A surprise, yet not a surprise.
Chapter 6.1 — Fate’s Preface (1)
Wen Han travelled with this group of people, trekking along for a dozen or more hours until, after being on the move for another night, they at last drew near to Kathmandu. Prior to entering the city, everyone gradually dispersed, and their group became less than twenty people, then just a handful of people. Finally, only she and Cheng Muyun remained.
The two had changed into clean clothing. In this sort of gloomy weather, the garments’ dark colours allowed them to easily blend in and hide within a crowd.
“Where are we going?” After Zhou Ke and that bespectacled man also left, she softly asked this question.
“I will take you to the embassy.” He instructed, “When you are there, you need to ask for help. If someone questions you, simply say that that night, after you were rescued, you became separated from everyone else and you walked back here.”
The meaning of his words was plain.
Do not say that she knew him. What happened on the night those bandits were exterminated should be kept in her heart.
Her eyes flickered a little.<>Please support the original translation at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
Brushing a thoughtful glance over her, Cheng Muyun draped his arm casually over her shoulder, and like he and she were the most ordinary of couples and foreign tourists, he spoke quietly. “You need to retrieve your luggage and passport.”
“And then?” The words blurted from her mouth. “Where are you going?”
From last night to now, he had not spoken about what he would do next or where he would go. Everything had ended two nights ago, hadn’t it? That person who had been with him, Meng Liangchuan, had already explained that that had been a very difficult-to-locate trafficking operation. Although only a few words had been said, she conjectured that he perhaps was an informant for the police.
He smiled, not providing an answer.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
“My visa will be expiring soon. I must go back… Will you go to Moscow to find me?” Remembering he had once said that in this lifetime, he would never return to Moscow, she followed up with another quiet question. “Are you able to enter Russian borders?”
Still he did not answer.<>Please support the original translation at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
She did not know how she could continue this conversation.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.
The two stood on the shore of the Bagmati River, the Pashupatinath Temple beside them.
This was Nepal’s largest open-air cremation site.
Whether the corpses were of the poor or came from nobility, they would all be cremated on the platforms on both sides of the river. The damp air teemed with the putrid stench of burning dead bodies. However, those people who stood by the fiery pyres were all very devout and sincere. Wen Han had witnessed cremations on the banks of India’s Ganges River, but she had watched from across the waters.
Now, though, she was standing in the midst of them.
Less than twenty paces away were cremation platform after platform and corpse after corpse that was ablaze.
The morning breeze, intermingled with rain, blew against her face.
With one hand, he pulled up the hood of his hiking jacket. Then, in an instant, he was biting down on her lip, like he was sucking hard on a lovely fruit that held an abundance of juice in it. Using the force of his sucking and the strength of his biting, he forced her tongue to extend forth so that he could deepen even more this deep kiss that was a public taboo. The entire process took only less than one minute, but by the time she was released, she was already gasping and feeling a little lightheaded.
Slipping his hand deep into her neckline, he touched her soft breast and then, rather indulgingly, continued to knead it a couple more times. When he felt her push him away, he finally stopped and brought to an end this one minute and more of dangerous flirtation and seduction.
To be alive. To continue living. To live until the day he could return to Moscow.
It seemed those were very much at risk.
Cheng Muyun pulled her neckline closed for her. “I know of a rather nice place near here where it should not be difficult to fill your belly.”
“Mm.” Wen Han thought, they should eat first. They both had not even consumed any decent food over these last dozen or more hours. While they were waiting for the food to come, she could unhurriedly ask him again.
When she was seated with a menu in her hand in one of Kathmandu’s small restaurants, it was as if she had returned to the world of the living. Yes, it was the world of the living.
All those dangers no longer existed.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
Though this place was very simple and basic, there were clean tables and a menu that appeared to be passable.
Before long, a stainless steel plate of rice was set in front of each of them, with curry potatoes and carrots and also curry chicken.
And a bowl of thick soup.<>Please support the original translation at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
These were the local dishes she had most detested when she first arrived in Nepal.
But now, she could not wait to eat them.
“Darling, eat more.” He was toying with the silver fork in his hand as he remarked in a low voice, “You know that every man wants his woman to be a bit curvier where suitable.” A blush rose into her face. Dropping her head down, she stabbed a piece of potato with her fork and put it into her mouth. As she lowered her eyes, she was even thinking whether she did not look good eating like this.
His finger was already gently caressing the back of her hand that was holding her knife, as if he was waiting for her to finish eating—very gentlemanly, yet very impatient as well.
Her heart itched and her mind was restless from his action.
Her thoughts drifted back to less than twenty hours ago—
The difficulty of her first time had been more painful than she had imagined.
But it had not been as painful as the wound she had suffered on her shoulder. It had felt more like someone was tearing at the most tender of places from within her body. He had not spoken, moving slowly, allowing her to adjust to this most primal of acts between a man and a woman that entwined them together.
But it had not been wonderful.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
……<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.
“What are you thinking?” he asked, his voice low, as if he had seen through her thoughts.
“Nothing.” There was a self-conscious rosy flush to her cheeks.
“I am going out for a smoke,” he said.
Puzzled, she lifted her head. She had never seen him smoke a cigarette before. It was as if, apart from the hookah he had had that night in the little inn in Kathmandu, he was not interested in that sort of thing.
“You cannot bear to be apart from me while I am outside?” he teased her.
She shook her head untruthfully.<>Please support the original translation at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
Unhurriedly, Cheng Muyun set his napkin on the table. Wen Han gazed at his face and also his eyes, those eyes that were like a pair of whirlpools.
“I will be right back,” he stated softly.<>Please read this at hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
Wen Han nodded.<>This is an UNAUTHORIZED copy, taken from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com
Walking out the door, Cheng Muyun surveyed the surroundings from the corner of his eye before glancing once more through the glass at the girl inside the restaurant whose head was bowed as she ate. Then, completely pulling up the hood of his black hiking jacket and blocking out the muggy raindrops, he turned at an intersection and strode into the quiet depths of a street.<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.
After approximately a dozen or so minutes, Wen Han began feeling unsettled. When the time had passed the thirty-minute mark, she at last realized he was gone.
She stared at the streetscape outside, gripping the tablecloth tightly.
Last time, in the camp, he had at least told her. This time… Should she wait a bit more? Maybe he had simply gone to buy some cigarettes? She wavered back and forth like this until two hours had passed.
Only when someone came over and asked her whether she wanted the plates to be taken away did she turn her head and, with reddened eyes, say softly in English, “I’m sorry. I didn’t bring any money. I can…” What could she give as collateral? From head to toe, she had only her outer and undergarments.
“The sir already paid the bill ahead of time.” The server’s use of the language was not very smooth, but fortunately he was able to express himself.
In passing, the server also handed her a piece of paper.
On it, drawn with charcoal pencil, was a simple sketch of a route. Not a single word was written.
She walked out the door and stood, helpless and alone, beside the glass window, looking all about. He was not there. Bowing her head, she looked once more at the paper in her hand. With steps that were somewhat weak, she began searching for the place he had sketched out. It was as if, from the moment she saw that piece of paper, she had understood that he would not be there, so when she saw those staff members of the embassy, she was not overly surprised.
And so this was until Agnesa dashed out and threw her arms around her. “Wen Han, Wen Han, you’re still alive. Still alive!” Agnesa was weeping with joy, and endlessly she rambled, “The police said that man is a bad person, that he was the one who brought the danger on us. Wang Wenhao barely managed to escape and got a lot of injuries, and now he’s been kidnapped again by that man. Wen Han, Wen Han, do you know where that man is? …”
Wen Han stared blankly at Agnesa, letting her shake and tug at her arm.
She found that she was unable to say anything at all.
She only knew that that friend of his, Meng Liangchuan, was somehow connected to the special police, and then she had automatically categorized him as one of the good guys. But before her now was a middle-aged man dressed in the uniform of the local police, walking towards her and handing her his badge. “Miss Wen Han, hello. One of our informants, Meng Liangchuan, was found to be conspiring with a trafficking organization based outside of our borders, and he has already escaped our control. I think you need to cooperate with us as we do some investigating.”
Wen Han was taken aback. “Other than knowing that his name is Meng Liangchuan… I don’t even know him.”
“But that night, he was the one who rescued you.”<>Copyright of Fanatical, hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. Translated with the express permission of the author for hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com. If you are not reading this from hui3r[dot]wordpress[dot]com, the translation has been taken without consent of the translator.
1 of 1 Prologue
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