Just a few days into summer vacation, Cheng Jinjin and Fu Xun moved in together at Cheng Chu's house.
They both attend the same middle school, with Cheng Jinjin being Cheng Chu's cousin on one side and Fu Xun being her cousin on another side. Despite their familial ties, they always bickered and made a ruckus when they were together.
A few days ago, they both received acceptance letters from No. 1 High, but while Cheng Jinjin earned her spot through hard work, Fu Xun's wealthy father paid a hefty sum to secure his admission.
Since Cheng Chu wouldn't be attending No. 1 High School next semester and her house would be empty, she gave the keys to Cheng Jinjin so she could live there.
Meanwhile, Fu Xun's father had already prepared a house for him, so Cheng Chu didn't need to worry about him.
After a few days of rest, the countdown on Cheng Chu's phone reminded her that she couldn't slack off anymore for the upcoming entrance exams. So, today she woke up early, had breakfast, and was ready to start practicing the piano.
But suddenly, there was a burst of barking from the yard next door. Cheng Chu rubbed her forehead in frustration and got up to go to the garden.
Sure enough, it was the three golden retrievers from the Lin family making a racket. It had only been a few months, but they had all grown to be as shiny and well-fed as ever.
At the moment, they were fiercely barking at a small corner. Cheng Chu was curious and tiptoed over to take a look.
There, she saw a small golden retriever cowering in the corner, its dark eyes glaring fiercely at the three larger dogs in front of it.
It bared its teeth and held its little head high, trying to look tough despite its small size. But instead of being intimidating, it was more like a young child trying to act tough.
As the three big dogs approached, strutting and slowly cornering the small dog, their heads lowered and teeth bared, emitting a low growl.
Unable to bear it any longer, Cheng Chu grabbed a long stick from the corner of the garden and gently poked the lead golden retriever through the fence.
The retriever turned its head and softened its fierce gaze upon seeing Cheng Chu, who then pushed it aside with the stick, signaling it to stop bullying the small dog.
The three big dogs looked at each other and seemed to recognize Cheng Chu as a friend of their owner, so they turned and ran away without daring to offend her.
The garden fell silent, with only a few faint cicada cries in the distance. The small dog, relieved that the three big dogs had left, still looked at Cheng Chu warily with its grape-like eyes.
Just now the bigger dogs had blocked part of her view, but now Cheng Chu could see clearly that the poor little dog being bullied was not just a purebred Golden Retriever.
Its fur was a lighter shade of yellow than a Golden Retriever's, and its two small ears were not drooping like a Golden Retriever's, but rather were triangular and stood up high when looking at her.
This was probably not a purebred Golden Retriever, but possibly a child born from a Golden Retriever and another breed of dog.
Cheng Chu looked down with soft and clear eyes, feeling that the pitiful little dog was very much like a person.
The morning breeze blew gently, and the two stood facing each other several meters apart for a few seconds.
After a moment, the little dog seemed to sense that she had no ill intentions and hesitantly took a few steps closer.
Cheng Chu smiled and waved at it. Its eyes, dark and shiny, flickered before it lowered her head and ran over with a panting breath.
On this hot summer morning, the few small trees in Cheng Chu's garden rustled in the gentle breeze.
The little dog ran up to her, tilting its head and looking up at her with its watery eyes, letting out a cautious "woof."
The sound was so small, as if it was afraid of scaring her.
Cheng Chu couldn't help but find it incredibly cute, reaching out to gently rub the dog's head.
It was a bit rough, but the texture was still good.
The little dog seemed to be stunned for a moment, taking a few seconds to react before slowly approaching and obediently rubbing against Cheng Chu's hand.
"Wait for me," Cheng Chu said, rubbing the dog's ears, causing its triangular ears to turn into airplane ears with a "whoosh."
She took a few steps back and heard barking behind her. It seemed louder than before. Cheng Chu turned around.
The garden was bright with morning light, and the sun shone through the leaves, casting dappled shadows on the ground.
A light golden puppy looked up at her, its tail wagging rapidly behind it. Its big eyes looked pitifully at her, as if it thought Cheng Chu was leaving and it was very reluctant to see her go.
Cheng Chu smiled and whispered, "Wait for me here, I'll bring you something to eat."
She didn't dare to look at the puppy's pitiful expression and turned to run to the kitchen. After a moment, she came back to the garden with two sausages in her hand.
The puppy was basking in the sun, sitting obediently. When it saw her coming, it stood up and happily ran in circles.
It wolfed down the sausages, as if it was afraid the three big dogs would steal them. It ate quickly and then obediently rubbed against Cheng Chu's hand, as if thanking her for feeding it.
Cheng Chu remembered a long time ago when Lin Qifeng had asked her if she wanted to raise a dog, and if she did, she could pick one from their house.
She looked down at the adorable little dog that was so well-behaved it made her heart ache, and for the first time, the thought of raising a dog crossed her mind.
"What? You want to raise that one?" Lin Qifeng sat cross-legged on the sofa, looking down at his phone. He raised his head in surprise at her words.
"Is that not okay? What's wrong with it?"
"It's not that it's not okay. If you want to raise one, you can pick one of the three purebred ones at my house."
Cheng Chu frowned, "But I still prefer this one."
Lin Qifeng said, "Sure, take it if you want. I found it on the road when it was very weak, probably sick, and was abandoned by its previous owner. If you want to raise it, be careful."
Cheng Chu nodded and asked, "What's its name?"
"What?" Cheng Chu thought he misheard.
"It's the fifth dog in our family, so we call it Number Five," Lin Qifeng explained seriously.
He finished speaking and looked up at Cheng Chu. The girl stood under the crystal lamp, frowning as if pondering something.
"If you think the name is strange, you can give it a new one," Lin Qifeng said.
The living room door creaked open and the nanny walked in with a little dog in tow.
As soon as the dog saw Cheng Chu, its dark eyes lit up like it had found a source of light. It happily ran over, but was stopped by the leash in the nanny's hand.
The little dog stuck out its tongue and looked at Cheng Chu with pleading eyes, its tail wagging frantically.
"You ungrateful dog, have you forgotten who rescued you?" Lin Qifeng shouted from behind.
Cheng Chu crouched down and stroked the fluffy little head of the dog, meeting its bright, shining eyes. The dark eyes were now clear and sparkling, like a summer stream.
Cheng Chu paused for a moment, then had a sudden idea.
She looked up and said, "Why don't we call it Meow Meow?"
"Meow?" Lin Qifeng rubbed his forehead. "But he's a dog?"
He sighed helplessly and said, "Oh well, he'll be your dog from now on. You can call him whatever you want."
The little dog stretched out its front paws and gently scratched at Cheng Chu's knee, as if asking for a hug.
Cheng Chu smiled, "You like the name Meow Meow too, don't you?"
"Woof!" The little dog barked loudly this time.
"Okay, okay." Lin Qifeng was completely helpless. "Come with me and get some things for the dog to use first, let him use them."
Cheng Chu picked up the little dog and patted its back. "Okay."
They walked through the second floor corridor and arrived at Lin Qifeng's family storeroom. The storeroom was very large and had everything inside.
But the lighting inside was not very good. He lowered his head and picked out a few bags of dog food for Cheng Chu.
"Never mind, you hold the dog and I'll help you carry these bags over," he said.
He picked up a few bags of dog food and said, "Let's go."
As they walked out of the door, the lights in the villa area were bright and the surroundings were quiet.
Lin Qifeng turned his head and looked at the girl beside him.
The soft light reflected on her porcelain-like face, and she looked down at the little dog in her arms with a gentle expression.
"The bracelet looks pretty," Lin Qifeng suddenly spoke up.
Cheng Chu lowered her eyes, and her peach blossom eyes emitted a soft light. "Yeah, I think so too."
"What brand is it?" he asked again.
Cheng Chu was a little surprised by the question. He didn't seem like the type of person who would ask such a question, but since he had given her a dog, it didn't hurt to answer.
She thought for a moment and said the name of the brand. The sound of cicadas on a summer night was filled with joy. Lin Qifeng put down the dog food and left.
Cheng Chu held her little dog, lovingly stroking its head and rubbing its ears from time to time.
The little dog was as well-behaved as a ragdoll, snuggling in her arms and letting her play with it.
At night, Gu Miao's thoughts were always particularly clear, so he preferred to study at night.
Summer nights were quiet, and there weren't many people at home. His cousin went back to their hometown with their uncle and aunt, so he was alone at home, feeling much better than usual.
After finishing the last math problem, he put down his pen, and his phone on the corner of the table seemed to light up as if it had a telepathic connection.
It was a message from Cheng Chu.
Gu Miao eagerly opened the chat window, and she sent a selfie. The beautiful girl smiled at the camera, her peach blossom eyes shining like crushed crystals.
Gu Miao's finger trembled.
Below was a message from the girl: "This is Meow Meow, isn't it cute?"
Only then did he notice that the girl was also holding a pale yellow puppy in her arms.
The puppy seemed very attached to her, lifting its little head and staring at her with its dark eyes.
Gu Miao pursed his lips and reluctantly replied, "Yes, it's cute."
The other side quickly sent a message, "I also think it's so cute, I really like it."
Outside, the cicadas chirped incessantly.
Gu Miao lowered his head, his eyes fixed on the puppy in the girl's arms, his lips pressed into a thin line.
After a while, he saved the picture, cropped out the puppy, and replied insincerely, "I like it too."
The author has something to say:
Gu Miao doesn't like it at all, where's the cuteness? Don't you feel hot holding a puppy in the summer?
Translations during sleepless nights. I can sleep when I'm dead! ...Please let me sleep. Happy readers keep me awake, and lots of love and a huge thank you for supporting my hobby!
Give me feedback at moc.ebircssutol@ypeels.