Chapter 12: Stubbornly Tangled
I heard footsteps. It was especially clear late at night in the hospital.
My heart couldn’t help but speed up. I was hopeless. It has already been ten years, and we have seen each other so many times. Why was I still so nervous whenever I thought about him?
I still felt bewildered when the door violently opened. My Luo Yuchen stood outside the door panting, staring straight at me.
We stared at each other.
It had only been half a year. We were just a few meters apart, but many things have changed, and it felt like a lifetime had passed.
I wanted to smile, but my face was too stiff. I couldn’t control it well.
I could only stare at him greedily.
He had thinned down by a lot. Some of his bones were visible through his skin. But nevertheless, his eyes were bright. His gaze shone full of yearning and joy.
I thought he would rush forward to hug me. However, he only stood outside the door, not daring to step forward.
He looked at me unblinkingly, his head full of thoughts as he hesitated to come in.
Then, I realized that he was actually afraid. He was slightly trembling. He looked at me, trying his utmost to read something in my expression.
He was waiting for my response… He actually didn’t dare to come over before receiving a clear signal from me…
I laughed. Where was the proud and arrogant Luo Yuchen who always had me in his grasp?
I was no longer the same person from half a year ago. Even if I still was, how could I possibly hate or ignore him?
He was firmly rooted in my life, growing on my flesh and fused with my blood. If he was pulled out, I would die along with him.
We have already missed out on so much that it was almost irrecoverable.
Yet, this idiot still had the audacity to feel afraid and hesitant.
Why did he still hesitate at a time like this?
Luo Yuchen never did anything that made me satisfied.
What else could I do? I could only submit to fate and take up this responsibility.
Luo Yuchen still looked at me with an expression I’ve never seen before. His face showed an amount of confusion combined with yearning, grievance, hesitation, and sorrow.
I smiled and opened my arms towards him.
Despite that, he still didn’t rush over to my side like I imagined. Instead, he took unsteady steps towards me. As if he had forgotten how to walk, he stumbled over like a penguin.
It was only a few meters of distance, but he took a good amount of time before finally stopping before my bed. He stretched out his hand, wanting to touch me but shrank back again.
My heart ached.
Was he afraid that he wouldn’t be able to touch me? That I would disappear into nothingness like before?
I wouldn’t. Never again.
I grabbed his hand tightly and pulled it to my neck.
Can you feel it? It’s warm with a pulse that is beating for you.
Luo Yuchen, I miss you so much.
It’s strange isn’t it? I have been by your side all this while. Yet, I still miss you very much.
His fingers were ice cold and trembling.
I think that I could warm them up. From now on and into the far, far future.
Then, I pulled him over and hugged him tightly.
Although my body was still difficult to control after not moving for half a year, there was no problem hugging him.
He was finally willing to relax and hug me as he called my name desperately.
“Xiao Heng, Xiao Heng, Xiao Heng, Xiao Heng…”
He was a singer after all… His voice was so pleasant to hear. My extremely common name sounded so heavenly with his voice.
I also foolishly replied to all of his calls.
It was the warmth that I could hug and the two hands that I could grasp. My Luo Yuchen.
It was wonderful. It was so wonderful.
I played with the hair that reached his ears. I was hugged so tightly by him it was becoming difficult to breath.
I was enjoying this extremely tight hug when he suddenly let go. Instead, he grabbed me as if grabbing a chicken. With reddened eyes, he asked me fiercely, “You won’t disappear again suddenly would you?”
I shook my head desperately.
He remembered. He remembered everything.
I must have made him suffer after disappearing right before him. I felt very remorseful. I had no idea how he lived after that day.
Staring at his thin, languished face, my heart ached.
He didn’t believe me and continued holding on. He studied me from top to bottom, as if checking merchandise for any missing corners.
I couldn’t help but laugh, saying, “Luo Yuchen is a fool.”
What a useless thing to say. There were so many wonderful, loving words to say at a moment like this, why did I pick the most tasteless one?
“Yes, I’m foolish.”
On the contrary, Luo Yuchen went along with me and admitted to it, his head lowered as he spoke.
A moment of silence.
My shoulders started to hurt from his hold, so I took his hands in mine and held them in my grasp.
Then, I noticed that his wrist had a bunch of hideous scars.
I was stunned. How could I not be familiar with this pair of hands? The hands that I have admired for the past ten years had always been slim and clean, white without a single blemish.
Luo Yuchen wasn’t a good owner. Every good thing that lands in his hands would all end up greatly damaged.
The scars that have suddenly appeared thoroughly destroyed the thing I have been meticulously taking care of for so long.
“What are these?” I bellowed, heart aching.
Please don’t let it be what I think it is. Please don’t let it be what I think it is…
I only have one scar on my left wrist. Although it was ugly, it has already been six months and only a light scar was visible.
However, the scar on his wrist is still protruding sinisterly.
I don’t believe it. It won’t be what I think it is. My Luo Yuchen isn’t so foolish…
He didn’t say anything. All he did was bury his head onto my shoulder and ignored everything.
I looked towards Fang Xieyi. I was directly facing him, while Luo Yuchen’s back was to him. Using his right index finger, Fang Xieyi made a cutting motion on his left wrist.
I cried out involuntarily and hugged Luo Yuchen tightly.
“Luo Yuchen, what did you do?”
Luo Yuchen hugged me back tighter without raising his head.
I pushed him away forcefully and held up his wrist. His eyes were still red as he looked away stubbornly.
He didn’t cry, always being able to force himself to act strong.
There are so many scars. Just how many times did he do it?
“You hurt yourself because of me?”
There are so many scars. What if you died? What if I woke up and ended up finding you dead? Are we going to reenact an old play like Romeo and Juliet?
It’s so beautiful yet scary, serious yet absurd.
Fear overwhelmed me, entangled like a spider web, making me unable to breathe.
“Luo Yuchen, how could you do this?!” I bellowed at him.
How could you do this? What have you done to my most important and cherished Luo Yuchen?
“Why can’t I do it when you can?!” He finally looked straight at me. Feeling more injustice and fear than me, his reply was fiercer than mine, “Why should I live on when you’re dead?!”
What kind of logic is this? Why can’t you live on when I’m dead?
I didn’t save you from that ice cold lake just for you to try and commit suicide afterwards!
Of course I knew that you would feel hurt, sad and regretful. You would have always remembered me, the one who died.
However, although it may be selfish of me, I saved you hoping that you will live well and happy…
Nevertheless, I can no longer reproach him.
I know it’s useless trying to criticize Luo Yuchen now. Once he feels that he is not wrong, he will continue to feel this way. Feeling that he doesn’t need to live on if I’m not around, a feeling that lingers no matter what.
Luo Yuchen has always been so stubborn…
I’m unable to correct him. I can only bear with him, with his stubbornness, persistence and his nature to mask his inner vulnerability with a tough shell.
He really can make someone feel angry, distressed and helpless.
Fortunately, it didn’t result in a grievous mistake.
Thankfully, heaven decided to have mercy on us and gave us another chance to restart. He is still in my embrace, he can still laugh and cry, he is still breathing and his heart is still beating.
It was so difficult to achieve…
Let him continue being cold, arrogant and stubborn.
Anyway, he has always been this way when I liked him.
It’s already a luxury that I can restart.
I have always been very greedy, but now I’m very satisfied.
I pulled on his sleeve. In the end, he had still won me. Seeing me back down, he also stopped being haughty, continuing to bury his head on my shoulder obediently.
“Luo Yuchen, I missed you so much.” I spoke softly into his ears, “I missed you. And, I love you…”
How unfair. It has always been me saying this.
It was me who said it last time, but he ignored me.
Now, it was still me who was saying it. However, he was sobbing so much he couldn’t say it.
I suddenly felt that I’m losing too much in this. I’m saying it so kindly to him. In the end, I’m going to end up in the palm of his hand again.
I’m really making a loss, being with Luo Yuchen.
Forget it. There’s still a long time. I will force him to say it back to me a thousand times.
I feel that I’m doing much better than before. I can deal with Luo Yuchen slowly. I will let him off for today.
The next day, Luo Yuchen was feeding me hot buns he’d just bought when Xiao Lu, who heard the news, came over with breakfast he’d made with love. The two of them stared at each other with hatred for a long while before Xiao Lu snatched away the bun in Luo Yuchen’s hand, scorning, “Xiao Heng has just woken up and you’re already feeding him junk food? How inconsiderate.”
Then, beauty Lu came before me and opened the breakfast he made with a bright smile, saying, “I’ve cooked you a nutritious breakfast and even woke up early in the morning to brew you soup. Try them while they are still warm.”
Luo Yuchen stared blankly at the bun that had been snatched away from him. He was about to rage, but shrank back like a deflated balloon after he saw the appetizing breakfast made by Xiao Lu. He sat on a chair by the side with a cold face and didn’t say anything.
“What are you looking at?” Feeling Luo Yuchen’s resentful stare, Xiao Lu rolled his eyes imposingly and said, “Would you be able to make it?”
The breakfast was carefully prepared, comparable to five-star restaurant standards. How is it possible for Luo Yuchen, who can barely take care of himself, to prepare it? The disparity between the two of them made me feel like laughing.
“I bet you can’t make it.” Xiao Lu sneered. Ignoring my insistence that I can eat by myself, he held the spoon and started feeding me with a smile, saying, “In this world, a man that can’t cook isn’t a good man. In the future, I’m in charge of feeding Xiao Heng.”
Saying so, he took the spoon and waved it before Luo Yuchen, who was grinding his teeth in anger. Then, he looked back at me and said with a loving smile, “What do you think ,Xiao Heng? I’m better right? When will you abandon him? I will be your substitute…”
Luo Yuchen obviously received a huge blow, but was unable to retort. He’s been grinding his teeth for a long while in anger, said hatefully, “Isn’t it just cooking? I can learn.”
Xiao Lu gave him a disdainful glance and showed a malicious smile. Sarcastic words were about to flow out from his mouth like an unending river.
Xiao Lu usually wouldn’t mock others. However, once he wanted, he could use more than five languages to scold the person to the point that the person would regret being born.
At this moment, Fang Xieyi leisurely appeared outside the door. When Xiao Lu’s sight fell on him, he changed his line of fire. Putting down the breakfast box, he bellowed, “Fang Xieyi, you still dared to come?”
Right. Fang Xieyi, you still dared to come.
After Luo Yuchen and I’s entanglement last night (A pure and simple one, do not think about the wrong things. A hospital is a public space), we didn’t forget to question the main culprit, Fang Xieyi, about his heinous crimes. Unfortunately, Xiao Lu couldn’t make it to the first round of questioning. Now that Xiao Lu knew he had been tricked with such an unfunny joke, he was ready for a fight when he saw Fang Xieyi.
Seeing fox Fang fleeing frantically out the door, I thought in my heart that an evil person will have their retribution and can never escape from the crimes they have committed.
On the latter half of last night, I learned about what happened during the one month I was sleeping after leaving Luo Yuchen.
The blow Luo Yuchen suffered was huge. When I suddenly disappeared after saving him from the lake that night, he was unable to believe what he saw, and he went to question Fang Xieyi again. However, Fang Xieyi still told him that I was dead.
Luo Yuchen asked what it is that he saw if I was dead, to which Fang Xieyi replied with a gloomy smile that it was probably my spirit and asked if Luo Yuchen wanted to visit my grave to pray.
After seeing it for himself and confirming the harsh, unbelievable truth, Luo Yuchen couldn’t take it and did the same foolish thing as me.
Fortunately, Xia Mingxiu went back to take something and found him in time.
Afterwards, Luo Yuchen was basically crazy when he was in the hospital and continued doing the same thing again.
As I listened, I didn’t dare imagine the despairing scene. I only hugged Luo Yuchen tighter.
Of course, Fang Xieyi quickly learned about the fact that Luo Yuchen attempted suicide. Not wanting to lose a life, he ultimately told Luo Yuchen that I was still alive but not yet awake.
I listened to Fang Xieyi’s casual explanation of what happened and looked at Luo Yuchen’s scars and haggard appearance. I was feeling very moved in the first half of the night for having such a selfless brother who dotes on me. However, I was so close to murdering my brother in the later half of the night.
Fang Xieyi also knew that he had gone overboard, so he let me reproach him for the whole night. However, it was completely meaningless. Not only did he not admit to his mistake, he continued sowing discord. He argued that if Luo Yuchen hadn’t been so heartless before, I wouldn’t have attempted suicide. If I didn’t attempt suicide, he wouldn’t have gone with the flow and lied. If Luo Yuchen hadn’t suddenly realised his own mistakes, he wouldn’t have done that foolish act. All in all, he concluded that everything started and ended because of Luo Yuchen, it was all Luo Yuchen’s retribution..
I have already finished sharpening the knife used for killing the fox, ready to purge all evil regardless of family amidst Fang Xieyi’s endless talking. This time however, it was Luo Yuchen who was magnanimous and asked me to let it go.
Right now, the magnanimous beauty Luo was sitting in front of me, hesitating whether to continue feeding me the bun he bought or the nutritious breakfast made by someone else.
He thought over again and again. In the end, he frustratedly chose the breakfast made by Xiao Lu and started feeding me slowly.
He was still feeling frustrated with his head lowered even after I finished eating. He looked so cute, I couldn’t help but lean inr for a kiss.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t effective in relieving him from his depressed mood.
“What are you thinking about?” I stretched out my hand and rubbed his hair into a bird nest after seeing his gloomy expression.
Finally, he asked softly, “It was you that night… right? The one who pulled me out of the lake…” His knuckles were turning white from him clenching his fist.
I didn’t know how to answer. This kind of thing is very bizarre. If I hadn’t experienced it myself, I wouldn’t have believed in such things either. Thus, I tried sounding him out, “Do you believe it?”
“In what? Your spirit?” Unexpectedly, Luo Yuchen jumped up from his chair and grabbed my shoulders strongly, sounding a little fearful.
I didn’t know what to say. Is Luo Yuchen scared of spirits?
Seeing my silent acknowledgement, he fell back on his chair. Then, he laughed and said, “Why is my life not in your hands? Your resentment is so strong your spirit came out of your body…”
He sounded like he was laughing, but he looked like he was about to cry.
I also knew this wasn’t something funny. My deep obsession to such a point has frightened Luo Yuchen.
Very quickly, Luo Yuchen stopped laughing. He stood up and grabbed me again, saying gloomily, “Next time, you’re not allowed to miss me so much. You’re not allowed to like me so much. You’re not allowed to think that I’m the most important.”
Why is he once again not allowing me to like him?
I have no idea what he was trying to get across, so I confessed blankly, “But… it has already become a habit…”
Luo Yuchen felt especially helpless when he heard me.
“You’re not allowed to!” Nevertheless, he was still insistent with his point. He shouted in exasperation, looking similar to the Luo Yuchen I’m extremely familiar with, who in the past only knew how to resort to violence when it comes to me.
“What are you doing?!” Coincidentally, Xiao Lu came in through the door. What else could he think of when he witnessed this scene? He rushed in immediately and pushed Luo Yuchen aside, looking like a hero ready to fight the evil dragon, and kept me behind himself protectively.
Luo Yuchen was pushed aside towards the wall, his expression an indescribable mix of viciousness and injustice.
I suddenly understood what he meant. He wanted me to stop neglecting myself because of him.
This was what he meant with all his confusing “not allowed” talk.
Both him and I are not good at expressing our feelings, even a normal conversation requires shouting. If we don’t listen intently, we wouldn’t understand.
He was afraid. He was thoroughly frightened by my resolution and me not cherishing my life.
“Fang Xieyi, you said that this fellow has repented. Why doesn’t it seem so to me?” Xiao Lu was very hostile. He looked towards Fang Xieyi, who was leaning on the door with messed up hair and clothing, and said, “I looked away for a second and he is bullying Xiao Heng again!”
Not knowing how to explain himself, Luo Yuchen looked at me uneasily.
What are you looking at? I know you said it out of concern. I won’t blame you unjustly.
Don’t look so wronged, like a little wife.
All I remembered was me pulling Xiao Lu lightly with a smile, asking him to let it go.
Then, I don’t know what happened.