When Ou Renjin received the news from the hospital, he had already forgotten about 036. At that time, he was reading a plan on the computer, and his mobile phone was turned on and left aside on speakerphone, “Discharged from the hospital? If I remember correctly, he has been admitted to the hospital less than ten days ago.”
“Yes. The doctor just took an x-ray two days ago and, oddly enough, found that his bones had completely healed. When the doctor changed his dressing in the first few days, he noticed that the wound on his stomach was healing exceptionally fast, and the stitches were removed in two or three days. Such a deep wound, and not even a scar can be seen now.”
Ou Renjin frowned, and his hand holding the mouse paused. He picked up the phone and turned off the speakerphone, “What about him, how did he react to this?”
“Extraordinarily calm, as if taking it for granted.”
“Now that he can be discharged, arrange it. Give him a check and ask him what other requirements he has. There will be no shop after this village (it’s the last opportunity).”
Ou Renjin wasn’t exactly considering such a thing as a matter of course, but he wasn’t really surprised either; he had read a lot of medical texts and medical reports over the years. The human body was so mysterious, the world was so big, and there were all kinds of strange and bizarre cases. At this time, the thought that flashed through his mind was: so this pretty little thing, did he really crash into the car on purpose relying on his special abilities?
On the other end of the phone, Guan Qijun crumpled the matching report in his hand and gritted his teeth, “President Ou, I asked the doctor to make a matching with him a few days ago.” He paused for a moment, “The matching is successful. The doctor says that this heart of his is much better than that death row prisoner’s heart.”
Ou Renjin’s gaze suddenly sharpened, “Are you now suggesting I kill someone?”
“I…” Guan Qijun’s face went white, “Of course it’s best to be able to obtain the heart source legally. I just think that in case it comes to the last step…”
“You think? You think I’m already a through and through predator covering the sky with my hand? Able to make a living human being disappear from this world without raising any suspicion? To have so many doctors and nurses cooperate with me in killing people and keep their mouths shut? Are you thinking those people who are watching me now are all trash?”
Ou Renjin said these words as a joke, but his tone wasn’t joking.
Guan Qijun’s palms began to sweat, but he persisted, “I’ve checked him several times and couldn’t find any identifying information. I had the nurse help me test him. He doesn’t have any relatives or friends, he can’t speak and is most likely from a black household (unregistered household). I think this is a rare opportunity for us. Last time, it was difficult to arrange for a death row prisoner, but the prison side leaked the news and the matter was scrapped. This time, the only people who know that his matching was successful are Dr. Chen and me. There is absolutely no risk of exposure.”
Ou Renjin listened to him finish without interrupting, his expression obscure, “I will make a trip to the hospital later. You should stay out of it.”
His tone was low and cold as he warned, “Do you know? I hate it when people make decisions for me.”
Guan Qijun flinched; he lowered his head, almost holding his breath, and his voice trembled a little, “President Ou, there will be no next time.”
When Ou Renjin arrived at the ward, the man was staring at the TV set without moving, his posture as stiff as a statue. Ou Renjin leaned against the door frame and knocked on the door, and the man turned his head to look at him, his eyes obviously brightening.
“I heard from the doctor that you’re ready to be discharged?”
036 nodded. He was actually a little puzzled in his heart. He didn’t understand why the rich man didn’t arrange the surgery right away. In the past, those rich people were always very anxious, and it basically didn’t take more than three days from the heart matching to the completion of the surgery.
Was the rich man’s physical condition not suitable for immediate surgery? He stared at Ou Renjin intently, like a prisoner waiting for a sentence.
“Is there somewhere to go after you are discharged from the hospital?” Ou Renjin asked again.
Discharged from the hospital? 036 shook his head. He thought that perhaps this benevolent man was trying to give him a few days off to make up for the pain he would soon have to endure.
Ou Renjin’s meaningful gaze fell on him, “Then you are planning to stick with me?”
036 was a little troubled, reacting to the meaning of his words, and nodded uncertainly.
He would indeed have to stay close to this man for a long time to come, so that if he had a rejection reaction, blood could be drawn directly through the device and certain substances could be extracted and injected into his body.
So they should stay in the same ward, and even the distance between the beds would not be too far.
“Then pack up and come with me.”
036 was still very obedient. He stood up and walked up to the man, handing him a piece of paper.
Ou Renjin took it; the writing on the paper was neat and somewhat rigid: You said I could make a request. Then, can you give me one of those green leaves outside?
Somewhat confused, he looked up at 036 and pointed to the leaves outside the window.
036 nodded heavily.
“Follow me.” Ou Renjin turned and walked outside.
036 froze, a little breathless, then followed him, step by step, towards the door.
With each step, the drumbeat of his heart was a little stronger.
They walked down the long corridor, down the stairs, out of the hospital doors and into the warm afternoon sunshine. He stepped out unharmed, no electric shocks, no men suddenly appearing to stop him, no punishment, no pain.
Quiet and peaceful.
He pressed hard on his heart so that it would not jump out of his mouth happily. He almost forgot how to take a step; he felt the sun burning his skin a little. He could only follow Ou Renjin’s lead, like a robot programmed to follow.
Ou Renjin stopped in front of the first tree he encountered and, without bothering with the fallen leaves on the ground, reached out his hand, plucked a green leaf and handed it to 036.
“This is a camphor tree. Its leaves are a bit small but it’s the only kind of tree that’s still green in the winter.”
036 took the leaf carefully and rubbed it gently with his fingertips for a short while, as if holding something precious.
“This is not a request, you can pick it yourself if you like. Ask for one more thing when you think of it, don’t waste it on such things.” Ou Renjin walked forward, casually picking off a few more leaves of magnolia and shoving them into 036’s hands.
When he got into the car, 036 didn’t care about the leaves in his hand anymore. He stuck to the window and stared out with rapt attention, looking at the scenery as if it was something rare.
Instead of taking him to the mid-mountain villa, which was only a thirty-minute drive away, Ou Renjin took him through half the city to another of his properties, a garden villa community.
This place had long been on the entertainment press’s radar and had always been his golden house (a place where one keeps his mistress). The previous occupant moved out just half a month ago.
Ou Renjin glanced at 036, “Is it okay if you live here from now on?”
036 turned his head to look at him. At this moment, he seemed to have a lot to say and a lot of questions to ask. He looked around in vain and found no pen or paper.
“You can just use sign language, I can read it.”
036 looked over in confusion.
“You don’t know sign language, do you?”
Ou Renjin didn’t say anything else. He parked his car in the garage, walked to the back seat to open the door for 036, and led him into the villa.
There were two middle-aged people, a man and a woman, standing at the door. When they saw them coming in, they took Ou Renjin’s coat very politely, and helped them two with their slippers. They were both smiling and kind-looking.
“This is Uncle Li and Aunt Zhou. They are specifically responsible for taking care of you. If you need anything, feel free to mention it to them.”
These two were used to seeing such scenes and didn’t know how many masters they had taken care of and seen come and go. Now that they saw the new one, they greeted him cordially and naturally, with a very warm attitude.
“The room has been cleaned up, all the decorations, bed sheets and duvet covers have been changed. Let me take… this gentleman up.” President Ou brought people over in such a hurry that Aunt Zhou worried she had missed something. She didn’t even know the name and preferences of this person. She only knew that he seemed to be lonely, mute and pitiful, and she didn’t know how long he could stay here.
036 followed her up, and as soon as he entered the room he saw a sunny bay window, with a white blanket, a brown and white striped pillow and a small wooden coffee table.
He went over and sat down, gently stroking the soft blanket, then took the pillow and hugged it in his arms, looking out the window. The view of the courtyard was beautiful, with the green leaves he liked everywhere.
Aunt Zhou meticulously described where all the various things were placed, and 036 sat on the bay window and listened quietly, nodding along every time she finished saying something.
“There was too little time, and I haven’t prepared your clothes yet, but it’s a good thing there are a few sets of pyjamas that are still new, so I’ll bring them to you to change into. The heating at home is fully turned on, and it is more comfortable to wear something looser.”
At the mercy of Aunt Zhou, 036 let her change him into a silk shirt, the light grey fabric glowing silver in the sunlight. Aunt Zhou finished by straightening his collar, specifically unbuttoning two buttons and pulling the lapels apart to reveal half of his clavicle.
The clothes were originally prepared according to President Ou’s preferences and figure, but he rarely spent the night here, and the boys who lived here for a long time rarely had President Ou’s 1.80 metre height.
Aunt Zhou looked 036 up and down and was solidly satisfied. He looked as tall as Ou Renjin and his figure was quite thin, but his style was completely different. He had a clear and calm temperament, like a noble prince raised in an ancient castle.
“I still have soup simmering in the kitchen. Go down and let President Ou eat it before he leaves. The ingredients for dinner are also ready, ask President Ou if he wants to stay for dinner. I’ll cook a few dishes now, it’ll be quick.” Aunt Zhou said as she pulled 036 downstairs.
Ou Renjin was sitting on the sofa, talking on his phone, his whole body nestled into the cushions. His expression was obviously rigid and serious, but his posture was particularly casual.
When he glanced at 036, his voice paused for a moment and his eyes lingered, not moving away, “…Well, let’s put it this way first, the specific details will be discussed at the meeting tomorrow.”
Hanging up the phone, he hooked a finger at 036 with a faint smile. 036 walked over to him and sat down, glancing at the obviously old phone in his hand. It was quite different from the usual communication equipment used in the lab, but there were always people who admired the old style simplicity. 036 thought that the rich man’s long, slender fingers did look good holding an old-fashioned phone.
Translator’s note: Do you think someone like Ou Renjin would really use an outdated phone? That’s a little hint from the author.