The Taming of the Yandere

 

V2 Chapter 25: A Problem that Barbecue Can’t Solve

 

The night market.

To my city, it isn’t something that’s really special. Other places might have ones that are bigger and better than ours, but I’ve always thought that my night market gave people the best sense of home.

The pedestrian street wasn’t too wide, and it was normally empty and quiet during the day. But once nighttime came, the little road seemed to wake up, and all kinds of dazzling booths littered the curbs.

Some came to sell clothes, and set up hangers right on the street. The cheap but colorful fabric billowed in the gentle evening breeze.

Other goods were just as plentiful. Pots, pans, bowls, plates, brooms, just everyday household appliances. They were even cheaper than the ones sold in the supermarket.

Of course, there were also those retired grandpas and grandmas, selling their own gardened plants or little toys woven with lily pads and rice sacks. Although it didn’t earn much money, they served well to pass the time.

However, the most important business on the night market was food. Sustenance is the most important The first desire people have when they come into this world is to fill their stomach.

The amount of food I’ve eaten from when I was born to now is probably enough to fill several truckloads.

The night market had fried egg pancakes, fried rice, and steamed dishes from the north and our native southern seafood barbecue.

I liked to eat local barbecue the best. With our close distance to the sea, I can buy a big pile of clams for only a little more than ten yuan. * Roast them on the fire, dab on a little soy sauce, and no words can describe how delicious it is.

*A pound of clams at a coastal city in China is like twelve to fourteen yuan. That’s about 3-4 USD. 

A celebrity from the Northeast once said this.

“There isn’t a single problem in the world that barbecue can’t solve. If one meal isn’t enough, then you better go for round two.”

….

I blundered around, crashing through the bustling night market.

When I was young, I would come often with my mother to eat a midnight meal, but our chances grew slim when my studies took a steep climb.

Did Jiang Muqing come here to eat?

Alone?

One person silently stuffing themselves on a table seems quite peculiar.

I followed the flow of the crowd. The food area was full of young couples, and some gathering of family and friends.

In this environment, if one person were to take up one table in solitude, along with a full table of barbecue and full boxes of beer, they’ll definitely stand out.

I found the orange dress in no time. She sat at a quiet corner, waiting for the cooks to bring her the seafood she ordered.

“Jiang Muqing!”

I walked over, and sat in front of her

The shoujo saw that I called, and turned her head around with disgust after glancing upwards. She seemed to have known I was going to come, and didn’t show much surprise.

“Ten lamb kidney kebabs, please.”

She ignored me, and waved to the waiter.

What does kidney kebab have to do with me coming here?! And isn’t ordering lamb kidney, a Northwestern specialty, in a coastal city strange?

“Um…. Isn’t that a bit too much?”

Her table already had quite a lot of food, and I doubted that her stomach could hold that much.

“If you want to eat, then sit. If you don’t, then leave. Try not to bother me.”

Jiang Muqing turned her head unhappily.

“….”

I didn’t have anything to reply.

Jiang Muqing didn’t seem that interested in the table’s barbecue, but more in the box of beer by her feet.

She familiarly pulled out a bottle, cracked open the cap with an opener, and poured it in a mug. She downed the whole thing in one gulp. *

In one gulp?

Wow…

*China’s regulation of alcohol to minors is extremely lax. Well, not lax, more like insufficient. Nobody cares enough that they’ll ask for ID even if the customer is clearly a minor. Of course, if you go into malls or large supermarkets, they probably won’t sell minors alcohol, but any moderately/small sized stores won’t have a problem as long as you have money. Karaoke-TV and large restaurants are okay with it if you make a reservation for those private closed-off rooms, where no one can see. Most kids in China have their first real beers in middle school.

As a high-school student, I haven’t had any alcohol before. *

*Lu Fan is a f4cking pussy.

I’ve never tried to get drunk before, because I know that it doesn’t feel very good. When people get drunk, not only do they say crazy things they don’t mean, they also throw up everywhere. It’s rather annoying. *

*Getting sh1t-faced with your friends is really fun.

Beer shouldn’t get me too drunk, since its alcohol content is lower.

I didn’t want eat anything. I planned to sit here for a while, wait for the shoujo to finish her tantrum, and safely bring her home.

Maybe it was time to let her vent properly.

Jiang Muqing finished the bottle to the last drop, and immediately brought out another. She downed the whole thing again in one shot.

She seemed to have made a blood-oath with the box of beer, vowing to finish the entire thing by tonight.

She cracked open bottle after bottle, filling mug after mug.

I sat on the side, watching her.

How much are you going to drink?

Then, the ten kebabs of lamb kidney arrived.

The shoujo stopped.

“Lu Fan, eat it all.”

She looked like she was ordering me.

“I don’t want to.”

I’m not just going to eat this plate full of animal organs, although it did smell pretty nice. *

*Again, Lu Fan is a pussy. If you ever go to China, authentic roasted lamb kidneys are the BEST.

“Are you a man?” She demanded.

“How am I not?”

“You’re scared to drink the beer, and you’re scared to eat the kidneys. You’re not any stronger than a woman.” She patronized.

“Who says I’m scared?”

“If you’re not going to eat, then I will!”

The shoujo finished a kebab.

Say, why did you order something for men, anyway? Nobody here has weak kidneys.

Kidneys?

Could she mean… *

*Kidney problems can affect sexual function and the ability to have children.

….

Jiang Muqing, this is not going to end like this!

For a woman to question a man’s abilities down there, is the last straw for me.

I pulled the rest of the kebabs to my side, and started to wolf them down.

“Here, drink.”

Jiang Muqing cracked open a beer.

I tipped the beer to my lips, but the fiery, bitter taste made me sputter at half a bottle.

“Hmph, what an idiot.”

Jiang Muqing opened another bottle, downing it all in one gulp.

“You’re the idiot!”

The rest of the bottle went down quickly.

My stomach suddenly felt really stuffed, throbbing with pain. I quickly ate some roasted squid and bread to quell the disgusting taste in my throat.

“Idiot, why can you be so natural, so relaxed around other girls… you can talk for so long….”

Jiang Muqing cracked another one, and drank half of it.

“Mm?”

I realized that she was getting a little dizzy. She must be nearing her limit.

“To me…. You’re always so tame, acting so agreeable… I feel like there’s a big conspiracy behind your back…”

“Lu Fan, you have a big conspiracy!”

Jiang Muqing glared at me with bloodshot eyes.

“….”

“Lu Fan wants to get rid of me….”

“Lu Fan wants to leave me….”

“Lu Fan thinks about getting away from me every day… and not caring about me….”

“Lu Fan hates me…. Finding other girls… not coming home…”

“I wanted to give Lu Fan a surprise… wearing clothes that Lu Fan likes… and going to find you… and…”

“I should have known; I’ve always been run around in circles by Lu Fan….”

“I’m the idiot… I’ve always been….”

The shoujo drank bottle after bottle, until the box was completely empty. But she was still groping for a bottle.

“Even if I’m led in circles, what difference does it make? What do you think you can change?”

“Lu Fan’s plan will never work.”

“Don’t you understand? I’m not even able to leave your side…”

She spoke sentence after sentence, each one slamming mercilessly against my carefully constructed confidence.

Before, I had set myself to tame the yandere with conviction. But now that I realize it, I’ve never gone past square one.

If these drunken words are the shoujo’s true feelings, then one thing is clear. The first phase of the Taming of the Yandere has failed.

As for the future, I have no idea….