Since Xie Min and Sui Yang’s break up, it was the first time that the non-LEGO toy rabbit spent a night on the same bed with someone.
Actually, it wasn’t Sui Yang who suggested sleeping together.
When Xie Min returned home, his phone started ringing.
Xie Min’s father, perhaps a bit drunk, called. Because Xie Min had already answered too many calls that day, he took the phone and went upstairs to answer it while washing up.
Water kept dripping from the showerhead hanging above as Xie Min listened to his father speaking intermittently. Angrily, his father asked where he was and wanted him to listen carefully on the phone. He complained about spending a lot of money raising Xie Min and Xie Min’s brother, Xie Cheng, and not getting anything in return, calling them both useless.
It’s quite surprising that Xie Min didn’t feel angry due to his father’s scolding. He turned off the water and clarified to his father, “Dad, I did earn some money for you.”
Xie Min dried hus body, stood in front of the mirror, picked up a hairdryer, and blew his hair. Perhaps the noise of the wind was too loud because his father cursed a few more times without getting a response, and then hung up the phone. Xie Min partially dried his hair, turned off the hairdryer, and glanced at his reflection in the mirror. He had gained some weight since the accident and now looked somewhat like a normal person.
Xie Min smiled at the person in the mirror, feeling a sense of happiness radiating from his reflection.
Xie Min didn’t continue blow-drying his hair. He walked out of the room and leaned against the glass railing, gazing at the dimmed living area on the second floor and the nighttime scenery beyond the floor-to-ceiling windows.
After staying for a while, the impersonal hotel apartment gradually transformed into a place that felt more like home than Xie Min’s previous house. Personal belongings of both Xie Min and Sui Yang, along with some new items that didn’t belong to the hotel, were scattered throughout—clothes, shoes, painting supplies.
Lost in thought, Xie Min stared at the outline of the easel in the darkness when he heard a sound behind him.
Sui Yang, dressed in dark blue pajamas, approached and wished him goodnight.
“What are you contemplating here?” Sui Yang asked.
Xie Min replied, “Nothing.” Sui Yang took a couple of steps closer, reaching out to touch his hair and remarking, “It’s not dry yet.”
Sui Yang had a pleasant fragrance and warm hands. His focused gaze brought a sense of calm and security to Xie Min.
Xie Min experienced a somewhat inexplicable and age-inappropriate attachment. He moved closer to Sui Yang, embracing his back, and rested his face between Sui Yang’s shoulder and neck. “I’m tired from blow-drying.”
Sui Yang gently returned the embrace, remaining still. After a while, he asked Xie Min, “Do you want me to help you?”
Xie Min’s room was the main bedroom of the suite, with a walk-in closet connecting to the bedroom and a vanity area for girls. Sui Yang invited Xie Min to sit on the chair at the dressing table while he assisted in blow-drying Xie Min’s hair.
Sui Yang handled it gently, quickly blow-drying Xie Min’s hair. He put down the hairdryer, and Xie Min praised him, “You’re quite skilled. Maybe you should get a membership card at the hair salon.”
“Thank you,” Sui Yang smiled and laughed. “Xie Min, you’re so generous.”
He lightly touched Xie Min’s face and said, “Well, I’m going to bed now.”
Xie Min turned to look at him. He kissed Xie Min’s cheek and was about to leave when Xie Min grabbed his arm and tugged.
Sui Yang didn’t pretend to ask why Xie Min was pulling him, but he also remained silent. He lowered his head, gazing at Xie Min for a moment, and said, “I’m afraid you might think I’m too eager.”
“Oh, come on,” Xie Min immediately played dumb. “What’s wrong? Are you in a hurry?”
Sui Yang laughed and called Xie Min a silly elementary school student. He leaned down, trapping Xie Min between the chair and the dressing table, and lightly nibbled Xie Min’s lips.
In the end, it could be considered that Xie Min allowed Sui Yang to spend the night in his room.
Xie Min’s physical condition wasn’t particularly good, and Sui Yang didn’t go all the way. When Xie Min woke up in the early morning, he found himself being held by Sui Yang, and in an instant, memories of the previous night flooded his mind, making him blush. Compared to high school, Sui Yang seemed to have learned many things over the years, making Xie Min tempted to interrogate him, asking where he learned such impure behavior.
The room was dimly lit, and Sui Yang’s face was very close to Xie Min’s. He seemed to be in a deep sleep, but when Xie Min moved slightly, he opened his eyes. Sui Yang looked at Xie Min, initially bewildered, but after a few seconds, he slowly drew closer to Xie Min, using a force that almost made Xie Min feel overwhelmed, tightening his arms around Xie Min’s waist. He lowered his head and kissed Xie Min’s neck, somewhat muffled, saying, “Xie Min.”
Xie Min felt ticklish and a bit shy, softly asking, “What are you doing?”
Sui Yang remained silent as he continued his descent.
Lying on the bed in the springtime room, Xie Min was sweating from the heat.
Amidst the actions that left him bewildered and infatuated, Xie Min felt the temperature around him reach unreal heights. He gasped intermittently, clutching Sui Yang’s shoulders, sensing an almost merging connection between them. Unrealistically, he thought that if only they could have met earlier, three years ago, two years ago, or even just one year ago, with more time, if he had been together with Sui Yang like this earlier, life would have been so much better.
They stayed upstairs until noon. Xie Min was both hungry and exhausted, almost unable to even take a shower.
The chef brought the meal to them, and they took a few bites. Sui Yang received a call from his secretary, discussing business matters. He informed Xie Min that he had to return to Yuanguang tonight because he had something important early tomorrow morning. If he woke up too early, he might disturb Xie Min, so it was better to leave in the evening.
Sui Yang had a good attitude, and Xie Min couldn’t resist deliberately saying, “So, you’re aware that this young master has allowed you to sleep in my room again.”
“Well,” Sui Yang laughed, “can I, Mr. Xie?”
“If you don’t sleep in Yuhai today, don’t bother asking,” Xie Min scolded him.
“Fine,” Sui Yang told him, “you still have the temper of an elementary school student.”
Xie Min didn’t go to work and instead read some reports sent by the assistant at home.
Sui Yang initially planned to add more strokes to Xie Min’s portrait in the afternoon. However, due to Xie Min constantly coming and going to inspect his artwork and causing disruptions, he couldn’t complete it. He would have to continue painting it next weekend.
By ten o’clock in the evening, Sui Yang was about to leave. He didn’t allow Xie Min to see him off. He leaned down and kissed Xie Min, who was sitting on the couch watching TV, saying “Goodbye” and “Goodnight,” then left. Xie Min’s eyes were fixed on the TV screen, but the movie plot didn’t register in his mind. He heard the sound of the door closing, and after a while, the room felt excessively quiet. Xie Min realized he had forgotten to ask Sui Yang about Dr. Zhuo’s matter.
In fact, Xie Min had long been accustomed to being alone and could endure such silence. Skillfully and experienced, he rewound the movie back to the scenes he remembered and resumed watching.
However, during the movie, Xie Min had a sudden whimsical idea. He imagined Yuhai and Yuanguang folding together, just like the sci-fi novels and films their college roommate loved.
Xie Min and Sui Yang had a busy week. Sui Yang couldn’t find time to return to Yuhai in the first two days, and Xie Min arrived home close to midnight.
On Wednesday night, Xie Min finally canceled a dinner gathering and attended Jiang Ci’s birthday party instead.
Jiang Ci’s birthday parties in previous years were always grand, but this year, only a few friends, familiar faces to Xie Min, attended.
They had dinner on the rooftop of a hotel. Xie Min didn’t drink, but Jiang Ci had a bit too much. Leaning against Xie Min, they chatted, their speech slurred. Jiang Ci commented that Xie Min had been looking good lately and expressed hope that Xie Min would find his own happiness, though Jiang Ci was certain he would find it first because Xie Min was too busy.
Seeing that Jiang Ci was almost drunk and realizing it was almost time for the scheduled phone consultation with Dr. Zhuo, Xie Min bid farewell and returned home.
Back in his room, Xie Min initiated a video call with Dr. Zhuo. In the cozy light of her counseling room, Dr. Zhuo greeted him, “Hello, Mr. Xie.”
Her voice was familiar to Xie Min, who felt a slight sense of unease but greeted her in return. She naturally inquired about how Xie Min had been doing lately and whether this was his first time seeking psychological counseling.
“No,” Xie Min said, “Sometimes I also talk to a psychologist.”
“Then I must thank Mr. Xie for trusting me,” she smiled and looked at Xie Min, without asking why Xie Min changed psychologists or how he came to know about her. She chatted casually with Xie Min, as if they were friends.
Dr. Zhuo asked questions and spoke with a balanced and measured approach, making Xie Min feel that opening up to her would be a safe option. Xie Min understood that she had professional ethics and refrained from asking about Sui Yang. After chatting for twenty minutes, she finally returned to the main topic and asked Xie Min if there was any concern he wanted to share with her.
Xie Min hesitated and summarized briefly, “I got back together with my ex-boyfriend. But—I don’t know.” Xie Min shifted his gaze elsewhere, pondering how to describe his relationship with Sui Yang, “We broke up a long time ago.”
“Sometimes I feel like he still cares about me,” Xie Min admitted to Dr. Zhuo, feeling a bit embarrassed in reality. After all, he was not young anymore, and it felt awkward to discuss romantic matters with a psychologist. “It’s like he still considers me important. Because no one else has ever valued me like he does, and I can still sense it.”
“But he hasn’t been very clear about it,” Xie Min said, “And he keeps things from me, although they shouldn’t be something significant.” At this point, he confessed, “He sees a psychologist and lied to me, saying he was seeing a fitness instructor.”
Dr. Zhuo smiled slightly without making any judgment and asked Xie Min, “So, do you want him to be completely honest with you about everything?”
“I don’t know,” Xie Min said, “If he doesn’t want to say, I don’t want to pressure him. Because none of it is really important. He might not want to say because he thinks it would make him uncomfortable. But I want him to know that even if he tells me, I won’t get angry.”
Facing a psychologist, these words could be spoken without much drafting, but in front of Sui Yang, it always seemed like the right occasion and atmosphere were slightly lacking. However, after speaking them out, Xie Min suddenly felt a bit more relieved than before.
“Mr. Xie,” Dr. Zhuo pondered for a moment and said to him, “Perhaps you just need more time.”
She praised Xie Min for his mature and healthy attitude, giving him some confidence. She advised Xie Min to gradually become familiar with his boyfriend again, to observe each other more attentively, as the other person might gradually become more open and honest.
Xie Min hung up the phone, unsure if consulting Sui Yang’s psychologist had any meaning. He sat in a daze for a while, about to go freshen up when he heard a sound downstairs. A thought sparked in his mind, and he went downstairs to take a look.
The temperature had been rising nationwide in the past few days. Sui Yang had changed into a light khaki windbreaker and held a large bouquet of flowers with one hand. Seeing Xie Min walk out from behind the entrance, he was slightly surprised and said, “Still awake? It’s already past one.”
“You’re not asleep either,” Xie Min pointed out.
“Why did you buy flowers?” Xie Min walked closer, catching the scent of roses.
“A gift for Mr. Xie, will you accept it?”
“I’ll reluctantly accept it,” Xie Min took advantage verbally and proudly accepted it.
The bouquet was a bit heavy. Xie Min walked over to the coffee table, leaning down to place the flowers on it. Just as he straightened up, Sui Yang embraced him from behind.
Xie Min felt the weight of his clothes, and Sui Yang’s body heat quickly transferred to him. He held him tightly, making it difficult for Xie Min to move.
“Sui Yang,” Xie Min called out. Sui Yang responded with a muffled “Mm,” his voice against Xie Min’s skin. Being held like this by him, Xie Min felt the heat and the stirrings of affection. It was as if he was floating in the realm of youthful love that could make him embarrassed. He completely forgot about giving time-related advice. Unable to hold back, he asked Sui Yang a rather childish question, “Did you miss me a lot?”
Sui Yang continued to hold him for a little while longer and said, “Yes”—
This level of longing should be alright.
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