Five-year-old Xiao Shiyu lowered his head.
His fair elbow had a mosquito bite the size of a dollar coin.
It looked like it had been two bites that had connected together.
Signs of his nails pressing into it were still present.
It looked incredibly itchy. 


“You can’t dig your nails into it like that, you’ll make it worse.” Chu Feng’s heart ached for him.
He couldn’t believe he didn’t give Xiao Shiyu any insect repellant even in such a scorching summer. 

He didn’t think there’d be mosquitoes even in the game. 

He immediately bought a box of hua luo shui1 it’s like insect repellant and sprayed some on Xiao Shiyu. 

Xiao Shiyu couldn’t stand the stench of insect repellant and started coughing. 

“I’m sorry.” Chu Feng scrambled to hold onto Xiao Shiyu, using his hand as a fan to dispel the smell.
“I didn’t mean to spray so much…” 

Somehow, Chu Feng had managed to fan the water vapor in the wrong direction, leading it right into Xiao Shiyu’s nostrils… 

He choked on it almost instantly, heaving over and coughing. 

“I’m sorry! A-Are you okay?” 

Chu Feng didn’t dare to do anything else, passing the hua luo shui to Xiao Shiyu instead. 

—He’s incredibly bad at taking care of children.
He had tried to be a teacher at the kindergarten in an attempt to take care of all the Xiao Shiyus at once.
Four of them were under the care of Chu Feng, and after taking care of them, they all fell sick. 

Feeling defeated, Chu Feng had no choice but to quit his job as a kindergarten teacher and went to teach high school Xiao Xie instead. 

After he left, all the Xiao Shiyus got better.
5-year-old Xiao Xie was living healthily in his kindergarten life. 

“I’m fine.” 

Xiao Shiyu took the hua luo shui and sprayed it on Chu Feng’s ankles, wrists, and neck.
He didn’t spray too much, nor too little, the mist landing gently onto his skin. 

“You should spray some too, just in case they bite you.” 

Chu Feng kept his head lowered, face hot.
He’s already 29 and he couldn’t even take care of people as well as a five-year-old child. 

Xiao Shiyu put the hua luo shui into his little school bag and said, “That was insect repellant.” 


Chu Feng: ? 

“Insect repellent is used to prevent insects from biting you, it doesn’t really do anything if you use it after getting bitten, do you have something that can ease the itch?” 

Xiao Shiyu’s face was expressionless, subtitles appearing beneath his head. 

You don’t even know this? 

Chu Feng: …

“S-So what am I supposed to buy?” 

“Just buy the green one.” 2 this  

“Oh.” 

He scooped some of the chilled cream onto his finger and rubbed it onto the swollen part of Xiao Shiyu’s elbow. 

—The bite seemed to have gotten even bigger than before. 

“What kind of mosquito bit you? Your bite looks awful.” 

Normal mosquito bites were only about the size of your fingernail.
They were white-ish and raised, but Xiao Shiyu’s one was swollen red. 

“I think it was a… a tiger mosquito.” 3 asian tiger mosquito   

“Light a mosquito coil when you get back, okay?” 

“Okay,” 

5:15. 

Chu Feng held Xiao Shiyu’s hand as they walked along the stone road together.
The road wasn’t long—only about 20 meters—and they quickly finished walking its length.
Chu Feng sucked on his popsicle like how Xiao Shiyu used to do it. 


He flicked his hand outward, and the popsicle made an arc through the sky before landing inside the trash bin. 

Chu Feng sneakily took a glance at Xiao Shiyu. 

Xiao Shiyu tsk-ed softly, another line of subtitles appearing beneath his head, 

How old are you already? And you’re still acting cool in front of a five-year-old kid? 

Thud! 

After Xiao Shiyu finished his popsicle, he flicked his hand, and the popsicle landed the same way Chu Feng’s had. 

They finished walking the expanse of the road, and Xiao Shiyu turned around just like the script had intended for him to, waving goodbye. 

“Bye.” 

Under the setting sun, Chu Feng watched as Xiao Shiyu’s silhouette disappeared into the horizon. 4 the word in chinese is sending him away with his gaze, but i dont think theres a word in english for that  

The cicadas that used to cling to the old tree on the edge of the road were still screaming. 

Chu Feng listened to the cicadas and slowly walked his way toward the gate of his Dream City. 

Beep— 

As he exited through the gates, the blue brain waves cut off its connection.  

Chu Feng opened his eyes and stared at the white ceiling above him.
The sun’s rays shone in through the small balcony, staining his ceiling a pastel orange. 

The orange spots moved slowly, shifting toward the bedroom’s walls, submerging the pictures hung on it in gentle warmth. 

Chu Feng got out of bed and stared quietly at the picture on the wall.
They were all pictures of him and Xie Shiyu, from 7 years old to 27 years old. 

Above the pictures hung a clock in the shape of a black cat.
The hands on its tail pointed to 5:45. 

Lin Lan and his suan cai yu will be here soon. 


Chu Feng walked into his living room, boiling water for tea—something he hasn’t done in a long time— for his cousin. 

Bzzzzzz… 5 sound of a mosquito, i dont know what it is in english sorry  

Clap! 

Chu Feng swatted the side of his ear. 

—The mosquitoes were here. 

The black insects buzzed around his house.
Chu Feng half slammed the kettle onto his countertop and went to search for his insect repellant, spraying it all over his room. 

His blood type was O, which made him more prone to mosquito bites, while Xie Shiyu’s blood type was A, which meant he never got bitten, only Chu Feng.
The highest record of mosquito bites he has ever gotten was 12.
It was when they were doing it in bed and a mosquito managed to worm itself under the blankets.
He had gotten those 12 bites in less than 10 minutes. 

“It’s itchy.” 

Xie Shiyu made a sound of acknowledgement. 

“Don’t worry, it won’t itch after lao gong 6 husband, Xie Shiyu is calling himself the husband here is inside.” 

“I’m talking about proper business right now!” Chu Feng hit him on the head.
“I was bitten!” 

“Qing ai de7 im not really sure if i should be translating these or not so ill js keep it, my dearest/dear/love , you sure you want to stop right now?” 

Bzzzzzzz… 

Clap! 

He didn’t manage to hit it.
A thirteenth bite appeared. 

Chu Feng was so mad that he didn’t want to continue. 

—Xie Shiyu had been so mad he lifted the entire blanket up and found the mosquito, crushing it to death. 


5:50. 

Chu Feng found a charred, black mosquito coil from one of the cupboards in the kitchen, no doubt one that Xie Shiyu had bought for him and didn’t finish using.
Chu Feng inspected the mosquito coil and thought, It probably doesn’t expire. 

He placed the mosquito coil upright and took out a lighter from his pocket. 

Click! 

A bright orange flame burst into life. 

Chu Feng placed it over the mosquito coil. 

The small fire licked the head of it, and a small ember appeared, with smoke coming out of the coil. 

Wait. 

Mosquito coil… 

Fire… 

All the blood in Chu Feng’s body froze. 

He’s truly gone crazy.
How could he tell Xie Shiyu to light up a mosquito coil?! 

Chu Feng turned around and rushed to his bedroom, putting on his helmet and entering [Lucid Dream City]. 

The sky was painted in a golden hue, but the West District’s sky was full of smoke. 

—There was a fire in the kindergarten! 

The summer was hot and humid.
Underneath the black smoke was a terrible fire.
Chu Feng got in his car and sped over, his hands covered with cold sweat, anxiety coiled in his chest. 

—The Xiao Shiyus in the kindergarten were only 5!

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