Chapter 28: Go Away (1)
“Master, my legs hurt.”
“You, go away.”
Lin Zhao Xi jerked to a halt. Lu Zhihao didn’t brake and hit her back with a thud. She stumbled, then turned her head, “My master told you to go away.”
Her comrade’s face reddened with frustration, while Old Lin stared at her, his expression reading, why are you so shameless?
Of course, it was all inherited from you.
Old Lin was really cold to her. No matter how much she pulled and pouted, Old Lin didn’t care about her. She ignored her injuries and ran after him. When a kid gets scraped knees, they dry up by themselves after running around for a while.
For the rest of the day, she followed Old Lin’s rhythm, going wherever he went. She patrolled with him, slacked off, held up a large parasol, watched two grandfathers play chess in the pavilion, and listened to an old man playing erhu.
Although her dream of being recognized as the daughter of a rich family shattered before it was fully formed, it was better than anything to find Old Lin.
But… what happened to Old Lin in this world? Why did he neither choose to be her father nor study abroad? She had a lot to ask Old Lin, but she couldn’t without revealing who she was.
As she looked at Old Lin in thought, two sanitation workers carried baskets and rowing boats to the pond in the park, ready to fish out the garbage in the pond.
Quicker than words can tell, Old Lin ran and jumped on the boat, picked up a bamboo pole, and pushed against the shore. The small wooden boat swayed off the shore.
A trace of triumph finally shone in his dark and weary eyes.
Lin Zhao Xi stood on the shore, not the least bit worried. She chose a shade on the shore, sat down on the rock, and took out the Mathematical Olympiad book and exercises.
The small wooden boat slowly drifted through the water, a sight perfect for reviewing the exercises about boats and streams. Starting from the most basic exercises, Lin Zhao Xi tried to calculate the results by employing the imparted formulas and quickly becoming acquainted with them.
She read the text, glancing at the lake every once in a while. Thanks to her previous life experience, she knew that there was only one dock on the entire pond, and Old Lin would have to come back from wherever he floated.
A gentle breeze blew from the pond, and the sun was slanting to the west, when the boat finally returned. The sanitation workers carried a basket full of rubbish ashore while Old Lin stood on the boat. He was covered in sweat, looking at her with his arms folded, the posture screaming an ultimatum.
“Why have you still not left?” He asked.
Lin Zhao Xi nodded, folded a corner of the Olympic Mathematics page, and turned to look at Lu Zhihao, serious. “Go, my master is not happy.”
“Hey!” Lu Zhihao had been nodding off under a tree in a daze. He prodded at her with his small eyes.
“Don’t play dumb, I was talking about you!” Old Lin jumped ashore in an instant and picked her up by her ears.
Lin Zhao Xi flailed, then waved at Lu Zhihao, unreconciled. “You, go away.”
The early summer was hot, the air carrying the clear sound of cicadas chirping to their ears. The shadows of the trees in the park swayed over the trails, deep and serene.
“Tell me, why are you following me?”
Lin Zhao Xi followed Old Lin to the janitor’s room. She watched him pick up a thermos bottle and fill a cup with water while he opened a newspaper. He flipped to the entertainment section, stopping on the gossip column discussing a celebrity’s lover.
Locked outside, she leaned on the window and smiled doggedly at Old Lin. “Master, why did you come to my rescue earlier?”
“I didn’t rescue you.”
“But you drove the bad guys away.”
Old Lin raised his hand. Startled, Lin Zhao Xi stepped back, only to see Old Lin’s rough finger pointing to a warning sign at the door that read: No stalls in the park.
“Oh.” So that’s why you chased the fraud away.
Lin Zhao Xi continued, “My leg hurts, Master.”
Old Lin was too tired to say “If your leg hurts, go treat it” for the millionth time. Even Lu Zhihao, who had been following her, didn’t bother to say it.
“Master, my, leg, hurts!” Lin Zhao Xi continued.
Old Lin threw the newspaper down in a fit, then slapped the window frame. “Come in, come in.”
Lin Chao Xi hefted her schoolbag onto her shoulders and threw a triumphant glance at her attendant, Lu Zhihao, swaggering into the room.
Lu Zhihao stayed at the door. The clock in the room showed it was just past five o’clock. He said, “I need to go to an extracurricular class, Lin Zhaoxi. Don’t disturb other people while they work.”
“I’m such a principled person, how could I ever?”
“The hell you have principles! Stupidly following strangers around the entire day… What, are you looking for your father?”
Hello guys, Sial here. I hope y’all had a nice week, because I didn’t… just kidding! The last few days have been bumpy because I keep running away from my algebra assignments (SOS T^T). I used to think math was easy… what happened?! Wish me luck guys – I’ll need a heap of it to catch up with all my homework. And, see y’all next week! Thank you for reading. ^^