Chapter 52

The Promise Sealed with Our Lips Guan Gai Man Jing Hua, 冠蓋滿京華 2022/9/13 16:53:02

He Nuo thought that Shi Yan was going to force the drink down his throat like how he did so with sweets in their first year, but instead he saw Shi Yan place the cup near his lips and smile cunningly as he prepared to drink it. He Nuo felt like he was struck by lightning as he suddenly understood what he meant, so he jumped over and s.n.a.t.c.hed the cup, I’ll drink it, I’ll drink it myself.”

Shi Yan said triumphantly, “Don’t leave a single drop behind.”

He Nuo pinched his nose, then downed the medicine without daring to breathe. After he finished drinking it, he kept his mouth open and didn’t dare to touch any part of his mouth with his tongue. It tasted bitter everywhere, “Is there any Coptis in this?”

When he saw He Nuo like this, Shi Yan began to coax him unconsciously, “Good medicine is bitter and beneficial for your illness, it’ll definitely be effective since it’s so bitter. Wash your mouth a few more times, once you get used to it you won’t think it’s that bitter tomorrow.”

He Nuo let out a cry of anguish, “I still need to drink it tomorrow?!”

Shi Yan nodded, “You’ll have to drink it for two weeks.”

“I’d rather die.” He Nuo complained in a casual manner.

But he heard Shi Yan smack the table with his palm and the loud sound frightened He Nuo. Shi Yan glared at him, “You’d rather die? Do you know how much Laozi has f.u.c.king done for the sake of your health? And how many strings I had to pull for this d.a.m.n sickness of yours?!”

He Nuo appeared like he was frightened silly, so he stood rooted to the spot without saying another word. Shi Yan slammed the door and went out. He Nuo looked at the medicinal residue that lined the walls of the cup, and his eyes immediately became wet. He wasn’t someone who liked to cry, and you could even say that He Nuo doesn’t even remember a time when he had actually cried. He never had the habit of crying when he encountered any problem, and when he did suffer several times in the past, all he did was endure it silently; but now he wasn’t suffering, he was guilty and ashamed.

He was blaming himself. It was as if he had gotten accustomed to how well Shi Yan treats him, and in recent times you could say that Shi Yan had been taking care of him meticulously in every possible way. But while he was accepting Shi Yan’s goodwill, he didn’t think about how much Shi Yan had sacrificed for him. If it wasn’t because Shi Yan talked about pulling strings in a fit of anger, he wouldn’t have known how much trouble he had caused Shi Yan. In He Nuo’s simplistic world, Shi Yan seemed omnipotent. He Nuo felt guilty for neglecting the effort and money Shi Yan had spent on him — and he only realised now that since the medicine wasn’t prescribed in the hospital, it couldn’t have been bought at public expense.

Shi Yan didn’t go too far, he was in the adjacent meeting room. He was so angry he wanted to swear like crazy at first, but after he calmed down, he realised that his impulsive reaction was a bit over the top. Did he frighten that idiot? Shi Yan knew that He Nuo’s kidney must be suffering from either of the two kinds of nephritis, and its root cause couldn’t be cured anymore. He could only nurse him carefully to try and keep his condition under control so that it wouldn’t worsen. So even a small cough was a thorn in Shi Yan’s heart, because w.a.n.g Feng’s mother had mentioned before that any kind of minor illness could be due to a weak immune system and may trigger the relapse of his nephritis, then his condition would worsen.

For the past two months, He Nuo’s coughs had weighed upon Shi Yan’s heart. No one knew how much he hoped for a medicine that could cure the root cause of this stubborn cough. He was afraid that He Nuo would urinate blood again, because when he asked w.a.n.g Feng’s mother to bring him to go see other nephropathic patients, uremic patients all suffered from such serious edema that they looked like an elephant’s foot. Their skin had tiny cracks because they were bursting from the edema, and it was covered in furfures that would fall off their skin as they walked. The physician told him in a usual tone that these patients could only live for another three or two months, and actually didn’t need to be hospitalised.

Death from uremia was a sensitive issue for Shi Yan, which was why he was so agitated by the joke that He Nuo had uttered without much thought. Now that he thought about it, He Nuo wasn’t someone who would make light of of his life, he was just complaining a little to someone whom he was very close to. In fact, that guy can only be that wilful and carefree in front of him. Just look at how cautious and restrained he is at home!

When he thought of this, Shi Yan felt gratified that He Nuo can be himself in front of him. When he opened the door, He Nuo was standing outside. He Nuo had already been standing there for a few minutes. He knew that Shi Yan was inside, but he felt too ashamed to knock on the door.

“I’m sorry. I,”

“What are you saying?” Shi Yan placed one arm around his shoulder, “I went crazy, but why are you going crazy with me? Let’s go back to do our homework.”

The He Nuo who was facing his books couldn’t stop the tears from welling up in his eyes. He stood up and walked to the window. Shi Yan approached him and turned him around to face himself; He Nuo’s tear-filled eyes made Shi Yan feel like his heart had just been stabbed.

“I’m sorry.”

“I can’t believe you’re shedding golden drops just because you took some medicine. I’lll accompany you to drink it tomorrow, okay?” Shi Yan placed his hand over He Nuo’s eyes and touched its corners.

“What are you doing?” He Nuo didn’t understand Shi Yan’s strange actions.

“Tasting your golden drops,” Shi Yan wiped his finger on his lips, “If you’re a girl, I would have just eaten it directly. But since you’re a guy, we’ll have to make do with this.”

He Nuo laughed through his tears. His tears hadn’t fallen at first, but the result of suppressing it was that they had all ran into his nose, so with just one laugh of his, a bubble suddenly emerged from his nostril. Shi Yan burst out laughing when he saw his snot bubble, while He Nuo blushed with shame and embarra.s.sment.

Shi Yan finally stopped laughing out of kindness, “Ok ok, we can go back and study now ba.”

“How much was the medicine?”

“I knew you’d think that way. It’s free.” Shi Yan also knew that He Nuo wouldn’t believe him, “I don’t care if you believe it or not, they didn’t accept a single dime from me.” Then he told He Nuo about what had happened, or else this stubborn fellow would worry over this favour he owed him.

“Thank you, and sorry.” He Nuo spoke solemnly after a period of silence. Even if he believed that Shi Yan didn’t spend any money on it, Shi Yan had still expended a lot of effort in finding that family.

“What nonsense are you spouting? Do you think I’ll let you off if you flatter me? You can’t skip even one day of drinking that medicine, and you’ll have to come here everyday to do your homework.”

From then onwards, He Nuo spent every night with Shi Yan in the office. He had never hesitated over drinking the medicine again, while Shi Yan started bringing fruits from the second day onwards. He would stuff He Nuo with some fruit after he takes his medicine: mandarins, oranges, and every time Shi Yan would peel it with a fruit knife before he pa.s.sed it to He Nuo. How could He Nuo get the chance to eat this kind of high-quality fruits at home? He always ate these fruits under Shi Yan’s coercion.

The medicine was barely enough for seven days, but Shi Yan would keep the medicinal roots and residue after he finished boiling the medicine every time, so after seven days, he used the remnants from the past seven days of the medicine he had boiled to cook new medicine again. It was the weekend on the tenth day, which was four days before the Spring Festival. By then, they would be enjoying their holidays, so for the past few days Shi Yan had prepared the medicine at home and placed it in a thermos cup before he delivered it to He Nuo. There wasn’t anyone at home during the day, and the medicine was being reused a second time so it didn’t have a very strong scent. The scent would disperse as long as he opened the windows, thus Shi Yan managed to cook the medicine for four days without anyone finding out.