All of a sudden, Dun felt the light on him. So, he slowly opened his eyes and noticed it came through the window as the curtains now were pulled to the sides. At the same time, he felt chilly. He knew its snowing outside as soon as he looked at the white flakes.

Nobel Lin was sitting near the window. With his one hand, he was holding the palette and in his other hand, he held the brush. On top of that, there was another brush in his mouth. His blue apron could be seen with the colour stains.

Till Dun leaned against the pillow and sat up, Nobel Lin stayed still like nothing could enter his eyes except his painting. He seemed in a state of euphoria when he felt quiet and peaceful. The boy would be disappointed if he followed Dun to Yangon. There would be no snow he could watch nor beautiful scenery that might inspire him to draw. Moreover, due to the hot weather in Yangon, it would be a problem for the boy who didn want to bathe.

”Nobel Lin, are you going to stay here? ”

He glanced at Dun and returned to his drawing. After a while,

”No, ” he replied.

A smile formed on Duns lips. He was certain that the boy would say otherwise on the first day he arrived at Yangon.

”Nobel Lin, Im starving right now. ”

Dun muttered while scrubbing his stomach in order to show he was hungry as he missed breakfast. What he didn expect was that the boy instantly stopped what he was doing and went outside the room. Soon, he came back and only then he realised where the boy left. Nobel Lin returned with a tray of snacks and put it down on the table.

Dun came out of the bathroom after he washed his face and discovered that Nobel Lin was gone. His drawing was almost finished; the boy only needed to follow up. In his painting, a boy was gazing at the pine trees in the forest. The boy in the painting was stretching both of his hands whose posture seemed to be comfortable even when hes in the woods.

It was undeniable that Nobel Lin was gifted in drawing. His brushes were more prominent and appealing than in the past. After having his breakfast and leaving the tray in the kitchen, he headed outside. The children were playing in the snow. As for Nobel Lin, he was making a snowman far from the crowd without paying attention to anyone.

”Dun, did you sleep well? ”

”Yes. ”

”Noh Noh is gentle in his sleep. Lim always sleeps with him whenever he pays a visit. ”

”Who is he?

”Oh! Haven I told you? He is Samuel Lim, a famous artist in the Netherlands. Well, he was also Burmese and every now and then he came here to make a donation. Every time he comes here, he plays with children and it seems that he is quite fond of Noh Noh because he looks for Noh Noh first. And then, he would draw with the boy. It is also him teaching Noh Noh how to draw systematically. Your brother talks a lot when hes with him. Youll be surprised for sure. ”

Samuel Lim was the artist who drew the portrait of Nobel Lin. He was familiar with the boy. As he put one and two together, Lim must be the first and last person who has seen the boys smile. Mother, you can rest in peace now. Isn it your wish to see Nobel Lin smile, is it? Currently, it seems your dear Nobel Lin could smile.

”Oh, thats right! Lim called me and said he would come today. Ill introduce you two. I told him the other day that Noh Noh would go back with you and thus hes gonna visit today. ”

Although Dun smiled at her, he wished that Lim would take the boy away forever, not just to come visit Noh Noh. Its better for him without Nobel Lin anyway.

Not long after they were chatting, a car pulled up in front of the orphanage and a person got out of the car.

”Its Lim. ”

As a girls cry emerged, everyone rushed out to greet that man. Dun was observing as the situation unfolded, sitting on the chair. When he shifted his gaze over to Nobel Lin, the boy also turned to look at the crowd. Then, he stood up and dusted off the dew that was on his hand and body.

Giving the presents to all the children surrounding him,

”Merry Christmas, ” he greeted. Dun couldn make out that mans face from afar. After they got their presents, they left him. Then, he unloaded a particular present from the car. The other presents were similar in size, but the present just now was a little bigger than the others.

”Merry Christmas, Nilar. ”

That man who just greeted aunt Nilar glanced at Dun and smiled at him. He extended a friendly handshake, ”Hello, you must be Dun, ” he said. Dun also returned his gesture and greeted.

”Im Samuel Lim. Nice to finally see you. ”

Even though Dun thought that Lim would be an old man, the reality hit him hard. In fact, they would be around the same age. Even if Lims older, it would be only one or two years older than him. Despite the fact that they have similar body structure, Lim looked more like a fresh youth as he was in casual clothing for being an artist than Dun who dressed like a typical doctor.

”Its a pleasure to see you, too. ” Dun also greeted him back and smiled at him.

”Nilar, wheres Noh Noh? ”

He who was speaking in English seemed more gentle when he mentioned the boy.

”Noh Noh is over there. ”

Nobel Lin was in a blue woollen hoodie, his sleeves were so long that it almost hid his tiny body. The boy was looking at Lim at the moment.

”Oh, I see. Excuse me, then. ”

Instantly, Lim ran to the boy and gave him a present.

”Merry Christmas, Noh Noh, ” he greeted. In response, ”Merry Christmas, Lim, ” the boy said clearly without stammering. It would be a lie to say that Dun was not surprised at the boys intonation. The boys response was surely fast. Is this how their relationship goes?

On the bench outside the orphanage, aunt Nilar, Dun, Nobel Lin, and Lim have taken their seats. Nobel Lin was tempted to open the present which was given by Lim.

”I don like to talk in a roundabout way. Dun, can you allow me to adopt Noh Noh? ”

His voice had not the slightest bit of hesitation. The coffee turned cold and Dun hasn touched it yet.

”Dun had only Noh Noh as his family. Lim, its been eight years since they got separated from each other. Please, reconsider. ”

”Thats what I want to say. Its already been eight years so why can they live separately for the next twenty years or fifty years? I can take care of Noh Noh. I think he will be happier with me, rather than with his brother. ”

Lim told them straightforwardly like he was frightened of losing his favourite toy. Dun wanted to laugh seeing him. How childish is he! Did he think he(Dun) didn want to give up Noh Noh? Who would want to take care of this kid? Dun would gladly hand over the boy as theres someone who would willingly shoulder responsibility?

”My opinion doesn matter. What matters most is Nobel Lins view on this matter. Let him choose his own happiness. Im not that strict. ”

Dun said it in a humble way and waited for Nobel Lins answer. Would the boy follow Lim? Or would he choose Dun? He was in a dilemma. On one hand, he wanted the boy to follow another, on the other hand, he was afraid that he might choose Lim other than Dun who had been with him since young.

”Noh Noh, I have everything related to painting that you fancy. Will you go with me? ”

Lim persuaded him with drawing. Dun said nothing and waited for the boys reply. Aunt Nilar also didn want to poke her nose into their business. She stood quietly beside them because she believed either of them would make Noh Noh happy and moreover, the person in question was right here.

”Hmm, Noh Noh, will you stay with me? ”

Nobel Lin shook his head constantly after taking one glance at Lim and another glance at Dun.

”Then, Noh Noh wants to go back with Dun? ” When aunt Nilar shot a question, Nobel Lin answered, ” I want to go home. ”

Did the boy miss their home after eight years apart? Wait, Nobel Lin can even make a head or tail about reminiscence. Dun felt sympathy for him. If he were a normal person, then the boy would talk about how he was missing home.

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