Translate: Ice | Edit: Sae
Before the classes were divided in the First Year, Gu Fei was still in Class 1. At that time, there was a dolt in their class who was chatting in the back row with the girl he had just gotten with, probably also even brushing their elbows together occasionally, during the self-study period. Then after the self-study period was over, the guy would go straight to the bathroom.
It was said that this hot-blooded young man had ejaculated simply from just brushing elbows, and would go to the bathroom to dispose of his underwear.
Their class had laughed and couldn’t get over this for over an entire semester.
Gu Fei had thought it was very amusing at the time, but now he felt like they were pretty similar to one another.
He lowered his eyes to glance at the left side of his body, Jiang Cheng’s left hand was still resting on his waist. At first, he had only grabbed onto him because Gu Miao had given him a scare, but probably because Gu Miao had continued to hold on to the bicycle seat, he didn’t have anywhere else to place his hands… so half-holding, half-grasping, his hand never withdrew from his waist.
For Gu Fei, this sort of “if you don’t look with your eyes, you would hardly feel it” kind of contact was something he wouldn’t be able to feel at all under normal circumstances. He had carried plenty of people on the backseat of his bike or motorcycle before, men and women alike, so this sort of contact was beyond normal.
But the person now was Jiang Cheng.
When he looked at Jiang Cheng now, the vague or distinct recollections of Jiang Cheng’s body in Ding Zhuxin’s demented and tattered designs would sometimes emerge in his mind uncontrollably.
His legs, his waist, his back, and even the scar on his ribs and cracked lips…
In summary, the hand that Jiang Cheng rested on his waist now, was like a grenade.1
If it exploded, maybe a pair of his underwear would also need to be disposed of.
After pedaling for a while, he caught sight of the group from their basketball team as well as the girls they brought on the backs of their bikes.
Gu Fei stretched out his right hand with his palm facing the back and squeezed the brakes. As soon as the bike slowed down, Gu Miao’s face just happened to hit his palm. She kept her face against his hand as a stop and used the momentum to slow down the speed of her skateboard.
“What is it?” Jiang Cheng asked from behind.
“You take over ba.”2 Gu Fei used his leg to prop up the bike and looked back at him.
“You’re tired already?” Jiang Cheng got off the bike, “This physical strength of yours is saddening. You can’t even pedal a bike after a single game.”
“Why didn’t I realize before just how talkative you are?” Gu Fei also got off and shoved the handlebar of the bike over to him.
“I’ve never cooperated with Er Miao before,” Jiang Cheng swung himself onto the seat. “I won’t bump into her, right?”
“If you happen to bump into her, she knows how to move away.” Gu Fei sat on the backseat, “Let’s go.”
“It’s so hard to start pedaling on the spot, can’t you wait for me to…” Jiang Cheng started.
“No. My physical strength that isn’t even enough to pedal a bike after a single game won’t allow me to run anymore.” Gu Fei retorted as he took out his phone and started playing on it.
“Fuck.” Jiang Cheng quietly cursed but could only exert his strength to start the bike on the spot.
Gu Miao took the initiative to distance herself two steps away and started her skateboard with a kick. Then after a while, she slid back and grabbed onto the backseat to let herself be dragged forward.
Jiang Cheng pedaled for a period of time and caught up to Wang Xu and the rest in front of them.
“You’re here,” Guo Xu turned around and saw them. “You guys ran off pretty fast ah.”
“We’re hungry,” Jiang Cheng replied.
“Jiang Cheng.” A girl on the left called out to him.
He turned his head and the phone in the girl’s hand made a kacha sound. He sighed: “Don’t you know to turn off the sound when you’re sneaking a picture?”
“This isn’t sneaking a picture ah.” The girl covered her mouth a little embarrassed and giggled for a long while.
The group of them chatted as they rode along the way. It wasn’t a short distance from where they were to downtown; they had noisily occupied an entire lane, and whenever a motorcycle or moped had to get by, they would squeeze together into a clump and giggle foolishly.
It’s really that age where they would laugh even if they’re eating shit. Jiang Cheng looked at the people around him.
These people, if it was before he moved, would have basically been the topic of ridicule for him and Pan Zhi. They were a little crude, kind of stupid, yet he was now squeezed together at the side of a road with them.
But he didn’t giggle with them… however, he had already lost count of the number of times he and Gu Fei had giggled together.
Gu Fei stayed silent the entire time, donning the unsociable look he always had and played on his phone with his head lowered behind him.
Whenever the girls wanted to sneak a picture of him, Gu Fei would directly bury his head in his back.
“Stop taking pictures, just ask which of these two do you want pictures of.” Wang Xu had Yi Jing on his bike, he looked full of energy with no shortness of breath, “I have them all. There are even pictures of Jiang Cheng eating flatbreads.”
“You motherfucker.” Jiang Cheng glared at him.
“Send it over, I want to see it!” Immediately, one of the girls started to shout.
“I can’t just send it that easily, and I can’t beat Jiang Cheng.” Wang Xu said, “I can only sell them, one is 20 yuan.”
“You are willing to take a beating for 20 yuan…” Lu Xiaobin muttered.
Everybody instantly burst into laughter.
“You shut the hell up!” Wang Xu glared at him, “Do you even know how to calculate?! If ten people buy them, then that’s 200 yuan!”
“True,” Lu Xiaobin paused. “That’s a lot then. Jiang Cheng now has a lot of fans, if everyone bought one… you’ll earn quite a bit.”
“The IQ of you people ah,” Guo Xu sighed, “A photo can be sold once at most. Once it’s sold to one person, they can just make copies, who would want to continue buying from you…”
“Scram!” Wang Xu shouted, “Only your IQ is high right?!”
“That’s a pretty good business idea,” Gu Fei whispered from behind. “I have all different ones in my hands, high resolutions, with your face included, and no pixelati…”
“Do you even have any ethics left in you as a professional photographer?” Jiang Cheng whipped his head around and whispered back.
“Of course I do, that’s why I haven’t sold them yet.” Gu Fei replied, “I’m waiting for a high price…”
“Do you believe me when I say that I will throw you off?” Jiang Cheng threatened.
“Nope,” Gu Fei answered.
Jiang Cheng opened his mouth but couldn’t let out a word.
“There’s a level I can’t pass.” Gu Fei brought the phone next to his face, “Can you help me pass it later?”
“… Fuck.” Jiang Cheng was speechless. “Are you still competing with Li Yan?”
“En.” Gu Fei continued to play, “He’s already three levels ahead of me.”
“I’ll help you pass three levels later,” Jiang Cheng said. “You’re playing this stupid game like it’s some serious business. It’s as if we’re still waiting for you to save the world ne.”
Gu Fei started laughing from behind him: “That’s right ah, and the ones that I’ll eliminate first are those with a nasty mouth.”
Since Wang Xu had only called to reserve a room right before they left, there weren’t any bigger rooms left. With the players and the girls added together, it was around twenty people, so in the end, the waiters had to put three tables into a single room.
“Just squeeze together,” a waiter said. “Young people, right, you bond more when squeezed together.”
“Alright! Let’s squeeze together!” Wang Xu nodded then pushed them into the room one by one.
Jiang Cheng pulled Gu Miao to the innermost seat by the wall. He had promised Gu Miao that they would sit together. Gu Fei then followed after and squeezed in with them, plopping down right beside him.
“You’re not sitting beside Gu Miao?” Jiang Cheng glanced around: to the left was Gu Fei and to the right was Gu Miao.
“It’s too late to switch.” Gu Fei had stood up, but just as he wanted to switch seats, he saw that everybody had already squeezed in, so he immediately sat back down and lowered his voice. “If I switch now, I’d probably end up with girls on either side.”
“What,” Jiang Cheng kind of wanted to laugh. “Do you have some sort of problem?”
“I don’t have a problem,” Gu Fei retorted. Yi Jing sat down on his other side; without making a sound, he lightly inched his chair closer to Jiang Cheng’s side. He leaned over and whispered, “I’m just not used to it.”
“A dignified boss like you…” Jiang Cheng poured a cup of tea and set it in front of Gu Miao. “Gu Miao, drink some water and take off your jacket, your face is flushed right now.”
The room was small, and when the group of people squeezed in and sat around a long table, it looked like a meeting, both hot and noisy.
Gu Miao took a sip of water. She then raised her hand and tossed her hat on the table, donning a head of messy hair that stuck out everywhere as she took off her coat and tossed it on the floor next to her.
“Hang it on that rack,” Gu Fei said, pointing at the coat rack in the corner. He then took off his own jacket and handed it over to her, “Help Gege3 hang his too.”
Gu Miao grabbed the clothes and hat and hung them up, her hair still in a wild mess.
“Smooth out your hair,” Jiang Cheng said. “You’re a little lady, you have to watch your image.”
Gu Miao stared at him and impatiently combed through her head a few times before her gaze then shifted to his jacket.
“Oh.” Jiang Cheng quickly took off his jacket and handed it to her, “Hang it up for Cheng-ge too, thank you.”
Gu Miao took his jacket over with a serious expression on her face, and since she wasn’t tall enough to reach any higher, she placed his jacket on top of Gu Fei’s on a single hook. Then she went to sit back down and picked up her cup to slowly drink her tea as she huddled in her chair.
Jiang Cheng leaned back in his chair so that the backrest hit the wall. He hugged his arms as he watched the room full of people who all just had to yell at the top of their lungs if they wanted to speak – it was very noisy, very chaotic. The door to the room was originally open, but because the waiters couldn’t stand it anymore, they came by and shut the door.
But it was also very jovial. He hadn’t attended a gathering like this in a long time. In his previous school, everybody was a studying maniac with very strict families, thus most of them went straight home right after school ended.
Someone who would skip a class when he was bored and stayed out all night like him wouldn’t even have a companion most of the time…
The rowdiness in front of him now made him finally feel the warmth that spring should have.
“What do we eat, what do we eat?!” Wang Xu took the menu and started attending to everyone, “I ordered three pots, all of them are two-flavored, is that enough?”
“Enough, enough!” Somebody shouted in reply, “The type of pot doesn’t matter. What’s important is the meat! The vegetables!”
“There’s plenty for meat and vegetables.” Yi Jing smiled as he patted his backpack, “We’ve already brought the class funds, and Xu Zhong has also said that he’ll make up for it if we overspend.”
“Lao Xu is quite interesting sometimes,” Wang Xu remarked. “He just nags too much, even more so than my mom. He would end up moving himself first whenever he says something… Lamb! Fatty Beef! Pork belly! Hurry! If anybody has something else they want to eat, I’ll write it down!”
“The heat is making me sleepy.” Gu Fei also leaned back with his seat.
All the members of the basketball team that took off his jacket had on short-sleeves underneath, so when Gu Fei leaned closer, his arm would brush lightly against his.
In a season that wasn’t yet suitable to wear short-sleeves, the sudden skin contact made Jiang Cheng suddenly feel a rather peculiar feeling.
Gu Fei probably felt the same. Jiang Cheng could sense him immediately making some space between them by shifting toward Yi Jing, but barely two seconds later, he had scooched back over again.
Jiang Cheng contemplated this and felt that it was pretty funny, chuckling at the teacup in front of him.
“Fuck.” Gu Fei also started laughing along with him. He might as well let loose and relaxedly lean against him, even letting his legs rest against Jiang Cheng’s. “Laugh again and I will exterminate you.”
“With just a rubber band, I can kill you right back…” Jiang Cheng smiled. He glanced at his and Gu Fei’s legs pressing against each other under the table and suddenly realized that his level of acceptance toward Gu Fei’s touch was already just as much as that of his grandson, Pan Zhi.
Moreover, this feeling was completely different than with Pan Zhi.
… Of course, it was completely different. Pan Zhi was a good brother, a brother who he could share secrets and freely play rough with. Gu Fei on the other hand… Gu Fei was someone of his kind who, to him, incited an intuitive attraction and exuded a sense of temptation.
Despite never having considered the idea of finding someone of the same kind, let alone seeking comfort in one another, he had to admit that as they were now, with what was before them now, in a crowd of rowdy people and an atmosphere that was a little too warm, in the minuscule details unnoticed by anyone else, and in the fleeting sense of ambiguity that wasn’t for others to know and only for their eyes to see… he felt a sense of comfort that he wanted to quietly revel in.
“What do you want to drink Da Fei, something white?”4 Wang Xu waved the menu in front of the two of them.
“En,” Gu Fei sounded in response.
“What about Jiang Cheng?” Wang Xu looked over at Jiang Cheng, “We haven’t drunk together before, what do you want to drink?”
“… Whatever.” Jiang Cheng wanted to say that he didn’t want to drink anything at first but seeing everyone in the room in such high spirits, it just wasn’t good enough that they had won the game. With several girls also present, if he had said that he didn’t want to drink, they would definitely tease him to death that day.
“Wow…” Wang Xu teased. “Whatever? This tone, as expected of the three-point king.”
“And you just said that Lao Xu was naggy,” Jiang Cheng glanced at him.
“Watch yourself when speaking to the captain.” Wang Xu pointed at him, “When school had just started, I only let you off5 to give Da Fei face.”
“Oh.” Jiang Cheng nodded.
“Waiter—” Wang Xu flung opened the door and rushed outside, shouting, “Hurry up! Bring another Niu Er!6 And some fresh juice—”
Then he turned around to look at Gu Miao: “Queen Miao Miao, do you want to drink juice? There’s orange juice and corn juice.”7
Gu Miao didn’t raise her head, just grasped her teacup, and shook her head.
“Then what is she going to drink?” Wang Xu looked over at Gu Fei.
“Beer,” Gu Fei answered.
“… Fuck me.” Wang Xu was struck dumb but still turned his head, “Get another beer, our Queen wants to drink!”
“Aiyou, stop yelling!” The waiter stood by the door and said, “We’re right in front of you, what are you yelling for…”
“Your big brother is happy today—” Wang Xu continued to yell, “Hurry, bring the meat and alcohol up first!”
“Got it already! Meat! Alcohol!” The waiter placed the bowls in front of him, then turned and jogged away.
Yi Jing stood up and took out a camera from her backpack then raised it toward the girl beside Wang Xu: “Juan Er, let’s take a group photo first. You take it from your side, and we’ll take it from our side afterward.”
“Alright.” The girl caught the camera she tossed over and said as she backed up, “Everybody squeeze toward the middle, otherwise, we can’t catch everybody.”
A room full of people immediately squeezed toward Gu Fei and Jiang Cheng.
“Squeeze together! Squeeze together!” Wang Xu squeezed beside Yi Jing and rested a hand on the wall as he leaned his body this way.
Yi Jing smiled as she dodged him by shifting toward Gu Fei
Gu Fei didn’t say anything, swiftly leaning toward Jiang Cheng even closer.
“Fuck.” Jiang Cheng had just gathered Gu Miao over to him when the people squeezing on his right pressed him into a bundle with Gu Fei, “You should all go lose weight!”
“Quickly,” Gu Fei said to the girl taking the picture.
“Smile!” The girl instructed, “Class 8 is number one!”
“Class 8 is number one!” The group roared in unity.
The girl pressed the shutter. Everybody had just started to scatter when she hurriedly waved her hands: “Wait! I haven’t taken one yet…”
“Call a waiter!” Wang Xu pointed at the door, “Call a waiter over to take a picture for us!”
The waiter was startled by the mass they squeezed into as soon as he came in: “It didn’t seem like there were so many of you a moment ago…”
“Hurry up!” Jiang Cheng couldn’t help but give a yell.
His and Gu Fei’s chairs weren’t completely next to each other, but now they were squeezed so much that the two of them had to bend their waists. He had no choice but to place his hand on Gu Fei’s leg… this posture couldn’t last very long.
“Make a heart! Make a heart!” Wang Xu suddenly ordered.
“Make two fucking eggs-yolks, my ass!” Jiang Cheng was about to go crazy, “I only have one hand!”
“I also only have one hand, not gonna happen,” Gu Fei said.
“The two of you use one hand each then, hurry!” Wang Xu urged, “How about everybody uses one hand each! Find someone beside you to form a heart with and use both hands if there’s no one beside you! We made big hearts during the game earlier, so now let’s make small hearts! Clasp a finger too! Yi Jing… come on, the two of us can make one!”
“Ai…” Yi Jing helplessly smiled and pressed her thumb and index finger against his to form a small heart.
“Queen Miao Miao, you use two hands. Do you know how to make a heart?” Wang Xu was busying himself to death.
Gu Miao held the cup of tea and leaned against Jiang Cheng as if she didn’t hear a word he said.
“She doesn’t know,” Gu Fei answered for Gu Miao. He then stretched out his left hand in front of Jiang Cheng.
Jiang Cheng glanced at him, then placed his right thumb and index finger against his.
“Is everybody all good?” The waiter asked, “I still have to serve the dishes ne.”
“All good!” Everybody shouted.
“One, two…” The waiter raised the camera.
“Class 8 is awesome—” Wang Xu yelled.
“Class 8 is awesome—” Everybody shouted in a chaotic mess.
After the picture was taken, Jiang Cheng shook out his clothes that had become wrinkled from being squished and felt that he had already started sweating on his back.
Gu Fei rubbed his legs.
Jiang Cheng looked at him: “Aw, aren’t you so fragile~.”
Gu Fei couldn’t help but laugh after rubbing two more times, “Aw, your mouth is so nasty~.”
“Aw, I heard that you wanted to exterminate me~?” Jiang Cheng countered.
“Aw, I heard that you could kill me with an elastic band~.” Gu Fei returned.
They had just finished speaking when they both burst into a laughing fit under the table.
“Come on, come on, come on!” Wang Xu interrupted their laughs with a shout, “The alcohol is here! Pour it! Pour it all! Girls, you can pour yourselves some juice… Miao Miao, your beer!”
Wang Xu placed a pint of beer in front of Gu Miao. Gu Miao stood up without a word, picked up the beer, and took a big gulp.
“The fuck…” Wang Xu was given a scare, “Is she just thirsty?”
“Can a little kid drink like this?” Yi Jing asked in a low voice beside them out of concern.
“She’d drink around a cup before stopping on her own,” Gu Fei said.
“What a carefree little girl,” Yi Jing lamented.
“Come on!” After everyone had poured themselves a cup of alcohol, Wang Xu raised his cup, “I want to say a few words! Thanks to everyone for all your hard work, it’s because of that that we were able to achieve today’s victory!”
“Ah—” Everyone knocked their cups together.
“Thanks to our class representative for cheering us on and fighting to get us public funds for this meal!” Wang Xu said, “Thanks to Gu Fei for participating in the game and for playing so damn awesomely! Thank you, Jiang Cheng! Even though you just transferred over this semester, if we didn’t have you to guide us in this game, we would have never won so easily…”
“Hurry and drink.” Gu Fei knocked his cup against the table.
“Cheers!” Wang Xu knocked his glass, raised his head, and gulped down the alcohol.
Following that, several guys leaned their heads back and downed their cups with one gulp.
“Fuck,” Jiang Cheng uttered. Even though the cup wasn’t big, it wasn’t the extremely small type either, “Do you all chug down like this?”
“You don’t have to.” Gu Fei also directly downed a cup, “Only Wang Xu and the others drink this way, you southerners…”
“… I’m not a southerner,” Jiang Cheng said.
“If it’s South from us here,” Gu Fei drew a line with his hand. “Then all are…”
“Jiang Cheng!” Wang Xu raised the bottle and looked at him, “You claim to be fine with drinking whatever, how come you still haven’t moved?”
An entire table of people all looked over, making Jiang Cheng feel incredibly helpless. He could only raise a toast to Wang Xu and said in a very low voice: “Here’s to you who has no brains…”
And then he directly poured the entire cup of alcohol into his mouth.
After downing the alcohol, the boys that were already excited grew even more exuberant. The sounds of their voices even started to quiver. The waiter pushed open the door to check on the situation: “Oh, sorry, we thought you had started fighting…”
“Eat!” Wang Xu waved his chopsticks.
The way this group of excited people devoured the shabu-shabu meat was not a pretty sight. They practically dumped entire plates of meat into the pots then immediately after, seven or eight pairs of chopsticks reached in and stirred around… all the meat would be completely picked out in less than a few seconds.
Yi Jing picked out a plate of meat and placed it in front of Gu Miao: “Meimei8, eat more.”
Gu Miao buried her head into the bowl and ate, not forgetting to stand up and give her a bow first.
Jiang Cheng scooped a bowl of soup. But before he had a chance to put it down, Gu Miao reached out her hand, so he set it down in front of her and used Gu Miao’s bowl to fill himself another bowl of soup.
He just sat down and didn’t even get to take a sip when Gu Fei pushed his own bowl toward him: “Excuse me, if you could…”
“Get it yourself.” Jiang Cheng ignored him.
“I’ll help you,” Yi Jing said.
“No need.” Gu Fei quickly picked up the bowl and stood up, rushing to fill himself another bowl.
After he sat down, Jiang Cheng leaned back in his chair, silently cackling to himself as he gazed under the table.
“Drank too much?” Gu Fei gave him a sideways glance.
“Ah, I did drink a little too much.” Jiang Cheng took a deep breath, holding back his laughs.
Though that cup of alcohol really was strong, if they were to compare the intensity of their drinking abilities, he was more than willing to admit defeat to the group of people before him now. Wang Xu and the others were engrossed in drinking with full steam ahead; now that Lao Xu wasn’t here to hold back the reins, they drank like they were trying to use drinking as a means to prove that they were grown men… each downing the cups, phenomenally, unlike the common person.
Jiang Cheng doesn’t have that ability. With just that one cup, he already felt like his stomach was lit on fire. Adding to the heat in the room, he felt like he was on the verge of passing out.
“Ai.” Gu Fei nudged him with his arm.
“En?” He leaned his head against the wall and tilted his head to look at Gu Fei.
Gu Fei pressed a piece of candy into his palm: “Mint candy, it’ll gradually make things better.”
Jiang Cheng glanced at him. His mind was a little blank at that moment… since when was his alcohol tolerance so low?
He grabbed onto Gu Fei’s hand and firmly clasped down with the piece of candy wedged between the two of their hands.
The author wants to say: Will continue tomorrow.
【The author is in a bad mood, currently blank】
“I… I’m here to kick up a fuss o(≧口≦)o!” The black furry spirit frantically shook its fur and yelled.
“w(゜Д゜)w Ying.” The small black furry spirit cries.
Ice: *HEAVY BREATHING* All those subtle flirtatious touches I cAN’T.
I (who is also a hormonal, thirsty teenager) am also nearing the edge of my limit. ಡ_ಡ
Sae: Me: It was 1 AM when this was most edited :)))) I’m too old for this hahaha
1 Grenade – in the original text grenade/bomb (炸弹) was left as □□ due to censorship
2 Ba (吧) – (modal particle indicating suggestion or surmise)
3 Gege – older brother, short is Ge, like Cheng-ge if you forget
4 White liquor: Baijiu—白酒, pronounced bye-j’yo—is a drinks category that encompasses all traditional Chinese grain spirits. Baijiu is most commonly distilled from sorghum, but is also be made from rice, wheat, corn and millet. Made across China, a country that is roughly the same size as Europe, it is a diverse range of beverages. Baijiu production techniques differ significantly by region and style, and different types of baijiu can be as distinct as whiskey is to tequila. It is the world’s most popular liquor by volume, with annual outputs that exceed the combined total of vodka and whisky. Baijiu and Western spirits, broadly defined, are fundamentally different alcohols. In a global context, baijiu is remarkably new and under-examined.
5 Let you off (放了你一马) idiom literally translated to “give you a horse” meaning to forgive someone, let them off, let them go, etc.
6 Niu Er is short for Niulanshan Erguotou and is a cheap brand of Erguotou, which is a baijiu/hard liquor made from sorghum grain
7 Corn juice – or corn milk is also popular in Asian countries like China, Thailand, and Vietnam, where it might be served plain or mixed with milk or sugar.
8 Meimei (妹妹) – little sister