Chapter 42 – Amau Masanori
TL Note: Bold text is in Japanese.
If Jiaming was to follow his current personality, when the other person said “see you there”, he would definitely not go and would have let Amau Masanori wait there forever. Of course, the other choice was to comply, since the two of them were around the same rank and the guy had asked so sincerely. However, he knew that Amau Masanori was the good guy type who would try to not offend anybody, so he did not expect him to react violently even if he decided not to go.
In the morning of the next day, on the way to eat breakfast, Lingjing and Shasha suddenly proposed something that caused him to be in a dilemma.
“Xihai Road Cinema, 3pm in the afternoon? They’re showing ‘A Chinese Odyssey Part 1: Pandora’s Box’?”
“Yep! Last night, Dad gave me three tickets and said that it was very good. He said we’d probably like it, so we should go watch it,” Shasha said happily while holding the three tickets.
“But I have something to do at 2pm…” He pointed at the two girls. Even though he did not say anything, he did not want to be the third wheel at their date. When Shasha looked like she was about to freak out on him, he hurriedly smiled and said, “Haha, actually it’s not a problem. I will definitely get there in time. Why are you looking at me like that?”
“Who are you meeting up with? Is it that japanese girl?” Shasha narrowed her eyes at him.
“I don’t even understand what's she saying, why would I be meeting up with her? My father’s friend was planning to leave Jianghai City today but wanted to see me first. I’m only gonna chat with him briefly and he’ll probably give me some pocket money. I’ll buy the popcorn at today’s movie, ok?”
The suspicion on Shasha’s face cleared up a bit, but she continued to say, “Hmph, there’s a lot of things one could do without saying anything.”
“How would you know?” Jiaming eyed her and she blushed lightly. It seemed that she remembered something and felt guilty – she was probably remembering their kiss in the woods behind the lumber processing factory.
As the three of them finished eating, Jiaming walked ahead while eavesdropping on the two girls whispering behind him.
“Shasha, why are you asking him so many questions…”
“Ach, I heard from my dad that men take the wrong path easily. Lingjing, we have to watch over him closely!”
“But… but… it feels weird…”
Jiaming could hear everything they were whispering about and could not help but feel powerless. Little girls nowadays... what are they learning?! For goodness sake, the two of you are lilies, can you keep an eye on your girlfriend instead? I’m only a friend to you guys, not your shared body massager…
After cleaning up and school ended, the three of them ate lunch at Lingjing’s place. As Jiaming had a prior engagement, he got ready to leave around 1pm. When he passed by Shasha as he was leaving, she punched a sandbag, and as she hit it, she said, “Remember… to get there… earlier!” She threatened Jiaming as if he was the sandbag as she continued punching.
He strolled along nearby streets and arrived at Fleeting Dusk Cafe at precisely 2pm.
As he entered through glass doors, a warm, comforting aroma enveloped him. The waiter at the entrance was about to question Jiaming as he was wearing Starlight Secondary’s school uniform and looking around, when at the furthest seats near the window, at the back, a familiar face poked their head out and started waving at him. The Amau Masanori eight years later was mature and earnest; however, at this point in time, he was still only a university student. He could not be considered especially handsome, but he had features that made one feel he was trustworthy. If one did not know his background, they would have assumed that he was a young salesman that had just entered his profession.
The soothing piano music tinkled away in the background and every table was seperated and set up with a beautiful decoration. Jiaming only saw Kaoru when he approached the table, as the decorative plants on the separation screen had blocked his view. Evidently, her injuries were better, and she had been allowed to check out of the hospital. She was wearing a spotlessly-white casual outfit that clung to her delicate and slender figure, giving her a growing young lady feel. When she saw Jiaming arrive, she placed both hands on her legs and bowed, and a trace of an apologetic look appeared on her usually emotionless face.
“Hello, I'm Amau Masanori.” The man beamed at him as he reached over to shake his hand, speaking fluent Chinese. If Jiaming did not know that Masanori had a honest and sincere character, he would not have decided to come and would have sniped him long ago. “I'm Gu Jiaming, please call me Jiaming.”
Jiaming sat down opposite him, ordered a cup of coffee, and asked, “You know the police is watching you. Since you've asked me to meet at this time, it might bring me trouble, and I hate trouble.”
“Hoho, I'm confident that I have the ability to evade police observation. Besides, I believe Jiaming has the ability to do it too, right?”
“It's fine if they're regular police, but how would you know who's part of Ancestral Awakening?”
“You mean you’re not part of them?” Amau Masanori asked doubtfully as Jiaming sipped at his coffee.
“Don’t try to probe me, I said before that I hate trouble.”
“Ah, I’m sorry. I called you out this time for a few reasons. First, I wanted to thank you for helping Kaoru out, and secondly, she said that you were quite familiar with my circumstances, so… You know, even my family is not completely aware of my private affairs. Of course, I hope that you can forgive Kaoru for unintentionally revealing some matters about you, but I actually did some investigating on my own. I also hope you don’t mind, but I’ve dispatched of your little friend, Cao Dongfeng, who you left residing in the mental hospital.”
“I already knew that you would see that something was odd. Though, I did overlook Cao Dongfeng.” Jiaming smiled briefly as he looked at the somewhat-forced indifferent expression on Tsukichi Kaoru’s face. “She’s still not that mature huh… Oh right, is Yui currently at Todai? If I remember correctly, she should be in her second year. Also her home-ec skills are quite impressive…”
With that one sentence, the atmosphere around the table suddenly changed. Amau Masanori’s manner suddenly turned cold, but then after a moment, he slowly relaxed. “Is it… do you know Yui? Is that why you know about my matters? But that’s not possible, even though the Ryuudo family has contacts everywhere, they never did like China. Yui’s also never been here before, so it must mean that you’ve been to Japan before…”
Masanori analyzing this in front of him was a means of him saying that he did not want to create any hard feelings between him and Jiaming. Jiaming only smiled and stood up, “My circumstances are very complicated. You won’t be able to find out anything, so don’t bother. I’m not affiliated with any of the groups, and I don’t want to have any contact with them. If you want to continue investigating me… Well, I’m part of Japan’s Katsuyoku clan, and I am second in line… Ok, I have things to do. I hope I never see you again, and the both of you, please do have a safe return trip.”
He left the cafe with those parting words and then Kaoru spoke up, “Amau-kun, what did Gu-kun say?”
“Ah, he said that he was Japan’s Katsuyoku clan’s second son,” Masanori responded, his mouth twitching, trying not to smirk.
“Katsuyoku clan’s… second son…” Kaoru repeated the strange name and when Masanori saw her serious expression, he finally chortled, “Yeah, well, if we consider it from the Chinese meaning, he was actually saying that he’s Katsuyo Kujiro. Anyways, there’s still three hours before the flight. Kaoru, let’s prepare to return to Japan.”
Jiaming took the public transit after he left the cafe. When he looked at his watch, it was only 2:35pm, and there was more than enough time for him to make it to the cinema.
Even though it could not be considered rush hour, the passengers on the bus were still packed together like a can of sardines. As he stood by the door, Jiaming saw a familiar figure – the high school girl that was masquerading as the policewoman and asked for his statement a few days ago, Mu Zhenzhen. This time, she had shoulder-length hair and was wearing bright blue sportswear, rushing her way onto the bus. Since it was the start of winter, the heater was on. However, since there were a lot of people on the bus, it was quite stuffy. A lot of the passengers were absentmindedly staring into empty space, but this high school girl was one of the rare few who retained their alertness.
Following her gaze, he saw a young lad in the midst of carefully pulling out a small wallet with two fingers from a middle-aged woman’s handbag. The fellow only looked to be around 17-18 years old and was keeping a lookout around him when he noticed Mu Zhenzhen’s scrutiny. He fiercely glared her and without batting an eye, she promptly hollered, “Catch that thief!”
The bus instantly descended into chaos as the passengers, one after another, frantically looked around to inspect their bags and items, while the thief was scared into letting go of his loot. Mu Zhenzhen wanted to apprehend the thief, but two other youngsters pretended to accidentally crowd around her as she tried to make her way towards him. The thief was trying to escape and shoved his way towards the exit of the bus.
Mu Zhenzhen mustered up all of her power and somehow successfully bulldozed her way through the crowd and caught onto the thief’s arm. At the same time, the thief had just kicked out at Jiaming who was squashed against the door and was unable to avoid it.
The kick was not very strong, but it left a distinct footprint on the front of Jiaming’s shirt. Trying to wipe the stain off, Jiaming’s lips curled up helplessly.
“Wow… so powerful…”
 A Chinese Odyssey (1995): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Chinese_Odyssey
 Todai is short for University of Tokyo - the most prestigious university in Japan. ↩
 Katsuyo Kujiro - this name in chinese is 一夜九次郎 (yīyèjiǔcìláng). Unfortunately, this is an untranslate-able pun… It actually means a guy that can do it 9 times in a night. ↩
2 / 3 chapters of the week (next release is Friday, March 23).