Chapter 3: Preparing for the Beginning of School
On the second day, the moment I woke up, the bed next to me had already been neatly made. When I looked at my watch, I saw it was half past ten. With my hair resembling a nest, I swayed and lurched towards the bathroom. Fang Yuke just happened to come out from the bathroom holding a bunch of grapes. He looked at my hairstyle and frowned, “Were you sleeping or making bombs? How come every time you wake up, you always have this type of hairstyle?”
I glared at him, “What are you going to do about it?” When I finished speaking, I ruthlessly slammed the bathroom door. I looked at myself in the mirror, and I was indeed a little intimidating. My hair looked like the Lion King, spread out in all directions. My forehead even had a red mark on it. I patted my face while talking to myself, “Sigh, you awoke from a beautiful dream. Why would you transmigrate from the ancient times back to the modern times?”
After I finished washing up, Xiao Xi and Fang Yuke were already watching TV in the room. When they saw me come over, Fang Yuke pointed at the grapes at the table and said, “Eat some fruit. People that are too angry need to get rid of all that internal fire. Careful that you don’t grow any pimples.”
I picked a grape off the bunch. It had been a long time since I had eaten fresh fruit that tasted so sweet.
Xiao Xi asked me, “Do you still want to eat breakfast?”
I immediately conjured up a shy appearance, “Xiao Xi, I’m really sorry. Usually I wake up pretty early. But maybe it was because I wasn’t used to the bed, so last night I didn’t sleep well. Thus, I just kept sleeping until this afternoon. So don’t make fun of me anymore.”
Xiao Xi laughed, exposing his nice dimples, “In the school, a lot of people’s days go from 5 to 9. They will sleep in the morning at 5:00 am. In the nighttime at 9:00 pm, they will wake up. Day and night are reversed.”
I pretended to have a clear understanding, “I understand, I understand. Learning in the evening is more efficient.”
Xiao Xi touched his head, embarrassed and laughed softly, “Haha, in reality everyone plays online games. Usually we will study right before the test.”
I couldn’t react quickly enough. I didn’t know if I should say that gaming was good or not. I didn’t game, but I also hated learning. Thus conflicted, I could only glance at Fang Yuke. My heart was still scheming, wondering if I should learn how to play online games to narrow the distance between me and Xiao Xi.
Fang Yuke rolled his eyes and said, “I advise you to still study hard. Don’t go play online games. Your brain can only handle one semester exam in a school year. Don’t be like the others and cram at the last minute. It isn’t that easy to hug Buddha’s feet .”
I angrily said, “How long have you known me? What’s wrong with my head? You don’t know how smart and clever I usually am. Otherwise how would I have tested in?”
Fang Yuke pursed his lips and didn’t speak. After a long time, he said some things that made me furious, “Usually, before the Gao Kao test, you had only gotten into the top 20 position twice, right? The top 20 places are usually held by the same people. We’re all pretty much very familiar with each other. I also somewhat heard of your name before. Aren’t you the type of person who will be in 20th position at one point and then go down to 120th position in the next exams?”
I angrily retorted, “What’s wrong with 120th place? The day I got the 120th position, I had a very high fever, alright?”
I hadn’t even finished when Xiao Xi interrupted me, “Yuke, how do you know Linlin got 120th place? You rascal, do you usually keep an eye on her?”
I immediately said, “Impossible! impossible! Xiao Xi don’t joke around. I’ve only known him for two days. He is only guessing. I actually did get 120th place before. That day, I really did have a high fever. I didn’t test well, hehe, I didn’t test well.”
I didn’t know what was wrong with Fang Yuke, but his small white face became quite red.
I used her hand to touch him, “You’re okay right? The time I got 120th place, I really did have a high fever, so my mathematics grade didn’t pass the bar.”
Fang Yuke drank a sip of a drink and lowered his head, “I know.” He paused for a moment, but was afraid we didn’t hear it and added, “I know now.”
Two more days days passed like this until the beginning of school finally came.
The South Gate of Peking University opened its doors, its boulevards bustling with activity. Half of the people were immature students like me, while the other half were the parents who were more excited than the students. Xiao Xi had already went to the train station to pick up some junior classmates. Fang Yuke and I went our separate ways, looking for our respective departments. I quickly found the School of Foreign Languages. There, I picked up my keys, medical card, new guidelines, and a bunch of other trash. I then rushed excitedly towards my dormitory.
The meat pie hit my head again , hehe! I lived in a new building. The most important part was that the school had arranged for me to live next to the window, and the window was right across from Xiao Xi’s dormitory. This way, I could always see when Xiao Xi left and when he returned. Extremely pleased, I went to the balcony outside the room and stretched, when I suddenly saw a familiar figure at the opposite balcony. I immediately took out my glasses from my bag and glanced over. The fortune in my heart dissipated thoroughly into despair. That was right! The person opposite me was that poisonous mouthed Fang Yuke!
Fang Yuke just happened to look up and see me. However, he was much calmer, like he had nothing to do. He expressionlessly turned back to his dormitory room, leaving me standing alone on the balcony and grinding my teeth.
It hadn’t passed too long before the other three people also living in the dorm dropped by. The person in the bunk under mine was from Jiangxi province and was named Wen Tao. Her nickname was Ah Tao. I didn’t know if she had tanned a lot or if her skin was naturally dark, but this made her teeth seem exceptionally white.
A girl from Beijing lived in the bunk opposite me. Her apparel and makeup made her seem extremely mature. She had brown eyes, and thick lips, and her name was also very classy. Her name was Julie, like Angelina Jolie.
In the bottom bunk opposite me was a girl from Shanghai. Her figure was very sexy, and her name was Wang Jie. Everyone was brought over by their parents. I was the only one all alone – it was particularly bleak.
The Shanghainese mother passionately sold her daughter off, “Our family’s Jie’er is usually more shy and can’t really speak to strangers. But she’s really good to her friends. All her friends all say that my Jie’er is the best.” My heart thought: What nonsense! In front of you, can her friends say that your daughter isn’t good? How stupid would that be? But the Shanghainese mother didn’t care about how we reacted and continued, “I picked the name Jie’er . The “Jie” character is seen less. It isn’t the Jie from Czech Republic, but the Jie as in ‘Jie Yu’.” Do you know what that means?” The others all didn’t speak. I was the only one who instinctively shook my head. The moment the Shanghainese mother saw my reaction, she explained everything with extreme satisfaction.
Besides the Beijing mother, the other mothers all began to throw books onto the shelves. The moment I glanced over, I thought ‘oh boy’. Wang Jie’s table was full of piles of sheet music, Wen Tao’s table was filled with literary history. Only my bookshelf didn’t have any books on it at all, bare except for a cup for brushing my teeth. Wen Tao’s mom secretly began to ask Ah Tao if that Zhou Linlin had was an orphan or if she had any family problems, coming here all by herself. I was furious and immediately took out my cell phone to call Fang Yuke.
This rascal actually answered the phone pretty quickly, “What’s the matter?”
I began to put on an act, “Big brother, have you reached the train station? The past two days you didn’t even help me settle in yet! When you get home, tell dad and mom a little bit of how things are going.”
The other side had already hung up. I hung up too and suddenly thought, Why did I call that rascal? My family doesn’t even have any difficulties; both my dad and mom are alive. Couldn’t I just have called my father and mother? I had really become an idiot from all of Fang Yuke’s cursing!
Registration day and the following day were all days for physical exams for the freshman. I grabbed a Peking University map and slowly walked around the university. Where was the university hospital? Alas, if only I had my parents to accompany me. All the other dormitory mates didn’t even need to worry. Their parents had probably already asked around for it. Today they would even have time to go shopping and look around. I walked around, trying to read the map with my abilities. I was afraid I would be walking around for a while.
In the end I found myself at a crossroads that was amply adventitious. Whatever. I guessed I could only use the large crowds to my advantage. I blocked the path of two people who looked like they had both gone through many great changes (TLN: cough cough puberty?). These people were dressed like they had been at Peking University for many years. Before I came to Peking University, my mom told me to speak politely and nicely. Thus, I drew out the word “Miss” a little longer. After I finished even I wanted to puke, but my old mom’s words actually worked.
TLN: The reason she wants to puke is because the woman is pretty old, but Linlin is calling her “Miss” which in Chinese is used mainly for addressing younger women…plus her other words are probably super cheesy lol.
The woman’s face with countless wrinkles and folds immediately bloomed into a big flower . She said, “Oh, just keep keep following this path. You make a left, another left, and another left, and then you’ll see it.” I expressed my extreme gratitude and followed the direction in which she had pointed. After I got to the University Hospital, I felt that the face with a big flower had really laughed too evilly. I regretted that I asked her and that I couldn’t have gone to the hospital myself. Because after walking in a full circle, I found that University Hospital was actually right next to the crossroads where I had asked for the way. It was in this way that I circled around rather foolishly.
I collected all kinds of information while also beginning to process it all. My height and weight was smaller than the height and weight of the other classmates. So first I would start from there. I would take my blood last; even if I got it under control, if I got dizzy, I could at least finish 95% of the exam even before I had to be carried back. I was very satisfied with my coordination arrangements.
When they were ranking our heights and weights, I deliberately looked at the person in front of me. The doctor measuring the heights and weights was quite careful. He actually filled out the whole report, as if we were illiterate. I watched those girls in front of me. I hated that I couldn’t be 165 cm, 45 kg. When it was my turn, the doctor unwillingly got up and lowered the measuring bar , rigidly saying, “157 cm, 52 kg.”
Panicking, I snatched the report and turned around to run. I hadn’t even run a few steps before I bumped into someone. I quickly apologized, “Sorry, I need to pass by.”
“Idiot.” A familiar cold voice.
I looked up. F**k, why did two enemies inevitably meet? Just now, I had obviously looked around. There were only girls nearby. I snappishly said, “Are you a person or a ghost? So elusive.”
Fang Yuke didn’t fuss with me. He gave a ‘qie’  and told the girl beside me, “Let’s go.”
Only then did I notice that a girl stood beside him. From one glance, she was the master of the 165 cm, 45 kg stereotype. She laughed and said to Fang Yuke, “Why don’t you introduce us?”
Fang Yuke pursed his lips, “Zhou Linlin, German Department.” Then he turned towards that girl. She didn’t wait for Fang Yuke to introduce her before she warmly smiled at me. I found that when she laughed she had some shallow dimples.
“My name is Ru Ting. Everyone is used to calling me Ting’er. I am studying Spanish, and we’re even in the same college. Yesterday, he went to take the examination by himself. Today I pulled him over. I am afraid of blood tests, but this guy has his head in the game,” she said as she tugged at Fang Yuke’s sleeve.
“The blood test area isn’t here. It’s in that small white building over there.” I pointed at the “Cave of the Devil.”
“Haha, I know, but just now I saw Yuke keep looking over here. So I pulled him over.”
Yo, she even called him ‘Yuke.’ Their relationship wasn’t ordinary. But Xiao Xi also called me “Linlin.” Haha. I gave a self-satisfied smile.
“Idiot.” It was Fang Yuke’s voice again. I had already surrendered to him. Couldn’t he say some fresh new words? I rolled my eyes and smiled to the maiden Ru Ting saying, “Then I won’t bother you two. I’ll go to the other examination rooms. When I have time we can have a meal together.”
Ru Ting answered very quickly, “Sure. Yuke’s friends are my friends.”
The medical examinations were really very long. When it came to the last event–drawing blood–it was already 2:00 pm. I had just entered the “Cave of the Devil,” when I saw people being carried away. The doctor that passed by even said, “In this session, if it isn’t fainting from the needle, then it’s probably fainting from the blood. Sigh, all that crying and trouble… The little kids of this generation have really been too spoiled. So we need to pierce them a little and clear their bones out.” Hearing this, my hairs all stood up, and I crouched at one side to calm down.
I looked at the report. There was only a single number missing. I hated that I couldn’t just filled it in and be finished with everything. But after I thought about it, if I was tested, I would be found as a fraud. Before I even began my wealthy life, I would be kicked out. I had almost pinched the report and dampened it with my sweat as my spirit wavered. When I had crouched until my feet were almost numb, I saw Fang Yuke and Ru Ting.
Ru Ting’s face was very very pale and held Fang Yuke’s hand tightly, softly saying, “See my hand is so cold, Yuke. I’m afraid of needles. You know this. I’ve been afraid of needles since childhood.”
Fang Yuke turned and patted Ru Ting’s shoulder, “Don’t be afraid. This is something that happens in the blink of an eye. It will pass in a split second.”
That rascal. Talking so warmly to other girls, but being like an icy mountain when he talked to me. Wasn’t he afraid that he wouldn’t make me mad, acting as if I wasn’t a girl?! With that being said, I had began to follow his line of logic as a form of self comfort. It was something that happened in a second. It was all a fuss about nothing. This old woman got into Peking University, and a hot senior classmate had fallen from the heavens, making me prepare to get into a relationship. With such concerning circumstances, I might as well sacrifice myself. When my thoughts reached this point , I suddenly stood up and strode to the front of Ru Ting. I held her hand that she had put on Fang Yuke’s hand, and tightly grasped it, “Ru Ting, there are many things that come with a price. When you get into Peking University, you also need to make some sacrifices. The time for your sacrifice has come.”
Ru Ting instantly became like a statue. After a long time, Fang Yuke said another familiar word, “Idiot.”
We waited in line for half an hour when it finally got to us. I was put to the left side, while Ru Ting was put to the right side. Ru Ting’s eyes watched Fang Yuke anxiously. With that expression, even I felt distressed. But I couldn’t pity or begrudge her for much longer, as my legs trembled myself. I learned from Ru Ting’s expression and looked at the doctor, saying, “Big brother doctor, my blood vessels are very thin and very hard to find. You better find someone to help you and fight through it. We can’t be like the nurse back at my village who thought my arm was like a carrot. It’s such a shame that we cannot insert a hedgehog instead.”
The doctor laughed, “What school did you come from? So weak. Even though you’re a little fat, aren’t your blood vessels just as obvious?”
When I heard this, I became unhappy, “How am I fat, how am I fat? At the most I only have some baby fat, okay?” The doctor pointed at my report and said, “Isn’t it written that you’re above 50kg here?” After he finished I heard Fang Yuke secretly laughing at the side. I glared angrily at him. I said in my heart, ‘Do you know this is a national secret? I’ve let you off lightly. It’s good that I’m not like that Mu Wanqing. When the secret is exposed, she immediately marries someone who knows the secret. Otherwise I really would have let you off extremely lightly….’
While I was being mad, the doctor’s soft tube had been placed onto my arm. Ru Ting had also had it tied to one of her arms. Her other hand tightly held Fang Yuke’s hand. I only hated that I was all alone with no one to lean on. I definitely couldn’t hold the doctor’s hand right? Alas, if only I had a boyfriend. My heart felt sad. When I looked up, I saw Fang Yuke’s expression. He kept on looking at me. The moment I saw this, I also looked at him and immediately looked away. I felt really weird, but I didn’t know why I felt weird. I hadn’t thought it through when I saw the doctor’s tubing already came undone. Fang Yuke lightly said at the other end, “Don’t look at it.” I used my peripheral vision to see that Ru Ting had already put her entire body in Fang Yuke’s embrace. I thought, ‘What do you not want to her to see? The other party can only see your chest now. Haha, do you want her to stop looking at your chest? Unless you don’t have pecs?’ I evilly laughed. The doctor had already taken out the needle now. When he was extubating me, he said, “Aren’t you pretty brave? You looked at the needle for so long, and even laughed after the shot. When I saw your fear just now, I thought you would faint.” I also felt it was very magical.
It was really weird. How could I look at the needle drawing my blood? If this had been in the past, it would have been an unthinkable thing. The doctor pressed a cotton ball onto it and said, “Keep pressing on it for two minutes. Don’t let go.” I agreed. I turned my head, Ru Ting was sobbing. I suddenly felt that girls should be like Ru Ting – a little fragile, so as to make guys have a sense of accomplishment. As for me, boys were strange enough. My happy heart became a little serious. Ru Ting didn’t move in Fang Yuke’s embrace. At this point, I didn’t make any motions to leave or to stay. It was just that the doctor opposite Ru Ting couldn’t continue to watch this, and immediately yelled, “Next.” Only then did Ru Ting begin to slowly stand up, leaning on Fang Yuke.
I slowly followed both of them out. I hadn’t walked a few steps when I lost my cotton ball. A little bit of blood seeped through the area that had just been poked. Not too long after that happened, it condensed into a small blood pearl. I wiped it with my hand, and blood came out again. I wiped it again. Right when I was enjoying it, Fang Yuke came out of nowhere holding a small adhesive bandage. He cooly threw it to me, helping Ru Ting at the same time, while also saying, “Idiot, aren’t your blood platelets great?”
I had already become accustomed to his poisonous tongue. I said a word of thanks as I ran out of the university hospital. I still had some self awareness. Those two were a couple. From one glance, I could tell that this rascal had prepared this bandage for Ru Ting. If he gave it to me what would Ru Ting think? I better not be the third unwanted party in their relationship. If I wasn’t careful, I would break up the happy couple, and that would be a big crime. Even if my IQ wasn’t high, how could my EQ be low? Hmph, you rascal, I oblige.
— Hug Buddha’s feet – catch a lucky break
 meatpie hit my head, In case you don’t remember, meatpie refers to good luck that hits you at the right time. 婕 (jie)- means handsome
 “immediately bloomed into a big flower”- means that her face has become super super super happy and patronizing
 qie, sound of interjection that is scoffing or dismissive