Chapter 65 Can You Even Afford Them?
Li Yundong turned at the voice, then froze when he saw Feng Na standing next to his table with a lunchbox in her hand, smiling sweetly at him. Dressed in a white, short-sleeved blouse and a pair of skinny jeans which made her legs go on forever, Feng Na looked absolutely stunning and vivacious.
"Yo! What's up!" he greeted.
"So. I heard you've been putting on airs after becoming famous," Feng Na teased, her sweet smile turning into a smirk.
"Tsk, tsk, tsk! Putting on airs already?" Cheng Cheng walked over with a tray and stopped beside Feng Na. "Dang! Couldn't you at least wait until you've given us your autograph before doing that?"
"Hardy har har. Now you're just making fun of me," Li Yundong said. Then, he waved along the length of his mostly-unoccupied table. "Come on, quit standing around and take a seat before someone calls the police and has them arrest me for hogging government property."
Feng Na chuckled and took the seat across from Li Yundong while Cheng Cheng slid into the seat next to hers.
"By the way," Feng Na said after she'd opened her lunchbox, "that FearlessOtaku on the forum last night, was that really you?"
Li Yundong snorted. The mere mention of last night pissed him off. How dare they make lewd comments about his girlfriend? On the university forum no less!
"Yes," Li Yundong growled. "It was me."
Feng Na and Cheng Cheng burst into laughter.
"Oh, boy..." Feng Na said, giggling into her hands. "That phone number as well?"
Li Yundong tossed his spoon onto the tray.
"No shit," he said, suddenly losing his appetite.
"You must be out of your mind!" Feng Na said. "What made you think that posting your phone number onto the forum would be a good idea?"
Li Yundong glared at Feng Na for a second. Then, with a snort, he picked up his spoon and returned to his lunch.
"Pfft... haha. You're totally screwed, pal," Feng Na went on. "You might need to change your phone number soon. Do you know how many girls are composing love letters as we speak? Some have even booked a room in a love hotel—"
"PFFT!" A grain of rice shot out from Li Yundong's nose after it went into the wrong hole, reducing him to a series of coughs. Beside him, Su Chan patted his back.
Once the coughing subsided, Li Yundong shot Su Chan a grateful look before glancing at Feng Na in shock.
"You're shitting me right? Love hotel? F*ck! Are girls these days so open about this type of thing?"
Feng Na smiled without commenting.
"Well, just turn on your phone if you don't believe us," Cheng Cheng piped in. "Check your voicemails and text messages!"
Li Yundong eyed Cheng Cheng warily. Seconds later, however, he succumbed to his own curiosity. He pulled out his phone and switched it on.
After a while, Li Yundong got a taste of what "one text message per second" really meant.
"Damn, you're like a celebrity now," Feng Na said.
"Yeah... I feel kinda envious right now..." Cheng Cheng concurred.
Li Yundong pulled out his phone battery in a fit of anger.
"You're envious of this bullshit?" Li Yundong said, tossing his phone and the battery onto the table. "Then you must be f*cking nuts! This is harassment!"
Feng Na winked at Li Yundong, then wiggled her brows.
"So, what do you think about your meteoric rise to stardom?" Feng Na said. "How does it feel to have people worshipping the ground you walk on?"
"Well, harassed," Li Yundong muttered under his breath, then shot Feng Na a fleeting glance. "It's pretty simple if you really wanna know. You can try it for yourself. Just become famous."
Feng Na sighed wistfully, her face adorned with an expression of self-pity. "It's not like I don't want to," Feng Na said. "I just don't have what it takes to be famous, that’s all."
Suddenly, Feng Na smiled at Su Chan.
"I'm not like little Su Chan over here, turning heads wherever she goes."
Su Chan suddenly abandoned her spoon, her whole face lighting up.
"Are they complimenting me? Are they complimenting me?" Su Chan said, tugging Li Yundong's arm excitedly. Then, she smiled at Feng Na and Cheng Cheng. "Keep going! Keep going! I love hearing compliments!"
Feng Na and Cheng Cheng looked at each other for a moment before bursting into a round of cackles and giggles.
Li Yundong chuckled and tapped Su Chan's nose with his chopsticks. "How vain!"
Su Chan stuck out her tongue and made a face at Li Yundong.
"Isn't everyone vain to some degree?" Feng Na said with a shrug.
"And that's where you're wrong," Li Yundong said, tapping his own nose with his chopsticks. "I don’t have a vain bone in me!"
"As if!" Feng Na said with an eyeroll. "No person alive can be completely free of vanity." Feng Na snorted loudly. "Sorry, but I just don't buy that crap!" Feng Na's steady gaze fell upon Li Yundong. "Don't tell me it didn't feel good to have so many people looking up to you, hell, having crushes on you. When a girl suddenly climbs to the top of the academic building and yells, 'Li Yundong, I'm in love with you,' you won't feel pleased? Not even a little?"
Li Yundong pondered Feng Na's words for a moment.
"Okay, fine, I admit that it does feel good inside knowing that so many people look up to me. I mean, hey,"—Li Yundong shrugged and gave Feng Na a sad smile— "at least they're no longer cursing at me or calling me names. As for the second scenario... Well, if a girl confesses to me, I might feel a bit pleased too. But I'm sure it wouldn't be as dramatic as you imagined."
Li Yundong turned towards Su Chan and pinched her earlobe.
"Because I’ve already found my best girl, and she's sitting right here!" Li Yundong turned back to Feng Na and gave her another shrug. "What can I say? I'm the faithful type."
Li Yundong brushed Su Chan's neck with his fingers.
Su Chan giggled and leaned away from Li Yundong's hand. Then, she raised her chopsticks as though she wanted to hit him with them.
"That tickled, you meanie!"
Feng Na and Cheng Cheng shared another glance, each wearing a yearning expression.
Feng Na suddenly cleared her throat and put on a fake smile. "Well, you're such a scrooge, Li Yundong. You like a girl that much, yet you're letting her wear men's clothing? Don't think I haven't noticed that she'd been wearing the same clothes for the past few days."
Li Yundong gaped at Feng Na, stunned by the revelation. Damn... she's right... he thought. He'd never been one to pay much attention to things like clothing, so it never occurred to him to take Su Chan shopping for clothes. But more importantly...
Li Yundong glanced at Su Chan. She never asked me for new clothes... I wonder why…
Li Yundong's eyes traveled up and down Su Chan's body. At the moment, she was wearing one of his old overalls plus his old T-shirt. The clothes didn't fit her at all; their looseness made her look too skinny.
"What?" Su Chan's spoon hovered in front of her lips as she met his gaze, her eyes blinking with confusion. But hey, at least she still remembered that her world didn't consist of just red braised pork.
Li Yundong smiled at her and said, "Let's get you some new clothes today."
"Why? We already have so many clothes at home," Su Chan said.
Li Yundong chuckled.
"But those are my clothes," he said. "I mean, it's not like you can keep wearing my clothes forever, right?"
Su Chan's spoon hit her tray. "Have you grown tired of me already? You won't even allow me to wear your clothes?"
F*ck, were those tears in her eyes?
Li Yundong laughed out loud and pinched Su Chan's cheek.
"No, silly! You're a girl! How can a girl run around the place dressed in men's clothes?"
Su Chan slapped Li Yundong's hands away, then made a face at him.
"Why not?" she said. "Also, the food here sucks compared to your cooking!"
"Of course," Li Yundong said with a chuckle. "This is like mess hall food. Egalitarianism is all that matters, not taste. It can never top good old home cooking."
"Wait a minute, you cook?"
Li Yundong flicked a glance at Feng Na, who was now staring at him in surprise.
"Yep!" he said proudly, then turned back to Su Chan. "Isn't that right, my dear little princess?"
Su Chan grimaced, causing a few adorable wrinkles to appear on her nose.
"Bleurgh! Your cooking sucks!"
Feng Na and Cheng Cheng burst into laughter, slapping the tabletop repeatedly.
"Pfft... Hahaha... Look at the poor fool," Feng Na said, wiping her tears. "That's what I call burned!"
"Hey! How could you—" Li Yundong gaped at Su Chan, looking utterly affronted. "You little minx!" Li Yundong jabbed a finger at Su Chan. "You were the one who hogged the entire bowl of duck meat the other day! I only got two miserable pieces!"
Su Chan puffed out her cheeks in a huge pout. "I would have more competition if I admitted that your cooking tastes good... Our food is barely enough for two people, let alone four!"
Li Yundong threw back his head in laughter. Oh, how he adored this girl!
"Then I'll just make a larger portion, silly!" he said.
"Pff..." Su Chan's puffed out face deflated when Li Yundong's pinched one of her cheeks forcefully.
Su Chan leaned away from the table to avoid Li Yundong's hand.
Li Yundong turned and saw two women standing behind Su Chan with slack-jawed expressions. The one holding the tray was Zhuang Hui, whose clothes were slightly stained with soup. The woman beside Zhuang Hui fared worse; her tray had been knocked to the floor by Su Chan, and the front of her skirt was now completely soaked with what appeared to be a mixture of soup and fruit juice.
"Dammit! Are you blind!" the girl yelled.
Su Chan flinched. "I'm sorry," she said. "I didn't see you..."
Feng Na kicked Li Yundong under the table. He turned and saw Feng Na rummaging through her handbag. A moment later, she jerked her chin towards the soup stains on Su Chan's clothes and passed a pack of wet wipes to him. Li Yundong took it gratefully and began cleaning the soup stains on Su Chan's arm and shirt.
"Our apologies, miss. I assure you it wasn't deliberate."
Zhuang Hui gasped. "Li Yundong!"
Zhuang Hui's friend felt her anger dissipating at the mention of Li Yundong's name. She pulled out her hanky and worked on cleaning off the food stains on her clothes. As she did, she studied Li Yundong furtively.
"So. You're the infamous Li Yundong?"
Li Yundong nodded and said, "Yes I am. We're terribly sorry for dirtying your clothes."
Instead of answering Li Yundong, the girl leaned towards Zhuang Hui. "So she's your love rival?" she whispered to Zhuang Hui while eyeing Su Chan. "Hmph. Don't worry. Just sit back and watch me teach this girl a lesson today."
Zhuang Hui had intended to dissuade the other girl from picking a fight, but she changed her mind when she saw the innocent look on Su Chan's face.
Rage filled Zhuang Hui's heart.
How dare she play the victim when she is clearly in the wrong! Zhuang Hui thought. I won't allow Li Yundong to be fooled by this girl's innocent act!
While Zhuang Hui was entertaining hateful thoughts, her companion fired the first salvo.
"Do you have any idea how expensive these clothes are!"
Li Yundong could tell at a glance that this woman was from the Art Department. In terms of physical appearance, she was definitely good-looking, and she had a nice figure as well. Her tongue, on the other hand...
This chick could probably give Ding Nan a run for her money.
Li Yundong stood up and shielded Su Chan with his body. "Miss, we've already apologized for the accident just now. We really didn't mean it, and we don't want any trouble," he said with a deep frown.
Su Chan poked her head out from behind Li Yundong's back. "I... I'm sorry. I really didn't do it on purpose," she said meekly. "Um... If you want, I can clean your clothes for you..."
The girl released a derisive laugh.
"Clean them? Is that a joke?" she sneered. "These are Christian Dior clothes, not the cheap hand-me-downs you're wearing!"
Li Yundong took a breath to suppress the surge of anger he felt.
"Dee-oh?" Su Chan said in a tone of confusion. "How much do they cost then? I'll pay you back!"
Another derisive laugh sounded.
"Pay? Don't joke around. You can't afford these clothes. Those rags you're wearing cost less than a single thread on my clothes!"
Su Chan's face flushed in mortification.
Li Yundong's eyes flashed like lightning, his brows rising to his hairline.
"What did you just say?"
"Enough, enough," Zhuang Hui said, tugging her companion's arm. "Just let it go."
After that, Zhuang Hui and the girl left their table with the latter desperately cleaning the stains with her handkerchief. The sound of her cursing was still audible even after the pair had gone some distance away.