Chapter 8 — [Ｂｉｇ Ｇｉｒｌ]
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Li Mu walked out of the barbershop with a pomade brand in hand. He looked ethereal and devilishly handsome with the bad boy image look.
The facial hair had been shaved; the bowl-like hair had been cut. Li Mu’s overall look sang a different tune from that of a well-behaved student to a bad boy image from those Hong Kong films and that of a rebellious flower boy from those Korean dramas of the later generation. His ivory-colored washed-out shirt, floral patterned bermuda shorts, and flip-flops gave Li Mu a more cool, casual, and laid-back feeling.
At the same time, Chen Wan could be seen from a distance riding a brand new mountain bike towards the front entrance of the barbershop. Her supple, willowy figure was really nice to look at. Her beige-pink striped shirt hugged the contours of her bodily figure; her light blue denim kissed her slender legs, and as she rode the bike, you would find her ass plump. She wore a pair of Converse sneakers. She dressed simply, but it was the sort of simplicity that was pleasant to look at compared to the girls of this age.
Though Chen Wan was older than Li Mu by three years, he did not consider this girl in her early twenties to be a mature, young lady. Rather, he thought she was just a big, little girl. It’s just that this big, little girl grew up rather beautiful causing his old heart to beat fast.
Li Mu looked at Chen Wan and their eyes met one another and as she raised her head, her cheeks flushed a rosy red. She did not know the guy in front of him, and she could not recognize that it was Li Mu but when their eyes connected, she felt her nerves tingle throughout her body.
In this day and age, it became a rare occurrence to cross path with a guy who looks good and could dress well like Li Mu. Under normal circumstances, all the girls saw were those boys with weird clothing and had long, vibrant hair.
Chen Wan subconsciously lowered her head, not daring to look at Li Mu. She made a detour around him and quickly entered the barbershop. As she looked around, all she saw was a guy with punk-like style. Other than him, there was nobody else present.
Li Mu, that brat! Can’t even keep his words… we agreed to meet here. Where did he run off to?!
Chen Wan walked out fuming with anger. She thought she might as well head over to his house. She already knew his address anyways. Chen Wan then saw the guy who gave her the tingling sensation smile foolishly with a smirk.
“Sister Wan, how could you not recognize me?”
She looked at Li Mu for a while and was extremely shocked.
“You are Li Mu?”
“Of course, Sister Wan.” Li Mu, with both hands tucked in his pockets, grinned. “Have you already forgotten me?”
Chen Wan’s face turned red.
Li Mu liked to tease Chen Wan as he loved to see this beautiful girl’s blushing face because it was simply too captivating.
Coming to terms with Li Mu’s change in physical appearance, Chen Wan could not help but ask, “Ai yah, why did you shave off your mustache and cut your hair like this? You don’t look like a student.”
“The college examination ended already.” Li Mu shrugged as if everything was to be expected and waved off his hands, “Come, let’s return home.”
Return home. This two words Li Mu uttered in such casual manner caused anxiousness in Chen Wan’s state of mind. She also became a little shy, pointing towards the brand new mountain bike she rode earlier and said in a somewhat angry manner, “I bought it for you! You can have it!”
“….” Li Mu was stunned, “Why did you buy a bicycle for me?”
”To compensate you. Your bicycle was damaged by me.”
”But I have no use for it. I will be leaving for university soon.”
“During summer vacation, when you are going out with friends, you’ll need to use the bicycle, right?
“Elder Sister, if I take this bicycle to go out with friends, especially to go to the internet cafes, then… I’m sure it’ll be stolen within ten minutes!”
This type of mountain bicycle bought by Chen Wan was superior in quality and at a level of a professional at first glance. The front fork suspension could be locked and it was one of those dial-in models; the front and rear brake disc, derailleur, shifter were all from SHIMANO. In Li Mu’s previous lifetime, a standard SHIMANO bicycle would cost at least 12,584 yuan!
“Is it really that easy for a bicycle to be stolen?” Chen Wan could not imagine such situations as she herself did not go to those internet cafes. Besides, she had never lost a bicycle before.
Li Mu let out a sigh, “Ms. Perfect here has no understanding of the common people’s pain. Nowadays, people do not ride bicycles over 1,258 yuan to the internet cafe. How can you not understand this reasoning?”
“What’s Ms. Perfect?”
“It means you have a perfect skin complexion, it means that you are rich, and it means that you are a beautiful girl.”
“What a smooth talker!” Chen Wan let out an annoyed sound, “Then don’t ride the bicycle to those internet cafes. The people I have seen riding such bicycle in Shanghai are all sports enthusiast. Have you heard of the term ‘bicycle touring’?”
“I have heard of it…” Li Mu replied, “But I am only a student… unless Sister Wan wishes for me to go and follow those sports enthusiast bicycle touring to Tibet?”
“Of course not. This is meant to be a transportation tool for you.”
“How much did Sister Wan spend?”
“It’s not too much. About five hundred plus.”
“Not too much? You liar! Five hundred plus? It is more than five hundred plus. Why don’t you sell it to me for a hundred first? With only five hundred, you can’t even afford the transmission gearbox.”
Chen Wan suddenly realized that she was actually always so passive and resigned when in front of this guy, Li Mu.
Bursting out in anger from embarrassment, she said irritably, “Little rascal, why do you keep uttering nonsense. If you do not want it then I’m leaving and let us not meet one another again!”
“Wait, wait wait,” Li Mu saw her anger rising and replied hurriedly, “Sister Wan, I’ll keep it, ok?”
Li Mu knew Chen Wan’s family was well off. Moreover, she wished to compensate but Li Mu kept refusing. This sort of thing must have been a mental blow to her state of mind so he might as well accept.
Li Mu tapped on the frame of his front seat, “This bicycle doesn’t have a rear seat. Why don’t you seat here, Sister Wan?” He teased, smirking foolishly.
Chen Wan could feel the lids of her eyes burn in rage. This guy continuously made her mad, angry, and embarrassed.
“It’s okay. I’ll just walk.”
She had never experienced this sort of feeling before; being taken advantage by a little boy three years younger than her was simply foreign. She did not know what to do. She felt as if she had no power to fight back. Chen Wan could not help but think about the boy she hit yesterday and the boy in front of her now. The change is truly significant.
Chen Wan sighed deeply. No matter the age, there is always a certain kind of person who loved to take advantage of others. Li Mu is that sort of person.
Li Mu guessed that Chen Wan would not agree to sit on the front seat, so he pushed the bicycle. The pair walked together side by side, separated only by the bicycle. It drew the attention of people. Under the midsummer sunshine, the two walked in tandem towards the strong rays of light. Whether it was their facial expression or temperament, something was different.
Though Li Mu’s physical appearance was different from earlier which caused the likes of Chen Wan to not recognize him at first glance, the people who lived in this district watched Li Mu growing up when he was only in diapers. As they watched the pair walk together shoulder to shoulder, they were somewhat shocked because they recognized Li Mu, and within seconds, the scene they witnessed in front of them began to spread around within the district.
“Have you seen it? Li Dao Ping’s son, Little Mu brought a pretty little lady home.”
“Uh… how do I explain it… you see, if you search the whole district to look for a pretty lady, you won’t find one that is half as pretty as her!”
“Li Dao Ping sure is fortunate. His wife, Xiao Yun Fang was the prettiest lady at that time, and now his son also managed to find such a pretty little lady. Truly lucky.”
Li Mu’s house had not yet been renovated greatly but regardless, it was extremely clean and neat. The courtyard was filled with various sorts of plants and flowers planted by his mother. Most of them were in the blooming season and it only made the courtyard all the more beautiful. Chen Wan was enchanted by such sight when she entered the courtyard.
After placing the bicycle Chen Wan gave him inside the storage shed, Li Mu asked Chen Wan to join him for lunch.
“Sister Wan, if you have no plans, later on, come join me for lunch. I have a childhood friend coming over to pick me up later and eat at KFC. Will you come?”
“Childhood friend?” Chen Wan curled her mouth, “I’m not going, I don’t want to be an inconvenience..”
Li Mu could see that she misunderstood some things, “What inconvenience? That childhood friend looked for me to go to the internet cafe to play. If you have nothing going on, then you might as well tag along. With a pretty girl around, it will be much for fun and meaningful.”
“Go to the Internet cafe?” Chen Wan pondered for a moment, “Alright, I have nothing to do later on anyway.”
“Let’s enter the house first and sit for a while.”
Li Mu invited Chen Wan to his living room and poured her a glass of water while Chen Wan toured around Li Mu’s house in curiosity.
The pieces of furniture and design of the overall house were intricate and well-done. On the wall hung a vintage photo wall created by Li Mu’s father. It included sets of monochromatic portraits of his parent’s wedding photo, of their travels overseas and below included the location and year his parents traveled. At the other side, we’re sets of colored photos. It included the first 100 days from when Li Mu was born, and after that, a portrait of him taken every year up until he was eighteen years old hung on the wall.
Chen Wan mused at those sets of monochromatic and colored photos, “Uncle and Auntie are truly good looking and such an ideal couple.” She praised.
“Indeed,” Li Mu laughed complacently, “My family’s gene is too perfect, that’s why I grew up looking so good.”