By the time Xia Lin raised his head, he realised he was already at the door of his house.
The door was tightly locked.
He recalled today was the third day of Song Yan's business trip. If all went according to plan, he would only be back after two more days.
Xia Lin quietly stood outside in a daze, his arms and leg cold. The test result letter in his hand felt so heavy that he couldn’t bring himself to open the door.
Even if he went home, it was not as if he could see a trace of Song Yan. There won’t be anyone to console him, hug him.
Xia Lin was not sure for how long he stood in front of the door. In the end, he still took out his keys and slowly opened it.
The moment he stepped in, he was unexpectedly greeted with a thick fog of cigarette smoke.
Xia Lin couldn’t stop himself from coughing a few times. By the time he looked into the house, he saw Song Yan somberly sitting by the living room sofa with his head down, half a cigarette clasped between his fingers. His whole body was enveloped by a haze and scattered across the coffee table in front of him were cigarette butts.
Xia Lin froze for a moment before coming back to himself. He moved his hand that was holding the test result letter behind him, he had not yet figured out how to best break this news to Song Yan. He did not want to see Song Yan being upset over him.
“Back so soon?” He affected a casual tone, moving towards the window. “You smoked so much yet didn’t open the windows to let the air out.”
“Stop right there.” Song Yan slowly raised his head and spoke in a low voice.
Xia Lin immediately stopped in his tracks. He realised just how serious Song Yan was looking. His eyes looked gloomy and even seemed to carry traces of irrepressible anger.
“What’s wrong?” He lowered his voice and turned to walk towards Song Yan. “Things aren’t going smoothly at work?”
Song Yan abruptly stood up and stared at Xia Lin, not blinking once. His whole posture was guarded, evidently rejecting Xia Lin’s advances.
“You take a guess, just who was it that I bumped into at C City.”
Xia Lin’s breathing stilled.
“What’s wrong?” Song Yan continued staring at him, a touch of derision visible in his smile. “Is it very surprising? In this lifetime, I could actually still get to find Luotong.”
Xia Lin’s heartbeat stopped for two beats, and he heard himself hollowly asking, “Yu Luotong... he’s back?”
“I knew it, you knew long ago that he moved out of the country.” Song Yan’s derision only grew heavier, in it were traces of deep hatred. “But at the start, why did you lie to me that Luotong was dead? You were so eager for him to die earlier?”
“I had no choice back then...”
Before Xia Ling could be done with his sentence, he was suddenly cut short by a slap from Song Yan.
He felt his vision going black. Staggering on his feet, he hurriedly raised a hand to prop himself by the wall to steady himself.
Bearing with the searing pain, he quietly caught his breath. After his vision cleared, he slowly said, “You... can you let me finish my sentence?”
Song Yan gave a scornful laugh, “What do you think, that I’ll be so foolish as to believe you a second time?”
“...” Xia Lin closed his eyes when another bout of dizziness hit, the words that he had wanted to say were once again swallowed back.
“You have no words to say for yourself now?” Song Yan’s smile was chilling to the bones. “Xia Lin, these few years I treated you well. I had even thought of spending the rest of my life with you. But how did you treat me? You lied to me that Luotong was dead, watched as I suffered and grieved for so long, and ultimately ended up by my side. You won, are you satisfied now?”
Xia Lin closed his eyes once more, “Song Yan, there is no winning or losing in love. I admit that I took advantage of your moment of weakness to get closer to you but lying to you about Luotong’s death was not my intent.”
“Enough!” Song Yan coldly stopped him. “I can’t bear to hear one more word out of your hypocritical mouth.”
He strode to the door and Xia Lin hurriedly rushed up to him, grabbing onto his arm like a pitiful pet that was about to be abandoned, “Song Yan, where are you going?”
Song Yan shook him off without looking back, “I’ll give you one day to move out of my house!”
“... Song Yan?” Xia Lin paled.
“I don’t wish to see you ever again, please disappear from my sight.” After he was done speaking, Song Yan left and slammed the door shut.
Xia Lin stood on the spot for a moment, despondent tears slowly trailing down his face.
“Yu Luotong, since you already made the decision to fake your death and disappear, why did you come back...”
He somewhat resented Yu Luotong’s actions, but what he resented, even more, was his inability to do anything.
He took a few steps back, sitting morosely in a corner and let the tears silently fall till dusk.
Finally, he recalled the test result letter.
He wiped his tears and as he looked down at the test result letter that had been squeezed into an unrecognisable shape, he felt himself calming down.
“This is how it’ll be,” He repeated to himself under his breath. “This is... alright too.”
In fact, regardless of whether Yu Luotong came back to the country or not, in this lifetime, he was not fated to be with Song Yan for long.
Since it’s now like this, why not let himself leave with a little less worry.
With that thought in mind, Xia Lin crumpled up the test result letter into a ball and threw it into the bin.
After that, he opened up the windows to let the air circulate and cleared the coffee table of the cigarette butts. He kept the clothes that were drying on the balcony and even labelled the food in the refrigerator into their different categories.
And once that was done, he packed up his belongings into his luggage, placed the house key by the shoe rack, took one last look at the house that held so many memories of both him and Song Yan, before pushing the door open and taking a step out.