Chapter 46: –I’m not going to give you a hard time tonight, so I’ll ask forgiveness when you’re not angry. I’m sorry.
Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
Cao Yuan was covering his face and playing with his phone while trying to laugh but unable to hold it in. He was forced to eat a melon and watched the sparks of Xiao Ke’s predecessor and incumbent collide, which was quite enjoyable.
He secretly sent a message to the group under the table, [Our Old Zhou drank a jar of vinegar. The old cucumber is soaked enough to become a pickled cucumber!]
Lin An slightly raised his chin and stared at Zhou Zui before he looked at Cao Yuan, who did not even look up as he did not care. He finally knew that he had wrongly matched them up just now.
Zhou Zui also looked at him with his hand pressed against Xiao Ke’s glass, and he had no intention of letting him drink that glass. He pushed Xiao Ke’s hand away and brought the glass to his side before he mildly asked, “How do you want to drink?”
Lin An shook his head and pulled a smile as if it didn’t matter before he said, “I won’t drink with you.”
Zhou Zui said directly, “If you will not drink with me, then please go back. Professor Xiao’s stomach is not good since he has a weak stomach. It is inappropriate to ask him to bear the pain and accompany you to be reckless for a while. I don’t know who you are. You can make him drink this wine even if it hurts him, but I can’t. I won’t. I don’t want to.”
Zhou Zui’s voice was low while every word struck a nerve, and Lin An was holding his own glass of wine while slightly shaking. He did not talk to Zhou Zui again, but his eyes kept falling on Xiao Ke. His eyes were heavy and looked very painful and sad. His closest and most familiar person had now become someone else’s, which was like poking a knife into his heart, a poke that created a bloody hole.
Xiao Ke sat in the middle. While no one was looking, his hand gently shook Zhou Zui’s leg under the table as he took advantage with this small touch to silently coax his person.
In the end, Xiao Ke was not really able to do something that desperate and would not embarrass others in front of people as he would always give them three points of face, not to mention that this person was Lin An.
While the cause of their separation was due to him, in the end, he did not really hurt their relationship. Xiao Ke was grateful that he told him when he had an idea, rather than wait for everything to become a fact before begging for forgiveness. At least he was honest from the beginning to the end.
Xiao Ke would not embarrass him too much as that was not in his character, and it was not necessary.
Thus, Xiao Ke finally smiled and stood up to take an empty glass before he poured himself a full glass with Zhou Zui’s wine. He turned his head and said to Lin An, “Mr. Lin, I never owe anyone, you know that. You said that I owe you a glass, consider this the last thing that had not been cleared between us. Then, let’s finish everything with this drink today.”
Xiao Ke pulled the corner of his mouth and continued, “You are older than me, you took care of me in every way. I sometimes did not know what to do, thanks to Mr. Lin for treating me well in those years. After this glass of wine, we are completely clear, I don’t owe you anything, and you don’t owe me anything.”
Xiao Ke knocked on Lin An’s cup that was too full and spilled some wine. Xiao Ke pursed his lips as he looked solemn and serious when he said the last two sentences in a voice that only they could hear, “I will say the same thing, I wish Mr. Lin a prosperous future and a great career. From now on, we are not really related. You are you, and I am me.”
As he drained the glass, he held Lin An’s glass down to not give him a chance to drink again, because if he drank again, then he wouldn’t be able to pay back what he owed.
Lin An’s hard feelings were written on his face as he looked at Xiao Ke, and his eyes contained so many emotions with extremely red eyes that people couldn’t bear to look at them. The expression in Xiao Ke’s eyes also fluctuated as it was impossible for a person not to be touched. Xiao Ke put down his cup and patted Lin An’s shoulder as he laughed and said, “Don’t drive if you drank, call a chauffeur.”
This was the end of the conversation, how could Lin An not understand? He nodded and finally gave Xiao Ke a deep look before turning around and walking away. The pace was neither fast nor slow while his usual temperament was always there.
Xiao Ke let out a long breath and sat down. In his case, the past had already been turned over, and it was expected that after today, Mr. Lin could also turn over the page.
After solving one issue, there was another. Xiao Ke had not complied with Zhou Zui’s intention, which must have made Mr. Zhou’s heart feel uncomfortable. However, only Xiao Ke could do that as Lin An was an outsider and Zhou Zui was his lover. His lover would go home with him while he would think of ways to coax him, but he could not rely on his lover to really lose face in front of an ex.
Xiao Ke looked up and saw Old Cao smiling as he looked at him with an expression of watching a play. Xiao Ke also couldn’t care less about him and poured himself another glass of wine before he said to Zhou Zui, “This glass is for my Teacher Zhou as an apology. Don’t be angry with me, I am at fault.”
Before he could pick up his cup, Zhou Zui held his cup down and his jaw tensed up in a sexy line before he said in a deep voice, “No need to do this with me.”
Xiao Ke’s heart felt very tender as he knew that Zhou Zui had really taken what he said to heart, and he also knew that Mr. Zhou had been aggrieved, which he was to blame for, but he really couldn’t help it. Xiao Ke said seriously, “I need to use the same method. I have to coax Mr. Zhou even more when he is angry.”
“I’m not angry.” Zhou Zui first said this with a cold face, and then did not make a sound. It took more than ten seconds before he suddenly frowned and asked, “The same as who? I’m the same as him?”
Xiao Ke hadn’t reacted yet, but Old Cao happily let out a “pfft” from the opposite side. Xiao Ke hurriedly shook his head and said, “Not the same, not the same, I didn’t mean that.”
Cao Yuan lowered his head and changed the group name to ” You guys are not the same.”
The two of them had never experienced a problem like this since they had gotten together, and Zhou Zui had never been angry with him so Xiao Ke didn’t want to upset him about Lin An, which he shouldn’t have. Xiao Ke felt sorry for Zhou Zui, who had been in a good mood today, but it was obvious that he was in a bad mood because of this.
Xiao Ke wanted to say something else, but Zhou Zui took Xiao Ke’s glass of wine and drank it along with the glass he had previously taken from Xiao Ke before he bowed his head and said, “I said, feel free to toast whoever you want, I’ll take it, I’ll drink it for you.”
At that moment, Xiao Ke’s nose felt really sore as strong emotions came up so he had to turn his head away to calm the strong throbbing and sore nose.
Old Cao made a joke at the right time and asked Xiao Ke, “Is it true that all of you intellectuals have to write a poem before drinking? I almost sang it just now.”
Xiao Ke snorted out from his nose, and his voice was muffled as he said, “Well, that’s how we PhDs drink.”
After seeing enough of the commotion and eating enough melons, Old Cao naturally said that he was full and wanted to go back. The three people had been drinking so they called a chauffeur to take Cao Yuan home first before they went back to Zhou Zui’s place. Zhou Zui didn’t make a sound from the beginning to the end of the car ride and silently looked out the window without changing his posture.
When he got out of the car, Xiao Ke clutched his hand and shook it with a smile, “Don’t be cold-faced, Teacher Zhou.”
Zhou Zui shook his head and said, “Not cold-faced.”
Zhou Zui said that he was not angry, but he did not say anything and had no expression on his face. After changing clothes, he went to take a shower without talking to Xiao Ke before he went into the shower, and he did not even look at him. Xiao Ke’s heart felt a little hardened and a little powerless as he now did not know exactly what to say to make the atmosphere feel less heavy.
Zhou Zui’s shower took quite a long time. He stood in the shower room against the wall as the hot water on the glass lay a full layer of steam that spread more into water droplets which flowed down.
Zhou Zui stared at the water droplets while feeling somewhat empty and did not know what he was thinking.
He came out with already changed clothes that were a black short-sleeved shirt and shorts. Xiao Ke usually liked to see him dressed this way. The room was a little too quiet, and Zhou Zui felt that something was wrong. He searched back and forth but did not see Xiao Ke which made him really confused. He quickly took out his phone to call and ask, but there was a message from Xiao Ke.
[My heart, I’m not going to give you a hard time tonight, I’ll apologize when you’re not angry. I’m sorry.]
Zhou Zui was immediately dumbfounded and panicked. He dialed the phone number directly, but it could not be reached.
Zhou Zui frowned and did not even think about pushing open the door nor did he even think about changing shoes.
He had opened the door too quickly, so his abrupt halt was very stuttering. He didn’t even have the time to erase the panic from his face.
Xiao Ke had a cigarette in his mouth and was looking at him with his back leaning against the elevator door while his shoulders were slumped and he looked very disheveled. From the time he met him until now, except for the first day in the bar, Zhou Zui had never seen Xiao Ke in this state.
Professor Xiao was always full of energy with laugh-filled eyes which were very dashing.
Zhou Zui closed his eyes and went over to take the cigarette out of Xiao Ke’s mouth before he held the person in his arms. Xiao Ke inhaled his body’s smell of laundry detergent, which was a faint fragrance.
“Scared the hell out of me.” Zhou Zui let go of him while his hand was still clasped behind his neck and rubbed it twice heavily before he spoke in a very muffled voice, “Where do you plan to go? Still smoking?”
“I’ll just stand and wait,” Xiao Ke said with a slight smile. “If you see the message and come out for me, then I can’t let you not find me. As long as you come out, I’ll be here. If you do not come out, then I will go home and buy flowers tomorrow to coax you. I just grabbed the cigarette from you, I’m not in a good mood.”
Zhou Zui closed his eyes, and for the first time, he spoke to Xiao Ke in a ruthless voice, “Why are you trying to scare me? What’s the point of leaving me here, leaving me behind? I’m old, Professor Xiao. Don’t scare me anymore.”
“No, ah, I am worried that if you see me, then you’ll be even angrier…” Xiao Ke bit his lip. “I feel guilty.”
There were red spots brewing from under Zhou Zui’s eyes, and he opened his mouth several times but did not say anything before he finally hugged Xiao Ke a little tighter. The words he said were deep, “I’m sorry, I did not control my emotions. I really wasn’t angry, I was just jealous at the time, but later on, I was thinking about something else. I’m sorry, Professor Xiao, I look terrible, I let you misunderstand.”
Xiao Ke really didn’t want to leave. He hadn’t been there for a week so who would really want to leave?
There were fortunately only two households on this floor while the one on the other side of the hall was empty; otherwise Xiao Ke would have been a bit embarrassed to make this scene. After he returned, Zhou Zui said to him, “Professor Xiao, in the future, no matter what the problem is, you can say it. Even if there is something that I am really angry about, do not leave. Besides, I have nothing to be really angry with you about.”
Zhou Zui began to talk seriously about love again, and Xiao Ke could not stand this. Xiao Ke laughed out loud and rubbed Zhou Zui’s head while saying, “I know, baby. I really frightened you. Let me pet you on the head to take away the fright.”
Zhou Zui hugged him as he buried his face into Xiao Ke’s shoulder, and his heart sank a little. It was true that he was in a bad mood just now, but it was not because of Lin An since such a small thing would not make him so persistently depressed.
Zhou Zui thought that Lin An was normally non-existent so he still felt congested when he saw him, but what about Xiao Ke? He had a history like that so what was Xiao Ke’s mood like?
He couldn’t even sleep in the same bed with Xiao Ke as of now. He had been hiding this matter, but what if Xiao Ke knew?
Professor Xiao was so proud, and Zhou Zui felt very sorry for his pride.
Thus, he did not dare to look at him just now as his heart felt very weak.
He kept himself buried there without saying anything or making a sound so Xiao Ke couldn’t help himself but to laugh, and he asked him, “Why are you pouting?”
Zhou Zui closed his eyes and said after a while, “I have something to say.”
“Hmm?” Xiao Ke’s fingers flicked his ear. “Say it.”
Zhou Zui had never wanted to hide anything from Xiao Ke.
He wanted to tell him everything, and Xiao Ke deserved all the honesty that he could get.
That night, Zhou Zui sat next to Xiao Ke and slowly spoke about his plight while each sentence was very torturous. It was hard to say that when he closed his eyes, he would confuse the people around him, and that reality and illusion were twisted together. He said that he couldn’t close his eyes at all, that he couldn’t even breathe whenever he closed them.
He knew Xiao Ke was very mindful of the shadows left by the past. It was so hard to say, but it all came out anyway.
Xiao Ke was unexpectedly very calm after listening to it, and his expression didn’t even change as he simply asked him softly, “Then why did you just say it now?”
Zhou Zui said, “I don’t want to talk about it, I don’t want to put you in the same space as another person, I’m afraid you wouldn’t be comfortable.”
“There is nothing uncomfortable, and since I have decided that I am ready to accept this, you should have told me first.”
Zhou Zui let out a hmmm and said after a while, “Let me find a doctor.”
“A psychiatrist?” Xiao Ke raised an eyebrow. “Have you ever been to one before?”
“Yes.” Zhou Zui was honest and said directly, “It’s useless.”
Xiao Ke laughed, “Then we won’t look.”
Zhou Zui looked at him, and Xiao Ke came over to kiss him on the lips. He looked him straight in the eyes and said, “I told you before, with Professor Xiao around, I’m not afraid of anything. Professor Xiao will protect you. Leave it to me.”
Xiao Ke is so badass about his break up!
I get why XK did what he did, but also get why ZZ felt peeved about it; it was a no-win situation.
Lin An only had himself to blame; too little too late. Imagine your partner asking you to let them marry someone else (and worst, in this case, which doesn’t need explaining) and wait for them, but be available in the meantime. Ummm… no.
Thanks for translating and editing.
These 2 are so sweet❤️ it’s good and healthy to share feelings of doubt, fear, and past pain. It makes a path to a future together as 1. I love their love. Thank you for all your work translating ❤️
Why don’t people give up when it’s hopeless? Sometimes it’s scary to start over, but it can also be exciting as you learn to stand on your own two feet again.