A Strong Male Friend

Wen Le gave a scornful laugh.

What an asshole.

She took a few sips of the sweet milk, feeling comfortable as she squinted her eyes, her whole body relaxed.

Zhou Kao handed Wen Le a document.

Wen Le took it and glanced at it. It was the process planning, host script, and promotional copy for tomorrow night’s masquerade ball.

Wen Le said, “Do you really need me to help you with this little bit of stuff?”

Zhou Kao complimented her, “You’re good at writing.”

Wen Le was speechless. “I’m the science student, and you’re the arts student, right?”

Zhou Kao gave her a sideways glance. “Will you help or not?”

Wen Le forced a smile and said, “I’ll help, I’ll help.”

In fact, there wasn’t much to do, just double-checking the already planned process to see if there were any oversights.

As they flipped through the document, they chatted.

Wen Le said, “The feedback in all aspects tonight was pretty good, and the online buzz is strong. We should be able to meet our expected goals tomorrow, but if too many people show up at the last minute, we might need to prepare more masks.”

Zhou Kao made two marks on the document with his pen and said, “Hmm, they thought of that. Just now, the senior student in charge ordered another batch of props, feathers, and paint, which will arrive tomorrow.”

Wen Le looked over the document again, correcting a few typos and word choices. “There’ are no more errors.”

She put down the document and looked at Zhou Kao, her eyes turning as she suddenly became curious. “What will you dress up as tomorrow?”

Zhou Kao paused for a moment at the question, his face twisting momentarily.

Wen Le caught the fleeting emotion and became interested, staring at Zhou Kao, wanting to hear his answer.

Zhou Kao quickly regained his composure and said, “You’ll find out when the time comes.”

Wen Le was naturally dissatisfied with this answer. “I’ll find out anyway, why don’t you tell me now?”

Zhou Kao flipped through the pages of the document and stopped talking.

Wen Le knew she couldn’t get anything out of Zhou Kao’s mouth, so she gave up. It was just that…

Wen Le thought about the request unanimously passed by the Student Union and the Social Council, and she couldn’t help but laugh.

The seniors of the Student Union and the Social Council believed that, as staff, they should be responsible and dedicated to the Orientation project. They were willing to sacrifice their own image to create conversations and hype, enliven the atmosphere, and increase the sense of participation in the masquerade.

So everyone decided that the staff members would be responsible for being funny, and the guests would be the ones looking beautiful. The organization even decided to hold a vote on the day of the masquerade, and the staff member who sacrificed the most would receive a dedication award and a small gift prepared by the organization. Those who dressed themselves up beautifully would be condemned by everyone.

Therefore, the staff members’ costumes probably wouldn’t be too beautiful. Wen Le actually thought that a funny masquerade would be more fun. 

But Zhou Kao…

Wen Le really couldn’t associate Zhou Kao with the words funny or ugly. Zhou Kao seemed to always have the image of a beautiful flower on a high mountain.

Wen Le thought of Zhou Kao with a teasing look in her eyes.

Zhou Kao’s eyes were still on the documents, but he seemed to notice Wen Le’s expression and said, “Don’t look at me like that. Think about yourself. How good can your situation be, Deputy Director of the Communications Department?”

Wen Le didn’t care and raised her eyebrows, “I’m looking forward to your performance tomorrow night, Director of the Organization Department.”

The orientation ended at 9:30 pm. After all the guests left, all the staff members stayed behind and held a brief meeting to summarize tonight’s situation, arranged tomorrow’s tasks, and finally cleaned up the equipments and the venue.

Wen Le didn’t return to the dormitory until 10:30 pm.

She kicked off her high heels, took off her earrings and bracelets, and put them in a box.

Wen Le looked at the jade ring on her hand and was lost in thought for a moment.

She couldn’t help but think of Zhou Kao’s gentle kiss on the ring.

His lips touched the jade ring, and his warm breath caressed Wen Le’s hand. She seemed to be able to feel that kiss through the ring, and her fingers and palms were burning with abnormal heat.

Wen Le suddenly felt hot and quickly took off the ring from her finger.

The ring was held in Wen Le’s hand, and her fingers involuntarily curled as she carefully placed the ring back in its box and tucked it into the corner of her drawer before slowly closing it.

Tonight’s party was destined to be the hottest event that would not be extinguished for a long time.

The school forum had been discussing the party for a while, and even on Weibo, the hype was high. 

Everyone was excited, and for some, it was also a special night.

Wen Le got ready for bed and listened to her roommate’s excited voice talking about the party on BBS. They talked about how Yi Ze’an gained 300,000 followers because of his live broadcast tonight, how everyone was impressed by her cheongsam dress, singing praises of it on the forum, and also….

Talked about her dance with Zhou Kao that shook the entire audience.

As she listened, Wen Le began to daydream, her unfocused gaze fixed ahead of her dormitory, and the dormitory lights shone brightly in her hazy vision.

Wen Le seemed to recall the light above the dance floor through that halo.

In slow motion, Zhou Kao leaned down, and Wen Le’s waist was tightly held by his powerful arm. Wen Le’s hand was held in Zhou Kao’s palm, and she leaned back, looking up at his handsome face from above.

The light shone from above, and Zhou Kao’s few strands of hair bounced because of his movements and were reflected by the light.

Zhou Kao’s narrow and deep eyes gazed at Wen Le, and the black pupils reflected only her figure. It seemed that nothing else could enter his eyes except for Wen Le, and at that moment, time seemed to stand still.

Zhou Kao held Wen Le’s waist and made the two of them stand up straight. Wen Le looked at Zhou Kao’s hand slowly brushing up her elbow, then sliding down to her palm, and finally slipping through her fingers, interlocking his fingers with hers.

Wen Le stared at Zhou Kao in a daze, and he led her towards the center of the dance floor in front of the crowd, where they danced together in circles all night long.

Wen Le opened her eyes, her heart pounding. She wiped the sweat off her forehead and looked at the time; it was already half-past nine in the morning. It turned out that she fell asleep at some point last night because she was too tired and had dreamt about dancing with Zhou Kao all night.

Wen Le sat up and took a glance. Bao Xiaofan and Man Qingxuan were still sleeping, Cheng Hui was playing with her phone on the bed, and Ai Fei had already long disappeared. Sun Youmei’s bed was empty.

Seeing this, Wen Le lay back down and continued playing with her phone on the bed.

She opened WeChat but found no messages.

The party would last for three consecutive days, from Friday night to Sunday night. Yesterday was Friday, and today was Saturday.

There were no classes or arrangements in the morning, so Wen Le played with her phone for a while. When Bao Xiaofan and Man Qingxuan woke up, the dormitory gradually became lively with conversations. It was only then that Wen Le got out of bed to freshen up.

At noon, the four of them were too lazy to go to the cafeteria, so they ordered takeout. Ordering takeout meant they didn’t have to change clothes, which saved them the trouble. As soon as the takeout arrived, they could simply put on a long coat over their pajamas and go downstairs to pick it up. There were quite a few girls in the dormitory building dressed like this, but no one would go to the cafeteria in their pajamas.

Sun Youmei still hadn’t returned by noon. Cheng Hui said, “She told me this morning that her boyfriend bought a house near the school, and they’re going to move out and live together.”

The others were surprised. “Does the guidance counselor know?”

Cheng Hui replied, “She said she already told her.”

They exchanged glances and didn’t say anything more.

Around 2 o’clock in the afternoon, the staff members went to the gymnasium to begin decorating.

Wen Le carried her makeup kit, the same small box from yesterday, but the clothes inside had been changed.

Tonight was the masquerade party.

A masquerade party naturally required masks.

However, not all guests would prepare masks in advance, so the organizers contacted vendors and purchased a large number of masks.

To keep costs down, the masks they bought were the cheapest ones with hard paper shells and a white base.

They simply cut the hard paper shells into the shape of masks, but there were no patterns on these hard paper shells.

Because the masks were made of hard paper shells, they were very cheap, and even with a large quantity purchased, it didn’t cost much.

To minimize costs, they first conducted a survey on the BBS to estimate the number of people attending the masquerade party and purchased the plain paper shell masks.

To add more fun to the party, they added a DIY mask session before the start of the party.

All guests holding plain masks could enter the venue one to two hours in advance. In the designated area prepared by the staff, they could use the materials provided by the staff to decorate their own masks.

They purchased a large quantity of feathers, paint, plastic chains, various colored threads, and all sorts of inexpensive trinkets such as beads, lace, and wire to provide the guests with materials for mask-making. They even included shredded aluminum cans, which were both environmentally friendly and inexpensive.

Of course, these items were not free, but they weren’t expensive either.

For just one dollar, guests could get a plain paper shell mask and enter the venue, using the materials provided by the staff to decorate their masks.

For the cost of one dollar, they could enjoy such an interesting party, and they believed no student would hesitate to spend that amount.

In their publicity, the Student Union and the Student Council made it clear that all the money students spent on masks would be donated to impoverished children in the southern regions who had lost their schools and homes due to floods.

The staff took photos of the completed masks and selected the most unique thirty masks to be posted on the BBS. After the party ended and with the consent of the creators, the top ten masks with the most votes would be auctioned off on-site. The money raised from the auction would be donated to children in mountainous areas.

DIY masks themselves were already an attractive project, but combining this project with the masquerade party, auction, and charity work made it even more eye-catching.

By 5 o’clock in the afternoon, the venue setup was completed.

After going to the cafeteria for dinner and returning, they went through the process again and then went to the dressing room in batches to change clothes.

Shortly after Wen Le entered the dressing room, someone came in carrying a pile of milk tea to distribute.

The girls in the dressing room were pleasantly surprised. This brand of milk tea came in large cups and tasted delicious. Of course, its price matched its size, costing around ten yuan per cup.

There were various flavors of milk tea, and the girls eagerly selected their favorite flavors, whispering and asking who treated them.

The girl who brought the milk tea said, “It’s your new idol, Zhou Kao, the school hunk of the campus.”

The girls started to excitedly whisper, “Ahhh~oh my God, he’s so charming.”

“I don’t want to drink this milk tea anymore, I want to keep it as a memento.”

TN: LOL literally hahaha

“Oh my goodness, I can’t believe I have the privilege of drinking milk tea treated by the campus heartthrob. Ahh!”

The girl who brought the milk tea said, “And he bought a cup for every staff member too. It must have cost several thousand dollars.”

“Damn, what a rich person.”

“Ah ah ah, he’s both rich and handsome.”

“This new idol is really too impressive.”

Wen Le looked at the milk tea in her hand and for some reason, thought of the cup of hot milk from last night. She felt a warmth spreading from her palm to her heart, making her feel all fuzzy inside.

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