Figure Skating: I’m More Suited for the Olympics – Chapter 80 Fanboy

Before the competition gala, it was basically just skating through one’s program on the ice again, adjusting the conditions. Zhang Jue’s short program has always been worry-free, even the fans think Little Crocodile rarely makes mistakes in the short program.

Well, although he did flip a few times, it never affected Zhang Jue’s dominance whenever he competed, he always stood on the winner’s podium.

However, there were some changes after moving up to the next level, such as the free skate duration extending to four and a half minutes (±10 seconds), and the number of jumps increasing from seven to eight – five single jumps, two double jumps, and one triple jump, making a total of 12 jumps.

The increase in duration and technical elements was one of the reasons many young athletes struggled when moving up. Their stamina couldn’t keep up.

Zhang Jue had no stamina issues, but with more elements to perform, there was more room for mistakes. Although he didn’t make many mistakes during the Autumn Cup, he still had a fall in the end, so the coaches were a bit worried.

Fortunately, in the rehearsals before the competition, Zhang Jue’s condition remained consistently improving, showing no signs of being affected by pre-competition nerves or doping tests.

During Zhang Jue’s rehearsal, Maquen chatted with David, who was also in the last group: “Jue’s condition has been consistently good, especially the strong impact during his performance. Some haters, you know, those with dark thoughts, always suspect that he takes stimulants to maintain such high emotions.”

David nodded: “But even when he skates something like ‘Adios Nonino,’ which is sad and without intense emotions, he does it well. Also if he was on drugs, he wouldn’t have this appearance now.”

There was no trace of post-drug excitement on Zhang Jue. In fact, when not in competition, he appeared as a quiet, angelic boy as long as he kept his mouth shut.

Moreover, he didn’t have bulging muscles that typically come from drug use. While having the smooth muscle lines expected of an athlete, his facial features were gentle and delicate, even pretty enough to be feminine, and he hadn’t even gone through puberty at the age of 15.

If a child like him were on drugs, it would be even more embarrassing for some of the girls in the North American gymnastics team who grew up looking like men. Oh, forgot, they all have asthma and heart problems, so after submitting a report, they’re allowed to take medication legally.

Maquen shrugged: “So, this kid looks too beautiful. Those people insult him as a ladyboy when he skates well, suspecting he takes drugs. But, in fact, those drugs can cause changes in appearance, especially for kids with his physique.”

Just by looking at the legendary “handsomebaby.zhang’s” affection for Zhang Jue, it was evident he wouldn’t let Zhang Jue take any drugs.

So, in summary, Zhang Jue’s good condition was simply due to his excellent psychological qualities as an athlete.

After the gala, athletes went for lunch, rested if needed, and at four in the afternoon, the men’s free skate officially began.

Zhang Jue, wearing his costume under the coat, supported himself against the wall, lifted his leg toward his head, stood on one foot, and Zhang Junbao supported his waist.

“Can you stretch your leg a bit more?”

“I can, but it still hurts.”

Zhang Jue tried to fully extend the lifted leg, achieving a 180-degree split between the two legs. Shen Liu asked: “Does the pain increase compared to before?”


Shen Liu nodded, recording on his notes: “Okay. Generally, with age, flexibility tends to degrade, but our guy hasn’t started degrading yet.”

Actually, even if Shen Liu hadn’t asked, Zhang Jue knew his flexibility hadn’t degraded.

After all, at 24, he could still effortlessly bring his leg to his head. This was also due to the excellent genes given by Mrs. Zhang Qingyan.

Mrs. Zhang was naturally flexible and agile. Last month, she joined a yoga class and could already do a split without much practice, and mind you, she was already 36 this year.

In Zhang Jue’s memory, when he was just starting primary school, Mrs. Zhang, during a purse-snatching incident by a motorcycle robber, used her powerful reflexes and strength to reach out and grab the robber’s neck, pulling him backward, causing the robber and the motorcycle to flip.

According to Zhang Junbao, Mrs. Zhang was a sports genius who possessed both strength and flexibility, as well as exceptional reflexes. In the past few years, Zhang Jue had frequent nasal congestion, but even a common cold or fever was unknown to him.

But even with such a good foundation, Mrs. Zhang didn’t want to be an athlete and face dietary restrictions, so she went on to study accounting and did well.

She was a university student in the 90s, and if she hadn’t divorced and wanted to leave the sad place, she would have had a well-assigned job. But Mrs. Zhang didn’t give up, she completed her bachelor’s degree last year, passed the certified public accountant exam, and succeeded in the postgraduate entrance exam this year – she was also even better at English than Zhang Jue.

In Zhang Jue’s eyes, his mom was a shining woman, always striving upward. In Zhang Junbao’s eyes, Zhang Jue’s physical talent was only fifty percent of his mom’s, strong in flexibility but not inheriting his mother’s outstanding strength.

Even so, his talent was considered outstanding among the new generation, even by top athletes like Maquen.

Zhang Jue moved around a bit, then stopped and sat obediently on a chair, tilting his head back to let his uncle work on his face.

As time passed, the makeup became more complete, and the passersby stopped to watch Zhang Jue’s face for increasingly longer periods. David stood next to him, staring at the kid’s face for a long time, only to realize that Maquen, the Italian ace, was sitting in the corner with his eyes closed, muttering something.

He was surprised: “Rare sight. The kid just moved up, and he already made Maquen feel threatened?”

This was a patent held by top athletes like Vasily, Sergei, and Martin, who came from Vancouver. Even the Russian crown prince Ilya didn’t make Maquen nervous.

No, actually, everyone was nervous now, even David himself.

He took a deep breath, tightened the bandage on his wrist, tidied up his costume one last time, and stepped onto the ice.

David’s free skate program was Tchaikovsky’s “June: Barcarolle,” a clearly elegant melody that he skated with a mysterious and dangerous sense of adventure.

It was like exploring in a cave. Humans always had an uncontrollable fear when facing darkness, but there was also joy and surprise in the adventure, such as the new species commonly found in fragile cave ecosystems.

This “June: Barcarolle” was skated by him into a Gothic-style adventurous poem, refreshing the audience and being quite unique.

Future figure skating fans commented – David Bisoli personal style is very unique, only he can skate with that flavor because besides him, no one else had that kind of life.

He was an athlete who couldn’t be imitated!

Most importantly, this athlete, apart from the season when he just moved up, had been struggling with the quadruple jumps, unable to improve his scores. Yet, he was unwilling to leave this discipline, falling into what figure skating fans often referred to as the “sophomore slump.”

However, starting from this season, David consistently succeeded in his 4T jumps in competitions. Regardless of the quality, he landed all his jumps, and all the Grades of Execution (GOE) were positive!

Helena touched her chin: “Hmm, it seems like he has overcome the challenges. Achieving this before the Sochi season, he’s quite determined.”

And following David was Italy’s top skater, Maquen.

Zhang Jue stopped jumping rope, standing in the waiting area, earnestly watching Maquen’s every move, like a crocodile lurking in the river, closely staring at its prey.

Maquen turned around and glanced at him, unexpectedly blowing a kiss. It was unclear whether it was a friendly gesture or a provocation.

Seeing Maquen’s action, Shen Liu chuckled: “He takes competitions with the younger generation so seriously, what’s the big deal.”

Zhang Jue didn’t grasp the full meaning of their conversation. Since he rarely watched Maquen’s competitions before, he lacked insight. However, when the classic melody of “Turandot” played, Maquen’s demeanor changed.

The current world-ranked number one athlete showcased his skills in front of Zhang Jue.

“Turandot” is one of the most influential works of the Italian composer Puccini, telling the love story between princess Turandot and the exiled Tartar prince Calaf. Of course, it’s a Western fantasy about the East, but it remains a popular choice for many Eastern figure skaters.

For example, Uncle Lao once skated to “Turandot” in his youth.

Zhang Jue thought that with Maquen’s style, he would interpret the program as a passionate declaration of love from Prince Calaf to Turandot.

However, reality proved otherwise.

The free skate lasted only four and a half minutes, and the music in the program was naturally edited, unable to capture the completeness of an opera. Yet, Maquen incorporated the most intense parts of “Turandot” into his program. Surprisingly, it looked thrilling and exciting.

“Can you feel it? His technique is very mature, the quality is excellent, and most importantly, he knows how to exude his charm and charisma as an adult towards the audience.”

Zhang Jue turned back, puzzled: “Charisma?”

Shen Liu squatted down, instructing: “Every athlete has a different performance style. You’re more of an experiential type, good at feeling the emotion of the music. Maquen is a typical technical skater. He uses every method to shape himself closer to the role he wants to portray. Look at the details of his movements, all aimed at fitting the program and transforming himself into the Calaf he imagines.”

“This Italian’s performance style is very subtle. You can learn a lot from this detail-oriented approach, but don’t learn anything else from him.”

Shen Liu coughed: “If you start flirting like him everywhere, I’m afraid your mom will knock your head open.”

Zhang Jue immediately burst into laughter. Zhang Junbao called him: “Don’t take it lightly. If you really go astray outside, not just you, but both Shen Liu and I won’t be able to escape. We’ll all end up in the hospital.”

Maquen’s performance was truly spectacular, and compared to Zhang Jue, who still looked like a child, figure skating fans were more drawn to Maquen’s mature appearance. So, female figure skating fans responded enthusiastically to his performance. Zhang Jue could understand, considering that over 75% of the audience in the U.S. station was there for Maquen.

However, in the latter part of the program, he stumbled on a 3A+2T combination jump.

Shen Liu sighed regretfully: “This kid fell on the 3A again. Since he’s not good at it, he should just include one 3A in the program. Why hasn’t he learned his lesson after so many years… Damn, why did he even fall on a 3S? Is he surfing on ice?”

Felt inexplicable that he was being teased by the sarcastic Zhang litte Jue, Maquen quietly shifted to the side.

Fortunately, two missed jumps didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of figure skating fans much. At the end of the program, a flurry of flowers rained down on the ice. Many bouquets wrapped in plastic paper were thrown onto the ice, all sunflowers.

It was said that sunflowers were Maquen’s favorite flowers, so his fans bought up all the sunflowers from the nearby flower shops before the competition started.

Yang Zhiyuan squatted down, pinching Zhang Jue’s calf: “Little Jue, you’re in good shape this time, no injuries, well-fed. It’s time to give a good performance. Your opponent has finished, go, get ready for the competition.”

Zhang Jue smoothly took off his coat, shivering: “It’s a bit cold.”

Zhang Junbao pulled the kid towards the entrance of the rink: “You won’t feel cold if you move. Sell yourself, you see Maquen’s performance was so exciting. If your performance is bland, the figure skating fans will fall asleep.”

The young teenager was skillfully pushed by his uncle and arrived on the ice.

By this time, the ice had been cleared of the flower bouquets. As the last performer of the men’s singles free skate, Zhang Jue skated around the rink, finally stopping in the middle.

The young skater’s costume for the free skate, based on Khachaturian’s “Adagio of Spartacus and Phrygia,” had a white base. Light green beads, diamonds, and dark patterns formed thorns and vines that surrounded him. As it reached his waist, the thorns and vines became deeper. The hair accessory, a white thorn-shaped ornament, gave the impression of complex antlers growing from his head.

The designer had named the theme for Zhang Jue’s costume as “Spring God.” She hoped that when Zhang Jue wore this outfit, he would resemble a little deity resting in the sunlight of the spring jungle, exuding the deep and enchanting aura of the wilderness and the warmth and melodiousness of spring.

In order to create this look, Francis Miller had directly given Zhang Jue a box of silver glitter. He gestured for Zhang Junbao to touch the corners of the kid’s eyes with it during makeup and to lighten Zhang Jue’s lip color as much as possible.

Sitting in front of the TV, Francis was so satisfied that he snapped his fingers.

“I’m truly a makeup genius. This outfit is amazing.”

He was confident that there must be many people at the venue who couldn’t take their eyes off Zhang Jue right now!

As expected, in the largest ice and snow sports venue in Kent County, many people were closely watching Zhang Jue’s silhouette.

Arthur Cohen swallowed: “So beautiful…”

Jue truly deserved to be hailed by the media as the most beautiful figure skater in the world! The design for this season’s free skate was simply outstanding!

This young boy’s wallet was already itching. He only waited for the official site to release the poster for this season, and he would buy it all!

On Channel 5, Zhao Ning glanced at the script.

“Alright, now entering the stage is our young skater Zhang Jue. His free skate program is ‘April’s Lovestory.’ Translated into Chinese, it’s ‘The Love Story of April.’ Zhang Jue clearly stated in an interview that here, ‘love’ refers to pure love, not romantic love.”

“Our little one still hasn’t performed a love-themed story this year.”

Jiang Chaosheng said: “It is said that this time the kid’s free skate music was altered by himself. The original composition consisted of three different pieces, and the choreography was done by the former ballet principal dancer Mia Rossi-Bayeva. She was once a world-class modern ballet master. This time, she specifically choreographed a new dance for Zhang Jue, which was then adapted for the ice.”

“It’s worth mentioning that Zhang Jue used this dance before and won the B Group gold medal at the Metropolitan Youth Ballet Competition in September this year.”

Although figure skating is referred to as ballet on ice, it’s quite rare for figure skaters who rank high nationally to win gold in dance competitions.

Jiang Chaosheng, a native of Metropolitan City, went to the venue with Chen Zhu and Shi Mosheng to watch Zhang Jue’s competition. To their surprise, they discovered that Zhang Jue was outstanding among the participating young dancers.

This kid wasn’t just skilled in figure skating, he excelled in ballet as well. Moreover, he was particularly adept at expressing his emotions through body language, with remarkable stage control. A small figure standing on the stage, he possessed a strong and inexplicable presence, almost like a born solo dancer.

No wonder even someone as strict and arrogant as Mia Rossi-Bayeva, known for her harshness, took him as a disciple several years after retirement. She even personally choreographed for the kid and introduced him to other outstanding ballet masters during competitions. Undoubtedly, she cherished this disciple a lot.


Support translation:

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This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Star

    This is the same upload as the last one

  2. Lucianna

    This is the same as the previous chapter.

    1. Lajna


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