A Lucky Coin

A Lucky Coin

Chapter 1 - Chapter 1

"This is the room I'm living in now, I'd estimate it's no more than eight square meters." Yan Hang sat in the swivel chair holding his phone, tapping his toes on the ground, spinning the chair in a full circle.

-Better than before, just a bit messy, you still haven't tidied up after all these days

Someone commented on the screen.

"Still hibernating from winter, haven't woken up yet," Yan Hang yawned, "too lazy to move."

-Will you see that kid again today?

Someone else asked.

"That kid... don't know," Yan Hang tilted his head to look towards the living room, "let's wait by the window."

-Hope he doesn't get bullied again today, it's heartbreaking

Yan Hang didn't say anything, slowly getting up and sauntering over to stand by the living room window.

In his 17 years of life, following his dad moving who knows how many times, this was the latest house he'd lived in.

This time it was on the first floor, facing a small street, quite clean, much better than the previous apartment behind the vegetable market, at least there were no strange smells.

Except it got a bit noisy when school let out.

It was a large residential area, with many kids of all ages passing by this road on their way to and from school.

Yan Hang pushed open the window and sat on the windowsill.

The weather was still a bit chilly, the breeze blowing in carried a crisp coolness, taking a breath was like sucking on a mint.

He quite liked this windowsill, there were no security bars, the radiator cover connected to the windowsill, it could be considered a pseudo bay window, very comfortable for sunbathing in the afternoon.

The kid everyone wanted to see had not passed by yet.

But it should be about time, he would pass by a bit later than the other students every day, who knew if it was to avoid going home together with his classmates, or if he was held up at school by people and couldn't get out.

Yan Hang put his phone on the windowsill facing outwards, not looking at the screen or speaking again.

After just two or three minutes, a few students in school uniforms walked over, tossing a backpack back and forth between them.

Yan Hang picked up his phone and pointed it that way: "Here they come, let's see what kind of performance these withered branches and fallen leaves of the motherland will put on today."

Behind the students throwing the backpack was one who was slightly shorter.

Several comments flashed across the screen:

- seems safe today?

"Not safe," Yan Hang said, "that backpack is his."

The backpack was quite old, changing shape as it was thrown about - square, long, slanted. Every time the backpack traced out a parabola in the air, books or pens would fall out.

But today's withered branches and fallen leaves were relatively milder compared to usual, not getting physical.

The protagonist of this live segment followed silently behind, occasionally bending down to pick up the things that fell out.

He didn't spare a single glance at those few people tossing his backpack around and jeering at him, nor at his own backpack, as if those people and things didn't exist at all. He just slowly walked like that, hands full of things. When those people stopped, he would just stand silently to the side.

There wasn't much in the backpack to begin with. After tossing it for a couple minutes it was empty. Those students threw down the backpack, one of them went over and smacked the things out of his hands, scattering everything on the ground, then the group happily walked on, trampling over the things.

As the kid squatted down to pick up his things, Yan Hang jumped down from the windowsill and went back inside the room.

-Not filming anymore?

Someone asked on the screen.

"Nah," Yan Hang said, "too depressing."

After saying that, he stopped looking at the screen and directly exited, tossing his phone aside and leaning back in his chair.

Judging from the uniforms, those students were probably from the junior high division of No. 82 Middle School next door. When Yan Hang went out to eat at noon and wanted to take a stroll, he got lost and passed by the gate of No. 82 Middle School three times, leaving a deep impression.

The school was quite strict. The third time he walked past the gate, the school security guard came out, glaring at him, watching him all the way until he was over a hundred meters away. Yan Hang felt like blowing him a kiss.

Starting from the day they moved in, for four days straight, whether it was noon dismissal or afternoon dismissal, he could see that kid whose backpack was thrown around getting bullied in various ways. The people bullying him and the forms of bullying were different each time.

Yan Hang poured himself a glass of water. Since the half month before and after moving, for the first time he felt a bit frustrated, probably because it was too depressing.

He glanced at the time, put in his earphones and lay down on the bed, closing his eyes.

do you love me?

do you need me?

do you want me?

do you love me?

He quietly hummed along with the music in his earphones, adding a line after each lyric.


Half asleep, Yan Hang heard the door open, followed by the voice of his dad who had disappeared for a day and a half: "The emperor has returned."

Yan Hang didn't make a sound, too sleepy.

"Sweetie?" Dad called out again as he put things down, "Dearest crown prince?"

Yan Hang sighed inwardly. Just as he was about to struggle to wake up, his dad walked into his room and his voice suddenly changed: "Yan Hang!"

Before he could open his eyes, he felt his arm being grabbed by his dad, yanking him up: "Yan Hang what's wrong with you!"

"Fuck," Yan Hang frowned and opened his eyes, his arm numb from being pulled, his neck even cracking, "if I really committed suicide, you would've yanked the last breath out of me."

"What are you doing lying in bed at this hour?" Dad asked.

"Sleepy," Yan Hang glanced at him, "you're in a good mood today, Your Majesty."

"Made some money," Dad smiled and turned to walk out, "get up, let's go out to eat... oh right, I found a set of college English books for you, the person said it was for English majors, and there was intensive reading... I couldn't understand, you take a look and see if it works for you."

"Anything is fine." Yan Hang took off his earphones and got out of bed.

"My son is awesome, never went to school," Dad said in the living room, "but can actually read college English."

"I have an elementary school certificate." Yan Hang leaned against the doorframe.

"Right," Dad nodded, "I've always kept it, our family heirloom."

"...Let's go eat." Yan Hang sighed.

They had just moved here a couple days ago and didn't know where the good restaurants were. Yan Hang originally wanted to look it up on his phone, but his dad wanted to try their luck.

"Let's go to the second restaurant on the left after going out along this road, how about that?" Dad said.

"Okay." Yan Hang nodded.

Since he was young, Dad always liked to do this, taking him to create all kinds of unknowns. It was like a game they had played for more than ten years.

Sometimes the ending was a pleasant surprise, sometimes a shock.

And sometimes... it hurt the wallet.

Like today.

When they rented this apartment, the agent boasted loudly, as if the place they were going to rent was the center of the universe. Fortunately, with years of renting experience, they could basically judge the condition of the place just by asking about the price.

Sure enough, it was just an old neighborhood.

But unexpectedly, the agent wasn't exaggerating too much, because at the end of the road Dad pointed to, there was actually a bustling modern street.

So after turning left, the second restaurant they saw was a high-end Japanese restaurant.

"What should we do?" Dad turned to look at him.

"Since you picked the restaurant, let's eat here even if it pains the heart." Yan Hang said.

"Let's go." Dad waved his hand and walked into the restaurant.

Walking in, he was quite dashing. In fact, situations like today were not uncommon. Each time, Dad was quite dashing, but coming out was a different story.

"Your Highness," Dad stood by the roadside, rubbing his belly, "do you feel like we actually ate this meal or not?"

"We ate." Yan Hang answered truthfully.

"Do you still remember how much it was when we paid the bill?" Dad asked again.

"940 yuan. We got a card, put in a thousand and got a 10% discount," Yan Hang said. "We spent a total of 846 yuan."

"Looks like it wasn't just my imagination," Dad took out the card from his inner jacket pocket and handed it to him. "There's still 154 left. Go eat when you feel like it."

"Big spender." Yan Hang glanced at him and stuffed the card into his pants pocket.

"Heading back?" Dad asked.

"Let me treat you to some noodles." Yan Hang said.

"Huh?" Dad looked at him. "We just ate nearly a thousand yuan worth of Japanese food. Don't you think going out to eat noodles right after is an insult to that 846?"

"You eating or not?" Yan Hang asked.

"Let's go, let's go," Dad pushed him towards the small street they came from. "On the way here I saw a beef noodle place..."

This beef noodle restaurant wasn't bad. The bowl was big with lots of noodles. The key was the generous layer of large slices of beef on top, which looked very satisfying.

"This bowl is only 15 yuan." Dad said.

"Yeah," Yan Hang nodded while eating. "Let's eat first. After we're done, we can go back and mourn that thousand yuan of yours."

"Okay." Dad lowered his head and started eating in big mouthfuls.

When they were almost done, he raised his head again. "Hang ah."

"Yeah." Yan Hang responded.

"Do you want to go to school?" Dad asked. "I think this place is pretty good. We might stay here for a longer time."

"No." Yan Hang answered quickly.

"Then we won't go," Dad was also very straightforward. "I see you always reading at home, so I was wondering if you suddenly wanted to go to school. It would be a good opportunity to interact with more people."

"Those are two different things. I can also interact with people through part-time jobs," Yan Hang said. "Besides, I never wanted to go to school, not even elementary school."

"Yeah, you even insisted on asking me to see if you could drop out of school," Dad started laughing. "Damn, your Teacher Lü gave me a good scolding for that."

Yan Hang smiled.

Teacher Lü was the only teacher he could still remember. She was a very kind and amiable old lady. The last time he saw her was at his elementary school graduation ceremony.

The old lady bluntly expressed her dissatisfaction with Dad.

"Such a good child," she said. "I really worry he'll be led astray by you in the future."

Not long after returning home, Dad went out again without saying where he was going.

Yan Hang didn't ask. In all these years, he never asked about Dad's completely irregular appearances and disappearances, or what he went to do.

He would always come back anyway.

He was used to it.

While Dad gave him a strong sense of security, he also always brought him a deep unease.

He tidied up the things in his room a bit. Since there was a possibility they would stay here for a long time, it was best to take things out and put them away properly.

He didn't have many things. One suitcase for clothes and a bag stuffed with his various little gadgets.

Dad had even fewer things. A few pieces of clothing in a duffel bag was all he had. Sometimes he felt Dad's whole life was like a journey, and always a short one at that.

He couldn't even count all the places he had been to with Dad, all the residences they had changed. Sometimes they didn't even rent a place and went straight to a hotel. Other times, they would return to the same old place several times.

"I want to go back to the old places," Yan Hang flopped onto the bed, taking out his phone to look at it. "I want to walk on the old roads..."

There was a bunch of private messages on Weibo. Yan Hang gave them a casual glance. Nothing interesting. He replied "no" to a message asking if he would livestream today, then tossed the phone aside and put on his headphones.

He had been having some insomnia lately, only feeling sleepy in the afternoon, but even that was pulled away by Dad's arm.

Yan Hang stared at the ceiling with his headphones on. To coax himself to sleep, he listened to all sorts of rain sounds, the sound of wind blowing through bamboo leaves, gentle guitar... He lay there until his back went numb, but to no avail.

So he got up, changed into a set of sportswear, and went out.

It was almost 3 a.m. now. There were no pedestrians on the street. Occasionally, a car would whoosh by under the lonely street lamps.

At the end of the road was the bustling area. At its busiest, the neon lights would turn the night sky red.

But where he was, many cities would have this - the dilapidation closely behind the prosperity, like two worlds, more like the shadow of that world.

Yan Hang put in his earphones, switched to running music, took a deep breath, and started running forward.

He quite liked running. It was the best way for him to pass the time and relieve boredom.

He ran from the old residential area where they lived to No. 82 Middle School, circled the school a few times, then turned onto the main street. When he passed the Japanese restaurant they ate at today, he ran back and forth a couple more times to commemorate it.

After running around most of the nearby roads and working up a good sweat in the wind, he finally returned home.

After showering, he rummaged through his bag, took two pills, and flopped onto the bed. Exhaustion finally let him feel drowsy as he closed his eyes.

With the help of the medication, he slept until noon before getting up. Sitting on the bed, Yan Hang was in a daze for nearly five minutes before realizing it was already noon.

His head felt groggy from sleeping, and he had no appetite. Giving up on lunch, Yan Hang casually grabbed an English book his father had brought him and sat on the windowsill.

He stayed there until afternoon, alternating between the book and his phone, reading a dozen pages and watching an extremely boring variety show.

As the usual time approached, Yan Hang fiddled with his phone. If it weren't for that kid, he would only livestream when he was extremely bored. Now, aside from his few equally bored fans, he was also somewhat curious about that kid.

Would he fight back?

To what extent would he retaliate?

Yan Hang adjusted his sitting position, leaning against the window frame, and turned on his phone.

As expected, quite a few people were anxiously waiting to watch. He silently pointed the camera at the street, and it didn't take long for people to start discussing.

Why was it like this? Why wasn't anyone doing anything?

Yan Hang sighed.

There were no answers to all the whys. He had long stopped asking.

A few minutes later, the main character of the livestream walked into the frame first, which was a first in the past few days.

He was pushed over.

From the windowsill, one could see about a hundred meters of this street outside. The situation on the stretch leading to the school before this wasn't very clear, but this hundred meters was like the climax before the end of a good show, where these little scoundrels would part ways to go home.

The main character stumbled a couple of steps and glanced back.

Perhaps it was just an unconscious action, but it was indeed the first move that could be called anything close to "resistance" in the past few days.

Then, a few boys walked into the frame, and one kicked him in the lower back.

Yan Hang clicked his tongue.

That was quite heavy.

Another boy followed, kicking his leg.

Based on this trend, they would probably take turns kicking him as they walked.

A couple of stall owners selling snacks on the side couldn't bear to watch and shouted a few times.

But it had no effect. The boys glared back fiercely.

After watching for a few days, Yan Hang had figured it out. This kid wouldn't fight back. He wasn't sure if it was an illusion, but he even seemed very calm, as if isolating himself in another world, unable to hear, see, or feel anything.

But for the little scoundrels, this reaction was the most infuriating. From Yan Hang's experience, they wouldn't stop until they got a reaction out of him.

As they walked and kicked their way to the opposite side, one boy took out a glass bottle from his bag and smashed it against the protagonist's shoulder.

The thick bottle actually shattered upon impact.

"They're going a bit too far today," Yan Hang said, lightly kicking his feet and jumping off the windowsill.

-Is Brother Xiao Tian going to step in?

-Be careful, should we call the police?

Several comments flashed across the screen. Yan Hang put his hands in his pockets and felt around, finding only a mask, not even a key.

"I don't know," he said. "I can't stand watching this anymore. It's too depressing."

After crossing the street, Yan Hang saw the protagonist's face clearly for the first time in days.

It wasn't an illusion. The expression on his face was indeed calm.

Calm to the point of being very composed.

Calm to the point of making one feel extremely uncomfortable, though it was hard to say whether it was sadness or something else. After all, Yan Hang only had an elementary school diploma and couldn't find the right words to describe it.

Half of the shattered bottle had yet to fall to the ground, tied by a string on the boy's finger. As he raised his hand, ready to fling the remaining half at the main character's face again, Yan Hang whistled.

It was quite loud. Apart from spacing out while running, whistling was probably Yan Hang's greatest skill.

His dad loved whistling, and in order to find himself a partner, he had trained Yan Hang to be able to duet with him before he even started elementary school. The father and son would sit by the roadside every day, whistling at passing young ladies.

This whistle attracted the attention of the little scoundrels, who turned to look at him.

Yan Hang walked over without saying a word, placed his phone on a pile of unused bricks laid on the ground under a roadside tree, facing the livestream scene, then took out a mask and put it on. In all this time livestreaming, he had never shown his face. He had to maintain tradition.

The screen was bustling with comments, but he had no time to look. The little scoundrels had all turned around, and two of them were already walking towards him.

"Are you sick in the head?" one boy asked, glaring at him.

"Starting from today," Yan Hang pointed at the main character, "he's under my protection."


Every chapter whispers secrets; every coffee sip fuels the journey. Let's embark on another chapter, powered by everyone's support! >.<

Give me feedback at moc.ebircssutol@skcitshsif.