Back at the initial lounge, Dong Linhai was still sleeping like a dead pig and knew nothing about what had just happened. Dong Zheng woke him up without telling him that the people of the Deep Disguisers came to provoke them. The three of them went back together to the castle.
Seeing Dong Linhai’s confused look when he was barely awake, Cui Zuojing couldn’t help but think badly—If one day he told Dong Linhai that Dong Zheng was pursuing him, what would this silly face show? What kind of expression?
It must be wonderful.
Every time they came out of a box, it would take them three to four days to adjust. This time, it might take more. Those horrible scenes really frightened everyone. After sleeping for nearly a whole day, they were no longer so overdrawn. But they still had to force their body to fall asleep because they could no longer fall asleep normally.
On the third day.
Lin Hangzhi was lying on the dining table with chopsticks in his hand, as if he was going to die in the next second. Dong Linhai kept nodding off little by little, and when he was about to fall asleep, he would wake up suddenly. He would look around with horror to confirm that he was surrounded by people instead of monsters. Then, his eyes would begin to slowly close again.
Wang Que didn’t go downstairs to eat, and it may be assumed that she also had another sleepless night. Only Dong Zheng looked better. He sat face to face with Cui Zuojing and ate Lilian’s carefully prepared breakfast.
Dong Linhai nodded off sharply again. He woke up from his dream and saw that Dong Zheng looked normal. He said bitterly, “Brother, did you fall asleep last night?”
“Yeah.” Dong Zheng pushed the little rice dumpling away and put it on Cui Zuojing’s plate. Dong Linhai, who was extremely sleepy, didn’t even notice this extraordinary little movement.
“How did you fall asleep? Hurry up and teach me.” Dong Linhai’s eyes widened instantly, full of desire.
Dong Zheng said, “…If you can’t sleep by yourself, find someone to accompany you to sleep at night.”
Cui Zuojing bit his chopstick, since he was the one who’d accompanied Dong Zheng to sleep last night—In fact, it was actually him who went to sleep with Dong Zheng. Without looking up, under the table, he slipped his bare feet out from his slippers and placed them on top of Dong Zheng’s feet, as if it would be more comfortable to rest like this.
Dong Linhai was stunned for two seconds, then realization dawned and he slapped his thigh. “Yeah! Why didn’t I think of that! Brother, I will go to sleep with you tonight. I definitely won’t be afraid if I have you with me!”
Dong Zheng: “……………”
Dong Zheng said, “It’s better for you to find Hangzhi. Don’t you two just happen to be unable to sleep?”
Dong Linhai’s face was very innocent as he insisted on sleeping with his brother. “But it would be better if I sleep with you and Hangzhi and Cui’er sleep together, right? The last time we slept in the same bed was years ago.”
Fu Zhe, who was sitting at the head of the table drinking tea, couldn’t hold back. He silently sprayed out the tea in his mouth, hurriedly moved the liquid into the trash can, and laughed out loud.
Lin Hangzhi’s mouth was half-opened like a fish. Half of his face was lying on his arm, and he stared at Fu Zhe in amazement, not hearing what the others were saying. As soon as he loosened his hand, the chopsticks in his hand fell onto the ground.
Lin Hangzhi groaned twice, reluctantly stooped over to pick it up, and his brain was so muddled that he could hear the sound of water swishing as he bent down.
Then under the table, he saw Cui Zuojing’s feet resting on top of Dong Zheng’s feet.
Lin Hangzhi didn’t react immediately. He picked up the chopsticks and put them on the table again. He stared straight ahead with a pair of sleepy eyes, and his mind began to slowly process the image that he’d just seen.
Five seconds later.
Lin Hangzhi: ?!?!?!
The sleepiness that had entangled him for two whole days disappeared in an instant. He pretended to be picking up something again and bent down to make sure that it was indeed not an illusion caused by him being too sleepy.
Cui Zuojing’s toes were inside Dong Zheng’s trousers, rubbing his ankles dishonestly.
Lin Hangzhi leaned back on his chair and was silly for a while.
Then he thought about Dong Zheng and Xiao Cui’s recent behaviors and excessive intimacy……
Lin Hangzhi sucked in a breath.
Suddenly, he felt as if he’d discovered something terrible!
Dong Linhai was still intent on wanting to sleep with Dong Zheng. He had the momentum to persevere as long as Dong Zheng didn’t directly reject him. Lin Hangzhi saw Cui Zuojing snickering with his head down, and he soullessly lifted the bowl in front of him, drank the warm soy milk, stood up, and said, “I’m full. I’ll go up and sleep for a while. That…Xiao Hai, come with me. Let’s try if us two can fall asleep together.”
Dong Linhai didn’t notice anything. Seeing Lin Hangzhi taking the initiative to invite him, he immediately gave up on Dong Zheng, who seemed unwilling. He drank a few mouthfuls of soy milk and ran to catch up with Lin Hangzhi.
In an instant, there were only three people and one cat left in the living room.
Fu Zhe smiled and shook his head. He picked up his tea cup and sighed, “You guys are really—”
“If someone couldn’t sleep and knocked on my door in the middle of the night, what could I do?” Cui Zuojing shamelessly took the initiative to say with no embarrassment at all. He completely didn’t try to save face at all. “No way. I can only accompany the captain for one night.”
Victor lazily raised his head from the sofa, “Why does that sound so fishy?”
Before Cui Zuojing could defend himself, Dong Zheng promptly said, “Uncle’s eyes are very perceptive.”
Under the table, Cui Zuojing’s foot smacked into Dong Zheng’s.
The man didn’t seem to feel it at all. After eating the last bite of the bun, he saw that Cui Zuojing had also finished eating and was about to wipe his hands on the tablecloth as was his habit. He immediately grabbed his wrist and wiped his fingers one by one with a tissue.
“Don’t find any more work for Lilian,” he said.
Cui Zuojing hummed in agreement and stretched out his hands to let him wipe. Even when Dong Zheng wiped his mouth, he didn’t resist and sat obediently, enjoying being served by the captain.
At this time, his eyes narrowed slightly. He took a long, deep breath, and a faint watery sheen appeared in his eyes.
Dong Zheng saw that Cui Zuojing was secretly yawning with his mouth closed. He thought of Cui Zuojing holding a pillow and pushing open the door of his bedroom at 2 o’clock in the morning last night, asking if they could sleep together. He was certain now that Cui Zuojing was still sleepy
“I’m a little tired, and I want to rest for a while,” Dong Zheng said, looking at Cui Zuojing.
At the moment when they looked at each other, Cui Zuojing’s vanity was greatly satisfied. He didn’t realize that Dong Zheng was deliberately taking care of him. He thought happily that Dong Zheng was still afraid, and said, “Hey, you, look at you. All right then, I will reluctantly accompany you to sleep for a while.”
The corners of Dong Zheng’s lips curved up.
The two went upstairs one after another. Fu Zhe drank tea and stared at the book in his hand. He didn’t read a word for a long time. Finally, he asked, “Uncle, what do you think?”
Victor changed to a more comfortable position. He lay on his stomach and flicked the tip of his tail, and said sincerely, “It’s good.”
“Yes.” Fu Zhe smiled and sighed into the heat of his tea. “Really good.”
One advantage of the castle’s lack of communication with the outside world was probably that there was no light interrupting their sleep. By the time Dong Zheng finished putting on his pajamas, Cui Zuojing was already lying on his bed.
This time, he wasn’t like how he’d been in Dusk Island, wearing only a pair of pants on his body. After understanding Dong Zheng’s intentions, Cui Zuojing was very vigilant. Even if he was uncomfortable, he still honestly put on pajamas.
He occupied the center of the entire bed. Seeing Dong Zheng getting in on the right side, he turned over to make room for him, hugged the comforter, and yawned contentedly.
Last night, Cui Zuojing had hugged his pillow and pushed open the door to Dong Zheng’s room. He pitifully asked him if they could sleep together again. Dong Zheng lifted the comforter, lay down on the bed, and very gentlemanly kept a relatively safe distance from Cui Zuojing, not wanting him to feel psychologically strained.
Now, he did just the same as last night.
“Go to sleep.” He turned off the lamp on the bedside table and lay flat on his back with his hands relaxed at his sides. He closed his eyes, waiting for something.
Dong Zheng actually wasn’t too tired. He’d completely digested the fear that the box had given him in one day. Or, more accurately, he used the program kernel to transmit the memories of those scary things into data and seal them up. So last night, he slept as well as he did the night before.
His ability was extremely useful.
After about five minutes, a rustling sound rang out in the darkness. The young man’s voice was very soft, tentatively ringing in his ear, “Dong Zheng?”
Dong Zheng breathed smoothly and silently. Not even his eyelashes trembled.
After making sure that Dong Zheng was asleep, Cui Zuojing breathed a sigh of relief. He quietly moved closer to Dong Zheng’s body and his fingers hooked onto his hand.
It was only when he really felt Dong Zheng’s body temperature, could he completely let go of the remaining fears in his heart.
Just like last night.
Cui Zuojing didn’t even think about how ambiguous his actions were just now. His mind was full of thoughts of wanting to rest. As soon as he closed his eyes, he heard Dong Zheng’s deep and mellow voice ringing in his ears, “Actually you still have some feelings left, right?”
Cui Zuojing didn’t expect that Dong Zheng was still awake. With a guilty conscience, he subconsciously withdrew his hand but it was quickly caught and held in place.
He thought that Dong Zheng would have wished for him to be like this, and he had no psychological burden. It was just that he felt…a little weird.
To say that he had nothing to do with Dong Zheng, but then to lay in the same bed with him, holding hands and falling asleep together…It was strange.
Cui Zuojing was silent for a moment and whispered, “Maybe.”
From feeling amused by his team member’s embarrassments, to laughter, to indulging in drinking with everyone at the tavern, to the subtle anger he’d felt when Dong Zheng reproached him, and then to the satisfaction he’d felt when he was able to eat the snacks he wanted….Since even Dong Zheng was aware of it, Cui Zuojing had no excuse not to realize that what the clown had left behind wasn’t just hatred to support him.
From the very beginning, the clown was unwilling to let him store all his feelings as he’d done at the end of that year. Maybe, he couldn’t persuade Cui Zuojing, so he only secretly took away those “negative” feelings.
Dong Zheng turned sideways and faced him. They were lying close in the darkness, but they still couldn’t see each other’s appearance, and could only hear each other’s soothing breathing.
“So now, how do you feel about me?”
There was silence in the bedroom.
“It’s…” After a long time, Cui Zuojing’s voice rang out slightly, “I’m still not sure.”
He bit his lower lip, not knowing what to say in answer. From the moment Dong Zheng made it clear he wanted to pursue him, his dependence on Dong Zheng…indeed began to rise exponentially.
It was as if you suddenly had someone who would care about you regardless, and you would inevitably want to use some “privileges” in front of him to show how special you were to him.
Look, he didn’t care so much about his younger brother who was related to him by blood or the only girl in the team. Only me—
Cui Zuojing wasn’t sure how things would develop once he took back his feelings.
But no matter what happened, he was sure that he would never be harmed.
This was the confidence that Dong Zheng gave him.
A different atmosphere was brewing in the air. The darkness, the silence, and the small piece of skin where they touched each other made everything warm up silently, making it difficult to breathe.
Cui Zuojing moved his legs uneasily, closed his eyes again, trying to hide something, and whispered, “I’m tired.”
“Sleep.” Dong Zheng’s palm was dry and warm, just holding on to his fingers firmly. “Don’t be afraid.”
Cui Zuojing knew the second half of the sentence he didn’t say.
—I am right beside you.
Xixi: Lin Hangzhi is too funny. Also, I would dearly loved to have seen this horror box. Sigh.