Chang'e spoke. "Our spirits are remembered, and thus live forever, only if we've been extremely good. Or extremely bad. And it was very bad of me to steal my husband's potion."
"If only he knew how miserable you are without him," said Jade Rabbit.
"Surely he's forgiven you by now?" said Moony.
Chang'e rose from her throne, blocked her ears and circled in a gathering wind. "Down below, all those dear children wishing for a happy family, when I don't have one myself.
All those dear people asking for peace on earth, when my moon ... is a mess! "
The moon fairies plucked and blew their instruments louder but the wind whirled stronger and the strange humming grew.
"Wait!" cried Jade Rabbit. The flash of a knife, a gleam of jade. Jade Rabbit, eyes tightly shut, his knife poised to cut.
"No, no!" said Moony. He couldn't bear the pain.
The wind subsided. Chang'e flopped on her throne. "Yes, I agree. Jade Rabbit, enough!" she said.
Tears rolled down her cracked cheeks.
Why was she so unhappy? Moony didn't understand.
Jade Rabbit poured her a cup of tea. The fairies played soothing music.
Then Moony knew what he had to do. His double duck egg heart felt light and free.
He tipped on the plate, rolled to the trolley edge, jumped onto Change's lap. "Eat me," he said.
Chang'e raised her head. She smiled. She looked so beautiful when she smiled.
She lifted him, placed him on her palm. "Why should I?"
"Because I'm a Traditional?" Moony said.
Chang'e smiled again. Her lips were red and her teeth sparkled.
"And I may be a comfort to you," said Moony, "because I'm both sweet and salty. To enjoy sweetness, you have to have tasted salt."
Chang'e cupped him in her warm hands.
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