Chapter 263: Let’s get together
Three pairs remained.
“It’s our turn again,” The girl with the long plait said.
Finally, Li Xingming stumbled, helplessly being forced to retreat off to the side. The girl with the exposed waist smiled at him, “It’s okay, we’ve been awesome already. Also, thank you, senior.”
Warm words, gentle tone, charming smile. Li Xingming was so overwhelmed by excitement he nearly went bonkers.
Only now did everyone realise that…
Only two pairs remained on stage. Furthermore, the comparatively scrawnier Zhang Ninglang had actually held on.
A great majority of those present were feeling happy for Zhang Ninglang, some of them even feeling rather moved. Due to his weaker physique, no one had expected him to perform well in this game from the start. Therefore, with him having been able to stand strong in the second half of the game where the difficulty was basically the same for all the remaining challengers, everyone felt especially happy on his behalf for some unexplainable reason.
In truth, people are happy seeing the weak ultimately overthrowing the strong most of the time when they have no vested interests involved.
“Second place is already very good.”
This was what everyone, the girl with the long plait included, was thinking, was saying.
This was because the first year male of the remaining pair was tall and burly and packed with muscles, also having been holding out in a relatively steadfast manner ever since the start of the competition…
Virtually everyone recognised Zhang Ninglang’s imminent defeat.
“Still, even if he can’t win, he’s been totally awesome already.”
This was what everyone else was thinking, was saying.
Yet, Zhang Ninglang wanted to win. Perhaps he didn’t actually want to win that much, not being dead set on first place. Instead, he just wasn’t willing to stop. He had already said that he could go on, no matter how heavy the load, no matter how fatigued he was…
It had not been easy for him to muster up his courage and compete like this. So long as he still had even a shred of energy remaining in his body, he definitely would not give up.
To others, this might be just a game. Yet, to Zhang Ninglang who had hesitated and shrunk back earlier before finally mustering the courage to step forward, this was an important thing which he had to do for himself.
The tall boy whistled.
Zhang Ninglang turned to look at him.
“Are we still continuing? Senior,” The boy smiled.
“Yeah,” Zhang Ninglang nodded, replying simply.
“Let’s begin then.”
With that, the boy was the first to move as he did three rapid squats that put the suppleness and elasticity of his legs on full display. Then, he sprung back up, shooting Zhang Ninglang a glance.
There was already no longer anyone still shouting ‘Carrot Squat’ by now, this totally brainless game having turned into a silent showdown between two men.
At the very least, Zhang Ninglang was silent whilst also unwavering.
A very simple movement, three times. Each one of Zhang Ninglang’s movements seemed slow and painstaking, but there was no time-wasting or cutting of corners in the least. When he rose for the last time, he stumbled slightly, nearly losing his balance…
Amidst the startled exclamations that arose, Zhang Ninglang clenched his teeth, straining his legs to the utmost as he valiantly caught himself, refusing to lose his balance no matter what.
He had completely overturned the simple, brainless concept of this game.
Currently, everyone felt just like they were watching the final round of a 10km race. The one who was clenching his teeth and persisting on the running track was that normally quiet classmate of theirs who was usually so easy to overlook.
Thunderous applause rained down upon him.
“I suspect Lil’ Bro can’t bear to put her down. You guys just don’t know how it felt just now. How smooth on the hands, how springy on the back, how soft…ah, it brings me back…” Li Xingming said with a scoundrelly look on his face.
“You scumbag. Do you think that everybody’s like you?” A female classmate in the row before him berated, full of righteous indignation, “Look at Lil’ Bro’s hands for yourself.”
Only with this reminder did many people notice it.
Zhang Ninglang’s arms passed under the girl’s knees. Yet, he was not touching her thighs at all. Unlike how most other people would do it, his hands were clenched into fists before him as his arms supported her weight.
“He’s been like this ever since the beginning,” The female student said.
Up on stage, the tall boy frowned slightly before taking in a deep breath and performing three super rapid squats again. Then, he revealed a nonchalant, relaxed expression. Xu Tingsheng discovered that his legs were actually already beginning to tremble.
“Hurry and cheer for him. Louder, more passionate.”
“Why? It’s Lil’ Bro that he’s competing with.”
“Get him feeling too embarrassed to slow down,” Xu Tingsheng told those people sitting around him.
Thereafter, the cheers for the tall boy nearly surged through the roof. The boy was affected by these cheers that seemed to hail him as a hero, feeling very emotional and extremely excited.
“Give up, senior. Look, it’s still so easy for me,” The boy sprung up slightly with the girl on his back, saying to Zhang Ninglang.
Zhang Ninglang smiled.
Everyone could tell that it was already incomparably difficult for him, that he had to use his full strength for every little bit that he moved as beads of sweat unceasingly trickled down his face.
“Just forget it, Lil’ Bro.”
Many of Zhang Ninglang’s classmates from Chinese Class 2 aside from those from Room 602 began trying to persuade him to desist, with the girls feeling especially distressed on his behalf.
“Senior, how about we stop competing?” The girl with the long plait said on Zhang Ninglang’s back, her voice already somewhat unnatural as she wanted to struggle, wanted to get down…
At the start, having persisted in getting Zhang Ninglang here on stage, she had never done so with winning in mind at all. She had just wanted to play this game together with him, wanting to be carried by him rather than by some other guy…it would be fine even if they were the first pair to be eliminated.
Zhang Ninglang wobbled slightly before standing steadfast, propping her up a little.
She understood, no longer struggling.
The second time.
After emitting a muffled groan for the first time, against everyone’s expectations, Zhang Ninglang rose back to his feet.
The third time.
No one found it unexpected anymore. He still managed to stand up despite everything. He would seem about to fall one second, yet that second would pass and he would still remain upright. An inexplicable feeling was unknowingly overtaking everyone’s minds now that this weak, slender body of his would actually never fall no matter what.
Xu Tingsheng suddenly remembered their first meeting, that shy young Zhang Ninglang who had dared not speak in front of Apple as he had appeared overly bashful.
“I’ve got to tell Apple about this different Lil’ Bro, this Lil’ Bro who’s finally found his other half. Even if your cousin wasn’t eight years old, there still wouldn’t be any hope for her anymore.”
The tall boy did not waste any time at all, not even leaving everyone time for applause as he immediately resumed squatting and rising at an extremely rapid pace.
The first time.
The second time.
All still appeared smooth at least on the surface as his speed had not fallen in the least.
When on his third squat, the boy finally ran out of energy while rising as his figure suddenly halted…if he had been going at it steadily, he would definitely have been able to slow down before rising back up again. There was already no one who minded speed now…still, he had been moving too quickly, too hastily…without any time for his muscles to recover in between…
Therefore, now, he was unable to recover his balance from that slip up…
The boy directly fell backwards, landing on his buttocks. Fortunately, he had kept a firm grasp on the girl on his back, protecting her from any bodily harm.
Everyone present was unable to immediately register this in their minds.
“He’s won, hasn’t he?” Old Wai murmured.
The next moment, cheers erupted all around, “He’s won! Lil’ Bro’s won!”
Overwhelming applause reigned as everyone seemed not to notice at all that this was rather an exaggerated mood for just a victory in a small game.
Amidst the applause, Zhang Ninglang turned, telling the girl with the long plait softly, “This is my first time carrying a girl. If you are so willing, so long as I still have strength left within my body, I would like to carry you forever.”
The girl with the long plait said, “Senior, let’s get together! I can’t wait any longer. I’m afraid that someone else might discover just how good you are.”