Love/Hate – Chapter 37

“Are you sure?” Jing asked.

Xiao You nodded.

“You don’t want to think twice about it?” Xiao Qiao asked.

Xiao You shook. “Or rather, you should say… I’ve been thinking a lot about this… more than twice definitely,”

“But…” San Chai said, she stopped. “I don’t know how or what to say,”

“Put yourself in my shoe and you will understand,” Xiao You said, turned and then looked at the guys standing at the balcony outside the living room the girls are sitting in, wondering what the guys are talking about.

**********

Xi Men took a deep breath as he stood at the balcony. Sighed.

The other F3 are at the balcony too.

Ah Si and Lei are sitting at the recliner while Mei Zhuo lean against the balcony’s railing. Xi Men stood there looking out to the sky and scenery in front of him.

Sighed. Again.

Xi Men shook lightly and then he sighed again.

“We are counting your sighs,” Lei said, breaking the silence.

All of them looked at Lei, before turn to look at Xi Men.

“Come on, dude. Say something,” Mei Zhuo said.

“I don’t know what to say, dude,” Xi Men replied.

“What are you feeling?” Ah Si asked, turned his head slightly to see the balcony door is closed and that the ladies are talking among themselves in the living room of this Xi Men’s penthouse.

“My mind is a mess,” Xi Men said. “When she said she wanted to abort the baby, I… I don’t know what to think,”

“I thought you would have prepared yourself for it. She already said that she is contemplating when she was in hospital around 2 weeks ago,” Mei Zhuo said. “You should know that this might happen,”

“I didn’t expect she will come back to the same topic after 2 weeks and I thought she has already accepted the baby and to be a mother,” Xi Men said.

“After all it is her decision. Why do you have to mess yourself up and also sighed like this?” Ah Si asked.

“It has sinks in me that she is pregnant. That she is precious. I have taken the full responsibilities of taking care of her,” Xi Men said. “To tell me all of a sudden that she doesn’t need me… it’s… it’s… sigh,” Xi Men said.

“I guess frustrating is the right word for you?” Mei Zhuo said.

“Perhaps,” he looked up to the wide scenery in front of him.

“You like her, don’t you?” Lei asked, trying to confirm the question he asked Xi Men the last time.

All of them looked at Lei and then at Xi Men. Xi Men suddenly dunked his head at that question.

“I saw your reaction,” Lei said.

“That is the same question I asked last time,” Mei Zhuo said.

Xi Men looked up, pretending to be normal.

“I faced her 24 hours a day, for the past 2 weeks, Lei,” Xi Men said.

“If I ask you to take care of my niece for 2 weeks, will you fall in love with her also?” Ah Si asked.

All of them glared at Ah Si.

“Didn’t you see my point?” Ah Si asked. “He is saying it as though whoever is with him for 24 hours for 2 weeks will make him fall in love with her,”

Mei Zhuo and Lei looked at Xi Men.

“Yes, that sounds… weird,” Mei Zhuo said.

“Give me something else that is fresh,” Ah Si said.

“Like?” Xi Men asked.

“I don’t know,” Ah Si said. “Well, go on,” he patted Lei.

“Huh?” Lei wondered why Ah Si pats him.

“Give your points,” Ah Si signaled.

“Oh,” Lei said. He then looked at Xi Men. “Tell us, dude. You like her,”

Xi Men took a deep breath. “I treated her as one of the most important women in my life,”

“Who else is in the list?” Mei Zhuo asked.

“What list?” Xi Men frowned.

“You said one of the most important women. So who else?”

“Duh. My mom,” Xi Men said.

“Ohhhh…” they said.

“Look,” Xi Men said. “You are right,” he pointed at Lei. “I felt different towards her. I wanted to take care of her and I don’t want her to fall down and get hurt. I come home straight after I am done with my meeting just so I can be with her, make sure I am there for her when she needed some stuffs. I make sure she slept well and I tuck her in before I left the room. I make sure she eats good and nice food and comfortable with everything I provide her,”

“You sounded like treating her as your wife, dude,” Mei Zhuo said. “That is what I do to Xiao Qiao,”

“Look, she is pregnant,” Xi Men defends. “Like I said also in the hospital back then, I…”

“You love her, Xi Men,” Lei said.

Everyone quiet.

Xi Men stopped talking, he could only opened his mouth, gaped, looking at Lei.

“You love her, Xi Men,” Lei repeated, as he clasped his hands together. “You don’t like her but you love her so much that you have treated her as your wife and the baby as yours,”

“Love conquers all, dude,” Ah Si raised his hand as Lei also raised and smacked his hand to Ah Si’s in agreement.

“You guys are so annoying,” Xi Men said.

“That’s what friends are for,” Mei Zhuo smacked Xi Men’s shoulder.

“Not when my mind is a mess?” Xi Men asked. “I thought friends are supposed to help! But I don’t see any points of you guys helping me but trashing me now!”

“Look, dude. We just clarified your feelings. You are in love with her, that explains all the messiness in your brain,” Lei said.

“I mean her abortion!” Xi Men said.

“Xi Men, why does it concern you so much about her abortion? It is not your baby,” Ah Si said.

“He just said that if she aborts the baby, Xi Men will no longer takes care of her,” Mei Zhuo said. “It means she doesn’t need him,”

“Then take care of her like a friend after that. It doesn’t mean you are useless already,” Ah Si said.

“It is that way of taking care… you know? To be there all the while… you can’t do it as a friend,” Xi Men said.

“Why do you have to make it so difficult? Just go and confess your love to her!” Ah Si said. “I doubt that you have done that,”

“I don’t get it!” Xi Men said.

“He is always dumb when it comes to love, right?” Ah Si looked at Lei and Mei Zhuo. He then looked at Xi Men, “So much of being a playboy you failed in the terminology of love,” Ah Si said. “If you confess to her and she accepted you, you can take very good care of her. You can still cook her food, bring her on date, tuck her in on her bed. Not to mention you can sleep with her too,” he smirked.

Mei Zhuo and Lei laughed and high-5ed Ah Si.

Xi Men immediately smacks his own head and getting more and more embarrassed with his own best friends.

“DUDE! What the f*ck is wrong with you?!” Xi Men asked. “Using my agony for your joke and to ask me to confess and sleep with her?!” he then frowned. “Don’t tell me… you, Ah Si, whom, to us, had been a virgin until marriage… is actually no longer a virgin before marriage?!” he pointed. “You never speak like this to us before!”

“Hey, Xi Men is right! You are the most innocent-and-uncorrupted mind among us!” Mei Zhuo said. “You’ve never spoke and think this ‘dirty’ with us before!”

Lei snapped at it, “That hits me too!”

Mei Zhuo and Lei looked at Ah Si. “So, is that true that you are not a virgin on your marriage night?” they asked together.

“What the fuck? Why are you pointing the arrow at me now?!” Ah Si asked. “And Lei!” he turned looking at Lei. “You already done with Jing, didn’t you?”

Lei laughed, along with Mei Zhuo and Xi Men.

“What are you laughing about?” Ah Si asked.

“To be honest with you, Ah Si. I don’t have to answer you,” Lei laughed again. “You are trying to ditch that question to me so I don’t see the need to answer that,” Lei makes the ‘thumbs up thumbs down’ action with his hand.

“You…!” Ah Si said.

“Okay! Please. Come back to me. No more sex jokes,” Xi Men said. “Now the story is not about you having pre-marital sex,” he pointed at Ah Si. “Now it is with me. Xiao You wants to abort the baby,”

“Okay, here’s the deal. You can do nothing now. She decides to abort, then it is her decision. She is not married. We don’t know who the father of the baby is,” Mei Zhuo said.

“If she aborts the baby, I think it could be good,” Lei said.

“WHAT?! WHY?” Xi Men over reacted.

“We can stop asking her and speculating who the father of the baby is. And you can woo her and stuff,” Lei said. “And she can come back for work,”

“LEI! Not at this time you should talk about her job!” Xi Men said.

“That is one of the results IF she aborts the baby. Of course that is not the main objective. Why are you always on you, you, you and you? Have you ever thought about her?” Lei asked Xi Men.

Xi Men looked at Lei, stunned with the statement.

“She is a single soon-to-be mother now. She has the option to raise the kid on her own or abort the fetus now and you have to know that if she is keeping the baby, it is for life,”

“But aborting the baby is also for life!” Xi Men said.

“YES! You are right about that but she can have another one but if she keeps the baby she cannot kick the baby out from the house at anytime!” Lei said.

“What the hell are you talking about, Lei? How can you be so… cruel about this?” Xi Men asked.

“Look,” Lei stood up. “I am not going to support her to abort the baby or to support you for her to keep the baby. I am stating the fact that it is her choice, her body and her baby and it has nothing to do with you. You step in to take care of her and she has the choice to even ditch you now but she chose to keep you. You cannot be so selfish just because you wanted to take care of her, you disallow her right to make her decision. I already saw the way you overprotect her when she wanted to go out with Jing. Now, this is different!”

“Overprotect her?” Mei Zhuo and Ah Si repeated.

“Yes, she wanted to go out with Jing but Xi Men refused to let her go out,” Lei said.

“That’s very bad of you, Xi Men!” Mei Zhuo and Ah Si said.

“I don’t think the reason of her not ready to be a mother is the right reason to abort the baby. The baby is innocent!” Xi Men said, ignoring the matter.

“Do you want to take care of her baby instead?” Mei Zhuo asked.

Xi Men turned looking at Mei Zhuo. “What?”

“Since you are saying it like you are a saint and that the baby is innocent, I am asking if you are the angel, and I ask you for final confirmation now after so many times in the past, willing to take care of the baby all by yourself without even a doubt in you?” Mei Zhuo asked.

“YES!” he suddenly stopped and all of them looked at Xi Men. “Oops,”

“OOPS?!” they asked.

“You answered right now without hesitation!” Lei said. “You accepted the baby wholeheartedly?!”

“Do you actually fathered the baby?” Ah Si asked.

“How the hell would I know?” Xi Men asked. “I wish I know who the father is too. From the way she speaks it doesn’t sound like me…” he scratched his head.

“Hey, you stayed with her for 2 weeks and you can’t even dig that information out?” Mei Zhuo asked, looking at Lei sitting down comfortably on the recliner again.

“No. She is very tight lipped about it. And I respect her, okay,”

“If you respect her then you would not have sleep with her in the first place,” Ah Si mumbled.

“Say that again and I’ll kill you,” Xi Men glared at Ah Si. “I SAID, I don’t know it is her that night!”

“Now, do you want to father that child?” Lei asked.

Xi Men looked at Lei, took a deep breath and says, “I would,”

“Okay, here’s the thing. I don’t know the reason why she wanted to abort the baby. If like you’ve said that she is not ready, there is nothing you can do to make her ‘ready’. Readiness is something to do with personally, mentally and emotionally. The baby is growing on daily basis in her body and the decision can’t wait. It must be done hurriedly, regardless what the outcome is. A baby once reached a level of maturity in the body could not be aborted,” Lei said. “From the looks of it, I don’t think you can do anything to change Xiao You’s mind as she looked determined; but to accept that she has decided,”

“We know you love her…“ Mei Zhuo was saying and halted when Xi Men glared at him. Mei Zhuo pointed back at him along with a weird glare like he is going to kill Xi Men, “We know you do love her, okay,” he said, to which Xi Men sighed. “For your part, I think all you can do is just confess and see how it goes from there,” Mei Zhuo said.

Lei and Ah Si nodded.

Xi Men took a deep breath and sighed.

“By the way, has she made an appointment with the doctor?” Lei asked.

“Yes,” Xi Men said.

“When is the appointment?” Ah Si asked.

Xi Men swallowed a lump in his throat. “Tomorrow,”

“TOMORROW?!”


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