Chapter 4 – Go Back Home

Edited by: umamin


A completely deserted parking garage, fluorescent white light, slight moisture in the air, a miasma of dust and gasoline.

Warm, wet touch, scalding breaths, overlapping figures, tightly clasping hands.


As if they’d returned to so long ago.

It had also been inside an underground garage, also in surroundings like these, also with these two people.

It was during their second year, when they were both still students. They didn’t have a car nor did they know how to drive, but often, to escape the sweltering summer heat, they had chosen to cut through the cool, shaded tunnel. They had kissed there once.


That day, Fu An had been in a very good mood. He had been holding a doll-head ice cream pop1{the picture}. He had said to Qi Qianze, “Qi Qianze, I really want to kiss you.” Qi Qianze had then stopped and turned to kiss him.

At that time, they hadn’t had any person or any matter separating them, didn’t have any quarrels, big or small. In all the time since they’d met, those had probably been the best moments of their relationship.


When they first began dating, Qi Qianze was always hesitant to be intimate with Fu An, as if he didn’t know if what he was doing was right or wrong. His actions were stiff and slow, his skills uncoordinated and choppy. Nevertheless, his clumsiness revealed that he was careful and shy. Every time he was like this, Fu An would nimbly use his tongue to distract Qi Qianze, little by little becoming more intimate with him. In the end, he would also graze the corner of Qi Qianze’s mouth with the tip of his teeth, causing a little bit of pain. When they pulled apart, he’d ask if it had hurt. If it had, then it was to make Qi Qianze remember him, and if it hadn’t, then they needed to kiss again. 

As time passed, they grew familiar with each other, but Qi Qianze always kept the same method, as if kissing could only be at that pace. If it wasn’t slow and tender, it wasn’t right.


At this moment, Fu An slowly recalled many memories of the past.

If he thought of it this way, Qi Qianze seemed to have treated him very well – they weren’t much different from people who were actually in love.


But now it was different.

One of Qi Qianze’s hands held onto Fu An’s shoulder, while the other gripped his wrist. His body pressed him tightly to the car door. It was impossible for Fu An to escape. He deeply entered Fu An’s mouth, infecting Fu An with his taste and his warmth, and making embarrassing sounds.

Qi Qianze was no longer the same quiet, solemn youth. Now, his kiss was a savage plundering. From the moment he lowered his head, he left Fu An with nowhere to hide, and made him suffer thorough defeat in every area. 


Fu An didn’t know what had come over him. He had a thought to bite, to make Qi Qianze let him go, but once he tried to, he discovered that all his strength was gone, his limbs soft and his muscles cotton. He couldn’t even stand straight.

Soon, this weak, numb feeling even invaded his mind. He almost forgot who he was, where he was, and whether they really had been separated for those three years.


After an unknown amount of time passed, Fu An was nearly suffocated, and uncomfortably dodged to one side. Broken pleas for mercy fell from his lips.

Qi Qianze seemed to understand his struggle, and finally pulled back just a little.


Fu An felt as if the warmth of his body had spread to the car door he leaned against. He panted, waited until his breathing steadied a bit, then raised his eyes towards the light and glanced at Qi Qianze with pupils that seemed as dark as a bottomless ocean.

Fu An had only looked at Qi Qianze for a split second, but it felt like he’d stared for a very long time. With a sudden startle, he regained his wits and tried to wrench himself free. But once he moved, he discovered that his wrist had actually been released at some point. His two wayward hands, which were clearly unable to differentiate good or bad, were clinging onto Qi Qianze’s arms against his will.


Fu An’s Adam’s apple bobbed. His hands had evilly betrayed him, and he was caught off guard – he didn’t have even a shred of fighting spirit at the moment.


“Fu An.”

Qi Qianze’s voice was a bit hoarse, with a kind of stupid hope.


Qi Qianze’s voice was always so nice to listen to. With just one sound, Fu An’s heart began to beat like a drum, and he wanted to flee far away into the wilderness.

Fu An pursed his lips, gritted his teeth, and withstood the urge to escape.


“Fu An, would you believe me if I told you it’s also impossible for you to get rid of me?”


Hearing this, Fu An froze. Fu An had never imagined that Qi Qianze would say this, and suddenly thought it laughable. What ‘would you believe?’. Not being able to get rid of Qi Qianze was a given, because he had never wanted to.

He had longed for this person, and desperately wanted to know how he was doing. To find even tiny scraps of news about Qi Qianze, Fu An had stayed in the engineering group chats, scrolling through boring conversations every day. He had wanted to catch a glimpse of him with his own eyes, to touch him with his own hands, so when Fu An learned of the three-year reunion, he had made a casual suggestion for his group to eat at the same place. When he heard the word “doctor”, he had come out of the room across from the engineers’ – even if it wasn’t Qi Qianze that was choking on wasabi, he would nevertheless have had the chance to be near Qi Qianze again.

And as for going to the bathroom to look for Qi Qianze, that had purely been because he hadn’t given up, and had still harbored some futile hope.

Fu An didn’t know what kind of expression his face would reveal, so he just lowered his head and hid in the shadows.

He couldn’t speak. Qi Qianze said for him: “Because you’ll always love me.”


It was as if someone had suddenly seized Fu An’s heart and twisted violently.

Fu An raised his head and looked at Qi Qianze, face pale with shock. He couldn’t figure out what Qi Qianze’s words meant.


But Qi Qianze hadn’t actually been certain when he’d said them. When he saw Fu An’s shocked face, he stopped and, as if muttering to himself, his voice beginning to tremble, whispered, “Fu An, is it……true? Do you… still love me?”


Is it true? Do you still love me?

Fu An’s heart was pierced. Clearly, even after so long, the words didn’t spare him from the same familiar pain. With his lips slightly parted, he breathed, “Qi Qianze……”


“Fu An,” Qi Qianze interrupted him, “don’t say any more.”

He finally drew back a step and gave Fu An some room. Chilly air squeezed its way in between them, extinguishing the lingering warmth they had shared.


It’s about to end, Fu An thought, as he was assaulted by the chill.


Qi Qianze asked Fu An: “Do you have your things on you?”


Fu An paused, with a face full of confusion: “My what?”


“Your phone, wallet, keys, were they left upstairs?”


“I have them all.” Fu An had only brought his phone and keys.


“Good, let’s go.”

Qi Qianze lifted his hand to press Fu An’s shoulder, pulled the door open, forced Fu An into the passenger seat, and buckled the seatbelt for him. Finally, he closed the door, quickly rounded the front of the car, got inside, locked the doors, and started the car, all in one go. 


Fu An couldn’t understand what was happening and asked him: “Where are you taking me now? What are you going to do?”


Qi Qianze said: “I’ll go somewhere random, fuck you, murder you, and then throw the corpse away.”


Fu An: “……”


Qi Qianze found him funny, softly laughed, and said: “Just kidding, let’s go back.”


“Let’s go back home.”

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    {the picture}


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