The Complete Guide to the Use and Care of a Personal Assistant
First Published on Chaleuria
Ling Miao was about to become homeless, and, as a result, his thoughts were completely focused on rent.
A week ago, his landlord had informed the tenants that the next month’s rent would be raised and had given them a week to find another house. Ling Miao’s other two housemates had found cheaper housing and moved out; he and Ji Linxi had not found suitable housing and intended to continue living there. But Ling Miao simply did not have the money to pay the increased rent.
Ling Miao had considered borrowing money from Ji Linxi, but Ji Linxi also had his own difficulties and Ling Miao had only borrowed from him the previous time to buy a cellphone out of absolute necessity. The money he earned from his writing would arrive in the middle of the month, but the landlord collected rent at the beginning of the month. As for asking for help from his parents—Ling Miao could not do it.
Su Yuyang was Ling Miao’s last hope, but by the looks of it Ling Miao would be better off sleeping on the streets.
Ling Miao cleared the table and left without saying goodbye to Su Yuyang. When Su Yuyang exited his room, he saw that the living room was empty. For some reason, guilt blossomed in his heart.
Forget it. I’ll go withdraw the money tomorrow. He’s worked hard, after all, Su Yuyang thought, then did not think more about it.
The next day, Su Yuyang was woken by a thunking sound. After having his sleep disturbed, he could not go back to sleep no matter what he did. He looked at the clock and grumbled as he got out of bed, rubbed the sleep from his eyes, and went to the bathroom to shower. After he walked out of the shower, he passed by the kitchen. A shadow flashed in front of his eyes; his whole body shuddered as he grew afraid that a thief had snuck into the house. He looked closer and saw that Ling Miao was in the kitchen!
“Ling Miao?” Su Yuyang called in surprise.
Ling Miao smiled apologetically and said, “You can go shower first. Breakfast’ll be ready in a bit.”
Su Yuyang walked to the living room and his gaze fell on two old suitcases and a plastic packing box. He was very sure that these things were not his.
Ling Miao walked over holding a bowl of congee. He had just sat down when Su Yuyang asked, “These are your things?”
“These …. uh… “ Ling Miao hesitated as he did did not know what to say. Su Yuyang ate the congee in small mouthfuls. Clearly, he did not intend to continue inquiring, but he was also prolonging the time he spent eating.
Su Yuyang always retreated to his study after eating breakfast, and he did not allow Ling Miao to disturb him during the time between breakfast and lunch.
Ling Miao knew Su Yuyang had good intentions, so, naturally, he did not want Su Yuyang’s kind intentions to go to waste. Su Yuyang had almost finished his congee when Ling Miao spoke up: “Su-ge, I was chased out by my landlord.”
“The contract doesn’t say I have to be responsible for your room and board, right?” Su Yuyang stomped Ling Miao’s plans dead with a single line. Ling Miao let out a cold ‘hmph’ and complained, “If you just gave me my pay, I wouldn’t need to…”
“You still dare to talk to me about pay?” Su Yuyang’s initial intention to give Ling Miao his salary was crushed to pieces by Ling Miao’s words, and now he wanted to settle the score with Ling Miao.
Su Yuyang was not a petty person, but he did enjoy Ling Miao’s frustrated expressions of repressed rage, so he would occasionally provoke Ling Miao. He didn’t think of this as a bad thing.
Su Yuyang glared at Ling Miao who swallowed everything else he had had to say.
Ling Miao finished washing the dishes and walked out of the kitchen, only to see that Su Yuyang was still sitting in the living room.
Su Yuyang beckoned to Ling Miao and motioned for him to sit down. Ling Miao looked at Su Yuyang and hesitated; probably he was spooked by Su Yuyang’s earlier reaction. This hesitation really did not seem like the Ling Miao Su Yuyang knew, and Su Yuyang shouted: “What are you standing there for? Come over.”
Ling Miao walked over with mincing steps. Su Yuyang let out a cold ‘hmph’ as Ling Miao staggered and dropped onto the sofa.
Su Yuyang took a deep breath, and Ling Miao thought that Su Yuyang was about to make fun of him. He got what he wanted to say in first: “Do you know where there are apartments for rent?”
Ling Miao was almost sure that Su Yuyang didn’t know, but in order to not be laughed at, he had to cut Su Yuyang off.
Su Yuyang said coldly, “Go to an agent if you’re looking for a place.”
Ling Miao crawled forward a little, just enough to touch Su Yuyang’s arm. Su Yuyang glared at Ling Miao, who muttered to himself as he retracted his hands. Ling Miao said with his face all smiles, “Then can I live at your house?”
Ling Miao had already planned this all out. He was going to move into Su Yuyang’s house; this way he could save on rent. If Su Yuyang wanted to charge him rent… his salary was paid by Su Yuyang anyway, so wouldn’t it be fine for Su Yuyang to take it out of his pay?
When he had told Ji Linxi of this plan, however, Ji Linxi had only said, “You’re still not awake, right?”
Su Yuyang showed a considering expression, but this, in Ling Miao’s eyes, already translated to “unwilling.”
A terrible sigh. Su Yuyang looked to the source of the sound, and Ling Miao’s disappointed and helpless gaze fell into his line of vision.
Ling Miao inhaled sharply as if trying to suppress something. He looked at Su Yuyang, and the look in his eyes was so sorrowful Su Yuyang was unable to look at him directly.
“Su-ge, it’s not a big deal if you don’t take me in. After all, our relationship is just that of an employer and his employee. Only, I’ve been very busy recently trying to find a house, and may not have time to make you food, or edit and publish your chapters. If it’s quick, maybe it’ll take a week, if not, maybe half a month. During this time, I’ll have to trouble you to order takeout, and edit and publish your drafts yourself.”
After Ling Miao finished speaking, he jumped up from the sofa and wheeled his luggage toward the door.