Perhaps it was because she was too tired, but Cheng Xi didn’t sleep well that day. She dreamed throughout the whole night, but her dreams were filled with scenes of neither rhyme nor reason, a large number of people and random things flitting through them. When a loud knocking sound came from her door, she was dreaming of walking barefoot along a cliff as loose stones cut at her like sharp knives.
On some level, dreams reflected the inner self. As a psychiatrist, Cheng Xi clearly understood that this dream represented the danger that she felt from Lu Chenzhou.
The intense knocking on her door shattered her dreams of danger. When she raised her head, she saw Lin Fan’s face through the screen door. She was very surprised because he exuded an aura of absolute dejection; his clothes were a mess and his hair disheveled.
Once the door open, he immediately leapt over, hugged her, and started kissing her passionately. Cheng Xi was very unsettled; unlike Lu Chenzhou’s dazed actions that one night, Lin Fan’s passion seemed to be fueled by anger and suppressed emotions. His body’s stench was hard to bear, as it was the smell of stale beer mixed together with bitter tobacco and a cloyingly sweet perfume.
She tried to block his advances. “Lin Fan, what’s wrong with you? Don’t be like this.”
He ignored her and grabbed her hands. This never before seen impatient behavior felt like he was urgently trying to obtain something from her. Cheng Xi had never liked this sort of out-of-control intimacy. When he started pinning her hands down, she leaned back to build up some momentum before headbutting him with her skull when he kissed her behind the ear.
The headbutt hurt Lin Fan enough to make him suck in a deep breath, forcing him to release her and grab his nose. Not long after, fresh blood seeped through his fingers.
Unfortunately, Cheng Xi hadn’t been very accurate and had accidentally smashed his nose.
Even though her own face also hurt, Cheng Xi was still concerned for him first. “Are you alright?”
Lin Fan shook his head, clearly having sobered up from the shock. Faced with Cheng Xi’s clear-headed and somewhat cool expression, he was so embarrassed that he couldn’t even look her in the eye. Cheng Xi pretended not to have noticed his embarrassment and poured some cold water into a basin to serve as a compress to stop the bleeding. Then she even grabbed a wad of cotton for him to stuff up his nose.
Once she had prepared everything, Cheng Xi stooped to a side and watched him wash his nose. Her expression was filled with concentration, her expression oozing gentleness, and her clear eyes carrying a faint hint of a smile; her entire mien made one calm down quickly.
Lin Fan couldn’t help but splash her with a bit of water. Cheng Xi was unable to dodge it, and the water droplets dripped down her face like pearls.
After a mess of a night, he could only marvel at how wonderful it was to see her again. Unable to resist the temptation in his heart, Lin Fan leaned in closer, trying to lick her lips.
Cheng Xi dodged, wiping her face while simultaneously laughing at him.
“What’re you laughing at?”
“If I were you, I wouldn’t have chosen to hit on someone at this time.”
She stretched out her hand, pointing at his nose. Only then did Lin Fan remember that two wads of cotton were still stuffed inside his nostrils. He quickly lowered his head and mumbled, “You’re quite fierce.”
“Sorry. I only wanted to hit you lightly.”
As she said this, she couldn’t help but think of Lu Chenzhou and the two punches that she had given him; that was truly fierce. She could still see a bit of bruising by his jaw last night.
And for some reason, men always seemed to like trying to be intimate while they were out-of-control. Just what did they think they could achieve in that state?
Lin Fan had completely sobered up by now, saying, “It’s fine. I’ll treat it as the price I have to pay for being frivolous.”
Upon hearing this, Cheng Xi patted his head. “Keep reflecting. I’ll go wash up. If the bleeding doesn’t stop after a few minutes, then I’ll look at your face again.
Her expression was so natural, it was almost as if his losing control wasn’t surprising at all. Although Lin Fan had felt somewhat guilty at first, not wanting her to ask about what happened that night, he actually felt somewhat depressed when she didn’t bring it up at all.
He nodded as he responded somewhat stuffily, “Alright.”
Cheng Xi was actually somewhat curious about what had happened. The reason why she didn’t ask was because she was trying to be conscientious; he would definitely tell her if he wanted to talk about it.
She didn’t think too much of it, so she went to wash her face with a relaxed heart. When she returned, Lin Fan was still kneeling in front of the wash basin. She walked over and his expression was one of extreme shock as he looked at her.
“What’s the matter?” His expression was too obvious, so much so that Cheng Xi couldn’t help but ask him about it. She asked, “Did something happen?”
“No.” Lin Fan clutched at his nose, forcing himself to laugh. “I’m afraid that you’ll dislike me.”
“Dislike you for what?”
“For running over to your place and doing all that after I became really drunk… Don’t you blame me?” He glanced at her, his tone sincere. “I’m sorry. I originally wanted to wait for you to return, but my colleagues asked me to go drink, and I couldn’t blow them off. So, I had to head over… Oh, right. Is Mr Lu alright?”
“It’s a bit serious. He scratched the hives that were caused by his allergic reaction and that broke the skin, which then led to a serious infection. In the end, he has to stay in a germ-free environment for a few days.”
“Oh,” Lin Fan responded, before asking a while later, “Did he actually not know that he can’t scratch himself after an allergic reaction?”
This was said somewhat maliciously, but Cheng Xi knew what he was feeling and could sympathize with his reaction, so she pretended to not hear it. “He probably knows that, but he wasn’t paying attention. Actually, not only did he break through his skin, but he also immersed it in water, making it even more serious. Alright, let’s not talk about him anymore.” She stood up and rolled up her sleeves. “I’m planning on making up for last night’s dinner. Do you want to help?”
“No.” Lin Fan had also realized that he was being petty, so he jokingly said, “I made all the food yesterday, so you have to make all of it today if you want to make it up to me.”
Cheng Xi smiled. “Alright. Then just go wait outside for a big meal.”
After saying this, she went into the kitchen. Lin Fan looked at her back, his smile slowly vanishing until his face was completely expressionless.
The steak from yesterday was already cold, and it wouldn’t taste good even if she heated it back up. Cheng Xi felt that it would be a waste to throw it away, so she called her mom and asked her for advice on how to best revise it.
As a chef with many years of experience, her mother quickly responded with a method. After she taught it to her daughter, she casually asked, “What’s Lu Chenzhou’s phone number? Give it to me.”
Admittedly, Lu Chenzhou had clearly been more excessive on that day than her. In her mother’s eyes, he had already gone from ‘that dolt’ to Lu Chenzhou.
Black streaks marred Cheng Xi’s forehead. “Why do you want his number?”
“You refused to let us parents meet up, so I want to talk to him about his aspirations and goals. Can’t I do even that?”
Cheng Xi chuckled. “No, mom. Don’t cause any more trouble for me.”
And then she hung up.
When she turned around to grab some starch, she saw Lin Fan standing by the door. Her heart jumped a little, but she didn’t let it show. Instead, she put on a smile and said, “What’s the matter? Did you decide that you couldn’t bear have me work alone and came to offer me help?”
And Lin Fan indeed did wash his hands and start to help her. As Cheng Xi covered the steak in starch, he washed the vegetables by her side. As he washed them, he asked, “What do you like about me, Cheng Xi?”
Cheng Xi looked at him, still smiling. “I’m not quite sure. Perhaps it’s because you stood out from the crowd?”
Upon hearing this, Lin Fan also laughed, responding, “Then how long will you like me for?”
“If you don’t change, then I probably won’t change either.”
Lin Fan just looked at her as his laugh started to turn somewhat forlorn.
Cheng Xi wasn’t as skilled as her mother at cooking, so she had messed up the modified steak dish. In the end, it was Lin Fan who saved the day by making two ham sandwiches.
When breakfast was finally served, Cheng Xi’s phone rang. Lin Fan had come to her house very early, at almost six in the morning. So, they were also having an early breakfast, at around seven.
The call was from Lu Chenzhou’s grandmother, who was almost crying while on the phone. “The results are out. He has septicemia. What do we do?”
Even though she could predict that Lu Chenzhou’s condition was quite serious from Dr. Xie’s expression last night, it was still hard for Cheng Xi to accept that the worst had actually happened.
After the phone call ended, she put down her utensils. Upon seeing her expression, Lin Fan quickly asked, “What’s the problem?”
“Lu Chenzhou’s examination results are out. He has septicemia.”
Lin Fan didn’t like her serious expression, and after a while, asked, “......Is it hard to cure?”
“Yes, somewhat.” She stood up and said, “I have to go to the hospital.”
Lin Fan pulled her down. “Can’t you eat something first?” He tried to restrain his anger as he looked at her. “It’s not your specialty, so being late isn’t a big deal. Please eat something before heading over, alright?”
“I’m sorry. I really can’t eat anything right now.” She broke free and was about to walk away, truly very worried.”
Peng! In his anger, Lin Fan threw his utensils onto the plate. He suddenly stood up. “Do you really care that much about him?!”
Cheng Xi stopped in her tracks, slowly turning around to look at him.