~The Music of Teenage Love~
"You really like Wen Jun, don't you?" My good friend, Mei Mei, asked while smiling.
"Of course not! How can it be? How can I like him?" I said in response. "I just really admire him. He is a good friend of mine, so it's just natural that I support him. Just look! He is the first honor in class! He isn't only smart, he is also very skilled in basketball, dancing and drawing! He also won our school's singing competition winning second place! He treats everyone with respect, and he's also very humble. Of course everyone likes him! What kind of person wouldn't like him?"
"Of course I know that, Xiao Hua! But then I also notice…you have been staring at him in class these days!" Mei Mei said again.
I felt my face turn red. My heart skipped. I still don't agree with the nonsense she's saying. I don't care about what Mei Mei says.
It's all nonsense.
But I can't keep lying to myself! Whenever I see him, I will feel very nervous. Whenever he smiles at me, I feel as though I would faint. I don't only like him because of his handsome face, I also love it every time he encourages me do to something. I didn't believe in my own capabilities before, but now I look at myself with a different point of view. Now I am braver in facing all hardships. And why is that so? It's all because of him. Because of him.
But, I'm still afraid. Scared that he will see my little mistakes.
Our school will have a singing competition next week. Since I was in preschool, I already liked to sing. I always sing at home. I especially like Japanese, Korean, American and Taiwanese songs. I really want to try how it would be like to join a singing contest. But, my parents, my brothers and sisters, and my friends all advised me not to join. Why is that so? It is because they say that I don't even sing well. My singing is only fit inside the toilet room. I would definitely lose. If I still go up the stage and sing, everyone will just laugh at me. Those words really hurt me. I was very sad. They all said I was smart, but I can't sing. I should just do well in my studies, get high grades, and not busy myself with anything else. Especially that useless dream of singing…
Do I really not have hope in the aspect of singing anymore? Can't I practice anymore? I might improve someday, right? I felt my tears slowly fall down my face. Suddenly, I didn't think that Wen Jun, the friend I adore, came. And he stayed beside me. I thought, his parents gave him a really good name. Wen Jun. That name really suits him. He treats everyone very gently [wen rou]; he is also very good-looking [ying jun]. My heart skipped a beat again when he wiped the tears from my face dry. I shyly looked at his huge black eyes.
"Xiao Hua, why are you crying?" He asked me with utmost tenderness. At that time, I couldn't control myself anymore and told him the truth about whole situation. He listened to me intently, from beginning until the end.
After I finished talking, I felt very humiliated. I thought he was going to laugh at me. But, I thought wrong. I felt really ashamed because I thought of Wu Jun that way. Did I really think that this gentleman would laugh at a girl like me? Impossible! He's not that kind of person.
"Don't let them hinder your dreams." He suddenly reminded me; my heart pounded with what he said.
"Huh? What do you mean?" I asked him curiously.
"You like to join the contest, don't you?" He asked me for assurance.
"That's right. But, I can't sing… Really, I'm no good!" I whispered.
"Everybody can learn. Everyone can also improve. To say you can't is nonsense!" He told me encouragingly. I felt that he has touched my heart yet again. I know that this isn't the first time. He has already changed my way of thinking before. Right now, he has done it again.
"But, who will teach me?" I worriedly inquired him.
"Me. I can teach you."
My heart started beating crazily again.
A week passed quickly. Today is the day of the singing competition. At that time, I was so nervous! But then, Wen Jun suddenly came beside me and told me softly. "Do not be too nervous. Just breathe slowly. You will surely do well. Remember, you need to believe in your own abilities. Do not forget the things I taught you. When you sing, release your voice from your abdomen. If you can't reach the high notes, it's okay. Use your deep, low toned voice to sing. The song I chose isn't that high pitched; no worries. You will…"
Wen Jun didn't stop reminding and encouraging me. He always assured me… that I will do well. I noticed that he was even more nervous than I was! It looked like he was so worried on my behalf.
"Yes, teacher." I said jokingly. "It looks like you're even more worried than I am!"
"Nah! Okay. Go up the stage already. Don't forget, I will always support you. Win or lose, it is okay. Remember, your parents, your friends, and the whole school can see you singing for the first time."
"I know that." I smiled at him and walked up the stage. "I will definitely surprise them. I will make them happy."
I finally got on stage. My footsteps were heavy. I was a little afraid, but then, when I saw Wen Jun staring at me, I became brave. I'm no longer scared. I saw that the auditorium was filled with people. The whole entire student body is really going to hear me sing! I will certainly succeed! I need to sing well, or else Wen Jun would be so disappointed in me. I closed my eyes shut, then took a deep breath, and sang.
I wasn't even done singing, but many people were already clapping their hands. There were others who stood up while cheering me on, shouting.
"We look up to you!"
"You sing too well!"
"You really improved a lot!"
My tears couldn't stop flowing. I was way too happy. That moment was the most memorable and happiest time of my life! I felt like I was up above the skies. I finally reached my dream! And all these are because of… Wen Jun!
In the end, I didn't win, but I still had no regrets. I know that I did my best performance. I worked hard. My parents and all my friends are supporting me. They all liked the song I sang. I made them happy.
I couldn't help but smile.
But, the song I sang was Fahrenheit's very popular song, "Can't Love".
I thought. Maybe Wen Jun just treats me as a friend. He can't love me like the way I love him. I recall a line from that song.
You can't love me the way I do, I understand.
Just when I was feeling depressed, without warning, Wen Jun hurriedly ran towards my side and then embraced me. Leaning against his body, my heart was thumping yet again. I was really astounded.
"Xiao Hua, you might not know, but I…" He uttered tensely.
"What is it?" I asked curiously.
"I love you very much." He said ever so gently. And then, he lightly kissed my lips.
I sensed the sincere love he had for me.
That's when I realized,
Wen Jun was my real dream.
This was translated from the Chinese story "年輕愛的音樂" on the day after it was written. The English version was written on May 3, 2012 afternoon.