Under the dim candlelight, Yu Yuan’s figure was faintly visible through the screen.
The teenager’s figure was no longer thin, and was beginning to develop toned muscles. The lines of his muscles were well-defined, looking extremely eye-catching.
The teenager’s handsome appearance couldn’t help but appear in her mind, and Yan Mu suddenly felt her nose heat up.
She subconsciously covered her eyes, but couldn’t resist peeking through the gaps in her fingers.
On the screen, the teenager’s figure slightly swayed, followed by the sound of splashing water.
The teenager’s sigh of comfort came through the hazy mist. Yan Mu felt her blood surge, and had to do something to distract herself.
She flurriedly turned around, meaning to tidy up her luggage, but accidentally kicking over a stool instead.
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“Gb Yw, obyv yal usw eskdt? Gal usw sjyu?” Zw Zwyd’p hsknl pswdele y zkvvzl osaakle.
“R-R’x qkdl,” Zyd Yw bwaaklezu pyke.
Fbl bwttle bla qssv, bla qynl yzz pnawdnble wr yp pbl pvawttzle vs pswde nyzx.
“Slyzzu? Ps usw oydv xl vs nsxl swv yde vyjl y zssj?” Tlyakdt bla alrzu, Zw Zwyd pllxle xsal osaakle.
Gqvla bl prsjl, vbl pswde sq oyvla przypbkdt nyxl qasx clbkde vbl pnalld ytykd, yde Zyd Yw nswze yzxspv kxytkdl vbl pnldl sq “clywvu lxlatkdt qasx vbl cyvb”.
……Fbl qlzv bla dspl tlv lhld oyaxla.
Yan Mu took deep breaths, struggling to calm herself down.
“Don’t come out!” She was like a cat whose tail had been stepped on.
She couldn’t imagine what she’d look like if Yu Yuan came out right now.
Yan Mu knew her superficial dog personality too well.
If it was any other beauty she’d be fine, or at least, she’d still have her own willpower, and could manage to stay calm and rational with some effort.
But if it was Yu Yuan……
Faced with him, she’d have no choice but to surrender.
Yu Yuan was created by her own two hands, and her natural enemy could be used to restrain her.
Yan Mu patted her face, trying to relax.
“Anyway, you’re not allowed to come out!” Yan Mu emphasized, with her back to the screen, not daring to turn around.
Because of her overwhelming guilt and nervousness, her tone was unconsciously higher and more forceful.
“……Oh.” Yu Yuan’s mood was uncertain.
A splashing was heard again, as if the teenager was continuing his bath.
Yan Mu managed to calm down and said to Yu Yuan, “I’ll tidy up our luggage.”
The teenager didn’t speak, seemingly angry.
Yan Mu knew that it was her bad and she was in the wrong, so her tone instantly softened.
“Can I tidy our things?” She felt like she was coaxing a preschooler from kindergarten.
After a long while, the teenager sulkily gave a muffled response.
Yan Mu felt guilty, but currently, it was impossible for her to remove the screen and clearly explain to Yu Yuan face to face.
So, she was going to wait for him to finish bathing before she clarified.
She sighed and took out their bundles1包袱 (bāofu) – bundle wrapped in a cloth Picture of it: to organize.
She only brought a few undergarments and valuables, so her bundle was very small.
Yan Mu took out her change of clothes, then tidied up Yu Yuan’s bundle.
As soon as she opened it, Yan Mu froze.
There wasn’t much in Yu Yuan’s bundle, only a few pieces of clothing and a large and closely wrapped bouquet of flowers.
They were the Chinese bellflowers she’d given Yu Yuan that day.
The flowers were air-dried into a dried bouquet.
The bellflowers had turned from a fresh light purple to a rich and deep dark purple; almost all of the little daisies had turned into bare stalks as their petals were too thin to preserve, and the silver leaves that were used for decoration had also turned dull and withered.
Such a wilted flower bouquet was really not good-looking.
But Yu Yuan had carefully wrapped it up with cloth, and put it in his bundle like a treasure.
Yan Mu was in a trance, and the teenager’s words from before seemed to echo in her ears—— “This is the first bouquet of flowers I’ve ever received, I must keep it well as remembrance.”
Back then, she just laughed off what she’d heard, thinking that it was just a teenager’s silly words, but she didn’t expect him to be honest.
……Yu Yuan, this fool.
Yan Mu held the bouquet of flowers with mixed feelings.
Splashing water sounded again from behind the screen, followed by a rustling, like the teenager was wiping his hair with a cloth towel.
Then came the sound of the teenager’s light and graceful footsteps.
Yan Mu held the bouquet and slowly turned around.
Yu Yuan was wearing white underclothes, and his long, jet-black, silky hair hung down like a waterfall.
He had just stepped out from behind the screen, but the moment he saw Yan Mu, his gaze slightly flickered, and he silently retreated behind the screen again in a huff.
“……Ah Mu doesn’t like me anymore,” she heard the teenager murmur.
Well, now Yu Yuan is throwing a fit.
Yan Mu put down the bouquet, and followed the water marks on the ground to the back of the screen.
The teenager leaned against the bathtub, water still dripping from the ends of his hair, his red lips charming, and his beauty like an alluring siren.
The collar of his underclothes was wide open, revealing his fine collarbone. There were still all kinds of old scars on his no-longer-thin chest.
Thinking of the bouquet of flowers just now, Yan Mu’s heart turned into a soft mess.
She picked up a cloth towel and softly said to the teenager, “I’ll wipe your hair.”
Yu Yuan secretly glanced at Yan Mu, then quickly lowered his head.
Yan Mu couldn’t help but smile. She picked up the cloth towel, then walked to the edge of the bed and sat down.
The teenager followed2亦步亦趋 (yìbù-yìqū) – to blindly follow suit (idiom); to imitate slavishly; to do what everyone else is doing closely behind her, as if afraid that she’d run away.
Yan Mu patted the spot beside her.
Yu Yuan silently3不声不响 (bùshēng-bùxiǎng) – wordless and silent (idiom); without speaking; taciturn and obediently sat down.
Yan Mu moved behind the teenager and straightened up to wipe his hair for him.
Yu Yuan was a lot taller than her, so she had to stick close to Yu Yuan to wipe his hair.
From a distance, the two of them looked like they were intimately hugging one another.
For a moment, the room was extremely quiet, so quiet you could hear the crackling of the candle flame, and the rustling of hair being wiped.
“Does Ah Mu hate me?” the teenager softly asked.
“Even if I hated everyone, I wouldn’t hate you,” Yan Mu said in his ear.
Yu Yuan lowered his head and stopped talking.
“I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have shouted at you just now.” After wiping his hair dry, Yan Mu came to sit next to Yu Yuan. “I’m sorry Yu Yuan, will you forgive me?”
She pulled the teenager’s hand, her gaze extremely sincere.
The teenager’s hand was covered in old scars, and Yu Yuan slightly flinched when Yan Mu touched them.
He subconsciously wanted to retract his hand, but Yan Mu was grasping it.
Yu Yuan’s eyes slightly flickered, and he turned his head to the side.
After a long time, Yan Mu heard him softly say, “I forgive you.”
The corners of her mouth curled up into a smile, and the stone in Yan Mu’s heart finally fell to the ground4落地 (luò//dì) – land (vehicle such as airplane); have one’s mind at rest.
She picked up the comb to brush Yu Yuan’s hair.
Yu Yuan had excellent quality hair, and it could be combed smoothly without hitting any knots.
The room was dense with steam, and the fragrance from the bath beans on the teenager’s hair wafted over.
The scent lingered on Yan Mu’s nose. Enduring and spreading out, it didn’t disperse for a long time.
“It smells good,” Yan Mu leaned over and inhaled. “The quality of this place’s bath beans is really not bad.”
In order to save costs, many inns provided bath beans that were almost odorless, or with very cheap fragrances.
Yu Yuan thought of something and gently nudged Yan Mu.
“Ah Mu, hurry up and bathe, the night will be cold soon,” Yu Yuan said as he lowered his gaze.
After speaking, he got up and called for hot water again, then sat on the bed very obediently and began reading a book.
Yan Mu moved the candle to Yu Yuan’s side, then hesitated for a moment, before saying with some embarrassment, “Then…… I’ll go bathe now?”
“Mmm,” Yu Yuan nodded his head and continued to read.
Yan Mu went behind the screen. The large tub of water was steaming, and the curling vapor made her vision hazy.
Yu Yuan won’t be peeking, right……
Yan Mu recalled Yu Yuan’s character: cold temperament, sinister and ruthless, yandere, and not fond of women.
Mmm, he probably won’t peek then.
Yan Mu instantly felt relieved.
She removed all her clothes and slowly sank her body into the hot water.
All her fatigue from the day disappeared. Yan Mu felt very comfortable, as if all of her pores were opened.
She wet her hair and picked up a bath bean to wash it.
Yu Yuan’s knuckles turned white as he gripped the book.
The sound of splashing water came from behind the screen, and if he looked up slightly, he’d see the young girl’s slender silhouette.
He pursed his lips, turning red from his ears to his neck.
The book no longer seemed engaging.
Yu Yuan put the book aside, disinterested.
The faint aroma of the bath beans came through the air, and it was exactly the same smell as Yu Yuan’s.
Yu Yuan raised his head and lightly sniffed.
Ah Mu was bathing in the same wooden tub as him, and her body had the same smell as him.
This realization excited him.
His heartbeat suddenly accelerated, and Yu Yuan’s mood became inexplicably delighted.
He took a deep breath and buried his head under the quilt.
He’d climbed into her bed many times before.
But this time, more than usual, it made him…… feel more restless5心猿意马 (xīnyuán-yìmǎ) – lit. heart like a frisky monkey, mind like a cantering horse (idiom); fig. capricious (derog.); to have ants in one’s pants; hyperactive; perturbed; adventurous and uncontrollable.
Remembering the figure that he had inadvertently seen just now, for the first time, Yu Yuan deeply realized that—— Yan Mu was already an adult.
She was no longer the little girl who would crouch in the corner, hugging her knees, curled up into a ball.
She was like a peach blossom about to bloom in the morning, with little dewdrops on its pink petals.
Beautiful, fresh, and clean, tugging at one’s heartstrings.
One couldn’t help but anticipate how beautiful and attractive it would be when it was in full bloom.
This made Yu Yuan a little worried.
Yan Mu was so good-looking. Once she arrived in the capital, there would definitely be many men coveting her.
At the thought of Yan Mu smiling at other men, Yu Yuan felt like the good mood he’d had just now was completely gone.
Yu Yuan lowered his eyes and secretly plotted in his heart.
There were sounds coming from behind the screen, it seemed like the young girl had finished her bath and was getting out of the bathtub.
Yu Yuan’s expression slightly paused, and he buried his whole body under the quilt, not daring to move.
A rustling sound emerged, which seemed to be the young girl getting dressed.
Yu Yuan closed his eyes and inexplicably felt like his mouth was dry6口干舌燥 (kǒugānshézào) – mouth parched and tongue scorched （idiom); talk too much.
Light footsteps headed towards him.
One step, two steps, three steps……
The young girl’s strides were light and graceful, as nimble as a cat.
However, he heard the young girl cry out in surprise, followed by the muffled sound of a body hitting the ground.
Yu Yuan seemed to forget all his shyness and timidity.
He lifted the quilt and took a few steps towards Yan Mu.
The young girl was curled up into a ball, her face writhing in pain.
She was wearing underclothes, so Yu Yuan couldn’t see her injury yet.
He looked at Yan Mu anxiously and found that she was already tearing up from the pain.
“I’ll carry you,” He seemed to instantly make up his mind.
Before Yan Mu could speak, she felt her body become light.
The teenager carefully carried her in his arms, as if he was hugging a rare treasure.
Yu Yuan’s all-encompassing scent poured into her nose. Yan Mu was completely nestled in the teenager’s arms. When she looked up, she could see his pointed chin, and well-defined attractive jawline.
Those beautiful eyes that one could drown in were looking at her worriedly.
Yan Mu had the illusion that the eyes and heart of the teenager were filled only with her.
Her heart started to pound, uncontrollably and violently.
Her face also flushed, as red as a peach blossom.
“Does it hurt a lot?” Yu Yuan was getting more and more worried.
Yan Mu’s face reddened from the pain.
She was clearly the one injured, but Yu Yuan’s heart was also throbbing with pain.
He gently placed Yan Mu on the bed.
“Where does it hurt?” He asked.
Yan Mu froze, then said, somewhat embarrassed, “Waist……”
Yu Yuan was stunned, then his eyes darkened.
“……Which side of your waist?” Yu Yuan hoarsely asked, pretending to be calm.
“The back side,” Yan Mu covered her face.
She was about to die of shame.
She had just stepped on a puddle of water on the ground when her foot slipped, and just as she was about to reach out and hold onto something, she knocked against the stool instead.
She felt like she had a grudge with that stool, after all, this was the second time she’d bumped into it tonight.
And it was the back of her waist that was knocked against it, so she couldn’t even see it herself.
The young girl hesitated over and over again, then raised her head and softly asked, “……How about, you help me look at it?”
Yu Yuan’s character is not fond of women anyway. So, there shouldn’t be any problem…… right?
Yu Yuan was stunned.
For a moment, fireworks seemed to explode in his mind.
The teenager suddenly felt a little dizzy.
His hands trembled slightly, and he tried very hard to look calm.
He didn’t dare to look at Yan Mu. He could only lower his head and hoarsely say, “……Then, let me have a look.”
Edited by: Gaze