I have updated chapter 25 so please read the remaining section. This is to ensure the aggregators don’t have the updated version. People who have read my earlier translations, you know how it works!
Chapter 26 A drunk Mu er
Zhong Yuan’s appearance was very deceptive, he could easily charm most people. So after a while, our female squad leader in high school sat next to him and started to chat with hm. The two of them kept looking at me from time to time, so I lost my appetite. After a few minutes, she came over to the teacher’s table with Zhong Yuan and introduced him, “ This is Mu er’s classmate Zhong Yuan . He came with her.”
I fumed in silence, the heck he came with me!
Zhong Yuan respectfully bowed and said hello. As it turned out, no one looked down on the unwelcome addition. Our class teacher looked up and down for a while and even asked the waiter to get a chair and asked Zhong Yuan to sit next to her. So this ‘successful student’ was squeezed next to her.
I whispered to Zhong Yuan in dissatisfaction, “ Why are you here ?”
He smiled and said, “ It was boring. I came to join the fun.”
Ha! You came here to create chaos, I told myself. I asked him again, “ How did you reach here? I didn’t see you in the bus.”
Zhong Yuan answered, “ I rented a car.”
I suddenly remembered. When we were coming , the bus was being followed by a red minivan. When the bus stopped so did the car. I noticed it , joking with Xu Xu that this year , we had pulled all stops. The bus was even accompanied by a car for emergency purposes. I hadn’t thought too much about it then.
Zhong Yuan would have made such a great spy!
I looked around and saw many people looking towards us. Their gazes were curious. In short, Zhong Yuan and I were being misunderstood. But most importantly, I did not know how to explain anything to anyone. Since no one asked me, if I went ahead and explained, it would seem like ‘ the lady doth protest to much.’ Yet if I didn’t attempt to explain, I would feel awkward.
Finally I decided to leave it be. Anyway I was often misunderstood, and I didn’t care anymore.
So I started eating happily. The class teacher found Zhong Yuan very interesting and asked him a long list of questions, encompassing everything. She also said many polite things like, ‘ Mu er can survive at school because of your care.” What the heck ! I was the one who was taking care of his meals, his clothes… I was being oppressed!
In any class reunion, the most indispensable item was drinking. Usually, I was the first to get drunk. Not because I loved drinking but because I had very low tolerance for alcohol. Even if I drank one cup, I would become dizzy. If I had tow, I would become numb. And if I had more than that, my brain would go on strike. So whenever I went for dinner, I usually avoided alcohol. But this was the class reunion. All of us had met almost after a year. So if I still said no to the drinks, it would seem a bit too much. In a way, it was still ok to say no t your classmates but when the teacher asked you to drink a glass , you would only be considered disrespectful to turn down that invitation.
I took a glass of wine and looked at Zhong Yuan who was happily chatting. I suddenly felt irritated and courageous. Well , Zhong Yuan, you did this to yourself , don’t blame me. So I handed the glass to him and said “ Drink a glass with me.”
Zhong Yuan was quite clear. He took the glass and drank it. After drinking, he raised his eyebrows and looked at me. Then his tongue darted out and licked his lips, tasting the last dregs of wine. The expression in his eyes was ambiguous, and his lips were wet. With that kind of look, was it a wonder how enchanting he seems?
I coughed and whispered, “Can you help me avoid the toasts?”
He smiled, “ Why would I want to help you?”
I bit my lips and answered with a distressed heart, “ How about if I waived two days worth of room rent and food?”
He smiled and shook his head, “ Not interested. Do you think I lack money?”
I was taken aback, “ What do you want then?”
Zhong Yuan turned back and looked at the class teacher’s mobile phone, “ I like that.”
I shook my fist and said with a sad heart, “ Brother, this is extortion. That phone is very expensive.”
“ The charm on the phone”, he corrected me, “ her mobile phone charm seems to be something that was embroidered.”
I carefully looked at the charm. It was beautiful. So I patted him on the shoulder and generously said, “ Sure, I will embroider one for you.”
A bit childishly, Zhong Yuan answered, “ I want a big one.”
So Zhong Yuan helped me to avoid the toasts.
I had to drink the toasts of several teachers though. I was already swaying and my limbs felt like plasticine. So I had to lie down on the table. I could hear some sentences, “ Mu er cant drink, I will drink on her behalf”, “ Oh, Mu er mentioned you and she is grateful for your care in high school”. Unfortunately, my brain was now on complete shut down mode. I could not process the words. I was now like a computer monitor without the CPU. I could hear but could not process.
After some time, someone picked me up from the table and then I leaned on something that was both soft and hard. Something wrapped around my shoulders tightly. I opened my eyes and looked up. I saw a chin, very fair and very beautiful. I lifted up my hand almost without conscious volition and stroked the chin. I heard a burst of laughter nearby and someone said, ‘ Mu er is drunk and is sexually harassing people”, and some other person commented, “ Zhong Yuan, be careful!”
I was forced to drink something and then I was pulled down and hugged.
I slept in the arms of the person for sometime and then woke up again. It seemed that there was some conversation going on about going to a karaoke bar and someone was saying no. I opened my eyes and spotted a glass of wine on the table. I felt a sudden impulse, so I grabbed the glass and drank it.
But even before I could finish it, someone had taken it away, I was very irritated . I tried to take it back and shouted, “ Give me wine!”
But no one heeded my request. My body suddenly left the ground. Someone supported me as he said, “ Mu er, let’s go home.”
I didn’t know what this sentence meant. I just wanted to drink.
I was being carried out and away from the table. I was not willing and I screamed, “ Let me down, let me down, why are you bullying me…” As I screamed, I burst into tears.
Someone sighed softly near my ear, and slowly put me down so that my feet touched the ground. I went back to the table to drink, but someone hugged my shoulders, pulled my arms back and I lost all my freedom. I was dragged away.
When we came outside, I saw a little girl on the side of the road, turning to a woman by her side and naggng her, “ Mom, I want this, mom, I want that.” Suddenly, I broke away from the people around me and rushed forward. I pointed at the little girl and shouted loudly, “ You think you are so amazing because you have a mother ? Huh?”
The little girl burst into tears and I was dragged away to the car.
I was in someone’s arms ad my tears flowed down incessantly. I said, “ Is it so great to have a mother?” I tell you, even I have a mother. My dad said, he is both my father and mother.”
Someone patted me on the back and whispered something. His voice as gentle and sympathetic.
I continued, “ My dream is to give my dad a good life. I have been such a burden on him for nearly two decades. He has broken his back for me. I want to make a difference, I want the people in our village to envy him. I want him to know that he rescued a person with huge talent. Mom, this old me is obviously so talented, why would you throw me away? If you did not want me, why give birth…”
I cried in the man’s arms so that his shirt was damp. I cried and cried, “ I must give my dad a happy life”
Miumiu – On the face of it, Mu er seems such a happy go lucky person. Yet she has , deep in her heart, these feelings of being unwanted by her parents, guilt from being a burden on her rescuer. I have a feeling it is these emotions which are blinding her to ZY’s obvious interest. I would love to know what Zhong Yuan said to her. Because by this time, it is pretty clear our hero as feelings for her although she is in the dark. But alas.. we can only guess. What do you think ? Please leave me your thoughts..
When I woke up the next morning, my head was bursting. When I thought about yesterday, all I could recall was that Zhong Yuan had helped me to avoid some of the toasts. Some pictures flashed in my mind, but they were quite messy and I could make no sense of it. Then I gave up, after all what could happen with a group of drunks?
I got up from bed and started wearing my clothes when a thought struck me! It seemed that yesterday, I had taken off all my clothes and had only slept in my underwear. That couldn’t be right! The clothes I had worn to the party were neatly stacked by the bedside. But I had never been in the habit of neatly folding my clothes, they were always thrown off helter skelter. Even if I were drunk, I would never arrange them so neatly. Unless this was some ghostly phenomenon, this only meant someone had entered my room and helped me undress! The situation had been so bad, I could not have undressed myself!
Who had helped me ? Apart from me, there were only two people at home and my dad never entered my room. That left only Zhong Yuan…
I started sweating. If he had just folded my clothes, that was still fine. But I was I bed in only my underwear, which mean my innocence….
I hurriedly put on my clothes and rushed out of the room. “ Zhong Yuan, I need to ask you something!”