tw: child abuse
“Brother Jiang, I really tried my best this month. But there are still a few clients that think the room is not good enough and the price is too expensive, so I couldn’t say much more to convince them.”
Xiao Ping shook in his cheap suit, showing a smile so ugly that it looked like he was crying.
“I know that the performance evaluation from above is strict. Brother Jiang, please help me, I still have two young children to support at home.”
The man called Brother Jiang turned his back to him. He leaned against the street lamp, smoking and kept silent.
The smoke in his hand was of the cheap red pagoda mountain brandHongtashan, a leading brand of cigarettes in China. It was pretty expensive a while back so maybe in this timeline/story it’s cheaper., as the man shook the cigarette, bits of it fell to the ground, looking like scorched snow.
After holding his breath for a few seconds, he took out a stack of red bills rolled up to its corners and stretched out his hand to stuff it into the man’s old coat that looked like it had been worn for more than ten years.
“Take it away.”
The two salesmen next to him showed panicked eyes and pleaded in a wailing voice: “Brother Jiang—”
“I’m giving you another two-months of grace period,” the man pressed the cigarette butt on the lamp post, and said in a low voice, “I will reiterate your performance from the last set of transactions for you. But there will be no next time.”
Xiao Ping nodded hard again and again as if checking if this was a dream. He held the stack of old bills in his hands, neither moving to keep it nor return it.
The person next to him quickly winked and said, “What are you doing in a daze, Brother Jiang, let’s go to dinner quickly!”
Before Jiang Wang could speak, the sound of skidding tires from a sudden brake suddenly sounded out from not too far away.
He instinctively kicked away the subordinate beside him, and in the next second his throat clogged up as his body rose into the air. The truck that went out of control, directly hit Jiang Wang making him fly up.
The world was suddenly shaking up and down.
Jiang Wang lost his center of gravity, and kept falling. He saw reflections of skyscrapers and dilapidated houses.
Finally, he fell into a lake with a thud, and everything fell into darkness.
As he looked at the gloomy sky, his pupils gradually lost focus.
In the end, the police wouldn’t even need to inform anyone of his death.
It was just a pity for the coat he was wearing.
The lake water poured into his lungs, the rotting moisture accompanying it would make people want to vomit.
Jiang Wang sank for about ten seconds, but then he realized he had to get out by himself.
He was average in the water but his body was pretty nimble. He closed his eyes and endured the taste of blood in his throat as he swam upward. The only thought currently in his mind was that he shouldn’t be late for his afternoon schedule.
Chaos sounded, like a train passing through a tunnel with shreds of light hovering above the water.
Jiang Wang opened his eyes and looked up, he stretched out his hand to brush away the aquatic plants and kicked out hard.
He appeared on the waters’ surface but all around him there was only silence.
Something was wrong.
This was not the provincial city.
Jiang Wang took a deep breath and swam to the shore.
The truck hit him so hard that his collar was now soaked in blood. His chin got scratched, cuts spanned half of his palms, and water now filled his leather shoes and socks.
The park lake he thought he fell into had now turned into a small river, and the current city he was seeing was so flat that the horizon could be seen at a glance. At this moment, a flock of birds coincidentally flew over the clear sky.
Jiang Wang hadn’t seen a flock of birds for many years. He propped up his body and walked to the higher part of the shore, and realized what was wrong.
There was an intersection two hundred meters away, and a newly built newsstand stood next to it. The smell of new paint directly hit his nose.
He stumbled over, ignoring the strange gazes of the passersby. He picked up the local newspaper with one hand, and found the date in the crowd of flip phones and health supplement advertisements.
The 10th of June, year 2006.
He had returned to City A.
Outdated cars and old streets, it looked like a nostalgic set in a period film. There was even a dog who currently had its legs spread and was peeing next to his suit pants, startling him.
Jiang Wang turned around and walked back to the river without saying a word, and directly plunged in.
When he resurfaced, it was still 2006, but there were a few more children pointing at him on the shore.
Jiang Wang continued to soak in the water, making his face stink.
“Go back for dinner! Don’t look at the crazy man!”
The small town women in floral clothes drove the children back to their homes as the sky gradually darkened.
The man swam back to the shore silently, he wrung out his clothes and started walking deeper into the street.
Jiang Wang was very familiar with this place.
Blocked and remote. It was a small city near the fifth and sixth tiers that had access to the latest high-speed rail, and it was also the ghost place where he left in a hurry when he was a teenager.
The only thing that needed to be confirmed was…
If it was 2006 now, then the him of 20 years ago, did he still exist here?
The town was not that big, so you could walk to a place you were familiar with in just ten minutes.
There were people in the mahjong hall laughing and joking loudly, the shuffling sound of ‘ping ping pong’ sounded like a lottery.
A light bulb hanged atop an open-aired stall that sold braised chicken and braised duck. After the hawker received the payment, he would grab a large handful of noodles and throw them into a pot to fry them, you could see sweat dripping down his neck.
All these sights were exactly the same as his childhood memories.
The man’s joy and anger were usually not visible, but at this moment he was even more expressionless. He walked deeper into the narrow street, his memories coming back little by little.
His company’s team sometimes organizes watching movies together, so he knew of a few things.
The same person in different timelines should not meet each other, otherwise it could trigger an antimatter reaction and cause annihilation.
He was just about to forget about this seemingly important detail completely.
An aunt carrying green onions and pork was chatting with the neighbors. She shook her hands and breathed out hard as she expressed her excitement.
“It’s a really good business.”
Jiang Wang walked through them and turned into a shanty corner, but suddenly, he heard the cry of a child.
His breathing became hard.
First, he saw a wine bottle roll down, and then the sound of a broken belt hit.
“Stop hitting, Dad— please, Dad!!!”
The child was screaming and howling, his voice pierced the night like an abused kitten.
Jiang Wang felt his blood stagnate at this second, and the thought of leaving quickly passed through his mind.
‘No, that’s the me in the past, I can’t——’
The drunkard overturned the table and smashed its contents all over the floor, yelling and kicking it over and over again.
The next second, the patterned plastic curtains roughly opened, and a little boy rolled out with his arms covering his head. He staggered and rushed out before he could even properly stand, his face and eyes were flushed and traces of tears could be seen.
When the child opened his eyes and looked up, he saw Jiang Wang standing in the corner.
The drunkard yelled and opened the door to catch the little brat. The child was in a panic, he was extremely scared and didn’t know where to hide.
Jiang Wang took a deep breath, he picked up the child and ran away.
Regardless of the laws of time and space, and the world being destroyed, they could discuss it when they’ve successfully ran away.
The child caught in his armpits kept talking with a shaky voice, “You, you. Who are— you? Who? Ahh Ahh!!!”
Jiang Wang’s arm strength was amazing and his explosive power was also strong. The physique he had cultivated in the past five years as a soldier ran 800 meters at once, without even making him pant much.
He completely forgot that the drunkard wouldn’t be able to chase them far at all. He escaped until his last breath was exhausted before he dared to stop.
At first, the child was screaming and kicking his legs indiscriminately, but when they stopped, the child turned silent like a rabbit that was caught on the back of its neck.
The two stood still in an unfamiliar corner, they had no idea where they were.
After the boy was put down, he didn’t dare to scream or run. He even consciously covered his mouth and looked at the stranger in the dim light.
There was a scar near the corner of his eye, a split eyebrow, blood on his clothes, and he was wearing the clothes of a gangster brother in a Hong Kong film.
‘—Definitely not a good person.’
Jiang Wang had his hand propped up against the wall evening out his breathing, completely unaware that he had been classified as a gangster by the other person.
The child was too stunned and didn’t dare to speak.
Jiang Wang took a look at the child, he put his hand in his pocket taking out four bills and a few coins from his waterproof wallet.
In his current time 20 years later, there would be no more need for paper money. But he still used to bring them to take care of the small security fees of some properties when he accompanied clients for a visit.
When the child saw him counting the money, he became more nervous, like an ostrich he seemed to try and shrink his neck.
It’s over, he estimated that he’s going to be sold.
“Are you hungry?”
The child took deep breaths for several seconds, then raised his head to look at the man opposite him, trembling.
Jiang Wang was 1.9 meters tall, it was terrifying to look at him against the light.
“Uncle… Hello uncle, my name is Peng Xingwang.”
‘Crap, don’t mention this ghost name.’
Jiang Wang emitted a murderous aura all over his body from hearing this, he frowned and said, “I asked you if you want to eat.”
Peng Xingwang, the little friend’s trembling became worse, he held on to the man and said, “Uncle, I can pick up bottles and do arithmetic. Don’t sell me to a coal mine, okay?”
Jiang Wang grinded his teeth and walked forward, carrying the child by his collar.
“Stay in a hostel with me tonight.”
He found a random barbecue stand, ordered two cans of beer and a plate of fried noodles, and after thinking about it, he ordered a bowl of egg porridge for the child.
Peng Xingwang hadn’t eaten anything decent for three days, and there was no way he could run away with the hot porridge in front of him. So he tightened up his mouth and drank it.
Jiang Wang drank the two cans of beer with a calm face, his mood was as stinky and damp as his clothes.
Across the table, the child was wearing oversized old clothes with pink cartoon pigs printed on them. At a glance, he remembered how the neighbor aunt couldn’t bear his state so she gave him the leftovers from her daughter’s clothes.
Peng Xingwang swallowed his saliva as he smelled the meaty scent from the cumin lamb skewers. He wanted to have a taste but still didn’t dare to touch it, he only dared to stare at it quietly.
Jiang Wang’s eyes were poisonous, he felt even more angry when he saw this scene.
“Eat if you are hungry.”
“If you don’t eat. I won’t eat.” The child shook his head, “I’m full.”
Jiang Wang pushed the plate toward him with a stern face.
“Eat or not?”
Peng Xingwang ended up nibbling at the lamb skewers while holding back his tears, he was a little bit frightened.
Jiang Wang was nicknamed “89 Sniper Soul Hunter” by the people in the army. Before retiring, he dared to even kill wild wolves during cross-country training. And after retiring, he could still sell more than a dozen houses with a straight face, he never softened his temper for anyone.
But at present, in front of Jiang Wang, the snotty-nosed version of himself from 20 years ago, looked very far off from his current temperament.
Peng Xingwang ate the skewers clean and even scooped out the bottom of the porridge with a small spoon. Seeing that half of the bowl of fried noodles still remained on the opposite side, he showed a pitiful expression. But still, he ended up obediently following the strange man and continued walking, he didn’t dare resist anymore.
His mother had left a long time ago, and his father was probably sleeping in the mud by now. Few people should care that he was going to be sold.
“Don’t call me uncle.”
Peng Xingwang nodded aggrieved and whispered, “Thank you Uncle.”
“…Call me Big Brother.”
A certain man’s underworld identity was now completely confirmed in the mind of a child.
It was getting late, and the shops selling clothes on the street had already closed. Jiang Wang turned around and took Peng Xingwang to the pharmacy to buy some alcohol gauze and cotton swabs.
The guy at the hostel looked at Jiang Wang’s ID card, he thought to himself that this man must not be from the city.
This was the first time Peng Xingwang had come to this kind of place. He thought that by tomorrow he would have to go into the mine and dig coal, which made him a little sad. He bit his mouth and had a complicated expression on his face.
Jiang Wang didn’t want to wait for the person to see the registration date on his ID card, so he urged with a cold face, “Are there no open rooms?”
“Open, open.” The guy hurriedly returned the ID, asked him to register his name and phone number, and led the two of them up to open the room.
Before closing the door, Jiang Wang glanced at the hostel staff, “Give me a cigarette.”
The staff carefully took out two for him.
The guy felt upset, but he didn’t dare provoke such a difficult person. After thinking for a second, he handed over a newly bought lighter.
Jiang Wang went to the toilet and washed his hair and face. He took off his dirty clothes, soaked them in the water, then hung them on the balcony to dry. He put on his inner trousers and took out a cigarette. With a blank expression he put medicine and tied gauze on his scratched hands.
The child watched quietly for a while, then handed a cotton swab to the gangster who had just finished tending to himself.
Jiang Wang praised his own self in his heart, he motioned to the child to lift up his clothes, “I will help you apply the medicine.”
The child took off his clothes without even turning his head, blue and purple wounds and bruises could be seen in several places.
In the past Jiang Wang heated up a nail he got from a wooden board to close and sanitize his wounds, this made several wounds end up rotting.
Jiang Wang’s eyes became colder, he treated the wounds without saying a word.
Then the child suddenly burst out in tears.
Jiang Wang paused, “Does it hurt?”
“Uncle… Big Brother,” Peng Xingwang burst into tears, “You are a good person, if you don’t sell me, you will succeed.”
Hello, Cia (asoc1a7) here! I am back with the novel “Transmigrated to 20 Years Ago and Adopted Myself”. I hope you enjoy it! Thank you to Licolico in NU for the recommendation!
Here is the link to the raws. Please support the original work and the Author Qingli (青律)!
|↑1||Hongtashan, a leading brand of cigarettes in China. It was pretty expensive a while back so maybe in this timeline/story it’s cheaper.|