Tang Bingyao woke up early the next morning. A ray of sun was shining in her face, something was smelling delicious, and she had a throbbing headache. “Uch…” she groaned as she pulled the blanket over her head. “Stupid sun. Too bright.” She closed her eyes and tried to ignore the sledgehammer that was slamming against her head. The soft, warm bed almost made that happen. “Mm-hmm…” But then her stomach responded to the food she could smell. She opened her eyes and complained, “Too early…”
“Eh?” Tang Bingyao yelped. Her eyes snapped open completely and she pushed the blanket away. “Where am I?” She looked around the room, panicking. This isn’t my bed. Uhmm… Where am I? Where, where… “Ughh.” She rubbed her head painfully. Why does my head hurt so much? What happened? Did someone hit me? Did I get kidnapped!? “Ugh. It hurts so much.” She closed her eyes again and rested her head back on the pillow. “Ahh, so nice and soft.”
Tang Bingyao pulled on the blanket and curled up underneath. What happened last night? It was… Friday? Her eyes shot open again. It was my birthday! Birthday party. We went to the restaurant… Food… It was a blur in her mind. There wasn’t a cohesive story, only random tidbits of information. And every time that she tried to tie them all together, her headache got worse. She groaned and mumbled, “Never drinking again. Mhm.”
We had a few drinks after dinner. I think… Did the guys play a game? I sat… somewhere? Tang Bingyao was trying very hard to remember the events leading up to her waking up in a strange room. They all went home, I remember that. Except for… Her eyes suddenly went wide. Something very specific came back to her. I went home with him. He brought me home. And then I stopped him and I… I… She was breathing quickly, worried, nearly hyperventilating. I told him that I lo… lov…
It was that exact thought that jogged the last bit of Tang Bingyao’s memory. A realization that gave her a fresh wave of relaxation. I never said the full sentence. I passed out. I didn’t say it! I didn’t say it! She took the first deep, long breath of the morning. The headache suddenly didn’t feel all that bad anymore and she even managed a small smile. It’d have been way too embarrassing if I did tell him… But I held myself back. BunBun is the right one for him, and not me. My body shut itself down before I could do something stupid. Mhm, good.
Tang Bingyao needed a couple more minutes to convince herself that she really hadn’t said the words and that that was for the best. But the more she thought about it, the more she remembered about that particular part of the night. I passed out. And then I remember being in an apartment… A girl… Su Xue? Am I at his place? Is this… She pushed the covers off and looked around the room again. I’ve seen this room before. This is Su Xue’s room! I’ve seen it on the stream before! She smiled in relief. I wasn’t kidnapped.
The strong smell of food reached Tang Bingyao’s nose again, now grabbing her full attention. She glanced at the door and then down at her clothes. W-what am I wearing!? These aren’t mine! She pulled at the pink pyjamas she was wearing. They were exactly the type of pyjamas she never bought. It was pink with a large drawing on it. She twisted her head to get a better look at it. Jinx? Is this a Jinx pyjamas? She chewed on the inside of her cheek, looking around the room. I can’t go out looking like this. What if Lin Feng sees me in this? Uh-uh. Where are my clothes?
Tang Bingyao got up and searched around the room, but the only clothes she found were those in Su Xue’s closet. Can’t put those on without asking. That’d be rude. Hmm… She grimaced, considered, then slipped into a pair of slippers and carefully opened the door, peeking around the corner. No one here. What is smelling so good anyway? She sniffed and searched around the hallway. Is someone making breakfast? Does Lin Feng cook?
Uch, my head. Tang Bingyao painfully rubbed her head, groans coming from both her mouth and stomach. She looked back into the room and then out into the hallway again. Do I…? Hmm… Maybe there’s an aspirin for my head. Mhm. I’ll go and see. She pushed the door open and walked down the hallway, following the smell of scrambled egg and bacon. It led her to the kitchen, where she found Su Xue toasting some bread.
Su Xue looked up when she heard a sound and noticed Tang Bingyao poking her head into the kitchen. “Oh, Tang Tang! You’re awake! Perfect timing!”
“Please, not so loud,” Tang Bingyao whispered. She briefly paused to rub her head and then added, “Morning.”
Su Xue grinned and pestered, “Drank a little much, eh? How are you feeling? Your head spinning right ‘round?”
“Just a little,” Tang Bingyao whispered, embarrassed. She meekly continued, “Sorry for the trouble.”
Su Xue shook her head, smiling brightly, and said, “It’s nothing. Happens to everyone at one point. But maybe don’t drink so much in the future. I’m not going to be around every time to help you puke in a bucket and make you some honey lemon tea…”
Tang Bingyao froze up. “P-puke?” she muttered. Her face flushed red. She chewed on her lips and stared at the floor. “S-sorry. I didn’t mean to. It just kind of… I won’t do it again. I’ll never drink again… Sorry for everything. I can help clean up…”
“It’s fine! Relax a little!” Su Xue said, giggling. She then pointed at the pyjamas Tang Bingyao was wearing and continued, “Those PJs fit you really well by the way. You look super cute!”
Cute? Tang Bingyao looked down at the pyjamas she felt so uncomfortable in. Does it really look cute? She chewed on the inside of her cheek and shook her head. Will Lin Feng also think it looks cute? Her face heated up again. She looked down at her feet, trying to hide her embarrassment.
“Oh, right!” Su Xue suddenly exclaimed. “Before I forget, your grandma called! She’d gotten the number from Ren Rou? Anyway, I told her you were sleeping here and that everything was good. But I think it’s better if you go and give her a call. She sounded really worried.”
Tang Bingyao’s eyes went wide and her stomach dropped. Nana! I completely forgot… She nodded at Su Xue and said, “Thanks. I’ll call her and let her know I’m ok.”
“Do that. You should also go and wash up. The bathroom is right next to my bedroom. I already put a clean towel and new toothbrush for you there,” Su Xue responded. Then she lifted up her finger and added, “Oh, and your clothes are still hanging out to dry. That’ll be another few hours or so. Just wear my PJs for now. There’s no puke on them, right? Oh, oh, also go and wake up Lin Feng when you’re done with all of that. Breakfast should be ready by then and if you don’t wake him up, he’ll sleep till dinner.”
Tang Bingyao froze, her body trembling and shaking uncontrollably. She gritted her teeth and rubbed her head. I fell asleep! He doesn’t know what I wanted to say! Mhm! And these pyjamas look cute. Xue Xue said so. She tried to convince herself, though her stomach strongly disagreed. It felt like the inside of a washing machine, going ‘round and ‘round. Please be a blockhead. Please!
Su Xue raised her eyebrow and asked, “Worried you can’t wake him up? I know.” She shook her head before continuing, “He sleeps like a log. But there’s a few ways to get him out of bed. One of them, hold on…” She searched around the counter for a bit before picking up a large cleaver. “Just smack him with the dull side of this. Don’t know what it is about this thing, but it has him wide awake in seconds. It’s my go-to weapon these days.”
Tang Bingyao’s worries disintegrated and were replaced by shock and pure horror. She stared at Su Xue, speechless. That smile looks so much like An Xin’s when she gets mad at Lin Feng! I don’t… She shook her head and said, “No, no, it’s okay. I’ll wake him up without that, that thing.”
Tang Bingyao spent far more time in the bathroom than she usually would. Not because it was difficult to work the shower or because anything else took longer than normal, but because she was trying to find the courage to go to Lin Feng’s bedroom. Su Xue had told her which door it was and she was now standing in front of it, her hand raised, ready to knock. She chewed on her lips. This is his bedroom. What if he figured it out? No, I would’ve woken up in his… No! Mh-mm! She shook her mind clear of that thought and knocked on the door. “Lin Feng?” she quietly asked.
There came no response from the other side of the door. Tang Bingyao knocked again, hoping that Lin Feng would wake up from this. But it looked like Su Xue was right. He slept like a log. After a third knock and still no response, she pushed the door open and poked her head inside. “Hey, Lin Feng,” she said. “It’s morning. Su Xue wants you to wake up.”
Lin Feng was fast asleep, dreaming about something that had him smiling. Tang Bingyao stepped into the room and called out to Lin Feng. He still won’t wake up? She took another step and called out again. There was still no response. She repeated this process all the way until she found herself standing next to his bed. What do I do now…? She chewed on her lips, considering her options. She finally started poking him, jabbing her finger in his face, and said, “Lin Feng. Lin Feng. Lin Feng. Wake up.”
There was finally a response from Lin Feng. But not the one Tang Bingyao was expecting. Lin Feng slapped Tang Bingyao’s hand away, as though she were a mosquito, and grumbled, “Go away, Su Xue. I wanna sleep. I’m really good at sleeping too.”
“Uh, it’s me,” Tang Bingyao said slowly.
Lin Feng opened his drowsy eyes and turned to look at who was calling out to him. Then his eyes shot open. Tang Bingyao was standing next to his bed, her face hovering only a little above his. “Tang Tang!” he yelped. “Yeesh! You nearly gave me a heart attack!” He took a few exaggerated breaths, then looked at her and asked, “Did you sleep well?”
Tang Bingyao nodded and replied, “Morning. Uh, mhm, yeah. Su Xue told me to wake you up, so I came…”
Lin Feng rubbed his eyes and pushed his blanket down. “Oh, okay. Yeah. I’ll get up.” He stretched out long and yawned. “Man, I drank way too much last night. Really shouldn’t hav—”
Tang Bingyao didn’t hear a word Lin Feng said anymore. Her eyes were about to pop out of her sockets. Of all the things she worried about happening, this hadn’t been one of them. Now it was. She always liked to wear pyjamas. Top and bottom. They were comfortable. She never even considered that not everyone wore pyjamas. But Lin Feng clearly wasn’t. He… He… THOSE ARE HIS BOXERS! “IIIIIIIIIIII!” She reached out and grabbed the closest thing she could find, an Oxford dictionary, and threw it at Lin Feng. “IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII! YOU’RE NAKED!”
Time slowed down for Lin Feng. He saw the book flying his way. NOOOOOO! He tried to move his body, but it felt sluggish. And in the next moment, the dictionary fell on his balls. “GAAAAAGHHHHHHHH!”
Su Xue was sitting at the breakfast table reading a magazine, when Lin Feng and Tang Bingyao walked in. She asked without looking up, “What was that scream all about, Tang Tang?” She looked up, her eyes widening in surprise. Lin Feng too? She continued, “Lin Feng? You’re up early. Haha! I guess Tang Tang should come over more often! You’ll never sleep in till dinner again!”
Tang Bingyao felt her face heat up again. She looked down at her feet and mumbled, “Uh-hmm…” She quietly sat down at the table and looked away from both Lin Feng and Su Xue.
Lin Feng had a completely opposite reaction. He was screaming bloody murder and shouted, “SHE THREW A BOOK AT ME! SHE THREW A BOOK!”
Su Xue burst out laughing. She looked at Tang Bingyao and said, “Good job! I hadn’t thought about that yet! Which book did you use?”
“THE DICTIONARY! SHE THREW A DICTIONARY AT ME!” Lin Feng yelled.
Su Xue frowned and asked, “A dictionary. Is that all? What are you screaming so loudly for then?” She then winked at Tang Bingyao.
Lin Feng rubbed his groin and complained, “It was a hardcover! SHE THREW IT AT MY BALLS!”
Su Xue started laughing again, unable to contain herself. Tears crept from her eyes and she couldn’t stop herself from saying, “So you do have something down there!”
Tang Bingyao glanced at Lin Feng and then quickly turned away again. She feebly asked, “Are you alright? Does it really hurt?”
“Does it really hurt? Yes it hurts!” Lin Feng shouted, massaging his balls. “I’m really good at feeling pain too!”
Tang Bingyao’s lips were trembling and she was forcing back tears. “I’m sorry. I… I didn’t mean to.”
Lin Feng sat down next to Tang Bingyao at the table and looked at her. A painful smile appeared on his face. “It’s fine. I’ll be ok, I think. But really, Tang Tang, please don’t throw books at my private parts again. It really hurts.”
Su Xue winked at Tang Bingyao and interjected, “It’s karma. He deserved it. Don’t feel bad about it. He totally had that one coming.”
Lin Feng wanted to retort, Tang Bingyao wanted to apologize, and Su Xue really wanted to bask in Lin Feng’s misery, but they were interrupted when Lin Feng’s phone started ringing. He grabbed it from his pocket and accepted the call. “Hello? Chu Fang?”
“Hey Lin Feng,” Chu Fang said. “Morning. Do you have some time today? Together with the rest of the team. I want to watch you guys play a bit and I’ve got some news I need to tell you guys about.”
Lin Feng nodded and replied, “Oh, sure, of course! I think we’re practicing anyway this afternoon. Is that good for you?”
“Yeah, that should be fine,” Chu Fang said. “Just send me the time and location and I’ll be there.”
Lin Feng rubbed his stomach, the smell of food distracting him from the call. “Ok, ok. I’ll let the others know. I’ll also send you the info. Uhm, anything else?”
Chu Fang laughed and said, “You’re busy?”
“Well, breakfast…” Lin Feng started to explain. But Chu Fang cut him off. “No worries! I’ve got plenty to do here anyway. Just remember to send me the time and place. I’ll see you there!”
“Ok, see you there!” Lin Feng replied before hanging up. He then grinned and said to Tang Bingyao, “You heard that, right Tang Tang? Guess he wants to see us practice! And something about some news…”
Su Xue had been listening in, but only heard half of what Chu Fang said. She looked at Lin Feng and asked, “Who was that? Something about the Collegiate Cup? When is that starting anyway?”
“In a few days,” Tang Bingyao said, which was quickly followed by Lin Feng adding, “December 8th. So on Tuesday, I think?”
Su Xue rubbed her chin and said, “Practice this afternoon, huh? Tang Tang’s clothes should be dry by then, so that won’t be an issue. But it’s still a couple of hours before lunch.” Her eyes suddenly lit up and she suggested, “Hey, I know! Tang Tang and I can play some duo queue on stream today! I’m sure the viewers will love to see a… continuation of last night. I kind of had to stop that rather abruptly. And you need all the practice you can get before the tournament anyway! This is perfect!”
“I’m also playing in the tournament! I should play too!” Lin Feng quickly mentioned. But Su Xue just laughed at him. She said, “I thought you were really good at League too? You don’t need any practice. But if you want to become really good at being a maid too, you should get some practice in for that.” She giggled before continuing, “It all adds up! Tang Tang gets some practice in with me and you get to practice your maid skills! This’ll be great!”
Su Xue turned on her stream and informed her most loyal viewers on her QQ group chat about it. The turnup was massive. Everyone and their mothers tuned in to watch this episode in the life of Su Xue. It was a direct result from the night before, when Su Xue went offline after placing the ‘body’ down on her bed. All her viewers were now letting Su Xue know how they felt about that. If she was committing a crime, they wanted in on it!
「How could you leave us hanging like that! My feelings are hurt! HURT!」
「you think you can just close the stream whenever you want!? ANSWER MEE!!!!」
「How dare you let all your viewers down like that! You’re not worth our support! UNFOLLOWW」
「mass reports for false advertising, lezzz gooooooooo X9999999999999 (so many viewers.l….)」
The camera was still off. Su Xue played around with the stream settings, until she got it right. The camera turned on and showed Su Xue and Tang Bingyao sitting behind the computer. Everyone recognized the ‘body’ that had come back to life. She was a beautiful girl wearing cute pink Jinx pyjamas. Their inner simps awoke and they flooded the chat with messages aimed at Tang Bingyao.
「hey hey! Nice to meet you! I’m Water Wraith!」
「SUP SEXY! You one of xuexue’s friends? BFFs?」
「you play lol too? add me pls! we can duo queueue!!!!」
「I luuuvvvvvvv your ponytail! your pjs pretty sexy too!!」
「whats your name? I NEEDA KNOW FOR RESEARCH!!!!!」
「can i tell my friends about you??? pretty preasseeeeee」
Su Xue coughed and said, “How about we stop this?” She then pointed at Tang Bingyao and continued, “This here is Tang Bingyao. She’s Lin Feng’s classmate. She’s still in high school. Now stop being creeps!”
「again!??!?!?!? How many classmates does he have? WTFFFFFF」
「NUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!! tangtang!!!!!! add me on league plsssssss」
「I didn’t realise. She looks very beautiful. Nice to make your acquaintance, m’lady! *tips fedora*」
Su Xue deleted the last message with a trained flick of her mouse and temporarily muted the user who sent it. Then she smiled at Tang Bingyao and said, “You should say hi to them. Just look in the camera up there.”
Tang Bingyao nodded, speechless. Not because of the chat messages, but because of the sheer number of viewers. She stared at that number going up and up. From hundreds to thousands of viewers! She finally said, “Hi, hi. Uhmm, I’m Tang Tang.”
Lin Feng butted into the frame and shouted, “Tang Tang is an amazing Ad-carry!”
Su Xue rolled her eyes and said, “No one asked you anything! Hurry up and go pour us some water!” She then looked back at the camera and continued, “You might remember Tang Tang from the Shanghai 16 School Tournament. She was the Ad-carry on Lin Feng’s team! She was so good! Oh, I know! How about she plays ad-carry for a couple of games and I support her?”
「WOOOOOO YEAHHHHHHHH TANG TANG GOOOOOO」
「pls teach xue xue how to play, tangtang!!!!!!」
「legendary incoming in 3, 2, 1…. NOOOWWWWWWW!!!!」
「dont carry xue xue too hard, or shes gonna lose a bunch of games again tonight…….」
「screw that! I’ll just not watch tonight! CARRY HARD TANG TANG!!!!!!」
Su Xue glared as she read through a few of the messages, but overall she was pretty happy. She winked at Tang Bingyao and said, “See? They’re all excited to watch you play. Let’s get into the queue. You Ad-carry and I Support. Sounds good, yeah?”
Tang Bingyao sat up straight in her chair. They’re all watching me. I can’t let Su Xue down! Mhm! She was going to play on stream for the first time. She’d never before played with so many people watching her. That made this moment so much more scary. She couldn’t let these viewers down. She had to show them something special! A truly good game! She grabbed her mouse and placed her fingers on the keyboard. Then she stared intently at her screen and said, “Mhm! I’ll do my best!”