Wang Shenglong’s father observed Chen Ge and Doctor Gao out of the corner of his eyes. He knew how unusual his son looked, and whenever someone judged his child with a weird gaze, there was an indescribable pain in his heart. However, this time was different. Both Doctor Gao and Chen Ge acted normally.
“Exercise can help stave away heart problems and release stress. Try not to keep him cooped up at home.” Doctor Gao removed his shoes and stepped into the room. He sat down beside Wang Shenglong without a trace of disgust or condescension. Wang Shenglong did not show fear at Doctor Gao’s approach; if anything, it felt like he wanted the company.
He wiggled his large body with difficulty like he was trying his best to show his welcome. Wang Shenglong and Doctor Gao shared a peaceful relationship, but when Chen Ge prepared to enter the bedroom, everything changed.
He followed Doctor Gao and removed his shoes, but when he stepped into the bedroom, the smiling Wang Shenglong suddenly stopped. His expression turned serious. He glared at Chen Ge, and it felt like he was a lion who felt some other dangerous beast entering his territory.
Doctor Gao, who was sat beside Wang Shenglong, felt this most directly. He looked at Chen Ge with confusion. Chen Ge himself felt this. Wang Shenglong’s reaction was abnormal to his eyes.
What did the man sense on me? Is it the residual smell of the stray cat, or can the monster on him sense the presence of Zhang Ya? Chen Ge stopped moving and took a seat further away from Wang Shenglong.
“Perhaps it’s the sudden influx of strangers that has unsettled him.” Doctor Gao tried to smooth over the situation and started chatting with Wang Shenglong. He was a professional. He did not bring up anything related to mental disease. It felt like he was merely chatting with a friend, and Wang Shenglong slowly relaxed, using the board to respond to Doctor Gao’s occasional questions.
Chen Ge did not say a word, and he focused fully on listening. Doctor Gao was tactful with his speech. It might have seemed like small talk, but unconsciously, he had drawn out many secrets from Wang Shenglong, including the darkest memory from his childhood and his daily habits as well as his history with doctors.
The conversation continued for forty minutes, and the longer the conversation went on, the more Doctor Gao felt this was not a psychological patient. Wang Shenglong’s mind was clear and bright. He was willing to communicate with others and showed desire to receive treatment. Listening to their conversation, Wang Shenglong’s family was gratified. Despite his looks, they knew Wang Shenglong was a kind and harmless child.
After the conversation ended, Doctor Gao exited the bedroom. He pulled Wang Shenglong’s father to the side to ask, “The child acts very normally. It doesn’t seem like he is tormented by psychological illness. I can’t help but suspect he is hiding something from me.”
Mental patients, for the most parts, were like normal human beings. It was only when their illness acted up that they would commit actions that normal people would not understand.
“The child has never hurt anyone and has not done anything weird. Other than the refusal to speak and move, he is just like a normal person.” Wang Shenglong’s father fetched a glass of water for Doctor Gao.
When Doctor Gao conversed with Wang Shenglong, the latter had told him about the childhood nightmare. “A normal child suddenly lost his power to speak, could the story he was telling be real?”
Wang Shenglong’s father shook his head with a sigh. “We have no idea whether it’s real or not. We’ve seen so many doctors, but none of them could confirm or deny it.”
“Whether it’s real or not is not that important. The important part is even after so many years, Shenglong can still recount it in such detail; this means that the incident has impacted him greatly. As long as we can solve this problem, he should be able to regain the ability to speak.”
“But if this incident is completely made up, how are we supposed to help him solve it?” Wang Hailong asked.
“Even if it is fictional, every single detail in it has a real meaning to Shenglong, just like how dreams often reflect real life.” Doctor Gao took out his phone to show that he had recorded his conversation with Wang Shenglong. “We cannot take everything at a surface level. Temporarily, I cannot promise you anything, but I will try my best.”
“Doctor Gao, as long as you can cure Shenglong…”
“I don’t have much confidence either. After all, his language power must have regressed since he hasn’t spoken for so many years.” Doctor Gao looked back into the bedroom. “But the most stressing issue is not his psychological problem but his physical issue. He is seriously overweight, and this puts his life in danger.”
“We have talked to him about this, but he dislikes exercise. He prefers to just stay inside his bedroom. He doesn’t even want to move out to the living room.” Wang Shenglong’s father was also frustrated.
“Try to communicate with him and tell him that this is normal to change his worldview and perspective. Then his action might change.”
Doctor Gao discussed the situation with Wang Shenglong’s family outside the bedroom. Inside the bedroom, Chen Ge sat across from Wang Shenglong. By then, the smile on Wang Shenglong’s face had disappeared. His beady eyes that almost disappeared among his folds of fat narrowed into slits as he studied Chen Ge.
“Wang Shenglong, I want to help you, so I hope you will stop hiding things from me.” Chen Ge maintained a safe distance from Wang Shenglong. The man was very cautious of Chen Ge, and Chen Ge refused to get any closer because of the stench that came off the man. However, it appeared like only Chen Ge could smell it.
Grabbing the board, Wang Shenglong wrote, “I’m not hiding anything; I’ve told you everything.”
“You know whether that is true or not.” Chen Ge lowered his voice. “Their focus is on why you aren’t talking, but I’m different. I’m more curious about the other memory that you most detest. What happened to you when you were inside the Third Sick Hall?”
The mention of the Third Sick Hall caused the flesh on Wang Shenglong’s face to shake violently. His chubby hands clenched into fist, and his body shook unevenly.
“Your aversion to doctors occurred after you left the Third Sick Hall, so what happened to you inside that hospital?” Chen Ge held Wang Shenglong’s fists. “You are a normal person, but you are under the threat of something abnormal. Tell me the truth, I can help you.”
Wang Shenglong rejected Chen Ge’s offer. He suddenly went berserk and shoved Chen Ge away with powerful force.
Catching his breath, Wang Shenglong glared at Chen Ge. After a long time, he wrote this down on the board.
“We have both transformed into monsters. Instead of worrying about me, you’d better worry about yourself.”