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74 We’re Not Alike!

 They arrived at the bus stop after walking for a short distance.

Zhang Xiaotong was just like the rest of the people by the bus stop as she lowered her head and played with her phone.

However, she would occasionally raise her head and casually look to her back before quickly lowering her head back down.

Liu Zilang was standing at the back of the bus station as he stretched himself lazily to warm his body up.

He looked at students in their school uniforms and with their bags, waiting to board onto the bus. A weird vibe hit him as if he felt that he was getting old.

Then he noticed a row of claw machines behind him, just along the street of shops. They were the type of claw machines that required tokens to play.

Liu Zilang was a teenager who was addicted to the Internet. Hence, he was never interested in such things. However, Liu Zilang vaguely recalled the day when Zhan Xiaotong moved in a few years ago. She would always insist to play with claw machines every time she went out shopping with their family.

Liu Zilang's father was extremely bad at it as he was not able to win any prizes despite pouring in a chunk of tokens. He would often release his frustration onto the claw machine, scaring kids by the side until they were in tears.

Back then, Liu Zilang would just stand beside his father and laugh at him.

Liu Zilang extended his leg out.

He was eyeing the row of claw machines at the corner of the street.

Tempted, he walked over quietly.

...

Liu Zilang arrived at the row of claw machines as he fumbled for tokens in his pocket.

He did not have many tries.

He could not afford to make too many mistakes.

Liu Zilang put in a token and then tried out the machine's mechanics. To his surprise, it was rather easy to operate.

He was confident and felt like as if he was on a shopping spree as he started to eye items he wanted from the claw machines in front of him.

There were actions figures such as SpongeBob Squarepants, Pikachu, and soft toys inside those claw machines.

Liu Zilang glanced around and set his sight on one of them.

There were dolls in hamster onesies, their faces were similar in size as their body. Although they looked inappropriate, they were actually quite cute.

That was the one!

Liu Zilang's eyes gleamed as he found his target.

He put a token into the machine and calmed himself down.

He squinted and began to maneuver the claw as he wished.

Target locked on!

Liu Zilang hit a button and the claw plunged down, grabbing hold of the doll's head!

The doll was caught as easy as pie!

Liu Zilang curled his lips and whistled as he celebrated in his mind.

Then, Liu Zilang saw a bus approaching from afar. He quickly turned his head around, picked up the doll and then ran toward the bus.

...

At the bus stop.

Zhang Xiaotong was chatting with the just-arrived loli with glasses, Jiang Yumeng. The former's gaze would occasionally shift about around her.

"Xiaotong, are you looking for someone?" Jiang Yumeng noticed her shifting gaze and asked out of curiosity.

Zhang Xiaotong immediately waved her hand as she muttered anxiously, "It's not... It's nothing."

Jiang Yumeng looked at Zhang Xiaotong and could not help but feel that something was off about her that day.

Then, Jiang Yumeng looked at the street not far away as she heard the sound of the bus. "Ah, here comes the bus!"

"Yes." Zhang Xiaotong said in a bitter tone.

"Huh? Isn't that your brother?" Jiang Yumeng was shocked.

Zhang Xiaotong raised her head up hastily and saw Liu Zilang running toward her with a toy in his hand.

...

"Huff!" Liu Zilang caught his breath as he ran toward the bus stop.

He did not want to admit that he was well over his prime!

Seeing the bus that was fast approaching, Liu Zilang quickly handed over the doll to Zhang Xiaotong. "This is for you, I got it from the claw machine over there."

Zhang Xiaotong's face brightened up when she saw the toy in Liu Zilang's hand but her expression was soon hidden away.

She took the toy from Liu Zilang silently, with her head down.

"Wah! It's Umaru-chan! It's so cute!" The loli with glasses, Jiang Yumeng, grasped her hands together as her eyes sparkled like stars.

Liu Zilang was proud of himself. "The claw machine is too easy since I got it on my first try. I'll bring you guys along next time."

He then continued with a smile on his face, "How's the toy? It resembles Xiaotong, doesn't it?"

Jiang Yumeng compared the toy with Zhang Xiaotong as she looked at both of them. She laughed before saying, "Yep!"

Zhang Xiaotong was stunned as her face turned red.

She harrumphed as she shook her head. "We're not alike!"

The bus had arrived the moment she finished speaking.

Zhang Xiaotong pulled along Jiang Yumeng who was waving her hand, bidding goodbye to Liu Zilang. The both of them flashed their student cards and went toward the back of the bus to find seats.

Liu Zilang smiled as he waved at the bus' window.

Zhang Xiaotong looked at him coincidentally and immediately shifted her gaze somewhere else.

Jiang Yumeng who sat beside her also looked at Liu Zilang who was by the bus stop before she shifted her attention toward her friend. She whispered, "Your brother treats you well. He sent you to school and got you a toy."

"He's not. In the past he..." A cat caught Zhang Xiaotong's tongue. "Nevermind, forget about him."

Jiang Yumeng grinned as she looked at Zhang Xiaotong who was holding the toy on her skirt, by her knees. She could not help herself but tease Zhang Xiaotong. "I never noticed it, but you do resemble Umaru-chan."

"Says who!" Zhang Xiaotong pouted unsatisfactorily.

"Don't you like Umaru-chan?" Jiang Yumeng glanced at Zhang Xiaotong. "You can give it to me if you don't like it."

"No!" Zhang Xiaotong said as she held onto Umaru-chan firmly.

"I'm just joking. I'm messing with you because you look anxious." Jiang Yumeng covered her mouth as she started laughing.

On the way to school.

Zhang Xiaotong was out of her norm as she did not stare at her phone. Instead, she had been staring at the toy by her knees.

When she was about to get down from the bus, her lips curled up and she smiled.

...

Liu Zilang did not put much thought into figuring out that maiden's heart. He had gone back home after gifting Zhang Xiaotong the toy.

Since he had nothing better to do that morning, Liu Zilang decided to stream in his room.

As many popular streamers did not stream in Douyu in the morning, not much was going on at that time.

That was because most of the viewers would only join the live stream in the afternoon and at night. The platform would be at its peak in between 8 pm and 12 am.

Hence, those live streamers who were more popular would often stream from the evening until midnight and would rarely stream in the morning.

Liu Zilang tuned in to the PlayerUnknown's Battleground section and saw that there were not many people streaming. The majority of them were small-scale streamers with only ten to twenty thousand viewers. Liu Zilang switched on his live streaming software and hopped into the game.

He was not in a hurry to play as he went to look at the game's ranking boards.

It was his first time viewing those ranking boards that were categorized into a total of six servers. The servers were Asia, Southeast Asia, Europe, Oceana, South America, and North America.

He opened up Asia's ranking board and the top 10 players' IDs were shown.

IG-Wolves.

Tyloo-NightHawk.

Se7en-Lech.

17_shou.

Apulsvable.

...

As Liu Zilang scrolled through them, he realized that the top 10 player IDs shown were familiar to him from his previous FPS game.

...