04 - Treat you to a sweet
Luo Tang's words made Wei Ruxia realize that he had heard her conversation with Hu Yinyin. She wasn't embarrassed by his eavesdropping and after thinking about it, she lowered her head and said to Luo Tang.
"It's up to you whether we’re close or not."
As Wei Ruxia spoke, her face was still a pinkish red and her light brown eyes were looking at Luo Tang brightly under her messy hair. Pure and innocent, like a small animal.
What she meant was that she wanted to get acquainted with Luo Tang, but it was Luo Tang who seemed unwilling.
Luo Tang realized what she meant and he looked down at Wei Ruxia in his arms, his long eyelashes casting shadows on his lower eyelids.
Luo Tang said, "I'm quite approachable."
Wei Ruxia, "......"
During the trip, she sorted out her relationship with the ‘approachable’ Luo Tang. After getting off the subway, Wei Ruxia began to think about how to act when she was alone with her father.
To be honest, she didn't want to be alone with Wei Zishan, she just wanted to avoid him.
Luo Tang and Wei Zishan were different. Luo Tang was a little cold at best, while Wei Zishan hated her from the bottom of his heart.
Wei Ruxia was only sixteen years old and hadn’t grown up enough yet to bite the bullet and please someone who hated her.
Fortunately, after she got home, her grandma called and told her that Wei Zishan had come to the hospital to help her. She was also afraid that Wei Ruxia wouldn’t be able to sort out her own dinner, so she ordered takeaway.
Looking at the code lock on the door, Wei Ruxia breathed a sigh of relief. She opened the door and went inside.
After eating the takeaway, Wei Ruxia went up to the study in the attic to do her homework. It was only the first day of school today so there wasn’t much homework. However, Wei Ruxia's previous high school didn’t use the same textbooks as Ancheng No. 1 High School and Wei Ruxia had a weak foundation, so it took some effort to complete it.
By the time she finished her homework, it was already nine o'clock in the evening but her grandma and Wei Zishan hadn’t returned.
Calling in Wei Zishan to help, told her that her grandma seemed to be very busy and Wei Ruxia decided not to call and trouble her. After taking a bath and brushing her teeth, she went to bed.
Wei Ruxia's sleep quality had always been good, but she woke up thirsty in the middle of the night, so she got up and went downstairs.
Walking to the stairs, Wei Ruxia saw that there were still lights on in the living room. She took a step forward and saw Li Suhe sitting on the sofa in the living room.
Li Suhe was a little thin, and her back looked lonely and desolate under the soft light.
"Grandma." Wei Ruxia called softly.
Li Suhe, who was in a daze in the living room, turned her head and glanced at Wei Ruxia after hearing the sound. She had a heavy and complicated look on her face, but she managed a smile and asked, "Why are you up?"
"I’m a little thirsty." Wei Ruxia said. She walked to the kitchen and poured two glasses of water, bringing one to Li Suhe, then she sat next to her.
As soon as she sat down, she could smell the scent of disinfectant on Li Suhe's body.
Wei Ruxia looked at Li Suhe and asked, "How's your friend?"
Putting her hand on the glass, Li Suhe looked at the rippling water and said calmly, "She’s dead."
Opening her mouth slightly, Wei Ruxia said, "Sorry, I..."
"It's okay." Li Suhe interrupted Wei Ruxia with a smile, then she raised a hand to tuck Wei Ruxia's hair behind her ear. When her hair was down, Wei Ruxia's brow softened a lot, making her look more immature and energetic.
She was a sixteen year old child.
"We’re all at this age now. I can't stay with you for long. What will you do?"
Wei Ruxia first experienced death when her mother died.
It wasn’t like taking the subway and after doing it once, you won’t panic the second time. It only reminded you each time that you have less and less, and you’re getting closer and closer to being alone.
The corners of Wei Ruxia's eyes were itchy, her heart seemed to have been placed on top of a fire and the flames licked at her a little.
"I’ll get along with Dad," she said.
She seemed to have gotten the answer she wanted, as the dense fog that had gathered in Li Suhe's eyes dissipated. She squeezed Wei Ruxia's hand, smiled softly, and said, "It's late, go to bed, I’ll send you to school tomorrow."
"You can sleep a little longer tomorrow morning." Wei Ruxia said, "I can take the subway with Luo Tang."
Speaking of Luo Tang, Li Suhe’s smile deepened and she asked: "Are you and Luo Tang friends now?"
Wei Ruxia remembered her conversation with Luo Tang on the subway that day and she answered vaguely, "He’s approachable."
Obviously, that night Li Suhe not only talked with Wei Ruxia, but also with Wei Zishan. Even during the few days when Li Suhe was still around the house, Wei Zishan actually agreed to eat with them.
She and Wei Zishan both loved Li Suhe deeply, just as she loved them.
Under Hu Yinyin's daily coercion, Wei Ruxia joined the Hanfu society. Although it wasn’t until the last period on Thursday afternoon that she actually saw a Hanfu.
There were many clubs at Ancheng No. 1 High School, and the club activities approved by the school were given the last two classes on Thursday afternoon. All clubs were also arranged to have their own rooms upstairs in the arts building.
Hu Yinyin brought Wei Ruxia along to say hello to everyone in the club. She didn’t lie, the club was full of delicate young ladies.
Today's club activity was mainly to discuss the play that would be performed at the exhibition that was held at the Ancheng Minghong Activity Center at the end of September. There were two male roles in the play, one would be played by Hu Yinyin's boyfriend, Xu Xian, and the other would be Wei Ruxia, who just joined the club.
Wei Ruxia was caught off guard by this arrangement.
"You just need to dress up and act handsome. The plot is very simple, you only have a few lines." Hu Yinyin comforted Wei Ruxia while leading her downstairs.
"Okay." Wei Ruxia accepted Hu Yinyin's comfort.
After she finished speaking, the two of them walked to the dance room on the second floor. Hu Yinyin glanced inside and gave a soft, "Wow."
In the dance room, a girl in black tights was practicing. She was really in good shape and her back curved gracefully.
After completing a movement, the girl's gaze moved to the direction where Wei Ruxia and Hu Yinyin were standing.
Not only was she in good shape, she was also beautiful.
"She’s rumoured to be Luo Tang's girlfriend, Li Yawen." Hu Yinyin gossiped with Wei Ruxia, "The rumour might actually be real this time. He’s fought with people from the sports school down the road several times for Li Yawen."
It’s no wonder that everyone thought this girl could move Luo Tang’s heart, even she liked the look of her. Girls from the south were really easy on the eyes.
It was still daylight, and she could see outside the dance room clearly. Li Yawen first glanced at Hu Yinyin, then her eyes fell on Wei Ruxia, where they stuck on her legs.
Most dancers were tall and straight, with arrogance in their posture. When she saw Wei Ruxia's legs, Li Yawen's eyelids drooped. She put her leg down, got up and went to another place that they could not see to practice dancing.
Hu Yinyin watched the whole process. She frowned and said, "What’s up with her? Even if she is Luo Tang's girlfriend, she doesn't have to look at us like that."
Wei Ruxia also felt Li Yawen's contempt, there seemed to be some hostility in her eyes.
Although she wasn’t sure where the hostility came from.
Leaving Li Yawen be, Hu Yinyin asked Wei Ruxia, "Do you have any plans for the weekend?"
Wei Ruxia wasn’t familiar with Ancheng, so she shook her head and said, "Nope."
"Ah." Hu Yinyin sighed and said, "My home is too far from Ancheng. My parents won't let me go too far on weekends, so I can't have an ice cream date with you."
Hu Yinyin's home was in a small county outside of Ancheng. She usually lived on campus, and her parents only came to take her home on weekends.
"Is there anywhere fun to go in the city?" Wei Ruxia asked.
"Of course there is." Hu Yinyin said, "Golden Palace International is very fun. There are makeup shops, brand clothing stores, movie theaters, arcades, and all kinds of delicious food. It's heaven!"
Wei Ruxia asked,"Are there restaurants? I’m looking for one that serves Ancheng specialties."
After hearing Wei Ruxia's words, Hu Yinyin took on the role of a confidant, and smiled, "I didn't expect that you’re also a foodie. Of course there are. Yurong's Ancheng cuisine is very authentic. I’ve often gone there to eat, do you want to try it?"
As the two talked they had already left the art building, Wei Ruxia moved into shade, nodded and said, "Yeah, I want to try it out."
"Will your grandma accompany you?"
"My grandma will be at her friend's funeral on Saturday, I’ll go by myself."
"How will you get there?"
Although it was her second time riding the subway, it was the first time Wei Ruxia went alone. Saturday was a busy day for the subway and she couldn’t stand as easily without Luo Tang there to create a space for her.
When she arrived at the station for the Golden Palace International, Wei Ruxia stepped out of the crowded subway into a flow of people.
Golden Palace International Mall was one of the largest shopping centres in Ancheng. Wei Ruxia checked the map for it last night and found that the restaurants were on the sixth floor. When she reached the sixth floor using the elevator, she had no idea where to go.
The floors were too big. Wei Ruxia looked down several corridors on the sixth floor, but couldn't find Restaurant Yurong.
After searching for a while, Wei Ruxia saw an arcade at the end of a corridor, and a sign for a toilet hanging at the entrance of a passage next to the arcade.
Wei Ruxia walked towards the toilet.
There were a lot of people in the Zhoutian Arcade, mostly young people, and there was music coming from the machines accompanied by all kinds of cheers and noises.
It was so noisy inside that Wei Ruxia only realised someone was fighting inside after she’d walked into the side passage.
There were only two people fighting, one looked strong, while the other was tall and thin. The strong boy was facing Wei Ruxia, but the tall thin one had his back turned.
Just based on appearances, the one who was strong looked like he would win. He took the initiative and threw a heavy punch at the other boy, and the tall boy's figure flashed, taking advantage of his opponent’s momentum to raise his leg and knock down the strong boy with a single kick.
Then he unilaterally showered him with attacks.
The boy's movements were clean and beautiful, quick, accurate, and ruthless. Under his black T-shirt, the butterfly bones on his back shifted with the movement of his fists.
Beside them stood two boys and one girl. The two boys didn’t intervene, so presumably they were with the taller boy. The girl was startled by the scene in front of her, her voice shaking as pulled the tall boy’s shirt.
Luo Tang wasn’t moved by her tugging, and it wasn’t until Xu Lingzhou begged his ancestors for mercy that he landed a final punch on his bloody face and stood back.
Even after such a fierce fight, Luo Tang's expression remained calm. He raised his other hand and held his fist, as Han Junsong's voice suddenly came from behind him.
"Hey, isn't that Wei Ruxia?"
After a slight pause, Luo Tang turned around.
At the entrance of the side passage stood Wei Ruxia, looking in their direction.
"Thank you." Li Yawen said to Luo Tang, "I’ll take you to dinner."
"You don’t need to thank me." Luo Tang looked at Wei Ruxia as he spoke to Li Yawen, "This had nothing to do with you."
Li Yawen's expression froze.
After Luo Tang finished speaking, he got up and walked to Wei Ruxia.
Seeing the boy's face gradually become clearer, Wei Ruxia suddenly realized that Luo Tang's clean and cold appearance didn’t seem so out of place in a fight. On the contrary, when fighting, he had the air of a villainous gentleman that others didn't.
"You saw all that." A little blood stained the corner of Luo Tang's eyes, and it looked a little coquettish on his face.
It wasn’t his blood, it belonged to the boy he'd just beaten.
"Yeah." Wei Ruxia replied.
Hearing her answer, Luo Tang seemed to smirk.
He looked at Wei Ruxia, put his hand into his pocket, and after searching around with his fingers twice, he took something out.
It was a lollipop.
Lowering his head to peel off the wrapping, Luo Tang raised his hand and stuffed the sweet into Wei Ruxia's mouth.
Wei Ruxia looked at the blood on his knuckles, as a peach-like sweetness spread in her mouth.
Folding the wrapper slowly, Luo Tang looked down at Wei Ruxia, his dark eyes like a starless night sky.
"I’ll treat you to a sweet, don't mention this when you go back home."
The author has something to say:
Tangtang: Please eat some sweets, don't tell my mum.
Little Devil: Don't eat it! He’s giving you a lollipop today, maybe he’ll give you a sweet stick tomorrow.
Wei Ruxia:? ? ? ?
I'm using 'sweet' because I'm Australian and think 'candy' sounds weird, but I also acknowledge that 'lolly' also sounds weird, and 'sugar' (the more literal translation) just doesn't work in English. So I decided to make everyone unhappy and use 'sweet/s'. ︿(￣︶￣)︿