Who’s willing to come up and help him?
Following the route home from his memory, XiaYao returned to his house back in high school. He was still in a trance as he reached the threshold.
All those who had stayed in this house with a broken floor corridor were labour force workers who worked in the city. XiaYao had lived here since a young age with his mom.
At this time, mom should still be at work so XiaYao found the keys from his bag and just as he was ready to open the door, someone opened it from the inside.
“Back already?” XiaYao’s mom said, in an apron with the spatula in her hands. Taking XiaYao’s bag from him, she said: “Go, quickly go buy me a bottle of soy sauce.”
To see his mom back was so sudden to XiaYao that he stood there absent-mindedly.
“Still standing like an idiot for what, go quickly.” XiaYao’s mom turned around to go into the kitchen after speaking.
XiaYao didn’t hear his mom telling him to go buy soy sauce, but instead followed his mom into the kitchen.
“Mom.” He found his mouth hoarse after saying that, “How come you’re back?”
XiaYao’s mom stirred the pan and at the same time answered his questioned: “Isn’t today your birthday? I got off work early to give you a delicious evening meal. Why are you still here? Quickly go and buy me a bottle of soy sauce.”
After saying that, she ignored XiaYao and picked up a clove of garlic to cut up.
Only after buying the soy sauce and coming back home did XiaYao fell a bit of reality. The house is filled with the aroma of dishes, the rumbling of the chicken stew with its delicious smell, the memory of his mom’s apron; it’s just as bustle as he recalled it.
So good, XiaYao felt his eyes tearing up.
It’s so good to be home.
After dinner, while XiaYao helped his mom with the dishes, she brought out a red packet.
Every New Year’s, XiaYao would receive a red packet from his mom, she had never bought anything for herself, only organizing a big feast for him along with a big red packet.
The money is always placed together by XiaYao, after cleaning up, together with that memory; the red packet is placed with all the ones from the previous years.
XiaYao’s mother is probably exhausted after a day’s work, falling asleep when it wasn’t even eight.
After bathing, XiaYao’s eyes fell onto his mom lying on the bed, breathing heavily. XiaYao felt a constriction in his chest.
His mom had passed away when XiaYao was studying at university. At that time, XiaYao had followed ZhouDu to live in an unfamiliar city, leaving the mom that he had always relied on, alone in this place, and did not even see her one last time.
This was XiaYao’s biggest regret in life. That year, in his heart was only ZhouDu, so much that he didn’t realize his mom, who had always worried about him, had cancer.
It’s a good thing everything started again, thought XiaYao, turning onto his side and shutting his eyes.
On Monday morning, XiaYao wore two big panda eyes into the classroom, seeing nightmares every time he closed his eyes, there was no way he could sleep at all these last 2 nights.
Just as he sat down, his desk mate, Chubby, had also rushed in.
Chubby’s real name was Guo Dongdong, but because of how rounded his body was, the class didn’t call him by his real name anymore.
He held 3 steamed stuffed buns, one bite, and one gone, and after 3 bites, nothing left. He craned his neck like a goose as he mercilessly swallowed, followed with sucking the milk clean in his other hand. Then he was alive as he greeted XiaYao.
XiaYao nodded at him, and proceeded to take out the English book from his bag. He was a quiet character so Chubby didn’t bother.
The class representative went around collecting everyone’s weekend work, when it was reached XiaYao, his face suddenly turned white as a sheet.
Chubby handed his paper in and elbowed XiaYao, “Time to hand in the paper.”
“I didn’t write it.”
Chubby’s eyes shot up, the representative of the English class, a pale, delicate and pretty girl quickly said, “Then quickly do it now, I’ll go and collect the others first.”
XiaYao didn’t know which English paper; there was no way he could know which weekend homework it was back in third year.
The class representative came to collect it three times, and each time, XiaYao said he didn’t do it. Chubby gave him the thumbs up.
XiaYao had a wry smile. When he raised his head, he saw a person at the doorway from the corner of his eye.
ZhouDu with his bag astraddle was coming closer and closer.
ZhouDu’s school uniform brushed XiaYao by the elbows, XiaYao felt his heart thumping, about to jump out from his throat.
XiaYao breathed out a sigh of relief when ZhouDu left.
He was a cautious rabbit, venturing gingerly in love with ZhouDu, but afraid of how others would look at it with disgust, he could only silently hide deep in a forest of his own.
The third class was Chinese; the Chinese teacher was also their homeroom teacher. He was a tall and skinny middle-aged man, who wore thin rimmed glasses, shiny bangs always pulled back, as well as a face like a boss, so he was nicknamed “First Lady”.
The First Lady scanned the whole classroom and found everyone present, revealing a satisfied smile.
“Very good, everybody seems to have that awareness of being in senior year.” He pushed his glasses back, and with a renewed smile, “But there is one person who has no consciousness of being in senior year.”
XiaYao knew he meant him; he lowered his head, not a word.
“XiaYao.” The First Lady obviously did not intend to let him off.
XiaYao stood up.
“Why wasn’t homework done?”
“You forgot?” The First Lady snapped at the table. “How come you didn’t forget to eat? Even WangHao has written his homework, and you didn’t even write a single paper!”
WangHao, in a half lying position secretly playing with his mobile phone, suddenly heard his name from the First Lady, quietly whispered “Che, didn’t even do anything, still attacked.”
XiaYao felt his face heat up, just obediently stood still with his head lowered. The First Lady also didn’t want to waste too much time on him, after reprimanding, he turned to the class and said, “The first mock exam for senior year is coming up soon, do you guys plan to face it with such attitude? Ah! Students, there is not much time, the countdown for the entrance exams has already started. Every minute, every second right now is precious, and yet, look at you all, early morning and talking once sitting down, no conscious point, read some books, do some homework, and look at the class next door, what their attitude is!”
After nagging, he looked at his watch and said to XiaYao, “Sit down first, let’s start class.”
The Chinese class for the first quarter then went by in a whirl, with the First Lady almost frothing in the mouth.
XiaYao knew that this was only the beginning, and when physics class came around, he was right. The physics teacher was going to give a scolding.
When it came to the last big question, the physics teacher stopped.
“XiaYao, Come up and do this question.”
XiaYao stiffly walked up to the blackboard, some of the students held looks of sympathy; others held looks of not caring at all.
“Teacher, I can’t.” replied XiaYao with his ear tips bright red.
The physics teacher gave a cold grunt, “I thought since homework wasn’t done, it’s all in your stomach, guess I overestimated you.”
He turned his head and asked: “Who wants to come up and help him?”
All those that made eye contact with him quickly lowered their heads.
This problem was very difficult, and XiaYao wasn’t familiar with those who can solve it, or it should be said that apart from Chubby, XiaYao didn’t have much interaction with anyone else in the class.
XiaYao stood in front of the blackboard embarrassed, and just when he thought no one was going to help him, a familiar voice rang out.
“Teacher, I’ll do it.” ZhouDu put one hand into his pocket and slowly walked to the platform.
He glanced at the somewhat stupefied XiaYao, reaching out towards his hands for the chalk.
As their fingertips brushed, XiaYao looked like he got electrified, shrinking back. ZhouDu glanced at him, not saying anything, quickly solving the two questions on the blackboard.
The physics teacher nodded with satisfaction and made the two boys return to their seats.
After school, Chubby guiltily said, “I’m sorry; I also couldn’t solve that problem.”
XiaYao was surprised, because he didn’t think that because of this Chubby would apologize. He quickly replied that he was fine. Chubby then insisted that he must absolutely treat XiaYao to tea, since he broke the code of brotherhood.
XiaYao felt that two boys drinking tea was a little strange, so he declined. Chubby was relentless, if he wasn’t going to accept then that meant he hadn’t forgiven him so in the end, XiaYao could only agree.
Pun t/n by Tracy : He was a tall and skinny middle-aged man, who wore thin rimmed glasses, shiny bangs always pulled back, as well as a face like a boss, so he was nicknamed “First Lady”.
OG Chinese: 加上老板着一张脸，所以人送外号“老板娘”jiā shàng lǎo bǎn zhe yī zhāng liǎn, suǒ yǐ rén sòng wài hào “lǎo bǎn niáng” (lit. Plus he always had a stiff expression, so people nicknamed him ‘boss lady’). If you look at the bolded parts, you might notice that while the characters and pinyin are the same, there are two different English translations. This knowledge dlc comes in three parts:
- In Chinese, the character 老 lǎo (lit. old) can also mean ‘always’.
- 板着脸 bǎn zhe liǎn means to have no expression
- 老板 lǎo bǎn means boss, as in business owner
From this, we can see that if you want to say that someone is always expressionless (1+2), the first two characters form the word for boss (3). That’s not all though, because the teacher’s nickname is actually 老板娘 lǎo bǎn niáng – this means ‘boss lady/landlady’ (as you probably saw from the literal translation), and is usually for female business owners (duh) or the actual business owner’s wife. Please rate this dlc 5 stars on steam.
❤t/n: Whoa, it’s almost been a whole month since chapter one came out. There were some issues and so that is why chapter two didn’t come out when it could have, sorry about that ;_; I’ll send more as I can. Chapter 3 will be out soon! That chapter broke my heart a little.
P.S. I saw this comment, but sorry, there’s no art that can be found for this novel ;_;
Though you’re welcome to create any ^_^