Sissy - Chapter 1.2
The other side heard no sound, and called out again: “Is it Li Chengxiu?”
Li Chengxiu hesitated for a long time, and finally said: “Yes.”
The other side heaved a sigh of relief and laughed softly “Thought I had made a mistake.”
Li Chengxiu held the phone silently and pressed it to his right ear. Since he heard this sound, he moved the phone from his left ear, where he always listened to the phone to his right ear, where he had a weak hearing. Reducing the volume to the lowest level can minimize his anxiety.
“Why don’t you speak?”
“Well, you still remember my voice, nice.”
Li Chengxiu didn’t know what to say, so he was silent.
“I asked your manager for your number. Here’s the thing, what time will you get off work tomorrow? I will pick you up, and we will talk about the party.”
Li Chengxiu was disgusted by his tone of indifference: “Tomorrow, no work.”
“Oh, that’s just right, you have more time for me. So where is your house? I will pick you up tomorrow morning.”
Li Chengxiu slowly said: “Tomorrow, rest.” He deliberately stressed the word rest. He only has one day off a week, and he has to send money tomorrow, and he doesn’t want to meet Mr. Shao.
There was a silence there: “Master Li is probably tired too, in that case, you should rest tomorrow. I’ll come back to you the day after tomorrow, that’s all, goodbye.”
The other party hung up the phone decisively, and Li Chengxiu could hear his displeasure.
He laid down on the bed and wrapped himself in a quilt.
No matter how much he dislikes and how much he doesn’t want to get along with the person surnamed Shao, he can’t resist the money that comes to his door.
He put the passbook in his hand back under the pillow, hugged the pillow tightly, and his exhausted body soon went to sleep after a long day.
The day after he went back to work, another sous-chef surnamed Liu came, looking at him as if he was wronged. He turned around to find out what happened that day, what kind of dishes did he cook that day, what the boss said, how much is he being paid for the party at Victoria Harbour, when to go, and if Boss Shao coming these days?
Except for what kind of dishes he cooked, Li Chengxiu honestly didn’t know where he would go.
Chef Liu’s face became more and more ugly as he listened, making Li Chengxiu feel uncomfortable when he was working, and he felt the unease whole day.
Don’t look at it as a small hotel. The fighting inside is unambiguous. Especially the newly opened ones, as the pioneer troops sent to “open up wasteland” will have the most opportunities for promotion in the future. Everyone is working hard and hopes to take this opportunity to climb up. Li Chengxiu, who was the least optimistic in the past, is now the first to show his face in front of the boss and his friends. This cannot help but arouse the envy of others.
After getting off work at ten o’clock in the evening, Li Chengxiu hastily packed up his things and hurriedly went out.
He walked through the front door today, just out of the hotel gate, and a champagne-coloured sports car was in front of him under the bright yellow light.
The car looked very beautiful, the front cover was very long, and the body was very bright. It looked very expensive.
Li Chengxiu glanced but didn’t care. Carrying a bag of leftovers for breakfast tomorrow, bowed his head and walked forward.
When he passed by the car, the car horn rang abruptly. He was taken aback and looked at the car window in amazement.
The car window slowly lowered, and Li Chengxiu was not far away, and suddenly felt a blast of cold air escaping from the car.
The young Mr. Shao stuck his face out of the car, waved to him, and smiled: “I’m here to pick you up.”
Li Chengxiu took a few deep breaths and looked at him blankly.
Seeing that he was still dazed, Mr. Shao frowned, opened the car door, got out, walked to him, and stretched out his hand: “Master Li?”
Li Chengxiu awkwardly came back to his senses, looking at the hand in front of him. He subconsciously reached out, only to find the hanging plastic bags in his right hand. He hastily replaced the plastic bags with the left hand and then gently extended his right hand to shake with him.
This person’s hands were dry and strong. For some reason, Li Chengxiu felt that his strength was a little deliberate.
Li Chengxiu called out “Mr. Shao.”
“It’s too strange to hear you call me Mr. Shao, Li Chengxiu. Don’t you remember me?”
Li Chengxiu’s heart trembled. Although he had guessed that he was Shao Qun earlier, hearing him confirm it personally, still made him flustered.
Li Chengxiu raised his head slightly, gave him a quick glance, pursed his lips and said in a low voice: “Remember.”
Shao Qun’s eyes lit up and he smiled: “You remember? We haven’t seen each other for more than ten years. When I saw your reaction that day, I thought you didn’t remember me at all, and I was quite sad. After all, we were classmates, so there’s no need to be so rusty, or do you still remember the stupid things I did?”
Li Chengxiu’s cheeks burned, and beads of sweat slowly seeped out of his forehead.
Shao Qun deliberately emphasised, “stupid things I did”. If he is still worried about the harm he caused him when he was young and ignorant, it is because he is narrow-minded.
Indeed, what can an eleven or twelve-year-old child understand? Looking back now, it wasn’t a big deal, he had already forgotten about it.
The catastrophe that was as horrific as if the sky had collapsed, now that I think about it, is only infinitely magnified because of the young age. In fact, that’s the case. He is still alive and kicking. After changing a city, no one even knows who he is.
He doesn’t hold a grudge against Shao Qun, it’s just that the trepidation and inferiority complex that he feels when facing this man remains unchanged after all these years. If possible, he doesn’t even want to stand side by side with him.
Colleagues who got off work together took a few glances when they passed by, making both of them very uncomfortable. When Shao Qun saw he(LC) was not talking, he said, “Get in the car.”
Li Chengxiu looked at the car behind him hesitantly, “To do what?”
Shao Qun said, “Talk about work.”
Li Chengxiu wanted to tell him that there is nothing to talk about at this late hour, so it’s better to have another day. But at the thought of delay, if it offends Shao Qun, it will not do him any good. Since everyone is here, he doesn’t dare to turn around and leave.
So he nodded and got into the car.
When Shao Qun sat in the car and closed the door, the narrow space was suddenly filled with the smell of oily smoke.
In the empty parking lot, Li Chengxiu didn’t feel that he had such a strong smell, but once he was locked in a closed car, the smell had nowhere to hide, and even he himself felt embarrassed.
Shao Qun wrinkled his nose and lowered the windows on all sides. His move made Li Chengxiu even more uneasy, his face flushed red.
He couldn’t help thinking that more than ten years ago, he did the same, going to school every day with the smell of oily smoke. The people around him evaded him. At first, the disgusting look of the classmates really stung him, and then it gradually became numb.
Since he worked on his own and had a stable income, he tried his best to clean himself up. He just got off work and hadn’t had time to take a shower, but he didn’t expect to be sitting with the person who mocked him at that time.
It’s as if nothing has changed, Shao Qun is still the ever clean and arrogant nobleman, while he is still the sissy who has no one to care for and no one to love, who stinks to school every day, even he can’t help but loathe himself.
Now he is obviously different, which is why he is embarrassed. In front of Shao Qun, who was still glamorous, he was still so embarrassed.
The champagne-coloured sports car slid out silently, and Shao Qun swiftly moved along the coast. The sea breeze made Li Chengxiu almost unable to open his eyes. He could only hold on to the seat belt on his chest tightly, enduring waves of nausea.
After driving into the city, Shao Qun’s slowed down, and the car windows rose up. Shao Qun seemed to be holding his breath all the way. Only then did he breathe a sigh of relief, he changed his face that had been squeezed, and smiled at him relaxedly: “I drove a bit faster are you okay?”
Li Chengxiu shook his head with a pale face.
“Have you eaten?”
“Then let me take you to have a snack. I haven’t come to Shenzhen many times before, but I might be here for a long time in the future, and I really didn’t expect to run into you here.”
“We, talking about work?”
Shao Qun lightly laughed: “That store’s sugar water is very good, and I don’t know if it can be in your eyes as a chef, go and try it first.”
Li Chengxiu no longer asked any questions. Shao Qun was still the same as before, and he wouldn’t allow others to refute what he said, and everything had to be done according to his intentions.
Shao Qun led him into a teahouse. The waiters are familiar with Shak Qun, so they were taken into a private room.
Shao Qun casually ordered ten kinds of things, and after ordering, he said to Li Chengxiu, “I’ve been waiting for you until I’m hungry.”
Li Chengxiu didn’t know how to respond, so he nodded stiffly.
Shao Qun silently looked at him, suddenly moved his chair, leaned towards him, and softly said, “Cheng Xiu, I can call you that right? You’ve been very nervous, do you hate me a lot?”
Li Chengxiu was surprised. He raised his head to meet his(SQ) beautiful bright eyes, his heart jumped wildly and shook his head in embarrassment.
Shao Qun said sincerely: “I’m actually very happy to meet my former classmates in such a remote place. I have never forgotten you for so many years. I was ignorant and brought you a lot of trouble back then. I always wanted to find a chance to apologize to you. I didn’t expect to see you again. I want to say sorry to you. Will you accept it?”
Shao Qun’s eyes and tone are so sincere that Li Chengxiu was even more embarrassed when he heard it.
He did hate Shao Qun quite a lot back then. If it wasn’t for him, he wouldn’t be nestled in a hotel as a cook today. He would have gotten into a good high school, a good university, and would have had a completely different life. However, after fourteen or five years, he has a more thorough understanding of many things, and he has also begun to believe in fate. Shao Qun was already a distant and vague impression for him, just like he would not hate the kid who always robbed him of candy, he had almost no memory of this person for a long time.
Under such a serious and earnest gaze, Li Chengxiu showed a shallow smile. He felt that the hard bumps that had been stuck in his heart from the day he saw Shao Qun until now have gradually melted away. He felt relieved, so for the first time, facing Shao Qun, he said clearly without hesitation: “It’s okay.”
Shao Qun looked at him with unusually bright eyes, which made Li Chengxiu feel a little uncomfortable. Only then did he skim his head.
The beautifully styled snacks soon came up one by one, and Shao Qun greeted him warmly with something to eat.
Li Chengxiu just had his dinner, so he didn’t have much of an appetite, so he just picked up a few.
Shao Qun asked him about his situation over the years while eating.
Li Chengxiu said lightly that after dropping out of school, he went to work. Later, he heard that Shenzhen had many job opportunities so he came.
Shao Qun nodded, and after a moment of silence and said, “After that incident, my family sent me to England. When I came back again, I went to look for you, but I couldn’t find you anymore.”
Li Chengxiu thought of the difficulties, hardship and embarrassment, his chest felt suffocated, not knowing what to say he said an “Oh”.
Shao Qun put down his chopsticks and reiterated once again, “I’m really happy to see you again.”
It has been many years since anyone has expressed earnestness or kindness to Li Chengxiu. He was used to being disliked and ignored, so having someone who could be happy to see him, even if it might just be a courtesy, was somewhat flattering for him. Shao Qun’s superiority and glamour suddenly became less repulsive to him as well, and Li Chengxiu was in a better mood, so he slowly said, “Thank you.”
“I’m the one who has to thank you for being willing to do me this favour.”
Remembering the “business” they wanted to talk about, Li Chengxiu asked, “The party, how to do it, I have no experience.”
“It doesn’t matter, you don’t have to be burdened, there are specific people to operate specific things. You only need to be responsible for setting the menu, and things to be purchased, and then make some preparations in advance. It is enough to prepare the food that day, not very different from what you usually do in the hotel.”
Li Chengxiu felt relieved by these words. He has not done similar work, only when the hotel received the conference group in the past, there may be something to learn from, but he is still afraid of screwing up, the future in the hotel will be more difficult.
Shao Qun gave him a general description of how many people would come to the party, the main flavours of the dishes, a few specialities that must be available, etc., and Li Chengxiu listened carefully.
Finally, Shao Qun said he would take him to meet the person in charge of this party in two days, and they would focus on the discussion together then.89
After a meal, Li Chengxiu finally dispelled the cramps and tension in front of Shao Qun, and his speech became smoother and more complete.
Shao Qun, and still asked: “You didn’t speak like this before, why…”
Li Chengxiu froze for a moment, and the tongue that had just been smoothed out seemed to be tied in knots again.
Before getting to know Shao Qun, he was already very taciturn. After dropping out of school, he became more autistic, and it was normal not to say a word for several days.
He always plays with girls. When he grows up to be able to distinguish between men and women, his whole person, from behaviours to ways of doing things to the tone of speech, has been weird and different among boys, so he is always laughed at. In order to avoid being discovered, he can only cover up with silence.
The less he speaks, the less he will be able to speak. Now he has become unable to speak.
Originally the two of them chatted smoothly, Li Chengxiu momentarily had some forgetfulness, Shao Qun’s reminder immediately knocked him back to the original form.
Shao Qun also felt embarrassed, “I’m just asking casually.”
Li Chengxiu lowered his eyes and nodded.
Shao Qun leaned forward and said: “But you haven’t changed much, you’re still the same as before.”
Li Chengxiu sat up straight and subconsciously pulled his body away from him.
“You too, not much has changed.”
Shao Qun smiled “You know after I saw you that day, I told Da Li and others, do you remember them?”
Li Chengxiu’s body shook and his face turned pale.
Shao Qun also said “They are all very happy and want to see you. Da Li and A’Wen are in Beijing, Sheng is in Shanghai. I originally invited them to the party. They all said they were busy and are not coming. As soon as I said that you were here, they all said they would come. Look, you have more face than me…”
“Don’t.” Li Chengxiu said.
“Don’t…” Li Chengxiu said with a shaky voice.
He didn’t even want to see Shao Qun in person, let alone those friends of his. He didn’t understand what was there to make them happy about meeting him.
When they played him like animals, now they apologized to him as if nothing had happened. Now they are old classmates who have not seen each other for years? When did they ever get close enough to laugh and talk frankly?
What happened back then can always be attributed to a sentence of youthful ignorance, so he has long since stopped caring. If it wasn’t for the appearance of Shao Qun, he would have never remembered it again.
But now this group of people are going to reappear in front of him, like the dogs that chased and bit him together years ago. Even if that group of dogs has grown up and no longer bite, he still has lingering fears and can’t stop the disgust he feels.
Shao Qun looked at him in silence, suddenly raised his hand to touch his hair, and said softly: “If you don’t want to see them, I won’t let them come.”
Li Chengxiu’s body shook violently and stood up from the chair with a crash.
He had not had physical contact with anyone for a long time, and at that moment he panicked and had the urge to break out of the door.
Shao Qun awkwardly withdrew his hand, and a trace of strangeness flashed in his eyes, but it was fleeting. He also followed and stood up, saying, “Are you full? Then let me take you home.”
Li Chengxiu nodded, picked up the plastic bag on the chair next to him, and quietly followed Shao Qun.
When Shao Qun turned around, he saw him lowering his head, holding the bag in his arms like a woman, walking slowly behind him. He frowned, walked a few steps quickly, and walked away from him as he walked through the lobby of the tea house.
The two had a chat on the way.
Shao Qun sent him to the place according to the address Li Chengxiu said and looked through the car window at the dilapidated old apartment building outside: “You live in this kind of place?”
In his tone is a hint of surprise.
Li Chengxiu’s face was a little hot. He wanted to tell him that many people live in such a place but felt that it was useless to talk to people like him, so he said, “Thank you for sending me back, I’m leaving.”
Shao Qun nodded and unlocked the car door for him.
Li Chengxiu was about to open the door and get out of the car when Shao Qun suddenly stopped him.
“Cheng Xiu, when’s your next day off?”
Shao Qun shook his head: “Wednesday is too late. Please take a day off this Saturday.”
Li Chengxiu froze, and his heartfelt a few moments of discomfort: “You can’t take a day off.”
“Why can’t you take a day off, it’s not like the hotel can’t do without you.”
Li Chengxiu still shook his head: “You can’t ask for leave.” If you ask for a day off, you won’t get the bonus. Why should he ask for leave for him?
Shao Qun finally showed some impatience on his face, clutched his hair, and said, “If you are worried about your boss, I will say hello to him. That’s it. If you wait until next Wednesday, time is too tight. I hope that the ary I run will make people unable to find flaws, and I hope you can cooperate with my work. Isn’t this also what your boss requires? ” (T/N ary* is in English in the raws, considering it as a suffix it can mean forming nouns such as dictionary, granary or forming adjectives such as budgetary, primary.)
Li Chengxiu is speechless. Shao Qun waved goodbye to him, then raised the car window, a step on the gas pedal and the car sped out as if staying one more second is unbearable.
Li Chengxiu is still holding his breakfast for tomorrow, panting and holding his way up the dark hallway.
Every time he walked this staircase, he was very scared. The light bulb in the corridor is broken. No one repaired it all year round. The stairs are narrow and steep. At night, you have to touch the wall to move forward. However, the wall is bumpy and uneven. During the day, he often sees a lot of dirty things attached to it, every time going upstairs in the dark is a frightening experience for him
The moment he returned to his house and turned on the light, he was drenched in sweat, and his whole body collapsed on the bed.
There is no light in the stairwell, the darkness where you can’t see anything from front to back, the dead silence of the campus, he cried and shouted to let him out, his voice echoing in the empty building, making it more eerie and horrible.
This distant nightmare became clearer because of the appearance of Shao Qun.