Chapter 29: Inspired, Elegant, Graceful
Translator: Lonelytree Editor: Millman97
Ye Shuang knew the day would be hard, but she didn’t expect it to be that f*cking hard. She had underestimated the difficulty of the test, or rather the cruelty of the in-laws toward a future member of the household.
Funnily enough, Fang Mo seemed to have come better prepared than Ye Shuang, or at least better prepared to enjoy the show, because as he predicted, right after Ye Shuang said what he did, Grandmother Luo added as if as an afterthought, “Then, Xiao Ye, how about you go and write something? I hear from Xiao Feng, you’re an expert in both calligraphy and painting.”
That bastard has said what‽
Ye Shuang felt like crying because she had wasted all those years of love on that little brother of hers. In a quintessential Little Brother Ye fashion, the guy had accidentally dug a hole for his sister to fall into. Grandma, aren’t we family, why are you doing this to me…?
A laugh almost escaped Fang Mo’s throat. Thankfully, before it did, he used his palm to cover his mouth, and the laugh morphed into a cough as it escaped his lips. It was not that he was feeling particularly evil, but that awkward expression that had appeared on his friend’s inhumanely handsome was too funny. It looked like he had just been struck by lightning.
Grandmother Luo fidgeted under Ye Shuang’s pleading gaze; it reminded her of her granddaughter Shuang Shuang, who would look at her this way whenever she needed something from her grandmother… Sigh, looks like that talk of the four Chinese arts’ full mastery was just a bluff, but this boy does feel close to my heart for some reason…
After that, Grandmother Luo decided to not purposely create trouble for him anymore. Therefore, she softened her tone and said, “It’s okay, Xiao Ye, just go and write anything. In fact, since the elders from the Chinese Calligraphers Association are here, why don’t you ask them for some pointers?”
Grandmother Luo decided to allow Ye Shuang some breathing space. Mainly, she thought, Since Xiao Feng dared to make such a claim, then even if Ye Shuang isn’t really a calligraphy expert, he should at least know how to hold and use a calligraphy brush, right?
After hearing this, Fang Mo glanced toward the side of the room, and indeed, there were a few familiar looking male elders standing not far away. Looks like they were in the other room earlier. No wonder I didn’t notice them before. But this grandmother sure is one hell of a character; in less a few moments, she has already found out about the ‘hidden bosses’ in this shop‽ No wonder they say, the older the ginger, the spicier it is.
Fang Mo was too occupied by his own thoughts to notice the beseeching gaze from Ye Shuang.
Ye Shuang was invited to the main table by the group of smiling elders, while Grandmother Luo stood to the side like a tigress marking its prey. As Ye Shuang gripped the brush in her grasp, she felt like she was about to pee there and then…
“At least the grip and form are not bad,” the elders commented as they chatted along with Grandmother Luo. “Sister, how long has this junior from your family practiced calligraphy? Nowadays, it’s hard to find young people who are able to calm their hearts to focus on traditional arts like calligraphy; we also wish for them to inherit this valuable skill… so don’t worry, we’ll be glad to give this young man any necessary pointers.”
Ye Shuang’s face was covered with cold sweat. Of course her form was not bad; that was thanks to the optimization of her physical condition. Due to the alien DNA, she was able to mimic any form that she had just seen with 80 percent accuracy… But the problem was, there was no knowledge of calligraphy among the alien memory. No matter how great the physical optimization was, she couldn’t fake a traditional culture unique to Earth!
I wonder if they’ll accept a photocopy, if they don’t mind, I should just take this calligraphy to 7-Eleven to photocopy and give each of them a copy to take home, at most that’ll cost me one dollar… Wait, photocopy‽
Suddenly, Ye Shuang had a brilliant glow suffusing her eyes.
The group of elders noticed the life in Ye Shuang’s eyes, and they quieted down to wait for him to begin with faces full of smiles. Ye Shuang cleared her mind before focusing her attention on the calligraphy in front of her. Instantly, her mind started analyzing and calculating the size of the paper, the distribution ratio of the words, the strokes and lines…
When Fang Mo recovered, he finally noticed Ye Shuang’s troubled face. He was about to jump in to save his friend, but it was around then that Ye Shuang started to move his brush.
His brush strokes were inspired, elegant, graceful… not !
In any case, Ye Shuang’s movement gave everyone present a disagreeable feeling, and it was not because his handwriting was horrible, in fact, his calligraphy was perfect. At first glance, it was seventy percent similar to the other calligraphy, but upon a closer inspection, they realized his work was one hundred percent similar to the other piece.
The disagreeable feeling came mainly from Ye Shuang’s expression when he was writing; he didn’t exhibit the contained unruliness of a master calligrapher or the veracity of a scholar, if anything, he looked like a scientific researcher, focused and precise in his actions.
The group of elders looked at each other and didn’t even know how to comment on this curiosity. Calligraphy, a form of art, placed emphasis on emotions… so why would one approach it with the critical eye of a scientist conducting research‽
Ye Shuang didn’t notice the distress she had caused in others. She continued to mimic the picture that she had scanned in her mind, her every brush stroke a precise and concise duplication of the original. When she finally stopped and set the brush down, she raised her head with a smile and said, “I’m finished, please be kind with your comments.”
“…” Comments‽ On a photocopy‽
Even Fang Mo didn’t know what to say.