As a person who runs hotels and resorts all over the world, the one thing Lu Chenghe didn’t lack was a place to stay. Zuo Ning thought that Lu Chenghe would stay in one of the hotels owned by the Lu group but the driver who picked them up drove to a villa area. When he looked at the brightly lit house, Zuo Ning assumed that Lu Chenghe had planned to borrow a friend’s house. But it turned out that Lu Chenghe owned property in An City.
The moment they had decided the stay in An City, the bodyguards had contacted people to clean the house. When they entered, a good faint scent diffused through the air and the floor heating had been turned on. When the door closed, it was like the raging wind and snow was blocked outside. The house was incomparably warm.
Lu Chenghe put Little Pudding on the ground and saw him immediately run to the carpet and rub himself on it. Then, just like at home, he just lay on the warm ground, smilingly waiting for the humans to prepare his dinner.
Qi Wei had helped the bodyguards carry the luggage to the respective rooms and chose his own room along the way. He wished that this snow would end soon. His canine son was still waiting for him at home.
Zuo Ning looked at everyone running around from his vantage point on the ground. He yawned widely. Lu Chenghe walked over so he wagged his tail, but had no intention of getting up.
Lu Chenghe lightly poked his forehead twice. “Lazybones.”
Knowing that this was Lu Chenghe’s territory, Zuo Ning relaxed a lot and was arrogantly laying on the ground. But the carpet here was not as comfortable as the one at home. The carpet at home was very fluffy. The moment he put a paw on it, the fur covered the back of his paws. The fur here was short. You could tell it wasn’t as cozy as the one at home.
Lu Chenghe watched as Little Pudding paws began to knead the carpet. He then hit the back of his paw. “I just cut your nails. Do you want your paws cut off?”
Zuo Ning slapped his paw on the carpet and bared his teeth at Lu Chenghe. “Awoo!” He wasn’t even breaking anything, did you need to be so aggressive?!
Lu Chenghe took hold of his muzzle and gently swayed it back and forth. “Shouting? What, I can’t scold you?”
Zuo Ning placed his paws on Lu Chenghe’s hands and rescued his head from Lu Chenghe’s grip. Then he aggressively charged at Lu Chenghe, pressing him directly onto the sofa. “Woof!” If you’re fierce, I’ll bite you!
Lu Chenghe just lay like that, grabbing one of Little Pudding’s toys from the side and teased him.
However, the toy did not appeal to the person pressing him down. Zuo Ning didn’t even glance at it and just lay on Lu Chenghe’s body. He rubbed his head on Lu Chenghe’s chin. Every so often he would tilt his head upwards to give him a kiss.
Lu Chenghe hugged Little Pudding who was at one moment a fierce man-eater and then at the next moment a big baby. He kneaded the fatty body and played with Little Pudding.
Although he didn’t manage to get home on time as planned, having such a noisy little thing by his side made it not so lonesome. If he wasn’t able to rush back in time for the New Year, it didn’t seem so bad.
They thought that the blizzard would lessen on the second day, or at least not be as bad as it had been. They thought that even if air travel wouldn’t restart, other forms of transportation would be fine. Unexpectedly, the continuous heavy snowfall meant that the roads were blocked. They couldn’t travel by air or by land. They could only wait until the weather changed.
Domestically, they were not the only ones affected, a large scale snow disaster had broken out all over the country. The number of casualties was continuously increasing. The Lu group had already begun to carry out support measures and aid had already been sent to the front lines. Since Lu Chenghe was trapped in An City and had no way of returning to the head office, he could only go to the branch in An City to handle affairs.
During the daytime, except for a temporary chef and a housekeeper, only Little Pudding and one bodyguard that Lu Chenghe left behind lived in the An City villa. The rest followed Lu Chenghe to and from the company every day. After all, such a big snowstorm definitely had an impact on the hotels and resorts under his watch.
While Lu Chenghe was busy working, Zuo Ning could only be bored to death, lying in the room thinking about life. The snow finally stopped falling in the morning only to start again in the afternoon. Zuo Ning lay on the warm carpet, staring at the falling snowflakes through the large window.
The TV embedded in the wall opposite the bed was currently broadcasting news about the snow from all over the country. Zuo Ning yawned. While he was comfortably staying at home, there were probably countless people suffering outside. As he thought so, he once again turned over. His belly had warmed up, now it was time to warm his back.
Out of the corner of his eye, he saw a laptop-tablet lying quietly on the carpet. Zuo Ning’s paws twitched.
He still remembered his mood the first time he got the tablet from the steward. He felt so empty because everything around him was changing, but he wasn’t. So much so that it felt like despair. No matter how he longed for it, he still cowered away, afraid to even bump into it. He kept telling himself that since there was no way to go back, he shouldn’t do anything to make his already messed up life even more stressful. But now… couldn’t he touch it now?
Zuo Ning slowly got up and used his claws to pull the laptop over. He pressed the small home button twice and unlocked the passwordless tablet in a flash. This one was not the same as the one at home. Lu Chenghe had someone buy a new one after he began to be very busy because he was worried for Little Pudding being in a strange environment with no one to accompany him.
As he looked at the new laptop Zuo Ning’s paws shook a little before finally opening the browser. When it got to the input method, he was a bit troubled. He looked at his doggy paw. How could he poke with such a big flat surface? He tried to stretch his toes out and separate them for a long time, but he still couldn’t stick out a paw pad to press the button. So he could only slowly use the very tip of his paw pad to type.
Unfortunately, using the normal keyboard input method was difficult for a dog’s paw. He managed to switch to the 9 keys input method with difficulty, and it was only barely better.
It took a long time before he had typed out the name of the area where he lived before plus his name. When he saw the two words he hadn’t seen in such a long time, his nose felt a bit stuffy. He looked at the magnifying glass icon beside the search bar and paused. He sighed loudly before pressing it.
The page refreshed quickly but that less than a second of waiting time to Zuo Ning was like a terrifying long wait. He felt like his heart was going to jump out of his chest and his whole body trembled with each heartbeat.
When an outdated news article appeared in front of his eyes, Zuo Ning felt his blood freeze. Even if the floor under him was very warm, he couldn’t feel a single degree. He just felt cold. So cold that he couldn’t stop trembling.
University student lost his life after saving a drowning child. The blood-red title made Zuo Ning’s heart convulse. He was in so much pain that he had trouble breathing.
Zuo Ning used a paw to open the article and two pictures jumped out. One was his student ID and the other was a picture of his teachers and the child’s parents holding a memorial in front of his photo.
No one could be more familiar with his own face, and when he saw it turned into a black and white photo he felt like his world had flipped over. Awareness of the fact that he may be dead felt different from confirming the fact with his own eyes. The feeling was more direct and also more distressing.
Lu Chenghe received a call from the bodyguard stationed at home reporting that Little Pudding had spent the whole day in his room. He didn’t eat and was aggressive to anyone getting near him. Lu Chenghe directly handed everything he was working on to Qi Wei. Although the disaster was a little severe and some things that needed to be taken care of were a bit troublesome, it wasn’t a problem to have someone as capable as Qi Wei to take care of them.
He got off work early and when he arrived home and opened the door, he saw Little Pudding sitting in front of the floor to ceiling windows, blankly staring outside. Usually, when he arrived home, no matter what Little Pudding was doing, he would run over quickly. But today, he didn’t even turn his head to look.
Lu Chenghe released a sigh of relief when it didn’t seem like Little Pudding was physically sick. “Little Pudding.”
Zuo Ning turned his head. He was not in the mood today to act cute or dumb. He just wanted to be alone, he wanted to slowly accept the reality that he had already died. So after taking one look at Lu Chenghe, he didn’t continue to pay attention to him.
Lu Chenghe walked to the carpet by the window and sat down. The distance between them was just enough for a hand to reach over and rub the dog’s head. Seeing that Little Pudding didn’t pay attention to him even though he was so close, he lightly rubbed the back of its paws. “What’s wrong? I’m home. Aren’t you going to give me a hug?”
Zuo Ning silently moved away from his hand a little, not letting him touch.
Lu Chenghe thought that he was mad at being abandoned at home. After all, this was not ‘home’ for Little Pudding. He had to interact with strangers every day. Perhaps he was scared and on edge every day, thinking that he had been abandoned. As he thought so, he felt that suddenly the constantly troublesome Little Pudding was a little silly and cute, but he did feel a bit distressed for him as well.
Since Little Pudding still didn’t let him pet him, Lu Chenghe just directly picked him up and hugged Little Pudding in his arms. “Alright. It’s my fault. I shouldn’t have left you alone here. Don’t be angry, alright?”
Zuo Ning leaned on Lu Chenghe’s chest and was lost in thought staring at his coat button. Lu Chenghe had the habit of changing into lighter clothes when he got home. Even if he didn’t change, he would at least take off his coat. Today, he hadn’t even taken off his coat before he had come to look for him.
His paw stretched out to grasp the button in front of his eyes. Lu Chenghe held his body tighter, preventing his paw from stretching out, and picked him up to leave the room. “Are you not hungry? You haven’t eaten at all. How about eating something?”
Zuo Ning struggled in his arms and jumped down. He returned to the place he was sitting before. He didn’t want to look at the dog bowl today and didn’t want to eat dog food. He didn’t even want to eat the dog food that was even more refined than what the humans ate!
Seeing that Little Pudding was still acting abnormally, Lu Chenghe took off his coat and threw it onto the bed. He sat on the side of the bed and looked at him. “Are you still being moody and troublesome? You were aggressive today as well right?”
Naz's note: I feel for Zuo Ning so hard in this chapter. ;w; Sometimes you just want to be alone to sort through your emotions.
As always, appreciate any and all reactions or comments! Also let me know if you spot any errors! Thanks for reading~