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Chapter 899: Adventure And Vacation
“Scientific expedition to Greenland?” Han Lu frowned. “I have a vague memory of it. I remember her mentioning it to me a long time ago, saying that a Greenland local had found some ruins. It was said that murals related to primitive wors.h.i.+p could be found there.
“The guy reported it to the authorities, which caused a great stir at the time. It garnered the interest of many scholars, so they organized two scientific expeditions to the area mentioned by the locals. They went search of the ruins, but found nothing in the end. After that, everyone began to accuse the local man who claimed to have found the ruins. They felt that it was a story he had made up. Although the locals insisted that they weren’t lying, they could not find enough evidence to support their claim.
Gradually, they all started to forget about this. Your mother, however, had always kept her interest in it. From the description that locals provided, she believed the ruins were likely related to Mesopotamian, Celtic, and Egyptian mythology.”
Zhang Heng seemed a little surprised. “Why can’t I find these things online?”
“Oh, the news is about 70 or 80 years old. It was quite a humiliation to the archaeological community at that time, so it was only published in some local newspapers. Xiao Xia had found the piece of news in the old British Library, and during that time, she was writing her thesis. Although the news had little to do with her research, she became obsessed with it ever since.
“Later, we both graduated, and we were busy with our own affairs. In the beginning, Xiao Xia and I kept in touch with each other by phone. Later on, our work became more tedious, so we changed our communication method to emailing each other. We usually talked about the recent events in our lives. And then one day, Xiao Xia suddenly told me that your dad and she met a man called Time in some salon. He ran a travel agency, and he happened to fancy expeditions as well. So, he came up with an expedition team. And he was thinking of going deep into the uninhabited land of Greenland.
“Xiao Xia told him about the 70-year-old piece of news. Time was very interested in it and decided to invite your parents on the expedition. I persuaded Xiao Xia that she shouldn’t accept the invitation so soon, let alone the perils that came alongside the harsh environment. She was also traveling with a group of strangers that she would meet for the first time. And here, she was about to accept an invitation from a stranger to explore a desolate land.”
“However, Xiao Xia told me about how rare of an opportunity it was and that your dad would also be going with her. But your mother…” Han Lu put down the gla.s.s of water, seemingly pondering on what she should say next. “As far as I know her, she is actually not that courageous. From what I know, she is afraid of the pain of childbirth and the cold. When we studied together, she would lie in bed, munch on chips, and binge on soap operas whenever it started to snow. She didn’t even want to get out of bed. I don’t know why she was so obsessed with the ruins in Greenland. Since she was ready to brace the extreme cold and face the danger, I knew that she was desperate to go there.
“Finally, she got to join the expedition with your dad as she wished. Because of their partic.i.p.ation, the team became a de-facto scientific expedition. They were in Greenland for quite some time. Well, we didn’t contact each other for about two months, but when she talked to me again, she told me that they had safely returned to their place of origin. I asked about the scientific research and whether she had managed to find the ruins she had been raving about.
“She said that she had found something she didn’t know how to describe. If those things were published, they would probably cause an uproar among every theological and archaeological circle and even impact existing scientific processes. I thought she might have exaggerated the whole thing at the time, but I could hear the excitement in her voice. That being said, I have never seen her publis.h.i.+ng the results of that particular expedition until now. After that conversation with her, she never mentioned that expedition again.”
Han Lu went on, “In order to make sure that she was emotionally sound, I never asked her about the expedition again. However, I still have to say that her decision at the time was made without much consideration. You were only two years old, and she didn’t even return to her country to hand you over to your grandfather. Instead, she asked one of her colleagues to take care of you for a few months. The worst part was she didn’t even tell me about it. I didn’t know that she gave birth to a son until she returned to China. To be honest, that did make me feel a little uncomfortable.
“I’m her best friend. We used to talk about everything. Although we didn’t communicate as frequently as we did at school, it didn’t affect our friends.h.i.+p. She should’ve told me that she had a son. She later explained that she didn’t want to annoy me because I had just split with my fiancée at that time. However, she should know me well enough that I would not be bothered by such a thing.”
Han Lu paused and then curiously asked, “Why are you so interested in Xiao Xia’s trip to Greenland, and why don’t you just ask her or your father?”
“I asked my father about it, but as you said, they don’t seem to want to talk about it,” replied Zhang Heng. “Anyway, thank you for telling me what you know.”
“It’s not a big deal.” Han Lu smiled. “But you better not tell Xiao Xia that I told you these things because I don’t know why she hides it from you. I feel as if we are going behind her back at the moment.”
“I won’t tell her.”
After a while, the stewardess walked over with the menu, and with a smile, requested their orders. Han Lu chose a j.a.panese meal and a gla.s.s of plum wine. However, she did not finish her main course. Instead, she finished the dessert and fruit. After she drank about half a cup of plum wine, her cheeks became slightly flushed. She then started to about the vacation.
“Where do you want to go and have fun tomorrow?”
“I haven’t been to Okinawa. It’s your call,” Zhang Heng said.
Han Lu said nothing in response to that. Almost immediately, she suggested, “Let’s go diving. Have you ever dived before? Are you good at it?”
“Well, I’m okay.”
“I have dived in Cape Maeda and Wreck’ 92. Let’s go to Yonaguni Island this time. It is said that if you are lucky, you could see hammerhead sharks and humpback whales,” Han Lu gushed. “But we might encounter strong currents if we dive there. If you are a beginner, or if you have not dived much, we can head somewhere beginner-friendly.”
“It doesn’t matter. Just go where you want to,” Zhang Heng said.