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百年合欢

来源:飞魔幻飞魔幻 19年2月号A作者:飞言情

连诚总记得自己头一回见沈婉的时候​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。那时邓将军新丧,连诚随父吊唁时,见到了一袭素白的沈婉​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

麻衣披身,很典型的孀妇打扮,大概是多日劳累,沈婉的脸白得像张纸,只有通红的眼圈有些颜色,只让人觉得憔悴,也不见得添了好看​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

“二爷​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”沈婉屈膝见礼,再没话可说,只好搜肠刮肚蹦出一句,“您坐​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连先生颇不见外,拣了主位坐下,顺手递了杯茶给沈婉,很有喧宾夺主的意思​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉接也不是,不接也不是,半晌才道:“不敢劳动二爷​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

便是不肯接了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连先生面色不虞,转而问道:“这几日替愚弟操持丧事,沈夫人定是辛苦了吧?”

沈婉强笑了一下,垂着头不作答​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。一旁有在邓府伺候久了的嬷嬷悄悄拧了她一下,咬着耳朵道:“夫人,二爷问你话呢​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉逼不得已,只道:“不辛苦​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

侍立在连先生一侧的连诚不由得皱了皱眉​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他曾听过这女子的二三事,知她是邓将军新娶的填房,虽说身份值不上这位子,但好歹是明媒正娶的邓夫人,父亲又是拿人当客来待,又是张口喊人“沈夫人”,多少有些不厚道​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

但连诚只敢皱眉,因为连先生待他并不好,若他敢为这位邓夫人说话,指不定要遭到怎样的收拾​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

接下来的对话便没那么难堪了,沈婉既已屈从,自然不好再逼,二人你来我往说了几句,竟有些其乐融融的错觉​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

说到邓将军的遗产分配时,沈婉甚至从善如流道:“二爷是邓爷的义兄,邓爷的产业自是应由二爷打理的​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连先生笑得眼睛眯成一条缝,伪善地推让了几句,便从沈婉手里将一干房契账目全收了过来​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚撇了撇嘴,他虽早知道父亲此来是为这些钱,真看见这场面,还是觉得难言的不舒服​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

用过晚饭,连先生不便再留,临走时对沈婉道:“沈夫人女儿之身,独自操办白事定有诸多不顺,不若我便将我这诚哥儿留给你,好歹帮扶帮扶​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚没料到还有这么一出,有些不快​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。沈婉大概更没料到,小心翼翼地道:“怎敢劳动诚少爷​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连先生“哈哈”一笑道:“这孩子向来也不中用,作个添头罢了,沈夫人尽管使唤,不必客气​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”又道,“我与邓铭多年的交情了,他又无子,过几日百事定了,干脆把诚哥儿过继给你家,也省得外头那些闲人碎嘴,说我这个老哥哥对弟妹照顾不周​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

说罢,也不由沈婉推拒、连诚抗议,径直乘黄包车走了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉跳脚,拎着麻衣角一路追到巷口,终究没追住,懊丧着脸回来,诚惶诚恐地道:“诚少爷今日好歹住下,我让嬷嬷给你备一间厢房​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚看她迈着小步子一路走上长廊,忽然大声道:“邓婶娘,你不必介怀,反正连预这个人,是出了名的贪财好色喜欢卖儿子!”

沈婉惊得回头看他,恨不得用眼神捂住这小子的嘴,连诚却觉得无比快意:

连预是他父亲,他恨他十八年,今天这恨意终于喷薄而出,像一团野火,烧得熊熊腾飞​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连预好色,人尽皆知​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他年轻的时候便讨了好几房妻妾,后来连家太爷归了西,更是肆无忌惮,多子多福羡煞了旁人​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

人丁多了自然就不稀罕,连诚头上有三个哥哥一个姐姐,全被连预给了人​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

“他的手段倒是高明,这家给一个那家给一个,笼络关系,嗬!真没白当‘政客’​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”连诚一边不甚熟练地剥着莲子,一边嘲讽道​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉听了直乐:“没想到连二爷……”

话说了一半忽然意识到不妥,恐怕隔墙有耳,于是把又把嘴紧紧闭上​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚却不肯顾忌,接着道:“没想到连二爷是这么个东西吧?也是,婉姐姐跟着邓叔父,自然听不到这些糟心事​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

自打被连预留下,连诚一直不肯叫沈婉婶娘​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他虽知道沈婉需要这个名分作慰藉,但他总怕“婶娘”叫多了,一不小心就真成了“娘”,于是软磨硬泡,跟沈婉讨了个“婉姐姐”的叫法​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

倒也合适,沈婉本也没比他大多少​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉笑道:“是啊,邓爷宽厚,又不嫌我出身低贱,我跟了他六年,从没遭过一分罪​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”又转为哀戚,“说来也是我福薄,邓爷去得这样早​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚没话好说,他其实早听过这位沈婉姑娘的事迹,早些年被卖到堂子里,听说跟过一个姓李的什么部长,还生了个孩子,又不知怎么被人家赶出了家门,沦落回堂子里​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。落魄了几年又不知怎么认识了刚没了夫人的邓铭将军,没名没分六年,好不容易扶正,邓爷又撒手人寰了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚可怜这个命运坎坷的女人,像可怜他自己一样​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

但他总也想不到什么话来安慰她,他本就没资格安慰她,他甚至连自己都安慰不了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

邓将军的丧事轰轰烈烈办了半个月,终于事毕​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。过继的事连预提了几次,都被连诚当众下了脸,恼羞成怒,干脆再也不提​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

当然他也没提让连诚回连家,连诚也随遇而安,没名没分地住在邓府,甚至还有点乐哉乐哉的意思​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉劝过他好几回,他都不在意地道:“反正我娘早死了,连家也就是个安乐窝,现在邓府更安乐,我何必回去讨没趣呢​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

话说如此说,其实邓府也并不怎么安乐——沈婉总以为邓爷在,不愁吃穿,从没想过攒一分银子,而今田契房契都被连预搜刮走,日子过得拮据艰难,不得已辞了大半佣人,只留下一个分外能干的秦妈帮佣​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

那些人被辞退的时候大多脸色难看,有脾性不好的已经开始骂骂咧咧,说什么“早就知道堂子里出来的女人败家,才几天就把邓爷留的票子全烧完了”云云​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚听了啐的一口喷在他们脸上,骂道:“要不是王八把钱掠走了,邓夫人能这样做?呸!亏得邓爷和邓夫人都待你们这样好!”

有人不服他,梗着脖子要和他打架​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚冷笑一声,抡起一只花锄砸穿了一个人的脚​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。再没人敢上来惹他,人们一拥而散出门​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。不到半天,连家诚哥儿的悍名便传遍了整个四九城​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉听了忧心忡忡地来劝他:“别这么暴戾,不好​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚不作声,沈婉气得拧他:“婶娘跟你说话呢,听到没有!”

当然听到了,连诚抬起头看着沈婉,想:这是第一个劝自己别犯浑的人,他想让她多劝几句,自然不能这么快就应​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉却以为他死不悔改,劈手抽了他一嘴巴​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚没躲,仍看着沈婉,甚至还笑了一下​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。笑过之后,他忽然揽住沈婉的腰:“婉姐姐,你可真像我娘​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉挣扎了一下,忽然明白,定定地站住,半晌后,摸了摸连诚的头发:“诚少爷,何必呢?”

连诚自打经沈婉一顿教训,待人接物也温和了许多,对沈婉更是表现出一种异乎寻常的依恋,几乎是寸步不离​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

秦妈见了,语重心长地道:“诚少爷,这可不合规矩,夫人是孀妇,你是外男,可走不得这么近!”

连诚才懒得理她,左耳进右耳出,仍黏着沈婉​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉喜欢合欢花,年前嫁进邓府时,邓爷专门从外头移了一株在府里,盛夏时如亭亭华盖,人坐在树下,合欢花簌簌落满肩​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

没事做的时候,沈婉常在树下坐着,一坐便是一天,约莫在思念亡夫​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。有时给连诚讲起她当年的故事,话里总带着一股未亡人的悲悯​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

其实不完全是想邓爷,连诚知道,沈婉大约也很想她的孩子​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

但这事偏偏提也不能提,前些日子听人说,那个李部长刚丢了个女儿,论年岁,似乎就是沈婉的骨血​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉还不知道这事,连诚还不敢告诉她​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

有时他想,若那孩子真不见了,或者死在外面,可叫沈婉怎么办呢?于是,他不由得也添了一分悲悯和希望​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

这希望竟还真应验了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

约莫立秋的时候,有个孩子跑到邓府来拍门,秦妈把那孩子赶出了巷子,回来时还不无得意:“那孩子眉尖尖有道疤,天生一副讨吃相,嗬!我可没吃的给他​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

谁料沈婉听了腾地一下站起来,险些把椅子撂倒,晃着秦妈的胳膊,指着自己的眉心道:“什……什么疤,是在这儿吗?是不是水滴样的,小小的,像被指甲挠出来的?”

秦妈被吓得不轻,回忆了一下,点点头​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉尖叫一声,鞋也没穿齐整,一口气跑出门​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

孩子正立在门口打算再敲,门骤然打开,险些闪进去​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉抱着小丫头左看右看,几乎喜极而泣,千言万语到了嘴边,最后只化作一句:“我的儿啊!”

随后赶来的连诚顿住脚步,心里有点不是滋味​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

婉姐姐在他面前向来都是端庄持重,温吞柔和,从没见过她这般失态的样子​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉真在乎这个女儿,连诚看她抱着丫头进了内堂,全然把自己忘了,连一个眼神都没舍得赐予自己,又悲观地得出一个结论:

沈婉也是真不在乎我​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

不过世上没有不透风的墙,那个李部长听闻女儿偷偷跑来找沈婉,大发雷霆,问候了沈婉十八代祖宗,扬言要来砸邓府的门​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚几乎是抱着一种窃喜的心态将这消息告诉沈婉的,希望李部长将那孩子领回去​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

虽然很无理,但连诚总觉得,这个叫绵绵的丫头横亘在他与沈婉中间,简直再多余不过​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

谁知沈婉把柳眉一竖,道:“难道我还怕了他吗?当初他家大夫人不能生养,我怀了绵绵,非要把我赶出去,好嘛,我走,只要绵绵在李家过得好就行​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。如今绵绵在他家受了欺负跑出来找我,他还想把绵绵要回去?门都没有!”

一边说着,她一边还摇了摇小绵绵:“你说是不是呀,绵绵?”

连诚从没见过沈婉这样娇美鲜活有生气的样子,忽然一瞬间低到了尘埃里,又觉得自己自私,又觉得自己混账,出了屋,抬手打了自己一嘴巴子​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

次日,连诚回了连家,跪在地上给连预认了错,请求重回连家​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

这面子给得够足,连预也碍于官声,不好意思大庭广众落实个苛待亲子的罪名,就顺坡下驴,将连诚接回连家​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚没觉得多高兴,却也没以前那种排斥,一瞬间仿佛入定的禅僧,只是心里想着沈婉​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他记起那日沈婉看着绵绵的一双眼,大而亮,里面有浓得化不开的柔情,像一番海子,又像一番星​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

足够他沉溺其中​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连预在政府做官,官不大不小,刚好压李部长一头,是故连家的公子叫他把绵绵还给沈婉,他也没敢拒绝​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

从李家出来,连诚拉着绵绵的手往邓府走​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。绵绵才八岁,正是可爱的时候,一路上蹦跶着,叫连诚“大哥哥”​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

她真可爱,沈婉真爱她,连诚这么想着,不无悲哀​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

一瞬间嫉妒心作祟,他将绵绵带到城郊安置下来​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

那里有个别院,别院里也有做工的嬷嬷,这是他名下的财产,谁都不知道​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

而后他才改道邓府,见了沈婉,低着头不敢看她,话里满满的歉意:“……对不起啊,婉姐姐,李部长死活不肯把绵绵送到邓府,我也没办法,只好折中了一下,把绵绵接在了我的别院……”

说这话的时候,连诚的心几乎要从胸腔里跳出来,他怕沈婉一怒之下跑去质问李部长,怕谎言被戳穿​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

但沈婉只是长长叹了口气,苦笑道:“是我没本事,怪不得你​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

一瞬间,连诚有些后悔撒这个谎,但事已至此,别无选择,只好干巴巴地做最后一点弥补:“不过也没关系,别院离邓府也不是很远,婉姐姐什么时候想绵绵了,只管去看她​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

谁料沈婉却摇了摇头:“你到底是连家的人,我一个寡妇,频频出入你的别院,叫人听了去,像什么样子​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚敏感地听出一丝疏离,颇为惶恐:“婉姐姐说的是哪里话……”

“是实话啊,”沈婉抿了抿唇,“连二爷是有本事的人,诚哥儿跟着连二爷,可以奔个好前程​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”顿了顿,又道,“总好过老陪着我这么个孀妇​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚懂了沈婉的意思,哭笑不得:“婉姐姐是不是误会了?我回连家,只是想借连预的本事要回绵绵而已​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉摇了摇头,也不知信没信,只是道:“诚哥儿是外男,以后还是少来吧​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

说罢,她推搡着连诚出了门,秦妈便过来把门闩上​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚从越来越小的门缝里看到沈婉,低着头,站在合欢树的荫翳下,长眼睫的影子打在脸上,委屈又决绝​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚不把这事当真,仍每天往邓府跑,邓府每天也不开门​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

正是秋雨连绵的时候,连诚每天风里来雨里去,连他自己都觉得痴,可沈婉竟毫无反应​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

她是动了真格?真不肯见自己了?连诚有一回淋了大雨,走在路上恍恍惚惚地想,又想不通​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

婉姐姐怎么会这么小器呢?不过是一个误会而已,况且他都解释清楚了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

为什么呢?

流言传到连诚耳朵里时,冬至已过​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚敏而好学,能担大任,连预也发现了这个事实,开始把一些事丢给他做,颇有些想让这个没被给出去的儿子“发挥余热”的意味​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

起初连诚还有些工夫关心沈婉,后来忙得像个陀螺,连轴转,也就没工夫打问邓府的消息了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他好不容易闲下来,和朋友聚一聚,有人借着酒劲儿开他的玩笑:“诚少爷,现在可没工夫纠缠沈寡妇了吧?”

连诚当场变了脸色,一杯酒泼在那人脸上,眼神冷得吓人:“什么意思?”

那人也知道自己说错了话,眼看躲不过,只好缩着脖子老实交代​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

阔人家舌头碎,约莫邓将军丧事刚办完,关于沈婉和连诚的桃色传闻就流遍了圈子里每家人的耳朵​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚是连家现存的唯一男丁,自然没人敢把这事闹到他跟前,可沈婉不一样​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

那人没继续往下说,只抬起头觑着连诚的脸色​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚只觉得愧疚,天知道沈婉每天要怎么穿越这种恶意的荆棘,而他竟毫无察觉!

他想立马跑去邓府向沈婉道歉,可拔腿跑了几十步,又觉得一阵不是滋味​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

流言而已,难道就值得沈婉跟自己断得一干二净吗?

最终,连诚还是没再找沈婉,一半是怕她再受伤,一半是跟沈婉置气​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

虽然他明知道,沈婉一定不会主动来找他​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

闲时他想沈婉,只好去看绵绵,绵绵长得越来越像沈婉,长而细的眉,大而圆的眼,性子也像,只比沈婉多了点活泼​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

有时候连诚看着绵绵,就好像在窥伺八岁的沈婉,天真无忧,惹人怜爱​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

他恨自己生得晚​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

更令他窃喜的是,绵绵童言无忌​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。沈婉时常来看她,当然会和她说一些话,而绵绵像个传声筒,忠实地将每一个字句传递给连诚​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

譬如绵绵说:“大哥哥,昨天娘哭了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚问:“为什么呢?”

绵绵奶声奶气地道:“娘说,她有点舍不得大哥哥​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚硬是没按捺住脸上的笑意​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

他不舍得沈婉哭,但是他愿意沈婉为自己哭​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。平日沈婉将自己蜷缩在邓府厚重的朱漆门里,只有这时,连诚才觉得,沈婉大概还在乎他​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉在乎他,这几乎是他唯一的幸福​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

年关时有个拜年的重头戏,沈婉固然是未亡人,却也不好免俗,只得带着秦妈到处串场子,到每家说几句吉祥话​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

拜年拜到连家时,连诚推了当日的所有安排,悄悄躲在门外听​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

“连夫人好福气呀,又添了个麟儿​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”沈婉恭喜道​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚躲在门边撇了撇嘴,他可以想象连夫人扭曲的嘴脸:这孩子又是小妾养的,生下来也不会亲近连夫人,只是多张吃饭的嘴,多个分家产的人罢了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉不知道这些情况,是真心实意的祝贺,可落在连夫人耳里就变了味,只觉得是沈婉存心刺她,于是皮笑肉不笑地道:“我不如沈夫人有福气啊,听闻前几日银行的白先生还请沈夫人吃饭呢​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

后来她们又说了什么,连诚一个字也没听进去,只觉得无比气恼​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

夜里躺在床上时,他忽然明白了这气恼的来历​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚想,自己莫不是喜欢沈婉?

并没觉得不妥,连诚只觉得解脱,一瞬间一切都有了解释​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。最终,爱意打败自尊,他从床上一跃而下,溜出连家往邓府去了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

从现在起,和那个别扭的自己彻底和解​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚站在邓府门口,摆出一个和煦的笑,抬手敲了敲门​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

“谁呀?”门“吱呀”一声打开,竟是个男人!

连诚的笑被冻在脸上,这个人,可不是那银行的白先生吗?

宅子里传来沈婉的声音,连诚仿佛被惊醒的梦中人,转身拔腿就跑,烈风呛进肺里,呛得胸口生疼​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

好像一颗真心被风剖开,被撕碎在寒夜里​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

次日用早饭时,连诚面无表情地陈述了这个事实:“昨天白先生宿在邓家​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连预如他想象中的一样,惊怒交加,派人到邓府请沈婉来问话​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。伺候的下人嘴上没把门,不过一个钟头,这消息就插上翅膀传遍了各个宅邸​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

这影响太大了,连预拍着桌子叫骂,要替死去的邓爷休妻​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。沈婉哭红了眼,又是下跪又是磕头,几欲昏厥​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚冷眼旁观着这一切,心里空荡荡的,还泛着疼​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

这事闹了好几天,落了个“押后再议”,连预终于后知后觉地发现了什么,问连诚怎知邓府的丑事​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

“我亲眼看见的​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”连诚注视着连预,神色平静,目光炯炯,带着些鱼死网破的决绝,“那天晚上我去了邓府,是白先生开的门​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连预没想到这逆子还有这样的内幕不曾说出,气得吹胡子瞪眼:“你去那寡妇家做什么!”

“我要娶她​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”连诚一瞬间做了个决定​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连预气得无话,抖着手,往他头上掷了个烟灰缸​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

血顺着眉眼流下,连诚闭了闭眼,重复道:“我要娶她​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连预几乎气死过去,狂怒之下拖着连诚到祠堂上了家法​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚把脊梁挺得直直的,愣是一声也没出​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

当晚,沈婉来看他,坐在他床边哭得像个泪人​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚伤口感染发着烧,迷迷糊糊捏住沈婉的手:“你怎么来了?”

“你被打成这样,我怎么能不来?”沈婉拿帕子拭了拭泪,骂道,“诚少爷,你今天说的那是什么浑话,平白讨打吗?”

连诚在心里苦笑:她还是不明白自己的心意​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

半晌后,他捏了捏沈婉的指节,涩声道:“婉姐姐,你能不能为我勇敢一次?只要你愿意,前面是刀山火海我也……”

“我不愿意​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”看样子沈婉又想劈脸扇他一下,碍于他是伤员,生生忍住,换了个温和的方式跟他对话,“连诚,我马上就二十八了,我有女儿,我有归宿,犯不着去惹悠悠众口​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚冷笑一声,放开沈婉,撇过头不去看她​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉见他这个样子,毫无办法,默默又坐了一会儿,便推门走了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚听着她的脚步,直到一切重归寂静,忽然抬手狠狠捶了一下床板:

沈婉有归宿了,就要剥夺他的归宿吗?

真是个狠心的女人​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚闹出这么大动静,沈婉的罪名彻底落实,正月还没过就被连预从邓家宗祠除了名,卷着一袭铺盖,又流落回堂子里​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚对此不发一言,好像扬言要娶沈婉的压根不是他​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连预只当他是浪子回头,乐得眉开眼笑,又给他置了几份产业​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。这样一来,连诚愈发忙,后来干脆在外面另置了一间公寓,省得每天为了回家,奔走大半个四九城​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

有时得闲连诚也会去看沈婉,只远远地看几眼​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他不敢见她,逼迫自己将爱全部化成恨,日子一久,竟也自欺欺人地相信了这么荒谬的事​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

一夏过去,连预的身体更不如前,有大夫说连预捱不过这个冬天​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚深以为然,生怕这预言不灵验,还在连预的药里悄悄做了些手脚​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

那天连诚破天荒地见了沈婉,他到她所在的堂子里,点她作陪​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉是风尘里摸爬滚打的女人,早就对一切麻木了,可见了连诚,还是颇为局促​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚对此苦笑一声,拍拍旁边的椅子请她坐,没动手动脚,规规矩矩地道:“婉姐姐,好久不见​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉大概还没想通他的来意,只点点头,不肯答话​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连诚也不在意,自顾自地道:“我挺恨连预的​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

“我娘刚生下我的时候,连预刚娶回现在的大夫人,正宝贝着呢,大夫人不喜欢连预有那么多孩子,就让连预把我给出去​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”连诚闭了闭眼,换了个舒服的坐姿,“那时候连预对子嗣还没这么淡薄,死活不肯,最后折中了一下,干脆把我娘弄死了,以绝后患​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

“可现在他要死了,我怎么就有点难过呢?”

沈婉愣愣地看着他,连诚才发现自己已经泪流满面,慌忙用袖子抹了几把,挤出一个比哭还难看的笑​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

“诚哥儿,”沈婉叹了口气,“我以前也恨我爹,我想不通,为什么我家里六个孩子,他偏要卖了我​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

“后来我才知道,人这辈子,到处都是逼不得已,谁都有苦衷​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。所以,别那么执着,看淡些​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

连诚张了张嘴,没说出什么话来​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

冬至的时候,连预终于咽了气​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚作为长子,理所当然地担负起孝子的责任,盖棺的时候他在连预的棺材里放了两锭金子,算是终了连预所有的念想​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

而后,连诚马不停蹄地跑到堂子里去,向沈婉下聘​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

堂子里的客人起哄,沈婉被逼在当堂,进退两难,只好骂连诚:“你又发什么疯?孝期还没过,就要娶我这么……这么一个女人?”

“又不是现在就娶,”连诚道,“只是下定而已​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

“荒谬!”沈婉气得拍桌子,“何曾听过女家比男家大八岁的事?”

“只八岁而已,有什么大不了?”

“可我是你的婶母!”

此话一出,全场冷寂​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚沉着脸拉她到外面去,现出一点几乎算得上可怜的神色:“婉姐姐,那只是一个名分而已​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉的神色比他更可怜:“可那究竟是事实,绕不过的,你娶了我,别人该怎么说?不得把你的脊梁骨戳断?”

“是你教我看淡些的,那你为什么不能把这个名分看淡?”连诚笑得戚戚然,“婉姐姐,你总能找到理由拒绝我​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

说罢,连诚向随从招了招手:“把沈婉小姐带走​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉被架起,毫无挣扎的余地,喝道:“连诚,你疯了吗!”

“是,我疯了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”连诚低下头不去看沈婉的眼睛,仿佛嘲讽一般,“也是因为你疯的​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

无人管束,连诚上演了一出现实版的金屋藏娇,在城里置了一座好宅子,把沈婉和绵绵塞进去,里面的人出不去,外面的人进不来​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

政府的同僚笑这个子承父业的家伙荒唐,但很快就笑不出来了​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚完美继承了连预的好手段,升迁速度令人咋舌,开始有人对他逢迎,有人想投其所好,派人打听他的喜恶​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚想了半天,道:“我那宅子里还缺一株合欢树​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

新的合欢移植来时,沈婉正缠绵病榻,听下人说了这事,又发了好大脾气​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。连诚去看她时,被甩了一巴掌:“不许你玷污我亡夫对我的爱!”

连诚委屈至极,他并没有效仿邓将军移植合欢的意思,只是看沈婉喜欢而已​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

但他并不悖逆沈婉的任何意思,默默又派人把树砍了,只摆了个合欢树雕刻像在屋子里​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

后来,沈婉病好了,开始想法子跑,连诚拦也拦不住,愁得头疼​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。这事不知怎么传到了连诚的一个下级耳朵里,那人献计道:“不知尊夫人抽不抽烟啊?”

连诚迅速领会那人的意思,将信将疑道:“我可听说鸦片烟对人的身体不好​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

“是有些副作用,但并不大​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”那人笑得谄媚,“要留住尊夫人,总得付出些什么吧?”

连诚被说动,狠了狠心,开始每日往沈婉的吃食里添加少量的鸦片烟​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

沈婉察觉时已经染上了烟瘾,质问连诚道:“连诚,你怎么可以这样?!”

连诚不答,任她打骂​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。等她折腾累了,他把她抱放在床上,单膝跪在地上给她点烟,点着点着忽然抱住她:“小婉,对不起​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

沈婉只默默流泪​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

鸦片使沈婉的意志迅速消沉下去,整日恹恹的,懒倦,只在吸烟时有那么点活力,仿佛一个精致的洋娃娃,空有皮囊,灵魂早已不知去向​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

某日,连诚办公回来,听见沈婉对绵绵道:“你说娘这样活着,有什么意思呢?”

连诚本能地揪心,慌忙冲进去,却见沈婉又恢复了一张冷淡的面目​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他惶恐如溺水之人,试探着开口问:“小婉,你没事吧?”

沈婉继续吞云吐雾,吝于跟他说一句话​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

后来,小婉还是去了,趁连诚不在时割了腕​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

绵绵哭着找去政府时,连诚正在开会​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。听绵绵叙述了来龙去脉,他赶忙赶回去,只看到一具已经发凉的尸体​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

绵绵拉着他的袖子抽抽噎噎地哭:“大哥哥,娘真的很喜欢你,可你怎么总是伤害她?”

那一刻,他连跨进房门的勇气都没有,也无法面对这个孩子的诘问​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。他倚着门框,回想他与沈婉之间种种,神魂俱碎,胸口疼得不能呼吸​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

他无疑是世界上最爱沈婉的人,但他毁了她​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

良久后,连诚挥挥手,对赶来的随从道:“葬了吧​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。”

尾声

民国元年,政府要人连诚退出政界,不知所终​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

连先生住过的宅子被一个洋人买下,洋人不喜合欢树,便将合欢挖去,植下一株垂杨,而今垂杨已亭亭华盖​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

白驹过隙,不知几载​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍​​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍​‍‌‍‌‍‌‍​。

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