Part 2, Chapter 7 Summary
LuLing flees Peking and tries to make a living in Hong Kong as she waits for GaoLing to get a visa for her to travel to America. At first, GaoLing’s letters are not very encouraging. She writes that life in America is not the dream she had imagined. She is working hard but not making very much money. Getting a visa for LuLing is also proving to be difficult. She advises LuLing how to fill our her portion of the application—decreasing her birthday so she will appear younger and telling the officials that her birth certificate was lost in a fire.
In the meantime in Hong Kong, life is no easier for LuLing. She has very little money and no contacts. Everyone she knew lives in Peking. LuLing finds a place to stay in the shabbiest part of Hong Kong in an apartment that overlooks heaps of trash. She shares her room with two sick women. She finds work as a maid. Every time she thinks she has saved enough money to buy a ticket back to Peking, she learns that the price of the tickets has increased beyond the amount of money she possesses. So she returns to her jobs and tries to save more. After doing this for a couple of years, she receives a letter from one of the teachers from the orphanage, telling her not to come back to Peking because she is better off where she is. After the Japanese left China, the country broke apart in a civil war. Communist forces are now fighting Nationalists. Because Kai Jing is remembered as a martyr of the Communist cause, LuLing would be considered a Communist sympathizer. However, because LuLing worked at the orphanage, which had been run by Americans, she could also be accused of supporting the Nationalists. She would be in constant danger.
When LuLing begins to believe that her fate could get no worse, she runs into GaoLing’s husband. His health has deteriorated, and he had lost one of his hands. He demands to know where GaoLing has gone. When LuLing tells him...
(The entire section is 533 words.)