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86 Brimming With Memories

 "Great, great! Nianzhi, I'll wait for you to urge Mr. Huo to find a girlfriend! Did you know, he actually already..." Yin Shixiong was blabbering and almost blurt out Mr. Huo had already "popped his cherry." But considering that Gu Nianzhi was still a minor, he swallowed it back down. He had a creeping intuition that if he told this to Gu Nianzhi, Mr. Huo would murder him for sure!

Gu Nianzhi keenly latched on the slip up and leaned towards Yin Shiziong. Her giant, inky eyes were focussed intently on him and brimming with curiosity, while mischief flashed across hthem. She used her most saccharine voice to ask, "Brother Xiong, Uncle Huo already what? You didn't finish..."

Yin Shixiong slammed on the brakes then floored the accelerator--although Gu Nianzhi had a seatbelt on, she was thrown against the car door.

"Are you ok, Nianzhi? That car just merged without signalling and scared me to death..." Yin Shixiong quickly explained, he wanted to gloss over the the topic and hoped Gu Nianzhi would forget it after a little scare.

However, Gu Nianzhi was not so easily dismissed. Tilting her head to watch him, she pointed to the display next to his steering wheel, "Brother Xiong, you have automatic sensors, how can another car merge without you knowing?"

Yin Shixiong, "..."

He squinted at her from the side and reached out to ruffle her hair jokingly, "Young lady, don't be so shrewd! You should be soft, silly, naive--that's what men like!"

Gu Nianzhi nearly rolled her eyes 360 degrees mentally and huffed, "Well does Brother Big Xiong want to find someone who is soft, silly, naive for a girlfriend in the future?"

Yin Shixiong silently envisioned his future girlfriend. A soft, silly, naive girlfriend? He could throw up from just thinking about it...Yin Shixiong grinned and resumed his focus on driving.

Gu Nianzhi cleared her throat, "Brother Big Xiong, why aren't you talking?"

Yin Shixiong looked left and right before exiting the highway ramp, then pointed to the surroundings, "Remember this place? You've haven't been back for two years."

Ever since she started university two years ago, she had left the base and began living with Huo Shaoheng in the penthouse in Fengya Precinct. Now that she was reminded of the apartment, Gu Nianzhi asked, "Right, Brother Xiong, I want to transfer the title of the apartment back to Uncle Huo, can you help me with the paperwork?"

Yin Shixiong was stunned, "You don't want a free house? Are you crazy?!"

"But that's Uncle Huo's, not mine. I've graduated and can find a job to pay rent." Gu Nianzhi mustered up her courage to let it out and snuck a glance at Yin Shixiong, then quickly averted her eyes.

"It's fine, it's fine, just take it." Yin Shixiong stopped in front of the entrance of the base and took out his identification. The guard examined it and let them through. Yin Shixiong drove towards Huo Shaoheng's quarters and continued to persuade Gu Nianzhi, "Also, with Mr. Huo's fortune, an apartment is no big deal, don't be shy."

"However rich Uncle Huo is, that's his business, it's nothing to do with me." Gu Nianzhi looked down to stare at the backpack resting on her knees, then wrung the ears of the little bunny she hung on it.

Yin Shixiong knew he couldn't convince her otherwise, so he had no choice but to tell her, "But for you to transfer it to Mr. Huo's name, you need his signature. You'll have to persuade him."

"...What?" Gu Nianzhi's eyes grew, "But he didn't get me to sign when he transferred the title to me!" Her expression grew ardent, "Was the paperwork not complete? That means the apartment isn't mine yet? Haha, then I don't have to transfer it back and forth."

Yin Shixiong looked her with pity, "Nianzhi, you're different from Mr. Huo. He can transfer the title to your name without your signature, but you can't transfer it to him without his signature. --Get it?"

It finally clicked in Gu Nianzhi's mind and she was dumbfounded. Yin Shixiong parked the car in front of Huo Shaoheng's quarters and came around to open the door for Gu Nianzhi, "We're here, you go in yourself."

Huo Shoaheng's quarters in the C City Special Operations base had a very strict security clearance. Gu Nianzhi was permitted by security before, but she hadn't returned in two years and was unsure whether or not she could still go in. She walked up to the metal gates before the building with trepidation and pressed her palm on the round display in the center of the metal door.

The display chimed as it initiated and began processing the data. After a moment, the speakers in the display sounded with a gentle and standard female voice, "Welcome Home." The doors opened towards both sides; everything was automatic. Gu Nianzhi beamed as she carried her backpack and luggage inside. Yin Shixiong drove away only after the doors closed behind her. Returning to the building she had lived in from the age of 12 to 16, she actually felt like she was returning home. Her memories indeed began from when she was 12, starting from the burning car. Walking into her bedroom on the third floor, Gu Nianzhi set down her suitcase and backpack, then sat down on the bed in a daze. This room was brimming with memories. When she was 12, the then 22 year old Huo Shaoheng became her guardian and took her to the Special Ops base. In the beginning, she frequently screamed awake in the darkness and couldn't fall back asleep because she was too traumatized. Huo Shaoheng moved her little bed to his room and always lit a warm yellow lamp by the headboard. Chen Lie later told her, Huo Shaoheng was a light sleeper and couldn't stand sleeping with any lights on. But for her, he had totally adapted. As soon as she woke up screaming from a nightmare, he would immediately be at her bedside to stay with her. Everytime she opened her eyes, she would see his silent face and inky eyes full of concern--only then did she feel safe and could fall asleep peacefully. Until a year later, when her night terrors improved, her little bed was moved back to her own room on the opposite side of the hallway from his. He knew she was timid and scared of the dark, so as as long as she could sleep, he would keep his door open and have a light on. She could see the warm yellow glow from the room across her's and felt warm and safe enough to have a good night's sleep.

Gu Nianzhi walked to her closet and half knelt to open the bottom drawer. Although she hadn't lived here in two years, it was still full of the pads she liked... Her period first came when she was 14. Huo Shaoheng had Yin Shixiong buy all kinds of pads to put in her room, then only bought whatever brand was used up the quickest. Later that imported brand wasn't available in the Empire anymore, so Huo Shaoheng had someone purchase it abroad and ship a year's supply everytime. The brand she liked was still in the bottom drawer of her closet. Gu Nianzhi reached out to glide her hand across the pads, then sighed deeply and closed the drawer. Sleepiness quickly came to her because she had returned to a familiar place. She yawned and went to sleep on her little bed. Gu Nianzhi slept peacefully until noon the next day and didn't want to get out of bed. Fumbling to the nightstand, she grabbed her phone and subconsciously dialed Huo Shaoheng's number.