Chapter 25: Betrayal at the Boutique

Translator: Mukyuu
Editor: Mikyuu

But the man dropped the topic as soon as he had asked the question. Not only did this make Ning Yan go on an emotional rollercoaster, but even Wei Zhounan was utterly confused. 

Ning Yan felt a little self-conscious. 

He was absolutely not a careful person and this was clearly an example of both him and his cousin forgetting to ask his closest friends to play along. 

But

It doesn’t look like it will be a big problem? 

Ning Yan thought hesitantly—if such a hole in their plan would cause Lin Rong to immediately guess the truth and therefore make the Pact-aura react, Ning Yue wouldn’t have been that nonchalant about it. 

This meant that any missing details would, at most, make Lin Rong suspicious, but they wouldn’t be enough to confirm the truth. 

Furthermore, at the very beginning when Ning Yue told Lin Rong about this, he had made it clear that everything was suspicious. 

Well, the Pact-aura wasn’t reacting anyways. 

If Lin Rong really had confirmation, he wouldn’t be this calm either. 

Ning Yan waffled over the question and then thought that he really didn’t care anymore. He sighed and let his attention get drawn away by what was happening. 

Wei Zhounan, on the other hand, actually thought more deeply about the question. After all, Lin Rong wouldn’t say something without a reason. Especially since the question involved Ning Yan, it definitely wasn’t meaningless!

“Did you know Ning Yan has a pet dog?” 

Ning Bro had a dog? When? How come he’d never heard about it???

Wait!

Wei Zhounan suddenly remembered something—Lin Rong had said on Weibo that the white puppy wasn’t his, but his friend’s. 

Combine that with what Lin Rong had just said… 

A multitude of expressions flashed across Wei Zhounan’s face. 

Damn!

Did he just get served a bowl of dog food?!1In Chinese slang, people who are single are sometimes referred to as 单身狗 (literally: single dog) and lovey-dovey acts are referred to as 狗粮 (literally: dog food). In slang, the act of eating dog food or being fed dog food means having to watch someone exhibit/perform romantic acts.

Just then, Lin Rong tilted his head and looked at Wei Zhounan. 

That single glance was enough to confirm Wei Zhounan’s suspicions and he felt like spitting blood. 

His Ning Bro got a dog but didn’t let him know. Instead, Ning Bro sneakily gave it as a present to Lin Rong! 

Wei Zhounan felt like running out of the room while crying. 

Best buddies clearly aren’t as important as lovers! 

Since the cameraman was right behind them, it wasn’t a good time to talk. Wei Zhounan simply gave Lin Rong an angry look. 

Today’s ultimate goal was to find a golden bone. Their first mission after being divvied up into teams—get their first mission card from a stranger. 

The group of directors took out a piece of clothing and let each of the five animals sniff it and then find the five strangers who had the mission card. 

Ning Yan, “???” 

His nose was probably fake. 

The clothing was on its way to the cat, who was next-in-line, but Ning Yan trailed after to sniff it again—What else is there except for the scent of laundry detergent?

They really have to identify the five strangers this way?! This will take forever!

Right when Ning Yan was questioning his life, he spotted the parrot decisively soar into the air. He wasn’t sure if the parrot had even smelled the clothing, but then he saw the Golden Retriever sniff once and also take off after the parrot. 

Ning Yan’s eyes glinted and he immediately followed after the bird and the dog. 

“Hey, let’s go, let’s go!” Wei Zhounan saw the white puppy take off and hurriedly called out to Lin Rong. The two of them ran after the puppy. 

But Wei Zhounan soon discovered that the puppy appeared to simply be following the parrot and the Golden Retriever?!

This…

Is this smart or stupid…

No, since this is Ning Bro’s dog, the IQ must be high! Wei Zhounan thought with gritted teeth. 

They were in a plaza with many people, and though it was not super crowded, there were still quite a few onlookers and passersby around them.

After flying through about half of the plaza, the parrot startled a young girl by landing on her shoulder. 

Immediately after, the Golden Retriever also arrived and blocked the young girl. 

Xue Lian and the owner of the Golden Retriever, who was also the male lead of the movie, arrived one after the other and started their battle for the mission card. 

Xue Lian said excitedly, “My Gossip landed first! The mission card should be ours!”

“No, at times like this it’s ‘may the best team win!’” The other group had a sneaky MC who commanded the Golden Retriever, “Haha, up!” 

The Golden Retriever immediately stood on its hind legs and put its front paws on the young girl’s body. Standing this way, it was about as tall as a person!

Then it started wagging its tail and looked at the young girl with puppy eyes, panting quietly like a soft and squishy little angel. 

The girl took a step back, overwhelmed by the Golden Retriever’s passion. 

Xue Lian anxiously said, “Gossip!” 

Gossip, the parrot, obediently made its move. It opened its mouth and cried, “Fool~ fool~” 

The audience: …

And then they all burst into laughter. 

Xue Lian’s face turned bright red and the veins on his forehead popped out as he forced a smile. “Gos! Sip!” 

Gossip, “You damned idiot~ you damned idiot~” 

More laughter from everyone. 

The other three laughed so hard they almost fell to the ground while clutching their stomachs. 

The more senior MC from the other group laughed until there were tears in his eyes and he gave the parrot a big thumbs up. “What a genius bird.” 

Just as they thought the Golden Retriever had won this round, a white flash suddenly appeared. Before anyone could react, the white puppy rolled around on the ground until he touched the young girl’s legs and panted with his belly up. He whined enticingly. 

The young girl covered her mouth to hold back a squeal at how passionate these little creatures were being, each one more so than the last. Her face blushed red. 

Wei Zhounan and Lin Rong arrived soon after and the senior MC immediately claimed, “Hey, hey, it’s too late, too late. This mission card is ours.” 

Lin Rong said calmly, “May the best team win.” 

Xue Lian turned around and supported Lin Rong, “That’s right, that’s right! Yuan Bro, you just said it—may the best team win!” 

The senior MC choked on his own words. 

Ning Yan suddenly dialed up the charm. He flopped over and crawled forwards a few steps until his two front paws held onto the young girl’s right foot. Then he looked up expectantly at the girl and wagged his tail. 

He was too much like a child begging for candy. The young girl blushed at how adorable the puppy was and took out the mission card with shaking hands. Ning Yan immediately jumped into the air, grabbed the mission card in his mouth, and ran off with it. 

The senior MC chased behind him. “Hey, you puppy!” 

Wei Zhounan followed after Ning Yan, panting breathlessly, “What a smart dog! Clearly you’re my—cough cough—dog!” 

When their team had put enough distance between themselves and the rest of the group, Ning Yan held the mission card in his mouth as he tilted his head at Lin Rong. 

For you, big pervert. 

Lin Rong’s lips formed a smile as he took the mission card and petted the puppy. 

Wei Zhounan was a little jealous. Ning Yan used his paws to lightly pat Wei Zhounan’s leg. 

You gotta adjust your attitude, kid; this is your future brother-in-law!2Wei Zhounan and Ning Yan aren’t related by blood. The ‘brother-in-law’ here is meant in the sense of “brother from another mother”; they’re such good friends that they may as well be real brothers.

Wei Zhounan moved closer to Lin Rong and asked, “What’s the mission?” 

Lin Rong’s low voice answered, “It’s just the mission location.” 

As the two were trying to figure out the mission card, Ning Yan’s nose twitched. 

Hey, it’s that familiar laundry detergent scent!

His gaze locked onto a young man and he trotted over. 

The young man was pretending to stroll around casually when he suddenly felt a weight on his pant leg. He looked back to see a puppy pulling on it. 

Lin Rong, after glancing up from his mission card and seeing a familiar scene unfold in front of him, “…” 

The white puppy effortlessly earned a second mission card from the young man. Wei Zhounan noticed the scene and said, “But we don’t need two mission cards.” 

As he finished saying this, the parrot and Golden Retriever raced over. Their original target had been the young man, but as soon as they saw that Lin Rong had a mission card in his hand and the puppy had another mission card in his mouth, the senior MC and Xue Lian each halted their dog and bird. They rubbed their hands together and smiled winningly as they approached Ning Yan. 

“Sese, good Sese, very good Sese…” 

Ning Yan sat down with dignity as if he were a king.

Lin Rong, “…” 

Wei Zhounan, “…” 

Amazing

========================= 

Would Ning Yan just hand over the mission card so easily? 

Absolutely not. 

He had the Golden Retriever and the parrot do a talent show before sneakily tossing the mission card to the ground. The two of them immediately started fighting over it and Ning Yan had a hard time not bursting into helpless laughter!

Wei Zhounan looked like he had no idea what was going on.

This, this is really Ning Bro’s dog?!

Lin Rong gave a small cough and called seriously, “Sese.” 

Ning Yan, “Woof!” 

Fine, no more fooling around!

They called for a taxi and spent 20 minutes getting to the next mission location. 

The staff were already there and had prepared a long picnic table. On top of the table were several covered plates and the pets had to pick which plate of food their owners would eat. 

“What options are there? Nothing strange right?” Wei Zhounan asked suspiciously. 

The group of girls smiled but refused to say anything. 

They weren’t the first to arrive. Wu Yu’s team had gotten there before them. 

Wu Yu glanced at them and let out a hiss. He turned around to see that the Russian Blue had already sat down in front of a plate. 

Dogs and cats were both sensitive to smell, so they probably wouldn’t pick anything strange, right…? 

While Wu Yu was thinking this, a staff member walked up and uncovered the plate to reveal a bowl of black soup. 

As he contemplated his misfortune, the scent of the soup wafted into his face and he almost felt like passing out. His entire face turned blue!

Wei Zhounan and Lin Rong walked over for a closer look but before they had gotten too close, Wei Zhounan covered his nose and cried out, “Urgh, this… is vinegar! It smells foul! This is a biological weapon!” 

Lin Rong covered his nose as well and took a few steps back silently. 

The staff smiled and said, “You have to eat all of it to get the next mission card.” 

Wu Yu’s body wobbled before he closed his eyes, clenched his fist, and struggled to smile even as he joked, “… If I eat it all, will you be responsible for calling 911?” 

His companion, who was a side character in the movie, also pulled a long face. “Oy, baby, why’d you pick such a dark cuisine dish?” [3]

TN3: 黑暗料理 (literally: dark cuisine) refers to dishes that are ugly or otherwise unappetizing. 

The Russian Blue had sneakily moved away, out of the biological weapon’s attack radius, and elegantly washed its paws. 

Wei Zhounan fretted and remarked quietly to Lin Rong, “I hope there isn’t anything bitter or spicy. I really can’t eat bitter things.”

Lin Rong frowned thoughtfully and then said to Ning Yan, “Sese, go on.” 

“Hey, you’re just gonna let him go like this?” Wei Zhounan asked nervously. 

“This episode is meant to have the pets make the decisions; there’s no other choice,” Lin Rong said calmly. “Believe in him.” 

Ning Yan gave Wei Zhounan a reassuring look and stalked proudly forwards. He began sniffing at the first dish. 

Even though the dish was covered, he could still smell something. 

The first dish is clearly something spicy. Ning Yan walked over and the staff kept smiling. 

The second one… hmm… there doesn’t seem to be a smell? He’ll come back to it. 

The third one… urgh… that’s bitter melon! Wei Zhounan isn’t the only one afraid of it, he is too. Ning Yan quickly fled towards the fourth dish! 

He sniffed each and every dish before finally coming back to the second one. Finally, the staff’s expressions changed—into surprise. 

“Why’d he go back, why’d he go back?!” Before he knew it, Wei Zhounan was weakly clutching Lin Rong’s arms. 

Ning Yan finished picking and turned around to see Wei Zhounan leaning intimately against Lin Rong. He paused and then let out an unhappy bark, “Woof!” 

Lin Rong paused… and then silently withdrew his arms from Wei Zhounan’s hold. 

Next to them, Wu Yu couldn’t help but notice what was going on as he attempted to swallow all the vinegar. 

The staff members put the dish that Ning Yan had picked in front of Wei Zhounan and Lin Rong. Wei Zhounan looked on nervously. 

But when they took off the cover, it revealed a normal-looking plate of egg fried rice. 

Wei Zhounan shouted in surprise, “It looks normal? Sese you’re so smart! I love you!” 

He hugged the white puppy and rubbed his cheeks against the dog. 

Ning Yan let out a self-conscious whine. 

Wu Yu, standing off to the side, twisted his face even further. He looked back at the half-full bowl of black vinegar and thought he would choke on it. 

A bowl of fried rice was nothing to two grown men. They quickly divided and conquered it. 

Wu Yu’s team was still struggling to swallow the vinegar when the parrot and Golden Retriever teams arrived. By then, Ning Yan’s team was already on their way to the next stop. 

In the car, they examined the next mission card. 

This mission card gave them three locations and while the tasks didn’t have to be completed in a specific order, the team had to successfully finish all three before they could move on to the last destination. 

The three missions each had a sentimental name. 

They were: “In Your Pet’s Eyes,” “Your Pet’s Dream,” and “Forming Precious Memories Between Pet and Owner.” 

Wei Zhounan mused, “‘In Your Pet’s Eyes’ is the closest to us, but ‘Forming Precious Memories Between Pet and Owner’ seems to be located at a photography business, so it’s probably just a photoshoot. Why don’t we tackle that first?” 

Lin Rong wasn’t picky and nodded in acquiescence, “Sure.” 

Wei Zhounan had guessed correctly. “Forming Precious Memories Between Pet and Owner” was a pretty simple mission and it was, indeed, taking photos together. 

After completing that task, the staff members stamped their mission card and the team rushed off to “In Your Pet’s Eyes.” 

Everyone did the three tasks in a different order. 

When they arrived at the location for “In Your Pet’s Eyes”—a clothing boutique—the tabby cat team, which was the slowest team thus far, had just arrived. The female lead from the movie was on that team. 

The shop owner smiled and said, “How do the pets view their owners? Today we’ll be having the pets pick an outfit for their owner.” 

Then the shop owner added, “The rest of the mission has to be completed while wearing the outfit.” 

Everyone, “…” 

Suddenly, the anxiety in the room shot up. 

Wei Zhounan laughed drily, “Then… you’ll have the outfits for men and women separated for the pets to pick, right?” 

The shop owner blinked teasingly, “Nope.” 

Wei Zhounan, “…” 

The female lead’s partner was another female, a senior MC. They both patted their chest in relief, looked at each other, and said, “That’s okay, that’s okay.” 

This shop clearly had mostly clothing for women, but even if they were handed clothing for men, they could totally wear them! It would not be as exciting as men wearing women’s clothing! 

They both turned and cast sly looks towards Lin Rong and Wei Zhounan. 

Wei Zhounan asked stiffly, “Bro, can we depend on Sese this time?” 

Ning Yan turned around and wagged his tail. 

Lin Rong’s gaze softened and he nodded. “Yes, we can trust him.” 

Ning Yan, Yup that’s right!

The tabby was up first. 

The shop owner pulled out two racks of clothing, a mixture of men’s and women’s clothing. Each piece had a string attached to it that hung down to the ground and whichever string the pet chose would indicate the chosen piece of clothing. 

Everyone knew that pets wouldn’t really be able to choose an outfit for their owner. This mission relied solely on randomness, otherwise known as luck, but then again, the show was built on randomness. 

Unfortunately, this time the tabby didn’t cooperate and stuck to the female lead like glue and refused to even glance at the two racks of clothing. 

The two girls tried every trick in the book but the tabby kept meowing flirtatiously at the girls. In the end, they told Lin Rong resignedly, “Why don’t you go first?” 

So Ning Yan walked up. 

Hmmm… what dashing outfit should he pick for Wei Zhounan and the big pervert?

Ning Yan didn’t have to think for too long. He quickly decided on an outfit with an interestingly-designed casual shirt and suit pants. He turned around to see what his two teammates thought and saw that Wei Zhounan’s eyes glinted with excitement as he nodded happily at the choice with his thumbs up, and the man next to him… was petting the cat!!!

When the man realized Ning Yan was looking, he immediately withdrew his hands and his gaze wandered around the room. 

But the two girls quickly let out gasps of surprise because the tabby… crawled onto the man’s lap. 

Ning Yan bit down so hard he almost crushed his canines.

The man pursed his lips and even Wei Zhounan’s attention was drawn away by the cute little cat. As Wei Zhounan went to play with the cat, Ning Yan stared at the other man. Since the man remained motionless, Ning Yan slowly turned his head around. 

… In the next second, he whipped his head around to see the man’s palm gently resting on the cat’s head!!!

Jerk!!!

Lin Rong stiffened and reflexively withdrew his hand a second time. He felt a moment’s regret and a premonition of bad things to come. But the white puppy quickly turned his head and didn’t look back again. 

Lin Rong, “…” The premonition got worse. 

After a few minutes, two sundresses hung in front of Lin Rong and Wei Zhounan. One pink, one yellow. 

The two girls slapped their thighs as they laughed widely, “Hahahahaha!!!” 

Wei Zhounan stood up in shock and cried out wildly, “I saw him pick a men’s shirt! How did it become a dress?! You guys must have cheated?!”

The shop owner held back a chuckle and explained, “He did pick that outfit first, but then changed his mind.” 

Wei Zhounan tried to argue, “How do you know he changed? Maybe he liked all three outfits! Then we should go in order of selection and put that men’s outfit among the choices!” 

The shop owner said seriously, “No, he really did change it. After he picked these two sundresses, he yanked on the strings to show us.” 

Wei Zhounan refused to believe it. “Impossible! Not possible! Sese, I just looked away for one second, what have you done?!”

Ning Yan laughed coldly, Sure you only looked away for “one second.” 

Wei Zhounan turned around to ask Lin Rong for help. “Bro, please control your child!” 

But the man was attempting to calm down by resting his forehead against his palm. 

Ning Yan sat down on the same spot and looked at them arrogantly—Wear it! I’m telling you to wear it! That’ll teach you to pet cats!

The man raised his head and opened his mouth to say, “Sese…” 

Ning Yan looked back, unmoved. 

The man, “…” 

Wei Zhounan pleaded, “Wait, bro you’re giving up now? Wake up, my brother!” 

The two girls just about died of laughter. 

“No, we want to see you wear dresses!” 

“Wear the dress! Wear the dress! Sese’s got good taste! The two he picked—pfft, are so cutesy hahahahaha!” 

Wei Zhounan’s face flushed red. 

The tips of the man’s ears quietly turned red. 

The cameraman mercilessly circled around the two men and didn’t miss a single angle. Wei Zhounan’s body shook and he wanted to pass out. 

The shop owner held back a laugh and reminded, “You have to change into the clothes to get the stamp. Then you have to wear it for the rest of the mission.” 

Wei Zhounan raised a hand while facing the cameraman. He smiled aimlessly at the camera and announced, “So, I’m announcing that as of today, I’m quitting the Haha family.” 

The two girls, “Hahahahaha!”

But quitting was not an option, and neither was stopping the recording. 

Lin Rong took a deep breath and looked at the white puppy. 

The puppy gave him the stink-eye. 

Lin Rong stood up and calmly said, “Just change into it first.” 

Wei Zhounan’s world crashed down around him. 

It took them close to 20 minutes to change into the outfits. 

The two girls chatted outside. 

“Hey, you don’t think they ran away through the back door, do you?” 

“Shop owner, do you have a back door?” 

The shop owner smiled reassuringly. “Don’t worry, we don’t.” 

Xue Lian’s group had also arrived. They paused when they saw the two girls, the tabby cat, and the white puppy. “Hey, Lin Bro is also here.” 

“Yeah.” The two girls explained the rules of this mission to Xue Lian and explained, “Lin Bro and Zhounan are inside changing clothes.” 

Xue Lian asked curiously, “What outfits did Sese pick for them?” 

The white puppy calmly groomed his paws. 

Just then, the doors to the changing rooms opened and two figures walked out. 

One in bright yellow, the other in pink. 

Both were at least 185 centimeters tall, broad-shouldered, and narrow-waisted. They each had a shapely figure, which meant that a size XL looked fine on them. 

Their muscles were covered with lace and the two handsome men both wore Peter Pan collars. 

Wei Zhounan, in the yellow dress, kept his head stubbornly lowered and plucked at the dress in embarrassment. 

Lin Rong wore pink and remained expressionless, but looking closely, it was obvious how stiff his facial muscles were. 

Xue Lian stood rooted to the ground in shock. 

Then he and the rest of the crew in the room burst into wild laughter. 

The bursts of laughter were accompanied by the puppy’s barks as he rolled around on the floor and the sounds of the parrot crying out in mockery. 

“You damn fool~ you damn fool~” 

Mukyuu

50% reader, 40% translator, and 10% snarker.