“You didn’t understand what it meant to like someone yet back then so I wanted to wait for you to understand. When you suddenly understood, you fell for someone else...” Sis Ming You let out a long sigh,disappointed. “I didn’t know exactly when you would understand nor did I know that you would fall for someone else. Harry...” She lifted her chin. “This is a lesson for me. Don’t walk down the same path as me. Before she learns to like someone, tell her. Even if she rejects you, at least she would know that you like her...”
Harry furrowed his eyebrows and looked away. “She doesn’t like me.”
“So, you will just keep guarding her like that?”
“Mm,” Harry replied sorrowfully. “I’m happy... just doing that. Plus... she would avoid me if I tell her...”
“Heh... that’s true...” Ming You chuckled lightly and was relieved. She extended her hand and patted Harry’s chest. “As long as you are happy... and, don’t tell your dad that I liked him before.”
“Mm.” Harry sounded even more depressed.
Sis Ming You left Harry’s side.
“I’ll send you off.” Harry took the initiative to offer, worry in his eyes.
Sis Ming You waved him off. “It’s okay. I’d like to be alone.” Sis Ming You walked past Harry in silence. Harry turned to watch her retreating silhouette until she disappeared at the end of the lights.
I walked up behind Harry and patted him. Shocked, he screamed, “Ah!”
He spun and saw me. Rubbing his chest, he scolded, “Why don’t your feet make sounds when you walk?!”
I gazed at Sis Ming You’s back in sorrow. “Is it that painful when the person you like doesn’t like you back?”
“Of course!” Harry looked away, his hand over his chest.
I glanced at his hand. “You are in pain? Who do you like? I’ll help you!” I clenched my fist and raised it in encouragement.
A flash of pain passed through his amber eyes, but it was very quickly replaced by his disdainful gaze. Rolling his eyes at me, he pushed my head away. “Move aside. Don’t cause more trouble instead of helping!”
I narrowed my eyes. “How dare you push my head!”
He raised his eyebrows at me. “Why? You want to hit me?!”
I clenched my fist. “Since Mr Harry has such a request, I shall do my best to fulfill it!”
Hence, I chased after him under the lights. He was actually happy to get hit by me.
Harry was the only guy who would be happy getting beaten up by me.
Sis Cannon and Khai were getting more and more intimate. They’d even started sending eye signals to one another during our meals. There were also many other signals that weren’t child friendly.
For example, there was once when we ate rice paste in the cafeteria. One of the warehouses in Kro had been filled with food that was about to expire. Hence the food had been given to us to eat.
During the meal, Sis Cannon had been stirring the white starchy rice paste with her spoon. She lifted the spoon, the white starchy semi-solid liquid dripping from it. Sis Cannon smiled suggestively at Khai. “Hey, doesn’t this look like it?”
Khai was confused. “Like what?”
All of us at the table looked at Sis Cannon puzzledly. What did it look like?
Sis Cannon then held the spoon before her face and licked the rice paste. Suddenly, Khai blushed really hard!
Then Harry blushed too. He threw the spoon onto the table at once and roared in anger, “How do you expect us to continue eating like that?!”
Raffles blushed too and put down his spoon. “That’s not very nice...” He lowered his head, his ears red too, with the redness spreading to his smooth neck as well.
The guys were all blushing as they coughed. They stole glances at the girls and didn’t dare to look at us anymore.
Arsenal seemed to understand and she blushed too. She put down her soon. “I can’t eat anymore.” Then, she walked away directly.
“Me too.” Ming You stood up and walked away with Arsenal, shaking her head continuously. “This is ridiculous! They got married! Then, they...!”
Xiao Ying looked around at everyone. “What is it like...”
I held my head. Well, now we wouldn’t be able to see rice paste the same way as before anymore.
Only Xue Gie and Bill continued to eat calmly. They had always been in a different world from us, like an invisible barrier stood between us and them.
Seeing rice paste at the corner of Xue Gie’s lips, Bill instinctively wiped it away for her. Xue Gie looked up at him for a moment, before she continued eating. Bill looked at her in silence and then blushed. Flustered, he lowered his head, too shy to look at Xue Gie.
“Forget it!” Harry finally threw the spoon away and the guys followed behind him as he left.
From then on, we ate separately. Yet even when sitting separately, we could still see Sis Cannon and Khai’s under-the-table actions.
We suddenly understood that it was impossible for those in a romantic relationship to be in the same world as us who weren’t in one. Soon, Xue Gie and Bill sat separately from us too.
The scouting troop and the DR team that had always been moving together began to scatter. With the new romantic relationships that had developed, the pure friendship between guys and girls began to change.
After Sis Cannon and Khai got engaged, the number of engaged couples increased like romance was contagious. The atmosphere in Noah City became lovey-dovey, as more and more engaged couples moved into the Love Nest. Within a short time, the Love Nest had become lively. Having many common topics to chat about, the people there often hung out together, and would look from afar at those of us not in relationships with the eyes of adults looking at children.
The ‘generation gap’ between us and those in the Love nest grew wider. We couldn’t be as close as before, because we would always end up defeated by their kissing and suggestive smiles.
I used to hear from my cousin that if your friend started a romantic relationship, you would grow apart from her. I hadn’t believed it in the beginning but I believed it now. Of course, this distance would only be temporary since they were in their honeymoon period.
The intense romantic vibes caused the relationship between Harry, Raffles and me to become strange too. The people around us kept making fun of us and asking when I would get engaged with Harry and Raffles, or asking who I’d picked. Their teasing made us feel embarrassed, and placed Harry and Raffles in an awkward position.
Over time, they hardly walked by my side. Our pure friendship had become coquettish flirting in their eyes.
Sometimes when I walked alone, I would miss the times I’d spent with Raffles and Harry. Back then, we’d been fooling and joking around with each other. Harry and Raffles would always argue and they would always be around me. But suddenly, they’d started avoiding me. They avoided me so that we wouldn’t be awkward when the others asked questions.
Little Har, Little Raf and Little Bing grew up together.
As Little Carl was charged with taking care of them when we weren’t around, the birds would see Little Carl as soon as they opened their eyes. Hence, they took Little Carl as their mother.
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