The more people you had, the easier it was to eat too much at a buffet.
Kou Chen had eaten there quite a lot with Xu Chuan and Wei Chaoren before, but he’d never eaten so much he could barely bend over.
His phone rang as he stood at the side of the road waiting for a car.
He didn’t want to pick up, just thinking about it made him feel short of breath.
“Jie.” He picked up the phone.
“Yo, did you get beaten up?” Kou Xiao’s voice sounded from the other side, “Want me to call 120 for you?”
“I just ate at your hotel,” Kou Chen said, “Ate too much.”
“Look at you,” Kou Xiao sighed.
“Did you ask your classmate what we have to bring? Old Yang and I’ll go to the store on the weekend, we’ll get everything in one trip.”
“I’ll tell you tomorrow,” Kou Chen glanced at Huo Ran, “He’s an expert, I’m trying to get him to just take us with him.
You and Old Yang can stay in one tent.
Don’t mind me, or else when you two settle down for the night…”
“You can keep watch outside.
It’s in the middle of nowhere, don’t we need someone to do that?” Kou Xiao said.
“Say that again?” Kou Chen said, “Pardon Please?”
“You’re friend’s gonna have to want to take us with him, you better prepare first,” Kou Xiao was very clear about the position they’re in, “Unless they owe you money, nobody’s gonna want to bring rookies like us along.”
“Don’t worry about it, is there anything I can’t do?” Kou Chen said.
“There’s nothing you can’t exaggerate,” Kou Xiao said, “Okay, I’ll wait for your news, I’m hanging up.”
“Mhm.” Kou Chen hung up.
Huo Ran could be rude, and his temper is bad, but you could tell that he’s a reasonable person.
Kou Chen thinks that it shouldn’t be a problem to get him to bring them along.
The problem was that he had to do some research about camping, so Huo Ran couldn’t laugh at him for getting in the way.
Also, he didn’t want to be like Jiang Lei and fall in a ditch and dislocate something, needing Huo Ran to step on his chest to fix it.
The first day back at school, the dorm supervisor was already hard at work.
When they returned, Old Yuan was waiting in front of their rooms.
“It’s not curfew yet, right?” Huo Ran quickly got out his phone.
“It’s not,” Old Yuan said.
“I just came to visit.
Did you guys unpack yet?”
“We did.” Kou Chen said.
“Come down to my office tomorrow after morning self-study.” Old Yuan said.
“What’s wrong?” Kou Chen asked.
“We need to talk about what happened last night.” Old Yuan said.
“Last night?” Kou Chen turned to Huo Ran.
Huo Ran turned to Xu Zhifan.
“Last night…” Xu Zhifan cleared his throat, “They weren’t there, it was just me and Jiang Lei, and Hu Yi.”
“Is that so?” Old Yuan hesitated, but he waved them off a moment later.
“You can all come, just take it as a casual chat.
I can’t quite convince myself when it comes to you guys.”
After Old Yuan disappeared past the corner, Huo Ran yelled out: “You guys got caught last night?”
“Why else would we be late?” Jiang Lei sighed.
“Old Yuan didn’t come to find us the whole day, I thought it would be forgotten.”
“It’ll be fine, Old Yuan is reasonable.
You were really just taking a walk around the school.” Xu Chuan said.
“Let’s go back,” Kou Chen stretched.
“Only at Fuzhong can they care about stuff like this for so long.”
After washing up, the lights turned off a few minutes after Huo Ran laid down.
Then they heard a noise come from Kou Chen’s dorm room.
“Did they go out?” Jiang Lei asked.
“Probably.” Xu Zhifan yawned.
“Didn’t Kou Chen say he wanted to go back tonight?”
“Crazy.” Huo Ran laid on his arm.
“Why does he have to go at night?”
“We didn’t find anything during the day.” Xu Zhifan laughed.
“Besides, there’s no difference between night and day for someone not scared of ghosts, like Kou Chen.”
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection.
If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
“Tsk.” Huo Ran grumbled.
Qtja’r rb lwqgfrrlnf jybea cba yflcu rmjgfv bo utbrar? Lf rmgfjwfv ilxf tlr yjmx rcjqqfv lc tjio ogbw pera j vlribmjafv olcufg.
“Tbe akb jigfjvs jijgwfv atja qfgrbc ijra cluta.” We Jtejc rjlv, “Ktfgf’r cb kjs atfs’gf ralii atfgf.”
“You can’t be sure of that.” Wei Chaoren looked around as he walked.
“They must be thinking ‘fuck I was spotted last night, they’re gonna think I won’t come back, but I will’.”
“Vtea eq!” We Jtejc rjlv.
“Qtja? Tbe’nf yffc qlrrfv ja wf atf ktbif fnfclcu.” Qfl Jtjbgfc kjr nfgs ectjqqs.
“That date pit in your head poked a hole in your Chuan-ge’s face.” Kou Chen said.
“Keep asking and he’s gonna smack you.”
“I’ll just go with you to the infirmary for a couple hours tomorrow.” We Chaoren said.
“Don’t you dare!” Xu Chuan refused immediately.
“Stay the fuck away from me when I go to the infirmary.”
“You…” As Wei Chaoren spoke, Kou Chen’s finger suddenly appeared in front of him, and he shut up immediately.
“Did you see?” Kou Chen whispered excitedly.
“Fuck!” Xu Chuan whispered too.
“I saw it.
We can’t be all hallucinating, right? I saw some gray thing move… Chaoren did you see?”
“Fuck!” Wei Chaoren slapped his leg as well.
Kou Chen and Xu Chuan turned to look at him.
“The fuck was I supposed to see? I was talking to you guys, I didn’t see shit.” Wei Chaoren complained.
To be honest, they weren’t really sure of what they saw, seeing as it was across half the field in the dark.
Going closer to the haunted building, they couldn’t know where exactly that person was.
“Search floor by floor.” Kou Chen whispered.
“Okay.” Xu Chuan nodded.
Wei Chaoren reached out and grabbed Kou Chen’s shirt from behind: “You guys go, I’ll take the back.”
Kou Chen looked at him: “If you rip my shirt I’ll tie you up in here.”
“Don’t worry, let’s go.” Wei Chaoren patted his chest, keeping his grip on his shirt.
There were three rooms on each floor, all locked.
Looking in from the window, there was nobody inside.
They crossed the hallway, to the skylight.
Limestone tiles made up the floor, with grass growing between the cracks.
“You guys think people come here to take a shit?” Kou Chen felt that the environment was very attractive to those that couldn’t hold it in anymore.
“I don’t think there’s anyone coming here to shit.” Xu Chuan said.
“Second floor.” Kou Chen said.
The second floor’s layout was the same as the first.
Kou Chen bent down to inspect the floor when they passed the place he fell yesterday: “Good for me, the floorboard split in two.”
“You two get to here last night?” Wei Chaoren asked.
This was where we heard someone upstairs.” Kou Chen stuck his head through the nearby window.
It smelled dusty, and there was nobody there.
Wei Chaoren followed behind him and Xu Chuan.
He was relatively calm, a lot better than Huo Ran, but he had a death grip on his shirt.
Kou Chen felt that his shirt was about to cut through his waist.
Xu Chuan walked at the very front.
As he climbed up the stairs to the third floor, footsteps sounded from below.
They were quick, the sound of running.
“Stop!” Kou Chen yelled before he even turned around, and then he ran over to the railing.
Looking down, he could see a floaty figure cross the ground in front of the building, heading for the field.
“After them.” He pushed Wei Chaoren’s hand away from his shirt, directly jumping over the railing, down onto the hallway below.
The floor cracked beneath him.
“Are you trying to destroy the building?!” Xu Chuan hissed.
Kou Chen started sweating too, he forgot this was the haunted building with a history longer than the hundred year old school.
The mental image of him falling through the second floor to straight to the first had him squatting down for a couple seconds.
After making sure the floor didn’t split in two, and that the building wasn’t planning on collapsing, he leaped up and ran to the first floor.
But that figure had long since disappeared.
Kou Chen gazed across the field for a while.
Forget the figure from just now, there wasn’t even a security guard in sight.
He wouldn’t even know where to start if he were to give chase.
“It’s a girl.” Xu Chuan ran over to his side.
“Mhm, I think so too.” Kou Chen nodded.
Their footsteps were light, and they looked small and dainty, at least two sizes smaller than the coat they wore.
Although he couldn’t see clearly, he felt like they had long hair.
“A girl?” Wei Chaoren was shocked, “A girl is this brave?”
I’m staying right here.
Don’t go back to the dorms if you dare.” Kou Chen stared at the other side of the field unflinchingly.
Xu Chuan felt a bit bored.
As he was about to go pat him, he suddenly ducked to the ground, scooching over to the side: “Fuck, security, get down! Are you two blind?”
Xu Chuan and Wei Chaoren ducked as well, scooching over with him.
They looked extremely stupid as they hopped along on the floor with their arms around their knees.
Xu Chuan would normally rather die than move in such a position, but Kou Chen started it, and Wei Chaoren moved surprisingly fast like that, so he somehow ended up following their lead.
Almost at the wall, Kou Chen started laughing.
Xu Chuan suddenly realized, glancing at the field.
There wasn’t even any security guard.
He leaped up and aimed a kick at Kou Chen’s ass.
“How fucking bored are you?!”
Kou Chen was still laughing as he wiped away the tears: “Come on, life is so hard, can’t even catch the person I’ve been trying to catch.
I gotta find fun somewhere.”
“At least we gained something.” Wei Chaoren remained squatting on the floor hugging his knees.
“At least we know it’s a girl, a dainty one.”
“A girl?” Huo Ran was shocked.
That piece of information completely made him forget about the gloominess of having to go to the teacher’s office twice right when school started.
“A girl is alone roasting sausages in the haunted building?” Xu Zhifan repeated.
“Why do I feel like it’s a joke?”
“I’m serious.” Xu Chuan said.
“Behind the skylight, there were burn marks on the floor.
When we went back, there was half a sausage in the ashes.”
“You guys ate it?” Huo Ran asked.
“Nope.” Kou Chen looked at him.
“Saved it for you.”
“How do you know it was from that girl? I thought you guys didn’t see the fire?” Huo Ran obviously had his doubts.
“The fire was out when we went,” Xu Chuan said.
“But the ash hadn’t been blown away yet.
It’s pretty windy these days, if you go now, I bet it’s all gone.”
“How strange.” Hu Ran didn’t really believe Kou Chen, but he could believe Xu Chuan’s words.
“How hungry does she have to be to cook in the haunted building…”
“It was a proper sausage too,” Wei Chaoren said.
“Not a hot dog sausage, a proper sausage.
The ones you have to cook first.
Much more tasty than hot dog sausages.
The ones my family makes are even better, though Kou Chen’s doesn’t count.
He makes them himself, and he had me try one, it was like chewing a sock…”
Huo Ran and the others were all shocked at that, not because of the sock flavoured sausages, and not because Wei Chaoren made it sound like he knew what socks tasted like…
“Someone like you who had so many people out for you that you had to transfer, knows how to make sausages?” Huo Ran said.
“Who’s out for him, his sister?” Wei Chaoren asked.
Kou Chen wasn’t bothered by his sock-like sausages, he even laughed along with them, but that sentence irked him.
He pointed at Wei Chaoren: “With your IQ, forget about surviving past the first episode, you can’t even make it into the cast.”
They couldn’t stop laughing as they made their way to the classroom.
Jiang Lei only stopped laughing when the English teacher arrived and smacked the back of his head.
At lunch, Xu Zhifan specifically asked for a steamed sausage.
“They made me crave sausages for the whole morning.” He sat down in front of Huo Ran, taking a bite.
“Fuck, it’s so salty.”
“Like a sock?” Huo Ran asked.
“I don’t know what socks taste like…” Xu Zhifan put the bitten sausage on Jiang Lei’s plate, “Lei-ge, here.”
“Nice!” Jiang Lei took a bite as he scrolled through his phone, “It’s pretty good.”
“What kind of taste buds…” Before he could finish, a plateful of vegetables was set down beside him.
Then Kou Chen sat down.
“Why are you sitting here?” Huo Ran turned around, Xu Chuan and Wei Chaoren were still in line.
Kou Chen didn’t answer.
He dug out a bus pass from his pocket, pressing it to his nose: “Beep! A student card.”
“…Alright.” Huo Ran ignored him, turning back to his food.
Hu Yi asked: “You’re only eating veggies?”
“Yesterday’s food was too oily, gotta cleanse my system.” Kou Chen said.
Then, with a ‘I love vegetables’ expression he mixed them around in his plate before picking up a big lump of veggies and putting it in his mouth.
“The veggies in our cafeteria,” He frowned, “They don’t put any oil, even if you’re blanching you have to put at least some oil, right?”
“Didn’t you say you’re cleansing out your system today?” Huo Ran said.
Kou Chen didn’t say anything, staring at him for a few seconds before scarfing down his food.
When Xu Chuan and Wei Chaoren sat down with their lunch, he had already cleaned his plate.
“Damn, Kou Chen.” Wei Chaoren looked at his plate in shock, “Why are you sitting here with a plate if you’re not gonna eat?”
“None of your business.” Kou Chen pushed his plate to the side, and looked around.
“I’m wondering if I’ll run into the girl from yesterday.”
“Hm?” Jiang Lei looked up, “Right, pretty much everyone eats in the cafeteria at lunch.”
“Do you see?” Xu Chuan asked.
“Yeah,” Kou Chen sighed, “I see that all the girls are pretty skinny.”
Huo Ran also looked around as he ate, taking a couple more glances at the girls that passed by him.
Girls these days are all pretty conscious of their appearance, most of them being pretty skinny, like they’d blow away at a strong gust of wind.
None of the ones he saw were that tall.
It’s like looking for a needle in a haystack.
As they prepared to leave, Huo Ran saw that popular girl.
She wasn’t with those dudes, instead sitting with the girl that kept her head down the other day, along with two other girls, chatting as they ate.
Kou Chen said that she and the others were accepting protection fees from the back of the haunted building.
Only the girl with her head down looked like the one actually paying… So they really are protecting her? Even eating lunch together?
Walking out the cafeteria, he couldn’t help but glance back.
In terms of dainty, the girl with her head down would be considered dainty.
She probably didn’t have an appetite.
She only sat and looked at her plate, not touching a thing on it.
Like she felt his gaze on her, that girl suddenly looked up at him.
He immediately felt a bit embarrassed.
“Huo Ran,” Kou Chen called.
Before he could reply, Kou Chen already slung an arm around his shoulders, moving closer to him, “I…”
“Go away!” Huo Ran startled, slapping his arm off.
“I’m trying to talk to you.” Huo Ran raised his arm.
“Speak.” Huo Ran looked at his arm.
“So, take us with you for National Day,” Kou Chen put down his arm, scooting over to his side and whispering, “Me, my sister, and her boyfriend…”
Huo Ran turned to glare at him: “That many?”
“Mainly because my sister and her boyfriend are about to break up, this is the only way to save their relationship,” Kou Chen looked a little sad, “My sister and Old Yang got together in middle school, ten years, it couldn’t have been easy…”
“…Ah.” Huo Ran started.
“They won’t be there for long, just for a night or two.
They won’t cause any trouble.” Kou Chen sighed, “It’s still mainly because they want to try their best to fix their relationship.
Ten years… My sister went from a girl to a woman.
If they break up, it’ll be hard to find someone else…”
Huo Ran stared at him for at least ten seconds: “Kou Chen.”
“Hm?” Kou Chen turned, sorrow still written on his face.
“Fuck you.” Huo Ran said.
“Damn,” Kou Chen started, before laughing, “Why are you so uncivilized?”
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