It took Wen Bai a long time to process what had just happened when Wen Qing phoned him saying that he was going to come find him.
He was completely immersed in a half-awoken state. He was scared that this was all a dream, yet he was also frightful that he would soon wake up from it.
He continued to feel unsettled right up until Wen Qing sat in front of him.
Wen Qing clearly looked slightly exhausted after his trip.
“Wen Bai, I have a favour to ask.” Wen Qing pulled his lips into a thin line.
“Lend me three million dollars and I’ll pay you back in the future.”
“Did something happen?” The were hints of worriedness beneath Wen Bai’s eyes.
“No, I’m helping a friend.”
Wen Bai lifted the corners of his lips and laughed as he wrote a cheque right then and there.
Wen Qing reached out to grab it only for Wen Bai to grab onto his hand, “What friend is so important that you’ve come to ask me for help?”
“An adopted sister.”
“Sister?” Wen Bai laughed in a joking manner, “Are you guys really close?”
Wen Qing felt slightly uncomfortable inside as he nodded his head with a frown.
“You don’t have to return the money. Let’s just say that it’s my thank you gift to them for helping me look after you for three years.”
Wen Qing remained silent as he waited for Wen Bai to continue.
“Wen Qing. Three years, it’s been long enough.” Wen Bai gazed at Wen Qing’s face and knitted his brows, “You can’t punish me with his mistakes.”
Wen Qing met Wen Bai’s gaze with a dull expression, “Then what do you want me to do?”
“Can’t you give me a chance?”
“Sure, why not.” Wen Qing faintly smiled, appearing to be indifferent, “I would never have imagined that I would be worth three million dollars. Why not?”
Wen Bai remained silent for a long time.
“Wen Qing, do you believe that my heart will soften if you degrade yourself like that? Wen Qing, it’s already been three years. I should’ve changed by now.” Wen Bai reached out and caressed Wen Qing’s face, full of sentimental affection, “Do you know? I wouldn’t even be content with just waiting. One must always create their own opportunities.”
Wen Qing’s body stiffened.
“Wen Qing, I sometimes feel tired too.”
Wen Qing felt sorrowful for some unknown reason.
He retrieved the piece of paper from Wen Bai’s hand. It was so heavy that Wen Qing didn’t dare lift his head up.
Wen Qing returned to the hotel and lay down on the bed.
He blankly stared at the ceiling with his eyes wide open.
These things were were too heavy and he couldn’t carry the burden himself. Wen Qing turned his body over.
His phone ringed. It was a call from Han Wei.
“Thank you Wen Ge! My dad just called me!”
“Called you for what?” Wen Qing felt somewhat confused.
“Huh? My dad told me that your friend has already helped and paid back the debt.”
Wen Qing glimpsed at the cheque on the bedside table, “My friend?”
“Yeah. They said that they were a good friend of yours for ten odd years.” Han Wei sensed that something was wrong with Wen Qing’s tone, and so continued on to ask, “Wen Ge? Is something wrong?”
Wen Qing frowned, “No. I just didn’t think he would be so quick.”
Han Wei laughed, “Wen Ge is such a nice person, even your friends are so loyal!”
Wen Qing remained silent for a while before saying, “Okay, the problem is solved now. I’ll be staying back to have some fun for a few more days.”
“Okay! But I need to get paid for overtime work if I help you keep an eye on the shop!”
“Okay, okay.” Wen Qing randomly said a few more words before ending the call.
A good friend of more than ten years?
Wen Qing lifted the corners of his lips. His ten odd years were all spent entangled together with Yan Han, so how could he possibly have any good hearted friends?
Haha. Friends. Wen Qing’s smile was full of self mockery.
Wen Qing found time to return the money to Wen Bai.
When faced with Wen Bai’s questions, Wen Qing merely said that the situation had been resolved and so the money was no longer needed.
Wen Bai didn’t inquire any further as he gazed at Wen Qing with a forced smile.
“That’s fine. Wen Qing, would you rather shut yourself off from others until you die than be willing to rely on someone else?”
Wen Qing’s eyes were slightly out of focus. He heard Wen Bai sigh.
“If you get tired of it all, then come and find me. I’ll wait for you.”
Wen Qing shook his head, “Your life belongs to you and you alone. I wouldn’t dare drag anyone else with me.”
“Yet you drag that Yan Han with you?”
Wen Qing lit up a cigarette in slight irritation.
“How could I possibly want to drag him with me? I don’t even have enough time to escape. You should find someone as soon as possible. Don’t stay single anymore.”
“You’ve never listened to my words either, so you don’t have to worry about me.”
Wen Qing pinched out his cigarette and turned around to leave.
The pouring rain outside felt like shards of ice.
Wen Qing stayed and waited at the hotel for three days before he took initiative and phoned Yan Han.
“What do you want?”
“Did you ask the same question when you went to find Wen Bai to lend you money?”
Wen Qing coldly laughed, “You’re a good friend of ten odd years, how could I compare you to Wen Bai?”
Wen Qing discovered that his patience was wearing thin when it came to Yan Han.
Back then when they were living together, he could still feign ignorance about his affairs and greet him with a smile despite having to see him everyday. Yet, now that he hadn’t seen him for such a long time, his patience hadn’t accumulated a single bit. Instead, he said whatever came to mind with bitter sarcasm.
“Why can’t it just be that I simply wanted to help you?”
“Ha, do you even believe that yourself?”
Yan Han asked in reply, “Didn’t you say I was selfish?”
Wen Qing smoked his cigarette, unwilling to continue the conversation.
Yan Han didn’t say anything either and remained silent.
Wen Qing listened to the sound of Yan Han breathing and felt irritated for some unknown reason, “Just what do you want? I’m going to hang up if you don’t say anything.”
Yan Han merely asked Wen Qing a single question, “Do you think I ever loved you?”
Wen Qing didn’t reply.
Yan Han faintly laughed softly, “I’ve recently been constantly thinking about this question. I thought about the twelve years we’ve been together for and I can’t even be sure of the answer myself anymore.”
“I think I’m pretty selfish too, but Wen Qing, come back.”
Wen Qing held the cigarette between his fingers and took a long drag as he squinted his eyes, “Okay. I’ll come back.”
Wen Qing could almost feel Yan Han’s joy through the phone.
Wen Qing hung up with no sentimental attachment.
People. Are they not all such self-humiliating bastards?
He had to completely wreck the feelings he had harboured for more than ten years before he was willing to give up, and it just had to be in the name of something like love too.
One did not bring such things with them upon birth, nor could one take it with them past death’s door, and so he could ruin it however he liked. Didn’t he obtain three million dollars in the end anyways?
Wen Qing laughed.
His mind felt itchy and painful, as if it was being pricked by needles.
And it cut at his convulsing heart.
Wen Qing returned to that place.
The place he had once lived in and called home for twelve years.
Wen Qing told Yan Han that he wanted to take a trip back to County S.
Yan Han quietly gazed at Wen Qing, “Do you have something you need to go back and grab? There’s no need for such trouble, I can just buy it for you.”
Wen Qing shook his head. “I’ve already made a promise with you. Are you still scared that I’ll run away?”
“Yes.” The other man nodded his head honestly.
“I won’t run away.” Wen Qing held a cigarette between his fingers and took a drag, “My shop is still back there. I need to hand it over to Han Wei and leave her with a few words.”
Yan Han met Wen Qing’s eyes. Upon seeing the persistence in the other’s eyes, Yan Han took a step back, “Okay. I’ll go together with you.”
Wen Qing smoked his cigarette and nodded his head.
When Han Wei saw Wen Qing, her lips formed a huge smile, “You’re back, Wen Ge?” She then saw the man standing behind Wen Qing and gasped in surprise.
Wen Qing looked at Yan Han and then at Han Wei, “What?”
“Do you two know each other, boss?”
“Yeah, what’s the matter?”
Han Wei tilted her head and laughed, “This customer comes to our shop almost every Saturday to buy two serves of tiramisu. So it turns out that he was looking after your business.”
Wen Qing nodded his head carelessly before he made his way upstairs to his bedroom,
Yan Han stood outside the bedroom door.
Wen Qing lifted his head and took shot him a glimpse, “Why aren’t you coming inside?”
Yan Han laughed, “I still remember that you don’t like other people randomly coming into your room.”
“I’m not so finicky. Come in.” The corners of Wen Qing’s mouth lifted into a cold smile.
Back then when he first got together with Yan Han, there was one time when Yan Han went to have a look at his rented house. He toured him around all the rooms except for his own bedroom,
At the time, Yan Han had hugged him from behind and asked, “Why aren’t you showing me your bedroom?”
He had frowned and said, “I don’t really like other people going inside.”
In the end, Yan Han still stayed over and slept in his bedroom. Later when they acquired their own home, he never thought of buying a place for himself.
The current situation… ha… it felt like it had become some sort of respectful charity work. Or perhaps even ingratiation?
Wen Qing packed up a few items. He searched through the cupboard for some stuff such as bills and contracts.
Yan Han stood to the side and sized up the room,
There were only simple necessities. It was so simple to the point where it seemed sort of destitute.
Yan Han looked at the bed.
It was a double bed, yet there was only one pillow.
Would Wen Qing also wake up in the middle of the night like he had for the past three years and begin to stare blankly at the empty bedside?
Was there ever a split second where Wen Qing wanted to return to his side?
Wen Qing finished packing his stuff and looked at Yan Han, “You can just sit here and wait. I’ll go downstairs and talk over a few things with Han Wei.”
Yan Han raised a brow, “I can’t listen to it?”
Wen Qing’s eyes were filled with raw irritation, “I’ve never seen you be so meddlesome three years ago. You can sit and wait if you wish, if not, then you can leave.”
Yan Han remained silent and rubbed his nose before awkwardly taking a seat.
Wen Qing ignored him and went downstairs to find Han Wei.
He handed Han Wei the pile of stuff in his hands.
“Wen Ge?” Han Wei was slightly confused.
“I’m just coming back for a visit today. I’ll be leaving shortly. Here, take these things and help me look after the shop.”
“Then when are you coming back?”
Wen Qing lit a cigarette, “I don’t know.”
“You don’t know?”
“I paired up with some other people to go on a budget travel around the world. I might even die on the road.” Wen Qing breathed out a mouthful of smoke.
“Don’t say stuff like that Wen Ge.” Han Wei glared at Wen Qing, “Tell me your card number so I can pay you back the money in installments.”
“That can wait until later. I’m not desperate for the money. You should slowly start to save up.”
“Just give me your card number. Who knows, maybe you just so happen to need the money I transfer into your account while you’re travelling.”
Wen Qing used his free hand to stroke Han Wei’s nose, “Silly girl, I wasn’t the one who lent you the money. That friend of mine is not short on cash, so we’ll talk about this when I come back next time. You just need to keep an eye on the shop while I’m away.”
Han Wei lifted her head up and looked at Wen Qing, “Will you come back?”
Wen Qing laughed and ruffled Han Wei’s hair, “Are you seriously hoping for me to die on the road?”
As he spoke, Wen Qing heard Yan Han coming down the stairs.
Wen Qing looked at Han Wei and smiled, “Dear, you have to take good care of yourself when I’m away, and get yourself married as soon as possible.”
Han Wei’s face turned red, “I know! We’ll see about that after you come back alive first!”
“What are you two so excitedly chatting about?” Yan Han walked over to them with a smile.
Wen Qing’s smile faded slightly, “Nothing. It’s getting late now, we should leave.”
Yan Han lifted the corners of his lips and nodded.
Han Wei gazed at the back of Wen Qing’s figure as he walked out of the door and suddenly felt anxious.
She shouted loudly, “Wen Ge!”
Wen Qing halted his steps and turned back to look at her. Yan Han stopped as well.
“You’ll come back, right?”
Wen Qing didn’t reply and merely laughed. It was as though Han Wei had asked an unnecessary question.
Yeah, hadn’t she already asked him once before?
Of course Wen Ge was going to come back.