Xu Yanyan was a person who couldn’t keep up with others, he was always one step behind others.
This time too, he was one step later than the senior to confess his love and one step later to the hospital. Ge Yun was accompanied by the senior and Xu Yanyan did not walk in at all. He and Liao Nanqing found a 24-hour convenience store to rest. Liao Nanqing bought two boxes of instant noodles and some oden, but Xu Yanyan had no appetite at all.
He said: “That man, he looks so naive, not as handsome as me. What kind of vision do you think Chubby Ge has?”
Liao Nanqing pushed the soaked noodles to him, “Eat the noodles first, ba.”
Xu Yanyan took a couple of mouthfuls casually, took out his mobile phone and called a taxi: “Let’s go, I’ll send you home by the way.”
The temperature in the early hours of the morning was very low. Xu Yanyan wore a thin windbreaker, and his nose was red. He shaved his head and looked taller and thinner.
“Are you leaving now? It’s the middle of the night, let me help you find a hotel to stay in?” Liao Nanqing stopped eating, and followed Xu Yanyan out of the convenience store, he sneezed, thought about it, and kindly took the scarf down to hand it to Xu Yanyan, “It’s too cold, you can wear it.”
“I’m not afraid of the cold, I’m not Chu…I’m not you and Ge Yun.”
He did not even shout Chubby Ge.
Xu Yanyan put his hands in the pockets of his windbreaker, his eyes were dry, and he kicked the ground with his toes during the time he was waiting for the car to come. The shallow dust on the cement ground was crushed away, layer by layer, one by one, and disappeared in the dim yellow of the street light. The darkness was silent, except for the sound of the wind, there was only the sound of their two breathing.
The surrounding was silence, along with Xu Yanyan’s mood.
“I have something to do tomorrow, I’m going back tonight.” Xu Yanyan smiled hard at Liao Nanqing, a smile that was uglier than crying, “Don’t you tell her I came, xiongdi.”
When the car came, Xu Yanyan said, “Let’s go, ba.”
Liao Nanqing refused: “It’s okay, I’ll get home on a bicycle.” He noticed the tears hidden under Xu Yanyan’s eyes. If he was in the car, Xu Yanyan probably couldn’t cry.
Liao Nanqing was somehow very lost, as if his two best friends had fallen out over this.
“Okay, pay attention to safety.” Xu Yanyan didn’t say much, waved his hand and got into the car. Liao Nanqing didn’t know if he cried afterwards and naturally he wouldn’t ask. He only knew that when closing the car door, Xu Yanyan turned sideways for a moment and became a boy who was at a loss for words. Like a junior high school student who failed an exam, or high school students, anyway, not like an adult college student.
Liao Nanqing was sad, he wrapped his scarf tightly, found a shared bike and rode back to his apartment.
The wind whistled past his ears, and there were hardly a few cars driving on the road except for the bright streetlights. It had been a long time since he had stayed alone on the street in the wee hours of the morning. It had been a long time since the last time, when he hadn’t returned to town, he had spent most of the night walking alone on the road to avoid his stepfather.
At that time, he was in the abyss.
There was no light, not even a faint street lamp could illuminate his eyes. He remembered walking aimlessly, going back and forth in circles, always in that small place. From this point, to that point, and back again, as time passed, he didn’t dare to go back to that home for a moment.
And now, he waited through the red light, crossed the empty road, and Su Beimo was waiting for him in his apartment.
He slowly had a home, no longer a redundant item that drifted around and attached itself to everywhere.
The light in the apartment was always on; Liao Nanqing guessed correctly that Su Beimo was really waiting for him.
Su Beimo, who was sitting playing a game, saw him coming back and got up to hold his hand, “It’s so cold.” After saying that, he pulled his hand and stuffed it into his pajamas, smiling and asking him, “Is this warm?”
Liao Nanqing nodded: “It’s so warm.”
Su Beimo then rubbed his hands together and muttered to get him something hot to drink: “The oatmeal I bought at the supermarket last time is quite creamy, don’t you like it? I’ll make you a cup to warm up.”
“Not drinking. It will be warm after holding you for a while.” Liao Nanqing did not let go, his head against his shoulder, hugging him tightly.
“It’s only been a few hours since you’ve seen me and you miss me?” Su Beimo whispered and laughed, asking in his ear, “Hug so tightly, miss me so much?”
Liao Nanqing loosened a hand, pulled down the scarf, and pursed his lips: “Yes, really missed you.”
“Since you missed so much, then you kiss me.” Su Beimo moved over.
Liao Nanqing hurriedly covered his mouth and kissed him through the back of his own hand. Su Beimo paused for a second and suddenly reddened behind his ear. Liao Nanqing wouldn’t know how provocative his action was, he simply wanted to say, “I just ate bubble noodles, I’m going to brush my teeth.” He hooked up the corners of his mouth and smiled happily, “Su Beimo, wait for me for a moment.”
Lubricants at home, condoms, not a single thing had been forgotten.
Su Beimo paced, struggling internally. I don’t want to do it today, I want to let him rest.
Su Beimo thought he was irrational; he was getting more and more childish, and his self-control was not working. He really liked Liao Nanqing so much.
Every day, he liked him more and more.
Because Liao Nanqing, who only blushed yesterday, would already do it with his own hands today, so the same goes for Su Beimo; yesterday’s likes were a little bit, and today’s likes were a little bit more.
The sheets would be changed again tonight.
In the early morning of November, the cold wind was shivering and the lights of the apartment were out.
When the first rays of sunlight spilled through the glass window in the morning, Liao Nanqing had only slept for three hours. He shrank under the covers, only to feel that the quilt was not warm enough, as if something was missing. He subconsciously reached out to touch, his side was cold sheets, Liao Nanqing was suddenly awakened. Su Beimo, who was still lingering with him a few hours ago, was not in bed now.
Liao Nanqing had sweat on the corner of his forehead, he had just had a short and confusing dream. He dreamed about the time he was at his stepfather’s house. Perhaps it was the scene of cycling back in the early morning that made his mind confused.
He actually dreamed of his cramped room, pitch black, unable to touch the door. Outside was the sound of locking up, and the cry of his younger brother caused headaches. His mother Li Qin’s words were sharp and ear-piercing. He looked down and saw the faint bruise on his arm through the pale light of the doorway.
Li Qin’s voice was loud, screaming, “Touch him again if you dare! His father killed someone anyway, and he’s not afraid to kill a second one after he’s released! Go ahead and fight! Beat him to death!”
“You killed him! Liao Dong will come out to pay you back!”
“How can my life be so bad, ah. I was with a murderer, and now with you! Nanqing just broke a bowl, what are you angry with him for?…”
Begging for mercy.
“I was wrong… I was wrong…”
Liao Nanqing covered his ears, and those memories that were deliberately buried emerged in layers. It was the pain he was most unwilling to think about, the pain he suffered for no reason in the year he first arrived at his stepfather’s house. Initially, he always sat crouched on the floor, quietly listening to the noise outside, counting the black holes in his body by the light of the cracks.
One, two. Three, four.
The door opened.
Liao Nanqing’s counting came to a screeching halt, and he sat on the ground, his eyes dull.
Li Qin held his newly born brother expressionlessly as she said: “Run, why don’t you run.” The air was overflowing with despair, she was so helpless, unable to protect her child. Until finally, she began to loathe Liao Nanqing’s dullness.
“When he comes, you run, do you understand?”
Liao Nanqing nodded, nodded like crazy, too scared.
Fortunately, it was a dream.
He got out of bed and drank two sips of water, and went barefoot to look for Su Beimo, but the living room, kitchen, toilet, and even the room were all empty, Su Beimo was not at home. Liao Nanqing’s palm was cold, so he grabbed a jacket from the sofa and wrapped it around him, and unplugged his charging phone.
Sure enough, there was a message reminder above: [Grandma is sick, I’ll go back, you take a good rest].
Liao Nanqing hurriedly dialed his number: “Su Beimo, where are you? How is Grandma Su doing?”
“I’ve arrived home.” He rushed back overnight, his voice was tired and full of weariness, but he had obviously relaxed “Grandma is fine, she just bumped her head, don’t worry. I’ll take care of her for a few days, and I took two days off from the company.” Su Beimo rubbed his forehead and sat on the hospital’s promenade. He didn’t say anything too much to Liao Nanqing; he was also confused when he received Su Jing’s call last night.
Grandma Su coughed badly in the middle of the night. She went to the living room to pour hot water in her thin pajamas. She fell and knocked on her head and fainted. Had it not been for Su Ya to find her, the old lady would have frozen to death in the living room.
Su Ya was so anxious, she called for 120 and sent Grandma Su to the hospital, while notifying Su Jing. Su Ya was dizzy and her legs were trembling when she was stimulated by the old lady. She shed tears as she talked, for fear that there would be something wrong with Grandma Su. When Su Jing heard it, he misunderstood, thinking that Grandma Su really had something serious. He hurriedly called Su Beimo and asked him to come back quickly.
Lest he missed the one last time.
Therefore, Su Beimo did not think much about it, took his wallet and cell phone and left the door, catching the earliest bus.
The result was an oolong. But Grandma Su herself was getting older, and now she was injured even more physically. Su Ya took the opportunity to hospitalize Grandma Su to conveniently do a few tests and check ups. The hospital in the small city was not like the big hospital in City B; they didn’t even have to wait for a bed and there were still vacancies here, so Grandma Su’s hospitalization procedures were quickly completed.
Usually, they couldn’t get Grandma Su to do a checkup, but this time, it was a good thing.
In the hospital, Su Ya and Su Jing were busy, and Grandma Su was lying on the hospital bed, drowsily asleep, with a drip hanging from the back of her hand. After the doctor’s treatment, there was no serious injury, it was really a false alarm.
The doctor’s face was very cold, he held a pen and wrote while advising: “The old lady is getting old, you family members should pay more attention in the future. Try to eat lightly during this period, recuperate, and don’t let the wound touch with water…”
Su Beimo listened attentively and held Grandma Su hand without the drip, which was somewhat cold.
He put Grandma Su’s hand into the quilt, took the hospital’s temporary warm water bag to fill it with some hot water and wrapped a small towel around Grandma Su’s hand that was under the IV.
“Beimo, you and your father should go back to rest first, I’ll look after Grandma.” Su Ya patted Su Beimo’s shoulder and apologized, “I was too stirred up, causing you to rush back overnight… hey, are you exhausted?”
Su Beimo really needed to catch up on his sleep, he told Su Ya not to worry: “It’s okay, I happen to have a few days off, I’ll stay with my grandmother for a few days.”
“It was good. Last night, we were still discussing what to buy for your birthday, so I was delayed. Had I known this, I would have bought her a thermos to put in the room, so she would not have fallen…” Su Ya was still blaming herself, Grandma Su was getting older day by day, and many things could no longer be as careless as before.
It was as if this incident had set off alarm bells for all of Su’s family that old age was tightly tied to loss. Su Beimo knew that maybe in just a few years, he would lose Grandma Su.
The line between life and death was beginning to clear in his consciousness as he grew older.
Su Beimo’s birthday was considered completely ruined, Grandma Su was angry about this, angry at herself.
It was hard to convince her grandson to come back for his birthday, but she fell down.
Su Beimo comforted her, “Grandma, don’t be angry, if you are angry again, Auntie will have to do more tests for you. Do you want to be discharged?”
“Oh, A’Ya is just worrying about it. I just fell off, so there is no other problem. From time to time, they take me for this checkup and that checkup, hey, if it wasn’t for you accompanying me ah, I really don’t want to stay in this hospital.” Grandma Su squinted and smiled as soon as she heard Su Beimo’s words.
After a long while, she asked Su Beimo, “How is Nanqing recently?”
Su Beimo smiled back: “Very good.”
“He has gone to college, and the outside is much better than ours. It should be good to think about it. If he is still alone for the New Year this year, you will bring him back.” Grandma Su said, with a slight sigh,” You said he goes to the university but there is no news. I’m so worried. ”