Chapter 65: My Wings
Translated by Shiya of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
“It hurtssssssssss…! You aren’t a crab! Don’t be so harsh!! Ugh~~~~~~Xiao Yu! You~~Ah~~~~~~hurts~~~~~~I can’t take it anymore… Just eat me already, why don’t you!!! I’m not playing along with you anymore!!”
Gu Ting Yu was kneeling on one knee in front of Nian Xing at the moment; he had polished some fish bones to help Nian Xing make a prosthetic leg which could become his support.
Gu Ting Yu used to be a vet to begin with; he had done numerous bone-related surgeries on animals before, but this time there was no professional equipment, so getting Nian Xing connected to a prosthetic leg was difficult.
Nian Xing’s lower body had already started to degenerate. If he didn’t start exercising soon, then there would be absolutely no hope of walking ever again.
He had been working for the entire morning just to connect the prosthetic to the uneven stump; even though he did his best to be gentle, he still scratched and injured some of Nian Xing’s skin… Gu Ting Yu didn’t raise his head to look at Nian Xing, he knew that Nian Xing had mixed feelings about all of this.
——Meaningless complains, screaming like he wanted attention… Nian Xing tried his best to distract himself; he seemed to have grown accustomed to not having legs already…
But had he really?
“Is it done?” Nian Xing waved his upper legs a little, and the fish bone made sounds as he did so, “It hurts like fucking a seaweed. It’s also as ugly as a conch poop!!”
“Conches can poop?” Gu Ting Yu wiped away the sweat on his face and said, “Come, hold onto me.”
T/N: Of course conches can poop, the problem is how do you fuck a seaweed!?
Nian Xing kept scolding and cursing while spreading his arms to hold onto Gu Ting Yu; he stopped talking after he tried standing up while using Gu Ting Yu as support.
Gu Ting Yu knew that Nian Xing was really in pain this time.
The prosthetic pierced into Nian Xing’s flesh. His whole body was shivering in agony. Gu Ting Yu suddenly let go of Nian Xing just when the merman felt that he couldn’t stand the pain anymore.
In two seconds, Nian Xing was on the floor.
There was no laughter nor scolding. Nian Xing looked at Gu Ting Yu from the floor, and his gaze met with a pair of serious eyes.
Gu Ting Yu picked up a small bucket and walked towards the door; he turned his head back and said, “… You are too weak. I’m going to fish, get back up on your own before I return.”
“Creak” ——Nian Xing, who was lying on the floor, helplessly watched Gu Ting Yu closing the door.
After a few minutes, loud roaring exploded from the room, “I’ll fuck your sea turtle shell!! I’ll eat your conch meat!! You seaweed!! I am going to fight you!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Gu Ting Yu leaned on the outside of the door and quietly listened, his pitch-black eyes reflected the dull blueness of the world.
He listened to Nian Xing’s cursing, listened to him falling down again and again, he also listened to the sharp sound of fish bone hitting each other… Eventually, he clenched his fists and decisively left.
The round moon hung high on the veil of the night, and the ocean had returned to its usual calmness. Gu Ting Yu’s bucket had a few half-dead fish floating on the surface; he sat down on the platform below the tower, not wanting to go back just yet.
Maybe it was because he didn’t know how to face the handicapped Nian Xing, but more importantly, he was afraid that he would pity him.
To most people, “pitying” meant sympathizing, it was a word filled with emotions and kindness. But to Gu Ting Yu, pity was a sharp and invisible knife, it could stab through a person’s dignity.
Back when Gu Ting Yu was still a vet, he had saved numerous injured animals.
He treated them, comforted them and hugged them——the only thing he didn’t do was showing pity.
From his perspective, all life in this world that had a soul was equal, and as such, they did not need unnecessary pitying.
Being handicapped wasn’t equal to weakness; he didn’t want Nian Xing to think of himself like that.
Gu Ting Yu had the bucket in hand, and while walking up the staircase, he couldn’t stop wondering how Nian Xing was doing.
Will he be standing? Will he be lying down?
Will he have a victorious smile on his face, or will he be cursing my strictness?
Gu Ting Yu hesitantly opened the small white door, and was surprised by Nian Xing——
Nian Xing lifted his head, his eyes sharp like that of a hawk. He was standing in an extremely straight posture, with his entire lower body encased in thick ice.
[Freezing Technique] ——A kind of water element magic which freezes water solid in an instant.
“!!!!” Gu Ting Yu ran towards Nian Xing as fast as he could; he didn’t know for how long Nian Xing had had his legs in ice, but the cold temperature would cause less blood to flow to that area, and the muscles in his legs might die after prolonged exposure to the cold.
Nian Xing’s lips had turned purple; he pushed his lips together in an attempt to stop his shivering. Wiping the snot below his nose away, he said with laughter, “Now you know how great and awesome I am… Hahahaha~~~”
“…” Gold light glowed in Gu Ting Yu’s palm, easily melting the strong ice.
“See~~~Worship me! There’s nothing the king of fish couldn’t do~~~Hahahaha…”
“Hahaha……Hey, say something, hey!”
Gu Ting Yu remained silent; Ming Lei’s powers only melted the ice, and the high temperature it was emitting was not suited to warming up an ice-cold wound. He examined the horrifying state of the point of connection between the legs and the prosthetics. Blood-stained pieces of ice dropped onto the floor.
He extended his arms to hug Nian Xing’s legs, they felt even colder than the snow. Gu Ting Yu held Nian Xing’s legs close to his chest, using his own warmth, using his heart, using the most primitive method to warm Nian Xing.
Nian Xing suddenly felt a large amount of pain.
His numb legs could feel Gu Ting Yu’s heart beating strongly, the pain was as if thousands of fine needles piercing into his cut legs, piercing through flesh, blood vessels, muscles and bones. The pain finally subsided once his legs were all warmed up and sensation returned.
Nian Xing collapsed onto Gu Ting Yu’s chest, panting heavily. Gu Ting Yu patted his ginger hair kindly as he murmured, “… are you crazy, did you not want your legs anymore?”
“I haven’t wanted them for a long time, it has nothing to do with you, you seaweed!”
“Because of you I will have to take the prosthetic off and reconnect it.”
“…” Nian Xing’s face instantly turned pale.
Gu Ting Yu wanted to lift Nian Xing up and bring him to his shell, but met with Nian Xing’s fierce protests. The merman ended up crawling back to his shell by himself while cursing the prosthetics, as they made crawling on the floor harder than before.
On the opposite side of the room, Gu Ting Yu was boiling water to cook the fish he caught. Even if Nian Xing refused to eat his brethren, it didn’t mean that Gu Ting Yu had to suffer from an empty stomach, after all.
Seeing the figure of Gu Ting Yu working hard in the room, Nian Xing randomly picked up painting tools and started sketching on a piece of scroll; he casually outlined Gu Ting Yu’s foolish-looking face.
He added a sea turtle shell-shaped hat on Gu Ting Yu, then proceeded with drawing a beard made of seaweed on his face, and as the finishing touch, he drew himself riding on top of Gu Ting Yu’s back. The Nian Xing in the picture was looking up at the sky, laughing in victory, and Gu Ting Yu had tears all over his face.
“Humph, I dare you to say that I’m weak again…” Nian Xing murmured under his breath. In reality he didn’t want to use the freezing technique to encase his own legs.
He wanted nothing more than Gu Ting Yu to see him standing upright when he came back in through the door.
When Nian Xing was depressed, he’d droop his eyelids and stare at the floor, and his messy but long eyelashes could be seen; when he was confident, his eyes would glow brightly, he’d look straight ahead, and his strong smile could be seen.
Though no matter if Nian Xing was happy or not, he always looked annoyed and kept complaining. Even seeing Nian Xing fall and get back up again over and over, Gu Ting Yu never once helped him with that. Nian Xing also never asked for Gu Ting Yu’s help.
Nian Xing painted wings on the little fish, but whether they could fly or not depended entirely on the little fish itself.
The thing Gu Ting Yu and Nian Xing needed to do everyday was to climb the spiral stairs down, and then up again. Nian Xing would basically just roll down the stairs in the beginning. On the way back up, each time Gu Ting Yu ascended five more steps than him, he would turn back and look at Nian Xing smiling as if saying, “You are so weak, so weak…”
No matter how much Nian Xing was hurting, he would jump up like a cat whose tail got stepped on whenever that happened, and he’d hold onto the railings and lean on the walls to keep walking.
Finally a day came when Nian Xing could stand up straight without any support; Gu Ting Yu just smirked a little and lightly complimented Nian Xing, “Not bad.”
Nian Xing smugly replied, “Ha! Now you know how great I am!”
The two of them leaned on each other under the tower that night. Nian Xing was using his fingertips to skim the water… Gu Ting Yu frowned; Nian Xing seemed to long for the ocean, but to fear it at the same time.
“Why won’t you go for a swim?” Gu Ting Yu asked.
Nian Xing retracted his hand from the water immediately, and clenching his fists, he replied, “I didn’t ask about your past, so you shouldn’t ask about mine either.”
“Me?” Gu Ting Yu stretched his body lazily while yawning, “The important thing isn’t my past but the fact that I’m not certain if I have the strength to keep going ahead.”
Nian Xing was suddenly in a great mood, so he turned back to look at Gu Ting Yu, “Well, you have legs, so why don’t you keep on walking ahead—no matter what the future may have hold for you?”
You have legs, so why don’t you keep on walking ahead?
Seeing that Gu Ting Yu became oddly quiet, Nian Xing waved his hand and said, “Oi, what are you daydreaming about? Ugh… whatever, I’ll tell you since I’m just that awesome. The reason that I won’t go into the sea is that… I’m afraid of drowning.”
Gu Ting Yu lifted his head—what did he just hear?
A merman was afraid of… drowning?