The clothes on ZhouXiang were not suitable for the snow weather. After a short while, his entire body shivered and his lips turned blue. YanMingXiu pulled him into the car and spoke with a heavy nasal sound, “How could you come down wearing so little?”


ZhouXiang responded embarrassingly with a bit of nervousness, “I heard that it's not cold when it's snowing.”


"Nonsense, no matter what, it's still below zero.” YanMingXiu turned the car's heater to the highest. He caressed ZhouXiang’s face with his frozen fingers, showing a crying and laughing expression. But even with him showing such a strange expression, he still made people felt touched endlessly.


ZhouXiang embarrassingly turned his head to the side.


YanMingXiu gripped his chin and melded their lips, gently kissing him.


ZhouXiang starred at YanMingXiu’s eyelashes in close proximity, moving like swaying fans; it is especially captivating.


YanMingXiu winked, “I'm going to stay here (in ZhouXiang's room) tonight.”


ZhouXiang still felt a bit awkward, “No, go back with your brother.”


“Will you move back?” YanMingXiu looked straight at him, his eyes full of expectations.


ZhouXiang nodded and shook his head, "I can't. I have to take care of my mom.”


YanMingXiu uttered, “We can live together. We can move into the home at SanHuan. I can take care of her along with you.”


ZhouXiang thought for a moment, “Forget it. My mom's personality is not one who likes to trouble others.”


“But I want to live with you,” YanMingXiu lightly frowned.


ZhouXiang's mind is in chaos, “Let’s talk about this later.”


YanMingXiu pressed ZhouXiang onto the car's door and expressed his dissatisfaction with a lingering kiss.


Bang! Bang!


Suddenly loud banging noise sounded from atop their heads, starling the two. ZhouXiang immediately sat up straight and his head severely slammed into the windows, hitting it so hard that he is seeing stars.


YanMingXiu pulled him forward and softly smiled, “Got you so scared?”


He wiped the fog off the window and saw YanMingSu standing outside of the car, looking at them helplessly.


ZhouXiang pushed him away and got out of the car, “I am going to go up first.”


ZhouXiang is not an easily embarrassed person, but now he is actually somewhat embarrassed. He didn't know how to face YanMingXiu. He needed to sort out his thoughts and think of how to handle ChenYing and YanMingXiu's relationship in the future, and with his career, and how to explain to CaiWei and the others. All in all, just thinking about this is enough to give him a headache.


YanMingXiu’s eyes fixated on ZhouXiang’s back until he disappeared into the stairway before he turned his gaze back.


Seeing his useless younger brother, YanMingSu could only sigh, “Are you satisfied now?”


YanMingXiu smiled, his smiled tinged with a bit of inexplicable sorrow, “He really do still have feelings for me.”


“Then why don’t you go tell him yourself?”


“He is very resistant to me, especially with the feeling of taking the same path from before. When you're on a path and the end is a cliff, you certainly won't want to take it a second time.” YanMingXiu looked up toward ZhouXiang's lighted room, his expression absorbed and persistent, “But I want him to be by my side at all times, advancing and retreating together, no matter what the end is.”


“Then, the thing you promised grandfather and our parents, how long are you going to be able to hide that?” YanMingSu’s expression is a bit serious.


YanMingXiu’s eyes turned gloomy, his ordinary expression concealing unspeakable pain, “I don’t know, but… if I don't grasp firmly onto him at this time, he will leave me at a time when I'm most helpless. If I didn't appear here today, he will hesitate again tomorrow. Ge, he lost his parents when he was 8 years old. In fact, he lacked security more than anyone else. If I can’t make him feel at ease, he will choose the most rational way to protect himself. His so-called rational way is one that I can't accept.”


"Your own choice, I have nothing to say. But remember… once your lies are exposed, I'm gonna see how you're going to deal with it."


YanMingXiu narrowed his eyes and didn't answer.


He can't consider the consequences. Nothing can be worse than ZhouXiang’s leaving him at this time. He needed to firmly trap ZhouXiang so that he can't leave him no matter what happens.


—–


After ZhouXiang went upstairs, he thought that ChenYing would say something to him. Unexpectedly, ChenYing didn't say anything, merely telling him to go to bed early.


After ZhouXiang returned to his room, he flopped down on the bed heavily. His heart continued to beat erratically, for everything that had just happened … for the past … for YanMingXiu.


ZhouXiang asked himself, even though he doesn't know what would happen in the future, would he continue to live on being confused and foolish? The corner of his mouth moved, revealing a somewhat warmly smile. If he was to be with YanMingXiu, being confused and foolish moving forward is worth a try.


Thinking about everything that had happened in the past, ZhouXiang unconsciously fell asleep.


In the middle of the night, his phone rang. He touched the phone and squinted his eyes at the screen. Again, it is YanMingXiu’s call. Almost out of reflex, he bolted off the bed and opened the curtains to look downstairs. Sure enough, YanMingXiu and his car are downstairs. YanMingXiu even poked his head out of the car and waved at him.


ZhouXiang connected the call, “Why are you being crazy again?”


YanMingXiu felt very grieved, “I said that I wanted to sleep with you but you don’t want to.”


“I've said that I don't want to and you're still not leaving?”


“I've also said that I want to be a bit closer to you.”


“Fine, with you calling in the middle of the night, you think I don't understand what you want?”


"Then, can I go upstairs?"


ZhouXiang hesitated for two seconds and sighed, “Come up then.”


He quietly opened the door and pulled YanMingXiu in.


ZhouXiang’s room is small, and it's hot, hotter than in the car. YanMingXiu took off his sweater as soon as he entered, wearing only a tank top.


ZhouXiang narrowed his eyes and looked at him.


YanMingXiu pulled him on the bed, “I know you're not in the mood. We're just going to sleep, just sleep.”


ZhouXiang heaved a sigh and lay back on the bed.


YanMingXiu took off his pants and climbed into the bed and got under the blanket, tightly hugging ZhouXiang.


The room is so quiet that they could only hear each other's breathing.


"MingXiu.


"Mnnnnn?"


“You remember what it was like when we first met?”


YanMingXiu is silent. Of course he remembered the first time they met. He had mistakenly thought that ZhouXiang’s back was WangYuDong's back. This is not something worth mentioning. It is a forbidden topic between them because of the things that happened after.


“Hey, why aren't you talking? Could you have forgotten? I was doing a martial arts scene as WangYuDong's stuntman and you thought I was him and even hugged me from behind.”


YanMingXiu said solemnly, “I remember.”


YanMingXiu treating ZhouXiang as WangYuDong's substitute is a lifetime knot for ZhouXiang. It is also something that made YanMingXiu feel very ashamed every time he thought of it. But ZhouXiang felt that he if could just freely bring it up himself like this, perhaps one day, he could completely let it go.


“Did you know what I thought of when I saw you?”


"What?"


"I was thinking…if I could do it (sex) with you just once, then anything is worth it."


YanMingXiu laughed, "Really?"


"Really."


"What about now?"


ZhouXiang is silent for a long while, “Now, it's not just once but everything has changed."


YanMingXiu didn’t say anything. He just embraced him tighter.


ZhouXiang whined softly and sighed, “It would be best if we could go back to the past.”


—–


YanMingXiu left before the sky brightened. After all, it would be embarrassing for ChenYing so see him again.


However, he came again at past 9 o’clock in the morning and said that he would take ChenYing to see a doctor.


ZhouXiang remembered that he had mentioned contacting a good nephrologist last time. It was about treating the illness. It is best not to delay it. ZhouXiang advised ChenYing to go right now.


ChenYing is hesitant because she is worried about money issues. YanMingXiu could see her concerns and said softly, “Auntie, between Xiang Ge and I, there are no difference between what we have. His matters are my matters. You being so stubborn will only make him feel pained, making it harder for yourself.”


ZhouXiang is in no position to speak. After all, he still needed to use YanMingXiu’s money. This is really not a glorious thing. He can only look at ChenYing anxiously, hoping that she would understand.


ChenYing couldn’t stand see her son feeling so pained. Although she felt that her face is hot, she could only follow the two of them downstairs.


YanMingXiu took her to a private hospital in Beijing. There is a prominent expert on kidney disease in China who is in partnership with the hospital. Sometimes she will come here to provide consultations.


ZhouXiang brought all of ChenYing's medical information, his heart full of hope.


After arriving at the hospital, ChenYing had a few routine examinations. The doctor led two apprentices to study ChenYing’s condition and requested that she stay in the hospital for a few days so that they could further observe her and try to determine the best treatment plan within the weeks' time.


ChenYing is not willing to stay in the hospital but decided to with the doctor’s examination and ZhouXiang’s persuasion.


After the nurse took her to the ward, the doctor said to ZhouXiang and YanMingXiu, “With her condition, it best to have a kidney transplant. You can start looking for a kidney donor now."


Coming out of the hospital, ZhouXiang kept thinking silently.


YanMingXiu squeezed his palm, “Xiang Ge, this is indeed a very difficult task but there are so many Chinese people, we can search online. Don’t think too much. Even if you can’t find a kidney donor, as long as she follows her treatment, many people with uremia can live for a decade or two."


ZhouXiang smiled, “I understand but don’t tell her about this. Wait until there is a donor first. I don't want to give her any hope that won't come true. I am afraid that the old lady won't be able to bear it.”


“I understand.” YanMingXiu smiled and glanced at him, “Xiang Ge, let’s go to WangJiaWang supermarket near our home to buy some hot pot ingredients. They have the beef balls you like to eat. Let’s have hot pot tonight, okay? “”


"Okay, Let's go. Haven't eaten it in a long time."


YanMingXiu felt a piercing pain in his heart as he bitterly smiled, "Yeah, haven't eaten it in a long time…”


End of the Chapter