When He Zhou returned to the banquet hall, He Xiaoqing immediately came over and whispered to him, "Where did you go in such a hurry just now? Couldn’t you have given me a heads up?”
He Zhou said, "I took care of some things. Why, were you looking for me or something?"
He Xiaoqing looked around before lowering her voice, "Let me tell you something, but don't get too worked up."
"Don't get too worked up."
"I won’t. Say it already.”
"I just heard that Qiu...Qiu Yanzhi came."
He Zhou: "......"
He Xiaoqing looked saddened. "Ge, I know your mind must be in turmoil now, but it’s our grandpa’s birthday. You mustn't do anything stupid! You have to endure even if you can’t endure anymore!”
"Oh." He Zhou replied.
He Xiaoqing suddenly saw something that made her expression change slightly. She hurriedly said to He Zhou, "The man in the gray suit coming over is our uncle's son. You call him Lingxiang-ge."
Before He Zhou could figure out the meaning of He Xiaoqing's words, the man greeted him and clinked glasses with He Zhou.
"Lingxiang-ge." He Zhou called out.
The man smiled. His tone dripped with false familiarity, "You've been back to China for so long, why haven’t you gotten in touch with your Ge? Haven’t seen you in a few years. Have you lost some weight?”
Fortunately, this man wasn’t very close with Qin He. The few minutes of conversation passed smoothly with He Xiaoqing occasional interjections.
After the man left, He Xiaoqing let out a sigh of relief.
He Xiaoqing emptied her glass and put it back on a tray. She complained under her breath as she wiped her mouth with a tissue, "Lucky we got through that. I told Grandpa that you aren’t ready for this kind of event in your current condition, but he insisted that you come.”
He Zhou continued to test the waters without giving himself away, "I think my condition now isn’t bad."
"What do you mean, ‘not bad’?" He Xiaoqing muttered, "You don’t even know the names of most of the people here. Is that what you call ‘not bad’? Have you forgotten how you didn’t even recognize Grandpa and I when you woke up?"
...Qin He has amnesia?
He Zhou reviewed the information he had looked up on the internet, but there was nothing mentioning Qin He's memory loss. The He family seemed keen to keep this fact hidden.
He Zhou sipped at his wine, his expression casual. "But I can still recognize Qiu Yanzhi."
He Xiaoqing gave him a look. "No you didn’t. You only vaguely remembered him at first. It wasn’t until I recounted some things that happened to you that you remembered.
He Zhou was about to ask something else when He Pingfeng came over.
He Pingfeng was older, more experienced, and as shrewd as an old fox. He Zhou didn't dare to test him like he tested He Xiaoqing, so he swallowed the questions he wanted to ask back into his throat.
It was already past midnight when He Zhou came back.
Even though he hated Qin He's body, He Zhou still had to go to the bathroom and take a shower to wash away the smell of alcohol on him.
After coming out in his bathrobe, He Zhou wiped his hair while going to the cabinet to get his pajamas. He was too busy thinking about Qin He's amnesia to pay attention, resulting in his pajamas slipping off the hangar onto the ground.
When He Zhou squatted down to pick up the pajamas, he suddenly found a large glass jar hidden in the corner of the closet.
In the jar were various kinds of candies.
Somehow, He Zhou subconsciously felt that this candy was prepared by Qin He for Qiu Yanzhi.
...Why does Qin He, like Qiu Yanzhi, always hide things in the cabinet?
He Zhou was a little angry, but his mood became better after opening the lid and looking at the types of candies inside.
So what if you hid so many candies for Qiu Yanzhi?
None of these are the fruit candies Qiu Yanzhi liked the most.
He Zhou was about to put the lid back on when he happened to see a date on a chocolate wrapper.
He frowned, picked up the chocolate, and looked at the date again.
It was produced 4 years ago -- meaning it had already expired.
He Zhou vaguely felt that something wasn’t right here.
Although this jar of candy was placed in the corner of the cabinet, it was very clean and had obviously been cleaned regularly by the cleaning staff.
And the candies inside this jar seemed to be high-end brands of many varieties. The person who assembled this obviously meant for it to be a gift that could be given out at any time.
Any way you look at it, this jar of candy should not have been allowed to expire.
Unless, of course, the owner of the jar of candy didn’t touch it for three or four years.
Combining what he heard at the party today, namely how Qin He lost his memories, and what the secretary said about him recently being discharged from the hospital...
In addition, that ‘Lingxiang-ge’ said today that he hasn’t seen Qin He for several years, meaning he must have been hospitalized for quite a long time.
He Zhou moved his arm. Perhaps because of the altercation with Fei Sihao today, his arm was still a little sore even now. A sign of just how weak the body he was in was.
Not to mention the wheelchair and crutches he had seen in the gym...
He Zhou felt more and more that Qin He's body's current state was caused by being bed bound for several years. His muscles atrophying would explain why he still hasn’t recovered.
He Zhou fumbled with the date on the chocolate and came to some vague conclusions.
Qin He had an accident that landed him in the hospital for three or four years, most likely in a comatose state.
In other words, Qin He might have been a vegetable for three or four years.
He Zhou sensed a faint connection here, but he couldn’t connect the dots just yet.
As he put the chocolate back into the jar, his fingertips unexpectedly touched something cold.
He Zhou felt for the object and took it out. It was a small golden key.
The locked door in this house suddenly came to He Zhou.
He hesitated for a moment before standing up with the key in hand and going there.
With a gentle twist of the inserted key, the door opened with a click.
The moment He Zhou opened the door, his body stiffened.
The walls were all covered with dense layers of photos.
Photos of Qiu Yanzhi.
When He Zhou looked closer, he found that the photos were all from the last few months.
Qiu Yanzhi crying in the hospital, eating, and attending rehab…
Even his reunion with Qiu Yanzhi in the street, them hugging, going shopping, strolling around hand in hand, meeting, and having fun at the amusement park.
Everything was photographed and hung on these walls.
Every single photo was taken secretly.
He Zhou felt goosebumps rise all over his body as he continued to take it all in.
Was Qin He some sort of perverted stalker?!
What He Zhou found strange was how his reaction differed when he came across the photo album underneath the pillow. The shots Qin He had taken of Qiu Yanzhi along and the two of them smiling together made him very jealous, but these secretly taken photos only made him sick to his stomach.
Every one of the countless photos spread across the walls was taken from a hidden, dim location. Each photo only served to highlight how perverted and voyeuristic the person who had them taken was. It sent chills down He Zhou’s spine.
The moment He Zhou reached out and tore off the photos, his mind suddenly flashed back to the one in the game who filled Qiu Yanzhi's apartment with hidden cameras, Ye Hongyuan.