Cheng Xi waited patiently until she finally heard Lin Fans mother sigh lightly. Cheng Xi, why are you making this so difficult?
Ive known you for so many years, Mrs. Lin. Wont you satisfy even this one small request of mine?
Lin Fans mother fell silent again, mulling it over before finally saying, Alright. Ill send you an address. Im free this afternoon, so you can come then.
Not long after, Cheng Xi received a text with an address in it from Lin Fans mother. When Cheng Xi looked it up, it was a private residence in the best area in the city, and not too far from the hospital.
The head nurse suddenly knocked on the door. Time to eat. She already knew that Chen Jiaman was being transferred, and her gaze toward Cheng Xi was filled with sympathy.
Cheng Xi stood up. Alright. Lets go.
As they walked through the hospital corridors, the head nurse tried to comfort Cheng Xi. Actually, isnt it good that shes switching hospitals? You wont have to worry over her anymore. We all know how troublesome Chen Jiaman can be, and you should be happy that shes being transferred.
Cheng Xi only smiled wryly, and the head nurse covered her eyes. Alright, alright, you shouldnt force yourself to smile. She patted Cheng Xi back as she repliably said, If youre not feeling well, then I can give you a massage to relieve some tension.
Cheng Xis heart warmed, and she leaned against the head nurses shoulder. Thank you. I already feel better just by hearing this from you.
Indeed, even though Cheng Xi was a bit angry, she wasnt all that sad; perhaps it was because she had a team supporting her by her side.
In the afternoon, she had to request time off to go see Lin Fans mother. The department head gave her no trouble at all; he simply waved his hand and said, Go, go.
He then personally scheduled a doctor to fill in for her.
Cheng Xi was very grateful.
She took a taxi directly to the address that Lin Fans mother had sent her. Despite the cold winter winters, the streets were still crowded, and Cheng Xis ride over was plagued by traffic jams.
When she finally arrived, she waited at the doorstop for quite a while before a housekeeper-like figure came over to answer the door. Are you Ms. Cheng?
Only then did the housekeeper open the door and let her in. Lin Fans mother was on the second floor. When Cheng Xi walked over, she was trimming flowers by the corridor. The temperature had been unprecedentedly cold these last few days, and even though they were indoors, she was dressed very warmly with a white wool sweater and a sapphire-blue marten coat with a white fur collar trim. Framed by the dusky rays of the sun, Lin Fans mother looked far younger than her actual age.
But she was clearly not in a good mood, and her mood was reflected in her pruning; a perfectly good banyan tree had been ruined by her terrible trimming.
Cheng Xi noticed that upon seeing Lin Fans mothers handiwork, the housekeeper by her side snorted lightly with a speck of disdain in her eyes. Then she curtly announced, Shes here, before leaving right away.
Lin Fans mother ignored the disdain in the housekeeper, put down the scissors, and then smiled at Cheng Xi. Ill bring you to see my old man first.
The old man she was referring to was the owner of this house, as well as Lin Fans mothers current husband. She had said that he was old, and she hadnt been exaggerating at all; the man who appeared in front of Cheng Xi was old, very old. His head was completely bald, his body thin and skinny, and his skin covered in liver spots.
His bedroom had long been converted into a sickroom. In front of the bed were some common medical apparatuses, and two people who looked like doctors were sitting by his bedside. The master of the house was lying in bed with one hand outside the blankets. There was an IV by the bed, with fluid slowly dripping down from it.
Upon hearing the noise of two people entering the room, he opened his eyes slightly. Lin Fans mother walked in, leaned by his side, and said, This is Lin Fans classmate. Shes here to see you.
The old mans dusky gaze meandered over, landing on Cheng Xis face. After quite a while, he opened his mouth and said, Okay.
Then Ill go and talk with her now. Stay well. After Lin Fans mother finished talking to the old man, she considerately helped him arrange his blankets before pulling Cheng Xi out of the room.
Only after they exited the room and were once again breathing the fresh air outside did Cheng Xi slowly release a pent up breath.
Were you scared? Lin Fans mother asked with a smile.
Cheng Xi didnt know what to say.
Lin Fan has always thought that this was an embarrassing affair, but I thought that it wasnt so bad. These past years of being married to him are some of the most peaceful days of my life.
She brought Cheng Xi to a small living room on the side of the house, sat down in front of her, and started chatting. She had neither the gentleness and grief of her early years nor the snobbishness and affectation that Cheng Xi had seen in her recently. Lin Fans mother was very calm today. Do you know why I wanted to meet you here? Its to show you that Lin Fans different from you, that the burdens hes been carrying is different from the average persons. Dont even try to convince me to let Jiaman stay in Renyi Hospital. I dont want her to become his burden.
Cheng Xi tartly replied, She wont be his burden.
Really? Lin Fans mother looked at her with a placid smile. Just because you say so? What if she doesnt improve for the rest of her life? As youve said before, her illness cant be solved through money—she also needs familial care, ceaseless kindness… Lin Fans mother had actually used the word kindness. Cheng Xis heart stiffened, but she didnt stop her from speaking and silently listened as Lin Fans mother continued. Lin Fans not willing to follow the path that I chose for him. He wants to bear all these burdens alone, and I have no choice but to let him do so. However, this shouldnt be his responsibility, and I dont want him to be forced to carry this burden. I dont care about why you want him to care for Jiaman. Whether its because of your duty as a doctor or because of your selfishness as a woman, none of it matters to me.
Cheng Xi glanced at Lin Fans mother, her eyes limpid and determined. Mrs. Lin, do you think that the reason why I want Lin Fan to take care of Chen Jiaman is because I want to woo him?
Lin Fans mother didnt reply, but it was clear that she did indeed think so.
Cheng Xis face turned red. I didnt know that, in Mrs. Lins eyes, that Im an undignified girl who doesnt have any self respect. What if I promised to never be romantically involved with him again? Would you……
No. Lin Fans mother shook her head, cutting Cheng Xi off. Cheng Xi, I dont want to take any risks. Even though I do want him to choose a wife who can help him achieve his goals rather than choose one out of impulse, as his mother, I do want him to both have a successful career and marriage. He likes you. I dont want to deny this, and neither can I deny it. However, if he has to see you from time to time while still harboring feelings you, Cheng Xi… Then do you think this would be good for him?
Also, I dont understand why you wouldnt agree to transfer Jiaman to another hospital. Professor Cai was your professor and a national authority on psychology. Her laboratory is well-funded, and as long as Jiaman volunteers to be a test subject in her laboratory, then even if she cant recover, she will still receive very good treatment and care. Isnt this the best outcome for everyone involved?
Cheng Xis voice was trembling as she replied, But do you know what shell have to face as a test subject? Her minds already so fragile. If the methods that they use arent suitable…
Do you think that youre more experienced than Professor Cai? How are you so sure that she wont receive suitable treatment over there? If your method is indubitably the right one, then why hasnt she improved even after spending such a long time in the hospital? Cheng Xi, weve known each other for a while, and I dont want to hurt you by being too blunt. Youre so young and so talented, and youll surely encounter many more men and patients in the future—why spend so much time on this one?
So, Mrs. Lin, you really do think that I want to keep Jiaman here because of Lin Fan, dont you? Cheng Xi took a deep breath, trying to calm herself down. Youre right. Im still young, and therell be many more men and patients in my future. Men, I dont care too much about…… As for patients, while you might not understand my attachment to them, you should understand the disgrace and humiliation I feel from knowing that I can cure Chen Jiaman but not being able to do so. I dont doubt my professors work, and Im certainly not brash enough to claim that I know more than Professor Cai. However, Im also a psychiatrist in my own right, and I know what sort of treatment my patients need. Thats enough reason for me.
After Cheng Xi finished speaking her mind, she got up, ready to leave. After taking two steps towards the door, she stopped again, turned around to Lin Fans mother, and said, I didnt think this in the past, but I feel like theres something I have to say to you now. Its really frightening that anyone can become a parent.