In the dental clinic that finished work, the dim lights elongated the occasional walking figures.
There were only a few consultation rooms with lights on. The patients and doctors left one after another.
The dazed assistant Xiao Yu walked out of Consultation Room 8 and reluctantly closed the door, leaving the space for Dr Chi and his lover.
He had just discovered a big secret and was full of excitement. He didn’t know who to tell as he walked through the long corridor step by step.
Once he walked to the front desk, Xiao Yu finally saw a colleague he was more familiar with and quickly said, “An An, do you know who I saw? I’m sure I’m the first one in our clinic who knows—”
An An at the front desk had also held back for a long time. Finally, she saw a colleague she could make small talk with after work and who happened to come out of the consultation room.
Her eyes lit up and she said almost in unison, “Xiao Yu, is that person just now Dr Chi’s husband? You should’ve seen him, right? Oh my god, I am definitely the first one to see him in our clinic.”
The voices of the two people collided. They stared at each other and after a moment of silence, they laughed together.
An An finished laughing and asked in a low voice, “So that is really Dr Chi’s husband? Did Dr Chi introduce him to you?”
Xiao Yu replied honestly, “Dr Chi said this was his husband who came to wait for him to go home together.”
An An held her face when she heard this. “Husband! What a romantic name. I suddenly remembered the wedding candy. I remember that it tasted very good.”
Xiao Yu nodded. “The packaging is also very exquisite. I couldn’t bear to throw it away and used it as a key box.”
As the two of them were chatting, another doctor left the consultation room and went down the corridor to the elevator.
Seeing the person coming, the receptionist An An and the assistant Xiao Yu stopped their conversation in tacit understanding and greeted the other person politely.
“Dr Xu, you’ve finished work.”
Xu Baijun heard them talking about wedding candy just now. He responded to them before asking casually, “Is someone else getting married again?”
Listening to him ask this, An An’s expression was faintly hesitant.
This Dr Xu had been working at the clinic for almost five months. At first, they didn’t have deep contact with him and everyone thought he was a talented person with good qualities. Later, they gradually realized something was strange.
In the beginning, many people saw that he had a good impression of Dr Chi and often ran to the other person’s consultation room as soon as he got off work. Then one day, he suddenly started to tell others about the gossip of Dr Chi going on blind dates with a rich person.
Later, Dr Chi got married and returned to work after the wedding. He gave everyone wedding candy but skipped Dr Xu.
Dr Chi was very patient with children but his attitude toward his colleagues was normal. He wasn’t cold or attentive. He maintained ordinary politeness and said things directly.
He obviously didn’t like this Dr Xu, who had talked nonsense about his private life. After that, he didn’t say a word to the other person. He completely treated this Dr Xu as a stranger when they met in the clinic.
In this daily life of getting along with each other, everyone gradually discovered the problems with Dr Xu. He was vain and confident. He had a better family than ordinary people and always showed off intentionally or unintentionally. So slowly, most people didn’t like to interact with him very much.
An An and Xiao Yu looked at each other. They remembered Dr Xu’s suggestion that Dr Chi relied on the blind date to hook up with a rich person a few months ago and couldn’t help feeling a bit annoyed.
In fact, after getting along with Dr Chi for a long time, everyone could guess that his family’s conditions must be good. He just didn’t regard it as an important thing and didn’t mention it at all.
With Dr Chi’s character and conditions, how could he use marriage as a tool to cross classes?
Therefore, An An shook his head. “No, we are talking about Dr Chi’s wedding candy.”
Hearing this, Xu Baijun’s expression froze and he subconsciously said, “It has been so long and you still remember…”
Xiao Yu continued, “Yes, the wedding candy was so delicious. Today, Dr Chi’s husband came to take him home. He is waiting in the consultation room.”
They were married for four months and Dr Chi never mentioned his other half. He didn’t like to talk about his private life, no matter whether it was feelings or family circumstances. His colleagues who had been with him for a long time basically didn’t think much.
But when chatting on weekdays and occasionally mentioning this, as long as Dr Xu was present, his words would always reveal a hint intentionally or unintentionally. He seemed to imply that this was just a one-man show. It happened so hastily and suddenly so Dr Chi couldn’t bring it up normally.
He always seemed to be prejudiced against Dr Chi.
Both An An and Xiao Yu found it strange.
They had only seen Dr Chi’s partner and didn’t know who he was, but the gentleness in his eyes was very real.
He obviously came to pick up Dr Chi to go home and specially brought a gift.
It wasn’t a one-man show.
So when Xiao Yu finished speaking, An An added in an envious tone, “Dr Chi’s husband is so handsome and he seems to be quite accomplished. He came over and specially brought a gift for Dr Chi, who is working overtime. The relationship between the two of them is really good.”
Xu Baijun’s expression stiffened even more obviously. He even forgot to hide the surprise in his tone. “…You said that he is now in our clinic?”
The sound of the door opening was once again heard in the corridor. The assistant Xiao Yu looked back. “Oh, they are coming out now.”
In the increasingly quiet corridor, two figures came out of the consultation room one after another and walked side by side in the light.
Dr Chi had changed out of the white coat and his style of dressing was always simple and casual. With his red hair, he looked careless in the night.
The man beside him was gentle and calm. He wore a low-key black coat and the gift bag in his hand gently swayed with his steps.
They were obviously two completely different people but they seemed to be a perfect match.
They were whispering something and Dr Chi had a faint smile on his face.
The person around him looked sideways, as if he wasn’t willing to look away for a moment. He was full of strong affection.
The eyes couldn’t lie. It was a type of love that was easy to recognize.
Xu Baijun’s expression became ugly as he stood next to the front desk.
This was the first time he had seen He Qiao with his own eyes.
He was also the only one who recognized Dr Chi’s husband.
He had seen internal photos at his father’s place of a meeting of the top management of the Wanjia Group. Among the participants was He Qiao, who had just come into contact with the family business.
However, it was just a photo. His father was only a department manager of the branch of the group and wasn’t qualified to participate in that type of meeting.
Every time his prejudice was destroyed by facts beyond imagination, he subconsciously didn’t want to accept it. Thus, he would involuntarily make up some reasons that made it easier for him.
People were always unwilling to admit their mistakes, so they fell deeper and deeper into their mistakes.
It wasn’t until he witnessed it with his own eyes that he could no longer find any excuses.
Xu Baijun was a bit embarrassed and a bit flustered. He took a step to the side, afraid he would be noticed.
With He Qiao’s attitude, Chi Xueyan just had to say something and his father’s job would definitely be lost.
But no one looked at him any longer.
The excited An An hurriedly reached out her hand to greet Chi Xueyan. “Dr Chi!”
She felt like she was watching an idol drama and couldn’t help complaining with a smile, “You actually lied to us last time. You said that your partner is very ordinary. The biggest advantage is that he has a good temper.”
Xiao Yu followed up with a sigh. “If only I was so ordinary.”
Chi Xueyan smiled. “Sorry, I was just speaking casually before.”
As he spoke, he looked at his lover beside him as if explaining to the other person. “Ordinary is fake but your temper is really good.”
His lover looked down at him and answered in a low voice, “…Yes.”
In front of outsiders, they maintained the proper intimacy. He Qiao reached out and wrapped an arm around his waist.
Fingertips grabbed the corners of the clothes and the winter sweater insulated him from the body temperature. This posture could be called gentlemanly without going too far.
What Chi Xueyan didn’t know was that He Qiao was actually really restrained and good-tempered at this time.
He briefly exchanged greetings with his colleagues before leaving the clinic with He Qiao.
They had dinner at a restaurant that was booked in advance and completely solved the problem of eating for the door. The moment Chi Xueyan arrived home, he habitually went straight to the bathroom.
By the time he finished washing up and put on his bathrobe, fresh strawberries had been placed on the table.
It had a sweet and luscious taste.
But He Qiao wasn’t in the living room. It seemed he had also gone back to his room to take a shower.
It wasn’t the same as his usual habits.
Chi Xueyan didn’t think much of it. He thought it was a subconscious action after going to a clinic.
He curled up on the sofa and ate strawberries while watching TV, his thoughts wandering endlessly.
Chi Xueyan remembered the figure waiting for him outside the door before leaving work in the evening and also remembered Su Yu saying during the day that he was changed by marriage.
Immediately afterward, he remembered something that he had forgotten for a long time.
He Qiao came out of the room after taking a shower and changing into his usual house clothes and first heard the noise of the TV.
The screen cast light and shadow on the soft directly opposite it. The person shrouded in this light and shadow was looking down intently at a document.
He had obviously just casually blow-dried his hair. The wet end of his hair still had drops of water that fell into his loose bathrobe one after another.
His white fingertips pinched a strawberry and hovered in midair, as if he was so fascinated by something that he forgot to eat it.
The intertwined crimson and snow-white brought an indescribable attraction, but the owner of the color was unaware of it. He often appeared in the living room in the most comfortable and lazy posture every night after becoming familiar with each other.
He Qiao thought that Chi Xueyan might lack interest in love, but he had a keen ability to identify it.
As for s*x, which was inseparable from love, it seemed that it had never entered his field of view.
Usually when Chi Xueyan got along with him, apart from his casualness, he usually paid attention to propriety and didn’t want to bother or disturb He Qiao too much.
It was only in this regard that the other person didn’t have the slightest awareness or sensitivity. It was as if it was a word that didn’t exist in his world.
…It seemed that He Qiao could eat less vinegar.
However, there was also an additional depression that could only be endured alone.
He Qiao actually wanted to help him dry his hair but couldn’t help hesitating in front of the damp moisture. Finally, he just asked a more ordinary question.
“What are you looking at?”
It was the first time he saw Chi Xueyan take the initiative to flip through something that looked like a document.
Chi Xueyan looked up when he heard the words and there was an interested smile on his face.
“I am looking at our marriage agreement,” he replied. “Looking back at it now, some of the terms are quite interesting.”
Lawyer Su, who helped them draft the contract, always thought that the two of them were true love, but their love was special. So in addition to the preservation of their respective assets, the focus of the agreement was mutual non-interference in their private lives.
In order to ensure that his good friend could still play freely after marriage, he deliberately took the initiative to list the terms in this part in detail. It included various ways to deal with the breach of contract.
It was this part that Chi Xueyan was least concerned about. He felt that he would immediately become strangers with He Qiao after getting married and there would be no interference.
But he couldn’t say it directly. He could only live up to Lawyer Su’s kindness and gave a very symbolic number to all the places where a careful calculation of the breach of contract fee was needed: one yuan.
He Qiao didn’t raise any objections when signing the contract. He probably didn’t think these terms would be used one day.
Looking back now and seeing the meticulously written non-interference clauses combined with the very symbolic one yuan fine, it seemed quite a contrast.
It was almost like a type of fun.
Chi Xueyan reviewed the agreement and put it on the coffee table. Then he shook the strawberry in his hand at He Qiao.
“The strawberries are delicious. I will leave the rest for you.”
There was exactly half the plate left.
On the round porcelain plate illuminated by the warm yellow ceiling lamp, half was a gorgeous red while the other half was a pure white.
The man who walked out of the room never approached the sofa and just gently agreed.
He Qiao’s temper was always good.
The night flowed away in this ambiguous reverie and a new day arrived, accompanied by a new three meals a day.
For breakfast, he ate dumplings with a different method at home. It was no longer fried in oil and the soup in the bowl was clear. The filling was the same but it tasted different. This was Chi Xueyan’s favorite taste.
Lunch was a bit different. He didn’t go to eat in the media company’s cafeteria or eat takeout in the office.
Chi Xueyan was dragged by a few relatively familiar colleagues to a restaurant on Maple Leaf Road for lunch.
After last night when his lover visited, gossip the next day about the marriage partner that Dr Chi had kept secret for a long time spread in the clinic.
But that was all. There was no more information. Everyone didn’t even know what his surname was.
An An and Xiao Yu were both very curious but they knew Chi Xueyan’s temper and didn’t inquire too much.
It was because just knowing was able to adjust their dull and boring day, like a small ripple of happiness.
The life of ordinary office workers was like this.
During the meal, they talked about a colleague who recently resigned. This timing was very strange. Why so sudden? He didn’t even want the year-end bonus?
Chi Xueyan forgot after listening to it and didn’t care.
He didn’t even remember the doctor’s full name.
After talking about the gossip of the clinic, they also talked about Wanjia Media in the building opposite them, which was becoming increasingly famous. They relied on an advertisement to make a long-forgotten singer popular again. Now people wearing hats and sunglasses often entered and left the luxurious office building. It was estimated that they were celebrities who came to discuss cooperation.
The company that moved here after changing its young leader not only achieved strong internal results but also changed a bit externally.
In the open space next to the office area, a construction area was blocked off. They said it was a construction site but no one knew the details for the time being.
Chi Xueyan didn’t know either.
He only knew that the construction area could be seen from his office window.
It was most likely He Qiao’s decision.
He Qiao didn’t send him a menu today. It was probably because the strawberries were too deliberate.
Thus, Chi Xueyan was ready to continue waiting for the next unintentional surprise.
After lunch, he took a leisurely walk on Maple Leaf Road with his colleagues. The winter sky was like a pure diamond, clear and mysterious.
Tonight, Chi Xueyan had to work overtime again. He Qiao had to go out and socialize, so he couldn’t wait for Chi Xueyan and they couldn’t have dinner together.
Once the day’s work was finally over, Chi Xueyan ate a simple meal downstairs and went home in a tired manner.
He pushed open the door and there was an empty silence.
It was rare for the brightly colored home to make people feel it was a bit deserted.
In addition to the absence of He Qiao, there was another difference.
Chi Xueyan saw an exquisite gift box on the dining table. It should be a gift for him.
It was because it was the same style as the box that contained strawberries yesterday, but the size was smaller.
The moment he opened the box, a smile appeared in his eyes. It even seemed like a lot of the fatigue in his body had disappeared.
It still contained strawberries but it was only one.
People who were close to him could basically find out that he liked weird things. He Qiao obviously saw it as well.
So this was a strawberry with a strange shape. It was hard to forget after seeing it.
There was a round upper body and two pointed lower edges, like a healthy and full tooth.
There was also a folded note and a coin in the box.
Chi Xueyan picked up the coin first. Then he opened the note with slight surprise.
There were two lines of familiar handwriting on it, clear and powerful.
[I couldn’t think of a suitable reason so I will pay the fine in advance.]
[Can you continue to come over for lunch tomorrow at noon?]