After Lu Chenming was thoroughly beaten by Cheng Yang, he became a lot less shy; he didn’t even hide when he saw Cheng Xi, although his face still turned red.
Cheng Yang hit the back of his head. “Call her ‘Sister’!” And so, Lu Chenming obediently called out, “Sister.”
His voice was very soft, almost as if a mosquito had spoken. Cheng Yang was having quite a bit of fun hitting him around, and was just about to smack Lu Chenming’s head again when he noticed that Cheng Xi was staring at him, retracted his half-raised hand, coughed, and parted his hair awkwardly instead.
Compared to Cheng Yang, Lu Chenzhou was so calm that he was worse than the bystanders staring at the commotion.
When he noticed Lu Chenming, he lazily asked, “Why did you send that message?”
Lu Chenming stammered out, “……It’s just……”
He didn’t say anything more for what seemed like half the day. Impatient, Lu Chenzhou asked again, “You can’t handle what I asked of you?”
Lu Cheming’s body shuddered imperceptibly, and he softly replied, “No, I can.”
Lu Chenzhou nodded in satisfaction. Cheng Xi and Cheng Yang waited by the side for quite a while, thinking that he was about to say something else, but in the end, he waved his hand and said, “Let’s go eat.” And that was it.
The Cheng siblings were both struck speechless by this vague exchange. As they went to get food, Cheng Yang secretly whispered to his sister, “Lu Chenming and Lu Chenzhou aren’t actually brothers, are they?”
Cheng Xi elbowed him to get him to shut up. Actually, she somewhat understood Lu Chenzhou’s thought process—it didn’t matter how loudly one answered or whether or not one’s attitude was problematic; in either case, once the promise was made, all Lu Chenzhou had to do was wait for the results.
In summary, Lu Chenzhou was an entirely results-oriented person.
After Cheng Yang got the message that Cheng Xi didn’t want him to talk about this anymore, he obediently didn’t bring it up. Succumbing to the mighty force of Cheng Xi’s elbow, Cheng Yang fell backwards in a very exaggerated fashion. He actually landed on Lu Chenming’s body and took advantage of his position to land a hook on his neck.
Cheng Xi was preparing to slow down when she heard her brother say to Lu Chenming, “Don’t ever do this in the future again. You really almost scared me to the point of crapping my pants.”
She turned around, saw Lu Chenming lower his head, smiling, and she also smiled herself. In her joy, she skipped a couple steps forwards to catch up with Lu Chenzhou, and then linked arms with him while the others weren’t paying attention.
Lu Chenzhou tilted his head to look at her curiously. “We’re in public,” he said seriously.
Cheng Xi nodded back, just as serious. “Yup.”
“We’re still fighting.”
She had completely forgotten that she had been pretending to be on bad terms with Lu Chenzhou in front of Cheng Yang.
She quietly whispered, “Don’t worry. I’m the type of girlfriend that’ll keep harassing you.”
Lu Chenzhou raised his eyebrows and moved as if to remove his hand from hers, but Cheng Xi read his movements and grabbed onto his hand tightly. They ended up childishly pulling at each other for a while. In the end, Lu Chenzhou didn’t look at her again, but he couldn’t stop the corners of his mouth from curling up.
Since Lu Chenzhou was too picky with his food, the four of them ultimately drove to Donglai Hotel for dinner. Neither of the Lu siblings liked speaking very much, so the noble goal of keeping the conversation alive landed on Cheng Yang.
Thankfully, he was used to such duties, and as he had been in business for so long, he wasn’t afraid of awkward silences either. With the heavy pressure of preserving his sister’s happiness on his shoulders, his primary task was to brainwash Lu Chenming into compliance. While Lu Chenzhou was washing his hands and cleaning his bowl and chopsticks with scalding hot water and Cheng Xi was taking a call, he tried his hardest to defame Cheng Xi in front of Lu Chenming. “I’m serious! She’s so particular at home that it’s about to drive me crazy. There was this one time: she came home and when she saw the socks that I’d just taken off lying on the sofa, my goodness, she immediately grabbed a stool and started beating me!”
His tone was so exaggerated and humorous that Lu Chenming couldn’t stop himself from smiling. He glanced at the door and softly asked, “Does she…… hit people often?”
So as Cheng Xi walked back into the dining room, she heard Cheng Yang dramatically shout out, “Of course she hits people! She looks refined, cultured, and gentle right now, right? But I’m telling you, it’s all a lie! My sister’s extremely vicious when she starts hitting people. Now that she’s an adult, she only uses a stool to hit others, but when she was small and even more savage, she used to beat me with a rod this thick.” As he said this, he stretched his hands out. “One time, she chased me through eight whole streets. In the end, she almost crippled me! I’m not exaggerating! Really, I’m not.”
Lu Chenming gasped. “That fierce?”
“That’s right. That’s why I’m telling you to not be deceived by her facade. A person like my sister can’t be handled by just any random person. Only someone like your brother”—he then shot a subtle glance at Lu Chenming, conveying something along the lines of, “You understand, don’t you,” as he continued to say, “Could perhaps just be able to tolerate her.”
Lu Chenming started imagining a person as cold as his brother being chased around by Cheng Xi, who was trying to spank him, and he couldn’t help himself from starting to chuckle.
Since the two of them were having such a good time, they completely forgot about the fact that Cheng Xi was right outside, and that Lu Chenzhou had only gone into the washroom to wash his hands. By the time they finished messing around, both of the people they had just insulted were standing behind them.
Mr. Lu walked over and methodically wiped his hands clean with a towelette as he asked with a raised gaze, “So what am I like, hmm?”
Meanwhile, Ms. Cheng crossed her arms, looked at the two of them with a spurious smile on her face, and said in a particularly polite tone, “Cheng Yang, it sounds like eight streets was far too few for you. Shall I chase you down a few more?”
“Oh my god!” Cheng Yang looked around, so scared that he started trembling, and then hid behind Lu Chenming. “Brother, save me.”
Lu Chenzhou didn’t make a move, but Cheng Xi deftly reached oved and pinched the tip of Cheng Yang’s ears. “So you’ve learned to defame me. Not bad.” She dragged him into the washroom, keeping a solid hold on Cheng Yang’s ear all the while, slammed the door shut, and then started to brutally ravage him.
Outside, the two people could only hear Cheng Yang’s screams. “Aaaaah!”
It almost sounded like they were performing an opera.
Lu Chenming stared at the washroom door open-mouthed, wanting to help but unable to think of a way to do so. In the end, he just twisted his hands anxiously and looked at his brother, particularly helpless.
Lu Chenzhou, on the other hand, pressed the bell on the table and called a waiter over. “Start the meal.”
The Cheng siblings fought all the way until all the food had come out. Cheng Xi’s face was normal, but Cheng Yang had to limp out.
Lu Chenming went to his side and fearfully asked, “Are…… are you alright?”
Cheng Yang grimaced. “My ass is about to split open.”
Lu Chenming was speechless. “……”
So the Chengs actually did have a tradition of hitting people. He secretly glanced at Cheng Xi: currently, the tyrant-in-hiding, Dr. Cheng, was sitting on the opposite side of the table, and gently trying to curry favor with his elder brother. “Do you want some of this?”
His brother coldly replied, “No.”
Cheng Xi made an “Oh” sound and then lowered her gaze.
Truly, everything had a weakness.
This false alarm was the final event that helped Lu Chenming get over his feelings for Cheng Xi, the best possible result. Cheng Yang was the only one who ended up suffering, as he had to teach Lu Chenming about sales, ending up as tired as a dog afterwards.
By May, Chen Jiaman had become able to sit in the hospital plaza for a short period at a time. As her mental state improved, she finally entered the most important stage of her recovery. However, when Cheng Xi noticed that Chen Jiaman’s feelings were steadily worsening as she blamed herself more and more for killing her own grandmother, she bit her lips and finally called Lin Fan’s mother.
The hurt and lonely Chen Jiaman needed someone to rescue and redeem her—she had lost all of her close relatives at too young of an age, leaving her with only feelings of horror and despair towards the future. She needed a sense of security, and this security wasn’t something that Cheng Xi could provide as a doctor.
Lin Fan’s mother picked up the phone, but she never showed up. Instead, as the downpour continued for the fourth day, it was Lin Fan who pushed open the doors to her office.
“I’d like to ask you for a favor.” He stood in front of her, wet and cold, as he spoke in a somewhat miserable tone. “My wife seems to have relapsed. Could I trouble you to take a look at her?”