Figure Skating: I’m More Suited for the Olympics – Chapter 64 Thumbs Up

Zhang Jue’s opponents were almost crushed by the pressure he brought. Essentially, everyone had given up on competing for the championship with Zhang Jue and shifted their focus to the other two positions on the podium.

Quad jumps were a high-dimensional weapon in the junior category, allowing Zhang Jue to easily attack his opponents in lower dimensions. Surprisingly, after stabilizing the quad jumps, he found himself with almost no competitors.

Even the theoretically nationality-favored Angus Joe in front of him appeared weak, almost like a little chick.

The competition in the senior category was much more intense.

The second day of the competition mainly featured the short programs of the senior events.

In the women’s singles, Daria took first place in the short program of the final. However, keen observers could tell that Shiratsuka Masako was still a formidable opponent. The powerful difficulty of Shiratsuka Masako routine allowed her to potentially overturn the rankings at any moment.

Vasily, in the men’s singles event, still dominated at this stage of his career. However, competitors like Maquen from Italy, Martin from France, and his compatriots Sergei and Ilya were all eyeing the championship.

Although Vasily was indeed impressive, everyone had quad jumps. The competition was about who could perform better on the spot.

At present, most male singles skaters only mastered one type of quad jump. So, even the formidable Vasily only performed a 4T in the short program, 4T and 4T+3T in the free skate. The differences were minimal, making the competition especially intense, and the excitement level soared.

There were no Chinese athletes in the senior category this time. The pair skating duo, Jin Meng/Yao Lan, both ended up hospitalized due to injuries. While pair skating not only suffered a break but also hovered on the edge of a shutdown, Huang Ying and Guan Lin would have to move up to the next age group like Zhang Jue next year. If they didn’t move up, the seniors might find it challenging to keep up.

Therefore, this year, Zhang Jue couldn’t cheer on his seniors with a little red flag in the audience. He could only sit and watch the athletes from other countries compete.

During the short program of pairs skating, Zhang Jue heard Coach Ma talking about two siblings.

“This pair is real siblings. Their coordination is currently the best in pairs skating. The performance of the French team is very strong, and Russian figure skating is traditionally strong, but the German pair is your strong competitor.”

Zhang Jue felt sympathy for these two kids. They were so young, yet they had to compete with adults. The visual effect when they stood on the podium was probably similar to his concave face. Especially for Guan Lin, who was relatively short among the male pair skaters, he had to compensate for his lack of natural talent by working hard. Hence, they had to compete fiercely.

So, this future pair skating duo, in the later stages of their careers, would also face continuous injuries. When they retired, they would probably cry a lot – one for the hardships of their professional careers, and two for the lack of successors. However, they would be powerless to continue supporting themselves.

Thinking about this, Zhang Jue took a deep breath, feeling a bit choked up. If he retired, the situation would be quite similar.

Someone placed their hand on his head and rubbed it.

“Figure skating is one of the sports closest to flying in the world. When you open your arms on the ice, there’s a moment when you want to fly forever.”

Zhang Jue turned to look at Shen Liu, who was gently looking down at him: “But no one can fly forever. Landing is not scary; it’s just the beginning of another kind of new life. But you can fly for a long time; don’t think about those things for now.”

It was strange, Shen Liu came to him as a coach to fulfill his dream of rising in men’s singles. However, when it came to the topic of retirement, his attitude was different from what Zhang Jue imagined.

Rather than hoping Zhang Jue would continue to skate down the path of men’s singles, Shen Liu seemed to emphasize that Zhang Jue should have a correct understanding of “retirement.”

Zhang Jue appreciated his care and attention. He snuggled closer to the coach, giving a soft hum.

Shen Liu: This kid is quite cute when he doesn’t use the panda hum during serious situations.

Then, a milky fragrance approached. Zhang Jue and Shen Liu followed the scent and saw Zhang Junbao walking over, wearing a serious expression. He carried his coat, wearing only a slightly tight black sweater.

Zhang Jue sniffed: “Uncle, didn’t you go to buy hot milk?”

Zhang Junbao waved his hand: “Hey, don’t mention it. I got bumped by someone, and the milk spilled all over my chest. The person kept apologizing, even used their hand to wipe it for me, and kept asking for my phone number, saying they would send the clothes for dry cleaning. Who gives their phone number to a stranger? I finally got rid of that person and came back.”

Zhang Jue and Shen Liu’s gazes fell on his chest.

Whether Zhang Jue was thinking too much or not, according to Zhang Junbao, the foreigner who spilled the milk seemed to be trying to flirt with his uncle, wiping his chest for him.

Speaking of which, Zhang Jue had encountered similar situations in his previous life. So, he knew that the concept of flirting also existed among people of the same gender!

Not to mention, if someone like Zhang Junbao, who was a top-grade man with a milky fragrance, went out ten years later, it wasn’t clear how many people would call out “Mom, hungry, food” in a daze. If a fan of ABO culture got inspired, there would probably be a new story!

Shen Liu immediately took off his coat: “Senior, I wore too many clothes today. Wear my coat, the ice rink is cold, and with your low body fat, you might freeze.”

Zhang Jue sat between his uncle and Coach Shen, with the strong scent of milk on the left and the handsome Coach Shen on the right. Suddenly, a strong sense of responsibility arose in him.

Ah, times have changed. Nowadays, it isn’t safe for good-looking boys to walk outside. Both his uncle and Shen Liu were handsome, and they were both straight-iron, so if someone took advantage of them, they probably wouldn’t realize it. In the future, he had to be more careful.

Just at that moment, Shen Liu started lecturing Zhang Jue: “Little Jue, after watching today’s men’s singles competition, do you understand what kind of opponents you’ll face next year?”

As the lone seedling in men’s singles, Zhang Jue suddenly had the impulse to hide in his uncle’s arms: “I know.”

Maybe there was something wrong with the ice rink today. After a day of competition, not only did Shiratsuka Masako fall miserably, but Vasily also made a mistake during his 3+3 combo, turning the last 3lz+3T into a 3lz+2T. He ended up ranking third, behind Maquen and Sergei.

In pairs figure skating, the German duo with the best chance of winning had a disastrous performance. They made a serious mistake during a throw jump, and the female partner fell on the ice and couldn’t get up for a while. In the end, they had to be assisted off the rink and withdrew from the competition.

In the four figure skating events, all the favorites in three events faced issues, it was almost like a spell.

The surprising part was ice dancing. The top-ranked Canadian brother-sister duo, Zhu Lin and Stephanie, chose a vampire theme for this season. Already attractive individuals, their pale and enchanting appearance created a captivating atmosphere. At the end of their performance, they even shared an ambiguous kiss, leading Zhang Jue to deduce that it was a staged moment. However, judging by the excited reactions of the audience, when these two retire and reveal it was just a performance, their fans might be disappointed.

In comparison, the real couple of Yin Meijing and Liu Mengcheng skated beautifully to the song “A Step Away.”

Song Cheng showed interest on his face, saying: “Interesting. ‘A Step Away’ is a classic piece. It appeared in both ‘Scent of a Woman’ and ‘True Lies.’ Many skaters, when choosing this piece, subconsciously bring in scenes from the movies. But they didn’t.”

These two expressed their own interpretation of “A Step Away,” just like how Zhang Jue didn’t confine himself to others’ frameworks when skating to “Autumn.” They both had their unique understanding of the music.

He shook his head and said: “These two are geniuses. The lifts were just beautiful, not to mention being the best in ice dancing. With the precision of a blade and moves that seemed to be taken directly from a textbook, Ayala has a unique perspective, acts quickly, and is reliable. With this coach, their future looks promising.”

Ah, if China had such talented individuals, coaches would have been eager to take them under their wings long ago. After the men’s singles event, Zhang Jue was treated like a precious egg. In ice dancing, however, there had never been a rising star, and the coaches were desperate for talent.

At the end of the competition, Yin Meijing and Liu Mengcheng ranked third, just 2 points behind the former world’s second ice dancing pair, Brick/Mona from the United States.

Well, those 2 points practically stayed within national borders.

After a day of competition, except for ice dancing, there were disappointed faces everywhere. Many local fans who came to support Japan’s number one, Shiratsuka Masako, were very disappointed. When Zhang Jue went to the buffet for dinner, he found even the top athletes had low spirits.

Shiratsuka Masako sat alone by the window, eating a bowl of white rice. When Zhang Jue passed her table, the girl didn’t even lift her head, and her phone played the song “Wanderer’s Song.”

Vasily ate a banana with determination, while Sergei and Ilya sat not far away, not daring to approach him.

The German pair in pairs skating had already boarded a plane back to their country to see an orthopedic specialist.

As for ice dancing, Zhu Lin and Stephanie chatted casually, with an atmosphere similar to flirting. Yin Meijing and Liu Mengcheng fed each other so every single folk didn’t want to bother with them.

Xu Chuo still didn’t attend dinner. Zhang Junbao picked up a plate of blanched vegetables, saying he wanted to talk to Xu Chuo and Coach Zhao. Shen Liu followed, and Coach Ma encouraged Guan Lin to eat more. Huang Ying, on the other hand, bit her cucumber while envy glowed in her eyes as she watched her male partner.

Zhang Jue focused on observing them, picking up a piece of sushi and dipping it into something unknown before putting it in his mouth.

At this time, the coach of the Japanese team received a call.

“Hello, reporter… Yes, yes, we’re here in the restaurant on the third floor. Turn left after you exit the elevator… I see you.”

The table was overturned with a crash, plates and bowls fell to the ground. The commotion attracted everyone’s attention. Zhang Jue, with tears in his eyes, jumped off the chair and ran to the drink area, stepping on a banana peel along the way, slipping and falling to the ground with a thud.

The newly arrived Japanese reporter stared blankly at the scene, not sure what had happened, just instinctively raising the camera.


The China top skater suddenly fell to the ground, and Vasily, with a banana in his mouth, looked puzzled as he turned his head. Shiratsuka Masako stood up with her phone in hand, Yin Meijing widened her mouth, and Liu Mengcheng, carrying water, turned the table where Zhu Lin and Stephanie were eating to rush towards Zhang Jue. This classic scene was frozen in time.

Zhang Jue was just helped up when he saw the familiar Japanese reporter giving him a thumbs up.

Someone laughed.

“You’re still as amusing, Little Crocodile.”


The person who came was none other than the retired British former men’s singles skater, Francis Miller, who had retired for ten years. He was the choreographer for Zhang Jue’s free skate “Dance of the Great River.”

Seeing him with tears still in his eyes, Liu Mengcheng quickly handed him a cup and said: “Jue, have some water first.”


Support translation:

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