Meng Yan was a bit stunned by this response.
He knew quite well about He Changkong’s situation.
He knew that He Changkong had joined TMM after having a falling out with his family.
He was of legal age and didn’t need a guardian’s supervision, all he had to do was put his name down, leave a handprint, and he was officially here.
However, Meng Yan hadn’t expected that after all this time, He Changkong would still refuse to budge even an inch.
He didn’t even plan on going back home despite hearing about his mother’s illness.
However, Meng Yan understood the principle that one should not impose on others what one would not desire for themselves, and he was aware of the adage about advising others on goodness.
Moreover, He Changkong was his brother, and if his brother thought he was doing the right thing, he would support him.
Thus, Meng Yan didn’t say much, just patted his knee and stood up, saying, “Then go back.
I’m not full yet.”
“Wait a moment,” He Changkong turned around and went back into the convenience store.
Meng Yan couldn’t figure out what he was up to, so he followed him inside.
He watched as He Changkong requested two boxes of the convenience store’s newly released seasonal limited edition cakes, he became even more confused, “Are you hungry or just craving something? We have a ton of food left to eat where we’re having our meal.
Why did you buy these?”
He Changkong glanced at him, “Bought it for the kid.”
Meng Yan: “???”
Shen Yanming had a little-known Weibo account.
He had reposted about this convenience store’s new product, expressing his desire to try it.
He Changkong had seen it.
However, there wasn’t a convenience store like that near their base, and he couldn’t find it online either.
Today, he happened to be here, so he decided to buy some.
So, when they returned to the dining place, the team members watched as He Changkong and Meng Yan each carried a box containing a small cake.
They placed the items next to Shen Yanming.
“You got these for me?” Shen Yanming’s eyes lit up.
“Wow, I was thinking of buying and trying it the next time I went out.”
He Changkong nodded, “Mhm, I saw that you wanted to try them.”
Shen Yanming replied, “But I can’t eat that many.
The shelf life is only about ten days… Can I share it with others?”
He Changkong nodded, “Sure.” In fact, He Changkong bought so many to let Shen Yanming share them with others.
He hadn’t initially planned too much; he just wanted to bring a box to treat Shen Yanming.
However, considering so many people were present, and others didn’t know what relationship he had with Shen Yanming, it wouldn’t be appropriate for him to walk in with a box of treats only for Shen Yanming.
But he had a soft spot for kids and didn’t want them to feel he was treating them unfairly.
He Changkong still wanted Shen Yanming to know that these cakes were bought specifically for him.
Therefore, he gave both boxes of cakes to Shen Yanming first, letting him decide whom to share them with.
At the moment, everyone was engrossed in their meal and didn’t seem particularly interested in these snacks.
Shen Yanming arranged the two boxes, opened one, and started eating, looking somewhat out of place amidst the group eating their main course.
The wish granting Kong kong jiang, I love Kong kong jiang the most.” Shen Yanming quickly finished one cake, felt a bit full, and rubbed his stomach.
He Changkong said, “If you’re full, don’t eat anymore.”
Shen Yanming was feeling playful and continued to pat his stomach, “Baby, don’t kick me anymore.”
He Changkong: “…”
Meng Yan, who was nearby, found it amusing, “How many months? Whose?”
“Who else could it be?” Shen Yanming turned to look at He Changkong and even started singing, “That night, you didn’t refuse me…”
Meng Yan played along with their joke and exclaimed, “Damn, you’ve even had a child.”
He Changkong said, “…Don’t talk nonsense.”
He wondered how someone who blushed when he kissed them before sleep could speak about such matters without any psychological burden.
Shen Yanming chuckled a few times, and when he saw Meng Yan go off to play with others, he leaned in close to He Changkong’s ear and asked in a hushed tone, “I wanted to ask earlier, but got caught up in the conversation… Back then, you didn’t go to that training camp in North America, right?”
In their previous life, the game’s organizers had also arranged a similar training camp, with the top two teams from the regular season representing the Chinese region.
TMM had undoubtedly been chosen, but they hadn’t gone with a full roster, and He Changkong had missed it.
Back then, the official explanation had been that Kong’s health wasn’t great, and the fans had nearly blown up the club’s Weibo in protest.
He Changkong answered, “No, I didn’t go.”
Shen Yanming asked in a hushed voice, “Why not?”
He Changkong didn’t have the intention of hiding anything from Shen Yanming.
It’s just that the atmosphere here is currently lively, and even though others might not necessarily be able to hear what they are saying, it wasn’t the right time to discuss such matters.
It wasn’t until He Changkong returned to his bed that night that he broached the subject again.
At that time, He Changkong’s mother, Xu Yun, used her illness as a reason to send many messages to Meng Yan, urging He Changkong to go back home.
The reason she didn’t send the messages directly to He Changkong was that he had blocked her after several failed attempts to communicate due to their differences.
He Changkong wasn’t a person who was indifferent to family ties.
When Xu Yun spoke up to that extent, he had even gone home briefly before departing.
Upon his return, He Changkong found Xu Yun’s complexion healthy and radiant, not at all like someone who was sick.
She had even prepared a table full of dishes and said they should have a proper talk.
He Changkong didn’t refuse and gave Xu Yun face.
He even listened patiently as she continued to lecture him.
He didn’t argue when she said things like, “Being in this industry is not the right path after all.
You claim to bring glory to the country, but isn’t that just self-deception within your small circle? Those of us who are a bit older still feel that you’re not taking the proper path,” and “Listen to your mother, come back home.
I can’t stand being ridiculed anymore.”
After finishing the meal, he said, “Mom, if there’s nothing else, I’ll head back.”
Although he said he wanted to leave, Xu Yun didn’t let him.
When she heard his words, Xu Yun became visibly agitated.
“Do you think you’re having a great time out there all by yourself, doing whatever you please? You’re happy, so you’re making me unhappy?”
He Changkong clenched and then unclenched his fists.
She even ran to search through He Changkong’s bag while speaking.
The atmosphere had been relatively friendly during the meal, and He Changkong hadn’t been too guarded, so he left his bag on a cabinet near the dining table.
Xu Yun had been keeping tabs on her son’s activities through various means.
She knew he was about to leave for training camp overseas, and since departure was imminent, she decided to take matters into her own hands.
Knowing her son had the habit of keeping important items on him, she rummaged through his bag and indeed found his passport and other documents.
“Then I won’t let you be happy either!”
With those words, Xu Yun tore the passport into shreds, and He Changkong didn’t even attempt to stop her.
That night, He Changkong once again left home.
He didn’t return to the base; instead, he spent the night in a 24-hour bookstore.
He couldn’t figure out why it seemed that no matter what he did, he couldn’t gain approval.
It had been like this when he was studying.
No matter how well he performed, he never received a word of praise.
Finally, when he started doing something he loved and even stood on the global stage, in his mother’s eyes, he was still worthless.
Nestling into He Changkong’s embrace, Shen Yanming wrapped his arms around him.
By now, Shen Yanming had become quite skilled at this action.
He gently touched He Changkong’s face and said, “How could that be? Gege, you’re handsome and amazing.
No one can surpass you in my heart.”
While his words sounded gentle, he was actually beginning to curse internally.
Even if the other person were He Changkong’s mother, he still found it absurd.
He thought that if he had even half of He Changkong’s reassuring qualities, his parents would be burning incense at home every day.
He couldn’t understand—when they had such an outstanding son, what was there to be dissatisfied about?
However, Shen Yanming felt that saying this didn’t seem very convincing, so he started giving specific examples: “The first time I watched your match video, I thought, wow, how can someone play a healer like this? If I could get healed by this person even once in my lifetime, I’d have no regrets… And then I watched all those miscellaneous interviews of yours, or rather, various bits of gossip.
They say your academic performance is excellent too.
Your school—I couldn’t even get in if I studied for 20 hours a day.
You’re a top student and a gamer at the same time.
I’m truly in awe…”
Shen Yanming continued, “So many people like you, and they must think the same way I do… Don’t feel like you’re not recognized…”
He Changkong missed the main point, “You’re smart, and if you really studied 20 hours a day, you could get in.
Although it’s probably too late to start now, you could set a slightly lower goal.
I’ve been wanting to tell you, after this season’s matches are over, there will be a few months’ time.
By then, I’ll help you review… You can start studying a bit now.”
Shen Yanming: “???”
With a pained expression, Shen Yanming asked, “I can’t say no?”
He Changkong held his hand, “I know you don’t like studying, but having a backup plan would be better.”
“Let’s talk about that later,” Shen Yanming used a stalling tactic and redirected the conversation, “No, really, why are you like this? I’m genuinely trying to comfort you…”
In truth, He Changkong had gradually let go of these things, of course not to the extent of complete indifference.
Occasionally, he would think that his life was his own, and what did it matter if he received recognition or not… Besides, he was now receiving the most genuine recognition from all over the world.
When his little puppy looked at him, its gaze was always sincere and warm.
He Changkong pinched Shen Yanming’s hand, “If you want to comfort me… can you give me a kiss?”
Shen Yanming leaned closer and quickly pecked his cheek.
“Not like that,” He Changkong paused, taking Shen Yanming’s index finger and placing it against his own lips, “…try kissing here?”
Shen Yanming: “…!!!”
Thank you for reading!
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