Chapter 55: He, The Health Expert
Tang Cuo and Jin Cheng weren’t in a hurry to find Lin Yandong. The two of them didn’t plan to enter the serial mission again any time soon, so this matter could be put aside.
For now, news of Jin Cheng’s return to East Cross Street hadn’t spread out, so it was relatively peaceful here. After a while, Wen Xiaoming received a notice from the Ruby Bar and travelled to Zone F with a bag full of stuff to send them some warmth.
The two sides met at the Ruby Bar.
“Boss, it’s just nice that you’re back now. If you come back a little later, I’ll have been dragged to a dungeon by Lily.” Wen Xiaoming was still wearing a fisherman’s hat and flip-flops, with faded pink hair and cloth earrings. Carrying a big bag on his back, he looked like a mobile street vendor walking the runway, and as soon as his stall closed, he would fly to Paris to attend Fashion Week the day after.
“Is Lilith okay?” Jin Cheng asked.
“She’s okay, applying face masks at home everyday. By the way, boss, she asked me to bring you a few pieces. There’re whitening and moisturising ones, which one do you want? And I also bring clothes, all of them are new.”
Tang Cuo was still wondering whether this third person who always appeared in the two’s conversation was actually called Lily or Lilith. After listening to Wen Xiaoming, he felt that the name really wans’t at all important.
He looked at Jin Cheng ― Is your team the department store’s beauty section?
Jin Cheng raised his eyebrows. “Don’t give me that expression. Do you think that when you meet her in the future, you can escape the fate of having to apply face masks? I think you should perm your hair, the hair foils looks like they suit you. It’ll soften that righteous face of yours a bit.”
Wen Xiaoming: “I think it is a good idea.”
Tang Cuo: “…”
But I don’t think it is.
Tang Cuo never liked to do up his hair. For him, it’s enough to get a neat, refreshing cut, and any sophisticated style was too troublesome. He also didn’t want to discuss the topic of beauty with Jin Cheng and Wen Xiaoming; it was too out of his knowledge.
Fortunately, Jin Cheng let him off and moved on to ask Wen Xiaoming about the current situation in Zone A.
Wen Xiaoming talked a lot but nothing much into details. Basically, most were just small matters and everything was generally at peace. At the end, he suddenly remembered something and said: “I remember now, when I went to the game hall yesterday, I heard from someone in Zone B that Extreme Luck looks like he wants to level up to Zone A soon.”
The original words from that watermelon-eating spectator1in Zone B were ― “Extreme Luck is really lucky. Everyone in Zone A is now in jail, and those who have been punished back to Zone F are now stuck in Zone F. The rest are those who don’t often engage in troubles like Lin Yandong. Zone A is now in great harmony! It’s a good time to enter Zone A, everything will go smoothly for him. By the time that Blacklist lunatic Jin Cheng returns, he’ll already have a firm foothold. He’s really 66666!”
Why was Extreme Luck Yu Yiyi on Mr. Crow’s Blacklist? This was a mystery of Yong Ye City that no one had yet to solve. With his wicked luck, it was clear that he should be Mr. Crow’s favourite son instead.
Wen Xiaoming said earnestly: “I kind of want to be friends with him.”
Jin Cheng raised his eyebrows: “He was also hanging around East Cross Street that day. He wanted to kill me, and you want to be friends with him?”
“But didn’t he make no moves and just leave at the end? I think we still have a chance to be friends. Boss, am I right? Our group’s luck is too bad now, we urgently need to be neutralised.”
“What did you just say?”
Wen Xiaoming immediately shut up and obediently shook his head.
He really couldn’t control his own mouth and had to spill whatever was on his mind, but what he said was actually true. Let’s look at the few members of their team. Their boss was No.1 on the Blacklist, and their pretty-much-confirmed new member Tang Cuo was also on the Blacklist with an absolute certainty of never getting out, not to mention their evil demoness Lily. Wen Xiaoming, their little background support member, seriously had no way to improve the quality of their luck.
After meeting Tang Cuo some time ago, he even wanted to create a good luck simulator, similar to a good luck buff, but to no one’s surprise, he failed miserably.
However, he believed that one day he would succeed. This was the confidence of an equipment master.
Before he left, Jin Cheng told him: “Look for an opportunity to meet Lin Yandong and tell him that I need to talk to him. But as to what I want to talk about, we’ll have to wait till the meeting.”
Wen Xiaoming nodded and headed back home.
Tang Cuo and Jin Cheng returned to East Cross Street with the big bag of things. The two had no intention to cover up their movements and even walked around excessively freely, so after a while, everyone knew that they had been back.
After putting the stuff down, the two went to the department store again, because Jin Cheng wanted to fulfil his promise ― To buy a hair dryer for Tang Cuo.
The department store in Yong Ye City was a very magical place. You could not only buy all kinds of daily necessities and fresh meat, but also all sorts of strange services.
Such as face distortion service. At different prices, you could get a technician online to perform plastic surgery on your face. Although adding points to Charm could help regain youth, it couldn’t directly turn a beast into a beauty, yet the face distortion service of Yong Ye City could do that with ease.
Tang Cuo glanced curiously at the slogan on the billboard ― ‘Yong Ye City Aesthetics, your best choice’.
Looking at the prices, it costed 12 points for double eyelids and 18 points for nose lifting. The most expensive was the nemesis of baldness – ‘Saving The Hairline’ – which actually costed 38 points.
What a very shady business.
Beside that, there was a Dream Machine that looked like a giant egg.
Tang Cuo had seen a similar device in the mall before, which was called a VR Experience Machine, where customers just wore VR glasses and sat on it. But this Dream Machine was obviously no ordinary VR machine, and the queue in front of it was the longest in the whole store.
“What are they queuing for?” Tang Cuo asked.
“Dreaming.” Jin Cheng leaned on the pillar with his arms folded, his gaze solemn. “This machine can weave the dream that you had when you were still alive. In the dream, you may be able to realise your wish before your death and reach the pinnacle of life.”
Tang Cuo understood.
The Dream Machine was like a way to escape from reality, attracting waves and waves of people to come here. The more immersed one was in the dream, the harder it would be for him to face reality, then he would continue to sink further, creating a vicious circle.
It costs 10 points to create a dream at a time. As the players slowly put in the points, they were approaching nearer to the edge of collapsing.
But there were lots of people standing in line, and the queue even stretched beyond the corner of the store.
Suddenly, Tang Cuo saw a familiar face in the crowd. He raised his eyebrows slightly and winked at Jin Cheng. Jin Cheng followed his gaze and saw that No. 1 from [Conquering Demon City] was in the middle of the queue.
No. 1 triggered a forced mission and was sent to the dungeon. He kept trying to get others to save him, and finally stayed in the second round, abandoning his own chance. As his shitty luck would have it, the third round ended back in the second round’s field, and he almost snatched Jin Cheng’s winning ticket.
Jin Cheng wasn’t surprised to see No. 1 queuing up for the Dream Machine.
More than ten days had passed since [Conquering Demon City], and maybe twenty days later, No. 1 would still be forced into a dungeon, because he always tried to escape from reality.
Whether he could survive this time would be hard to say.
“Let’s go.” Jin Cheng had rescued No. 1 once, but the guy obviously had no will to save himself, so Jin Cheng wouldn’t have a saint’s heart to take care of him again. He and Tang Cuo continued to slowly walk upstairs and reached the second floor in a short while.
The two stopped and briefly glanced at the three-way intersection, then one went to the right and the other went to the left. Their individual goals were extremely clear.
“Where are you going?” Jin Cheng couldn’t help but turn around.
“To buy chocolate.” Tang Cuo said.
“Can’t you come buy a hair dryer with me first before that?”
Tang Cuo turned around and walked back to Jin Cheng, his hands put inside his trench coat pockets through the entire time, looking all cold, cool and unbound by anything. Going to the supermarket was actually a relatively foreign thing to him. He enlisted in the army at the age of 18, and after he was discharged from the army, he kept to online shopping. If online shopping couldn’t make it, he would head to the mini mart downstairs and rarely ever step into the supermarket.
Now that he thought about it carefully, every time he went to the supermarket with someone, the person seemed to always be Jin Cheng.
Jin Cheng, however, didn’t know this, even though he knew a little about Tang Cuo’s past. Seeing an empty trolley in front of him, he reached out his hand and pushed it towards Tang Cuo: “Push it for me.”
Tang Cuo tilted his head slightly: “?”
Conveniently, Jin Cheng grabbed a few coasters from the shelf and put them into the trolley, then a glass jug, a toothbrush, and a bunch of cute animal-shaped hooks.
Tang Cuo silently pushed the trolley behind him. He looked left and right, and after a long time, he still didn’t know what he needed to buy. He simply had no idea where Jin Cheng’s desire for shopping came from, but he didn’t want to comment until ―
Jin Cheng picked up a multi-purpose health kettle.
“I don’t want this.” Tang Cuo said firmly.
“Who says I buy it for you? This is for me.” Jin Cheng leaned on the other end of the trolley, looked at him amusedly and added a twist at the end: “I buy it to cook for you.”
“I refuse your refusal.”
Jin Cheng, a health expert who never maintained his own health but wanted to force others to stay healthy.
The two sides kept on like this in the Electronics section, with Jin Cheng insisting on buying but Tang Cuo insisting on not buying. Two tall, handsome guys with long legs stood in the middle of the isle, attracting plenty of stares from passersby.
In the end, this war without firepower ended with Tang Cuo agreeing to compromise, because whoever paid had the final say.
Jin Cheng felt that Tang Cuo’s expression at the moment was particularly interesting, like a little tiger who was obviously fierce yet put on a weary face, giving up resisting and simply turning into a cat.
If you touch him, maybe he’ll scratch you with his paws.
Thinking about it, Jin Cheng couldn’t help but raise the corners of his mouth. Tang Cuo glanced at him, thinking that he was really odd today, and that he must be contemplating something evil.
So he pushed the trolley faster and walked in front.
Jin Cheng leisurely followed behind, watching Tang Cuo’s back. Slowly he walked, and slowly, the complication in his heart was getting more complicated.
An hour later, the two returned with two big bags full of stuff.
Tang Cuo bought a lot of chocolate beans, which slightly diluted his annoyance over the health kettle. On the way back, he ate hot and sour noodles, whose hot and sour sensation made him feel both pleased and contented.
Back in the room, the moment Tang Cuo entered the door, the bell suddenly rang.
“Sir, you have an express delivery package, please come to check and take it!”
Hearing this, Tang Cuo couldn’t help thinking of the express fee scam he got last time, and he really didn’t want to be scammed again. But this time, Jin Cheng heard the sound too and was very curious: “Who sent it to you?”
Tang Cuo was expressionless: “Maybe my enemy sent me knives.”
Jin Cheng responded with a smile.
You can use this trick on others, but not on me.
Translator and reviewer at Strictly Bromance blog. In essence, she lives to indulge in plot-driven stories sprinkled with camaraderie and slow-burn drama-free romance, especially more so if they belong to adventure, mystery or supernatural genre. A trope that she always thirsts after: “Comrades who go through life and death together”.