Lu Jinnian stood alone in the living room. The sound of laughter blared from the dining room. It sounded like the atmosphere was very lively, but his whole body was shrouded heavily with a sense of loneliness that wouldn't dissipate.
He didn't know just how long he stood there for. When the dining room doors opened, he masked his loneliness by hurriedly pulling out his phone from his pocket and pressing it against his ear, pretending to be on the phone.
Xu Jiamu called out, "Bro". Seeing as Lu Jinnian was on the phone, he instinctively shut his mouth, pulled open the communal restroom doors, and walked in.
Lu Jinnian only put his phone back into his pocket when he heard the sound of flus.h.i.+ng from the restroom. Xu Jiamu came out, drying his hands with tissue. Seeing as Lu Jinnian was off the phone, he said, "Bro, you finished up?"
Lu Jinnian gently nodded his head.
Someone from the dining room called Xu Jiamu's name, to which he replied back in a high pitched voice. He chucked the paper into the bin and turned to Lu Jinnian. "Come in and eat."
Lu Jinnian stood on the spot, motionless and cold. "I have to go, there's some business I have to attend to."
A hint of disappointment flashed across Xu Jiamu's eyes, but he didn't press on. "All right, if you have time later, I'll come find you for a meal."
Lu Jinnian made a "mm" sound and glanced at the dining room door. He didn't say anything, just stood there quietly for two seconds, then strode out.
The temperature at night had already dropped. It wasn't as hot as it was during the day, as a matter of fact, it was quite soothing.
Lu Jinnian held a cup of tea and stood in his balcony as he quietly stared up at the stars.
He only agreed to go to Xu Jinnian's dinner after seeing her enter the mansion in the morning.
He knew that by going over, he was simply asking to be tortured by things he saw and heard.
Yet, there was no helping it. G.o.d only gave him a chance to be with her for two hundred and fifty-one days. Even though he got this opportunity by acting as Xu Jiamu's subst.i.tute, now, all he could do was torture himself to get closer to her.
A single dinner was more torturous than he ever imagined, but that was all right, he was still able to see her. He even spoke twice to her, did he not?
The two conversations: the first was when he said "Thank you" when she handed him tea, the other was when he said "Give it to me" as she hung up the phone on Han Ruchu. But it was all worth it, was it not?
Lu Jinnian stood there all the way up to ten something at night, until there was movement at the neighboring mansion. Perhaps two people had drank a little much, for when they got into their car, they screamed incoherently, which triggered the neighbor's dog to bark endlessly.
The car lights shone endlessly in the courtyard as they left one-by-one.
Under the faint yellow lights, Lu Jinnian, who stood on the second floor, saw Xu Jiamu and Qiao Anhao at the gates of the courtyard. They walked back into the mansion and shut the doors, completely silencing the entire world.
Only the two of them, Xu Jiamu and Qiao Anhao were left in the mansion next door...
Lu Jinnian’s mind wandered to the boxes of condoms he’d seen as part of Xu Jiamu's shopping earlier, when he went over for dinner, and instantly didn't want to think more.
After about half an hour, the lights in the mansion next door were out. Lu Jinnian's hands trembled, and his cup shattered into pieces which fell to the ground.