Li Mingxuan did not stay with Shen Xi for too long; after the rain had subsided a little, he chose to say goodbye. Before he left, he wrote down his phone number on a sticky note for Shen Xi, in case Shen Xi needed to call him for something in the future.
Shen Xi politely thanked Li Mingxuan for his kindness and did not take it seriously. From the bottom of his heart, Shen Xi didn’t want to have too much to do with Li Mingxuan. Thinking of Li Mingxuan’s friendship with Shen Ji, he couldn’t help but doubt Li Mingxuan’s motives for approaching him.
Li Mingxuan could see Shen Xi’s detachment, smiled and left the phone number without saying anything else.
When he left the hotel, Li Mingxuan threw the changed clothes he was carrying into the back seat, but unexpectedly a black object slipped out of the clothes.
Li Mingxuan was taken aback, only to remember that he deliberately turned off his mobile phone to avoid his mother’s calls today, and then casually stuffed it somewhere. No wonder there had been no phone calls all morning.
After thinking about it, Li Mingxuan picked up the phone and turned it on. A long beep sounded and a dozen missed calls popped up, most of them from the Li family.
Li Mingxuan got a headache; he didn’t expect his mother to be this persistent.
Having no wish to go home now, Li Mingxuan sat quietly in the car, lit a cigarette and listened to the rain outside the window as he fell into deep thought.
Speaking of which, Li Mingxuan was able to meet Shen Xi because he, like Shen Xi, went to the cemetery today. Like Shen Xi’s mother who was buried in this cemetery, Li Mingxuan’s grandfather was also buried there.
Grandpa Li valued Li Mingxuan the most during his lifetime and cultivated him as an heir since he was a child. Li Mingxuan never failed to live up to his family’s expectations. He studied and took over the family business; everything satisfied the family, except for one thing that deeply hurt Grandpa Li’s heart.
Before Grandpa Li died, Li Mingxuan was already an adult. When he returned to China to take over the family business, Li Mingxuan had a serious conversation with his family.
Ignoring the shocked eyes of his family, Li Mingxuan admitted that he was not interested in women and that perhaps he would fall in love with a man in the future. He knew that as the heir of the family, his fate was to marry and to give birth to the next generation of heirs, but he could not guarantee that he could do this.
His sexuality was innate and there was nothing he could do to change it. If his family could accept it, then he would take over the family business according to the family’s arrangements. If the family could not accept it, then he would choose to stay abroad and start his own business, and the Li family would still have time to train Mingfei as the heir.
Li Mingxuan’s words were like dropping a bomb on the family. Everyone, including Shen Bixue, was blown away by the news. But looking at Li Mingxuan’s serious expression, everyone could not help but believe in his determination.
At one point, Shen Bixue even wondered if Li Mingxuan liked Shen Ji. Li Mingxuan had to explain countless times until his family was convinced that he really did not have any feelings for Shen Ji.
Although Shen Ji was ruled out, the family was still not happy. Grandpa Li was so stimulated by this incident that he fell seriously ill. Li Mingxuan felt guilty but he couldn’t compromise. It was Li Mingxuan’s father who finally came to his senses first. As far as he was concerned, as long as Li Mingxuan could support the Li family, a marriage was not necessary. As for the next heir, didn’t they still have Li Mingfei? His only worry was that Li Mingxuan would die alone, but when he thought of his son’s conditions, Li Xiyong eventually put his mind at ease.
With Li Xiyong as his guide, Grandpa Li finally accepted his grandson’s choice, and Shen Bixue also had no choice but to agree.
After Grandpa Li passed away, Li Mingxuan remained single for so many years, and the hope in Shen Bixue’s heart was rekindled. Even if Li Mingxuan liked men, hadn’t he never met the one he was attracted to in all these years? So why couldn’t he try to be with a woman?
With such a thought in mind, Shen Bixue arranged for Li Mingxuan to meet with a daughter of a family friend today. What Shen Bixue didn’t expect was that not only did Li Mingxuan not show up today, he even turned off his mobile phone, silently indicating his attitude.
Thinking of this, Li Mingxuan could also guess how angry his mother would be. With a bitter smile, Li Mingxuan stubbed his cigarette and drove away from the hotel. When he returned home, unsurprisingly, Shen Bixue was sitting in the hall waiting for him.
Looking at Li Mingxuan come in, Shen Bixue’s worry for her son prevailed over her anger, and although her face was dark, she couldn’t help but ask, “Did you get caught in the rain?”
Li Mingxuan smiled and sat beside Shen Bixue, “I got a little wet, but I took a shower at Shen Xi’s place.”
“Shen Xi?” Only then did Shen Bixue notice that the tight clothes Li Mingxuan was wearing were not his own.
Li Mingxuan told her about his encounter with Shen Xi today, and Shen Bixue’s attention was immediately drawn to the incident. After listening to it, she sighed deeply and said no more.
Li Mingxuan was about to leave with an excuse when Shen Bixue turned her attention back to him, “What? Just going to muddle through today?”
Li Mingxuan smiled bitterly and stared at Shen Bixue seriously, “Mom, you know, I like men.”
Shen Bixue eagerly retorted, “But haven’t you never met someone you’re attracted to? Can’t you try to be with a girl?”
Li Mingxuan shook his head, “Since there is going to be no result, why delay other people.”
Shen Bixue gave Li Mingxuan a disappointed look, “But you’re already approaching thirty. In case you never meet the one you’re attracted to, do you want to stay single forever? Your father and I are both getting older and we can’t say when we will be gone. When Mingfei has his own life, who else will stay by your side?”
Shen Bixue’s words were overflowing with deep concern, and Li Mingxuan could only smile and say soothingly, “Don’t worry, Mom, I won’t be alone all the time.”
Looking at Li Mingxuan’s clear unwillingness to talk more, Shen Bixue could only give up helplessly, “I know what you mean, I won’t arrange anything for you without permission again, but you must also promise me that if you really meet someone you like, you must bring them home for me to see them at the first opportunity.”
Li Mingxuan naturally nodded without hesitation.
After convincing his mother, Li Mingxuan let out a sigh of relief.
After returning to his room and changing his clothes, Li Mingxuan took a look at the time. It was just two o’clock in the afternoon; he thought for a while and went to his study, where there were still a lot of things waiting for him to deal with.
Time always flies when you are busy, and when Li Mingxuan looked up, he realised that it was already after 6pm. Stretching out for a long time, Li Mingxuan looked at the drizzle that was still pattering outside the window, and a thought flashed across his mind. What was Shen Xi doing now?
The thought was only fleeting when his mobile phone suddenly rang. An unfamiliar number appeared on the screen.
“Hello, are you a friend of Mr. Shen Xi?” From the phone came a thin female voice that seemed to carry a hint of anxiety.
Li Mingxuan’s brow furrowed involuntarily, “I’m Shen Xi’s cousin, what’s the matter?”
“Great, you’re Mr. Shen Xi’s family!” The other party’s tone immediately revealed a feeling of relief, “The thing is I’m a room service worker at the Jinghao Hotel. This afternoon we accidentally discovered that Mr. Shen was sick, but we were unable to contact Mr. Shen’s family. We found this number in the trash can…”
The other party hesitated a little when she said this; she seemed to feel that she shouldn’t have said the number was found in the trash can.
Li Mingxuan directly interrupted her words, “What’s wrong with Shen Xi now?”
“Mr. Shen has a fever, we’ve given Mr. Shen medicine, but he needs someone around to take care of him.” There was a hint of urgency in the other party’s tone, obviously worried that Li Mingxuan would not come over.
Li Mingxuan said, “I’ll be right there.”
Hanging up the phone, Li Mingxuan felt like he was about to laugh out loud angrily. As soon as he had given his number to Shen Xi, Shen Xi threw it in the trash. Should he be glad that Shen Xi didn’t tear it apart?
What Li Mingxuan didn’t know was that Shen Xi did tear it apart, but it was just torn in half and could be put back together by the hotel staff. Speaking of which, if it weren’t for Shen Xi’s mobile phone that was wet and couldn’t be turned on, the hotel wouldn’t have called Li Mingxuan with the idea of giving it a try. At this moment, the torn note was lying quietly on the bedside table, waiting for Li Mingxuan’s arrival.
Li Mingxuan didn’t delay much. After finding a few antipyretics at home, he mentioned to his mother that there was something he had to do in the evening and hurried to the hotel.
Li Mingxuan had followed the road from his home to the hotel several times, but never once had he been as anxious as now. Fortunately, it was only drizzling and the road was relatively easy to drive. Half an hour later, Li Mingxuan was already standing at the door of Shen Xi’s room.
Only when the hotel staff saw Li Mingxuan’s arrival did they let out a real sigh of relief. Although they all knew Shen Xi’s identity, they were unable to contact Shen Xi’s family. They just had to give the phone number in the trash can a try, they never expected to find Li Mingxuan. Thinking of the gossip about Shen Xi and Li Mingxuan’s night meeting a few days ago, the people in the room couldn’t help but look at each other.
Although they were curious, they had not forgotten the doctor’s instructions. Jinghao Hotel was one of the top hotels in Zhongjing, and for the convenience of its guests, there was always a specially hired doctor in the hotel to serve the guests. As soon as Shen Xi was found to be ill, the hotel quickly sent a doctor over. After examination, the doctor concluded that the fever was caused by catching a cold from the rain. The illness was not serious, the only trouble was that someone needed to be around to take close care of the patient.
That was why Li Mingxuan was found.
After listening carefully to the doctor’s instructions, Li Mingxuan nodded to indicate that he had taken note of them. The hotel staff placed the medicine on the bedside table, gestured to Li Mingxuan and left the room quietly.
It was only at this time that Li Mingxuan got a good look at Shen Xi’s current appearance. Different from his pale complexion at noon, Shen Xi’s face was flushed and his brow was furrowed, obviously very uncomfortable.
Li Mingxuan carefully stretched out his hand and touched Shen Xi’s forehead, which felt extremely hot, obviously burning very badly.
After a worried glance, Li Mingxuan was about to pull back, but to his surprise, Shen Xi held him tightly and refused to let him go.
“Grandpa, don’t leave Xiao Xi,” Shen Xi murmured in a low voice, holding Li Mingxuan’s arm with both his hands.
This murmur was like a feather brushing over Li Mingxuan’s heart, instantly softening it.
After carefully adjusting Shen Xi to a new position, Li Mingxuan sat on the edge of the bed and gently patted him with his free hand to soothe him.
Shen Xi seemed to find this very comfortable and his eyebrows slowly relaxed, but his whole body rubbed against Li Mingxuan’s side more and more. Seeing that Shen Xi was about to fall off the bed, Li Mingxuan had to press him back. But as much as he pressed Shen Xi back, time and again Shen Xi unconsciously rubbed against him. In desperation, Li Mingxuan had to squeeze into bed and sit next to Shen Xi.
Shen Xi soon squeezed his whole body into Li Mingxuan’s arms and hugged him like an octopus. Li Mingxuan wanted to put Shen Xi down, but Shen Xi refused to let go, clinging to him.
“Grandpa, don’t leave Xiao Xi.”
Shen Xi kept whispering these words. Li Mingxuan sighed and acquiesced to Shen Xi’s hugging.
That night, Li Mingxuan managed to stay awake till the middle of the night and finally couldn’t help falling asleep. With the change of Li Mingxuan’s pose, Shen Xi quickly found another comfortable position in his arms and continued to cling to him, deep in sleep.
Half asleep, half awake, Li Mingxuan noticed Shen Xi holding onto him and slightly adjusted his position, carefully protecting him in his arms.