Shun Nin is the sole male heir of his prosperous, chauvinistic family. He doesn't know how the other half lives until his death and reincarnation into a girl to the same family. He finds himself in living hell having to deal with ridiculous patriarchy he once embraces. His anger amplifies when he learns that his death has been a conspiracy and his best friend is going to marry his girlfriend.
EXCERPT FROM FAVOURITE CHILD
The top executives of Chong Advertising Enterprise were in the majestic conference room that had turned into a pressure cooker, all experiencing Grandpa’s wrath.
“We have lost a million dollars in the course of only a few days,” Grandpa’s voice boomed across the room. His fist pounded onto the mahogany conference table that stretched long across the room.
His eyes scanned his audience. At the straight faced men and women in business suit. Dad, Mom, and Aunt Cheslydia were among the assembly.
When no one made a move to speak, Grandpa grew angrier and continued his venting. “There has been a large sum of money lost and I demand an explanation.” His knuckles connected to the table with another loud thump.
Again, there was silence. Grandpa’s anger blazed into fury. His face turned a deep maroon.
“Don’t worry, Father,” Dad said quickly, saving the rest in the room from his shouting. “I will see what I can do to attract new customers.”
“You’d better,” Grandpa said grimly. “Because if this condition persists, we will have to resort to unfavorable decisions. You know what that means.”
Some men gulped, others hung their heads low.
As the conference continued long into the evening, the door suddenly flung open. All eyes turned, every head pivoted to the direction of the door, where Wei Wen had barged in.
Mom gasped quietly as her heart leaped up to the ceiling. “What are you doing here, Wei Wen?” she whispered to herself. Her eyes swerved in Grandpa’s direction.
His eyes scarlet with rage, wrath overflowed his face. Something told her Wei Wen was going to be punished severely. Dad’s face was an exact duplicate of Grandpa’s.
The silence was so deafening in the conference room as if it had turned into a vacuum.
Wei Wen veered around, her innocent eyes wandered around the room, oblivious to the tension that was building up. Then, she found her mother and started to run at her, screaming, “Mommy, Mommy!” Her voice exceptionally loud and ringing in the quiet room. Mom was wide eyed. She glanced at Grandpa and Dad’s angry faces in turn, then pivoted toward Wei Wen, who was still hurrying toward her.All eyes were affixed at the little girl. Everybody seemed to be holding their breath as Grandpa’s face turned purple.So innocent. Like she doesn’t even know she’s wrong. Mom tightened her lips.
“Mommy, I want to go to the park now,” little Wei Wen demanded stridently as she held Mom’s hands tightly.
Instead of answering, Mom slowly turned toward Grandpa, fear raging through her mind.
What was he going to do next?
What would he do to Wei Wen?
These questions and many more raced through her head like angry hornets. Her heart pounded faster and louder at every passing second until she was sure that everyone in the room could hear it.
Suddenly, Grandpa jumped up so violently, his chair fell backward. All eyes riveted at him instead. “Who on earth gave you permission to come in here, Wei Wen?” His voice roared like thunder, drowning the quick beating of Mom’s heart. “You’ve brought enough misfortune to the family and even the company.” His finger jabbed in Wei Wen and Mom’s direction. “GET OUTTA HERE NOW!!!”
It had come so abruptly, Shun Nin’s head snapped at Grandpa with a shudder. Everyone had jumped. One or two, the weak ones as Shun Nin called them had fallen out of their chairs and were slowly getting back up.
“I—I am sorry, Father.” Mom finally found her voice.
The next second, Shun Nin’s feet were off the ground. Mom had lifted him in her arms and hurried for the door. He turned back into the conference room and saw Dad whisper to Grandpa, “I am sorry, Father. She’s just a three years old baby. Forgive her please.” He couldn’t help but to be pleased that Dad had stood up for him for the first time. After he had become Wei Wen. When he thought back, he could be doing it for Mom or just to calm the storm.
“Shun Nin was a genius at three,” spat Grandpa. “Boys are usually smarter than girls.” That was the last thing Shun Nin heard before the door slammed in his face. Every single voice was shut out. Together with the tension that vibrated in the air.
Once in the family room, when he was with Mom alone, peace settled over and within Shun Nin. Mom sat down on the sofa with him on her lap, then a sigh escaped her chest. “Wei Wen, you must never do that again. You are not going into the conference room again even if no one is there,” said Mom sternly. Her face reflected her weariness.
“My darling Wei Wen.” She put a finger at Shun Nin’s lips. Kissing him on the cheek, she hugged him close and tight. “I want you to know that Grandpa and Daddy think you’re a dark omen. They think that you brought the bad luck that has plagued the family and company when you were born.”
Shun Nin looked down unhappily at his feet, then into Mom’s eyes. “Do you hate me too, Mommy?”
Mom beamed and passed her hand over Shun Nin’s back. “Why would I hate you, darling? Mommy will always love you no matter what.”
“I love you too, Mommy.” Shun Nin threw his arms over Mom’s neck and held her tightly.
She hugged back.
In her embrace, he asked again, “Mom, why is Grandpa so sexist? Why he’s so patriarchal? Isn’t this the modern world, the democratic era? Why is he still stuck in the Dark Ages?”
Another gasp escaped Mom as she pulled back to look at Shun Nin. She stared dumbly at him for a couple of seconds. “Where did you learn such big words?” When Shun Nin shrugged, Mom shook her head. “Don’t worry yourself about Grandpa. He’s just close minded. I have to go back to the conference now.” She pecked him on the cheek again before she got up and left him on the sofa.
Shun Nin watched with heavy heart as Mom disappeared into the horizon. A sigh left him when the door closed after her. “If only she would stay for a little longer.”
Again, the family room fell into the spell of silence.BW
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Candistic lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Graduated with Biotechnology degree, she is a scientist by day and sci-fi writer by night. Favorite Child is her first novel.