After Lucy's husband left, Qiao Anhao and Lucy sat on the sofa.
The coffee had already gone cold, so Qiao Anhao brewed a new pot and poured Lucy and herself a cup.
Lucy said "Thank you", then pulled out a business card from her bag and handed it over.
Qiao Anhao accepted it with two hands. Even though it was printed in English, she understood it.
Lucy, 31 years old, Psychologist.
Qiao Anhao put the business card away, and gave a simple introduction to Lucy. Before she could finish, Lucy smiled, nodded, and said, "Regarding your text messages, I know all about them."
After a pause, she added, "Nian told me." She took a sip of coffee. "As for the misunderstanding I created, I offer you my apologies. However, rest a.s.sured, Nian only came to find me purely for business."
"Uh huh..." Lucy tilted her head and thought about it for a moment. "Simply put, Nian is my patient."
Lucy is a psychologist and Lu Jinnian is her patient, which is to say, Lu Jinnian's mental health... Qiao Anhao instantly became stiff, unable to believe what she was hearing.
Lucy looked as though she understood exactly what Qiao Anhao was thinking, then curved her lips into a smile. "Actually, this is Nian's private matter, and I promised to keep it a secret, but you have this saying in China, something like 'Whoever hung the bell...'"
Mid-speech, Lucy didn't quite know how to continue, so Qiao Anhao helped her in English. "Whoever hung the bell on the tiger's neck must untie it?"
"Right!" Lucy nodded enthusiastically. "I believe, if you knew about it, then it would definitely be helpful for Nian."
This time, Qiao Anhao didn't say anything, but stared straight +at Lucy.
"I met Nian five months ago. At the time, my husband and I were driving home when we found him. He drank a lot, so he wasn't very conscious at the time. He and my husband had known each other for many years and were very good friends, so we took him home with us.
"He wanted to leave when he sobered up, but my husband desperately tried to persuade him to stay. Finally, he agreed.
"He's really handsome, and a gentleman. Though he doesn't speak much, but my husband and I like him a lot. Our Nini also likes him too. Nini is our beautiful Labrador retriever.
"A week later, I realized that something was off with him. That night, I went out to a party. It was already three in the morning when I came home. The lights in his room were lit and his door wasn't shut. I was curious, so I pushed it open to find that he wasn't asleep and his room was filled with cigarette smoke.
"At the time, I just thought that he was really addicted to smoking, so I tried to persuade him to quit, but he didn't care." Lucy shrugged her shoulders, then looked a little helpless. "Though we lived together, we rarely interacted with him. My husband told me that was just the way he was, so I didn't think much of it.
"Until one day, I came home from work. Nini saw me, immediately jumped onto me and grabbed my leg, dragging me to his bedroom while barking at the door. Nini's personality is very docile. We rarely see her like this, so I realized that something was wrong. I knocked on the door, but there was no reply. Nini then started to scratch at the door, and that's when I realized that something wrong, so I hurriedly went to find the keys, and when I opened the door..."
As Lucy said this, she paused for a moment, glanced at Qiao Anhao, then traced a line down her wrist and said, "He had committed suicide."