Edited by Isalee
Forced to learn it for two hours, Bai Xinyu finally completed something that he had never ever done before… making the bed. What made him even more lost was that this matter of making a bed, they even wanted to have a competition for it. Thinking about how he would have to get up every day before the sun was even up, and that he would need to spend time making his bed, Bai Xinyu felt that there was really no meaning to life.
Yu Fengcheng seemed to have forgotten the incident of having threatened him in the bathroom. Feigning friendliness, he taught him how to make the bed and put the bedsheets on. Feng Dongyuan and Qian Liang thought that they were now fine, and were quite happy about it. The two people had innocently thought that an argument between young people would start and end quickly, and there was no need to mull over it.
Once housekeeping class was over, Chen Jing gave them an hour’s break. It would soon be time for lunch. Thinking that he would be able to lie on his bed and rest for a bit after lunch, Bai Xinyu stared at the clock, wishing for time to move faster. He felt that today was probably the longest day in his life. So many things had already happened, yet it was only morning.
During the break, Bai Xinyu again went to the reception office, wanting to make a call. As it was the first day of the recruits officially joining the troops, there were too many of them who wanted to make a call home. Upon arriving, Bai Xinyu swore. The queues were three to four metres long, and Qian Liang, who had come along with him as well, complained for a long time. Feng Dongyuan consoled them, “Yesterday when you were resting, I came to make a call. Not many people were there at that time. Don’t worry, not that many people will be here tomorrow.”
Qian Liang said, “Let’s go, let’s go. We’ll find a place for a smoke.”
Bai Xinyu perked up a little. “Go, let’s have a smoke.”
Feng Dongyuan laughed, “You guys are still smoking? I don’t know how to smoke.”
“We’ll teach you.”
Feng Dongyuan shook his head. “I won’t learn. Smoking is harmful to the body.”
The two people dragged him to a pavilion. Bai Xinyu took out his cigarettes, handing one to Qian Liang. Qian Liang’s eyes brightened. “Wow, I’ve never seen this before. Look at the English words on it, is it extremely expensive?”
“They’re not English words, it’s a German brand,” Bai Xinyu said, a little smug.
“I have to try it.” Qian Liang lit the cigarette, smoking it carefully. With an expression of enjoyment, he said, “Mn, it’s a good cigarette.”
Feng Dongyuan laughed. “What’s so good about this thing?”
Bai Xinyu held one stick out to him. “You really don’t want one?”
Feng Dongyuan shook his head.
Qian Liang said, “Dongyuan, just by looking at you, you look extremely honest. Are you one of those… meritorious students?”
Feng Dongyuan was a little embarrassed. “Mn. I was the class leader too, and the president of the student union.”
“Really? Then your grades must have been excellent.”
Feng Dongyuan’s expression dimmed a little. “It wasn’t too bad, but I didn’t do well on the college entrance examination. If I had one of the top three scores in the entire school, I would’ve been able to attend university for free, but I was missing a few points.”
All his life, Bai Xinyu had not been very smart. He did not understand Feng Dongyuan’s sorrow, and said unconcernedly, “There’s no point in university, if you can’t go, then so be it.”
His memories of university were being overseas, chasing skirts, drinking liquor, and racing all night long. Up until today, he still had no idea of the number of faculties there was in his university, and he had been advised to withdraw.
Qian Liang shoved him. Bai Xinyu did not realise the meaning behind it. “What?”
Feng Dongyuan sighed, “It’s good in the army as well, we’ll even get paid in the future.”
“Oh? We’ll get paid?”
“Depending on the situation. If we can be promoted to become a warrant officer, we would be paid. In the army, I won’t be spending much money, and I can even send money back home. My sister still has to go to school…” Feng Dongyuan mumbled to himself as he thought about the possibilities.
Bai Xinyu finally seemed to have been slightly enlightened. He asked, a little naively, “Your family is very poor?”
Qian Liang could no longer bear to watch this drag on. He signalled Bai Xinyu desperately with his eyes. “Xinyu.”
Feng Dongyuan smiled. “It’s fine, there’s nothing embarrassing about it. My family’s situation is really not good.”
Without even thinking, Bai Xinyu said, “I’ll give you money then. How much do you need? Anyway, I can’t use any money right now.”
Feng Dongyuan froze. “No, no need. We have enough.”
Bai Xinyu continued generously, “Aiyah, doesn’t your sister still have to go to school? Just tell me, how much money do you need? You don’t have to pay it back.”
Feng Dongyuan’s face was a little red. “There’s really no need.”
“Why are you being so courteous? I’ve already said that you don’t have to pay me back, which means you won’t have to pay me back.” Bai Xinyu’s thought process was very simple. This Feng Dongyuan was quite nice to him, so he should be nice to this person as well.
Feng Dongyuan stood up instantly. “There’s really no need. You guys can continue smoking, I’ll head out first.”
He turned and left immediately.
“Ai…” Bai Xinyu was baffled. “He’s really…”
Qian Liang sighed, frowning and looking at him.
Bai Xinyu did not understand. “What’s wrong? Why are you glaring at me?”
“Say… Are you stupid?”
Bai Xinyu widened his eyes, feeling that he had been scolded out of the blue. “Why are all of you like this?”
Qian Liang extinguished the cigarette. “Everyone knows that your family is rich, it’s practically written across your forehead. However, there’s no need for you to show it off everywhere. Feng Dongyuan is an honest person, you cannot hurt his dignity like this.”
Bai Xinyu was stunned. He finally came to a realisation, and said angrily, “Who’s showing off?! I want to help him out of goodwill! Is there still a need for dignity when they’re poor to the point that they cannot afford their tuition? Couldn’t he be a little more mature?”
Qian Liang pointed at him angrily for a few seconds. He then lowered his hand, deflated, before he turned around and walked away.
Dazed, Bai Xinyu was left behind in the pavilion, and remained motionless for some time. He could not figure out what he had done wrong. He only had good intentions, yet he ended up offending others? What was this? Was everyone in this army base as abnormal as Yu Fengcheng? Huffily, Bai Xinyu smoked one cigarette after another. He had a bellyful of grievances with nowhere to vent, and he felt as though he was about to explode.
This was his first day in the army. The entire world had something against him, what an amazing first… oh, no, not even half a day had gone past!
Bai Xinyu suddenly remembered that there was only an hour’s break, and he still had to queue up for lunch later. They had to queue for meals, and they even had to recite poetry — what damn place was this?!
Returning back to the dormitory, everyone was present, and Bai Xinyu was fortunately not late. He deliberately stood next to Feng Dongyuan, glancing at him guiltily.
Feng Dongyuan gave him a faint smile before turning away, and Bai Xinyu felt even more morose.
In their platoon, they headed for the canteen. After getting their food, they recited the poem like usual, and only after they finished reciting did they start eating.
This time, Bai Xinyu purposely waited for Yu Fengcheng to sit down first before choosing another table far away from him. However, this meant that he was also separated from the rest of his platoon. After a few bites of rice, Bai Xinyu sneaked a look at Yu Fengcheng’s table. Qian Liang and Feng Dongyuan were there as well, the entire table chatting and smiling. Bai Xinyu was not very happy. This jinx treated others quite normally, only treating him as though they were enemies. Why? For what reason did he need to endure such treatment?
As he worked on his lunch, Bai Xinyu got more and more out of sorts. He did not have a single person around who would talk to him, and he did feel a little lonely. Human beings were social creatures, and they could not stand being alone. This was especially so for Bai Xinyu. He had never been independent, and always relied on others. All the more, he was unable to bear such loneliness. He started to miss Qian Liang and Feng Dongyuan a little, and while eating, he reflected on whether he had really said something wrong.
But he clearly only had good intentions…
Hurriedly finishing his lunch, Bai Xinyu returned alone to the dormitory. Throwing himself on the bed, he closed his eyes, imagining that he was at home. However, that hard and stiff wooden board under him once again reminded him of his surroundings.
Others started coming back as well. In small little groups, they chattered away. It seemed as though everyone was curious and interested about their first day in the army.
Bai Xinyu heard some movements from the bed next to him. He opened his eyes to see Yu Fengcheng who had come back. The man was looking at him with a faint smile. Bai Xinyu hurriedly turned himself over, facing Yu Fengcheng with his back.
Unceremoniously, Yu Fengcheng climbed over, pressing his knee on the side of his body. “Hey, get up.”
Bai Xinyu pulled his blanket over his head, trying to hide from his reality.
Yu Fengcheng pulled the blanket away, twisting Bai Xinyu’s face to look at him. Smiling wickedly, he asked, “Are you planning on suffocating yourself?”
Bai Xinyu asked guardedly, “What do you want?”
Yu Fengcheng pointed at him. “Do you not realise whose bed you’re sleeping on?”
Bai Xinyu froze, then sat up. All the beds looked the same, and he really did not pay attention, just lying down according to his feelings. He counted from the wall, it should be the fifth bed… Fuck, he was sleeping on Jinx Yu’s bed!
Bai Xinyu turned, wanting to get up. However, Yu Fengcheng held his shoulder, pointing at his bed. “You didn’t even remove your shoes, and dirtied my bed. You want to leave just like this?”
A recruit laughed from the side. “Where has your attention been? You even mistook another person’s bed as yours.”
Yu Fengcheng whispered into Bai Xinyu’s ear, “Eagerly delivering yourself to my bed, are you trying to send me a hint?”
Bai Xinyu was anxious. “Bullshit, I really didn’t pay attention. D-don’t overthink things.”
Yu Fengcheng laughed lowly, “What am I overthinking?”
Bai Xinyu really wanted to give himself two tight slaps. This was the first time he was angry with himself over his intellect. He clearly should be avoiding and dodging him, but in the end, he had sent himself to his door to be bullied. Why was he such an idiot?!
Bai Xinyu patted the area that had been dirtied by his shoes. There actually was not much dirt on it, but Yu Fengcheng clearly did not plan on letting him off so easily.
“If not… I’ll give you my bedsheets.”
Yu Fengcheng raised a brow. “Who wants your bedsheets?”
Bai Xinyu whimpered, “Then what do you want?”
Yu Fengcheng laughed, “Why are you so nervous? I’m not going to eat you up.”
The phrase “eat you up”, no matter how Bai Xinyu heard it, it sounded as though it was filled with teasing, and his face turned green.
Yu Fengcheng pulled him off the bed. “Just pay me back with a cigarette, let’s go.”
Without waiting for a response, he dragged Bai Xinyu away with him.
Yu Fengcheng pulled him to a secluded corner in the camp. Seeing that there was nobody around, Bai Xinyu took to his heels, wanting to run away. In the end, he was caught tightly by Yu Fengcheng.
“Just stand here properly. Do you think I’ll rape you here?”
Bai Xinyu looked at him, quaking. He thought that there was a possibility of that happening.
Yu Fengcheng held his hand out. “Your cigarette.”
Bai Xinyu took out his cigarettes from his pocket and handed it to him.
Yu Fengcheng looked at it, and tossed it in the bin.
“Hey, what are you doing!” Bai Xinyu had only brought a carton of good cigarettes with him. The store in the army camp definitely would not have anything good, so he wanted to save up those cigarettes!
Yu Fengcheng dusted his hands. “The cigarettes in your locker all belong to me now too. From today on, you’re not allowed to smoke anymore. If I find out, I’ll beat you, understand?”
“Why should I listen?! You even want to manage my smoking?! It’s not illegal!”
Yu Fengcheng’s response could not be any more natural. “I don’t like the smell of cigarettes on people who belong to me. Be more aware of that.”
Bai Xinyu’s face flushed red. “W-w-who… who fucking belongs to you?!” He stammered from anger.
Yu Fengcheng pinched his chin. “It’ll happen soon. I’ve said it before, if you’re going to remain here like this, sooner or later, I’ll fuck you until you faint. I mean what I said.”
Bai Xinyu was extremely aggrieved. “You think I’m willing to stay here? More than anyone, I want to leave, but can I? My cousin no longer bothers with me anymore…” Speaking of his sorrow, his voice was a little hoarse.
Yu Fengcheng patted his face, smiling, “Then there’s no other choice. Quit smoking, understand?”
Bai Xinyu looked at him resentfully.
Yu Fengcheng spoke commandingly, “Do you understand?”
Disgruntled, Bai Xinyu nodded.