"Mr. He, Miss Ji Yi has reached the hotel with me and my wife. Now Old Zhang is checking her ankle."
"Mr. He, just now, I secretly went over to her door and overheard Old Zhang say that she didn't injure the muscles and bones in her ankle."
He Jichen stood in front of the tall windows of the airport's VIP lounge and stared at a plane about to make a landing. One hand was on the phone listening to the call, and the other hand was reaching for a cigarette. He put it to his lips and grabbed a lighter, but just when he was going to light it up, he heard the man on the phone reporting what was happening. "Now Old Zhang is smearing bruise removal cream. He says she'll be able to walk like normal after two days."
He Jichen put his lighter away, removed the cigarette from his mouth, and flatly said into the phone: "Mhm," to indicate that he heard what he said.
"Mr. He, Old Zhang has applied the medicine. It looks like she fell, since her knee was a little injured. Old Zhang is helping her disinfect it..." They almost finished in the hotel room, so the man knew it was time to go back. Just as he was about to say goodbye to He Jichen, he heard the sweet sound of a woman's voice on He Jichen's end of the line. "Mr. He, your private plane is in position. You can board now."
The man suddenly stopped what he was going to say. "Mr. He, it's so late. You still want to get on the plane? Just to..."
Mid-speech, the man seemed like he suddenly thought of something and changed what he was going to say. "...Mr. He, are you coming to Lijiang?"
Having guessed He Jichen's thoughts, he didn't hide a thing and replied with an honest "Mhm."
"Miss Ji Yi really is fine. If you're worried, my wife and I can stay with her tomorrow. Aren't you busy over there? You don't have to rush here overnight..."
Before the man could finish trying to persuade him, He Jichen suddenly asked, "She doesn't know that I arranged for you both to be there right?"
"No, she doesn't know. I didn't mention your name, just as you asked. I just said that Mr. He asked us to come..."
"Thanks," replied He Jichen flatly. He paused for a moment and added, "Hanging up." He didn't even wait for the man to respond before ending the call on his own accord. He pinched the cigarette as he followed the flight attendant through the VIP path to board the plane.
As he took a seat, He Jichen fastened the seat belt and waited for the plane to take off. When it was steadily in the air, a tall and slender air hostess walked over, offering a menu. "Mr. He, please let me know what you'd like to order?"
He Jichen didn't take the menu but said in a flat voice, "A cup of cool boiled water." Then he readjusted his seat to sit back in the most comfortable position and shut his eyes.
The air hostess quickly brought back a cup of cold water, but seeing as he had his eyes shut, she assumed he was sleeping so she didn't disturb him. She gently put the cup of water down and attentively helped him turn off the lights above his head before she left.
He Jichen continued to shut his eyes to get some rest for a while before his eyelids flickered open again and he reached for the cup of water. When he drank half the cup, he put it down and turned to look out the window at the pitch-black sky. The stars glistened radiantly and the moonlight shone brightly.
He stared at the shockingly beautiful night view and suddenly thought back to the WeChat messages Tang Huahua sent him four hours ago...
Since "Three Thousand Lunatics" was going to start shooting in under a month, he only had new year's family dinner at home on Chinese new year's eve before getting on an overnight plane back to Beijing.