Mr. Melancholy Wants to Live a Peaceful Life - Chap 117
Huan Zixu truly had no way to comprehend what was going on in Yu Hua’s head. Yu Hua could spend millions to buy him an apartment, so why did he have to cling to the two hundred yuan taxi fare?
Of course, how could he know that the apartment, the studio’s office space, and the commercial apartments were all presents purchased with the System’s reward money? Yu Hua had never seen that money as his own. But the two hundred yuan were different. That was money Yu Hua had made with his blood and sweat. He had lost that money because of Huan Zixu’s scheme, and no one had reimbursed him for it yet.
“Well, I should be the one to reimburse that money,” Director Xiao said with a faint sigh. “After all, it’s an economic loss that came out of battle with the Destroyers. It fits the reimbursement requirements.”
“Then I’ll leave it to you, Director Xiao.” Yu Hua passed the receipt to Director Xiao.
That Director Xiao could say this indicated that he understood Yu Hua’s intent.
Since walking through the door, Yu Hua had been displaying his overwhelming power.
All this “using his special abilities to save on electricity,” “not having a table at home so he had to bring the studio’s conference table,” and other seemingly stingy talk was only giving Yu Hua an opportunity to manifest his power.
Yu Hua was telling them that he had enough power to handle complicated matters with ease. On the high end, he could prop up heaven and earth, resist the System’s attacks; on the low end, he could cook food and take care of daily trifles.
Director Xiao believed that Yu Hua was exposing the identities of the Destroyers and Protectors one by one to force him to acknowledge the positions of the studio members. Accepting Zhen Li and Yuan Luori, forgiving Director Ha, or reimbursing the taxi fare Yu Hua had spent because of Huan Zixu—all of it was a declaration of position, acceptance of the Destroyers.
When Director Xiao took the receipt, Yu Hua sat beside You Zhengping at last. “Everyone sit down and eat.”
Everyone finally picked up their chopsticks. This dinner of Yu Hua’s had everything. He had suited practically everyone’s tastes. There was even a bowl of specially made dog food in front of Director Ha, and Yuan Luori’s parrot also had birdseed.
“You’ve spent so much time tormenting them, the food’s gone cold,” You Zhengping said.
You Zhengping was a little nervous. This amounted to his first time introducing his superior and his colleagues to his husband. Making a good meal was a matter of course. Because of everyone coming to terms with each other, the meal had been held up for a long time, causing the food to get cold.
“It’s no problem,” said Yu Hua.
He lightly tapped the table with his finger. The food on the table instantly became steaming hot.
Cen Xiao, who was the most sensitive to fire type power, looked at Director Xiao and quietly said, “He didn’t reheat it.”
Director Xiao picked up a piece of pork belly and put it in his mouth. He had meant to investigate which ability Yu Hua had used to heat the food, but unexpectedly, Yu Hua’s food had been remarkably made. The red braised pork was rich but not greasy. It melted in the mouth. It slid down your throat as soon as it entered your mouth, as though it had grown legs. You were swallowing it before you had chewed it twice, and only a lingering taste and somewhat bitten tongue remained.
Before, he had only heard You Zhengping constantly bragging to the Protectors about his married life, bragging about Yu Hua’s culinary skills. Director Xiao hadn’t taken it seriously. Now that he had tasted a piece of his favorite red-braised pork, he at last became acquainted with Yu Hua’s cooking. No wonder Cen Xiao and the others were always coming here to scrounge food.
He hadn’t figured out what special ability it was. All right, he would have another piece.
Director Xiao reached for the plate of red-braised pork with his chopsticks but found that the plate was already empty.
When their superior had served himself first, the subordinates had naturally followed in Director Xiao’s footsteps without hesitation, reaching their sinful chopsticks out towards the red-braised pork. The Protectors were well-trained, their movements uniform. Cen Xiao and the squad were especially outstanding in the art of snatching food.
While Director Xiao had still been tasting, Cen Xiao and the squad had each downed four or five pieces one after another.
Huan Zixu, who had been slow to reach out, ended up with nothing, but Feng Kui with his long arms had obtained a piece. He split it into two and gave Huan Zixu half.
“Xiao You told me that your favorite food is red-braised pork. I made it especially for you. How does it taste?” Yu Hua said.
It had been specially made for him, and these people had still stolen it! Director Xiao unhappily glanced at everyone, then constrainedly said, “It’s good. How did you make it? No, I mean, I couldn’t tell how you warmed up the food.”
“It was nothing. I restored it to its condition before it cooled,” Yu Hua said lightly, as though this ability wasn’t worth mentioning.
For him, it really wasn’t worth mentioning.
Cen Xiao pondered whether this ability was to restore things in time, in space, or whether it was a change to the state of matter itself. After thinking for a long time, he found that he simply couldn’t understand these three abilities. The only thing he understood was that Yu Hua could restore all the food to its ideal state, so why had he left the fried fish in front of him black?
Was he hinting that if his fire burned too brightly it was easy to turn to charcoal?
Cen Xiao didn’t dare to think about it deeply. He sadly picked up the fried fish and enjoyed a charred welcome.
Seeing that Director Xiao and Yu Hua didn’t mean to talk business, You Zhengping lowered his head and began to eat. A crowd of twenty-something special ability users opened up their bellies and ate. The food on the table was picked clean. Only a couple of dozen empty plates remained.
In Yu Hua’s bowl were a few pieces of meat You Zhengping had engaged in a desperate struggle to snatch specially so he could serve them to his husband.
Anything that had passed through You Zhengping’s chopsticks was delicious to Yu Hua.
By the time they finished eating, it was past 8 PM. The sun had fully set. Outside, the black clouds were thickly arrayed. Lightning flashed and thunder rumbled. Countless streaks of lightning passed close by the windows of Yu Hua’s apartment. Thunder exploded as if right in their ears like someone’s howls of rage.
But no one inside felt afraid. Yu Hua’s casual attitude and steady expression turned this room of less than 180 square meters into the sturdiest fortress.
“I’m going to wash the dishes,” Yu Hua said, getting up.
“No need.” Director Xiao pointed. A current of water carried the dishes on the table to the kitchen. The faucet turned on on its own, instantly washing the dishes clean.
Director Xiao used his special ability to clean the table and the dishes. Round water droplets rolled off the dishes and the table towards the sewers. Not a drop spilled inside.
Everyone was solemn and respectful. Director Xiao’s special ability was powerful enough to part great rivers, but it turned out that it was also this meticulous.
Seeing Director Xiao unilaterally washing the dishes for him, Yu Hua’s expression was actually a little desolate. The reason he hadn’t bought a dishwasher when he had been fitting up the apartment and insisted on doing the dishes himself every day wasn’t that he was stingy, it was that he enjoyed that feeling of living.
The happy, the frustrating, the joyous, the trifling—time passing bit by bit.
Director Xiao had deprived him of his final hobby. Yu Hua was displeased, but when he considered that this was Xiao You’s boss, he thought, forget it. What kind of boss doesn’t cause vexation?
Yu Hua brewed cups of tea for everyone. He was the first to lift his cup. “Now that we’ve eaten a meal and drunk this cup of tea, can we count the Protectors and the levelers as one?”
These words alarmed Zhen Li. He suddenly remembered Yu Hua saying, “I hope the day never comes when the Protectors and the Destroyers work together.” But now Yu Hua had personally resolved the misunderstandings between them, producing this scene. What was that for?
Director Xiao was the first to drink some tea. He put down his teacup and said, “Tell us, what is your goal? As long as it’s to resist the System, the Protection Organization will cooperate.”
Director Xiao didn’t make this promise lightly. With the way it was looking outside—the whole world relying on Yu Hua’s power to stay afloat—no matter what request Yu Hua raised, as long as it wasn’t sending the whole world to its death, they would agree to it.
In fact, as soon as they entered the room, Director Xiao had turned on his long range monitoring system. The upper echelons of the whole world’s Protection Organizations had been listening in on their small talk.
If Yu Hua hadn’t wanted them to be monitored, he naturally had plenty of means. Since he hadn’t prevented it, that showed he agreed.
“Then I’ll get right down to it,” Yu Hua said.
The rest couldn’t resist thinking mockingly, You call this getting right down to it? You’ve been getting to it all evening!
“I have two goals,” Yu Hua said. “First, let the studio’s members join the Source Project. Second, give me control over the Source Project.”
The Source Project collected the power of the whole world’s Protection Organizations, but not the studio’s Destroyers. Zhen Li and the others weren’t included.
“The addition of their power won’t make much difference. It shouldn’t impact the outcome of the battle. What’s so crucial about adding them?” Director Xiao asked.
“You can’t use the power of the Source Project at random like a headless fly. This power is crucial. Someone needs to lead it to where it’s going to be used.” Yu Hua looked at the studio’s members.
“Where will you lead the Source Project’s power?” Director Xiao asked.
“To protect all the levelers within the System,” Yu Hua said.
Director Xiao and all the Protectors in the room frowned simultaneously. Levelers were Destroyers; they were their enemies. This was hundreds of years of ground-in hatred. They could accept Zhen Li and the others, but that didn’t mean that they were willing to use their own power to protect these yet-unknown hidden enemies.
Director Xiao said, “The Protection Organization just determined to restart the Source Project. The System immediately attacked, and you revealed your identity. I guessed that your goal was the Source Project. In fact, while we were eating, I already obtained permission from my superiors. If the Source Project was to be used for taking down the System, we would be willing to hand it over to you. But…if it’s going to be used to protect the lives of countless Destroyers, we…would find that hard to accept.”
This was already very tactful. For the Protection Organization, the System was the mastermind behind the scenes, while the Destroyers were the butchers who aided and abetted it. They all had to die. Not killing them was the limit. How could they also protect them?
Yu Hua said, “Most of the levelers have no connection to me. Even if they all die, they would only be strangers dying on different worlds. But they’re the leaves and branches of the System, joined to the System through veins and arteries. If the System chooses devastation, It can use the self-destruct devices implanted in these Destroyers’ bodies to destroy all the worlds It controls.
“You might say, those aren’t your worlds, anyway. But if the body dies, will a part survive?”
“Must it be this way?” Director Xiao asked.
“If not for this, the System would have vanished fifteen years ago,” Yu Hua said. “And you wouldn’t exist any longer.”
“It’s either live together or die together?” Director Xiao laughed bitterly. “I’ve hated the Destroyers for so many years, and now you want me to shake hands and make peace with them?”
Yu Hua poured another cup of tea for Director Xiao. “After this cup of tea, I ask you and the Protection Organization behind you to make a decision.”
Director Xiao picked up the teacup. He wasn’t the decision-maker. He was also waiting for the Protection Organization listening over the monitoring equipment to discuss and issue a conclusion.
Time passed minute by minute and second by second. The World Protection Organization’s upper echelons debated fiercely. You Zhengping, who had been silent all along, suddenly said, “I don’t agree.”
Everyone’s gazes converged on him. You Zhengping looked at Yu Hua and said, “I don’t agree to the second point. I’m the Source Project candidate. You’re not part of the Protection Organization. We can’t hand the Source Project over to you.”
He had said it before—fighting the System, I’ll be with you.
Director Xiao: Yu Hua used his special abilities to cook to demonstrate his strength.
Yu Hua: Actually, I really was saving money.
Director Xiao: Yu Hua requested reimbursement because he wanted the Protection Organization to acknowledge Huan Zixu.
Yu Hua: Actually, I really care about the 200 yuan.