“Do you think… the world we’re in might actually be a novel?” Xu Ling’s intuition told him this hunch, “Could we be just characters written by an author or simply passersby in someone else’s story?”
Xiao Qing sat silently for a moment, then spoke up.
“What if it’s true?” Xiao Qing took a sip of tea, “What do you plan to do about it?”
Xu Ling sighed and lay back on the couch dejectedly.
“Do you know? Almost every time I’m reborn, I’m first bullied, then end up sleepless and eventually, I commit suicide by jumping off a building.” He spoke as if narrating someone else’s story, “Day in and day out, do you know?”
“Afterward, I started looking for ways to escape this life full of pain.”
“Whether it’s transferring schools or dropping out.”
“It’s all a dead end.”
“What about me?” Xiao Qing suddenly interrupted, “What am I?”
“…You are an accident,” Xu Ling expressed firmly. “Originally, any choice I made could have influenced someone else’s decision. So when you chose to take me in, I wasn’t too surprised at the time.”
“But it’s no use. After living through so many times, I’ve known for a long time who Xiao Qing really is.”
“So? What do you want to do?”
“I want to end my cycle of rebirth.”
“You had it before. Have you ever tried living well before? Even just once.”
Xu Ling pinched his brows.
“For me, it’s just a waste of time.”
“Then give it a try.”
“Try to live well.”
“What does living well mean?”
“It’s…” Xiao Qing stopped for a moment, then continued, “after you get home from school, just rest properly and don’t think about other things.”
“Whether it’s chatting with friends, playing games, doing homework—anything that helps distract your mind.”
“You’d make a good psychiatrist, you know that?”
“Thank you, I know.”
Xiao Qing gently placed his teacup down, making a faint clinking sound.
“Anyway, give it a try with me.”
“It won’t hurt to try this one time, right?”