Chapter 491 - Feng Ling
Tang Wulin was known for having a bottomless pit of a stomach. He had already conned Yuanen Yehui once into treating him to a meal in exchange for smithing a metal for her. But now before their very eyes was Na’er, shoving bite after bite of meat skewers into her little mouth, tossing each used stick into a pile at a rate that was almost on par with Tang Wulin’s.
Xie Xie and Yuanen Yehui both thought they were dreaming. Although she wasn’t as active as her brother, Na’er still managed to strike fear into the hearts of onlookers at how quick she made the food disappear. A third of the dishes ended up in her stomach.
Xie Xie gulped, his eyes wide as they drifted to Tang Wulin. “Boss, is everyone in your family a glutton? Na’er, you shouldn’t learn from your brother. He’s a bad example to follow.”
Na’er giggled and reached for another meat skewer.
Rolling his eyes at Xie Xie, Tang Wulin said, “Please. Don’t you understand how wonderful eating is? Na’er, you want some more?”
She shook her head. “I’m good, Big Brother. I’m full. That was good food! It’s been a long time since I had something like this.”
Tang Wulin smiled, warmth in his gaze. They weren’t the same young children from six years ago, wide-eyed and innocent. From when Na’er had been taken out of his life. They both grew since then. But if Tang Wulin had to be honest, she had changed more than he had.
He could tell that she was deliberately avoiding certain topics, such as those regarding her family. She always directed the conversation in another direction whenever he even slightly tested the waters. After the second time, he took the hint and stopped prodding. He didn’t want to make things difficult for her. As long as she was his little sister, it was enough.
The grill shop was getting busier and busier, a long line already twisting down the street. Guests had cycled to and from the tables, and only Tang Wulin’s party had remained throughout.
Through the clamoring of the guests, Tang Wulin heard someone say in a hushed voice,“Wow! That little missy really knows how to eat!” Having detected ill intent in their voice, he looked up from his food to identify the speaker, his sense of hearing heightened from breaking his fourth seal.
Since Yuanen Yehui was currently in her male disguise, Na’er was the only person in their group that looked like a girl.
Tang Wulin soon pinpointed where the voice had come from. A group of three young men in their twenties, chests exposed and arms covered in unseemly tattoos. A single look was enough for him to tell they were thugs. The crowd parted to let these men through. Not even the shop owner dared to say anything. He just lowered his head, focusing on the grill as if it were the most interesting thing in the world. As if his customers weren’t about to get harrassed.
The one who had spoken stood at the front left of their group. He looked like a monkey, exposing his chest despite being all skin and bones.
“Little Lei, you talking about that silver-haired girl?” asked the man in the center. He wore his hair in a fauxhawk and had bulging muscles. A real bull of a man. The tattoos running along his arms gave him a violent and fierce edge.
“Yeah! Big Bro Feng, it’s that girl! She’s quite the looker already. I bet she’ll be smoking hot in a few years.”
“Isn’t she kinda young?” asked Feng.
Lei exposed a smile that was more teeth and gums than anything. “Young is good! Haven’t you heard? You gotta groom pretty girls from childhood! That’s how you get close to them.”
The other thugs hooted with laughter and grunted in agreement. Their filthy gazesl converged on Na’er. Not bothering to keep the voices down since the beginning, the thugs basically broadcasted their dirty thoughts to everyone in the shop. Many of the other patrons sent sympathetic looks to Tang Wulin’s party.
Tang Wulin and Na’er just continued eating as if nothing happened.
The shop owner pushed through the door and walked into the fenced eating area, bringing over five freshly grilled skewers of squid to Tang Wulin’s table.
Astonished, Tang Wulin looked up at the owner. “Boss, we already got all we ordered!”
The owner placed himself between Tang Wulin’s group and the thugs, using his body as a makeshift wall. “These are my treat. But you kids should leave immediately. Those guys who just walked in are good-for-nothings looking for trouble. You shouldn’t get involved with them.”
“But we’re right by Shrek Academy. They actually dare misbehave with the academy next door?”
The owner smiled bitterly. “Even if they’re right outside, they don’t police everything. Shrek City’s public order is pretty good to begin with, but you can’t be rid of all the criminals. Those guys had probably gotten expelled from Shrek Academy at one point. Or maybe they’re one of the hopefuls who failed to get in. Either way, they harbor a lot of resentment and refuse to leave the city, straying further and further from the right path.”
Tang Wulin’s eyes went wide. “Then they’re also soul masters?”
“Probably.” The owner shot him a meaningful look, eyes gesturing to the exit.
Tang Wulin smiled. “Don’t worry. We were just about to leave anyway.” He picked up the skewers the owner just brought out and devoured them each in a couple of bites. Then he settled the bill.
Xie Xie glanced at Tang Wulin, asking in a hushed voice, “Captain, do you want me to…?”
Tang Wulin shook his head. “It’s fine. We’re going. Na’er, are you ready to leave?”
Na’er nodded and smiled wide, a bit of sauce at the corner of her mouth. Grabbing a napkin, Tang Wulin gently wiped it away.
“Let’s go then.”
The four of them stood up to exit the shop. But the thugs barred their way at the door.
“Hey kids, you leaving already? I saw that you only ate food earlier. How about having some drinks with us too? Booze is good stuff. Let’s all grab some drinks,” said the skinny man, his smile reminiscent of filth as he placed a hand on Tang Wulin’s shoulder.
Tang Wulin returned a polite smile. “No thanks. We’re already full. And we’re still minors, so we can’t drink.”
“Well, you kids can leave then. But you know, that girl looks familiar. She sure looks like my little sister who I haven’t talked to for many years.” The man’s beady little eyes swept up and down Na’er’s body lecherously. “How about we chat a little?”
Tang Wulin and Na’er had blank looks on their faces. Even Xie Xie and Yuanen Yehui couldn’t help but crack up a bit.
“Wait a minute,” said the muscular man, the one who seemed like the leader of the thugs.
“Big Bro Feng, what’s up?”
Feng stared down Tang Wulin. “Are you kids from Shrek Academy?”
Tang Wulin’s heart thumped. “How’d you know?”
The man clicked his tongue. “You kids are able to remain so calm and confident even in a situation like this. The only kids this ballsy around here are from Shrek Academy.”
The other thugs looked at Tang Wulin’s group, jaws dropping, the predatory glints in their eyes disappearing in a flash. Every single citizen of Shrek City prided themselves on being neighbors with Shrek Academy.
“Well, you’re right. We’re students at Shrek Academy,” Tang Wulin answered calmly. “Now, do you mind moving out of the way?”
The man advanced two steps on Tang Wulin, until the two were staring at each other face to face. “I’ll let you go. But first, have a spar with me. You’re free to leave after that.”
Tang Wulin narrowed his eyes. “What if I refuse?”
“My name is Feng Ling. If you refuse, then I will still let you pass. But I will proclaim that Shrek Academy’s students are no match for Feng Ling.” There was a provocative glint in Feng Ling’s eyes, just daring Tang Wulin to refuse.
“Now you’re just taking advantage of me! You’ve probably got a whole decade on me!” Tang Wulin said, never breaking eye contact as he grinned. He was sure that if not a decade, then Feng Ling was at least seven or eight years his senior.Previous Chapter Next Chapter