Chapter 26: Devastated

(Disclaimer: None of the characters in this novel promotes or supports smoking. Smoking causes cancer. Smoking kills.)

Gu Xia stood alone in the stairwell in a daze. He didn’t know what was being said in the ward. He couldn’t comprehend what happened to Tu Sisi.

His mood was very irritable, partly because of Tu Sisi’s illness, and partly because of the doctor’s words.

“Hahh…”

Gu Xia sighed. Then he walked to the door of the ward. Noticing that the door was still closed, he thought that they were still talking inside. So he went downstairs to buy a pack of cigarettes, and squatted on the stairwell to smoke. Although there was a ‘No Smoking’ sign on the wall, Gu Xia was much too irritated at this moment to care about that.

Time passed and a sound of footsteps came closer. Gu Xia looked up and saw Tu Jianguo walking over with a sullen face.

Gu Xia’s heart skipped a beat. Could it be that Sisi’s illness was really serious?

“Uncle, how is Sisi?” Gu Xia asked while still holding a cigarette.

“I don’t know yet, and I couldn’t see anything wrong. Sisi is still the same as before. At least I didn’t see much of anything the doctor said just now.” Tu Jianguo said with a frown.

“Uncle, don’t worry, maybe Sisi doesn’t have that kind of mental disorder at all! After all, the doctor also said that there are no such cases in China.” Gu Xia could only comfortably say.

“Hahh…I hope so!” Tu Jianguo said with a sigh.

“When Sisi’s mother comes out, you can also go in and see Sisi.” Tu Jianguo said.

“Hmm”

The two men in the stairwell continued to smoke cigarettes, both worried for the same girl, but their troubles were different. After all, what Gu Xia knew, Tu Jianguo didn’t know.

In the ward, Tu Sisi was drinking porridge with steamed buns, chatting and laughing with her mother and sister, and there was no sign of any abnormality described by the doctor at all.

Seeing this, Tang Chunhua and Tu Fangfang breathed a sigh of relief, and their tense minds also relaxed at this moment.

“Sisi! Are you full already? What else do you want to eat? Mom will buy it for you.” Tang Chunhua said while stroking Tu Sisi’s hair.

“No need, Mom, this is enough for me.” Tu Sisi said sweetly.

“It’s all your dad’s fault. I told him not to let you go out to travel. You’ve never been so far away since you were a child.” Tang Chunhua complained.

“Mom, don’t blame Dad, it was I who wanted to go traveling.” Tu Sisi shook Tang Chunhua’s hand like a child.

“You! You were spoiled rotten by your father.” Tang Chunhua said angrily.

“Sisi, are you feeling any discomfort?” Tu Fangfang asked.

“I’m fine, sister, let’s go home! I want you to cook braised pork for me to eat. The braised pork you make is the best.” Tu Sisi said to Tu Fangfang in a cute voice.

“The doctor said that you still have to be observed, and when we go back, your sister will make you a big plate of braised pork, okay?” Tu Fangfang said with a smile.

“What is there to observe! Look at me, I’m fine, we should go back now, Mom~” Tu Sisi insisted.

“Sisi, you have to listen to the doctor’s advice. Mom is staying with you here, so isn’t that okey?” Tang Chunhua said helplessly.

“Okay then…”

*****

Gu Xia didn’t get to see Tu Sisi until the evening, and his mood became more and more irritable.

Originally, at noon, he wanted to go in to see Tu Sisi, but he was told by Tang Chunhua that Tu Sisi had already fallen asleep. She also told him to go get a good rest, and not disturb Sisi’s rest.

He knew that his mother-in-law was blaming him for inviting Tu Sisi to travel and not taking good care of her, which made Sisi become like this.

Gu Xia was sitting alone on a chair downstairs in the hospital, with dense cigarette butts scattered under his feet. He had already smoked two packs of cigarettes today, his expression was sluggish, and his eyes kept dozing off. He was feeling fatigued, and this fatigue was more of a mental one.

“Here…”

A bottle of drink was handed to Gu Xia.

Gu Xia looked up and saw Tu Fangfang standing in front of him.

“Don’t take it to heart, her mother is in a bad mood because of Sisi. She has resentment towards you for this matter, so she didn’t let you see Sisi. You should go back to the hotel to rest first! I think you’re going to fall ill like this.” Tu Fangfang said softly.

After seeing that Gu Xia didn’t respond, he continued, “And you are still young, so there will be more opportunities to meet in the future, you understand? Go back, take a bath, get a good night’s sleep, and then come to see Sisi in a refreshed state. Wouldn’t that be better? Look at you, your beard has grown out, and you look sloppy.”

“Alright then! I’ll be going back first.” Gu Xia thought about it and nodded.

When Tu Fangfang saw Gu Xia’s figure leaving, he couldn’t help but sigh.

“Really a crazy person.”

*****

When Gu Xia returned to the hotel, Li Sicheng was not in the room. He guessed that he went out with Wang Qian.

Gu Xia took a cold shower, then lay on the bed and fell asleep.

When he woke up, it was already the next afternoon, and he had slept for nearly twenty hours since he slept last night.

Gu Xia washed his head and shaved his beard. He looked at his refreshed self in the mirror and nodded with satisfaction.

“Creek!”

“Gu Xia, wake up! Come, and eat something, I guessed that you were about to wake up at this time, so I brought you something to eat, eat it!” Li Sicheng walked in and offered him food.

“Well, don’t say it, I’m really hungry.”

Gu Xia was not polite, picked up the food and ate it.

“Where’s Wang Qian? Why isn’t she with you?” Gu Xia asked while eating.

“She…she’s feeling a little unwell, so she’s resting in the room.” Li Sicheng scratched his head. 

“Oh~ you have to take good care of Wang Qian, don’t be like me and make her sick too.” Gu Xia urged.

“Don’t worry! Go to the hospital after dinner! I’ll meet you there later.” Li Sicheng smiled.

“Okay, take care of Wang Qian! I’ll take a taxi.” Gu Xia waved his hand and said.

“Alright then!” Li Sicheng was not worried about Wang Qian, so he easily agreed.

Gu Xia quickly finished eating, said hello to Li Sicheng, and took a taxi to the hospital. On the way, he also bought a bunch of Tu Sisi’s favorite lilies at a flower shop.

When he arrived at the hospital, Gu Xia hurried to the ward, but when he opened the ward, he saw that there was no one in it, and the ward was clean and tidy, as if no one lived here from the start.

Gu Xia was stunned for a while, then turned to look at the door number at the door, it was the right one! But what about Tu Sisi?

Gu Xia hurried to the nurse’s desk and asked, “Hello, what happened to the patient at number 345?”

“They have already gone through the discharge procedures in the morning.” The nurse replied.

“What!”

The flower fell on the ground, but Gu Xia didn’t even look at it. He felt that he had difficulty breathing, and his heart felt very painful.

Gu Xia took out his mobile phone and dialed Tu Sisi’s number, but no one picked it up. Gu Xia continued to call again and again with the same result.

‘Why?’

‘Why didn’t you tell me when you left?’

‘Why don’t you answer the phone?’

Gu Xia walked out of the hospital like a walking corpse, and sat in the same position as last night, smoking fiercely.

Gu Xia’s hand holding the cigarette was shaking, his eyes were looking at the ground without focus.

After sitting there until the evening, he was found by Li Sicheng and Wang Qian who came to look for him.

Li Sicheng patted Gu Xia on the shoulder, not knowing what to say or how to comfort him.

He and Wang Qian also went to the ward just now. They also asked the nurse and learned that the Tu Sisi family had left.

Even Wang Qian felt that Tu Sisi had gone too far this time. She also called and was hung up, making Wang Qian angry to death.

Wang Qian felt angry for Gu Xia in her heart. ‘Gu Xia guarded you by your bed sleeplessly, but you woke up and didn’t even see him, and left without saying goodbye. Who does that?’ 

She didn’t feel good about it at all!

“Come on! Let’s go home.”

Gu Xia threw away the cigarette in his hand, stood up, and then walked outside.

His voice was hoarse and dry from smoking too much, and his figure was a little unstable. His visage cast a gloomy shadow under the street lights.


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