“Xiao You, look at me,” Lei immediately extends his hands out and grabbed hold of both Xiao You’s arms, as she is looking at the television.
With Lei suddenly grabbed and hold her arms, Xiao You’s attention reverted back to him and she looked at him.
“Xiao You, Xi Men is fine,” Lei said. “Xi Men is fine,” he repeated.
Xiao You didn’t know what to react to that statement. It is a statement that she wants to hear, but… but is he really ‘fine’ or will Lei say the contradicted sentence so that it makes her feel better?
She looked at Lei still gripping onto both her arms tight. She then swallowed a lump in her throat.
“Where… where is Xi Men…?” Xiao You asked, as her tears fell to her cheek.
“I’ll bring you,” Lei said, slowly releasing the grips.
Xiao You followed Lei and Jing, walking towards the first class ward in the hospital.
Lei heads to a door, puts his hand on the door handle, and stopped. He then turned and looked at Xiao You.
Tears are evident in Xiao You’s eyes. And she, without fail, will wipe the tears that had fallen to her cheek.
Lei turned his head to look straight and twisted the door handle to open the door.
“No, stop,” Xiao You suddenly said and at the same time extends her hands out to grip onto Lei’s wrist, stopping him from opening the door.
Lei and Jing looked at Xiao You.
“Xiao You… why?” Jing asked, extending her hand out to squeeze Xiao You’s arm.
Is she still mad at him now, even at this time, that she didn’t want to see him?
But… she is here in the hospital now and she has hinted a while back at the entrance of the hospital that she wants to see him.
She wouldn’t have followed them to this door of the ward if she didn’t want to see him… right?
“Give… give me a moment,” Xiao You requested.
Lei and Jing looked at each other.
Xiao You bites her lips as she struggled with the tears.
Is Xi Men really alright?
Or is he badly injured, like, really, really bad?
Xiao You swallowed the lump in her throat.
Xiao You closed her eyes and took a really deep breath.
She opened her eyes and released her hand from gripping Lei’s wrist.
“Okay, we can go in,” Xiao You said.
Lei looked at Xiao You for a brief while before his gaze returns to Jing, who also gave him a nod.
He twists the door handle of the first class ward, and he pushed the heavy door open.
Everyone is in the room, and all of them looked at the door.
The door that Lei had pushed ajar lets Xiao You not only sees Xi Men but also meets Xi Men in the eyes.
Xi Men is sitting on the bed… unscathed!
There isn’t a bandage anywhere! Not even on his face!
Her eyes widened.
She is shocked!
Xiao You covers her mouth in disbelief, as she remained standing at the same spot.
This is not what she had imagined. She had expected worse since she saw the news on the television.
His condition now is… perfect!
Tears fell to her cheeks.
Xi Men smiled slightly at the sight of Xiao You.
There are few emotions exhibited on Xi Men’s face. He looked bitter, happy touched and also seems to be in disbelief to see her there.
He felt bitter because he missed her so much.
He felt happy because she is right in front of him.
He felt touched because she came to the hospital to see him when she found out he is involved in an accident.
He had not seen her for almost 2 weeks now, since she told him she didn’t want to see him.
And to see her now looking at him… he is moved, and at the same time, in disbelief.
He swallowed the lump in his throat.
His sight has never left Xiao You.
He bites his lips as he is filled with emotions that tears start to form in his eyes. And the smile on his face has slowly faded because he was trying so hard not to let the tears fell.
He wasn’t sure if he should smile now or to let the tears flow. He couldn’t decide. He couldn’t control his tears, and he couldn’t even put a smile on his face now.
“I’ve told you he is fine,” Lei smiled.
Xiao You looked at Lei.
“Go in,” Lei urged, and Jing nodded.
Xiao You slowly turned from gazing at Lei to look at Xi Men.
She then slowly walked in, exchanging a brief smile with Xi Men and stood next to Xi Men. “You… you are fine,” she sniffed.
Xi Men saw her reddened eyes. He slowly extends his right hand out, a hint to have her put her hand into his’, well, he hoped. He then smiled reluctantly at Xiao You. “Are you… disappointed that I should be… seriously injured…?”
“No,” she shook her head. “No… I don’t mean that,” she then puts her left hand onto his extended right hand.
His thumb casually caressed the back of Xiao You’s hand in his hand.
He looked at her hand that is clasped in his, with tears still in his eyes that he struggled to keep them from falling.
A tear eventually fell to his cheek.
“Xi Men…” Xiao You called, as seeing his tear fell, it somehow made her feel sad.
She is made to believe that he suffered massive injuries from that horrible accident.
But he looks completely fine…
How did he…?
Her reddened eyes form tears again.
Xi Men slowly lifted his eyes up from looking at her hand to her face.
He saw her reddened and teary eyes. “Xiao You…” Xi Men said.
A tear fell onto Xiao You’s face.
Upon seeing that, Xi Men sits up straight and lightly pulled her left hand which is still in his right hand.
And with the light tug as a calling he gives her, she sits down on the side of the bed.
He raised his left hand really, really slowly as his right hand is still holding her left hand and (his left hand) wiped the fallen tear on her face. “I am okay, don’t worry about me,”
She looked at his tears-flooded eyes and she tried to hold her emotions back.
He is alive.
He is right in front of her after the horrendous accident, looking back at her.
Overwhelmed by her emotions, she leaned forward and hugs him with her head on his right shoulder.
“Ouch…” Xi Men lets out a groan.
Xiao You, upon hearing his groan, pulled her body back as she knew he definitely groaned of pain because of her, but Xi Men pulls her back down to his chest, into an embrace.
“I am okay,” Xi Men said, hugging her tightly with his right hand. “I am okay,” he repeated.
He doesn’t care if she is causing him pain. She hugged him. He wants it. And he wants to continue hugging her.
“But…” she softly said.
He is definitely injured somewhere…
He shook his head. “I am fine,” he assured her.
Xiao You closed her eyes in the warm hug.
It’s been a while since he actually hugged her like this.
He smiled faintly, before he closed his eyes and he rubbed her back.
This accident has given him the chance to hug her.
Lei, Jing, Mei Zhuo, Xiao Qiao, Ah Si and San Chai smiled, as they stood behind and watched.
“When I was on the call with her just now, I wanted to tell her ‘don’t worry about Xi Men, he’s fine’ but the line was cut off,” Mei Zhuo said, putting his hand on Xiao Qiao’s shoulder. “And I didn’t manage to call her back. The operator keeps telling me she is out of reach,”
“It is okay. No longer matters,” Ah Si smiled.
“And if the initial cost to repair the car is just only the flat tire, now it is going to be more than that,” Lei sighed. “That’s going to cost a lot,”
“Since you have been watching the news at the entrance while waiting for Xiao You, did they mention anything about the truck or the driver?” Ah Si asked Lei.
“Oh, the news said the truck driver is not injured. He had lodged a police report and he said he saw Mei Zhuo sends Xi Men to the hospital,” Lei said, looking at Mei Zhuo.
“Actually, the truck driver quickly got down from the truck after the crash and told me his truck has a brake failure just right after I get Xi Men into my car. And not knowing the type of injuries Xi Men has, I told the truck driver I’m sending Xi Men to the hospital first,” Mei Zhuo said. “I guess, the next course of action will be between the truck driver or the company with Xi Men,”
“Hmmm… sounds like it is in the right way of execution now,” Ah Si said.
“Yes,” Mei Zhuo said.
“Guys, should we… leave them alone?” Jing asked, briefly turning her head to Xi Men and Xiao You.
All the friends looked at each other, exchanging glances.
For a while they have been talking among themselves at the back of the room, that Xi Men and Xiao You didn’t hear, nor being a part of the conversation.
They then turned and looked at Xi Men and Xiao You, still very much in the hug.
They want Xi Men and Xiao You to get back together, and hope that this is the chance.
They aren’t sure if it is a wise idea but… there might be a chance both of them want to talk to each other, without anyone else being around or listening.
“If Xiao You doesn’t want to be left alone with Xi Men, she will say so,” Jing said softly.
“Ah, right…” Lei said. “I agree to that idea,”
Xiao Qiao nodded as well.
Upon seeing Xiao Qiao nodded, Mei Zhuo nods as well.
Ah Si and San Chai exchanged glances, and then they nod too.
They then turned and looked at Xi Men.
“Xi Men, we’ll be out,” Mei Zhuo said. “We’ll come back in a bit,”
Xi Men opened his eyes and nodded as he remained hugging Xiao You tight.
Xiao You didn’t say anything.
“Let’s go, let’s go…” Ah Si said, making the way to the door.
The friends go out one by one, and the last one to leave the room closes the door.
Both Xi Men and Xiao You remained in the hugging position for a while.
He didn’t want to let her go.
He didn’t know when he will ever get to hug her again.
Being in a tight hug by Xi Men, she acknowledges that it is real.
That Xi Men is still very much alive.
She is so afraid that he died in the accident.
She is so afraid Emily will lose her father.
An urge to cry suddenly arise. With her hands at Xi Men’s back, she slowly gripped onto Xi Men’s patient clothes.
Xi Men, of course, felt the pull of his top from the back since she is gripping it. He isn’t sure why she is doing it, until he heard soft sobs from her.
Hearing her cries saddens him. He embraced her tightly.
He didn’t know the true reason behind her sudden weep.
He is curious and he wanted to ask but he didn’t want to break this precious moment just because he talked. He wanted her to remain in his arms. He wanted her to stay by his side. He wanted her to be with him for the rest of his life.
‘I love this woman… I love her so much…’ he thought to himself as he remained hugging her. ‘Why on earth could I think for a moment that I don’t love her anymore?’
He had made a mistake once… and he didn’t want to repeat it again.
He will do all he can to win her back…
But at the end of the day, it is her decision.
He is glad that she came to see him after hearing he is involved in an accident.
He continued to hug her, but unsure for how long, until he felt the grip on his shirt loosens.
In mere seconds, she slowly removes herself from the hug; increases the gap between them and finally puts both of her hands on both his arms to completely remove herself from the hug.
“Ahhh…” he winced.
Hearing him groaned due to pain when she pulled herself away from him didn’t make her feel good at all.
“Xi Men, are you injured somewhere?” she asked, looking around and all over.
She looked at him, trying to find bandages but none.
“I…” Xi Men looked at her.
“Tell me,” she looked at his handsome face.
There is no scratch at all on his face. Not even tiny ones.
How on earth could he…
She then lowered her head, back to the thought of wanting to know if he is injured somewhere.
Maybe… it is covered by his hospital wear?
Just as she thought it may be that, he slowly lifted up the loose sleeve on his left hand.
There is a bandage from the shoulder to the elbow!
Her eyes widened as she looked at the white bandage on his arm.
“Don’t worry. It is just abrasions, bruises and road rash,” he said.
That explains why he seemed to take forever to raise his left hand up to wipe her tear on her face.
“You could have told me! I think I was pressing onto your arm earlier…” she said, immediately feeling guilty.
She could have know there is a bandage beneath the sleeve when she puts her hand over, but because she didn’t even think that he could be injured right there (on the arm)…
“It is okay. It hurts without you having to press it either,” he smiled faintly.
“What? That sounds serious!”
“No, it is not serious. There are no cracks or fractures in my bone,” he said. “The pain is just the aftermath of the trauma the hand had went thru. It is normal,”
She looked at his bandaged arm, and then she looked at him. “Really?”
“Yes. Doctor said it is normal and the pain might increase tomorrow and may last for the next few days…”
She flinched at the thought of it.
He just smiled, looking at her facial expression. “So I minimize the movement of my left hand,”
“Umm…” her eyes then traveled to his right hand, “What about your right hand?” she immediately raised the sleeve of his right hand to check, thinking he may have it covered like what he did with his left hand.
“No, no, no. This side is completely clear,” he said, as she looked at his hand free of bandages.
“Your legs? Your back? Your…”
“I only injured my left hand and that is all,” Xi Men said.
She looked at him. “Really? You only injured your left hand? And nowhere else?”
He nodded. “Nowhere else,”
He laughed. “I would be in ICU now if I have that,”
However, she doesn’t find it funny. “But you wouldn’t know! Did you do any scan or x-ray…”
“Xiao You,” his right hand holds her hand, “I am fine,”
She looked at him, her eyes stared into his left eye and then his right eye, and switches to one another.
A part of him is happy that she cares about him. It is shown in her actions.
“But… your car is totally wrecked, and you…” she said.
“I was out of my car when it happened. I have a flat tire so I stopped by the roadside. I called Mei Zhuo to come and help me to change the tire. As I was at the back of my car, wanting to take the spare tire out…”
Xi Men turned around upon hearing the honk followed by the screech.
All he saw is a truck flashing its headlights and heading towards him.
Upon seeing the truck is charging at him, Xi Men’s reaction and reflex to the situation is to back step; fast.
The truck had come crashing at a diagonal angle to the back and the left side of the back passenger’s door of Xi Men’s car. Due to the angle of the crash & the strong impact – it move and tilts Xi Men’s parked car and that the truck hits the driver seat too before the truck drags the car for a few meters and stopped; making Xi Men’s car completely mangled.
In the action of him taking his steps backwards, the back of Xi Men’s foot hits the curb of the sidewalk, thus the light ‘thud’, causing him to trip and fall to the back.
He scraped his left arm on the pathway in the midst of landing at about 3 meters away from the truck, which is really lucky.
Pain slowly crept in and it increases with every heartbeat of his’.
*SMACK DOOR CLOSE.
“XI MEN!” Mei Zhuo dashes towards him. “Xi Men, are you alright?!” he looked at Xi Men lying on the sidewalk.
Mei Zhuo looked at Xi Men groaning in pain as he lied down on the pathway; and Mei Zhuo does not dare to move Xi Men since he didn’t know what kind of injuries Xi Men might have.
“I am fine…” Xi Men slowly tried to sit up.
Looking at Xi Men trying to sit up, “Are you sure you are fine? If you are not, don’t move! You may make your injuries worse! I’ll call…” Mei Zhuo is ready to dig for his phone in his pants.
Xi Men suppresses the pain and also struggling to sit up because Mei Zhuo is not helping to pull him up. “I did not get hit. I fall on my own…” Xi Men uttered.
“OH!” upon hearing it, Mei Zhuo quickly extends his hand and helped to pull Xi Men up into sitting position from lying down on the pathway.
Xi Men took a deep breath as he suppressed the pain that lingers.
“AH! Your left arm is bleeding!” Mei Zhuo said, pointing at the blood-drenched sleeve of his shirt.
Xi Men turned to look at his left hand to finally realize he is bleeding.
Everything happened so fast, he couldn’t even register what actually had taken place. He only knew he had dodged an accident…
“Xi Men, you need to go to the hospital. Do you need an ambulance?”
Xi Men shook. “No, let’s go with your car,”
“Can you walk?” Mei Zhuo asked.
Xi Men nodded. “Yeah…”
And Mei Zhuo grips on Xi Men’s right hand and lifts Xi Men up to his feet.
*End of flashback.
“Because Mei Zhuo is actually nearby… he reached exactly the time when the accident occurs,” Xi Men said. “So… he gets me off the pathway and sends me to the hospital immediately. That is why… nobody knows about my condition. No one gets to see me at all at the place of accident. It’s just that my car plate number gives away who the owner (of the car) is… and if I am not mistaken, Mei Zhuo could have told the truck driver as well, for reporting (to the police) purpose,”
Xiao You turned her head away.
Wondering why she turned away, “Why…?” he asked worriedly.
“I…” Xiao You said. “I thought it is bad enough to picture you involving in the accident while you are still inside the car…”
He looked at her.
“But it is worse to find out you are out of the car and… and you were near the contact point of both vehicles…” she said.
He smiled faintly. “I know. I couldn’t believe myself either…” he said. “I guess I’ll be dead if I didn’t manage to dodge it. I might be in between the truck and my car…”
“No… no…” Xiao You shook with her eyes closed. “I do not want to picture that, no… stop talking about it,”
Xi Men could only keeps quiet as he looked at her, not looking at him. “Okay, I’ll stop,” he said.
She then opened her eyes, “When I saw the image on the television, my heart sank. I am so worried, I don’t know what to think and what to do,” Xiao You said.
Even though he can feel she cares for him, it didn’t make him as ‘happy’ as he is now to hear it from her mouth that she is worried about him, because it was him that makes her worried so, so much.
“You… are worried?” he asked, suddenly itches to hear it from her mouth.
Instead of answering him, she said, “I couldn’t imagine if Emily loses her father…”
Xi Men looked at Xiao You, now he is upset at her respond. “Xiao You, on my brink of death… all you think of about me… is just that Emily will lose her father?” he asked.
Not looking at Xi Men, Xiao You turned her head further away from his direction, she didn’t say a thing, and she swallowed the lump in her throat.
Seeing that she didn’t even say a thing, it makes him even more upset.
“Don’t… don’t you feel anything for yourself?” Xi Men asked. “Did I hurt you so much… so much that there is absolutely nothing left in your heart that will hurt if I died right here, right now?”
She turned to look at Xi Men now with tears in her eyes. “You have the nerve to ask me how I will feel if you died right here, right now, for all that you’ve done to me?” she stares at him coldly.
He is slightly taken aback with what she uttered along with her cold gaze. “I…” he stuttered. “I am sorry,” he said. “I am terribly sorry for all I have done… I knew I am at fault since the beginning,”
She glared at him, holding back her tears from falling.
“Xiao You… I used to think I know women well, but I know nuts about love. All I know about love was from you. And… I didn’t know it is still love on the day I decide to divorce… (*he said ‘decide’, it means the day he left) it is my fault… all my fault…”
She just looked at him, keeping quiet.
“Xiao You… I am sorry for all the hurtful things I have done…” Xi Men said. “Please forgive me…” he gripped her left hand. “I love you still… I love you so, so much… and I still want to be with you…”
She looked at her hand, and she slowly retracts her hand from his grip.
He looked at her hand sliding away from his grip. To have her removing her hand from his hand, it feels so painful. It feels so terrible.
He had felt the distance with Xiao You for a while; but right now at this moment, he feels it even more.
It is as though she had really left him; mentally, physically and emotionally.
Sadness filled him.
If he could not get her forgiveness after he had just escaped death, there seems to be no other way anymore.
He must have hurt her too much.
Maybe… too much beyond repairable.
He felt his world had crumbled.
Everything is gone.
He could only slowly turned his right hand over to have his palm faced him as tears formed in his eyes.
The hand that had just held hers…
Now the only thing that shared between them… is just Emily.
And a marriage certificate.