The purchase

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I found out master Li He and his wife didn't stay long, they left soon after and I was called to clean up the mess in the living room. It broke my heart not being able to speak to him. I shouldn't have expected too much from master Li He. Why would my former master have anything to do with me?

The very next day I was surprised to find out master Li He came back at the manor, I wasn't called to serve him some refreshments, but I saw him and my new master going for a slow stroll in the courtyard. They were in carefree conversation. It made me wonder what brought him back the very next day. He didn't have his wife tagging along this time, he's alone and the tension he wore when he saw me yesterday - surprised as he was - was gone.

Master Li He seemed relaxed today.

I watched him while I hang the sheets on the line to air dry, half hidden behind it. For some reason, I felt the need to hide from him after yesterday. After I saw his wife, after he remained silent without acknowledgment, I felt like he didn't care.

His head lifted and his eyes wandered into mine, he had his smile worn already when he looked at me while I met his eyes.

Master Li He's glance was quick, it flicked into me, and then, away. It was enough to make sure the girl who stood behind the rippling white fabric was me.

He looked away leaving a sudden surge of ache in me.

*****

That evening, my master called me to his side while he was enjoying his dinner.

I rushed away from the kitchen walking over to the dining room to get to him. My head already tucked to my chest with my eyes down to my feet as I approached him. "You called for me, master?" 

Master picked up his cup of tea with puckered lips sipping slowly. He made me wait a few seconds as he enjoyed his drink before drifting his attention and spoke in his gentle olden voice. "Li He is quite fond of you."

My chest squeezed at the mention of his name, my cheeks flushed red. "You bought me from his parents, master."

He smiled, his eyes soft on mine. "I think his fondness for you reaches a different level." He groaned and touched his round belly with satisfaction. "He offered me a great deal of money to buy you back after he saw you yesterday."

I tried holding back my stun, but the shock showed anyway. I brimmed with delight. "Really?"

He laughed expecting the exact reaction. "So, what do you think? Should I let you go?"

"Yes!" I clapped my hands to my mouth, feeling bad at how fast I spat my answer. "No, I mean...no. I like here, too...but..." I stammered, my mind sped faster than my mouth could keep up with, muttering words that made no sense any longer.

My master's laughter grew louder. "Oh my, how I would love to be young again." He chirped and waved his hand at me. "Calm down, dear."

I managed to stay still even though I'm floating and squirming where I stood, I couldn't wait to run outside and celebrate. I waited for his further instruction, tugging on my robe out of anticipation.

"Well, go on, pack your stuff. He's coming for you tomorrow morning." He smiled, and I didn't have to be told twice as my feet moved on their own before he was even finished talking. I ran excited out of my mind.

*****

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