Zhou Xiang looked at the phone on the ground, head lowered, and didn't speak.


He didn't want to have a fight with Yan Mingxiu but he was too tired to explain. Merely sending a drunken friend back home could result in this kind of interrogation. Yan Mingxiu's wilfulness and arrogance was nothing new, but it was especially unbearable today. Perhaps it was because his mind was still occupied with what happened during the day. Yan Mingxiu's attitude, how he anxiously dissociated himself from him, made it so that even though Zhou Xiang had found lots of reasons in his head to defend him, he still felt bitterly disappointed.


Seeing that Zhou Xiang wasn't saying a word, Yan Mingxiu got even madder. Wang Yudong's low sigh echoed in his head over and over again. Wang Yudong had looked at him with eyes of complete puzzlement and asked him why he was getting involved with someone like Zhou Xiang.


Those eyes stabbed him like a needle.


He also started wondering in confusion, was the reason he was together with Zhou Xiang merely because of his back view resembled Wang Yudong’s and nothing more? He, Yan Mingxiu was unable to obtain the same thing, and could only demean himself and resort to finding a substitute. When did he become so pathetic?


And even though this person was just a substitute, and repeated over and over again that he liked him, he was also sowing oats behind his back.


Yan Mingxiu had never been subjected such humiliation. Ruthlessness swelled up within him. Zhou Xiang's silence didn't not cool his temper in the least. Instead, that silent admittance made his rage flame up even more.


Yan Mingxiu shouted angrily, "F**king say something! You promised me at that time that unless you come across him at the company, you will absolutely not come in touch with him. Were those words all just a f**king fart? You even went to his house! He's a major celebrity, why couldn't someone else send him home, why did it have to be you?!" At this point, it was no longer just about Lan Xirong, Yan Mingxiu only needed to find an outlet to vent his irritable mood.


Zhou Xiang raised his head. His face didn't have its usual smile. He merely said dully, "Mingxiu, stop making a fuss, okay? I only sent a drunk person home, does it deserve you acting this way?" His voice was filled with exhaustion. Even simply constraining the discontent in his heart had already used up all of his mental and physical energy.


Yan Mingxiu snorted coldly, "You already sent yourself to his house, why bother to come back? I heard people say that you two used to always hang out together. He can drop by your house without notice, if I hadn't been here, you two would have already continued your relationship from before."


The more Yan Mingxiu spoke, the more he felt he sounded like an unreasonable shrew. However, he couldn't stop. He felt as if he was a spectator, helplessly watching his own mouth unceasingly spit out those cutting words. He didn't know what he was thinking. Maybe he wanted to see Zhou Xiang get angry, or maybe he just wanted to take out his temper on Zhou Xiang. This person had thrown him off his balance, and had made him drift further and further away from Wang Yudong, and Wang Yudong even saw them embracing each other. Even though he knew perfectly well that there was no hope between him and Wang Yudong, he still never wanted to let Wang Yudong know about him and Zhou Xiang. It made him furious and indignant, it made him panicked, it made him want to bring order out of chaos.


Zhou Xiang suddenly stood up, his complexion gloomy. "Mingxiu, I don't want to quarrel with you. Think for yourself whether you’re being reasonable. I'll stay out tonight." He grabbed his coat and started to head out. He couldn't stay here for a second longer, if he did, he was afraid that he would...


Yan Mingxiu grabbed his shoulder and suddenly pressed him against the wall. He looked at him viciously. "You dare to leave?" He was pressing down an astonishing amount of force. Zhou Xiang felt like his shoulder bone was going to split open.


Zhou Xiang grabbed Yan Mingxiu's arm and shouted, "Let go, how long are you going to keep this up for?!"


Yan Mingxiu was startled. They had almost known each other for a year. Zhou Xiang had never given him an attitude even once, let alone scold him in a loud voice. Yan Mingxiu was so mad his hand was shaking.


It was already bad enough that he had embarrassed himself in from of Wang Yudong, now even Zhou Xiang was daring to blow up at him, and all for the sake of that sissy face Lan Xirong!


Without thinking, he slapped Zhou Xiang on the face. His lips trembled, "You're getting angry at me for him?"


Zhou Xiang was momentarily slapped stupid. He stared at Yan Mingxiu with disbelief.


When you hit people, you don't hit the face. From Zhou Xiang's pallid complexion you could see how humiliating this slap was in this sort of situation.


He pushed Yan Mingxiu away, and said sternly, "When on earth are you going to grow up?!" If there was really is something between me and Lan Xirong, would I wait until today?! Can't your eyes see how I treat you? You don't even have this little drop of trust in me, was my hard work during this time all f**king fed to a dog?!


"You're regretting now? You're regretting that you didn't go with that sensible Lan Xirong?"


"What does this have to do with him? It has never had anything to do with him, it's all just your f***ing groundless thinking. I want to ask you as well, why did you act like that at the balcony today? You're not even afraid of your parents finding out, but you're still scared of Wang Yudong finding out? Is being with me that shameful?" After Zhou Xiang shouted out everything that he had be holding back in his heart in one go, he felt released for a moment. However, upon seeing Yan Mingxiu's extremely ugly complexion, he felt a dull ache in his heart. He didn't know if he and Yan Mingxiu would end just like this. They had been together for so long and had never quarrelled before. He was unable to predict what sort of consequences this fight would bring about.


The moment Zhou Xiang mentioned Wang Yudong, Yan Mingxiu seemed to explode. With eyes of ice, his pointed at Zhou Xiang's nose and said in a stern voice, "You have no right to butt into my business, who the f**k do you think you are?!"


Zhou Xiang moved his lips. He wanted to argue back, but something seemed to have clenched onto his heart; he couldn't say a word.


Yan Mingxiu was always demanding this and that from him. Although in Zhou Xiang's eyes, Yan Mingxiu's demands were very immature, he thought Yan Mingxiu acted that way because he cared about him. However, he actually still didn't even have the right to question Yan Mingxiu's actions even a little bit?


After they had been known each other for almost a year, for the first time, this stark discrepancy was thrown into Zhou Xiang's face, and in such a naked manner, he couldn't evade or turn a blind eye even if he wanted to.


Because Yan Mingxiu hadn't spared Zhou Xiang’s feelings at all.


They had been together for so long now. Zhou Xiang thought that they had already stepped into the right direction, but it turned out it was all his wishful thinking. Yan Mingxiu's heart was too high; he still couldn't reach it.


Zhou Xiang didn't want to continue arguing. The situation was already bad enough. He nodded, "I, Zhou Xiang, am no one." He pulled Yan Mingxiu's hand off his arm, and headed for the door carrying his coat.


He had completely forgotten that this was his home. For a long time, he had already thought of this place as Yan Mingxiu's home as well. But right now, this place was flooded with his hurt and despair. He truly couldn't stay here any second longer.


Yan Mingxiu’s palm was suddenly replaced by air. He looked at Zhou Xiang's back and couldn't bear to see Zhou Xiang leave like this. He charged over and grabbed Zhou Xiang. "Where the f**k are you going?"


Zhou Xiang said dully, "Mingxiu, I have no right to interfere in your business, and you also have no right to interfere in mine. You can't go too carried away with your double standards." He pushed Yan Mingxiu away, opened the door and left without turning back.


Yan Mingxiu gazed at the empty corridor. The only thing he could feel were the cold gusts of wind tearing at his skin.


---


Zhou Xiang aimlessly drove his car around the urban. He had nowhere to go.


In the past, he definitely would have run to Cai Wei's place without a second thought, and taken shelter for one night at his place, on the bed or sofa or anywhere. However, Cai Wei had a family now and his wife was pregnant. Zhou Xiang couldn't just senselessly go at this time of the night and disturb their rest. After a person starts a family, they seem to be wrapped up by an invisible membrane. They will no longer belong to him, and will naturally no longer belong to friends. Zhou Xiang gradually met up with Cai Wei less and less. Zhou Xiang also no longer outrageously rang Cai Wei in the middle of the night to tell him to get up to play computer games.


As his close friends gradually attained their own lives, Zhou Xiang felt more and more lonely, as if the people beside him were disappearing one by one, and only he had been cast aside.


He wanted a family too, and he also wanted to get married. Unfortunately, his circumstances didn’t allow it.


After he turned thirty, too many of his friends had already formed their own families, and humans have a tendency to swim with the tide. Possibly because of that, although no one pressed him, he also couldn't help feeling a bit anxious. However, finding a man that he could settle down with was truly too hard. He knew perfectly well that Yan Mingxiu was not suitable to be that person, but he really liked him. He just wanted... Just wanted to make a gamble, have a try, so that he wouldn't regret it in the future.


He had always thought that he was doing pretty well. In the end, it was only today that he clearly saw how many grams his hard work was worth.


It was too unbearable. Zhou Xiang didn't know what to do.