Chapter 23

The Sun slowly rose over the Tung Shou Pass, gleaming through Mulan's window. She slowly awoke from the light. She smiled, she knew that this was the day she would finally be going home, it had been so many years since she saw her parents, so many things have happened since then.

Mulan looked down at the cradle, which held her sleeping son. He was so at peace, cuddled up in his father's cape. Mulan began stroking his head lightly. He didn't stir; Mulan knew that this always calmed Ping.

Mulan slowly began to sit up. She took a deep breath and stretched, and began to get ready for the journey home.

Mulan began to wash her face, to the side of her she noticed the dress she wore when she was at the emperor's palace.
"Auntie must have washed it" Mulan thought.

Mulan quickly grabbed her clothes and began to dress herself. After she dressed, she finished getting ready by brushing her hair. Mulan could tell the rest of the household was up, by the smell of breakfast. Mulan slowly opened the door to join the rest of the household, but Ping awoke.

His little infant sounds indicated he was on the verge of a cry. Mulan quickly rushed to Ping.
"Don't worry, I won't forget you." Mulan said as she picked Ping, who was still covered by the cape.

Mulan should have known he was going to wake up, he was hungry, she knew he would be, She could feel her breast begin to fill up with milk, and also the smells from the kitchen could have awaken him as well.

Mulan rested Ping on her shoulder, and made her way into the dinning room.

Finally arriving in the dinning room, she saw her uncle sitting at the table waiting for his breakfast.
"Well good morning, Miss Hero." He said in a cheery tone
Mulan smiled at the comment, "Good morning." Mulan said back in a delighted way as she sat down at the table.
Mulan began to throw the cape over herself, so she could feed Ping. He began nursing hungrily.

Mai-Li came in with bowls of rice and tea.
"Oh, well look who is up." Mai-Li said as she noticed Mulan at the table, "And how is our little mommy this morning?" She said in a kindly manner as she handed out the bowls.
"Just great." Mulan said with a bright smile.
Mai-Li smiled back. All was happy and cheerful though out breakfast.

"That should be the last of it." Uncle said as he loaded the last of Mulan's things into the carriage.
"Thank you so much!" Mulan said in a kindly tone as she held Ping.
"It's no problem really, anything for family!" her uncle said with a smile

Mulan kindly smiled back, and carefully placed ping in his basket.
"Alright, then we should hit the road," Mai-Li said, "if we want to be able to get to Zu's house before night fall."

Mulan hugged her uncle, "Thanks for every thing again"
"It's no problem," he said as he backed out of the hug, "you just have a safe trip now, ok"

Mulan smiled, "ok"
"Alright then, ready." Mai-li asked
"Yep." Mulan said happily.
"Ok then lets go!" Mai-li said as she helped Mulan into the carriage, and handed her ping.

Mai-li closed the carriage and hopped on to the front, and reined the horses to go.
"Have a safe trip!" Mulan heard her uncle yell as the carriage rode off.

Mulan settled down and made herself comfy. She looked down at her sleeping son it the basket.
"Your finally going home little one." She said softly to Ping.

At the emperor's palace Shang was just beginning to wake up. The sun hit his face; Shang quickly covered his eyes from the brightness. Shang slowly began to sit up, and stretched.
"Well good morning sleepy head," Tigress said in a cheery way," I'm surprised, I would have thought you would have been up by now, knowing that you are going to see your son and all."

Today was the day! Shang was finally going to get to see his son again, and Mulan. Finally he could make up for all the things he did to Mulan.

He just wanted all of this to be over with so he could finally be with the people he loved the most, Mulan and Ping.

Shang quickly got dressed in his armor.
"Why the armor?" Tigress asked.
"Well I want to look presentable for her parents, I already now they will probably hate me." Shang said as he began to tie his cape," so I might want to look and be the best I can, try to get some of their respect."
"Well good luck on that." Tigress said in her sarcastic ways.
Shang just rolled his eyes, and quickly began packing his things.

Finally Shang finished his packing and began to get ready to leave.
"Alright, I think were ready to go." Shang said," Just one thing."
"What?" Tigress asked
"Do you know where Mulan lives?"
"Don't look at me, do you think I know where she lives, boy you must be crazy." Tigress said in a ghetto tone.
"Well... we need to find out some how... if we ever want to get there." Shang said
"Ask the emperor, he might know."
"Great idea." Shang said as he got up to ask.

Shang quickly began to walk down the halls of the palace. Finally he found the emperor walking down the halls.
"Your highness... Sir!" Shang said.
"Oh, Captain Li, just the man I wanted to see." The emperor said as he walked towards Shang.
"I... I am." Shang questioned
"Yes, I wanted to talk to you about Fa Mulan."
"You... you do?"
"Yes...here we can discuss it privately in my library; I don't want every one to know about it, if Che-fou hasn't already told everyone."
Shang laughed at the comment, as he followed the emperor.

"I know your probably wondering, why I want to talk to you about Fa Mulan." the emperor said.
"Yes sir"
"I know she is a very big part of your life now."
Shang smiled at the comment, "Yes sir she is."
"And I can see you love her very much, am correct?" the emperor asked.
"Yes sir, very much."
"Well, not to be rude captain Li, but I do want to know how all of this happened."
"Sir?"
"What I mean is, did you force her to do something she didn't want to do?"
"Well... um…" Shang hung his head down in embarrassment, "Yes sir."
"Well then, I would have never expected this from you captain Li, I would have never thought you would have raped a woman like that."
"Sir, I don't think what I did was rape."
"Well then, my boy, what do you think it was?"
"Well sir I just wanted to show her how I felt about her, sir, I would have stopped at anytime she wanted, I would never make her do anything she didn't want to."

The emperor thought about what Shang said, "Well, my boy, out of that affection you have caused a lot of trouble."
"I know"
"But I can tell by the way you love her, you could straighten things out."
"Thank you sir."
"And by the way your dressed this morning, I can see you've dressed to impress."
Shang laughed, "Yes sir."
"Well then, my boy, I can see you need to be on your way, if you want to make it there before night fall."
"Thank you sir, but just one thing."
"Yes, my boy."
"Do you know where Mulan lives?"
The emperor laughed at the question, "She lives in the farm region in the middle kingdom."
"The what?"
"You don't know much about that region do you?"
"No sir."
"Well then how about I just let you use one of my maps." the emperor said as he went to get a map, and Shang followed.

It was late noon, and Mulan had happened to take a nap on the way to her parents. But suddenly she was awoken by Ping. Mulan could tell he was hungry; she was getting very use to the sensation of her breasts filling up with milk.

She slowly picked up Ping, she didn't want to drop him cause to road had become bumpy. But Mulan knew that meant that they were in the farm region, she was not far from home.

Mulan took the pillow from behind her and placed it on her lap. She slowly laid Ping on the pillow, while still holding him. She pulled out her breast and began feeding him. Ping feed hungrily.

Mulan watched her son, she loved him so much. But she was still worried about what her father would think.

Suddenly the carriage came to a stop. She heard her aunt walk around to the door of the carriage.
"Welcome Home Mulan." Her aunt said as she opened the door.
Mulan looked down at Ping, "We're home little one." Mulan said softly.

"Mulan!" yelled a voice outside the carriage.
"Mama!" Mulan said happily to herself, it had been so long since she heard the sound of her mothers voice.
"Li?" Mai-li said as she went to the voice.
"Mai-li!" Fa LI said as she ran to hug her sister in law, "What are you doing here?"
"Well I came to bring home Mulan," Mai-li began, "and someone special."
"Someone special?' Li asked."

Li slowly walked to the carriage, and was amazed at what she saw. Was she really seeing her daughter, her now 18 year old daughter, Mulan, feeding a baby?
"Mulan!" Li gasped.
"Mama...please I can explain." Mulan pleaded.
"Mulan what have you done?" she said angrily.
"Mama please" Mulan pleaded almost in tears.

Li watched as her daughter began crying, she couldn't bare to see her daughter cry. Li knew that becoming angry at Mulan was not going to help anything, just make things worse. Li knew Mulan needed her more than ever, she knew that now she needed to keep her temper down. She knew that punishing her would not teach her the lesson she needed to know, she could tell Mulan had already learned her lesson, Mulan had learned what comes from doing things of that sort. It was just best to support her now, and try to help.

"Mulan you have broken tradition severely," Li began
"I know." Mulan said through her tears.
"But, I can tell you learned your lesson, and even though I am angry at you, I am going to try to help you get through this.
Mulan smiled through her tears, "Thank you mama!" she said as she hugged her mother.

Li began to pat her daughters back, "It will be ok, I have no idea what your father has to say about this, but everything will be ok."

Mulan hugged her mother closer, even though she was worried about what her mother would say she knew her father would be the hardest to tell.

They slowly came out of the hug, "Now, how about I see my grandchild." Li said.
Mulan slowly took Ping off her breast and began to hand him to her mother. Mulan put her breast back in her dress.

Ping began to cry, when Mulan took him off her breast.
"Aww, it's alright little one, there's no need to cry, Nai Nai's gotcha." Li cooed to Ping, li looked up at Mulan, "What's the baby's name?"
"Ping." Mulan said sweetly as she looked at her child, "He's my little soldier."
"Ping?" Li asked.
"I will explain later."
Li just laughed, "One thing though, I have a very handsome grandson, he looks just like his mother... just with a boyish charm."
Mulan laughed at the comment.
"You have that right." Mai-li said.
They all laughed at the comment and began to unpack the carriage.

Mulan watched her father. She could tell he missed her so much, just as much as she missed him. But still Mulan had no idea how he was going to take the news.
"Alright." Mulan thought "Here goes nothing"

She began to walk towards her father.
"Mulan!" Zu gasped.
"Father." Mulan said as she bowed, "I've brought you the sword of Shon-yu." Mulan said as she placed the sword in her fathers lap, "... And the crest of the Emperor!" Mulan said as she placed it on her fathers lap as well, "They are gifts... To honor the Fa Family." Mulan said as she bowed once more.
"Mulan," Zu began, "You have already brought honor to this family, these implements mean nothing to what you have done."
Mulan smiled and hugged her father, but Mulan knew that was not the end of the surprises.

They came out of the Hug, "Baba," Mulan said softly, "I have more to tell you."
Zu became worried when he saw Mulan's expression, "Yes, my daughter."

Mulan took a deep breath, "Father", Mulan began, "While I was at war..."
"Yes"
Mulan took a deep breath and paused, "I...I have bared you a... grandson."
"WHAT!" Fa Zu yelled as he quickly stood up.
"Father please just listen to what I need to say!" Mulan pleaded while still on her knees.
"Mulan do you know what you have done!" Zu yelled angrily, "You have broken tradition and given the Fa family a bad name!"
"But Baba you just said…"
"I know what I said, but you have now given the Fa family reputation a terrible name. You have made the Fa family sound like a Family that has no discipline for there women!, like we just let them do what ever!"
"But Baba…" Mulan said as she began crying again.
"NO BUTS MULAN! You have ruined the family name."
"Baba...please just listen to me."
"Why should I? You can seem to do anything right, you couldn't even pass the matchmaker's test, and now this, Mulan why do you do these things, why can't you just get things right."

Mulan became angered, "I have gotten things right! I was the one who saved China! I worked my ass off to save my county and try empress you, and you don't give me a second glance just because I gave birth to a son! I thought having a son was supposed to be a glorious thing..."
"MULAN THIS IS A COMPLETLY DIFFRENT SITOUATION!"
"NOT BY MUCH! Yes I know I gave birth to a child without being married! And completely ruined the sacredness between a man and wife!" Mulan yelled, then she stood up to be eye level with her father," But what do you care, from what I know now you apparently have never had any faith in me! All you could care about is honor...honor apparently means more to you than our Family!"
"HOW DARE YOU DEFY ME! Zu said as he slapped his daughter across the face.

Mulan quickly fell to her knees, with tears streaking down her face. He had never done anything like that to her before, but then again she never fought back. Mulan began to cry harder, he had scared her terribly.

Mulan slowly looked up at her father "You may hate me, and you may hate my son, but no matter what you say, or what anyone else says, I will still love my son! Just like I thought you loved me!"
Zu stopped and realized what his daughter had said. Zu took a deep breath and walked into the house.

Mulan began to lower her head to try and hide her tears; she could still feel the sting from her fathers hand. Why did he have to hate her?

Li quickly ran to her daughter when she saw her on the ground.
"What happened! Are you alright?" Li said as she examined her daughters face, "What did he do...," She realized Mulan had been slapped, "Oh Mulan."
Mulan began to cry harder.
"I knew he would do something...but I never thought he would hurt you." Li said as she wiped the tears off of Mulan's face.
"Why does Baba hate me?" Mulan asked softly as she began to lay her head on her mother's shoulder.

Li just lightly patted her back, "He will come around in time."
Mai-li walked up with Ping in her arms. Ping quietly began crying, Mulan quickly looked up. Mulan held up her arms in a sign she wanted her son.
"I just hope I am the only one he hates... I don't want him taking this out on Ping." Mulan began as she looked down at her son," He has been through too much."

Shang had been ridding for many hours.
"Are we there yet?" Tigress asked in a tired fashion.
"Almost, her house should be at the end of this trail." Shang paused.
Tigress looked up, "What's wrong?"
"I have no idea what to do when I see her." Shang began, "I have treated her so badly in the past, and I have no idea how to apologize."
Tigress hopped on a near by rock, "Ya just got to be true to your heart."
"Well what will that do?"
"It will do every thing"
Cranes: (2 cranes come flying in and part the tree branches above Tigress to make a stage light) True to your heart, ya must be true to your heart that's were the heavens were born, and baby shower you with my love.
Tigress: (sun light hits her) WOO...ha-ha...com'on
Cranes(back ground) dat da da dat da
Tigers: (jump back on the trail and starts jiving) yyeeeaaaahhhhhheeee (Pulls Shang off of his horse and throws her arm around him) Baby I knew at once That you were meant for me Deep in my soul I know That I'm your destiny, Though you're unsure
Why fight the tide, (pokes his head) Don't think so much, (points to Shang's heart) Let your heart decide ooh. (Takes his other arm and does future showing movement) Baby I see your future And it's tied to mine (points to herself) (rubs her paw on Shang's face) I look in your eyes
And see you searching for a sign, (stands up and pushes Shang down a small hill)
But you'll never fall (Tigress jumps after) 'Til you let go, (looks down at Shang on the ground) Don't be so scared Of what you don't know!
Tigress and cranes: (Cranes help Shang stand up) True to your heart
You must be true to your heart That's when the heavens will part (Tigress splashes in a puddle and gets Shang wet) And baby shower you with my love, (Tigress and Shang sit on a rock while Tigress moves her shoulders to the beat) Open your eyes Your heart can tell you no lies And when you're true to your heart (Tigress points to self) I know it's gonna lead you straight to me.
Cranes: (in back ground) Got to be true to your heart.
Tigress: (Tigress and Shang walk up to a bush, Tigress parts the bush to revel a view of Mulan in her garden) Someone you know is on your side Can set you free (Places paw on her chest) I can do that for you If you believe in me Why second-guess What feels so right Just trust your heart (cranes open up tree branches to reveal light) And you'll see the light.
Tigress and cranes: True to your heart You must be true to your heart That's when the heavens will part ( shakes of water) And baby shower you with my love Open your eyes Your heart can tell you no lies And when you're true to your heart I know it's gonna lead you straight to me, wwwhoo!
Cranes: (in background) Got to be true to your heart
Tigress: Ha..uhha
Cranes: Ya know it's true
Tigress: Your heart knows what's good for you
Cranes: Good for you
Tigress: Let your heart show you the way
Cranes: Ya know it's true
Tigress: It'll see you !
Cranes: Got to be true to your heart
Tigress: (cranes fly in with Mulan's war helmet, she catches it with her head and pretends to be Mulan) boy my heart is driving me to where you are You can take both hands off the wheel and Still get far (Tigress takes the helmet of her head and rolls it off her shoulder to Shang) Be swept away enjoy the ride (Shang almost drops the helmet but happens to catch it) You won't get lost
With your heart to guide YYYOOOYYYYOOOOHHHHHHOOOOHHH!
Tigress and cranes: True to your heart You must be true to your heart that's when the heavens will part (tigress climes a cherry tree and begins to bush a branch to make flower petals fall on Shang) And baby shower you with my love Open your eyes Your heart can tell you no lies And when you're true to your heart I know it's gonna lead you straight to me
Cranes: true to your heart, ya must be true to your heart
Tigress: Got'a be..TTRRRRUUUUEEEEE
Cranes: ya must be
Tigress and cranes: (Shang get back on his horse and tigress and shang begain walking to mulan's house boppin to the beat) True to your heart You must be true to your heart That's when the heavens will part And baby shower you with my love Open your eyes Your heart can tell you no lies And when you're true to your heart I know it's gonna lead you straight to me...(repeats)

Mulan was sitting on her bed feeding Ping. Fa Zu slowly walk up to her room, and gazed at his daughter and grandson. He took a deep breath and walked in to Mulan's room.
"Mulan." Fa Zu said.
Mulan quickly looked up, "Baba!" Mulan was speechless, "I am... I am so sorry about what I said out there, I didn't mean it...really I didn't... it's just... I've been through so much in the last 9 months, it's...it's just...just."
"I understand" Zu said softly.
"What?"
"I understand."
"Do you forgive me?"
"Mulan, you know I can not be mad at you for long, no matter what you do, I can't stay mad at you." Zu said as he sat beside Mulan," and of course I forgive you, but you do know your life will be completely changed now don't you."
"Yes sir, I've known that since they day Ping was born."
"Ping?"
"It was his father's suggestion, and it was my war name." Mulan said with a laugh.

Zu stiffened up when she mentioned Ping's father, he may forgive Mulan, but he would never forgive the man who did this to his daughter, he knew when he meet him, he would give that so called father a piece of his mind. But right now he didn't want to yell at his daughter anymore, so he dropped the subject of his grandson's father. Really he just wanted to spend some time with Mulan...and his new grandson.

"How about we take a walk through the garden." Zu said as he stood up, "so I can learn a little more about this grandson of mine" he laughed
Mulan smiled at the suggestion. And they began to head out to the garden.

They began to slowly walk through the garden, "So what did change your mind about Ping anyway?" Mulan asked
Zu smiled, "If you really want to know, it was your mother, she pointed out something I would have never though of."
"What was it?"
"Well she told me that the best way to deal with this was no to be angry, she said if it was something that was simple, like breaking something or doing something that won't change your life much, that this would be the time to be angry, but she said with this kind of situation, the best thing to do was just make sure you knew it was wrong and help you the best we could, and she was right."
Mulan smiled and looked down at her son in her arms.
"You have quite a boy there, Mulan" Zu began, "He looks just like you."
"Thats what everyone says."
"Well then it must be true" Zu said with a laugh.
Mulan laughed, "But at least they can tell he is my son."
Fa Zu laughed, but then Ping began to start crying.
"He must be tired... poor thing, he couldn't sleep the whole way here."
"I bet, my sister isn't the best driver."
Mulan laughed, "I am going to go put him to bed."
"That's fine," Zu said as he watched his daughter walk off, "But Mulan... I would like to talk to you after you do that."
Mulan nodded her head and went to put Ping in bed.

Mulan began to walk back into the garden, Mulan saw her father sitting on the bench in the garden. Mulan kneeled down beside her father who was sitting on the bench.
"Mulan" Zu began. "I just wanted to say, the things that I told you when you came home, are not true. I just became enraged, I didn't know how to handle something like this, my mouth had a mind of it's own at that point."
Mulan smiled, but her smiled faded away, "Father, much of that was true, I was a failure as a daughter and as a woman of society. The only way I brought honor to this family was from the war, the sword and the emperor's crest."

Zu began to see his old Mulan again; the one who always thought she could never do anything, he hated that about her, but he did miss her, he missed her so much.

Zu fell to his knees and hugged Mulan, "The greatest gift in honor is having you for a daughter," he said as he wiped the tear from Mulan's face, "I have missed you so." he said as he hugged her again.
"I've missed you to Baba."

From afar Mulan's mother and grandmother were watching the whole thing. Li was happy to see that they had made up.
"GREAT!, she brings home a baby and a sword... if you ask he she should have brought home a ma..
"Excuse me" A young man asked as the two women slowly turned around to the voice, "Does Fa Mulan live here?"
Li and grandma both look at each other, they could tell that they were thinking the same thing
"NO wonder she brought home a baby!" they thought, as they slowly pointed in the direction of Mulan.
"Thank you" He said as she walked away in that direction
"WOW! sign me up for the next war!" Grandma proclaimed, as Li gave her a "are you crazy" look.

Shang walked up to Fa Zu, "Honorable Fa Zu I... Mulan! aaahhhhh... I brought you your helmet...well actually it's your helmet isn't...um I mean."

Mulan walked up to Shang and took the helmet, "Would you like to stay for dinner?"
"Would you like to stay forever!" grandma yelled.
Shang smiled at the comment, "Dinner would be great"

AN: This isn't the end. There's a bunch more! I'm SO sorry that I haven't updated sooner! Every time I tried to upload something, fanfic told me there was an error! I'll try to have a few more chapters up by the end of the weekend, because you have all been waiting so (somewhat) patiently! More reviews = more chapters by Monday!

KristinHigg96