Xiao Lou was holding two lanterns in his hands and waiting for Yu Hanjiang to pick them up. He didn’t expect four people to be waiting this time.
Yu Hanjiang, Shao Qingge, Mo Xuemin and Long Sen, the four ‘courier brothers’ were waiting in line to ‘take the goods.’
Xiao Lou was distressed. Yu Hanjiang was sweaty from running so he gave the lanterns to the most relaxed Long Sen. “I have to trouble you.”
Long Sen joked, “No problem, I’ll send it right away. Please give me a five star praise!”
Xiao Lou, “…”
Did he really think of himself as a courier?
After Long Sen left, Xiao Lou headed to the next stall and picked up a riddle lantern he had discovered a long time ago. He had been idle and bored so he wandered down the road to find all the riddle stalls on the road.
This type was still a graphical riddle. There was a green leaf on the first side and beautiful eyes on the back. This lantern was a gift and Xiao Lou stated, “One leaf blinds the eyes.”
This question was very simple and everyone standing next to him also understood.
There was another palace lantern hanging next to it. There were four sides. Three chopsticks were on the first side, a sun on the second side, four chopsticks on the third side and a moon on the last side.
His teammates were wondering about the connection between chopsticks and a sun and moon…
As a result, they heard Xiao Lou say, “Three in the morning but four in the evening.” (Idiom that means: to change something that is already settled upon/indecisive)
The team members, “……”
Yes! The chopsticks only represented numbers while the sun and the moon represented the day and night respectively.
Seeing Xiao Lou smile and take the lantern from the boss’ hand, Shao Qingge couldn’t help his mouth twitching. Old Mo was right. Only the four couriers acting together could keep up with Xiao Lou’s speed.
The owner of the next stall smiled and asked, “Yu daren, accompanying your wife to the lantern festival today, is it to win all the lanterns on the entire road?”
Yu Hanjiang replied, “My wife likes to guess the lantern riddles. No matter how much she likes to win, she can win it.”
This boast stunned the stall owners. She could win however much she wanted to win? Was his wife so amazing? The stall owners didn’t believe it and had Madam Yu guess their riddles.
Xiao Lou wasn’t polite to them. He strolled from stall to stall. Whoever had a riddle, he would take it down and guess it.
The riddle he got next was a bit more difficult.
The palace lantern had a total of six sides with the words’ ‘crazy’, ‘epileptic’, itchy’, ‘content’, ‘pain’ and ‘correct’ written on them. Xiao Lou cocked his head to think carefully. Apart from ‘content’ and ‘correct’ all of them were illnesses. He smiled and said, “Safe and sound.” (Come out unscathed from accidents or illnesses).
The stall owner praised him. “Madam, you are so powerful. Why not guess one more?”
This lantern riddle also contained images. It was a palace lantern with eight faces. From left to right, each face had two butterflies, three leaves, four bugs, five sheep, six cows, seven women, eight birds and nine little rabbits.
Xiao Lou carefully rotated the lanterns and guessed, “Short of food and clothing?”
The store owner couldn’t help exclaiming, “Madam is truly strong!”
Shao Qingge always heard Xiao Lou answer before he could read it. This was the number from two to nine. There was no ‘one’ and ‘ten’ which was the homophone for ‘lack of food and clothing.’ Xiao Lou was really 666666. He wanted to make a lantern with six sides for Xiao Lou and write a ‘6’ on each side!
Shao Qingge and Mo Xuemin glanced at each other. They each took two lanterns from Xiao Lou and quickly went to hang it on the lantern tree.
On the way back, they met Yu Hanjiang carrying lanterns. Obviously, Xiao Lou had guessed two more correctly while they had gone to hang the lanterns. This was simply the speed of a bulldozer! Would the entire lantern market be cleared out?!
Xiao Lou told everyone with actions what it meant by ‘crushing problem solving’.
The lantern riddles on this street were all graphics and Xiao Lou swept through all the riddle stalls. He had four teammates to help him hang the lanterns. In the blink of an eye, all the riddle lanterns on the street were on by him. Meanwhile, the tourists came and watched. Madam Yu was guessing lantern riddles. Not only did Yu daren hang lanterns for his wife, he called Master Mo, a shadow guard and a rich son to help him.
Tourists who planned to guess the lantern riddles saw Xiao Lou and consciously avoided him. It was as if they ran away after seeing a boss.
After guessing the riddles on the west street, Xiao Lou moved to the east street.
The lantern riddles on this street were mostly word puzzles and the answer must be written with a brush. Xiao Lou was the best at guessing word puzzles. Once he saw the riddle ‘Grass grows in the field after the rain’, he immediately wrote ‘Bud (蕾).’
“There are mountains on all sides, all mountains are connected” —’field (田).’
“There is no first day on the first month’—’agree (肯)’.
“This word is extraordinary. There are only four strokes, no horizontal lines, no straight lines and no hooks. The emperor wants to get up when he sees it and the saint wants to bow when he sees it.” The team members were thinking, ‘What is the word that makes the emperor want to get up?’
Then Xiao Lou’s pen wrote, “Father (父).”
Let’s give up thinking and just be a courier! How tired was their brain? Just give it to Professor Xiao.
The four teammates acting as couriers followed Xiao Lou and lined up to help Xiao Lou hang the lanterns.
Xiao Lou not only guessed the puzzle quickly but he also wrote using the brush in a very correct and timeless manner. The stall owners willingly handed the lantern to him and didn’t forget to praise him. “Madam is powerful!”
The onlookers commented, “No wonder why Yu daren is obsessed with his wife and hasn’t taken a concubine after so many years. It turns out that the madam can not only do autopsies and solve cases but she also knows poetry and song!”
“I wouldn’t want a concubine either.”
”Yu daren is really blessed!”
”Madam Yu is also blessed. Didn’t you see Yu daren put down his airs and run to hang the lanterns himself?!”
Yu Hanjiang could hear the voices of the people around him.
He thought to himself that it was indeed a blessing to be with Xiao Lou. He wouldn’t let anyone take Xiao Lou away.
As Xiao Lou was sweeping through the lantern market, Ye Qi, Liu Qiao and Qu Wanyue were also working hard.
In fact, Ye Qi was also very clever. He had guessed the riddles of half the street. Once he found the riddle and read the question, it took him around 10 seconds to think before he gave the answer. This was also considered smart among normal people. He was excellent but compared to Xiao Lou, the ‘big devil,’ he was still a lot worse.
Qu Wanyue’s street was full of riddles corresponding to idioms such as ‘when will the moon return to me?’ and the answer was ‘With one’s heart set on speeding home’. The riddle ‘the peach blossom lake is thousands of feet deep but falls short of the love that Wang Lun sent me.’ The answer was ‘incomparable’. Qu Wanyue was a dance teacher but she was very interested in poems. After making one guess, she guessed them all quickly.
However, guessing idioms was harder than guessing words. All after, the idioms she learnt were limited. She had the richest vocabulary during the year she took the university entrance examination. After that, many idioms were slowly forgotten. She had to think about each question before giving an answer and her speed was slightly slower than Ye Qi.
Liu Qiao’s speed was similar to Ye Qi except that most of her street had pictogram riddles similar to ‘a group of wild goose chases a boat’. It was actually very difficult for her to transform an image into Chinese characters in her mind.
Time gradually passed.
As Liu Qiao initially speculated, they hadn’t finished one street by the time Xiao Lou finished guessing the riddles of two streets.
The Shangyuan Lantern Festival had a total of five streets filled with riddles and it would be closed at 24:00. The three people felt that time was getting tighter and they simply went to Xiao Lou for help.
Ye Qi hurried over to find Xiao Lou and said, “The remaining time is running out. I encountered some puzzles that I could guess. I placed them all on the table first so Xiao…” Ye Qi was aware of people around them and changed his words. “Madam Yu, come and guess them!”
Liu Qiao also said, “I also have a few riddles I couldn’t solve. Madam, come and see.”
Qu Wanyue smiled. “Why don’t we look for the riddles and Madam Yu will solve them. The time remaining is only one stick of incense left.”
The three of them had done their best and each of them got 20-30 lanterns, leaving the difficult questions to Xiao Lou. If Xiao Lou was fast enough, he might be able to guess the riddles of the entire lantern market. This approach was indeed very wise.
The trust of his teammates warmed Xiao Lou’s heart. “Okay, I’ll try my best. Let’s hurry.’
Ye Qi took Xiao Lou to his street first. “I didn’t guess this one. The riddle ‘s red on one side, green on the other, one side is fond of wind and the other side is fond of rain’. What is the answer?”
This question wasn’t simple. Xiao Lou gave a rare frown but quickly answered. “Autumn.”
Ye Qi thought about it carefully. The character ‘autumn (秋)’ was split into two halves. The ‘he/wood (禾) was green and the ‘huo/fire (火) was red. The ‘he’ liked rain and the ‘huo’ liked wind. This was the answer! He couldn’t help giving Xiao Lou a thumbs up and quickly raised a pen to write the word ‘Autumn.’ Although his character was crooked and not as beautiful as Xiao Lou’s writing, the answer was correct and the boss handed him the lantern.
Ye Qi continued to pull Xiao Lou to help. “Where is the wife?”
Xiao Lou froze. “What?”
Ye Qi said, “I’m not asking about you. The riddle of this lantern is the sentence ‘Where is the wife?’”
Xiao Lou reacted. He stretched out the finger of his writing hand and wrote on the palm of his left hand, “Two.”
Ye Qi wrote along and finally understood. Where did the wife go, meaning that in the word ‘person 夫’, the ‘fu (人) was missing. This left behind the character 二, which was the word ‘two.’
Ye Qi thought he was very smart yet why hadn’t he thought of this?
The teammates around them had a collective headache. These riddles were weird. Some looked at shapes, some guessed poetry and some had logical reasoning. However, only Xiao Lou could think of an answer so quickly.
After helping Ye Qi guess the riddles of his street, everyone came to Liu Qiao’s street.
Liu Qiao also gave the more difficult ones to Xiao Lou. “This guess isn’t well-intentioned.”
Xiao Lou thought about it and wrote, “Funeral.”
Liu Qiao continued to ask, “Gold, wood, water and fire?”
Shao Qingge interjected, “Earth?”
Liu Qiao replied, “I guessed earth but it wasn’t correct.”
Xiao Lou smiled. “It is lacking earth so the word should be ‘坎 (pit/threshold).”
Shao Qingge, “……”
He would stick to being a courier.
Xiao Lou also helped Qu Wanyue solve a few difficult riddles and their teammates quickly hung these lanterns on the lantern tree near the stone bridge.
Now the tree near the stone bridge was densely covered with lanterns, adding up to the hundreds. The 10 meter high lantern tree was decorated with various lanterns and looked spectacular. The surroundings were warmly illuminated like it was day time.
The moon was hanging high in the sky and the trees were full of lanterns. Everyone was shocked by this grand scene.
The time came for the lantern market to end.
Just as everyone thought the clearance prompt would appear on their floating boxes, fireworks were suddenly lit.
Countless bright fireworks rose into the air and the cheers of the tourists filled their ears as many people gathered around.
Although the ancient fireworks didn’t have as many patterns as modern ones, the red fireworks illuminated the night sky and shone on the faces of the crowd. Under the tree hung with lanterns, countless people folded their hands together while watching the fireworks and made a wish.
This warm scene was unforgettable to Yu Hanjiang.
It turned out that the Keeper of Diamonds asked them to hang the lanterns on the trees for the fireworks.
Saying goodbye to the old and welcoming the new. The fireworks in the sky and the lantern tree were a type of spiritual sustenance for the people of ancient times. They gathered around the lantern tree to make wishes for the new year, whether it was for good weather, national security, their parents to live longer or the health of their wife and children. The expression on everyone’s faces was very pious.
The lights and fireworks shone on the faces of the people. All of them were happy. The children jumped up and down excitedly, the young couples snuggled up together to watch the fireworks while the elderly had kind smiles on their faces.
This peaceful, prosperous world was what they gained after clearing 8 of Hearts.
Yu Hanjiang turned his head and happened to meet Xiao Lou’s clear eyes.
Xiao Lou’s skin was already white and under the fireworks, his face seemed to be dyed with a red light. He looked so good that people couldn’t look away.
Yu Hanjiang walked over and gently hugged his shoulders, speaking softly, “It turns out that Daqi’s Shangyuan Lantern Festival has the tradition of making a wish. Do you have a wish? We are here so we might as well do what they do. Do you want to make a wish under this lantern tree?”
Xiao Lou smiled. “Okay.”
He raised his head to look at the lantern tree full of lanterns and silently made a wish.
He wished that everyone could leave the Card World smoothly and that after returning to reality, he could still be with Yu Hanjiang. If possible, he would apply to the criminal police team of Jiangzhou City as a forensic doctor so he would always be with Office Yu in the future.
There was the sound of fireworks blooming and the thumping of his heart. Xiao Lou didn’t dare look at the person beside him so he kept watching the night sky. These fireworks were so beautiful and it was the most interesting Shangyuan Lantern Festival he had ever attended.
He didn’t know that the man beside him was gazing at his side profile tenderly.
Yu Hanjiang also made a wish.
‘If I can return to reality, I just want to be a couple with you. It is a couple for a lifetime.’