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ISTIL Chapter 6

Mine

After the opening ceremony, more than 4,000 people got up and poured out of the room. The doors on the side of the auditorium and the small door at the back opened, so the crowd swarmed out. Shi An went around the stage and looked down, but there was no one to be found in the black mass.

 

Shi An, with his eyes downcast, couldn’t help but feel a little lost, and followed the crowd out the door.

 

The auditorium was very warm, but when he first came out, he actually felt a little cold. Shi An rubbed his cold fingertips. After standing there for a few seconds, he turned and walked towards the teaching building.

 

Classes were suspended during the sports festival so the whole three days were free to be spent.

 

When Shi An returned to the class, he scribbled a schedule first, and started to work on the questions as soon as he opened the book.

 

Shen Qiaoqiao was dragged around by Pan Tong and returned to the classroom at almost eight o’clock. There were very few people in the classroom. She took a look at her seat and saw that Shi An had been back for a long time.

 

She guessed that Shi An would go back to the classroom first. She didn’t know why, thinking that Shi An was already in the classroom, she was a little anxious and didn’t want to stroll around. She just wanted to go back to the classroom and sit next to him.

 

Shen Qiaoqiao had been at Shi An’s deskmate for almost half a semester, but every time she returned to her seat, she was inexplicably a little nervous. There was a thin layer of sweat in her palms, her fingertips were cold, and her heart was beating fast.

 

Shi An sat on the side near the aisle, writing a literature paper with several key words circled on the question, his brow furrowed as if he was thinking.

 

When he finished writing B, he habitually dotted a small point next to the letter.

 

Having written for more than half an hour, his back was a little sore. He put down the pen to stretch his back, but from the corner of his eyes, he caught a glimpse of Shen Qiaoqiao standing behind him, with her fingers twisted around her clothes. He didn’t know how long she had been standing there.

 

Shi An was slightly startled.

 

Shen Qiaoqiao was on the inside. She should have been standing all the time because she wanted to come in but was embarrassed to disturb him. Shi An showed a slightly surprised look and got up to make way for her, rarely speaking a few words to her: “How long have you been standing here? Why don’t you say anything?”

 

Shen Qiaoqiao bit her lips and went in, whispering that it didn’t take long. The tips of the white ears were flushed with red. Shi An did not pay attention, ready to sit down again, but the back door of the classroom was suddenly pushed open with force.

 

Shi An’s seat was in the third row from the back, very close to the back door. The door opened loudly. He looked to the side and saw the head teacher, Cheng Yuan, standing at the door. The tall, slender young teacher smiled gently, but opened his mouth and roared towards the classroom.

 

“What are you guys doing in the classroom? Go stroll ah, go to the game ah, go shout ah, you are wasting your youth!!!”

 

Shi An, who was already familiar with Cheng Yuan’s style, was about to sit down again when Cheng Yuan pointed at him and said, “Don’t sit down, it’s you, who’s! wasting! your! youth! Quickly go out to play, be a good boy, you’re going to read silly if you study!”

 

For the first time in his sixteen years of life, someone spoke to Shi An in such a tone.

 

He felt his temples jumping and turned his head to look at Cheng Yuan. The boy, with clear eyebrows and a pale but gentle look, whispered slowly, “…We have youth to waste.”

 

After saying that, he even showed a trace of regret. His eyelashes moved slightly as he glanced up and down at Cheng Yuan.

 

This was actually saying that he was old in disguise?!

 

Cheng Yuan rolled up his sleeves and looked at the student in front of him, whom he had always admired, and said viciously: “Student Shi An, I’m here to inform you that our class is missing two men in the 1000-meter long distance race for the first year. I put your name on top of it, I didn’t have time to talk to you, in a hurry to turn in the form.”

 

He pushed his glasses: “The check-in starts at 8:30. Grade representatives, jiayou for the honor of Class 3.”

 

Shi An: “…”

 

 

Shi An lined up for the check-in with no expression on his face after changing into a class uniform.

 

Class 3 originally did not have a class uniform, but had one custom-made for the sports day. Shi An brought his class uniform with him, but because he had to take the oath as the grade representative, he wore his school uniform when he came over in the morning.

 

The uniform was a white hooded sweatshirt with a QR code consisting of the names of the students printed on the back. The style was youthful and creative, and although it was not a sports uniform, it was better for running than a school uniform with a white shirt underneath.

 

There were many people at the check-in desk. Shi An frowned slightly; his head was dizzy because of the wind. He had a bad cold and had a low fever last night. He only felt his feet soft after standing for a while, so he simply squatted down on the ground.

 

“Shi An!” Zhou Yuan ran to his side and squatted down after him: “Did you also sign up long-distance running?”

 

Unexpectedly, he could meet Zhou Yuan here. Shi An took a moment to respond: “En.”

 

“Did you bring any candy? Have you eaten breakfast? You’re not having hypoglycaemia again, are you?” Zhou Yuan looked sideways at Shi An’s pale face and was a little worried.

 

“I’m fine. I bring candy.” He touched the front pocket of his sweatshirt, which contained several large white rabbit toffee.

 

“That’s good…When’s your group turn?”

 

“Second.”

 

“Before me, I’ll cheer for you on the side.”

 

Shi An lightly smiled and said goodbye.

 

The first group of students were already on the track. Zhou Yuan found a spot in the bleachers at the side of the field. He was in the sixth group, not in a hurry to go down, so took out his cell phone to call Yan Liang.

 

“Hello, Yan Liang, where are you?”

 

“I’m watching the game, the basketball court in front of the teaching building.” Yan Liang took a few steps to the side holding the phone and asked, “Aren’t you in the sixth group? It’s your turn to compete?”

 

“Not me, I saw Shi An, he also signed up for the 1,000 meters, the second group. Do you want to watch?”

 

“What? Long-distance running?” Yan Liang froze, “He’s signing up for a long-distance race?”

 

He thought Shi An would not participate in any race.

 

The first group had already started running, and one boy ran with all his might at the beginning, instantly leaving the others by a wide margin.

 

“Holy shit, this guy is crazy…” Zhou Yuan stretched his neck to watch the race and replied vaguely, “Well, I’ll hang up if you don’t come.”

 

Yan Liang knew that he had signed up for the long-distance race and said he would come to support him, but it was unexpected to run into Shi An. Zhou Yuan thought Shi An wouldn’t care if Yan Liang was there, so he casually spoke to Yan Liang and hung up.

 

 

Shi An refastened the laces of both shoes, tucked the two hood strings into his clothes, and reached out to straighten out the somewhat cumbersome hood.

 

A group of twenty people, Shi An waited unhurriedly until they had all taken their places before standing at the end.

 

A number of people gathered around the edge of the track. Shi An heard several female voices calling his name, so he scanned the circle with some confusion. The girls shouted even louder when they saw him looking over and a thin female voice was heard distantly shouting, “Oh my god, he’s so cute!”

 

There was even a chorus of agreement around.

 

Shi An: “…”

 

As a sixteen-year-old boy, being called cute by a girl was really not a thing to be happy about.

 

He was just about to turn his head back with a cold face when he saw Zhou Yuan running down and standing at the side shouting at him, “Shi An!”

 

Seeing him stubbornly plunged into the pile of girls, standing out from the crowd, with his hands together and shouting hoarsely, he had to turn his side slightly and ask Zhou Yuan again: “What?”

 

Zhou Yuan: “You jiayou I’m here for you, buddy!!!”

 

The people around the group probably didn’t expect Shi An to have a friend with this kind of personality, so they laughed a lot. Shi An was a bit helpless, just about to say yes, but then he saw Zhou Yuan’s eyes rounded in horror: “It’s going to start running!

 

Shi An turned back just as a gunshot rang out, and the people in front of him ran out with a splash, leaving him with an empty space in front of him.

 

Shi An: “…”

 

Everyone ran so hot and sweaty all over, Shi An’s face became whiter as he ran, almost transparent, and his fingertips became colder. He slightly bent his knuckles and when his fingertips occasionally touched his palm, he could feel the coolness of his fingertips.

 

His high school entrance examination sports score was very high; it was a one kilometre long-distance running test. In the third year of junior high, he practiced hard and his scores were not bad. In the end, Shi An ranked third.

 

Just after the finish line, he ran a few steps forward with momentum. Shi An wanted to leave the track and go to the playground with artificial grass, but unexpectedly his body was crooked and his knees went weak, almost falling down on the spot.

 

The physical education teacher next to him snatched him over. Shi An took a few breaths and stood firm, saying that he could go.

 

He braced himself for a few steps. Seeing that the teacher turned around and ignoring the heartbeat that was still beating fast, he flopped directly to the ground and sat down.

 

Just now when he was running, he did not feel hot. But now he felt a lot of sweat on his forehead as soon as he sat down.

 

The heart beat very fast, it seemed that it turned into a drum hitting the eardrum. There was a noise in the ears and a burst of blackness in front of the eyes.

 

He was a little slow in pulling out his hood string and tried to reach into his pocket for candy. He was so dizzy that he struggled to pull it out several times before he could barely get it out. Peeling off the candy paper, he stuffed it into his mouth.

 

Suddenly Shi An felt someone tug his hand and his arm was on the person’s shoulder. He was about to struggle, but his nose caught the faint scent of lemon soap on Yan Liang’s body and his body stiffened slightly.

 

This scent of soap mixed with Yan Liang’s unique scent, he could not be mistaken.

 

Yan Liang seemed to be trying to pick him up but the soles of his feet were soft, frowning and not wanting to move. Moreover, Yan Liang was very close to him that his hair were sweeping his face. Even his half closed eyes could feel Yan Liang’s sight.

 

His face was about to burn.

 

“Shi An, how are you? Listen to me, you can’t sit down just after running!” Yan Liang saw Shi An trying to sit down again, and hurriedly reached out to wrap his arms around his waist, half-supporting and half-holding him up. He hurriedly said, “Is your low blood sugar coming back? I’ll carry you to the infirmary.”

 

When he heard the word “carry”, Shi An started to struggle again, and somehow he had the strength and didn’t soften down again.

 

Yan Liang breathed a sigh of relief and had to start coaxing him again: “Okay, okay, I’m not going to carry you, as long as you can stand still.” He lowered his voice again, pretending to be serious. His grainy, low voice tickled Shi An’s ears: “Are you still a child? What did the teacher teach you, Shi An? Can you sit down right after the run? En?”

 

God knew how scared he was when he saw Shi An’s pale face and couldn’t even stand up; his heart almost exploded that he rushed across the track before the race was over.

 

Shi An was not in good health when he was a child, had a serious illness, and stayed in the hospital for a long time. After that, whenever there was something wrong, the entire Qingjiu Alley people were frightened and made a fuss in confusion,1鸡飞狗跳; hens flying and dogs running―utter confusion but Shi An was always the calmest one.

 

Although it was normal to lose strength after a long-distance race, Yan Liang was instinctively frightened.

 

Yan Liang felt that Shi An’s body was a little stiff. He thought Shi An was embarrassed because there were too many people watching so he let go of his shoulders: “We go to the bleachers to sit over there?”

 

One by one, the second group of students finished running. After they were finally allowed to pass the track, Yan Liang took Shi An to cross the track to the colorful ladder-like bleachers on the side of the track. Yan Liang looked up and found that the girls in the stands were staring at them both with glowing eyes, making Yan Liang feel a bit angry, so he stretched his arms and held Shi An again.

 

A girl raised her phone and wanted to take a photo, but she seemed to remember something. She bit her lip and put her phone down again timidly, her cheeks flushed.

 

Yan Liang was a little bit dumbfounded. He didn’t know why he had such a big temper in the morning, and he was a little embarrassed. Stretching out his hand to rub his hair, he said warmly: “…I won’t scold you again…It’s just there’s time and place for taking pictures.”

 

After saying that, Yan Liang was a little aggrieved, the corners of the mouth slightly down deflated: “I asked you to take less pictures…I also don’t collect money.”

 

Everyone laughed, and the girl who put away her phone asked in a whisper, “Is it okay now?”

 

Yan Liang turned his face to the side and saw Shi An with his eyelashes slightly drooping and his face looking better than earlier, so he asked him, “Is it okay?”

 

Shi An didn’t react. When he heard Yan Liang seemed to be asking him, he was a bit confused. He looked up and swept a glance, and countless pairs of eyes looked at him expectantly.

 

Shi An nodded slightly.

 

Yan Liang put his arm around his shoulder and extended his long fingers to make a scissors hand by his cheek: “Take it, take it.”

 

Yan Liang had already begun to smile towards the camera, while Shi An turned his face slightly to the outside.

 

There were too many eyes here; he didn’t know if anyone could see anything in his eyes if he looked at Yan Liang or looked at the camera at this moment.

 

His expression still looked calm to others, but he was not sure what state he was in, so he had to lower his eyes a little to hide his emotions.

 

The girls snapped a few shots of the two before Yan Liang waved his hand and said, “All right, my athlete2我家运动员 – literally my family athlete but it also can mean ‘my athlete’ is going to take a break, it’s closed.” He turned around and pulled Shi An to sit down.

 

The girls behind them were laughing and shouting in a low voice, very excited. Shi An could not hear anything, full of Yan Liang’s voice repeatedly ringing in his head.

 

My athlete.

 

Mine.

 

This was not the first time Yan Liang said this kind of words, he had said it a lot of times, but he did not know, every time he said it, it could make Shi An’s heart hot and soft.

 

Shi An sighed softly, hand on the chin.

 

What about the photos.

 

Actually, did the heart want to let them know that he and Yan Liang really had a good relationship?

 

So he, who always did not like to take photos, did not refuse it?

 

Shi An’s knuckles bent unnaturally, but his expression was as calm as ever.

 

I’ll go back to the classroom and write two more papers later.

 

 


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  • 1
    鸡飞狗跳; hens flying and dogs running―utter confusion
  • 2
    我家运动员 – literally my family athlete but it also can mean ‘my athlete’
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