Figure Skating: I’m More Suited for the Olympics – Chapter 36 – Looking Good

As the grandson of the old master of the Qin family, Qin Xuejun’s massage and acupressure skills are quite good. After finishing the fruits, only halfway through the movie, Qin Xuejun casually lifted one of Zhang Jue’s legs and started massaging his feet.

Zhang Jue was initially startled, but as the massage continued, he began to enjoy it, squinting his eyes.

Qin Xuejun later gained the nickname “Golden Hands.” It is said that his surgical skills are exquisite, and he gained fame during residency by administering anesthesia to a newborn premature baby just after birth.

This delicate touch, much like Zhang Jue’s feel on the ice, is unreasonable and enviable. It’s a unique talent.

If these golden hands were used for surgeries involving unborn fetuses or newborns still attached to the umbilical cord, who knows how many lives could be saved? Rumor has it that when Qin Xuejun completed his residency, there was almost a fight between the heads of the obstetrics and orthopedics departments over him. Later, the neurology department also joined in, and the situation was quite intense.

Under the skilled massage of these golden hands, Zhang Jue couldn’t be happier. It was much more enjoyable than the foot massages he had experienced in his previous life. The acupoints were accurate, the pressure was just right, and the hands were warm, relaxing his fatigued feet.

If it weren’t for the stimulating plot of “Forbidden Island,” he might have almost fallen asleep in comfort.

The child sniffled and softly thanked: “Brother Qin, thank you.”

Qin Xuejun grunted: “I have something to do the day after tomorrow and can’t come to watch your competition in person. If you really want to thank me, bring back a plaque as a gift, alright?”

Zhang Jue nodded happily: “Sure, I’ll bring it back for you.”

Qin Xuejun said: “…Forget about the gift. After all, it’s the first final medal for Chinese men’s singles. Your coaches probably want to keep it well.”

Although he was junior in rank, he didn’t dare to compete with that group of people for the first Finals medal.

But if Zhang Jue wins more medals in the future and is willing to give, Qin Xuejun would gladly accept one for his collection. Thinking about this, he refined the massage even more delicately.

From start to finish, Qin Xuejun never doubted whether Zhang Jue could make it to the awards podium, and Zhang Jue never doubted himself.

Because Qin Xuejun was a talented student highly regarded by many seniors, each one of them spared no effort in nurturing him. After finishing one movie, he had to leave, claiming he needed to go home to complete the assignments his professors had given him. Rumor has it he also planned to study the technique of the manual hemostasis he witnessed during the day.

Zhang Jue stood up to send him off, but Qin Xuejun stopped him.

“Rest, I’ll go by myself.”

Then, he hobbled away with his crutch, while Zhang Jue, pasting a medicinal patch on his foot, lay on the bed. The TV had already started playing “Lost in Journey,” and one of the male leads, inconvenienced by not being able to carry liquids on the plane, guzzles down 5 liters of milk at the security checkpoint. Zhang Jue recalls Qin Xuejun pinching the strawberry, the long, fair, and well-defined fingers stained with red juice.

Such a beautiful pair of hands, but perhaps due to frequent contact with disinfectants, a 1-millimeter-long cut has appeared at the joint of the thumb, already scabbed over. Brother Qin hands were so precious; they deserved a bit more care.

Oh, right, and those eyes too. Qin Xuejun was one of the few high-achieving individuals Zhang Jue has met without any nearsightedness, with gray eyes resembling the sky in Siberia, floating with cold-colored snowstorms, yet pure, clear, and distant. They must be cherished well in this lifetime, and no one should be allowed to harm them.

He sighed in his heart, hoping that this guy would encounter fewer unnecessary troubles in the future and stay healthy, enabling him to save more people.

As Zhang Jue prepared to get a good night’s sleep, Zhang Junbao walked in, greeted by Shen Liu.

“Little Jue, don’t rush to sleep. Have a glass of milk. Your uncle especially went to the national team canteen to get a 5-liter bottle of pure milk. The source is particularly safe, and the quality is good.”

Zhang Jue: “…”

Zhang Jue couldn’t resist his old uncle’s insistence, so he reluctantly gulped down the milk, comforting himself with a milk mustache.

It’s okay, doing too many jumps can have a negative impact on height growth. Drinking milk can counterbalance that. Puberty is the time for crazy growth anyway, and whether you drink milk or not doesn’t make a difference.


Zhang Jue’s lower back injury, if he not strain it, could recover in about a week or so. Since it wasn’t severe enough, it couldn’t meet the standards for closed training, so he had to take painkillers.

He spent a day without training and, on the third day, was taken directly to the arena. Zhang Junbao added powdered painkillers to his sports drink. The pink drink turned into a strange color immediately.

Zhang Jue stared at the drink bottle with a resistant look for a long time. Zhang Junbao coldly said: “Drink it.” Zhang Jue closed his eyes, resignedly drank the entire concoction, and exclaimed: “What’s this taste!”

Zhang Jue covered his mouth, tears welling up, leaning on his uncle’s sturdy arm to suppress the urge to vomit. Shen Liu chuckled, patting his crocodile head.

“This is the taste of an athlete. If you don’t take good care of your body, you won’t be able to escape from this in future training and competitions.”

It’s supposed to taste bad, it’s meant to make you not want to drink it a second time.

Song Cheng smilingly added: “Little Jue, you must cherish your body in the future. Health is your most precious wealth.”

Zhang Jue nodded. With the medicinal patch on his back, waist support in place, he took the jump rope and started double jumps. The rope made a whooshing sound on the ground, and the boy’s legs, like they were equipped with springs, exhibited great elasticity.

Once his body heated up, Zhang Jue prepared for a few movements. Leaping forward, he executed a 2A on solid ground.

The young boy’s jumping height might not be as astonishing as Ilya’s, but his mid-air rotation speed was unmatched. His slender and petite figure made his jumps seem graceful, almost like he was flying.

Seeing this, Hayato Teraoka thought, this is probably another kind of physical talent. He, being 1.74 meters tall was destined never to jump as beautifully as Zhang Jue, even with all the speed in the world.

Just as Zhang Jue was about to jump again for a 3S, Angus Joe, seemingly casually, passed by his jumping trajectory, nearly colliding with the landing Zhang Jue.

The young boy was startled, but Angus Joe walked away naturally, as if everything was just a coincidence making Zhang Jue’s nervous reactions seem a bit paranoid.

Ilya noticed something. He had been a Russian prodigy too, beating peers at 13, so he had encountered similar situations, resulting in several instances of poor performance. For young athletes with unstable conditions, it’s normal for a compromised warm-up to affect the competition.

Anyone in the entire warm-up room who understood the situation felt that Zhang Jue was being bullied. Zhang Junbao, Shen Liu, and Song Cheng, however, became alert simultaneously, guarding against Zhang Jue doing something that might warrant self-reflection at this critical moment.

This little crocodile, just looking delicate, would have been taken to the infirmary long ago if he were easily bullied!

Zhang Jue stood still for a moment, turned around silently, and walked away, planning to warm up elsewhere. Hayato Teraoka squinted his eyes and shouted in Mandarin.

“Zhang Jun, come jump over here.”

The Japanese boy waved friendly at Zhang Jue. Zhang Jue glanced at his old uncle and, after receiving a nod of approval, jogged over to Hayato Teraoka. He gave him a smile, revealing a set of eight teeth. Today, the child was dressed in a costume adorned with musical notes, with musical note earrings dangling from his ears and a gold ribbon tied in his hair, resembling a little prince.


Hayato Teraoka’s smile became a bit more genuine. He stood on Zhang Jue’s outer side, effectively blocking the view between him and Angus Joe, clearly showing a protective intent.

For Hayato Teraoka, helping this junior was not just because Zhang Jue looked cute. In his view, as Asian athletes in men’s figure skating, especially in the difficult Asian men’s singles, should mutually support each other and present a united front to the outside world.

Moreover, even though Tama-san looked small, he was very strong and determined. Despite being injured, he continued to compete. It was truly hard not to like him.

Ilya lowered his raised hand, shifting his gaze away.

Oh well, even if he calls him, Jue probably won’t understand.

As the warm-up continued, applause continued to echo from the outside. Before the men’s singles, the Junior Ice Dance Finals were held. Ice dance is currently the only discipline in figure skating that allows the use of vocal music.

The French pair, currently competing, chose Sarah Brightman’s “There for Me.” The celestial-like singing lingered in the arena. The young boys and girls on the ice held hands, locking eyes with mutual deep affection. Their faces showed the same profound emotions, and their still somewhat inexperienced steps and lifts captivated everyone.

The French senior men’s singles, Martin, leaned against the railing, holding a cup of lemon water, looking completely bored.

He asked Vasili: “Hey, I came to watch the competition because my fellow countryman Alex didn’t perform well in the short program, and I’m worried about him. But your Ilya doesn’t need to be worried about at all, right? Why are you here? The Junior events aren’t that interesting!”

Italy’s men’s singles, Maquen, smiled gently. “I think there’s still something to watch in the Junior Men’s Singles. Isn’t there a kid that performed Bellman in the Final? He seems promising.”

Russia’s men’s singles second elder, Sergei, rolled his eyes: “Come on, that kid is only 13. It’s normal for young kids to be flexible, and I’ve seen his spins. His axis is unstable, and the jump height is ordinary. Clearly, he relies on speed for his jumps. I’m sure the upper limit for a kid who has come this far through opportunistic means is not high.”

Sergei and Maquen argued until Vasili interrupted them.

He said: “Sergei, don’t get it wrong. That kid has a high ceiling. He’s one of the most remarkable potential in men’s singles skaters I’ve seen. He will be a formidable rival for Ilya and Hayato Teraoka. Their presence is enough to increase the appeal of this competition.”

Sergei a bit puzzled, said: “I don’t know where you got all this, but I will stick to my opinion. This Junior event might be somewhat interesting, but the winner will only be Ilya.”

Vasili chuckled, shaking his head. In the tone of someone who has been there, he joked: “Sergei, you’re only three years older than Ilya and six years older than Jue. Unless there’s an accident, you two have a high probability of meeting in the senior competitions. I advise you not to underestimate him.”

“That’s the kid Shen is pinning hopes on for the rise of Chinese men’s singles. He’s not an easy opponent.”

Maquen concluded: “Let the competition results tell us everything. Look, those six kids are here, they are entering the arena.”

Following his pointing finger, Sergei happened to see Zhang Jue eating a banana.

As the first in the short program, Zhang Jue would perform last in the free skate, so he was having his pre-competition banana now!

Sergei couldn’t help but click his tongue.

With just this little body, how could he possibly beat their Ilya!


Support translation:

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