24 – An Assist From a Rival
Unexpectedly, before the two of them noticed, Yang Lin had already secretly taken a photo.
Because of the poor lighting and the movement of the people, the quality of the photo was not good, and even their figures could not be seen clearly. However, Fang Mo walked right into the trap, and was still wearing the same coat from the picture. Most college boys usually didn’t pay much attention to what they wore, and in this kind of weather, they would usually wear a T-shirt, and few would wear a dress shirt outside.
Fang Mo was different, and always had to wear something special. Because the motion in the shot was very dynamic, the light-colored jacket on his body was decorated with a few long and short gradient-colored stripes that hung downward. It looked quite good but was very conspicuous.
Seeing Xu Xiran looking at him with surprise and disbelief, Fang Mo panicked.
This time, he really was wronged.
He was dumbfounded and didn’t say a word, and Xu Xiran quickly twisted his brows together: “You, you and Zou Shun… are actually…”
“No!” Fang Mo shouted.
In this state of emotion, he couldn’t control his volume at all and startled Xu Xiran.
“Then why were you two…” Xu Xiran lowered his head and quickly glanced at the photo, then hurriedly looked away, unwilling to look at him directly.
“The angle, it’s the angle!” Fang Mo felt wronged and angry, “This person is sick! Purposely taking this photo is so weird! He was standing next to us, so he should know that we were not what we look like in the photo! This is deliberate slander! What a scumbag!”
Xu Xiran was persuaded by his tone and volume, but was still a little puzzled: “What kind of angle would make you two look so…”
In a moment of desperation, Fang Mo acted before thinking, and without warning, he reached out his hands, took Xu Xiran into his arms, pressed him against his chest, and hugged him.
Xu Xiran panicked and was just about to struggle, but before he had time to move, he was quickly shaken by Fang Mo’s force, “At the time I was just…”
“What are you doing! What are you doing!” Xu Xiran shouted and tried to break free.
After all, he was a little stronger than Zou Shun and struggled much more seriously than him, and would soon break free of Fang Mo’s restraint.
“At the time, he was acting like you…” Fang Mo stopped halfway through his explanation.
This was because the closed bedroom door behind them opened a crack. Two pairs of eyes appeared in the crack, and there was a third person’s voice.
“Let me see, let me see!”
Fang Mo and Xu Xiran, whose upper bodies were still entangled together, turned their heads to look in their strange position.
“What are they doing?” The original pairs of eyes in the crack of the door were pressed down, and a third pair appeared at the top.
After the air was quiet for a few seconds, Fang Mo and Xu Xiran quickly bounced away from each other.
“You see,” Fang Mo smiled awkwardly at Xu Xiran, “Aren’t we now also chatting in this kind of place in the middle of the night, right? It’s normal, it’s nothing strange.”
Xu Xiran was now in the position of where Fang Mo and Zou Shun had been before. He lowered his head and covered his face, looking like a pure girl who had just been robbed of her innocence by thugs.
“…I’m sorry,” Fang Mo felt guilty, so he was very sincere, “It’s my fault.”
Xu Xiran put his hand down and looked up at him: “Did you see their eyes just now?”
Fang Mo didn’t dare to look at him, but his eyes wandered.
“They definitely misunderstood,” Xu Xiran lamented, “Nine out of ten that it can’t be explained anymore.”
“Although it’s a bit out of place to say this now…” Fang Mo said cautiously, “but your xuedi also misunderstood me and Zou Shun just like this.”
This example was too vivid so Xu Xiran believed him.
“Fuck,” he cursed, not knowing whether to laugh or cry, “Couldn’t you have just said it? Maybe even a warning would’ve been nice!”
Fang Mo shrank his neck: “You see, from being misunderstood by your roommate now, doesn’t it make you anxious? When I was misunderstood, I was definitely anxious. If you put yourself in my shoes, do you understand how I feel?”
The examples were there and they all sounded reasonable. Xu Xiran felt extremely exasperated and let out a deep sigh.
“I’m sorry.” Fang Mo felt that he needed to repeat it again.
He did feel ashamed. But it was undeniable that this misunderstanding also made him a little happy. From a certain perspective, he really had to thank Yang Lin for that.
While in his thoughts, Xu Xiran’s phone vibrated again. Yang Lin had waited for a long time without a response and couldn’t bear the silence anymore.
[“Xuezhang, did you see the picture?”]
This kid had ulterior motives. He didn’t receive feedback immediately after reporting the incident, and wanted to inquire about the situation.
Xu Xiran looked down at the phone and was silent.
But Fang Mo was no longer worried, and even had some expectations. He asked Xu Xiran, “Aren’t you going to quickly reply to him?”
It was reasonable to say that since Xu Xiran believed in him, he would definitely help him reply back. Something like, “you don’t need to worry about the things between us”, or “I believe Fang Mo is not that kind of person”. Since they already agreed to pretend to be a couple in front of certain people, they had to really act like it. How would a relationship simply fall apart this quickly?
When imagining Yang Lin’s anger after seeing the reply, Fang Mo’s heart felt satisfied.
But Xu Xiran had a different way of looking at this. He frowned and bitterly said: “Well now, I am not only seen as gay, but also misunderstood as a cuckold.”
Fang Mo froze.
“If I told him not to meddle in our business, what would he think of me?” said Xu Xiran.
The evidence of his lover’s infidelity was right in front of him, which was not only green1Slang for a cheater, but also stupid. He could practically hear people cry2Meaning that this situation was just too sad.
Xu Xiran held his forehead: “This is humiliating.”
Fang Mo felt increasingly more ashamed. He squatted in front of Xu Xiran and tilted his head up, sincerely saying, “I’m sorry…”
Xu Xiran propped his forehead with one hand, and stared at him for a while with one eye between his fingers, then softly sighed. He sat up straight and flicked Fang Mo’s forehead: “Treat me to dinner!”
Fang Mo hurriedly agreed while shrinking back: “Yes, whatever you want to eat, it’s all up to you.”
Xu Xiran shook his head and sighed, picked up the phone, and thought hard about how to reply so that he could dismiss Yang Lin without losing too much face. After thinking about it for a while, he suddenly raised his head and asked an irrelevant question.
“Why were you holding Zou Shun like that?”
Fang Mo’s heart skipped a beat.
Because you said you were willing to pretend to be a couple with me, so I carelessly felt high. How could he possibly tell this kind of truth to Xu Xiran?
“He… he was feeling down,” Fang Mo began to build his story, “I won’t say more on the details, since after all, it’s his own personal life. I only wanted to comfort him, but he wouldn’t listen to me, so I just went in and hugged him and shook him a few times, and said something like, ‘Don’t be sad, cheer up’.”
This answer sounded somewhat reasonable, but after hearing this, Xu Xiran slowly shook his head: “This really… this can’t be good, can it?”
“Ah? Why? Can’t I comfort him?” Fang Mo was puzzled.
Xu Xiran sighed, reached out and pulled him to his side and let him sit down: “Don’t you think this kind of gesture is a bit too intimate?”
”Is it?” Fang Mo said, his heart suddenly moved slightly, “You and I often have our arms around each other’s shoulders. We’re both guys, so what’s the problem?”
Xu Xiran raised his hand and lightly tapped on his head: “Stupid! He’s different from us.”
Fang Mo felt that he was very smart, but sooner or later, he really would be made stupid by him.
“…Aren’t you non-discriminatory?” He felt a little uncomfortable, “I have such a good relationship with him, there’s no need to deliberately treat him differently because of his orientation.”
“So that’s why I say you’re stupid,” Xu Xiran said. “To you, it doesn’t matter if everyone is a boy, but to him, the lines can be unclear.”
Fang Mo frowned and looked at him.
“You have to think about it from his point of view,” Xu Xiran said with a serious face, “Since you know that he likes boys, keeping a proper distance is a basic courtesy, do you understand?”
Fang Mo was stunned for a while, then quickly nodded: “Oh!”
It was true that he had always been unable to accept physical contact between normal male friends, and even the slightest intimacy would make him uncomfortable. He was willing to be arm to arm with Xu Xiran, simply because he liked him.
As for Zou Shun, Xu Xiran had a blind spot. Although they were both male, they were the same model3Position. Moreover, they have known each other for too long and were too familiar with each other, and so they were completely unable to produce any chemistry with each other, and have completely ignored each other as options that could be pursued.
“You’re frank with him, but what if he overthinks it?” Xu Xiran continued.
“No, no,” Fang Mo waved his hands dismissively, “He has someone he likes, that’s why he came to find me.”
Xu Xiran hesitated, and finally sighed: “I guess so, but even then, you should still pay more attention.”
Fang Mo nodded vigorously: “Mn, I know.”
He secretly thought in his heart that he now had richer responses to the questions Zou Shun had asked him before. He liked Xu Xiran’s gentleness and appropriateness in such strange little details.
He had seen many straight men react differently towards gay men. Some people would mock, some people would directly detour, some people would deliberately act ambiguous to prove their charm, and some people won’t say anything on the surface, but they resist them inside and secretly distance themselves. Xu Xiran was different. He would treat the other party as an ordinary person, but knew to keep a sense of propriety to not embarrass the other party.
This man was a good person.
Fang Mo’s heart emitted little pink bubbles. However, Xu Xiran had other thoughts: “Have you ever met the person he likes?”
Just as Fang Mo was about to nod, Xu Xiran’s phone vibrated again.
Yang Lin was ignored again, and unwilling to be lonely, persisted on sending him messages. He seemed to have had a major misunderstanding of the reason why Xu Xiran didn’t reply.
[“I understand that this must be difficult for xuezhang to accept. I’m sorry for letting you know about this, but I think it’s better than being kept in the dark. After all, it’s better to just get the pain over with than prolong the agony. There’s actually one more thing that I hesitated for a long time on whether I should to tell you. I have been holding back because I didn’t want to make you upset, but now that I think about it, I should have said it to you a long time ago.”]
“What is this?” Fang Mo asked, craning his neck to see.
Xu Xiran was as curious as he was, and despite the long silence up until now, he immediately sent a question mark.
Yang Lin immediately sent a reply.
[“Last time when we went to eat mala soup together, he touched me under the table. At that time, I thought I was thinking too much, but now it seems that I actually thought too little.”]
Xu Xiran spit out on the spot.
Fang Mo couldn’t help but roll his eyes.
Xiao Yang, I used this move 800 years ago, you still want to fight me?
- 1Slang for a cheater
- 2Meaning that this situation was just too sad