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Same Place Not Same Bed Chapter 5 Part2

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He smiled at her. As if to tell her that everything was going to be okay, and that she shouldn’t think too much.
" Do you like to eat stewed beef ?"
She surmised that he must have called either the coach or a staff member for the team, but she had guessed wrong.
A van stopped in front of the bus station.
The driver was a gentleman, his eyes calm,thick eyebrows with a hooked nose. He looked quite serious.
" Come here and say hello."
Li Yongxuan hesitated a moment, then slowly moved forward.
The driver looked calmly at her.
" This is my personal steward, driver, assistant, you can call him Old Mai." Mai Wei Zhe casually introduced him to her then said, " Hurry up ! I’m starving to death."
He sat with her in the back seat of the car. She secretly asked him, " Is this your grandfather?"
Mai Wei Zhe looked at her in surprise. She had figured this out the first time ? It was cLear that she had thoroughly studied the personal files of Mai Wei Zhe and all his other team members.
She knew that Mai Wei Zhe had been brought up by his grandfather since childhood. But she was surprised that even his grandfather had such a healthy spirit.

They sat quietly in the car till it reached it’s destination. At this point, Old Mai turned towards Mai Wei Zhe and said , " You haven’t told me the lady’s name yet,"
" Ah! Didn’t I mention it just now ? Her name is Li Yongxuan. She is going to stay with us from today", Mai Wei Zhe announced.
Li Yongxuan was dumbfounded, when was this decided ?
Old Mai just nodded solemnly nodded, took her luggage and walked towards the house .

It was a very ordinary looking two storied brick house. But as she walked into the entrance, she couldn’t help but take a deep breath.
The fragrance of food filled the room.
In the living room, apart from a large LCD TV and a sofa in the corner, the were treadmills, fitness bikes, weight training equipment; then there was an open kitchen and on the other side was the dining room.
Although not very large, it was well arranged. The furniture was wooden, the walls and bookshelves had framed photos…it was a house that was lived in.
She stood in a daze when Mai Wei Zhe came and pushed her from the back, " Let’s have dinner."
" First, wash you hands!" The old man commanded from the kitchen as he heated up the food.

They washed their hands and sat at the table. The fare was quite simple, a clear beef soup, two kinds of vegetables, and chicken breasts.
However, Old Mai was a very good cook. Even a boring food like chicken breast had been roasted with spices so that there was a fragrant aroma and even Li Yongxuan wanted to try it.

She stared as Mai Wei Zhe ladled some soup directly from the pot and put it in her bowl. She drank a mouthful.
She had been hungry for the whole day, both her body and soul were exhausted; this bowl of hot soup seemed to soothe her nerves.
The clear beef soup was very tasty, the seasoning done just right. She was used to having lunch at restaurants. No one had ever even made a cup of coffee for her, or sent her a meal. She couldn’t remember the last time when she had such a delicious homely meal.
Suddenly, she burst out in tears, her tears dropping into the bowl.
The old man froze in fright. Mai Wei Zhe turned around to see her crying and immediately came over to her side. Very calmly, in a low voice, he asked, " What’s the matter ?Did you burn your mouth ? I forgot to mention to you that the soup was hot…"
"No no..I just feel this soup is so delicious…"

After listening to her, both the old man and the young man were obviously relieved .
Mai Wei Zhe couldn’t help but make a teasing comment, " The soup is delicious, and that makes you cry ? You’d think this food was so heavenly ?"
She didn’t answer, but concentrated on devouring the food.
The beef was delicious as well, it was stewed perfectly so that is was tender and soft, the ginger seasoning was just right. After having two or three bowls of the soup, her stomach was full.
She looked up , and just took a spoonful of brown rice.

Every dish that she tasted, even the chicken breasts that were in front of Mai Wei Zhe, were amazing.
The three people on the table ate their meals quietly.
Mai Wei Zhe would occasionally make fun of her, but the teasing did not deter her from eating her fill.
LI Yongxuan tasted all the dishes on the table
After eating, her face looked much better. Her eyes no longer had that empty haunted look it had before.
She stared at Old Mai opposite her ," This is so good. Thank you."
Old Mai nodded, but didn’t say anything.
Mai Wei Zhe heard this and did not like this biased treatment,he immediately protested, " I also helped serve you the dishes, why aren’t you thanking me ?"
" But you didn’t cook", she winked at him.
Mai Wei Zhe touched his nose, and sulked. On one side he helped pick up the dishes from the table, on the other hand, he kept muttering something under his breath. He seemed very unwilling, but there was a smile in his eyes.

" I will help with cleaning the dishes", she offered.
It was the least she could do in return for the wonderful meal she had.
" No", said the old man. He signaled that she should go upstairs, " Xiao Mai will take you to your room upstairs. Get some rest."
" Um…"
"Go", he categorically stated, with no room for dissent.
She obediently followed Mai Wei Zhe upstairs. He looked very glad, "Fortunately you are here. So I can escape the torture of washing dishes."
" If it’s too inconvenient, I can go to a hotel". Although she didn’t know where there was a hotel, she could not help but offer as she walked upstairs.
In response, Mai Wei Zhe only waved his hand, he didn’t even bother turning back.
" Don’t worry, my family often offers temporary shelter to my team mates. Anrun lived here for more than two months after the hostel he used to stay in asked him to move."
Upstairs, there were three bedrooms, each with an attached bathroom. They all looked practical and comfortable.
He pointed out one to her, " You stay in that room. If you need something let me know. I have to go now."

" You have to go …go wash the dishes ?" A pair of huge eyes looked at him. In her heart, she was secretly hoping he could give her some company for a little while, talk a little…
" I’m going to run. I haven’t completed the training schedule for today."
She stared at him as he went downstairs, then stepped into the room.
It had a small single bed, a bookcase and a wardrobe, all made of wood. The curtains were light green , a low voltage light was on, the small room looked really warm.
She sat down on the bed covered with a green bedspread, and for a moment, wondered …why did Mai come after her ?

The next day,when Li Yongxuan woke up, she felt completely refreshed.
She casually looked at the bedside clock, it was ten thirty.
Ten thirty ! She immediately sat up. She slept till ten thirty ? In the past five years she had never woken up later than seven, what was going on with her today ! But then she remembered where she was.

From downstairs, she could hear the sound of the treadmill. There was a delicious fragrance of food, and her stomach rumbled as she smelled it. She could smell coffee, muffins, fried eggs..
After washing up, she came downstairs with some trepidation. As she had expected, the table was laden with a hearty breakfast, all hot and fresh. Seeing this, her belly rumbled again shamelessly.

" Have your breakfast", Old Mai gestured, holding a spatula, gestured towards the freshly made French toast.
"Uh..so much..is someone else joining us ?"
The old man shook his head and replied with a solemn expression, " Because I didn’t know what you would like to eat- Mai only told me you have coffee and donuts for breakfast – I made a western style breakfast for you to chose."
Li Yongxuan was completely dumbfounded.
This table was filled with so much food, she wouldn’t be able to finish it in a week !
" Why does someone get to eat so much..yeah yeah", the sound of someone singing came in from the living room behind.
The singing was off key and the self made lyrics were obviously awful.
" Why do I only get whole wheat toast and omelette..why why ?"

Li Yongxuan could not help but burst out laughing.
In the last few days, no, perhaps since a very long time, this was the first time that she had laughed genuinely from the heart.
When she laughed, her usual calm and dignified expression changed completely. It warmed people up, as if they had walked out from the freezing ice rink to the sunshine outside.
Old Mai handed her a cup of coffee, and she obediently sat down at the table.
She faced the table full of food; this was going to be a problem. But this was a good problem to have.

" Don’t you want to eat together?" she called out joyfully.
" I have already eaten", Old Mai answered.
" I want to.l want to…" MAi Wei Zhe's answer was enthusiastic, but it was drowned by the old man’s admonishment. He roared back at Mai , " You owe me an extra three and half hours of training that you missed yesterday."
It seemed that while MaI Wei Zhe was not afraid of anything, he could even stand eye to eye with his coach,but he was dead scared of his grandfather.
With this scolding, he obediently shut his mouth, and continued running on the treadmill.

He had missed out on his training yesterday because he had come after her.Li Yongxuan contemplated this as she ate the soft and sweet honey muffins.
" Yesterday, I troubled him…"
" Dont make excuses for him", the old man interrupted her coldly, " even if he trains normally, he isn’t allowed to eat these things . He has a special diet."
She looked at his breakfast and felt a profound sympathy for him. All were low fat, high fiber, high protein food, absolutely bland.
" Unfair..why my life …", Mai Wei Zhe continued singing from behind, airing his grievances.

With the strange soundtrack behind her, she finished a muffin , French toasts two strips of bacon, an omelette, a cup of coffee , a glass of orange juice, and two pieces of apple. After all this, she felt that her stomach was close to bursting, and she stopped.
It was so delicious ! Mr Mai's craft was really first class, equivalent to that of a professional chef.
After eating, Li Yongxuan helped to clean up the dishes.

After she finished the task, she asked a bit shyly ," Is there something else I can help with ? Also, about the rental for my stay…"
" There is no rent", Old Mai waved his hand and interrupted her.
" If you want to help…"
She walked into the living room with Old Mai.
Mai Wei Zhe was running on the treadmill, but he quietly looked at them as they approached, giving her a very jealous look.

"Will you write these records ?" Old Mai pointed at a notebook on the table.
She nodded.
Since she had followed their training schedules for so long, she was no stranger to the records of the physical condition of the athletes.
Old Mai was very satisfied, he entrusted her with the responsibility, and went back to the kitchen, ready to show off his skills in Chinese cuisine.

Mai Wei Zhe had been running for an hour, his speed was still very stable. The regular running sound, together with the beat of the rap music he was listening to, although very loud, soon seemed to have an invisible rhythm. From time to time, he himself would sing a line or so, in compliance with the coach’s instructions," when doing aerobic exercise, your speed should be to the extent that you should be able to sing."
This strange harmony created an unprecedented sense of calmness in Li Yongxuan.She sat cross legged in the ground, earnestly recording his speed and timings.
No computer, no mobile phone, even no work…suddenly , she had nothing to do.

" Oh yeah.,yeah.." snatches of singing came to her ears.
" Do-not- doze -off- after-a-meal- you will become – will become – a pig" . This song was so awful. Li Yongxuan looked up and stared at him.
" I did not doze off". Didn’t he see how solemnly she was recording everything ?
Mai Wei Zhe secretly smiled, pretended not to hear and continued to run.Sweat soaked his t-shirt, his face, his arms, his neck, all had a layer of thin sweat. It made his skin seemed glowing, as if his skin was made of honey. His eyes were of a deeper coloured honey…
Though she wasn’t the one running, she suddenly felt a bit heated and out of breath.
The treadmill faced the TV , probably so he could watch it sometimes while running. At this point, the TV was off. The black mirror like surface of the TV reflected their images. She secretly looked at his image, and caught him stealing a glance at her!
Their glances collided , then he moved his gaze away.
" Yesterday, didn’t you have a press conference ?How did you manage to suddenly come out?" She stared at him.
Mai Wei Zhe turned away, and continued to run as if he hadn’t heard her.
" And why DID you come after me ?"
Mai Wei Zhe maintained his silence, but ran faster and faster , his footsteps pounding the treadmill..Beep, beep ..
The heart rate monitor attached to his chest issued a warning.
The old man roared from the kitchen, " Are you trying to kill yourself ?"
Her heart inexplicably started beating rapidly…
"You could not have known that I was fired, I had nowhere to go, and even if you knew, what did you want to tell me?"
Even after asking him three questions, the great captain, the man who was never without an answer to any question, was speechless, and his heartbeat soared as he ran faster…
" And also…"

" Have you asked enough questions ?" Mai We Zhe was finally forced to respond. He pulled of the heart rate monitor and got off the treadmill. Then he put his hand inside his bag.
After a while, he turned and handed her something, " I just thought you were leaving and I wanted to give you this!"
As his fist opened, she saw her silver ring.
" How is this with you?" Li Yongxuan was shocked , and then added," I have been looking for it everywhere."
" Is it? I thought you weren’t paying attention to anything", Mai Wei Zhe sneered, " that night you only seemed to have eyes for.."
He had stepped closer to her, towering over her..
But then he abruptly stopped speaking.
Because he didn’t want to mention the name of Liang Wenhe.

He breathed in, his face flushed and covered with sweat. His eyes flashed fiercely at her. At that moment, he seemed like a ferocious beast who had rushed across the grasslands and was now staring at his prey.His expression was confusing. A bit happy, but also a bit sad..
" I thought I had lost it.." Li Yongxuan said calmly.
She pondered for a moment, then said, " This is the only thing that I have of my aunt. This was the ring her boyfriend gave her. But that day she received the ring was also the day…"

That day, a couple with their daughter visited their sister at her university. The whole family was travelling together. It was a nice sunny day in early autumn, and the family had a lot of fun. But while they were returning, a drunk driver destroyed it all.
They drunk driver rammed into their car. The man driving the car died on the spot. The wife was taken to the hospital but died after first aid. Leaving only their nine month daughter Li Yongxuan in the care of her aunt Li Hui.

Her aunt was only a freshman at that time, a mere 19 years old. She had just got herself a boyfriend. After a series of misfortunes, the boyfriend left her, and the rest of the extended family too. Her little niece became her sole responsibility and a heavy burden. But her aunt never complained. She quit university to work. They weren’t very well off but she persisted in raising Yong Xuan.
The two people soon became each other’s support. Till her first year in university when Yong Xuan suddenly found out that her aunt's youth had been completely sacrificed for her.
" .. in my junior year, my aunt was diagnosed with liver cancer. She first gave me the ring after twenty years of wearing it constantly when she entered the operating room. " Li Yongxuan gently narrated, " Later Aunt had become too thin and could no longer wear the ring. After a year.. my aunt passed away."
She gripped the oxidised silver ring in her hand.
She could remember that time as if it was yesterday. She was sitting outside the intensive care unit, cold with fear as waves of panic washed over her.

The room was silent except for the whirring noise of the treadmill." When my aunt was cremated, the head priest of the temple would not allow me to put the ring with her. He said this ring was unlucky, and any woman who wore it was destined to be alone for the rest of her life. He said I should throw it away, but how could I?Even if she was really lonely, how could I forget the kindness of my aunt ?"

Mai Wei Zhe suddenly reached out and grabbed the ring in her hand.
" Evil words , who taught you to believe in these lies ?", he said fiercely. He put the ring in the pocket of his shorts and turned around.
" I have been wearing it for some time. I lost some weight, so I think probably the ring slipped out." She wiped her face full of tears , strange, since she hadn’t been aware that she was crying and caught up with him, " Can you give it back to me ? I will be careful, probably wear it as a pendant.."
" I won’t, finders keepers" Mai Wei Zhe had reverted to playing a rogue. He only threw a thick towel on her face.
She removed the towel from her face and was surprised to see that he had taken off his t shirt!
His shoulder, arms, back and even the thin waist with clearly defined muscles was at the same level as any underwear model.

li Yongxuan's ears turned red, " You., why are you suddenly undressing ?"
" Its sweaty, can’t I change ?" He looked back at her sneakily, " Now I am going to take off my pants."
At this point, her sad memories and the poignant atmosphere had suddenly changed. He had skilfully managed to pull her back from the edge of lonely desolation.
He was back to his old antics, anything to make her blush and panic and run away..
But this time it wasn’t as simple. She blushed but bravely looked back.
Take it off ? Do it quickly, her eyes were saying.
Mai Wei Zhe was a little surprised.
" You really want to see? Since you ask…" Saying this, the shameless person really put his hands on the waistband, as if prepared to pull it down.
" It’s a pity that this will have to be left for next time", he winked at her, " I have an appointment."
Li Yongxuan clenched her lips, desperately holding back the urge to laugh out loud.
" You…all you can do is talk". Knowing she was safe, she deliberately provoked him.
His light, amber eyes turned deeper, the color of rich chocolate.
" You don’t know how bad I am", he answered in a low voice.
Her heart suddenly started beating rapidly.

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