The sleeping man didn’t move and Zhou Jinheng felt at ease and even more happy that he could finally touch him.
Approaching him when he was awake was out of question. He had to be mentally prepared to be ignored when he said something. Although this silent resistance was frustrating, it also indirectly proved that the little fool had not forgotten him.
Only when you can’t forget someone will you feel resentment, and only when you are full of resentment, will you resist. Hate is caused by love. It was better to be hated by him than to be forgotten by him.
Zhou Jinheng didn’t expect that one day he would comfort himself with the wonderful logic he had seen in a script. Smiling bitterly, he held that hand tighter.
God treated him well after all.
He would make up for his mistakes one by one. Since he was given the opportunity to hold this hand, he would never let go.
It rained until the second half of the night.
When Yi Hui opened his eyes, Zhou Jinheng was putting down the tent curtain that had been opened. When he saw him wake up, he said, “The rain just stopped, go to sleep for a while.”
Yi Hui didn’t answer. He pressed his palm to the tent cloth and checked it. It really didn’t rain, so he sat up and packed his things.
Zhou Jinheng couldn’t persuade him and helped him to clean up.
The blanket was not tied with a rope anymore and was too big to fit into the backpack. Zhou Jinheng held it under his arm. He also put away the tent and carried it on his back. Yi Hui was going to grab it but he walked forward in big strides and only left a pack of unopened biscuits for Yi Hui: “You can take this. You must eat before you go down the mountain.”
Yi Hui didn’t bother to pay attention to his unreasonable “orders”, put the biscuits in his pocket and walked on his own.
It was still dark, and the potholed uneven road was covered with a layer of rain, making it almost as difficult to walk on as when it rained. Zhou Jinheng led the way, but his hand with a flashlight was stretched behind him to show Yi Hui the way. After walking for a while, Yi Hui felt uncomfortable. He used his mobile phone to turn on the flashlight and said, “I have a flashlight, so you can light the road for yourself.”
Zhou Jinheng turned his head when he heard his voice and there was a smile on his face in the beam of light: “Okay, then follow me and be careful.”
After a while, Yi Hui realized that he smiled because he thought he cared about him. He hesitated but didn’t clarify it after all.
The more you talk about it, the more guilty you feel. Their current relationship was at best just one of casual acquaintances and it was perfectly natural to be indifferent.
Passing the only public restroom on the mountain along the way, Zhou Jinheng turned his head and asked, “Do you need to go?”
Even though it had been half an afternoon and almost the whole night, Yi Hui felt that he could hold back for a while, so he shook his head and said, “No need.”
He wanted to continue to walk and go down the mountain as soon as possible, but who knew that Zhou Jinheng would turn back, step in front of Yi Hui and handed the blanket to him: “Wait for me.”
Yi Hui stood there holding the blanket, so angry that he wanted to stomp his feet but not daring to move casually, for fear that he would not be able to hold back if he moved a lot.
After Zhou Jinheng came out, he wiped his hands and muttered to himself: “You can’t hold it in like this in the future. I seem to have read it in some book. Holding it in for a long time will damage your kidneys.”
Perhaps it was a psychological effect but Yi Hui immediately felt a pain in his kidneys, which seemed like a warning to not “hold it in”.
In the end, he still went into the men’s room. Zhou Jinheng followed Yi Hui in with a flashlight, as if he wanted to watch him throughout the whole process. After Yi Hui stared at him critically for a long time, he exited in a daze. He didn’t forget to shout from the outside: “It’s slippery, be careful.”
Yi Hui felt that he seemed to be taking care of a child. Well, if you think about it, he was a fool before, wasn’t it equivalent to a child at a young age?
His slightly warming heart suddenly cooled down. In the past he had been stupid enough to stick to the man as soon as he hooked his finger. Even if he was not much smarter than before, he would not be stupid to that point.
When they were almost down the mountain, Yi Hui received a call.
“Classmate Jiang, I’m sorry!” As soon as the call was connected, Tang Wenxi apologized, “There was no rescue team under the mountain. I wanted to call the police. That guy said that there were no wolves in such a small mountain and the police will definitely not bother with it. He also said that his friend had already met you… Are you with him now?”
“En.” Yi Hui responded vaguely, more worried about him, “I’m fine. There is really no danger on the mountain. Have you reached the bottom of the mountain? My sister said that you didn’t go back to my house, did you find another place to stay?”
When he mentioned it, Tang Wenxi began to falter: “En, en… I found another place to stay in the city, don’t worry about me.”
The two chatted a little more. Tang Wenxi’s plane ticket was booked for tomorrow morning. The flight was about to take off in less than half a day, so Yi Hui couldn’t make it over to see him off. He promised that he would help him pack the luggage he had left at the Jiang family’s house and send it over, then hung up the phone.
After more than a day of excessive use, the phone’s battery finally ran out and the flashlight and shutdown vibration went out together. Once Zhou Jinheng, who was walking in front, noticed it, he returned without saying a word and walked side by side with Yi Hui.
This section of the road was spacious and easy to walk, but it was windy and rainy all night, and the fallen dead branches and leaves were spread all over the ground. Yi Hui stepped on a branch inattentively and almost fell. Zhou Jinheng reached out to help, but he avoided him.
In the end, Zhou Jinheng was still young and could not hide his mood. When he kicked the road obstacle away for the third time in a grumpy manner, Yi Hui was actually silently relieved.
He was still the same and their recent entanglements must have been on a whim. When he got tired of playing and ran out of patience, he would naturally give up.
Along the way, Yi Hui deliberately forbade himself from thinking about it. In order to distract himself, he found a bunch of irrelevant things for himself to think about.
For example, why was Zhou Jinheng’s mobile phone still charged?
The resting place at the foot of the mountain was still far away from the residential area. Zhou Jinheng asked Yi Hui to wait here and went to the 24-hour convenience store on the opposite side to buy something.
Yi Hui had been enduring since the halfway point, and now that there was no one around, his clenched teeth relaxed a little. Sitting on a stone bench and rubbing his left knee, he thought that this body was slow to recover and he was afraid that he would have to stay in bed for a few days to recuperate when he went back.
He didn’t know what Zhou Jinheng went to buy, he just felt that if the wound was not treated well, it might become infected and it would be troublesome to have a fever later. Now that he occupied this body, he needed to adapt to its habits, protect it well and not let his family worry about him.
After rubbing his knee a few more times, Yi Hui stood up and moved his joints. Thinking that it shouldn’t be a problem to walk a little, he limped towards the light on the other side of the road.
In the early hours of the morning, the entrance of the convenience store was deserted. There was a pickup truck parked at the main entrance. Two people wearing overalls with the supermarket logo were moving goods inside. The mountain air after the rain was fresh and he took a deep breath. His lungs were filled with the smell of soil and vegetation. The footsteps and conversations of workers slightly obscured Zhou Jinheng’s voice.
The phone call seemed to be coming to an end. Zhou Jinheng, carrying a half-full shopping basket in his hand, with his back turned to the door, bent down in front of the shelf with desserts to look for something. Because he couldn’t spare his hand to hold his mobile phone, his tone became brisk: “Go home? Didn’t I go back last time? Tsk, if it weren’t for you, why would I go back? …… You little girl, just take care of yourself, don’t worry about your brother… Well, you can start preparing now, and maybe I will take your sister-in-law home with me next time… Okay, your sister-in-law is waiting for me, so hang up first.”
Putting the mobile phone back in his pocket, Zhou Jinheng took the items he selected and threw them into the shopping basket. He turned around and saw Yi Hui standing not far away. He was taken aback for a moment: “Didn’t I ask you to wait for me there?”
Later, he must have realized that Yi Hui had heard what he had just said. There was a rare shyness on his face as he licked his dry lips and said, “I got everything, let’s go and check out.”
His gestures were full of familiarity and intimacy, but the other party did not intend to cooperate. Yi Hui passed by Zhou Jinheng and walked to the counter selling medicines. From the direction he was taking, Zhou Jinheng realized what he was looking for, stopped him and raised his shopping basket: “I have already got it.”
On the bench outside the convenience store, Yi Hui was pressed to sit down again against his will. Zhou Jinheng squatted on the ground, neatly rolled up his left trouser leg, removed the handkerchief that had been tied for a few hours and saw faint redness and swelling around the wound. He frowned and wondered, “Why did it get more serious?”
He remembered that although the little fool was delicate, he was blessed with good health. He usually recovered quickly from headaches and fever, not to mention such small bumps and bruises that often healed before he noticed them.
Yi Hui could naturally understand what he was thinking. He planned to be silent to the end, but remembering Zhou Jinheng’s brisk tone when he was talking on the phone just now, Yi Hui suddenly felt a surge of sourness in his heart.
Then, this strange feeling transformed into another side of him that he had never dealt with before, strongly affecting Yi Hui’s sanity and causing him to say without thinking: “Because I am not him, of course I am different from him.”
With these words, Zhou Jinheng’s expression suddenly changed as if he was standing in cold wind. But after a while, he curled his lips and his expression softened again: “If you’re different, then you’re different. Who can stay the same from childhood to adulthood.”
As he spoke, the movements of his hands did not stop. He carefully wiped the wound with a cotton swab dipped in red medicine, leaned over and blew a few times and was just about to wrap the bandage; but as soon as he opened the pack of gauze, Yi Hui suddenly took it away.
“I am not the one you are looking for. You are mistaken.” Yi Hui didn’t find it easy to speak. He remembered saying something similar, but he knew it carried more weight at this moment, “You’ve made a mistake, I’m not him.”
Perhaps sensing the danger or perhaps lacking confidence, Yi Hui had changed his mind. He didn’t want to play with Zhou Jinheng anymore and didn’t want to wait until Zhou Jinheng lost patience. He wanted to cut off the relationship now.
What was this for? He had already changed his body and was trying to escape the past, but Zhou Jinheng had somehow gotten the wrong idea and came to haunt him. Whether it was out of necessity or out of obsession, why should he still be in control of everything and why should he have to spend time with him again?
Even the longest life had an end, and since Yi Hui did not own this life, he had nothing to offer in exchange.
“Didn’t you say that if I didn’t want to see you, you would just leave?” Before the other party could speak, Yi Hui continued, “Thank you for coming back for me, thank you for your care, now you can go.”
When he heard this, Zhou Jinheng’s lips were pursed, and the smile he had barely managed to put up could not be maintained. His face turned gloomy, as if it was about to rain in the mountains.
It was a sign that he was about to get angry. Yi Hui knew better than anyone what he looked like when he was angry. He would be furious, would use something handy to vent his anger, and then walk away.
As soon as things didn’t go as he wished, he would always react like this. Yi Hui didn’t mind being that “something” again. It was not the first time anyway; he had enough experience in this area.
One second, two seconds… Time passed quietly, but the expected violent storm did not come.
Yi Hui only heard a little snort. He couldn’t tell whether it was cynical or sarcastic. In short, it wasn’t a happy chuckle.
“Go? Where else can I go?” Zhou Jinheng’s voice was muffled, as if he was asking himself, “Where else can I go if you are here?”
Yi Hui did not understand, nor did he want to understand. When Zhou Jinheng pinched his chin and turned his face to make him look at him, there was no trace of warmth in his eyes.
Even though he was fully mentally prepared, even though he’d got through the first few times unscathed, Zhou Jinheng was still stung by Yi Hui’s display of indifference and resistance. His frustration was like a fine net that enveloped him in an impermeable manner.
Along with it came the overwhelming sense of uncertainty.
“You like me. You had said you liked me.” Zhou Jinheng stubbornly looked at Yi Hui, touched his cold hand lying by his side with his other hand, as if he couldn’t wait to pass some of his body warmth to him, “You are just angry with me, but you don’t want me to go, right?”
Faced with this nonsense, Yi Hui only considered it a joke, but he didn’t know whether to cry or laugh.
He couldn’t even find an expression that was appropriate enough to repel the opponent.
The effect of self-hypnosis continued and now he no longer needed to detach himself deliberately in order to stay out of it. Like a third party outside the story, he could ignore the tenderness that did not belong to him, and without looking into the expectant and begging eyes, he could withdraw his hand little by little from the other’s loosened palm.
“It was him who liked you, not me.”
The skin of his hand felt nothing but the air again, and as the sweat on it evaporated. Yi Hui’s vision became dim and blurred, but his thoughts were clear.
From beginning to end, I was the one who begged you. In my previous life, I begged you to like me. Now I beg you to let me go.
If I have to do this for you to let me go, then I will say it.
“I hate you, please… stop pestering me.”