However, for those blessed ones who lived in heaven, would it be easy to adapt to life on the ground after they fell? They had no place on the ground. They would live subjugated. Would their arrogance allow them to bow to those who lived on the ground?
It really felt like a case of “Fortune favors the east bank for thirty years, but passes to the west bank after thirty years pass.” (A Chinese proverb that means the world is always changing, and often defies our expectations.)
“Try to guess… How much of your memory would the clone have?” I asked, looking at Xing Chuan.
Xing Chuan slowly lifted his chin and his eyes turned cold as he replied, “He definitely doesn’t love you. That is something that couldn’t be kept in his memory. The old monster wouldn’t create another chance for someone to betray him again…” He looked at He Lei in the image, muttering softly, “Lei, I’m sorry. I owe the Aurora Legion an apology…”
He Lei heard his apology and broke into a faint smile next to the three uncles, nodding at us.
Suddenly, someone from He Lei’s side knocked on the door. The three uncles took on serious expressions and fell silent.
Uncle Mucheng’s expression grew gentle as he opened the door. There was a tinge of awkwardness on his expression too. He asked, “Sayee, are you here to… look for Lei?” He looked at He Lei as Sayee slowly walked into the communication room. Her head hung low as she clutched her tattered dress anxiously.
He Lei looked more relaxed and happy when he saw Sayee. Ever since he had told Sayee the truth, Sayee hadn’t seen him. It was perfectly understandable, but it had still made him worry. Sayee was his family, after all. He had felt apologetic toward Sayee and had wanted to talk to her again. He would have felt better even if Sayee were to scold him or even beat him up. Now, though, He Lei wore a rare smile. He hardly smiled.
Uncle Mucheng stood by the door, sending Uncle Yorkshire and Uncle Hesher an eye signal. Then, they quickly moved to leave the room with Uncle Mucheng quietly, shutting the door behind them.
Only Sayee and He Lei were left in the quiet room. He Lei slowly walked forward as Sayee tugged on her braids. “Sayee… I’m sorry…” He Lei said gently and sincerely. “I couldn’t fulfill all my promises. It was my immaturity that hurt you. You’re my favorite younger sister. Tell me, what can I do to make up for it?”
Sayee remained silent as He Lei looked at her worriedly and apologetically. “Sayee…” He Lei said anxiously.
“Brother He Lei…” Sayee finally spoke, clutching her dress tighter.
He Lei was nervous. He slowly put his hands on Sayee’s shoulder, apologizing. “It’s all my fault…”
“No, Brother He Lei didn’t do anything wrong…” Sayee shook her head, saying, “Actually… I have a secret too… that I have never shared with Brother He Lei…”
He Lei became confused, asking, “Secret?”
Sayee bit her lips, nodding. She put her hand into her pocket and took out a paper box. When I saw the familiar box, I was stunned. It was the milk box that I had once passed to Sayee!
“Isn’t that…” Raffles seemed to recognize the box too. He asked, “Isn’t that the milk you brought? I remember you gave us all your food as a token of appreciation when you first came to Noah City, and it included this milk.”
“You brought it from your own world? Cough, cough…” Xing Chuan looked up at me.
I nodded, answering, “Yes.”
“Why is it with her… Cough, cough…”
I smiled faintly, thinking about the faraway yet beautiful memory of the time we had first met. I said, “On the day we met, all of you chased after the Ghost Eclipsers, and I gave her this milk.”
“You’re such a ‘gentleman’. Cough, cough, cough… Could you be the one she actually likes… Hmph…” Xing Chuan sounded sarcastic, yet jealous. It was as if he were complaining that I didn’t let either men or women off the hook.
I glanced at him speechlessly. His jealousy was reaching the peak. Was he jealous of a girl too?
“Xing… Why would there be girls who like Bing…?” Raffles didn’t know whether to laugh or cry at the remark.
“Hmph, there are many women who like her. Cough, cough…” Xing Chuan was really jealous. I’d thought he was just joking earlier. He stared at me with soaring envy, saying, “You don’t know how popular she was on Silver Moon City. There was a girl who still wanted to be with her after realizing that she is a girl. Cough, cough, cough!” His cough intensified.
I patted his back angrily, saying, “Even if you recover, I’m afraid you won’t live long, because you’re always jealous.” Raffles snickered off to the side. Xing Chuan’s expression grew grave as he coughed.
He Lei took the perfectly intact milk box from Sayee. He looked stunned, trying to figure out what it was. He didn’t recognize the milk box. “This is…”
“This is what the North Star gave me… on that day…” Sayee said slowly.
He Lei slowly recalled that day. “I remember now. She gave you this milk…”
“Mm…” Sayee’s expression grew calm, saying, “Brother He Lei, this is my secret. I… In my heart… it has always been…”
He Lei revealed a look of surprise. He held the box, looking at Sayee. The worry in his eyes was gradually replaced with his usual steadiness. His gentle expression carried a doting smile. “...Luo Bing?” He Lei asked in reply. Sayee nodded, confirming our thoughts.
“Pak!” I slapped my forehead. Xing Chuan was right again.
“Hmph…” Xing Chuan’s scornful chuckle made him sound like a wife complaining about her husband getting the attention of girls all over.
“Hehehe…” Raffles laughed too. “Bing was treated as a guy back then. Girls always prefer gentle guys.”
“At the end of the world, she gave the girl milk. Of course the girl would love her for a lifetime. Cough, cough…” Xing Chuan seethed with envy, saying accusingly, “You captured Harry and Raffles’s hearts using food too, didn’t you?!”
“I-!” I was left speechless. I felt explanations would sound more like excuses.
“Xing, I have to explain something.” Raffles wore a gentle smile, seemingly happy to join Xing Chuan’s war of jealousy. He said, “Harry has always made bad judgments…” I wondered how Harry would feel if he’d heard Raffles’ comment.
“The only time he made a good decision was when he picked Bing. He was the one who rescued Bing back then. He already knew Bing was a girl, and it was love at first sight…” Raffles said, chuckling. The memories of our youth were warm and pleasant in that moment.Previous Chapter Next Chapter