Chen Yuncheng walked toward the subway station. On the way, he tried to call Zhang Wenyong again, but the other party still didn’t answer. He had to leave him a message on WeChat, put the phone back in his pocket and trot across the street at the green light to enter the platform of the subway station.
As he entered the station, Chen Yuncheng looked up subconsciously and saw a dark grey Land Rover passing by the street. In his haste, he didn’t manage to see the license plate number clearly before he lowered his head and stepped up and off the elevator.
He went back to his kiosk. Chen Yuncheng opened the rolling shutter door halfway, and after he got in, he closed the door and locked it from the inside.
The lights in the kiosk outside had been turned off. He went straight through and entered the inner room, turning on an orange ceiling lamp on the roof.
Chen Yuncheng picked up his cup, walked to the water dispenser, squatted down to get the water, and at the same time took out his mobile phone and called Gu Yaojia. The two of them had nothing much to add, but Chen Yuncheng advised her not to be too nervous. Zhou Yan was an adult. If there was still no news tomorrow, he would accompany her to the police.
After the phone call, the water glass was also filled. Chen Yuncheng got up and picked up the glass of water, drank all the warm water down, put the glass on the table and walked toward the bathroom.
The inner room of his kiosk only had one living space and a bathroom.
The room was not very small, but the entire wall was lined with cardboard boxes, which were filled with drinks, beer, and other goods. The only space was left for a bed, a clothing wardrobe, and a small square table against the wall.
Chen Yuncheng didn’t watch TV again after taking a shower, but just lay on the bed and played with his mobile phone. He was actually a little absent-minded, not because of Zhou Yan’s matters, but due to the man he met at the entrance of KTV today.
The moment the two brushed past each other, he felt that he knew the man, so he stopped and kept looking at the man’s back, hoping that the other party would also still recognize him.
But when the man left without looking back, Chen Yuncheng began to be uncertain again. He thought to himself that they had been separated for sixteen years, and both of them were still children when they were separated. Was that person really the same person as the one that he remembered?
Chen Yuncheng put down the phone and decided to temporarily put aside the distracting thoughts in his head and have a good sleep. He lay on his back on the bed and put his arms under his head and thought to himself, why does it matter if that person was Ning Junyan? To him, that life has long been an experience of the past.
Chen Yuncheng woke up the next morning and opened the kiosk first as usual. He then walked to the noodle shop two shops away to eat noodles.
He sat at the table near the door and exchanged a few words with the boss who cooked the noodles. When his noodles had just been served, a man sat beside his table.
Chen Yuncheng raised his head and saw that the person sitting opposite was Zhou Yan.
Zhou Yan looked haggard as he called out, “Cheng ge.”
Chen Yuncheng took out a pair of chopsticks from the chopstick holder, stirred the beef noodles first, and then said, “Your wife has been looking for you all night.”
Zhou Yan said, “My phone is out of battery.” After speaking, he saw that Chen Yuncheng’s face did not look very good and added, “I called her.”
Chen Yuncheng picked up a chopstick and put the noodles into his mouth. After swallowing it all, he asked Zhou Yan, “Have you had breakfast?”
Zhou Yan said, “Not yet.”
Chen Yuncheng raised his hand to call out to the boss, “Cook another bowl of beef noodles.”
Zhou Yan didn’t refuse. He looked like he was hungry. As soon as the noodles came up, he picked up his chopsticks and ate the noodles.
Chen Yuncheng finished his bowl of noodles first and then sat beside him. He leaned on the back of the chair and looked at him.
It was not until Zhou Yan finished eating the noodles when Chen Yuncheng asked him, “Are you full?”
Zhou Yan took out a tissue to wipe his mouth and nodded.
Chen Yuncheng said, “Do you have something to tell me?”
Zhou Yan folded the used tissues and put them on the table before staring at the half bowl of noodle soup left in the bowl, and said, “Cheng ge, can you lend me some money?”
Chen Yuncheng asked him, “What’s the matter?”
Zhou Yan said, “My son is sick.”
Chen Yuncheng was a little surprised, “Sick? Is it serious?”
Zhou Yan said, “It’s a heart problem. We can do surgery, but I can’t get that much money right now.”
Chen Yuncheng said, “Why didn’t you tell me earlier?”
Zhou Yan’s expression was a little painful, he raised his hand and rubbed his face vigorously, “I know you don’t have much money, so at first I wanted to borrow it from Yong ge, but I got into an argument with him and now I lost my job, so I really have no choice.”
Chen Yuncheng whispered, “Zhang Wenyong was not originally a good person.”
Zhou Yan said, “I can’t help it either.”
Chen Yuncheng asked him, “How much money do you need?”
Zhou Yan said, “At least a hundred thousand.”
Chen Yuncheng looked at him, “How could I have so much money?”
Zhou Yan did not speak.
Chen Yuncheng sighed heavily and stood up. He paid the money for the noodles first, stretched out his hand to pull Zhou Yan up, and said, “Let’s go.”
“Cheng ge?” Zhou Yan looked a little surprised.
Chen Yuncheng didn’t say much. He took Zhou Yan back to his kiosk and went into the inner room alone. He came out after a while, and then took Zhou Yan to a nearby bank ATM to withdraw 30,000 yuan.
When handing over the money to Zhou Yan, Chen Yuncheng said, “I only have this much money. Keep and take care of the money yourself. Go do what you have to do.”
Zhou Yan couldn’t reach out to take the money for a long time.
Chen Yuncheng said, “What’s wrong?”
Zhou Yan said, “I feel very bad for you, it’s all the money you’ve worked hard to save for the past two years.”
Chen Yuncheng shoved the money to Zhou Yan and said in a flat tone, “Take it and pay it back slowly. I don’t need the money now anyway.”
Zhou Yan and Chen Yuncheng walked out of the bank together. Chen Yuncheng walked in front with his hands in his pockets. Zhou Yan caught up with him from the side and said, “Cheng ge, are you still not thinking about finding a girlfriend?”
Chen Yuncheng simply said “ah” without saying much.
Zhou Yan added, “I will definitely return the money to you as soon as possible.”
Chen Yuncheng didn’t say anything. When he was walking around the corner, he suddenly stopped and said to Zhou Yan, “Last night, I seem to have seen—”
“Who?” Zhou Yan was puzzled.
Chen Yuncheng didn’t go on. Not far ahead was his kiosk, and he saw a police car parked on the side of the road.
Zhou Yan followed his line of sight and saw the police carHe suddenly asked nervously, “Are the police troubling you?”
Chen Yuncheng shook his head. He patted Zhou Yan on the shoulder, told him to go first, and then walked towards the kiosk alone.
When he approached the kiosk, Chen Yuncheng first looked down at the police car and saw that it was empty. He then saw a slender figure standing against the glass container in the kiosk.
“Officer Long,” Chen Yuncheng called out, his tone becoming enthusiastic unconsciously.
Long Zhanyu turned his head to look at him, his slender fingers bent up and knocked on the glass of the counter. He said, “Get me a pack of cigarettes.”
Chen Yuncheng smiled and said, “Okay, wait a moment.”
When Chen Yuncheng went to the counter to get the cigarette, Long Zhanyu kept looking at him. When Chen Yuncheng turned his head, he saw Long Zhanyu’s dark eyes staring at him without blinking. He handed the cigarette over and said, “The brand you always smoke.”
Long Zhanyu unzipped his down jacket and took out his mobile phone from his inner bag to pay.
Chen Yuncheng asked, “Were you on duty last night? Why are you so early today?”
Long Zhanyu gave a vague “um” and said, “Have you seen Zhang Wenyong recently?”
Chen Yuncheng hesitated for a moment, and decided to tell the truth, “I went to him yesterday and couldn’t find him.”
Long Zhanyu took out a cigarette, put it in his mouth, and approached Chen Yuncheng, “Why were you looking for him?”
Chen Yuncheng reached out, picked up the lighter on the counter and helped Long Zhanyu lit the cigarette he was biting at the corner of his mouth. He then said, “Something happened to one of my brothers. I wanted to ask him, but I didn’t even see him.”
Long Zhanyu slowly exhaled smoke from the corner of his mouth, his eyes fixed on Chen Yuncheng, “Be honest.”
Chen Yuncheng said in a serious tone, “I pledge to the authorities that I am being 100% honest.”
Long Zhanyu moved away from the front of the counter.
Chen Yuncheng suddenly said, “Officer Long, you look so good-looking. Aren’t you afraid of being harassed when you are handling a case?”
Long Zhanyu grinned, turned, and walked outside the kiosk. He opened the driver’s door of the police car and sat inside.
Chen Yuncheng walked to the door, waved his hand, and said, “Take care.”
The author had something to say:
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