59 – Amazing! His Brother Was Also Harboring Ulterior Motives?!
t/n: sorry for the long wait! I just got back from a long trip to Asia and should be able to post regularly again. Thank you for all your patience and support ???? Here’s the long-awaited chapter and as a special treat, this week will be a double update and I will post the next one as well 😉
There was an unnatural red mark on Liu Xiaochang’s collarbone.
Fang Mo unintentionally saw this. Liu Xiaochang was wearing a top with a particularly big neckline, so when he bent over to organize his things and looked up, the ambiguous mark imprinted onto his snow-white skin was faintly visible.
While Fang Mo yelled “don’t look, don’t look” in his head, he couldn’t help but take a second look.
Liu Xiaochang’s appearance paired with this kind of mark made it look like he had been defiled by someone.
Fang Mo secretly sighed in his heart, Yang Lin is quite passionate, isn’t he.
These two guys were going so smoothly that it made a person mad.
Fang Mo lay in bed sourly whimpering while Liu Xiaochang was completely unaware. After he finished tidying up, he answered the phone and walked out with a smile on his face.
The lonely Fang Mo stayed in the dormitory, sighing with a dismal heart. Then his phone received a new message.
It was sent by Zou Shun.
When he clicked to open the message, it was a photo. In the photo, two hands were on top of each other, each wearing a black cord bracelet with a simple but unique pendant hung on the cord. By looking at the shape of the pendant, it was obvious that the two could be put together.
[“Doesn’t it look so good! He gave it to me! We each have one! They’re matching!”]
After Zou Shun sent this line of words with a sonorous and powerful tone, he sent a lot of crafty-looking emojis.
Fang Mo was speechless.
He had already seen the same photo in Zou Shun’s Moments ten minutes ago. At that time, he didn’t leave a like or a comment and forcibly ignored it. He didn’t expect that this guy couldn’t hold back, and would personally show it to him as well.
A photo like this, wasn’t this too unfriendly to a single dog1Self-deprecating term for being single?
Fang Mo ruthlessly typed a reply.
[“I’m busy, go away.”]
Two seconds after pressing send, the phone rang.
Zou Shun didn’t care about his attitude. He was quite happy, and the tone of his voice sounded ethereal: “This guy always randomly buys stuff, and doesn’t ask me ahead of time. This brand is so expensive! But to make him happy, I’ll still wear it.”
Fang Mo put on a fake smile: “Heh heh.”
A week ago, Fang Mo sincerely hoped that his friend would have a smoother relationship.
…But this was a bit too smooth, wasn’t it?
In contrast, all the bleak wind and icy rain2Idiom for hardships that Zou Shun had experienced before now seemed hilarious.
Zou Shun, who was immersed in wondrous love, didn’t have the leisure to tell Fang Mo the entire story until two days after the end of the competition. During this time, he was so carried away that he didn’t even go back to school.
The reason why He Chengyi couldn’t be found a few days ago was because he had to go back to deal with some temporary matters in his hometown. The previous two times that he stood Zou Shun up were also related to this.
Xu Xiran’s inference this time was actually completely correct. He truly couldn’t come because he suddenly had something he had to attend to.
As for his so-called blind date, she did exist at the beginning and was introduced by relatives. Before hesitating whether or not to meet, he tentatively mentioned it to Zou Shun and got Zou Shun’s enthusiastic encouragement, so he couldn’t get off the tiger3Idiom meaning, if you ride a tiger, it’s hard to get off, meaning that it’s hard to stop halfway.
In fact, they only met that one time, and he rejected her that very same day. Everything after that was just an excuse made up to go on dates with Zou Shun.
Zou Shun pretended to be too casual, and He Chengyi thought he was hopeless and wanted to see him, but was afraid of being too embarrassed if his feelings were discovered, so he could only make things up.
Why was it women’s perfume? Because he really wanted to give him something but was afraid that he would not accept it, so he thought it was a more natural and subtle gift for him. He Chengyi said that the slightly sweet and seductive smell was especially suitable for him.
As for the movies, he indeed watched them ahead of time and the reasons were both unbelievable and dumbfounding.
The first two dates were for the same movie, and the main plot took place at sea. Zou Shun let it slip before that he had a bit of a fear of the deep sea, and would scream if he saw a picture of a huge creature appearing at the bottom of the ocean. He Chengyi was afraid that if those kinds of scenes appeared in the movie, it would scare Zou Shun, so he went to sweep the landmines ahead of time4Meaning checking for landmines so the next person won’t step on any so that when the two of them watched together, he could let Zou Shun know which scenes to look away.
There was no legitimate reason why he watched the second movie ahead of time. It was purely Zou Shun who casually said, “The reviews seem to be quite polarized, so I don’t know if it’s actually good or not.” He Chengyi happened to pass by the movie theater that day and had nothing else to do. When he saw the poster at the door, he naturally thought of the person he was about to meet, and for no explained reason, went in to watch.
“Look at this guy,” Zou Shun said with a bit of a sighing tone, “Couldn’t he have just honestly told me that he liked me?”
Fang Mo thought to himself, what qualifications do you have to say something like that?
The reason why He Chengyi appeared in the anime expo was naturally because of Zou Shun.
Just like how Fang Mo couldn’t wait to tell Xu Xiran about Zou Shun’s love story, Zou Shun also shared Fang Mo’s bitter experience in unrequited love in front of He Chengyi.
“I just wanted to tell him that going to this kind of event was really not because I liked you and wanted to chase you, but that I was just trying to help you get someone else,” Zou Shun defended himself this way.
After Zou Shun cut off contact with He Chengyi, he inevitably panicked that he wouldn’t be able to see him again, and couldn’t let go. Remembering that he said that he would participate in such a competition, he checked the time and place online.
Originally, he only wanted to watch him from a distance, and no one expected that it would be such a coincidence that the two would meet at the venue. When Zou Shun saw him, he left Fang Mo on the spot and chased after him.
He tugged at panicked He Chengyi and babbled incoherently, and then he was kissed.
“Ai,” Zou Shun sighed exaggeratedly on the other end of the phone, “Why is he so good to me? I almost can’t bear it anymore.”
Fang Mo held the phone, expressionless: “Oh.”
After showing off for a while, Zou Shun finally regained a little conscience and began to care about Fang Mo’s love life.
“How are you and your person doing now? It should be going well, right?” he was clearly smiling in his tone, “I think Xu Xiran almost lost his soul that day.”
Fang Mo hesitated to speak: “…I can’t say for sure.”
“What do you mean?” Zou Shun asked.
“He’s been a little weird these days…” Fang Mo grimaced, “He seems to be avoiding me.”
The day Xu Xiran was sick, Fang Mo had thoughts that were just too much.
He thought, since he already had a fever, why couldn’t he have a higher fever? If only he could be completely muddled like last time, hugging him and acting like a baby to him, how nice would that be.
But after thinking about it, seeing his sweetheart feeling unwell, Fang Mo’s heart still hurt for him after all. He took care of the sick patient for the whole day, and finally saw Xu Xiran’s fever subside, only to realize afterward that something was wrong.
The next few days, Xu Xiran didn’t even take the initiative to find him.
If he sent him a message, he would still reply, and if he invited him to dinner, he would agree. He was able to meet with him, but his attitude would feel slightly different from before.
“He used to like having his arm around my shoulders,” Fang Mo said, “but now he won’t do it at all. Occasionally when I would purposely touch him while talking, he would even dodge. It’s like… he wants to pretend that it’s nothing, thinking that it’s not obvious when it’s actually very obvious… Long story short, it’s awkward and strange.”
“Did you go overboard and eat too much tofu5Touch him too much or in a non-platonic place?” Zou Shun asked.
“There’s no way. I’ve done things that were ten times more ridiculous before, and he never felt that any of it was wrong,” said Fang Mo.
In being a good brother to Xu Xiran for so long, he was used to taking advantage of what they had. Just like the saying, “it is difficult to go from extravagance to frugality”, when Xu Xiran suddenly guarded his body like jade, it immediately made Fang Mo alert.
“Maybe he’s being shy,” Zou Shun said, “I saw him that day, and it looked like he had all of a sudden fallen in love. Before, he was indifferent to your touch because he thought you and him were just being boys, but now that he probably has a certain awareness of you, he feels embarrassed!”
“If only that was the case,” Fang Mo said dejectedly, “I think there’s another possibility that’s a bit higher.”
“What other possibility is there?”
“You tell me…” Fang Mo was worried, “Do you think he found out that I like him?”
Zou Shun didn’t respond for a moment.
Fang Mo sighed again: “He asked me that day why I was so good to him. When he said this, he had a weird expression. I suspect that there was a second half of that sentence, but he was too embarrassed to say it. What he really wanted to ask was, ‘Why are you so good to me? Is it for my body?’”
“Eh…” Zou Shun comforted him, “Don’t be like this, you’re just feeling guilty.”
“No, I have proof. Did you see what he posted in his Moments at two in the morning last night?” Fang Mo said.
“Ah?” Zou Shun obviously didn’t see, “Wait a minute, let me take a look… He always posts weird and incomprehensible things, so I usually don’t pay much attention to them. Ah yes, ‘The boy who slayed the dragon finally turned into a dragon’ …what the hell? Do you know what that means?”
Under the influence of Xu Xiran, Fang Mo had occasionally been able to understand some of these messy and unclear things lately.
At least this one, he vaguely felt that he understood.
“I think he’s referring to me,” Fang Mo said.
Zou Shun was a little dazed: “You? The dragon slayer? Or the dragon?”
“What he meant was that I had originally agreed that we’d help each other, and that I would help him block those men who had intentions for him. At that time, I was the dragon slayer. But now I have degenerated into one of them, and began to have intentions for him, so I became a dragon. You see, if I place myself into it like this, there’s no mistake, right?”
Zou Shun fell into silence.
“What do you say? Do you think that it’s because he suspects me, but also cares about our friendship, so as to not be too hurtful to me, posts this subtle message to hint at me?”
“… Is he that meticulous of a person?” Zou Shun asked.
“Sometimes,” Fang Mo emphasized, “Don’t look at how he usually is, he’s actually quite meticulous in certain things!”
Zou Shun pondered for a while: “I still feel that you are just feeling guilty like a thief. Doesn’t he always post incomprehensible things? It may not have anything to do with you.”
“…I hope so.”
“Don’t worry. Didn’t you see that I also thought that he didn’t like me in the beginning, and I was depressed every day. In fact, I was just thinking about it. If I take a person too seriously, I will easily worry about gains and losses, and that’s actually very bad,” Zou Shun said. “You should be more optimistic. Even if what you said is true, if he didn’t reject you immediately, doesn’t that mean there’s still a chance?”
“…” Fang Mo bit his lip.
“If he’s really talking about you, are you planning on giving up?” Zou Shun asked.
“I don’t know, I’ve even worn a skirt for him, how else do I work harder?” Fang Mo said all depressed. “Do you know what the worst part is? This feels like playing a game with no progress bar, and I have absolutely no idea what percentage I’ve completed by now.”
“Let me digress,” Zou Shun coughed, “I will use games as an example. You are really being tormented by him.”
“Maybe your progress is already at ninety-nine percent,” Zou Shun said, “One step further and you’ll get him. It’ll be such a pity to give up right now. I really think his attitude towards you that day was extremely suspicious.”
“I may not even be at one percent,” Fang Mo said. “No matter how hard I try, it will all be useless.”
“…Don’t tell me you really want to give up?” Zou Shun asked.
Fang Mo didn’t speak.
Occasionally, when he couldn’t see Xu Xiran, he would indeed have that thought.
“When I gave up, I almost lost everything,” Zou Shun said again.
Just as Fang Mo was about to speak, the phone attached to his ear suddenly vibrated. He pulled it away to take a look.
It was a new message sent from Xu Xiran.
His heart moved, and he quickly opened it.
Then he went blind.
[“The first episode of the second season of Love Story is out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”]
Before he could react, a second message appeared.
[“Are you in your dorm? Do you want to come and watch together?”]
“Are you still listening?” Zou Shun on the other end of the line didn’t get a response for a long time and asked, “Momo? Hello? Hello?”
“I’m here,” Fang Mo scratched his hair helplessly, “Something came up, so I’ll have to hang up first.”
“Oh, then go,” Zou Shun evidently understood, “Good luck!”
After Fang Mo hung up the phone and put on his shoes to go out, Zou Shun sent him a new message.
[“For the last percent, go!!!!!!”]
Fang Mo couldn’t hold back and smiled.
At the end of the day, persistence didn’t depend on the progress bar.
If the feelings were not there, even at 99%, there would be no need to continue. If you really liked someone, you wouldn’t want to stop until your head is broken and battered. At least at his point, his progress bar must have already been ahead of everyone else.
Xu Xiran sent him another message.
[“? Where you at?”]
Fang Mo sighed and pressed the voice button to reply.
The story of Zou Shun and Mr. He has now been roughly explained. When the main story is finished, there will be an independent side story likely from the perspective of Mr. He.
Additionally, there will be some plot development for another couple in the main story, with the possibility of further exploration in the side story depending on the situation.
Yin: Yessss!!! The sweet HCY & ZS get their story!! Honestly ZS in this convo just feels like a reader is giving FM advice? Right? Giving so very accurate hints and just itching to push him to XXR.
- 1Self-deprecating term for being single
- 2Idiom for hardships
- 3Idiom meaning, if you ride a tiger, it’s hard to get off, meaning that it’s hard to stop halfway
- 4Meaning checking for landmines so the next person won’t step on any
- 5Touch him too much or in a non-platonic place