When A Snail Falls in Love - Chapter 68

[Updated at: 2021-01-11 09:55:12]
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Chapter 68: Chapter 72 ‘Till The Mountain Flowers Bloom



Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation


1. Giving Birth


I was early in the summer and the temperature in Lin City was steadily rising. The due date for Xu Xu delivery was fast approaching, so in preparation of this, she had been admitted to a private maternity hospital. Father Xu was almost always by her side, while Xu Juan and Ji Bai were also available on call 24 hours a day as they made sure to take turns to keep watch at the hospital after work every day.


Although Xu Xu had a narrow pelvis, the fetus’ head was not big, so the doctor said that she could still go for a normal delivery. It would be tough but not impossible.


Xu Xu was not one to shy away from a bit of pain, she decided to go ahead with it.


During midnight of her second day in the hospital, the ward was completely silent, as if everyone had fallen into a deep sleep.


Suddenly, Xu Xu was awakened by a severe pain in her lower body.


At the time, Ji Bai was leaning back against the couch beside the bed, looking exhausted and sound asleep. She did not rush to wake him up, instead, she looked at the clock on the wall and endured the pain as she calmly counted the number of the contractions. This was because the contractions happening at a certain frequency would indicate that she was about to deliver.


After counting for a while, she felt that it was about time, so she reached her hand out to pat Ji Bai’s head. “Husband, wake up, I’m about to give birth.”


Ji Bai was still in a daze when he opened his eyes. However, when he heard these words, he immediately jolted awake.


The doctor and nurses hurried over very quickly, and after an examination, they wheeled Xu Xu into the delivery room.


Since only one family member was allowed to accompany the patient during the delivery, both Father Xu and Xu Juan who had rushed over upon hearing the news could only stay outside and wait. When Xu Xu was taken to the delivery room, her eyes fell upon their anxious faces. Thus, she smiled at them and remarked, “Don’t worry, I don’t know how long it’ll take for me to give birth. You don’t have to wait here, just go rest in the ward. I’ll probably be done by the time you wake up.”


Once she said this, the doctor and nurses beside her smiled as both her father and brother forced themselves to nervously smile too. The head nurse saw this and tried to ease their worry. “Mrs. Ji has a great attitude so I’m sure there won’t be any complications.”


Ji Bai held her hand and shook his head. “Why are you worrying so much? Father and brother will take care of themselves, let’s concentrate on delivering the baby.”


Xu Xu glanced up at him. His handsome face was tensed up and his palms were covered in a layer of sweat.


He was nervous as well.


Xu Xu rubbed the back of his hand. “I’ll be fine, don’t worry.”


Ji Bai went quiet for a moment before answering. “… You don’t have to worry about me either.”


That night, another woman in the hospital also went into labor. She laid in the delivery room next door, and even though they were separated by a wall, they could hear her screaming out loud in pain. “Husband… it hurt, it hurts so much, oh my gosh…”


Meanwhile, the situation on Xu Xu’s side was very different. Not a single cry or scream was heard from the beginning until the end. Every time she experienced extreme pain, she would simply grit her teeth; sometimes she trembled, but she never made a sound.


Ji Bai was concerned as he looked at her and said softly, “Why don’t you shout if it hurts?”


Xu Xu panted as she replied, “Why should I shout? I won’t make me feel any better, not to mention it’s a waste of energy.”


Ji Bai didn’t know what to say. “… Oh, should I kiss you better then?”


Xu Xu scoffed. “Don’t make me laugh, I’m trying to hold my breath.”


At last, the clear sound of a baby crying was heard. Xu Xu’s body relaxed as she exhaled deeply.


The nurse cleaned up the baby and wrapped it in a towel before passing it to the father. When Ji Bai carefully took the baby, his eyes became watery.


He quickly brought the baby over to Xu Xu. Her short hair was already drenched in sweat, but when she looked at her child, her face which had been calm all this time finally lit up with a tired smile.


Ji Bai hugged both her and the child together before smiling gently. “As expected, my wife gives birth well.”


What more could he ask for with a wife like her?”


Xu Xu and the baby were transferred back to the ward, and after some time, she fell asleep.


When she woke up, the sky outside the window was already rising. She turned her head and immediately saw her child sleeping soundly in the cot beside her. Meanwhile, the three men did not seem to be tired at all as they surrounded the cot and spoke to each other in hushed voices.


Xu Juan whispered, “The baby looks like me.”


Father Xu examined the child’s features carefully. After pondering for a moment, he commented, “He’s not like you, he has a strong heroic spirit – he’s more like Ji Bai.”


Xu Juan laughed. “The baby’s so tiny, yet you can already tell that he has a heroic spirit?”


Ji Bai grinned without saying a word.


As a champion in life, he did not need to voice out his victories.


At this moment, Xu Xu laughed as well. Ji Bai noticed that she was awake, so he walked over to her quickly and held her hands. “Are you hungry? Do you feel uncomfortable at all?”


“No.” She looked at Xu Juan and Ji Bai – one was delicate and elegant, while the other was strong and handsome. Then, she looked at her child. She did not know if it was because of her father’s influence, but when she looked at her child’s tiny, lively eyes, there really did seem to be hints of a heroic spirit, which made him seem very much like Ji Bai.


From now on, there would be a little Ji Bai in their lives.


This made her feel really… blessed.


The three men insisted that Xu Xu stay in the hospital for a few more days before she return home for her postpartum. Naturally, Xu Xu agreed to it to please them.


At night, in addition to her private nurse, Xiao Liu, Ji Bai and Xu Juan took turns to keep watch at the hospital. On the third night, Xu Xu was awakened by the crying sounds of her child. When she opened her eyes, she saw Xu Juan already cradling the baby and trying to calm it down.


It took more than half an hour before the baby finally fell asleep. However, since the pair of siblings were now wide awake, they decided to chat as quietly as they could for a while. Eventually, Xu Xu yawned and Xu Juan stroked her hair. “Alright, go to sleep now.”


Xu Xu nodded and laid back down to sleep. After a while, she opened her eyes again only to see Xu Juan still seated on the same spot, staring at the baby on the cot with eyes glowing with happiness.


“If you like children so much, you should have your own.” Xu Xu said patiently, “It’s time for you to find a girlfriend.”


Xu Juan chuckled, then laid back against the couch and wrapped a blanket around himself. “I’m already looking. Hurry up and go to sleep now. Goodnight.”


2. Epilogue


In the blink of an eye, a year had passed.


It was Xu Juan’s company’s anniversary dinner, which was held in the best hotel in the city. Though it was still early in the evening and the streetlights outside were only just beginning to light up, the spacious ballroom was already filled with dazzling lights, well-dressed guests, and the noise of merry conversations.


Ji Bai and Xu Xu were also present to support her brother, whereas their child was temporarily left under Father Xu’s care, who was naturally more than happy to take up the responsibility.


Xu Juan walked around the hall with his beautiful female secretary in hand. He was all smiles as he went around greeting the guest. Meanwhile, Ji Bai and Xu Xu found a quiet corner of the room to sit down, whereby they whispered to one another secretively and just generally enjoyed each other’s company. As they were doing so, a tall figure walked over toward them from the middle of the hall. They heard him before they saw him. “Third Brother Ji, sister-in-law, why are you hiding away here?”


It was Shu Hang.


Ji Bai let go of Xu Xu who was in his arms, then clinked wine glasses with him. “When did you come to Lin City?”


Shu Hang smiled and replied, “I’m here to play. Sister-in-law, let me borrow Third Brother for a while to introduce him to a few of my friends.”


The two men made their way through the crowd and arrived at the balcony outside. The sky was a murky blue color, and the stars were only just starting to show themselves in the navy abyss. Ji Bai smiled casually. “How are things with you and Yao Meng?”


Shu Hang sighed. “Nothing much, I’m not going after her anymore.”


Ji Bai did no probe him anymore after hearing this. Shu Hang’s passionate exploits over the past year had not borne any fruit, so his surrender was expected. The two men drank for a while, but when Shu Hang looked at the garden downstairs, he suddenly put his glass down. “I’m going to the washroom, you should go back to sister-in-law.” Right saying this, he disappeared around the corner.


Ji Bai had a great eyesight, so he could see the license plate of the car that had just stopped by the sidewalk. ‘Isn’t that Yao Meng’s car?


‘This fellow, he just said that he’s not going after her anymore.’


Ji Bai held in his laughter and walked back into the hall to look for his wife.


Xu Juan’s company was quite a renowned one, therefore many reporters were camping at the entrance, ready to get a juicy quote or snap a scandalous picture. Yao Meng was dressed in an elegant gown as she got down from her car, only to be greeted by the non-stop flashing of cameras.


“President Yao, we heard that your group is interested in investing in Xu Juan’s company?


“President Yao, did you come here today to discuss business with Xu Juan?”


Yao Meng only smiled politely before her bodyguard cleared a way for her, after which she walked in with her head lowered.


Right then, a reporter rushed over and blurted out a question.


“Miss Yao, three months ago, Feng Ye the serial killer was arrested. I heard that you provided the police with many clues to assist their investigations. Is this true?”


Yao Meng paused, but she continued forward without answering, prompting the reporters behind her to jump onto the story.


“Miss Yao, we heard that Feng Ye has made numerous requests to meet you in the prison, which you promptly refused. Why aren’t you meeting him?”


“Feng Ye will be executed next month; will you meet him before he dies?”


Yao Meng suddenly stopped in her tracks and turned around. She looked at them with an ice-cold stare and said plainly. “No, I won’t meet him.”


Instantly, the camera flashes exploded into life. However, Yao Meng had already turned around and continued walking toward the ballroom, leaving the excited crowd behind.


Meanwhile, Shu Hang was only a few steps away from her, where he remained silent as he observed her calm demeanor.


Due to some business matters in Beijing, he had not been able to travel to Lin City for the past few months. Just as he had his first window of free time, he unexpectedly caught wind of this explosive news that Yao Meng’s ex-boyfriend was, in fact, a serial killer. After he committed two crimes in Lin City, he caught the attention of the police and was declared the key suspect.


Shu Hang was not clear about the details, but he was aware of the fact that Yao Meng was indeed the one who had cooperated with Ji Bai, Xu Xu, and the others to capture Feng Ye.


In reality, he had genuinely been going after Yao Meng for half a year, he really did lose hope. However, when he heard this news, he immediately rushed back to Lin City.


He had not come for anything else but Yao Meng, but why did she have to worry him so much? She had already been harmed by a psychopath before, how could she dare cooperate with the police again? Could she not just take care of herself and mind her own business?


Upon seeing her walking to the ballroom’s entrance alone, a victorious smile surfaced on his face. Shu Hang gulped down the wine in his hand, then ran to catch up with her. “Yao Meng? What a coincidence.”


Coincidence? Of course not, he had traveled several thousand kilometers to come to this ball that she may or may not have attended. If he had not met her today, he could have vomited blood.


When Yao Meng turned and saw that it was him, she looked somewhat confused and nodded politely. “Hello.” She was about to leave, but Shu Hang was not planning to let her go so easily and tried to follow her. “Don’t leave, why do you run away when you see me?” However, he accidentally stepped on her gown, and since they were standing on a polished marble floor, she immediately lost her balance and crashed to the ground. “Ow!”


Shu Hang’s eyes widened in horror as he crouched to grab hold of her arms and help her up. “I’m sorry, I’m sorry.”


Yao Meng wanted to stand up, but a sharp pain shot through her ankle, and instantly she cried out. Shu Hang ignored the formalities and hurriedly lifted a small corner of her dress to press her ankle gently. “I think you sprained your ankle.”


When Yao Meng lowered her head to look at him, she saw his slender hand firmly gripping her foot. His lowered face was composed and quiet, and even at this moment when his face was a little gloomy, the corners of his mouth naturally curved upwards, as if he always wore a lively smile.


While she was distracted, Shu Hang tried to pick her up. “I’ll bring you to the hotel’s infirmary.”


“There’s no need to… put me down.” She rejected him in a soft tone.


Right then, Yao Meng’s bodyguards and assistants came over. They recognized Shu Hang and tried to take over. “President Shu, let us take care of President Yao.”


Shu Hang shifted his body and moved Yao Meng away from them as he replied, “No, she has a sprain, I’m good at this. You can follow my lead.”


Her assistants and bodyguards looked at each other and thought to themselves, ‘But we’ve actually received professional training…’


Before Yao Meng could protest, Shu Hang carried her away and went to look for the manager in the lobby for directions. After this, he strode to the infirmary.


It was a minor injury, and although it was painful, there was no need for her to go to the hospital. Shu Hang laid Yao Meng down on the white patient’s bed and the doctor on duty gave her a thorough check. “She’s fine, I’ll just apply some medicine.” He took out a bottle of ointment from the cupboard, after which Shu Hang took it away from him conveniently. “I’ll do it, you may attend to your matters.”


Obviously, the doctor was aware of the situation, so he nodded and left.


Shu Hang gave the excuse that it would be inconvenient with so many people around, so Yao Meng’s bodyguards and assistants were left waiting outside. Now, only the two of them were left in the small infirmary. Under the dim fluorescent light, Shu Hang smiled at Yao Meng as he slowly massaged her fair ankle and applied the ointment on it.


“I’m being a good Samaritan, so don’t overthink and get defensive. When I was younger I was very playful and I often fell down, after which my grandfather would apply medicine on my wounds. One becomes a doctor after being injured so many times, right? I’m not boasting, but I am quite skilled at this – in fact, when I was in university, I was the de-facto doctor of the football team …”


As he spoke, his hands went about their business, each movement skillful and gentle. However, as he nursed her, he became a little distracted; her ankle, her skin, the touch of it was too…


As he was caught up in his own thoughts, he suddenly felt that something was off. When he looked up, he saw Yao Meng looking back at him with teary eyes. He had no idea of how long she had been crying quietly to herself.


Shu Hang’s heart ached, and he wanted to hug her out of reflex; unfortunately, his hands were smeared with the hot medicine. As their eyes met, Yao Meng began to cry even more terribly. Shu Hang did not care anymore and he pulled her into her arms tightly without letting go. “Don’t cry, don’t cry, your makeup is smudged… Don’t cry alright, everything will be okay. Trust me, trust me.”


After Shu Hang pulled Ji Bai away, Xu Xu went into the dining room to get food. On the way there, she bumped into Xu Juan.


It was natural for Xu Juan to have several drinks on such an occasion, hence his face was slightly red. He asked his secretary to leave, to which his secretary nodded and replied gently, “I’ll wait for you in the main hall then, President Xu. Remember that you’ll have to greet President Cao from the Binya Group later.”


Xu Juan smiled and nodded at the reminder.


Once she had walked far away, the brother and sister looked out at the serene night sky outside the window and fell silent for some time. Xu Xu finally broke the silence by saying, “When I gave birth, you claimed that you would start looking for a girlfriend seriously. It has been a year now, brother, you’re not getting any younger.”


Xu Juan was a little tipsy, so he squinted his eyes and looked at her. “Do you think it’s so easy to find a suitable match? Look around the ballroom, almost all the ladies from Lin City are here, but is there anyone suitable for me? Nope. If there is, I can’t seem to find her.”


Since he said this, Xu Xu became serious and she turned towards the ballroom to do a quick scan. Then, she thought for a while and said, “There are a few good candidates who will be suitable for you. Remember what you said to me: you said that you’ll look actively. Do you really want Father to worry about you for the rest of his life?”


Xu Juan was stunned, then he smiled and beckoned at her to continue. “Alright, tell me. Who here is suitable?”


Xu Xu pointed at a lady in the crowd dressed in a sky-blue gown. “She’s not bad. She looks friendly, has clear eyes and is behaving very decently. She has no male partner and has glanced at you a few times.”


Just as Xu Juan was about to answer, Ji Bai appeared from around the corner. He greeted them with a smile, “Wifey, it’s getting late, we should go home.”


Xu Xu nodded. After all, they still needed to look after their child at home, so she turned to look at Xu Juan. “Brother, we’re leaving. Think seriously about what I just said.”


Xu Juan replied leisurely, “I’ll prove it to you with actions, not words. I’ll go talk to her now, don’t worry.”


Xu Xu really hoped that Xu Juan could leave his past behind so that he could find a good partner. As she watched him walking towards the lady with a wine glass in his hand, her heart softened. She no longer interfered and instead smiled at Ji Bai. “Let’s go.”


Xu Juan walked towards the middle of the ballroom where the lady that Xu Xu had pointed out was. Just as Xu Xu had said, though the lady was speaking to someone else, she was already aware of his presence and she began to blush slightly. Her eyes were glowing and she appeared to be quite nervous.


When Xu Juan turned his head sideways, he caught sight of the fact that Ji Bai and Xu Xu had already left. Thus, he downed his drink and walked past the lady without stopping.


It was late at night and the crowd had begun to disperse. Despite this, the lights in the hotel were still shining enthusiastically.


Xu Juan stood alone at the balcony and looked out at the stars twinkling in the infinite void.


He was half-intoxicated, but he still thought to himself, ‘Right, sister is right. Life is long and wonderful, but it’s time for a new beginning.’


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