I looked at him and he smiled faintly. “Zi Yi came to Honeycomb when he was thirteen. No one knew where he came from, but he smelled good… So, I told Queen Bee that I wanted him.” The corners of his lips curled in a smile, and he continued. “Then, we met the people from Silver Moon City. I smelled the same scent on them. So, I know that Zi Yi… came from Silver Moon City.” Ah Zong smiled at me. “It seems that there has been a mole next to me. No wonder he wasn’t affected by the Honeycomb boys after so many years. Only he remained manly. Hmph…” He smiled flirtatiously and sweetly.
He spoke casually, even as he identified the mole. He didn’t need to interrogate anyone or speculate. Ah Zong really knew everyone around him well. In other words, he had known long ago that Zi Yi was Silver Moon City’s man, but he hadn’t exposed him.
In truth, it would have been meaningless to reveal him back then, because Blue Shield City had so much information on hand. Not only was it normal for Silver Moon City keep track of them, it was also expected for Silver Moon City to place a spy among them. Even if he gad exposed Zi Yi, Silver Moon City would send another person down. He would have to get to know the person all over again, unlike Zi Yi, whom he knew intimately and who was loyal to him.
“I never expected…” Ah Zong looked to the side. He lifted his hand to hold back the hair fluttering next to his neck. “...that Zi Yi would be Cang Yu’s man. It means that Cang Yu never believed in anyone, including His Highness Xing Chuan. So he even had to plant someone in Blue Shield City.”
I reckoned Ah Zong’s speculation was correct. I looked at him curiously, asking, “What does Silver Moon City smell like? Is this your superpower? Sense of smell?” Ah Zong’s sense of smell was sharp. He seemed to be able to pick up scents that ordinary people couldn’t.
“Coldness… mercilessness… loneliness…” Ah Zong described. “Death… silence… The people in Silver Moon City seem like the dead. I couldn’t smell…” He squinted. “...the smell of growth on them. On the contrary… there was an… identical scent, like a laboratory…” Ah Zong’s expression became confused. “Why would it smell like that?” He thought for a while, and his captivating eyes looked dreamy.
“Ah Zong!” I called softly, and he came back to reality. He turned around and smiled at me again. “My superpower is really to smell things others can’t pick up on, and distinguish between different scent chemicals. Actually, changes in human emotions release different chemical substances, and the scents naturally change as well. So, I can smell different hormones. You and Raffles…” He smiled sweetly. “I could smell it…”
“After my superpower evolved, I became able to control the secretion of hormones, including sex hormones.” He chuckled, adding, “Not only can I turn myself into a girl, but I can also change another person’s gender, too.”
I looked at him in surprise. “For how long?”
He smiled, “Forever, possibly.” He extended his hand to me, saying, “Bing, let me change you into a guy. Then, you don’t have to go through the trouble of disguising yourself.”
“Don’t!” I quickly grabbed his hand. “Let’s go and see what your living conditions are like.” I ran, dragging him along. He smiled so happily...
In fact, though, Ah Zong brought me to where they were staying, because I didn’t know where Arsenal had arranged for them to stay. But when I entered the tunnel to the North Sector, I already had a bad feeling.
The North Sector was where Noah stored mechanical equipment. There were many machines running in the North Sector, so it was very noisy. That was also the reason why it wasn’t used as a residential area.
Ah Zong and I walked through the tunnel and saw connecting bridges crisscrossing in complicated patterns. Many thick pipes and elevating platforms could be seen in the surroundings. I knew that there was a huge cabin at the end of the bridge, used to store bigger spare parts.
Ah Zong walked in front of me, and white steam occasionally puffed out of the sides of the tunnel. The North Sector was cold in the winter and hot in the summer, because the temperature in the area wasn’t conditioned in order to save energy. On top of that, there was a lot of heat from the operating machines.
However, Ah Zong walked casually and elegantly. It was as though he thought it was a gift from God no matter how bad their living conditions were, and he had no complaints.
When I reached the end, I felt sorry for the sight in front of me. I saw that they had really given the warehouse to the Honeycomb boys as a temporary habitat. There wasn’t any furniture, only simple sleeping bags and tents.
The Honeycomb guys stayed in groups of three of four. They were daydreaming, either on the sleeping bags or in the tents. It was a huge warehouse with dozens of Honeycomb guys, but it was silent.
“Brother Ah Zong is back.” Suddenly, a Honeycomb boy saw Ah Zong; he quickly stood up and looked at Ah Zong happily. The Honeycomb boys stood up and looked at Ah Zong, then at me.
“That’s Luo Bing…”
“That’s Brother Ah Zong’s Queen…”
“Would she let us stay in a better place…”
The Honeycomb boys were whispering among themselves in anticipation, and I felt worse. I hadn’t taken good care of them. I hadn’t given them a comfortable home.
“I’m sorry…” I held Ah Zong apologetically. His body stiffened, more than it ever had before. It was as though he had turned into a piece of wood. “I’m sorry…”
The Honeycomb boys sniggered flirtatiously.
“Brother Ah Zong is stunned.”
“I have never seen him like that. That’s funny.”
“Brother Ah Zong definitely likes Queen Bing…”
“Queen Bing, why are you apologizing?”
The kind Honeycomb boys were optimistic. No one blamed me for giving them poor lodgings.
Once, they enjoyed a rich and comfortable lifestyle. They once lived in Blue Shield City without worries. But now, they could only live in tents and on the ground.
Noah City wasn’t mine, after all. I couldn’t demand that Noah City had to provide equal treatment to Ah Zong and the other boys, taking what I wanted like a pirate. After all, people in Noah City still viewed them as gigolos.
However, I couldn’t sit by and do nothing. I had to fight for them!
“It’s okay, Luo Bing,” Queen Bee said. I let go of Ah Zong and looked at her apologetically. Xiao Shui and Zi Yi helped her as she walked towards me. There were wounds that had yet to heal on Xiao Shui’s face.
“Don’t mind us,” Queen Bee continued as she looked at me with a smile. “You already did a lot for us. If it weren’t for you, we might be roaming around outside.”
“If I knew the living conditions would be so poor, I’d rather have gone with the Ghost Eclipsers,” Butterfly popped his head out from one of the tents. Then, a dozen other Honeycomb boys popped their heads out from the other tents around him and rolled their eyes.
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