It was true that Ning Yan liked to post selfies.
His fans might call him a little prince, but they also knew that he was vain and selfie-obsessed.
None of the cats or dogs he ran into while working had escaped the fate of having their photo taken.
So when the man behind him raised the question, Ning Yan stiffened and his heart thundered in his chest.
But Lin Rong fell silent after that one sentence.
Ning Yan waited and waited, but there was no follow-up. He turned around timidly, only to meet the man’s gaze.
Ning Yan, “…”
The man squinted and asked in a low voice, “This also has something to do with the secret?”
Ning Yan swallowed.
Lin Rong thought about it some more but dropped the topic and didn’t go out of his way to ask Ning Yue. Instead, the man turned his gaze back towards the phone.
Ning Yan crawled over, feeling guilty, and nudged the man’s arm.
The man hauled him onto his lap and said soothingly, “It’s okay.”
Lin Rong wasn’t the type of person to post daily Weibo updates.
His Weibo was very official-looking and most of the posts were work-related His fans kept protesting, asking for more nine-square-grids1 九宫格 (jiǔ gōng gé) refers to the 3×3 grid of images that Weibo users can post.
Of course there was no nine-square-grid; they could keep dreaming.
Today was Lin Rong’s birthday and Weibo posted an auto-generated birthday post. Lin Rong’s fans gathered underneath that post and offered their best wishes. They had assumed that this would be it, just like every year before, so nobody expected that around 10pm that night… Lin Rong would suddenly post two photos!
One was the picture of Lin Rong with his mother and sister.
Lin Rong’s family had excellent genetics.
Mrs. Lin was, without a doubt, a world-class beauty. Mr. Lin was primarily a singer, but in his youth, people had often remarked more than once that it was a shame he wasn’t an actor. He had remained sophisticated and elegant as he aged.
Any child of theirs would be undeniably beautiful.
Everyone acknowledged how handsome Lin Rong was; Lin Yin’s beauty was also as vibrant as a rose in full bloom.
Those who enjoyed looking at beautiful people wanted to pass out from that single photo.
But what was the most important thing?
The main point was that in both photos, there was a white puppy!
In the group photo with Lin Rong’s mother and sister, the white puppy looked completely lost and had a dazed expression on his face.
The second photo was of just Lin Rong and the puppy. In it, the puppy seemed to have become enlightened and suddenly managed to look enticingly at the camera.
“Damn, to think I would one day actually call a puppy handsome?!”
“LOLOLOL! What’s the puppy doing in the second photo? That expression is so silly LOLOLOL!”
“Ah, I’m dead! Why did you suddenly get a puppy? So cute!!!”
“Miao Bro, Miao Bro, are you turning into Woof Bro now?”
“Lin Rong2The original text has netizens called Lin Rong 哥 (literal: brother). Young fans (especially female fans) will often refer to their idol as 哥 or 哥哥, both meaning brother, to indicate affection/appreciation/respect, etc. It is more affectionate than referring to them by just their names. For clarity’s sake, the translation substituted in the character’s name, you never posted photos of Fanfan and Dundun before but you posted this photo of this dog today. This is preferential treatment!”
“We reject preferential treatment! We want to see photos of Fanfan and Dundun!”
“What’s the puppy’s name? So cute!”
“Miao Bro seems very happy today!”
“Why would someone as serious as Miao Bro have such a comedic dog?”
“Move aside, move aside. We’ve got memes! [photo][doge]”
The number of comments and likes under the post grew exponentially. At that rate, it would inevitably end up on the list of trending topics.
Lin Rong shared the post and added a comment to explain that the puppy wasn’t his but that he was taking care of the puppy for a friend.
Fans were delighted that Lin Rong was spontaneously interacting with them and discussed who the mysterious friend was.
Ning Yan glanced over a couple of times and was extremely satisfied by the number of compliments he was getting.
Lin Rong had just finished posting on Weibo and was skimming through the comments left by his fans. Then he opened up WeChat and left it on the screen.
Ning Yan followed the man’s gaze and spotted his own profile picture.
Lin Rong’s nickname for Ning Yan was “Yanyan.”
The man only looked at the profile picture and made no move to send a message.
Ning Yan put his head on the man’s arm and silently thought, You can tell me anything. Even if I can’t respond right now, when I turn back into a human, I’ll respond to you first!
But the man only looked.
He stared for a long time before gently touching Ning Yan’s profile picture, as though this alone was enough to satisfy his desires.
Ning Yan’s heart ached, just a tiny bit. He opened his mouth and gently bit the man.
The man turned around and asked in a low voice, “What’s wrong?”
Ning Yan puffed up his doggy cheeks. He was just a bit angry.
Not long after, he silently licked the place he had just bitten.
Big pervert, just you wait.
When he turns human again—
That night, Lin Rong’s Weibo post became a hot topic and the relevant keywords appeared on the list of trending topics. Countless fans commented below, hoping for Lin Rong to upload more photos of the puppy… even better if Lin Rong was also in them!
Ning Yan had stopped following what was happening and had no idea about that entire thing.
Lin Rong would occasionally scroll through his fans’ comments and stroke his chin thoughtfully.
The desire to share a photo had come upon him suddenly on his birthday. It was a first for him.
That sensation was new, refreshing, and exciting.
When he had asked Ning Yue for permission, Ning Yue’s reply had been, “Post it. That dog is so vain. Make him a trending topic.”
Though he had no idea why Ning Yue was more invested in this than he was, Lin Rong only thought for a few moments before setting the question aside.
Even at this moment, Lin Rong was only scrolling through the comments. He still wasn’t in the habit of using his Weibo frequently.
Lin Rong took Ning Yan over to Gu Shi’s for the second round of vaccinations. A week later, Lin Rong’s manager Lu Ming called about the white puppy.
Actually, Lu Ming had sent a message to ask about the puppy on the night of Lin Rong’s birthday.
The day Ning Yan had attached himself to Lin Rong, Lin Rong had been on the phone with Lu Ming.
As soon as Lu Ming saw the puppy in the photo, he remembered what had happened that day. He just hadn’t thought that Lin Rong would take the puppy back with him. Now Lin Rong was saying this puppy belonged to a friend?
After much thought, Lin Rong gave the same explanation to Jiang Xiaoning, Jiang Mo, and Lu Ming. He simply said that he really had picked this puppy up from the streets and only later found out that it was Ning Yan’s lost dog. Coincidentally, Ning Yan wasn’t in a position to take care of the dog right then, so he was helping foster the puppy for a while.
In response to this, Jiang Xiaoning, Jiang Mo, and Lu Ming were all confused. Lu Ming knew about Lin Rong’s crush on Ning Yan—after all, he’d experienced the shock of visiting Lin Rong’s apartment. But Lin Rong seemed so transparent about this situation that it seemed like nothing else could be going on. So they couldn’t get anything else out of the man.
This day, Lu Ming brought him another piece of news.
Hello, World had been planning to film a pet-themed episode the following week, mostly to help two of their guests promote their newest film—a pet-themed movie, Haha’s World.
It turned out that one of the guests in the original line-up had an emergency and couldn’t make it. The program staff had been scrambling to find a replacement and Lin Rong’s dog just happened to land on the list of trending topics. Though it was Lin Rong’s friend’s dog, the dog seemed interesting and thus the staff wanted to ask if Lin Rong could bring the dog and come as a guest.
Lin Rong was in the middle of a sabbatical and Lu Ming hadn’t planned on scheduling any work commitments. But Hello, World was a very popular outdoor variety show, so Lu Ming thought he might as well ask Lin Rong.
Naturally, Lu Ming had taken into consideration the fact that the puppy belonged to Ning Yan—which complicated matters and made it inconvenient to take the puppy on stage—and assumed there was little chance this would happen. Perhaps Ning Yan himself would like to go on the show?
Lu Ming wasn’t wrong—when he called, Ning Yan was sprawled out in Lin Rong’s arms, entertaining himself. As soon as the puppy heard the topic, his ears perked up and he pressed closer to the phone.
Lin Rong opened his mouth to say, “Let’s pass on this, Lu Bro—“
What do you mean “pass on this”?
Ning Yan immediately let out a series of disagreeing barks.
Wei Zhounan was a permanent MC on Hello, World and Ning Yan had been on it a few times. He didn’t think the program would invite him—as a dog. The more he thought about it, the more excited he became. Ning Yan wanted to go!
Lu Ming laughed when he heard the puppy barking. He teased, “Is the puppy listening in?”
Lin Rong ruffled the puppy’s head and said in resignation, “Ignore him.”
How can you ignore him?
Ning Yan stared up at the man.
Lu Ming inquired, “Really can’t do it?”
Ning Yan, “Woof, woof, woof, woof, woof, woof!”
Lin Rong glanced at Ning Yan and hesitated.
Lu Ming asked, “How about you ask… Ning Yan and then let me know? No rush.”
After he had hung up, Lin Rong furrowed his brows and explained to the puppy, “Sese, you’re Yanyan’s dog.”
It was one thing to spontaneously post a photo on Weibo; it was another to go on a show with the puppy.
Ning Yan barked. What does it matter? He is Yanyan and Yanyan agrees to this!
Besides, his cousin had confirmed that he wouldn’t change back so quickly. There would be at least a month and a half between the first two shifts, so they could film without any worries!
Lin Rong didn’t know what to do.
Since it was time for their stroll, Lin Rong took Ning Yan downstairs for their walk. As soon as Ning Yan ran into Ning Yue, who was in his black dog form, Ning Yan explained the matter to Ning Yue.
Ning Yue listened and then rolled his eyes at Ning Yan. He stated, “You sure know how to make things difficult.”
Ning Yan: “I want to play, I want to play! Cousin!”
Ning Yue: “What are you? Three?”
Despite making fun of his younger cousin, Ning Yue called just as Lin Rong had finished walking the dog and was about to reply to Lu Ming.
Ning Yue said calmly, “I heard Hello, World was thinking of asking you and Sese to go on the show?”
Lin Rong, “…?”
Has the news spread that quickly?
Ning Yue asked, “Are you interested in the show yourself?”
Lin Rong fell silent for a moment.
Ning Yan stood up and put his two front paws on Lin Rong, looking at him pleadingly.
Lin Rong’s face broke into a resigned smile.
He answered, “… Yeah.”
He remembered that Yanyan had gone on this show a couple of times and Lin Rong himself also liked the show.
It wasn’t that Lin Rong hadn’t had opportunities to film for the show before—it was just that if he couldn’t be in the same episode as Ning Yan, then it didn’t matter.
But this time he was invited to go along with the puppy… It felt different, which was why he was interested.
Ning Yue said, “Then go. Ning Yan already knows and also thinks it would be fun to go on the show like this. He’s very much looking forward to it.”
Lin Rong paused.
Since Ning Yue had said so, Lin Rong weighed his options and, in the end, decided to accept the invitation.
As soon as the man had hung up, Ning Yan jumped up in happiness!
Yay! He can go out and have fun!
Lin Rong turned around to see the white puppy jumping in joyful circles and happiness bloomed in his own eyes.
But immediately, worry colored his expression. All of a sudden, he felt worried for the variety show.
A week later, Lin Rong and Ning Yan left to film the variety show.
Hello, World had five permanent MCs and, for this episode, they also invited five special guests.
Two of the guests were the leads in Haha’s World, and they also brought the two featured animals from the movie—a Golden Retriever and a tabby cat.
A side character from the movie had also been invited and he brought his own pet, a Russian Blue.
The other guest, besides Lin Rong, was the idol Xue Lian. His pet was pretty unique.
It was a white parrot with a crown on top of his head. Ning Yan didn’t know what species, just that the parrot was pretty well-known on the internet because his mantra seemed to be “sucker” or “damned sucker.” The show would probably have to censor all of those. On top of that, the parrot was extraordinarily fond of yelling at its owner. Together, the human and parrot formed a bizarrely entertaining combination.
At the start of the show, the five guests would make their entrances accompanied by their pets. Lin Rong was set to appear last.
Since this was work, Lin Rong had obediently dressed up.
Instead of the casual look he adopted in private, the man’s eyes seemed colder after styling his hair and putting on makeup. Not just colder… but also sexier.
No joke, the sight captivated Ning Yan and he kept glancing over every once in a while.
The man noticed the puppy being extra well-behaved and cute today. He didn’t know the reason behind it, so he merely smiled and scratched under Ning Yan’s chin, asking with a laugh, “Why are you suddenly so obedient?”
Ning Yan let out a soft but proud hmph.
They waited until it was their turn and the moment the car door opened, Ning Yan straightened his back and made sure he appeared his most energetic. The cameraman inside the car watched in astonishment—the dog was a genius to be able to switch attitudes in a flash.
Lin Rong laughed quietly and stepped out of the car.
“Let’s go,” he said.