Chapter 24 – Item Binding
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Xi Baichen came out of the grocery store carrying his newly bought daily necessities, and then went to the roadside to find a van.
Having negotiated the price with the driver, Xi Baichen sat in the front passenger seat and fastened his seat belt. The car slowly turned around and drove towards the intersection.
Mi Li had just borrowed a cell phone from an old villager when she suddenly caught a glimpse of the tall figure sitting in the van. She was overjoyed, raising her feet to chase after him. She didn’t even have time to return the cell phone, so the old villager was anxiously following her. “Oh no, my phone, my phone!”
The market was bustling, and her shouts were quickly drowned in the noise of the crowd.
Seeing the car drifting away, Mi Li picked up the phone while chasing, and quickly dialed a series of numbers.
The phone in his pocket vibrated suddenly. Xi Baichen took a look at it and saw it was an unfamiliar number, but answered anyway.
[ Old Bai, it’s me, *wheeze*, *wheeze*… ] Rapid gasps came from the phone.
“Who is this?” Xi Baichen looked puzzled.
[ It’s me! ] The volume suddenly increased, somewhat heartbreakingly, [ Little Mi! Phew, I-I’m right behind you!!! ]
Xi Baichen quickly turned, first sweeping the empty back seat before looking up. Through the rear windshield, he saw a slim figure struggling to catch up to the car, her hand holding a cell phone.
“Sifu, stop!” Xi Baichen tightened his fingers, staring at the figure for an instant.
The driver parked the car on the side of the road. Xi Baichen pushed the door open and jumped out of the car, then strode over to meet the girl who was running towards him.
She wore a unique style of home clothes and her hair flew in the wind. Her bare feet ran on the road, covered in dust and dirt.
Xi Baichen walked faster and faster, and finally broke into a jog.
“Old Bai!” Mi Li opened her arms and threw herself into his embrace excitedly. Her hands wrapped around his neck, and she hung off of him with her entire body.
Xi Baichen naturally stretched out his hand to support her waist. Looking down at the girl in his arms, he called out hesitantly, “Little Mi?”
“It’s me~~” Mi Li let go and smiled brightly at him, her shiny eyes bent into crescents. Her forehead was covered with sweat, her cheeks were flushed, and her breathing was rapid. She was extremely lively.
If Little Mi could become human, she would probably look like this. Xi Baichen thought to himself.
“You… have you possessed a human this time?”
“What do you mean possessing a human?” Mi Li twirled in a circle, raised her chin, and said proudly, “I have cultivated into a human form. Are you surprised and shocked?”
Xi Baichen’s eyes were bright: I always thought she was a lonely ghost. She really turned out to be an evil spirit and even cultivated into a human form?
Since Mi Li was in a good mood, she entered her drama mode again and started talking nonsense. Regarding the mystery of the two worlds, she didn’t know how to explain it at the moment. She resigned herself to confusion for the time being and decided to ponder it in the future.
“Get in the car.” Xi Baichen suppressed the excitement in his heart and habitually pulled her hand. He glanced at her bruised feet inadvertently and frowned, then simply carried her.
“What are you doing?” Mi Li was carried off in confusion.
“First, I’ll take you to the nearby clinic for medicine.” Xi Baichen carried her and moved towards the van, walking steadily and effortlessly.
When Mi Li turned into various objects, she got used to him squeezing, holding, carrying, and tossing her around. She actually didn’t feel anything was wrong.
“Ah, that’s right.” Mi Li raised the phone in her hand and said in embarrassment, “I just borrowed an old villager’s cell phone and haven’t returned it. He should still be there.”
Xi Baichen put her in the backseat. He sat next to her, and said to the driver, “Excuse me, sifu. Please turn around and go to the nearby clinic. I’ll increase the fare by 200 for you.”
“Okay.” The originally impatient driver immediately smiled. He turned the steering wheel and drove back the way they came from.
While passing an intersection, Mi Li used her sharp eyes and spotted the old villager who lent her the cell phone, sighing on the side of the road.
She asked the driver to stop, ready to go and apologize. Xi Baichen pulled her back, took the phone, got out of the car and walked towards the old villager. A few minutes later, he returned to the car and said, “It’s done.”
“Did you apologize for me?”
“Yes, he didn’t mind.” Of course he didn’t mind. Xi Baichen compensated him with two thousand yuan, enough for him to buy five of the same model.
“That’s good.” Mi Li immediately laughed, “Thank you.”
Xi Baichen’s gaze stopped on her face for a few seconds before moving away.
The driver drove them to the clinic. Xi Baichen originally planned to ask the clinic’s doctor to prescribe medicine for Mi Li, but this clinic’s business was booming. There were five or six patients sitting in the lobby. Coughing, wailing, and children crying… it was very noisy. The doctor was too busy, and the medical environment was not good. He was worried that Little Mi would be infected with germs before her foot injury was healed, which would be very troublesome.
Xi Baichen bought medical supplies at the clinic and did not stay any longer. He got into the car with Mi Li and went straight back to the village.
Mi Li sat in the car, watching the scenery outside the window enthusiastically with her two calves dangling leisurely. At this time, a large warm hand suddenly held her ankles, lifted her calves and placed them on his own legs.
Mi Li was unprepared. Her body tilted and the back of her head fell towards the car window.
Xi Baichen was already prepared. He stretched out his hand to support her waist and stabilize her figure. He let go afterwards, looking down to examine her foot injury.
Mi Li had a delicate pair of white and tender feet, but unfortunately they were now cut and bruised. The soles of her feet were covered in sand, and many granules were embedded in her flesh.
Xi Baichen looked up coldly, “Since you borrowed a cell phone, why did you chase me? Wouldn’t it have been fine to stay where you were?”
Mi Li said innocently, “I wasn’t thinking at the time; I was worried that you would run off.”
“Oh?” Xi Baichen carefully used a cotton swab to help her clean the sand off her feet, and said casually, “Were you that worried I would run off?”
“Of course, you are my only support in this world.” Mi Li casually teased him.
Xi Baichen lowered his eyes and snorted, “Don’t you mean owner?”
He spoke harshly, but his hands were gentle.
“Does it hurt?”
“It hurts~~” Mi Li smiled and cutely said, “I need ‘owner’ to hug and carry me~~”
Xi Baichen glanced at her: Ok, I’ll satisfy you once we get back.
Back at the village, Xi Baichen stuffed the shopping bag of daily necessities towards Mi Li, then picked her up and strode towards the house.
“Meow.” Little Bai heard the sound and ran out of the house.
“Little Bai~” Mi Li waved at Little Bai.
“Little Bai?” Xi Baichen put her on a soft surface and looked at the folded-ear cat spinning around her feet, “You call it ‘Little Bai’?”
“Yes.” Mi Li didn’t think anything was wrong at all.
Xi Baichen’s lips curved unnoticeably. Without a word, he went to the kitchen to fetch a basin of warm water. He squatted down, rolled up his sleeves, and prepared to help her wash her feet.
“Ah, I’ll wash them myself.” Mi Li tried to retract her feet, but Xi Baichen held them firmly.
“Your foot is injured, it’s not convenient to do it yourself.” Xi Baichen gently wiped her feet with a dampened towel until they were clean. He then washed his hands, took out some ointment, and applied it to the wound little by little.
Although his movements were a bit rusty, they were extremely careful.
Mi Li laughed and said, “I didn’t expect you to be able to take care of people. When you took care of the little dumplings before, if you had this kind of performance, they would have already sworn fealty.”
Xi Baichen sneered, “They are not you.”
Mi Li said: ” ……Huh?” It was obviously a heartwarming sentence, why did he have to put on a mocking face?
“Okay.” Xi Baichen helped her with bandaging and exhorted, “Obediently stay still, don’t run around.”
“As you command.” Mi Li gave a military salute.
Xi Baichen glanced at her worriedly, and then left the room with the water basin.
Ten-plus minutes later, he walked in with two bowls of noodles.
Looking at the somen on the table, she asked in surprise: “You made it?”
“Yes.” Xi Baichen could now make some simple dishes even without Mi Li’s guidance.
After tasting it, Mi Li praised, “It tastes good.”
Xi Baichen’s expression was indifferent, but his eating movements became a bit faster.
After eating the noodles, Mi Li approximated the time. There should only be a few minutes left before she returns.
She was a little nervous, not knowing if anything would happen this time.
While thinking, familiar sensations assaulted her mind, her consciousness becoming a little fuzzy. It was time to return.
At this moment, there was a sudden chill on her neck. Mi Li looked down and found that Xi Baichen had put a pendant on her.
“What is this?” Mi Li struggled to stay alert. She picked up the pendant on the string, and dimly saw the words “Little Mi” engraved on it.
“It was originally a pendant prepared for you.” Xi Baichen replied, “Since the folded-ear cat is called ‘Little Bai’, then this pendant with ‘Little Mi’ engraved on it belongs to you.”
The voice faded away, and Mi Li was too late to respond. Her consciousness broke away and instantly plunged into darkness.
It was unknown how long it was before Mi Li woke up from her deep sleep. She stretched and rolled a few times on the soft sofa. Then she heard a *badump* and fell off the sofa.
Huh? Where did the meow come from?
Mi Li opened her eyes, and felt her vision was a little strange. Everything around her seemed to have grown a lot.
Looking down at herself, she screamed, “Meow, meow, meow!” [ Am I a cat again??? ]
She stretched out her claws to cover her mouth, and looked around. That’s right, this was her home, the world she lived in.
How did she appear in her own world as a folded-ear cat? What about her own body?
Mi Li staggered and searched in each room, but could not find her body.
So, she left her body in that world, and her soul possessed Little Bai’s body before crossing back???
What’s going on?
Mi Li walked around the room with her cat’s paws, forcing herself to calm down.
The first time she took Little Bai through, it was left behind. The first time she went through with her body, her body was left behind, but Little Bai came back.
Thinking about it, there was something unusual.
How did she exchange with Little Bai?
Her paw unconsciously touched her empty neck, and Mi Li’s eyes lit up.
The only thing she and Little Bai had in common was the pendant.
Could it be that as long as you wore the pendant, you would be left in that world? Was it a problem with the pendant, or was it that all living creatures crossing over could not be bound by items belonging to that world?
Mi Li’s thinking gradually cleared up, and she decided to look for an opportunity to verify it.
In the room, Xi Baichen was holding the suddenly passed out Mi Li, a flash of confusion appearing on his face.
“Little Mi, Little Mi?” He whispered a few times, then checked her vital signs, but it seemed that she was just asleep. Was it because she had just cultivated a human form and her condition was unstable?
Xi Baichen knew that this evil spirit could not be understood with common sense, so he calmed down. He carried her to the bed and laid her down, covering her with a quilt. After watching quietly for a while, he turned around and left the room, ready to get Little Bai something to eat, but it was nowhere to be found.
Xi Baichen didn’t pay attention, believing that it went off to play in some corner. He poured cat food into its bowl. When it was hungry, it would naturally come and eat.
After doing this, Xi Baichen grabbed his laptop and returned to the room where Mi Li was resting, typing while waiting for her to wake up.
- Skilled or professional blue collar workers are sometimes referred to as Master (师傅) but that sounds weird in English. You don’t go around calling cabbies Master.