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ABBR - Chapter 96-Pt.2

"..." Murong Shi was given a big fright, nearly dropping her phone.

This was the first time Xu Chuanchuan had seen Murong Shi making such a flustered look, so she couldn't help but laugh out loud. Then, she asked, "Was it fun?"

"Not at all," Murong Shi said, rolling her eyes. Then, she shoved the box of desserts to Xu Chuanchuan.

When Xu Chuanchuan opened the box, she found two Portuguese tarts, two durian crisps, and two doughnuts inside. The sweet and milky fragrance the pastries emanated instantly entered her nostrils, and she instinctively inhaled deeply.

Murong Shi chuckled when she saw the gluttonous look on her lover's face. Then, she said, "Hurry up and eat them while they're hot."

"I can't finish everything by myself," Xu Chuanchuan said. Then, she took a step closer to Murong Shi and said, "Let's share them."

"I've tried them already," Murong Shi said.

However, Xu Chuanchuan ignored Murong Shi's words and held up a tart to her lover's mouth, saying, "Quick, quick, I only have five minutes."

Murong Shi avoided the tart and jokingly asked, "What's the hurry? Are we having an affair?"

"Is five minutes even enough to have an affair?"

Murong Shi smiled. Then, she deliberately put on a straight face and seriously said, "We'll need at least two hours for that."

Xu Chuanchuan's face heated up. Then, she began urging Murong Shi once more, saying, "I really can't leave my desk for too long. Come, come, I'll feed you."

Raising an eyebrow, Murong Shi wrapped an arm around Xu Chuanchuan's waist and said, "I already locked the door, so feed me with your mouth."

"That will take too long!" Xu Chuanchuan stamped her feed. Then, she stuffed the tart into Murong Shi's mouth before grabbing another one for herself.

While the couple was eating, someone's phone rang. Realizing that it was her phone ringing, Xu Chuanchuan thought it was her department chief or colleagues calling her. However, when she grabbed her phone and took a look, she found Ange's name displayed on the screen. So, she hurriedly answered the call and asked, "Have you arrived?"

Ange: "I just got off the plane. Are you here yet?"

"Me? I…" Xu Chuanchuan stammered. Then, when she saw Murong Shi nodding, she said, "I'm here, I'm here! Hurry up and come out! I have a big surprise for you!"

"What big surprise?"

"You'll know once you come out. Alright, let's continue talking once we meet up! Bye-bye!"

Xu Chuanchuan hung up without waiting for the other party to respond. Then, while taking a bite out of a matcha doughnut, she said, "I wonder if she'll get mad at me for tricking her?"

"She should be thanking you instead," Murong Shi nonchalantly said.

Airport.

After hearing that Xu Chuanchuan had prepared a big surprise for her, Ange couldn't help but wonder what the surprise was while exiting the airport together with the crowd.

The weather was growing colder recently, so Ange had brought many more clothes with her this time. Her suitcase also carried her laptop. So, it was much heavier than the last time she visited S City.

When Ange dragged her heavy suitcase out of the airport, she couldn't help but wonder if she was hallucinating. After all, rather than Xu Chuanchuan, she had discovered the tall and skinny Fang Qin among the crowd outside instead.

Approaching Ange with a smile, Fang Qin tenderly asked, "Are you tired?"

Ange blinked her eyes in bewilderment. Instead of responding to Fang Qin immediately, she tried to search for Xu Chuanchuan's silhouette among the crowd. However, after failing to locate her good friend, she returned her sights to the person in front of her and asked, "Why is it you?"

Instead of answering Ange's question, Fang Qin asked, "Do you not want it to be me?"

"..." Ange wet her dried lips and let her eyes wander in panic. This is her surprise???

Fang Qin stepped closer to Ange while the latter wasn't paying attention. Then, she said, "Let's go."

Before Ange could react, Fang Qin had already snatched her suitcase away.

"I can pull it myself," Ange said as she tried to snatch back her suitcase. However, while doing so, she accidentally touched Fang Qin's hand. Then, she instantly retracted her hand as if electrocuted.

Seemingly failing to notice Ange's actions, Fang Qin pointed at the parking lot outside and said, "That white car there is mine."

"...Thank you."

"You're welcome."

It had been half a month since their last meeting. After Fang Qin returned to S City, the two of them had remained in contact with each other, though none of their conversations ever crossed any lines. After getting into the car, Fang Qin sighed ruefully and said, "I didn't think we would meet again so soon."

While looking at the car's decorations, Ange pretended to be calm and said, "I didn't expect it, either."

"Did you come here specifically to visit Chuanchuan?" Fang Qin asked while boldly scrutinizing Ange's body.

"Something like that," Ange guiltily said.

"I thought…"

"Thought what?"

"Nothing." Fang Qin faintly smiled. Then, she reminded Ange to fasten her seatbelt and started the car. "I'll take you out for some food first."

"I'm not hungry," Ange hurriedly said. "I already ate on the plane."

"Then…"

"You can take me straight to a hotel," Ange interrupted.

Fang Qin's gaze lowered when she heard Ange's words. Then, she responded with a subdued "okay."

Afterward, the two behaved like strangers, neither of them paying any attention to each other. The inside of the car was quiet, so quiet that Ange began fidgeting in her seat. Then, unable to take the silence any longer, Ange asked, "Can I play some songs?"

"Sure," Fang Qin said before turning on the stereo.

After finally hearing some background noise, Ange's tensed nerves loosened slightly.

"How long will you be staying?" Fang Qin asked.

After thinking it over, Ange replied, "I don't know. I'll see how things go first."

"You can come to find me if you're bored."

Ange did not follow up with Fang Qin's offer. After looking at the scenery outside speeding past her for some time, she grew bored and straightened her head. "By the way, you left something at my house."

"What is it?" Fang Qin asked in surprise.

"It's that blue nightgown. You left it hanging on the balcony."

After combing through her memories, Fang Qin smiled and said, "So that's why I couldn't find it."

Fang Qin had kept her eyes focused on the road ahead throughout the drive. Noticing this, Ange kept glancing at Fang Qin's face through the rear-view mirror. However, Fang Qin suddenly looked at the rear-view mirror at this time, catching Ange red-handed.

"You don't really need to give it back."

"Why?"

When Fang Qin looked at the rear-view mirror again, she found that Ange had lowered her eyes. Then, she teasingly said, "You can keep it as a souvenir."

Ange opened her mouth but failed to utter any words. While nervously clutching her phone in one hand and the seatbelt in her other hand, she feigned calmness and said, "No need. I have a lot of nightwear at home."

The airport was a distance away from the city, so the two occasionally exchanged a few words to pass the time. However, their conversation was limited to their daily lives and nothing more.

To deepen their relationship, Fang Qin decided to ask about Ange's cake shop and pets. She even asked about Ange's housekeeper.

Basically, Fang Qin asked all the questions while Ange would answer everything like a robot. Both of them had their own worries, and neither of them could let go and speak frankly. Hence, the atmosphere between them was dry, so dry that Ange wanted to drink some water.

When they were close to reaching the city, traffic started becoming congested. Seeing the slow traffic, Fang Qin asked, "There's a Home Inn near my workplace. Do you want to stay there?"

Looking up from her phone and turning to Fang Qin, Ange said, "Anything."

Fang Qin tightened her grip over the steering wheel and stared at the red light timer in front of her. Then, she said, "If you don't want to stay at a hotel, you can stay at my house instead."

Surprised, Ange asked, "Why your house?"

"No, to be precise, it's an apartment I'm renting outside," Fang Qin said. Then, after a slight pause, she continued, "I stayed at your place for two days last time without paying a cent. Now that you've come to S City, it's only right that I entertain you."

There were no flaws in Fang Qin's words. However, when Ange thought about how inconvenient and awkward it would be for them to stay under the same roof, she hesitated.

Ange's main goal in visiting S City this time was to avoid Fragrant Citrus, so she didn't know when she would be able to go back. She had even brought her laptop in preparation for a long stay. However, if she were to stay in Fang Qin's house, she was certain she would become a nervous wreck again and become unable to work, just like the time Fang Qin had stayed over at her house.

After weighing her options, Ange said, "Nevermind. I think it'd be better if I stayed at a hotel."

Hearing Ange's reply, Fang Qin turned to stare at the other party and asked, "Are you scared of me?"

"..." Letting out a dry laugh, Ange said, "We are both women. Not to mention, you have a much better temper than I do. Why would I be scared of you?"

Fang Qin hesitated for a moment before eventually choosing to remain silent.

After dropping Ange off at the hotel, Fang Qin had to leave. Before leaving, she said, "I'm sorry. I only took a half-day leave, so I need to go back to work."

"Go on, then," Ange said. She wanted nothing more than for Fang Qin to leave as soon as possible.

However, when Fang Qin eventually left, Ange suddenly found herself feeling bored. With nothing better to do, she decided to get some sleep.

When six o'clock arrived, Xu Chuanchuan called Ange and said, "Me and Murong are coming over to pick you up. We'll go have dinner together afterward."

Ange was still in a daze, so she gave a blurry reply before getting out of bed to freshen up.

Murong Shi was responsible for choosing their dinner venue. Shortly after the three of them arrived at the restaurant, Fang Qin also arrived in a hurry.

With others around, Ange didn't become as flustered as before when she met Fang Qin once more. Partway through the meal, she dragged Xu Chuanchuan to the restroom and demanded, "Why did you have her pick me up?"

Looking at her friend's annoyed expression, Xu Chuanchuan cheekily smiled and said, "Stop pretending, Little Ange. We know everything already."

"Know what?"

Clearing her throat, Xu Chuanchuan said, "Fang Qin told Murong that her flight back from Shanghai got canceled because of a typhoon and that you let her stay at your house."

"..."

"Did anything exciting happen between you two?" Xu Chuanchuan asked in a whisper.

"...No."

"Really?" Xu Chuanchuan asked, moving her face closer to Ange.

"Nothing happened!" Ange said with a blush on her face. "Tang'er, since when have you become so indecent?"

"Tch. You're much more indecent than I am."

"..."

The arrival of another person in the restroom interrupted their conversation. After finishing their business in the restroom, they walked back to their seat, hand-in-hand.

"Have you ordered?" Xu Chuanchuan asked.

"What took you so long?" Murong Shi asked, her eyes trying to burn a hole through Xu Chuanchuan and Ange's held hands.

Sensing the threatening gaze, Xu Chuanchuan quickly loosened Ange's hand and returned to her seat beside Murong Shi. Then, she said, "There were many people."

Placing the menu in front of Xu Chuanchuan, Murong Shi said, "Fang Qin and I each ordered a dish. You two order the rest."

While flipping through the menu, Xu Chuanchuan asked, "Little Ange, what do you want to eat?"

"Anything. You order for me."

"Okay."

"Little Ange?" Fang Qin asked, pretending to be surprised.

Ange's face twitched a little when she heard Fang Qin mentioning her pen name. Then, she started faking coughs and sending visual signals to Xu Chuanchuan.

Realizing her blunder, Xu Chuanchuan let her eyes wander for a moment before confessing, "Actually, Fang Qin already knows about your work. I told her about it.

Surprised by this revelation, Ange looked toward Fang Qin and asked, "Since when?"

"Since the second time we met," Fang Qin said in slight embarrassment.

"..."

Then, Xu Chuanchuan interrupted them and said to Ange, "This is my fault. I really wanted to match you two together. I was afraid that you two wouldn't have any common topics, so I told Fang Qin about your work."

Being a novel author wasn't anything to be ashamed of, so Ange wasn't mad at Xu Chuanchuan. She just felt a little surprised.

Meanwhile, after carefully observing Ange's expression and seeing that she wasn't angry, Fang Qin said, "I already read all of your books."

Finding it awkward to talk about her work in person, Ange responded with a stiff smile as she didn't know how to respond.

Then, Fang Qin continued, "I even left you many long reviews. Maybe you've noticed them."

"What's your ID?" Ange asked, feeling a little surprised.

"My ID is 'Water Heart.'"

"..." Ange had no recollection of the name whatsoever. After all, she received many comments and reviews every day.

As an author herself, Xu Chuanchuan could understand Ange's current predicament. Xu Chuanchuan could also tell that Ange was reluctant to talk about her work, so Xu Chuanchuan interrupted, "This restaurant's business is pretty good. There are so many people here today."

Ange sent a grateful look to Xu Chuanchuan.

The four of them spent a long time in the restaurant. They also talked a lot. When they left the restaurant, Fang Qin looked toward Ange and offered, "Your hotel is on the way, so let me drop you off."

Ange did not refuse.

The more Xu Chuanchuan looked at the two, the more she found them to be a matching pair. Revealing a happy smile, she said, "Then, we'll be leaving first. Little Ange, I'll come to find you again tomorrow.

Ange absent-mindedly nodded in response.

The drive from the restaurant to the hotel was short, and Fang Qin's car arrived in front of Ange's hotel in no time at all.

"Thank you," Ange said while unbuckling her seatbelt. However, just as she was about to open the car door, someone caught her wrist.

Noticing the look of surprise in Ange's eyes, Fang Qin quickly released her grip and smiled, saying, "I like your novels a lot."

Ange awkwardly shook her hand a little before politely saying, "Thank you."

"But that's not all I like," Fang Qin added. Then, she looked into Ange's eyes and earnestly said, "I like you, too."

"..."

TL Notes:

I made some changes to the last part of this chapter because it's basically a play on words that don't translate well.

Hellscythe's Notes:

That's it for ABBR! Thank you everyone for following Xu Chuanchuan and Murong Shi on this arduous journey, and please consider trying out the new yuri novel I'm translating - My Cousin is Always Busy(GL).
 
Here's the link for Chapter 1:
https://hostednovel.com/20832/novel/miss-cousin-is-always-busy/mcab-chapter-1

Read it, or else. :)

Other novels I translate on Hosted Novel:
Pantsu Hero Alice (PHA)
Reincarnation of the Strongest Sword God (Side Stories)
Miss Cousin is Always Busy (MCAB)(Yuri, Quick Transmigration)
Written by Inverse Sign. Translated by Hellscythe. Edited by Grammarly.