Chapter 129 – Disheartened

At the door, Lu Xia observed the surroundings and didn’t hear any sounds. Then, Jiang Junmo took the initiative and went forward, knocking on the door while whispering, “Senior Brother Xu, are you asleep?”

Jiang Junmo called out twice, and rustling sounds came from inside the cowshed. Soon, a cautious figure emerged.

“Who is it?”

“It’s me, Senior Brother Xu!” Jiang Junmo hurriedly replied.

Seeing Jiang Junmo, Senior Brother Xu seemed relieved. He quickly walked to the door but didn’t open it to avoid making too much noise and drawing attention.

“Junior Brother, why did you come over? Aren’t you cold?” Senior Brother Xu asked with concern.

Jiang Junmo smiled and said, “I’m fine, Senior Brother. I’m wearing a lot of clothes, so I’m not cold!” Then, he quickly asked, “How are you all doing? Can the house withstand the snow? Is there any danger?”

Senior Brother Xu smiled and said, “Don’t worry, I’ve been here for a few years. It snows every winter, and we just need to clear the snow from the roof every once in a while. It’s not dangerous. Junior Brother, don’t worry.”

Although Senior Brother Xu said so, Jiang Junmo noticed that he was wearing a tattered cotton coat with little thickness, and he was shivering from the cold. Jiang Junmo couldn’t help but feel a bit distressed.

Lu Xia, who had been silent all along, quickly suggested, “Let’s give the food to Senior Brother Xu first and not let him stay in the cold here so late.”

As Lu Xia spoke, Senior Brother Xu noticed her presence for the first time, and he became a little nervous. The experiences of the past few years made him wary of strangers.

Jiang Junmo noticed Senior Brother Xu’s unease and suddenly realized that he forgot to introduce her. So, he quickly said, “Senior Brother, this is my wife, Lu Xia. She came with me to visit you.”

Senior Brother Xu relaxed upon hearing Lu Xia’s identity. Although it was too dark to see her appearance clearly, he could tell from Jiang Junmo’s gentle tone that she should be a good person. Moreover, she was willing to come and visit him, someone stuck in such a difficult situation. He smiled and said, “Alright, I heard that you got married not long ago. I’ve been worried about you. I couldn’t go out, and now that I see you, I feel relieved. My wife isn’t here today; otherwise, she would be thrilled.”

Lu Xia also smiled and replied, “It’s about time we came to visit Senior Brother. It’s just that Junmo only told me today. I hope you won’t mind.”

Senior Brother Xu said sincerely, “Why would I mind? Sister-in-law, don’t mind my current state. To be honest, with how I am now, people can’t even stand to look at me, let alone mind. I’m just happy that you’ve come.”

Hearing the despair in his tone, Lu Xia didn’t know what to say to comfort him. All she could do was say, “Senior Brother, try to be optimistic. At least you’re still alive. There’s hope for a better future.”

Senior Brother Xu chuckled self-deprecatingly, “I don’t expect to see a better future now. I just hope to survive because I still have a wife and child.”

Hearing his words, Lu Xia sighed and didn’t know how to respond. At this moment, Jiang Junmo decided to break the silence, “Senior Brother, don’t think too much. We brought some food for you this time. We prepared it in a hurry, so we only have this for now. In a few days, we’ll bring more for you.”

Senior Brother Xu quickly refused, “Why bring food? I’m just happy that you came to see me. I’m not hungry enough to starve to death.”

Upon hearing his words, Jiang Junmo directly said, “Senior Brother, don’t hide it from me. If you’re not hungry, then why is your child, Xiaotian, so thin? Can’t you see it?”

Hearing this, Senior Brother Xu froze in the courtyard.


Chapter 130 – Jiang Junmo’s Memories


Lu Xia also chimed in, “Senior Brother, don’t be polite with us. We have enough food. Besides, we can earn work points, and our family also sends us food tickets. Buying food is much more convenient for us than it is here.”

Hearing this, Senior Brother Xu found it difficult to refuse. Just like Jiang Junmo said earlier, the people here didn’t earn work points for their labor. The village only provided them with a small amount of food to keep them from starving. He and his wife tried to eat less to save food for their child, but the child was still weak and emaciated. As a father, he felt heartbroken, but there was little he could do.

So, when faced with the food brought by Jiang Junmo, he couldn’t bring himself to refuse.

Lu Xia saw his hesitation and directly carried the food inside the cowshed.

Senior Brother Xu subconsciously took it and was surprised by the amount of food they brought.

He wanted to decline again, “This is too much. Did you save up this food for a long time? No, you should take back some of it. One-third is enough for us.”

Lu Xia shook her head, “Senior Brother, please accept it. I heard that there are many people here. If someone is too hungry, they can also benefit from it. It’s our way of showing concern.”

Senior Brother Xu withdrew his hand upon hearing her words. There were indeed many people here, and life was difficult for everyone. If they accepted their food, Senior Brother Xu was worried that they might end up sharing their own food with others. He didn’t want to cause any inconvenience.

However, he didn’t expect that Jiang Junmo and Lu Xia had thought about this already. He couldn’t help but silently decide to remember this favor.

“Alright then, I’ll accept it. Junior Brother, Sister-in-law, thank you both!”

Jiang Junmo and Lu Xia smiled at his gratitude.

“Senior Brother, don’t mention it. Please go back quickly; it’s too cold. We’ll come to see you again in a few days.”

“Okay, you two be careful and don’t come too often. Avoid being noticed by others.”

“We understand, Senior Brother.”

After bidding farewell to Senior Brother Xu, Jiang Junmo quietly told Lu Xia about Senior Brother Xu’s family situation. His senior brother’s name was Xu Jing, and he used to be an art teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts. His family background was good, and he married his wife, Qiu Ling, after falling in love. They were a well-matched couple, and after getting married, they quickly had a child and lived a happy life.

When Jiang Junmo was younger and just became a student of the teacher, he saw Senior Brother Xu a few times. At that time, Senior Brother Xu was only in his early twenties, having just graduated from college and started working at the academy. He wasn’t married yet, but he treated Jiang Junmo very well, often taking him to learn art together. Among his fellow students, who were much older than him, Senior Brother Xu was the only one Jiang Junmo could play with.

Later, after Senior Brother Xu got married, they met less frequently, but he would occasionally invite Jiang Junmo to have a meal at his home.

After college classes were suspended, Senior Brother Xu returned to his hometown with his wife and son. Jiang Junmo didn’t hear much about him after that. It wasn’t until later that he heard that his senior brother had an accident, so he asked someone to inquire about it, but he didn’t find anything. Surprisingly, he found him here while he was in the countryside.

Listening to Jiang Junmo’s words, Lu Xia also felt emotional. She was even more surprised to learn that Senior Brother Xu was only a little over ten years older than Jiang Junmo, making him only in his thirties. When she saw his blurry figure just now, she thought he was in his forties or fifties. She had assumed he was a middle-aged man, and she was also surprised at how young his son was. Now, it seemed that it was Senior Brother Xu who appeared to have aged prematurely.

Feeling the desolation and sadness in Jiang Junmo’s tone, Lu Xia comforted him, “Don’t worry; now that we know, we’ll take care of them more in the future.”

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Forgive the author for not including explanations, it was probably because of the so-called censorship.

In China, during the 1960s and 1970s, a significant political movement known as the Cultural Revolution took place. It was a tumultuous and complex period of Chinese history initiated by Mao Zedong, the Chairman of the Communist Party of China. The movement aimed to purify the party and society from perceived capitalist and traditionalist elements and to reassert Mao’s ideological leadership.

During the Cultural Revolution, there were no specific “crimes” that led to people being sent to live in cowsheds, which were often used as makeshift prisons or forced labor camps. Instead, individuals were targeted based on their perceived class background, political beliefs, or associations. Anyone who was suspected of being counter-revolutionary, anti-Mao, or part of the “bourgeoisie” or “revisionist” class could become a target.

The term “cowshed” or “cowshed-style” was used metaphorically to describe the primitive and harsh conditions under which people were forced to live and work. These makeshift detention centers were typically located in rural areas and forced individuals to engage in labor-intensive agricultural tasks, often with inadequate living conditions and little to no access to basic amenities.

People who lived in cowsheds were often denounced and subjected to “struggle sessions,” where they were publicly h*miliated, physically and verbally ab*sed, and pressured to confess to their alleged crimes or ideological deviations.

The accusations and denunciations could come from neighbors, colleagues, or even family members, leading to an atmosphere of fear and mistrust.

It’s important to note that the Cultural Revolution was characterized by political turmoil, mass mobilization, and extreme ideological fervor. Many people suffered immensely during this period, and the exact number of victims remains difficult to ascertain. The impact of the Cultural Revolution on Chinese society was profound and far-reaching, leaving lasting scars and shaping the country’s history for decades to come.

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4 thoughts on “Cannon Fodder Husband Ch.129-130

  1. Ah, thanks for explaining. I wasn’t sure which “sin” this guy committed & wondered. In this case, his greatest “sin” was likely simply being good at existing. It’s interesting how authors can’t talk about the brutality of this time period openly online, but everyone still knows what happened and why.

  2. Wow, so it was because of that. I was confused why his brother lived in such condition, if he committed crime then why he’s not in prison? Now i got it

    What a crazy time to live

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