To Xia Wennan, walking around campus at this hour both seemed like a thing of the distant past and something that had just occured yesterday.
Countless memories rushed to the forefronts of his mind; when he remembered his first days in university, he turned to ask He Yufeng, “Senior, in my first year, did you welcome the new students at orientation?”
He Yufeng smiled at Xia Wennan’s words.
“You still remember?”
“Some memories in life leave a particularly deep imprint,” said Xia Wennan.
Coming to a halt, he looked out at the stretch of boulevard before him that led up to an antiquated structure housing the campus library.
He both missed and regretted the loss of his precious years as a student, which made him want to recover his memories now more than ever and retrieve the most precious events of his life: his university days, his last memories of his grandpa, and last but not least, whatever had happened in the laboratory of that red-brick building.
Leaves rustled in the breeze, the cold air with its unique scent buffeted him head-on, tinged with the smell of chocolate truffles.
Xia Wennan turned to find He Yufeng, only to discover that He Yufeng was standing right beside him, his eyes lingering on Xia Wennan’s face.
“What is it?” Xia Wennan couldn’t help asking.
He Yufeng said, “Little junior, do you still remember what I said to you when we were walking down this street in the year I graduated?”
Xia Wennan was bewildered.
“What did you say?”
He Yufeng said, “I told you to come to Moze after you finish your studies and that I’d be waiting for you… But you didn’t come.
Why would you want to go to Ming Yan?”
“I… don’t remember.” Xia Wennan looked at He Yufeng.
“Did you think that senior wasn’t good enough for you?” asked He Yufeng.
“I really don’t remember though.”
He Yufeng went quiet for a moment.
“So no matter what I ask, I’ll never get an answer?”
Xia Wennan said, “I’m sorry.”
He Yufeng merely sighed and didn’t say anything else.
Xia Wennan caught sight of three tall male students with a basketball directly across from them, heading their way.
Worried that the topic of their conversation would become awkward if He Yufeng continued speaking, Xua Wennan pointed straight ahead.
“That basketball court over there—I still remember it.
I applied for the faculty team in my first year, but I got rejected.
Back then, weren’t you the team captain?”
“That’s because the number of first-years we could recruit back then was limited, and there were a few alphas…”
Before He Yufeng could finish speaking, one of the three male students, who had drawn near, suddenly gave chase to another boy holding a basketball, who ran ahead and barreled right into Xia Wennan.
The male student was an alpha with a very tall stature.
He’d been running while looking over his shoulder, and when he realised that he had run into someone and came to a halt, Xia Wennan had already crashed into a tree with a resounding smack.
“Little junior!” He Yufeng stepped forwards and helped Xia Wennan up and shoved away the student from Xia Wennan’s side all at once.
“Sorry! Sorry!” The tall youth repeatedly apologised to Xia Wennan.
Xia Wennan’s head had collided with the tree trunk; his forehead was scraped up and beginning to swell.
The male student asked, “Would you like us to take you to the infirmary?”
Xia Wennan waved his hand dismissively.
The collision didn’t feel that severe to him, but being surrounded by several alphas so abruptly, three among them drenched in sweat from playing basketball and reeking of pheromones no less, he grew a little light-headed under the influence of so many different scents.
He Yufeng was still holding him up.
“Why don’t I take you to the hospital?”
Right then, the sound of a car horn abruptly cut through the air.
Xia Wennan tilted his head, and between a two-person gap, he spotted a car that had pulled over on the side of the road.
When the windows came down, Ming Luchuan was sitting in the driver’s seat with a stony face.
“What are you all up to?”
Xia Wennan lifted a hand to distance himself from He Yufeng and said, “I’m fine, really.
I’ll be leaving now, thanks everyone.” He bypassed the students and walked up to the car, opened the door of the passenger seat, and got in.
He also… had no idea why he would even thank them.
The student who bumped into him yelled, “You’re really okay? I’ll be off too then!”
Xia Wennan waved at him.
Meanwhile, He Yufeng was standing by the car window.
He leaned over and said, “Heading back?”
“Goodbye, senior,” said Xia Wennan.
He Yufeng could only nod.
Ming Luchuan didn’t start the car right away.
He studied Xia Wennan and asked, “What happened to your forehead?”
“I crashed into a tree.” After saying so, Xia Wennan casually grabbed a tissue, wiped his forehead, and saw bloodstains—though there wasn’t much.
Let’s hurry home.”
After a glance at He Yufeng, Ming Luchuan started the car and drove off.
He followed the navigation around half the campus, and when they approached the school gate, he stopped the car at a nearby on-street parking space.
He reached for Xia Wennan’s pinch and squeezed it, turning Xia Wennan’s head to face him.
“How did you crash into a tree?”
Xia Wennan felt wronged.
“I was just standing on the sidewalk when a student knocked me against a tree.
It wasn’t my fault.”
Ming Luchuan’s tone gentled significantly.
“Does it hurt?”
Xia Wennan shook his head.
Let’s go.” He kept urging Ming Luchuan to hurry back; his forehead really didn’t hurt much at all, but he felt a tad bit dizzy.
This dizziness persisted the entire night.
Lying in bed while his eyes bore into the ceiling, Xia Wennan thought, he couldn’t have gotten concussed from bumping into that tree, could he?
The door of his room was opened from outside; Ming Luchuan walked in with a first-aid kit and sat down on Xia Wennan’s bed without preamble.
Xia Wennan watched him as he opened the first-aid kit and rummaged through the contents for a good while.
He first took out a disinfectant spray, pointed it at Xia Wennan’s forehead, then seemed to think that it was wrong and put it back in the box.
He switched to a bottle of antiseptic, dabbed some onto a cotton swab, then gently cleaned Xia Wennan’s wound.
Afterwards, Ming Luchuan changed his position so that he was crouching by the bed, and stuck a band-aid to the cut on Xia Wennan’s forehead.
Xia Wennan smiled.
While Ming Luchuan was doing this, his face remained stony from start to finish.
After sticking the band-aid, he began tidying up the first-aid kit, intending to leave Xia Wennan’s bedroom.
Xia Wennan grabbed his hand and said, “Da-ge, my head hurts.”
“Who’s your da-ge?” Ming Luchuan said icily.
Xia Wennan thought for a moment, then softened his voice and said, “It hurts.
Blow on it, pleaseee?”
“Blow on it yourself.”
Xia Wennan immediately sprang up.
“Wow, I’ve already given you such obvious hints and this is how you want to act? For the sake of my head, can’t you stay with me tonight?”
“Who told you to go to dinner with He Yufeng?” Ming Luchuan said, but even though he sounded cold, he put down the first-aid kit and sat down on the edge of the bed.
Xia Wennan intentionally scooted over to the side, vacating half the bed and reaching out to pat it.
“I’ve waited for you.
Ming Luchuan looked at him for a while before lying down on that half of the bed.
Xia Wennan immediately laid in Ming Luchuan’s arms and simultaneously pulled up the blanket to cover the both of them.
Hos bothersome headache slightly eased as he took in the scent of Ming Luchuan’s pheromones, and he closed his eyes and said, “Didn’t I tell you that I was going to have dinner at my advisor’s house?”
“How did it go?”
“Pretty well, Teacher Lin is really nice.”
“Then why did you go and bump into a tree after dinner?”
“Someone ran into me! Is it my fault that they weren’t looking where they were going?”
Ming Luchuan was silent for a moment before asking, “Is it bothering you?”
Xia Wennan reluctantly opened his eyes and glanced at him.
“I feel a bit dizzy, but I don’t know if it’s a concussion…”
Ming Luchuan immediately moved to sit up.
“We’re going to the hospital.”
Xia Wennan held him back.
It’s so late.
Let’s just observe it for tonight and maybe it’ll be fine by tomorrow.” Xia Wennan shifted around in Ming Luchuan’s arms, trying to find the most comfortable position before closing his eyes.
“There’s already something wrong with my head anyway, maybe it’ll knock away the blood clot from wherever it’s hiding and I’ll recover my memories tomorrow.”
Ming Luchuan touched his head gently.
Never in a million years did Xia Wennan imagine that he would dream of He Yufeng that night.
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