Arc 6: Interstellar Art Soldiers Chapter 14
Tao Yuan and Zuo Lei returned to the room.
“Ke Ning is your ex-boyfriend?” Zuo Lei asked with certainty.
“Well, you truly deserve to be the youngest captain of the Special Operations Team. Your intuition is impressive. I hadn’t said anything, and you already guessed it,” Tao Yuan flattered him with an innocent look.
“Why didn’t you tell me earlier?”
“I was worried that if you knew I had dated your nephew, you might feel uneasy about our relationship. We shouldn’t be together with that kind of connection,” Tao Yuan explained. “Besides, our relationship was not widely known. We were in an instructor-student relationship at the time, and it ended before it became public. In both his heart and mine, we never really considered it a proper relationship.”
“Then what was he doing just now? I heard he already has a partner. Why did he come to find you?” Zuo Lei wasn’t accusing him but genuinely puzzled.
Tao Yuan paused for a moment to organize his thoughts and then briefly explained the situation to Zuo Lei, focusing on the main points.
“So, he wants to get back together with you?” Zuo Lei asked.
“From the way he acted, it seems like that’s what he wants,” Tao Yuan replied.
“So, what’s your thought on this?” Zuo Lei didn’t care whether their breakup was due to a misunderstanding or how much Ke Ning was suffering. He only wanted to know Tao Yuan’s feelings.
“My thought is that no matter if I’m with you or not, I will never get back together with him,” Tao Yuan said seriously and firmly. “Now that I’m with you, it’s even more impossible to reconcile with him. My personality is such that I will never go back to an old relationship. Once we break up, no matter the reason, it means the relationship couldn’t withstand the test and is not worth getting back into.”
“What if he suddenly gets seriously ill and doesn’t have much time left, and he wants you to accompany him in his last days? Would you agree?” Zuo Lei asked.
“No.” Tao Yuan answered without hesitation. “Even if it’s just for a day or two, I wouldn’t agree. I might seem cold-blooded and ruthless, and I do have my own quirks when it comes to handling emotions. I believe anything can be given away, but not emotions. If he has little time left, and he wants me to accompany him, I would never be able to do that. Especially when I already have you as my partner, I absolutely couldn’t do something that would be no different from betraying you.”
After hearing Tao Yuan’s words, Zuo Lei inexplicably felt relieved. He had never been upset about the past relationship that had already happened.But when it came to Tao Yuan, even if nothing had happened, he couldn’t help but worry. The fear of losing Tao Yuan made him panic like he never did before.
Zuo Lei hugged Tao Yuan tightly and said, “You must remember what you just said. No matter the reason, if you want to break up with me, it will drive me crazy. I can’t bear even a day without you.”
“Don’t worry, as long as you don’t mention breaking up, I won’t do it,” Tao Yuan replied, resting his face on Zuo Lei’s shoulder. Then he asked, “What if it’s your ex-lover who wants to get back together with you? Would you agree?”
“I won’t,” Zuo Lei replied just as resolutely, “I’ve never loved anyone as much as I love you. Losing you would be more painful than having my heart ripped out. No matter what happens, no one can make me break up with you.”
Ke Ning went to the Chief Military Law Officer to receive his punishment. Considering that his offense wasn’t too severe, the officer gave him a verbal warning and confined him to a cell for two days without food or water. He also advised Ke Ning not to repeat such actions as it could seriously impact his future. Even with his family background, a negative record would make promotions difficult.
Ke Ning didn’t expect that Tao Yuan was now in a relationship with Zuo Lei, and the news hit him hard. Zuo Lei wasn’t just a senior officer to him. He was an unattainable figure. The thought of competing with Zuo Lei for their love crushed his confidence, and he felt defeated.
But he couldn’t bear to give up just like that. He believed that he and Luo Xi had fallen in love first, and their breakup was only because of Erman’s scheming. He saw himself as an innocent victim and felt deserving of forgiveness. Most importantly, even though he knew Tao Yuan was now with Zuo Lei, his love for him didn’t diminish at all. He genuinely loved him and couldn’t bring himself to let go.
The team leaders under Zuo Lei were excited after leaving the scene. Seeing how calm Yi Bin was, they assumed he must have known about the situation beforehand and tried to get information from him. But Yi Bin asked them not to discuss this matter with others. Hhe believed that if Zuo Lei and Tao Yuan hadn’t gone public with their relationship, there must be a reason behind it.
As they had arrived at the Border Star Constellations, the literary soldiers had to begin their performances for the stationed soldiers. Each team had to perform at a specific base, and the schedule was already set. So, the busy life of the literary soldiers had begun.
For over twenty consecutive days, they traveled to different planets for performances. Tao Yuan’s fan base and admirers were growing at an astonishing rate. The soldiers went crazy sending him gifts, and all the top-ranking videos in the past year were his performance videos. The most popular one was the Red and White Roses performance, and the soldiers strongly demanded to see more of these performances.
So, beyond the original planned schedule, Tao Yuan’s team performed several more large-scale musicals of Red and White Roses. In the blink of an eye, a month had passed, and the literary soldiers also got some time off to rest and relax.
The Imperial Supply Fleet’s ships also arrived at the border star cluster. Their main supplies consisted of military weapons and equipment.
The Lion Fleet came to assist in border defense this time, and the highest commander of the fleet was Deputy Captain Wei Ni De 1, who was Zuo Lei’s older brother by over twenty years. Wei Ni De was good friends with the Vice Captain of the supply fleet, Genadon 2. And when Zuo Lei was still a new recruit, Genadon was his instructor, and only in recent years, he got promoted to Vice Captain of the supply fleet.
So, Genadon arrived, and Wei Ni De, along with Zuo Lei and some other officers, personally went to welcome him. They all planned to have a meal together.
But it was only at the dinner table that Zuo Lei learned that Dean was also present. Currently, he was one of Genadon’s clerks.
At the beginning of the meal, Genadon kept bringing up old stories and subtly hinted at wanting to match Zuo Lei and Dean together, even though he didn’t say it outright. It was very obvious
When Genadon finished speaking, Zuo Lei spoke up, “After this assistance mission is over, I’ll be getting married. If the Instructor is free, I’d like to invite the Instructor to attend my wedding.”
“Married?” Genadon asked in surprise, “You haven’t been in a relationship these years. Why do you suddenly want to get married?”
“I am in a relationship. It’s just that it hasn’t been made public,” Zuo Lei replied.
“Then your fiancé is…”
“It’s Luo Xi, the youngest son of Durst Family,” Wei Ni De answered for Zuo Lei.
“The youngest son of Senator Durst?” Genadon looked at Wei Ni De and asked.
“Yes,” Wei Ni De nodded.
Genadon thought for a while and said to Zuo Lei, “Did your mother arrange this? Although your families are well-matched, love is the most important thing in marriage. Living together as two people who don’t love each other, wouldn’t that be torturous for both?”
“My mother approves of him, and I love him very much too. It was me who proposed marriage to him. This is the first time I’ve loved someone so deeply, and I don’t want to miss him. That’s why I want to marry him as soon as possible,” Zuo Lei said seriously.
After hearing Zuo Lei’s words, Genadon 3 quickly glanced at Dean, unsure of what to say. Zuo Lei had made it clear that he loves and wanted to marry Luo Xi, and his mother was also pleased with the arrangement. What else could Genadon say? He had brought Dean along with the intention of matching them together, and if it didn’t work out, he wouldn’t fulfill his promise to his brother.
Dean seemed rather calm and smiled at Zuo Lei, saying, “Congratulations.”
“Thank you,” Zuo Lei nodded.
Afterwards, the group continued to eat, drink, and talk about other things. Two hours later, they went their separate ways.
Although Genadon didn’t bring up any more matchmaking comments afterward, he hadn’t given up on the idea. He planned to wait for the right moment to create opportunities for them to reconcile.
After Erman learned that his brother arrived, he felt both happy and worried. After getting permission from his unit, he could go to the main ship of the supply fleet to see his brother.
“Brother!” Erman hugged Dean excitedly as who opened the door for him.
“Come in,” Dean patted his back.
“It’s been so long since we last met. I really missed you,” Erman said.
“I missed you too. Even though we often use video projection using a communicator, I still wanted to see you in person,” Dean poured him a glass of water, sat next to him, and patted his head, asking, “How are you getting along with Ke Ning? Is your relationship stable?”
“We… We broke up,” Erman said, lowering his head.
“Broke up?” Dean was taken aback. “Why did you break up?”
“He said he still loves Luo Xi in his heart, and being together with me would cause both of us pain. So, he decided to break up with me. I told him about the incident with the drugged drink and apologized to him,” Erman spoke calmly, but he still felt a pang in his heart.
“I see,” Dean said. “It’s probably for the best. A relationship built on deceitful means is unlikely to have a good outcome. Ending it earlier will allow both of you to find relief. Erman, don’t do such things again in the future or there will be consequences.”
“I won’t do it again. I will find someone who truly loves me,” Erman said, tears welling up in his eyes.
“That’s the right attitude,” Dean said, patting his head.
After learning about Erman’s past actions, Dean was very angry and scolded him. However, Erman tearfully begged him, and he could only help him conceal the truth because Erman was his only younger brother and the only family he had left. Their parents passed away early and left them a considerable inheritance, making them free from worrying about food and clothing for the rest of their lives. Erman was practically raised by Dean, so he depended on and respected him deeply.
“Brother, there’s one more thing… About Brother Zuo Lei,” Erman hesitated, not knowing how to express it.
“You should call him Major General Zuo Lei. We broke up several years ago, so it’s not appropriate to call him like that.”
In general, a younger brother should address his brother’s lover or partner as “brother.”
“Major General… Major General Zuo Lei, he…”
“He’s getting married, right? I already know,” Dean calmly replied.
“Married?! Is he getting married?!” Erman exclaimed in shock.
“What? Isn’t that what you were going to tell me?” Dean looked puzzled.
“I only knew they were dating. I had no idea he was going to marry Luo Xi,” Erman said in a panic.
“Luo Xi?” Dean suddenly found the name familiar. “The person Major General Zuo Lei is going to marry is named Luo Xi, and the person Ke Ning still loves is also named Luo Xi. Could they be the same person?”
“It’s the same person,” Erman said, almost on the verge of tears. “What should we do? Major General Zuo Lei is going to marry Luo Xi. Brother, what are you going to do?!”
“What should I do?” Dean replied. “We’ve been broken up for so long. Isn’t it normal that he’s found new love and is getting married. Just because he’s getting married doesn’t mean I can’t go on with my life.”
“Brother, don’t pretend to be strong in front of me. I know you’ve always loved General Zuo Lei in your heart. It must have been hard for you to become single again, and you probably want to be with him again, right? I thought Major General Zuo Lei didn’t date anyone for years because he was waiting for you, but I didn’t expect him to get married. You should talk to him and explain why you broke up. He will surely understand,” Erman urged.
“He has always known the reason for our breakup, and I asked him if he would wait for me. He said…” Dean closed his eyes, holding back the pain in his heart, and continued, “He said that once it’s over, it’s over. Since I’ve made up my mind to break up with him, he won’t wait for me.”
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- 威尼德 Wēi ní dé
- 格纳顿 Gé nà dùn
- Raws says Wei Ni De, but I’m pretty sure this is a typo since Genadon’s brother is the ex husband of Dean