Chapter 21 – Companionship (i)
“Ji Ran, do you still remember a movie titled ‘Troubled Time’?”
Hearing that familiar voice from behind, Xi Wei turned back and was met with a pair of clear, bright blue eyes. Of course, he knew it belonged to his childhood friend Klaire, but what he said made Xi Wei do a double take.
“Or should I continue to call you Xi Wei now?” Klaire smiled, took a step closer, and stopped in front of Xi Wei.
They looked at each other for a long time until Xi Wei finally managed to recover from his shock. He asked stiffly, “What did you say?”
Instead of answering, Klaire asked him another question, “You have Ji Ran’s memory, don’t you? Then, Yu Qianhe, do you still remember this name?”
Xi Wei, “…”
Xi Wei’s eyes opened wider, which made Klaire sure that he must remember.
Sure enough, Xi Wei looked shocked and alarmed. He frowned and asked, “Who are you? How do you know all of this? Do you know Yu Qianhe?”
At that moment, Klaire was so happy he wanted to kneel down and worship God right there and then. He finally found his beloved man in this strange world, and his Ji Ran also remembered him! Although the two of them died together in a car accident, their story did not end. The fate entwined between them had yet to reach its end.
“I am Yu Qianhe, your manager,” Klaire simply said.
“Ah?” Xi Wei’s face turned to that of disbelief.
Klaire smiled and softly said, “Do you remember? When we first met, you held my hand and said, ‘We are of the same age, so I’ll just call you Qianhe.’ After I became your manager, your first job was to help a first-rate star to do martial arts scenes. That summer, we went to the south to film a movie. I couldn’t adapt to the southern climate and ended up being bitten by mosquitoes. You told me then that you grew up in the south, so you were not afraid of mosquito bites, and advised me to use mosquito repellent lotion everytime I went out. You even personally helped me to put some…”
The man with the sunny smile complained about “the fierce mosquitoes in the south” as he carefully coated Yu Qianhe’s arm with the lotion. The cool feeling coming off his fingertips seemed to make that summer somehow feel warmer and more beautiful.
Their living conditions during that filming were very poor. The two of them often had to follow the crew to live and eat in the wild. Their shabby dormitory was equipped with only one mat, and they had to sleep with a mere electric fan blowing above them. Every night, as he looked at the peaceful look on Ji Ran’s sleeping expression, Yu Qianhe often found himself thinking, if he could accompany him like this for the rest of their life, how nice would it be?
He accompanied him through the hot forest of the south, to the cold snow in the north, traveled across the beautiful town of Jiangnan, and also went with him to cross magnificent desert and grassland in the northwest. Ji Ran took roles in a lot of different themed movies, and Qianhe always followed him dutifully for years. Going to some of those outdoor filming locations might be unpleasant, but that time was the happiest Yu Qianhe had ever been in his life.
Even if they could only eat simple lunch-boxes, it still tasted better than the delicacies prepared for him at home.
Because he had fallen in love with that man.
Every time he saw Ji Ran’s happy smile, Yu Qianhe would also feel his mood improving. And every time he saw Ji Ran hurting and suffering while filming, Yu Qianhe always felt uncomfortable in his heart, like something was clutching it tightly.
Ji Ran had always been so strong and brave, full of energy and fighting spirit. He never felt discouraged even when he was faced with setbacks, he would just smile and optimistically say, “It doesn’t matter, the road is still very long. One day, I will get the Best Actor’s award. Those who look down on me and try to bring me down now will certainly look up to me with envy in the future. Qianhe, don’t you think so?”
Looking at his confident smile, Yu Qianhe smiled and patted him on the shoulder, saying, “Sure you can.”
His efforts were then rewarded. He received two consecutive Best actor awards, which solidified his status in the entertainment circle.
Unfortunately, a car accident took away everything, and he was sent to this completely unfamiliar world.
It’s okay, I am still here with you. I’ll accompany you just as before.
Klaire thought of this and stepped forward. He gently took hold of Xi Wei’s hand and seriously said, “Remember? I’m your manager.”
Hearing the other guy accurately retelling so many events in his past life, many of which were secrets only known to him and Qianhe, Xi Wei finally lowered his guard. He happily grasped onto the hand holding his and said, “Qianhe? Is it really you?”
Klaire nodded, “It’s me.”
Xi Wei excitedly jumped over and hugged him, patting him on the back, “You actually came to this world as well? How did this happen? So we were born again after the accident? No wonder our birthdays are only five minutes apart!”
Klaire smiled and said, “Yes, that’s right, we were reincarnated together after the accident. It’s just that I’ve only completely restored my memory recently.”
“No wonder you’ve been having nightmares, was it because you were receiving your memories?” Xi Wei asked seriously, “So, do you remember everything now? What’s the name of the actress I worked with in Troubled Time?”
“Xie Shi Qi, a newly debuted artist.”
“Who’s the director?”
“Linxu teacher.” Klaire looked at Xi Wei helplessly,”I remember all of it, don’t you believe me?”
Xi Wei smiled and nodded vigorously, “Yeah, I’m just making sure. It’s very nice to have you here too!”
He was obviously very happy; to meet an old friend who knew about his past in this strange world, it simply felt too amazing!
After holding back for a long time, he was finally able to talk about the topic he had always wanted to discuss. He pulled at Klaire’s hand, indicating him to sit next to him, then said, “Although we could have just died in the car accident, we were actually reborn here, God really is kind to us. But this world is strange, don’t you think? Humans are divided into Alpha, Beta, and Omega, and Omega can actually have children. It just doesn’t make sense.”
He was already five years old when he recovered his memory this year, and during those years he had already accepted the situation in this world under the teaching and influence of his parents, so he didn’t feel that weirded out by this world’s environment. But Xi Wei was different, he was born with complete memory of his past life. He must be very shocked when he found out men could give birth in this world; it would be impossible for him to accept that fact easily.
Sure enough, once he met someone he could talk with about this situation, Xi Wei immediately expressed his displeasure, “When I found out about this, I really couldn’t believe it. Men giving birth to children? This is simply unscientific, defying common sense, unreasonable. Moreover, I think I’m really unlucky, why did I become an omega? It would have been much better if I was an alpha, it’s not that weird. You are luckier than I am, at least you were born as an alpha.”
Seeing Xi Wei’s frowning appearance, Klaire couldn’t help thinking: You became an omega, I became an alpha, this is actually very good…
Xi Wei looked back at his friend next to him, paused, and optimistically said, “I am trying to change all this. You know, I’m not one to believe in fate. It doesn’t matter even if I’m an omega, I can’t marry a man anyway. I have been looking for this information since I was young, unfortunately, there is no surgery or drugs that can be used to change the secondary gender in this world. At present, I have not thought of any useful methods, but I believe there will definitely be some in the future!”
Klaire was silent for a moment before asking, “You…don’t want to marry a man?”
Xi Wei answered without hesitation, “Of course. I’m a man myself, isn’t it strange to be with another man?”
Klaire’s mood suddenly turned complicated. Ji Ran never tried looking for Yu Qianhe after his rebirth, this also proved that he only viewed that manager of his as a good friend, he had no feelings for him beyond friendship. After they were killed in the car accident, he may have had regrets, but he wouldn’t feel them as painfully as Qianhe himself.
Ji Ran had such a straightforward personality. He became good friends with a lot of actors in his past life. If they were to encounter troubles, he would not hesitate to help, so his popularity in the circle was especially good. Truthfully, Ji Ran treated his manager the same way as he treated his other friends. The only difference was that the two of them lived together, and Yu Qianhe had the chance to help him deal with the arrangements in his daily life, making him a little closer to Yu Qianhe compared to others.
But that was it.
They were only friends who helped each other, merely working partners. There was nothing remotely close to love between them, and it was unlikely that they would become something “more intimate”.
Ji Ran was a straight man in their previous life. He liked gentle and thoughtful girls, and was particularly polite to girls in general. He’d often take care of them and protect them, making so many of those actresses who had worked with him unable to resist falling for him. After his reincarnation, even though he became an omega, his mindset was an alpha’s, it wasn’t easy to pressure him.
But it doesn’t matter, Klaire thought. This life, he was born as an alpha, while Xi Wei was an omega, obviously their chance of being together was higher. And if Xi Wei was willing, they could even have their own children. This world was not opposed to gay marriage, the imperial decree instead encouraged unions between Alpha and Omega. Resistance from family and public regarding same-sex marriage had been reduced to a minimum.
So, the difficulty that he had to face in chasing Xi Wei was the short-tempered, straight, proud guy himself?
Klaire couldn’t help but smile at this thought.
After being reborn, Xi Wei had been playing the role of a child, he had been holding himself back for too long. Now that he finally met a close friend who knew everything, he immediately took the chance to talk about a bunch of things to Klaire. Klaire just smiled and listened, shaking his hand from time to time to express comfort.
Once he finished his talk, Xi Wei said, “We’ll continue calling each other Xi Wei and Klaire. Walls have ears, if anyone hears, we both will be in trouble.”
Klaire agreed, “Yes, that’s safer.”
Xi Wei looked at him with a smile, “I’ve actually gotten used to calling you Klaire, but I’ll still make sure not to slip.”
Little Xi Wei had a very lovely smile, and his big black eyes always appeared bright and clear. Looking at the same proud little guy in front of him, Klaire’s heart couldn’t help but turn soft—in their past life, he only knew Ji Ran after they were already in their twenties. The things he learned of Ji Ran’s childhood was only those stories he heard from other people. He knew that Ji Ran faced a lot of hardships as an orphan, but he couldn’t experience those hardships with Ji Ran as he didn’t know the man as a child.
Unexpectedly, he now actually had the opportunity to accompany this beloved person of his to grow up together.
The sentence “I like you,” was raging in Klaire’s heart toward the smiling child standing before him, but he desperately held back the urge to blurt it out.
His crush in their previous life eventually came to an abrupt end without any result. Fortunately, God gave him another chance to grow up with Xi Wei. They were still children now; it wasn’t appropriate for six-year-old children to fall in love. But, in the future, he believed that as long as he accompanied and stayed by Xi Wei’s side, one day Xi Wei would surely reciprocate his feelings.
While thinking of this, Klaire stretched out his hands and gently put Xi Wei’s little body into his arms.
“Xi Wei, I’m so glad you’re here.”
In our past life, I didn’t have the courage to confess to you and in the end I missed the chance completely. That was my deepest regret.
But now, I will grow up with you. In the future, I’ll tell you how much I love you.