I ADORE HIM
(To Go Our Separate Ways Till The End Of The World (1)
Qin Zhi’ai, who had arrived late, seemed to have something important to share with Xu Wennuan. She jogged all the way over to her and then apologized for being late, quickly pulled out a chair, and sat in front of her. She then raised her hand, beckoned the waiter over, and ordered some food. After the waiter left, she began saying eagerly in hushed tones, “Nuannuan, remember when I complained to you some time ago about how we could never contact Brother Bancheng and he seemed to have just vanished?”
Xu Wennuan hadn’t expected Lu Bancheng to be a topic during their conversation so, when Qin Zhi’ai mentioned him first thing, she momentarily froze while pouring the tea. She looked down and gave Qin Zhi’ai a soft acknowledgment, before she continued to pour unhurriedly and replied in a calm, steady voice, “I remember. What’s up?”
Qin Zhi’ai immediately answered, “Last night, Brother Bancheng called up Yusheng,” and then she said with a sense of pain in her voice, “That’s when we learned why he hasn’t contacted anyone for so long—not because he went to America but because something happened to him…”
Xu Wennuan’s brows twitched hard, and her fingers tightened around her cup. After some time, she lifted her head up calmly and gazed at Qin Zhi’ai. “What happened? Was it serious?”
“It’s exceptionally serious,” Qin Zhi’ai replied frankly.
Xu Wennuan’s heart sank even before Qin Zhi’ai sighed softly and said with some pity in her voice, “Brother Bancheng’s thighs were seriously injured, and now he can’t walk anymore…”
Xu Wennuan’s hands jerked and knocked her cup over, causing her tea to spill on the table, flow to the edge, and drip onto her shirt. The waiter, who had been standing by the side, noticed and quickly hurried forward to help her wipe it up; however, Xu Wennuan remained motionless in her seat as though she was a wooden doll, allowing the waiter to clean the entire mess. Her big eyes stared fixedly at Qin Zhi’ai and the words “can’t walk anymore” reverberated through her mind as if Qin Zhi’ai had dropped a bomb. She then asked in a quivering voice, “What do you mean when you say that he can’t walk anymore?”
“Well, I mean that right now, Brother Bancheng is as good as a physically disabled man. He relies on a wheelchair…”
Xu Wennuan’s brain blanked out in an instant.
“Last night, after he called Yusheng, we visited him. He was in his wheelchair and was much leaner. His complexion was also pale and haggard. Overall, he looked pitiful… Brother Bancheng is such a great man. Why would such a thing happen to him? It’s so unfair…”
After she had taken in all that Qin Zhi’ai had said, Xu Wennuan moved her eyes slightly and mumbled softly, “Can’t walk anymore?”
Qin Zhi’ai hadn’t heard her clearly. “Nuannuan, what did you say?”
“Can’t walk anymore? He can’t walk anymore…” As if she hadn’t heard Qin Zhi’ai, she continued to mumble, “He was fine when I met with him a while back. How could it be that he can’t walk anymore? Right, why can’t he walk anymore?”
Qin Zhi’ai only managed to catch the last part of what she said, “Why can’t he walk anymore?” After the waiter served their food, she served some onto Xu Wennuan’s plate and, thinking that Xu Wennuan was asking her a question, she then gave her a reply.
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