Though his older brother He Yuguang passed away three years ago, every time he went in front of his gravestone, a heavy, indescribable pain crept into He Jichen's heart.
After a while, he calmed down as he repeatedly stroked the word "Guang" and spoke in a deep voice, "Bro, I've come to visit you."
He Jichen knew that nobody would reply, but he still quietly waited for a while before he continued, "Bro, how have you been? Let's not lie..."
He Jichen knew he would never in his life see He Yuguang scribbling replies on his whiteboard ever again. He lowered his eyes and gulped hard. Then he pulled his hand back from the gravestone, turned around and sat down on the ground. He rested his head on the gravestone and stared up at the sunny skies. He smelled the tobacco of a cigarette he lit up, and he slowly said, "...I've been good. I'm not lying... Really good. She woke up, and she's doing alright... How about you, Bro?"
He was met with silence.
It wasn't until a gust of wind blew in and made the leaves from the surrounding trees rustle that He Jichen spoke again as though he was talking to himself, "Bro, can I ask you a question? Have you ever really wanted to start over with someone?"
He Jichen paused for three seconds then blinked softly. An infinite sense of sadness washed over his body, which in turn made his voice sound dejected. "Bro, I have..."
He Jichen said just three words before he stopped. Yet, he clearly said the words in his heart: I really want to start over with her; I want to go back to the moment she said her name. I really really want to start over with her; I want to start from the moment she first stepped into our house.
It wasn't until four years ago that he realized no matter how he confidently thought he would be as close as He Yuguang was in Ji Yi's heart, that wasn't the reality. His confidence had no use at all.
He Jichen lit another cigarette and slowly shut his eyes. Amongst the faint smell of tobacco, he continued his reminiscingabout the beautiful memories of the past that he had the night before in the bar.
Soon after He Jichen and Ji Yi met each other, they had to take their high school examinations.
Ji Yi's results were good, and she easily entered Sucheng Yizhong's senior high
After graduating to senior high, aside from still being as ignorant and boastful as he was in junior high, he also learned a new skill: to protect.
He learned this new skill in the second month into the start of senior high.
It was a Wednesday afternoon. Ji Yi didn't go home after school but went with a few girls to have lunch, then she headed to the Happy Internet Cafe.
Coincidentally that day, He Jichen, Fatty and the gang met up for a game at the Happy Internet Cafe.
But she was on the first floor, and they were on the second floor.
Halfway through his game, he went to the washroom. Since the second-floor toilets were occupied, he had to go to the first-floor toilets. He picked up a pack of cigarettes while he was there.
After he grabbed his cigarettes at the front desk, he nonchalantly headed upstairs. That was when he incidentally caught glimpse of her through the windows, sitting in the internet cafe.
He instinctively stopped walking and looked back.