Jiao Yuan called Papa Jiao to inform him they had gotten home safely. Before the phone call ended, Tiger's owner, the lady known as Auntie Ling to the Jiao kids, came by.
She brought some cakes and a case of milk in fear the children would get hungry. They could also have it for breakfast the next day.
She couldn't stay long because her relatives were visiting. She heated up some bath water for the kids after they insisted on staying home.
She stayed with them until they finished their baths and went to bed.
Zheng Tan stayed by Gu Youzi's side, waiting for her to fall asleep. Then he went to check on Jiao Yuan in his room. The kid was still awake.
Zheng Tan stayed for a while, making sure he fell asleep. When that was done, he went out to the balcony.
Zheng Tan liked to come out onto the balcony when he couldn't sleep. The ambiance was particularly suitable for thinking about human existence.
No, suitable for think about his f*cking cat-existence.
As the night went on, lights gradually went out one-by-one in the courtyard; The sound of TVs and chatting slowly died out as well.
Only Qu Xiangyang next door still had his light on. He wouldn't be going to bed until one or two in the morning.
Tonight, Zheng Tan was not at all sleepy. He just sat quietly on the balcony, his ears twitching from time to time to listen for movements in the children's bedrooms.
To his relief, they slept well, at least free of nightmares.
Looking down from the fifth floor, the orange light from street lamps seemed extra bright. Looking into the distance, orange light spots flickered between tree branches.
There was a special sense of peace and serenity when the wind stopped blowing and everything— the branches, the leaves and the lights— stood still.
Most street lamps on campus used orange lights wherever there was a road for vehicles. He heard that orange lights were the safest, because the color had the longest wavelength.
It was visible from far away. At the same time, it wasn't blinding. Drivers were able to see cars far ahead without tiring their eyes, even after being on the road for a long time.
This measure greatly increased road safety.
Zheng Tan yawned, it was getting late. In a few hours, morning-joggers would be up. Even Qu had gone to bed.
Zheng Tan turned back to go into the living room to sleep on the sofa. It was possible to watch over both children there.
Just when Zheng Tan lifted his paw, he heard the soft sound of wooden planks clanking together. His paused.
The sound came from the wind chime on the balcony of Fatty's home on the first floor. At first glance, the wind chime was no different from any ordinary ornament.
To outsiders, the only thing special about it was that it had wooden planks instead of metal or shells, yet still managed to make bright crisp sounds.
Zheng Tan never noticed it before, until one day when Fatty was being inspected by Wei Ling's old platoon leader. He found out the wood wind chime was meant to be a warning.
It couldn't chime due to wind alone, unless there was a wind storm. Normally, the wind chime only made sounds when it was struck by human force, and each plank made a different sound.
Zheng Tan looked down when he heard it ring. That was when he saw the 'rats'.
Although the two people were hidden in the shadows, Zheng Tan still saw them. Even if he couldn't see their faces clearly, he caught their silhouette.
After the robberies in September, the quarters had welcomed two dogs, which managed to warn off thieves so far.
From the look of the two, this was not their first offense. They seemed extremely familiar with the layout of the quarters and knew a bit about the residents as well.
They could be the ones responsible for the first two thefts.
'So, after a month in hideout, these two thieves finally couldn't stay away anymore?'
Who knew they were going to pick his building this time? Were they targeting his house? Certainly, they weren't planning to rob the fourth floor.
General's house was special. There were barbed wires around the balcony and the front door was specially made as well.
It was extremely well protected due to the family owning an expensive rare parrot. The other family was not here for most of the year. Their place probably didn't have anything valuable.
Which house was these 'rats' thinking about this time? If it was this house, well ...
Zheng Tans squinted; he flexed his paw, and sharp claws appeared.
'I can't speak, I can't heat water, I have to hide in a backpack to take the bus. But you are so wrong if you think I can't take care of you two.'
At this moment, the two people, hiding in the shadow at the foot of building B in the east quarter, had no idea there was a cat squatting behind a window on the first floor,
watching them intently. Nor did they know that, at the same time, another cat on the fifth floor was also watching their every move.