Chapter 2: Dragon
Although at first glance, the two eggs looked very similar, Su Muluo, after all, had carried the dragon egg with him for so many years. It was impossible not to tell the difference. So he reached out and touched it, only to find that his dragon egg still felt good, smooth, and comfortable, unlike a duck egg, which was a bit rough.
Now that he had distinguished the dragon egg from the duck egg, Su Muluo set the duck egg aside and soothingly stroked the dragon egg.
The dragon egg remained quiet, not moving at all, appearing rather sulky.
Su Muluo said, “Are you angry again?”
The dragon egg remained silent.
Su Muluo knew it was indeed upset. It probably felt that as soon as his phoenix arrived in the human world, it lost its charm and was even mistaken for a common duck egg. It must have felt wronged.
Thinking about this, Su Muluo couldn’t help but chuckle. He leaned down and kissed the dragon egg, saying, “Chu chu 1kissing noises, are you not angry anymore?”
The dragon egg remained silent.
The dragon egg leaned in Su Muluo’s palm, rolling slowly.
Well, reluctantly forgiving you.
Su Muluo smiled and carried his dragon egg into the kitchen to continue cooking.
Originally, he had planned to fry a duck egg for lunch, but because he had almost caused a kitchen explosion a while ago, he was still a bit jittery. So, he decided to simply boil the duck egg.
As the pot boiled, the duck egg simmered in the water. Su Muluo watched the duck egg for a while, then looked down at the dragon egg. Suddenly, a bold idea popped into his mind: “Can you be cooked?”
The dragon egg remained motionless.
Su Muluo poked it and asked, “If I cook you, will you hatch?”
The dragon egg still didn’t move.
Su Muluo wondered, “Why are you ignoring me?”
The dragon egg remained motionless.
Su Muluo said, “?”
In theory, the dragon egg shouldn’t be angry anymore, but it was now refusing to answer. Why?
After pondering for a few seconds, Su Muluo tentatively said, “What I said couldn’t be true, could it?”
The dragon egg still didn’t move.
Su Muluo suddenly found it very suspicious and thought about tossing the dragon egg into the water to test it, but he restrained himself. After all, what if he accidentally boiled the dragon egg? Even though he didn’t think a dragon egg could be easily cooked.
After a while, the duck egg seemed to be done. Su Muluo cracked it open and tasted it, only to furrow his brows. “It’s terrible.”
Surprisingly, the duck egg, which looked round and appealing, didn’t taste good at all. Su Muluo threw the remaining half into the trash can and decided not to have lunch.
Then he sat on the sofa with the dragon egg, took out his phone, and continued to explore the magical box he wasn’t very familiar with.
The dragon egg probably thought the sofa was soft, so it rolled around on it. Su Muluo tapped it gently with his fingers and said, “I’ll have to find a job in a few days. I can’t rely on selling feathers forever.”
The old rabbit demon had told him that his feathers were valuable, worth millions for a single one. However, to live in the human world, having a job was necessary. Su Muluo also valued his feathers and didn’t want to sell too many of them.
The dragon egg didn’t seem to have any objections and rolled in his hand. Su Muluo thought for a moment and asked, “How about a coffee shop?”
He had come across a coffee shop for sale this morning. Coffee wasn’t unfamiliar to him because the old rabbit demon had mentioned that young people in the city liked coffee and milk tea. Opening a coffee shop should be profitable.
The dragon egg still didn’t express any opinion and nuzzled Su Muluo’s palm. So, Su Muluo happily put it in his pocket and left the house.
A few minutes later, he returned to the coffee shop he had passed by in the morning. The owner had woken up and was playing with a small fish treat to amuse the nearby orange cat. However, the orange cat remained unimpressed.
Su Muluo walked into the shop, and even before he could say anything, the owner’s eyes lit up. He set down the small fish treat and stood up, asking, “Would you like something to drink?”
“No, thank you,” Su Muluo shook his head and said, “I saw the ‘for sale’ sign outside and wanted to inquire.”
The owner didn’t seem disappointed by this. Instead, he appeared surprised and said, “You want to take over this shop?”
Su Muluo gave a small “yes,” and this surprised the owner even more. He remarked, “You’re quite young; why are you considering this?”
Su Muluo remained silent for a moment and then replied, “You don’t look that old yourself.” After all, he wasn’t young; he was 1,800 years old.
The owner sighed, touched his receding hairline, and said, “You don’t understand. I’m already an experienced person… So, do you really want to take over this shop?”
Su Muluo glanced at the owner’s hairline, waited for a few seconds, and then nodded.
The owner said, “Well, then come and take a look.”
This coffee shop is not very large, but it’s elegantly and exquisitely decorated, with a subtle aroma of coffee lingering in the air. As Su Muluo followed the owner and listened to his explanation, he said, “The decoration here is quite nice, right? I had a designer specially design it. You see, this is the coffee area, and behind that small hidden door is the storage room. There’s also a lounge inside for the employees… but, well, I couldn’t afford to pay the employees, so they left.”
Su Muluo asked curiously, “Why, is the coffee shop not making money?”
The owner shook his head and said, “These days, it’s not that easy to make money. Young people nowadays prefer going to milk tea shops over coffee shops. Besides, I use carefully selected coffee beans, which means higher costs and prices. They don’t want to come… Besides, the location is near the city center, and I don’t know how expensive the rent is. I impulsively bought this shop space, and now the money I earn every month isn’t enough to cover the mortgage.”
Su Muluo pondered. If he couldn’t make much money later on, he might have to sell his feathers again… Phoenixes could only pluck their feathers to make a living, which was quite a grim thought.
Seeing Su Muluo’s silence, the owner assumed that he might be hesitating due to the high price and said, “If you’re really interested in taking over this shop, I can lower the price for you. If you don’t have enough money, I can rent it to you. You can consider it as my investment, and later, you can give me a share of the profit.”
He then quoted a very affordable rent, which was quite rare for a location near the city center.
Su Muluo quietly used his phone to look up what a “share of the profit” meant and then said, “But what if I can’t make a profit later? What if there’s no profit to share?”
The owner sighed once again and appeared somewhat forlorn, saying, “Money or no money doesn’t matter to me. I just hope that someone will continue to run this coffee shop because it used to be my dream. I don’t have much time left…”
Su Muluo was surprised, and he was about to say “I’m sorry” when the owner added, “In half a month, I’ll have to return to work at my father’s company.”
Su Muluo: “…”
The owner continued, “Even though I can’t fulfill my dream, as long as someone helps me keep it alive, it won’t be shattered. So, would you be the one to help me?”
“…I’d be willing,” Su Muluo said, “but I need some time.” Renting a shop would require signing a contract, which would need an ID, and he didn’t have one.
The owner heard this and felt a bit conflicted. He said, “Try not to take more than half a month. My father has given me strict orders that I must return in half a month, and if I don’t, I’ll be forcibly taken back.”
Su Muluo wasn’t sure if half a month would be enough, but after thinking for a few seconds, he agreed, “Alright, I’ll contact you within half a month.”
Relieved, the owner nodded and then took out his phone, saying, “Let’s exchange contact information. Oh, by the way, do you mind having several cats in the shop?”
Su Muluo asked, “What?”
The owner glanced at the orange cat near the counter, lowered his voice, and said, “My parents hate cats, and when I go back this time, I won’t be able to keep one. I’ll have to leave Qiansui here… But Qiansui is well-behaved, doesn’t disturb anyone, and doesn’t run around. He’s the shop’s mascot, and all the customers who came here before liked him. If you keep him, your business will surely thrive!”
He finished speaking, looking at Su Muluo with a hopeful and reluctant expression. Su Muluo turned his gaze to the orange cat named “Qiansui,” who was gazing outside with indifference, seemingly oblivious to their conversation.
“But are you not afraid he’ll be upset?” Su Muluo looked at the owner and added, “Cats are very sensitive, and maybe he’s already guessed that you’re going to abandon him.”
The owner was taken aback by this and looked at his orange cat. Qiansui turned his head, and their eyes met. Soon, the owner lowered his head.
“…There’s nothing I can do,” he said sadly. “I’m not a good owner, I can’t even support myself, and I have to rely on my parents… If I ever start earning money on my own and move out of my parents’ place, I’ll definitely bring him back!”
Su Muluo didn’t say much more. After all, it was the owner’s decision, and he didn’t want to interfere. He nodded and said, “Alright, if I can take over this shop, I’ll keep him.”
They agreed to stay in touch within half a month, and Su Muluo said goodbye to the owner before returning to his rented room. He opened a small package in his room.
Inside the package were several delicate and beautiful white feathers that he had shed over the years. Phoenix feathers didn’t fall easily, so he had only shed about thirty in his 1,800 years. He had kept them well.
Su Muluo calculated that one of his feathers was worth millions, according to what the old rabbit demon had told him. So, these thirty feathers would be enough for him to live in the human world for quite a long time. However, selling feathers was his last resort. If he didn’t make much money from the coffee shop, he could always spend the rest of the money and then return to the mountains with the dragon egg, considering it an experience of life in the human world.
With these thoughts, Su Muluo quietly reassured himself. He decided not to worry too much about money for now. The most important thing at the moment was getting an ID. He had heard that if a supernatural being wanted a suitable identity in the human world, they had to register with a special agency called the “Bureau of Extraordinary Beings.” He didn’t know how to do it, so he needed to research it.
Su Muluo took out his phone, visited a specific website that the old rabbit demon had given him – a forum dedicated to supernatural beings – and found the nearest branch of the Bureau of Extraordinary Beings.
However, the location was quite far from his rented place, and he had already been out twice today. He didn’t feel like going out again and decided to rest. He would go and register tomorrow.
In the evening, Su Muluo walked into the bathroom with clean pajamas and a dragon egg.
For him, the human bathroom was quite novel. While he had looked up how to use it on his phone and had a basic idea, he still wasn’t very accustomed to the “showerhead.” After all, in the mountains, he had taken baths in hot springs to clean his feathers.
Here, there was definitely no hot spring, but there was a brand new bathtub. The landlord had mentioned that the previous tenant had paid extra for it. However, as soon as it was installed, that tenant had some issues at home and had to move out, not getting the chance to use the bathtub.
The bathtub was filled with hot water. The temperature was slightly high, almost a little too warm, but very comfortable. Su Muluo submerged himself in the warm water, his soft black hair getting wet and resting against his fair skin. He half-closed his eyes and let out a contented sigh.
The dragon egg was originally nestled among the pile of clothes next to the bathtub, but it soon rolled slowly towards the bathtub. With a gentle “plop,” it splashed a few droplets of water.
Su Muluo smiled and gently pushed the dragon egg back into the water, where it bobbed up and down, circling around him.
Su Muluo watched it for a moment and then suddenly remembered something. He asked, “You can’t see me, can you?” – Back in the mountains, the hot spring waters were filled with spiritual energy from heaven and earth, making them a hazy shade of blue, not transparent. In this human world, the water was clear, allowing everything to be seen clearly.
The dragon egg hesitated in its circling.
Su Muluo’s gaze turned somewhat mischievous. “Are you trying to peek at me?”
The dragon egg froze in place for a moment and then slowly sank into the water.
Su Muluo said, “You are peeking at me!”
He grabbed the dragon egg, wrapped it tightly in clothes, not allowing it to show even a bit.
The dragon egg, looking rather dejected, tried to nudge its way out after a while.
Su Muluo promptly wrapped it up again. “No peeking!”
The dragon egg, looking even more forlorn, wriggled around in the pile of clothes. After a while, it attempted to emerge from its cloth prison.
Su Muluo said sternly, “No peeking!”
The dragon egg: “???”
Su Muluo teased, “If you don’t hatch soon, I’ll find someone else to be my partner. I won’t need you!”
The dragon egg: “???”
Su Muluo continued, “If you’ve been an egg for so many years and still don’t hatch, you might turn out to be a duckling instead of a dragon, and that won’t be very attractive.” Of course, he was just teasing the egg, trying to get a reaction out of it.
The dragon egg: “???!?”
It seemed that the dragon egg was on the verge of being exasperated, and it rolled around in the pile of clothes, even bouncing up in frustration.
Su Muluo’s eyes glinted with amusement, and he acted as though he was saying, “You can’t do anything to me anyway.” He continued, “Getting angry won’t help; if you have the ability, hatch first.”
Ignoring the dragon egg’s antics, Su Muluo changed into fresh clothes and placed the dragon egg in a small nest he made with some of the clothes. He didn’t want it rolling off the large, flat bed and breaking.
The dragon egg appeared to be quite traumatized by the earlier episode, and it remained still, not moving at all. Su Muluo lay down on the bed, running his hand gently over the smooth surface of the eggshell. A small smile played on his lips, and he said, “Remember to hatch tomorrow.”
Then, he turned off the lights and closed his eyes.
Although it was his first time sleeping in a human city, the softness of the bedding made him feel comfortable, and he slept soundly, without the discomfort he had expected.
However, he did have a dream. In the dream, a stranger in black clothes approached from the mist in the distance and silently sat down next to him.
Su Muluo turned his head to look at the man. He knew it was a dream because he couldn’t see the man’s face, only a pair of dark, golden eyes that seemed bottomless, deep and enigmatic.
Su Muluo couldn’t recall ever meeting this man before, but he did like the man’s presence; it felt oddly familiar, as if he saw this person every day.
The dream world was quiet, and the man just stared at Su Muluo without saying a word. After a while, Su Muluo broke the silence, “Who are you?”
The man didn’t respond.
Su Muluo continued, “Why are you in my dream?”
This time, the man spoke, his deep voice melodic and captivating, but for some reason, there was a touch of bitterness in his tone, “The person I love doesn’t want me anymore.”
Su Muluo: “…”
He wasn’t sure why, but at that moment, he felt a bit guilty. He coughed lightly and averted his gaze, “I’m sorry, I misspoke.”
The man continued, “He finds me unattractive and wants to elope with someone else.”
Su Muluo: “Ah… That’s really unfortunate. My condolences.”
The man: “…”
He fell silent again, and while his dark golden eyes remained emotionless, they seemed to carry a hint of grievance.
Su Muluo: “…” Under the man’s gaze, he felt like a scoundrel. After a few seconds, he cleared his throat and said, “Do you want to tell me about your situation? I can try to help.”
The man didn’t answer.
Su Muluo added, “You don’t want to know what this help is, do you?”
The man stared at Su Muluo for a while, his eyes still carrying that hint of grievance.
“…,” Su Muluo found himself feeling awkward. He coughed lightly, “Okay, that’s good then. I wish you success.”
He had intended to end the conversation at this point, but it seemed that the man was not pleased. He continued, “Don’t you want to know what the solution is?”
Su Muluo made a thoughtful sound. “What is it?”
The man kept looking at Su Muluo for a while and then slowly said, “The solution is…”
And then, he suddenly leaned in and kissed Su Muluo’s cheek.
Su Muluo: “?”
In that instant, the phoenix almost exploded with anger. Who knew, as soon as the man kissed him, he disappeared from the dream, disappearing at a lightning-fast speed. Simultaneously, the dream came to an end.
The bedroom was quiet in the morning. The curtain allowed a faint light to filter in from the window. Su Muluo sat up from the bed, his gaze lowering to the dragon egg that had been resting beside his pillow.
The dragon egg remained peacefully nestled in its small nest, appearing as if it hadn’t woken up yet, looking cute and innocent.
Su Muluo tapped the dragon egg and asked, “Are you awake?”
The dragon egg affectionately snuggled against his palm.
Su Muluo used the blanket to shield the dragon egg, preventing it from peeking. He changed into fresh clothes, got out of bed, and headed to the kitchen with the dragon egg in his hand.
The dragon egg obediently nestled in his palm, watching as he boiled a pot of water. He turned on the electric stove, poured the hot water into the pot, and after a few seconds, the water in the pot started to boil vigorously.
The dragon egg: “?”
It stared at the boiling water, feeling a sudden sense of unease.
At that moment, Su Muluo pointed at the boiling pot and, with a blank expression, said to the dragon egg, “Do you see this pot?”
The dragon egg: “…”
In the next moment, it was with a “plop” sound that the dragon egg was thrown into the boiling water.
T/N: Hey there! There is plenty more where that came from, so stay tuned! And stay healthy! Straighten your posture, so some stretches and drink some water before continuing hehe~
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