Chapter 368: The Vow in the Storm
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
His gaze looked like he was about to swallow her alive. His lips narrowed into a thin line as he watched her coughing without a word.
The more anxious Xia Ling became as she questioned him, the worse his expression became. When the emergency team reached them, carrying the empty stretcher, he coldly shifted to the side to make space for them.
Xia Ling grabbed onto the emergency personnel closest to her, like she was drowning, and asked again, “Do you know how Li Lei is? Tell me… please tell me!”
“Are you referring to the person that the other helicopter went to save? Don’t worry, I’ll ask through the intercom later…”
“Let me see who dares to tell her a single thing about him!” Pei Ziheng burst out in anger.
Everyone was silent.
The person Xia Ling was talking to gave her an apologetic look and did not dare say another word.
Xia Ling was carried onto the helicopter in a state of confusion, her body held down by the makeshift splint that was created, unable to move or turn her head, and could only stare up at the empty ceiling. She continued to cry out: “Pei Ziheng, where are you? Tell me… tell me about Li Lei…”
She kept repeating until her voice was hoarse.
The helicopter took to the air with a loud rumbling of the engines.
She heard snippets from someone reporting to Pei Ziheng from the side. “Unconscious…”, “Li Lei…”.
Random words floated to her ears.
Xia Ling struggled to hear what they were saying, but the rumbling of the helicopter engine was too loud, and she could not make out the words clearly. Pei Ziheng seemed to have given some instructions to the emergency personnel who responded, “Yes.” Then, there was silence.
“Pei Ziheng…” She coughed and mumbled. “Tell me…”
He finally walked over and bent over to speak to her. “Li Lei is alive.”
She was overjoyed and looked at him intently.
There was no expression on Pei Ziheng’s face. “However, the situation isn’t good. He’s unconscious… his vital signs are weak. The emergency team suspects that there is significant internal bleeding, and he needs emergency treatment.”
Xia Ling’s became anxious again. “Save him!”
“I can do that… However, Xia Ling…” Pei Ziheng stared at her and said slowly one word at a time. “How can you guarantee that once I save him, you’re not going to go back to his side?”
She opened her eyes wide in shock and shuddered as she thought about how cruel Pei Ziheng could be.
“You…” She shut her eyes, before saying bitterly, “I’m already here in your hands. How could I possibly escape?” The cold and massive bungalow appeared in her head, the one that was full of surveillance cameras, and the gold shackles…
Her greatest nightmare.
Unexpectedly, he said, “I can promise not to lock you up.”
Xia Ling was stunned again. What was he playing at?
“You can continue singing and doing what you like. Just like before, before that incident transpired…” His voice became gentle. “Xiao Ling, stop being so stubborn… We can live a good life together.”
So, in his eyes, all that happened because she was being stubborn?!
She felt pain in her chest, as the memories of the past flashed through her mind, making her breathless.
Seeing that she was not saying anything, Pei Ziheng continued, “Make a death vow now, swearing that you will not leave me.”
“If I refuse?”
“That bungalow has been empty for two years… Everything in it is still the same. It will not be any trouble at all to let you live there again.”
This threat was simple but effective.
“Okay, I’ll make the vow…” She said in a weak voice. “I… Xia Ling… Ye Xingling in this life… vow that I will not leave Pei Ziheng, or else I will be struck down by lightning… mmm…”
Pei Ziheng covered her mouth with his hand.
Xia Ling looked up at him confused. His expression was so dark it was terrifying.
“Xia Ling…” He said coldly. “Don’t even think of using death to escape again. I will not give you a second chance at that. No one will be able to kill you. This vow doesn’t count.”
When she was uttering the vow, she did not think too much about it. Now that he mentioned it, being struck by lightning was indeed a way out of this mess. Death was such a high price to pay. If she weren’t pushed to the corner, why would she even attempt that? However… she looked at the furious man in front of her now, and terror entered her heart. She could not fathom what living hell awaited her this time. Perhaps… suicide wasn’t such a bad idea…
“Xia Ling.” He seemed to read her mind and reached out to grip her chin, lifting it towards him. “You have to make two vows. Firstly, you will not commit suicide. Secondly, you will not leave. Swearing on your own life will not cut it… I want you to swear on Li Lei’s life. If you break your vow, I will make sure that he dies a terrible death!”
How could she swear on Li Lei’s life?!
Xia Ling shook her head with vehemence and struggled to free herself from his grip. No, she was not going to make this vow!
“You’re not going to make the vow?” He sighed and released his grip on her slowly. “Li Lei is still on the other helicopter right now. What do you think will happen if the emergency treatment fails?”
“You monster!” She understood the veiled threat in his words and shouted out in despair. “The Li family is the underworld! If anything were to happen to Li Lei, they are not going to let you go!”
Pei Ziheng smiled at her as if she were an ignorant kid. “I know the Li family is the underworld. I also know that Li Lei is the grandnephew of the mafia godfather. But, I also know…” He paused. “There is another family that the underworld is unable to touch in this country. A family that can do absolutely anything they want. That family’s name is Pei.”
He coaxed her patiently, like how he did when he was teaching her to read and write. “Of course, if I were to kill Li Lei out in the open, there would definitely be trouble. However, given his current state… if he died while we were administering emergency aid… with what reason will they be able to find fault with me?”
“Why would they need a reason to make you pay?!” Xia Ling was swayed by his words, but she still argued back.
Pei Ziheng smiled again, this time even wider than before. “Xiao Ling, singing still suits you. As for these mind games…” He looked down at her, his eyes overflowing with a doting expression. “Shall we make a bet on this? If Li Lei were to die over here, which force out there will be able to touch me? Do you think it will his good brother Li Feng… or that mafia gang?”
“You!” Xia Ling was jumping with anger inside, and her chest heaved. “Pei Ziheng, do you think making me vow on his life will do anything at all?! I don’t believe this! Don’t believe it at all!”
“Your reincarnation…” He stared down at her as if he were looking right into her soul. “God and spirits… How could you not believe it?”
He struck her right where it hurt. Yes, how could she possibly not believe it?
What happened to her was out of this world. Reincarnation, Nirvana, being a jinx, having a preceptor brother. It was as if there were a higher being controlling all of this. Even if the whole world could not care less about this spiritual hullaballoo, she was one that could not ignore it.
She remembered something she had said jokingly many, many years ago. “Ziheng, if one day you don’t love me anymore, I’ll jump down from up here and make you regret for the rest of your life.”
Then, she had pointed to the tall stage, while flashing him a big smile.
Making her words come true. Once was more than enough.