Gifting You With A City that Will Never Be Isolated - Chapter 10.3
Chapter 10 (2)
The buzzing at Bo Ziren’s temple was a sign of rapid blood flow. She had been feeling very nervous, but suddenly perked up when she heard the familiar voice. Her rapid heartbeat eased as she recognized Cheng Jingbo.
“Are you in trouble?”
The man holding Bo Ziren’s wrist saw him clearly and became obviously taken aback.
Cheng Jingbo looked him squarely in the face and spoke. His voice was neither hurried nor slow, but his words held weight to them.
“Luo He, you don’t seem very eager to graduate with all this trouble you’re causing.”
Luo He immediately let go of her wrist, trying to reason with him.
“I am not causing trouble. I’m just talking to her. I was a little riled, at most.”
Cheng Jingbo pulled Bo Ziren over to his side, bowed, and asked her, “Did they hurt you?”
“We didn’t hurt her,” cut in Luo He anxiously. “You can see her clothes look untouched.”
Bo Ziren glanced at Luo He blankly.
“They didn’t do anything except threaten me,” she said to Cheng Jingo, answering honestly.
“What did they do to you?”
“They’re threatening me with a choice of either becoming a friend or apologizing.”
Cheng Jingbo glanced at the two men, and his eyes fell on Fang Zheng’s face.
“Are you going to be friends with her?”
Fang Zheng snorted.
“Who is she?” he scoffed, “I just want her to apologize.”
“I don’t need to apologize to you,” Bo Ziren said, enunciating every word. “I owe you nothing.”
“It’s like this,” Luo He began, trying to explain. “This woman…er…female classmate, rejected my friend’s favors, talked ill of him, and then embarrassed him in public. She was too arrogant. We came here to ask for justice. Nothing more.”
Cheng Jingbo smiled softly upon hearing this, but it was a fleeting smile. His ink-colored pupils reflected the coolness of the moonlight.
“She couldn’t have done this. Obviously, your friend is lying. Luo He, don’t use the word justice again in the future. Especially towards girls. Your behavior is really not manly at all.”
Luo He went silent.
Cheng Jingbo turned to Fang Cheng and said, “If you think this behavior you are showing her is kindness, she will never be friends with you in this life.”
“Who said I want her.”
Fang Zheng lowered his head.
“There are so many women to choose from. I don’t need her.
“This is a waste of time. Scram.” Cheng Jingbo ordered.
Luo He pressed Fang Zheng’s shoulder. “I will walk you back.”
Fang Zheng resisted at first, refusing to leave, but Luo He pushed him in desperation, and the two men finally left.
After they had gone, Cheng Jingbo turned around and said to Bo Ziren, “Girls must learn to protect themselves. It is best to pay attention and learn ways to refuse boys in the future.”
Bo Ziren mulled over his words silently.
“Let’s go. I’ll take you back,” he said good-naturedly.
“How did you suddenly appear?” Bo Ziren asked as they began walking.
“I saw you as I was coming out of the cafe.”
“Am I so recognizable?”
“You are tall and you carry a blue school bag. You’re easy to recognize.”
She nodded, her heart warm.
“Do you go back to the dormitory this late everyday?” he asked her.
“No, today I was helping the tutor with the course, so I left late.”
“If you go home late again, look for a companion so it’s safer.”
“I have few friends, basically none.”
“Well, I considered seeing a psychiatrist before, but then I couldn’t bring myself to go. After further thought, I thought I’d find a channel where I can chat with strangers and see if my social skills improve.”
“I don’t think your symptoms are serious. I have encountered very serious cases. They can’t even look at people when talking to them. They feel the need to wear a raincoat when going out and use it to cover their entire head.”
“I know these types of people and I don’t want to turn into them.”
Cheng Jingbo slowed down and moved closer to her.
“Do you feel uncomfortable if we’re this close?”
If it’s you, then no.
“What about this? Do you feel disgusted?” he said as reached out and gently touched her arm.
Just a little nervous.
“Have you ever thought about why you feel this way? You may have a knot in your heart that needs to be undone. You have become used to processing your emotions by yourself and the more time passes, the more you don’t want to talk to people. It’s just that simple.”
Bo Ziren stopped and raised her eyes to him.
“I think what you’re saying makes sense,” she said.
“In fact, seeing a psychiatrist is not as serious as you think. It’s quite common to have a psychological consultation,” he said to her. “I happen to know a reputable psychiatrist. If you like, I could introduce you to him.”
“I’ll think about it.”
“Of course it’s all up to you. If you want you could also try to participate in some amateur activities and make some friends.”
“Me?” He smiled. “I mean friends who you can go shopping with, watch movies together, and talk about TV shows with. If it’s me, it would be too boring for you. I would just recommend some books to you at most.”
“No, I like to listen to you, and the books you recommend are also very good.”
She remembered one more thing and added, “The jokes you told Mu Zibei were also very funny.”
“He told you the skeleton joke?” he asked. “That’s a joke my colleague told me. He laughed every time he said it, but I never laughed once. He refused to acknowledge it wasn’t funny though. I guess I’ll tell it to more people and see what they think of it.”
“I thought it was funny. Do you have any other jokes?”
“No, but I have played with anagrams since I was little.”
“Can you give me something to guess?”
He looked at her and thought quietly for a bit before saying, “The spring near the forest. Guess the word.”
“Forest, spring water?” she asked. She couldn’t come up immediately with an answer.
“It’s not difficult,” he said.
“Really? I can’t seem to guess what it is.”
He took her hand and turned it in his palm. He drew a word with his finger on the back of her hand.
She suddenly realized that the answer was in her own name.
The spring water by the forest was Cypress.
“It’s very simple,” he said. “In fact, anagrams are basically dismantling words, and it’s often easy to find patterns within them.”
They then reached the dormitory, and he escorted her to the door.
Before leaving, he said, “Relax, try not to be too burdened. And consider my suggestion.”
She walked through the gate, but stopped again in front of the building.
Looking back she found him still standing there. His head was slightly lowered and he seemed to be answering a phone call. The long figure of his shadow seemed to spread out endlessly under the streetlamp.
She stood transfixed, watching the corner of his coat stir slightly, like the wings of a bird passing over water. The scene flowed with the movements of his shadow as he slowly walked away.
Interestingly enough, as he disappeared into the distance, the streetlamp suddenly went out, and the scene seemed to turn extremely cold.
“Yours should be ‘the spring water flowing westward’.”
She mustered up the courage to send it to him in a text message before going to bed.
The spring water flowed westward, and she had figured it out by herself.
She received a reply from him not long after.
[Cheng Jingbo: Smart, that’s it.]
It was at this moment she felt that the sum of all the glowing moments in her life, paled in comparison to his praise.