Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
Lan Yu got out of the car, and soon found the white van in a pile of luxury cars in the parking lot, with the windshield broken into spider web-like patterns, exactly like those seen in the surveillance video. He came close to the window and put his hand on it to look inside.
This car was also very worn inside, the seat leather surface was cracked everywhere, there were places that revealed the foam inside. The player in the center console was also gone, only a hole left. The back of the car recorder wasn’t connected, apparently broken, so he didn’t know who was driving that night.
The two of them looked at each other, and walked towards the bar across the street.
It was after 11 p.m. and many people had already gone to sleep, but for a bar, this was the best time for business. The baristas were quietly and quickly moving back and forth with their trays, and the bartenders were shaking their glasses with a clattering sound. The door was pushed open, the wind chimes chimed, as another customer walked in.
“Welcome…” Yun Jie, who had just been free, greeted them and found that they were the same two guests who had left earlier.
While Lu RanKong and Lan Yu stood in the doorway, the previous customers recognized them and averted their gazes, and the new customer glanced over recklessly and was forced to look away by Lu RanKong’s razor-sharp eyes.
Yun Jie’s eyes darted past Lu RanKong’s face and asked Lan Yu, “Is there something you forgot at the bar, sir?”
Lan Yu looked around the bar and said, “I’ve just had your Crow Wing and I don’t think I’ve had enough, so I came back to have two more.”
Yun Jie was about to lead the two to the card table when Lu RanKong asked, “Is there a private room?”
“Let me check…” Yun Jie said. He went to the front desk to ask and came back to guide the two towards a passage on the right, “This way please, there’s a private room available.”
Lan Yu followed him and asked, “Yun Jie, is that white van parked in the vacant lot across the street belonging to your bar?”
Yun Jie said, “Yes, that’s our bar’s liquor delivery vehicle.”
“Oh, then who can drive that car in your bar?” Lan Yu asked.
Yun Jie thought for a moment and said, “All of us can drive it…”
“Anyone can drive it?”
“Mn, if anyone needs to use the car, they just go to the front desk and get the key. It’s hanging there.” Yun Jie said.
“There’s no record of who uses the car, and no one manages it?”
Yun Jie looked at him, as if he was curious why he kept asking this question, but as a barman, he patiently replied, “We still have two good cars in the bar, and no one would want to use this car that’s about to be scrapped, so there’s no record. Anyone who wants to use it just takes the key.”
“Is there a camera in the parking lot? I’m afraid my car has been scratched.” Lu RanKong suddenly asked.
Yun Jie replied, “There used to be cameras, but they were taken down after a lot of guests came here and made comments.”
Lan Yu knew from the luxury cars outside that these people were of high status and for some reason didn’t want their whereabouts to be captured on camera, which was normal. But then, there was no way to know who was driving the van that night.
The three of them continued to walk forward, the corridor was lined with private rooms with closed doors, and the end was uncovered, revealing a dark open space.
“Where does that lead to?” Lu RanKong asked.
Yun Jie said, “That’s our bar’s small garden with a few outdoor seats.”
On the way, they met some waiters coming out of the booths with empty trays and stood aside when they saw the customers passing by. Lu RanKong and Lan Yu stared at them several times, making those waiters feel hairy inside, standing and not daring to move until the two walked by, then they looked at each other face to face.
Yun Jie stopped at the door of a room and pushed the door open, “You two, please come in…”
Lan Yu walked in and Lu RanKong didn’t stop, until he walked to the small garden and looked around. The garden was small but exquisite, with a few small carved tables hidden among the trees, and a few guests sitting there. It was encircled by an iron fence, there was a small alley outside, and not many people passed by.
Lu RanKong retreated back into the booth, and Yun Jie waited for the two to sit down before going out to serve drinks.
“When we finish this drink, I’ll go and blow the customers away and put all the bar staff in one by one and take turns interrogating them.” Lu RanKong leaned against the back of the couch, his hands folded behind his head.
Yun Jie quickly brought in the drinks and placed it in front of Lan Yu and Lu RanKong according to the small labels on the glasses, “I’ll be right outside the door, you can call me if you need anything.”
After saying that, he backed out.
The two of them picked up their glasses, raised them, and each took a sip.
Lan Yu looked at the glass in his hand and said with a little regret, “This drink tastes really good, if only there was a dessert.”
“A dessert?” Lu RanKong looked at him and said, “I think it’s sweet enough, if it were sweeter it would be too much.”
“Sweet?” Lan Yu took another sip and wondered if his or Lu RanKong’s palate was faulty, “This drink doesn’t taste sweet at all, what’s sweet about it?”
“Is it?” Lu RanKong took a sip from the glass he was holding and said curiously, “You really don’t have any sweetness in yours, it’s different from mine.”
Lan Yu also took Lu RanKong’s glass and tasted it, then frowned.
“This glass of yours tastes better, it should be the usual Crow Wing.” He looked at the small label on the glass and said, “But I didn’t even ask for it, so why would the bartender give me a drink without sugar?”
Lu RanKong looked over at him, “Could it be that he actually knows you and knows your previous tastes and that you’ve actually been to this Black Crow Bar?”
Lan Yu thought about it and rang the bell on the table, and Yun Jie, who was waiting outside the door, walked in. He swiped on the tip machine on the table and said, “Yun Jie, I really like this drink, you go and bring the bartender down here, I want to thank him in person.”
Yun Jie looked at his terminal entry, answered with a smile on his face, and retreated again.
“You think there’s something wrong with this bartender?” Lu RanKong asked.
Lan Yu said, “If he knows me but pretends he doesn’t, then there’s more or less something wrong.”
Soon Yun Jie pushed the door open, followed by the bartender.
Lu RanKong smiled and said to the bartender, “Please sit down…” Then he said to Yun Jie, “Please excuse yourself.”
Yun Jie went out not very willingly and closed the door. The bartender looked very thin and ordinary looking, and after being called into the booth by the guest, he neither asked nor was nervous, he just sat there quietly.
“Do you know me?” Lan Yu suddenly spoke.
“No…” The bartender replied quickly.
Lan Yu said indifferently, “If you don’t know me, why did you make me a different Crow Wing than his? Or is it that your Crow Wing is already bitter and you just put sugar in his?”
The bartender glanced at him and looked away again, “I don’t know you, I saw you once before.”
Lan Yu’s heart suddenly jumped and he asked, without moving, “I don’t remember much. Where did you meet me?”
The bartender didn’t say anything, so he added, “Don’t worry, I don’t mind, and neither does this one beside me.” The bartender said, “It was in this booth.”
“In this room?” Lan Yu and Lu RanKong looked at each other, “Tell me more, tell me all the details.”
The bartender gave him a hesitant look and didn’t say anything.
“It’s okay, tell us what’s there.” Lan Yu crossed his legs and put down the glass in his hand, but his eyes kept watching him.
“When we were leaving the bar just now, you said you hadn’t seen him, but now you’re changing your mind. I’m telling you, if you don’t tell the truth, you’ll get into a lot of trouble.” Lu RanKong said indifferently. His back was turned to the light, his features hidden in the shadows were somewhat unreadable, but the bartender felt a great pressure.
After thinking for a few seconds, he looked at Lan Yu and said, “Actually, I know you often come to our bar, but every time you don’t come in through the front door, you take the small back garden door and go directly into the private room.”
Lan Yu couldn’t help but put down his crossed legs and sat up straight.
The bartender continued, “I understand that you are in a relationship with Yun Jie and don’t want to be discovered, so I can only say that I haven’t seen you. After all, the needs of the guests are the greatest.”
“What? I’m in a relationship with Yun Jie?”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
Lu RanKong and Lan Yu stood up at the same time, looked at each other and slowly sat down again.
“Yeah, if you weren’t in a relationship, why would you come to him so often and not want to be seen by others?” The bartender smiled and said, “Every time you come, Yun Jie would take an hour off to keep you company in the booth, and will ask me to make a cup of unsweetened Crow Wing.”
Lan Yu asked with a sullen look, “Then how did you know that the person with Yun Jie was me?”
The bartender saw that he looked wrong and closed his mouth to stop talking, so Lu RanKong said lightly, “Tell me…”
The bartender said again, “We have a rule in the bar that if a customer likes someone and wants him to drink with him or something, he just needs to give the foreman the word. Every once in a while, Yun Jie will take a leave of absence, that means that his guest has come. Once I passed by when I went to the bathroom, Yun Jie happened to open the door and came out, and I saw you through the door.”
“Are you sure it was me?” Lan Yu stood up abruptly, his face was hard to read.
“Sure. Your appearance, sir, is unforgettable to anyone who looks at you at first sight…” The bartender replied.
Lu RanKong followed and stood up and said to Lan Yu, “Don’t believe his words, you certainly don’t have anything to do with that Yun Jie.”
“I’m not lying, I’m telling the truth, or you can ask Wu outside again, he was hiding in the back garden for a smoke once and happened to see you come in, but he just pretended not to recognize you, just like me.” The bartender pleaded.
Lan Yu glanced at Lu RanKong and saw a dark cloud on his face, so he whispered, “Even if I had lost my memory, I know I wouldn’t have fallen in love with Yun Jie. Whatever the reason for coming here so often before, it’s obviously not normal for Yun Jie to keep pretending he doesn’t know me.”
Lu RanKong came back to his senses abruptly, realizing that he was so bent on drinking vinegar that he had almost overlooked the most important thing, and his mind cleared instantly.
The bartender was still pleading, Lan Yu pulled open the door of the room and rushed out.
But the doorway was empty, and Yun Jie, who had been guarding it, was no longer in sight.
They turned around and ran to the bar lobby, stopping a waiter halfway, “Have you seen Yun Jie?”
The waiter pointed blankly at the door and said, “He just went out.”
Without another word, the two of them rushed to the door, bumping into several customers along the way, and rushed to the street amidst a series of complaints. Before they had time to brake, they saw a white van disappearing around the corner of the street, spewing out a large plume of exhaust.
“Get in…” Lu RanKong pressed the lock on the car as he ran, and the two of them darted across the street to get into the car.
Lu RanKong skillfully started, backed up, and turned onto the road in one fell swoop, and the sports car let out a loud roar as it chased in the direction of the van. Yun Jie went in the opposite direction, not through that crowded section, but on a street that was ancient, narrow and curved, even the sports car couldn’t pick up speed.
“Watch out…” Lan Yu saw a long bamboo pole sticking out from the wall, and just as the words left his mouth, the car was already driving up, the tip of the bamboo pole cutting through the body, resounding with an ear-piercing scraping sound. Lan Yu glanced at Lu RanKong and saw that he was only staring straight ahead, his muscles tense, apparently unconcerned about the scratch, so he didn’t say anything.
This was an old town that had not been demolished, the houses were low and tight, the alleys were crisscrossed, and they were like sewers in all directions. The car didn’t have its own advantage, never catching up with the van in front, could only be far behind, followed by the faint tail in the alleyway shuttle.
The street was lined with piles of briquettes and bamboo baskets of lumber, occupying part of the street, and the sports car wasted no time in rushing past, with ear-splitting scraping sounds all along the way.
Lan Yu watched the van’s trail, always alerting Lu RanKong, but just as it turned down an alleyway to the right, he suddenly noticed something strange and adjusted his seating position.
“Sit tight and be careful.” Lu RanKong’s eyes didn’t look at him, but his mouth loudly warned.
“Yeah, I know.” Lan Yu replied.
The strange feeling in his body became more and more obvious and felt somewhat familiar. It was a hot flush that slowly emanated from the small of his back and wandered towards the rest of his body. The cells in his body woke up instantly and pulsed with excitement.
Lan Yu’s head buzzed, as an Omega, he clearly knew that this feeling in his body meant that he was starting to go into heat. He abruptly gripped the window handle with his hand and sat up straight, his thoughts in confusion.
It didn’t make sense, it wasn’t long after the injection of the inhibitor, so it didn’t make sense to be in heat now, this should be a bad stomach…
“You want to get rid of me? Naive…” Lu RanKong didn’t notice Lan Yu’s fidgeting, he just chased after the van in front of him, eyes full of hunting excitement.
Lan Yu had no time to care about the van, he hoped that it was only a hallucination or a fluke, and felt the changes in his body with fear and trepidation. But the tide of heat continued to spread to all the limbs, so he was clearly in this tense situation, but his body was lazy like soaking in hot water.
Lan Yu’s grip on the handle above the car window was also getting weak and began to slip with a weak grip. He finally desperately recognized the fact that he was really in heat.
What the hell was going on? Why would it be in heat at this time?
He thought he had been very careful, he always took his inhibitor on time, never delaying a day, and he was using an isolator to prevent being stimulated by Alpha pheromones to come into heat. He usually took one with him when he went out, just in case, like this time when he came to Sasu Planet, he had one in his suitcase.
He felt the gland patch on the back of his neck, and it was firmly attached to his gland, not moving at all. But how did he suddenly go into heat? Was it some catalytic drug?
He suddenly remembered the cup of Crow Wing, the one he drank without sweetness.
Yun Jie pretended he didn’t know K. Then when he saw him and Lu RanKong enter the bar for the second time, he had sensed the crisis and probably put the catalytic drug in his glass. In other words, Yun Jie knew that he was actually an Omega and catalyzed him into early heat so that he could get a chance to escape.
“Don’t get distracted, grab the handle.” Lu RanKong woke him up with a loud shout.
Lan Yu took two deep breaths and tried his best to ignore the discomfort in his body and not to think about anything else. Now in this situation, no matter what, he had to hold on until he caught Yun Jie.
The sound of a car came from the left, he shot up and looked through the window at the section of downhill stone stairs, just in time to see the white van, from the stone stairs below a road flashing by, and they traveled in the opposite direction.
“Turn left ahead, there’s a sharp turn to turn around.” Lan Yu gave Lu RanKong directions in advance.
Lu RanKong also saw the car, but he didn’t drive to the front to turn around, directly to the left of the steering wheel, the sports car drove up the section of downhill stone stairs.
It was a little bumpy, and Lan Yu heard the chassis of the car knocking against the stone stairs. Lu RanKong didn’t care about his new car, as the car finally bumped to the road below, turned right and caught up to the van.
This brought them closer to the van, which was on a straight street, so Lu RanKong stepped on the gas, and the sports car exploded with excellent acceleration, in just a few seconds, it was in front of the van.
“Sit tight!” Lu RanKong shouted at Lan Yu again.
Lan Yu suppressed the physical discomfort and took a deep breath while holding on to the armrest. The car turned sharply to the left, the tires scraped on the ground with an ear-splitting sound, Lu RanKong made a beautiful drift and turned around, then stepped on the gas pedal and crashed straight into the van.
The van was accelerating, seeing the sports car to their head-on collision, it busied to the side to dodge.
Seeing the two cars about to collide, Lu RanKong hit the brakes, and the van hit the middle of the fence, the front cover of the car was deformed, emitting white smoke, the car turned off, not moving.
Then, the van door was opened and a man darted out and ran across the road. It was the barman, Yun Jie.