Slowly, starting to UNDERSTAND LOVE
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For the pass fews days, Bai Han Qi and his wife, continuously, busied themselves with preparations for Chinese New Year. Before, they had always enjoyed a great deal of hilarity when everyone gathered together to celebrate New Year. And in those moments, being consumed by the cheerful atmosphere, was good enough for them. But, this year was different, there are two additional people to the family, so everything must be livelier.
Aunt Zou had closed the restaurant earlier. She was dedicated and had committed herself, on dealing with all of the constituents for the New Year, at home. Bai Han Qi, on the other hand, was bent on being her second set of hands and occasionally, Bai Luo Yin would help out as well. But for the most part, Aunt Zou was not content and against Bai Luo Yin helping out. She would rather order her own son around.
Everyone in the household was full of joy with their jubilant appearance, that is, except for Bai Luo Yin.
Even the notoriously dense Bai Han Qi could sense that Bai Luo Yin was strange, somewhat out of character.
Today Aunt Zou was in the kitchen, making and deep frying various sweets for the snack boxes. Bai Han Qi entered with two barrels of oil, tightly secured in his hands. He placed them down and stood situated beside Aunt Zou.
His dark orbs peered outside and, in a low voice that was almost a whisper, “I have a feeling that lately my son is a bit strange.”
“Your son?” Aunt Zou gave Bai Han Qi a side glance.
Bai Han Qi laughed awkwardly, “I said it wrong, our son.”
“Stand a bit further away, so the oil won’t splash on you,” Aunt Zou reached out and pushed Bai Han Qi to the side and asked, “What do you mean strange?”
“A few days ago, I had already thought he was in a bad mood. So, these past two days, I been keeping my eyes on him and noticed that he’s always staring blankly at that jewelry box. That day he went out, I sneaked into his room and took a peek, they were all real gold and diamonds. My son…no, our son, where did he get so much money to buy all those things? He didn’t steal them, did he?”
Aunt Zou shot a death glare at Bai Han Qi, “You’re saying, he robbed a gold store so, these past couple of days, out of guilt, he’s been scared out of his mind?”
Bai Han Qi’s complexion was of a stern and upright male, “I’m afraid that’s what it is. Even if we let him surrender, we should at least wait until after New Year?”
Aunt Zou stood with arms akimbo, frowning at Bai Han Qi, a fire of resentment danced across her face.
“The longer you’ve lived, the crazier you get? Our son has faced so many hardships with you for all these years and he’d never thought of robbery. Now that life is a bit better, he wants to be a criminal? You’re very…what do you want me to say to you now? You, just go stand over there! Don’t get in my way, go go go…”
Bai Han Qi blocked the doorway. He understood none of this, and had thought that he has been wronged.
“This woman…you’re already at this age and you’re still so fickle! Explain this, we’ve just been married for a few days and you’ve already changed. Before, even if you scold me, you’d at least have a smile on, but just look, look, now…”
“That’s because before you’ve never said such nonsense.”
Bai Han Qi scratched his head and sighed. He turned away, with the intention of leaving when Aunt Zou called out to stop him.
“Come over here, I have something to discuss with you.”
“Didn’t you just say I was in your way?”
Aunt Zou was a little anxious, “I really have something to talk about with you. I didn’t remember a second ago. It’s about Yin Zi.”
Upon hearing this, Bai Han Qi quickly walked over.
Aunt Zou cautiously said, “I think, our Yin Zi is experiencing puppy love.”
“He’s already 17, it can’t be puppy love?” Bai Han Qi did not take it to heart, “When I was 17, I was already with Yin Zi’s mother.”
“You think things were the same back then as now? Nowadays, the pressure of studying is very aggressive. Yin Zi is already in his second year of high school and even more, I heard people say, the second year is the most crucial yea. If he doesn’t concentrate on his studies, he will fall behind his classmates.”
Bai Han Qi laughed, “I trust my son.”
“I’m not trying to scare you,” Aunt Zou patted Bai Han Qi’s shoulder, “Two days ago, a girl came here looking for our Yin Zi. She was standing at the entrance of the alleyway. I personally saw the two of them leaving together.”
“Was she pretty?” Bai Han Qi absent-mindedly asked.
“Pretty, very pretty…but, why are you asking this?”
Later that night, after they had finished dinner, Bai Han Qi went into Bai Luo Yin’s room, who was busy tinkering with a pile of boards.
“What are you doing son?” Bai Han Qi sat next to Bai Luo Yin.
Bai Luo Yin did not raise his head and said, “I want to make a model airplane. After the semester starts again, the school will be holding a model airplane exhibition.”
“You can do it son!” Bai Han Qi patted Bai Luo Yin’s head.
Bai Luo Yin grunted in agreement as he continued to busy himself with his task; he did not say anything else afterwards.
Bai Han Qi thought that it was no business of his to be sitting there; leaving would be best…but he wasn’t finished with what he wanted to say yet, so he told himself to stay…but once again he faltered, feeling rather indecisive.
“So the exhibition is after the semester starts?” Bai Han Qi asked once again.
Bai Luo Yin nodded.
“So, you’re working on it now?”
Bai Luo Yin’s hands stopped and he looked blankly at Bai Han Qi.
“Dad, what exactly are you trying to say huh?”
Embarrassment crawled onto Bai Han Qi’s face, “I wanted to ask…”
“Ask me why Gu Hai didn’t come back with me, right?”
“Yeah…it’s that. I wanted to ask you about it earlier. Since winter break started, I’ve only seen him once. At that time, you two weren’t together. What’s exactly going on huh?”
Bai Luo Yin faintly replied, “He’s celebrating New Year at home.”
“So that’s how it is…that’s good. It’s best to returned to his own home on such an important holiday as New Year.”
“Is there anything else?” asked Bai Luo Yin.
Bai Han Qi’s expression froze for a second before he awkwardly laughed, “Nothing else.”
After Bai Han Qi left, Bai Luo Yin was not in the mood to work anymore. His eyes made way toward the window. Meng Tong Tian was in the yard, foolishly waving the stick, that was in his hand, around. After a while, Aunt Zou called him into the house. There were no other living things in his line of sight. Only a single jujube tree remained, its leaves had long fallen and its branches and barks nakedly endured the winter’s weather.
And it was like this that he continued to look at everything, until time sneakily passed by without him noticing. It was only until his message alert tone went off, and Bai Luo Yin picked it up, did he realized that it was already past 11:00pm.
The message read: Shi Hui, “Are you free tomorrow?”
Bai Luo Yin did not reply back as he placed the cellphone to the side. He does not know how many times he had already turned a cold shoulder to those messages.
As expected, the things you’ve lost, only at the time that you’ve lost it, was it beautiful. Once you’ve picked it up again, its glamour has already been lost.
Several days ago, when he received Shi Hui’s call, he could still feel his heartbeat quickening and for a long while he was unable to calm it down. Now, this only feeling, has diminished as well. That beautiful past has become as transient as a fleeting cloud.
Why is it like this?
Am I really a heartless person?
Bai Luo Yin lightly sighed and closed his eyes.
Bai Han Qi entered Bai Luo Yin’s room. Upon seeing that his son’s eyes were close, he immediately thought that the youngster had already fallen asleep, so he switched the lights off.
Bai Luo Yin’s hands felt around for the cell phone beside his pillow, but instead, he felt a cold item beneath his fingers.
It was a nail clipper.
With the cellphone’s light, Bai Luo Yin could see a line of words strung one after the other, etched neatly on the nail clipper.
The other nail clipper was with Gu Hai and only two words was etched on it.
Bai Luo Yin suddenly laughed. He laughed and laughed until a touch of suspicion sprouted in his heart. This suspicion caused Bai Luo Yin’s laughter to be consumed with pain and agony, and the aftertaste of it, was drenched with despair.
Don’t tell me…the word I’ve often said to him was, ‘fuck off’?
Very late into the night, Bai Luo Yin suffered from insomnia again.
Shi Hui sent him another message, “I can’t sleep, what should I do? I miss you, what should I do?”
Bai Luo Yin’s hand reached down toward his own underwear. Slowly, he used his hand to comfort himself. It was only at a moment like this, could he get rid of all his troubling thoughts and silently indulged in this simple pleasure. His body gradually became hot.
A fire was ignited in heart. It flickered about, first dimly and before long it exploded, causing the temperature of his heart to flare up.
Gu Hai’s face suddenly flashed across his mind.
His hands trembled.
Bewilderment traversed throughout his face and alighted resplendently.
Before when Gu Hai helped him released, he had always imagined that Gu Hai was a woman. And, it was only then, could he engrossed himself in the moment.
It’s preposterous…why is it that now, I only became excited because of him. Have I really become a pervert?
Anxiety, restlessness, emptiness, concern…every single negative emotion gushed forth and fought against the pleasures that had inevitably gravitated toward his body. The strength of these two opposing forces collided. Neither advanced nor retreated…Bai Luo Yin’s heart and mind plunged into an abyss as it suffered severely from the lingering torment.
It felt like a ball of fire had torched his entire body, setting it ablaze. As the wave of heat surged, crested over him, and silently recapitulated, those abiding emotions finally were drowned out.
Bai Luo Yin silently gave up and caved in, abandoning himself. He allowed his feelings to act willfully, do whatever it pleases and devoured him.
He imagined that his own hands were Gu Hai’s hands.
He imagined the way, the tip of Gu Hai’s tongue, would travel slowly along his body. The more he thought of it, the more excited he felt…the more he thought of it, the more he couldn’t control himself.
It was even to the point that, he had the desire to slip into Gu Hai and thrust into him. Very intensely and strongly…very strongly…
As he reached his climax, Bai Luo Yin was unable to stop a moan from seeping out from between his tightly sealed lips, “Gu Hai…”
It sounded like a whisper…a whisper that hovered closely to his ears. Even Bai Luo Yin was scared by this realization.
Why would I call out his name in a moment like this?
In the middle of the night, Bai Han Qi awoken and sought out the bathroom to relieve himself. He discovered his son, in his pyjamas, crouched outside in the yard, smoking.
Bai Luo Yin stood up and looked at Bai Han Qi, “Dad, why are you up?”
“I need to use the toilet. Why you crouching here? Quick, go back to your room. Are you trying to get sick for the New Year?”
Bai Luo Yin stubbed the cigarette and steadied his gaze on Bai Han Qi.
“Dad, after you’ve finished relieving yourself, come sleep in my room.”
In that instant, a flush crept over Bai Han Qi’s face, happiness cozily settling on it. When Bai Luo Yin was younger, the two slept under the same blanket. Every night before sleeping, they had to warm it up and now, in the blink of an eye, Bai Luo Yin had completely stopped asking him to sleep together in the same room. Today was the first time since forever.
Bai Han Qi stepped forward, grasped Bai Luo Yin’s head and cheerfully said, “You haven’t been home in such a long time, you still know how to act like a spoiled child?”
Bai Luo Yin did not say anything.
Bai Han Qi patted his son’s buttocks before he chided him, “Go in, your cheeks are cold.”
 咯吱盒 – it’s a box that contains different type of sweets –some of which are fried – think of bento box but with snacks
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