Chapter 27: Nine Thousand Mistakes
When Tan Xilu learned from the police that Xu Huaiming had gone missing, his whole being went blank. He stood in the police station, enveloped in an unreal, ethereal sensation.
He couldn’t quite grasp the meaning of the word “missing.” What did it mean? How could someone go missing?
Seeing that Tan Xilu’s reaction was off, the police officer poured him a cup of hot water and comforted him, saying, “Mr. Tan, don’t take it too seriously. It’s just a temporary disappearance. We’ve been actively searching, so you don’t need to worry too much.”
Tan Xilu held the cup of scalding hot water, his palm burning from the heat, but he seemed numb to everything. He moved his lips, struggling to focus his pupils, and asked the police, “Did he go missing because the truck overturned and fell off a cliff?”
Before the police could respond, he asked again, “Have you searched every place? How could someone go missing? As long as he’s in the car, he must be there, right? It’s just because you didn’t search properly. I’ll go look, and I’m sure I can find him.” With that, Tan Xilu set down the cup and tried to rush out.
The police officer, seeing his overly emotional state, quickly restrained him, saying, “Mr. Tan, please calm down. The rescue team is actively searching. It rained heavily last night, and the road is slippery in that area. Even if you go, it won’t be easy to find him. If we have any news, we’ll definitely notify you.”
Upon hearing this, Tan Xilu, who had been so agitated a moment ago, suddenly covered his face and crouched down. His shoulders trembled, and tears the size of beans streamed down from his eyes, falling to the floor one by one. His sobbing was quiet but conveyed profound sadness.
Tan Xilu had come to the police station as a friend. Not far from where the truck had overturned, a broken phone was found with Tan Xilu’s contact information on the back of the phone case. When the police asked about the relationship between Tan Xilu and the owner of the phone, Tan Xilu, still in a fit of pique, said they were just friends. However, when he heard about the truck overturning and the owner going missing, he was stunned.
At that moment, same-sex marriage was not yet legal, and although being gay didn’t make one a pariah, it was far from socially acceptable. To avoid unnecessary trouble, Tan Xilu had not admitted to their relationship when questioned by the police.
But even a blind person could see that the tearful Tan Xilu and the missing Xu Huaiming had a relationship that was far from ordinary.
In fact, just the day before, Xu Huaiming had sent a message to Tan Xilu, saying that he was going with the elderly man from the neighboring fruit shop to the neighboring city for some shopping. He promised to make a new cake for Tan Xilu when he returned. Tan Xilu was easy to please. Even after their prolonged cold war, he couldn’t resist the allure of good food. Moreover, Xu Huaiming had made the first move to reconcile. However, Tan Xilu, feeling a bit proud, hadn’t replied to Xu Huaiming’s message, planning to make up when they met later. But he hadn’t expected that he wouldn’t get that chance.
Tan Xilu’s emotional breakdown continued until his mother came to the police station to pick him up. She apologized to the police for the trouble.
The police waved it off, saying, “We understand, Mr. Tan. As soon as we have any news about Mr. Xu, we will notify you.”
Tan Xilu, in a dazed state, was led out of the police station by his mother. On the way home, they encountered a traffic light intersection. She stopped the car, looked at Tan Xilu in the rearview mirror, and called out to him, “Xiaolu.”
She called his name three or four times, but Tan Xilu didn’t respond. He seemed lost in thought.
His mother sighed. She knew that this incident had hit Tan Xilu hard. Tan Xilu hadn’t had much experience in love, and this was his first major setback. She would have preferred it if Xu Huaiming had been a heartless scoundrel who played with his feelings, rather than the sudden disappearance that left Tan Xilu bewildered.
His mother had never been fond of Xu Huaiming. She had seen many types of relationships in her profession as a teacher, and she knew that meeting the parents was a serious matter. When parents agreed to meet someone, it meant they saw that person as a potential family member. But Xu Huaiming had repeatedly evaded it. Why wouldn’t he meet the parents? She couldn’t help but wonder if it was because he had no intention of staying with her son.
Because of this, his mother had become less enthusiastic about the relationship, and she had stopped mentioning Xu Huaiming. But to be honest, Tan Xilu had changed after starting his relationship. Sometimes, he would post pictures of delicious food on social media. She couldn’t remember the last time she had seen him cook. Whenever she came home, she noticed that he had gained some weight and looked well-fed. She had come to terms with it and thought that if Xu Huaiming was willing to be in a good relationship with Tan Xilu, it was fine. Even if they broke up in the end, she could introduce him to someone else. Love was supposed to go through ups and downs.
But now, they were facing more than just ups and downs.
Tan Xilu’s emotional breakdown persisted until he finally told his parents that he wanted to live a better life.
And he did exactly that. He quickly obtained various qualifications and began working at a pace that surprised his mother. His mother was always afraid that he had been through something traumatic again. But when he first accepted her suggestion to go on a blind date, she realized that he had finally come to his senses and was ready to move on.
He was truly prepared to continue living.
She thought things were gradually getting better. Despite meeting so many men, Tan Xilu didn’t find anyone he liked, but that was okay. There was plenty of time, and you couldn’t just settle with anyone for the rest of your life. However, now Tan Xilu said that Xu Huaiming, who had been missing for so long, had returned, and they had reconciled.
His mother couldn’t possibly agree to that. She didn’t want this man who had disrupted their family to come and disturb their lives again.
So, before Tan Xilu could explain, she hung up the phone decisively to show her stance.
T/N: Wishing you all a good September and welcome to Bad End month! There is plenty more where that came from, so stay tuned! And stay healthy! Straighten your posture, so some stretches and drink some water before continuing hehe~
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What about the perfect, most non-toxic male lead ever? Laws of Love
How about MC nursing ML back to health? Forced into the Deep
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