Having seen all sorts of patients, Cheng Xiwas very tolerant towards people with slightly unusual behavior, and didn’t mind his demeanor that much. Since her teacher had introduced her, she smiled and greeted, “Nice to meet you.”
But Lu Chenzhou kept staring at her, his forehead slowly creasing. “You only have one dimple?”
Cheng Xi, slightly baffled, automatically replied, “Yes.”
This unexpected evaluation left Cheng Xi speechless. Cai Yi also looked on blankly for a moment before laughing heartily. “Your students would probably cry if they ever heard that someone evaluated a professor renowned for her beauty as ugly, haha.”
She laughed so happily that Cheng Xi felt a bit exasperated, and she said to Lu Chenzhou, “I’m sorry for disgusting you with my ugliness. Do you want me to cover up that side of my face?”
This sparked another bout of laughter from Cai Yi, but it was as if Lu Chenzhou couldn’t sense the humor in her tone. He expressionlessly looked down at his watch. “Let’s go.”
Cai Yi wiped the tears of laughter off of her face. “Your grandparents aren’t here yet.”
“They’re late. Do we need to wait for them?” Lu Chenzhou responded indifferently, his voice detached.
Cheng Xi had some more time to look at him now. Lu Chenzhou was indeed expressionless, his handsome face as apathetic as still water.
She raised her eyebrows slightly upon seeing that Cai Yi was blinking rapidly at her. “Let’s go.”
“To get food with us.”
“Oh.” Cheng Xi helped her teacher up, and then followed along somewhat confusedly.
Lu Chenzhou’s grandparents never showed up, so it was only the three of them at the dining table. Lu Chenzhou was reticent, and it was mainly Cheng Xi and Cai Yi doing the talking during the meal.
But just as the waiter served the last fruit platter, he did say something. “Remove it.”
The waiter hesitated, and Cheng Xi and Cai Yi stopped talking.
Lu Chenzhou pointed at the platter a little impatiently. “What are you thinking, plating the fruit in such an ugly fashion?”
The waiter, Cai Yi, and Cheng Xi all looked at the platter. Quite honestly, the fruit platter was plated beautifully, with care and precision. The platter consisted of half a honeydew carved into the shape of a flower, which was then filled with a variety of vibrant fruits; it was a natural piece of art.
But Cheng Xi quickly noticed that on that platter was a lopsided cherry tomato, the likely reason for Lu Chenzhou’s distaste.
As expected, this person has a very serious form of OCD.
Cai Yi did not seem to find his behavior unusual, and waved at the waiter with a smile. “Take it away, will you?” And, as if nothing had happened, she turned to Cheng Xi. “Keep talking about that patient from just now.”
Cheng Xi continued explaining, “Her family invited a spirit medium to purge all the ghosts from their house, claiming that she must have been possessed. During the ritual, the girl was badly scared, and in her panic, accidentally killed her grandmother. When I saw her during my daily rotations, her condition had already reached a very severe state; she firmly believed that someone had cut her head off, and that she was a headless corpse.”
Lu Chenzhou looked at Cheng Xi after she finished talking. It was perhaps the first time he had directly looked at her after having commented on her lone dimple.
Cheng Xi was talking about one of the patients currently in her care, one with a serious case of Cotard’s syndrome, colloquially known as the walking corpse syndrome.
Cai Yi responded, “This is truly a classic case of Cotard’s syndrome. It’s a very rare illness in this country. How do you plan on tackling it?”
But before Cheng Xi could respond, Cai Yi’s phone rang. Cheng Xi heard her say a few words into the phone, before saying to the group, “Something urgent came up at the office, I have to go.”
Cai Yi stood up. “Let me walk you outside.”
As a doctor, there were always sudden, unexpected situations, especially in the psychiatry department—when patients’ illnesses flared up, most people wouldn’t be able to handle them. Cheng Xi wasn’t bothered by Cai Yi’s sudden departure, only thinking about how she might be able to help out.
But Cai Yi stopped her. “It’s fine, my assistant is coming to fetch me, and there are enough people on the scene already. You should stay here and enjoy a nice meal with Director Lu.” She then looked over at Lu Chenzhou. “You’ll help me take care of Cheng Xi, won’t you?”