Dong Zhi carried a bag of tomatoes and was smiling, about to get into the car and leave. He rubbed Lu Lingxi’s hair and his tone seemed a bit more solemn.
“Xiao Xi, in the future, if you need something, tell Brother Dong, Brother Dong will definitely help if he can.”
Before coming to dinner, Dong Zhi probably didn’t understand the situation of Lu Lingxi’s family from his daily life. However, now he realised that it was not easy for Wang Shuxiu alone to bring up Lu Lingxi, so Brother Dog couldn’t help but express his feelings.
Lu Lingxi smiled lightly and nodded, “I know, Brother Dong, go back and drive slowly.”
Dong Zhi waved his hand and didn’t say anything else.
Watching Dong Zhi drive away, Lu Lingxi was about to go home, but Dahei squatted in place and looked in one direction motionless. “Dahei?” Lu Lingxi looked suspiciously, then suddenly froze for a moment, blinked in disbelief, and walked over hesitatingly.
The Hongfu Community was too old and too worn out, so there was little property management. The row of streetlights in front of Building 3 had been smashed by the community’s naughty children with slingshots, and no one came to fix them for more than half a year. At night, the light in this area was not very good, and there were a lot of shadows. Lu Lingxi vaguely saw a familiar car parked under the shade of a tree, but it was a bit far away and he couldn’t see clearly whether it was Yan Yue’s car or not.
Lu Lingxi thought that Yan Yue couldn’t possibly be here now, but there was an indescribable feeling that prompted him to go over and confirm it. He lingered a little as he walked to the car, and the window slid down to reveal Yan Yue’s handsome face.
Lu Lingxi was a little surprised, but more than that, he was surprised in a way that he didn’t even realise. “Big Brother Yan, what are you doing here?”
Yan Yue’s eyes were dark and deep as he looked at Lu Lingxi intently. This place where he had parked was quite remote, and basically his whole figure was shrouded in darkness. If Dahei hadn’t spotted him, he was sure no one would have seen him. The gesture Dong Zhi had made to Lu Lingxi before he left was replaying in his mind, and the longing in his heart was somewhat overwhelming as he watched the young man standing unsuspectingly in front of the car.
If he tricked the young man into getting in the car now, he would take him away without any regard. Could he then confine the young man by his side and from then on no one but him would be able to touch him? Just imagining this scenario, Yan Yue wanted to drag Lu Lingxi into the car now. He couldn’t help but want to touch him, want to possess him, want the boy to really belong to him alone. But he couldn’t; he couldn’t bear it. Ye Kang had made it very clear what the consequences of doing so would be. People were social creatures by nature, and the consequences of him forcing the young man to go against nature were extremely likely to be devastating.
Reason and emotions were at war in his mind, and Lu Lingxi’s face slowly became puzzled. Yan Yue suppressed the impulse in his heart, hooked the corners of his mouth and said in a soft voice, “Xiao Xi, I miss you.”
When these words were spoken, there was an unusual relief spreading in Yan Yue’s heart. He could have come up with many clever or clumsy excuses to deceive the young man, and he was certain that Lu Lingxi would not suspect it at all, but he still said the truest reason. He had once wanted to just stay by the young man’s side, but now he was no longer satisfied with his one-sided desire; he wanted the young man’s response.
Hearing these words from Yan Yue, Lu Lingxi was somewhat surprised and blushed a little. He didn’t think of anything else, but simply felt that just like he would miss Yan Yue because he was used to having him around, Yan Yue would similarly miss him because he was used to his presence. Lu Lingxi faintly curled the corners of his mouth, looking a little shy as he whispered, “I miss you too, Big Brother Yan. Mom made dumplings today, with your favourite pork and scallion stuffing, and eggplants with garlic, but they were all eaten by Brother Dong while you were away.”
Hearing the young man say he missed him, Yan Yue was in heaven for a moment. He was a little afraid to believe what he heard, and for the first time, he showed a dumbfounded expression in front of Lu Lingxi. As for the next part about what Dong Zhi had eaten, to Yan Yue that was no longer the point.
Yan Yue took a deep breath, pushed open the car door and got out of the car. Lu Lingxi stood in front of him docilely, and Yan Yue resisted the urge to envelop the young man in his arms. He reached out and rubbed Lu Lingxi’s hair hard, trying to erase all the aura Dong Zhi had left on him.
Lu Lingxi frowned and grabbed his hand, complaining softly: “My hair is all messed up.”
Yan Yue’s eyes seemed to be scorching and there seemed to be a shallow layer of bright light floating in their darkness. He looked down at the young man, one hand resting on the top of his head, the young man’s hand grasping his. These linked hands made him shiver with sweet caution.
Wang Shuxiu’s voice came from a distant window, “Little bastard, where did you go to send someone off?”
Lu Lingxi almost subconsciously shook off Yan Yue’s hand and turned around, about to speak. Yan Yue grabbed him quickly and whispered before he could say anything, “Xiao Xi?”
“En?” With such an interruption, Lu Lingxi didn’t bother to answer Wang Shuxiu and looked up at Yan Yue first.
Yan Yue lowered his eyes slightly and said in an unusually soft voice, “Xiao Xi, I want to spend some time alone with you.”
Lu Lingxi blinked, somewhat bewildered. He realised that Yan Yue didn’t want Wang Shuxiu to know that he was here. Although he didn’t understand why, he still nodded. However, he said with some embarrassment, “I have to go back now, otherwise Mom will be worried.”
Yan Yue hooked the corners of his mouth and coaxed Lu Lingxi patiently, “Then later when your mom falls asleep, would you like to come out and keep me company, Xiao Xi?”
Lu Lingxi nodded quickly.
Yan Yue smiled in satisfaction and forced himself to let go of Lu Lingxi’s hand.
Lu Lingxi curved his eyes and trotted back with Dahei.
Inside, Wang Shuxiu looked at him and wondered, “What took you so long?”
Lu Lingxi, somewhat guilty, didn’t dare to look at Wang Shuxiu and whispered, “Dahei didn’t want to come back and wanted to run around outside.”
Dahei, who was crouched at his feet, gave a low whimper, protesting somewhat aggrieved against his poor excuse.
Wang Shuxiu didn’t understand Dahei’s meaning and believed Lu Lingxi’s words. “Dahei is indeed suffocating at home, it’s fine to take him out for a run in the evening sometime. All right, you go and take a shower.”
Lu Lingxi hesitated, thinking that he would have to go out later, “Mom, you go ahead and wash up.”
Wang Shuxiu pushed him inside, “You go first, just take off your clothes and leave them in there, I’ll throw them in the washing machine later.”
Lu Lingxi had to take a shower and change into the white cotton shorts and a light-coloured T-shirt that Wang Shuxiu had prepared for him and go back to his room. Wang Shuxiu was still in the living room tidying up, and Lu Lingxi wanted to read a book but couldn’t keep his mind still. He walked around the room twice in a somewhat nervous manner and hesitantly sent a text message to Yan Yue.
“Are you still there, Big Brother Yan?”
The simple word made Lu Lingxi settle down at once. He sat on the bed with his knees bent, holding his phone as he texted Yan Yue.
“Mom’s still up, still tidying up the house.”
“That’s okay, I’ll wait for you.”
The corners of Lu Lingxi’s lips curved up in a faint smile. Just like that, he and Yan Yue chatted back and forth. After some time Wang Shuxiu knocked on the door outside, reminding him to go to bed early and said that she was going to go to bed. Lu Lingxi nodded in some panic, his heart suddenly starting to beat rapidly. He didn’t understand what was going on, he was obviously just going out to chat with Big Brother Yan for a while, why did it seem like he was going to do something bad?
Soon there was no movement in the living room. Lu Lingxi pushed the door open and listened whether Wang Shuxiu was asleep. Then he walked to the door lightly, squatted down and said in a soft voice to Dahei who was following him: “Dahei, don’t bark, stay home obediently.”
Dahei rubbed against his arms somewhat reluctantly, and Lu Lingxi patiently stroked Dahei’s head and promised, “I’ll be back soon.”
After coaxing Dahei, Lu Lingxi gently opened the door and ran out. As soon as he left the building, he saw Yan Yue leaning against the wall at the entrance of the building. He was a little surprised, “Big Brother Yan, you’re not in the car?”
Yan Yue looked at his refreshing appearance and a smile filled his eyes as he softly said, “I’m here to pick you up.” He naturally reached out and took Lu Lingxi’s hand. Lu Lingxi was a little unprepared and was led by Yan Yue into the car. The two of them didn’t sit in the front but both squeezed into the back seat. Yan Yue’s explanation was that he was afraid that someone would come back late, see someone in the car and would be scared. The glass in the back seat was tinted, so it could hide their figures.
Lu Lingxi didn’t doubt Yan Yue’s words. He also felt that it would be bad if he was seen sitting in the front and someone told Wang Shuxiu.
The smile in Yan Yue’s eyes deepened. The boy’s obedient look made him reach out and rub the boy’s hair. Lu Lingxi’s hair under the touch of his palm was a little moist, and he could see that the young man had just taken a shower. He could smell the fresh scent of grass and trees on the boy’s body. Although he usually smelled it occasionally, it had never been as clear as this time.
Yan Yue was a little curious, “Xiao Xi, what kind of shower gel do you use?”
Lu Lingxi was a little embarrassed and whispered, “Milk shower gel.” He lifted his arm and sniffed it, “Does it still smell? I’ve rinsed it several times.” The scent of the shower gel was chosen by Wang Shuxiu, and Lu Lingxi protested several times but was mercilessly suppressed by Wang Shuxiu.
A hint of strange emotion flashed in Yan Yue’s eyes and disappeared extremely quickly. He was sure that the fresh scent of grass and trees he smelt was definitely not his illusion. But when he saw Lu Lingxi wrinkling his nose and sniffing his body like a little puppy, any vegetation fragrance was forgotten. Yan Yue had to use all his self-control to stop himself from crushing the young man underneath him and rubbing him hard into his arms.
Lu Lingxi sniffed for a long time and smelled nothing. When he met Yan Yue’s amused look, he dropped his arm in shame. “Big Brother Yan, is your holiday over?” Lu Lingxi asked, thinking of Yan Yue’s busy day today.
Yan Yue shook his head, the corners of his mouth curved up, “There’s still half a month left.”
Lu Lingxi was a little surprised, “Didn’t you say it would be until the end of August? It’s already the beginning of September, doesn’t it matter if you keep taking time off like this?”
Yan Yue looked at him meaningfully, “It’s fine, there are more important things than work right now.”
“What?” Lu Lingxi asked subconsciously.
Yan Yue didn’t say anything; he just looked at him and faintly curled the corners of his mouth.
Lu Lingxi’s heart inexplicably missed a beat, and the tips of his ears turned a little red.