After Shen Xi returned from the cemetery, his mood was not good.
He didn’t want to go back to the hotel alone, so he casually strolled along the busy commercial street of Zhongjing in the twilight. At this time, Shen Xi couldn’t help but miss his group of friends from the past, not the people, but the feeling of having company.
As the night gradually enveloped Zhongjing, Shen Xi casually found an inconspicuous bar, nestled in a corner, and began to drink alone in silence.
Shen Xi couldn’t remember how much he had drunk by the time a man dressed as a waiter snatched the glass from his hand and looked at him disapprovingly, “Guest, you’ve already drunk too much, you can’t drink any more.”
Shen Xi was already dizzy at this moment, and only his nervous energy kept him from collapsing. He didn’t understand what the other party was saying. Looking at the wine glass in the waiter’s hand, Shen Xi subconsciously went to fight for it but was suppressed by the waiter, “Guest, where do you live? I’ll call a taxi for you.”
The waiter seemed to say a lot more but in a daze Shen Xi only heard the words “where do you live” clearly. He felt that the man seemed to be kind, so he forced himself to look up. In a trance, he thought he saw Fang Luowei and couldn’t help but say, “Fang Luowei, so you are here.”
After finishing this sentence, Shen Xi passed out and his body collapsed limply on the sofa. He did not see the waiter’s surprised expression and did not hear him muttering, “Strange, how do you know my name is Fang Luowei.”
Fang Luowei carefully looked at the drunk man. Under the dim light, the man looked no more than twenty-something and was very handsome. Perhaps because of the wine, the man’s face was flushed with an odd shade of red, and his brows frowned tightly. It could be seen that he was not in a good mood.
After looking at him for half a second, Fang Luowei could not find the slightest impression of the man in his memory and had to keep his doubts to himself.
Seeing that the man was completely drunk, Fang Luowei resigned himself to leaning over to get the man’s wallet and mobile phone, trying to see if he could find any clues related to the man, or at least find someone to take him home.
“What are you doing?” A low voice sounded behind him.
Taken aback, Fang Luowei turned around sharply. Several men and women, obviously customers, were standing behind him. The one who asked the question was a tall slender man in the front, now looking at him with a cold face and a scrutinising expression.
Fang Luowei blinked and explained, “This guest is drunk, I’m looking if I can find any clues to send him home.”
Perhaps it was because Fang Luowei’s attitude was so sincere that the customers easily believed his words. The man who had asked the question came forward and gave the drunk man a complicated look, leaned down and carefully picked him up.
Fang Luowei said instinctively, “You know this guest?”
The tall man nodded and turned his head to look at his companions, “I’ll take him home, you guys can play by yourselves.”
His companions had disappointed expressions on their faces and one of them, a petite girl, hurriedly asked, “Are you coming back, Mingxuan?”
The man called Mingxuan shook his head, “No, I have to rush home in the evening.”
The disappointment on the girl’s face was obvious but Li Mingxuan seemed to be completely blind to it and left the bar with Shen Xi in his arms.
Fang Luowei watched in disbelief as the man carried the drunk guest away, then suddenly remembered something and chased after him, “Wait, I still have the wallet.”
Li Mingxuan carried Shen Xi out of the bar. As soon as the night breeze blew, Shen Xi felt chilly and instinctively leaned towards the nearest source of heat. Li Mingxuan looked at Shen Xi, who was persistently squeezing into his arms, and tightened his arms helplessly, holding him closer to his chest.
After carefully placing Shen Xi in the passenger seat, Li Mingxuan got into the car and leaned over to carefully fasten Shen Xi’s seat belt. He was about to drive away when Fang Luowei chased him, “Wait, I still have his wallet and phone.”
Li Mingxuan looked at the young man trotting over and thanked him politely, “Thank you.”
Fang Luowei waved his hand with a smile and gave Shen Xi a concerned look, “This guest drank too much wine at night. You’d better feed him some honey water when you send him back, so he’ll feel more comfortable.”
Li Mingxuan nodded, indicating that he had made a note of it, and then drove off in the direction of the hotel.
The drunk Shen Xi was very quiet and did not make a fuss like other drunk people, but just slept all the way. Li Mingxuan let out a sigh of relief; that was good.
Today, he originally made an appointment for dinner with a few classmates he had been abroad with. Somehow, one of the classmates mentioned that there is a nice bar there. Thinking that it was still early, Li Mingxuan followed them; he didn’t expect to meet Shen Xi here.
Seeing Shen Xi drunk alone in a bar, Li Mingxuan felt a strong emotion surge in his heart, both sympathy and pity, just like at the hospital today when he saw Shen Xi trying to look indifferent after Shen Dehan’s cold words.
Li Mingxuan let out a sigh and looked sideways at Shen Xi. The night’s neon lights coloured Shen Xi’s face through the car window in rainbow patterns. Shen Xi seemed to be affected by the lights and his sleep turned restless as he shifted his body from side to side in an attempt to avoid the light.
Li Mingxuan quickly parked his car on the side of the road, took off his jacket and covered Shen Xi’s face. Shen Xi stopped squirming and slept peacefully.
When the two of them returned to the hotel, Li Mingxuan fished out the room card from Shen Xi’s wallet and carried Shen Xi all the way to the room ignoring the eyes of the people around.
After carefully placing Shen Xi on the bed and taking off his jacket, Li Mingxuan covered him with the blanket and was about to leave when he suddenly thought of something and turned towards the living room.
A few minutes later, Li Mingxuan, carrying honey water, came back. Lifting Shen Xi up, Li Mingxuan carefully brought the honey water to Shen Xi’s mouth. Perhaps Shen Xi was too thirsty; he drank all the honey water in one gulp with his eyes closed and fell asleep again.
With a wry smile, Li Mingxuan made another cup and placed it in front of the bed, gave Shen Xi one last look, turned off the light and left. Behind him, Shen Xi slept, unaware of anything.
By then, it was already the early hours of the morning. Li Mingxuan carried his jacket in his hands and drove straight back to his home in the western suburbs.
To his surprise, his mother, who was used to going to bed early, was not resting yet and was sitting alone in the living room watching TV, looking as if she was waiting for him to return.
“Mom!” Li Mingxuan said in surprise.
Shen Bixue smiled at him gently and stood up, “Are you hungry? There is porridge in the kitchen.”
Li Mingxuan was about to stop her but Shen Bixue suddenly looked at him, “You’ve been drinking?”
Li Mingxuan hurriedly explained, “I’m not hungry, and I didn’t drink, I met Shen Xi who was drunk at the bar and got the smell from him when I sent him back to the hotel.”
The words “Shen Xi” attracted Shen Bixue’s attention; she sat down with Li Mingxuan and sighed, “Shen Xi is also a poor kid.”
Sitting next to his mother, Li Mingxuan said soothingly, “Shen Xi is already an adult. I think after returning to China he is a lot more sensible than before. Mother doesn’t need to worry.”
Shen Bixue shook her head with a bitter smile, “I haven’t bothered with Shen Xi at all over the years, so there is no need to say anything about worrying. It’s just that as I get older, when I think about him, I feel that the Shen family has really wronged him.”
Li Mingxuan knew that his mother had been thinking about the recent publications in the media, so he said, “Grandpa left Shen Xi a huge inheritance, enough to feed and clothe him for the rest of his life. Don’t think too much about it, Mom.”
Shen Bixue smiled bitterly, “Is having money enough?”
Li Mingxuan did not say anything. Shen Bixue sighed and spoke slowly, “Everyone says that Shen Xi has a bad personality, that he only knows how to eat, drink and play, that he is a straw bag without education and skills. But you have to understand why he has grown like this. Without the connivance of the Shen family, without our indifference, how would he have become this way?”
Shen Bixue looked at Li Mingxuan, “I still remember how Shen Xi looked when he was just born, a tiny little ball. Sometimes when I think about it, if your uncle hadn’t favoured Shen Ji and Shen Cheng so much and hadn’t wanted to leave the Shen family to Fang Yun’s sons so much, he wouldn’t have been so tolerant of Shen Xi. And if Shen Xi wasn’t the grandson of the Han family, your grandfather wouldn’t have worried whether Shen Xi would have some ideas when he grew up and wouldn’t have acquiesced to your uncle’s attitude of raising Shen Xi as a waste.
“If Han Rou and your uncle had a better relationship, your uncle might have been able to take care of Shen Xi for the sake of their father-son relationship. Or maybe if I ignored your grandfather’s and uncle’s wishes and looked after Shen Xi more, he might have grown up to be a different person. He might like to study, he might be good at it. Of course he might still be as unmotivated as he is now, but at least he wouldn’t have to stay in a hotel alone and he wouldn’t be drunk in a bar without anyone caring about it. Ask Shen Cheng, would he dare to do that? Not to mention your uncle, Shen Ji would break his legs.”
Li Mingxuan listened to his mother’s words in silence. He didn’t know what he should say at this point. His mother obviously didn’t need him to reply, she just wanted someone to talk to.
“I’ve been holding these words inside my heart for too long.” Shen Bixue smiled apologetically at Li Mingxuan, “Ever since your grandfather passed away, I didn’t know who to talk to. Your uncle wouldn’t talk about it, and I didn’t want to say anything about it to your father, so finally I caught you today and let myself talk about it.”
Li Mingxuan smiled softly, holding Shen Bixue’s hand, “Mom, don’t worry about talking, I’m listening.”
Shen Bixue smiled bitterly again, “Your grandfather had regrets before he passed away. He shouldn’t have agreed to your uncle and Han Rou’s marriage back then. Then Han Rou would not have died young, and so many tragedies would not have happened to the Han family.”
Li Mingxuan said softly, “Life and death are determined by fate. They have nothing to do with Grandpa.”
Shen Bixue shook her head, “You don’t understand, your grandfather and Elder Han have been friends for decades. He really regretted it.”
Speaking of this, Shen Bixue let out a long breath, “As for your uncle, your mother really can’t understand. If he really had Fang Yun in his heart, he should not have agreed to marry Han Rou. Since he married Han Rou, he should have taken responsibility as a man, but he had another woman outside. Your uncle says he really loved Fang Yun, so what about Zhou Mingmei? Is it true love to keep a woman who looks like Fang Yun? What did he make Shen Ji and Shen Cheng think?”
Li Mingxuan smiled bitterly when he heard this. Although he could not comment much on the affairs of the elders, Shen Ji had a lot of complaints about his uncle because of Zhou Mingmei. To think about it, it was the kind of thing that would upset anyone.
Shen Bixue patted Li Mingxuan’s arm, “Your mother talks so much. But I don’t mean anything, I just want to say that you have a good relationship with Shen Ji, so you should persuade Shen Ji to do something about it. No matter what, Shen Xi is his legitimate younger brother, and now that Shen Xi is like this, he’s not a threat to him. If he is on good terms with Shen Xi, your uncle might also treat him better. Then your grandfather would feel at peace underground, and those reporters wouldn’t make up nonsense in the newspapers every day. You should also look after Shen Xi more when you have time. The Shen family owes him a lot, after all.”
Li Mingxuan’s mind flashed back to Shen Xi’s drunken appearance at the bar, and he nodded.
Shen Bixue took a look at the clock and smiled as she rushed Li Mingxuan to bed, “Get some rest, I’m going to bed too.”
Li Mingxuan watched his mother walk back into the bedroom before turning towards the kitchen. He was really hungry after all this talk. Neither Shen Bixue nor Li Mingxuan noticed that at the corner of the stairs, Li Mingfei was standing quietly, thinking about something.
Shen Bixue returned to the bedroom and found that her husband had not slept and was leaning on the bed with his glasses, reading some documents.
“Back?” Li Xiyong put down the papers in his hand.
Shen Bixue nodded, and he smiled, saying, “Talked to your son about your pain?”
As Shen Bixue glanced at him, he took off his glasses and lay down, “Let me say, Dehan is a good businessman, but he is inevitably confused when it comes to women.”
Shen Bixue did not say anything, and Li Xiyong continued, “Don’t think too much, let Dehan go. Anyway, it is his son, if he doesn’t care, who will?” He said, “What’s the name of the nurse you said looked like Fang Yun today?”
“Chu Qianqian, a girl who is only twenty one years old.”
Li Xiyong looked suspicious, “Dehan wouldn’t have any ideas, would he?”
Shen Bixue gave him a blank look, “How is that possible, there is such a big age difference between the two.”
Li Xiyong shook his head, “This is not easy to say.”
Shen Bixue didn’t bother to refute, turned off the lights and went to bed.
After a while, a faint sigh sounded in the dark, “Fang Yun!”
3 thoughts on “Rebirth: Different Way Chapter 12”
It’s impossible for me to understand the concept of ‘true’ love that comes out in the form of substitute and replacement lovers. It’s a mockery of that wonderful feeling, like, I understand moving on and remarrying but this?? Stupid
Completely agree 🙂