143. “Happily” Live On
Warning: Mild attempted suicide and a lot of brooding which may be triggering for some.
What about XueQing then? Was she truly in love with Chen TianYang? Was she really…happy?
Why did things turn out like this? Happiness had arrived so quickly in this lifetime that everything felt like a dream to YiHan. He wasn’t mistaken or paranoid after all. Everything was fake. His happiness came from his family’s sacrifices.
YiHan dropped his head into his hands. He thought back to the glee and joy he’d felt, the stubborn clinginess he had towards JingYuan. He felt humiliated and embarrassed beyond imagination, especially when he recalled those romantic instances that felt exceptionally sweet back then, instances that would make him blush and his heart race. Memories of his wantonness in bed, how he would proactively seek JingYuan out, how he’d swoon, how he’d obey JingYuan’s every action – those all made his face flush with shame now. How he wished the gods could grant him a hole he could bury himself in and never come out. How he wished time could reverse and wind back to the moment he had just been reborn. He would hide away from his family the first opportunity he spotted. It might’ve been better to let them think he’d died in an accident. They’d hurt for a short while and they could start a new life while he could keep hiding in the shadows and did his best to change the things he’d regretted.
Actually, everything was fine as they were currently. Yan and Hua should be properly in love and happy. He’d bought some land in the southern districts. The Bai Group was doing well. As long as the Bai family didn’t fall from grace, there won’t be any more tragedies. XueQing… If she’s truly in love with Chen TianYang, that’d be amazing. The man was in love with her too. If…their romance was just a show, then everything would go back to normal without YiHan.
His sore eyes raised to scan the room he was in. His gaze then locked on the glass on his desk. JingYuan wasn’t in the room this time. He’d surely succeed, right?
YiHan rose to his feet and shuffled over to the glass. It was like he’d been possessed. His eyes were fixated on the glass, as mesmerised as if he was looking at JingYuan. Freezing fingers bump against the smooth glass. A self-deprecating chuckle escaped his lips. No wonder he hadn’t been able to find a single sharp object in his room for a while now. The only thing made of glass in this entire room was this glass, this cup he would drink from. It’s all because they were afraid he’d commit suicide.
They were afraid he’d kill himself. Yes. Everyone did all of this because they were afraid he’d attempt to murder himself. If he died now, wouldn’t that have meant everything they’d done would’ve been for nothing?
He softly placed the glass back down. He can’t die. He can’t even get hurt. He must live on. His family did this in hopes that he could live on, that he could be happy. Thus, he should “happily” live on. He thought back to the conversation he overheard. When they, his mother, his father and his JingYuan, heard Dr Zhou say YiHan was recovering well and would soon be fine, they sounded so happy. They’re happy about the current situation, right? He was just a pile of rotten flesh. So what if he sacrificed himself? Anyway, it would be an honour to be acting along with JingYuan. He was taking major advantage of JingYuan…
Cherish this time, Bai YiHan. Once you’re “fine”, JingYuan would return to his “normal” life. You mustn’t act all pained then. You mustn’t put on that laughable crying face and upset them. You must smile and wish them a happy future together, right? You’ve already taken up enough of his time.
As YiHan thought, living was his greatest punishment.
Just like a robot, he dazedly moved to his bed and slowly laid down on it. He closed his eyes. He looked as if he had never left the room.
Bai YiHan, what are you acting all pitiful for? So many people love you. You’re happy. I’m…happy.
JingYuan saw Dr Zhou out and went back up to Bai FuRen’s study to chat with YiHan’s parents for a few minutes. Then, he returned to YiHan’s room, only to find the young man still asleep. JingYuan couldn’t help but berate himself for acting too spoilt last night. He asked for too much. Look at how tired his precious one was now.
He sat down on the bed. A loving hand reached out to smooth YiHan’s fringe away from his face. They finally had YiHan’s parents’ blessings. JingYuan’s heart leapt. If YiHan was awake, JingYuan would eagerly propose to him. He hated how they were unable to get their marriage registration done that very day. He wanted so much to have that piece of certification paper that would make him YiHan’s lawful partner, the paper that would turn them into a true family.
His finger gently bopped YiHan on the nose as he whispered, “Little one, you’re so deeply asleep. Tired?” Since you’re so exhausted, I’ll spare you tonight.
YiHan’s face looked rather pale.
Was his lover cold? JingYuan glanced at the air conditioning’s display and scrounged for the remote control to increase the temperature by two. He pulled the blanket up higher and tucked YiHan in more securely. He sat on the bed for a long while. A glance at the clock told him it was time he headed into the office. Because of YiHan’s therapy session today, he’d been delayed for long enough. However, YiHan was asleep. He couldn’t bear to wake his young lover up. If he carried the man into his car, the man would surely be jostled awake. What difference was there between that and waking YiHan up now? Did JingYuan really have to go to work alone today? Oh no! Aah, it was all his fault. Why couldn’t he control himself last night? Why did he have to tire out HanHan?
Whatever. The doctor did say they could give HanHan some personal space. His lover was still young and he loved to play around. If they placed him on a strict house arrest all the time, HanHan would be annoyed, right?
Then…he would bring YiHan along to the office tomorrow. Ugh, he would have to tell Aunt Bai about it. HanHan must call him the moment the man was awake! Oh, poor pitiful him. He had to drag his lonely self to work all alone. It was a tale that saddened all who heard it.
He wanted to kiss YiHan before he left but he was afraid of waking the man up. All he could do was lean in close to YiHan’s neck and take a deep inhale. Why did his HanHan smell so nice? They used the same body wash! YiHan was also not one for perfumes or colognes! Was this the legendary scent of attractiveness (it’s not)? Aah, you seductive little brat!
Looking down at his lover encased in his blanket, JingYuan couldn’t find it in him to move his feet at all. He dawdled and shuffled around. Upon realising YiHan wasn’t going to wake up anytime soon, he finally, in an extremely reluctant fashion that required glancing back at YiHan three times per step he took, left.
The door closed with a “clack”. It was an extremely soft sound. This was JingYuan’s kind warmth.
YiHan opened his eyes. His gaze was as awake as can be. There wasn’t the slightest hint of drowsiness in them. His face was blank, neither happy nor sad. He looked very calm. He silently laid there on the bed. His eyes stared up at the lamp hanging down from the ceiling. He didn’t move a muscle. About an hour later, he got out of bed. With a blank expression, he washed up and straightened his clothes. It was only when he was presentable did he open the door and leave the room.
The instant he opened the door, a bright smile appeared on YiHan’s face. He quickly skipped downstairs where his mother was watching a show on the television.
“HanHan, you’re up,” Ma happily called out with a beckoning hand. “Come, sit by my side. You’ve had an awfully long nap. Did you not sleep well last night? Are you hungry?”
“It’s just a really nice nap,” YiHan said as he sat down by her side and embraced her arm like he always would. “I’m not hungry at all.”
Ma patted him on the hand and smiled back at him, “You’re an adult now and you still like to act cute with me. It’s nearly lunchtime. If you’re not hungry, we can wait until lunch is ready. Aunt Yang cooked some soup this morning. How about I ask her to get you a bowl to tide you over until then?”
YiHan maintained his posture leaning against his mother’s arm and replied, “It’s fine. I can wait until lunch. If I have soup now, I’d be too full for lunch later.”
“Mn, you’re right,” Ma said with a nod. “Right. JingYuan couldn’t bear to wake you up from your nap just now so he left for the office by himself. He asked that you call him the moment you wake up.”
Couldn’t bear to? True. After all, JingYuan loved him so much. YiHan was dearer to him than a brother. But that’s not all, was it? More importantly, Dr Zhou said JingYuan didn’t need to stick to his side all the time now. JingYuan could finally have some private time and personal space. Would he find it much less stressful now?
Don’t worry. I’ll “get well” soon. Just hold on a little longer.
Two weeks flew by and it was soon the old Mr Bai’s birthday celebration. The Bai family arrived a day before the party at the mansion in the western districts. The whole family chittered and chattered. It was a bustling day filled to the brim with happiness.
JingYuan watched YiHan smiling beside him as a slight frown took over his brows. He couldn’t sweep aside the eerie feeling he had. For a while now, his instincts had been telling him something was off about YiHan. However, the younger man would act as he normally would. He’d get angry. He’d be happy. He’d act coy and cute to JingYuan, and acted very affectionate with JingYuan. Nothing was different at all. At least, everything looked normal. Still, deep down, JingYuan felt like something about his HanHan had slightly changed.
For example, intercourse. Before, they’d have fun and make love. It was all perfect. YiHan would spoil him rotten in bed. As long as he asked for it, and as long as it didn’t go overboard, YiHan would go along with his wishes. Recently though, YiHan had been using all sorts of excuses to refuse him. Of course, such matters should only be done when both parties desire it. That was the essence of being in love. He didn’t want to force YiHan at all. As long as the other man didn’t want it, JingYuan would rather just bear with it than to force the other man to go along with it. It’s been two weeks and they’ve only done it once. It was also not a very happy incident as YiHan couldn’t put his whole heart into the act. The man was aroused but he looked like he objected to it somehow. The man didn’t even climax. If that was how sex would be, it didn’t matter if they didn’t do it.
It was nice to just hold each other and sleep together. YiHan was by his side. The other man had grown increasingly reluctant to follow him to the office but the other treated him as usual. YiHan didn’t show any dissatisfaction. JingYuan kept reminding himself that it was perhaps stress and boredom. Perhaps HanHan had been restrained for too long and far too strictly. It wasn’t strange for his HanHan to want some personal space, to have some independence. In the office, JingYuan had to work. He couldn’t just hang out with HanHan most of the time. His lover would find it boring. It was normal for HanHan to not like going with him to work.
Even so, the uneasiness could not be shaken off. JingYuan couldn’t resist going online and seek help anonymously. The replies the post had gotten were extremely grim. Nearly all of them said the same thing: “When a lover doesn’t crave your body anymore and doesn’t like to cling to you anymore, you’re basically over.”
JingYuan was very unhappy with his results. His HanHan was clearly so good to him. HanHan cared for him, relied on him, and there were no issues at all when they interacted with each other. But why did the uneasiness in his heart grow more and more?
At that thought, JingYuan couldn’t help but want to hold YiHan’s hand. However, due to a seemingly accidental wave of YiHan’s hand, JingYuan’s hand missed. True. YiHan’s family members were all here. Even if they knew the two of them were lovers, it wasn’t fitting for them to hold hands the entire time. JingYuan’s fingers clenched into a fist, then relaxed as he looked at YiHan. The other man’s face was as pleasant as ever. For some unknown reason, JingYuan’s heart panicked. His fingers clenched and relaxed and clenched and relaxed. He repeated the actions a few times but he still couldn’t hold back. He reached out and gently grasped YiHan’s wrist. It felt like the only way to soothe the frustration and uneasiness in his heart was through physical contact.
Oh no!: Yes. Despite what pinyin and MTL would tell you, 哦漏 (Ó lòu) actually means “oh no!”.
It was a tale that saddened all who heard it: Alternate translation of this idiom would be “It broke the hearts of everyone who witnessed or heard it”. The author also had a typo. They wrote 见者流泪 instead of 听者流泪.
Scent of attractiveness: By right, it should translate to “reproductive scent” or “hormonal scent” (aka body odour). However, the reference here is to the fantastical, ethereal scent novels/dramas like to talk about emitting from the most attractive character in the story.
Essence of being in love: The word used here is 升华 which means sublimation/vaporisation/purification or promotion/ascension. An alternate way of translating this sentence might be “that was the next level in love” or “sex is the act of pure love”.
Happy new year!