Chapter 44 - Chapter 44

That night he had quite a deep sleep. Jiang Cheng thought he might have dreams before falling asleep, but it was just a blank directly sleeping until being woken up by the cold the next morning.

The sky outside was bright, probably around eight o'clock, the fire in the house had gone out, and the wind blew in from the gap in the window that was left open for ventilation. Jiang Cheng sneezed as soon as he opened his eyes.

Then he reached out and touched next to him, no one was there.  

He turned his head and found that Gu Fei was not beside him.

But before he could be surprised that Gu Fei had gotten up so early on the weekend, he first involuntarily thought about what happened last night for a while.

Jiang Cheng sat up and rubbed his hair with both hands.  

The alcohol had worn off.  

The craziness had also worn off.

The embarrassment didn't come up.

What surrounded him now was a faint panic.

Jiang Cheng, what have you done!

The key point was, after doing it, the person you did it with has now mysteriously disappeared...Damn! What kind of person is this!

Jiang Cheng jumped off the sofa and turned around the house twice, making sure Gu Fei's clothes, schoolbag and everything else were not there. Did that bastard coward just escape without a trace?

Was that necessary!

Even if it was a one-night stand! There's no need to flee like this!

This was not just embarrassing anymore, Jiang Cheng felt very humiliated at this moment!

"Damn it!" He swore softly, picked up his phone and called Gu Fei after sneezing twice.

Before it could ring twice, he suddenly heard a cell phone ring at the door.


Who was here!

Not A Good Birds?

Li Yan?

Or Ding Zhuxin?

Damn, did I clean up the scene?

By the time he realized the ringtone outside was Gu Fei's phone, he had a back full of cold sweat.

The door was pushed open, and Gu Fei walked in carrying two steaming fast food boxes: "You called me?"

"Ah." Jiang Cheng looked at him.

"Hurry up and eat, beef noodles," Gu Fei put the boxes on the small table, "Li Yan just called me to go to the store, I went over and opened the door first."

"Is he at the store now?" Jiang Cheng asked.

"No, he'll come over later." Gu Fei said.

"So your store is just open with no one there?" Jiang Cheng asked again.

"Yeah," Gu Fei replied, "No one will come in to steal anything at this time, thieves just fell asleep after being busy all night."

"......Oh." Jiang Cheng sat down.  

Gu Fei took out a small plastic package from his pocket and threw it in front of him.

"Mustard?" That was Jiang Cheng's first reaction.

"You eat beef noodles with mustard?" Gu Fei lowered his head and started eating noodles.

Jiang Cheng took a look, it was a strip of individually wrapped mouthwash: "Your store has this stuff too?"

"What's wrong, my store is very stylish." Gu Fei said.

Jiang Cheng laughed for a long time, went to the bathroom to wash his face, rinsed his mouth, came out and sat down to start eating noodles.

It was still a silent atmosphere while eating, but Jiang Cheng didn't feel like talking at this point, his previous guesses about Gu Fei made him feel a little embarrassed.

Also...when he got up, he didn't feel very awkward, maybe because he was sneezing and in shock and anger at the same time and had no time to think about it.

Eating the hot noodles silently now, the uneasiness and panic in his body boldly raised their heads.

"Are you going home?" Gu Fei wiped his mouth after finishing the noodles, "Li Yan seems to have something to talk to me about today, he might come over here later if I'm not at the store, I have to go over now."

"Then you go ahead," Jiang Cheng said as soon as he heard, he didn't want anyone to see him, no matter who, or notice what had happened here, "I'm leaving too."

"Okay." Gu Fei said. Gu Fei gathered the snacks on the table into a bag, tossing it into the cardboard box. He bagged up the trash to take out.

Jiang Cheng got up and followed him out the door, silently all the way.

After eating, Jiang Cheng felt it wasn't that cold today, the wind was not big, but for some reason, he kept feeling like shivering.

When they reached the fork in the road at the steel factory, Gu Fei stopped. He would go left to return home, and Gu Fei's house was on the right.

"Well," Gu Fei glanced at him, "you going home?"

"Yeah," Jiang Cheng nodded, walked two steps to the left path, then turned around and slowly walked backward, "Well... I'm going then."

"Mm." Gu Fei responded without moving.  

Jiang Cheng walked backward a few steps, cleared his throat, didn't know what else to say, so he waved at Gu Fei and turned to walk along the road.

When he arrived at building where Li Baoguo's home was at, he saw Li Baoguo walking quickly across the street from a distance.

As soon as he saw this person, he immediately thought of Shen Yiqing's phone call yesterday, and felt irritated in his heart, almost clogging his throat, so he stopped and waited for Li Baoguo to go back and sleep before going upstairs.

But when Li Baoguo got closer, he saw two women following behind Li Baoguo, wearing the same clothes, looking like saleswomen.

"Uncle," a young woman ran to keep up with Li Baoguo, "Uncle, we really dialed the wrong number, it was indeed our fault, but you can't just deny it!"

"I don't know! I didn't answer any calls!" Li Baoguo yelled as he waved his hands, "Don't follow me anymore!"

The other woman was a little anxious: "Look at you, at your age! How can you be so unprincipled!"

"Who's unprincipled? Who's unprincipled!" Li Baoguo glared at her, "You guys say I took your stuff every day! How principled are you to falsely accuse people?"

"Uncle, how did we falsely accuse you!" The young woman yelled, her voice choking, "We did dial the wrong number and call you, but why did you say you bought it? And asked us to deliver it! Our driver still remembers you received the goods!"

"I don't know any driver!" Li Baoguo went into the building, and then there was a bang as he went inside and closed the door.

"How can this person be like this!" The young woman cried out at the door.

Jiang Cheng stood there watching for almost a minute before slowly walking over to the two women, feeling like he was dragging sandbags under his feet.

"Excuse me," he looked at the older woman, "Sis, what is...going on?"

"Do you know that person?" The sister immediately asked, pointing at Li Baoguo's door, "Can you help us speak to him?"

Jiang Cheng didn't say he knew Li Baoguo, but the sister still told him what happened.

These two were saleswomen at a liquor and cigarette wholesale shop. A regular customer ordered cigarettes and liquor, the new girl misdialed and called Li Baoguo, Li Baoguo asked them to deliver everything to the intersection, then left without paying.

"Our regular customers can pay after receiving the goods," the sister said. "As a result, the customer called in the evening asking when it would be delivered, and we realized we had made a mistake."

"This is my fault," the young girl cried, "But he can't take someone else's stuff and deny it, those things are worth more than 2,000, if he doesn't pay them back, I have to compensate everything..."

Jiang Cheng just felt cold all over, turned his head and sneezed a few times, then felt his head swell up and uncomfortable everywhere.

"Leave me your number," he said, "I'll contact you after I find out from him."

"You know him?" The sister immediately asked again, "What are you to him? His son?"

"......Yes." Jiang Cheng nodded with some difficulty.

"Then you must help this girl, you are all young people, she just started working less than two months ago, her monthly salary is not even enough to compensate," the sister said, "Her family is quite poor, it's not easy."

"I'll contact you after I find out." Jiang Cheng said.

The girl kept crying, the sister repeatedly pleaded, and Jiang Cheng didn't know what else to say, he just kept repeating this one sentence.

After the two finally left, he wearily opened the door and went inside.

"Why did you chatter with them so much?" Li Baoguo was standing in the living room. As soon as he came in, he yelled very unhappily, "You didn't even need to pay any attention to them!"

"Did you take those things or not?" Jiang Cheng threw his schoolbag on the sofa.

Li Baoguo was still yelling: "No matter if I took them or not, this matter..."

"I'm just asking if you took them or not!" Jiang Cheng interrupted him and yelled.

"I took them! So what!" Li Baoguo stared and yelled too, "What about it! What does it have to do with me! This is their own mistake, they have to bear the consequences themselves!"

"Give them back." Jiang Cheng stared at him too.

"Are you crazy? Things that came free, what is there to give back? It's not like I actively went to cheat them!" Li Baoguo looked at him like he was an idiot, "I'm telling you they checked the surveillance! And went to the police station! The police station won't even deal with it! Told them to resolve it themselves!"

Jiang Cheng would have been fine if Li Baoguo didn't say this, but as soon as he said it, Jiang Cheng only felt that his anger was about to blow off the roof of his skull: "Are you quite proud? Even the police station doesn't dare mess with you, a shameless rogue! You're quite happy?"

"Watch your mouth when you fart in front of me!" Li Baoguo was also angry, pointing at him, "Be clear who you're talking to! You're talking to your dad!"

Jiang Cheng suppressed the anger in his heart, stared at him silently for a few seconds, then turned and walked into Li Baoguo's room.

"What are you doing!" Li Baoguo immediately followed him in, grabbed his arm and tried to pull him out.

Jiang Cheng turned abruptly and shook off his hand fiercely: "I told you! Don't touch me!"

"What about touching you!" Li Baoguo yelled, "I gave birth to you, not to mention touching you a bit, I can beat you up, and you have no right to even fart!"

Jiang Cheng's hands were shaking, he ignored him, bent over to look under the bed, there was a pile of junk underneath, he didn't see any cigarettes or alcohol, so he went to open the closet.

"I'll teach you a lesson today if you don't know who's in charge of this family!" Li Baoguo rushed over and shoved him hard in the back.

Jiang Cheng was caught off guard, and was shoved so hard by him that he slammed into the closet door, and his nose stung.

Then Li Baoguo punched him in the face: "Really think you're some young master!"

Jiang Cheng had been scolded by his parents in this life, even made to stand or kneel as punishment, but this was still the first time he was hit by his own "parent".

Li Baoguo's punch was quite heavy, so heavy that he felt Li Baoguo couldn't possibly have been held down and beaten like that with this punch.

His vision went blurry, and Li Baoguo's third move followed up, kicking him in the stomach.

This kick made Jiang Cheng kneel directly on the ground, hurting so much he could barely make a sound.

Fuck. Your. Ancestors.

As Li Baoguo kicked at his shoulder again, Jiang Cheng gritted his teeth, grabbed a stool next to him, and swung it at his calf.

Li Baoguo probably didn't expect him to fight back, and let out a roar of pain and anger.

Jiang Cheng held his stomach and stood up, grabbing the stool and swinging it at his arm again, hitting him heavily.

"Fuck you." Jiang Cheng glared at Li Baoguo gritting his teeth.

Li Baoguo, who was only a coward outside but a bully at home, was hit twice in a row by him and couldn't keep his dignity anymore. He rushed up and unleashed a flurry of attacks.

After swinging the stool twice, Jiang Cheng didn't want to fight anymore, this man was an old man coughing half to death even if he wasn't his biological dad...when Li Baoguo pounced again, he pushed Li Baoguo away.

But Li Baoguo was pumped up, probably wouldn't stop until he beat him into submission. This momentum was completely devoid of the coughing fits of a sick man.

Jiang Cheng had no choice but to push him away again and again, from the back room to the living room, and finally pushed him crashing into the living room door.

"Are you trying to kill me!" Li Baoguo yelled, "Come come come! Kill me!"

Jiang Cheng didn't want to talk, just stared at him silently.

"Old Li! What's going on!" A neighbor's voice came from outside.

"My son is trying to kill me!" Li Baoguo yelled, turning to open the door, yelling at the few neighbors standing outside, "Everyone look! My son is trying to kill me!"

"Why do you..." Jiang Cheng's shock had overwhelmed his anger, and his voice was shaking, "Have so little shame?"

"I have no shame?" Li Baoguo turned to look at him, "I have no shame? I have to raise you, feed you, send you to school! I took a little advantage of something given to me for free, and you say I have no shame?"

Jiang Cheng felt like he almost couldn't breathe, was about to faint.

"Raising you is not easy for your dad too..." A man outside said.

"Shut the hell up!" Jiang Cheng yelled.

These neighbors all had an expression of watching a show, you could tell with one look that not a single one really sympathized or wanted to come persuade them to stop, they were just waiting to see Li Baoguo make a fool of himself.

"Yo!" An auntie exclaimed, "How can this child be like this!"

"So what's he like!" Li Baoguo suddenly yelled at her, "What's my son like! What business is it of yours to butt in!"

"Crazy, aren't you!" The auntie glared and stomped up the stairs cursing, "Your whole family is crazy! All the drug factories have gone bankrupt supplying you nutheads!"  

Li Baoguo slammed the door shut.

He turned around to glare at Jiang Cheng for a good long while before speaking: "I'm about to die..."

"Don't talk to me," Jiang Cheng said hoarsely, "I'm already dead."

Li Baoguo reopened the door and walked out.

"Where are the goods?" Jiang Cheng asked behind him.

"Sold them." Li Baoguo said.

"The money?" Jiang Cheng asked again.

"Spent it." Li Baoguo answered.

"From now on," Jiang Cheng said, "you don't have me as your son anymore, never had before, and never will again from now on."

Li Baoguo stood outside the door without moving.

"I'm moving out," Jiang Cheng said, "you don't need to raise me anymore, don't need to feed me anymore, don't need to send me to school anymore."

Li Baoguo looked back for a moment, laughed coldly, and didn't say anything before leaving directly.

Gu Fei sat behind the checkout counter playing on his phone, Li Yan leaned against the front of the checkout counter, watching Li Baoguo wandering around the shelves over there.

"These on sale, they're not expired right?" He pointed at some yogurt in the freezer and asked.

"Almost expired," Gu Fei said, "Two or three days until the expiration date."

Li Baoguo took one and put it on the checkout counter: "Calculate the price for me."

"Uncle Li, you drink yogurt too?" Li Yan said.

"Drink, never drank it before," Li Baoguo said, "Trying it out."

"Put it on your tab?" Gu Fei asked.

"Got money." Li Baoguo took out a wad of cash.

"Quite lucky recently huh, Uncle Li?" Gu Fei smiled and took the money to give him change.

"Still alright, still alright." Li Baoguo took the yogurt and walked out.

Li Yan sat down next to Gu Fei, watching Li Baoguo leave: "Really Jiang Cheng's biological dad?"

"Yeah." Gu Fei played on his phone.

"Damn, it really shows how much influence the environment has on people," Li Yan stretched lazily. “Look at Li Baoguo, and his whole family, yet they somehow produced a son like Jiang Cheng.”

“How long more you planning to stay?” Gu Fei ignored him, continuing to tap on his phone. “Wasted my whole weekend, annoying or what.”

“I'll go back when my mom gives up on matchmaking,” Li Yan said.

“Ugh,” Gu Fei tossed his phone on the table. “Just buy my shop then.”

Li Yan leaned on the chairback laughing for a while. “Where's the friendship.”

"Will you still be here tomorrow?" Gu Fei said, "If you're still staying here, I'll tell my mom not to come over, you can watch the place, and keep an eye on Er Miao too."

"Yeah, no problem," Li Yan said.

"And help me get the goods while you're at it?" Gu Fei glanced at him, "That place we went last time for the frozen dumplings."  

"Okay, okay, okay, leave it to me," Li Yan sighed.

Li Yan was not very old, not even 23 yet, but because he had never had a girlfriend, it made his mom, who had wanted a grandchild since he was 15, very anxious. Her son was just goofing off all day instead of working, completely neglecting the most important thing - getting married first.

Sometimes Gu Fei felt bad for Li Yan.

This time she must have pressured him pretty hard. Li Yan simply turned off his phone and holed up at Gu Fei's place for two days without going home.

Gu Fei had no more hearts left for his mobile game. Jiang Cheng said he would help him pass three levels, but only got through one, and Gu Fei had been stuck on the remaining two levels for two days now.  

He sighed, exited the game, and slowly scrolled through his feed.

Nothing interesting there, just girls posting heavily filtered selfies and online shopping posts, and guys posting either about games or showing off.

Jiang Cheng's posts stood out among them like a breath of fresh air.

Brother Cheng: I'm so rich.

Gu Fei smiled at this for a good while before giving it a like.

Jiang Cheng hadn't contacted him these past couple days, although they didn't really keep in touch over weekends normally anyway. After what had happened between them a few days ago that was difficult to think about, Gu Fei was somehow fine, he just worried a bit about Jiang Cheng's state of mind.

But judging from this Moments post, he seemed to be doing alright.

Still, when Gu Fei saw Jiang Cheng on Monday, he could tell Jiang Cheng didn't look too good, even though his mood seemed normal.

"Here." Jiang Cheng handed him two folded pages.  

"Self-criticism?" Gu Fei asked.

"Mm," Jiang Cheng nodded, "Shouldn't have any characters you can't read."

Gu Fei smiled, "Being a bad student doesn't make me illiterate."

Today was the day they would go on stage together to read their self-criticisms. Old Xu had already grabbed them to stand by the podium before the school-wide assembly, while Class 5 hadn't even arrived yet. It was just the few of them standing there looking foolish before the flag raising ceremony.

After what felt like forever, the flag raising finished, the principal and teacher on duty gave their speeches, and it was finally their turn to go on stage. There was a sense of "finally it's our turn" from them.

"Gu Fei first," the principal said.

There was a round of applause from below.

"Why are you clapping?" the teacher on duty said. "Why are you clapping? Reading a self-criticism is nothing to applaud. Quiet!"

Gu Fei took out the self-criticism Jiang Cheng had given him and unfolded it, then stepped up to the mic.

"Self-criticism," Gu Fei read from Jiang Cheng's chicken scratch handwriting, "Esteemed teachers, fellow students, I am Jiang Cheng from Class 8 Grade 2..."

After a brief moment of silence, the entire student body below burst into laughter, mixed with some cheers. The principal and teacher on duty turned around in shock.

"Fuck," Gu Fei whipped around to look at the line of people behind him.

Jiang Cheng was hurriedly rifling through his bag, and after much effort finally pulled out two more folded pages and rushed over to hand them to Gu Fei.  

Gu Fei gave Jiang Cheng the page in his hand and lowered his voice, "You're too awesome, you could mix them up?"

"You're awesome too," Jiang Cheng also lowered his voice, "Don't even know your own name?"


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