The Plough - Chapter 16
Ling Shu opened his eyes, with a momentary daze in his expression. He saw a white expanse. The white color had a familiar feeling, as if he had returned to a snowy sky. That feeling was etched in his memory.
When one first arrived in the snow, they wouldn’t feel cold, but for those from the south who had become accustomed to small bridges and flowing rivers, and soft snow and gentle winds, the power and strength of the snowy sky was beyond description. Besides being speechless in admiration, there were no other words to describe it.
But this feeling wouldn’t last for long. Soon the cold would seep into the body from the clothing, which was not thick to begin with, to the skin and muscles, then even deeper into the bones, until one finally understood that the cold penetrating the bones was not a description, but a state.
Putting one’s hands outside for more than five minutes would make them numb and sore, but they couldn’t draw them back to keep warm, because they were still holding a gun, nor could they stand up to shake off the snow and stamp their feet to warm up. They had to make an effort to hide in the snow and blend in with it until the moment they could fire the gun.
The dizziness and confusion felt like time and space were reversed, going back and forth between illusion and reality. Even though the body was still lying down, it was hard to control the chaotic thoughts. Ling Shu couldn’t help but frown and close his eyes again.
“You’re awake!” He heard a familiar voice.
The person sounded a little excited, but also cautious, lest a loud voice would cause his old injuries to flare up again.
Ling Shu didn’t open his eyes, he just raised his hand towards Ling Yao.
His back felt a slight sting.
“Don’t move, you’re still hooked up to an IV!”
Ling Yao quickly stopped him, just as she had grabbed his hand, she quickly let go with a gentle force and steadied it on the bed.
“Can you talk now, do you feel unwell anywhere?”
It was another male voice, melodious and low, but not entirely deep.
It was like the coldness of melted snow, with rational calmness and composure, which could not be easily disturbed by external forces.
Ling Shu finally opened his eyes.
His movements were slow, but it was obvious that he was uncomfortable.
Both people in the sickroom quieted down, not daring to rush him.
They watched as Ling Shu’s gaze slowly circled around them, with a puzzled expression on his face.
Ling Yao’s heart suddenly lifted, suspended in midair.
Then she heard Ling Shu say something unexpected yet reasonable, something she couldn’t believe yet couldn’t not believe.
“Who are you?”
Ling Yao’s legs suddenly felt weak, if it weren’t for Yue Dingtang quickly supporting her, she would have fallen down directly.
Ling Yao tearfully stifled a cry.
Yue Dingtang became solemn, helping Ling Yao to sit down.
“You don’t remember anything? Do you still remember who you are?”
Ling Shu had a blank expression, shaking his head.
Ling Yao couldn’t help but bury her face and look away.
The doctor had told them before that the patient had a head injury, and when they woke up they might have some temporary memory loss, but hearing such a possibility was different from seeing it with their own eyes. Ling Yao felt that she hadn’t been so shocked since the collapse of the Ling family.
“You are Ling Shu, the Ling of Ling Bing, and the Shu of the Dubhe star from The Plough, or the Big Dipper. I am your elder sister, Ling Yao, the Yao of distant Yao.”
“The doctor said that you were hit on the head by a wooden stick and your head was stitched with more than a dozen stitches, so your memory may be a bit confused for a while.”
“Don’t worry about it now, when you are better, you can slowly recall things.”
Yue Dingtang’s expression softened, and his tone was slow, afraid that the other party could not hear clearly.
Unfortunately, Ling Shu’s expression remained confused.
“So who are you?”
He looked towards Yue Dingtang.
“I am Yue Dingtang, the Yue of Yue Fei, in our family there were three boys and one girl, all with dynasties as their names, I was the third, the two brothers above were Ding Qin and Ding Jin. My elder sister Yue Chunxiao, you have seen before too, she had a good impression of you and even invited you to eat at our house.”
With unprecedented patience and tolerance, Yue Dingtang explained the origin of his name in detail.
Ling Shu was puzzled: “Who is Yue Fei?”
Yue Dingtang: “A famous anti-Jin general in history.”
Ling Shu: “What is the relationship between you and I?”
Yue Dingtang sighed: “We were high school classmates, we were very close before, so close that we practically wore the same pair of pants, every time there was something delicious, you would let me have it, during exams you would even show me the answers, once I was late and you even helped me cover up so the teacher wouldn’t know. Later, you asked me to lend you five hundred yuan, saying that you wanted to go to the Red Powder House to see the world, I gave it to you without saying a word, even though you never returned it to me afterwards, I never asked you to.”
Ling Yao stopped her sobbing, and suddenly raised her head.
“What Red Powder House? What five hundred yuan?”
Yue Dingtang looked solemn: “Big sister, Ling Shu is like this now, let’s not talk about these for now, let’s talk about it later, the five hundred yuan is not something I need urgently.”
“No, five hundred yuan is not a small amount, I did not know that this young rascal had borrowed such a large sum from you, you wait, I will go home to get the money, we must pay you back!”
Ling Shu: ……
Yue Dingtang stood up and tried to stop her.
“Big sister, how about this, you take out as much as you can conveniently, just pay a little bit, the rest can be talked about when Ling Shu gets better, don’t worry!”
“Repaying debts is a matter of conscience, although our Ling family is not as good as before, I can’t let others say that the Ling family can’t even pay back their debts!”
“Pay back my ass!”
Ling Shu couldn’t help it.
“I didn’t borrow money from anyone surnamed Yue at all, let alone go to the Red Powder House, you don’t even believe your own younger brother, yet you’re still being led around by someone surnamed Yue!”
Ling Yao was dumbfounded for a moment, and then suddenly became furious.
“Are you pretending to have amnesia?!”
Fury rose in her, and she took a few steps forward, and grabbed Ling Shu’s ear!
“Have your wings hardened or your guts swollen, do you know how much I’ve cared for you! You were always causing trouble outside, and now even being accused of being a murderer, did you want to keep me in the dark?! Even now I only know when you got your head injured and were admitted to the hospital! Have you ever thought of how scared I was when I saw your wounds! I’ll beat you to death today, on behalf of my parents and let you go down to play mahjong with them first!
Ling Shu was so scared that his face was pale, he almost fell off the bed and even the IV drip on his wrist started to reverse with the flow of his blood.
Yue Dingtang saw that something was wrong and quickly went up to drag away the angry Ling Yao.
“Big sister, let’s talk calmly, don’t be so agitated, he just had stitches on his head and he’s still dizzy.”
“Let him faint, this kid, if he doesn’t die, I’d be dead from anger first!”
Ling Yao was furious, but her voice was much softer.
The nurse just pushed open the door and saw that Ling Yao’s hand was still twisted in the patient’s ear and couldn’t help but frown.
“What are you doing here? Don’t you know that the patient needs to rest and stay quiet now?”
Ling Yao let go and said embarrassingly: “I’m sorry.”
The nurse went to change Ling Shu’s IV drip.
“How do you feel?”
“My head feels a bit dizzy.”
“My hand hurts, and my ear hurts too.”
“Miss, I’m uncomfortable all over.”
Ling Shu’s face was pale and his breath was weak, his eyes looking at the nurse as if he was looking at a fairy who had descended from the sky.
The nurse gave Ling Yao and Yue Dingtang a stern look.
“The family members should take care of the patient properly, don’t make too much noise, it will affect the patient’s recovery, otherwise I’ll have to call the doctor.”
When she turned to Ling Shu, she softened her voice.
“Don’t be afraid, if they make noise again, just press the bell at the head of the bed, we’ll come over right away.”
“Thank you, miss.” Ling Shu smiled gratefully at her.
Ling Yao and Yue Dingtang: …
After the nurse finally finished changing the nutrition solution and warned them again not to affect the patient’s rest, she left with the medicine tray, Ling Yao was so angry that her teeth itched, and she wanted to twist off Ling Shu’s ear.
Under her deathly glare, Ling Shu covered his head and said weakly: “I was scared you would scold me.”
Ling Yao was both angry and distressed: “You think you won’t get scolded like this? Now the newspapers have all reported it, some of the shameless ones have already exposed your name, even if you don’t say anything, how long can you hide it!”
Ling Shu: “If I could have found the murderer before it was reported, you wouldn’t have known. Don’t worry, we’ve got a lead now.”
Ling Yao: “You rest well first, then I can be at ease!”
She wanted to say more, but when she saw Ling Shu holding his head and showing an uncomfortable expression, she quickly shut up.
“Sis, I want to eat oranges.” Ling Shu acted cute.
“It’s so cold, who sells oranges outside!” After Ling Yao said that, she added, “I’ll go take a look, you drink the chicken soup first!”
She also said to Yue Dingtang: “I prepared two bowls of chicken soup, you and my brother should have one each, you should rest too, don’t keep running around!”
Yue Dingtang smiled: “Don’t worry big sister, my arm was just grazed by a bullet, it’s nothing, I will watch him, you are busy with your matters.”
When Ling Yao left, the two of them started to give each other weird looks.
There were two beds in the room, one was Ling Shu’s, the other was Yue Dingtang’s.
Ling Shu lay in bed, he would get dizzy if he moved.
But Yue Dingtang didn’t even have to change into a hospital gown, he could move around freely.
The more Ling Shu looked, the more unhappy he became.
“How did you know I was pretending?” He couldn’t help but complain.
Yue Dingtang remained calm: “The doctor said you had temporary amnesia, you kept asking me about my name and even didn’t know what Yue Fei was, isn’t that obvious? How could I bear to make your sister stay distressed?”
Ling Shu snorted, thinking, the one I wanted to get even with was you.
“I risked my life to save yours, is this how you thank your savior?”
Yue Dingtang nodded: “It’s precisely because of your lifesaving grace that I talked to big sister.”
Ling Shu furrowed his brow: “What?”
Yue Dingtang said, “Once this case is settled, I’ll see if I can find you a stable job, like being my teaching assistant.”
Ling Shu blinked: “Huh?”
Yue Dingtang said, “Don’t look so moved. I see you’re content with the arrangement, so I’m relieved.”
Ling Shu snorted with a half-smile: “Which eye of yours saw me content with the arrangement? I won’t be your slave. Give up on that thought.”
Yue Dingtang was surprised: “But big sister was very satisfied, isn’t she the head of the family?”
Ling Shu harrumphed: “Don’t say ‘big sister’ so familiarly, she is my elder sister, not yours.”
He felt his head spinning and his vision blurring, and he subconsciously leaned to the side.
He felt a warm body supporting his neck.
“Fine, fine. She’s your elder sister, not mine. We can discuss the arrangement later. It seems like there are some new findings in the case, we can talk about it when you’re feeling better.”
Yue Dingtang was afraid that he would faint in the hospital and get scolded by the nurses, so he surprisingly compromised.
The author has something to say:
Ling Shu thought to himself: Damn it, the guy surnamed Yue always screws me over.
Yue Dingtang chuckled: Haha, you can try to screw me over, but you’ll never succeed.