88: The Gay Debuff
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Continuing her train of thought for a while, Lin Songmei was feeling pretty good. So far, it had been a pretty good cultivation session where she had made a lot of progress. Cultivation as always, though, was a little monotonous. Nothing to really talk about concerning it. 

Songmei had cultivated—for who knows how long—until she felt a familiar cold finger pushing against her nose. Blinking her eyes open, Songmei was greeted by a smiling Yan Mingqing sitting... a little too close. 

It was a little hard to stay calm and collected in front of attractive people! The gay debuff! Unfair!

“H-Hello there, good morning,” Songmei murmured, raising an eyebrow. It was rare to see Mingqing with disheveled hair. Mingqing always held her hair hostage in her claw clip, that thing probably spent more time on her than the clothes she wore... 

“Good morning to you too,” Mingqing laughed, moving her hand away and leaning back, putting her arms behind herself to prop herself up. “You were up early today, so did you do anything fun while I was out like a dead log?”

“Nope.” Songmei sighed, shaking her head while pulling her knees close to her chest and out from under the covers. “I just cultivated while waiting for you to wake up...” 

“That’s awfully productive, what do you want to do now?” Mingqing asked, turning her head to block a yawn with her shoulder. “Sleep more? Get breakfast? Cultivate more?” 

The thought of food—namely some light, but savory early morning soup—pushing her to salivate just that little more, Songmei leaned her head back against the headboard. “...Food. I’m hungry... Maybe I’ll just wash my face and make my way to the food area.” 

“That sounds like a plan,” Mingqing shrugged, “You go first, I need to motivate myself to get off this heavenly soft mattress.”

Pushing herself off the bed and doing some light stretches, Songmei couldn’t help but laugh and wish Mingqing good luck. Pulling on some pants as she walked, Songmei stumbled into the bathroom, splashing some water onto herself.

Checking her face in the mirror, Songmei took a moment—well maybe closer to a few moments—to brush her hair, brush her teeth, and finish getting ready. 

There wasn’t much to do, she wasn’t going to put on makeup, that was for... people with energy and people to impress. Songmei had neither of those. 

Mingqing wasn’t going to be impressed with Songmei if she put on makeup, they had already seen each other covered in dirt and grime, Songmei wasn’t going to gaslight Mingqing into thinking she looked better than she did. And other uses of makeup... why? Makeup was a pain in the ass to put on anyway, and made it so Songmei couldn’t touch her face. 

That was a big deal! Songmei loved touching her face! Not for any perverted or weird reason of course. It was just nice. It was just good to have the option to check that there wasn’t food stuck to her cheek. It was just heavenly to use her hands as a bowl to hold her face in like a metaphorical soup. 

Maybe her reason was weird... 

Anyhow, splashing a little more water on her face, Songmei checked her hair—still silverish-white which was good—before heading back out. It was time for food! Time to satiate her ravenous stomach that was threatening to eat her esophagus if she didn’t feed it!

Again, that sounded weird too... 

What was up with her today?

Meandering out of the bathroom and back into the bedroom she and Mingqing shared, Songmei paused for a moment after opening the door. “Need any... help? Mingqing?” 

In front of her, halfway off the bed and halfway on the ground, was Mingqing, face-down, ass-up, and limbs-splayed like a starfish. Craning her head up, Mingqing pushed her hair out of her face. “I’m fine... just tired. Don’t mind me...” 

“Al... right, then,” Songmei shut the door with her eyebrows furrowed. She’d just take a seat outside the door here and wait while Mingqing figured out that situation herself. 

-------

A solid fifteen minutes later. Time Songmei spent just browsing the news and sorting through her messages, Mingqing emerged from the bedroom, changed into casual clothes. Eyes awake, hair in the claw clip as usual, Mingqing did some stretches in the doorway before wandering off to the bathroom. 

Songmei wondered if those stretches were really necessary... 

Did Mingqing really need to stretch and lift her shirt up right in front of her? That felt... playful for some reason. 

Maybe Songmei was just reading too much into it. Maybe all the cuddling had rotted her brain... 

“Wait for me by the door! I’ll be out in a second!” Mingqing called out from the bathroom, her voice partially obscured by the ajar door. “We gotta hurry since breakfast will stop being offered soon!” 

Pushing herself up off the chair, Songmei didn’t care too much. Her soup was going to be offered no matter the time, so if they were late... that was Mingqing’s loss—and maybe the croissant’s gain. 

“Want me to go down first and get you a croissant?” Songmei answered as she sat by the doorway and put on her shoes. “I can get us a table too while I’m there if you want!” 

With the sound of water splashing being the only indication that Mingqing hadn’t drowned yet—it sadly didn’t rule out the possibility that she was currently drowning—Songmei sat there for a few seconds before opening her mouth to repeat her question. 

As she did the weird hand-raise thing to raise her voice (because that was something that was definitely correlated), Songmei was interrupted by a breathless Mingqing who sounded like she had just swum through an underground water tunnel. “Yeah! Sounds good, just go! Get me two please, I’m literally starving over here!” 

Giving a quick affirming reply, Songmei pulled the door open and wandered out. 

It felt... foreign. It was rare that she left the apartment without Mingqing. Out of the two of them, she was the lazy and introverted one. That meant, anytime there was a late-night run to the convenience store downstairs, it was either the both of them, or Mingqing alone... 

More than that, it was weird to leave their room close to 10:30 am. They were usually in their room all day, or out at the asscrack of dawn—no in-between sadly.

Making her way to the elevator, Songmei wandered her way in after waiting for a few seconds. Leaning against the railing and the glass wall as it began to glide downward, she let out a long exhale while gazing out at the empty streets. 

Wandering around alone... just like back then. 

Thanks for reading everyoneee
Sorry for the lack of chapters... been really demotivated and just... out of it...

also that post - sat depression hit harddddd
got nothing done over the weekend...

damn life be tough bweh...
so many things are just ... just ew

I hope you all are welll
Take care reader friends <3

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