067. I’m a Man.
Once they were out of the dungeon, Hou Dongyan left to find his friends. Twig Fence who had stayed up all night also began to feel sleepy. He told them he’d be back once he woke up and disappeared instantly from their sight.
Nine Hall His Highness voiced his doubt, “This is the spiritual pet that Water Brother has been looking for? What the hell does he see in this guy?”
Leisure Cloud guessed: “Maybe because his aura is similar to ours?”
Nine Hall His Highness: “Does he have such a thing as an ‘aura’?”
Fire: “Then if you have to choose between Twig Fence and The Great Leftover, who’d you want as your teammate?”
His Highness narrowed his eyes in thought, “Twig Fence.”
He Jin wondered, “Why?”
Nine Hall His Highness: “The Great Leftover feels like someone with a really low-presence. My impression of him was only of his voice when he called me Your Highness for the first time.”
He Jin silently lit a candle for Hou Dongyan…
Wild Crane was wondering what they should do next when Nine Hall His Highness suddenly remembered his previous confusion and asked: “What happened with Yiyi? Why is she with Ice Cream?” Hearing his question, the rest of the team simultaneously turned their heads to stare at Fire.
Fire sighed, “It was her own decision.”
Yes, Qin Yu had not told anyone that he no longer intended to accept her into the team. In any case, Flower Yiyi’s decision to marry Ice Cream had made their position clear, there was no need to say anything more.
Fire swept his gaze at all of them and asked, “What do you think about my relationship with Flower Yiyi?”
Wild Crane: “Very good ah, you sure you didn’t have a fight with her?”
Nine Hall His Highness: “Better than my relationship with her!”
Only Leisure Cloud was able to grasp the key problem hidden in Fire’s question: “Just a normal relationship.”
Nine Hall His Highness rubbed his chin, mulling over Fire’s original question. “I feel that Yiyi likes you very much,” he said, dropping his hand and looked at Fire, “did she leave because of Ah Jin? Because your heart belongs to someone else, she dyed her hair white overnight, then left in sadness and processed to marry a man she doesn’t love?” Nine Hall His Highness clutched at his chest, seemingly heartbroken, “Oh, my Yiyi, why must you be so foolish, you could have had a better choice here…”
The team: “…” (=_=)
“You guys play slowly, we’ll be going first.” Without saying anything more, Fire turned He Jin into a ferret, hugged him in his bosom, and flew away using his wings.
The Cloud-Crane duo also had to excuse themselves, “We’re going offline as well. We’ll come back after napping and dinner.”
Fire brought He Jin to Choi Fung Island to continue the unfinished husband and wife mission. He Jin couldn’t help but ask, “Does Flower Yiyi’s decision to marry Ice Cream really have something to do with me?”
“What are you thinking about. It’s not your fault, she has her own reasons.” Fire gently kissed the ferret’s head, hugging him tightly in his bosom to prevent him from escaping.
He Jin’s heart jumped madly, but he didn’t really feel happy. Although Fire said that, he felt that the other man was only trying to comfort him… Flower Yiyi’s emotional approach in the game was also causing He Jin’s mood to turn heavy.
It’s only a game, why must emotional problem be involved in this?
To tell the truth, from the start he did not want to take the feelings shared between him and Fire seriously. However, during this one month of playing with Fire he had begun to feel a little confused.
Feeling touched by the man’s care and spoil, the wild jump in his heart at the man’s hugs and kisses, the resentment he experienced when being bullied and teased by the man… He had been influenced too much by this in-game “husband” of his, coupled with the sudden awakening of his sexuality-awareness, He Jin’s heart was facing a big struggle right now.
The two of them arrived at Choi Fung Island and took the mission. Fire let the human He Jin release Poor Flame. He moved to hug He Jin’s waist, but was pushed away by the boy.
Fire looked at him and asked: “What’s the matter?”
He Jin took a deep breath before saying: “Fire, I have something to say to you …”
Fire’s expression turned serious: “Alright, you can say whatever you want.”
He Jin clenched his hands, closed his eyes, then opened them again: “Actually… I’m a man.”
Fire stood still, no expression on his face: “Oh.”
He Jin: “…”
Qin Yu wondered why He Jin chose this moment to confess about his real gender, it was unexpected.
He Jin didn’t dare to look at him. Fortunately, the height difference between them was quite big, even without lowering his head he could still avoid looking at the man’s face.
However Fire suddenly squatted down, capturing his eyes and holding onto his hand: “I know, but I don’t care that you are a man. Are we good?”
He Jin instinctively pushed the other man, took two steps back, and blurted out: “But I care!”
Fire stared at him, an unreadable emotion in his eyes that He Jin couldn’t grasp the meaning of…
He Jin took a deep breath, then explained calmly: “Because I am also a man, when you sometimes hugged and touched me, it makes me feel uncomfortable.”
Fire raised his eyebrow: “You hate me touching you?”
No, He Jin did not hate it. He merely felt awkward before, but now he actually liked it, something that he would never dare to admit. He was scared, for him to like being treated like that, it always made He Jin feel like a pervert…
He Jin nodded, then shook his head: “Not annoying, I don’t hate you, but I don’t like being too close.”
Fire: “Since you don’t like it, then why did you make that promise to me in the beginning? You said we could play normally in this game, and in-game couples hugging each other is normal.”
He Jin said, “I thought I could do it since it was just a game … Sorry, my thought process was too simple.”
Fire asked coldly, “Then, what are you trying to say? Is it to tell me that… you can’t go on playing as my wife?”
He Jin: “…”
Fire looked a little angry, a powerful momentum oozing all over his body. Especially his eyes, looking as if they could lit people on fire…
He Jin began to regret saying these things to Fire. But he couldn’t hold it in anymore, couldn’t let himself go on like this. He feared that one day he would unconsciously develop feelings for Fire. That was something that he absolutely couldn’t allow.
“I’m sorry…” He Jin bowed his head. He wanted to say, ‘Yes, we should divorce, I will give back all the things that you’ve given to me. We can be like Dead Water and Twig Fence, maintaining only the relationship between master-and-spiritual pet, we don’t have to be husband-and-wife…’
But just as he finished saying ‘I’m sorry’, Fire suddenly hugged him, grabbed the back of his head, and kissed him hard. Just before he was kissed, He Jin heard Fire whispered: “You can’t think about it.”
This kiss came too suddenly, he was caught completely off guard. Moreover, it was much stronger then the kiss they shared during the husband and wife task. Ah Jin’s juvenile appearance made him unable to escape, nor hide. No matter how he moved his head, his lips would still be captured by the other man’s. Despite the limitation set by the system, Fire managed to make some exaggerated moves. This kind of close contact left him with a deep sense of shame, he felt as if his brain had exploded into a mess …
He fiercely opened his helmet’s eyeshield, forcibly withdrawing from the game.
His condition in the game – the agitated and moist eyes, gasping breaths, as well as the trembling figure caused by his struggling effort-, all were so truly reflected in reality. He Jin took off his helmet, wrapped himself with the quilt, and closed his eyes, trying to calm his breathing…
In another room in the same building, Qin Yu also took off his helmet at almost the same time. He rested heavily on the desk, glancing gloomily at the smart bracelet wrapped around his wrist. He sent a quick ME message to He Jin–
Fire: “Running away again?”
Qin Yu got up and pulled the door open, rushing downstairs with his head down. However, after running for half-a-floor, he suddenly stopped, clenching his fist to force himself to calm down.
…… No, now is not the time, don’t be impulsive …
Qin Yu sat down directly on the staircase between the third and fourth floor, his brain was too chaotic.
…… Don’t like being touched by me? You hate me? But why are you only saying it now? ……
His smart bracelet flashed, it was a reply from He Jin’s–
Ah Jin: “Sorry, Fire, I want to calm down.”
Qin Yu looked at it but did not send another reply. Feeling a little depressed, he covered his face with his hands and rubbed harshly… He Jin, He Jin, what the hell are you thinking?
While Qin Yu was still drowning in depression, half an hour later He Jin suddenly sent him a text message asking whether he was free and wanted to go play tennis– yes, it was sent to him, Qin Yu, not to Fire.
Qin Yu of course wouldn’t miss any opportunity to spend time together. He replied back with one word “free”. He hurried back to his room to change his sneakers, then took his racket downstairs.
He Jin was waiting by the doorstep of the first floor, leaning on the transparent glass door while carrying his newly-bought racket on his shoulder.
Qin Yu stepped down the first step, walking very slowly, looking at the man with narrowed eyes–slim physique, small hands, lack of strength and stamina. In fact, he could easily subdue him in reality…
Qin Yu pushed down the evil thoughts in his heart, putting on a smile as he said: “Go to the tennis court?”
“Yeah.” He Jin gave him a forced smile, his expression was too bleak and his complexion didn’t seem too good. He did not say anything along the way.
Qin Yu: “What’s the matter?”
He Jin hurriedly shook his head: “Nothing, I didn’t sleep too well last night.”
Qin Yu: “Oh, you seem to sleep quite late lately, won’t it upset your biological clock?”
He Jin: “No, it’s ok even if I sleep late…”
Qin Yu was also holding a temper in his heart, so he didn’t want to talk to him anymore, he only wanted to bully him. Upon arriving at the tennis court, he volunteered to take He Jin to the empty tournament venue rather than the novice practice area.
In the past month, Qin Yu had once or twice taught him about the rules and techniques of playing tennis while playing against him, including serving and simple counterattacks.
He Jin thought it was also the case this time, that Qin Yu would merely let him practice against him. However, once they entered the venue, Qin Yu smiled and asked: “Do you want to play a serious match?”
He Jin: “Ah?”
Qin Yu weighed the racket in his hand: “I won’t throw the game, and you’ll get to experience the real deal.”
He Jin was a little embarrassed, but he wanted to see Qin Yu playing a serious match since he had never seen it before. He nodded in agreement.
In the first game, He Jin served the ball and hit it to the middle. Qin Yu returned it with such a forceful attack. The ball speed was too fast, it was basically impossible for He Jin to catch it. He only felt something flew pass him like an arrow, almost brushing against his ear. It flew all the way to the back of the venue!
The second one was also the same. Qin Yu sent him such a tricky high lob, He Jin had to run backwards trying to catch the ball and almost fell down…
Third, fourth, cutting smash, spinning ball … such dazzling skills and all of them were aimed at He Jin.
When it was Qin Yu’s turn to serve, He Jin lost even more miserably. Don’t say returning the ball, his racket couldn’t even touch it!
This was merely a slaughter by the overpowered thug towards the novice rookie. He Jin ran around like a headless pig for quite a long time. He wanted to concede, but Qin Yu insisted on finishing 3 matches.
In the end, He Jin squatted on the floor with his racket held loosely in his hands. He was panting and sweating profusely. Was this in the game? Reality? He didn’t even know where he was anymore.
He watched as Qin Yu walked around the net, seeing only his long legs and white-blue sneakers which stopped half a meter away from him.
He Jin looked up at him with one hand clasped behind his back. He couldn’t see the other man’s expression under the glare of the bright winter sun.
Qin Yu stared at He Jin’s red eyes, which looked as if they could burst into tears at any time. Pulling up his collar to wipe the sweat on his chin, he smiled and asked: “Why ah, you make it seems like I’m bullying you.”