The Story of Da-A-Fu's Ancestors

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  • Their ancestors did their best to please the magistrate, but they could not make him happy. One day, a neighbor rushed to the ancestor's home and gasped, "I have just come from the city. The magistrate believes you tricked him and is coming here to punish you tomorrow morning!" The ancestors murmured in fear. But Ye Ye, the great-grandfather and head of the family, said calmly, "We cannot do anything about this. Let us enjoy our last moments together in happiness, as we always have.
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  • The Story of Da-A-Fu's Ancestors Retold by Sydney Paik 05/11/18
  • The family quickly began preparing. The adults brewed pots of chrysanthemum tea and filled baskets with cakes, tarts, eggs, chicken, and steamed buns. The children brought out their colorful kites, and Ye Ye retrieved a book of poetry, stories, and songs. "Come," Ye Ye said. "Let us climb the mountain."
  • The family made their way up the mountain, climbing up until there was nothing between them and the sky. They had a delightful time. The children flew their kites, the women sipped tea, the men ate delicious cakes, and Ye Ye sang songs.. All too soon, the day was ending. The children were told to wind in their kite strings. "Why bring the kites down?" a boy said. "This will be the last time we play with them." "Let them fly for as long as they can," a girl said. The family watched the kites disappear and silently wished for an escape from tomorrow.
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  • The family slowly started to make their way down the mountain. But as they walked, they began to shiver with cold. "Are we lost?" a child asked. "This does not look like the way home." His mother said, "That's impossible. There's no other way down the mountain- how can we be lost?" "The boy is right," Ye Ye said. "Look at that rock. I have never seen that rock before." The ancestors kept murmuring amongst themselves. "I think..." Ye Ye said. "That we are on a different mountain." 
  • Finally, a little girl shouted, "Look! Our home is right there!" The villagers shouted with joy and ran towards the gates of their village. Their dirty clothes were still in the washbin, Ye Ye's book was still open to the same page, and everything was exactly as they had left it. Ye Ye led the family from house to house, examining everything.
  • Finally, Ye Ye went to the gate and found a piece of red cloth. "Look," he said. "This is a piece of silk from one of our kites. I think we are somewhere else now." "How?" the ancestors murmured. "The kite must have brought our wishes to the Old Man of the Moon. He has moved us here, and that means that our destinies lie here." And so, their family has lived here ever since.
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