“100,0001 per stack.” Yu Hao said to Huang Ting, “1,200,000.”
Yu Hao had sold his house for 240,000 yuan during his summer holidays. He went to the bank to collect cash in order to repay the medical fees that he had owed; each stack was 100,000 yuan, just like the ones they’re looking at now.
Zhou Sheng said to Huang Ting, “Who would put so much money in a reservoir?”
The entire police station had been stirred up, everyone came over to look at the bag of money that the two of them had found.
Huang Ting said, “What were the two of you doing in Zhongshan’s reservoir?”
Yu Hao, “Uh……..”
Zhou Sheng shot Huang Ting a provocative look, “Does it have anything to do with you guys?”
“Of course it does.” Huang Ting, “It’s the middle of the night, why would two university students be at a reservoir?”
“Can’t I just be teaching him how to swim.” Zhou Sheng said.
Chen Yekai said, “Tell the truth! Yu Hao, explain it clearly yourself.”
So Yu Hao had to tell them the truth. But of course, he didn’t mention the black dragon in his dream. He just told them that he had read about ways to overcome the fears in his heart in his textbook. Huang Ting looked at Zhou Sheng, then he looked at Yu Hao.
“I’m guessing that this money must belong to some corrupt government official!” Zhou Sheng continued, “‘Holding a huge amount of property with unidentified sources2’, isn’t that what they always report on the news? A big tiger3 might even be uncovered with this. We’re the ones who rendered a meritorious service! Shouldn’t you guys be thanking us right now?”
Sometimes Chen Yekai would wear an expression that’s practically begging Zhou Sheng to stop talking, but he didn’t expect Yu Hao to also say, “That’s quite possible, this case needs to be investigated thoroughly.”
“But that has nothing to do with you guys.” After Huang Ting finished recording their testimonies, he closed his laptop, “As salty radish eaters, you don’t need to worry about what bland radishes taste like4……yo! Superintendent?”
After the superintendent had received their call, he rushed over before finishing his dinner. Everyone stood up to shake hands with the superintendent. The superintendent patted Yu Hao and Zhou Sheng’s shoulders and showered them with praises along the line of “it’s not easy for youngsters to resist such temptations”. A bright idea suddenly occurred to Chen Yekai, so he said in passing, “Could you guys confer on student Yu Hao a silk banner5?”
“That……we haven’t found the owner yet.” The superintendent hesitated, “Under what name could we confer it under? Why not……”
Zhou Sheng suddenly said, “‘In the name of the people’6 of course! Speaking of which, don’t customs dictate that if you don’t pocket the money you pick up, 10% of it would go to the ones who found it as thanks?”
Superintendent immediately answered, “A silk banner should definitely be conferred.”
“I’ll make one myself.” Chen Yekai immediately said, “Signing it under our station’s name is enough.” After he spoke, he looked at Zhou Sheng and quickly added, “Both of you will write it together.”
Huang Ting also helped to add as he explained to the superintendent, “This kid is currently being framed. A silk banner could change the impression his college leaders has of him. Student Yu Hao is an honest person……of course, this red……golden……haired student is the same.” No one dared to provoke Zhou Sheng as they didn’t want be ridiculed by him again, so he added in a quick word for Zhou Sheng.
Yu Hao suddenly felt like clapping furiously for Chen Yekai and Huang Ting.
After they left the police station, Chen Yekai hailed a cab and browsed Taobao7 in the front seat, then said, “Why did you think of coming to Zhongshan Police Station to report your case?”
“I only know the address of this police station.” Zhou Sheng looked out of the window and said indifferently.
“I’ll give you an upvote8.” Chen Yekai found a shop that makes silk banners in the city and ordered it to be delivered tomorrow using an express service. After he spoke, he turned around to look at Yu Hao and said, “You did well too, for not being tempted by money.”
“I didn’t really think that much.” Yu Hao said, “It was the first time I saw that much money in my life. But it’s not mine, so I shouldn’t have it.”
Zhou Sheng said seriously, “Chen Laoshi, why are you getting someone to make a silk banner? The moment it’s made, wouldn’t everyone know that the police station had picked up money? We shouldn’t have said anything and just leave the money covertly at the station, then secretly leave as we gently flick our sleeves without bringing away even a wisp of cloud9. In any case, it’s money stolen by corrupt officials. If we hand it over to the state, it would just fill our national treasury and end up in the pockets of those corrupt officials again.”
“But if the police station takes it, it could help improve the lives of the policemen who serve the people……at the end of the year, they could get a bonus of 50 000 or 100 000 yuan, then everyone would be happy……”
A scene in which the superintendent opens the plastic bag with gleaming eyes suddenly surfaced in Yu Hao’s mind.
Zhou Sheng, “I’m just kidding, Huang Ting’s a good cop. But I’ll say one thing — that superintendent is bad news.”
Yu Hao, “Why?”
Zhou Sheng, “I don’t know how to explain it, in any case he’s a rotten guy. This case won’t get a any proper closure.”
Chen Yekai was at a loss as to how to deal with Zhou Sheng. He said, “Don’t spout nonsense. 1.2 million…what can this bit of money do? Don’t describe our Superintendent Li as such a hypocritical and indecent person will you? And there are so many people watching too.”
“This bit of money? This bit of money!” Zhou Sheng slapped his thigh and said, “If I had 1.2 million, why would I still need to study?”
Chen Yekai said sternly, “You’re not going to earn just this 1 million or so throughout your lifetime. If you really think that way then you’re finished. If it was me, I would hand it over to our nation too. Zhou Sheng na, why do you always say words you don’t mean? Can’t you be a bit more sincere?”
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
Zhou Sheng resolutely stated, “Then again, just one of our Chen Laoshi’s scarves costs 24 000 yuan, so of course you wouldn’t think much of this mere……”
Yu Hao, “……”
Chen Yekai immediately intercepted Zhou Sheng, “You definitely, definitely can’t say that in the college!”
When Chen Yekai answered Xue Long’s call that day, he immediately rushed to the hospital to see Yu Hao and had forgotten to take off his scarf. Zhou Sheng was very perceptive and saw it at a glance, but Chen Yekai didn’t expect to have left Zhou Sheng something that could be used against him. For a form teacher to flaunt his wealth like this…wouldn’t be a very good influence.
“1.2 million.” The DiDi10 driver held the steering wheel and said, “If I had 1.2 million, why would I still need to be a DiDi driver?”
Chen Yekai, “……”
Zhou Sheng burst out into raucous laughter and grabbed Yu Hao into his embrace to mess around with him while Chen Yekai looked helpless. After they reached their college, Chen Yekai repeatedly ordered Zhou Sheng not to spread the matter about his scarf around before he let the two of them go.
1.2 million……Yu Hao had already forgotten almost everything that happened the past few days, his mind was full of the scene in which he had picked up the money.
【Why couldn’t we have picked up 100 yuan?】
Zhou Sheng sent him a message on QQ.
Yu Hao:【If we had picked up a 100 we really might not have handed it to the police. After all, we wouldn’t have been able to find its owner.】
Zhou Sheng: 【(purses lips) Even 50 yuan would be good too.】
Yu Hao: 【10 yuan’s not bad too.】
Zhou Sheng: 【What the hell can 10 yuan buy?! Let’s find a job together some other day. I suddenly remembered something, doesn’t that parent still owe you your tutoring fees?】
Yu Hao:【It’ll be good enough if he doesn’t send me to jail, I don’t expect him to pay me】
Zhou Sheng: 【When he comes I’ll accompany you to get your money back, then you’ll treat me to a meal. Buffet, one that costs 160.】
Yu Hao: 【No problem.】
Yu Hao turned his phone off. Today was the first time he had to deal with this many people in his life, and it was also the first time he ever had to talk this much. He couldn’t be any more tired than he is now. His roommates weren’t staying out overnight today, the one on the adjacent bunk was snoring loudly while the upper bunk was shaking like crazy. He stretched his leg out to kick the bedboard twice because he didn’t want to indulge the upper bunk anymore.
“Go to sleep!” Yu Hao simply and crudely shouted with impatience, “If you want to jerk off go do it in the toilet!”
His dormitory room erupted into a loud bout of laughter. Yu Hao was a bit surprised that he wasn’t such a steamed bun11anymore, but anyway the upper bunk finally stopped shaking. Yu Hao put on his earphones to block out the sound of snoring and fell into a deep sleep.
Music that sounded like the roar of an ocean tide began to blare, and in the next moment, he opened his eyes amongst a horde of troops! He heard General’s angry roar next to his ear.
“Why the hell did you bring BGM into our fight?!”
“I just fell asleep! While listening to music!” Yu Hao waved the laundry fork in his hand and saw the cavalry rushing towards them. The enemy’s general was clad in armour from head to toe — it was his form teacher in junior high.
“Screw him over!” Yu Hao shouted.
General brandished his huge sword and roared, “Then do something!!”
Deafening music was playing in the skies, and under that majestic blanket of music, Yu Hao wielded a laundry fork with both his hands. That laundry forked appeared to have sensed something as golden light immediately burst out from it, which was instantly followed by bursts of thunderbolts!
Yu Hao was suspended within the light and he was surprised to find that his appearance had changed. He wore an unbuttoned short tunic cardigan12 which had suddenly opened up as it materialised on his body. It was embroidered with lightning patterns, and looked like a black imperial robe that had an inner snow-white shirt lining. The golden light that burst out of the laundry fork in his hands shot out in all directions; it broke apart at its forked end, and the flowing light was reconstructed into two long, bronze knives!
Yu Hao whistled. He held a knife in each hand, and like a dual wield warrior, he bowed slightly when he landed on the ground and pushed his knives forward. Lightning burst forth from its tip like tidal lines — he looked like a deity who spread his wings as he collided with the vanguard troop units!
General cheered loudly. He swung his huge sword and followed closely behind. Lightning and thunder were bursting out in all directions which instantly overturned the cavalry troops ahead. The two rushed into the battle array, and amongst the gentle music that played in the background, they forcefully tore a hole in the enemy’s formation and kept pushing forward. General shouted, “Get rid of their leader!”
A fiendish look appeared on Yu Hao’s junior high form teacher’s face as he rushed towards them clad in full body armour. He wielded a zhanmadao13 in his hand and rushed right in front of them within an instant. But no sooner said than done, General had swung his sword out horizontally, then Yu Hao stepped on the broadsword, leaped into the air and turned a somersault in midair.
General withdrew his sword, turned sideways and forcefully knocked into the enemy general’s warhorse. The warhorse raised its front legs and the leader who rode it was lifted up along with it.
“Die!” Yu Hao stepped on air, flipped over and swung both his knives out at the same time. Within an instant, he had chopped the enemy general’s head off.
Black fumes immediately burst out, and the cavalry troops scattered in an uproar.
Yu Hao landed on the ground, then turned around to look at General. General took note of their surroundings. The two of them broke through the palace’s backdoor and slipped into its interior.
Behind the door was a pitch-black corridor.
“Do you have fire?” General said.
“No.” Yu Hao answered honestly, “When did you enter my dream?”
“About the same time as you.” General answered in the dark. His voice was accompanied by the clanking sounds his armour made while he walked as he explained, “When your dream ends, all outsiders will be ejected from your dreamscape.”
“And I thought that you would have stayed here to fight alone.” Yu Hao said, “Give me a moment.” He tried to piece his two short knives together.
General stopped walking and answered, “Then I would have been finished.”
Yu Hao said in the dark, “What happens if you die in a dream?”
General said, “You’re the owner of this dreamscape. After you die, you would return to the master of the totem and lose all your strength. Then you would be under its complete control, get banished to the borders, thrown into the subconscious world beyond the boundaries of your consciousness and fall into the darkness where you would wander in forever without a chance to ever come back again. It signifies that one of the ‘selves’ in your heart would have completely disappeared, while in reality…….”
General pondered for a moment, then said, “Maybe you would try to end your life again? It’s hard to say. As for me……un……forget it, don’t dig too deep into it.”
An idea flashed through Yu Hao’s mind. Didn’t these words mean that General’s true identity…could be that of a human?”
“You would die in reality too, wouldn’t you?” Yu Hao asked again.
General seemed to realise that he had said something he shouldn’t have, so he continued, “But you’ve recovered most of your strength, so we should be able to win.”
So when you came to the Great Wall to save me, you had placed yourself in danger as well. Yu Hao thought, then who are you in the real world? If possible, I’d like to get to know you.
But no matter who General was, the moment he confirmed that he was human, he had also ascertained another truth: General had the ability to dream travel. Was this some kind of superpower? Yu Hao sort of understood why General wasn’t willing to talk too much about himself, he probably didn’t want him to know that he had that kind of ability.
Inferring the answer to one question led to the emergence of even more questions. Why did General have that ability?
After Yu Hao pieced the two short knives together, it emitted a ray of light and the laundry fork resumed its original staff form. But it was different from the resplendent golden appearance it took on in his grandmother’s hands; in Yu Hao’s hands, it had turned into a long, bronze staff.
There was an exaggerated shape of a bird with big, round eyes at the top of the staff.
The staff shone brightly and illuminated the darkness that surrounded them.
General, “This is……”
Yu Hao, “I don’t know why either……but it seems like I was born with the ability to use magic.”
He could feel an endless stream of strength in his body that was currently flowing through his bloodstream. Once he injected it into his staff, the staff would begin to shine brightly.
“It’s natural for you to know magic because this is your world. What I’m curious about is this bird……” General turned around and placed one hand on his helmet as if he wanted to lift it up to take a closer look, but he resisted the urge to do so in the end.
Yu Hao said, “Why do I feel like I’ve never seen it before though? But then again, there are many things that I thought I had never seen before when I actually have.”
“Have you been to Sanxingdui14?” General asked as he used his finger to flick the bird.
When Yu Hao was reminded of that, he suddenly recalled, “On a magazine!《Chinese Heritage》! My family ordered it before. But what does it have to do with Sanxingdui?”
General waved his hand and said, “Let’s go.”
Yu Hao raised his staff and illuminated the corridor. They walked into the palace with a labyrinth of complicated underground passages. Yu Hao explored the area purely based on instinct — he had a nagging feeling that he had been here before, so even amongst the various stairs and corridors that existed here, he would always be able to find the correct path to take.
“I can sense the totem.” Yu Hao said.
There was something not too far away that was beckoning him over strongly.
General had been silent ever since he saw the bronze bird of Sanxingdui. Yu Hao called him again, “General?”
Yu Hao said, “Let me walk this last stretch to the totem by myself ba.”
General said without a second thought, “No.”
Yu Hao looked at General and said earnestly, “This should be my own battle.”
General said, “Don’t you want someone to witness it for you?”
Yu Hao didn’t know how to answer to that immediately. He was actually afraid that General would be in danger if he follows along. No matter what he was hiding from him, dying in someone else’s dream is not a problem that could be made light of, it would most likely be accompanied by grave consequences. If General is human, then it was more than enough for him to have accompanied him up to this point.
“I won’t do anything, I’ll just spectate at a side.” General said, “You need to learn how to accept other people’s goodwill, don’t always feel like you’re indebted to them.”
Yu Hao smiled a bit sadly and said, “I really do mind it though.”
General placed one hand on his shoulder and gave him a light push as a signal for him to continue moving forward.
“Talk about one thing that you can’t let go of the most in this lifetime ba.” General said, “You can say it no matter how important or insignificant you may think it is.”
Yu Hao said, “I’ve already let go of what I couldn’t let go of the most.”
“Just one?” General asked again.
Yu Hao roughly summarised what had happened during this third year of junior high, while General quietly listened.
Yu Hao spoke as he walked up a long staircase. After he had ascended this flight of steps, a sudden flash of light blinded them. A spacious passageway appeared in front of them, and on both sides of the passageway stood giant statues carved out of pure gold. There were two huge doors at the end of the passageway, and there was a knight standing in front of those doors. That knight’s face was incomparably clear, though Yu Hao thought that he had long forgotten how he looked like.
“Who is he?” General unsheathed the long sword on his back.
“My……friend.” Yu Hao answered, “He’s called Liu Pengxuan. Pengxuan, long time no see.”
He was his deskmate in junior high, the one who stole Hua Lun’s wallet and ended up causing his grandmother to kneel down in front of the whole school. Yu Hao said, “I actually thought that the one guarding this place would be Hua Lun, I didn’t expect it to be you.”
“You fucking gay.” That knight had a slim face and sunken eyes. He held a long rod in his hand as he said, “You’re a sickening jerk who would sell your friends out, I’m going to kill you!”
General roared angrily, “Shut up!”
When Yu Hao’s most sensitive, most vulnerable secret had been exposed, he was instantly at a loss. But General’s angry shout had saved him.
General’s loud voice boomed, “If you’re not going to do anything, I’ll teach him a lesson for you!”
Yu Hao, “……”
1. 100k yuan = 15k USD; 1.2m = 180k USD holy shit↩
2. This is an actual crime. Article 395 of Criminal Law stipulates: “Any State officers whose property or expenditure obviously exceeds his lawful income, if the difference is enormous, may be ordered to explain the sources of his property. If he cannot prove that the sources are legitimate, the part that exceeds his lawful income shall be regarded as illegal gains.” This law was created to crack down crimes of bribery and corruption↩
3. Corrupt high-ranking officials https://www.scmp.com/news/china/politics/article/2180294/no-let-corrupt-tigers-2018-chinas-graft-busters-claim-more-big↩
4. don’t be so idle that you wanna meddle in stuff you’re not supposed to↩
5. A silk banner conferred as an award: ↩
6. In the Name of the People (Chinese: 人民的名义; pinyin: Rénmín de míngyì) is a 2017 Chinese TV drama series based on the web novel of the same name by Zhou Meisen. Its plot revolves around a prosecutor’s efforts to unearth corruption in a present-day fictional Chinese city.↩
7. an online shopping site↩
8. Internet slang for +1↩
9. From the poem “Goodbye Cambridge” 《再别康桥》. Zhou Sheng’s just being stupidly romantic(?) for no reason hahaha I love him↩
10. Didi Chuxing Technology Co., formerly Didi Kuaidi, is a Chinese ride-sharing, artificial intelligence and autonomous technology conglomerate.↩
11. steamed bun = wimp↩
12. a kind of Chinese-style garment which buttons down the front or on the right
→ but unbuttoned and short
13. The zhanmadao (Chinese: 斬馬刀; pinyin: zhǎnmǎdāo; literally: ‘horse chopping saber’) was a single-bladed anti-cavalry Chinese sword↩
14. Sanxingdui is the name of an archaeological site and a major Bronze Age culture in modern Guanghan, Sichuan, China.
This might be the bird at the top of Yu Hao’s staff:
T/N: WOW 14 footnotes!! That’s a record!! Dies internally
Favourite dialogue of the chapter:
“Screw him over!” Yu Hao shouted.
General brandished his huge sword and roared, “Then do something!!”
Omg I just love Yu Hao x General so damn much.
Also, gonna try to
force get next chapter out by tonight! IT’S A GREAT CHAPTER. IF YOU THINK CHAPTER 2 WAS GREAT CHAPTER 9 IS EVEN BETTER
Possible spoiler alert:
–Highlight below to see–
Now that I’m rereading the novel, I’m realising how fking smart and oscar-deserving this damn Zhou Sheng is