Though the hallway in the dorm wasn’t very long, Wang Xiaoming cleaned it very thoroughly and actually extended the area for cleaning all the way to the patch of cement outside of the dorm. This caused the cleaner who was originally responsible for that area to lose all interest in their job and turn into a health inspector—and one who couldn’t find fault at that.
After Chu Zhao had almost slipped twice on the floor that was as slippery as an ice rink, he finally reflected—painfully—and decided to give Wang Xiaoming a serious job overseeing cleanliness.
With that, Wang Xiaoming finally managed to become something like a manager of the housekeeping division and officially sign up for work.
Though Baal had quite a number of small complaints when it came to wandering around the Silver House building aimlessly every day, when he saw his rapidly recovering body in the Black Star Pearl, those “small complaints” were really “small” indeed.
“You’ve already inspected three floors,” Baal complained from behind him.
Wang Xiaoming held a hygiene inspection list in his hands and carefully checked off each item as done or not done.
“You’ve already inspected three floors!” Baal’s voice got slightly louder.
Wang Xiaoming’s hands paused.
Baal raised his eyebrows. Hmph, he had finally heard.
“Shit, only three floors. There are five left. We have to move faster.” Wang Xiaoming scratched his forehead with the pen and continued walking forward, only to dive headfirst into Baal’s embrace.
“Why are you blocking me?” Wang Xiaoming had only taken a step back when a pair of strong and firm arms encircled him.
Baal trapped Wang Xiaoming in his arms as he murmured, “No wonder human beings didn’t want their wives to go out in public.”
“That’s not true. Society promotes gender equality now and wives can carry half the sky,” Wang Xiaoming retorted without thinking about it. Then he looked up to say, “Besides, we can’t be apart more than 5 meters, so even if you don’t want to go out in public, you’ve got no choice.”
Baal let go and hooked a finger under Wang Xiaoming’s chin, looking at the man and saying in a strange tone, “Are you perhaps misunderstanding something?”
“What?” Wang Xiaoming asked perfunctorily, his eyes still busy with examining the cleanliness of the hallway.
“When it comes to our relationship, I am the husband.” Baal thought they had to settle this matter now. He didn’t want them to be like Lucifer and Michael, fighting over this day in and day out.
Wang Xiaoming’s wandering gaze suddenly focused on Baal’s eyes. “Huh?”
“This warrants a ‘huh’?” Baal was very dissatisfied. “When it comes to husband and wife, the stronger one is the husband.” And between the two of them, he was clearly the stronger one.
Wang Xiaoming thought about it with a furrowed brow and then nodded. “Alright.”
“What do you mean ‘alright’?” Did Wang Xiaoming mean that he was letting Baal have this under duress?! Baal gritted his teeth and the finger that was hooked around Wang Xiaoming’s chin had the urge to scratch the man, hard.
“You’re the husband,” Wang Xiaoming repeated.
Baal’s expression lightened a bit. “Hmph. You better remember it.”
Wang Xiaoming’s phone suddenly rang in his pocket.
He picked up the phone and it was security informing him that a guest was approaching, advising him to go wait in the stairwell.
The rule in the Silver House where staff only appeared when the guests needed them had garnered the appreciation of the majority of guests, because those who came here were either well-known or were in positions of power.But the nature of this place was not above board, so for the guests, the fewer people they saw, the better—though of course, this was just them lying to themselves.
Wang Xiaoming walked into the stairwell.
But Baal stood outside the stairwell and crossed his arms while he glanced in the direction from which the person was coming.
Wang Xiaoming asked worriedly, “You’re not thinking of sending people here and there again, are you?”
Baal answered in vexation, “Do you think I really enjoy sending people here and there?”
He did actually think that.
Wang Xiaoming sneakily nodded but didn’t say anything.
Baal said, “I only move them away when I want someone to disappear.”
So from the numerous times he had sent people away, what he liked wasn’t shifting people from place but place but making them disappear?
Wang Xiaoming stuck out his tongue.
From the other end of the stairway came the sounds of a man shouting, closely followed by the wall being struck by something. One of the paintings hanging on the wall fell off, crashing down on the floor with a bang.
Wang Xiaoming quietly cracked the door open and peered out with his eyes.
He saw a middle-aged man with a beer belly and a receding hairline drunkenly poking his fingers into the forehead of a young man squatting by the wall.
“What are you looking at?! I am the one who bought you… do you know? I bought it. Everything on you, everything you’re eating and wearing belongs to me! I am demanding that you go find Xu Yiming right now… Go, I’m telling you to go find him!” He struck out with his leg and kicked the young man once. “Go!”
The youth had his leg kicked twice but still stood up and pretended to smile as if nothing was wrong. “Ming is in the hospital and asked for several days off. He’ll only be back in a few days.”
“Hospital? What hospital? He’s got a dick and isn’t some chick who has to go the hospital for an abortion after getting some.” The middle aged man mumbled for a while and then suddenly whipped out his palm. “What kind of person are you?!”
The youth’s snowy skin pinkened slightly and his lips twitched twice. He wanted to lash out but forced himself to calm down. “If President Yu doesn’t like me, then how about we go back so you can find someone else you like?”
“Like? Where’s Xu Yiming? I like Xu Yiming!” That President Yu renewed his tantrum.
Baal shrugged his shoulders. “I think it’s quite interesting.”
How was this interesting?
Wang Xiaoming scratched the door and, when he wasn’t paying attention, his head pushed the door open and he tumbled out after losing his balance.
Luckily Baal grabbed the collar of his shirt just in time…
President Yu and the young man watched, stunned, as he stumbled out from behind the door and stopped when his face was about 45 degrees away from the floor. And then he straightened, fifty degrees, sixty degrees… until he was perpendicular.
Wang Xiaoming moved his neck and chuckled drily, “I’m here to inspect the building, to check over the cleanliness.”
Wang Xiaoming’s hand rubbed his neck nervously, “Silver House, the floors of the Silver House are pretty clean.”
“You two looked quite busy.” Wang Xiaoming’s face was practically frozen from his attempts to smile, but the two men opposite him didn’t react at all.
Baal was quite enjoying the show and showed no signs of wanting to help.
“Say,” Wang Xiaoming blocked his mouth with his hand and asked quietly, “if we walk back to the stairwell, do you think they’ll pretend nothing happened?”
Baal thought that was an excellent plot point and said, “Why don’t you try?”
Wang Xiaoming actually tried, scooting back bit by bit with his feet.
The young man suddenly said, “You’re an employee of the Service Department?”
Wang Xiaoming’s feet halted and he smiled stiffly. “Yeah, you… can see me?”
The young man crossed one arm in front of his chest and pretended to cradle his face with the other to block the half that had been struck. He said with a smile, “You’ve got some great martial arts moves.”
Wang Xiaoming wondered dazedly whether having what Chu Zhao described as magic being attributed to martial arts counted as a demotion.
“Are you interested in making money?” President Yu hiccuped drunkenly and walked up, without any good intentions.
The young man reached his hand out slightly and then shrunk back.
Wang Xiaoming looked at President Yu’s wobbling figure and then at Baal’s cold expression. He cautioned out of good-will, “Don’t come any closer.”
“I’m going to pour President Yu a cup of sobriety tea,” the young man said, then turning around and running off.
Wang Xiaoming remarked, “Did he know that Superman was about to change, so he left on purpose?”
Baal gave a cold laugh, “He’s afraid of trouble and that’s why he left.”
In the middle of that, President Yu walked up to Wang Xiaoming and said, “Ten thousand for a night!”
It was only after Wang Xiaoming joined the Silver House that he realized he actually had the qualities to “sit at the bar”1Euphemism for being a prostitute.[\mfn]. From President Zhang to President Yu… this was the second time he had been chosen.
Baal asked, “Where do you want him to sleep?”
“Uh, somewhere where nobody would die.”
“As you wish.” Baal snapped his fingers loudly.
President Yu was about to reach out a hand to stroke Wang Xiaoming’s face. Then he blinked and realized everything in front of his eyes had gone dark and he couldn’t see anything.
“What place is this?”
“Is there anyone here?”
“… Are you a human or a ghost?”
Wang Xiaoming looked at the empty hallway and asked, curious, “Where did you send him?”
Baal answered dismissively, “The warehouse we passed by last time.”
“… That only gets opened once a week.” Wang Xiaoming started worrying.
Baal pursed his lips.
“And that’s every Sunday.” Wang Xiaoming said with a frown, “Today’s only Friday.”
Baal’s eyes squeezed shut. “You’re off tomorrow.”
“Yeah.” Wang Xiaoming felt embarrassed after he finished answering. “That’s not the point of the conversation.”
“We’re going on a date,” Baal declared happily.
“Huh?” He was just discussing…
“What do humans like to do on a date?” Baal stroked his chin. “I’ll have Xiang Wenxun arrange it.”
“Wait.” Wang Xiaoming gripped Baal’s arm and said, “Don’t trouble President Xiang again.”
Baal asked, “How does this count as trouble? He wishes, from the depths of his soul, that I trouble him some more. The sooner I recover my body, the sooner his brother can wake up.”
“Didn’t you say before that at the rate we’re going, it’ll take a maximum of half a month to fully heal?”
Baal grinned with an open mouth. “That’s right. In order to maintain momentum, we need to go on lots of dates.”
“That’s decided.” Baal made the decision like a tyrant.
“No wait, I had something to say.” Wang Xiaoming squatted down and draped himself in a weird pose over Baal so that he could hinder Baal’s footsteps.
Baal stopped and asked, “What did you want to say?”
“…” After a moment’s pause, Wang Xiaoming stood up and let go, murmuring to himself in confusion, “That’s right, what did I want to say?”
Baal’s lips lifted in a pleased smile.
In the warehouse.
A voice shrieked pitifully, “Help me! Let me out! Is there anyone here?! … I’m sorry, I won’t dare do it again… Guanyin above, I’ve given you a lot of daily incense, please work.”
But though his voice was loud, it was blocked by a strong sound barrier made of the metal door in combination with the cement wall. The barrier secured the peace of people walking past.