On the first Friday of the semester, the entire student body was a little restless.
Everyone’s summer vacation syndrome wasn’t fully cured. In one of their classes, Old Ye emphasized five times the ‘need to curb one’s evil instinct’,1or to concentrate on the task at hand but his words fell flat and there were no obvious effects.
Originally, Chu Yu didn’t have this syndrome. Compared to his deserted home, he liked school more for it bustled with noise and excitement, and he could chat and play with others.
But because Zhang Yueshan – seated in front – was restlessly turning his Rubik’s Cube all day long and Li Hua, who didn’t have a Rubik’s Cube, was spinning his pen like a propeller ushering wind, Chu Yu also became a bit fidgety in his seat.
The moment the bell rang, signaling the end of class, it seemed as if the whole building was about to collapse. It was filled with the scraping sounds of tables and chairs moving, as well as the sound of dense footsteps.
Zhang Yueshan’s school bag was tidied up five minutes in advance, and he sprang up the second the bell rang. “My friends, see you next week!”
Li Hua wanted to reduce the weight of his school bag so he planned to leave after completing his English homework. He didn’t raise his head when he heard those words, but he prolonged his intonation as he spoke, “Bye bye, take care!”
Chu Yu slowly packed his school bag.
There wasn’t a single one of his textbooks inside, instead, his school bag was full of comic books that he’d finished reading and was planning to take back and replace with new ones.
“Lu-Ge!” A shout came from the classroom’s back door. Chu Yu was familiar with the voice. He turned his head to look over and it was indeed Zhu Zhifei.
Lu Shi didn’t reply, only gestured.
Zhu Zhifei understood. He carried his backpack into the classroom, dragged a chair over, and sat down to watch Lu Shi solve questions.
He soon gave up after reading it. “Sure enough, Lu-Ge is still my Lu-Ge. How do you do it? You finish scanning the question at a glance, spin your pencil twice, and voila, the answer appears. I haven’t even figured out which fucking formula to use!”
Lu Shi ignored him, speeding up to read the remaining three problems. Omitting all the steps in the process and rendering the draft paper for the calculations useless, he mentally calculated and wrote down the final answer.
After he finished, Lu Shi put his pen aside. “Let’s go.”
Zhu Zhifei stood up. “Go go go, my mother told me to bring you to our house for a meal. We’re having stewed pig trotters with pearl barley.2 She said that since you study hard, you must eat more of it to replenish your brain. I don’t really get it, how do pig feet replenish your brain?”
Lu Shi stuffed a few test papers, a book of school work exercises, and an extra pencil into his school bag, then zipped it up and hung it on one shoulder.
Chu Yu, who was still sitting in his seat, had also finished sorting his backpack. Seeing that Lu Shi was about to leave, he asked, “That… are you going home for the weekend?”
Lu Shi looked down at him. “Hm, going back.” Feeling stuffy, he loosened the top button of his white shirt’s collar in passing. Then recalling something, he added, “I’ll return to the dormitory Sunday night.”
Chu Yu began to calculate the time in his head.
Saturday and Sunday, only two days. Even if he became a little uncomfortable, he should be able to last until Sunday night.
It should be okay to go to Lu Shi to drink a bit of blood when the time comes, right?
He keenly felt that Lu Shi wasn’t afraid of him, nor was he averse to him sucking his blood.
Thinking of Lu Shi’s blood, Chu Yu couldn’t help but swallow.
Seeing that Chu Yu had quietly drifted off to who knows where, Lu Shi bent down and his collar drooped, the line of his neck extending through the shirt’s wide open collar.
He leaned close to Chu Yu and spoke in a volume that only the two of them could hear, “Just come find me when you’re hungry.”
The other party’s clear, cold breath suddenly spread over to him, causing Chu Yu to subconsciously hold his own breath.
Too… too close!
Lu Shi took Zhu Zhifei out through the back door of the classroom while Chu Yu remained unmoving in his seat.
He faintly heard Zhu Zhifei ask Lu Shi what he’d said just now that required him to lean in so close.
Patting his little heart, Chu Yu inwardly muttered, when talking just talk, why the heck did he need to be so close?
Chu Yu walked out of the school gate carrying his bag full of comic books and a black Rolls Royce was parked on the street outside the gate. Uncle Chen got out of the car, took his school bag, and opened the car door for Chu Yu.
He’d just sat in the back seat and the car hadn’t even started yet when his phone rang, the screen read ‘Jiejie’.
Chu Yu tapped the answer button.
“Are you home yet?”
Chu Yu shook his head, then, remembering that his sister couldn’t see him, he replied, “Not yet, just got in the car. Uncle Chen said that Aunt Lan made chicken soup at home and is just waiting for me to return and drink it.”
“Okay. You aren’t in good health so drink more, but remember to let it be tepid before drinking. Don’t rush, or it’ll burn your mouth and hurt.”
Chu Yu watched the stream of people outside the car window and replied, “Jie, I’m not a child.”
“Why not? In my eyes, you’ll always be that soft little cutie who raises his tiny arms to be hugged by his sister.”
Chu Yu’s mouth curled up into a smile.
On weekends, the road outside Jianing Private wasn’t usually crowded.
The car drove very slowly so Chu Yu inadvertently noticed Lu Shi and Zhu Zhifei walking together among the crowd. Zhu Zhifei was gesticulating as he spoke very excitedly. Lu Shi didn’t wear any expression, but he’d reply from time to time.
Everyone was wearing the same white shirt and black trousers, but to Chu Yu who was watching, it seemed that Lu Shi was more eye-catching than the rest.
It wasn’t just his appearance, Lu Shi had a slightly different temperament or perhaps aura. In any case, he had a strong sense of presence.
On the phone, Chu Xi paused for a few seconds. “I heard Catherine mention that you called mother last night because you were feeling sick?”
Catherine was Shi Yaling’s assistant.
“Yeah, my body was a little uncomfortable, but it’s better now.” The smile on the corner of Chu Yu’s mouth faded. “Mother even transferred me money today.”
Chu Xi uttered half a syllable then stopped, only after a long time did she speak again. “Xiao-Yu3Mentioned this before, Xiao means little or small. Chu Xi used it as endearment this time, it’s not that Mom doesn’t love you, she’s just—”
“I know, she’s too busy.”
‘It’s not that Mom doesn’t love you’… then why?
It’s because she’s too busy.
It’s because in her heart, there are too many people, too many matters that are more important than you.
He didn’t want Chu Xi to worry, so Chu Yu suppressed the various emotions surging in his heart and tried his best to relax his tone a bit. “It’s fine, Jie. You don’t need to comfort me, I know.”
“Jiejie, I can hear your assistant calling you for a meeting, quickly go, and go to bed early after the meeting. Don’t stay up all night every day, you’ll easily get old.”
The assistant was urging her so Chu Xi had no choice but to say, “Okay then, have fun on your weekend. If you don’t have any money, or if you want anything, you can tell Jiejie.”
“Okay, go work.”
After hanging up, Chu Yu let go of the phone and looked dazed for a while.
When he looked out the car window again, he could no longer find Lu Shi’s shadow.
At dawn on Saturday morning, Chu Yu changed clothes and got ready to go out.
He’d woken up from hunger in the middle of last night and his whole body was severely hot. He was confusedly dreaming again but he couldn’t run to find Lu Shi in the dead of night, so he had to endure it, groaning as he boiled until dawn.
After asking Uncle Chen to take him to Qingchuan Road’s intersection, Chu Yu exited the car and was once again lost.
He discovered that there were also times when the study god was unreliable.
Before he left, Lu Shi stated that he could just come find him whenever he was hungry, but Chu Yu didn’t know where Lu Shi lived.
After suffering through this once before, Chu Yu was almost used to the low fever and constant feeling of starvation, so he wasn’t in a hurry this time.
He decided to wander around and try his luck to see if he could encounter Lu Shi.
Facts proved that he was indeed very lucky as he really ran into him.
In the alley with mottled walls, Lu Shi stood with several gangsters beneath his feet, a steel bar and a few plastic pipes were scattered around.
Chu Yu sniffed and found that there wasn’t any sweet or stinky smell, so it was likely that no blood was shed.
He curiously examined the people lying on the ground, but also didn’t see any injuries. The only thing he could tell was that the group of people were motionless, like dead dogs.
Lu Shi wore a loose, black short-sleeved T-shirt and jeans. His whole body was full of hostility and his dark eyes were cold, akin to sharp ice.
Hearing his movements, Lu Shi turned around and saw Chu Yu. He wasn’t surprised and merely asked, “Hungry?”
Chu Yu nodded and didn’t dare say too much. “Mm, I’m hungry.”
No longer caring about the people lying on the floor, Lu Shi walked towards Chu Yu. “How long have you been hungry?”
As he approached, Chu Yu sensed that Lu Shi was currently in a bad mood and irritable.
If one were to describe him exaggeratedly, they’d say he felt a bit murderous.
Chu Yu was perceptive and answered only what was asked. “In the middle of the night, maybe around one or two o’clock.”
“Hm.” Lu Shi didn’t say much. He picked up an unopened bottle of mineral water from the ground.
The bottle of mineral water was seriously deformed, and Chu Yu could almost imagine why. At the critical moment in the fight just now, that bottle must’ve been extremely lethal.
Lu Shi unscrewed the bottle’s cap and handed it to Chu Yu. “Pour the water.”
The two cooperated. Chu Yu poured and Lu Shi washed his hands clean below the water.
As Chu Yu paid attention to the angle of the water bottle and its amount of flow, he couldn’t help but stare at Lu Shi’s hand.
His hands were really beautiful; cold white skin, slender joints, and neatly trimmed nails. It was refreshing and pleasant, like a work of art.
Wiping off the water on his hands with a tissue, Lu Shi raised one and pressed a finger to Chu Yu’s lips. “Open your mouth.”
Chu Yu was indescribably a little nervous.
He slightly opened his mouth.
Lu Shi put his finger in.
The somewhat cold, still damp fingertips, touched his moist, hot lips and tongue. For a moment, the both of them were startled and agitated.
Chu Yu was terribly hungry, but as he grasped Lu Shi’s finger in his mouth, he was a little afraid to bite down. He looked up at him with his light-colored eyes.
Lu Shi raised his eyelids. “Afraid I’ll be hurt?”
Chu Yu held his fingertips without exerting much strength and nodded.
“You’re hungry, just bite, it doesn’t hurt.”
Chu Yu really couldn’t stand it anymore.
He’d been hungry for most of the night, and when he rested, he’d dreamed of biting Lu Shi’s shoulder.
Submitting to instinct, Chu Yu gently bit down.
The skin broke open and blood flowed out. After swallowing only two or three drops, Chu Yu restrained his desire for more and quickly stopped.
When he released Lu Shi’s fingertip, he subconsciously licked it with the tip of his tongue.
The wound on the fingertip was very small, and it didn’t even take a moment for it to heal completely without leaving a trace.
Chu Yu promptly nodded. “Yeah, I’m not hungry anymore.”
He could feel that even though he wasn’t full, two or three drops were enough to suppress the unbearable feeling of starvation and fever.
Lu Shi was willing to let him drink his blood, but Chu Yu wouldn’t take advantage of him.
If he lost too much blood, it wouldn’t be good for his body.
Lu Shi didn’t speak anymore, he turned and walked out.
His back looked gaunt.
Chu Yu walked two steps behind him to catch up, then looked back at the gangsters who were still sprawled on the ground. “Those people—”
“Hush.” Lu Shi’s lowered eyes glanced at Chu Yu. The coldness and sharpness in them hadn’t vanished in the least, but his voice was quite soft. “Behave, don’t bother me.”