On this calm and quiet evening, there was no commotion in the emergency room, and even the patient wards were free from urgent situations.

Ji Yao had a comfortable night shift and it was all thanks to Jiang Heng.

Jiang Heng’s birthday was a positive day, calm and uneventful, Ji Yao thought.

His way of giving credit, crude and superstitious as it was, seemed to be how love worked.
No matter what pleasant things happened, they would subconsciously be attributed to the other person.

After finishing morning rounds, he followed the routine and handed over the shift to his colleague.
While putting on his coat and explaining the conditions of specific patients to a new intern, he saw a flash of light from his phone.
A new message from Jiang Heng had popped up.

“I’m waiting for you in the parking lot,” he said.
“Meet me here.”

Ji Yao unlocked his phone in surprise as he didn’t expect him to come to the hospital.

He had reversed his sleep schedule for the night shift, and he had told Jiang Heng that there was no need to come to pick him up.
Unexpectedly, Jiang Heng still made the trip.

“What’s up, doctor Ji?” The intern at the desk inquired, looking puzzled.
“Is there a serious issue with this patient?”

“…No,” Ji Yao hurriedly replied, regaining his focus.
He quickly replied to Jiang Heng’s message and continued, “But the patient is elderly and has severe osteoporosis.
There was also a right radius fracture while the family was providing care yesterday.
We need to pay extra attention.”

The intern nodded and entered the information into the memo as Ji Yao instructed.

“And the patient in bed 16,” Ji Yao said.
“The young boy is alone, and his family’s financial situation isn’t great.
His parents are busy with work, so check on him several times during the day.”


“Got it,” the intern nodded.

After thinking for a moment and finding no omissions, Ji Yao nodded and said, “Alright, is there anything else you need to ask?”

“No,” the intern replied.
Seeing Ji Yao’s gaze frequently shifting to his phone, he guessed there was an urgent matter and obediently stood up.
“The  teaching instructor is about to start work.
If I have any questions later, I can ask him.”

“That’s fine,” Ji Yao said.
“I’m leaving then.”

Putting on his coat, Ji Yao zipped it up to the top and hurriedly walked out.

The morning in the hospital was bustling with activity.
Family members arriving, cafeteria workers preparing meals, and doctors trying to catch the attending physician before they went to the outpatient department.
The hallways were filled with hurried footsteps.

Ji Yao was stopped three times along the way and patiently dealt with all the family members.
Only then did he step into the elevator as it arrived.

The elevator started, and Ji Yao stood in the corner, staring at the red numbers on the display, counting the seconds meaninglessly in his mind.


From one to ten, then from ten to one.

When he had counted to the sixty-second time, the elevator finally reached the ground floor.
The crowded crowd flowed out into the lobby, and Ji Yao walked slightly slower than the others.

The elevator doors closed behind him, going up again.
Ji Yao looked around and, just as he walked through the lobby, saw Jiang Heng’s car parked in one of the scattered spaces across from the back door.

Jiang Heng always seemed to find the most conspicuous spot to park, making it easy for Ji Yao to spot him.

“Why did you come so early?” Ji Yao got into the car, handed the red bean milk to Jiang Heng, and said, “Didn’t I say you didn’t have to come to pick me up?”

“XiaoTong suddenly wanted to visit the City God Temple, set twelve alarms, and woke up all the roosters and everyone in the house,” Jiang Heng said as he drank the milk.
He then placed the cup in the cup holder, glanced at the rearview mirror, and drove the car out of the parking lot.
“She got up early and realized she couldn’t find her ring while getting ready.
She’s still looking for it at home.”

“Is it expensive?” Ji Yao became instantly nervous.
“Why aren’t you helping her look for it?”

“It’s her wedding ring, but it’s on the dining table,” Jiang Heng said with a hint of amusement.
“She took it off while eating last night and placed it on the candle holder.
She just forgot about it.
She has a habit of randomly leaving things around; she needs to find it herself this time.”

“You really…” Ji Yao couldn’t help but sigh and didn’t know what to say.
He could only say, “it’s also your day off, can’t you just sleep in at home?”

“Then how would you get home?” Jiang Heng raised an eyebrow and asked, “It’s not easy to get a taxi during rush hour, and there’s no direct subway from your hospital to the apartment building.
You’d have to transfer twice on the bus.
Isn’t that hectic?”


Ji Yao realized that he was right.

During weekday rush hours, traffic was congested everywhere, especially at the hospital entrance.
Jiang Heng would drive for a while, stop for a while, and it took a long time to even get out of that street.

There was only a little bit of red bean milk left, and Ji Yao leaned his head on the seat, stealing glances at Jiang Heng with a playful smile that he couldn’t suppress.

Jiang Heng felt like he was being scrutinized so closely that he would lose a layer of skin.
He finally couldn’t help but ask, “Are you in a good mood today?”

Jiang Heng silently thought for a moment, still unable to figure out what had made Ji Yao so happy.

Did he win the lottery? Jiang Heng wondered, but that didn’t make sense because Ji Yao couldn’t even distinguish between Mega Millions and Powerball.

“A bit,” Ji Yao said.

Ji Yao only admitted it without mentioning the reason.
Jiang Heng had been waiting for Ji Yao’s follow-up, but to his surprise, Ji Yao didn’t seem inclined to explain further.
He suddenly felt suspended in mid-air and it made him uncomfortable.

Unfortunately, Ji Yao didn’t seem to notice Jiang Heng’s unease.
He increased the air conditioning slightly, then took out his phone to respond to WeChat messages he hadn’t had a chance to reply to earlier.

There wasn’t anything interesting in the work group chat, so Ji Yao scrolled down and unexpectedly found a new message from an unexpected contact.

He was about to open it when his phone displayed a low battery warning at ten percent.

“Forgot to charge it,” Ji Yao lightly clicked his tongue and said, “Do you have your tablet? Let me borrow it.”

Due to the nature of his work, Jiang Heng usually had his tablet phone on him at all times.
Upon hearing Ji Yao’s request, he tilted his head slightly and said, “It’s in my bag in the back.”

Ji Yao stretched his arm and retrieved the tablet from the backseat, unlocked it, and then signed in to his own WeChat account.

His own phone had automatically shut down due to low battery, so Ji Yao found the recent contact in the list and sent a reply.


“New Year? Are you celebrating by yourself?”

“Of course not!” came the quick reply from the other side.
“So I was wondering if you’d like to come out for a get-together.
It’s also a good opportunity to thank you for what happened before.”

“——Liu Mianmian?” Jiang Heng suddenly said with a subtle tone, “your fiancée? You’re still in contact with her?”

Jiang Heng swore he didn’t intentionally peek at Ji Yao’s chat records.
It was just that the tablet screen was too big, and he happened to glance at the rearview mirror while making a right turn, accidentally catching a glimpse of it.

Ji Yao was initially puzzled about how Jiang Heng knew that Liu Mianmian was the “intended bride” he almost married.
However, after some thought, he realized that Jiang Heng had known about it back then, and it wasn’t surprising that he had investigated.

Jiang Heng’s tone was strange, and it sounded extremely unnatural.
Ji Yao felt a bit stung by his words, and he suddenly remembered that when he had first reunited with Jiang Heng, he had been just as cryptic and prickly, like a cactus.

That’s right, back then, Jiang Heng didn’t know that Ji Yao wasn’t married.
Ji Yao realized this belatedly.
Later, after the young nurse “betrayed” him, Jiang Heng had become much friendlier.

Ji Yao raised an eyebrow, and a certain speculation suddenly crossed his mind.

Jiang Heng had always been so calm, his personality was like the calm sea on a sunny day, rarely showing any fluctuations, and even when he did, it was usually positive.
Seeing him genuinely agitated was rarer than a meteor shower.

Now, for a rare moment, Ji Yao decided to test him.
He responded to a message from Liu Mianmian, politely declining her invitation, and then he turned off the screen, looking somewhat clueless about the situation, like an unassuming, straightforward guy who couldn’t read the room, saying, “We can be friends even if we called off our marriage.”

Jiang Heng: “…”

Jiang Heng’s expression instantly darkened, devoid of the warmth that had come to pick Ji Yao up earlier.
He pursed his lips and didn’t even spare a glance at Ji Yao, taking the empty red bean milk cup out of the cup holder between them and tossing it into the car’s trash bin like he was throwing a fit.

Ji Yao couldn’t help but size him up and suddenly had a hunch.

“Are you angry?” Ji Yao asked tentatively.

Jiang Heng simply ignored him.

Ji Yao cautiously moved closer to him, trying to gauge his expression, but Jiang Heng seemed determined not to pay him any attention.
He frowned, and turned the air conditioning temperature to cold.

Ji Yao: “…”

Maybe it’s better not to provoke him for now, Ji Yao thought.
Otherwise, he was afraid that Jiang Heng would leave him by the side of the road and then call a car to take him back.

This high-temper, low-pressure atmosphere continued until they reached Ji Yao’s doorstep.
Along the way, Jiang Heng didn’t say a word to Ji Yao, and when they arrived, he didn’t say anything, simply unfastened his seatbelt and prepared to get out of the car.

Ji Yao quickly put his hand on Jiang Heng’s hand that was about to open the car door and blinked at him.

“Are you really angry?” Ji Yao asked.

Jiang Heng lowered his gaze and looked at him expressionlessly.

Ji Yao sighed inwardly.

Actually, Ji Yao had originally thought that it was fortunate that nothing had happened, and he had a chance to start over, which was already good enough.
Since the mistake had already been made, it didn’t really matter what twists and turns there were.
Jiang Heng had already made it clear that he didn’t blame him for what had happened, so it meant that this chapter had already been turned, and there was no need to explain it all over again.
Otherwise, it would seem like he was avoiding his mistakes and trying to find excuses for himself.

But he also didn’t want to make Jiang Heng angry on his birthday, so he licked his lips and quickly prepared an explanation in his mind.

“Actually… she’s a lesbian,” Ji Yao said nervously.
“She has a girlfriend, and they’ve been together for seven years, longer than we have.”

Jiang Heng’s gaze flickered slightly, and while his expression was still cold, he relaxed his grip on the car door handle slightly.

“I admit,” Ji Yao said softly, “Actually, three years ago… she’s someone I recruited from the campus network.”

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