Chapter 6 Snowman

Snow だるま

Shota and Aji were sitting side by side at Kisarazu’s deserted beach, and the hook sank in the water. They haven’t seen each other for half a year.

“Fishing bait is divided into soft and hard. According to the depth of the water, there are floating, static and sinking…”

Xiangtai kept explaining while combing the tangled fishing line for Azhi.

“How do you know this? Where did you learn it?”

Azhi admired Xiangta’s explanation very much, and asked so after asking many questions.

“I read it in the book.”

As Xiangtai said, she lowered her head shyly.

“I read it in the book.”

Azhi laughed, and the two lowered the fishing line into the sea.

After sitting on the beach for nearly three hours, his body became cold and he caught a lot of horse mackerel. The two looked at the bucket intently.

“1,2,3…4,5,6…”

The two counted in unison, and touched their fists as they did in the past.

“Yay!”

“Yay!”

The two looked at the blue bucket again.

“How to do?”

Azhi asked.

“Can’t you raise it?”

Xiangta asked.

“Ah… I shouldn’t be able to feed…”

Xiangtai poked the fish’s back with her index finger.

“Let it go?”

“Yes……”

The two stood up and put the fish in the bucket back into the sea.

The young black body of the horse mackerel quickly disappeared without a trace in the turbid water.

After the fishing, the two visited the detention center where Xindai was detained. They put the fishing rod in the storage box, were taken into a room, and sat down on folding chairs. Xindai came soon.

“It’s going to snow tonight.”

Xindai said, sitting in the middle of the two. The round hole that can let the other party’s voice come out can just show a face of Xindai, and can’t see her expression clearly.

On the contrary, Xiangtai felt relaxed.

“They said it would probably be sentenced to five years…”

Xindai said lightly.

“Sorry… took my share.”

Although it was agreed between the two, it still made Azhi very guilty to transfer all the responsibilities to Xindai.

“You have a criminal record. Five years is not enough.”

“but……”

“I’m very happy. I think I have earned it!”

This doesn’t sound like fake.

“I’m sorry… I blamed me for not running away…”

Xiangta said, lowered her head.

“It’s not Xiangta’s fault.”

Shindai leaned forward and brought his face closer.

“Yeah, how can it never fail.”

Azhi patted Xiangta’s back to comfort him. The two didn’t seem to know that Mrs. Xiang stole those things to cover Rin-chan. That’s fine, Xiang Tai thought.

“How is the orphanage? Go to school every day?”

Shindai smiled and asked Xiangta, his expression was very kind.

“Well, the language test, my class is eighth.”

“Amazing!”

The letter represents feeling a little surprised.

“Xiang is so smart.”

Azhi seemed so happy as if he said he was.

“Hair cut short? Let me see.”

Xindai made a gesture of taking off his hat.

When fishing, Mrs. Xiang always wears a hat embroidered with a Roman alphabet.

The hat was given to him by the police officer Qianyuan.

“Quickly, let her take a look.”

As he said, Azhi pushed Xiangta’s shoulder.

Xiangta took off her hat. I wash my hair every day, unlike before, the dry bangs shook on his forehead.

“Yes, it looks well-mannered.”

Aji praised Xiangta again, and he kept saying this as soon as he saw Xiangta at the station.

“Santa…”

Shindai’s gaze returned to Xiangta’s face, staring at him intently.

“The place I found you was in Matsudo’s Pachinko’s parking lot… a red Mercedes. The license plate is Narashino.”

Xiangtai listened in silence.

“What are you talking about…”

Azhi gaped in surprise for a while.

“If you want to, you can definitely find your biological parents.”

At the end of last year, Xindai told Aji, who came to visit once a month, “want to see Xiangta.” She must be very clear in her heart that it is impossible to see Lin Jiang, but at least she wants to see Xiangta, Azhi thought.

“Understood, I think of a way.”

Azhi promised as he left the visiting room. He knew the address of the orphanage, so he targeted the primary school near the orphanage. When the school is over, he is waiting at the school gate. If you tell the truth to the orphanage, I am afraid that Xiangtai will not be allowed to take away, so he has to hide it from the orphanage.

“…You… did you ask me to bring Shanta to say this?”

Azhi finally understood Xindai’s true intentions, and his tone became rigid.

“Yes… you have to understand. We are not worthy, we have this child.”

Shindai said to Azhi like he was educating a child, and his eyes fell on Xiangta.

Xiangta also looked directly at Shindai.

Xiangta thinks Xindai is very beautiful.

No, maybe it’s not exactly the same as beauty. He felt that her eyes and mouth had the clarity and tranquility that they had never seen before.

Shindai resisted the tears in her eyes, and when she was about to burst her eyes, she informed the police officer nearby that “the conversation is over,” and then stood up. The two silently watched Xindai’s back.

As soon as he reached the door, Xindai stopped and turned around.

I couldn’t hear her voice, but from the shape of her mouth, her mouth seemed to move: “Goodbye!”

Azhi did not call Xindai again. Xiangtai did not dare to look at Azhi’s face from the side.

The two left the detention center and boarded the tram, but none of them spoke.

“Goodbye” and “See you next time” are different, Xiangtai thought. That must mean “farewell”.

The Tokyo sky moved outside the car window and it started to snow.

At the station, Xiangtai hesitated to say goodbye to Azhi, and finally he decided to go back to his apartment with Azhi.

He was worried that Azhi, who had been silent, went home alone. The two walked side by side on the snowy street.

“It’s big.”

Xiangta looked up at the sky.

“Sure enough, I did what she said…”

Azhi felt a little worried about his injured right leg.

The fishing rod in his hand was cold, and Xiangtai kept changing the fishing rod from right to left and then from left to right along the way.

The two first stopped by a convenience store and bought cup noodles and croquette.

The apartment that Azhi rents has two floors, a total of eight rooms, three of which are unoccupied. The outer stairs were rusted and the iron railings were crooked.

“Don’t touch it, it’s dangerous. It’s broken.”

Going up the stairs, Azhi turned around and told Xiangtai.

There is a small sink and a gas stove in the wooden-floored kitchen, and the six-tatami single-bedroom structure has no tables and nothing else. It is empty and looks very spacious.

After the water is boiled, pour it into the cup noodles and place the croquette on the lid of the cup noodles. Wait three minutes.

Both of them made a “ding-” sound on their mouths at the same time and began to eat.

“…This way of eating is really delicious.”

“I didn’t lie to you.”

“Who did you learn from?”

“…”

“Huh? With me?”

Azhi laughed.

“Do you live here alone?”

Xiangta looked around the room and asked.

It’s the opposite of that home.

“Yeah. It’s a bit smaller, but the bathtub is new.”

Azhi said triumphantly.

“Eh……”

“Will we wash it together later?”

“let me see.”

“Why, still ashamed?”

Xiangtai felt that Azhi seemed to be pretending to be happy.

The words “goodbye” that Shindai said just now can’t be lingered in Xiangta’s mind.

Azhi must be the same as himself, Xiangtai thought.

“Do you want to live here?”

“… won’t you be scolded?”

Azhi asked secretly, enduring joy.

“Now go back and get scolded as well.”

“indeed.”

The two deliberately sucked their faces hard and made loud noises.

The snow fell until late at night.

When Aji walked to the corridor to smoke, there was already a white snow scene outside, as if he was not in Tokyo.

“Xiangtai, come on.”

Azhi shouted, and he breathed a puff of smoke into the air.

Xiangta, who was preparing to make the bed, walked out of the entrance and yelled “Wow” the moment he opened the door.

“It’s a big game!”

He mumbled.

“right!”

Azhi responded.

Xiang Tai quickly walked down the stairs, walked through the parking lot, and came to the courtyard of the apartment. He looked back at Azhi.

“Make a snowman.”

As soon as the voice fell, Xiangtai squatted on the ground and started to pile a small snowball. Aji pinched out cigarette butts in the canned salmon used as an ashtray and ran down the stairs in slippers.

On a quiet night, the sound of an ambulance rushing past was heard in the distance.

On the other side of the road, snow fell from the branches in front of the house, making a “plop” sound. No one is moving.

Xiangtai only heard the sound of two people stepping on the snow and rolling the snowman louder and louder.

It seems that there are only two of them in this world. It would be great if there were only two of them, Xiangtai thought.

Xiangtai and Azhi lay back to back in a bed.

They hung their clothes wet with snow on the clothesline in front of the pool, and placed the electric heater underneath.

In the dark room, only the fire in the electric heater was shining orange.

Thirty minutes into the bed, the toes finally warmed up. Xiangta’s back felt Azhi’s movement.

“Are you asleep?” As Xiangta was about to ask, Aji asked, “Are you asleep?”

“not yet……”

Xiangtai answered.

“Tomorrow, are you going back?”

Azhi confirmed.

“Ok……”

If you don’t go back tomorrow, it will definitely cause a major event, which will cause Azhi more trouble than himself, Xiang Tai thought.

“Well……”

Xiangta remembered that she had always had a question.

“Ok?”

“Everyone… are you going to run away and leave me alone?”

He felt Azhi’s body suddenly become stiff.

“Ah…Yes. But I was caught before that.”

“is it……”

If it were in the past, Azhi might lie, “If there is nothing, I just want to pick you up.”

However, like Xiangta, the last smiling face of Shindai behind the glass during the day has been lingering in his mind.

“Sorry, Xiangta…”

“Ok.”

“Sorry.”

Azhi apologized again. Mrs. Xiang did not respond.

“Dad…decided to be an uncle…”

Azhi said, saying that he seemed to do his best. This is not what I thought about before, it was just when I was building a snowman with Xiangta.

I’ve never been called “dad” before, but if I say this, it might be very strange to Xiangta, Azhi thought, he was waiting for Xiangta’s response.

“Well, good.”

Xiangta said with her back to Azhi. Both of them stopped speaking.

After a while, Xiangtai began to hear the slight breathing sound after falling asleep. Hearing this voice, Azhi suffered from insomnia all night.

It would be a pity to fall asleep.

Xiangtai’s clothes that were hanging there were already dry. After Azhi took it off, he folded it and placed it next to Xiangtai’s pillow.

Xiangtai slept soundly. Azhi got into the bed again and lay down.

Go to the beach together. Watching the fireworks together, no, listening to the fireworks. Make a snowman together.

I’m satisfied enough. If you have any extravagant hopes, you will get retribution. Azhi told himself so.

Snow turned into rain at dawn.

(Will the snowman melt?)

Azhi thought.

The two got up before noon and set off to the bus station.

The two remained silent. Stand side by side in front of the stop sign, waiting for the bus to come in.

The bus approached, passing in front of him, and the sound from the tires passed into the ears.

“Remember, go back and admit your mistakes.”

Azhi finally broke the silence unbearably.

“Ok.”

Xiangta stared at the front and said.

“It was said that it was forcibly taken away by my uncle.”

“know.”

The bus appeared from a distance. Aji, like Shindai yesterday, wanted to say something to Xiangta. He thought, he must speak out.

“Sorry…uncle…decided…”

The first time he said the name “uncle” from his own mouth, Azhi’s mind suddenly went blank, and the following words were stuck in his throat.

(Decided not to meet again.)

Azhi’s words were just about to be exported.

“I was caught deliberately…”

Xiangtai said.

“Eh?”

Azhi asked inexplicably.

“I was caught deliberately…”

Mrs. Xiang said it again.

Azhi reacted immediately, really kind-hearted Xiangta.

It was not himself who decided to end all this, but Xiangta.

“It’s not uncle’s fault.”

The boy in front of him, he said so.

The horn of the bus rang in the distance.

(Time to break up.)

Aji patted Xiangta on the shoulder.

“That’s it.”

Azhi felt that the young man standing beside him was far more like an adult than himself.

Some are sad and some are happy.

The bus rang another horn and stopped in front of them. Xiangtai got into the car silently.

“Santa…”

Azhi waved his hands in a low voice. Mrs. Xiang can’t seem to hear. He went to the last seat of the carriage and sat down. The bus opened.

“Santa…”

Azhi called again. When he recovered, he ran after the bus. Xiangta did not look back.

Xiangta’s hat brim was very low, and she stubbornly did not look back. He thought that if he turned around and waved his hand, Azhi would be even more sad.

After three traffic lights, Xiangtai felt that there seemed to be no movement of Azhi chasing the bus behind him. He finally turned his head and looked out the car window. On the asphalt road with the remaining white snow, the bushes kept receding back.

“…Dad…”

It was the first time Xiangta called this.

Azhi, who was chasing the bus, stopped. He held back his tears and looked up at the sky. He cried, crying like a child. He felt that he had lost his most precious thing. Azhi crying loudly, he has nowhere to go. No one is waiting for him.

On the outer corridor of the residential building in the community, a person is playing in the tree.

On the back of her hand, there was a black green block again as before.

The bottles containing many shells and other babies were put aside, and she picked up the marbles scattered around her feet one by one.

“1, 2, 3, climb up the mountain…”

At the other end of the fence, you can see the black roof of the factory. There is still the snow from last night on it, and the sun shines on it, shining white light.

“7, 8, 9, shoot the ball, stretch out two hands, 10 fingers…”

In the tree, I counted the number songs that Xindai taught me to sing, counting to 10.

There are four marbles on the ground.

She didn’t know how to count after ten.

“It would be great to learn.”

A little depressed in the tree.

No way, she had to count “1, 2, 3, climb up the mountain…” from the beginning, and put all the marbles into the bottle.

At this moment, she suddenly felt that someone was calling herself, she stood on the beer box, grabbed the fence and leaned out. She straightened her chest vigorously, trying to see the distance.

The hands clinging to the railing in the tree were icy.

Little snowmen are piled on the edge of the dump. She felt the footsteps of someone approaching, so she leaned her body out of the railing.

Her gaze seemed to be attracted by something, and she held the railing tightly with her hands and took a deep breath.

Who is it, the voice that can’t be heard reverberates in the clouded sky in winter.

The voice was shouting.

Shouting loudly.

“The Thief Family / Wan Yin き Family” Complete Book



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