In the late autumn of that year, after waiting in Beijing for sixteen years, Lu Chong finally took his old cat to Haining and came to the place where he and the young man first met.
It was just that although he set foot on this land, he still had no idea where to find the young man and whether the other party would appear.
All he could do was keep waiting, just like in the past for so many years.
When the accident happened, there was no warning; the glass shattered and then there was a loud thud as something heavy fell to the ground.
The car slammed to a halt, and the driver said, “Sir, someone jumped out of the window in front of us.”
At that time, Lu Chong had just come out of “Golden Glory”, and the car had driven a few dozens of metres. He felt that the car was a little stuffy, so he got out.
When he walked over and took a look, two people held each other after having jumped off the second floor of a small bar. The taller one was pressing down the smaller one, who was lying on his back, smelling heavily of alcohol. Both of them were unconscious.
He glanced at them: “Take them to the hospital.”
At that time, Lu Chong had no idea that fate was merciful to him and delivered the person he was looking for to him without his knowledge, but he failed to grasp it.
Half a month later, when he went to the hospital to check his eye, he was stopped by a young boy: “You’re the man who saved me that night, aren’t you? My name is Luo Wenjun, the doctor said that a little later, and my leg would have been seriously injured. Thank you so much!”
Lu Chong was startled when he saw this person. The young man had a pair of amber eyes, a little dark but a bit similar to the ones that were blurred in his memory. He was surprised. The young man was thin and looked like a teenager, and his eyes were full of pure gratitude. Lu Chong was particularly friendly to such young men, and he was more patient and tolerant towards them than towards most people, because the person he was waiting for was like this more than ten years ago.
He sometimes had the somewhat whimsical feeling that the other person was not from Earth at all, and that when they met again, he would still look like the teenager he remembered, so he financially supported many teenagers and did a lot of charity in this area.
Because of this, and because some of his opponents or people who simply don’t like him vaguely knew that he was looking for a teenager, rumours spread that he was addicted to young and tender boys, and sponsoring those people was to make it easier to get to them.
Lu Chong was initially furious and punished the rumour mongers severely, but the more he did so, the darker the rumours became, and as he grew older he stopped caring about it. They could say whatever they wanted. He waited silently in vain for so many years. Maybe if this kind of reputation spread, that person would hear it and get angry?
Of course, it was all just fancy hopes.
This Luo Wenjun was the son of the Luo family of Haining, but was abandoned by mistake and lost for more than ten years. Lu Chong heard that when he was accepted back to the Luo family, he was badly targeted by the original fake prince who caused a big drama.
Lu Chong was not interested in that, but he did listen to some of it when Luo Wenjun gratefully and helplessly came to him to talk about his troubles at home.
He could see that Luo Wenjun knew who he was and wanted to get some help from him. Those careful little calculations could not escape his notice, but as he always was 30% more tolerant towards teenagers, even if the other party only looked like a teenager and was actually twenty-one years old. Plus Luo Wenjun was really the underdog who had been victimised, and his desire for his father and elder brother’s approval was so desperate and genuine that when he asked Lu Chong to release those ships of the Luo family, Lu Chong agreed.
As a result, Luo Wenjun’s status in the Luo family had greatly improved. The Luo family survived the crisis and took their business to the next level thanks to his mercy. Lu Chong knew this, but there were too many people who had benefited from him over the years. This little thing was insignificant.
Later, when the rumours spread that Luo Wenjun was his little lover, he just laughed it off.
However, if he had known that Luo Wenjun was using various acts of gratitude, intentional encounters, conversations at certain parties, representing the Luo family to negotiate partnerships and so on to continuously create the illusion of being close to him, to raise his own value, and to use the Luo family as a backdrop to become the real prince of Haining, and the one person he persecuted and oppressed the most was the one Lu Chong was looking for, he would definitely have not let it happen.
Unfortunately, he didn’t know anything.
In his first year in Haining, the cat, which had been with him for more than ten years, died of old age, and he buried it by the amusement park where it had been found that year.
The next year, the amusement park was completed. It was luxurious and grand, with the most comprehensive amusement facilities. Its fame spread far and wide, but the person who said he would definitely come after hearing about it still did not appear.
In the third year, Lu Chong couldn’t wait any longer. Haining was his last hope, but for three full years, it proved that there was no hope for him here. He collapsed a little, couldn’t sleep at night, and even had occasional hallucinations. His doctor told him that long-term heavy stress had caused great hidden dangers to his mental health.
It wasn’t that he couldn’t wait, he just couldn’t hold on any longer.
At that time, there were only two ways in front of Lu Chong. The first was to just let it go, and when he reached the limit one day, he would either become a gloomy madman or would kill himself. And the second one was to find a way to make himself happy and relaxed, so that he could live longer and be more normal.
Someone he was waiting for hadn’t come yet, and he was unwilling to end his life like this. He was even more worried about how that person would feel when he came back and found that he himself was gone.
So at the end of the third year, he left Haining.
He travelled, expanded his business, took care of his family and kept finding things for himself to do, but every year he would come back to Haining, quietly, for a month or so when he was in a good mood.
As each year passed, he actually acquiesced in his heart that he would not be able to see that person again, but he had promised to wait, and he would keep his promise for as long as he lived. It was like an obsession, the last stubbornness of a terminally ill man.
The two most important people in his life, his father and the young man, had been lost on the same day. He had nothing to lose. If even this promise was lost, he would really have nothing.
Year after year, day after day, until finally one night, his heart throbbed and he woke up from a shallow sleep.
There was a feeling, as if somewhere in this world, something most important was leaving him.
“The one you waited for is dead. Would you trade your life for the chance of him to be reborn?” A cold voice sounded.
“What do you mean?! Who are you?” Lu Chong’s heart was beating so hard that he could barely comprehend the meaning of the other party’s words.
He was already forty-two years old, he had been through most of his life, he had experienced many storms, and this heart in his chest had long since aged beyond recognition, but at this moment he would still be horrified and frantic because of a few words.
That cold voice sounded again, “The person you were waiting for was called Luo Wencheng. He died a minute ago, but he has a chance to be reborn. Are you willing to trade your life for the energy for his rebirth?”
“Luo… Luo… Wen… Cheng? His name is Luo Wencheng…” The name sounded vaguely familiar. He must have heard it before, but at this point he lost all ability to think and could only dully repeat it, as if he had lost his soul.
A great pain took hold of his heart, and he could hardly breathe. “You say he is dead?”
“How did he die? How could he die? Where is he? Where is he!!!”
Lu Chong rushed back to Haining as fast as he could.
At this point, it was just three hours after Luo Wencheng died.
Because Luo Wenhao pretended to give him a decent funeral, he was immediately sent to the crematorium.
Luo Wenjun originally wanted to bury him in a random place, so that he would be a lonely ghost after death, but the man was dead and he had vented enough of his anger, so it didn’t matter anymore.
As a result, they had just arrived at the crematorium and the coffin was about to enter the furnace when a group of people rushed in and took them under control.
The Luo family was now the absolute ruler of Haining, one of the most powerful in the whole of the south. Who would dare to go wild on their territory?
But the group of men in black was arrogant to the point of recklessness, and even pulled out their guns directly, as if they would shoot everyone here the next moment.
It was the sound of footsteps that were so urgent that they were messy.
When Luo Wenjun looked over, a group of people stepped aside to let in a man coming in quickly.
The man was as tall, dignified, cool and majestic as Luo Wenjun remembered. Although his temples were grey, Lu Jiuye was still handsome and distinguished, full of a charm that grew more mellow with age.
But Luo Wenjun couldn’t feel happy. He didn’t expect to see this man again, and the current situation was obviously wrong.
The man stopped abruptly by the coffin.
He stared blankly at the coffin, opened it with trembling hands and lifted the white cloth inside.
Luo Wencheng died so tragically that his face couldn’t be seen. He was hastily thrown into a gorgeous coffin, covered with a cloth, as if to hide all the tragedies underneath. When Lu Chong uncovered the layer of cloth, the unspeakable smell and the almost disfigured appearance were nowhere to hide.
Lu Chong looked at this face blankly.
He had seen this man before.
He had seen his back that day when he had fallen out of the window; this man had fallen in front of his car. And he had seen his front from afar once afterwards, when he argued with Luo Wenjun and almost struck him, and afterwards Luo Wenjun used it to sell misery.
Twice, he didn’t recognize this person, and twice, he never thought about reaching out to help this young man who was forced into a desperate situation.
He had helped others for so many years, why hadn’t he been able to help the person he wanted to help the most?
Why couldn’t he have been a little more curious, why couldn’t he have been a little more kind?
It was a great invisible hand called destiny that separated them.
When he was alive, Lu Chong couldn’t recognise him, couldn’t remember him, but now that he was dead, he could finally remember what he looked like in his own memory again. Even if he almost looked like a different person, Lu Chong could still recognise him at a glance.
He clearly was very similar to his teenage self.
“Lu Jiuding, don’t forget me!”
“We agreed that you would only like me and you can’t like anyone else!”
“From now on you’ll be called Lu Chong!”
“Fifteen years, fifteen years at the latest, I’ll definitely come to you!”
“Don’t be afraid, I’m not going to die…”
That sound was still in his ears.
It was clear that you said you wouldn’t die.
You little liar, you clearly said you wouldn’t die.
Lu Chong picked up the person in the coffin, ignoring the rancid smell and crawling worms and hugged him tightly in his arms.
The teenager who climbed through the window to save him on a rainy night, the teenager who accompanied him in his recovery, the teenager who smiled mischievously and teased the cat, the teenager who frowned in distress and gave him a name, the teenager who solemnly told him to be good, the teenager who spat blood and reassured him that he would not die…
No more, all of them were gone.
Lu Chong choked and finally couldn’t suppress his voice, crying as if his heart was tearing apart.
Everyone looked at him in shock; this man of terrifying power, this man who decided who would live and who would die, was at the moment crying like a child abandoned by the world.
Lu Chong buried Luo Wencheng next to the amusement park, together with the cat.
He had chosen the most trustworthy and reliable person to inherit all his things, and his only request was that when he died, to bury him here as well, and not to let anyone disturb them.
But if time was reversed, all this would be gone, wouldn’t it?
That would be good too.
“Why couldn’t you have told me earlier?” He was rich and powerful, there were countless ways to keep the young man safe. He had worked so hard all those years to actually be able to protect him from a single harm when the young man reappeared.
“This was his destiny.” The cold voice sounded in the empty suburbs, “In his life, he had a chance to change his fate, but he wasted it, or used it in advance. You should have died then, but survived because of him, and as punishment, his fate became a dead end, irrevocable.”
Lu Chong choked and asked, “Then after he is reborn, can he change his fate?”
“Being reborn is the same as restarting the game. Everything starts from scratch. He will go back in time with the memories of these ten years. How far he can go is up to him.”
“But he still won’t remember me, will he?”
“He will be reborn ten years earlier, nothing before that will change. The memories related to you are a different matter. Therefore, I will not tell him that he was reborn with your help either.”
Lu Chong smiled. All his hair had turned white after that mournful cry. At forty-two, still a prime age for a man, he had aged overnight to the point where it was hard to ignore.
“It’s all right if there’s no me, as long as he’s well.” He looked at the suburbs under the brilliant sun and muttered to himself, “Ten years ago, when I first came to Haining, I should have had a chance to meet. I hope I can help him then.”
Instead of indirectly helping Luo Wenjun harm him.
“No,” he suddenly thought of something, “he’s a smart kid. If he wants to take revenge on the Luo family, he’ll definitely find a way to use external forces. At that time, could I be regarded as a big backer?”
He hooked his lips slightly, “I’m really looking forward to it.”
He hadn’t spared anyone in the Luo family. Luo Wenjun, Luo Wenhao and Luo Kaifang were all worse than dead, especially Luo Wenjun and that professor called Fang Bude. Whatever suffering Luo Wencheng had endured, Lu Chong had returned it to them tenfold and a hundredfold. In addition to this, all those involved and the forces behind the scenes, all had to pay the price.
Lu Chong’s eyes reflected the clear sky, but in the bottom of his eyes bloody madness was surging. He was about to leave the world, but he still wanted to start a huge storm and make the world change colours.
Yes, everything was about to start again, but the pain of his beloved, his young man, would not disappear, and he would even be reborn with this pain and hatred.
Lu Chong’s heart ached, and even though it was pointless, he wanted everyone to hurt with him.
But he could not keep his young man waiting, so he could only retaliate in the crudest way possible, and then sadly let Luo Wenjun and others have their last meal after torturing them for a while.
One night, Lu Chong peacefully closed his eyes with a light smile of anticipation at the corners of his mouth, and the next moment, his breathing and heartbeat stopped.
The system had taken the energy that his life had turned into and replenished it into its own depleted energy cartridge. Lu Chong’s life had been saved by Luo Wencheng, so only the energy of his life could be used by the system. But even so, this energy was only enough to reverse time and Luo Wencheng had to give something of himself if he wanted to live.
The system found Luo Wencheng, who remained at the same node where he had died ten days earlier: “Do you want to start over? I’ll take your love and hope, and for that, I can make your life start again.”
Lu Chong’s eyes snapped open.
He kept gasping in the darkness, and the person beside him was awakened, reaching over to touch him, “What’s wrong, did you have a nightmare?”
Luo Wencheng reached out and turned on the bedside lamp. Seeing Lu Chong’s pale, sweaty face, he jumped out of bed to bring a towel for him.
Lu Chong hugged him fiercely, “Don’t go, don’t go, let me hold you for a while.”
Luo Wencheng didn’t move anymore. He touched the hairy head buried in the side of his neck. Lu Chong’s hair was dark and shiny, and it didn’t tangle when touched, just like a male lion’s mane, smooth and heavy.
It was just that at this moment, the male lion seemed to be frightened and suddenly turned into a little cub, begging for comfort and a hug.
Luo Wencheng was about to be strangled by his arms, but he didn’t push him away, stroking his hair and back: “What nightmare scared you like this?”
“I don’t know.” Lu Chong buried his head deeper and said sullenly, “I think I dreamt that you died.”
Luo Wencheng was startled. The side of his neck was wet and moist. He looked down and realised that there were tear marks on Lu Chong’s temples. When he had just glanced at them, he thought they were from sweat.
Did he actually cry in his dream?!
Luo Wencheng didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry, and was a little distressed: “I’m fine, aren’t I? Don’t worry, this little instrument is enough for me to live for a long time, and when the time comes, as you said, technology will have advanced and there might be other ways to continue saving me.”
He put Lu Chong’s hand on his heart, thinking that it was his heart problem that made this man think about it day and night.
But hadn’t this matter been resolved? That old professor had been dead for some time.
Perhaps it was precisely because of the relief of pressure. This man was extremely strong, and once he relaxed, his vulnerability was doubled.
Lu Chong vaguely felt that wasn’t the case, but he couldn’t remember exactly what happened in the dream, only the unbearable heartbreaking grief still lingered in his heart.
He could only cling to this person as if he were clutching the whole world that had been lost and found: “Wencheng, don’t leave me again.”
He had said this many times, but Luo Wencheng continued to reply patiently, “Don’t worry, I won’t leave you, ever.”
Luo Wencheng thought the matter was over, but a few days later, Lu Chong did something that surprised him. He tossed the Luo family all over again.
Luo Kaifang, Luo Wenhao, Luo Wenjun, all three of them were in prison. Among them Luo Kaifang was sometimes crazy and sometimes normal. Luo Wenhao had his legs broken and wanted to commit suicide but didn’t dare to. Luo Wenjun was gritting his teeth and actively trying to behave, planning to get out of prison one day, seducing his cellmates in every possible way, hoping that someone who was in prison for a short term would do something for him after he got out.
This something was naturally to retaliate against Luo Wencheng.
Although Luo Wencheng knew about this, he didn’t care at all. He was here with Lu Chong, even a special forces unit couldn’t get close to him, okay?
But Lu Chong suddenly took it upon himself to add fuel to the fire for those three, making their situation even worse and truly making their life worse than death.
Luo Wencheng asked him somewhat hesitantly, “What exactly did you dream about that night?”
Lu Chong didn’t say anything; he didn’t know how to say it because he really couldn’t remember. Even though he got that master hypnotist to hypnotise him, he couldn’t recall the slightest fragment of the dream, but he just felt he needed to know, it was extremely important to him.
He even felt a little aggrieved when he was sure he couldn’t remember anything.
He leaned on Luo Wencheng’s shoulder, “Wencheng, you still haven’t told me why you appeared to me like that back then.”
According to their age difference, when he was sixteen, Luo Wencheng was only five years old, right?
“Ahem!” Luo Wencheng almost choked on his own saliva. Lu Chong had never mentioned this, he thought he would never ask.
It was okay to talk about it, though; metaphysical, yes, but during these few times of separation and reuniting, some of his performances were already metaphysical enough.
“This, ah, to start at the beginning, it was when I was fifteen years old. A system suddenly appeared…”
This was a long and twisted story. Luo Wencheng gave some general information, mentioning that he had died and come back again, without going into details. In any case, he gave the general idea that there was such a thing.
But Lu Chong was so sharp and clever that the mere thought of Luo Wencheng’s extraordinary hatred for Bruin De Lang was enough to make him think of many things, and after questioning, it turned out it was really so.
He was outraged and wanted to kill someone. The man he loved had twice been a test subject, and died horribly the first time because of it!
Yet Bruin De Lang was dead, so Lu Chong turned several circles and went after the Luo family again. And then there was the organisation behind Bruin De Lang. Lu Chong had already withdrawn from the whole thing; and then he popped up again to give full support to counter-terrorism agencies and to catch all those who had slipped through the net.
Because of his strong support, the follow-up operation was really smooth and efficient.
In his previous life, he had not been able to take his revenge properly and slowly, but this time he was finally able to do so, as if it was destined by fate.
Luo Wencheng just watched him look like a big cat with ruffled fur, spinning around in circles, slapping a paw here and there, and felt amused and distressed, finding him a little bit cute.
“I’m fine now, really, I don’t remember the past.” After Lu Chong had vented enough, he found time to talk to him.
Lu Chong said in a muffled voice: “I wish I was by your side at that time.”
Luo Wencheng stroked his hair: “You’re here now, that’s enough. I told you that because I didn’t feel the need to keep it from you, not to make you unhappy.”
Luo Wencheng was really indifferent to those things in the past. He sometimes thought that without that system, he would be destined to die tragically at the age of thirty-one, and Lu Chong would not have survived his teenage years.
And now, they were both fine and together, loving each other, and would spend their lives together.
For such a result, such a life, it seemed not a big deal to go through some twists and turns and suffer a little; and it was not only he who had suffered, but Lu Chong as well.
What they had gone through before was just the price they had to pay in advance for the happiness of the rest of their lives.
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