This year’s summer in N City was shorter than usual, just at the end of September, and it already smelled a bit like autumn, but in the past two days, the temperature plummeted and the stifling heat and humidity disappeared, catching people off guard.
Zhang Man held her guitar in her hands and walked along the corridor that connected the two school buildings. At the front and back end of the corridor were huge windows, which were open at the moment, and the surging airflow found an outlet, whistling from one end to the other, creating a strong breeze in the hallway.
She got blindsided and walked quickly back to the classroom, putting her guitar next to the table.
By the window, the curtains were blown by the wind, and the young man, with one hand tilted to his head, was reading a book as always and his smooth jawline and long, clean knuckles were matched together in a charming way.
Zhang Man raised her hand and poked him.
“Li Wei, I just went to the audition for the National Day Gathering and passed, I’ll be singing on stage, you must come to see it.”
The National Day Gathering was on October 7th in the afternoon, the last day of vacation, and it was not mandatory for everyone in the school to come. If she didn’t tell him in advance, he would definitely skip it.
The young man looked at the guitar she had placed on the edge of the table and nodded his head.
Zhang Man asked again, “Do you have a cell phone? Please give me your cell phone number.”
After asking, she suddenly remembered that Li Wei had never had a cell phone in his previous life since no one wanted to contact him, and every time she called him, she always called his home landline.
The young man hesitated for a long while, then nodded his head.
Zhang Man is a bit confused, he doesn’t have a cell phone, right? Has there been a change in this life?
“Then, please tell me your cell phone number, so we can get in touch. In case I have something to do during the holidays and I won’t be coming over for make-up classes, I can also send you a text message to save you the worry.”
The young man coughed and was succinct: “No worries. Come on time tomorrow, I’ll give you my number.”
The next day is the National Day, so the seven-day holiday will start this afternoon, and for Chen Feier, who has always been disobedient to discipline, it is no different from a bird flying out of a cage, grabbing Zhang Man to go shopping after school without hurrying to release her school bag.
The weather was bad, but it was no match for her enthusiasm for shopping.
She has recently begun to take a fervent interest in a young male rock singer, and she never stops talking about him. When she heard that he had just released an album a while back, Chen Feier was so excited that she dragged Zhang Man to a record store in the city center.
However, there is no doubt that this is the winter when the male singer will be exposed to the scandal of drug use and plagiarism, and thus go into hiding.
She couldn’t say it outright and only politely reminded Chen Feier a few times, but the girl didn’t take it to heart and was very protective of her new idol.
The two left the record store and went to the mall across the street to shop for clothes.
Chen Feier was so enthusiastic that she went into almost every store to try a few items and strolled back and forth for a whole while buying things here and there, from head to toe. Zhang Man followed behind her, carrying her bags, and felt her legs were about to break.
She admitted that she really had no desire for anything in any of these stores.
Chen Feier was very energetic and started her usual gossipy nature after shopping: “Man Man, you’ve been running to Li Wei’s house every day for the past few weekends and spending time alone in the same room right? Could you tell me exactly what you two are doing there?”
Zhang Man was helpless and reached out and nudged her head, “What do you think? Of course we’re studying.”
Chen Feier hates the iron for not becoming steel, “No, Man Man, men are sexually active creatures, you can’t hold back so much as you are ah! Here I was thinking you already kissed him.”
This girl has been outspoken since she was a little girl and has never been in love herself, so she speaks freely with no shame at all.
But after all, she is still a young girl and could not resist the urge to say more.
Zhang Man suddenly wanted to tease her, sighing in a serious way: “I also want to kiss ah but do not want people to think that I’m easy.”
As expected, Chen Feier blushed at her words, tilting her head backwards to wail, “Oh My God, Man Man, why are you so shameless now!”
Zhang Man laughed and fired back, “Weren’t you the one who was being shameless first?”
Meanwhile, Chen Feier suddenly stopped walking and pointed to a cell phone store across the street: “Hey, Man Man, look, isn’t that Li Wei?”
The crystal chandeliers in the mall were very bright, and at the end of the long corridor, inside a huge glass wall, the young man’s side face was clearly reflected.
He didn’t carry a backpack, and he had changed into a black sweatshirt, so it looked like he had gone home before he came out. He stood in front of the counter and listened to the sales lady who introduced different models of cell phones, occasionally nodding or shaking his head.
Zhang Man was stunned, and only then did she react, no wonder he said he could not give her his cell phone number until tomorrow, he was planning to buy it today.
So, did that mean he also wanted to call and text her when he had nothing to do?
Startled in her heart, she squeezed the string of shopping bags tightly in her hands, and an indescribable joy slowly spread over her chest.
Chen Feier’s focus is obviously different: “Gee, honestly, Li Wei is really good looking. Man Man, look at the life-size stand-up sign placed in front of the cell phone store and compare them, I think he’s even more handsome than the brand endorser.”
She turned back and saw her just standing there, so she poked her, “Man Man, do you want to go over and say hello?”
Zhang Man shook her head, but a smile gradually crept onto her lips.
–If he doesn’t want to say it, she can pretend not to know.
When Chen Feier was satisfied with her stroll, they walked to a nearby bus stop together with an umbrella.
Zhang Man, who was still immersed in her chance encounter with Li Wei, came back to her senses and found Chen Feier looking at her oddly.
She raised her hand and touched her face: “Feier, what’s wrong?”
Chen Feier put away the umbrella, took the pile of shopping bags from her hand and muttered: “I’ve just asked you to duck in a little because your shoulders are getting wet …… Look at yourself, you are almost grinning from ear to ear and the whole time you are being silly, you can’t even hear me talking to you. Didn’t you just see Li Wei earlier, how could you be like this ah?”
Chen Feier said and rolled her eyes, expressing her dissatisfaction with her.
The next day was the National Day, and Zhang Man and Li Wei had agreed to go to his house for extra lessons.
When she arrived at his house, she noticed that for the first time in her life, the young man was not up early and opened the door for her with his hair still in a mess and sleepy eyes. When she came in with the groceries, the young man gave her a nod, yawned, and went back to sleep.
He had gotten used to her arrival.
Zhang Man worked in the kitchen for nearly an hour, after all, it was the holidays, and today she came prepared and cooked some of her best dishes from her previous life.
The kitchenware at Li Wei’s house is new, fully functional, and much more convenient than the ones she used to use, and she came a few times to add some small things. Pink absorbent rags, oven insulation gloves of the same color, beige ceramic small pot, hand towels shaped like dolls……
The colorful cartoon style did not match the overall cool gray and black décor, but it filled the entire kitchen one piece at a time.
After the food was ready, she went to his study, but there was no one in the room, and the table was covered with drafts of paper with messy formulas. Worried that the food was cold, Zhang Man knocked on the door of his room, but no one answered.
She reached out and turned the knob, luckily the door was unlocked.
The young man’s room, like his entire home, was large and empty. On one side was a huge floor-to-ceiling window, with two plain gray satin curtains tied up with a band of the same color, and the morning sun shining in, illuminating the entire room.
In the middle of the smooth wooden floor was his bed, so large that he slept curled up on his side in it, which made his tall body seem surprisingly small.
Because the cast on his left hand had not yet been removed, he moved restlessly several times, probably because it was uncomfortable.
Zhang Man quietly walked over and stood by the bed to watch him.
His hair was unruly and looked fluffy and soft, reminding her of the white and fancy Ragdoll cat that Zhang Huifang had kept in her home in her previous life.
His cheeks were a little flushed from sleep and his eyes were closed, accentuating the incredibly long and curled eyelashes.
Zhang Man suddenly stopped rushing to get him up and sat cross-legged on the floor, her arm on the edge of the bed, staring at him intently without blinking.
He looked peaceful as he slept, as if he had dreamed something good, and the corners of his mouth were slightly curled up, which was less serious and withdrawn than usual.
Suddenly, she thought of yesterday’s ridicule of Chen Feier — where men are sexually active creatures and how she could hold back when she’s with him.
Her gaze shifted involuntarily to the boy’s pursed lips. His lips are perfectly shaped, lightly colored with the dryness after long sleep and with a slightly pronounced lip line.
Zhang Man swallowed her saliva, and at this moment she felt the heartbeat in her chest, beating loudly and clearly. It was a strange feeling, she thought. While she was not doing any strenuous activities, the subtle guidance of her emotions could really trigger her heart to beat faster.
It was a feeling she hadn’t had for more than a decade in her previous life.
And only to him, did her insatiable heart feel the inexplicable longing.
Zhang Man suddenly remembered a saying that she used to think was very clichéd, but now it seems to make some sense. “Everyone is a fish, but only when you meet the right person, you are like a fish in water.”
As she was looking at him, she was caught off guard by the sudden opening of his eyes. Having just woken up after all, he blinked slowly, and the moment he saw her, there was a hint of confusion in his eyes and he looked straight at her like that, as if trying to recognize if the person in front of him was real.
Zhang Man stood up from the bedside in a panic and said awkwardly: “That …… Li Wei, it’s time to eat.”
The young man nodded at the words, sat up with the blanket, rested quietly for a long while to fade away the trance of sleep and regained his usual clarity.
He got up in his slippers and followed her to the dining room.
He had a good appetite, and after they sat down to eat quietly, the young man held out his right hand to her: “Cell phone.”
Zhang Man reacted and took out the phone from her pocket and put it in his hand. The teenager took the phone, operated it with little proficiency and pressed a few numbers to dial before hanging up.
He handed the phone back to her, “My number.”
Zhang Man held the phone in her hand, feeling the weight of it was a little heavier. She smiled in her heart and didn’t expose him. He just bought the phone yesterday and it must have only her caller ID.
She bent her eyes, smiled and instructed, “Then save mine later as well.”
The young man nodded at the words, and went to the kitchen to wash the dishes consciously. The two of them, one doing the cooking and the other washing the dishes, have been working together incredibly naturally for so many days.
“Li Wei, I’ll go with you to remove the plaster cast in the afternoon after I finish the makeup class, the doctor said last time that it can be removed after a month.”
The young man was stunned for a moment, and after a long while he said, “Good.”
After saying that, he looked at her for a moment and then dropped his eyes to the floor, returning to his previous blank expression.
Zhang Man looked at his suddenly darkened look and was startled when she realized what was happening.
—He is indeed a very sensitive person.
Zhang Man eased her emotions and took the initiative by saying, “Li Wei, if you get well, will you not need me anymore? You promised to give me extra lessons all the time so you can’t go back on your promise! From now on, you’ll still give me extra lessons on weekends, and I’ll cook for you, okay? I can’t do my homework at home on my own and there are a lot of things I can’t do.”
As her voice trailed off, he was somewhat stunned. It was as if he was trying to think about what she meant and his brain, which had always been working at high speed, suddenly got stuck.
Halfway through, he said, “That’s fine for … me.”
There was some rising tone at the end of his sentence.
Zhang Man’s heart suddenly turned sour, and she understood that he also wanted her to come more often.
He was so lonely and alone every day that he had to fill the void in his life with delusions. Like he said last time, he can’t think straight 24 hours a day, and if she’s around, he’ll have something to do when he’s bored.
Because she had to go to the hospital in the afternoon, Zhang Man accelerated her “learning process”, and even Li Wei felt that she seemed to suddenly get the hang of things today, and learned very fast. She got through a lot of complicated questions easily, and the accuracy of her homework improved a lot.
The original content of three hours was compressed into less than two hours.
The two of them took the X-ray film Li Wei had taken before at the school hospital and the medical report written by the doctor, and went to a nearby hospital.
After all, big hospital was not as leisurely as the school hospital and it was a holiday, so many people came for medical treatment.
It took two or three hours to register, see the doctor, and then remove the plaster cast and do the examination. Li Wei was inside the examination room while Zhang Man took the bill to pay the fee and get the medicine to be used later, running upstairs and downstairs, too busy to be bothered with anything.
When he finally finished, there was no more heavy obstruction on his left hand and his month-long restraint was lifted, so he could finally move freely.
Zhang Man stood at the door with a pile of things in her arms, and when she saw him come out, her eyes lit up. Then she was a little nervous to let him move around, so she asked him: “Li Wei, please try moving your arm up and down and left and right to see if it will be uncomfortable, the bones where the small arm joint was cracked before, we don’t know if it is fully grown.”
In fact, a thorough examination has been done and the bones are growing well and there are no more problems.
But the young man, seeing how anxious she was, obediently lifted his arm and turned it up and down a few times, like an old grandfather exercising in the park every morning.
Zhang Man stretched out her hand again: “Try to hold my hand tightly and see if you have the strength and the flexibility to use your fingers.
The young man was not so obedient this time.
—He lowered his head and avoided her outstretched hand. Then he lifted his left hand, which had just had its cast removed, and pinched her white cheek with two fingers closed together.
It wasn’t as hard as she said it would be.
When he looks down at her, he can’t really see her expression because the light is behind his back. The tips of his fingers were warm and tinged with the warmth of a heartbeat.
His thumb and forefinger traced slowly from the corner of her lips and the side of her ear respectively, pausing gently when he reached the middle.
Then tugged outward.
As if a pinch wasn’t enough to prove the dexterity of his fingers, he flexed his knuckles again and turned to rub her cheek affectionately against the back of his hand.
Within the next second, he touched her cheek again.
It was like he simply couldn’t leave.
My teeth will probably rot by the sweetness of this chapter… XD