Don’t Be a Kept Man
uite stably and with a “puh-tong” he fell right onto the ground.
Wen Chuo didn’t expect this, and his face immediately changed.
He wanted to pull him back up, but he didn’t know what he should say.
Standing there in one spot with frozen limbs, his hand finally reached out but, after a moment’s hesitation, it was pulled back.
With his head lowered, Bai Yang didn’t move, only sitting on the ground.
His expression was unclear and as Wen Chuo looked down from his position, staring at Bai Yang’s skinny, paper thin back, he also didn’t move.
One minute passed.
Two minutes passed.
Three minutes passed.
Bai Yang still didn’t move.
That was when Wen Chuo finally realized that something was wrong and he quickly reached out to pull Bai Yang back up.
Angry and worried, he said,
“I’ve already told you that you can’t just wander all willy nilly in the construction site.
There are so many stray rocks on the floor and tripping can scrape off half your skin……”
A teardrop suddenly fell onto Wen Chuo’s hand.
It brought a searing hot heat and he subconsciously looked down at it.
When his brain finally caught up to understand what that was, his voice dropped off to a stop.
The words on the tip of his tongue were suddenly plugged up inside his mouth and swallowed back down into his stomach.
Wen Chuo felt like he had done something wrong,
Bai Yang didn’t say anything and he stood up by himself.
There were scrapes all over his wrists, and two bloody welts were prominent on his skin.
As eye-catching as his injuries were, Bai Yang only lowered his head and slowly brushed the grime off the palm of his hand before pulling Wen Chuo again, dragging him towards the exit.
This time, Wen Chuo didn’t struggle out of the hold.
He took off his safety hat, and with clumsy hands, he dropped it onto a nearby pile of bricks, feeling a bit uneasy as he was dragged out.
“Bai Yang? Bai Yang? Hey, say something, Bai Yang.
Are you angry?”
Seeing the wounds on his hand, he didn’t dare tug at him, and instead, forcefully grabbed Bai Yang’s shoulder to turn him towards him.
In response, Bai Yang only stared back at him with a very calm and cold expression.
With the two of them standing together like this, compared to Bai Yang whose clothes were still so clean as per usual, it only highlighted how dirty Wen Chuo was.
The color of his wine red hair had already begun to fade, half yellow, half red, making him even more gangster than a thug.
Wen Chuo asked again,
“Hey, are you mad?”
Bai Yang still didn’t reply.
The only response he gave was to pull Wen Chuo’s dirty hand once more and drag him towards their home.
Some pedestrians nearby who recognize them as neighbors casually gave a few glances.
There wasn’t much meaning to their eyes, but Wen Chuo still felt that he looked too dirty, too messy, and it was ruining his normal state of status.
So without the need of Bai Yang pulling him, he flew away very quickly by himself.
When they were home, Bai Yang didn’t let go of Wen Chuo.
Pulling out his keys to open the door with a jingle, he went inside his apartment, and Wen Chuo, a leech by all meanings of the word, could only follow along.
The living room was still in its organized array, with all the messy items cleaned up in proper order and organized in specific spots.
There were collections of wasted paper, plastic bottles and metal cans.
But in the corner, a computer lay on a table, sitting there for who knows how long.
With the sunlight shining through the curtained window, the blackness of the screen seemed to be layered with a faint glow.
Wen Chuo paused in shock.
He wiped his hand on his pants and went over to take a look, before confirming that it really was a computer.
Bai Yang silently cleaned up the shoes that were kicked off haphazardly by the door before lightly closing the door.
He picked up the bag stuffed full with bottles before, and as per his normal routine, crouched on the ground and began to flatten them one by one before putting them in a large plastic checkered bag.
Wen Chuo stood in his spot, silently watching.
He didn’t cry when he injured his hand as he was carrying those bricks.
He didn’t cry when he got yelled at for making cement too slowly.
But now, his eyes were tingling with an acidity.
He faced away from Bai Yang, slowly crouching down, and buried his face into his knees, not moving for a very long time.
The sound of bottles being squished flat was the only sound in the room.
Only when the last bottle was flattened did Bai Yang finally stand back up.
He tied up the large plastic checkered bag full of these flattened bottles well before walking into the kitchen to clean his hands.
The wound on his elbow was slightly swollen, and it looked quite frightening.
Bai Yang gave it a glance but didn’t really put it to mind.
He casually let water flow all over it, rinsing it with his expression like normal, dumb but calm.
He didn’t know that Wen Chuo had cried himself into a dumb dog by himself.
Bai Yang walked into the living room and finally found Wen Chuo crouched by the floor, hugging his knees and not moving.
He came closer with confused footsteps and crouched before him, patting his shoulders.
Wen Chuo immediately sniffed his nose and then messily wiped his eyes.
When he lifted his head, his eyes were still red.
Seeing Bai Yang in front of him, with his pair of eyes that were so black and damp, now reflecting with a slight glint of light, he suddenly brought Bai Yang into an embrace.
Wen Chuo had a bit of a hiccup from crying, and he buried his face into the skinny shoulder of Bai Yang.
The hard work he did and the feeling of being stifled and being wronged all rushed into his head, and he couldn’t hold it back.
Hatred and helplessness arose like a tsunami in his heart.
It was rare for Bai Yang to give a reaction, but a reaction he did give as he reached out to pat Wen Chup on the back.
“Don’t move bricks.
Wen Chuo closed his eyes and whatever decision he made then, he let go of Bai Yang.
Holding Bai Yang’s face in his hands, he said with all seriousness,
“……The tiredness is only temporary.
I won’t be moving bricks for the rest of my life.
Bai Yang, I will absolutely be earning money in the future, and I will be bringing you to live a good life.”
Bai Yang hugged his knees and looked at him.
As if he was the same as he had been many years ago, on that fall day, as a tiny, tiny, small ball, sitting in front of the restaurant and lifting his eyes to look at Wen Chuo who had just returned from school.
It was the youth of their past.
Wen Chuo lowered his head to kiss him on the lips.
His embrace slowly tightened, testingly swirling between the other’s tongue, sticking, forceful, and dominant.
Bai Yang was forced to lift up his head and accept all of this.
His breathing froze, and after a long while, his fingers began to climb up Wen Chuo’s back and slowly tightened up.
*1 Like in volume 3, usually the “head” is basically someone who can rally up a few others that can work on a construction site (not necessarily only big ones, small renovations too), kind of like someone who gets called to work (not necessarily by contract) and he gets to call his “team” who he’ll pay (either from the construction site project person or from his pocket as compensation), but here just to simplify things, I’ll call him the site manager.
*2 steamed buns: to clarify these are called mantous and they are basically steamed buns with no filling.
There are different variations that have been created with its long history, and some areas have different “traditional” mantous, but mostly like this:
*3 just to give some of you an estimate, as of today by google, 100 rmb is about 15 usd – do note that the prices of expenses do differ by country (or even by city/town).
Edit: Fixed the amount that was incorrect (from 104 to 140)
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