Chapter 27.2 – Playing Cards!
The next day, Lu Tinghan went to the headquarters in the morning and returned early in the afternoon.
Then Shi Yuan lost another night’s card game.
Lu Tinghan was already letting Shi Yuan win, and Broken Copper and Broken Iron also lowered their levels, but he just kept losing. Putting away the playing cards, Shi Yuan asked: “Lu Tinghan, do you think I can beat them?”
Lu Tinghan said, “You have made progress.”
Shi Yuan asked again: “Can I win?”
Lu Tinghan said, “Work harder.”
Shi Yuan asked again: “Can I?”
Lu Tinghan said: “You’ll know tomorrow.”
Shi Yuan knew that he would never win.
The next day, he went to the “City East Cafe” as scheduled, and met Zhou Ping’an and his party.
The reconstruction work has been going on for more than a month, and some people have returned to normal work. This coffee shop just opened yesterday, and they are the only ones in the whole store.
The store was out of stock, with no coffee, no juice, only very expensive milk. They each drank a cup of hot milk and chatted about the recent situation.
Zhou Ping’an said that the shuttle bus to the main city has not resumed operation, and he has no way to find his girlfriend—Xuejian’s flower season is over, and he can’t send her favorite flowers. And the young couple said with a smile, it is her best gift that you can meet her.
Shi Yuan also told the story of what happened at the distribution office, and said that the theater will reopen soon, and maybe they will be able to perform stage plays.
“That’s really good!” Zhou Ping’an said, “People always need to have a little entertainment in life. It’s a pity that I’m going to the main city and I can’t see it.”
“Then wait for you to come back and see,” Shi Yuan said. “The script is so well written that it even appeared in the newspaper.”
After the chat, Zhou Ping’an took out the cards again.
Those who were not interested in playing cards bid farewell first, leaving only him, Shi Yuan, and the couple.
Except for Shi Yuan, those three people were all addicted to cards, otherwise, they wouldn’t miss it until today. As for Shi Yuan…he was just interested in everything about humans.
And he kind of likes them.
There were no bets in the game, it was purely for fun. Those three players had superb card skills, and Shi Yuan really lost again.
Going home at night, Shi Yuan reported the results to Lu Tinghan.
Lu Tinghan was reading “The Biological Hypothesis of Infection” and said: “Maybe you will win next time.”
“Yeah maybe, you’ve said I’ve improved.” Shi Yuan said, nestled beside Lu Tinghan, and bent his eyes with a smile. But after a while, he became unsure again: “What if, I mean what if I really can’t win?”
“Well, what to do?” Lu Tinghan asked. “You can’t memorize cards or play tricks. Sometimes in order to win, you have to do everything you can.”
Shi Yuan thought for a while: “Then if I let them touch my tail, maybe they will let me win?”
“…This is not allowed.” Lu Tinghan said. “Shi Yuan, you should continue to lose.”
Shi Yuan had no choice but to give up this idea.
Another half month later, Lu Tinghan got busy and resumed his life of leaving home early in the morning and returning late at night, so he stopped teaching Shi Yuan how to play cards.
Shi Yuan met Zhou Ping’an and the others again, but he still lost completely.
The Lu family’s spirit of never admitting defeat and their tradition of fighting for the top were carried forward by Lu Tinghan, and then broken by Shi Yuan with a bang and without suspense.
The last time they met was the night before Zhou Ping’an went to the main city.
They still found the terrace of the coffee shop to sit, and this time, they finally drank coffee.
Zhou Ping’an scratched his head and said, “I discussed it with Lily. I will also look for a job in the main city in the future and will not come back.”
The young wife was very emotional: “It will be difficult to meet in the future, the traffic is too inconvenient.”
“Yes,” Zhou Ping’an also sighed.
Shi Yuan asked, “How do I go to another city?”
“There is a fixed-point shuttle bus,” Zhou Ping’an said. “The procedures are very complicated and the tickets are very expensive. I only made an appointment a few months in advance. Fortunately, the Abyss has not been very active recently, and the number of shuttles has increased.”
“How much is the ticket now?” the young wife asked.
“When I bought it, it was over a thousand, I don’t know about the recent ones.” Zhou Ping’an smiled. “But it’s okay, I can still contact you, but it’s a pity that I really can’t see Shi Yuan’s stage play… Let’s not talk about it, let’s play cards!”
They played late, and all the lights in the nearby buildings were out, leaving only the yellow wall lamps on the terrace.
In the last game, Zhou Ping’an finished talking about his engagement plan with his girlfriend, listened to the couple’s suggestion, and said, “Shi Yuan, speaking of which, we never knew the identity of your commander boyfriend. You hide it so well, can’t you reveal it?”
What he wanted to say was “mating partner”, but there were so many people here.
“It’s not convenient for me to say,” Shi Yuan explained. “Moreover, he is not my boyfriend.”
After he said that, he buried his head in his hand and studied the cards, not noticing the three people’s eyes that were as wide as copper bells, almost falling out.
—Someone put a hand on his shoulder.
It was a slender hand in a pure white glove.
When Shi Yuan turned his head, Lu Tinghan was standing behind him on the left, his white shirt outlined his broad shoulders and narrow waist, and his epaulettes were shining with a dark golden light.
Under the dim light, his features were handsome and deep, as if carved out of marble. His posture was actually quite reserved, half in the shadows, with one hand falling on Shi Yuan’s shoulder, his eyes downcast as he asked, “Did you win?”
“Ah, why are you here?” When Shi Yuan saw him, the tip of his tail began to wag happily. “I haven’t won yet, this is the last one.”
Lu Tinghan stood silently, watching Shi Yuan finish the last game.
Facts have proved that no way is no way.
Even though those three people were so shocked that their hands were shaking, making frantic eye signals to each other, and their faces full of “F*ck aahhhh! Pinch me aaahh!”, Shi Yuan still couldn’t beat them and lost without suspense.
After leaving the cafe and standing on the deserted street, they said goodbye to each other and promised to see each other again in the future.
Shi Yuan and Lu Tinghan stood side by side under the street lamp, watching the little couple whispering to each other, turning the corner arm in arm, and disappearing. Zhou Ping’an walked directly ahead, the road was very long, and it took a long time for his figure to fade away.
Before being completely immersed in the darkness, Zhou Ping’an stood still, turned around, and waved vigorously to Shi Yuan.
“Live well!!” He shouted, even though he knew Shi Yuan couldn’t hear him.
Shi Yuan also waved to him.
Standing on tiptoe and waving, jumping up and waving, and waving hard together with the tail.
Until he could no longer see his back.
The night wind slid across the street quietly, freezing to the bone.
Shi Yuan got into Lu Tinghan’s car and turned on his mobile phone to find that there were four missed calls, all from Lu Tinghan.
He said: “Ah, I turned it to mute while I was working and forgot to turn it on… what happened?”
“Nothing,” Lu Tinghan said. “Let’s go home early these days.”
Only the next day did Shi Yuan know that just as they were playing cards, a shooting occurred nearby.
After the battle, there were inevitably a small number of weapons left in the city, such as guns, ammunition, bombs, and so on. The number of them was very small, most of them were no longer usable, and the military was trying its best to recycle them, but it was inevitable that there would be some missing.
The murderer picked up a damaged handgun, and after a simple repair on his own, he went to rob with the gun and unexpectedly killed the victim by accident.
The case took place three blocks away from the coffee shop, not near nor far.
Now, Shi Yuan knew why Lu Tinghan came to him.
After that, he went home as soon as he got off work and never delayed – in fact, he always did, except for the days when he played cards, after all, there was nothing more important than staying with his human.
The joy of victory passed, and the gloomy clouds enveloped the city silently again.
When Shi Yuan was working, he could hear people talking about the “peak of infection” again. This time, more people were talking about it, and their words were more conclusive.
“There was no Level I warning during the previous low period,” they said in a panic. “The Alliance might have known that the peak period was coming, but they were afraid to say it for fear of causing panic.”
“That’s right, maybe another monster will come tomorrow…”
“I know that many people are planning to go to the main city. It’s the safest place out there. It’s just that it’s not easy to get a place to settle down, and it’s not easy to take the high-education route. Damn it, if I had known that, I would have fought to the death to get a good diploma.”
“What about technical jobs? Is it easy to settle down?”
“It’s also difficult…”
While listening to their words, Shi Yuan stared at the tomato scrambled eggs, wondering how to cook them deliciously.
On the last day of working in the distribution office, Shi Yuan was transferred to the night shift and did not get off work until nine o’clock.
Lu Tinghan came to pick him up, the driver turned the steering wheel, and the black car was driving silently in the city, its headlights peeping into the night.
Lu Tinghan didn’t go home last night and stayed at the headquarters all night.
The walls of the city were still standing, the warriors were ready to go, the storm was coming, and now was not the time to rest. The officers and soldiers who accompanied him had long since had red eyes and yawned again and again, but he was composed at all times, his hairstyle and clothes were not messed up, and he did not show signs of fatigue, and he could still command in the next second.
After all, he was still young.
There was a tough and upward force in his bones that supported his straight back.
However, unlike in the past, today, Lu Tinghan closed his eyes and rested in the car.
The street lamps passed by the car window one by one, and the light fell down, on and off. Shi Yuan didn’t talk about what he saw today, he stared at Lu Tinghan’s side face, after a while, he stretched out his hand and stroked Lu Tinghan’s temple lightly.
—A strand of hair was messed up there.
Only he saw it.
The hair was pulled back, and Shi Yuan’s hand was also grabbed.
Lu Tinghan didn’t open his eyes, he lightly held his wrist, and said in a low voice, “… Shi Yuan, come with me tomorrow.”
“Where are we going?” Shi Yuan asked.
“Visit the cemetery.”