Chapter 21—The Truth
Edited by Tin
The weather was the tiniest bit warmer than before. During his break, Zhou Hao took the opportunity to go to the flower market and bought two little pots of flowers. Right now was the season for gardenias. A few blossoms of white peeped above the green leaves, looking quite elegant. Their scent was very mild, and it was a decent choice to display at home.
Jiang Yuqian was now a regular visitor, and the two people had a lot of time to interact. Between two men, there wasn’t only just that sort of thing to do, but many others as well.
When they were free, they would even play computer games together, clattering wildly on their keyboards. Zhou Hao was the main dps, while Jiang Yuqian played support. When the situation was getting urgent in-game, Zhou Hao would even shout at him, “Aiyah, taking your own sweet time. Quick, catch up.”
After spending all that time playing computer games, they would then get bored, and each would then move to do their own things. Zhou Hao would look through his medical books, while Jiang Yuqian would busy himself with his company matters.
At night, they might do something private, or they might also just lie there, chatting.
Zhou Hao noticed the different, sudden niceness. As he indulged in it, at the same time, he remained a little wary. He kept feeling that this person was brewing a huge storm within him.
Once, Zhou Hao asked him, “Did you go for a personality transplant recently? You’re so nice now?”
Jiang Yuqian’s face darkened. He didn’t say anything, only picking up the inciting person and carrying him into the bedroom.
Right now, Zhou Hao was the happiest he had ever been. He never said it aloud, but in his heart, he was undeniably happy. He tucked this happiness secretly inside him, only allowing himself to taste a tiny bit of it. After that little taste, he would hurriedly put it back inside its box, saving the rest for the next indulgence.
He even started to try and forgive his mother, trying to find a reason to explain how terrible this woman was.
Right now, his inner self was a thing of such perfection that it was almost a dream. Looking into the water, there would immediately be a reflection of a smiling face; when he felt the wind, even the wind was caressing him gently.
The post was still on Douban. Zhou Hao sat in front of the computer for two hours, and he kept feeling that there were no words that were able to express how beautiful the days had been recently.
Writing it down, he kept feeling that the conclusion was too hasty, and he deleted it;
Again, he wrote, but there was still an anxiety inside him, and he deleted it again;
Conflicted to the very end, his new update became—
The change in the situation happened in early June. Cheng Zixu made a special effort to look for Jiang Yuqian, asking him what he meant by the words he said late that night.
But as a man, no one would share the matter in its entirety.
Jiang Yuqian did not tell Cheng Zixu exactly what the issue was. He only stared at the man in front of him with sorrowful eyes that were brimming with emotions.
Not getting a response, the usually placid Cheng Zixu could not help but ask aggrievedly, “What exactly did you mean by your words that night? What did you do for me?”
“There’s something I need to attend to. I’m going back now.”
Walking away, he did not return to his own home, but back to the apartment he shared with Zhou Hao. Zhou Hao was not at home in the day, and without asking, Jiang Yuqian found that video from the play history of the television.
That short, three-minutes video, he watched it at least twenty times. Looking at it over and over again, by the end, he was almost numb.
The video that started it all. If it didn’t exist, the three of them wouldn’t have such a twisted relationship that they shared right now. He probably wouldn’t have shared the same bed as Zhou Hao for four years, and it was even more improbable that he would be feeling such conflict about his feelings.
The image on the television continued moving. Although the lighting was dim, the image was not blurry.
Jiang Yuqian abruptly froze. The neck of the “Cheng Zixu” on screen unexpectedly had an extra mole. He rewound the video to look at it again, and it was true, there was a mole there.
While on Cheng Zixu’s neck, there clearly was not a single mole at all.
In that moment, he was unable to completely accept the “truth” that had replayed in his mind countless times. If even the “truth” was fake, then all these years, had he not been treated like a fool by that person?
Jiang Yuqian calmed down. Chuckling a couple of times, rage exploded out of him.
A swing of his arm, and he swept everything on the coffee table onto the floor—the mugs, the ashtray, as well as a pink fruit platter…
Crashes and clatters, a cacophony of sounds.
The key point of his rage—Why did you lie to me? Why did you deceive me, turning me into someone like this?
Even more was a sort of release. Another version of him, inside his heart, revealed his soul—I now finally have a reason to be free of this nutcase.
At night, Zhou Hao returned home from the hospital. The first thing he saw was how messy the place was, and next was the image frozen on the large TV screen.
Shifting his direction, he slowly walked towards a fear he didn’t know…
“What are you doing here?”
With bloodshot eyes, Jiang Yuqian stared at him fixedly, and in them was a towering rage.
Extremely flustered, Zhou Hao picked up the remote control from the floor and pressed the off button.
Jiang Yuqian stood up from the couch, walking closer to him a step at a time. As for Zhou Hao, he withdrew, a step at a time, until he reached the front door, where he had nowhere else to go.
Jiang Yuqian’s face was completely dark, and neither did he speak, causing one to tremble in fear. Zhou Hao could guess what had happened. He tried to explain, but he could not make a sound.
After some time, Jiang Yuqian’s anger and sullenness receded a little, and his lips moved. “I’ll give you the house and the card. There’s still some money in the card.”
Zhou Hao wanted to cry, but he couldn’t. He had to keep himself composed, to completely explain everything to this person.
His brain churned quickly, and in a short amount of time, he had come up with many explanations. In his heart still existed a thin thread of hope. It didn’t have to be like this, it didn’t have to be like this between the two of them. Didn’t they just interact well with each other recently? He still wanted to have his happily ever after with his hubby.
Tentatively, he reached out and grabbed Jiang Yuqian’s arm. His grip was very steady, and the person in front of him did not shrug him off either. This caused the tiny thread of hope inside him to expand widely. His nervousness had dissipated entirely, and he regained his usual cutting self.
“What are you doing? Why are you giving me the house for no reason? You want to be my sugar daddy?”
Jiang Yuqian brushed away Zhou Hao’s hand. “I won’t be coming here anymore.”
This was not the first time he had said that, and Zhou Hao had long been numb to those words already. This time, he also did not see it as anything important.
Jiang Yuqian moved away from him, about to leave. In an instant, Zhou Hao seemed to have finally realised that this person was truly going to leave.
Zhou Hao ran over, standing with his back to the door handle. He was a little agitated, but yet he lacked confidence. “What do you mean? Are you dumping me?!”
Jiang Yuqian had enough of how this person always acted as though he did nothing wrong. The corner of his lips quirked up disdainfully, and he asked in return, “That video? Zhou Hao, you’re completely evil!”
Zhou Hao lowered his lids. He remained silent, as he was in the wrong.
“How dare you?” Jiang Yuqian snorted. “Huh? Using a fake video to deceive someone? You’ve actually fucking deceived me for four years!”
“Listen to me.” Zhou Hao tried to grab at Jiang Yuqian’s hands, but the younger man dodged him. With nowhere for his hands to go, Zhou Hao rubbed them together anxiously, then out of habit, he reached for the cigarettes in his pocket. After lighting one up, he inhaled on it, and finally he felt a little better.
“Can’t we not kick up a fuss, all right? Let’s just live together happily.” Zhou Hao spoke, skipping over the part about the deceit.
Jiang Yuqian ignored him, forcefully pushing him away from the door. Losing his footing, Zhou Hao stumbled to the right.
Zhou Hao rushed back, throwing his arms around the person who was about to leave. Repeatedly, he said, “Calm down, Hubby, let’s calm down, we’ll be happy together…”
Jiang Yuqian struggled in his embrace, and soon freed himself. He shoved Zhou Hao away, the viciousness in his eyes more than apparently. “Are you done with your insanity?!”
Zhou Hao blinked his eyes hard. When he was sad, he always liked to blink.
He didn’t understand. Why did the man that had been holding him only a few days ago now look like an entirely different person? Weren’t they just lying on the couch together yesterday, using each other as pillows, leisurely whiling away the afternoon?
“I don’t get it…” Zhou Hao mumbled. This time, he was the one who didn’t understand.
Jiang Yuqian understood Zhou Hao’s confusion. Wasn’t it just—I only told you a small lie, but why are you not giving me a chance to repent?
“What do you not get?” Jiang Yuqian scoffed.
Zhou Hao lifted his head, trying to catch any sense of love in the eyes of the person across from him. However, there was none. Other than an ice that was miles deep, he could not see anything else. Being in the wrong, he remained silent.
“You don’t get why over the past few days, we’ve been getting along so well that we almost seem as one, and yet I don’t even care a bit about the relationship between us?” Jiang Yuqian put the confusion inside him to words.
“You actually thought I like you? That I want to be with you?” Step by step, Jiang Yuqian pressed closer.
Zhou Hao’s gaze turned savage, it turned crazed. He wanted nothing more than to leap forward and destroy that mouth.
Jiang Yuqian jeered at him. “Even if you didn’t deceive me, I will never be with someone like you.”
Someone like me? What sort of person am I like? Zhou Hao thought dazedly.
Brooding over it, he still didn’t understand. Just like before, he lunged forward, kicking and punching. He hoped that Jiang Yuqian would get angry, then drag him into bed. Like that, all feuds and hate would pretty much vanish.
However, Jiang Yuqian only kept on pushing at him, avoiding him.
“That time, after going to the hospital in the middle of the night, do you know who I went to?” Calmly, Jiang Yuqian recollected the memory. He didn’t pay attention to Zhou Hao’s reaction, but continued cruelly, “I went to Cheng Zixu. I asked him to date me, and he said he would think about it.”
Jiang Yuqian gave a sudden laugh. “Silly Haohao. You see, even without the deceit, I don’t plan on being with you either.”
As expected, his words found their target. Zhou Hao gave up on clinging and resisting, letting go of his grip on that person’s shoulder…
Actually he could just ignore Zhou Hao, and just turn away and leave. Actually, he could have not said all these hurtful words. But he wanted to see this person vulnerable and wrecked.
Finally, Jiang Yuqian glanced at that pitiful person, turning away and leaving.
Zhou Hao collapsed in a corner of the room near the door, and all he could think about was what that person said before leaving—
“Silly Haohao. You see, even without the deceit, I don’t plan on being with you either…”