WARNING: DO NOT READ, UNLESS YOU'VE READ YIN YANG OUT OF BALANCE (THE FIRST PART TO THIS SAGA)!!

THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR THE ENCOURAGEMENT (REVIEWS, EMAILS, and COMMENTS) TO: LYNN, Angel452, ToughSpirit, Erika7, Jhs Rockerbaby, lunerbrittania, Gizelle, Jayv, Rory4, WildDragonFire, and whoever is reading this.

Sorry for taking so long. I wrote this chapter like 3 times, but I wish you all enjoy reading it at least as much as I did writing it.

The Struggle Of Yin and Yang (The Sequel to Yin Yang Out Of Balance)

Chapter 1: Winning the Family

It was early morning on a warm summer day. Fa Mulan was inside the barn trying to steal the eggs from the hens for breakfast. She threw some rice on the ground and all the hens approached her to eat. All the hens, that is, except for the fattest of them. Mulan knew perfectly that she was the one who laid more eggs, but she wouldn't move just to protect the eggs she was sitting on. Mulan sighed and checked out to see what the other hens left behind to eat. There were only two eggs and it wouldn't be enough for the whole family. Mulan headed toward the fat hen. She stared at her for a while waiting for the hen to look somewhere else that wouldn't be her. After some minutes, the hen's eyes began to close. Slowly, Mulan picked up a stick trying to make the least noise with it. Then she poked the hen which made her jump cackling. "Yes!" Mulan exclaimed seeing there were seven more eggs for breakfast. Mulan began collecting the eggs, but she was not fat enough, so the hen attacked her. In the process, Mulan dropped the 3 eggs she had stolen, which obviously broke. "How can you be so selfish?" Mulan managed to get the hen off her. The hen sat on the remaining eggs eying Mulan smugly, as if daring her to try to steal her eggs one more time. Mulan stuck her tongue out at the hen and left the barn, cursing through gritted teeth.

Mulan's mood was not very good that morning, she entered the kitchen still fuming about the hen, "I'm going to kill that stupid little." Mulan's eyes went wide open and her jaw dropped in surprise. Li Shang was sitting by the table wearing his uniform and a handsome half grin on his face. What on Earth was he doing there? Mulan felt so ashamed of her careless appearance; her old worn out clothes adorned with feathers, egg and dirt. "Excuse me," she said and ran to her room to get something decent to wear.

"She still is very shy with the guests," Granny Fa whispered, "I keep telling her not to be so messy and pay more attention to her appearance."

"She's ok," said Shang, eyes still fixed on the door Mulan had entered previously.

Granny Fa nodded and rubbed her hands maliciously under the table.

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Thanks to the incident with the fat hen, Fa Li prepared bacon and rice for breakfast. Mulan was relieved that Shang liked the food, or at least he said so.

After breakfast, Granny Fa left the table with the excuse that she hadn't slept the previous night and Fa Li went to the village to get some groceries. Mulan and Shang were left alone (on purpose, naturally) to talk. Instead, none of them said a word until Mulan broke the ice, "What are you doing here?"

Shang grinned nonchalantly and answered, "Easy. I come in peace. I thought we agreed to be friends. Don't you remember?"

Mulan remained silent for an instant thinking if he was provoking her like he had been doing months before, but well, indeed, they had even shared a passionate kiss once and as far as Mulan knew, Shang had enjoyed it as much as she did. Mulan chuckled and said simply, "I just find it strange."

"Sorry it couldn't be any sooner," Shang began, "There was plenty of job for me the past months. You know after Camp Wu Zhong got burned out, we had to find a place to train the soldiers; and of course, lots of paper work.

Mulan nodded; still very surprised he wasn't teasing her yet. "So where is the new camp?"

Shang answered, "Actually, it's bigger than Camp Wu Zhong and it has a small building used as the official's quarters."

"That's great."

"So, what about you?" inquired Shang.

"No big deal," Mulan answered and a tired sigh escaped from her lips, "Chores.the life of a peasant."

"And how is the life of a peasant?"

"I doubt you would find it amusing."

"Why not?"

"Because it's simple and very common," Mulan said, "No adventures, no surprises, it's just the same routine every day."

"You know life in the army is a routine."

"Well at least it's exciting."

"So, you will tell me nothing. Are you?"

"Probably not, unless you want to come along."

Mulan led Shang to the little field were they planted the rice. "We sale it in the village," said Mulan.

"So your family eats from all that this farm produces?"

"Right.it's not."

"Please, do tell, it is interesting.

Mulan was startled by Shang's interest on her ordinary life. He came from a noble family, and was probably spoiled by luxuries and things she dared only dream of. Mulan was also a bit uncomfortable to the fact he didn't even mention the kiss they shared the last time she saw him. It was like it never really happened. She thought perhaps Shang only wanted her as a friend and she had misunderstood things. After all, she was the one who started it all. Maybe she had forced the kiss upon him, and he didn't want to be rude to her, so he kissed her back.

Just then, Fa Li arrived interrupting Mulan's thoughts. "Perfect. The rice is ripe so you can peel the husks."

Mulan tried to complain, but the lady silenced her by saying, "We'll go to the village and sale it tomorrow." Fa Li turned to Shang, "Come inside, General Li Shang, it's cooler than here."

Shang turned to Mulan and replied, "I would like to help Mulan with the rice."

"It won't be necessary," Mulan said, "I can do it myself. It's not as hard as it seems."

"She's right," agreed Fa Li, "Besides, you are our guest."

"I insist," Shang began in a persuading voice. "I would really like to help."

"If that is what you wish," said Fa Li nodding.

"Shang, you can't!" Mulan exclaimed indignant, "Mother you have to stop him!"

"Mulan, please," Shang begged, "Allow me to help you for once."

"Fine," she replied, "but if you start complaining, it won't be my fault."

"Mulan," Fa Li said finally, "Go get changed. You don't want to mess your dress."

"Yes mother," said Mulan through gritted teeth.

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Mulan put on her father's training clothes, except for the socks and shoes, exposing her firm legs from below the knees and her gracious little feet. As she went past the kitchen, she found her mother and grandmother giggling and peeking through the window.

"What are you doing?" demanded Mulan.

"Mind your business, child," replied Granny Fa, "I would be outside, if I were you."

Mulan quirked her brow in confusion, what could be so interesting outside? Then she remembered. There he was removing his robe, showing his perfect, muscular body. Mulan's heartbeat raised and her cheeks began to burn.

"Stop staring child and go outside," said Granny Fa.

"I'm staring at nothing," she lied.

"You call that nothing," Granny Fa sighed dreamingly, "I wouldn't doubt he's the son of some god."

"If I were him, I wouldn't want people harassing me," said Mulan.

"We're not harassing him!" Granny Fa exclaimed indignantly, "We are only admiring the landscape. You see it's a beautiful day.warm and sunny." The elder lady took out a fan and produced air, "I'm so hot."

Fa Zhou entered the kitchen clearing his throat. "Good morning, ladies."

Immediately, the three of them turned to Fa Zhou smiling nonchalantly.

"What is so wonderful about the landscape?" he asked suspiciously.

"I'd better go. Mom wants me to peel the rice." Mulan walked out of the kitchen before her father would say something more.

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"Sorry for making you wait so long," Mulan began as she walked to Shang, "I couldn't find these clothes."

"I don't mind," said Shang.

"Oh, you'll have to take off those," said Mulan pointing awkwardly at Shang's shoes, "if you don't wish to mess them up."

"Right."

So they began peeling the husks of the rice. Hours went by like that. They talked while they worked under the warm summer sun. Mulan glanced at Shang's sculptural body when he wouldn't notice and turn to the rice right away. As for Shang, he didn't waste the chance to check out Mulan's curves while she was unaware. They were done by sunset. Shang wiped the sweat from his forehead and let out a heavy sigh.

"Are you willing to help us again?" asked Mulan playfully.

"Certainly," Shang answered with a smile across his face.

"You're kidding!" said Mulan at the same time she splashed some water from the paddy on Shang.

He shook his head and chuckled, "Always picking a fight. When will you learn?"

"Come on, let's go and have dinner."

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Fa Li prepared some Cantonese rice and chicken for dinner. The whole Fa family gathered round the table to eat the exquisite meal. Shang complimented Fa Li for the great job with the cooking and Grandmother Fa could not waste the chance to say she had contributed with the meal. Fa Zhou silently listened to the conversation and occasionally turned his eyes suspiciously to the young General (who stammered when he spoke and avoided as much as possible to look at the elder man's daughter; he kept his eyes fixed on the bowl of rice and chopsticks before him.)

Shang's uneasiness around Fa Zhou decreased when the elder man finally spoke up addressing him. "General Li Shang, I must thank you for your kindness today. Not many of your status would offer to help the peasants."

"It was.my .pleasure.I mean." Shang stuttered, "You're always welcome if you need my help.sir.after all your daughter.has.has.done for .me, sir."

Fa Zhou placed his entwined hands on the table. The expression on his face was solemn and tranquil, yet no sign of fondness towards Li Shang. "Once again, thank you very much."

"General," Grandmother Fa began, "I was wondering if you would like to accompany us to the market place tomorrow to sell the rice."

"Granny!" Mulan finally dove in, "That's called abusing! Don't you see, Shang has more important things to do."

"Actually, I have this whole week duty-free," said Shang, turning for the first time to face Mulan.

"I suppose you want to rest. You had enough work today," Mulan could no longer hide her embarrassment.

"I still want to go to the village with your family," Shang concluded.

Mulan pursed her lips, shook her head and hid her face with the palms of her hands.

+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+ The following morning, the three women of the Fa family woke up early. The elder ladies insisted Mulan should wear a nice dress and put some make-up on her face for Shang would be there. Of course, Mulan refused to wear make- up and continuously repeated Shang wouldn't go because he had more important things to do, and they were guilty of forcing him to be polite.

Right in time, standing at the front door, was Shang when Mulan opened the door to exit.

Like the fair gentleman he was, Shang offered to carry the sacks full of rice and place them on his steed's back.

"Shang," Mulan began once they reached the little stand were they would sale the rice, "Doesn't it bother you to be seen with us?"

Her question made Shang let the sack he carried, land heavily on the ground.

"No," he replied anxiously, "does it bother you to be seen with me?"

"Of course not," she answered honestly, "it's just that people talk and invent these horrible things about."

"Listen Mulan," Shang cut her off, "I learned how to deal with rumours long ago, and as long as my conscience is clear, there's nothing to worry about."

"It does make sense," said Mulan smiling, "I'll keep that in mind,"

Shang smiled back at her and for an instant, a wonderful instant, their eyes locked.

Mulan was the one who broke the eye contact and asked. "Shang, why are you doing all this?"

"Doing what?" he didn't understand what she meant.

"Well, helping us.I mean.you.it's not your obligation."

"Does my presence here bother you?"

"Not at all," Mulan said, "It's just strange. I mean."

Shang dared to take Mulan's hand in his own and bent his head for a closer look of her face. "Mulan," his voiced turned uneasy, "You know I am,.I suck at expressing my feelings." Mulan raised a confused brow, yet she was curious, wondering why was he so nervous. "You have no idea how grateful I am toward you for saving my life in so many occasions." He looked into Mulan's eyes. "And damn it, I've been a complete idiot around you. First I abandoned you in the mountains after I discovered you were a woman." He fixed his eyes on the ground hopelessly, "I have never loved and admired a woman as much as I love and admire you. I know I don't deserve you. I can't forgive myself for the horrible things I have done to you, that's why I was suck a jerk the second time you joined the army.I thought I could forget you by teasing you and you would hate me for that. It was useless, on the contrary, I got to know you better and as silly as it may sound, I enjoyed teasing you, because you would pay attention to me."

He made a pause and continued. "Remember we agreed to be friends and we would figure out the confusion we were feeling the time we kissed?" Mulan nodded silently, and to her surprise, Shang got down on his knees and proceeded, "The gods know I love you more than life itself and I really want to make it up to you." He planted a gentle kiss on Mulan's hand.

Mulan finally opened her mouth to speak, "Shang, I don't need to forgive you, I was very silly back at camp Wu Zhong as well. There's no need for you to get down on your knees, please get up."

But Shang didn't move. Instead, he asked. "If it isn't too much of a request.would you spend the rest of your life with me as my wife?"

Mulan stared dumbstruck at the man on his knees before her. He had caught her by surprise. His eyes were pleading. "I don't know what to say," She whispered, "I need to think of it."

Long chapter huh? I hope you liked it. Cliffhanger.I won't take so long with the following chapter.