Gu Miao was awakened by a push.
The bright light from the ceiling lamp was dazzling, and the dull pain in his heart resurfaced. He forced himself to close his eyes and stop thinking.
But the person who came in was not willing to let him be. They pushed him hard and said, "Young man, wake up! Check if you've lost anything. There might be a thief in our room."
The nerves in Gu Miao's brain instantly tightened, and he jumped out of bed and frantically searched through his bag.
He tightly held the greeting card that had been resealed and the gold-rimmed glasses in his hand, and breathed a sigh of relief.
Thank goodness these things were still here.
The person next to him sighed helplessly and said, "Why did you bother looking at these things? What's the point of stealing something that's worthless? Quickly check if your phone is still there."
Gu Miao reached into his pocket and, sure enough, it was empty.
The thief must have been one of the people who stayed in this room yesterday, as he was gone when everyone woke up this morning.
At first, no one paid much attention, thinking he had gone out to find work.
But tonight, everyone realized that their valuable belongings were missing and the person had not returned, and they knew something was wrong.
As Gu Miao walked out of the police station, the night had already fallen. The cool breeze brushed past him, and his heart felt cold and bitter.
He wandered aimlessly, not knowing where to go.
In the distance, tall buildings stood, and the city was lit up with dazzling lights. The night sky was adorned with a few scattered stars. This city, which held the dreams of countless people, was still beautiful and prosperous.
But in the heart of this young man, there was only sadness. The chilly evening breeze blew the flowers on the roadside, and a few petals drifted away in the darkness. The dim streetlights illuminated the road, but his eyes seemed to blend into the endless darkness of the night.
It was hollow and dark, without a glimmer of light.
The thief was quickly caught.
It was obvious that it was his first time committing a crime, as his methods were not sophisticated and he had not planned his route well. His movements were captured clearly by the surveillance cameras on the roadside.
However, the stolen phones had already been sold, and only an unsold watch was found in his package.
The police exchanged the watch for Gu Miao and comforted him, "Young man, don't worry. Take your things back first. We will try our best to recover the phones."
The watch was bought with all of his earnings from last summer, but it was not worth even a fraction of the watch on her wrist.
Gu Miao silently took the watch.
Tonight's night sky was adorned with a crescent moon, and the young man looked up at the deserted street.
The moonlight was gentle. His silent eyes were faintly shining with tears.
Once a boy who hid in the shadows, he was obsessed and humble in his admiration of the moonlight. He dared not approach, only gazing from afar, feeling content.
But the moonlight also fell to the mortal world, generously favoring him.
It was a warmth he had never felt before.
So greedily, like wild grass, it grew madly in his heart. He began to fear the days without light, afraid of returning to a world without hope.
He knew he was unworthy, but the moonlight was so beautiful that he couldn't help but have delusions when he looked at her.
The thin figure of the boy was like a lonely ghost wandering in the night of the city.
He had no family, no money, and even his only dream no longer belonged to him.
In the distance, a row of buses were parked, and several summer insects danced freely in front of the headlights.
A middle-aged, short and chubby man approached, "Hey, young man, need a ride? Where are you headed? It's peak season and all the tickets inside are sold out, but I still have some here."
Turns out he was a scalper.
Gu Miao frowned and ignored him.
But the man stuck to him like chewing gum, "Take a look at my tickets, I have them for everywhere. Look, there's Nancheng, Lincheng, and Pingcheng, all of them very cheap."
The young man's steps faltered, and when he spoke, his voice was dry and hoarse from not speaking for a long time, "How much to Pingcheng?"
His eyes pierced through the cold and bustling street scene, blending into the vast night of the city.
Perhaps this city never welcomed him.
He lost his parents here, was kicked out of his home, and even the only warmth and longing in his life left him. The night wind was cold and long.
The old man got more enthusiastic when he realised he was interested.
"Pingcheng? That's quite far. You'll have to take a bus for a day and a night. My ticket is a sleeper, 280 yuan per ticket."
The young man hung his head, and the empty night wind blew up his clothes, making him look extremely thin.
"Give me one," he said.
The old man's face lit up. "Oh, great! The closest one now is at eight o'clock tomorrow morning. There's only one trip a week to Pingcheng. If you're not in a hurry, you can buy next week's ticket."
"I want this week's," Gu Miao said.
The ticket was a thin piece of paper that seemed like it could be blown away at any moment.
Gu Miao huddled with his luggage, squatting on the side of the bus station.
The night wind was slightly chilly, and he was only wearing a thin short-sleeved shirt. When the wind blew, he got goosebumps on his arms. Late at night, several buses roared towards the street from the bus station, gradually disappearing into the darkness.
He pulled out the patched-up greeting card from his bag and looked at it over and over again, a hint of longing in his cold eyes.
The bus station was deserted at night, and the middle-aged man selling tickets had nothing to do, so he squatted next to Gu Miao and looked him up and down through his glasses.
"This must be from your little lover," he teased.
The young man's lips turned white as he shook his head.
"Then you must like her, right? You don't seem to be going for just a day or two. Why don't you go and say goodbye to her?"
The young man's face was full of despair. "I can't disturb her."
The middle-aged man slapped his thigh. "What's the big deal? It's just saying goodbye. If you don't go find her, you might regret it for the rest of your life."
At the entrance, a bus roared loudly. Many people stood under the bus, wiping away tears and bidding farewell.
The old man nudged his companion and said, "Look, they're all leaving tonight, going to Songcheng, even farther than Pingcheng. Look at how they're crying."
The mournful cries pierced through the night and entered Gu Miao's heart.
His shameful desire grew silently like a dandelion seed that had drifted in unnoticed.
He told himself to just take one look, and then wish her a happy birthday before leaving and never bothering her again.
He put the card back into his pocket and placed it next to his gold-rimmed glasses.
Not far away, the car lights shone brightly as a young man carried his bag and the most precious thing he had held onto for over a decade. He was going to bid a permanent farewell to the girl he loved.
The crystal chandelier in the living room reflected speckles of light, sprinkling onto the smooth marble floor.
Fu Xun was nestled in the sofa, playing games when suddenly the landline rang.
Impatiently, he answered, "Hello, may I ask if you are a resident of Building 3? There is a gentleman at the entrance looking for Miss Cheng."
Too preoccupied with his game, Fu Xun replied absentmindedly, "Let him in."
After hanging up, he lost the team battle and threw his phone onto the sofa. Suddenly, he remembered what the security guard had said.
Looking out into the night, he saw a young man walking towards him. His hair was neatly combed, except for a strand that was blown by the wind, resting diagonally on his forehead.
He looked refined and handsome, but his eyes were filled with exhaustion.
Fu Xun didn't notice any of this, his arms crossed as he could only think of the disheveled appearance of Cheng Chu when she returned today.
The girl usually had her hair fixed with all sorts of exquisite hairpins, but now it was covered in mud and her expensive dress was stained and dirty. Her legs and arms were scratched and bleeding from small stones, but she gritted her teeth and said nothing as she applied medicine.
The young boy approached and looked at Fu Xun with sincerity, "Hello, I'm looking for Cheng Chu."
Fu Xun raised his chin with an arrogant expression, "Do you live on Yuqing Lane?"
Although he didn't know why he asked, Gu Miao nodded.
Upon hearing his response, a fiery light instantly rose in the narrow phoenix eyes of the young boy.
Gu Miao lowered his head, his back always straight and slightly bowed, his tone pleading, "Can you tell her that I'm waiting for her at the door, my name is Gu Miao."
Fu Xun looked at him and said coldly, "She doesn't want to see you."
The villa area was brightly lit at night, and the lush camphor trees swayed in the wind.
The young man's face turned white in an instant, as if all his strength had been drained from him.
He staggered slightly before managing to stand up straight.
After a while, he forced out a smile that was even uglier than bitterness, his voice hoarse, "Can you tell her for me, happy birthday."
Fu Xun looked at him, his anger weakening slightly at the sight of the lost and desperate look on his face.
But his tone was still harsh, "She's not in a good mood today. Try coming back tomorrow. Maybe she'll be in a better mood and willing to see you then." The young man's face was pale, but his black eyes were even darker than the night, bottomless and without a hint of light.
"Thank you," he whispered.
Feeling inexplicably uneasy, Fu Xun said, "Alright, you should go back now. Her birthday is still a few days away, say it yourself then."
After he finished speaking, he turned and left.
The swaying night wind was cold, and with each broken breath, it felt like a knife scraping against his throat.
Gu Miao thought of the snow in Pingcheng when he was a child, it was just as cold as tonight.
The moon was bright tonight, but with Fu Xun's light and airy words, the world was completely devoid of light.
He stood dazed at the entrance of the villa, lost in thought and unaware of how long he had been standing there.
The sky gradually began to drizzle, soaking his carefully combed hair that he had styled just to see the girl.
After who knows how long, until his clothes were gradually soaked through, he suddenly remembered the tattered greeting card in his bag. He hugged the bag tightly, his wet forehead dripping with rain.
He crouched down and moved to the edge of the fence, protecting the bag in his arms. However, the roof was very narrow, and the rain continued to trickle down his shins mercilessly.
As the rain gradually stopped, a loud dog howl came from the neighboring villa.
The fence next to him made a slight creaking sound, and the girl stood not far away, rubbing her eyes in disbelief.
"Is it really you? What are you doing here so late?"
Gu Miao suddenly looked up, his dark eyes shining like stars in the night sky.
His pale face was wet, but it was unclear whether it was from the rain or tears.
Gu Miao: Before leaving, I just wanted to see her one last time.
Translations during sleepless nights. I can sleep when I'm dead! ...Please let me sleep. Happy readers keep me awake, and lots of love and a huge thank you for supporting my hobby!
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