PP Chapter 18.2

Sponsored Chapter by: Anon(MS)


    Tang Junhe recalled that night six years ago, he couldn’t stop pinching the palm of his hand, resisting the desire to stand up and poke the eyes of Zhou Lin that were looking all over at him.

    He got off the bus two stops early and went around to the path that led to the river.

    As night fell, the dark path was silent. The surrounding abandoned low buildings are half demolished, the broken windows look like a black hole with unfathomable eyes which further sets off the silence of this place. It was deserted and secluded with few people around, it might be a good place to commit a crime, Tang Junhe thought to himself.

    Zhou Lin, who had been drinking today, followed behind Tang Junhe and tried to strike up a conversation with him, “Why did you come here?”

    Tang Junhe responded to him in an unprecedented manner, “It’s nice here. It’s empty and I like it when nobody is around.”

    When Zhou Lin, who had always been ignored by him, received the reply, he was flattered and let out a couple of “Oh” before saying “I also like having no one around.”

    “Is that so?” Tang Junhe let out a smile. He seldom smiled but when he did, the end of his eyes curved out in a soft arc and the coldness on his face faded away, “I knew you would like it too.”

    Through the hazy night, Zhou Lin saw Tang Junhe’s smiling face on the side and was stunned for a moment, completely forgetting his words.

    For several days in a row, Tang Junhe got off the bus two stops early and walked around this road. He has a general idea of the situation in this area. This area is a demolition area set aside by the government, and during the day there will be construction workers to step up the work. Fumes, noise, coupled with the frequent passage of heavy machinery, the road has long been crushed and broken down, and few people and cars pass by on weekdays.

    After determining the location of the crime, he began to plan to let Zhou Lin let his guard down. Occasionally, when Zhou Lin came up to talk to him, he would lovingly return a sentence and a half. Once he even took the initiative to ask about Zhou Lin’s job and expressed his sympathy, “It’s a shame. I still remember when you taught math class.”

    Zhou Lin was really ecstatic and took two more steps closer to him, “Really?”

    Tang Junhe gave a faint “Mm”.

    Of course he remembers. That is the most disgusting image of Zhou Lin he had seen and that is a dog disguised as a human being who stands on a respected three-foot podium but carries the filthiest and nastiest ideas inside, which is so pathetic and so abominable.

    ***

    The students of Runcheng First High School have all changed into their summer uniforms and the campus is filled with pure white short-sleeved shirts – except for Tang Junhe, who is still wearing his precious autumn and winter blue uniform. His slender arms are covered under the wide and large school uniform so no one can discern that he has a sharp knife hidden in his sleeve, which only covers the back of his hand.

    His lack of conformity in school uniforms drew another round of comments and some people began to secretly talk behind his back about him having an unseemly skin condition.

    One morning between classes when Feng Bo was leaning against the wall of the corridor, Tang Junhe came out of the classroom to go to the bathroom and happened to pass him.

    “Brother Xuan, is he really suffering some sort of disease?” Feng Bo’s eyes followed the back of Tang Junhe and asked Yang Xuan about it.

    “I don’t know.” Yang Xuan said with his back against the windowsill.

    “You’ve never seen him undress?” Feng Bo pursued.

    Yang Xuan glanced at him, but did not answer.

    “No? Didn’t you say when you were a kid that he came over all summer?”

    “When he was a child, there was no disease.” Yang Xuan frowned, as if he was quite impatient with this topic.

    “Oh?” Feng Bo finally stopped his curiosity and added, “Who knows, maybe he got it later on.”

    ***

    In Tang Junhe’s plan, this matter must be resolved before the summer vacation. He also wants to find a part-time job during that time to earn money to buy a bike.

    It was Friday and the weather was overcast, with heavy clouds that looked like they were wrapped in a layer of gray dust, piling up in layers in the sky. Tang Junhe felt vaguely uneasy inside, perhaps today is the day. With such weather, accidents are especially likely to happen. A decade ago, an accident occurred in such weather.

    Until the evening after school it was still raining and the weather was sultry like a steamer and people outside would feel suffocated just by breathing. The night fell a little earlier than usual in the obscure sky.

    Zhou Lin waited at the gate, wearing a dirty white T-shirt and wrinkled suit pants. As soon as he came up, Tang Junhe smelled the strong smell of alcohol.

    This is the day. Tang Junhe put his hand in his pants pocket without making a sound, and transferred the sharp fruit knife to the cuff of his school uniform.

    Zhou Lin followed him onto the bus and stood right next to him. He didn’t hide this time and resisted the urge to vomit, allowing Zhou Lin to make physical contact with himself several times during sharp brakes on the bus. However, in the next moment he saw the bulge in Zhou Lin’s lower body which reminded him of that night when he was 10 years old , he tightened his grip on his cuffs.

    He got off two stops early and was so tense that he forgot to look at the road and was almost hit by a motorcycle coming from the side. The man cursed and yelled back at him, but he ignored it and went on his way towards that path.

    Zhou Lin hurriedly squeezed out of the crowd and followed him. The smell of alcohol became even stronger, and Tang Junhe knew that it was a sign of Zhou Lin’s excitement; the smell of alcohol along with his rapid breathing sprayed out and filled the dim air.

    ==

    When Yang Xuan passed that stop, he consciously squeezed the brakes and gave way to the people coming off the bus.

    “Fuck! Do you wanna die!” someone in front yelled loudly.

    He looked up and saw his half-brother getting off the bus, looking indifferent even after being yelled at. The cowering-looking man followed him with eyes fixed on Tang Junhe in the front which brought to mind Feng Bo’s words in a text message.

【Brother Xuan, I saw that man again. The look in his eyes was almost as if he was going to swallow Thirdy’s son alive.】

    Why did you go there? What are you going to do in that place? Yang Xuan looked in their direction, and a thought flashed through his mind.

    The bus drove away and the crowd dispersed, giving way to the road. He didn’t think much of it and just rode off.

    For some reason, he felt vaguely out of sorts or “uneasy” to be more precise, which is a rare occurrence, since nothing has made him feel uneasy since his mother left.

   Perhaps because the weather was too stifling and the low clouds were overwhelming, Yang Xuan’s feet picked up the speed of the pedal and the rising wind blew his white shirt into a bulging bag.


Translator’s Note:

Junhe don’t deserve any of this BS.

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Mei
A Japanese language student that decided to translate Chinese Novels during the pandemic. If you want to support us, you can buy us a ko-fi. To maintain the site and support the translators as well. Thank you for reading!
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lowtide

That teacher is so awful, I feel so bad for TJH and how he’s been backed into this terrible corner. Thanks for your translation!

Tania

Thank you soo much for ur hard work

nix

En, he doesn’t deserve it. TBH, the way he methodically planned how to kill Zhou Lin, despite his calm facade, it felt more like he’s mentally crumbling. It was an act of desperation.

I just really hope Yang Xuan would come save him before his plan go haywire. In all honesty, it barely matters whether he can get away or not with the crime, what matters is if he indeed murdered ZL, it will be like a shadow, forever attributed to him, haunting him. There’s no guarantee if he could psychologically take it.

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