She wasn’t the only woman for whom he had developed affections, or was this Mo Yuan’s first heartbreak although this time was the most profound. Because in one’s life, everyone has one great love and for him, that one was Bai Qian.
Mo Yuan returned from Qing Qiu with his mind swimming in a sea of unanswered questions. For days after his encounter with her, the rational man in him minced and dissected their conversation endlessly. Every spoken word he reflected upon in great detail, and depth because he couldn’t understand what made her leave.
How could Bai Qian be content one day, then leave him the next without a logical explanation? Her actions didn’t make any sense nor did the complexities of her woman’s mind, which he could not comprehend.
In retrospect, Mo Yuan had unknowingly been at a significant disadvantage when he went to her, since he was unaware she was angry with him or why. Despite everything Zhe Yan had been telling him for months, he was oblivious to the reality that she had consciously left him, ending their long bond and moved on with her life without him.
Unlike Bai Qian who had months to prepare herself for the day she met with Mo Yuan; he walked into the situation quite clueless. At the time, he had been overwhelmed and somewhat speechless. He was unable to verbalize himself accurately due to his state of shock, considering he never expected them to break up.
Bai Qian’s only cause for her sudden change of mind was their vast age difference. Which felt like a verbal slap across the face, her reason for ending their relationship, especially since there wasn’t anything he could do about their age gap.
It wasn’t until he returned alone to the place that was once the home they shared on Kunlun Mountain, the second stage of his heartbreak kicked in and he became furious with her. He was angry because for him, the current situation felt like a betrayal of Bai Qian’s promise to him. She promised to love him forever and he swore to do the same.
It was an old nearly forgotten memory, but it suddenly came back to him as if it were yesterday. The moment had been minutes, before Mo Yuan abandoned his vows of abstinence resulting in him giving into his male desires for her. There had been a fleeting second when he had hesitated, even though she was irresistibly tempting like the forbidden fruit.
He remembered how beautiful Bai Qian looked lying in his arms and how her long, silky locks of hair flowed between through his fingers like water, before pooling underneath their bodies and on the bed. The emotional expression on her youthful face that had been so ripe bursting with desire, as she anxiously waited for him to make her belong to him.
It was then Mo Yuan confessed his fear and said, “Do you know why I hesitate to make love to you?”
“I’m afraid if we become lovers, and the day will come when you’re older you’ll change your mind about me and us. I won’t be able to bear the heartbreak when you leave me, and that’s why I hesitate to deflower you honestly.”
She didn’t understand him and Bai Qian had said, “Shifu, I’m not afraid of you hurting me.”
He recalled how ridiculous he had felt to verbalize his insecurities, but Mo Yuan had confessed anyway, “No, my darling. I’m frightened of you hurting me. I dread if I feel the rapture of loving you even once, that I’ll never be able to let go of you even if you leave me.”
The nostalgia made his eyes moist and misty when he recollected Bai Qian’s promise, “I’m going to love you forever and I’m never going to change my mind about you or us. I swear to love you forever because you’re everything I’ve ever wanted.” How stirring her sweet love confession had been before he broke his sacred vows, and made love to her.
The past was beautiful but the present was quite different. Now, she had said in an uncaring tone as dry as her eyes and he wondered, how? How could Bai Qian speak such words without shedding a single tear, when he had barely kept his at bay?
Her parting was this, “Shifu, I will eternally cherish our memories, and thank you for everything you’ve taught me. Our May to December romance has come to an end. I think it would be best for you to accept how things had come to be, and simply revert to your life before you met me.”
It was nearly ludicrous. Her naive mind and her simplistic thought process were humorous. If it hadn’t been so painful, he would have laughed. Mo Yuan had been correct in his assumption that she wasn’t ready, and too young to become engaged in such a serious relationship, if she could suggest going back to his life before her with such triviality. As if it were that easy for him after all the concessions he had made to be her lover.
Mo Yuan reflected how everything was so simple for her? When for him, it was chaos and spinning like a cyclops in his mind. There was presently a plethora of unknown emotions in himself, and foreign concepts he was fighting. The angry stirring within him was unbelievable along with the frustration, which had him puzzled about how to deal with his temper since this was all new to him.
Her rejection triggered all his insecurities. It made him feel vulnerable, depressed, bitter, resentful but above all; he was insanely jealous of someone else…another man desiring his woman then it finally dawned on him, that he had never been possessive over a female in his entire life.
He’d always considered jealousy was such a petty, juvenile and uncultivated emotion but it was eating him up inside. Mo Yuan had a new regret which was not impregnating Bai Qian when he had the chance, as he paced the room that he had once shared with her, he wondered was it his conceit and vanity? Or perhaps it was his complacency that was to blame, and things were as they should be?
‘Mo Yuan, let her go and find someone her age.’
Mo Yuan told himself as he threw her belongings, mostly gifts from him away in the rubbish only to fetch them out, and return them to their proper places. He did this over a dozen times, throwing her possessions away then digging them back out of the trash, before drinking wine in his robe and playing sad love songs on his zither. And the more he drank, he realized he couldn’t let her go.
Perhaps their May-December romance had come to a close, but it didn’t necessarily mean that a January to December romance couldn’t begin. With that, Mo Yuan decided to do something he had never done in his life, which was properly pursuing a woman he wanted to marry from the beginning.
Nobody in their right mind would refuse High God Mo Yuan entrance into their homes, and this was one of those situations, when Migu escorted him into the Fox Den without speaking to Bai Qian first.
She was annoyed from the start by the inconvenience of his visit. Then Bai Qian was highly annoyed, because he looked oh so handsome wearing a new intense amber hued garment she had yet to see before that brought out the warm brown in his eyes beautifully. There were times when Mo Yuan looked so damn attractive that it pissed her off to no ends, and this was one of those times.
She held back the urge to grimace at his handsome face. The half assed curtsy was small when she bowed and mumbled, “High God Mo Yuan. How may I help you?”
Her eyes narrowed on his perfectly trimmed mustache over his full, shapely lips as he hesitated and said in his seductive voice, “Bai Qian, in all things, there are proper etiquette even when lovers part. If I may be so presumptuous… I don’t believe our age difference had anything to do with your decision, and I feel it only fits to be honest with each other. We owe it to each other after all the years we’ve spent together.”
She could tell that he wasn’t going to leave without hearing what he needed to hear. Bai Qian politely motioned for him to take a seat in her father’s chair. Leaving a guest standing was rude. Migu hurried in with hot tea, swiftly filled the cups and rushed off the same way he had entered. She held her cup with both hands and blew into the piping liquid, while feeling Mo Yuan’s longing gaze on her face.
“We want different things in life.” She said. “Such as?” He replied. Bai Qian sipped at her tea, as her eyes followed the rising steam to avoid meeting eyes with Mo Yuan, and considered how to answer.
She stated and there was strength in her voice, “I’m not your mistress and I resent you treating me as such.”
Bai Qian saw the look of confusion on Mo Yuan’s face and continued, “You may think that you didn’t. But every time you made love to me without considering marriage, you turned me into your whore, and every time you filled my body with your seeds without contemplating having children with me, you made me your concubine.”
“Shifu, you once said it was sinful to deflower me but you were mistaken. If anything, it was sinful for you to make love to me for thousands of years without marrying me.” Bai Qian declared, and it felt incredible as if the weight of the world had been lifted off her shoulders.
To be continued…..