Chapter 12:

Taji wants to learn?

I’m in love with a Chinese Nationalist

Another fine weekend has arrived. After this restless week, I have been quite excited to sit back and relax with a bowl of ice cream in front of the TV. Unfortunately, life isn't kind and soon I got stormed by my mother about slacking off.

“Taji, mind cleaning the windows in the house?”

“I’m watching TV. I’ll do it when I’m finished with the show.”

“How long is left?”

“About 20 minutes.”

With nothing to say, she sighed and left the room. Finally, back to my show.

The show went on and on and on. I can’t tell if it was just poorly made or if I was actually watching the next episodes without realising.

The worst imaginable option happened. I was indeed watching the following episodes of the show. My mother left the house to go shopping a little while ago, the moment she gets back I will be dead.

I murdered my entire body just to clean all the windows in the house. I had only a few windows remaining when I heard the keys rattling at the door. Doomsday was about to arrive sooner than I thought.

“Taji? Where are you?”

I cannot tell if she is calling my name out to praise me or to complain about something. However, I cannot take the risk, I silently carried on cleaning the remaining windows. I really hope that she doesn’t come here for a little while so I can finish these off.

“Hi, Taji.”

My soul left my body. The sudden unexpected appearance right over my shoulder was not something I needed.

“Why the hell would you do that.”

“Because I wanted to see what you were doing. Good job by the way.”


To a surprise, my mother had nothing negative to say. Huh. That is rather weird. Usually, I would expect her to try to flame me for the smallest things possible.

I wonder, what should I do for the rest of the day? This is probably one of the hardest life questions anyone has to deal with. What to do? What is there to do? Where should I go? Should I go to Kingo? I wonder… wait… I need to do homework! Maybe Lei Mei will start to recognise me more if I start doing better at school. Maybe she will be able to accept me!

I have sat locked away in my room for three hours, using my brain to its maximum. Looking over thousands of articles, looking through hundreds of books and using countless sources BUT all of this is pointless, I have made no progress on this homework. What a waste.

How does anyone even manage this? I can’t understand anything. How does Lei Mei do this?

What should I do? What should I do? I wonder, what should I do?

Wait… if Lei Mei is so smart, why don’t I get her to teach me? That could work, I could also actually spend more time with her this way, meaning that we can get closer. This is the perfect plan.

“No.” Lei Mei replied on the phone and instantly hung up.

Well, that’s the end of that plan.

My boredom has finally forced me to leave the house, maybe I’ll find something to do while wandering around the streets.

It has been a while since I was able to go on a peaceful walk like this. This time something is different. Everything I see I think about how I could use it to spend time with Lei Mei. Different activities to do, different places to go eat food at, all sorts like this. No matter what it is my brain is linking it all back to Lei Mei.

I’m surprised how much sane I feel recently, yet still have the same amount of feelings for Lei Mei, maybe even more than before. I really need to get Lei Mei to notice me more.

I ended up going back to the alley cafe that Lei Mei took me to that one time. Despite the very sceptical look, it was rather cosy and had a nice atmosphere going.

The people here are really relaxed and kind, the music is also just perfect I can sit back close my eyes and feel free from my struggles and stress. It really makes me think that life is beautiful.

“Hey, kid. How has it been going for you?” said an oddly friendly voice.

“Hi,” I responded as I looked over to see their face. “I’ve been doing great, how about yourself?”

It was the old guy from the day I went out with Lei Mei for a date. Nice to see him around again.

“I’ve been doing fine kid. How’s it going with the lady?” he asked as he seated himself opposite me.

I don’t know who let him sit with me, but very well.

“It’s been getting better recently. I feel like we are starting to get closer than we were before.”

“You sure? There’s a lack of confidence in your voice.”

“Lack of confidence in my voice? What do you mean?”

“I mean that you aren’t able to express words correctly, you speak but it's just words, there is no passion in them.”

“I don’t follow.”

“You need to learn to express yourself. Put confidence into the words you are saying.”

I looked at him blank. I really don't understand what this means but I feel like he might be onto something.

After a sigh he carried on speaking, “See, what I’m trying to say, is that you talk like a bitch. You need to show that you mean what you are saying. Don’t think twice about it, just say it. Act as if it’s what you meant to say.”

“Ohh, I see.” This makes more sense now. I need to mean what I say. Maybe that’s why Tomoko finally backed down after that talk. I spoke my mind and didn’t think twice about it.

“You’re a genius old man. Where did you come up with this?”

“Years of experience. You’ll achieve great things over time with experience. Keep learning and you’ll surpass me.”

“Much appreciated wise man. I’ll make it there soon. Now I know what I need to do.”

“Oh? What’s that kid?”

“I need to become a Communist!”

The old man’s jaw dropped to the ground. He didn’t say anything. His eyes went blank. Is he dead? “Hey?” - no response.

I tried poking him.

No response.

Is he okay? I feel like he might actually be dead. I don’t know what to do anymore. Should I ask someone for help? Should I call for an ambulance? How the hell do I even explain what happened?

“Hey, excuse me. Something happened to this old man… he suddenly froze and hasn’t moved for a while now.” I asked one of the waiters.

Hopefully, they can help or at least get someone who can help.

“Oh, don’t worry about him. He’ll be fine in a bit.” the waiter replied and carried on with their job.

What the hell? Is this really that normal? What if he’s actually dead? This is terrifying.

While I waited for the old man to wake up, I started reading up about communism. Quite a lot of it was actually making sense. I have always felt that people should be treated more evenly… but to think that politics are the ones preventing us from all being equal and only helping the rich stay rich.

I really can’t believe what I’m reading. I wish I had known about this sooner. Now I understand why Lei Mei is so obsessed with this how Chinese Communist party thing. It all adds up. It’s the ideal way to live. I wonder why her parents decided to move out to Japan. China sounds like a great place.

“NO!” The old man screamed as he woke up.

What happened to him?