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Strange Life of a Cat - Chapter 111

Published at 12th of December 2017 03:12:16 PM

Chapter 111
Zheng Tan planned to check out the middle school before the sports tournament .

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Jiao Yuan's school was not that far from the university, but it still took a while to get there . Zheng Tan planned to leave through the side gate closest to the middle school .
That morning, Zheng Tan headed toward the gate after dropping Youzi off at her elementary school .
The gate was narrow and inconspicuous . Only students knew and used this door . Zheng Tan didn't want to get caught up in a crowd, so he jumped over the fence .
Zheng Tan had never been to Jiao Yuan's school, but he remembered Mama Jiao's daily commuting route and the school's location on the map . It wasn't that far away, so he should be able to find it without any problems .

The streets were busy . It was a different type of busy than downtown . Many of the city's original residents lived around here . Middle-aged women chatted about the groceries with thick Chuhua accents .
There weren't any skyscrapers or fancy cars . The street was bumpy and narrow . Bicycles, scooters, and family sedans co-existed around here . The street was full of life - simple, mundane, yet beautiful life .
The school bus didn't take this route, so Zheng Tan didn't see a Chuhua University bus on the street .

Zheng Tan jumped on a wall to avoid getting caught in the crowd .
On one side of the street were shops, many of them sold breakfast . Zheng Tan could hear the sound of frying dough . Many students and office workers loved having breakfast here . However, Chuhua University was too large and dormitories were on the other side of campus . Sadly, most students could only come here once in a while .
Zheng Tan walked along the street . He couldn't help but sigh in amazement . Every time he left the campus, he saw something different .
A meowing cat interrupted his contemplation .

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A kitty around six or seven months old jumped onto the wall and blocked Zheng Tan's way . The kitty eyed Zheng Tan then started to walk . It seemed that this cat was going the same direction as Zheng Tan .
The kitten came out of a building nearby and jumped onto the wall straight away . To cats, walking along the wall was a better option than sharing the sidewalk with pedestrians . They were able to survey the entire area as well as avoid being kicked by people .
As long as they were going the same direction, Zheng Tan didn't mind the kitten . He didn't know it and didn't bother greeting it .
They walked in peace for some distance when Zheng Tan saw a cat ahead of them walking in the opposite direction .

They were meeting on a narrow path, literally .
Was a fight going to ensue?
Zheng Tan decided to observe for awhile . The wall was too narrow to allow two cats to walk on it side by side . Would normal cats choose to fight in this situation, or would one jump off the wall?
Apparently, there was a third option .
To Zheng Tan's surprise, the two cats didn't even slow down . When they were about to bump into each other, the kitten ducked and passed under the other cat . The larger cat cooperated and lifted a paw .
The larger cat talked towards Zheng Tan .

Zheng Tan looked at it . They were about the same size and that cat didn't look like it would back down .

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Zheng Tan walked forward cautiously, he was worried the other cat might suddenly attack . However, the cat didn't show any hostility .
When they were about ten centimeters away from each other, that cat stopped . It lifted its chin and raised a paw as if to say, 'well, you can duck now' .
Zheng Tan was speechless .
F*ck . He was not ducking under this cat's legs .
He thought about it, then checked out the wall ahead of him . He made some estimates, then jumped .

He jumped over that cat and landed safely back on the wall .
He was getting much better at controlling his jumps now . Although he landed slightly too close to the edge, he managed to stand still . Zheng Tan turned his head and shot the other cat a glance before leaving .
That cat shook its tail and continued on its path as well .
The kitten who was walking ahead of Zheng Tan reached its destination . They were near an old residential neighborhood with lots of trees . The kitten probably had friends living here .
Zheng Tan kept walking . He made sure to check the buildings on either side of the street as he walked . He didn't know which side of the road Jiao Yuan's school was on, so he needed to be careful . The affiliated middle school had a much smaller campus than Chuhua University, so the gate was probably smaller as well . He didn't want to miss it .

He kept walking for another five minutes before he heard people reading .

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That meant the school was just ahead .
He heard the students before he saw the school gates . A teacher was leading the reading of some text . Some of the students were just going along because they had to and sounded sleepy . Others were putting in too much effort and absolutely shouting . He also heard the soft voices of young girls . Together, the voices created the music of youth .
Zheng Tan peered through a window on the first floor . A couple of boys were poking their heads out from behind their books to look a girl .

This made Zheng Tan laugh .
Oh, what it was like being young!
Kids now were still untouched by the internet and were relatively innocent .
No student dared to stare out the window . From time to time students caught sight of the black cat on the fence, but would immediately be called upon by the teacher to answer a question .
Zheng Tan kept walking . He wanted to see the gate .

The size of the middle school was nothing compared to Chuhua University and the gate was only the size of a university side gate .
Zheng Tan decided it was not worth his time, so he jumped off the fence and into the school .
He didn't dare walk around campus in plain sight . He didn't know what the rules were and he was worried he would be caught . He walked along the flowerbed and hid behind some bushes .
He checked out the cafeteria, the convenience store, the parking lot, and the track field before going to the classroom building .
It took him about half an hour to get a good idea of the layout of the school .

The classroom building was quite large . He had heard from Mama Jiao and Jiao Yuan that the seventh graders were on the first and second floor . Eighth-grade classrooms were on the third and fourth floor and the highest floors were reserved for the ninth graders . The teachers' offices were on one side of the hall and the washrooms were on the other side . There were staircases in the middle and on either side of the hall .
The school didn't divide students into different classes using test scores . At least not in the seventh and eighth grade .
Zheng Tan remembered Jiao Yuan was in class 1 . Xiong Xiong's mother wanted her child to be first in everything, so she managed to have Xiong Xiong and all his friends be put in class 1 .
Their classroom should be on the first floor . Zheng Tan found it next to the teachers' office .

There were always people in the hallway, so Zheng Tan went to the back side of the building . He found a window and jumped onto the window sill .
Newspapers were glued to all the windows on the first floor . He guessed it was because there weren't any curtains so the students used newspapers to block the sun . They sometimes left a corner clear so they could look out the window sometimes .
The boy sitting next to the window was not listening to the math teacher lecture . He was instead coloring all the '0's in his textbook . When he was done, he started work on the '4's, the '6's, the '8's and the '9's . He colored them all, then erased all his work and started all over again .

Zheng Tan remembered doing this when he was a student . He also liked to do illustrations in his textbook or add things to the already existing pictures .
However, it had been a while since he last picked up a pen . He typed everything in University . If something had to be handwritten, he would pay someone to do it for him . He couldn't actually remember the last time he wrote anything .
The boy felt someone was staring at him so he looked up at the teacher . He frowned and turned his head to look outside through the uncovered corner of the window . He stared straight into a pair of eyes .
These eyes did not belong to a human .