Translated by J.
After saying goodbye to the punctual little kitten who knocked at his window every day, Doctor Xuanyuan continued reading a medical journal at his desk.
As the clock slowly ticked away, by the time Xuanyuan put down his medical journal, the hour hand had struck eleven – a time when silence and stillness prevailed. Since his brain had been highly engaged, Xuanyuan was not tired at all. He did a big stretch and leaned back into his swivel chair. The lilies in the small garden outside his study were in full bloom, and their fragrance wafted in gentle waves into the study through the half-open window.
I should go for a stroll in the garden… Xuanyuan mused as he got up.
Since it was July, the days were horribly humid. But the night breeze, dampened by dew drops, was refreshing to the touch. Xuanyuan took a few deep breaths before following the fragrance of lilies into the garden.
As a man of excellent taste, the doctor’s small garden had been exquisitely designed. The cobblestone paths divided different types of flowers into patches of vibrant colour, while garden benches were placed between the season’s blooms, allowing visitors to rest their feet and admire the flowers at the same time.
Following the scent of nearby blooms, the doctor circled a tree branch heavy-laden with blossoms, then turned a corner, before glancing up towards the flower patch brimming with lilies…
Laying on the garden bench next to the lilies, was a person.
Wearing the doctor’s old clothes, he tucked one arm under his head, while resting his other arm defensively across his waist, tightly gripping a dagger. The veins on the back of his hand were visibly raised and the muscles in his forearms clearly tensed, as if he remained highly vigilant, even in his sleep. Under the starlight, the diamond blade of his dagger reflected a dazzling shine.
The lilies formed a snow-white circle around the intruder on the bench, their crisp green stalks hanging low from their heavy blooms. Swaying in the breeze, crescent-shaped shadows of the light grey blossoms projected onto Dugu’s pale face. The fragrant flowers and moonlight unexpectedly bestowed a sense of innocence and fragility onto his handsome, yet cold complexion. Perhaps due to the loss of blood, his lips were almost a pale pink, looking especially supple.
Due to having nowhere else to go, Dugu spent the past few nights in the doctor’s garden like this. Since it was a private residence, he did not have to worry about the police or Huangfu bodyguards searching the place. Plus, it was convenient for changing his dressing and…
Xuanyuan stilled as he listened to the maddening rhythm of his pounding heartbeat.
Then, as if possessed, he slowly walked towards Dugu. He tread as carefully and quietly as he could, but as he approached Dugu, he accidentally stepped on a flower stalk that had fallen onto the cobblestone path. With a squish, the fragrant juices from the stalk diffused into the night air.
“What do you want?!” Dugu woke up with a start. In the blink of an eye, the sharp blade of a diamond dagger swiftly pressed against Xuanyuan’s throat.
Gripping Dugu’s wrist with one hand, Xuanyuan gave a low chuckle. The tips of his brow shot up as he teased, “Be careful, that’s dangerous.”
Realising it was Xuanyuan, Dugu softened his hold on the dagger, but still retained the same posture. He coldly asked, “What are you doing here?”
Xuanyuan looked straight into Dugu’s eyes and replied earnestly, “If you have nowhere else to go, you can stay with me for now. It won’t help your injuries if you catch a cold.”
Dugu slightly narrowed his eyes as he retorted, “Do I look like the type of person who will catch a cold?”
Xuanyuan smiled amicably, “And there are lots of mosquitoes in the garden.”
There were indeed many mosquitoes in the garden!
Despite not being able to feel pain, Dugu could feel itching just fine. There was no lack of mosquito bites on his exposed neck and hands these past few days. Every morning, he would wake up to a number of dead mosquitoes around him, which had all frozen to death after drinking his blood while he slept.
“Come with me.” Xuanyuan blinked as he released his grip on Dugus’ wrist, then rubbed his hands for warmth, “You can stay in the guest room at my place. While I’m at work, you’ll have the place to yourself during the day.”
Once again, the vet tried to lure the little kitten home with treats…
Dugu coldly asked, “Do you have any idea who I am?”
“I do.” Slightly cocking his head, Xuanyuan smiled handsomely, “You’re my patient. You have nowhere to go and you need help.”
Dugu paused for a moment, then bit out through clenched teeth, “I’m the Guild Master of the Buried Love Assassins’ Guild.”
Xuanyuan revealed an expression that said he had understood perfectly, “So I’ve heard.”
“I’m an assassin.” Dugu’s expression was so cold that it was almost scary, “I don’t feel pain and I can’t laugh. I’m an orphan. The last Guild Master brought me back to the guild and trained me in various ways of killing from a young age. I’m a monster whose hands are soaked in blood.”
Ha, now that you know who I am, aren’t you going to tuck tail and run? Idiot.
Threatening to attack the vet, the small kitten bared its sharp little claws and fangs, as if trying to convince him that it really was a super-duper ferocious beast!
Xuanyuan quietly listened to Dugu speak, then recklessly tousled Dugu’s hair as if he had suicidal tendencies. He asked, “So?”
The vet indicated that he was not afraid!
Dugu was stunned and speechless. He asked in disbelief, “You’d let a killer move in with you? Aren’t you afraid of me?”
Xuanyuan calmly asked, “Are you going to kill me?”
Dugu opened his mouth with effort, but apart from a humph, he did not manage to say anything else.
Of course not, idiot.
After successfully interpreting the meaning of Dugu’s humph once again, Xuanyuan gracefully shrugged, “Then why should I be afraid of you?”
Dugu had nothing to rebuff him with.
“Come.” Xuanyuan extended his hand towards Dugu. Large patches of unopened hibiscus flowers swayed behind Xuanyuan in the breeze. Brighter than moonlight, the edges of his crisp white shirt also fluttered in the wind, as if his whole being had just stepped out from the frosty moonlight.
In Dugu’s eyes, the flower buds behind Xuanyuan seemed to have instantly bloomed.
He’s such a moron for wanting me to move in with him! Ha, why do such idiots even exist in the world? Dugu strived to suppress the emotions roiling within him, emotions that had formed a warm current at risk of breaking free from his eye sockets. Xuanyuan’s silhouette, which almost carried a soft glow, could be seen from the reflection of Dugu’s stone cold, obsidian eyes.
I feel almost…warm… thought Dugu. In an almost trance-like state, Dugu slowly withdrew the diamond dagger from Xuanyuan’s throat.
Watching the hand Xuanyuan had suspended in mid-air, a hand that seemed to be waiting for something, Dugu clumsily extended a finger and brushed it against Xuanyuan’s palm as a sign of goodwill. Then quickly withdrawing his hand, he coldly replied, “Hmph. Since you’re not afraid to die, then lead the way.”
Although Dugu’s tone was cold, he could not control the corners of his lips curving up slightly, betraying his true feelings.
Like a stone-cold vessel, Dugu carefully carried his emotions inside without revealing even a single drop onto his face. However, once the vessel was filled to the brim with tenderness and joy, his emotions would overflow in the form of a smile. It was completely outside of Dugu’s control.
Xuanyuan saw through this, but kept it to himself. He turned around and led the way back to his home. He urged while he walked, “Please use the front door from now on, I’ll give you my spare key.”
Enticed by the vet’s patient coaxing, the proud little kitten finally reached out its fleshy little paw and touched the vet’s palm. Then wearing a super-duper ferocious expression, it followed the vet home, not realising that its little tail was pointing straight up in the air, revealing the joy it felt inside.
So, the assassin and the doctor began living together.
Dugu moved into the guest room that Xuanyuan tidied up especially for his respite. Xuanyuan did not have amazing cooking skills, and he usually ate at the hospital or ate out, but he did have a very useful skill – making soup. While Dugu recovered, Xuanyuan made all kinds of soup for the both of them. To Dugu, although drinking soup was more like eating salty shaved ice, but due to the rich nutrition the soup provided, combined with his unusual constitution, his wounds healed very quickly.
When Dugu left his room for a bath that night, Doctor Xuanyuan mischievously placed a cute fluffy teddy bear on Dugu’s bed, and changed his pure white linens to ones with welcoming warm colours…there were even small floral prints on his new pillowcase.
As for Dugu, bathing was not a particularly pleasant affair. While other people enjoyed their warm showers, Dugu must continuously break off the icicles that formed on various parts of his body. While other people dried their bodies with a towel, Dugu must use a small hammer to break open the thin layer of ice around his body, then shake it off. While other people soaked in their steamy, relaxing baths, Dugu was confined to the centre of a cracked, frozen bathtub, completely unable to move.
But one must wash himself, even if he did not enjoy it…
When Dugu came back to his bedroom after his bath, he immediately saw the teddy bear that someone had left on his bed. He paused for a moment, then angrily threw the toy out of his bedroom with a hmph.
However, a minute later, Dugu’s bedroom door silently cracked open. A slender arm reached out from the gap. Grabbing the teddy bear by one foot, the toy was quickly dragged back inside the bedroom.
Never having owned a single toy growing up, Dugu sat cross-legged on his bed and pressed the button on the toy’s belly with an impassive face.
The teddy bear began to sing a childish nursery rhyme.
With a cold, stony expression, Dugu pinched the teddy bear’s ear, then rubbed its face.
A faint blush appeared over Dugu’s pale face, “Hmph!”
What a silly piece of junk! How boring!
The small kitten saw a toy in its brand-new cat bed and haughtily kicked it out of the bed with its little paw. But before long, the kitten sneakily grabbed the toy in its mouth and dragged it back to its bed, then began playing with it!
The wily vet could not help but quietly chuckle as he watched from the shadows outside the door.