“Later,” Yang Xuan said in a deep voice, “I beat the man up, so he(TJ) couldn’t kill him(ZL).”
Hui Zi, who almost recovered earlier, coughed again due to the shock. “Cough cough cough! Buddy, please don’t give me that look, I don’t mean anything else… don’t beat me up. I just fooled around with him. I didn’t want to really sleep with him…”
He finished and rubbed the back of his head and smiled, “that person should thank you for it. If you hadn’t beaten him up, his life would have been lost.”
Yang Xuan continued in a flat tone: “After being beaten by me, his legs weren’t too good, walking to the intersection, he was hit by a car and died.”
The look on Hui Zi’s face was almost like he had been struck by lightning, his jaw dropped for a moment before he stammered, “Buddy, I still have something to do first, I’ll leave first, okay.”
Yang Xuan finished the last puff of smoke and watched Hui Zi go downstairs. He pressed the cigarette butt into the ashtray on the windowsill, twisted it out, hooked the corner of his mouth, and gave a few inaudible laughs.
Going to the billiard hall every weekday afternoon to watch Yang Xuan play billiards has almost become a summer activity for Tang Junhe.
He had never enjoyed a summer vacation so much like this before and it was as if every day had become something to look forward to.
Every day, after giving tutoring lessons to the girl who started her second year of junior high school, he would receive 100 yuan from the girl’s mom. He would then walk downstairs and hum along the shaded path full of cicadas all the way past a row of fancy stores. After getting an ice cream from a store along the road, he would walk to the door of the bar called “Còuhe” and go up to the second floor, where he would meet his brother—Yang Xuan.
The second floor is fully air-conditioned, and the air conditioner is humming overhead with the sound of the machine operating, evaporating the beads of sweat seeping out of his forehead little by little and even the foul smell in the area has become tolerable.
After eating an ice cream, it was time for him to go home. Otherwise, if he goes back late, Tang Xiaonian will definitely ask about where he went in the afternoon. If Tang Xiaonian learns that he didn’t stay at home to do his homework, but ran out to do a part-time job, she will definitely find a way to lock him in the house.
Tang Junhe’s speed of eating ice cream became slower and slower, at first it could be finished in ten minutes, but gradually it became twenty minutes, and then it became thirty.
There is not enough ice cream to eat, and not enough time to see Yang Xuan, so when Tang Junhe insatiably ate ice cream, he also insatiably stared at Yang Xuan. Once Yang Xuan went downstairs, he began to become fidgety, unable to turn his head to look at the stairs, afraid that after finishing his ice cream, Yang Xuan would see him not doing anything when he came back.
Tang Junhe did not dare to stare at Yang Xuan all the time, and once Yang Xuan looked at him, he would turn his gaze away and pretend to look elsewhere to show his great interest in billiards. But once Yang Xuan was called by other guests to play billiards, his gaze would become unrestrained, looking straight at the side of Yang Xuan’s face as he concentrated on playing billiards.
In the twinkling of an eye, Yang Chengchuan took the two tickets his secretary had booked for him and took Tang Xiaonian out to see the piano recital. This will be the first Chinese Valentine’s Day that Tang Xiaonian will spend with Yang Chengchuan since she officially married him. She prepared dinner for Tang Junhe, then dressed up in the mirror and went out with Yang Chengchuan.
It was rare to be alone at home at night, so Tang Junhe sat in his room after showering and listened to the sound of cicadas outside the window and couldn’t help but guess what Yang Xuan was doing.
Will the billiard hall be very busy today? Will there be girls confessing their love to Yang Xuan?
Tang Junhe could see that his brother Yang Xuan was very popular with the girls, and very often there were several special assistant billiards coaches standing next to him, but the girls still liked to call Yang Xuan to play with them.
Tang Junhe put his pen down, looked at the alarm clock on the table, stood up and walked to the bed to change clothes – he planned to go to the billiard hall to see Yang Xuan. His mother, Tang Xiaonian, was not at home, so this chance is a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity.
Tang Junhe took off his pajamas and changed into a crisp white T-shirt and light blue jeans, leaving the house with half-dried hair on top. When he got off the bus and walked to the entrance of the bar, it was already more than 8 o’clock. The bar was already bustling early for the evening party, and in order to match up the party, the lights in the bar were changed to ambiguous orange tones, and the men and women going in and out of the bar were well-dressed, which made it more difficult for Tang Junhe to blend into the atmosphere of the bar tonight.
The new waiter at the door, seeing Tang Junhe about to step in, reached out and stopped him, sizing him up as he said, “Are you of age?”
“I came to see Yang Xuan.” Tang Junhe looked at him and said.
“Here to see Yang Xuan?” The man seemed to be new, looking at him suspiciously as if uncertain whether to let him in. When he was hesitating, the waiter who happened to be carrying a cocktail passed by the door and spoke at the right time: “It’s okay, let him in, he’s a classmate of Yang Xuan.”
“Oh, okay. Come on in.” The man breathed a sigh of relief at that.
“He’s Yang Xuan’s brother.” Tang Junhe looked at the waiter who spoke for him and said seriously, “Thank you.”
“You’re his younger brother?” The man laughed, “So that’s why I thought you guys looked a little alike.”