Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
Yu Chu followed him out the door anyway. He had been cooped up in the suite all day and was eager to get out for a stroll. The two chose a random direction and entered a small forest, the air was aromatic with agave and wild roses, and a few small squirrels jumped between the tall trees.
When they reached the beach, it was all clean sand, with coral reefs in the shallow sea, decorating the water in different shades of magnificent colors. Zhou Mu took the water bottle off his body and handed it to him, then took off his T-shirt, pants, shoes and socks to reveal his light wheat skin. He asked Yu Chu, “Want to go down to the water and have some fun?”
Although it was already October, the island’s climate was still similar to summer, only cooler in the mornings and evenings, and just as hot in the afternoons, and it was nice to go for a swim in the sea after walking around slightly sweaty.
Yu Chu looked at Zhou Mu’s blocky abs and the mermaid line that stretched from his belly to the edge of his black underwear. 1 He held back the envy that rose in his heart and calmly shook his head, “I don’t want to go into the water without changing into my swimming trunks.”
This was a lie. He didn’t want Zhou Mu to see his naked body since he was like a white chick. He would never go into the water until he had built up his muscles.
Zhou Mu saw that he made up his mind, so he didn’t persuade. He turned around and went into the sea.
Yu Chu went to sit under a palm tree near the beach and, using the lid of the thermos as a cup, poured a cup full of tea and sipped it, watching Zhou Mu in the sea.
Zhou Mu was very agile in the water, like a fish diving into the water, without needing to come up to breathe. Just when Yu Chu wondered if he had drowned, he emerged from a faraway place.
The sea breeze was so comfortable that Yu Chu lay back on the beach and closed his eyes. Since he was still not used to his somewhat deformed pinky finger, he laid down and rubbed the protruding joint with his thumb, and naturally, the contents of the diary he read last night came to mind.
“My hand hurts so much, it really hurts, I can’t hold a pen. He broke my finger, Mom, I’m so sad. I’m so sad. I’m so sad that my heart hurts more than my finger. I’m so sad…”
Like a flash of light, an enlightening thought flashed through his mind, and Yu Chu opened his eyes abruptly and stared fixedly at the sky.
No, this wasn’t right. If Yu Feng had broken Yu Chu’s finger, he would have felt anger or other emotions, not just sadness as recorded in his diary. The pain in a child’s heart was greater than the pain of a broken finger because the person he relied on and trusted the most had done something destructive to him.
Yu Chu’s finger was broken by Yu ShiQing.
Zhou Mu swam back to the shore from the sea and walked towards Yu Chu. His short hair was covered with water droplets, and as he walked, he shook his head. Those water droplets splashed away, some dripping down his chest and back, following the smooth lines of his muscles.
Yu Chu was sitting under a palm tree by the beach with a somber look on his face, his eyes staring at the sea. Zhou Mu was putting on his clothes and pants while watching him, and finally couldn’t help but ask, “Are you upset because you didn’t go into the water?”
Yu Chu was in no mood to talk back, just touched his pinky with a sullen face, not saying a word. Zhou Mu looked around, then picked up the thermos on the ground. He poured a cup of tea and handed it to Yu Chu, “Here, drink a cup of tea to cool off.”
Yu Chu didn’t want to take it, so Zhou Mu swayed the lid of the thermos in front of his eyes. He glanced at the turquoise tea, thinking that although Yu ShiQing was hateful, this tea was innocent, so he took it and drank it in small sips.
After drinking the tea, Zhou Mu reached out to pick up the empty lid. Yu Chu put the lid into his palm, but didn’t draw his hand back and slowly opened his hand, overlapping his suspended palm.
Zhou Mu’s palm was larger than his, holding his hand in a vague way. If Yu Chu held his hand upward, Zhou Mu could completely wrap his hand around Yu Chu’s. Yu Chu’s fingers were round and white, except for the little finger on the side, which was deformed and ugly, and a bit harsh to the eyes.
“The little fingers on both of my hands have been broken. Do you know who did it?” Yu Chu cocked his head at him.
Zhou Mu looked at his hands with downcast eyes and didn’t make a sound.
“It was Yu ShiQing who did it.” Yu Chu withdrew his hand and held it up in front of his eyes, moving a few fingers, “I forgot all about the past, so I thought it was Yu Feng, but just now I remembered a bit and realized it was Yu ShiQing.”
Zhou Mu screwed the lid back on the empty thermos and said, “Not surprising.”
“Why? He’s my real father, yet he broke my two little fingers, and you don’t think it’s strange?”
Zhou Mu said indifferently, “What’s breaking your own son’s fingers? If you don’t hand over the key and sneak off the island, you’ll have more than just broken fingers waiting for you.”
Yu Chu fell back heavily onto the soft sand, blocking the blinding light with his hands, “Does he want the key that badly? Is what Zheng Shan saved that important?”
“Of course, it’s important. It not only contains evidence of his crimes, but also involves other people. Once it’s released, what those people behind it have done will be exposed. Unless they hold the key in their hands and take that thing out to destroy it, not only your father, but other people as well wouldn’t be able to sleep in peace every day.” Zhou Mu’s voice sank down.
The corners of Yu Chu’s mouth, which wasn’t blocked by the back of his hand, curled up and he said, “Zhou Mu, you’re subtly leading the topic to the key again.” He moved his hand away from his face, half squinted against the light and looked at the figure above him, “Don’t beat around the bush, really. I really don’t remember where the key is, but when I remember, I’ll give it to you first.”
Zhou Mu asked, “Why give it to me first?”
Yu Chu lazily said, “Although you’ve been lying to my face, and you know that I know you’re lying, yet you still persist in lying. I know that, no matter what the reason is, you and Yu ShiQing are on opposite sides. Besides, what can I do if I get the key? Go blackmail him? It’s too dangerous, I wouldn’t do such a thing. Why don’t I just give you the key and let you deal with him?”
Zhou Mu didn’t retort, kind of acquiescing to his statement, and after a moment, he asked, “Then… what are your plans?”
Yu Chu closed his eyes again and rolled over comfortably, “He’s my father, he has power and hired thugs. I’m his son, who has no power, no ability, and no hired thugs, I only have a bodyguard with a hidden agenda. What could I be planning? I can only plan as I go, either you get rid of him, let me free, or, if you can’t get rid of him, I can only defect, find the key and give it to him as soon as possible. But then can he still lay hands on me? After all, I’m also his son.”
Zhou Mu couldn’t help but laugh twice, “You’re living a very realistic life.”
“That’s right. How can I survive without seeing reality?” Yu Chu said naturally.
“Mn, let’s hope that your bodyguard with the hidden agenda can make you happy soon.”
Yu Chu was about to make fun of him when he heard a few sirens blaring from the distant sea surface, and a ship was approaching. It was a small cargo ship that was heading towards the dock of Xing Yuan Island.
“Is someone coming to the island?” Yu Chu sat up and looked out with his hand on his eyes.
“No. Every few days, supplies are brought to the mansion from the shore, so I think it’s a ship that delivers supplies.”
“Oh.” The sun was already sinking in the west, hanging like a salted duck egg at sea level. Yu Chu stood up and patted the sand on his body, saying, “Come on, let’s go back.”
Zhou Mu obediently picked up his thermos and followed him.
Back on the second floor, Yu Chu stopped as if remembering something, turned to Zhou Mu and said, “By the way, my father asked me to be in charge of his birthday party in ten days. I have to go to Uncle Wu to discuss the specific arrangements, so go back to the suite first.”
Zhou Mu nodded and turned to walk towards Yu Chu’s suite, who then walked straight upstairs.
Stepping on the fluffy carpet, he reached the third floor, but didn’t stop. He looked at Yu ShiQing’s closed door, then continued to the fourth floor, then stopped at the unseen corner downstairs and quietly pressed himself against the wall.
The entire fourth floor was a vacant guest area, which was only used to stay overnight for guests who didn’t want to return to shore that day when they helds large banquets. Usually they were empty, and the maids would go regularly to clean and change the bedding supplies to keep the rooms clean.
As the sun sank to the bottom of the sea, the street lights came on around the Yu Family Mansion, but the hallway gradually fell into darkness. Yu Chu waited patiently, sticking to the wall without moving.
He suddenly remembered the words that Zhou Mu had asked him, “Then… what are your plans?”
He gave the true answer silently in the darkness, “I’ve never been at the mercy of others, nor will I leave my fate in the hands of others.”