The match resumed. It’s rhythm was still so fast that it made people unable to breathe easily. Nie Chuan’s nerves were like strings pulled taut.
Thomas had snatched the ball from Montenegro and passed it to Wright. Meanwhile, Nie Chuan followed Wright like a shadow and was constantly interfering with his dribbles.
When Wright did a behind the back dribble and turned in an attempt to throw Nie Chuan off, Nie Chuan pivoted and blocked in front of Wright once more. He had already adapted to Wright’s style of play, but Wright was no longer as bothered by Nie Chuan as before.
In that instant when he changed direction again, Nie Chuan suddenly took the ball away and rushed toward CBU’s basket.
But before he could bring the ball into the opponent’s area, the ball disappeared. Nie Chuan turned around only to see that Owen was already dribbling away from him.
There wasn’t any gorgeous technique whatsoever, nothing could describe it except for the word “fast,” so fast that Nie Chuan couldn’t even react.
Perhaps in the eyes of ordinary people, Nie Chuan was already fast enough. However, when compared to Owen, the disparity was very obvious.
DK returned to defence again. Nie Chuan followed closely behind Owen while Reece had already arrived in front of Owen.
When Owen confronted Reece, the corner of his lips pulled into a smile. All of a sudden, he stopped and fiercely threw the ball behind him.
That pass was extremely fast as it hurtled in Nie Chuan’s direction.
In Nie Chuan’s eyes, it was like a burning meteor. There was no doubt that it would smash his head open.
Subconsciously, as was the body’s natural response, Nie Chuan leaned his head to the side and even raised his hands to protect himself. The ball barely missed his cheek as it flew by before it was steadily caught by Thomas who ran past.
As Thomas dribbled up for a lay up, Carlo shouted, “Allen——”
Nie Chuan wanted to go forward but Owen turned around and blocked in front of him. Reece went to intercept Thomas but was a step too late, Thomas had already shot the ball smoothly into the basket.
“How do you feel? Kid?”
Owen tilted his head and smiled at him but Nie Chuan saw a strong killing intent in his eyes.
A burning pain in his cheeks made Nie Chuan lift a hand to cover it.
“Actually, I had wanted to smash your head open.”
Nie Chuan’s fingers trembled. Sure enough, that feeling had been real……
Suddenly, Nie Chuan hiccuped again.
Just when he hiccuped, Owen received the ball again and bypassed Nie Chuan. His movements were like walking on the moon, incomparably natural and unrestrained.
“Don’t give up!” Ewing shouted.
Nie Chuan sobered up and chased after him.
As if waiting for Nie Chuan to overtake him, Owen took a step back and stood outside the three point line.
Nie Chuan observed, Carlo was defending Thomas while Ewing was occupying Wright’s favorable position. Owen couldn’t pass the ball, he really wanted to get this three pointer!
Disregarding everything, Nie Chuan jumped to block the ball, behind Owen was the figure of Reece who was rapidly closing in.
I can block it!
I can block it!
The height of Nie Chuan’s jump made Owen slightly absentminded but he still smiled.
It was a backhanded jump shot. Owen’s posture in midair gave off a harmonious and aesthetic feeling. The ball went over Nie Chuan’s fingertips.
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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“You did well, you were just a bit short,” Reece stood behind him and said.
Nie Chuan hiccuped again.
In the next round of offense, Reece wanted to cut between Owen and Nie Chuan but was restrained by Thomas. It was as if CBU was intent on making Nie Chuan face Owen.
Owen broke through Montenegro and dunked fiercely. The ball ricocheted off the ground and shot at Nie Chuan like a rocket. Nie Chuan didn’t even have the time to step back.
“Ah!” Nie Chuan held the side of his waist. It was so painful that he sat down on the ground.
His stomach *churned and he almost threw up.
(tn: 翻江倒海 – literally “overturning seas and rivers” )
“Allen!” Ewing hurried over to take a look.
Carlo grabbed Owen’s shirt collar and said angrily, “You did that on purpose didn’t you! Are you done yet?”
Owen indifferently brushed off Carlo’s hand and smiled in a very gentlemanly manner. “You’re blaming me because I can’t help the ball hitting the ground?”
“Carlo, let go of him.” Reece came over and glanced at Owen.
As soon as Nie Chuan got pulled up by Ewing, he hiccuped again.
“You’re still hiccuping?” Ewing patted him on the back.
Nie Chuan gave an ugly smile.
“Does it hurt? If it hurts then take a break?”
This time it was Reece who spoke, “Peter, substitute Nie Chuan.”
Peter, who finally got a chance to play, nodded very seriously.
Nie Chuan returned to the bench while holding his stomach. There, Zack handed him a towel and water.
“You’re welcome. But Allen, you’re really very good. Not many people can do what you did when facing Owen.”
Is everyone comforting him?
Nie Chuan’s fingers which were clutching his water bottle were shaking. Only he knew the pressure that Owen brought upon him. It felt as if he could never surpass him no matter what.
If this wasn’t a practice match but an official one, Nie Chuan had no doubt that he would have been taken off the court. Owen wouldn’t have let him stay until the end.
Nie Chuan knew that even if he went back onto the court he would keep getting targeted by Owen and the only result would be getting butchered.
He wasn’t in the mood to continue watching the game because from beginning to end, his mind was replaying Owen’s every movement when bypassing opponents, his every pass, and his every dunk. It was as if all of this had just been to make him feel so defeated that he was too ashamed to show his face.
The first half was finally over.
Carlo and the others walked over.
“Allen, you good?” Carlo pressed Nie Chuan’s shoulder.
“He keeps hiccuping! It’s that Owen who’s no good! He scared Allen in the beginning then took advantage of Allen when he was hiccuping to break through his defense! Really despicable,” Ewing said indignantly.
Nie Chuan really wanted to say “thank you” to Ewing for finding so many reasons for his failure.
Regardless of whether he was hiccuping or not, his skill just wasn’t as good as the other’s.
That was a guy who was on the same level as Reece ah. In front of him, he was just like a cockroach that can be flattened under the soles of his shoe at any time.
“It’s said that scaring someone can cure hiccups! I’ll scare you!”
As soon as Carlo finished his words, he abruptly yanked Nie Chuan’s collar and threw another punch at Nie Chuan’s face.
“Carlo——” Ewing got so scared that his heart almost jumped out.
Nie Chuan closed his eyes and turned away and, like before, Carlo’s fist stopped at the tip of his nose.
“What are you doing! You idiot!” Ewing came forward and pushed Carlo away.
Nie Chuan hiccuped again.
“Eh? No use? Didn’t they say that scaring someone will stop hiccups?” Carlo had a puzzled expression.
“How can it be useful? If it was, then Allen wouldn’t be hiccuping after getting hit by the ball.” Toward Carlo, Montenegro was also helpless.
At this time, Nie Chuan felt a force pull him up. As soon as he looked up, he met Reece’s eyes.
“Follow me,” Reece’s voice was pressed very low.
“Hey, Reece! Where are you taking Allen?” Ewing called out worriedly.
“Reece…… wouldn’t do anything to Allen, right?” Ewing asked worriedly.
“He won’t. Allen has always been looked after by Reece so Reece would know his technical characteristics and his mental state the best. Wait for them to come back, Allen will definitely be back to normal,” Montenegro patted Ewing on the shoulder.
Owen was looking up from his water at this time.
Wright sighed, “Ah…… getting hit by that ball must have hurt, right? Does he need to go to the hospital?”
Owen raised his brow and asked jokingly, “What? You’re sympathizing with him?”
Wright closed his eyes and said, “If I say so myself, I think you’re letting him off easy?”
“How much harder do I need to be? You want me to make him suffer a broken bone?” Owen said in a half joking manner.
“His self-esteem should have already been crushed by you right?” Wright shrugged. “When he jumped at that time, I really thought he would block your backhand shot.”
“How is that possible?” Owen laughed.
“Maybe next time.”
Nie Chuan, who was being dragged along by Reece, was completely unable to keep up with his pace. As Reece strode forward with large steps, Nie Chuan was practically jogging to keep up with him.
“Reece! What’s the matter with you?”
Nie Chuan felt apprehension from the bottom of his heart. He knew that the numerous times he let Owen break through his defense can really make people irritated but…… his ability is limited ah! He had just learned how to walk, they can’t just immediately ask him to jump!
When they arrived in the bathroom, Reece opened a cubicle and pushed him in.
Nie Chuan fell onto the toilet bowl and looked up at Reece in alarm.
This was the first time he saw Reece like this. He was like a mountain peak on the verge of collapsing that could crush him at any time.
Reece leaned down and both of his hands brushed past Nie Chuan’s ears to prop himself up against the wall behind him. His gaze fell down on him from above, making Nie Chuan almost unable to bear it.
“I ask you, are you afraid of me?”
Huh? What kind of strange question was this?
But Reece’s eyes were incomparably serious.
“Answer me, are you afraid of me?”
Nie Chuan swallowed and was about to lower his head when Reece used a commanding tone to say, “Don’t bow your head, look at me and tell me the truth.”
“…… I used to be very scared…… Now……”
“How about now?”
Reece’s face was very close and Nie Chuan felt his own thoughts seemed to enter through the other’s eyes and began to fidget.
“Now I’m not scared.”
“Then who do you think is better, Owen or me?”
“Ah?” Nie Chuan couldn’t understand why Reece was asking this.
“Tell the truth. If I’m better then I’m better. If he’s better then he’s better.”
Nie Chuan swallowed a mouthful of saliva and closed his eyes and considered it very seriously.
The first time Reece dunked in front of him appeared in his mind.
Then there was his figure agilely dribbling past him every time he accompanied him for practice.
As well as his double clutch layup when he faced Raven.
“I think you’re better,” Nie Chuan answered.
He had no doubt whatsoever about this answer.
Drea (previously Re): What kind of Hulk smash did Owen do to hurt NC so badly…
MadMadamMims: Reece is so intense 🥵 r u going to inspect nc alone in the toilet?