Xiao Li was speechless for a long time while he looked Qi Xiu Yuan up and down as if he does not recognize him. After another moment flashed by, unable to withstand the expectation that dwelled in the eyes that took in his, Xiao Li turned away, “What do you mean leave together, weren’t you just scared a moment ago?”
“Could it be that you’re not scared?” Qi Xiu Yuan’s determined eyes captured Xiao Li’s as he exerted more strength in his hand, “You even blamed yourself for not remembering that Hong Tou’s grandfather had passed away already. Are you really not tormented by nightmares when you kill people?”
Although Xiao Li’s expression did not change even the slightest, his entire body on the other hand immediately stiffened, to the point that even his wrist that was being held tightly by Qi Xiu Yuan appeared to shake.
“Go with me,” said Qi Xiu Yuan, his voice laced with impatient, “There’s no need to care about those things anymore. We can go to a small place somewhere together. Even if it’s in a small county, a village, we can still live peacefull——”
Xiao Li lightly sighed and stretched his hand out to hit the wound on Qi Xiu Yuan’s head, causing him to painfully take in a breath of cold air. Then Xiao Li lowered his head to look at him and asked, “Are you awake yet?” Seeing that Qi Xiu Yuan still wanted to retort, Xiao Li continued, “Do you think you can escape unscathed? And what about Susu? Are you going to leave her here or take her with you to some village?”
“If you are willing to go with me,” Qi Xiu Yuan looked up, “Susu already has someone that can take good care of her.”
Xiao Li stared down at him for a moment as his brows tightened before he spoke with a serious tone, “Are you hiding something from me?”
At those words, Qi Xiu Yuan’s face ashen while both his eyes appeared to have sunken even more, and beneath the light, they looked like a pair of pristine black stones.
“‘The path they walk may be different from ours but they are humans just like us.’ My grandfather did not say these words, but he is truly Feng Long’s Du Yan San Ge.” The light from those black stones shot towards Xiao Li’s silhouette as Qi Xiu Yuan softly spoke, “During the latter years of his life, this title was placed on someone’s else, that person had also passed away a long time ago.”
The expression on Xiao Li’s face change to one of confusion and misgiving. He hesitated for a moment but still stretched out his free hand and rest it on Qi Xiu Yuan’s forehead to check his temperature.
Qi Xiu Yuan searched for his line of sight but it was blocked by his wrist so he leaned his head slightly to the side. Even then, the tone of his voice did not change, “After he abandoned the life of an outlaw, he resumed his original family name and named his son Qi Feng.”
He looked at the shocked expression that took place solace on Xiao Li’s face while trying his hardest not to smile, “Later on, my father and mother became known as Feng Long Shuang Sha, when they were apprehended by the police, there was a car crash. The person that apprehended them back then is now the Premier of the People’s Republic of China and head of the Ministry of Public Safety, Sun Ze Yu.”
Xiao Li silently took hold of Qi Xiu Yuan’s hand as his voice softened, “He knew my parents from a long time ago and had a really close relationship with them……” he paused and looked at Xiao Li before speaking again, “As long as you’re willing to go with me, he will look after Susu, he would even look after Xiao Yang——”
Hearing that, Xiao Li’s hand trembled as he looked closely into Qi Xiu Yuan’s eyes. He lowered his voice, “I can’t believe you like me that much……” he stared at Qi Xiu Yuan for a while, thinking about something, and while his brows slowly pulled closed, his free hand restlessly combed into his hair, “I’m sorry…there’s something I have to do now, I——”
“Why do you think I want you to leave with me?” Qi Xiu Yuan interrupted him, all the while an indescribable feeling lie quietly in his eyes, “What do you have to do? Those things……they used this strange tone to mention you, saying that something will happen to you……it’s as if everyone knows what you want to do, yet I’m left completely in the dark,” being emotionally stirred caused his wound to ache with pain before he suddenly coughed, “They all think that I don’t care about your identity, the things you’ve done, or whether you’ve killed before, but I do care.”
He tried his hardest to look at Xiao Li, appearing as if he wanted to use his eyes to make Xiao Li understand what lied within his heart, “I care because I know that you also care……it’s clear that you don’t like the underworld, you don’t like to kill people. Xiao Li, if what I’ve said is true then leave with me. Don’t worry about those complicated and dangerous things. You deserve to live a better life……”
Xiao Li gazed steadily, unable to take his eyes off of him.
“Xiao Li,” Qi Xiu Yuan softly called out, “Leave with me. We can live a life that is different from how it is now. Which village do you like? In the south or north——“
His voice disappeared in Xiao Li’s lips. Xiao Li had leaned into Qi Xiu Yuan, with one hand gently holding his cheek, allowing his head to be slightly raised as his lips pressed delicately against his.
There was an array of wounds on Qi Xiu Yuan’s face and the side of his lower lip was still swollen, but despite all the pain, he tried even harder to kiss and suck on Xiao Li’s lips.
Xiao Li pulled back slightly before he carefully and sincerely let his tongue draw out. Then little by little, he licked the swollen area, along with the bruises on the corner of his mouth, causing Qi Xiu Yuan to let out a small and intolerable moan as he attempted to lean even closer to Xiao Li. But Xiao Li pulled back again, his forehead now pressed against Qi Xiu Yuan’s forehead, while the tip of his nose touched the tip of Qi Xiu Yuan’s nose. And, when he spoke, his warm and soft breath soothed Qi Xiu Yuan’s lips.
His voice was tender, but what he said was, “I’m sorry.”
Qi Xiu Yuan immediately froze as Xiao Li moved his lips to kiss his forehead again and again before repeating, “I’m sorry.”
Then he got up.
This time he did not pay attention to Qi Xiu Yuan’s persistence as he gently yet firmly peeled away each finger that held tightly onto him.
After…. he turned around walked toward the front door.
“Xiao Li.” Qi Xiu Yuan anxiously called out to him.
But Xiao Li did not stop at all.
The sound of something heavy falling to the ground and Qi Xiu Yuan’s calling out and enduring the pain mingled together.
Xiao Li halted for a while, then he finally turned around.
Qi Xiu Yuan was in an awkward position as he sat on the ground beneath the light. The pain that wrung his body was so severe, it beckoned a thin layer of sweat to form on his forehead. He struggled to straighten his legs while raising his eyes to look at Xiao Li.
All of a sudden, a weak smile appeared on his lips as he used exerted strength into the hand that was in good condition to tear apart his own shirt.
As the light shined, Qi Xiu Yuan’s body is a tragic and miserable sight. The bruises and wounds were left all over his body from the severe assault. The dreadful large patches of bruising had spread through his entire body. There were layers of bandages wrapped around his body and the edges of it had rubbed against the swollen skin, dying it in red.
“I’m serious, Xiao Li. You don’t know how serious I am at all. I think the bones in my calf has misplaced,” he looked at Xiao Li, then said with an unsteady voice, “The doctor had said it would take at least a month before I can get off the bed. But I thought as long as I leaned on the crutches, there wouldn’t be any problems. But when I actually walk, I feel so sick that I want to throw up. He also said one of my ribs is broken, along with many muscle contusions. When I walked here, it felt like my rib was shifting, and my organs were in pain as if it was being pierced by it……”
Xiao Li looked at him in shock as he quickly felt around for his cellphone while rushing to kneel beside him.
“Don’t move, I’ll call the ambulance.”
Qi Xiu Yuan stretched out his hand to cover his phone as he stared at him and said, “I’ll walk like this to the hospital myself, that way they will cooperate. Xiao Li, there is a doctor that Sun Ze Yu had requested for and medicine in the car parked downstairs. As long as you promise to leave with me, we will both be safe. Promise me, even if it’s just for my sake, you clearly……”
Xiao Li could not look straight into his gaze any longer. He reached out and covered his eyes before drawing close to his ears. With a broken and trembling voice, he said:
“Qi Xiu Yuan, don’t be like this.”
Qi Xiu Yuan went blank for a moment. Those words beckoned a series of trembles to play out on his already complicated expression.
Xiao Li suddenly felt an insurmountable sense bitterness crash into his heart as he softly spoke, “Why can’t you understand? If I had known earlier that you would take things this seriously, I would have never…….when two men are together, who will consider what will happen tomorrow. Don’t tell me you really thought about being with me for the rest of your life? Even if that’s what you want, how is it possible to completely wipe out everything I’ve done in the past……it’s either dying in the gang or dying in jail, this is the ultimate ending for a person like me. I’ve already prepared myself since the beginning,” he lightly sighed then said, “The person who deserves a better life is you. You should forget about me.”
With that, he gently let go of Qi Xiu Yuan. Without turning back even once, he walked out the door and locked the sound of Qi Xiu Yuan’s voice inside the room.
All that existed at that moment was an all-encompassing sense of sorrow and misery reverberating in the room.
Qi Xiu Yuan’s whole body was riddled with overwhelmingly excruciating pain. However, all the pain could not be compared to the clear and distinctive sound of his heart being torn apart. It was as if a blunt and corroded blade was slowly cutting into his organs. Qi Xiu Yuan could only feel as if his breaths were being stolen as he gasped.
He slowly collapsed onto the floor and stared straight into the bright flashing light. He simply waited for Sun Ze Yu’s subordinates to come up from downstairs. Perhaps, they would come with a stretcher and help treat the wounds on his body.
But, for certain wounds, even the most brilliant doctor would not be able to sew it back up.
What exactly happened in the past that made it impossible for Xiao Li to breakaway? And what are the reasons that caused him to predict his own death and refused to live a better life? Could it be that he actually likes someone else more? Or could it be I’ve pressured him too much?
Qi Xiu Yuan continued to stare at the lights. And in return, the tubular fluorescent light left behind a luminescence shape in his pupil. Suddenly, a strange feeling overtook him. Why was it that, when he stared into the bright light, it was the darkness instead that appeared before his eyes?
And then, he remembered the words that Zhang Juan Juan had said. It’s impossible to escape parents’ shadow. Perhaps, this is really how it is.
Back when his parents were in that car crash, the car had struck the wall of the mountain, and his father died on the spot. The broken glasses from the front window of the car pierced into his mother’s lung, but she lived. She refused help and forced anyone that attempted to come closer to step back by pointing a gun in their direction. She waited for her lungs to be congested with blood…she waited for her breath to slowly stifle.
During those moments, her soft and tender eyes remained on her husband the entire time. It was as if no matter how much she looked, it was not enough, even though her husband was already beyond recognition.
Ten minutes later she also passed away, with one hand pulling on her husband’s and the other clutching the gun. In this way, both hands were drenched with an insurmountable sea of strength that made it impossible to pull her hands apart.
Perhaps this should not be called living in your parents’ shadow, but instead, this is a genetically inherited trait, thought Qi Xiu Yuan, with a waning mind.
Once you have thrown yourself into love, everything else will be of little value. You would cherish and love only that person to the point that even when you died together, the hands that clasped so tightly would still not let go.
But, I let him pull away from my hands……I let him pull away from my hands.
Having stared at the light for such a long time made Qi Xiu Yuan’s eyes contract, blurring his vision with a cloud of sadness. Those words incessantly danced around in his mind until the stabbing sharp pain caused him to finally lose consciousness.
 Hong Tou – Xiao Li’s subordinate that got killed when Xiao Li was ambushed at Arc De Triomphe.
 Feng Long Shuang Sha – Du Yan San Ge’s gang name is Feng Long. Shuang Sha (Paired Killers) is the title that Qi Xiu Yuan’s parents held.