The night was deep.

Gu She pushed open the door and immediately furrowed his brows. A snoring sound, deeper than the night itself, came from inside the room.

The entire room was filled with a scent of alcohol that clashed with the fragrance of orchids.

His footsteps hesitated at the threshold, then he turned on the light.

The room became bright, but the snoring sound seemed even more thunderous.

He walked to the bedside with the lamp in hand.

The person on the bed had their back facing him, sleeping soundly, with one foot against the headboard and the other foot hanging off the edge.

Gu She felt a sense of familiarity from the figure and reached out to turn him over.

“Ah!” Tao Mo let out a choked sound from his throat.

Gu She was startled, thinking that he was struggling to breathe, and immediately patted his chest lightly.

Tao Mo exhaled a long breath and then smacked his lips twice, turned his head, and fell back asleep.

“…”

Gu She stood by the bed, silently watching him for a while, until the snoring sound resumed, before setting the lamp aside, turning around, and leaving the room.

Gu Xiaojia had been eating peeled edamame in the courtyard before being called over. Due to rushing, he still had one in his hand and only realized it when he reached Gu She. Seeing Gu She’s gaze on the edamame in his hand, he awkwardly hid it behind his back. “Young master, are you going to bathe?”

Gu She didn’t say anything and pointed his finger towards the room.

Gu Xiaojia was taken aback and took a couple of steps towards the house. Before he could step onto the stone steps, he heard a loud snoring sound. He was greatly shocked and rushed in, shouting, “Ah! Who are you? Ah, you, how did you end up here?”

Gu She furrowed his brows and followed behind, only to see Gu Xiaojia shaking Tao Mo.

Tao Mo was in a drunken haze, desperately waving his hands, trying to break free from Gu Xiaojia’s grip.

“Stop,” Gu She said.

Gu Xiaojia suddenly stopped, turned his head, and said, “So, it wasn’t my imagination this afternoon. I saw that wood servant from the county government office jumping down from the roof, carrying someone in his arms… Could it be that he brought him here?”

Gu She furrowed his brows and asked, “Mu Chun?”

“That’s him!” Gu Xiaojia casually stuffed the edamame into his mouth. “I didn’t expect him to be so skilled. But why did he put Tao Mo on the young master’s bed?”

Gu She didn’t say anything. He knew that Mu Chun was not ordinary, but he couldn’t figure out his intentions.

Gu Xiaojia spit out the edamame skin and realized what he had unknowingly done. He quickly hid his hand behind his back and tried to appear composed. “Young master, what should we do now? Should we send him to an inn or notify the county government office?”

Gu She thought for a moment and suddenly said, “Clean up the outer room.”

“Ah?” Gu Xiaojia looked at him blankly.

Gu She said, “Get a new set of bedding.”

“Oh,” Gu Xiaojia walked a few steps towards the door sluggishly, then couldn’t help but turn around. “Young master, are you planning to keep him here?”

“Yes,” Gu She said.

Gu Xiaojia was assigned to the kitchen by Gu She. Although he had become slightly more timid, a skinny camel is still bigger than a horse, and he was a bit fat. He asked again, “Young master, aren’t you afraid of the Wood Spirit?”

Gu She raised an eyebrow. “Is he the one who should be afraid, or should I be the one?”

Gu Xiaojia was stunned by the question, then scratched his head and said, “I forgot, he’s also a man.” Reluctantly, he cleared the outer room that had never been used before, and then called two servants to carry Tao Mo over.

Due to the commotion, Tao Mo woke up halfway, opened his eyes, and stared at Gu Xiaojia, who was directing the servants, for a while.

Gu Xiaojia looked at him, about to lose his temper, but Tao Mo tilted his head and fell back asleep, extinguishing the fire in Gu Xiaojia’s belly. He grumbled to the servants, “Handle him more roughly.”

The servants thought he was speaking sarcastically and immediately became more gentle.

Gu Xiaojia: “…”

After all the trouble, Gu Xiaojia anxiously asked Gu She, “Young master, shall I sleep on the floor and keep watch here?”

Gu She said, “No need.”

“But…” Gu Xiaojia reluctantly looked towards the outer room.

“I have my own plans,” Gu She said, a bit impatiently.

Gu Xiaojia dared not say anything more, silently retreated to the doorway. However, he didn’t leave immediately, as if he was waiting for Gu She to change his mind. But after waiting for a long time without Gu She speaking, he finally gave up and left, closing the door behind him.

With the door closed, Gu She sat on the edge of the bed, listening to Tao Mo’s loud snoring. Suddenly, he had a strange feeling, as if he wasn’t alone in the darkness. Since he was three years old, he had slept alone in a room, and although there were maidservants in the outer room, they never dared to make a sound, even their breathing was cautious. Therefore, after night fell, he often had the illusion of being alone in the world. Tao Mo’s snoring, annoying as it was, reminded him at every moment that there was another person at the other end of the room.

“Ah!” Tao Mo choked again, followed by the sound of him turning over.

Gu She listened for a while, silently smiling at the corner of his mouth.

The next day, as the sky began to brighten, Tao Mo suddenly felt thirsty. Half-closing his eyes, he got out of bed to fetch water. But just a few steps into the room, he bumped his knee against a stool, stumbled forward, and ended up sprawled on the table.

After a while, he regained his senses, held his chest, stood up, and looked around with wide eyes. Then he froze. “Where is this?”

“It’s Gu Manor.”

Gu She’s voice came from the inner room, nearly causing Tao Mo to jump onto the table in surprise.

“Gu, Gu She?” He exclaimed, “Why are you here?”

“This is my bedroom.”

“…Then why am I here?”

“I don’t know.” Gu She had no intention of exposing Mu Chun’s skills.

Tao Mo realized he had asked a stupid question, but no matter how hard he racked his brain, he couldn’t figure out how he had ended up here. “I clearly went to the neighboring county yesterday to attend Liang Wenwu and Miss Qiu’s wedding…” He remembered that it was the first time Gu She had lost a case, and he definitely didn’t like to hear about it, so he quickly stopped talking.

“What happened later?” Since he didn’t hear any continuation, Gu She took the initiative to ask.

Tao Mo noticed no displeasure in his tone and answered, “Later, I met… and then I drank a bit more, and after that, I don’t remember.”

“What did you see?” Gu She didn’t miss the hesitation in his words.

Instinctively, Tao Mo didn’t want to mention Lord Yi Yu in front of Gu She and vaguely said, “An old friend.”

There was silence from Gu She’s end.

After this disturbance, Tao Mo felt that his mouth wasn’t as dry anymore. He turned his head to look for his clothes.

His clothes were all soaked in alcohol and Gu Xiaojia had taken them out to be washed last night, so Tao Mo searched around but only found a tablecloth. Although there was a fireplace in the room, it was still quite cold. After hesitating for a moment, he couldn’t resist the temptation of warmth and climbed back into bed. “Gu She, are you asleep?”

Gu She lightly tapped the edge of the bed with his fingers.

Tao Mo gathered his courage and asked, “Can I ask you something?”

“Speak.”

“What about my clothes?” Tao Mo’s voice suddenly became weaker, like a mosquito’s buzzing.

Gu She seemed to have not heard clearly. “What?”

“My clothes,” he raised his voice slightly.

Gu She said, “I don’t know.”

“…” Tao Mo was stunned for a moment, then covered his mouth and said, “So, I appeared in Gu Manor wearing this outfit?”

Gu She remained silent.

Mistaking his silence as consent, Tao Mo’s face turned as red as blood. “How, how could…?” He babbled for a while, then in a smaller voice, he asked, “Can you lend me a set of clothes?”

“What?”

“Can you lend me a set of clothes?” Tao Mo pricked up his ears, nervously listening for the response on the other end.

Gu She responded straightforwardly, “No.”

Tao Mo was about to ask if it was possible to send someone to the county government office when Gu She continued, “But I can give them to you.”

Tao Mo was overjoyed. “Thank you. Ah, um, it doesn’t have to be new, old ones will do. It doesn’t matter if they’re dirty. Or, maybe the clothes you wore yesterday…”

There was silence from the other end of the room.

Finally, Gu Xiaojia, who was worried, got up early and found a random piece of clothing from the old clothes Gu She didn’t wear.

From Gu Xiaojia, Tao Mo learned that he had arrived at Gu Manor wearing an overcoat, which relieved him. But when he heard that he had appeared on Gu She’s bed, he involuntarily shivered.