Fanatical

Fangirling Chinese Novels

The Healing Sunshine (一厘米的阳光) — Chapter 7.2

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Sometimes, you just can’t keep feelings in any longer. But what type of reaction will it bring when you make them known?

Chapter 7.2 — Night in Wellington (2)

This story was translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. All forms of reproduction, redistribution, or reposting are not authorized. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the copy is unauthorized and has been taken without consent of the translator.

 

Even though her eyes had already taken in the sight of it when the plane was descending, it was different now.

Right now, she and the ocean were face to face with each other.

She was looking at the ocean, and the ocean was looking at her, each observing the other, getting to know one another.

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Very happily, Jǐ Yi ran closer to it, then ran closer some more, wanting to keep running like this until she was in the ocean. But from behind, he called her. She turned, not knowing what he wanted to say to her.

In the moonlight, Jì Chengyang came near. “Just stand here and look. Don’t go into the water.”

His long-sleeved jacket was draped over Jǐ Yi’s shoulders, and now, there remained only a short-sleeved shirt on him. Under the moon’s glow, she could see a very clear tan line on his upper arm. That should have come from when he was in the war zone? While she speculated, she turned back to continue gazing upon those boundless waters. She still was not quite reconciled to being unable to go in, but her resolve also wavered, for she thought, what he said must be right.

In the space of this one thought, a wave suddenly came rolling towards her. And then, without warning, she was swept off her feet and lying in a pair of arms.

The next second, the water had thrown itself at them, drenching his shoes. She, though, did not come in contact with any ocean water.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only.

Instinctively, she threw her arms around his neck, and at its nape, her right hand closed around her own left wrist.

How did he suddenly become so near?

Right in front of her eyes were his eyes and brows, which were always hidden somewhat by his hair. An impulse surged up from the depths of her heart. She wanted to reach her hand over and brush aside that lock of hair for him. However, she was simply too nervous and could only continue gripping her own wrist, feigning composure, feigning that she did not want to do anything.

“The ocean water is very cold at night.” His breath brushed the side of her cheek as he spoke. “It’s not good for your health.”

His eyes were always so striking, as dazzling as the sunlight over the snow-capped mountains, such that she did not even dare look straight into them.

It seemed that with his return this time, he was wearing his glasses more and more. In her memory, if he removed that pair of gold-rimmed, half-frame glasses, those eyes would look even more gorgeous…

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She mustered her courage and, for the first time, followed the little desire in her heart, looking carefully into his eyes.

Then, loosening her arms that had been wrapped around his neck, she took the frame of his glasses between her fingers and slid it off from him.

He let out a chuckle.

Jǐ Yi, though, was gazing at him. Sure enough, those glasses had concealed a portion of his countenance so that its complete contours could not be seen, as if this was a deliberate mask that he put on.

Right now, like this, he looked the most handsome.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only.

As these notions ran through her head chaotically, the thought came to her out of nowhere that the way he was holding her was very similar to those actions of intimacy between Nuannuan and her boyfriend. There were times when she was not careful, and she would always manage to see those two nestled together in each other’s arms, speaking in low voices.

Jì Chengyang had originally wanted to say a couple of joking sentences, but he abruptly halted. He could feel the softness of her chest pressing against him, rising and falling heavily with her anxious breaths. For one moment, he froze. Taking two backward steps, he wanted to set her down but discovered that her arms were around his neck again.

“This afternoon, I was listening to a song on repeat, and then you all of a sudden appeared. It was such a coincidence.” Red had nearly completely infused her face as, just like that, she unconsciously spoke aloud the words in heart that she wanted to say. “It was Karen Mok’s ‘Suddenly.’ The lyrics… are especially well written.”

Can you understand what I’m trying to say? If you’ve heard the song, you should understand, right?

You have such high intelligence. A hint like this should be really simple…

“Even if time were to come to a standstill, even if life becomes as dust… we would, if anything, have more faith in love.”

This was the first time in her fifteen years of life that she, Jǐ Yi, had ever professed her feelings. When she spoke these words, her mind even thought of many people, including Nuannuan. She did not dare imagine whether Nuannuan and Nuannuan’s mother would die from shock if they heard these words coming from her. The one facing her was her best friend’s uncle. That was even more shocking than falling for a little ruffian like Xiao Jun or Fu Xiaoning.

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Gazing into his eyes, she unwittingly held her breath.

Jì Chengyang held her in his arms and backed up another step, evading the waves that were rushing relentlessly onto the sandy beach.

“That was a song to commemorate the earthquake in Taiwan[1].” He suddenly spoke. “In the face of disaster, be it natural or manmade, life is very fragile. Suddenly, the sky seems to dim and the earth seems to darken. The world before your eyes suddenly disappears, collapsing and crumbling to pieces…”

And so, you need to cherish the love that is by your side right now. But this last sentence, he did not say to her.

Jǐ Yi looked dejectedly at him, extremely surprised with the backstory of this song. “It’s a song for charity?”

It turns out songs for charity and the likes can also describe the small, trivial type of love; not every one of them is about the great, bigger type of love.

“You could say it is, but also not really,” he answered. “Here, help me put my glasses back on. We’re heading back.”

He probably really didn’t understand what I was trying to say? Jǐ Yi comforted herself as she carefully helped him put that “mask” back on.

Jì Chengyang finally set her down.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only.

When she returned to her hotel room, the girl she was sharing a room with had already showered and was lying on her stomach on the bed, making a telephone call home. Seeing Jǐ Yi walk in, she smiled, and moreover, it was a very strange, enigmatic type of smile. “Who’d you go out to play with?”

Jǐ Yi belonged to the type who would feel guilty discomfiture if she had done something that she did not want found out, and she was also feeling out of sorts because of what had occurred earlier. Grabbing some clothes, she ran into the bathroom.

By the time her hair was blown half-dry and she stepped back out, her roommate was already neatly dressed. Very excitedly, the girl urged her to hurry and choose a pretty dress to wear, telling her that the students and young performing artists who had taken part together in the cultural exchange today had reserved the hotel’s entire bar to have a relaxed gathering and exchange within themselves. Jǐ Yi’s thoughts were still on Jì Chengyang, and she did not really pay attention as she grabbed a dress and slipped it on. She had thought it would be like one of those traditional celebration banquets that occurred after every time they performed in China, where some teachers would say a few words to liven the atmosphere, everyone would hang around and have some fun for a while, and then it would be done.

To her surprise, when she arrived downstairs, it was a whole different type of scene.

In the dim, warm lighting, people, most of whom had just met, were holding glasses of wine or other beverages, and with some standing, some sitting, they were carrying out casual conversations.

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Sitting beside a few of her schoolmates, she dutifully filled the role of a little interpreter. In fact, most of the time, there were no problems in communication between everyone. It was only occasionally, when the conversation was surging with excitement, that something would be uttered that did not convey the intended meaning, and then someone would tug on Jǐ Yi’s arm and quietly ask her how it should be said instead.

The entire time there was music, with always someone playing the piano, and a person who had performed during the day was also now playing the violin.

After sitting for only a little while, she felt discomfort in her abdomen. She vaguely had a bad feeling about this.

“Yang!” Unexpectedly, a woman’s voice cried out this syllable.

Out of reflex, Jǐ Yi lifted her head. She saw several men and women raise their glasses extremely excitedly at the person who was strolling into the crowd. Such an enthusiastic reunion drew everyone’s attention to that spot. It was him—only him. The expressions those people displayed when they caught sight of him were completely identical to the ones that had been on the faces of those three young men they had encountered that year on that winding mountain road.

If it were her, her ego would certainly have been stroked by all these keen, admiring looks in people’s eyes, and she would have become arrogant, as if this was rightfully so.

The several schoolmates beside Jǐ Yi were all whispering enviously. “A famous alumnus of our Fuzhong High School, indeed. Those people there should all be people he met when he competed in competitions in the past?” Jǐ Yi had slipped out in the evening with him and had not heard the detailed introduction their teacher had given of Jì Chengyang, so she merely gave a couple of “mm-hmms.”

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only.

As a result of his appearance in this place, Jǐ Yi found a variety of reasons for herself to end up staying for another hour.

Time gradually slipped into the late hours. Because of the arrival of the deep of night, the lighting and music selection also transformed, becoming intense dance music and creating a dreamlike atmosphere that was resplendent and extravagant. Jì Chengyang appeared to dislike being pulled into the throng of people to dance, and he merely took a seat on an empty chair and kept those bosom friends from his past company.

The too-noisy music stimulated the blood that coursed through the body.

Jǐ Yi watched him for a long, long time. At last, as if nudged by an unknown force, she skirted her schoolmates and walked over. When she came up behind Jì Chengyang, she halted her steps. Her eyes first took in his arm, which was resting on the edge of the bar, before continuously moving down to his fingers, which right now were casually tapping out a beat. Then, slowly extending her arm, she gently touched the back of his hand with the tip of her index finger.

Jì Chengyang turned around.

In this second, the little girl he saw was completely different from the one in the past. Amidst such intense dance music, she was clothed in a pale blue dress with a little ribbon neck tie. She simply stood in that place, her left hand nervously holding the back of her right one.

The dazzling sprinkles of light caused her eyes to shine even brighter. There was disquiet, apprehension, and some hopefulness that was attempting to show itself. At this age of fifteen years and nine months, did she truly understand what exactly she was hoping for?

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Right at this instant, the music so very fittingly transitioned into a soothing tune. This appropriate change inserted into the middle of the pounding dance music now gave those young people, who only a moment ago had been engaged in gyrating dance moves with their faces pressed to someone else’s, an opportunity to gaze into each other’s eyes and silently draw closer to one another.

In this type of moment, everything in their surroundings noiselessly took on a suggestive air.

“You’re not going to bed yet?”

Jǐ Yi started back to awareness. Shifting his eyes away to look at the dance floor, Jì Chengyang said, “It’s late. If you have something to say, we can talk about it tomorrow.”

Suddenly, no words would come forth from her. Just as on the beach, she could only give an explanation that was redundant and unnecessary[2]. “I was just about to head back but I saw that you had come in, so I just wanted to come over and say good night.”

“I see.” There was a seldom-heard gentleness in Jì Chengyang’s voice. “Hurry back, then.”

Jǐ Yi’s heart sank again. “Good night.”

“Good night.”

Why was there the sudden urge to gamble everything and tell him about her love for him that she kept concealed?

What if he rejected her? Then what should she do? What if… he didn’t reject her? Her heart felt so restless it could explode. As the music began to switch once more to a hot, pulsing dance tune, she walked out the glass doors. And then, she sensed, too late, that there was moistness on her dress.

Oh no.

She furtively touched her hand to it to confirm her conjecture. Somewhat at a loss over what to do, she backed up a couple of steps and stood against the wall.

If she had just gone upstairs earlier, things would have been fine. Now what should she do? There were many schoolmates in there. Who should she ask to help get some clothes for her? While she surveyed her surroundings, there were constantly people in groups of twos or threes going in and out through those doors, but none were her schoolmates. The ones who did not like this type of fun should have gone to bed long ago, and those who did like it were probably still enjoying the dance floor.

Maybe, she began to think, I should just go to the washroom and wash the dress.

Even if she had to go upstairs with a dress that was half soaked, it would still be a thousand times better than what it looked like right now.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only.

In her plethora of chaotic thoughts, she finally was able to put together somewhat of a solution.

Just as she was about to take advantage of a brief moment when there was no one around to run into the washroom, she spotted Jì Chengyang stepping out. He glanced towards the elevators, then looked over in this direction where she was, as if he was actually looking for her. Afraid that he would see the red stain on her dress, Jǐ Yi nervously pulled her face that was about to break out in tears into a smile, asking, “You’re going outside for a smoke?”

Jì Chengyang fixed his gaze on her. “Why haven’t you gone back yet?”

“I’m waiting for my classmates so that we can go back together.” Taking a small step backwards, she made up this shoddy explanation for why she had not left yet.

He took in her rather peculiar action, not really believing her words.

Her eyes flitted around, continually trying to avoid his gaze.

Finally, the last few of her orchestra schoolmates came out as well. Spotting her and Jì Chengyang, they smiled and greeted them. “Didn’t you say you were going back to go to bed? How come you haven’t left yet? Want to head back together?”

“No, it’s okay. I still want to play for a bit longer.” She did not dare so much as budge in front of him right now, so she could only watch as her potential saviours all left.

Jì Chengyang listened to her illogical words that were inconsistent with the ones she had spoken previously, and then he carefully observed her motions. After seeing Jǐ Yi trying to avoid him and one of her hands lightly pulling on her dress, he at last was able to deduce something. Hence, without a word, he pulled off his jacket, offhandedly tied it around her waist, and then lifted her up so that she lay in his arms.

“This place where we are is near the ocean and surrounded by mountains. I remember that there’s a Mount Victoria, and from it, you can see the night view of all of Wellington.” Jì Chengyang strode towards the elevators.  When he reached the elevator doors, however, he did not cease his steps, instead nudging open the adjacent stairwell door with his elbow. “Before you leave, you can go one night for a look.” Likely because he was afraid she would feel embarrassed, he began talking about something completely unrelated.

“Mount Victoria?”

“It’s a very beautiful place. A movie that was adapted from a novel shot some scenes there when it was filming.”

“Which one?”

The Lord of the Rings.” He answered first in English, then repeated the name again in Chinese.

“Is it good?”

“It hasn’t released yet. Probably by next year, you’ll be able to watch it in Beijing.”

She silently made note of this.

Surprisingly, the whole way, no one else appeared in the stairwell. It was very quiet. Even the sound of his footsteps was very distinct.

Actually, she did not care about any novel or outdoor scenes shot for a movie. To her, in all of Wellington, the most beautiful scenery was right here, this stairwell that held only him and her. Jì Chengyang held her in his arms and continued speaking as he climbed up the stairs, fast becoming like a professional tour guide.

Noiselessly encircling his neck with her arms, Jǐ Yi buried her entire face into the spot by his collarbone.

Since he did not mind, she would just pretend to be oblivious…

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That night when he spoke to her about The Lord of the Rings, the first film had not even been released yet in theatres worldwide. Never had she expected that later, the entire The Lord of the Rings trilogy would become a film classic that would be difficult to surpass. Half a century after it was written, a British novel was invested in by an American company and then filmed in the homeland of the movie adaptation’s New Zealand-born director. Furthermore, by the time of the theatrical release, the original author had already been dead for decades. The life that literature possesses is much longer lasting than human life.

Just like Grimms’ Fairy Tales, just like the Four Great Classical Novels[3], and just like… this novel, The Lord of the Rings, that he had spoken about.

Because Jì Chengyang had mentioned this novel, she later specifically went and bought a translated copy of it and even completely read through the original. She even earnestly studied up on the entire life of the original author. When she found out that Tolkien had also once studied philosophy, she immediately thought of Jì Chengyang.

Those very initial feelings of liking him had had nothing to do with actually wanting to possess him. When you like someone who is outstanding, there is an unimaginable allurement and draw. You want to read the books he has read, walk the roads he has walked, eat the things he has eaten.

You want to become the same type of person as him.

<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com only.

[1] Referring to the Jiji earthquake, also known as the “921 earthquake,” that occurred in Jiji, Taiwan on September 21, 1999. Karen Mok dedicated this song to all the victims of that disaster.

[2] 画蛇添足 “hua she tian zu.” This is an idiom that means “to paint legs on a snake.” It means to do something unnecessary or redundant so that, after doing so, it actually ruins the effect of the original.

[3] 四大名著 “si da ming zhu.” The Four Great Classical Novels in Chinese literature are 《西游记》Journey to the West,《红楼梦》Dream of the Red Chamber (or Dream of the Red Mansion), 《三国演义》Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and 《水浒传》Water Margin (also known as Outlaws of the Marsh or Heroes of the Marsh).

 

This story was translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. All forms of reproduction, redistribution, or reposting are not authorized. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the copy is unauthorized and has been taken without consent of the translator.


Additional Comments:

My last translation project didn’t have any Chinese songs, so it has been a long time since I’ve done translation of lyrics. Here are the translated lyrics for Karen Mok’s 忽然之间 “Suddenly“.

(Note: I’m not sure if it was done purposely, but the lyrics quoted in the novel are slightly different. In the novel, it says, “even if time were to come to a standstill…” whereas the actual lyrics are “even if the hands of the clock were to come to a standstill.” Not a huge difference, but just wanted to point it out.)

忽然之间天昏地暗
Suddenly, the sky dims and darkness covers the earth
世界可以忽然什么都没有
The world can suddenly be empty of everything
我想起了你再想到自己
I remember you, and then I think of myself
我为什么总在非常脆弱的时候
Why is it that whenever I am feeling very fragile
怀念你
I will miss you?

 

我明白, 太放不开你的爱
I know that, too much so, I am unable to let go of your love
太熟悉你的关怀
That I am too familiar with the care you give
分不开,想你算是安慰还是悲哀
I cannot differentiate whether thinking of you brings comfort or sorrow
而现在就算时针都停摆
But now, even if the hands of the clock were to come to a standstill
就算生命像塵埃
Even if life becomes as dust
分不开,我们也许反而更相信爱
Such that we cannot be apart, perhaps we would, if anything, have more faith in love

 

如果这天地最终会消失
If these heavens and earth ultimately must disappear
不想一路走来珍惜的回忆没有你
I don’t want you to be absent from these cherished memories of my journey of life

 

Completed:
16 of 69 Chapter segments
0 of 1 Epilogue

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14 thoughts on “The Healing Sunshine (一厘米的阳光) — Chapter 7.2

  1. This lil girl is trying to confess but why JCY doesn’t seem to reciprocate her feelings poor girl..

  2. no matter what, JCY cannot seems to dart his sight away from JY
    thank you

  3. Hey JCY! Say something! I can SO relate with Ji Yi rn… That uncertainty, the fear…. God! How does MFBF capture feelings like this so beautifully?

    • Are you sure you want him to do that? Regardless of her maturity, at this moment, at her current age, if he is to say something, it would be rejection.

      Because she’s MBFB. 🙂

  4. JCY is so calmly evading all the love confession hints 🙂.

    Thank you for the chapter, Hoju 🙂.

    • Outright rejection would change their relationship, and he does not want that to happen, I believe. So the only thing he can do is to evade. 🙂

      You’re welcome!

  5. Thank you for the update Hoju 😉

  6. She confessed, he feigned ignorant and talked about earthquake.
    She stepped back, he saved her from embarrassment and carried her up.

    When heart confused, what should one do? I applaud JY for hanging tight on his nape and buried her entire face his collarbone. You go, girl~!

    Many thanks, Hoju~!

    • I applaud Ji Chengyang for not doing anything in response, actually. She’s much too young for him at this age. As a mature, adult man, he truly should be considering whether this girl knows what she wants at age 15, regardless of how mature she is. Refusing her outright would have changed this relationship that is precious to both of them.

      Ji Yi does know, and I am glad she always holds true to her heart. ❤ Her beautiful heart will be rewarded. ❤

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