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The Moon and Determination
Time: Half past one in the afternoon
In the end, should I attend that school?
Looking at the crowd of people, one question repeatedly appeared in my head. Although I couldn’t bring out my courage, I have to enter that school. I knew the school may have the answers to my questions, and I also knew the school was not as terrible as I had imagined, but whenever I remember the confusion from what I saw the other day; I had a feeling of wanting to retreat.
The glass of the store next to me reflected the midday sun, shining with a very harsh glare.
I was suddenly very mindful of the moon-like jewelry. Quoting a line that often appears in Manhuas, it was full of evil energy, overall it gave a very demonic feeling. Other than that, there was no other way to describe it.
I’d unconsciously walked back to the area nearby the street vendor, considering this situation; I suspected I had already been played by a ghost.
“What are you doing here?” Someone suddenly hit my back viciously, almost scaring me into screaming out loud. Please do not simply call someone who was currently wondering if he was being played by a ghost, it’s so horrifying.
“Mom said you went out with your friend. Where is your friend?” Unknown to why this person appeared here, Chu Ming Yue crossed her arms and stared at me, still with an enigmatic expression. Honestly, I felt she was more and more similar to senior in certain areas. Not the look, it’s the feeling they exude that was very similar. They might be the same type of person; they would most probably get along quite well.
“Just left, what are you doing here?” I looked left and right to determine my sis was by herself.
“Came out to shop with my friend, she went to buy something.” Ming Yue turned her head to one side and nodded. I followed the direction of her gesture and looked across. At the roadside, there was an ice cream shop and inside there was a person waving at her. It’s a girl I’d never seen before; she should be a student from her university right?
“She said she has never shopped in the city before, so I accompanied her for a walk. You want to go back now?” Passing the dessert box in her hands to me, it was most likely given to her by some unknown person again. This time it’s a famous dessert pie.
Do I want to go back now?
In fact, I was already planning to go home but for some reason I walked back here instead.
Before I got the chance to answer, the girl from the ice cream store had already came out carrying her things, “Little Yue, this is your…?”
“My little brother.” Ming Yue told her.
She turned her head towards me and nodded slightly, and I politely greeted her. “Your brother looks similar to you.” My sister’s friend said, but it sounded more like a compliment. The thing that distraught our mother the most was that I was nothing like my sis.
“Nn.” Chu Ming Yue did not refute her words, “He is Chu Ming Yang, I did mention a little about him to you before.”
“So he is the one you mentioned before.” The girl smiled at me, and I suddenly realized there was something that didn’t look the same. Just like the Miao Miao I know, she was also a foreigner, but her features were that of an Asian, hair colour was brown, eyes were blue in colour, giving off a sense of the sea, “Hello, Little Yue’s little brother. I’m Little Yue’s schoolmate, my name is Cynthia Edward.”
I don’t know if it’s because I’d seen Miao Miao and the others before, I actually did not have any extraordinary feelings towards this meeting, “Uh, I’m Chu Ming Yang, hello.” Although my sis had already introduced me, I still felt it was better to repeat it once again.
Cynthia gave me a similar feeling as Geng, but I couldn’t point out which part was similar. It was probably because they were of the same type of people, like the elder sister next door kind of feeling.
When did my sis have this kind of schoolmate? Question. I’ve never seen this type of person before; could it be she was a transfer student?
“Well, this is for you, Yang Yang.” Passing an extra-large tube of ice cream, she smiled and said, “I guessed it’s someone Little Yue knows, so I bought an extra one.”
Taking the tube of ice cream, sure enough both my sis and her hands were holding onto one of tube each.
“You might want to wait for us for a while if you aren’t going home soon. We’ll be heading back after buying some stuff.” Chu Ming Yue said while looking at me.
Buying some stuff?
“Won’t take too long.” Cynthia smiled as she told me.
Both of them were now looking at the same place, which was the moon-like jewelry stall from just now.
* * *
As soon as the hawker saw me, he immediately broke off his greetings with a look as if he had just seen a ghost, “Brother, you…”
I know he wanted to say ‘you are really good, consorting with four different girls in one day’; “This is my sister.” I snapped before he can continue his sentence. Regarding going out with my sis, it was often said we were like “beauty and the beast”; I was pretty used to it already.
“Ah, oh, I’m so sorry, it’s because you guys look totally different.” He said something which caused a prick to my heart, “Ladies, do take a look, and do tell if there is anything you like, I can give you a discount.”
There were some small changes in the small stall, the position of the things was a little different compared to earlier, and maybe some things were added in here causing the placement to change.
Cynthia did not make a thorough selection, and promptly took out a necklace from inside, and it just so happened to be the necklace Miao Miao didn’t buy, the moon-like necklace which gave me a rather strange feeling, “Little Yue, look at this.” She placed the necklace in front of my sis, the twinkling accessory was so glaring that my eyes started to hurt a little.
The necklace gave me a rather bad feeling, the same as before.
My sis narrowed her eyes to have a better look, “Not really good, I guess we should buy it?” Her sentence was rather contradictory, why does she want to buy something that’s not good?
“But it’s still not up to the level of needing to retrieve it.” Cynthia said while frowning.
Retrieve? I heard a very enigmatic word… Wait a moment; can be that Cynthia was the creator of this thing?
I heard the things in this shop are all handmade, maybe it was really her creation, and the boss bought it from her. If it’s like this then it’s reasonable, else I really can’t understand why anyone would buy something bad.
“If you like it, I can give you a twenty percent discount. And oh, this is something I chose and bought from abroad, so you won’t be able to find the same thing in this country, definitely won’t have someone with the same design.” Noticing both of his customers were hesitating, the hawker immediately came forward and started his recommendation, “This year traditional style is popular, this necklace has its own characteristic that can be matched with other clothes and is suitable to be worn in any occasion.”
“Let us look for a little while longer, thank you.” One sentence from my sister made the hawker shut up, in fact it should be said that her imposing manner caused the hawker to be afraid of disturbing her. There was a vague feeling of “do not randomly harass or you might be XXX-ed”.
Cynthia picked up the necklace again and looked at it for a long time, “Alright then, I’ll take this one.” Then she passed a thousand dollar bill to the hawker.
The hawker immediately smiled widely while he packaged up the item and then he took out the change.
In fact, I’d always felt that my sister was very strong in certain areas. If I could feel the necklace had a bad feeling, how can it be that she wouldn’t know about it?
Taking the necklace box and putting it inside her bag, Cynthia and my sis exchanged a look, “Let’s go.”
They’re leaving, were they going home?
Just as we were going to head home, a sudden burst of commotion came from the other end of the street. There were several people shouting accompanied by a very loud sound. It sounded like the noise of a locomotive.
But this should be the side-walk right? This is the side-walk!
“Yang Yang what are you daydreaming for!” Just as I heard this sentence, I felt my hand being forcefully grabbed by someone from behind, and then I felt my entire self being dragged backwards.
Screams came from the side-walk and the two scooters rushed towards this direction one after another, the pedestrians quickly ran to avoid the scooter. Before I had the chance to cry out, Cynthia, who was closer to the path, screamed. The rider on the back-seat of the scooter in front suddenly grabbed onto her backpack, and the rider of the back-seat of the scooter behind pushed her onto the ground.
“Robbery!” A female stranger at the side-walk screamed, several boys wanted to rush forward to block them, but the locomotive immediately turned, rushed out of the side-walk, and accelerated to the road, speeding away.
“Are you alright?” Ming Yue let go of my hand and then crouched down to help Cynthia up.
I wasn’t sure if I was imagining things, but they didn’t seem to really care about being robbed at all; they were not even a little alarmed.
Could it be that the bag was actually empty?
That’s not right. I remembered seeing her put her purse and necklace into her bag.
“No problem; just hurt my hand a little.” Cynthia brushed off the dust on her clothes, reddish abrasions appeared on her elbow, “Ugh, these are my new clothes! I specifically bought it to come here to play.”
Is that the problem?
“Let’s inform the police first?” When I remembered the bag that was snatched away had money and things inside, my first thought was to report to the police first, and maybe they might get lucky if they were able to intercept the locomotive and retrieve the items.
“Ah, there’s nothing important inside, so it doesn’t matter.” Smiling at me Cynthia said, what I’d speculated just now was right, “If the thing is destined to come back, it’ll come back. Else if we need to spend so much effort to get it back, it’ll be really embarrassing.”
Basically, if everyone had the same thoughts, I think the robbers would become filthy rich pretty fast.
“Don’t worry, Little Yue will help me to get it back.” Cynthia smiled too purely, and she seemed to be talking about…
“Sis, you installed an automatic search radar?” Getting it back by herself…
The answer my sis gave was a ferocious elbowing, in less than half a second I felt like I was being hit by a bear, immediate severe pain settled in and my mind started turning black, as if I was entering heaven.
Hey! I’m your little brother, you know!
* * *
In less than two minutes, we were surrounded by a group of people… correction, I wasn’t included inside.
The two women were surrounded by a bunch of men. I’m very familiar with this scene, it was called gallantry. If it was a swollen faced and ugly girl who was robbed, I believe there wouldn’t even be half a person who would care about her, right?
“Ladies, are you both alright, do you want to have some drink nearby to lessen the shock…?” What I heard were practically this sort of lines.
Ten seconds later — “I’m sick of this, all of you get lost!” My sister’s impatient and tough refusal rang out, “Otherwise I’ll slaughter the whole lot of you!”
The circular group immediately quieted down, terrified by the violent momentum, I saw the insensitive pile of people slowly opening up a path, my sis and a baffled Cynthia naturally walked out, “Why are you standing there for, get moving!” She stepped on my foot and walked away by herself.
“It hurts!” And you are wearing high heels! I was hopping while I quickly followed up.
“Nonsense, if it doesn’t hurt I wouldn’t have stepped on you.” Ming Yue rolled her eyes.
That’s not the problem, bastard!
“Little Yue, I need to go back already.” After stopping at the corner, Cynthia said as she took out a phone from her pocket and looked at the time on top, “And Yang Yang, its nice meeting you, today was really fun, let’s go out shopping together again next time.”
Her phone’s style looked very familiar; it was this year’s most popular Korean phone.
‘Because I have a similar one.’
So to say, was it fun to buy just one item? And she was also robbed not too long ago, what a weirdo.
My sister finished her monotonous greeting and Cynthia soon disappeared at one corner of the street.
This manner of quick coming and going was very similar to someone.
“Ah?” That sudden sentence made me confuse, or else where do you want to go?
“We’ll go and get Cynthia’s bag back.” My sis crossed her hands and headed the opposite direction of our house.
Get it back? It has appeared! That terrifying physic power!
In fact, compared to me, my sister should be even more suited to attend that weird school! She’ll definitely adapt well in there. She will one day dominate the school and become a super devil or what-not.
“Aiyo!” I was stepped by that high heel shoe again.
“If I asked you to follow then you follow, why are you asking so many questions?!” Ming Yue turned her head around and ferociously glared at me, the perfect aura in her eyes that was eternally being praised was filled with a sharp and vicious “those who refuse to comply will immediately be slaughtered”.
I could only obediently follow her.
I’d finally found out that, no matter if I’m at school or at home, I’m always at the lowest rank. This is too tragic. But then again, normally those at the bottom rank just have to follow instructions without thinking at all. In a sense it’s actually a pretty relaxed position.
In fact, I don’t know where my sis wanted to go to retrieve the backpack because the direction she was headed to wasn’t the street where they were robbed at or the police station, but she was headed towards a small road with lesser people.
“Oh right, do you still remember that you have a male older cousin?” My sister suddenly asked.
“Who?” male older cousin? I did not have any impression on this person, since I’d started being unlucky, I rarely kept in contact with my relatives.
“Mom’s younger brother’s child; your older cousin. In the past there was a period of time when we frequently meet up with each other, although it’s a lot less frequent now.” Ming Yue had a very strange expression when she looked at me, just as if I was supposed to know who he was.
Frankly, I do not remember this person at all.
“Cynthia is his girlfriend.”
“Ah?!” I was shocked by this sentence, no wonder I’ve never seen my sis with this type of friend, she turned out to be someone she met from our relatives’ side.
“In the past when you were still small you’ve always loved sticking to him and play with him. But now, you’ve totally forgotten about him. No wonder people always say children are the most ungrateful, forgetting in just a blink of an eye.” My sister looked at me with a discriminatory expression, “Last month when I helped mom send some stuff over, I met Cynthia then. He kept asking if you had any time to go over there to play, in the end you actually forgotten about him completely.”
Hey, hey! Who would remember stuff when they were young?! My head was completely filled with my ten years plus of bad luck, there’s no extra space for me to remember who was who, alright?!
“Alright, let’s end this topic here.” Ming Yue suddenly stopped in her tracks. It’s only then I realized we had walked past several blocks, and was at the outer perimeter of the city where there were relatively fewer people walking past.
Looking left and right, this place doesn’t look like a place where the bag would just grow out of. Just as I was thinking that, from the intersection came the sound of an emergency brake with a loud crashing sound, even more braking sounds, and finally was the sound of a driver rolling down his car window as he started cursing.
I was shocked, although accidents often occur to me in the past, but being an observer of a crash, gave me a different kind of feeling.
A motorcycle suddenly rushed out from the red light, the driver of a limousine who did not have the time to brake, crashed into the motorcycle head on. The person on the motorcycle was sent flying about a few dozen meters away. The whole intersection stopped moving, followed by several people sticking out their head to see what happened. After a while, a nearby traffic police officer immediately ran over and dragged out the yellow line.
Subsequently, at the same time, a scooter stopped at one side of the road. I recognize them; they were the gang of people who robbed us just now!
“There is a reason behind everything, since they rode so quickly on their bike; they were bound to get involved in an accident sooner or later.” Ming Yue didn’t even move one step. She just bent down and picked up something, the silver glare immediately attracted my attention.
The moon-like jewelry. Why is it…?
I looked across and saw the bag, which might have flown off due to the accident, laying open just a few centimeters in front of us. The necklace must have fallen out from inside. Layers and layers of people were crowding around the crime scene, so we weren’t able to see what had happened to the person. Shortly after, the siren of an ambulance echoed as it went through the crowd of people and stopped at the middle.
“Let’s go.” Ming Yue walked two steps, picked up the backpack, put the thing back inside and then hastened to leave.
I immediately followed her footsteps.
The sound of the siren was getting further and further away.
* * *
What on earth is that moon necklace?
My sixth sense told me the accident definitely had something to do with the necklace. Because it happened exactly at the right time, making me feel very suspicious and fearful.
My sister walked for some distance until we’d left the city before slowing down her pace. Or perhaps she actually didn’t walk that fast, it was because I was too tense, causing me to feel she was walking really quickly.
“Have you ever heard of the battlefield at the moon?” She turned her head and asked me casually.
“The red coloured one?” A lot of light novels and Manhuas loved to use this, on the day when many people died, the moon and sun or something similar will turn blood red in color. So to say, I’ve never seen it before. That day outside the Health Care Center, there were so many people who died, but I didn’t take notice of whether the sky turned red or pink, my bad!
Ming Yue nodded, “The jewelry we bought is called Blood Moon. It’s said that this was something that belonged to a Soldier from a battlefield from long ago, after absorbing the blood in the battlefield, it became cursed. Every human who owns it will have to pay with their blood.” She started throwing the bag in the air, and then her sentence suddenly changed into a different tone, “But that’s all nonsense, you don’t have to believe in it.”
Basically, I believed it already, I believed it in just one second.
Which recommendation magazine did you guys see these strange things from?!
Before I knew it, my watch had already reached three o’clock, seemed like we wasted too much time strolling in the city.
Just as we were passing by the park on the way home, the park looked rather different compared to this morning, the restoration of the park has progressed again, some of the flat surface and grass turf had already been rectified. There were even two to three little kids in there running while holding on to the ball and from time to time, and loud laughter could be heard.
Chu Ming Yue suddenly stopped walking. Mystified, I also followed and stop.
“Yang Yang, I want to ask you, you have to answer honestly.” She flung the backpack behind her and for some unknown reason, and looked at me with a very strange expression.
What did she want to ask?
“Okay.” In any case, if I were to answer “not okay”, I’ll definitely be beaten, so there was only one answer.
Ming Yue looked at me for a long time before she slowly opened her mouth, “When you went for an orientation at your new school, you didn’t mention anything when you got back. How do you feel about the school?”
A much unexpected question asked all of a sudden.
How do I feel about that school? I had a feeling if I stayed there for one second longer, it would allow me to rest in peace.
“Mom is very worried, oh.” She narrowed her beautiful eyes to look at me, “Because every time you went for orientation, you were involved in an accident. She kept thinking if anything had happened to you on that day and kept saying that if you’re not used to the school, she’ll help you transfer to a different school. Although the other day I said you had better not drop out of school, but the final decision is still up to you.”
She paused for a while, “What about you, what’s your decision?”
I don’t know why, but I think she was trying to get a confirmation from me. I can’t quite put my finger on it. If the threat in the past was a joke, today’s answer would be what decides it.
Senior was the representative of the school’s confirmation, Miao Miao was the representative of the students in the class’s confirmation, and now that my sister said this, this seemed to be like my family’s confirmation.
I don’t know why, but I always felt that everything seemed to have been lined up in the dark and then carried out. Occurring so smoothly, but they couldn’t have had any connection with each other before this. Everything happened just at the exact right timing; so exact that, there seemed to be an invisible path waiting for me to step on it.
“I… am not very accustomed to that place, but I want to try and see… see what is the extent I can reach at that place.” If I talked about the school, I’m certain nobody will believe me, but I do not know why, I felt that place was completely different from the places in my past.
Maybe I… really can learn a lot of things.
“Are you sure you won’t regret this?”
I nodded hard, after meeting up with senior and Miao Miao, I think I’d better strengthen my determination, or else I wouldn’t be able to face the both of them again.
However, I think when I’ve started school, and then chased by some strange things again, I would immediately regret this.
“Yang Yang, I’ve had something I’ve always wanted to tell you about.” Ming Yue patted me on my shoulder, revealing a gentle smile which made me think that she’s not my sister but was an alien in disguise, “There are places where simply going there is not going to make things better, if you yourself cannot accept yourself, everything around you will not be able to be able to accept you.”
I was rather surprised, because my sister rarely talks about stuff like this with me.
“As long as you accept yourself, only then would the world accept you.” She raised her hand and patted my shoulder, “You can treat attending a new school as a new beginning, everything will get better, give yourself a little more confidence, and it’s the same no matter what school you are attending.”
Maybe, she just wanted to encourage me.
I always thought my sister would only cold-heartedly watch me enter school and make a joke out of it. I’ve never thought she was actually very concerned about me.
“Why are you smiling so disgustingly?” Ming Yue frowned and glared at me.
“Haha, it’s nothing.” Maybe, something good will happen if I entered the new school.
“Oh right, sis, next time let’s go and visit uncle’s house, alright?” I was suddenly very curious about the current status of the person whom I’d always stuck to in the past. Is he around our age and currently studying in high school or college? I wonder if he still remembers us.
Ming Yue looked at me, and then with a “pop” she smacked the back of my head before she continued to head in the direction of home. The afternoon shadows gradually lengthened, and in the park, the children were still chasing the ball, laughing and running.
“Long-winded.” My life as a new student was about to begin.