Chapter 71 – Large Foundation
At 5 p.m. on September 30th, the Chinese delegation for the first World Carnival arrived at the New York airport. Chairman Nan Jiangang personally led the team to the hotel that the committee had organized.
The hotel accommodations had been arranged in advance. Ling Xuefeng and the chairman would have separate rooms, Su Guangmo and Tan Shitian were together, Chu Yan and Lou Wushuang were together while Liu Xiang stayed alone…
Once they arrived at the hotel, they found that so many people had brought their ‘family’ members!
No matter where it was, Su Guangmo had to bring along his younger brother Yu Pingsheng. Tan Shitian was followed by the excited Cheng Wei, Lou Wushuang took his younger brother Zhang Shaohui, Chu Yan had his apprentice Zhu Qingyue and even Liu Xiang brought along a good friend, Yang Muzi.
Chairman Nan Jiangang’s head was as big as a cow’s and he immediately communicated with the person in charge of booking the hotel to see if he could add more rooms. The result was that the hotel designated by the organizer was full.
The desperate Nan Jiangang had to ask, “Do you want to squeeze together or find another hotel?”
Cheng Wei raised his hand and actively said, “I can sleep on the ground!”
Zhang Shaohui took the initiative to come forward. “I will sleep with my brother in the same bed. We often slept together when we were young.”
“…” Lou Wushuang made an awkward expression.
People were speechless at the silly Zhang Shaohui. How young was he when he was a child? He wanted to squeeze onto the same bed as his brother?
In the end, the always reliable Ling Xuefeng calmly said, “I know a hotel nearby. Isn’t it better to go there and see if they have a few rooms?”
The group had no problem with this. The six people who were contestants of the Carnival first went to check in. They signed in at the reception desk, received the Carnival tickets and settled their luggage.
According to the original arrangements, Tan Shitian should be rooming with Su Guangmo. However, Tan Shitian didn’t take up his luggage. He secretly sneaked his key card into Su Guangmo’s hand and said, “Captain Su, it is better if you stay with Vice-Captain Yu. I will accompany Cheng Wei to another hotel.”
Su Guangmo patted Tan Shitian’s shoulder with a smile. “It is just to my liking.”
Zhang Shaohui wrapped an arm around his brother’s shoulder and said, “Brother, I will stay with you. We will let Xiao Zhu stay with his master.”
Lou Wushuang gave his room card to Zhu Qingyue with a blank expression. “It is easier to communicate when teammates are staying together.”
Everyone soon reached a consensus on the issue of accommodation.
Once Ling Xuefeng settled his luggage, he took Tang, Cheng, Lou and Zhang to a nearby hotel and booked two rooms. Everyone took a break before meeting at the hotel entrance.
Ling Xuefeng said, “I have already set a place for inner with Cat. Is everyone ready to go?”
In the previous group chat, people became used to Ling Xuefeng calling Cat God by the name ‘Cat’. However, seeing him type it was one thing, actually hearing him say it was another matter. They didn’t know why but when they heard Ling Xuefeng say ‘Cat’, they got a strange sense of intimacy.
If Li Cangyu was really a ‘Cat’, he was a sharp cat who scratched at his opponent!
The place to eat wasn’t too far away so Ling Xuefeng suggested that everyone walk there directly.
Cheng Wei was excited about seeing Cat God and quickly rushed forward. Tan Shitian helplessly pulled at his wrist. “Don’t go so fast. What if you get lost? Your English is poor so you definitely won’t be able to find the way.”
Cheng Wei glared at him. “I’m not stupid. How can I get lost? There’s navigation!”
Tan Shitian smiled and pulled at him. “Yes, you are the smartest. In fact, I’m afraid of getting lost so I have to follow you.”
Cheng Wei raised his chin. “Then keep up!”
The Tan Cheng combo led the way while everyone followed them with great enthusiasm. It was because this was a foreign country. If it was a city in China, the paparazzi would definitely be attracted by the gathering of so many gods while the teams’ fans would chase them.
They didn’t need to wear masks and sunglasses to hide their identity. They could wear casual clothes and walk on the streets, enjoying the warm and welcoming sunshine. This experience hadn’t been possible for a long time, causing the expression on everyone’s faces to be relaxed and happy.
In order to facilitate the meeting, Li Cangyu’s restaurant was separate from the hotel organized by the committee. Ling Xuefeng and the others quickly arrived at the location and found the private room number mentioned in Li Cangyu’s text message.
Bai Xuan had gone to the airport to pick up Xiao Gu and Uncle Zhang so he wasn’t participating in the party. Li Cangyu was the only person waiting for everyone in the restaurant.
Once he heard someone knocking on the door, Li Cangyu got up and became stunned when he opened it.
Weren’t there supposed to be only six Carnival players? How come there were more than 10 people. Was the size of the team so big?
The little fellow saw him and pounced, hugging him excitedly. “Cat God, Cat God, Cat God, Cat God!”
Li Cangyu, “…”
Li Cangyu was almost knocked down and helplessly rubbed his forehead.
Yelling his name so loudly and repeating it four times, Cheng Wei was truly the league’s number one brainless fan.
Due to the actions of the brainless fan, Ling Xuefeng was forced to temporarily hold back his hug.
Li Cangyu helplessly pushed Cheng Wei away and smiled. “How did you come?”
Cheng Wei replied happily, “The boss gave permission for me to come with Captain Tan. I haven’t been to the United States yet and I came to see you!”
Li Cangyu reached out and rubbed the little guy’s head, a rare doting smile on his face. “Long time no see. Why haven’t you grown up yet?”
Cheng Wei pouted. “I am obviously two centimeters taller. When I first met you, I was 1.73 metres and now I am 1.75 metres.
Li Cangyu looked him up and down. “Are you 1.75 metres? Why do I feel like you are shorter than before?”
Cheng Wei, “…”
The bullied Cheng Wei stared gloomily at Cat God. Li Cangyu softened up and smiled. “Don’t stare at me like that. I admit that you have grown taller.”
Cheng Wei became happy and said, “Not only am I taller, I am stronger than before!” He showed off his arm muscles to Cat God. Unfortunately, his little arm really didn’t have much muscles to show…
The big cat and kitten were getting along so well. Ling Xuefeng and Tan Shitian exchanged looks.
Among the people who came in later, Chu Yan and Su Guangmo were players who debuted in the second season. It was only one year later than Li Cangyu. They had played against Li Cangyu many times in that year and became familiar with Li Cangyu. They took the initiative to greet him.
“Cat God still hasn’t changed much!” Chu Yan said with a smile.
“You too!” Li Cangyu spoke emotionally. “I haven’t seen you for several years but you are still the same.”
“Haha, us old players haven’t changed much. It is the new players who grow quickly.” Then he dragged his apprentice over.
Zhu Qingyue was somewhat embarrassed. His face was slightly red as he saw the man who made him famous as a crybaby and he couldn’t help saying weakly, “Cat God is well…”
Li Cangyu found the young teenager and immediately became interested. “Xiao Zhu also came?”
Zhu Qingyue replied, “Yes, I came to be part of the audience.”
Chu Yan explained, “Xiao Zhu hasn’t been abroad so I took him to watch.”
Li Cangyu agreed. “Yes, it is good to go out.”
“This time, many people brought someone.” Su Guangmo interrupted. “So many people came today, won’t Cat God’s pressure be very big?”
Li Cangyu said, “It doesn’t matter. I brought my cards so eat whatever you want.”
Yu Pingsheng didn’t like to communicate with people. He stayed like a ghost behind his brother and only smiled at Li Cangyu. The smile was faint, just like his silent walk. Vice-Captain Yu was really amazing. If he moved around in the middle of the night, he would definitely be able to give a ‘midnight shock.’
Li Cangyu nodded at Yu Pingsheng. Then Zhang Shaohui actively walked over to Li Cangyu and extended a hand. “Cat God! You have become handsomer after a few years!”
Li Cangyu said, “You have become more talkative.”
Zhang Shaohui laughed. “Of course. You are the host today so I have to praise you even more!”
Lou Wushuang’s nature had always been cold. He came over and nodded to Li Cangyu, then stood silently by his younger brother.
The remaining two sisters of the Red Fox team and Tan Shitian were younger generation players who debuted in the fourth season. Li Cangyu was meeting them for the first time today.
Ling Xuefeng introduced them. “This is Red Fox’s current captain Liu Xiang and the vice-captain Yang Muzi.”
Li Cangyu took the initiative to hold out a hand and said, “I am more familiar with Yu Bing. I haven’t met any of the Red Fox’s second generation.”
Liu Xiang gave a gentle laugh and gracefully said, “I often hear people mention the name Cat God. Today is our first meeting. Let’s get along in the future.”
This girl was able to act so calmly after meeting a big god and her generous performance was decent. Li Cangyu admired her even more. He said with a smile, “Captain Liu is so polite. Yu Bing raised a good person.”
“Yes.” Liu Xiang stood next to Yang Muzi.
“Cat God is well.” Finally, the youngest captain in this group, Tan Shitian came forward to shake hands.
Li Cangyu looked up at him. Tan Shitian was standing next to Ling Xuefeng. Despite being young, he didn’t show any weakness in his aura. Unlike Ling Xuefeng’s indifference and toughness, Tan Shitian always smiled and gave the feeling of a ‘spring breeze.’ This Storytelling God was full of humour and wasn’t afraid of Cat God whom he was meeting for the first time.
Li Cangyu was very fond of this young player. Tan Shitian didn’t show the impatience of young people when playing the game and he was more stable than Cheng Wei.
Cheng Wei actively introduced them. “Cat God, this is the new captain of Time, Tan Shitian.”
“I know.” Li Cangyu nodded and shook hands with Tan Shitian. He praised, “Captain Tan is really young and promising.”
Tan Shitian smiled. “Cat God is flattering me.”
In order to steal the kitten, he must have a good relationship with the big cat. Tan Shitian thought this and his smile became brighter.
Cheng Wei made the initial move and Ling Xuefeng decided to grab the finale.
He wasn’t polite as the previous players who shook hands with Li Cangyu. Ling Xuefeng stepped forward and directly hugged Li Cangyu to his chest, whispering, “Long time no see.”
The hugged Li Cangyu thought that it hadn’t been that long. Didn’t they just see each other in Shanghai?
But it wasn’t good to refute Ling Xuefeng in front of so many people. Li Cangyu could only hug him and pat him on the shoulder. “Okay, let’s all sit down. Don’t be polite.”
Li Cangyu had booked a table for 10 people but too many people had showed up. He had the waiter temporarily add two more chairs and dishes. The table might be slightly crowded but it would also be more lively.
Li Cangyu sat down and said, “This store is opened by a Cantonese person. You have to adjust to the time difference when coming to New York so it is better to eat some food from home. Please try the light Cantonese dishes tonight.”
The brainless fan always supported Cat God’s decisions. “Cantonese is good! I don’t like spicy food and I’m also not accustomed to half-cooked Western food. Cantonese food is light and not greasy. It will be just right to eat.”
Su Guangmo also said, “Thank you Cat God. Eating light foods is better for digestion.”
Li Cangyu was very thoughtful about this. Some people didn’t easily adjust when going abroad so it was best to eat light domestic food.
Ling Xuefeng asked, “Do you want to order first?”
“Well, everybody look at the menu and order what you like.” Li Cangyu handed the iPad for ordering to Ling Xuefeng. The latter swept through the menu and first found the page for fish. “There is steamed fish. Is it enough to order three?”
Li Cangyu said, “Order four.”
Zhang Shaohui asked, “Is steamed fish so essential that you will order four of them?”
Li Cangyu looked up and smiled. “Two are for me and the other two are for everyone else.”
Li Cangyu VS. Carnival representatives and professional players, competition project: eating fish. The result: Li Cangyu won.
Cat God’s obsession with fish was really admirable!
The one dozen people ordered a full table of dishes. Everyone chatted while eating and the private room was full of joy.
The atmosphere of the Miracle League wasn’t as lively as it was in the first season. The number of gatherings weren’t as frequent. Still, the best of the new generation, Tan Shitian was humble since debut. He didn’t dare become too arrogant so old and new players could sit together and chat.
The people of different teams had to kill each other every time they net on the field but now the regular season had ended. The Carnival was just an entertainment gathering and there wasn’t too much pressure. The young people didn’t need to be arrogant.
Since the Carnival started on October 2nd, Li Cangyu didn’t buy wine to avoid affecting everyone’s status.
“Come, tea will be used as a substitute for wine. Everyone, let’s have a drink to having a good time in New York!” Li Cangyu took the lead in standing up.
Everyone stood up together and toasted each other. It was a rare encounter and they cheered for their common goal.
Once dinner ended, some people returned to their hotels while some were interested in shopping in New York.
Ling Xuefeng wanted to talk to Li Cangyu alone but found that the big lightbulb Cheng Wei was following Li Cangyu. Ling Xuefeng looked at Tan Shitian and said, “Captain Tan, is Cheng Wei’s luggage still being held by the hotel?”
Tan Shitian immediately smiled and pulled Xiao Cheng away. “Let’s go back to the hotel first and bring your luggage to your room. Otherwise, you might come back too late and the staff at the front desk might be off work.”
Cheng Wei wondered, “Don’t hotels usually have people on duty 24 hours a day?”
Tan Shitian’s excuse was pierced but he still talked with a straight face. “Perhaps it is different in New York. It is better to go and get it in advance.”
He said this while dragging Cheng Wei forward. Cheng Wei had to look back at Li Cangyu and cried out, “Cat God, I am going first to get my luggage. I’ll see you again on another day!”
Li Cangyu waved at him. “Come and find me when you are free. I will take you around the downtown New York area.”
Cheng Wei was happy and easily followed Tan Shitian.
Once the two of them walked away, Li Cangyu looked back at Ling Xuefeng and asked, “You took Cheng Wei away. Do you have something to say to me?”
“…” Ling Xuefeng was discovered by the witty cat and no longer covered it up. “How is the situation with you team?”
“Fine.” Li Cangyu looked at him seriously. “The assassin you met in the online game happens to live in Boston. I went to see him with Bai Xuan a few days ago. He is very talented and I plan to train him to see if he can develop into a possible teammate.”
Li Cangyu didn’t want to hide it. After all, Ling Xuefeng was asking out of concern for a friend rather than inquiring about the future enemy. There was no need to conceal it. In any case, his team would be exposed in the future.
The trust that Li Cangyu gave him made Ling Xuefeng feel very thankful. His eyes weren’t gentle as he whispered, “It isn’t easy to find a powerful killer. Right now, there are many killers in the league but it is rare for them to be as excellent as Lou Wushuang and Zhang Shaohui. If you can train this person, he might be the sharpest weapon against many teams in the future. Take advantage of it.”
Li Cangyu laughed. “Yes, that’s what I was thinking>”
Under the streetlights, Li Cangyu’s handsome face was illuminated by a warm glow. His lips that opened and closed while talking seemed to be coated with a soft luster, making Ling Xuefeng want to hold him and kiss him.
Ling Xuefeng’s eyes were dark and deep, seemingly holding many unspeakable emotions. Li Cangyu was watched by this eyes and suddenly got palpitations. He quickly turned away and coincidentally saw a same-s*x couple kissing intensely on the street. Li Cangyu touched his nose and whispered, “Foreign countries are really open. Cough, we shouldn’t act as lightbulbs.”
Li Cangyu pretended to be calm as he stepped forward, destroying the ambiguous atmosphere. Ling Xuefeng smiled helplessly and stepped forward with Li Cangyu.
The shadows behind them were stretched out by the streetlights, making them look fused together from a distance.
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