Would You Mind If I Play? - Chapter 49 - Su Fei’s World[Updated at: 2021-01-11 03:57:29]
Chapter 49: Su Fei’s World
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
The streetlamps had begun to light up when training ended. Everyone rushed home immediately―even An Ke. This was not the case before, but since his cousin sister had moved in with him, he quickly changed his behavior for the better. How else would he be able to discipline that stubborn kid?
As for her presence, it was no secret among his team. An Ke knew exactly who talked, but they merely put on an innocent face, giving him an itch in his teeth.
Ren Yu De was alone when he “coincidentally” bumped into some “acquaintances”.
“Yo! Isn’t it Yu De?” A few guys who had been squatting around the side of the road approached him.
Yu De did not want to respond and tried to distance himself but, the gang stood in his way.
“Don’t go! Not even staying for a chat with your old friends?”
Forced to remain where he was, Ren Yu De did not say a thing. He had no intention to “chat”.
“Tsk, tsk! Branded sports gear, branded trainers, branded gym bag. Looking good there, kid! Shu Guang’s quite the soccer team!” The other guy reached out intending to pat his shoulder, but his hand was slapped away by Yu De.
“Don’t be so cold! We were friends for two years after all! How could you treat friends like this?” he laughed humorlessly.
Ren Yu De’s face was gloomy, but he quickly recovered.
The nickname of the guy before him was “Cleftie”, because all of his upper teeth jutted out from his lips and covered much of his face. Back in his middle school years, the two of them knew each other after getting into fights, although they never really grew close.
To meet him today was unexpected.
“Hehe! Yu De! I know you’ve mended your ways but, I’ve got a little something I need your help with. I thought long and hard about it, and you’re the only one who can do it.” Bucky smiled, baring his buck teeth and curling his lips upwards―it was a repulsive appearance.
Nonetheless, Ren Yu De remained silent and Cleftie continued talking, “It’s quite simple. We’ll make a bet in your next match against Guan Lin High School and win some pocket money. Haha! There’s plenty of things like this happening all around anyway, so it doesn’t matter much if we do it.”
Ren Yu De’s expression changed.
“Of course, we’ll need you to cooperate. You only need to make a couple of mistakes in the game and score in your own goal. When the time comes, we’ll be rich! Haha! We’re betting on your defeat! Everyone knows about the other team’s ability. They’ll never beat you under normal circumstances. When the other idiots put all their money on you, we just have to wait for collection!
“There’s a portion for you too! But, naturally”―Cleftie changed his tone sharply―”if you don’t agree, we’ll bruise ourselves all over and tell the cops: the Shu Guang soccer team beat us up! And then, all of you would be disqualified. Haha!” He laughed wantonly. “Cooperation or disqualification, what’s your choice?”
Knowing that he had no other way, Ren Yu De sighed. “Fine. I’ll cooperate.”
Cleftie smiled again. “Smart choice! But you better not play tricks on us! I’ve recorded our conversation, and if you pull a smart one, I’m sending the tape to the Tournament Committee. ‘Shu Guang player suspected of betting’, haha! Such an eye-catching headline! Hahahaha!”
A chilling stare flashed across Ren Yu De’s eyes briefly before he laughed too. “I would never dare! Let’s have a pleasant partnership!”
High School Soccer Editorial Department.
“Looks like the tournament has settled down.” Liu Yang sighed. “The strong teams are progressing and have no immediate threats in the next round―shock results are unlikely.”
“Yingcai has also proven its place as the dark horse and is a very capable team. It would be natural that they win the next game too―Zhong Xin, their next opponent, has not been the same since Shui Huajun’s departure. Anything else? Let me hear what you two have to say.”
The chief editor glanced at the two best reporters under his disposal, Chen Huafeng and Zhou Peng. The pair then looked at each other―so that was the reason why they were summoned.
Zhou Peng started first. “I believe the matches have plenty of points; any games involving Zhongyuan, Shu Guang and Dingding would have plenty to write about. And then there’s the new kids on the block, Yingcai High School along with their star duo, Ma Ni and Sima Hongxin. Why not feature them in the next issue?”
Liu Yang shook his head. “Every other media has written tons upon tons of articles about them. Some even brought up their elementary school stories. Those can be included as supplementary materials―but, they are definitely neither highlights nor cover page material!”
“Then, how about this?”―Zhou Peng pressed on―”There has been a long-standing argument among readers about who holds the reins in Shu Guang; Zhang Jun or Yang Pan. How about a special-analysis issue? It would sell.”
“What is there to compare?” His chief editor glared at him. “Zhang Jun is the main character and the indisputable linchpin of the team. No matter how Yang Pan improves, he’ll still be in the service of his friend. This year, Yang Pan himself scored one but, assisted a whole lot more―meaning that he was aware of this fact. So, what more can we say when the person involved has realized what’s what?”
After being shot down twice, Zhou Peng kept quiet. So, Liu Peng turned his attention to Chen Huafeng, who had not said anything yet.
“Any suggestions, Little Chen?”
“Do you remember the interview I had last year with Su Fei, the Shu Guang manager?”
Liu Yang’s eyes glinted. “You’re saying…”
Chen Huafeng nodded. “Let’s have a feature for Su Fei when the other outlets fuss over the games and the players. Let’s view soccer and Shu Guang’s growth from the eyes of their manager.
Moved by the idea, Liu Yang slapped his palms on the desk in front of him. “Good! Let’s do that! The title will be ;Su Fei’s World’. Tell me if you need anyone’s help―I’ll send them over!”
And so, this was how the Shu Guang players began to “suffer”. Each of the members told stories of being stopped by reporters from High School Soccer, who asked them questions about Su Fei.
“Su Fei! Today’s been quite interesting!” Zhang Jun laughed as he made a beeline for her house. “I met a man―quite the shady character. He kept insisting that he was a reporter and would not stop asking me about you; anything I say, he would write it down in his notebook. Haha! Next time you go out, remember to be careful of those middle-aged perverts―”
He was stopped short when he saw Chen Huafeng, who was sitting opposite Su Fei and smiling at him. “Does that mean I’m a middle-aged pervert too?” he asked.
Awkwardly, Zhang Jun reflexively retorted, “Uh… No, nope. Of course you’re not a middle-aged pervert. You’re a teenage pervert.”
The teenage pervert was visibly stunned. “You… Is that the way to talk to your elders?”
“Why then would you keep running to Su Fei’s house?”
“I’ve only been here twice…”
“Do you plan on coming every day?”
Su Fei knocked Zhang Jun on the head. “Stop talking rubbish! He’s here for an interview.”
Zhang Jun rubbed the spot where he was hit. “He said that the last time…” Zhang Jun moaned, but in a more subdued voice.
Ha! So, Zhang Jun has a ‘wife’ who takes care of his manners! Chen Huafeng grinned maliciously inside, knowing that if he said that, the night’s interview would go to the dumps. Still, he could not help feeling happy with himself. Hmph! I’ll let you run your mouth! I’ve got you now!
It was the usual interview session; Zhang Jun, having gone through quite a number of those, remained quiet in a corner. Su Fei on the other hand, was the picture of enthusiasm.
She was not as nervous as she had been when they did this for the first-time; she quickly answered every question according to her knowledge and chattered incessantly. This, Zhang Jun thought, is the kind of idiot that reporters love!
And when the topic came to Su Fei’s life before high school, she quickly and honestly said that she did not understand soccer before that.
“Yeah! Yeah! I had to labor hard to teach her the soccer knowledge she has now!” Zhang Jun cut in.
“Oh? You did not understood soccer?” Chen Huafeng’s interest was piqued. “But, why would you choose to become Shu Guang’s new manager in the first place?”
Su Fei flashed her trademark smile. “Because, I like soccer!”
Zhang Jun’s heart was moved. That was what she told him a year ago too. And because of that, he had been working as hard as he did up till the present.
As for the reporter, in a rare moment of confusion, Chen Huafeng asked a rather meaningless question. “Why?”
“Why?” Su Fei thought about it. “Liking is liking, there doesn’t need to be a reason!”
Chen Huafeng hurried back to the office after bidding goodbye to the both of them; he needed to sort out the materials he collected from the interview, but Su Fei’s words lingered on in his mind.
“I like soccer!”
“Liking is liking, there doesn’t need to be a reason!”
Liking is liking. So, that’s how it is.
A simple mindset, but how awe-inspiring it was! Maybe the Shu Guang players held the same attitude as her? Because of their love for the game, they were never distracted and would pay attention to every detail. That was how they could play so well and create miracles on every turn.
The journalist then stared blankly at the materials his helpers had collected.
Teammate #1: “Su Fei’s very beautiful!”
Teammate #2: “Su Fei’s very energetic!”
Teammate #3: “Su Fei loves to work; she unites the team, respects teachers and elders, studies diligently and contributes her own strength to improve society…”
Chen Huafeng crumpled the entire sheet and threw it into the garbage bin. Next.
“Su Fei’s three sizes are xx, xx and xx. Favorite underwear color is…”
Clearly, Chen Huafeng had found An Ke’s reply. Grunting, he crumpled the entire sheet as well and threw it into the garbage bin. However, he suddenly jumped up. He retrieved the paper, straightened it out and folded it before slipping it into his own pocket.
“How do I say this? Hmmm. When we hear her shouts from the sidelines, we feel a drive when we play, hehe! Although this is how I personally feel…” The interviewee was Kaka.
Yang Pan: “She’s always the first to celebrate our goals. She’d also scream and celebrate every win crazily without a care in the world. That’s when you forget her usual quiet personality.”
Lin Xiaofang, first-year student: “She’s a nice person, very caring towards the new members. Although she has to worry about all sorts of things for the team and do it alone on top of that, she never complains.”
Ren Yu De: “She’s nice.”
And then, he reached Zhang Jun’s response. The version where he fooled around with Huafeng’s assistant had already joined the few others at the bottom of the waste basket; this was from his own interview at Su Fei’s place.
“She looks quiet on the outside but, she can be quite tempestuous on the inside. Then there’s quite the count of those who fell for her wiles; Forcing others to go out with her on rest days, and when there’s a break, she’d drag you to study…” Quiet for a moment, Zhang Jun then finished with, “But, I’m thankful for her.”
The line that seemed to come out of nowhere left Chen Huafeng pondering.
“…Truthfully, if you look at it in certain way, the Shu Guang of today would not have existed if not for Su Fei,” Liang Ke had said in his own interview.
That statement shocked Chen Huafeng. How could a manager have so big an impact? But looking at all the critics in her charge, the reporter slowly discovered the answer.
Su Fei was a run-of-the-mill manager, but she dearly loved the sport and her job.
She dedicated herself to the team and helped the players wholeheartedly―and that spirit truly inspired the players.
Everyone liked her thus, they would not want to see her sad, just like how Zhang Jun himself once put it. “We don’t want her to be sad, so we’ll keep winning match after match.”
Su Fei’s presence was among the chief factors in the team’s meteoric rise―apart from the excellent players and coach, as well as the players’ love for the game!
Such a lucky girl to have so many teammates who liked her.
Such a lucky team to have so fine a manager!
That expression of thankfulness from Zhang Jun may not just be his own either―it could have very well been a conveyance of gratitude from the entire team. Without Su Fei, there would not be the Shu Guang of today.
Therefore, they were all thankful for all that she had done.
And thus, the featured article for the next issue took shape in Chen Huafeng’s mind.