Chapter 8 Breakfast For A Family Of Three
Quickly enough, Jasper grabbed her by the shoulders to stop her from bumping her head on the
"Henry, what's going on?"
His voice was so stern that it made Ashley appalled. What Jasper said were of the same effect as
Leona, her chief editor, kept scolding her for half an hour. What an influential person said was surely
"Never mind. I had fastened seatbelt." Ashley said.
Ashley turned around and found that he was patting her son on the chest to calm him down. She
pretended to touch her head to hide her embarrassment.
"Sorry, Mr. Zhan. A puppy suddenly dashed out from the roadside."
Jasper didn't blame him any further. He placated his son and took a glance at her, "are you okay?"
"I'm fine", Ashley cleared her throat and said.
She bowed her head, feeling too embarrassed to look at Jasper, hence she didn't notice the glimmer of
smile in his eyes.
Then they drove to a secluded alley. Jasper got off the car with his son, while their driver, Henry,
opened the door for her.
Getting off the car and stepping on the bluestone road, Ashley found that it was a restaurant which was
in the remote corner of the alley. Its front door was made of wood which looked very old. There was a
board hanging above the door on which shown "Fine liquor and grilled fish" in regular script.
It was an interesting name.
Seeing her gazing at the board, Jasper pulled Nelson closer, "Can you see what it means?"
"Drinking in the gentle moonlight by the river with a beauty grilling fish head with her slender hand".
Then she recited word by word, "it should be from the words 'fine liquor and grilled fish'. Zheng Banqiao
(1693—1765, a Chinese famous calligraphist in Qing Dynasty) was renowned for his painting, and it
appeared he knew a lot about cuisine. Maybe the owner of the tavern wanted to track a hint of legacy
from Zheng Banqiao's paintings. "
The morning sunshine passed through this old alley and sprinkled slowly on the woman's cheeks. Her
white skin was like flashing lights. Today, she was just in a denim and shirt, and her long hair was still
hanging on her back like last time. But when she looked at the board and slowly told the stories, Jasper
feels obscurely that she should have lived in ancient times rather than this hustle and bustle world.
"You are good at poems." He praised.
"My mom likes poems and I was probably influenced by her." Ashley drew back her sight from the
board and looked at him, "I began to recite these ancient poems with my mother when I was a child."
"So your mother is from a literary family?"
"Maybe. My grandma and grandpa were both professors in college and my uncle is a diplomat. My
ancestors were the sort of successful imperial exam candidates or masters in earlier times."
"Your father is also a bit famous in A City. I met your mother two years ago, but she was different from
what you said."
Ashley laughed heartily. It was the first time she laughed from the bottom of her heart today, but there
was a little sarcasm in her smile, "Mr. Zhan, you certainly dislike gossiping about other people's family
affairs. The person you met was not my biological mother, but my stepmother."
Jasper nodded. "Let's go inside first." With that, he led Nelson in.
The boy did not forget to look back and beckon her in. Ashley couldn't help but praise in her heart,
'though being quite young boy, he's so considerate. Well, pretty good!'
The decoration of both the outside and the interior are quite normal.
There were neither luxurious ornaments, nor resplendent lamps. There were only wooden tables and
chairs, and paper lanterns was hanging on the beams for lighting. A row of wooden boards were hung
on the walls on which each bearing a dish name. It was true that they were menus rather than
But Ashley knew that a person like Jasper would never dine in a normal and ordinary restaurant.
Generally, a man of his type would usually choose high-priced private restaurants rarely known by
There was only one table occupied by guests in the restaurant. When the waiter noticed Jasper coming
in, he skillfully guided Jasper to an east table. Ashley thought Jasper must be a frequent guests here.
As soon as he arrived, Jasper stopped holding Nelson's hand. The little boy walked over with his short
legs, and then held Ashley's leg firmly. He raised his chubby face and stared at her with his bright eyes.
He was really cute.
Ashley rubbed his soft hair and asked, "Why are you holding me?"
The waitress had already served tea. Jasper took a sip and said, "Whoever he likes, he will habitually
hold her legs. Bad habit. "
'How can a father say that about his own child!' she thought.
"Auntie, may I know your phone number?"
"You want my number? Do you know how to call?" She lowered her head and spoke like a child.
"Yes, I do. I often see uncles and aunties make phone calls."
"Okay, I'll write it down."
"Yes, yes!" The little boy nodded, his eyes shining with delight.
He was so cute. Ashley really wanted to kiss him if Jasper was not by her side. She didn't expect a
man with stiff face like Jasper would have such a lovely son.
As an entertainment reporter, Ashley always prepared pens and some papers in her bag. She wrote
down her telephone number on a piece of paper, tore it down, folded it squarely and handed it over to
Nelson released her arms and put the note into the pocket of his shorts. After putting it in, he even
gave it a press.
Jasper waved at his son, carried him to a baby chair and poured him a glass of water. Nelson accepted
the cup and handed it over to Ashley.
"Auntie, drink some water."
Ashley was too embarrassed to drink the tea prepared by her son, and when she was about to refuse,
Jasper had already poured another glass of water for her son, and was even chatting with her.
"How's everything going with Dylan?"
"Nothing new. I don't know what he has been busy with recently."
"Apart from TV dramas and advertisements, Dylan seldom attends shows, so he has a lot of spare
time. I haven't heard that he's filming new plays lately. If he didn't go to those places, he must be busy
"Really?" Ashley nodded.
'What's wrong with this inexplicable harmonious atmosphere? Since when have I become so familiar
with Jasper?' she wondered.
"Well, Mr. Zhan..."
"Just call me Jasper"
"Jas... per." Ashley stammered, "Well, I..."
What did she want to say just now?
It was improper to elongate the voice, so she picked up a topic casually, "Where is Nelson's mother?"
Hearing what she said, Jasmine stopped serving tea. Ashley scolded herself in heart for presenting
with such a topic.
"Daddy said Mommy was in a place far away from here. She would come to see me when I grew up."
'That probably means Nelson's mother was dead?'
Jasper looked sullen on his face for the rest of the time, and Ashley knowingly stopped provoking him.
'What kind of woman can please Jasper's eye? And it seems he hasn't forgotten her yet.'
The waiter served some porridge, steamed buns and appetizers. 'Jasper didn't order just now.
Presumably the restaurant had no other food for breakfast. Guests have no choice, ' she thought.
On the other table, a family of three sat there. Although the brands couldn't be seen, their clothes were
well tailored, nicely fit and apparently expensive. It seemed that they were from a rich family.
"Daddy, why did I wake up today just on my own bed? I was in Mommy's arms before I fell asleep."
Their kid asked in a childish voice.
"Maybe the air conditioner was too strong and blew you there."
Puff... Ashley nearly spewed up the porridge from her mouth.
The boy seemed disbelieve what she said. He snorted and said, "Mommy, I saw you kiss daddy. Why
didn't you kiss me?"
The woman was a little embarrassed. "No kiss, dear! Finish your meal. "
"Humph!" The boy snorted again, looking very cute.
Looking at them, Ashley smiled at first and then the smile on her face faded slowly.
She seemed to see what she had dreamed of.
People grown up in divorced families are either afraid of marriage or eager to get married to have an
intact family. Ashley belonged to the latter.
She used to dream of becoming an actress with superb acting skills, and to experience different lives in
TV series. However, her parents divorced later and her family divided into pieces. Her dream gradually
became to get married to have her own home, so that she would never be afraid of someone broking
in, and she didn't need to endure those malicious remarks from time to time.
However, these were all ruined by Gloria and her daughter again and again.
"Auntie." Nelson called her and asked in a childish and innocent voice, "See, three of us are the same
as their family, aren't we?"
Hearing that, Jasper looked up and glanced her.
Ashley was embarrassed. She didn't want to match Jasper who was up her rank, so she answered
seriously, "We are surely different. Those three must live in the same house. We live apart."
"So we can live together?"
"……" Ashley felt it was difficult to explain to a child, "It is still different."
"What's the difference?"
Ashley couldn't make up an excuse any more.
"Be quick with your meal." Jasper fed the boy with porridge and save Ashley from embarrassment, "I
need to send your auntie to work later. She will get scolded if she is late."
Send her to work? Ashley refused quickly, "Mr. Zhan... Well, Jas... per, I can go to work on my own.
The pageantry and extravagance of your presence would create bad influence on our colleagues."
"I don't mind." Jasper said carelessly.
But she cared!
Suppose, when a line of black cars stopped at the door of the office building, it was in the rush hour
and the office workers came and went. Without exception, they would cast more glances at them.
Ashley could imagine how astounded she would be when she got off the car.
"Auntie, you smell so good. Are you free tomorrow? I will come to see you tomorrow." Nelson was
reluctant to part with her.
'Oh, no. I have planned to live a peaceful life for a few days. If I irritate your father by accident, I will
"Well, I am quite busy lately." Seeing the lovely boy frowning with unhappiness, she added, "but still
you can come, but you have to call me in advance."
"Yes, yes!" The chubby boy nodded happily.
After a while, Ashley dashed into the building to avoid meeting acquaintances. However, the elevator
stopped at the ground floor before which several colleagues were waiting.