Well, yes.
He Changkong appeared calm and capable, and there didn’t seem to be any issues on the phone.
Shen Yanming realized he was overthinking things.

After a few more words, they decided to go directly back to the hot pot restaurant where they were having their meal.
The mall was quite big, and it would be troublesome to look for each other, so they might as well go straight to the restaurant.

Their meal was interrupted several times, making it difficult to enjoy.

After returning to the private room, He Changkong met the inquisitive gazes of the others and briefly recounted what had just happened.

Lan was actually quite rational.
His impulse to hit someone was just a momentary loss of control, and after calming down, he put on an innocent expression.
He approached the girl he had almost slapped and coaxed her softly, “I was just angry and said some nonsense.
It’s because you were getting too close to that classmate of yours, and I got jealous and started overthinking things.
It’s because I like you so much… Can we go back for now? We’ll have more babies in the future.
I still have to play a match, and it wouldn’t be responsible of me to let you give birth now…”

However, the girl had clearly been frightened.
When Lan approached her, she instinctively moved back.

After hearing Lan’s words, the other girl’s face was filled with disbelief, “Then what am I?”

It was clear that Lan was feeling a bit overwhelmed, but he quickly reacted.
If he wanted to keep one, he had to let go of the other.
After coaxing the first girl, he couldn’t possibly continue coaxing the second one.
So, he put on a cold expression, “We never had any other relationship from the start, right? It was just a mistake I made when I drank too much last time.
We’re all adults, and we agreed not to take things too seriously.
I’m just friendly in our conversations, but I hope you won’t read too much into it and made the person I truly like misunderstand.”

Even He Changkong, who considered himself emotionally stable, felt his anger rising when he saw this situation.

He Changkong thought that if these two girls hadn’t bumped into each other, perhaps Lan could have privately comforted them separately, and the girls, being naive, would have believed in the person they liked, allowing this matter to be resolved peacefully.
However, now that they had bumped into each other, Lan’s attempt at reassurance was far from skillful.

But he did try his best.

A few months ago, He Changkong inexplicably returned to this timeline.
During this time, he quietly observed and found that most things he knew still followed the trajectory of his memories, with only some minor random events that might have changed.

Of course, the events related to Shen Yanming seemed different from what he remembered.
This person’s path was like a derailing train, heading who knows where.

But apart from him, the others remained as they were, both in the past and now.

He Changkong observed the situation for a while and quickly came to a conclusion.
In the previous timeline, Lan might not have caused any trouble due to these incidents, but it didn’t necessarily mean he hadn’t done those things.
He most likely had already appeased the girls who had been mistreated, which prevented the issues from becoming public.

However, this time, the situation had escalated, probably to the butterfly effect brought about by He Changkong’s rebirth.

In the previous timeline, he didn’t come to this restaurant with the other teammates and Shen Yanming at this time, so they didn’t encounter fans, and there was no subsequent plot of the mistreated fans rushing to Lan for an explanation.

Life is unpredictable.

He Changkong couldn’t stand listening to Lan’s repetitive explanations and interrupted, saying, “If you have something to explain, just explain it to the club.
No need to waste time here with all this nonsense.”

Lan was provoked by his words, “You!”

He Changkong looked at him expressionlessly, “What about me? If, as you said, it’s all just misunderstandings and you haven’t done anything wrong, then even if there’s an investigation, you won’t be in trouble.”

Lan didn’t want to appear guilty, so he held back his words, “Of course.”

Ignoring him, He Changkong gestured for the two girls who seemed upset to follow him.

Just before stepping out of the stairwell, He Changkong overheard Lan trying to shift blame, “Of course, I won’t have any problems, and don’t think you can finally squeeze me out.
Who doesn’t know that you want to bring that streamer you fancy into the team? Why don’t you squeeze out Meng Yan? Is it because you and him are childhood friends?”

He Changkong: “…”

He couldn’t be bothered to even give Lan a glance.

Previously, He Changkong had intentionally brought Shen Yanming over, mainly because he held the script of the prophet and knew that Lan would soon transfer to another team.
It wasn’t because he wanted to target Lan personally.

But now, the way Lan spoke made it seem like He Changkong had deliberately plotted against him.

He Changkong speculated that Lan’s words were not just for him but also meant for the two girls.
He wanted to push the responsibility onto others, making himself appear innocent.

Fortunately, when He Changkong glanced at them, both girls showed some disgust after hearing Lan’s words.

One of them even said, “I must have been blinded by love before, thinking that this person is good at games, has a good personality, and knows how to sweet-talk.
Damn, thinking about it now makes me sick…”

The other girl was still caught up in her sadness.
Her words weren’t harsh, but she sighed and tears welled up in her eyes.

He Changkong wasn’t good at comforting people, especially those of the opposite sex.
He didn’t say much, just hailed separate taxis for them, told them to be careful during this time, and that they could provide him with any evidence of Lan’s misconduct.

After such an incident, the cheerful mood of everyone gathering to eat hot pot had been affected.
However, the comedian Meng Yan was still actively trying to lighten the atmosphere at the dining table.

Just as Meng Yan finished eating his porridge, he foolishly tried to pick something from the spicy hot pot again.
Before his chopsticks could reach, Pudding smacked them down and said, “Stop touching spicy things.
If you mess up in the match later, I’ll stuff three kilograms of chili peppers into your mouth.”

Meng Yan sighed leisurely, “…Darling, you’re the spiciest one.”

Pudding glared at him, “Get lost.”

Meng Yan sighed again, “Even though we’re all human, some become the king of admirers…1King of Admirers: “妹子王” (mèizi wáng), it refers to someone who has a large number of female admirers or fans.
Of course, I’m not saying that such behavior is right.
I’m just lamenting the fact that I can only be scolded by a pseudo-girl like Ding jiang.”

“I just like wearing skirts.
It’s the same as you liking wearing A-styled clothes.
I’m not a pseudo-girl, so stop spouting nonsense,” Pudding suddenly changed the topic, “Didn’t you start dating someone recently?”

Speaking of this, Meng Yan felt even more sorrowful, “Yeah, that little sister was indeed cute.
The main reason was that I played a few games with her, and she was really terrible at it.
I didn’t have the heart to scold her, so I silently carried her through the game and helped her level up.
But then she got addicted to it? She kept pestering me to play with her every day… I couldn’t bear it.
I felt like dying from her incompetence every day.
I was afraid it would affect my mental health, so I immediately broke up with her.”

“Is this the so-called there’s ‘no love in e-sports’?” Shen Yanming joked, “Why don’t you give me the little sister’s contact information? Let me warm her heart that you hurt…”

Meng Yan laughed, “Sure, I’ll pass you her business card.”

“I was just joking… Did you really send it?!” Shen Yanming looked at the notification message on his phone and froze.
“Why did you send Kong ge’s WeChat to me…”

He Changkong, who had been prompted for no reason, didn’t respond to their conversation.
He simply looked at Shen Yanming, who had stopped eating, and asked, “Are you full?”

Shen Yanming nodded.

He Changkong asked again, “Do you have any other plans later?”

Shen Yanming replied, “No.”

He Changkong threw the car keys to Meng Yan and said, “You drive the car back later.”

Meng Yan didn’t react immediately, “Aren’t you going to drive? And you didn’t even drink.”

He Changkong stood up and went around to Shen Yanming’s back, placing both hands on his shoulders.
“Come with me?”

“Where to?” Shen Yanming was puzzled, but in the end, he followed He Changkong outside.

The two of them walked out of the mall and arrived at a nearby park.
The rain had stopped, but the air still carried a slight dampness, which helped alleviate the previous stuffiness.
Occasionally, a few drops of water fell from the trees, landing on their heads.
Shen Yanming let out a cry and quickly formed his hands into a makeshift umbrella, shielding himself from the rain.

He Changkong quietly switched places with him, and walked towards the tree.

There were pairs and groups of people walking along the road, all out for a stroll.

Shen Yanming didn’t understand why He Changkong suddenly took him out for a walk.
Blinking his eyes, he asked, “Aren’t you going back with them, ge?”

He Changkong seemed to be organizing his thoughts and took a while before saying, “You asked me earlier, if you could regain your dream if you lost it due to certain things.”

Shen Yanming was taken aback.
He had been asked about his plans for the future, and he expressed many emotions in his response, which made him feel a bit embarrassed afterwards.
Most boys their age would just charge ahead with whatever they wanted to do.
Why would they have so many strange worries? Besides, he wasn’t actually eighteen anymore.
Considering the few extra years he had lived, he was already twenty-one, the same age as He Changkong… But wait, why did He Changkong still seem much more mature than him?

Moreover, he thought that He Changkong had already given him an answer when he said “yes.”

But now, it seemed like He Changkong had specifically brought him out for a heart-to-heart conversation.

Shen Yanming pursed his lips and said, “Um… it’s not something important.”

He Changkong thought that the worries of teenagers during puberty shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Whether big or small, they were all important.
He also had many worries in the past, but no one was willing to listen to his heart.
However, he didn’t say all of that and simply asked, “Would you like to talk to me about it?”

The two of them continued walking side by side in silence for a while.

Just as He Changkong thought Shen Yanming wouldn’t say anything else, he heard Shen Yanming whisper, “I like playing games and want to go to the world stage.”

Just as he suspected.

Shen Yanming continued, and his words seemed somewhat illogical, “But when I encounter some difficult situations that are hard to explain, maybe because my determination isn’t strong enough.
I don’t feel like playing anymore, and I want to give up.
You might think it’s impossible to give up on something that hasn’t even started, right? But that’s how it is.
Let’s say I had a dream.
I played for a long time in that dream, but I didn’t achieve anything.
I thought the teammates I entrusted my back to were reliable, but they accused me of hitting someone and so on.
Ah, I feel so tired… Hahaha, isn’t this dream a bit delusional? Just think of me as cowardly and useless… But this afternoon, when I saw Xu Yin ge retire after a match and kiss the keyboard…”

He Changkong suddenly froze.

If he hadn’t been reborn, he would have thought that the kid was overthinking due to witnessing some of the messy and corrupt things in the industry.
He would have comforted him, saying that shadows always accompany the light, and shadows will always exist, but as long as one wholeheartedly runs towards the sun, there is no need to fear being engulfed by darkness.

But what Shen Yanming described as a so-called dream was so specific… Was it a prophetic dream? Or…

If he could be reborn, why couldn’t Shen Yanming?

If Shen Yanming hadn’t started over, what reason did he have to deviate from his previous path?

He Changkong took a deep breath and finally made up his mind to ask, “What you said… It wasn’t just a dream, right?”

Thank you for reading! 

Hope you enjoy the rest of your day

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1King of Admirers: “妹子王” (mèizi wáng), it refers to someone who has a large number of female admirers or fans.

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