“Ou Renjin, didn’t you say before that you weren’t fit for this kind of occasion? Is the sound too loud? Do you feel uncomfortable?” Ou Shaowen stood in front of him, extending his arms, “Can I hug you?”
“No.” Ou Renjin glanced at him, his expression two points colder than on stage.
Ou Shaowen withdrew his hands, a little lost.
“Since you haven’t called for two months, you must not have thought of me for two months, and now you want to hug me?”
“No, I’ve thought of you, I’ve thought of you many, many times.”
“Oh? I don’t believe it.” In fact, everyone in the world could be sure that Ou Shaowen hadn’t changed his mind just by looking at him, but that didn’t make up for the fact that he had failed Ou Renjin’s expectations many times, and Ou Renjin was so vindictive that he had to vent this unhappiness.
Ou Shaowen lowered his eyes and looked dejected. Ou Renjin was angry, and rightly so, he should be. Although the staff didn’t give him a charging cable when they gave him the phone privately, and he was not in the mood to ask for it when it ran out of battery later, this could not be called an excuse, so he did not even try to explain. He hadn’t called Ou Renjin because he really didn’t dare to call.
“You don’t have anything else to say?” If Ou Renjin was half-retaliating and half-teasing him a moment before, now his face darkened and his eyes were cold with suppressed anger.
Ou Shaowen shook his head, not knowing what to say. He wanted to ask Ou Renjin what it was like when he first met him. He had always thought he had brought him out of the lab, but now that he thought about what Ou Renjin had said to him at the hospital when they first met, he realised in hindsight that everything was not as he had thought.
But he still wanted to make sure.
“Just get in the car if you don’t want to say anything. Didn’t you say that the crew gave you three days off? I’ll take you to dinner first.” Ou Renjin turned his head and walked out.
Ou Shaowen took two quick steps to follow him and tried to take his hand, but Ou Renjin raised his arm to avoid him.
Ou Shaowen stopped and looked at Ou Renjin with some sadness, and heard him speak coldly, “You can’t touch me for the next two months.”
He knew that Ou Shaowen had a slight skin hunger, so he didn’t want to give him what he wanted.
Ou Shaowen looked at him, “Two weeks is okay, two months is too long.” It had been a long, long time since he had held him and hugged him.
“You think two months is too long too? I thought you didn’t have that concept?”
Ou Renjin was very fond of using rhetorical questions to express his cynicism when he was angry. Ou Shaowen sighed; he couldn’t ask the question he wanted to ask anymore.
Unexpectedly, Ou Renjin’s face would become even more unpleasant. What kind of expression was this on Ou Shaowen’s face? As if he didn’t take it seriously and was tolerating his nonsense. Obviously, when he waved to him with a smile on his face on the stage, Ou Renjin was ready to just let him off the hook.
He could stop being preoccupied with the fact that Ou Shaowen didn’t call for two months after strongly expressing his desire to call him as long as he sweet-talked and said something nice like he used to do. He was very good at it, wasn’t he? But now instead he didn’t say a word.
Tsk, with his fame and more people who liked him, he probably didn’t care about the hypocritical gentleness he could get from Ou Renjin anymore.
If it was before, at this time Ou Shaowen would have looked at Ou Renjin with starry eyes and told him many, many nice things, telling him how much he missed him and how the three months he could not see him were like years. But now, as the joy of the reunion faded and Ou Renjin showed his unwillingness to communicate with him, Ou Shaowen was immersed in his thoughts about the heart transplant again.
He wondered if he needed to confess. He had a lot of ideas about Ou Renjin before, believing himself infallible, and Ou Renjin had a lot of misunderstandings about him, and neither of them seemed to be what the other thought they were.
Xiao Liu, who was driving the car, tried to pretend that he wasn’t watching, but in reality he had his ears pricked up to listen to the movement.
“Ou Renjin.” Ou Shaowen raised his head, finally noticing Ou Renjin’s increasingly indifferent expression and the silence in the car, and called him softly.
Ou Renjin didn’t answer, so he asked, “Can you tell me what it was like when we first met?”
“What’s the point of asking this all of a sudden? You have never asked before.”
Ou Renjin was also full of questions about what happened when they first met, but between Ou Shaowen’s isolation-like behaviour and his inability to talk at the time, he guessed that he must have had a not-so-good or even dark and painful past, which was why he was so grateful for the slightest kindness from others.
Because of this, there were times when he was curious about Ou Shaowen’s past, but it only surfaced in the back of his mind once in a while and he never asked about it.
“I… I don’t know if I lost my memory for a while. I was at the hospital when I woke up that day, and I can’t remember what happened before that. I always thought you brought me from… where I used to stay, but now that I think about it, it doesn’t seem to be like that.”
Ou Renjin was a little shocked, glanced at him and replied truthfully: “It’s really not like that. When I met you, you probably fell from the hillside and happened to hit my car, so I took you to the hospital.”
For some reason, he was a little reluctant to discuss this topic.
“Is that all?”
“Oh.” Ou Shaowen responded softly and stopped talking. He didn’t know whether he was more glad or more scared.
Now he could be one hundred percent sure that this was a world without the lab and that Ou Renjin wasn’t the rich man who had bought his heart and five years of his life, as he had thought.
So what was he going to do?
He looked up with real sadness in his eyes. In the past, he could endure the pain day and night and never thought of giving up his life. Everyone in this world knew that without a heart, a person would die. He was afraid that this time he would die on the operating table, and even more afraid that without the laboratory equipment and the subsequent anti-rejection treatment, even if he died, he would not be able to save Ou Renjin.
Ou Renjin frowned slightly. Ou Shaowen’s expression was one of bewilderment and despair that he had never seen before, and it was alarming to watch.
“What’s wrong?” He had forgotten that just two minutes ago, he was ready to retaliate with coldness for those two months of not receiving phone calls. His gaze darkened slightly as he said, “You can trust me. The rich people in this world are much more resourceful than you think. I can still be considered a rich person, so no matter what, you can tell me, I am capable of protecting you.”
Ou Shaowen’s eyes turned red immediately. In fact, it was not the question of the timing for the surgery. Ou Renjin had never thought about using his heart at all. His offer was never more than a perfunctory comfort, and yet at the time like this, Ou Renjin still thought of protecting him.
Instead, he was a big liar and didn’t deserve such a good Ou Renjin.
His eyes were red and he pursed his lips without saying a word.
“Is it that the subsequent work arrangements are not to your liking, or are some of them bullying you?”
Ou Shaowen didn’t take the opportunity to hug him and touch him again. He still remembered that Ou Renjin had just told him not to touch him for two months, so he just meekly turned his head, avoiding his gaze and trying hard to take a deep breath to stifle that desperate desire to cry.
Ou Renjin grabbed his head and turned his whole body back, his eyes serious and deep, “No matter where you escaped from before, now that you are by my side and have signed the contract with Qimeng, you are my man, you don’t have to worry about them doing anything. You have to remember that you’re completely free of that past.”
It had to be said that apart from the inconceivable existence of human experiments, laboratories and organ petri dishes, Ou Renjin’s speculations about Ou Shaowen’s past did match a large part of the truth.
Ou Shaowen’s tears that he had managed to hold back began to rise again. He shook his head, still not speaking, and was silent for a long time before saying in a muffled voice, “I want to hug you, can I do it before I start counting the time?”
Ou Renjin frowned and took him into his arms, rubbing his hair with his palm.
Xiao Liu quietly glanced at the rear view mirror, thinking to himself that Ou Shaowen was really good, having coaxed President Ou in a few words.
Ou Shaowen buried his head into the nook of Ou Renjin’s neck, clinging quietly to the warmth of his skin.
“Don’t be afraid.” Ou Renjin comforted him.
Ou Shaowen pursed his lips tighter and wanted to cry again.
When he returned to the villa, he still looked like a wilted cabbage. Aunt Zhou cried out in distress as soon as she saw him, pinching his arm and insisting that he had lost weight, and rushing off to make him supper, and neither of them could stop her.
“Come here.” Ou Renjin sat on the sofa and patted the place beside him. Ou Shaowen went over and sat down.
“I’ll give you one last chance to explain why you didn’t call me.” This doubt haunted his heart; he felt that he had some understanding of Ou Shaowen and couldn’t let go of this matter.
Ou Shaowen opened his mouth, “I don’t know how to say it.”
“I have time. Start at the beginning and speak slowly, bit by bit.”
Ou Shaowen didn’t want to lie to him, but to just tell him that his previous promises were just words and didn’t count anymore… he couldn’t say it.
He hadn’t made up his mind to give up his life yet, and he wasn’t ready to watch Ou Renjin lose his life. He was like an ostrich with his head buried in the sand, just hoping that he wouldn’t be asked to make a decision now.
“Start.” Ou Renjin looked at him expressionlessly and the atmosphere got heavier. Ou Renjin’s whole body was filled with a sense of oppression that was rarely revealed in front of Ou Shaowen.
Ou Shaowen forced down his panic, “I just suddenly remembered something and realised that you don’t seem to be the… client I thought you were.”
He considered his wording for a moment, “I originally thought you paid to buy me so that I could be safe and sound with no one coming to me. And then I learned that you weren’t, so I was a little scared. The phone you gave me also ran out of battery, and when the programme team said I could call the outside world, my mind was scrambled and I didn’t know what to say to you.”
He was lying to Ou Renjin.
Although the “thought” was true, the “scared” was true, and the “out of battery” was true, he knew he was lying, and he was deliberately hiding most of the truth to mislead Ou Renjin.
Ou Renjin’s face immediately changed; he gritted his teeth and frowned fiercely. He had guessed countless possibilities for Ou Shaowen’s past, and now it seemed to be the worst one.