Gu Jing ran to the living room and she laid on the sofa.
Gu Jing didn’t understand why her heart pounded. Clearly she held Zhen Lang’s body in the past so she didn’t need to worry he caught her red handed. She hit her head against the sofa a few times, but her heart pounded nonstop.
Gu Jing closed her eyes and she saw Zhen Lang’s seductive body on the bed. She shook her head but the image of his body didn’t go away.
Gu Jing sniffed her hand and she smelt Zhen Lang’s body scent combined with alcohol like a unique cologne.
Gu Jing lethargically got off the sofa. She saw the empty bottle of wine on the table and on the inside she cursed the black belly Zhen Lang – ‘You drank that much wine and you didn’t get a stomach ache. I wish you’ll get a stomach ulcer!’
Gu Jing’s stomach rumbled. She sat at the dining table and she ate the braised beef with mushrooms. She felt Zhen Lang was a master chef despite his black belly.
Zhen Lang cooked Gu Jing’s favourite dishes and she happily ate his delicious food. Suddenly she realised she didn’t hear anything from the bedroom. She suspected he planned another ambush so she put her chopsticks down and she sneaked to the bedroom.
Gu Jing poked her head through the bedroom door and she spied on Zhen Lang. He held his stomach and he groaned. His pale face looked at the gla.s.s of water on a bedside table.
Gu Jing stepped into the bedroom. ‘Mr Vet, what’s wrong?’
Zhen Lang leaned his back against the bedhead and he shook his head. ‘Do you want to sleep on the bed tonight? We can swap, I’ll sleep on the sofa.’
Gu Jing silently stepped toward the bed. At a close distance she saw sweat on Zhen Lang’s forehead and on his shirt.
‘You…’ Gu Jing said. She slowly inched closer the bed and she bit her lips. ‘Do you feel sick?’
‘I’m ok. Bring your bedsheet in here and I’ll go outside,’ Zhen Lang said weakly.
Gu Jing crawled onto the bed like a kitten. She put her hand on Zhen Lang’s hot forehead. ‘Mr Vet, who do you want to fool?’
The sweat on Zhen Lang’s forehead covered Gu Jing’s hand. She held his hand. ‘Are you sick?’
‘I’m ok. I drank too much but I didn’t eat anything. My stomach hurts. I want to find pain relief but I didn’t put any in my suitcase.’
Gu Jing panicked. She regretted she wished Zhen Lang had a stomach ulcer. ‘Let’s go to the hospital.’
Zhen Lang pinched Gu Jing’s chin. ‘I don’t need to go to the hospital. Can you get me a gla.s.s of warm water?’
Gu Jing jumped off the bed and she ran to the kitchen.
Zhen Lang heard a loud commotion from the kitchen and he smiled.
Gu Jing rushed back to the bedroom with a warm gla.s.s of water. She wrapped an arm around Zhen Lang’s shoulders and she held the warm gla.s.s of water for him.
In Gu Jing’s memories Zhen Lang was invincible and he didn’t own any weaknesses.
Zhen Lang drank a sip of warm water and he caressed Gu Jing’s cheek. ‘You didn’t eat dinner. Go and eat.’
‘Perhaps you’re right. You have a stomach ache because you didn’t eat dinner. I’ll go get dinner for you,’ Gu Jing said.
Gu Jing put the empty gla.s.s of water on the bedside table.
‘You don’t need to. It’s an occupational hazard. Sometimes I miss lunch and dinner during long surgeries. If I rest for a while I’ll be ok,’ Zhen Lang said.
‘Then… did I get you to drink too much wine and made you sick?’ Gu Jing asked softly.
Zhen Lang patted Gu Jing’s cheek. He pulled her closer to him and she sat on his legs. ‘My body is ok. I just need to rest for a while.’
Gu Jing gently rubbed Zhen Lang’s stomach and Zhen Lang smiled. ‘Little girl, you rubbing my stomach makes me think about our childhood.’
Gu Jing laughed. She puffed her cheeks and she blew on Zhen Lang’s stomach. ‘Pain fly away. Zhen Lang don’t cry, Jing Jing will rub your pain away.’
Zhen Lang and Gu Jing laughed loudly.
‘When we were children, other children would bully you and I chased them away for you,’ Gu Jing said. She scoffed. ‘Then I had to comfort someone who cried and had a runny nose.’
Zhen Lang smiled and he pointed a finger at his cheek. ‘What else?’
Gu Jing kissed Zhen Lang’s cheeks. ‘Jing Jing kissed your pain away, you can’t cry anymore.’
‘What else?’ Zhen Lang asked.
Gu Jing wrapped her hands around Zhen Lang’s neck and she hugged him. ‘Jing Jing will protect Zhen Lang for the rest of your life, ok?’
Zhen Lang’s eyes shone brightly. ‘Ok.’
Gu Jing laughed. ‘Then Zhen Lang needs to give Jing Jing a lollipop and ice-cream.’
In that moment Gu Jing remembered how she and Zhen Lang loved and protected each other when they were children clearer than she remembered hers and Zhen Lang’s battles as adults.
‘I’ll give you all my lollipops and ice-cream. I’m ok, you should go and eat dinner,’ Zhen Lang said.
‘I’ll get you a bowl of rice,’ Gu Jing said.
Zhen Lang shook his head. ‘I can’t eat solid food while I have a stomach ache.’
‘Then… I’ll make you congee,’ Gu Jing said.
‘You know how to make congee?’ Zhen Lang asked.
‘I can learn to make congee,’ Gu Jing said.
Zhen Lang patted Gu Jing’s bottom. ‘Ok. If you can make me congee, I’ll forgive you for getting me drunk.’
‘How do I make congee?’ Gu Jing asked.
Zhen Lang instructed Gu Jing about the rice and water quant.i.ty ratio to make congee. ‘After you finish this step I’ll instruct you what to do next.’
Gu Jing jumped off the bed, she ran to the kitchen and she followed Zhen Lang’s instructions. Whilst she waited for the congee to cook in the pot she saw two salty eggs.
‘Mr Vet, can I make you salty duck eggs and minced pork congee?’ Gu Jing asked loudly.
Zhen Lang laughed. ‘Are you certain you can make it?’
‘Of course!’ Gu Jing said loudly.
Gu Jing put salty eggs into the congee pot. She poured another warm gla.s.s of water for Zhen Lang and she ran back to the bedroom to give it to him.
Gu Jing ran back to the kitchen, she opened the fridge and she took out minced pork. She put the minced pork into the congee pot. She scooped a bit of the broth with a ladle and she felt it tasted different to Zhen Lang’s delicious congee.
‘Remember to add ginger to get rid of the raw meat smell,’ Zhen Lang said from the bathroom.
Gu Jing didn’t find any ginger in the fridge but she found ginger lollies in the pantry. She unwrapped some ginger lollies and she put it into the congee pot.
‘Did you put the ginger in yet?’ Zhen Lang asked.
Gu Jing tasted the broth and it still didn’t taste like Zhen Lang’s delicious congee. ‘Mr Vet, what else do I need to add?’
‘Salt,’ Zhen Lang said.
Gu Jing put a spoon of salt into the congee pot and she turned off the stove. She scooped congee into a bowl and she didn’t know why it turned black.
Zhen Lang stepped out of the bathroom and he walked into the kitchen. He grabbed the bowl of congee Gu Jing hid behind her back.
‘I… I don’t know why it turned black,’ Gu Jing said.
‘Did you put in ginger lollies?’ Zhen Lang asked.
‘There’s still ginger in ginger lollies,’ Gu Jing protested.
‘Did you put salty duck eggs in before the rice cooked?’ Zhen Lang asked.
Zhen Lang scooped a spoonful of congee and he saw a piece of minced pork about four centimetres thick.
‘Do I need to put the salty duck eggs after the rice is cooked?’ Gu Jing asked.
Zhen Lang laughed. He swallowed a spoonful of congee and his face winced behind the bowl.
Gu Jing took a deep breath. ‘How does it taste? Is it edible? It’s my first time cooking congee.’
Zhen Lang nodded his head. ‘It’s good. I’ll eat the congee and you can eat dinner.’
At the dining table Gu Jing hummed and ate the rest of her dinner happily. She watched Zhen Lang ate the bowl of soup and on the inside she applauded herself for being a natural cooking genius.
After dinner Gu Jing’s happiness deflated, she saw sweat everywhere on Zhen Lang’s body and he had a high fever. She took him to the hospital for treatment, because she worried her natural cooking genius skills poisoned him.
End of Chapter Thirty-Three