Chapter 27 - Chapter 27

Jiang Cheng walked with Gu Miao at the very front, Gu Fei and Wang Xu dragged their bikes and followed behind.  

Wang Xu kept talking about the tactics he had planned at the side, Gu Fei didn't really listen, after all Wang Xu just wanted to talk, the audience wasn't the most important thing.  

Gu Fei kept playing games on his phone, he had reached the last level, and wanted to pass this level before the next update, but had failed for three days already.

"Send me a heart." Gu Fei said.  

"Then you can carry the ball..." Wang Xu stopped, "What?"

Gu Fei showed him the phone screen and shook it.

"Oh, wait," Wang Xu took out his phone and sent him one, then looked ahead again, "Ah, this Jiang Cheng is quite popular with little kids, your sister didn't even glance at me right?"

"Nowadays everything depends on looks," Gu Fei kept playing the game, "Entertaining little kids also depends on looks."

"Is that so," Wang Xu stood up pedaling the bike to look at himself in the glass of a roadside shop, "I don't think I look worse than Jiang Cheng, just less approachable." 

"Mm." Gu Fei murmured in agreement.

In fact Wang Xu was quite approachable looking, this was probably why he had always wanted to act cool to become the boss but never really succeeded.  

If talking about unapproachable, it was Jiang Cheng's looks that were truly unapproachable.

Gu Fei always felt that people with slightly downturned eyes evoked two feelings, one was pitiful, the other was Jiang Cheng's type, arrogant and made people want to hit him, plus he always looked impatient, clearly much harder to deal with than Wang Xu.

But...that night drinking at the steel factory, Jiang Cheng had a few moments where he turned into the first type, looking quite obedient when drunk and excited.

Too bad that state didn't last long, as soon as he lit a cigarette he turned back to normal.

Even when embarrassed it was still that attitude.

Gu Fei looked at Jiang Cheng and Gu Miao taking turns jumping up and down on the skateboard...he had already forgotten what it felt like when Jiang Cheng kissed him that day, or rather he didn't have time to feel anything at that time, but Jiang Cheng suddenly crashing onto the other sofa pretending nothing had happened was quite funny.

If Jiang Cheng had no reaction at all, he wouldn't have thought much about it, he wasn't a good bird......okay, that group of not-a-good-birds got much more outrageous when drunk, Liu Fan had even tried to masturbate as a performance, he had gotten the camera ready but unfortunately Liu Fan had passed out on the floor before taking his pants off.

Jiang Cheng's reaction was a bit extreme, but considering his habit of punching anyone who tapped his shoulder, pulled his clothes, or poked his face, it didn't necessarily mean anything.

Gu Fei didn't plan on thinking more about it. What someone was willing to show, no one would deliberately hide, and what someone didn't want others to notice, knowing brought no joy to him either.

That kind of forced probing, once was enough for a lifetime.

He never thought anything else about Jiang Cheng, only curiosity, admiration, goodwill, wanted to get closer, and Gu Miao really liked Jiang Cheng...Gu Miao showing goodwill to Jiang Cheng after just meeting him for two days really surprised him at first.

Some attracted cats, some dogs, Jiang Cheng probably attracted weird little kids...

Wang Er Xian Bing's business was quite good, crowded during lunch and dinner.  

Today there were no private rooms available, Wang Xu's mom arranged for them to eat in the room they usually ate at themselves.

"Too chaotic outside," she said, "Just sit here, you can chat too."

"Thank you auntie." Jiang Cheng said.

Because Wang Xu had to run in and out to get things, he sat by the door, Jiang Cheng and Gu Fei sat inside, Gu Miao sat right between them.

"Wipe your hands," Jiang Cheng took out a pack of wet wipes from his backpack, pulled one out and gave it to Gu Miao, "Your palms are all black, did you fall today?"

Gu Miao shook her head, swiped the tissue randomly on her hands a few times then put it down.

Jiang Cheng sighed, and looked at Gu Fei: "You want?"

Gu Fei smiled: "Actually, my philosophy is, not clean, very dirty, when you eat you'll have no disease... "

Jiang Cheng ignored him and pulled out a tissue to wipe his own hands. Before he even grabbed it steadily, Gu Fei's hand reached over. His fingers pinched and he took the tissue away.  

"Can you not be so annoying?" Jiang Cheng looked at him, "Being more straightforward would make the world better."

"Hear that," Gu Fei said to Wang Xu while wiping his hands, "More straightforward."

"I don't want to!" Wang Xu immediately said very straightforwardly. 

Jiang Cheng sighed.

Gu Miao wasn't here eating buns for the first time, when Wang Xu brought over the small basket of buns, she accurately took a donkey meat one.

"You always eat this one," Wang Xu smiled, "Want to try a different filling? 

Gu Miao ignored him, bowed her head and took a big bite.

"Say thank you." Gu Fei said.

Gu Miao immediately stood up, eating while bowing to Wang Xu.

"Aiya, no need to thank," Wang Xu had just sat down and bounced up from the chair again, also bowing to Gu Miao, "Queen, please enjoy."

"Proud of you." Gu Fei said.

"She's too cold-hearted," Wang Xu said, "I'm sincere."

"Not boss-like at all now huh." Jiang Cheng said. 

"With you two here, what boss," Wang Xu eyed him sideways, "But don't drag me down this afternoon when we're deploying our troops with the rest of the team."

"Oh." Jiang Cheng looked under the table.

"Looking for what?" Wang Xu also looked down.

"Looking for your thighs of course." Gu Fei said while eating. 

*T/N: He has none, because he's busy hugging theirs for the basketball game.

"F*ck!" Wang Xu yelled very unhappily, "Seatmates are really different huh, cooperating so seamlessly after practicing ball together for a few days."

Jiang Cheng didn't eat as much today as last time, soon he was already burping, and feeling like even Gu Miao ate more than him. 

Gu Miao's face was all red from eating, forehead sweating.

"Ai," Jiang Cheng took off her hat, and saw the messy hair, "Your hair..."

Gu Miao put down the bun, reached up and scratched her hair.

"Ai!" Jiang Cheng grabbed her hand, "All oily!"

"No problem." Gu Fei said at the side.

"She's still a girl." Jiang Cheng looked at him.

"Treat her as a boy and it's fine," Gu Fei took Gu Miao's hat and looked, "Torn?  From falling?"

Gu Miao looked at the hole in the hat, nodded.

"I'll make you a new one okay?" Gu Fei asked.

Gu Miao thought for a bit, then twisted the corner of her own sweater indicating to Gu Fei.

"Want a yellow one this time?" Gu Fei said, "Okay." 

"You're...knitting for her?" Jiang Cheng couldn't help but ask.

"Yeah." Gu Fei glanced at him.

Gu Miao was very excited about getting a new hat, dragged Jiang Cheng insisting to go buy yarn after leaving Wang Xu's.

"I'll take you," Gu Fei said, "Brother Cheng doesn't need to go."

Gu Miao didn't react, still grabbing Jiang Cheng's hand and not letting go, leaning halfway pulling him.

"Brother Cheng needs an afternoon nap, he needs to sleep." Gu Fei squatted down and said softly to Gu Miao.

Gu Miao also looked at him, eyes very wide, but still with no reaction.

"It's fine," Jiang Cheng said, "Let's just go, I won't nap today." 

Gu Miao still maintained that posture, like she didn't hear Jiang Cheng speak.

"You..." Gu Fei stood up and beckoned him, "Let her look at you, you say it again."

"Oh," Jiang Cheng also squatted down, moved in front of Gu Miao's eyes, "I'll go with you, no napping today."

Gu Miao finally reacted, turned and pulled him to walk forward.

Gu Fei sighed softly at the side.

"Where to buy?" Jiang Cheng asked him.

"Over the bridge, there's a whole street selling yarn," Gu Fei said, and asked again, "You nap everyday?"

"You're the one who said I nap everyday." Jiang Cheng said. 

"Oh," Gu Fei laughed, "I need an afternoon nap everyday, or I get sleepy."

"You can sleep in class, not like you listen anyway." Jiang Cheng pulled Gu Miao on the skateboard and walked forward.

"Can't do that," Gu Fei said seriously, "I have to pass this level, I'm competing with Li Yan so I have to pass first." 

"You're sick," Jiang Cheng thought for a bit, reached out his hand to him, "Give it here, let me try."

"You don't play right?" Gu Fei took out his phone.

"I got tired of it which is why I don't play anymore," Jiang Cheng took his phone, "And I've always had good luck, I'm a lucky, smart, study god, get it?"

"Now you're the one going on about this endlessly, it's not me anymore," Gu Fei said, "I think I only have three hearts left, is it enough?"

Jiang Cheng didn't speak, lowered his head and started playing.

From Wang Xu's stuffed pancake shop to the yarn street over the bridge was quite a long walk, Jiang Cheng kept his head down staring at the phone the whole time.

Gu Fei didn't have patience for this game, too lazy to think step by step, usually he just cleared wherever he could, but Jiang Cheng was different from him, staring at the screen for a long time before poking around a little.

It took at least three times as long as Gu Fei usually took for one round before he finally raised his head a little.  

"Passed?" Gu Fei asked.

"No," Jiang Cheng continued looking down at the phone, "died."

Gu Miao pulled his hem, looking around excitedly not watching her step, he didn't watch his step either, walked towards a broken step by the bridgeside with Gu Miao.

Gu Fei quickly pedaled his bike over, and grabbed Jiang Cheng's arm.

Jiang Cheng suddenly stiffened. He swung his arm back about to punch, and Gu Fei on the bike couldn't dodge in time, watching his fist carry a gust of wind flying towards his nose.

Conditioned reflex was already out of hibernation? 

But his fist stopped before reaching his face.

"Didn't break your arm hitting the brakes huh." Gu Fei let go of his arm.

"Sorry," Jiang Cheng turned and looked at the steps, "F*ck."

"Er Miao help Brother Cheng watch the road, lead him." Gu Fei flicked Gu Miao's head.

Gu Miao nodded, holding the skateboard in one hand and Jiang Cheng's hem in the other, continued forward.

After crossing the bridge, they arrived at the yarn shop Gu Fei frequented, and Jiang Cheng still stared at the phone.

"With three hearts you can play this long?" Gu Fei said, "We're here already, give up if you can't pass, you're still a study god even if you're unsuccessful." 

"Look." Jiang Cheng shoved the phone in front of his eyes, screen facing him, with only one step left.

"Hm?" Gu Fei looked at the screen.

Jiang Cheng extended a finger, slid on the screen, and after a burst of blasting and eliminating sounds, passed.

"...Impressive." Gu Fei sincerely exclaimed.

"No applause?" Jiang Cheng asked.

Gu Fei clapped loudly.  

"That's..." Jiang Cheng gave the phone back to him, "You got a message just now."

"Oh." Gu Fei put the phone back in his pocket.

Jiang Cheng wanted to say that he didn't look, but also felt it'd be overly deliberate, he did glance when the message came in, and saw the sender and content...

Zhuxin: Come listen to me sing today?

Didn't see what came after that.

Jiang Cheng had always felt Gu Fei and Ding Zhuxin seemed to be in a relationship, could feel the familiarity and tacit understanding, plus both had music note tattoos, that day when Gu Fei's phone was on do not disturb, he also came to the hospital together with Ding Zhuxin.

But looking at Ding Zhuxin's message now, with the "?" punctuation, it seemed like there was some estrangement between them before.

Very close people probably would directly say come listen to me sing.

Following Gu Fei into the yarn shop, Jiang Cheng felt it wasn't right to ponder others' private matters for no reason, it was none of his business whether they were a couple.

"Picking yarn again huh?" The owner greeted Gu Fei as soon as he came in, "Just got new yarn these two days, knits thinner than last batch, good for spring, more colors too, green is also available."

"She doesn't want green anymore," Gu Fei smiled, patted Gu Miao's shoulder, "Go pick a color."

Gu Miao ran to the rows of yarn to look back and forth.

Jiang Cheng was clueless about yarn, never saw anyone knit at home before, looking at the balls and rolls of yarn now was quite interesting, he also walked over, reached to rub the yarn balls.

Thick, soft and fluffy, so nice to touch...

"Feels really nice to touch right?" Gu Fei asked beside him.

"Ah," Jiang Cheng nodded, "Feels different from a finished sweater." 

"Hand knit feels just like the yarn ball," the owner said with a smile, "Machine knit doesn't feel as nice as hand knit."

"Is that so," Jiang Cheng was confused, "Never worn hand knit before."

"Have your friend knit you one then," the owner rubbed a deep blue yarn ball on his hand, "This yarn is so comfortable, the color suits boys too."

"Huh?" Jiang Cheng was stunned, feeling like this owner was just trying to make a sale no matter what.

"How about it?" Gu Fei leaned on the counter beside, smiling and asked.

"No no, don't need to," Jiang Cheng quickly pushed away the yarn ball. "I have plenty of sweaters, with the weather warming there's no need for more."

"You can still wear it next year," the shop owner held up more yarn. "This yarn would work..." 

"No, please, really don't..." Jiang Cheng's face was nearly red as he kept backing towards the door to get away, as if avoiding something. "I really don't need it."

Gu Fei stood by, grinning without making a sound, just watching the show.

"Your friend didn't say he wouldn't knit for you," the owner very eagerly held up the yarn, chasing Jiang Cheng. "Look at this kind..."

"Sis, Aunt, Auntie," Jiang Cheng looked at her sincerely. "I really don't need him to knit anything. I, I can knit too."

"No no no, don't need him to knit, I, I can knit too." Jiang Cheng quickly pushed away the yarn ball.  

Gu Fei looked very interested as he raised an eyebrow.

"Really?" The owner turned and looked at Gu Fei again in surprise, "You can knit, your friend can knit too, boys these days are incredible."

"Mm, yes," Gu Fei nodded, "We're boys of the new age."

"Then why don't you buy some?" The owner looked at Jiang Cheng again, "Let me tell you, is you're able to knit, your hands will get itchy if you don't knit and play with yarn everyday."

Jiang Cheng didn't want to say anything more after blurting that out, strongly unsatisfied with himself for digging a hole and burying himself in it.

The owner pushed yarn balls relentlessly when selling, Jiang Cheng could only nod to get away: "Fine, I'll ball."

"One ball?" The owner looked at him, "One ball to knit a sweater?"

"No, I'll just knit..." Jiang Cheng really didn't know what one ball could knit, glanced at Gu Fei for help, Gu Fei raised his hands, he quickly said, "Gloves."

When they left the shop after buying yarn, Jiang Cheng felt he had sweated a coat from this.

"You didn't help either," he sighed, "This owner was just too much."

"You said yourself you could knit." Gu Fei said.

"Look at me," Jiang Cheng pointed at himself, "Do I look like someone who can knit?"

"Do you think I look like it?" Gu Fei asked.

"......Alright," Jiang Cheng was speechless, handed him the small bag with the yarn ball and bamboo needles, "This is for you, it's no use for me, make gloves, a scarf or something for Gu Miao."

Gu Fei smiled and took the bag: "Thanks."

With no time to return home after buying yarn, Gu Fei had Gu Miao go straight back to the shop at the intersection, then walked to school carrying a bag of yarn with Jiang Cheng.

"Not letting her take this back?" Jiang Cheng asked.

"No need," Gu Fei said, "You passed the level so I've nothing to do this afternoon, I can just..."

"You're knitting a sweater in class?" Jiang Cheng was shocked.

"Why," Gu Fei said, "I can teach you if you want to learn."  

"No need!" Jiang Cheng quickly said.

Gu Fei indeed was a magical person. He really spent an entire afternoon with his head down knitting a hat for Gu Miao. 

Jiang Cheng couldn't concentrate much on the afternoon classes, always peeking over at Gu Fei's side. He was both shocked by Gu Fei's knitting skill which was no worse than those grannies who chatted while knitting sweaters and watching their grandkids, and also shocked by Gu Fei's hands... The hands that could haul someone up a tree now held knitting needles so beautifully. 

What was even more amazing was that no one around him showed any surprise at his behavior - they were probably already surprised before and now used to it.

"Oh," Gu Fei let out a soft sigh. 

"What's up?" Jiang Cheng asked.

"Dropped a stitch," Gu Fei said as he pulled the needle back out, "Gotta..."

"Damn!" Jiang Cheng couldn't help but curse softly, "Gotta redo all this? Can't even tell."

"You probably can't tell," Gu Fei said softly, "Er Miao is quite particular. She won't accept even slightly thicker seams, she'll throw a fit that can't be soothed."

"Oh," Jiang Cheng thought back to Gu Miao's frenzied screaming that day, and felt that being a brother to her was no easy task for Gu Fei indeed.

Gu Fei worked quite fast. By the end of school in the afternoon, he had knitted a small patch with twists and turns that made Jiang Cheng want to salute him with fists and yell "Awesome!"

"Don't go yet later," Wang Xu said, "I'm getting the team clothes from Old Xu, you guys wait a bit. We'll go to my place for stuffed meat pancakes tonight, and discuss tactics for tomorrow too."

The group of basketball players all gathered around Gu Fei's desk to chat while waiting to see the clothes Old Xu was lending. 

"I think it's better not to expect too much," Guo Xu said, "Think about last year's clothes."

"What were last year's clothes like?" Jiang Cheng asked.

"Prison No. 4 basketball team No. 2," Gu Fei said while knitting. 

"...He could even borrow that?" Jiang Cheng was surprised.

"With how promising we look this year, hopefully we won't have to wear prison uniforms still, right?" Lu Xiaobin said. 

"Who knows, Old Xu's aesthetics have always been unique,"

After chatting for a while, Wang Xu came back to the classroom carrying two huge bags of clothes. One look at his expression and you could tell these clothes probably weren't much better than Prison No. 4's.

"I think we'll still have to rely mainly on aura," he said, putting down the bags.

Everyone took the clothes out for a look, and collectively crumbled. 

"Five Star...Farm Goods Market?" Guo Xu held up a shirt reading the words on it, "Isn't Five Star Farm Goods Market the one two stops north of our school?"

"Yes," Gu Fei put away the yarn as he looked at the pile of clothes and sighed.

"There's even ads," Wang Xu pointed at the shirts, "Freshest noodles."

Jiang Cheng really couldn't help but laugh. He took out his phone while chuckling and snapped a picture of the clothes, then sent it to Pan Zhi.

-Grandson, we have a basketball match tomorrow, let me show you our uniforms first.

"Put the clothes away," Gu Fei said, "I'll bring you guys clothes tomorrow."

"That's awesome," Wang Xu immediately shoved the clothes back into the bags, "What kind?" 

"My friends' team," Gu Fei said. "Got a team name and all too, at least it's not the Farm Goods Market team."

"Damn, should've said earlier, I wouldn't have let Old Xu get these," Wang Xu stuffed the bags into his desk drawer, "Let's go, go eat and discuss tactics."

Jiang Cheng packed up and followed the group out of the classroom. 

Going downstairs, Pan Zhi's reply came back.

-Grandpa I feel so touched, tears nearly dropping. You've finally gone back to being the original grandpa!


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