Cheng Xi turned around, took the note, lowered her head to look at it briefly, and then said, “The question’s unfinished. I made a mistake.” She waved it in the air. “Can I take it back?”
Lu Chenzhou stared at her for quite a while before finally assenting. “Alright.”
Cheng Xi clutched the note in her hand as she left the room. As she exited, she saw Xu Po. “Please tell Tian Rou that I’ll be going home first.”
She brushed past him as Xu Po brought the other girl back into the room. He immediately asked Lu Chenzhou, “Are you really going to let Dr. Cheng leave just like that? She…… doesn’t have a car, right? This place is a bit far from her apartment. Isn’t it risky to let her catch a taxi back by herself?”
Lu Chenzhou remained motionless, not saying anything.
At this moment, Baldy ran over, his face slightly unhappy. “Don’t worry about that. It’s fine. My girl drove over, and she’ll send Cheng Xi back.” He then looked at Lu Chenzhou. “I just saw Dr. Cheng. She was crying, and my girlfriend even scratched me because of it! Look!” He tilted his head up, revealing a big red scratch mark.
Xu Po couldn’t bear to look at him any more; he had never seen a person be proud of being clawed by his girlfriend.
Xu Po sighed as he said, “I’d better go make sure they’re alright.” He also took Lu Chenzhou’s “new girlfriend” out with him. Boss Lu clearly wasn’t feeling very well, and having a random stranger stay here wouldn’t do him any good.
But Baldy didn’t leave. He sat down, faced Lu Chenzhou, and asked, “So the talk with Dr. Cheng didn’t go well?”
Lu Chenzhou’s voice was dispassionate as he replied, “Yes.”
“Does it hurt?”
Lu Chenzhou hesitated for a moment and then slowly closed his eyes, thought a while more, and then softly answered, “Yes.”
“Then why’d you break up with her?” Baldy’s small brain was unable to process the deeper meaning behind Lu Chenzhou’s words. “Is it because you think that your life is too boring, so you want to find a new way to torment yourself? Or…” Baldy’s tone turned strange as he continued, “Did you think that it would be cool to be like me, who chased my girlfriend away due to my personality, and then fell into despair while trying to get her back?”
Yup, that’s right. Baldy had lost his old girlfriend because she couldn’t put up with his behavior anymore.
Baldy thought that Lu Chenzhou’s current behavior was very similar to his behavior back then.
Unexpectedly, Lu Chenzhou actually didn’t look at Baldy like he was an idiot. Instead, he asked a question that almost shocked Baldy to the point of wetting his pants. “When she left you, did you…… want to kill her?”
Baldy almost fell over. “No, of course not! It’s just a break up!”
Lu Chenzhou smiled wryly. “I almost killed her.” Then, he spread his hands out as he said, “Just a little bit away.”
Baldy was so shocked that it took him quite a while to process Lu Chenzhou’s words. After a few minutes, he tentatively asked, “Is it…… because Dr. Cheng wanted to break up with you?”
“No. She was just doing her job as a doctor. I didn’t like it when she spent so much of her time worrying about other people, so I reported her and made her lose her job. Then, I almost killed her……” As Lu Chenzhou continued to talk, his smile took on a cruel glint. “The more I like her, the more I want her for myself. I want her eyes to always and only be on me. I want to tie her up, build a cage, and keep her in there forever…… In psychiatry, there’s a condition known as ‘Stockholm syndrome.’ If a perpetrator kidnaps a victim and treats the victim appropriately for a sufficiently long period of time, then the victim will start to depend on the perpetrator, both physically and emotionally.”
Lu Chenzhou’s tone was so serious that he really seemed like he would try it.
Baldy looked at him in disbelief for a few seconds, and then laughed uproariously for a few more, and then finally stopped when he realized that Lu Chenzhou wasn’t joking. He scratched his face awkwardly. “You’re not serious, are you?”
Lu Chenzhou’s gaze made Baldy’s remaining hair all stand up on end. He braced himself against the wall and seriously said, “Zhou, you can’t do something like that.”
Lu Chenzhou didn’t respond.
Baldy didn’t dare to say anything else; he was afraid Lu Chenzhou would force him to aid him in this crime! Perhaps he would be forced to swindle Dr. Cheng into coming back, or maybe he’d have to build a cage or something…… Baldy very much regretted not sneaking out with Xu Po. My goodness, it was frightening listening to Lu Chenzhou recount what he wanted to do to the person he loved!
He’d always known that Lu Chenzhou sometimes had strange thoughts, but he had honestly never expected Lu Chenzhou’s inner self to be this dark and brutal.
And, even scarier, Lu Chenzhou actually had the means to do everything he had said!
When Lu Chenzhou saw Baldy tremble at his words, he smiled a little, and then waved his hands to dismiss him.
The first thing Baldy did when he ran out was call Tian Rou. “Bring Dr. Cheng away, quickly! As far as you can, and don’t let her look for Lu Chenzhou ever again!”
And then Tian Rou yelled back at him, as she didn’t know the whole truth and was angry on Cheng Xi’s behalf. “Baldy, you asshole! You’re crazy! You’re the one who should stay far away from me!!!”
And then she hung up.
Baldy was speechless. “……”
While Baldy was busy feeling wronged, on the other side of the phone, Tian Rou was absolutely livid with anger. Even after hanging up, she continued to yell and complain about Baldy. “They’re all rats and snakes! Colluding scoundrels! Just who do they think they are?! Do they think that they’re irresistible because of their money? How well do they think they would do without the backing of their families, eh?! I’ve made enough money to raise a few hundred pretty boys like them!”
Cheng Xi was feeling quite down, but Tian Rou’s antics actually managed to cheer her up. “Do you even have the stamina to deal with a few hundred boys, hmm?”
“Can’t I just replace them every day?” Tian Rou inspected Cheng Xi’s expression carefully. “Are you still upset?”
Honestly, it wasn’t unusual for Tian Rou to be so mad. The phone was on speaker mode, and Cheng Xi had heard all of Baldy’s senseless appeals!
He was just trying to add salt to her wound and make things worse, wasn’t he?!
Cheng Xi smiled softly. “I’m not that upset.” That was a lie, but Cheng Xi truly wasn’t someone who felt strong emotions that often. When Lin Fan had disappeared abroad for ten years and cut all contact with her, she hadn’t been that upset either.
When Cheng Xi thought about how Lu Chenzhou had chased her out or already found a new girlfriend, she found that she was actually more upset for Chen Jiaman. She didn’t know if Chen Jiaman had the courage necessary to break free from her new chains and embrace the light once more.
And her professor, Cai Yi, even seemed to think that Chen Jiaman’s case was a model case study of a “pure” mental illness patient—as she was a young female who had experienced repeated mental trauma and suffered from both heavy depression and Cotard’s syndrome.
Only today did Cheng Xi realize how ambitious Cai Yi truly was. Not only was she trying to find a standardized treatment for depression, but she was also attempting to isolate specific gene sequences that were responsible for or exacerbated depression.
There were quite a number of patients suffering from depression, but not many of them were suitable for genetic analysis. Cai Yi wasn’t as young as she used to be, and if she wanted to see a resolution to this problem in her lifetime, then she…… couldn’t take care of things from every angle.
Cheng Xi respected Cai Yi’s determination, but as Cai Yi had said, Cheng Xi focused too much on her patients’ feelings and emotions. Although she could be a skilled doctor, she would never be a skilled researcher.
And so, although Cheng Xi understood Cai Yi’s motives, and although she also understood that it was inappropriate to bring Chen Jiaman up to Lu Chenzhou at this time, she still couldn’t help herself from doing so.
And she even forgot about the fact that the department head had instructed her to tell Lu Chenzhou to contact the hospital.
Cheng Xi inadvertently sighed. She felt like she had lost track of her priorities, and that she really shouldn’t have come over today.
While Cheng Xi was stirring up a headache thinking about how to fix the situation, Tian Rou couldn’t bear to look at her “agonized” expression any longer. So, she suddenly turned the steering wheel sharply to the right, making an abrupt U-turn as she shouted, “Stop sighing! It’s unsightly to see you act so upset after being dumped! And he even told you to go far away and to not contact him. How dare he! How dare he dump my little girl!? I’ll let him know what…… Regret! Tastes! Like!”
But what Tian Rou meant by “letting him know what regret tastes like” was to immediately call a whole bunch of people and ask, “Does anyone have little wolf pups, milk pups, or wild pups they can introduce to me? I want all of them! Send them over quickly! I’m holding an open audition to find a husband for a good friend of mine!”
Cheng Xi was struck speechless by her actions. “…....”