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Chapter 368 Meeting Again
As Mayor Du told the story, Ding Ning and Xu Minglu seemed to see a sad and sentimental love story.
Mayor Du’s story was dramatic and corny yet sad and sentimental. He and his wife, Xinyu, studied in the same university. Xinyu had a powerful background and was beautiful, like an unapproachable princess.
Mayor Du was born in a rural area. He fell in love with Xinyu when they first met. However, he was full of inferiority and dared not to place any hope on her. He loved her secretly and studied so hard.
It might be destiny that had brought them together. Xinyu was a woman who dared to love and hate. She had a crush on Mayor Du and refused all those rich young men who pursued her and confessed her feeling to Mayor Du.
However, the sensible Mayor Du stayed away from her and refused her because he thought there would be no good ending for them.
Due to this, everyone thought Mayor Du an arrogant, poor man. Those who failed to win Xinyu’s favor ridiculed Mayor Du and even fought him.
As a man with courage and uprightness, Mayor Du fought back with those who bullied him. Disregarding that others beat him badly, he caught the leading man and beat him hard.
Mayor Du almost beat the man to death though he was seriously beaten as well. He even grinned when he was covered in blood. Xinyu, who came after hearing the news, was full of tears when she saw him. As a hen who protected a chicken, she announced openly that she would marry Mayor Du in the future and that whoever dared to touch him would become her dead enemy.
Though that rich man who was beaten by Mayor Du had a powerful background, his family was less powerful than Xinyu’s. As a result, though he hated Mayor Du to the extreme, he dared not make trouble for him in public. Of course, he must have plotted against Mayor Du many times secretly.
After this incident, Mayor Du no longer worried so much. Since they both loved each other so much, they shouldn’t torture each other. As a result, Mayor Du opened his heart to Xinyu and accepted her.
The love road of the two was full of twists and turns. Because Xinyu threatened her family with her life, plus the talents Mayor Du showed, Xinyu’s family finally compromised and accepted Mayor Du. The family even helped Mayor Du a lot in terms of his political career. As a result, Mayor Du became a rising star cultivated by Xinyu’s family in the political circle.
However, the car accident that happened two years ago changed everything. In the fear that Mayor Du would abandon Xinyu, who became a vegetative patient, Xinyu’s family no longer helped Mayor Du and even suppressed him both openly and secretly, which rendered Mayor Du in a difficult situation. If Mayor Du had not been whitehanded and upright that his political enemy failed to get a handle on him, Mayor Du would not have been able to keep his position.
When talking about this, Mayor Du looked helpless with self-mockery. He said, “The idea that couples should get married only when they are coming from families of equal status has taken root deeply in people’s minds. Compared to other big and famous families, Xinyu’s family is very open-minded. However, there are still many people who look down upon me, a man dependent on his wife. They have no idea how much Xinyu and I love each other. As long as Xinyu could wake up, I don’t mind if I’ll lose my position as mayor. In my eyes, she is my everything.”
“Mayor Du, since I’m here, I will certainly try my best to cure Mrs. Du. Let me check her body condition now.”
Ding Ning sighed deeply. From Mayor Du’s experience, he seemed able to see the ugly and sneering faces of those so-called n.o.ble people.
For most of the people, men dependent on their wives were the representatives of those who sought for power and wealth. From this, one could understand what a hard life Mayor Du led these years.
This reminded Ding Ning of Shen Muqing, who had a similar experience with Mayor Du when she was young. Shen Muqing and her lover loved each other deeply but could not be together because their families were of different social ranks. Like a huge chasm, the idea about the marriage between families of equal social rank separated many couples who loved each other very much. It was really a sad and miserable thing.
Love was longer pure in this materialistic society and was mixed up with utilitarianism.
Uniting by marriage, an ancient way to build interest alliances, was actually continued this day among the rich and powerful families. On the contrary, the marriage between ordinary families was purer.
Was this a moral decay or an inexorable trend of society development? Ding Ning did not understand it nor did he wanted to understand it. He felt it hard to breathe as if a huge stone had been placed upon his chest and chocked him.
As a result, full of ressentiment, Ding Ning decided to help Mrs. Du without hesitation. No matter it was for Mayor Du’s lover, Xinyu, for Mayor Du’s career, or for that he wanted to break these disgusting rules, he would try his best to wake Xinyu up.
“Doctor Ding, I’m old enough to be your uncle, so, please don’t stand on ceremony to call me mayor but call me uncle.”
On hearing that Ding Ning was willing to cure his wife, Mayor Du patted Ding Ning on the shoulder excitedly to express his kindness.
“Well, okay, Uncle Du!”
Ding Ning scratched his head and called Mayor Du uncle shyly, which made Mayor Du laugh happily.
Xu Minglu’s eyes were full of jealousy. With the mayor as his uncle, Ding Ning would be regarded in higher status and do whatever he wanted to in Ninghai.
“Uncle, did you meet anything pleasing? Why you laughed so happily?”
The door of the ward was pushed open suddenly, and a crisp and familiar voice sounded.
Ding Ning turned around in astonishment and looked into the eyes of the woman who walked in and smiled brightly. He was stunned, and there was an obscure expression in his eyes.
The woman’s voice stopped all of a sudden, and her smile froze on her face. She stared at Ding Ning, dumbfounded, trying to avoid his eyes. However, she realized that she could move her eyes from him, just like when they first met.
“Gee, uncle, why is this lunatic also here?”
Qiao Zhenyu was really a man who would turn his back on old a.s.sociates. He had just called Ding Ning brother that morning, yet he now called Ding Ning a lunatic.
“Qiao Qiao, Zhenya, what are you doing here?”
Mayor Du did not notice the abnormal reactions of Ding Ning and the girl with a ponytail and spoke to them in surprise. When he heard Qiao Zhenya call Ding Ning a lunatic, he was amused and said, “Zhenya, don’t be so rude. This gentleman is Doctor Ding. I invited him to treat your aunt. Since you are of a similar age, you must have many common topics. Get along well with him.”
“Well, I did want to get along well with him, but he was so aloof that he totally ignored me. Because of him, my car is now in the Accident Handling Brigade.”
Qiao Zhenya was a straightforward man. Upon hearing the mayor’s words, he curled his lips, but soon, he seemed to have thought of something and blurted out in astonishment, “Did you just say that this luna… he is a doctor? You invited him to treat aunt?”
Even if Mayor Du was an obtuse man, he could realize that something was wrong. He asked with a frown, “Yes. What? Did you know him before? What do you mean by saying your car is now in the Accident Handling Brigade? What happened? Tell me more details.”
“Uncle, don’t believe him. He is an abnormal man. Don’t let him treat aunt. The whole thing is…”
Qiao Zhenya told the mayor what had happened between him and Ding Ning with a look of exultation. Sometimes, it was good to be talkative because it could practice one’s speechcraft. The same was true of Qiao Zhenya. When he talked, his words were organized, and the whole thing was told in detail. From time to time, he would even add his conjecture into the story, such as Ding Ning was a lunatic who drooled over his sister’s photos.
Mayor Du was amused upon hearing his words. He reproached both in amus.e.m.e.nt and anger, “Don’t talk nonsense. Doctor Ding is a well-known miracle-working doctor.”
With that, Mayor Du suddenly paused because he finally realized that Ding Ning and Qiao Qiao had stared at each other in silence from the moment they saw each other. It would be strange if he could not spot the unusual atmosphere between Ding Ning and Qiao Qiao.
“Long time no see!”
“How are you doing?”
Ding Ning and Qiao Qiao greeted each other almost at the same time. The tacit understanding between them even made the obtuse Qiao Zhenya sense something wrong. He asked in astonishment, “Sister, do you know this lunatic?”
Seeing that Ding Ning’s face turned grave at the words, Qiao Qiao’s beautiful eyes rolled, and she scolded in a light voice, “Don’t be so rude. He is my old cla.s.smate, not a lunatic.”
“So, he is your cla.s.smate. I thought he was your old lover. No wonder he would be so excited when he saw your photos.”
Qiao Zhenya was suddenly enlightened and muttered. At his words, Qiao Qiao’s face blushed, and she shot an angry glance at Qiao Zhenya, trying to avoid Ding Ning’s eyes.
Ding Ning’s mouth corner twitched. He was a little disappointed upon hearing Qiao Qiao’s introduction of him. Meanwhile, he also felt light-hearted. “Yes, we’re just old cla.s.smates who won’t have many connections in the future. Therefore, I don’t need to take what happened in the past into my heart.” he thought.
Qiao Zhenya suddenly yelled. Everyone was scared and looked at him. They thought he had an attack of his old illness.
Qiao Qiao raised her delicate eyebrows and shot him a glance of tenderness and blame.
However, Qiao Zhenya grabbed Ding Ning’s hands with s.h.i.+ning eyes and said surprisedly, “Hey, bro, so, you’re not a lunatic. That’s great. Since you’re not a lunatic, you can join our track-and-field team.”
“Zhenya, stop joking. Doctor Ding came here to give your aunt treatment. He is a famous doctor with superb medical skills. How would he go to join your track-and-field team?”
Mayor Du had not expected Ding Ning and Qiao Qiao to be old cla.s.smates, and it appeared to him that their relations.h.i.+p was not that simple. However, as an elder, he could not enquire them too much about their personal things. When he heard Qiao Zhenya’s heartless words, his face turned dark, and he could not help but scold him.
Qiao Zhenya curled his lips in disappointment and muttered, “It’s no good to be a doctor but great to be an athlete. When you win a champion, you will bring honor to your country.”
“Shut up, Zhenya!”
Qiao Qiao could not bear to hear him talk anymore. She scolded him with a frown before saying to Ding Ning with an apologetic smile, “Don’t get angry at my brother. He used to blab and is just a naive child.”
“It’s ok, my old cla.s.smate.”
Ding Ning looked calm again and replied with a polite yet distant smile, “I have to treat the patient now, please leave me alone.”
Mayor Du and Xu Minglu left the room quickly. Qiao Qiao’s eyes turned dark. She responded in a light voice and took Qiao Zhenya, who was muttering in a low voice and was unwilling to leave, out of the room.
“Should I call you Bai Qinglian or Qiao Qiao, my old cla.s.smate?”
As Ding Ning’s flat voice sounded, Qiao Qiao’s body froze, but she said nothing, walked out of the room quickly, and closed the door.
The door, just like the door of their heart that would never open, separated them and left them in two different worlds.
Ding Ning’s expression kept changing and stared at the door blankly. The figure who usually wore plain clothes and a simple ponytail with high self-esteem and self-respect in his memory now became so ethereal and unreal.
“Maybe, this is the real her.” Ding Ning thought to himself. She always remained so unapproachable toward others, and from the very beginning, he had never got to understand her. To him, Bai Qinglian was just another woman who existed in his memory.
Ding Ning shook his head and cast all distracting thoughts behind his back. He started to check Xinyu’s body condition.
“Uncle, I don’t mean to criticize you, but does this guy who is so young really know any medical skills?”
“I have never heard of such a thing that the doctor would drive the patient’s families out when treating the patient. Don’t you feel worried to leave aunt alone in the room with that guy?”
“Sister, is your cla.s.smate reliable? Could he be a pervert? Would he act indecently toward aunt when pretending to treat her?”
“Why you looked at me like that, uncle? Why your face turned dark? You didn’t sleep well last night?”