suit look like it was so small, as if it was for a child?
Could it be that the birthday suit for the adult body was hidden inside?
This doubt flashed across Su Hong's mind. He didn't think too much about it.
At last, they arrived at their destination. Grandfather and Grandmother were already waiting outside the door, beaming with happiness. Grandfather Zheng Wangde had been shouting from afar, "Why did you only just arrive?"
Grandmother Zhu Qimei also said, "The food is getting cold!"
"Aiyo, we waited for the bus for over an hour and then we still couldn't find it. That... Qin Qin, Miao, quickly call me grandfather and grandmother. " Su Hong immediately greeted.
Local customs, whether it is grandparents or grandparents, the general name of grandparents.
"Grandpa, grandma!" Su Qin and Su Miao shouted at the same time.
After a short exchange of pleasantries, everyone stepped into the room.
It was a typical old country house. The paint on the walls was broken and the furniture was old. There was not even a toilet. One had to go inside the shed beside the gate to make it convenient. People who lived in the city all year round would definitely not be used to living in this kind of house.
"Little thing, it's so big now!" First Uncle Zheng Gaang saw that they had arrived and hugged Su Miao, causing him to quickly struggle free.
Eldest Aunt Wu Fang was beaming as she carried out the hot dishes.
When Su Hong saw the dishes on the table, he realized that the number of people was not right.
"Mom and Dad, where are Second Brother and Lili?"
Second brother was Zheng Huiling's second brother, Su Qin and Su Miao's second uncle was called Zheng Xiong. Lili was Zheng Huiling's younger sister and her aunt, Zheng Huili and Su Miao, named Zheng Huili.
"Oh, those two. One says that they are busy with business, while the other says that they are busy with work. They won't be coming back this year." Zhu Qimei said as she wiped the table, looking a little unhappy.
Su Hong nodded.
"Look, dad, this is mom!" Suddenly, Su Miao pulled Su Hong and pointed to a picture of Zheng Huiling on the wall.
"Well, yes, Mama. You'll have to kowtow and give mom incense later, you know? " Su Hong patted Su Miao's head.
"I know, I know!"
This image of Zheng Huiling, smiled slightly. Su Hong felt sad at the bottom of his heart.
"Start the meal!" At the command of Zheng Wangde, everyone took their seats.
When the lights were on and they could be seen clearly, Su Hong realized that the people from Zheng Huiling's hometown had become thinner, and looked sickly. Especially Zheng Wentai and Zhu Qimei, they felt that they had aged more than ten years.
The possibility of the loss of their daughter was also a great blow to them.
Another strange thing was that the whole village seemed to be surrounded by a foul stench, like the smell of rotting dead fish.
However, in rural areas, the requirements could not be too high. Su Hong thought.
After the meal, Zhu Qimei took out a wooden box and took out two scarves.
"Qin Qin, Miao. Everyone put them on." Zhu Qimei laughed.
"Mom, what is this?" Su Hong saw that the two scarves seemed to be the same, both were black with a flowery snake tattoo on them.
"This is called a flower snake scarf, all the girls here have it, and it must be made by their own mother. When Hui Ling came back that year, he did two things for Xin Xin and Miao. " Zhu Qimei explained as she helped the two girls put them on.
Originally, Su Qin was somewhat resistant to this strange scarf, but when she heard that it was something his mother had left to them, she immediately became more amiable and obediently let his grandmother wear it.
"Sure, isn't this pretty?" Zheng Gaang drank his wine and praised loudly.
Su Hong had heard Zheng Huiling mention that there were about half of the members from the Flower Snake Village minority groups, which was why this custom was born.
Although the New Year's Eve meal was small in number, it was still rather lively. Su Hong also planned to let his two daughters live until the fifth day of the new year before they left so that they could experience more of the life that Zheng Huiling had as children.
It was a pity that at night, Su Miao was sick and had a high fever.
Zhu Qimei asked the person at the side for a thermometer, 38 degrees and 4.
"I've got a cold, it's fine, I'll be fine after a nap." Su Hong said to Zhu Qimei.
But on the second day, Su Miao's fever still did not decline.
In the rural areas, the conditions were limited. Su Hong could only let Su Miao lie on the bed to rest and not go anywhere else.
Su Qin was in charge of taking care of her sister.
Night time, just as the sun had set and Su Hong was drinking with Zheng Gaang, a rude woman's voice sounded out:
"Old Mrs. Zhu, Old Mrs. Zhu, quickly! Jiang Youcai's family begins! "
Zhu Qimei hurriedly put down the bowl and replied:
Immediately after, Zheng Weide and Zheng Gaang put down their wine cups at the same time. Zheng Gaang asked: "Why are you so early today?"
Seeing that everyone was in a hurry, Su Hong was startled.
"Mom, what's the matter?"
"Jiang Youcai's family, tonight we will immerse his daughter-in-law's corpse!" Zhu Qimei turned around and said, "Ah, yes, you're also one of us, we want to go too!"
"Oh …" "Well, what do you mean, soaked?" Su Hong was suspicious.
"Little Hui never told you this before?"
"There really isn't any."
"Alright, alright, I'll tell you as I walk, or it'll be too late." Zheng Gaang pulled Su Hong along, and the four of them walked out of the door.
"This... Doesn't Qin Qin and Miao need to go? " Su Hong asked.
"Kids don't use it." Zheng Wangde replied.
On the way, Zheng Gaang explained to Su Hong clearly how to immerse the body.
So it turned out that there had always been a rule in Flower Snake Village, which was that when a member of a clan died, they would use some sort of medicinal liquid to soak in and decompose their corpse, thus reducing their body's size. It was said that the ancestors of Flower Snake Village were a group of deserters in the ancient times. Until now, when they were being chased by the enemy, they had to rely on a few luxuriant ginkgo trees to conceal themselves in order to be lucky enough to escape death. Therefore, they believed that ginkgo was the protection of the gods and was the symbol of god. After living here, they let their descendants grow more ginkgo, and almost the entire village was covered with it. In the recent days, Flower Snake Village had even created a set of Soul Sacrifice Trees, which meant that the corpse would be stuffed into the trunk of a Ginkgo tree, sealed away, and then asked to be reincarnated with the blessings of a god. But there are many people in the village, the ginkgo tree after all is limited, how to do? He then invented a method to take the nearby river water and mix it into a kind of medicine, to shrink the human body and turn it into a cadaver, so that more bodies could be hidden in the tree. As for the formula, only a few people in the village knew it.
Over time, the burial ceremony became the most important tradition of the Flower Snake Village. It was held within seven days after the death of a person, and all the adults in the village were required to attend.
After Su Hong heard it, he immediately felt that this place's customs sounded a little creepy. If it was in a city, it should be considered as insulting the corpse, right?
However, no one cared about this remote and remote village.
It was only now that he understood why the shroud was made so small. It was because every corpse had been 'reduced'.
There was quite a distance from Zheng Wang De's home to Jiang Youcai's house. After walking around two small hills, the group of four finally arrived at an open space in front of Jiang Youcai's house.
At this time, Su Hong saw that a large group of people was gathered around two large torches. In the middle of the torches, Jiang Youcai's wife's body was covered with a white cloth. The people at the table were all crying, but no one could tell if they were crying or not. There were also two old men who were whispering on the side.