Early in the morning, Su Beimo’s phone was fully charged and lit up with a green power full indicator.
Su Beimo stretched his waist, his body ached, and his muscles and bones were tight after having not exercised for too long because of working. He yawned and reached out for the phone subconsciously. After watching the broken screen for a long time, he didn’t feel abrupt.
Just as soon as he turned it on, his phone jumped out with a lot of unread messages and seven missed calls like magic.
All were from Liao Nanqing.
[I’m looking for you in City B and waiting for you at the gate of your community. ]
[I’m here. ]
[When I called you, you didn’t answer, reply when you see the message, I’m worried.]
[It’s eleven o’clock, isn’t the dinner party over yet? ]
[Actually I bought a cake today, if you don’t come, I might not be able to resist eating it. I didn’t eat dinner and I’m too hungry.]
[Su Beimo? ]
[It’s almost twelve o’clock, I wish you a happy birthday here first. ]
[It’s late, why are you not coming back, I’m so worried. ]
Su Beimo did not even wash his face, dragging a pair of flip-flops and running downstairs.
Many old ladies in the community had just finished their morning exercises and came back in pairs. Su Beimo walked back and forth a few steps, eyes skipped those passers-by, panicking while looking for Liao Nanqing’s figure. But a night had passed, where was Liao Nanqing. He saw a white cake box on the ground not far away, recalling the message he had just seen, he hurriedly walked up, and once he bent down, he saw a card pressed under the ribbon.
The cleaner not far away rushed over with a straight face: “This is mine!”
Su Beimo drew out the card, and without refuting the cleaner, he opened this birthday card.
He couldn’t be more familiar with Liao Nanqing’s handwriting.
It was neatly written: Su Beimo, wishing you a happy birthday and a cheerful life every day.
At the end, there was a smear of ink that was accidentally smudged.
Liao Nanqing came last night, he saw Qiu Lu and misunderstood.
Su Beimo was like being splashed with a tub of ice water in a cold winter month, he was completely awake. He couldn’t care less and immediately called Liao Nanqing with his broken cell phone, but no matter how he called, it showed that he couldn’t get through. Su Beimo booked the ticket at nine o’clock, but he could not calmly wait until nine o’clock to go back. Su Beimo directly packed his things and went to the station to change to an earlier train.
An hour and a half, when did it ever get so long?
He still called Liao Nanqing’s phone number over and over again, but the other end seemed to be silent.
Su Beimo was anxious, his right cheek was slightly red, and there was still a slight palm print. Su Beimo touched the screen of Liao Nanqing’s number again, but it didn’t work. He dialed again, beeping——
His heart begged Liao Nanqing to answer his call countless times, and he even worried that something happened to Liao Nanqing. Unknowingly, Su Beimo broke out in a cold sweat, he wiped his forehead carelessly, his head was swollen. Apart from calling, he could not find any way to reach Liao Nanqing now.
The phone was their only contact; he could not find him, he could only keep dialing Liao Nanqing’s number, seeking a trace of peace of mind from the beep of the phone.
Finally, the call was connected.
Liao Nanqing looked like he had been woken up, his voice hoarse and low, and he was very depressed.
“Nanqing.” Su Beimo happened to have just gotten off the train, and the noise around him was so loud that he couldn’t hear Liao Nanqing’s words. He walked briskly to the far side and asked anxiously, “Where are you?”
Liao Nanqing was stunned, and it took a long time to answer with a heavy nasal voice: “At home.”
“What’s wrong with your voice? Are you sick? Wait, I’m coming over.”
“No, no need!” Liao Nanqing choked on himself and coughed a few times, unable to even speak, “No need to come over…”
However, Su Beimo had already hung up the phone in a hurry.
Liao Nanqing put down the phone and wrapped the thin blanket tightly around him, his throat filled with fire.
The wind blew for so long last night, it was weird not to get sick. Liao Nanqing went there suddenly, wearing thin clothes and got cold all over when he got home. He slumped in bed to make up for his sleep, and felt too uncomfortable at the back, so he rummaged through the cupboard to find some cold medicine to drink. He remembered that his cell phone was dead and had just plugged it in when he was caught by Su Beimo’s call.
Before he could stop Su Beimo, he was hung up.
When Liao Nanqing got out of bed, his feet were so weak that he couldn’t even find the position of his slippers. He was dizzy and couldn’t stand up, but he slowly dragged his steps to the living room. He sat on the sofa and waited for Su Beimo to come, afraid that he would fall asleep when he lay down on the bed. It would be bad if he didn’t hear the knock on the door.
He didn’t want Su Beimo to feel the same way about waiting for someone.
When Su Beimo came, Liao Nanqing was already at the limit. The cold medicine had a slight sleeping effect, and after opening a door, Liao Nanqing had two black eyes and fell straight into Su Beimo’s arms.
Liao Nanqing had been blown by the cold wind for so long, and he had not slept all night, so his whole body was burning up.
Su Beimo picked him up and rushed him to the hospital for IV drip. Although Liao Nanqing was not as tall as Su Beimo, he was still a boy, so Su Beimo still had a hard time holding him for a long time, but not so much that he couldn’t hold him.
Liao Nanqing closed his eyes and the corners of his eyes were wet. He held Su Beimo and talked nonsense, mostly unconsciously.
It was not until the nurse gave Liao Nanqing an injection that he reacted a little and became slightly more awake. The sick Liao Nanqing showed more weakness, he looked at Su Beimo, the aggression in his eyes almost followed by tears, Su Beimo rubbed his head: “Be obedient, sleep a little.”
Liao Nanqing nodded honestly, tilted his head and quickly fell asleep. Su Beimo took a blanket to cover him and rubbed his other hand that didn’t have the needle. These hands didn’t seem to be warm no matter how he covered them and Su Beimo was anxious, like an ant on a hot pan.
He asked the nurse to borrow a small warm water pack1or warm water bottle/bag, wrapped in a towel, and placed it under Liao Nanqing’s dripping hand.
While Liao Nanqing was sleeping deeply, Su Beimo made a phone call and asked Su Ya to cook some porridge, and he would go back to get it. Unexpectedly, once Su Ya heard that Liao Nanqing was sick, she said she would bring it to him later.
Su Beimo sat next to Liao Nanqing, remembering that on the way to the hospital, Liao Nanqing snuggled in his arms and asked in a low voice, “Su Beimo, will you leave me?”
“Will you leave me, just like mom and dad?”
“If you leave too, what should I do…”
“Do you have cotton in your ears?”
“I’m always alone…” The same goes for the new school. No matter how good Xu Yanyan and Ge Yun were, they were not family members. They had their own lives and their own circles, and there was only so little that could be given to him.
Only Su Beimo existed beyond his family. But Liao Nanqing clearly understood that Su Beimo also had his own circle.
Su Beimo had always been accommodating him and tolerating him.
Just because Su Beimo was a good old man.
Liao Nanqing asked himself what qualifications he had to keep Su Beimo by his side and never let the rest of the people step foot in his life, he simply couldn’t answer it. His like, for Su Beimo, might be a tremendous pressure.
Just like his stepfather used to say, he was a burden…
There was a wall in his heart, he couldn’t get over it, he couldn’t smash it, it suffocated him, he just had to whimper and whine, “I don’t want to be separated from you, I don’t…”
“Nanqing, you sleep for a while.” Su Beimo leaned close to his ear, holding him helplessly.
Liao Nanqing still muttered.
Su Beimo understood, now Liao Nanqing couldn’t hear what he said at all. He was so burned out that he only talked to himself. Su Beimo touched his cheek and urged the driver to drive faster.
From time to time, Su Beimo would probe Liao Nanqing’s forehead. Scorching heartburn, Su Beimo frowned, hugged him tighter, and gently patted his back.
Liao Nanqing smelled the scent of Su Beimo’s body, and tried to rub it, stupidly, and said without thinking: “The cake is gone, can’t blow the candles. I really want to eat it. I haven’t eaten it, this time I didn’t eat it…”
“Next time I will buy it for you.”
“Didn’t eat it… I bought it with the money I saved for a long time, and I want to give it to you.” He suddenly collapsed and cried quietly.
The driver in front had a complicated look on his face and glanced in the rearview mirror: “Dude, your brother is sick and confused, huh?”
Su Beimo did not answer, gently wiped Liao Nanqing’s tears, Liao Nanqing then tilted his head and said, “Su Beimo.”
“En?” He answered softly.
“I don’t want to be separated from you.”
“Don’t separate.” Su Beimo said, “I’ll beat up whoever keeps us apart.”
Liao Nanqing heard this sentence, closed his eyes and quietly quieted down.
The sleeping Liao Nanqing was as well behaved as he usually was. His long eyelashes trembled lightly with the sound of his breathing. He did not sleep well, perhaps because he was not feeling well. Before the IV drip was finished, Liao Nanqing woke up and opened his mouth to cough twice.
Su Beimo poured some water out of the thermos, sent it to his mouth and blew a few times to make sure it wasn’t hot, before handing it over for Liao Nanqing to drink.
“Su Beimo…” Liao Nanqing called weakly.
“Drink water first.” Su Beimo turned around to get the porridge that Su Ya had just brought. He figured that Liao Nanqing should be starving.
Knowing that he was still causing trouble, he held the water cup calmly and finished it with a small sip. His eyes caught sight of the IV drip he was taking, he mumbled, “How much is this?”
Su Beimo blurted out a number: “Two thousand.”
In the end, Liao Nanqing believed what he said, and his face was pale with fright in an instant before saying, “Then I, then I will give you an IOU, my mother… it may take a few days before she gives me my living expenses.” He was living on eight or nine hundred a month at most, so he had to be frugal. He felt his pocket and took out a few fifties, cupped them in his hand, and wanted to give them to Su Beimo first.
But Su Beimo held his hand down.
“Just say something and you believe it.” Su Beimo sighed, “Do you think the hospital is a black store?”
Liao Nanqing’s head was confused, and when he thought about it carefully, he knew Su Beimo was joking. He was nervously relaxed, lying down without saying a word, one hand picking at the corner of the blanket.
Su Beimo poured a small bowl of porridge, and Liao Nanqing looked at him intently, then averted his gaze before he turned around.
“My phone broke yesterday.” Su Beimo opened his mouth first, “That girl, and I are just colleagues. She sprained her foot and didn’t have a key, and she didn’t dare to go to a hotel alone, so she came to my house to stay overnight.”
This reason sounded very absurd.
“…” Liao Nanqing moved his lips. He didn’t know what to reply, and his heart was numb.
“But she found the key at the end and went back.” Su Beimo took out the clean spoon, scooped up a spoonful of porridge and blew it with little force, then sent it to Liao Nanqing’s mouth: “Even if she didn’t find the key, I will still go to the hotel to stay.”
Liao Nanqing ate the spoonful of porridge, not knowing how it tasted.
He looked down, not daring to look at Su Beimo and whispered, “Why do you have to explain all this to me…”
“Because we’re friends, and if I fall in love, I’ll definitely tell you.” Su Beimo raised his eyebrows with a bit of a smile and a few moments of righteousness, “Here, open your mouth. Look at you looking malnourished, have you not eaten well again in the past few days?”
Liao Nanqing had to open his mouth again to drink the porridge, he slowly tasted the pine nut flavor inside, smashed his mouth to taste it back and looked forward to the next spoonful: “I eat quite well, the school canteen is cheap and delicious.”
“Oh, it’s even better than what I made?”
“Of course not!” Liao Nanqing was anxious, “You make the best ones!”
After the words, he was fed a mouthful of pine nut porridge one after another, Su Beimo turned his head and smiled a little, then he turned his eyes and said in a serious manner, “Got it, drink the porridge.”
The mellow taste spread, and slowly fell along with the relaxed heart after hearing the explanation.
Settle down emotionally now.
His liking would become gentle and no longer impatient because of a reassurance from Su Beimo. As long as he could be around Su Beimo, he would become content.
Once Liao Nanqing relaxed, he felt especially hungry.
When Su Beimo deliberately slowed down his movements, Liao Nanqing reached out to tug at the corner of his clothes, and because he was still sick, his voice was softly begging for food: “I’m so hungry, Su Beimo.”
“Nanqing.” Su Beimo did not stop feeding the porridge.
“Did you wait for me so long yesterday to accompany me on my birthday?”
Slowly, Liao Nanqing spoke with a little nasal voice:”I, did I give you trouble? I’m sorry, I won’t do it next time, I’ll go with your permission.” Every time he was nervous, he stammered a little. Coupled with the bag of drips hanging over his head, Liao Nanqing was sure that his own deed was indeed causing trouble to Su Beimo.
He rubbed his eyes, looked down at the blanket he was covered with, and promised repeatedly that he wouldn’t dare to do it again.
He was afraid that Su Beimo would really be angry with him.
“No, you didn’t cause me any trouble.” Su Beimo put down his bowl of porridge and after a moment of hesitation, he held his hand with almost gentle movements, “I’m happy. But I’ll worry too, if you can’t wait for me in the future, just don’t wait.”
Hearing that Su Beimo didn’t blame him, Liao Nanqing’s eyes instantly lit up a bright light, faint, small as a dot among the stars. It was inconspicuous, but it filled Su Beimo’s vast and boundless heart, filling it up little by little.
Liao Nanqing said: “I wanted to wait.” He could be considered smiling, two dimples that were not obvious were hanging on his mouth: “Although it is a bit late, happy birthday, Su Beimo.”
Hoping that you are happy every day.
Because if you are happy, I will be happy too.
- 1or warm water bottle/bag