A number of years later, when the pudgy little king of jealousy grew up and flipped through this series of cartoons, he pursed his lips as he looked through them, tugging on his sister’s sleeve as he did so. “Sis, why did you make that big king of jealousy so handsome? He’s clearly old and ill-tempered, so this drawing is too fake! You have to change it!”
Cheng Xi overheard this in passing, and she once again confirmed that they were truly father and son.
But at this point, Cheng Xi was too tired to talk to Lu Chenzhou about it, pretending that she hadn’t heard the last few words that he’d said, and only paying attention to his “I agree”.
Chen Jiaman was sensitive and easily thought too much about things. Before anything had happened, she’d already scared herself half to death, so when Cheng Xi talked to her, she tried to be tactful but direct. Seeing her curled up in a corner, she smiled and knelt down. “What’s the matter? Is our little bunny trying to hide from her sudden popularity?”
Chen Jiaman was almost in tears. “Mom, I’ve done something bad.”
Cheng Xi hugged her. “No, you haven’t! I feel like your drawings are marvelous. Clearly the netizens can see the quality of your work, and they know to appreciate it. Don’t be scared, and keep on drawing. Make more people know about this story with the god of jealousy and his son; it’s something we’re all looking forward to see.”
Afraid that Chen Jiaman would feel burdened, she made Lu Chenzhou find some lawyers from Donglai to help discuss the contract regarding the publishing firm. In the end, having received enough support from her family and friends, Chen Jiaman finally had the courage to keep on drawing.
This series of cartoons really did become quite popular that year. It was because of this nascent popularity that the publishing firm initially wanted to host a specialized event with her. Chen Jiaman was quite afraid of doing something like this, but in order to support her, Cheng Xi dropped everything else and specially took leave just to attend it with her.
She wanted to help her walk out of her darkness, and then to see how far the little girl who used to hole up in the darkness and cry could truly walk when she was unfettered.
By this time, the king of jealousy had just turned one. Although he couldn’t yet walk, he could already wander a few steps by clutching something as support. In order to help deepen the relationship between son and father, Cheng Xi left Lu Chenzhou at home to watch after him.
The event with Chen Jiaman would last half a month. When she left, the weather was wild and stormy, but by the time she returned, it was a warm and sunny day. She didn’t notify anyone upon her return, and the first thing she saw when she entered the house was Lu Chenzhou and the king of jealousy sitting on the carpet on the living room balcony. Her son held a toy in his hands, and Lu Chenzhou was observing him from the side. As the sunlight shone in through the window, it seemed as though they were having a peaceful and relaxing time.
It had only been half a month, but the little king of jealousy was already starting to discard his support and take a precious few steps on his own. He wasn’t walking quite stably yet, however, staggering from side to side, falling on the carpet if he stopped paying attention for just a moment. At this time, Lu Chenzhou, who was sitting silently by the side, would quickly catch him and prevent him from hurting himself.
And when his son stood up and began walking again, he would even help clear the obstacles in his path. As he sat down, he would help stabilize him. Although Lu Chenzhou’s actions were clumsy, they couldn’t hide his carefulness.
Cheng Xi watched them from afar quietly, a happy smile flashing across her lips.
In the end, the father and son noticed her at almost the same time. The king of jealousy was so happy that he waved his hands about and teetered and tottered towards her, but his long-legged father slyly stuck his feet out in front of him, and the king of jealousy’s short stubby legs were quickly knocked over.
Only then did Lu Chenzhou pat his clothes and stand up. As his son cried, he got up and hugged Cheng Xi tightly. “You’re back.” And then he kissed her fiercely, even pausing it halfway through to brag to his son, “Look, all you can do is cry, but I can kiss.”
She clutched her forehead weakly. “You childish man! I just got back, I’m still very dirty.”
He held her face with both hands, smiling happily. “I don’t mind.”
Cheng Xi smiled back at him. “Is that so?”
She let him kiss her until he was satisfied before walking over to help support her son, who was crying so hard he could barely breathe. She hugged him and rubbed his back. “You crybaby, while your mother wasn’t around, you grew even fatter.”
She went to wash up and cleaned her son in passing. Although the king of jealousy was often quite jealous, he was still a very easy child to coax, much more so than his father. Cheng Xi washed the snot from his face, hugged and kissed him a few times, and he was once again a happy little baby.
But Cheng Xi’s sudden two-week-long departure had made her husband and son miss her so terribly that the little king of jealousy stuck to her for the rest of the day, not even willing to let go when he was having a meal.
Lu Chenzhou was a husk of his former self after taking care of him these last few days. He didn’t like having other people around the house, so even though he’d hired a housekeeper, it was just to make food for him and his son. Lu Chenzhou’s grandparents did come over quite frequently, but they were so old that they couldn’t really do very much.
And so, in this last half-month, Lu Chenzhou had to change his diapers whenever he pooped or peed, and he was so tired that he wished he could just foist the burden on someone else. But seeing his son stick so fervently to Cheng Xi, even needing to be fed when eating (though a one-year-old child would have to be fed regardless!), he really couldn’t banish the sight. Angrily, he stood up and moved his son’s little stool over, putting his hands on his hips and pointing at him, “Go sit in it! How can a man need to be fed? How can a man cry so much?!”
The ‘man’ ignored him, curling up in Cheng Xi’s lap and blinking with his eyes brimming with tears, his little red lips pursed, calling out, “Mom, mom, mom”, so much so that Cheng Xi’s heart almost melted. She raised her head and said to Lu Chenzhou, “Alright, stop it. I just came back, and I want to hug him a little more.”
That was why he wanted a daughter at the beginning; why did he end up with a son?!
He seemed to have neglected the fact that a daughter would have stuck to Cheng Xi as much as a son would.
Mr. Lu was so disgusted by his son that he didn’t even try to fight with him for Cheng Xi when they went to bed. Cheng Xi slept in the master bedroom with her son, and he surprisingly chose to sleep in the guest room instead. He rolled around the bed until it was creaking and straining under his weight, until finally Cheng Xi snuck into his room.
Mr. Lu was tossing and turning and so annoyed that he almost wanted to break the bed apart when he heard a knock on the door. He shut his eyes and pretended to be dead, ignoring her.
Cheng Xi smiled, lying on his chest as she looked at him. “Are you really going to ignore me? Then I’m going to leave!”
As she got up and was preparing to leave, Lu Chenzhou hugged her from behind, burying his head on her shoulder, his tone aggrieved. “After you were away for so long, is your son the only one you wanted to hug?”
She speechlessly patted his head, saying gently, “I missed you too.”
“You liar! You even said you were going to leave just now.”
She said nothing, turning around to hug him and kiss him forcefully.
It took a single deep kiss for Mr. Lu to suddenly feel revitalized again, his heart and eyes brimming with delight, a feeling of love that was hard to describe.
“Cheng Xi, you have to love me.”
“Even if we have a son, you still have to remember to love me.”
“Alright. Even if we have a son, I’ll still love you the most.”
He was even happier, hugging her tightly and then requesting over and over again, “Cheng Xi, say it again, that I’m the person you love most.”
His inner self was so insecure that Cheng Xi patiently and thoughtfully repeated herself in his ear. “Lu Chenzhou, you’re the person I love most.”
“Okay.” In the end, he finally hummed softly, bringing her hand to his chest. “Do you feel it?”
She felt his heart rate gradually speed up, and his skin that was warming to her touch.
He looked at her agitatedly, a slight blush on his pale face, his eyes shining. Looking at him was like tasting a fine vintage wine that would leave her drunk.
Cheng Xi submerged herself in that liquor, hearing him murmur softly into her ear, “You’re the only one I love. My life is only complete, only happy, because of you. So, please remember to love me.”
She shut her eyes, saying softly, “Alright, I will.”
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