Chapter 37: Eating Watermelon
Zhou Yu thought that when his contract with Juli Corp expired, he would return to his original world and not be able to see Mo Ye again. He shouldn’t allow Mo Ye to become too attached to him, so he would rather have him learn to be strong.
Mo Ye, as if he didn’t understand at all, kept his little head pressed against the window. The wind blew through his ears, fluffing up his fur. He squinted his eyes, looking content.
“Mo Ye, do you understand what I’m talking about?” Zhou Yu asked.
Mo Ye turned and licked Zhou Yu on the lips with the tip of his little tongue. He then looked at Zhou Yu with his crystal clear eyes.
At that moment, Zhou Yu was flooded with feelings of guilt. He felt that he was selfish in wanting to make himself feel better by giving Mo Ye such a choice, because in Mo Ye’s heart, there might be nothing left if he was gone.
Zhou Yu folded Mo Ye into his lap, “Forget it, just follow me.”
Mo Ye’s eyes brightened and he rubbed himself against Zhou Yu’s chest. He continued putting his face to the window and squinted to feel the wind and sand passing by his face.
Wu Yun shook his head helplessly, “You spoil him too much… You’ll spoil him rotten, you know? “
Mo ye turned around and used his front paw to swat Wu Yun over the back of his head.
“Hey, you brat! I’ll stuff you with green beans and carrots when we get back! “
Mo Ye hit Wu Yun on the head again.
“Zhou Yu, throw him out the window!”
Zhou Yu merely held onto Mo Ye. He rolled down the window and smiled.
They returned to the base and went through a series of examinations. Zhou Yu was worried about possible abnormalities in his body, but he passed all the tests. He thought that the blood of the S rank organism would alter his body in some way, but it didn’t seem to. That caught him off guard.
He and Wu Yun reported to Song Zhi about how Toby’s entire team was killed.
The corner of Song Zhi’s lips twitched as he looked at Zhou Yu and said, “So you got rid of the spider overlord by yourself? And Wu Yun just happened to pass out, so he knows nothing about it? “
There was speculation and doubt reflected in those eyes, but Zhou Yu only looked back into them calmly, without backing down.
“I was just lucky. It was still in the cocoon, but if it was an adult silver spider overlord, then I would have had a zero chance of success. ” Zhou Yu took out the recorder and pushed it in front of Song Zhi. “This is what I recorded in the collapsed tree-castle. It seems like humans have been there before.”
Song Zhi doubtfully took the recorder and turned on the screen. When he saw the engraving, his pupils suddenly contracted.
“What’s wrong, Mr. Song?”
“That’s my fiancée. At the time, she had been missing in the primeval forest for a month. So she had been staying in that tree-castle for the whole month… With an S rank organism. That S rank organism built the tree-castle in order to please her. He controlled the beautiful creatures of Nibelungen to court her romantically until it finally moved her. But once he received her affections, he was not so romantic anymore. When my fiancée became pregnant, the S rank organism left. He knew that my fiancée would die miserably, but he didn’t care. What he had really wanted was an heir. I desperately looked for him everywhere, but the message he sent me was that my fiancée had chosen all of this willingly.” Song Zhi’s lips curled as he said, “And that she must bear the fall alone.”
Zhou Yu stepped back and said, “I’m sorry.”
“You don’t need to apologize, Zhou Yu. You’re the most rational one among us, but when a rational person loses his reason, then he will become even crazier than the average person. I just want to remind you that you shouldn’t forget the three rules of survival.”
“I’ll make sure to keep them in mind.” Zhou Yu replied, “Please answer me one more question: did you know the delivery team would be trapped in Zone 12, a long time ago? Did you send us out there to test the new drug’s efficiency on preventing a parasitic invasion?”
Song Zhi raised his eyebrows and said in a calm voice, “All research results need to be tested through experimentation.”
“Then, did you expect Toby’s entire team to die?” Zhou asked again.
“That was outside of my expectations.”
“I hope you’ll always remember what was ‘outside of your expectations’. Those were six lives, and you’re not much more valuable than them. “
“I’ll always remember it.” Song Zhi lowered his gaze, “But what’s really ‘outside of my expectations’ is Mo Ye. He broke out of the base for you. Aren’t you curious as to how he can sense that you’re in danger? How he locates you? Why he keeps coming back with you without any intention of leaving? What does he want from you? “
“When he makes a request of me, then we’ll know.” Zhou Yu replied blandly.
Song Zhi didn’t order Mo Ye to be locked up and experimented on again, so Mo Ye was happy to continue following Zhou Yu.
Sometimes, Zhou Yu couldn’t help but think of the S rank organism that saved him. He had a peculiar feeling about him, as if they had known each other for a long time.
Where did that youth go?
What is he doing now?
What was his purpose in getting close to him?
When he thought about how that young man’s blood had healed his wounds, Zhou Yu couldn’t help but think: are there still traces of that blood in his body? How would it affect him?
Zhou Yu took out the Swiss Army knife from his waist and drew a cut down the palm of his hand. Blood quickly flowed out, accompanied by a stinging pain.
However, half a minute later, it didn’t hurt anymore.
He quickly wiped away the blood from the hand and found that not even a scar remained.
Zhou Yu stared blankly. His Swiss Army knife fell and Mo Ye picked it up with his mouth.
“Hrrn?” Mo Ye looked at Zhou Yu with his head askew. There was a trace of worry in his eyes.
“I’m fine.” Zhou Yu took the knife out of Mo Ye’s mouth.
Mo Ye straightened his back and stretched out his neck to lick Zhou Yu’s palm.
“I’m fine! It’s really all right! “
Mo Ye’s warm tongue slid over Zhou Yu’s palm, and finding that there was no injury there, it showed its usual expression again.
Zhou Yu hugged Mo Ye and subconsciously thought: is his rapid healing ability a good thing or another imminent disaster?
Song Zhi gave them three days off.
Wu Yun got his hands on a boomerang from who-knows-where and said he wanted to take Mo Ye out to play.
Zhou Yu didn’t want Mo Ye to only be stuck with him, so he brought him out to an empty lot on base.
Wu Yun pointed to the boomerang he had in his hand, “Mo Ye, when this flies out, you have to go retrieve it, understand?”
Mo Ye tilted his head, as if he was saying, “How could that thing fly?”
Wu Yun gave Mo Ye a pat, then threw out the boomerang.
Mo Ye watched with wide eyes, staring after it with interest.
Wu Yun picked up the boomerang then came back to Mo Ye’s side, “Do you understand now? Chase it back!”
“Hnn!” Mo Ye nodded.
Wu Yun felt like he had finally found something interesting to do to pass the time. He glanced at Mo Ye, who had gotten ready to run. But the second Wu Yun tossed out the boomerang, Mo Ye sat back down on the ground and squinted up at Wu Yun.
“Mo Ye! Why aren’t you chasing the boomerang? ” Wu Yun looked at Mo Ye.
Zhou Yu was sitting not too far away with his arms crossed.
It wasn’t that Mo Ye refused to chase after it, but he had been toying with Wu Yun.
Zhou Yu came to realize more and more that Mo Ye shouldn’t be regarded as any ordinary organism. The more time he spent with human beings, the more human-like his thoughts would become. At the very least, Zhou Yu shouldn’t be treating Mo Ye like an infant; it might be smarter than any one of them.
Wu Yun still hadn’t given up and was determined to train Mo Ye as you would a Husky. He repeated the rules of the game to Mo Ye.
He threw the boomerang again, and Mo Ye finally ran after it. To Wu Yun’s surprise, he didn’t run very fast.
But Mo Ye’s target wasn’t the boomerang, but Wu Yun.
He hit Wu Yun in the chest and bowled him over. Then Mo Ye narrowed his eyes and came to Wu Yun’s side to tap him on the chest with a little paw, as if to say: Take care, bro.
Wu Yun held down Mo Ye’s head unhappily and looked at Zhou Yu. “Zhou Yu! It’s toying with me! Can’t you control him? “
“You were the one who wanted to play with him, so you’ll have to take getting played by him.”
After playing all day, Zhou Yu got a message from Song Zhi that he was sending people to Night Spirit Island.
“He really doesn’t give up. He’s still trying to find that S rank organism,” Zhou Yu said, with his hands in his pockets.
Wu Yun begrudgingly hummed in agreement, “Who knows if we’re the hunters or hunted.”
Zhou Yu turned around and saw Mo Ye playing with the boomerang in his claws. He suddenly threw out the boomerang. Zhou Yu quickly ducked down, the boomerang hitting Wu Yun squarely on his back.
The night their vacation ended, Zhou Yu was called to Song Zhi’s office.
Song Zhi informed him that he would be leaving for Night Spirit Island tomorrow with Mo Ye.
Zhou Yu looked at Song Zhi incredulously, “Why are we going to Night Spirit Island?”
“To study them, of course. Team alpha will be going with you, and your partner Wu Yun. You two should be familiar with working together by now, correct?”
“I’ve told you this before, the night spirit is a highly loyal species. Mo Ye chose you, so if you go there, then he will be sure to follow. Other than your blood, he won’t eat anything else. If you want him to go with you, then he won’t refuse. He escaped from base to look for you, then followed you back; this alone is sufficient to prove my point. Zhou Qing is here, so you will definitely return.” Song Zhi had seen through it all a long time ago.
Night spirits were a loyal species. This was something Zhou Yu had seen among Elpis’s memories.
They guarded the island for generations, just for one owner. They had never been swayed by the temptations of the outside world.
“The island is the resting place of the night spirits’ ancestors, as well as their burial ground. Just like how Elpis will pass down its memories to its descendants, maybe Mo Ye will also be able to inherit something when he meets his ancestors. We may find unexpected gains.”
Zhou Yu knew that Song Zhi wouldn’t change his mind once he decided on something.
As for Mo Ye, it was impossible to always limit his world to being by Zhou Yu’s side.
“You want to find that S rank organism that much?”
“Yes,” answered Song Zhi.
Zhou Yu took a deep breath, and as he was opening the door of Song Zhi’s office, Mo Ye poked his head inside.
Song Zhi smiled and waved to Mo Ye, who only tilted his head to the side before leaving with Zhou Yu.
“Take him to Carlos, Carlos will equip him with a tracking device.”
Zhou Yu was sneering in his heart: As expected, there was no way Song Zhi would allow Mo Ye to leave so easily.
Carlos’s tracking device was designed like a bracelet, and it was fixed to Mo Ye’s front paw.
Mo Ye battered it, trying to get off the tightly fastened tracking device.
Zhou Yu patted his back and comforted him, “Let it be, Mo Ye. Compared to being in that glass room, what’s the harm in wearing a bracelet? Just try and get used to it.”
Mo Ye pawed it a few more times, then turned his head to the side, meaning: I’ll wear it, but I won’t like it.
“It seems like Mo Ye’s been growing,” said Carlos.
“No way, it’s only been a few days, how could he have grown?” Zhou Yu didn’t think so based on his appearance, and when he picked him up, he didn’t feel like Mo Ye was any heavier.
“Come, Mo Ye, let’s measure how big you’ve gotten, okay?”
Carlos took out a measuring tape. Mo Ye didn’t know what it was and tried to hide behind Zhou Yu. Zhou Yu reached out to hold him down over his abdomen as Carlos quickly took a reading of Mo Ye’s height.
“With the tail, he’s grown about five centimeters taller.”
“Five centimeters?” Zhou Yu narrowed his eyes and sized up Mo Ye. Looking at him now, it does seem like he grew a bit. “But why doesn’t he feel any heavier?”
“We’ll know once we weigh him.”
Zhou Yu picked up Mo Ye and placed him on the scale.
Doctor Carlos as astonished, “Huh? He’s clearly growing bigger, yet his weight hasn’t changed.”
Zhou Yu recalled the memories Elpis had passed onto him and suddenly remembered something. “Night spirits keep their weight constant throughout their lives from the time they are born.”
“So that’s how it is… How did you know that? I need to write down such important information!” Carlos asked, shocked.
“It’s nothing.” Other than Song Zhi, no one else should know that he had been chosen by Elpis.
The afternoon of the day before they were to set off for Night Spirit Island, Zhou Yu visited Song Zhi’s office.
“Mr. Song, I’m here to request a watermelon,” said Zhou Yu.
Zhou Yu still remembered the promise he made to Mo Ye, that he would treat him to a watermelon once he returned from his mission in Zone 12. But because of the many complications of the mission, he had almost forgotten his promise.
Song Zhi was slightly taken aback, “Why… do you want a watermelon?”
“Wu Yun and I risked our lives to retrieve the supplies from Zone 12, I don’t think it’s an outrageous request to ask for an extra watermelon!”
“Of course it’s not outrageous. I just didn’t think that out of all the different foods, you would have a special fondness for watermelon. It looks like I’ll have to ask Juli Corp to send over more watermelons for you.”
Saying that, Song Zhi made a call to the ration allocation department to have them allow for Zhou Yu to collect an extra watermelon.
Zhou Yu placed the watermelon on the dining table. Mo Ye hopped onto the chair, then table, and crouched down looking very curiously at a fruit he had never seen before.
Zhou Yu reached out to tug on Mo Ye’s little ear. Mo Ye looked up at him, his eyes narrowed to look like he was smiling happily, and like he was looking forward to something.
Zhou Yu purposefully sat there without moving, only staring at Mo Ye with his head propped up by a hand. Gradually, Mo Ye stopped smiling, and he curiously extended his claws to poke the watermelon. The watermelon rolled away, and just as it was going to roll off the edge of the tale, Zhou Yu reached out to steady it, then put it back on the table.
Mo Ye lowered his head and sniffed the watermelon. He lightly nudged it, then reached out to pat the watermelon while looking at Zhou Yu. The watermelon made a dull, muffled sound.
“Looks like it’s a good one, it should be pretty sweet.” Zhou Yu continued looking at Mo Ye with his chin propped on his hand. For some reason, Mo Ye’s gluttonous behavior was really way too cute for Zhou Yu.
Seeing that Zhou Yu still wasn’t budging, Mo Ye actually got a little angry. He raised his claws, about to swat the watermelon, but Zhou Yu was quick and deft enough to grab it.
“Bad boy, if you crushed it, then you can’t eat it anymore! “Zhou Yu stopped tormenting Mo Ye and took out his Swiss Army knife from his waist. He cut open the watermelon, revealing its juicy red insides.
“Hrrn?” Mo Ye lowered his head to sniff it. The sweet scent of watermelon was very distinct, Mo Ye had never experienced it before. He stuck out his tongue to lick at the very center of the red fruit, then narrowed his eyes, his wings fanning out. He seemed to really like the taste of it.
Zhou Yu used a spoon to scoop out the inside of the watermelon. Mo Ye’s head moved with the action of his scooping. Zhou Yu opened his mouth and made to send a large chunk of the watermelon into it. Mo Ye leaned out his head and anxiously stared at Zhou Yu, as if he was saying “Give me some too!”
In his mind, Zhou Yu was laughing hysterically. He lowered his hand to place the spoon close to Mo Ye’s mouth, purposefully using the spoon to poke him on the nose.
Just as Mo Ye was about to open his mouth and swallow the watermelon, Zhou Yu took it away. Mo Ye followed after the spoon, so Zhou Yu raised it up high. Mo Ye straighten out his back to reach, and Zhou Yu put his spoon lower again. As Mo Ye rushed to flatten himself again, Zhou Yu kept waving it around, left and right, until he really angered Mo Ye. Mo Ye used his paws to slap down on Zhou Yu’s hand and hold him there. Then he swallowed the entire piece of watermelon.
Zhou Yu was actually well aware of how strong and fast Mo Ye could be, but the reason why he was able to tease Mo Ye like this was that Mo Ye also liked playing with Zhou Yu.
Zhou Yu scooped out another spoonful of watermelon and fed it to Mo Ye. Satisfied, Mo Ye ate it. When Zhou Yu brought over the other half of the watermelon and was about to feed that to Mo Ye too, Mo Ye shook his head and pushed the spoon back at Zhou Yu.
Zhou Yu knew that Mo Ye wanted to share the things he liked with him, so he ate the next spoonful of watermelon.
Mo Ye remained sitting beside Zhou Yu, staring at him with those great big eyes of his. Those eyes were filled with curiosity, but not for the watermelon.
Zhou Yu reached out to rub him on his head. “Are you asking me what other delicious foods there are in my world, other than watermelon?”
Mo Ye nodded. Deliberating over it carefully, Zhou Yu said, “Actually, I don’t care much for food, anything’s fine as long as it can fill my stomach and isn’t particularly unappetizing. But in my world, a little kid like you should like eating candy the most, as well as ice cream and those kinds of things. Candy can be made in all kinds of shapes and sizes, for example, like a jar of stars, or a rainbow you can hold in your hand. They also come in different flavors, like watermelon-flavored candy and milk chocolate. As for ice cream, they’re icy treats that are usually only enjoyed in the summer. Imagine taking a bite of ice cream when you’re feeling unbearably hot and how refreshing it would feel—although I prefer drinking beer.”
Mo Ye pressed his head in closer, his nose almost touching Zhou Yu’s nose. He seemed especially interested in ice cream.
“Actually, I’m not too clear about it either, but ice-cream… should be made from milk and cream. It’s very sweet and comes in all kinds of flavors; some high-end ice-cream shops can even create different shapes with the ice cream. Ice cream melts on your tongue and the sweetness will fill your mouth, which is probably why children and girls really like it. After I complete my next assignment, I’ll ask Song Zhi for some ice cream to let you have a taste.”
Zhou Yu also put his head closer to Mo Ye and then rubbed his nose over Mo Ye’s head. Mo Ye showed a happy expression and put his front paws over Zhou Yu’s shoulder as if to hug him.
Mo Ye’s wings flapping a few times—it seemed to be filled with anticipation for ice cream!