Chapter 582: The silent sea and wild waves behind (2)
Tan Yao’s funeral was only conducted after Xu Tingsheng left the detention centre. Before that, he was left totally in the dark.
That day, his family dispatched a thirteen-seater vehicle to pick him and Fang Yuqing up. Most of those who should be there had come.
When Xu Tingsheng got back his handphone, it was already out of battery. He started charging it in the car. Seeing the charging icon on his handphone screen flash, everyone was fully silent.
Soon, he successfully turned on his phone.
Seeing Tan Yao’s name in the notifications, Xu Tingsheng smiled and asked, “Right, where is Tan Yao? And Fang Chen’s not here too. It can’t be that he’s still accompanying her in doing whatever, right?”
No one spoke.
Xu Tingsheng opened the message.
“Bro Xu, Tingsheng, you’re the one I most daren’t say this to. This bro is leaving. Let’s be bros again in our next lives.”
As he held his phone, Xu Tingsheng turned to look at everyone. Amidst their utter silence, his expression that found it absurd slowly turned to astonishment, then helplessness, then agony.
His body trembled slightly, tears flowing down his face. His burning questions were choked in his throat.
“Don’t be unhappy, Bro Xu. Don’t be depressed. Thinking back on it now, the one most fortunate thing in this lifetime was still on that first day of university, when you walked into Room 602. That was when I met someone. He is Xishan Tower’s Xu Tingsheng.”
“Sadly, I won’t have the chance to see you summon the winds and control the elements again. I won’t have the chance to be your best man, dancing that very stiff and very messy flower dance for your little girlfriend together again at your wedding. I won’t be able to help you rule over an area. I won’t be able to reach a ripe old age, telling my children and grandchildren tales of the good old days when I accompanied Xu Tingsheng in his grand exploits…”
“I still remember that you were the first person to know that I was an orphan. In this lifetime, I came alone, and I’ve been alone for many years. In the end, I’m still leaving first, alone. Still, I came to know some people who truly see me as their bros, with two women who’re so hot also unable to forget me for the rest of their lives. It’s actually worthwhile. Right? Big bro.”
“Two final requests. First, don’t do anything rash to destabilise yourself because of what happened to me. Think long-term. With your capabilities, there is no enmity you cannot pay back in a few years. Second, if I have a grave. Every five, ten years, could you take some time off to see me, narrating your later exploits? I’ll want to know just how legendary Xu Tingsheng became in the future. I will also want to hear you talk about how many kids you’ve sired, how many wives you’ve married (don’t let little sister-in-law see this part!).”
“Who can tell me exactly what the hell happened? How can he suddenly be gone just like that?!”
“Huang Yaming, your mother, how do you look after your bros?”
In front of his entire entourage, Xu Tingsheng howled, broke down and wept.
Huang Yaming beat down on his head and cried painfully too.
There was no complicated funeral ceremony as the situation was still not yet over at the time. The dozen or so of them sent Tan Yao into the ground together.
He remained in Yanzhou.
Someday, Xu Tingsheng would leave, Huang Yaming would leave. Everyone might leave for greener pastures, but Tan Yao would forever remain here. He would forever remain in the place where a group of youths in their twenties who did not know the limits of this vast world began their journey, remain in the precious memories of their youth that could never be wiped out.
Many years later, those sweeping the public graves of Yanzhou would see an inconspicuous grave marker. The youth in the picture was incomparably handsome, a bright smile on his face. Most would sigh at how unfortunate it was. Then, they would recognise the person who had come to offer his respects before that grave and be all wide-eyed, finding it inconceivable.
And so, they would go and ask around about it, learning of an old tale, about someone named Tan Yao and his story.
Some said, “It is too foolish and an utter waste. If he had been able to clench his teeth and bear it at the time, letting that woman whom no one still knows go off with that group, he’d definitely be one of the legendary magnates beside Xu Tingsheng today. Have you noticed? Wherever Huang Yaming opens his top grade bars, they’re still called Bright Brilliance to this day. This Yao(Brilliance) is the Yao of that Tan Yao.”
Someone said, “Whether it’s silly and whether it was a waste depends on the individual. For some, let them choose again, and they would still be smiling as they make the same choice.”
A kid who was still studying heard the story and searched on the internet before exclaiming astonishedly, “Are you talking about this Tan Yao?”
After receiving confirmation, he said, “He’s the founder of the Qingchen fund!”
“The Qingchen fund?”
“Yeah, the biggest scholarship fund for orphans in the country. Every year, it helps so many orphans complete their education. There’s one such case amongst my classmates.”
“He’s a good person! Still, I find it even more of a pity now.”
“Yeah. Still, do you guys know who the one currently managing the Qingchen fund is?”
“Who is it?”
“It’s Ye Qing!”
“Ye Qing? That Ye Qing from our Yanzhou?”
“Right, that’s her. It seems like there’s a story between them! Ye Qing has never married anyone, right? Though according to the internet, it’s said she adopted an orphan in 2008.”
“Right...Qingchen, if Qing is referring to Ye Qing, who does Chen refer to?””
“Chen? Never heard of that! There’s no such person on the namelist of those managing the fund.”
Just like what people could find online afterwards, other than the character ‘Chen’ of Qingchen that had been personally coined by Tan Yao, Fang Chen was completely wiped out of existence.
On the day of Tan Yao’s funeral, Ye Qing openly followed it from start to end in plain clothes, not avoiding potential suspicion at all. It was just that she said nothing throughout, not crying as well as she virtually seemed numbed and soulless.
In Tan Yao’s final text to Ye Qing, he had said: If I could relive it all, or if there really is a next life, I would choose to meet you first.
Also: Actually, I’ve had a thought recently. I was thinking that after getting to the end of this matter with Fang Chen, I would break up completely with her. I would properly cherish you and work hard towards one day having the ability to let you choose me unreservedly over your family’s businesses.
That was what he had been thinking before going off to die. Tan Yao had no need to fool anybody. Thus, he must really have been thinking of this. The person he chose was Ye Qing.
Still, whatever the choice he had made, he could still not let Fang Chen go on that cruise, even if it cost him his life.
Perhaps only Ye Qing understood Tan Yao. She knew that Tan Yao had actually always known that actually, it was not the case that the sole man whom Fang Chen who liked women truly liked was Tan Yao. Yet, he had still died for her…
“If I could have chosen to give up on my family businesses a little earlier, choosing to get married with you and have your kids just like Ms Fang and Fu Cheng...would you still have the heart to leave me like that?” Ye Qing would think this sometimes, resenting herself at the end of it.
The ladies of Yanzhou University had later written on the bedsheets hanging up high: ‘It was just a period of fun for you, but it was years of longing for me’. ‘A single blissful night solidified our union. Go well, Husband’.
It was like this even for them, much less Ye Qing who had doted on, loved and let Tan Yao have his way for so long! How many years would she have to long for him for?!
That day, Ye Qing’s silence persisted all the way till sunset when Fang Chen appeared.
Carrying flowers, Ye Qing approached from far away.
Ye Qing stood up and went forward to intercept her, “Stop it right there. Otherwise, I won’t be able to convince myself to let you go. Leave. You have no right to send him off. I’m also not willing for him to see you again...from now on, you will have nothing to do with Tan Yao.”
No one persuaded Ye Qing otherwise in the least.
Everyone already knew the contents of the timed reminder on Fang Chen’s phone by now. Fang Chen had also cried and repented on the hurtful words she had said to Tan Yao in his final days.
Therefore, as Ye Qing saw it, at least, it was Fang Chen who had forced Tan Yao to make such a choice.
Eventually, Fang Chen set the flowers by the roadside and left solitarily that day.
Many years later, Xu Tingsheng and co had virtually all broken off connections with her, besides Fang Yuqing who was her brother. Once in a while, Fang Yuqing would say, “Don’t blame her anymore. In this lifetime, she’s only had a single man.”
That night, Ye Qing made a trip to Room 602 and quietly packed up some of his belongings, including his shaver, his lighter, his photo album, the pyjamas, underwear, socks she had bought for him...she said, “I want to keep some things of his.”
In the latter half of 2008, Ye Qing adopted a child. It was said that the child was an orphan just like Tan Yao. Also, the child took on the surname Tan.
As for Ye Qing and Fang Chen, they only met one time afterwards, and then never again in this lifetime.
Tan Yao turned, and left.
The wild waves surged turbulently for a time. Yet, the silent sea was long decades of tranquility.Previous Chapter Next Chapter