Translated by Rara of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
In the office, Zhou Du was sitting on his chair with his eyes fixed on the computer, but his mind was lost in the thought of meeting Xia Yao this weekend.
He felt a bit regretful; why did he let his mouth slip and ask to meet Xia Yao this weekend, making himself unable to focus on work these past few days?
When Friday night arrived, Zhou Du became agitated. He had the house cleaned inside out just for Xia Yao’s arrival.
Yet, it wasn’t Xia Yao who showed up—it was Wang Hao.
When Zhou Du saw Wang Hao standing outside his door with his suitcase, he wanted to close the door and pretend he hadn’t seen anything.
The man in front of him was making a sour face, pitifully looking at Zhou Du. Zhou Du raised his eyebrows and stood aside to let him in.
As soon as he came in, Wang Hao threw his luggage into the living room and then lay dead on the sofa.
Zhou Du picked up and put down his suitcase to the side. Then he came by Wang Hao’s side, kicked him and asked, “What is it this time? Are you running away from home after making a scene?”
Wang Hao held a pillow in his arms, irritated, “Zhang Yang had the gut to yell at me, I don’t want to be with him.”
Zhou Du nodded, “It’s fine. Take your time to pack your stuff. I’ll book a ticket to H City for you.”
Wang Hao looked at Zhou Du in surprise, then shamelessly said, “I’m not going back. Zhou Du, you are my childhood friend, right? You must get Zhang Yang to apologize to me. Otherwise, I’ll stay at your house forever.”
Zhou Du lifted up his eyes and coldly glanced at him, “Let me tell you this, you should hurry up and go back to him as soon as possible. If Zhang Yang yelled at you, it must mean you have done something to drive him into a corner.”
“What did I do? It was just simple dinner with a girl my mom introduced to me! How dare he climb all over me over such a simple matter like that? It’s not like I said I wanted to marry that girl, how dare he pull a long face to me!”
Zhou Du frowned. He kicked Wang Hao to the side and sat down beside him.
“You haven’t settled it yet?”
“How can I just settle it?” Wang Hao drooped, saying gloomily “I feel terrified whenever I see my father, I don’t have the guts to tell him.”
Zhou Du said, “So, what you want to say is that you have decided to listen your parents and want to marry a woman?”
Wang Hao bit his lips, Zhou Du also didn’t urge him to answer. After a while, Wang Hao shook his head, “I don’t know. I don’t want to think about those things at all…”
“How long are you going to keep being an ostrich? Today it might have just been a dinner to reassure your mother, but tomorrow, are you going to marry her just to reassure your parents?”
t/n: ostriches allegedly bury their heads into the sand to avoid predators. It’s just a myth, but the phrase is still being used to describe the act of cowardice. The real reason why ostriches stick their heads into certain holes in the ground is that they’ve got their eggs hidden in there and are making sure the eggs are alright.
“I am not…”
Zhou Du put his hand on his knees, slowly said, “How would you feel if Zhang Yang was the one having dinner with a strange girl right now and discussing a future marriage?”
“I–!” Wang Hao jumped up from the sofa and clenched his fist.
Zhou Du looked straight at him, “So why do you ask for Zhang Yang’s blind acceptance of things you can’t even accept yourself?”
Wang Hao sat down again, thinking about Zhou Du’s words.
Zhou Du raised his chin and said, “You should call Zhang Yang to apologize right now; go back and have a talk with him.”
“Me… apologize to him?” Wang Hao stared at him in disbelief.
“I won’t apologize to him, I….” Wang Hao’s ears were slightly hot, “Can you help me call him and say that I’m going to stay with you for a few days? And then… let’s see what he’ll say.”
Zhou Du shook his head and sighed in his heart. He knew Wang Hao’s personality so well, he knew Wang Hao wouldn’t admit his fault easily, so he had no choice but to agree; he took out his phone to call Zhang Yang.
It took a while for the other person to pick up the phone. Zhang Yang said “hello” in an icy voice.
Zhou Du slightly furrowed his eyebrows, Zhang Yang’s side seemed a bit noisy.
“It’s Zhou Du.”
“Wang Hao is here with me.”
Zhou Du paused for a moment, but Zhang Yang didn’t respond to it. So, Zhou Du continued, “He said he want to stay with me for a couple days.”
Wang Hao perked up his ears, his nails sunk into the sofa.
“I see.” Zhang Yang asked in a flat tone, “Is there anything else?”
After Zhou Du hung up, Wang Hao quickly asked, “So, what did he say?”
“I don’t know,” Zhou Du said to him as he stuffed his cell phone back to his pocket. “From the noise I think he must have gone out to play; it seems he has no intention to ask you to go back.”
“What?” Wang Hao jumped up from the sofa instantly. “Is that what he really said?”
Zhou Du’s tone was impatient, “You are already an adult, is it that shameful to admit your mistake? Do you want to feel regret later when Zhang Yang finally breaks up with you for real?”
“Break, break up?” Wang Hao wide opened his eyes in disbelief.
Zhou Du looked at him and said nothing.
“No, I must ask him thoroughly.” Wang Hao quickly took out his phone and called Zhang Yang.
Zhou Du stood up and went back to his room, intending to let Wang Hao and Zhang Yang to have a private moment.
Wang Hao anxiously waited for the call to connect. After several rings, the other finally picked up.
Wang Hao swallowed his saliva nervously, intending to open his mouth before Zhang Yang.
However, the person on the other end of the phone remained silent. Wang Hao could only hear the deafening music coming from there.
“Where are you?” Wang Hao could not help asking.
Zhang Yang casually answered, “At the bar.”
Wang Hao took a deep breath. Good for him, going to a bar as soon as Wang Hao left.
Zhang Yang didn’t hear Wang Hao say anything, so he opened his mouth, “Is there anything else? If not, then I will hang up.”
“Wait a minute!” Wang Hao could not help blurting out: “I’m at Zhou Du’s house, you, you don’t want to say anything?”
Zhang Yang chuckled, “Is there anything for me to say if you want to stay at Zhou Du’s?”
After a moment of silence, Wang Hao said, “If you apologize to me, I’ll go back.”
Zhang Yang seemed to find Wang Hao’s words ridiculous. He laughed at the phone and said, “I apologize to you?”
Wang Hao went silent.
Zhang Yang continued: “You can stay there with Zhou Du. Also, I don’t think I have time to keep up with you for the meantimes. I have something to do right now so I’ll hang up first.” After that, he hung up on his own initiative without waiting for Wang Hao’s response.
Wang Hao was stupefied at the hang up screen and felt panic for the first time.
What did Zhang Yang mean? Did he not want him anymore?
Meanwhile, Zhou Du was sitting in his room, chatting with Xia Yao via Wechat.
“When can I pick you up tomorrow?” Zhou Du asked.
After a while, Xia Yao answered him, “In the afternoon. I’m going to take YangYang for vaccination in the morning.”
Ra: Anti-vaxxers right now: no Xia Yao you didn’t D:<
Zhou Du responded quickly, “Then I will accompany you in the morning.”
“No need,” Xia Yao refused. “It’s very nearby, just at the local community center.”
“But I want to see you,” Zhou Du couldn’t help himself from making such reply.
He stared at Xia Yao’s “…” typing icon, his palm was sweating nervously.
Then, he heard two knocks on his door. Wang Hao was standing outside, sobbing, “Zhou Du, Zhang Yang, he wants to break up with me.”
Zhou Du put his cell phone aside and opened the door.
“What happened?” he asked, unconvinced.
Wang Hao then told Zhou Du in details about the call he had just made to Zhang Yang.
Zhou Du stared at Wang Hao, “So? How do you feel right now?”
Wang Hao remained silent while anger flashed across his face.
“If you can’t solve your parents’ problems, you and Zhang Yang will break up sooner or later. Maybe right now he is trying to let go of your hand slowly before he find his next partner.”
“What?” Wang Hao was shocked. He looked at Zhou Du helplessly, “What am I going to do now?”
Zhou Du shook his head to show that he is out of option.
“My suggestion is that you should go back now and apologize to Zhang Yang. Otherwise, it will be too late if he has his mind sorted out and wants to break up with you.”
Wang Hao’s eyes were flustered, “You’re right.” He stood up quickly and got ready to leave.
Zhou Du grabbed him and said, “It’s late, I will drive you home.” He picked up Wang Hao’s suitcase beside the wall and followed him downstairs.
When he returned Wang Hao to Zhang Yang’s house, he realized that his phone was still in his room, and he was still in the middle of chatting with Xia Yao.
After Zhou Du came home in a hurry, he opened Wechat and saw Xia Yao’s reply.
“I miss you too.”
Zhou Du couldn’t help but smirk.
Xia Yao probably didn’t wait for Zhou Du’s response, as he asked another question below.
“Are you still there?”
Zhou Du quickly replied, “I was so excited that I went outside and ran a few laps.”
After a few seconds, Xia Yao sent a short voice message. When Zhou Du opened it, he heard Xia Yao’s sleepy laugh, “I just sent YangYang to bed and almost fell asleep.”
Zhou Du was lovestruck by Xia Yao’s sleepy voice. His throat went dry, as he also replied with a voice message.
“Yao Yao, let’s video call.”
Zhou Du waited for Xia Yao’s reply for a long time. When he was about to write something, an unexpected request for video call from Xia Yao came.
Zhou Du’s hand shook in excitement, so much that he accidentally hit the hang up button.
He called back in a hurry, and Xia Yao picked up very quickly.
The man’s familiar face suddenly appeared in front of him. Zhou Du felt regret instantly. He shouldn’t have accepted Xia Yao’s video call, because this type of feeling when one could only see his favourite dish but not eat it was really a torture.
Xia Yao had just gotten out of the bath; a few strands of hairs gently fell down to his forehead, making him look younger and innocent.
Zhou Du smiled at his wife, asked, “Have you taken a bath yet?”
Xia Yao nodded, he moved his phone a little bit farther, showing his pajamas, “Yeah, just got out of it.”
Zhou Du’s heart was thumping so hard that he couldn’t stop his finger from stroking Xia Yao’s face across the screen.
“Do you know what I really want to do right now?” Zhou Du asked in a hoarse voice.
Xia Yao shook his head and asked, “What do you want to do?”
Zhou Du looked in Xia Yao’s enchanting eyes, he lowered his voice and slowly let out two words in a seductive tone.
Xia Yao’s face suddenly turned red.
Zhou Du smiled shamelessly, “What nonsense, I really, really want to do you. Can I?”
Xia Yao was startled; he lowered his voice, put his phone near his face and said, “Keep your voice down.”
Zhou Du took the opportunity to kiss the screen and said, “Good night, my wife, see you tomorrow.” Then, the video cut off.
He looked down at his ‘little brother’ and muttered, “You shameless boy.”
Then he grabbed his pajamas and went into the bathroom.