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Chapter 42: Master He’s Visit


On our way back, we were caught by a thunderstorm.

Chu Yuan Jiang’s waist always ached on rainy days, and the pain started again on our way. As soon as I parked the car in the garage, I rushed indoors with him on my back.

His body had not collapsed over the recent two years only because it had been supported by a goal. But I felt that energy had somehow drained from his body, leaving only a shell of muscle. He might have seemed energetic on normal days, but he was, in fact, weak inside.

Out of the corner of my eyes, I saw a hint of an umbrella amidst the rainstorm as I opened the door in a rush.

I didn’t have time to think about it, and rushed to prepare warm water in the bathtub for Chu Yuan Jiang before stripping off his clothes and carrying him to the bath.

He let out a long sigh, his eyes narrowing as he relaxed in the rising steam.

I sighed too. “Look at you. Running around all day while your body is in this kind of condition? How can I stop worrying? Is this a job from that Xiong guy again?”

Chu Yuan Jiang laughed, “Haha, I need to make good use of my body and work as much as possible while I am still able to……”

I poured a handful of water over his head, and he shook his head like a giant puppy, splashing it all back in my direction. Then, suddenly, he wiped his face as if he had just remembered something. “Was there someone in the yard just now?”

I paused for a second, feeling he might be right. “I will check.”

Once I looked carefully out of the window, to my shock, I saw He Ling standing outside in the storm. He was ramrod straight, and, despite holding an umbrella, drenched up to his chest.

When I recovered my senses, I grabbed an umbrella and went out to invite him in.

Because his short, wet hair stuck to his forehead, he looked even colder and more grim than usual.

The freezing wind pressed his wet clothes against his chest and blew them out like a sail behind him, but he didn’t seem to feel cold at all. He just stared at me expressionlessly.

“Master He, what brings you here? Come in and have a cup of coffee.”

He Ling shook his head. “My car is right there. Come with me.”

I hesitated. “Master He, Yuan Jiang is still inside. His body has been paining him today and he needs my attendance. I can’t leave right now. Do you mind waiting inside instead?” As I talked, I tried grabbing his arms to guide him in.

He avoided my hands subtly, but did as I asked nevertheless. “Fine. I have a question for you once you are done.”

I led He Ling inside and brewed him some hot coffee. Once I was sure he was seated comfortably next to the heater, I went back to finish taking care of Chu Yuan Jiang.

I gave Chu a massage in the upstairs bedroom, made him some ginger soup, and waited as he drank it before going to bed. When I finally came back down, smelling of herbs, He Ling was blankly staring at his empty cup.

As I walked closer, I saw his clothes had been dried by the heat, but he still seemed frozen to the core. I apologized humbly, “I am deeply sorry for making you wait for so long… Do you wish to leave right now?”

He gave me a cold glance. “Is he always like this?”

I smiled apologetically, “He has back problems and we were caught in the rain just now. If we do not manage this carefully, he will need to lie in bed for at least a week.”

His eyes darkened. “I will just ask you some questions right here.”

I sat down across from him, nodding with sincerity.

He Ling lowered his eyes, lost in thought for quite a while, before asking abruptly, “Do you wish to hear news about Lin Ye?”

I was shocked. Hesitatingly I asked, “Does he know that I am here?”

“I have not told him.”

I couldn’t quite figure out what He Lin meant by that answer. I tried to hide the storm in my heart under an indifferent smile. “I will pass. It’s all ancient history.”

But He Ling’s gaze seemed unfocused, drifting away with his thoughts. “It was from Lin Ye that I first heard about you.”

Noticing my dazed face, he continued. “He saw me with Peter once, and asked me to do him a favor and pass some information to you. Only after we got familiar through that encounter, we started to collaborate.”

I was a bit stupefied, realizing the ‘favor’ he mentioned was related to the time when Xiong Xi Liang told me about the stories on his balcony[1]. I was at a complete loss that time, running around City B like a headless fly.

But… Lin Ye was actually looking for a chance to cooperate with He Ling at that time?

And the key to reach He Ling was me?


Footnotes:

[1]This event took place in Chapter 13


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