Dad, Please Try a Little Harder

Chapter 13 - 13 It’s Not About Being Sexy or Not, Mainly I Just Like Cats
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Chapter 13: Chapter 13 It's Not About Being Sexy or Not, Mainly I Just Like Cats

Zhao Baiyu was returning to Azure Bay.

This trip to Riverside had been quite rewarding for her. Without going into detail, her grandfather's teachings about "cultivating a noble character, staying grounded, and having a broad perspective" had left a profound impact on her.

The day before her departure, she encountered Qian Quan, her grandfather's young yet skilled Chinese chess companion.

"Mr. Huang mentioned that you practice martial arts. May I ask if you've learned Wing Chun?"

This young and handsome Chinese chess expert spoke with a smile that was hard to dislike.

"Do you want to learn Wing Chun that focuses on safety and thoroughness? I haven't systematically studied it. Are you interested?" Zhao Baiyu's curiosity was piqued upon hearing this.

"No, I've been casually researching it recently."

"Well, I can recommend a few Wing Chun experts of my generation to you if you're interested. You can spar with them in the future."

"No need, no need," Qian Quan refused repeatedly. "I was just curious after watching a movie. Please don't mind."

Jokingly, spar? He would surely be thoroughly outmatched by them.

"I don't mind."

Zhao Baiyu smiled and was about to end the conversation when a sudden inspiration struck her. She asked, "You're so good at playing Chinese chess. Do you have any insights to share?"

After careful consideration, Qian Quan pointed at the chessboard and said, "Look at the border of two opposing powers on this chessboard. It actually reveals the backdrop of the war between the Han and Chu dynasties. Using the boundary of the rivers as a reference, the western side represents the Han Dynasty, while the eastern side represents the Chu Dynasty. Therefore, I'm using Xiang Yu and Liu Bang as metaphors; it's just a metaphorical comparison for illustrative purposes."

Zhao Baiyu nodded, and Mr. Huang looked at Qian Quan with genuine interest.

"In the early stages of the war between the Han and Chu dynasties, Xiang Yu, the King of the Chu dynasty, had overwhelming dominance in terms of collective forces and individual strength against Liu Bang, the King of the Han dynasty. However, he ended up losing. Why is that?"

"He didn't win against Liu Bang in Chinese chess, which means that during the peak of strategic maneuvering, he was outmaneuvered by Liu Bang's 'gentle' approach. For example, at the meticulously planned gathering with schemes in Hongmen, where Liu Bang yielded at every point, stepping back and confusing Xiang Yu."

"However, Liu Bang's 'gentle' approach wasn't a sign of weakness; it was about accommodation and compromise. He used this strategy to navigate the situation, temporarily halting Xiang Yu's advances and luring him into a trap."

"He made promises to the people to establish certain terms, constructed mountain paths, confused the enemy and plotted in secret, set up ambushes from ten directions, and created a situation of echoes of Chu Dynasty's folk songs resounded from all directions, all in order to create his own advantage."

"Even more interestingly, these strategic maneuvers didn't seem to originate from Liu Bang himself. Instead, they came from his advisors and generals. Figures like Chen Ping, Zhang Liang, Han Xin, Fan Kuai, and others. Liu Bang himself appeared to be almost inactive, akin to a ruffian with no significant actions. Yet, he managed to turn the tide from defense to offense, ultimately conquering the realm."

"From the perspective of a Chinese chess player, Liu Bang appeared to be doing nothing while simultaneously doing everything."

Qian Quan combined the chess principles his father had shared with him with his own insights, and he expounded on them.

"Liu Bang had the favor of strategic fortune, and he understood how to create a favorable position. He merged the forces of fortune and strength, and he won in the end. These are my somewhat rudimentary insights into the game. I'm not sure if these concepts relate to martial arts, but feel free to listen and decide."

Qian Quan wasn't someone who typically expounded grand philosophies. However, when asked about his insights into Chinese chess, it happened to scratch the itch of his "master-level chess skills," prompting him to share his thoughts.

Mr. Huang chuckled and said, "Very impressive. I'd say it strikes the core."

Zhao Baiyu pondered for a moment before responding, "I have a lot of thoughts in my mind, but I'm not sure how to express them. I need to sort them out. Thank you for sharing these insights with me; I truly appreciate it."

Zhao Baiyu wasn't just being polite to Qian Quan; it wasn't her nature. She genuinely sensed something profound but couldn't articulate it at the moment.

"You're welcome. Actually, most of these principles were shared with me by my dad, a bit esoteric," Qian Quan admitted.

"They might be esoteric, but they also hold truth," Mr. Huang chimed in, then turned to his granddaughter. "You can also take a reference from his somewhat profound words."

"Okay."

...

In the second week after Zhao Baiyu returned to Azure Bay, Qian Quan's temporary job at KFC was also coming to an end.

He would be starting at Seacoast Normal University in early September. In the final week of summer vacation, he had planned to spend a few days at West Lake with Ding Linlang.

"I really like this Willow Melody Hotel the most. The name sounds nice, the hotel has a good ambiance, it's convenient for travel, and you can even enjoy a lake view... it's just a bit expensive."

While booking the hotel, Ding Linlang quickly set her sights on the third-ranked hotel in the province.

Qian Quan was also very tempted when he heard that. Moreover, he had enough money to spend now. After all, he had 530,000 in his account.

But obviously, he couldn't reveal that now. "Let's experience it another time when we get the chance. For now, let's just book a regular national chain hotel or maybe even a bed and breakfast."

"How about booking a bed and breakfast? There's one called Misty Clouds B&B; looks decent. It's a 35-square-meter duplex, with a living room downstairs and two beds upstairs."

"Is it far from West Lake?"

"About four or five subway stops away, within a 20-minute taxi ride."

"That sounds good. Let's go with that."

After reaching an agreement with Qian Quan, Ding Linlang quickly booked the bed and breakfast. For three nights, the price was exactly half of what they would have paid for one night at Willow Melody Hotel.

The next day, both of them packed a small suitcase and a backpack and set off.

Before leaving, Qian Wenlin gently warned his son, "Take care of Linlang during the traveling. Do what needs to be done proactively and avoid anything unnecessary, got it?"

Although Qian Quan and Ding Linlang had spent a lot of time together growing up and had plenty of opportunities for individual interactions, this was a different scenario where they would be traveling and staying in the same room. As a parent, Qian Wenlin couldn't help but worry.

"Dad, don't worry," Qian Quan responded, sensing the underlying message in his father's words. He found it a bit amusing. What could he possibly do that he shouldn't with Ding Linlang?

As Qian Quan and Ding Linlang boarded the public bus to the high-speed rail station, Qian Quan received another message from Mr. Ding, phrased more delicately: "Rocky, you understand what I mean, right?"

Qian Quan quickly replied, "I understand, Mr. Ding. You can trust me!" f(r)eewebnovel

"Do you know what my mom told me last night?" Ding Linlang glanced at Qian Quan and casually started the conversation.

"What did she say?"

"She told me not to cross the line with you, that we should maintain appropriate attitude and behavior."

"Huh?"

"Why are you puzzled?"

"It's just... both our dads gave me a warning too."

"A warning about what?"

"Just... not to violate you."

"Violate me?"

"That's what they said."

"I don't know why they're worried. We would have done it if we wanted to cross the line."

"That's exactly what I thought. These unnecessary reminders might just trigger a rebellious mindset in us. We may secretly cross the line and then surprise everyone..."

"Shut up!" Ding Linlang shot Qian Quan a glare.

"Just kidding, just kidding..."

An hour later, the bus arrived at the high-speed rail station.

Since they still had some time before the ticket check-in, Ding Linlang found a place to write her online novel.

At 9:23 a.m., the ticket check-in began.

Once on the train, Ding Linlang continued typing.

Qian Quan even began to suspect that she had shared her secret of writing online novels with him so that she could openly type in front of him.

However, this was unavoidable – updating was the lifeblood of online novels.

Around 11:40 a.m., the high-speed train arrived in Hangzhou.

After getting off the train, they first found a nearby mall close to the bed and breakfast they had booked for lunch.

"There are so many people here," Ding Linlang exclaimed.

"Tourist cities are like this," Qian Quan was mentally prepared, "And you see, there are many beautiful women in Hangzhou."

Before his words had even faded, two attractive and sexy young women wearing cat ears and backless dresses with high-end single-shoulder bags walked past.

Qian Quan gave Ding Linlang a confirming look, and Ding Linlang smirked, saying, "You really like this sexy wildcat look, huh?"

Qian Quan shook his head, "It's not about being sexy or not, mainly I just like cats."

Ding Linlang couldn't be bothered to engage with him and went on to find a place to eat.

During mealtime, lines were forming everywhere. In the end, the two of them found a noodle shop with relatively fewer customers.

After finishing their noodles, they went to check-in at Misty Clouds B&B.

The room was reasonably tidy, although it had a slight odor.

Once they had set down their luggage, Ding Linlang went to open the window. She turned around and noticed a transparent plastic container on the windowsill. f(r)eewebn(o)vel.com

"What's this?" Ding Linlang picked it up to examine.

"Probably chargers and things?" Qian Quan also approached curiously.

The plastic container held various adult items and... intimate products.

It was written on top: "Paid items."

An awkward silence hung for about two seconds.

Ding Linlang put the container down, saying, "These aren't chargers."

"Right."

"Let's stick to hotels in the future."

"Agreed."

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