New chappie today!
Just a note that we’re all becoming busier as the weeks go by~~~ 🙂
Chapter 51: He is a brilliant gem at my side. Even though he’s as ignorant about love as I am, I am unwilling to let him go.
Xu Xu accompanied Ji Bai downstairs as he took his leave near noontime. When they thought about the series of events from the previous night until this morning, both had an inclination to laugh, but at the same time, were also reluctant to.
“Then . . . call me soon.” Xu Xu waved goodbye to him.
Ji Bai immediately caught hold of her hand and pulled her into his embrace.
Many people strode past them in the corridor, but Ji Bai ignored all of them. He lowered his head to gaze fixedly at her: “Your family is wonderful.”
A smile lit up Ji Bai’s eyes: “I’ve just suggested to your father that you come with me to Beijing in November, to meet my family,”
Xu Xu looked at him.
She knew that he was doing this out of courtesy, because he had met her family that day.
“Today, meeting my dad was accidental. You don’t have to take it to heart, and we don’t have to rush.”
Ji Bai laughed as he looked at her: “Sooner or later makes no difference.”
Xu Xu’s face grew hot again: “November is still some months away. Let’s talk more about it more when the time comes.”
In truth, Ji Bai was not anxious. After all, they had recently started their relationship, and he had not previously thought about their meeting each other’s parents.
However, in line with what he had been taught from a young age, since he had already been introduced to her family and elders as her boyfriend, he ought to extend the same courtesy to her, and allow her to gain the approval of his family and parents.
In this area, he did not want her to feel that he was not treating her as an equal.
- (not literal translation; I am not sure how to render this, 屈就 – condescend to take a position)(show respect?)
When Xu Xu returned upstairs, Xu Jun was in the kitchen slicing watermelon. Only the father and daughter were in the living room.
Xu Xu sat by her father: “How was it?”
Father Xu looked at her with a loving smile: “He’s a great guy, resourceful and capable, magnanimous and steady. Your taste is much better than Xu Jun’s.”
- (literal translation is ‘vision, sight’, but would ‘taste’ be better here?)
Xu Xu did not have the chance to reply, when Xu Jun bellowed from the kitchen: “Dad, you are too biased. I am your son! Moreover, this is our first meeting with him, is it really necessary to give such a good appraisal?”
The three of them laughed. After he stopped laughing, Xu Senior said warmly: “Your older brother is right, I did give him a high evaluation. However, this is only my first impression. I do have some misgivings about his rather unusual family background.
In China, society is first and foremost authority-based. Economics follows closely after. Even though many people refuse to admit it, there is indeed a small group of people who stand at the apex of power in this society.
If a person has stood on the top of the pyramid from a young age, then, from that young age, it would be much easier for him to have more things; his attitude, his experiences, would definitely not be the same as for us common folk.
Xu Xu, you’ve studied psychology, you are well aware of the impact of the childhood environment on a person’s character and values. I am not going to interfere in your affairs, but, from today onwards, I hope that you will carefully consider whether he can always love and be faithful to you, while treating you with respect, and as an equal.”
Xu Xu pondered for a while, and nodded. “Right now, I can’t say that we will definitely be able to walk this road to the end, as there is always uncertainty to anyone’s feelings. However, the influence his family has on him should not be a problem. He must have been aware of this much earlier than we were, as when he entered the police academy at the age of 18.
Dad, you’ve met a few young men. Have you ever met anyone who, at that age, could give up the security of his ancestry**, his familiar childhood environment, and choose a path that someone in his situation had never taken before? Moreover, he did this in a manner that was not rebellious, decadent, or negative, but was positive, independent, and tenacious.”
- (not sure if this is the correct translation of 祖辈的蒙阴)
Her eyes softened: “Dad, he’s really great. In terms of probability, it’s incredible that I would be able to meet such a person in this lifetime. I must grasp this opportunity.”
Dad, Brother, he is a brilliant gem at my side. Even though he’s as ignorant about love as I am, I am unwilling to let him go.
Father and brother both left in the afternoon. Xu Xu tidied up the whole apartment, and gave Ji Bai a call.
Ji Bai was playing tennis with a few friends in the district. It was sunset, and the slanting rays of dusky light illuminated the red clay court which contrasted with the yellow greenish balls , bathing it in light both clear and warm?. When Ji Bai heard his phone ring, he hailed another friend to take his place, and strode to the sidelines.
“Have they left?” Jia Bai asked with laughter in his voice.
“Yep.” Xu Xu also could not help laughing. After the intimacies of the previous night, it seemed as if their conversation had a different nuance – there was a depth that only the two of them, with their shared affection, could comprehend.
“Have you eaten?” Ji Bai asked.
Xu Xu replied: “I just ate. How about you?”
“I’ve eaten, too.”
Both were quiet for a while. Ji Bai’s voice became more gentle: “. . . is it still painful?”
Xu Xu was startled for a moment, and replied with hot cheeks: “Uhm. It’s ok.”
Ji Bai then laughed lightly, and did not speak.
This caused Xu Xu to feel even more awkward, and she swiftly changed the topic: “What are you doing now?”
Ji Bai glanced at the tennis court behind him: “Xu Xu, want to come over and accompany me while I play tennis?”
Ji Bai had lived in the area for quite a few years, and was familiar with several neighbours. Every weekend, they would organise some activities, and would occasionally invite him to join in. Today, there were no special activities, just a few young people at the district sports stadium playing tennis.
When Xu Xu arrived, she found Ji Bai waiting for her at the entrance to the district tennis courts. He took her hand and led her to meet the others: “This is my girlfriend, Xu Xu.”
Everyone laughed, and someone remarked: “The ten-thousand-year bachelor has finally found a girlfriend! Our district’s last highly eligible bachelor has been captured.”
Other people also told Xu Xu: “Ji Bai is a great guy. Miss Xu, you are very blessed.”
Xu Xu stood behind Ji Bai, nodding her head. Ji Bai squeezed (hugged) her shoulders: “It’s me that’s blessed.”
Everyone laughingly remarked that Ji Bai was different now that he had a girlfriend, and the way he doted on her was unbelievable (not accurate translation, will it do?). Xu Xu blushed, and Ji Bai smiled wordlessly.
Just then, someone suggested: “Come on, our newly-minted couple, why don’t you play a round?” JI Bai handed a racquet to Xu Xu: “Want to try?”
Xu Xu looked at him: “Are you sure? I’m not good at this sport.”
Ji Bai smiled slightly: “I’m here. You just have to follow my lead.”
It was not empty bragging for Ji Bai to say this, for, up to this time, he was undefeated in the entire district. This was a superior and fashionable district, with many couples of similar age. Everyone liked to play any kind of game with doubles, mixed doubles, and husband-and-wife teams. Each time, he will had randomly partnered someone, and had still will managed to win handsomely. However, he used to observe the couple who were his opponents – when they lost, the woman would be full of blame, and the man would humour her while admitting his fault. In the end, they would lovingly hold hands and sit at the side of the court, helping each other to wipe off sweat, and drink water. He, on the other hand, would be with a group of sweaty, old men, giving each other high fives.
With these fundamentally intense sporting activities, if the losers were not gloomy, the victors were also not happy. If this happened too many times, then it would really be boring**.
- (索然无味 – flat and insipid)
Now, with Xu Xu, things will bewere different. She’s not good? It doesn’t matter, he was strong enough. The feeling of victory when playing with her would certainly be greatly satisfying.
However, Ji Bai had not realised that Xu Xu was ‘not good’ to such an extent.
Although her reaction speed was fast, and her footwork was accurate, her stature was too small, and her arms and legs were too short. In addition, she had insufficient strength in her arms. Needless to say, she was often unable to keep up with the trajectory of the ball. If she did manage to, when she swung her racket, the ball would simply fly into the net.
Their opponents naturally quickly discovered this weakness, and almost every ball was sent to greet Xu Xu. Even though Ji Bai tried his utmost to come to the rescue, he was unable to turn around a hopeless situation.
Others were happy he had lost, and even told him he had to invite Miss Xu to play with them from that day onwards, in order to nurture their relationship. Some others commented that this was indeed a memorable day, as Ji Bai the constant victor had unexpectedly suffered a crushing loss** It was a day to record in the district annals . . .
- 兵败如山倒 – troops in defeat like a landslide; a beaten army in total collapse.
Although Ji Bai was somewhat disappointed, he also did not take things too seriously. Everyone was sitting at the court side resting. He looked at Xu Xu’s red and sweaty face, and asked: “Are you tired? Drink more water.”
Xu Xu, who had been silent ever since she had lost, raised her head at this, and smilingly asked the others: “I’m tired after playing for a while. Shall we play something else? I suggest poker.”
Some people were just about to nod in agreement, when Ji Bai laughingly grabbed her hand: “It’s so late already, and you still want to play cards? Another day!” He softly whispered into her ear: “Never mind. We will have opportunities in the future to win and make up for losing this time.”
This little scamp’s thirst to outdo others was extremely strong! However, the night was before them, and he just wanted to be alone with her. How could he let others delay their time together?