[Chapter 041] “Call me gege, and I’ll tell you something.”
Bian JinYuan took the lead and seated himself on the bicycle. Li YuanQing saw that his good buddy was really going to be sent off via bicycle and felt an indescribable feeling.
Wen MingYi patted his shoulder, “Forget it, a bicycle is alright too. YunFei always travels by car and probably hasn’t traveled by bike much, so it’s good for him to try it.”
True to Wen MingYi’s words, Lu YunFei hadn’t really ridden bicycles often. He had always been fetched by drivers since he was young, and it was only in his first year of elementary school that he got a new bicycle, which he rode for half a school year. But that was him riding it alone, he had never ridden pillion before, nor had he given a ride to others. This time, it seemed quite fun for him to sit on Bian JinYuan’s bicycle.
“Where did you get your bicycle? I’d never seen you ride it before.”
“I’ve always had it, but it had been raining ever since school started, so I took the bus instead.”
“Then thank goodness it didn’t rain today,” Lu YunFei said, “But Bian JinYuan, did you really take leave?”
Lu YunFei sat on the bicycle and swung his good leg. Bian JinYuan noticed him doing that and reminded him, “Don’t swing, be careful of getting caught in the wheel.”
Lu YunFei quickly tucked his leg back and sat properly, the wheels turning in his mind.
There were lots of students on the road, and some were similar to them, bicycles with pillion riders. However, all of the pillion riders were girls. Lu YunFei looked at them and then tapped Bian JinYuan’s back, “Am I the first person you’ve given a ride to?”
Lu YunFei guessed as much, “Then you’re too tragic. People give the girl that they’re interested in the first ride. As for you, you’re giving a ride to a guy.”
Bian JinYuan smiled and didn’t reply, thinking that Lu YunFei’s thoughts were so random.
“But no problem,” Lu YunFei elaborated, “This way when your girlfriend starts picking on old histories with you and starts on the topic of bicycles, you won’t have to worry about which girl you gave a ride to.”
“Sit tight,” Bian JinYuan cautioned, “We’re going downhill soon.”
Hearing this, Lu YunFei clutched onto the bicycle seat tightly. However, Bian JinYuan rode fast, and the slope was at a steep incline. As they sped downhill, it was more exciting than he had anticipated. His left hand hugged Bian JinYuan’s bag while his right hand held tightly onto the bicycle seat, so he didn’t find it to be very stable. He let go of the seat and stretched out to grab onto Bian JinYuan’s waist.
Bian JinYuan startled, and looked down to see his pale wrist and the back of his hand.
“Let me hug you for a bit,” Lu YunFei announced, “Otherwise I’m afraid I’d fall off.”
“Mmm,” Bian JinYuan replied, a little bit unused to the feeling on his waist.
Lu YunFei sat on the bicycle and felt the rush of adrenaline as they sped down the hill. He happily stated, “My favourite thing to do when I used to ride my bicycle was going downhill, because it would go fast without me having to pedal. Amazing!”
“You’ve ridden bicycles before?”
“Of course, I saw how everyone rode bicycles and wanted to buy one as well. My bicycle was so cool! I loved it so much back in the day, but after that I got too lazy to ride it. Sigh.”
Lu YunFei came to this point and then had a spark of inspiration, “How about I give you my bicycle, it’s still quite new.”
“Just take it to ride, otherwise it’s just going to gather dust in my house.”
“Can your bicycle give people rides?” Bian JinYuan asked calmly.
It was then that Lu YunFei realised that his requirements for bicycles were different. His bicycle had to be cool, but Bian JinYuan’s bicycle had to be functional. Just like this bicycle – even though it wasn’t as cool as his, it could carry other people. Whereas his bicycle simply did not fulfil that requirement.
Lu YunFei’s head tilted as he leaned against Bian JinYuan’s back, “I’m such an impractical person.”
Bian JinYuan chuckled at this, “Not really.”
Lu YunFei leaned against him and watched as they rode past the busy streets, listening to the bustling sounds. He was brought back to his middle school years, yet it didn’t feel exactly the same. It was likely because he had changed from being a cyclist to a rider, so he didn’t feel that tired, and had more of a peace of mind and satisfaction.
The evening wind blew past, and he silently appreciated it, thinking that this was not a bad thing. This novel experience, a sliver of foreign within the familiar, felt like viewing a beautiful scene that had been viewed a long time ago, and realising the beauty of its other facets after a shower of rain.
When Bian JinYuan passed by a cake shop, he purposely asked indifferently, “By the way, when is your birthday?”
“Me,” Lu YunFei drew out the syllable while leaning onto him, “You want to celebrate my birthday?”
“But my birthday is already over,” Lu YunFei said, his tone light.
This answer was within Bian JinYuan’s estimations. After all, his birthday was in October, which only left the two months of November and December after it. It was a one in six chance, quite low.
“Then we’ll wait for next year’s.”
“Doesn’t this mean that you should call me gege?” Lu YunFei teased, “I’m older than you, didi.”
Bian JinYuan: …
Lu YunFei pressed on, “Did I say something wrong? Or are you embarrassed, didi.”
“Aren’t you childish?”
“Of course not,” Lu YunFei said unabashedly, “Shouldn’t those older be called gege?”
Bian JinYuan thought that with the way he was acting, he couldn’t tell that he was older than him.
Lu YunFei saw how he didn’t move and taunted, “Call me gege, and I’ll tell you something.”
“You’ve got to say it, then I’ll tell you.”
“Then forget it.”
Lu YunFei thumped him in disatisfaction, “Is it so inconvenient to call me gege.”
Bian JinYuan gripped the handbrakes and stopped the bicycle.
“Why are we stopping?” Lu YunFei queried.
Bian JinYuan turned to look back at him, “You really want me to call you gege?”
Lu YunFei’s eyes curved as he smiled, “Can’t you?”
“Sure,” He bent his head slightly downwards and moved towards Lu YunFei, as he softly called out, “Gege~”
Lu YunFei didn’t think that he would really call him that, and was momentarily caught off guard, before he burst into laughter.
“Why are you laughing?”
“I’m laughing at how easy it was to trick you,” Lu YunFei stopped laughing, but his eyes still held a twinkle of gentle amusement, “I was bluffing. My birthday is pretty great, I share the same birthday as Jesus.”
Bian JinYuan had never guessed that he would be tricked, and asked, “25 December?”
“Then you should call me ge.”
“I don’t want to,” Lu YunFei refused, “Furthermore, you already called me that, didi.”
Bian JinYuan couldn’t be bothered to argue and turned back to ride the bicycle.
Lu YunFei saw that he was resuming their journey and said as he sat on the bicycle, “If you don’t have any plans for this Christmas, you could celebrate my birthday with me.”
Bian JinYuan replied with an “Mmm”.
He thought about how Lu YunFei’s birthday was quite magical, to think that it was on Christmas day. Christmas day, “Christmas”, “Do you wish to save the world?” Bian JinYuan asked.
Lu YunFei shook his head, “I’m not that great. However, everyone’s birth is miraculous. There’s no need to save others, or for others to save them, as long as they live well.”
There was nothing wrong with his words, Bian JinYuan thought. And so it was in this conversational manner that Bian JinYuan sent Lu YunFei home.
After that, when Bian JinYuan celebrated Lu YunFei’s birthday, he realised that he really was suited for this day. He wasn’t a saviour of the world, but his own personal saviour.
It was just that the Bian JinYuan of this moment hadn’t yet made this realisation. Just like how he hadn’t yet realised how he treated Lu YunFei with a sort of gentleness and possessiveness.
Bian JinYuan stopped the bicycle in front of Lu YunFei’s house, “We’re here.”
Lu YunFei didn’t hurry off the bicycle, but asked, “Are you going back home now?”
“What will you be doing after you get home?”
Bian JinYuan turned back in puzzlement, as if he didn’t understand why he asked, “Read books,” he replied.
Lu YunFei nodded, and then he smiled, “Then why don’t you just read books at my home.”
Lu YunFei grabbed Bian JinYuan’s bag tightly to his chest, “We could eat together and read together, plus you could also tutor me in English. This could be a good use of your break from work, don’t you think?”
Bian JinYuan didn’t expect something like this, but it was something that Lu YunFei would do, only, “We already agreed that the tutoring issue would be decided only after this month’s exam.”
“Plans can’t catch up to changes. Teacher Bian, you’re already at my doorstep, do you really want to pass it by thrice without entering?
Lu YunFei teeheed, “Now that you’re in my territory, whether or not you can is up to me.”
He clutched Bian JinYuan’s bag as he got off the bicycle, “Come on, let me treat you to a meal, then you be my tutor.”
Bian JinYuan dismounted his bicycle and parked it properly before reaching out to take his bag from Lu YunFei. Lu YunFei gripped onto his bag even more tightly.
Bian JinYuan didn’t pursue too heavily considering Lu YunFei’s foot injury, so he could only persuade him, “I can’t today, I didn’t inform my family. If I don’t go home now, it’ll be too late when I go home.”
“I’ll ask my jie to send you.”
“It’s not appropriate.”
Lu YunFei thought about it, and seeing that he really seemed disinclined, and didn’t press the issue further, “Then what’s appropriate?”
This question stumped Bian JinYuan.
“I can’t possibly have you take so many days of leave just for me, and yet not do anything,” Lu YunFei said, “That’s all money.”
“There’s no end to earning money,” Bian JinYuan stated.
“But one more cent is one more cent.”
Bian JinYuan chuckled as he looked at Lu YunFei, “Another day,” he said, “When it’s more appropriate some time, I’ll be your home tutor.”
“Empty promises,” Lu YunFei retorted.
“It’ll happen,” Bian JinYuan said lightly, “Don’t worry, I won’t lie to you.”
Lu YunFei saw the gentleness and sincerity in his eyes and didn’t say more as he passed his bag back to him, “Be careful on your way home.”
“Mmm, you rest well too.”
Lu YunFei waved at him, Bian JinYuan carried his bag, said “Goodbye”, and rode off.
Lu YunFei watched his retreating back and sighed softly. He used to think that Bian JinYuan was cold and indifferent, which resulted in classmates not getting close to him, But now it seemed that this wasn’t the case. Even though his injury had nothing to do with him, he wound up sending him home in the end, and specially took a leave of absence to do so. This was way too caring.
Sigh, what to do when one’s deskmate is too good? What else but to find time to repay him. Lu YunFei gripped his crutch and walked over to open his house door.
Now that Lu YunFei was inconvenienced by his injury, the matter of bringing breakfast now fell onto Wen MingYi’s shoulders. Wen MingYi was different from Lu YunFei and Li YuanQing. Ever since he entered his rebellious phase in year one, he moved out of his gege’s house and rented a place near school.
Thus, buying breakfast was a simple matter for Wen MingYi. It was so simple that he could still ask Lu YunFei and Li YuanQing what they wanted to eat every night.
That was a weird end to the chapter but hey. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯