You once asked me, if I wanted to date you, or if I wanted to go on dates with you, right?

Author: Wu Zhe, Translated by Ami <3

         It was very quiet all around when he woke up in the morning. However, there was a lot going on outside. Elementary school kids on summer break screamed and shouted with abandon, in the midst of which were the chiding voices of old grandpas and grannies.

         Jiang Cheng yawned and glanced at the time on his phone. He had just enough time to wash up, eat breakfast, and head over to the photoshoot.

         “Grandson!” He yelled toward the living room as he got up. “Time to get up!”

         There was no answer from Pan Zhi in the living room. Jiang Cheng pulled on a shirt and walked out of his bedroom, “Grand……”

         There was no grandson on the living room sofa, only a folded blanket and pillow. He paused, then took out his phone to call Pan Zhi.

         “You’re awake?” Pan Zhi answered the call. It was clear he was outside, Jiang Cheng could hear a mess of background noise from the other side.

         “Where did you go?” Jiang Cheng was shocked at these sounds. “Don’t tell me you’ve adopted a morning exercise routine now.”

         “What morning exercise!” Pan Zhi said. “I’m here at the breakfast stalls. I already got food for you and Gu Fei, so hurry up and get ready then come on down, or else it’s gonna get cold.”

         “Wait, what’s your problem?” Jiang Cheng rushed into the bathroom with the phone cradled between his shoulder and his ear, and said as he squeezed toothpaste. “I’m gonna be at least 20 minutes.”

         “Wash your face while you piss, then brush your teeth as you shit. If you take longer than 10 minutes I’ll call you grandpa.” Pan Zhi said.

         “You already call me grandpa every day,” Jiang Cheng said. “I just want to know why you’re being so mystifying.”

         “It’s all Gu Fei, he asked me this morning if you’re awake, I said no, then he asked what I wanted to eat and that he’ll go buy it……” Pan Zhi said.

         “Then let him buy it, what are you fighting him for?” Jiang Cheng mumbled incoherently as he brushed his teeth.

         “Don’t you think his actions are very much like he’s taking care of his wifey and his wifey’s bestie?” Pan Zhi said. “As a straight boy of the new age, I simply cannot tolerate being taken care of like that by my best friend’s boyfriend.”

         “I feel like his actions are more like a fuckboy of the new age trying to hit on my bestie.” Jiang Cheng said.

         “That there, is the difference between me and a gay boy like you…… Alright hurry up and get ready then come downstairs, I can see him walking this way.” Pan Zhi said. “How unsuitable would it be for me to be alone with him.”

         “Got it.” Jiang Cheng laughed as he ended the call.

         It was only after he hung up that he noticed the problem with Pan Zhi’s expression of wifey and wifey’s bestie.

         When Gu Fei sauntered up to the breakfast stalls outside Jiang Cheng’s building, Pan Zhi was in the middle of setting dishes on the table that was already covered with food.

         “Morning.” He walked over and greeted Pan Zhi.

         “Morning. If you’re hungry just have a few bites first to tide you over.” Pan Zhi said. “I also ordered a few trays of buns, but they’re not ready yet.”

         “It’s fine, I’ll wait for Jiang Cheng to come down.” Gu Fei glanced up at the building. “Is he up yet?”

         “Yeah,” Pan Zhi shot him a look. “You didn’t contact him?”

         “He’s coming down soon anyway.” Gu Fei gave him a smile.

         After Pan Zhi squeezed to the stall keeper’s side to rush the buns, Gu Fei sat down at the table. He felt a little awkward at Pan Zhi’s question.

         It was true he didn’t contact Jiang Cheng. From the time Jiang Cheng sent that message the night before, he hadn’t contacted Jiang Cheng since. Even though he was longing intensely for Jiang Cheng the whole night.

         But as soon as he remembered that message he didn’t know how to respond to, Gu Fei felt a little nervous about contacting him. He didn’t get a good night’s sleep at all, waking up and dozing off again several times, with Jiang Cheng’s question filling up his mind.

         He didn’t know how he should respond if Jiang Cheng asked it to his face.

         When Jiang Cheng came out of the building and headed this way, Gu Fei waved at him.

         Jiang Cheng gave him a smile, and waved back.

         The smile made Gu Fei want to rush over there, grab him, and give him a big kiss.

         “Are you feeding hogs?” Jiang Cheng walked to the table, grabbed a bun out of a tray Pan Zhi just brought over, and took a bite.

         “When I was little, I used to always eat breakfast at home. My mom said the food outside isn’t sanitary. I was super envious of those other students who got to eat breakfast outside.” Pan Zhi sat down and looked at the table of food. “So I thought, some day when I can eat breakfast outside on my own, I’ll order every dish at the breakfast stall and fill the table.”

         “Didn’t you eat outside since high school started?” Jiang Cheng said.

         “Yeah, but it’s still not enough. I was too repressed, it’ll take at least a decade for me to get over it.” Pan Zhi chugged some soy milk.

         The breakfast was a little too bountiful. Gu Fei listened to Jiang Cheng and Pan Zhi chat as he worked hard at eating, but at the end they still had half a tray of buns left.

         “Ah, it’s going to waste.” Jiang Cheng patted his stomach.

         “Just take it to go. If there are any stray dogs or cats on the way we can feed it to them.” Pan Zhi said as he put the buns in a plastic bag.

         The photoshoot that day was for clothes. It was a series of collaborations between Ding Zhuxin and another independent brand, so they planned the shoot on set in her studio. It was a relatively easier job.

         Pan Zhi’s personality was entirely different from Jiang Cheng’s. Gu Fei sometimes thought their tight friendship stemmed from the ability to make up for what the other one lacked. Jiang Cheng didn’t tend to converse with people he wasn’t very familiar with, unlike Pan Zhi, who was chatting away with the two female models just minutes after arriving on set.

         Even when the two girls were having their makeup done, they still dragged him over to continue the conversation.

         “Are you impressed?” Jiang Cheng was waiting on the side to get his makeup done, while reading through the promotional pamphlet to get to know the brand better.

         “Mhm.” Gu Fei nodded.

         “How did the talk with your mom go yesterday?” Jiang Cheng asked.

         “We had an argument, though it was alright I guess. It’s impossible to not argue with her.” Gu Fei smiled a little.

         “Did Gu Miao make a fuss?” Jiang Cheng continued to ask.

         “Nah, she drew something herself yesterday, I’ll show you some time.” Gu Fei said.

         “Sure, in the same style as your display icon?” Jiang Cheng laughed.

         “More or less. I think the bunny in my icon is already her best work.” Gu Fei snapped on the camera lens, then held it up and looked through the viewfinder at his surroundings.

         “When I messaged you yesterday…… why didn’t you reply?” Jiang Cheng asked hesitantly.

         “I fell asleep,” The camera was still in front of Gu Fei’s face. “Didn’t hear it.”

         “Didn’t you say you’d keep a nerve on for me.” Jiang Cheng said.

         “I was too tired yesterday,” Gu Fei said quietly. He turned and pointed the camera at Jiang Cheng, and looked at his side profile through the viewfinder. “Crashed on my pillow and slept straight through till morning…… I’ll change my notification to something louder, that way I won’t miss it.”

         “Never mind,” Jiang Cheng glanced at him. “You should try to get better sleep at night, I can already see dark circles around your eyes.”

         Nini waved at Jiang Cheng, indicating that it was his turn for makeup.

         When Jiang Cheng stood up and walked that way, Gu Fei pressed a hand gently against Jiang Cheng’s side.

         Jiang Cheng’s body blocked Gu Fei from other’s view, so this discreet gesture wasn’t seen by anyone else. In summer, the heat in Gu Fei’s palm was very obvious, brushing warmly over Jiang Cheng’s waist.

         Jiang Cheng was used to makeup now. He would plop right down in the chair, close his eyes, and sometimes even catch a little snooze.

         Gu Fei said he crashed on his pillow and slept straight through till morning. Those words couldn’t be true.

         Jiang Cheng was familiar with everything about Gu Fei. If Gu Fei really did sleep that soundly, then there was no way he’d have dark circles today. Not only that, perhaps other people wouldn’t notice, but to him, the subtle fatigue on Gu Fei’s face was plain to see.

         Gu Fei didn’t sleep well last night.

         And it wasn’t because of his mom and Gu Miao. If it was because of them, Gu Fei wouldn’t keep it from him.

         It had to be because of that message. The message that by the time he wanted to rescind it, it was already too late.

         He wasn’t sure whether Gu Fei had thought about what will happen after, and he wondered whether him asking the question would be too much like he was bugging his boyfriend for an outcome.

         Or perhaps Gu Fei had thought about it. He just didn’t have an answer.

         During the shoot, Gu Fei was just like usual; he would patiently instruct Jiang Cheng on his movement and angle. Even though Jiang Cheng still felt a little uneasy and a little miffed, he still felt comforted at the sight of Gu Fei.

         Gu Fei’s every motion pleased him: the way he held the camera; the way he knelt down on one knee; the way he bent down at the waist while looking for an angle; even the way he put his head down while checking the photos. It was hard for Jiang Cheng to tear his eyes away.

         Occasionally when his gaze met up with Pan Zhi, Pan Zhi would give him a meaningful smile, then continue staring at the girl nearby. Of course, Jiang Cheng would quickly give him a meaningful smile in return.

         When they finished the day’s photos and got ready to leave, he saw that Pan Zhi and one of the female models had already added each other on WeChat. They were still giving each other eyes and lamenting the parting even as they were leaving.

         “What is this efficiency……” Jiang Cheng said.

         “The kind of efficiency where both of us are idle with nothing to do.” Pan Zhi said as he swiped at his phone. “Although I really do like the way she looks, at least it’s not an internet famous snake spirit kind of face.” [1]

         “Really,” Jiang Cheng tried to recall. “I didn’t notice.”

         “Duh, even if that was a handsome guy, you sir would probably not notice in this state of mind, let alone that it was a girl.” Pan Zhi said. “Now I know what you’re like when in a relationship.”

         Jiang Cheng glanced at Gu Fei walking in front of them.

         What state of mind?

         Even Pan Zhi missed sometimes. Certainly in Jiang Cheng’s eyes, Gu Fei today was still so handsome it made his heart throb and want to jump him and knead him and rub him. But inside, he still felt a little annoyed.

         He had discovered a side of Gu Fei that he never realized before, which was that this guy was very good at holding things in. No matter what it was, Gu Fei could push it down.

         It might have something to do with the kind of environment Gu Fei grew up in. He had to deal with a lot of things this way, that it already became a habit. But to Jiang Cheng, faced with this, he only felt like he was wrapped in a thick and heavy blanket.

         It felt repressive, suffocating, and difficult to breathe. It felt like he had nowhere to exert force to struggle, and even if he did manage to struggle it was impossible to rip apart an opening……

         After the three of them had lunch, Gu Fei got ready to head back. He still had to take Gu Miao for treatment in the afternoon. 

         “We’re gonna go window shopping then?” Pan Zhi said. “The two of us can walk around and around for hours at a time.”

         “Mhm.” Gu Fei nodded with a smile.

         Jiang Cheng didn’t say anything. Only when Pan Zhi started walking off, did he glance at Gu Fei, “Go on then.”

         “Let’s meet up for dinner?” Gu Fei asked. “At Wang Er Meat Pies?”

         “We’ll see.” Jiang Cheng was feeling a little down.

         “Cheng-ge,” Gu Fei said, looking at him. “I……”

         “You should go.” Jiang Cheng interrupted.

         “Once Pan Zhi is gone,” Gu Fei glanced in Pan Zhi’s direction. “I’ll take you out for a feast.”

         “Shameless. When Pan Zhi is here it’s meat pies, when Pan Zhi is gone it’s a feast.” Jiang Cheng looked sideways at him. “Shameless.”

         “Hey,” Gu Fei started laughing. “Then we’ll feast tonight, alright? Or tomorrow before he leaves?”

         “We’ll see.” Jiang Cheng replied.

         “Well aren’t we right back where we started then,” Gu Fei said. “Dead loop.”

         “Right, feels bad doesn’t it?” Jiang Cheng looked at him.

         Gu Fei was quiet for a while as he looked back at Jiang Cheng, then he sighed softly, “I have thought about it. I’ve been thinking about it ever since you asked me if I ever considered getting a boyfriend.”

         Jiang Cheng froze, and stared at him without a sound.

         “I might have thought about it way more than you have, but this isn’t something I can get across with an answer of a sentence or two,” Gu Fei said in a low voice. “Is it?”

         “I guess.” Jiang Cheng was all at once having a hard time wrapping his head around this.

         Only after Gu Fei left and he and Pan Zhi had been aimlessly strolling around for a long time, did he slowly come to a realization, and frowned.

         Gu Fei said he’d thought about it way more. Perhaps. It was true that Jiang Cheng hadn’t been thinking about it since “have you considered getting a boyfriend”. In fact, it wasn’t until Pan Zhi asked him that question this time, that he felt like it was time to think it through.

         And yet, all he wanted was an answer. It didn’t need to be detailed. All he needed was an answer.

         I have thought about after. I still want to be with you, even after. We have to be together no matter what. 

         That was all.

         Perhaps it was because he was still looking at the problem in a conventional way, from a perspective entirely different from Gu Fei’s. He was asking about an outcome, but Gu Fei wanted to talk about the process.

         However, now that he thought about it, if they established the outcome, then everything in the middle would be directed toward that outcome. But if they started with the process, they could end up with any number of outcomes.

         Jiang Cheng sighed quietly.

         Gu Fei. You’ve thought about a lot. What did you think about?

         He and Pan Zhi strolled all the way to the shopping center downtown, eating and drinking as they went, then ended up on a bench in the square listening to music for almost an hour.

         The shop across the street put a karaoke machine outside their door. Jiang Cheng didn’t expect the people in this crappy little city to be so bold. The singing didn’t stop for almost the entire time they’ve been sitting there.

         Some people sang well, some people sang so quietly nobody could hear them, and some people basically chanted the lyrics out loud, while others were so off key it made one want to run up and cut the power.

         “Cheng-er, how about you go up and sing a song.” Pan Zhi said. “Widen their horizons, let them know what singing is supposed to be like.”

         “I prefer to keep my powers hidden.” It had been a long time since Jiang Cheng sang. He used to go singing with Pan Zhi and the others often. But in this kind of setting, he would rather sit here and listen to other people sing off key.

         “Then I’ll go sing a song.” Pan Zhi stood up and straightened his clothes. “Record it for me, I’ll post it to my Friend Circle.”

         “……Your fourth grandpa is busy passing away, can you not post such happy content.” Jiang Cheng said.

         “It’s not like I’m sending it to Lao-Yuan.” Pan Zhi paused to think. “What should I sing?”

         Before Jiang Cheng could answer, he was already making his way over, saying as he went, “Red Sun it is, let me see if they have the accelerated version.” [2]

         Jiang Cheng laughed. They picked this one almost every time they went to karaoke, as the last one before they leave. The whole bunch of them would scream it out together.

         Pan Zhi was a pretty good singer, even though his Cantonese pronunciation wasn’t that great. However, with his predecessors as comparison, he practically sounded like a professional singer. Almost as soon as he opened his mouth, nearby pedestrians stopped to look at him.

         Jiang Cheng pointed the phone camera at him and recorded.

         Pan Zhi was someone who grew more energetic the more people there was. Since he had an audience, he started singing with even more gusto. When he got to the accelerated part at the end, he whipped around suddenly and pointed at Jiang Cheng, “Even if fate makes you wander and drift; even if fate twists in strange directions; even if fate scares you and makes it tedious to be alive; don’t shed tears of sorrow, nor should you give up and give in; I hope to, accompany you forever and always……

         Everyone immediately looked in this direction. Jiang Cheng felt like giving Pan Zhi a middle finger.

         But after a few more lines, Jiang Cheng suddenly felt a little twinge in his nose. He didn’t know if it was from the earnest way Pan Zhi was looking at him, or from the memory of his carefree days of the past.

         Or perhaps only because……he thought of Gu Fei.

         He stared at his phone screen. At the end when Pan Zhi finished singing, he quickly got up with his head down, and squeezed his way out of the crowd of clapping bystanders.

         By the time Pan Zhi caught up to him, he had already gone back to normal.

         “So?!” Pan Zhi flung an arm around his shoulder. “Let me see the video.”

         “I recorded a few clips,” Jiang Cheng tapped around on the screen. “I’ll send it to you, you can watch it for yourself.”

         “We should’ve just found somewhere to sing instead of wandering around earlier,” Pan Zhi said. “It’s been so long. What if……next year, after the exams we’ll get a bunch of people together and go somewhere, travel or something. Eat, drink, sing, and play to our hearts’ content!”

         “Alright.” Jiang Cheng smiled.

         “I was thinking, there’s no way I can get into the same school as you, but I simply have to be in the same city as you even if my parents have to blast the path open with money.” Pan Zhi raised his arms up in a stretch. “I used to think, even if you’re gone, I still have lots of other friends. Now I realize it’s not the same at all. Hanging out with you is still the best. When you’re not there, I’d miss you……”

         “Control yourself,” Jiang Cheng said. “You sir are a straight boy after all. If anyone hears these words they’ll think you have ideas about me or something.”

         “My idea about you is only that we better be best friends for life.” Pan Zhi said. “Whatever boyfriend, spouse, or wifey, none of that compares to a best friend.”

         Jiang Cheng laughed, “Uh huh, right.”

         “Don’t you laugh,” Pan Zhi clicked his tongue. “It’s only that I don’t like men, otherwise it wouldn’t be any of Gu Fei’s business.”

         “Why don’t you go say that to Gu Fei.” Jiang Cheng said.

         “It’s fine, it’s enough that you know.” Pan Zhi said. “I probably can’t beat him in a fight.”

         After a whole afternoon idling about with Pan Zhi, by the time they were sitting in Wang Xu’s family’s restaurant waiting for Gu Fei and Gu Miao to arrive, Jiang Cheng was in a much better mood. Although he kept wanting to laugh while listening to Wang Xu talk out of his ass at Pan Zhi. Wang Xu very shamelessly went on for a long time, even bringing out Yi Jing as a prop in his boasting.

         “Don’t think that just because you grew up in the big city,” Wang Xu slammed on the table and looked at Pan Zhi. “That you’re really better at everything. Just answer me this, can you out drink me?”

         “……I can’t, I don’t even want to drink at all.” Pan Zhi looked at him, then after a while sighed again. “Damn it why did I lower my intelligence to bullshit with you for so long?”

         “Because your intelligence isn’t that high to begin with. Like that girl you posted in your Friend Circle just now,” Wang Xu had his phone out, and said as he scrolled. “Makes me think you not only don’t have very high intelligence, but not very good taste either.”

         “Ok ok ok ok, alright, I’m low, everything about me is low.” Pan Zhi held Wang Xu’s hand down. “That girl okay, she really can’t compare to your class leader, truly.”

         “Tch, not at all sincere. In your heart you’re still not yielding, right.” Wang Xu glared at him.

         “I yield, I yield so hard. I am completely yielding on all fours.” Pan Zhi said as he glanced out the door. “Hey now, this is the real beauty.”

         Wang Xu turned to take a glance, “Yes that’s right!”

         Gu Miao walked into the room, hugging her skateboard, and went directly up to Jiang Cheng. She leaned her skateboard on the chair, picked up the cup in front of him, and chugged all the water in one go.

         “Did you skate back here?” Jiang Cheng pulled out a tissue and wiped the sweat from Gu Miao’s head.

         Gu Miao nodded.

         “Miaomiao, my queen?” Wang Xu nudged his cup over to her. “There’s more water here.”

         Gu Miao looked at him without any expression.

         “I haven’t drank it, it’s clean.” Wang Xu said.

         Gu Miao still looked at him cooly with a blank expression.

         Pan Zhi picked up the cup and poured the water into Jiang Cheng’s cup. Gu Miao took the cup and chugged it again.

         “Hey!” Pan Zhi couldn’t stop laughing.

         “Er-Miao, thank the big bros.” Gu Fei walked over and said.

         Gu Miao stood up and bowed to them, then stuck out her hand and snapped at Jiang Cheng, and gave him a thumbs up.

         Jiang Cheng immediately returned one to her.

         Gu Fei also greeted the others, then left to wash his hands, “Wang Xu, can you get a pack of wet wipes for Er-Miao.”

         “Alrighty.” Wang Xu immediately found some wet wipes for Gu Miao to clean her hands.

         Jiang Cheng watched her. She seemed to be in a pretty good mood, they must’ve had fun this afternoon.

         Pan Zhi, who had been sitting beside Jiang Cheng this whole time, stood up and sat down beside Wang Xu. Wang Xu looked at him, “What, you wanna battle me in drinks?”

         “……We’re just eating meat pies, why would I battle you?” Pan Zhi didn’t know what else to say.

         “Are you looking down on our meat pies? I’m telling you! In our city, ask anyone, Wang Er Meat Pies……” Once Wang Xu got to talking about their meat pies, his energy level shot right up. He locked his sight on Pan Zhi and started his speech, as if he was a promotional ambassador.

         Gu Fei paused when he came in and saw the newly empty seat beside Jiang Cheng, then saw Pan Zhi with a face full of helplessness as he was held down by Wang Xu. He sighed, then interrupted, “Captain, we’re all hungry, let’s eat.”

         “Would’ve have started long ago if we weren’t waiting for you! Hold on!” Wang Xu stood up and went into the kitchen.

         Gu Fei sat down, and on the other side, Pan Zhi let out a breath of relief, “I want so much to smack him.”

         Jiang Cheng started laughing. He was still feeling a little miffed at Gu Fei, every time he thought about it he felt all sorts of confusion and grievance. But as soon as Gu Fei sat down beside him, when he smelled the familiar scent of Gu Fei’s presence, he immediately felt his mood take a turn for the better.

         Humans are so ridiculous when they’re conflicted.

         Gu Fei dropped his arm, reached his hand under the table, and gently touched Jiang Cheng’s leg. Jiang Cheng glanced at Gu Fei. Gu Fei grinned at him, then grabbed his hand and gave it a squeeze.

         Pan Zhi cleared his throat.

         “What?” Gu Fei chuckled and looked at him.

         “Can’t stand to watch this,” Pan Zhi said. “Gu Miao, wanna go get the meat pies from the kitchen?”

         Gu Miao only looked at him with her hands around her cup.

         “We’ll go get the meat pies?” Pan Zhi leaned over the table and asked again.

         Gu Miao reacted this time. Probably hungry, she stood up and followed Pan Zhi to the kitchen. She even closed the door behind her as she walked out.

         The moment the door closed, Gu Fei turned and planted a kiss on Jiang Cheng’s cheek.

         Jiang Cheng also very quickly leaned in and bit down on his neck.

         “Is it salty?” Gu Fei asked.

         “Mhm.” Jiang Cheng took a sip of tea.

         “Er-Miao was very into the games today, I played along for a while, got all sweaty.” Gu Fei smiled.

         When Gu Fei was smiling like this, when Gu Fei talked quietly to him like this, Jiang Cheng would feel like an utterly unprincipled person. At this moment, all he wanted to do was keep staring at Gu Fei and not think or worry about anything.

         Whatever unhappiness, whatever unease, whatever whatever whatever. They were all flung to the side.

         He didn’t think about those annoying questions again the entire time until the end of Pan Zhi’s fictitious fourth grandpa’s funeral was over, and the two days long holiday came to an end.

         After seeing Pan Zhi off, and the two of them returned to his apartment and tangled around on the bed for a while, it was only then that all the unease and unhappiness slowly came back to the surface.

         Like weeds that couldn’t be eradicated no matter what, a moment of carelessness was enough for it to rear its head again.

         After all, the root was still there.

         Gu Fei was lying on his side while playing on his phone. Jiang Cheng wrapped his arms around Gu Fei from the back, “Hey.”

         “Hm?” Gu Fei stroked his arm.

         “I’m gonna study for a while later, can you keep me company,” Jiang Cheng said. “And not go back tonight?”

         “Sure.” Gu Fei turned over to lie flat, and pulled Jiang Cheng’s arm to rest on his body.

         “Do you want to also……study a little?” Jiang Cheng asked.

         “I should probably copy the homework first.” Gu Fei chuckled.

         “Gu Fei.” Jiang Cheng was quiet for a long time before he asked in a quiet voice. “Are you not planning on applying for university?”

         “Even if I am, there’s only the local ones.” Gu Fei said. “Those garbage colleges.”

         “Is it because of Gu Miao?” Jiang Cheng asked.

         “There’s a few problems.” Gu Fei set his phone to one side. “It’s impossible for Er-Miao to have a change of environment, and it’s impossible for me to leave her behind and go to school somewhere else. With her and my mom, if I’m not here, it’ll be a mess.”

         “Mhm.” Jiang Cheng nodded. He knew all this already. Gu Miao couldn’t even accept a change of wheels on her skateboard. He knew these problems even if Gu Fei didn’t mention them, and he understood too. But he still felt that something was not quite right. Though what exactly it was, he couldn’t figure it out for the life of him.

         The two of them just lay like that, each lost in their own thoughts, and neither of them spoke for a long time.

         “If after the exams I go away to school,” Jiang Cheng said. “You’re still going to stay here, right.”

         “Mhm.” Gu Fei answered.

         “And then what?” Jiang Cheng looked at him.

         Gu Fei frowned a little, and turned his face to look back at Jiang Cheng, “I don’t know what it’s going to be like, some things can’t be determined just……”

         “What’s that supposed to mean?” Jiang Cheng sat up. “Do you not have much confidence in long distance relationships?”

         “No,” Gu Fei also sat up. “That’s not what I meant, I was saying……”

         “Gu Fei,” Jiang Cheng interrupted him. “You once asked me, if I wanted to date you, or if I wanted to go on dates with you, right?”

         “Mmn.” Gu Fei clutched Jiang Cheng’s hand.        

        “I was wondering before, why you would ask me that. Now I know. The one who wanted to keep dating was me, and the one who only wanted to go on dates,” Jiang Cheng pulled his hand out and pointed at him. “Was you.”


[1] There’s a (Chinese) stereotypical internet famous face, which is big eyes, long lashes, and pointy chin. I do believe Fan Bingbing was the original inspiration, but don’t quote me on that.
[2] Almost all the songs referred to in this novel are ‘old’ classics. This one is no exception. Listen to the original song here. It’s known for its fast pace.

Some Stats

  • Raw character count: 7080
  • TL word count: 5043
  • TL time: 4:07:37
  • Edit time: 0:57:23
  • Curse words: 1x fucks, 2x shits, 1x ass

TL’s Notes:
Hi guys, I struggled over how to convey the last sentence properly, if it’s not clear, please head over to the footnotes of ch. 60 for an explanation :-[