Yimeng didn't know what quite to make of her situation. She only hoped that it would end soon, it was getting mundane. Already, Yimeng had begun to lose focus and drifted off. The city view indeed looked majestic at night, illuminated by the varying lights of different establishments. It was only a pity, Yimeng thought to herself, the night sky was too polluted for her to be able to get a glimpse of the stars. Perhaps after Xin Lan's fashion show, she would close the cafe and go on a trip to visit the many different stargazing locations within the country. Maybe she would even go outside of the country. Should she invite Xin lan and xiao mei er along?
Before Yimeng lost herself even further in own her sea of thoughts, she pulled her attention back to the current situation. It was one she was familiar with yet would never get used to.
"As I was saying, I want you to cut your ties with Zhe. I know you and he used to be engaged but the one marrying Zhe is me. Zhe is soft-hearted so he couldn't bear to tell you himself. Don't call him anymore."
Call him? Yimeng did not know whether to laugh or cry. When did she ever call him? Xin Lan had told her to give Mu Zhe a call but she had forgotten all about it. Why was one telling her to call Mu Zhe and the other telling her not to? Yimeng did not want to think anymore. Thinking took up too much energy. She wanted to go home and sleep. Tomorrow, she still needed to wake up early to open her cafe.
"Although I understand you still have a lingering attachment to Zhe, I hope you can understand me as a fellow woman. Me and Zhe have been through alot to get to this point, I don't want him to falter because he feels guilty about breaking off the engagement with you."
Yimeng wanted to leave. Since when did she and Mu Zhe ever have any sort of feelings for each other? She was the one who broke off the engagement herself, when did it become Mu Zhe who broke off the engagement? Yimeng did not want to listen anymore and even if she spoke, Yimeng felt like her words would be wasted on deaf ears. None of Mu Zhe's past girlfriends ever seemed to listen to her. Should Yimeng tell Mu Zhe to have lower expectations when picking a partner the next time she saw him? Even back then, Mu Zhe had been a magnet for weird woman. They were all successful but...Thinking about the last woman Mu Zhe had been with, Yimeng shuttered. Why were they never normal? Why did they always come find her and never Xin Lan or xiao mei er...she didn't even talk to Mu Zhe that much. The words they had said to each other this past year alone were limited to a few sentences.
Now that she thought about it, maybe it was not his girlfriend's fault but...Mu Zhe himself? Why did that guy talk so little? Why did he like making people misunderstand so much? Why did she want to murder him? Yimeng felt her head throb. This was the problem with aging...at that moment, Yimeng seem to forget...she was only twenty-four.
"Miss Bai I don't know you very well and you don't know me very well. Although you are Mu Zhe's fiance, I don't think you have the right to stop us from contacting each other. Me and Mu Zhe are merely just friends. Back then, whatever happened between us is something Miss Bai does not need to worry about. It has already been so long. All Miss Bai needs to know is Mu Zhe and I cleanly ended things. If Miss Bai truly does not want Mu Zhe to falter then...it would be wise if Miss Bai refrains from bringing up the past. What Mu Zhe can not tolerate the most is someone controlling his life. I'm sure Miss Bai knows what boundaries you should cross and not cross."
No Longer able to stand the atmosphere, Yimeng signaled the waitress for the bill and got up to leave. The restaurant was in the higher class area of the city and there were no public transports in site. Those who enjoyed this type of place usually came by car and had personal drivers. Yimeng was just a normal citizen…yes, just a normal citizen...
Pulling her coat closer to her body, Yimeng decided to walk to the nearest bus stop. At most, it would only be thirty minutes away. Besides, the night was especially enchanting to Yimeng. Once in awhile, as Yimeng walked along the concrete sidewalk, she would spot a star shining through the clouded sky. When she did, it made her especially happy.
"Get in, I will take you home."
Yimeng frowned as an black sportscar slowly came to a stop by her side, disrupting the peaceful atmosphere. It was Mu Zhe. Yimeng found herself liking Mu Zhe less and less. He always showed up at such inopportune moments. Why couldn't he read the atmosphere?
"What are you doing here? What about Bai Zhimou?"
"I heard about what happened. Let me take you home."
Yimeng pondered the invitation for a moment before accepting. She did not want another misunderstanding to arise but suddenly remembered Xin Lan had told her to contact Mu Zhe. Deciding to take the chance and properly discuss with Mu Zhe, Yimeng climbed into the passenger seat. The inside of the car was warm, vastly different from the autumn chill outside.
"Xin Lan said you had something to discuss with me."
Mu Zhe's eyes were focused on the dimly lit night road, face indifferent as he nodded his head. Even in the empty darkness of the car, Yimeng could make out Mu Zhe's prominent jawline and dark obsidian eyes. They were his most defining characteristics, a trait inherited from his father that was softened by his mother's more subtle genetics.
Mother Mu was a woman who had a petite frame and soft features, just like a small little rabbit. Father Mu, however, was the exact opposite with a towering build and fierce obsidian eyes; just like that of a villain that likes to steal candy from children. But although Father Mu looked slightly like an evil villain, he had the heart of a maiden. Truly deserving of his title as chairman of the wife worshipping cult.
Sometimes, Yimeng even pitied Father Mu. His personality meant that even his sons dared to bully him, ignoring his authority.
"Chengyou misses you."
The name brought a smile onto Yimeng's lips. Indeed, it had been a long time since she last visited the Mu ancestral home. The little bun must have grown a lot by now. Remembering that the little bun's birthday was soon, Yimeng decided she would make sometime in her schedule to go pick out a gift for him. While she did so , Yimeng would get something for the elderly grandmother Mu too. Yimeng especially missed grandmother Mu's cooking.
"Tell Chengyou aunty will visit him soon. Lately the cafe has been busy and I haven't had the time."
Mu Zhe carefully came to a stop at a red light, his gaze veering towards the woman next to him. Her gaze was steady as ever, and the brilliance of her eyes so subtle and gentle one could easily mistaken them for dullness. Her hair that used to always be tied in a tight ponytail now carelessly fell past her shoulders with a silk like shine and her messy t-shirts quickly chosen from the closet were now replaced by neatly ironed blouses.
The young girl who used to follow him around, calling him 'ge ge' from so many years ago no longer existed as if a phantom conjured by his mind.
"In the future, don't answer calls from strangers and don't meet up with strangers."
"A stranger? Aren't you afraid Bai Zhimou will get angry if you call her a stranger? Isn't she your bride?"
The red light had changed to green. Stepping on the gas pedal, Mu Zhe's rough voice calmly articulated each word, his gaze now focused on the long road ahead. Yimeng especially liked this part of Mu Zhe despite his many lacking flaws. Not only was he someone who knew how to draw the line, he was also steadfast, and valued friendship above all else. The times he had placed a woman before his friends could be counted on one hand, and even then, not all five fingers were accounted for.
"...Next time, choose someone who will sincerely care for Chengyou. That way, xiao Shu can rest peacefully."
Mu Zhe's hand on the wheel tensed. It had been a long time since he had heard someone else say her name. Perhaps tonight he would not be getting any sleep either. On his cheeks, Mu Zhe could still feel the phantom touch of her cool hands, could feel the ghost of her floral scent teasing his nose, and on his lips, her warmth still lingered. Perhaps for his entire life, she would forever haunt him.
Glancing at the man next to her, Yimeng sighed. It was a pity. His heart was not hers and her heart was not his. How great it would be if love was so simple. Alas, the heart was complicated and they would never be more than friends, two foolish people who had tried to hard to deny their fates.
Yimeng looked away, finding the passing streets more interesting than the handsome man next to her. On the streets, night stalls had been set up as passerbys stopped for a meal or to peruse the goods each stand had to offer. Although night had fallen, several students still in uniform lingered on the street, laughing as they talked with one another carefreely. On the ground, leaves littered the cold cement sidewalks, their orange and red hues illuminated by the night lights of the city. Soon, the trees would lose all their leaves and hail in the winter snow.
"It will be the fifth winter soon."
Mu Zhe kept his eyes on the road, simply nodding his head as indication that he had heard her whisper...the fifth winter...
"When winter comes, let's go visit xiao Shu."