The Complete Guide to the Use and Care of a Personal Assistant

Translator: Jury

Editor: NomNom

First Published on Chaleuria

Chapter Thirty-two

Ling Miao’s silhouette was visible against the glass. It was blurry, but Su Yuyang’s piercing gaze made one think everything was visible in blu-ray quality.

Su Yuyang mumbled, “It’s nothing. Are you done changing? I want to shower.”

“Oh, almost done.”

Ling Miao had just finished speaking when Su Yuyang heard the lock turning.

“Su-ge?” Seeing Su Yuyang, Ling Miao called out in surprise. He quickly walked over to Su Yuyang and asked worriedly, “Su-ge, why are you sweating so much?”

Su Yuyang raised his hand to wipe at his forehead, leaving his palm soaked with sweat. Shaking off the moisture on his hand, Su Yuyang smiled stiffly: “I’ll go shower.”

“Ah!” Ling Miao caught hold of Su Yuyang who already had one foot in the bathroom. He dragged Su Yuyang out and said seriously: “Su-ge, you can’t let your injury touch water or it might get infected. Wait a bit.”

Su Yuyang hadn’t noticed this issue. He looked at his injured hand and was actually kind of happy he’d injured it.

Ling Miao put a resealable bag over Su Yuyang’s right hand and tied it fast with string.

“Let’s do this for now. If you have any trouble, call me.”

Suddenly imagining a scenario in which Ling Miao washed him, Su Yuyang said “Mm” and fled into the bathroom. Several seconds later, Ling Miao heard the sound of water splashing on the tiles, but strangely, he didn’t hear the rumble of the water heater.

It wasn’t a very warm day and Su Yuyang usually wouldn’t take a cold shower in this kind of weather. Ling Miao was very confused and really wanted to ask Su Yuyang but on second thought, he had no business prying into Su Yuyang’s personal affairs, so he held back his curiosity.

Su Yuyang leaned against the tile wall, a chill seeping into his skin. A stream of water battered his head and trickled down his body. He couldn’t hold back a shiver, but he didn’t turn the water temperature up. The water blurred his vision and his mind gradually began to clear.

“Heh.” Su Yuyang grimaced. “What am I thinking? Have I really repressed myself for too long?”

His last relationship had ended two years ago. In the two years since then, Su Yuyang had focused entirely on his novels and had given no thought to matters of the heart.

It could be put like this: For the past two years, the people Su Yuyang had had the most contact with were the delivery guy and Feng Ji. Online, he mostly interacted with his editor, Mu Yu. The delivery guy wasn’t even up for Su Yuyang’s consideration while Feng Ji was ‘past tense,’ and Su Yuyang didn’t double dip. Mu Yuy was a married man and Su Yuyang wouldn’t get involved in that. Counting on his fingers, Su Yuyang really didn’t have any suitable people in his orbit.

Now that Su Yuyang thought about it, aside from completing Demonic Song Defying Heaven and starting Massacre of the Nine Heavens, his life these past two years was just like plain water.

Ling Miao had appeared. What would that do to plain water?

Thinking this, Su Yuyang turned off the water. Then he realized something very important and also embarrassing—he hadn’t brought his bathrobe in!

Su Yuyang’s own clothes were already wet. He glanced around the bathroom and didn’t find anything to shield himself aside from his wet clothes.

Su Yuyang cursed under his breath then raised his voice: “Xiao Miao, Xiao Miao!”

“Su-ge, what’s the matter?”

“There’s a bathrobe folded at the head of my bed. Bring it to me!”

Ling Miao yelled in acknowledgement and Su Yuyang didn’t hear anything more.

A knock came at the door. Su Yuyang pulled the bathroom door open a crack and Ling Miao handed the robe in, but when Ling Miao turned to leave he slipped and fell directly against the door. The bathroom door opened inward and as Ling Miao fell, Su Yuyang could only hurriedly dodge. So Ling Miao fell into the bathroom and above his head was Su Yuyang…

“Aah—”

The terrible scream could have broken Su Yuyang’s eardrums. He put on the bathrobe and strode out of the bathroom, leaving Ling Miao alone in a panic on the bathroom floor.

Ling Miao’s brain seemed to have frozen up. He lay on the tiles, the water on the floor soaking through his clothes.

When Su Yuyang returned to the bathroom, Ling Miao was still in the same position he had left him in. It was as if Ling Miao hadn’t so much as blinked.

Su Yuyang squatted by Ling Miao’s side and helped Ling Miao up. Ling Miao reflexively turned his neck so that he was facing Su Yuyang.

Ling Miao had seen something he shouldn’t have seen and now facing Su Yuyang was awkward. Su Yuyang, on the other hand, was unruffled. He laughed and said: “The floor is cold, you’ll catch cold if you keep lying there.”

Ling Miao, who had just recovered his faculties, promptly lost them again. He opened his mouth as if he wanted to tell Su Yuyang something, but he couldn’t make a sound.

“That…”

“Hss—”

Ling Miao raised his hand to push Su Yuyang’s hand away from his back, but when he touched the back of Su Yuyang’s right hand, Su Yuyang inhaled sharply in pain.

“Are you okay?” Ling Miao didn’t move any more, worried he’d accidentally pop the boils on Su Yuyang’s hand.

Su Yuyang smiled indifferently: “What could happen to me? You, on the other hand, should quickly change out of those wet clothes. If you catch a cold I’m not taking care of you.”

Having said his piece, Su Yuyang went back to his bedroom. Ling Miao clutched the clothes Su Yuyang had handed him and something flashed through his eyes.

Ling Miao could feel Su Yuyang’s change in attitude towards him, and internally he was panicking. He didn’t understand why Su Yuyang had changed. He even suspected that Su Yuyang intentionally hadn’t brought his clothes in and everything that had followed had been a part of Su Yuyang’s plan.

“That’s really it?” Ling Miao didn’t want to believe his imagination. Why would Su Yuyang do that?

He likes me? Pfeh!

He’s messing with me? He leveled up his messing with me?

Thinking it over and over, Ling Miao’s various trains of thought pummeled his brain to mush. If he kept going like this, he would not only fail to make sense of the matter, he’d also make a mess of the things he really needed to think about.

If he couldn’t figure it out, he’d stop thinking about it. Ling Miao tossed the matter straight to the back of his mind—in this respect, he was similar to Su Yuyang.

Su Yuyang didn’t have many chapters in reserve and because he’d hurt his hand, he switched from updating twice daily to updating once daily. Even so, updating took more than thrice the time it did before!

“Ling Miao, I told you to use the Five Strokes¹ input method, but you insist on using pinyin. Now you know how awful it is that your typing speed can’t even keep up with my dictation speed, yeah?” Su Yuyang yawned and said lazily.

Ling Miao narrowed his eyes at Su Yuyang and grit out through his teeth: “I’m not a scribe!” Ling Miao typed really slowly—he’d never denied it—but coming from Su Yuyang, Ling Miao could only hear it as mockery.

Ling Miao didn’t care if other people mocked him but if it was Su Yuyang, it just wouldn’t do.

Don’t ask. I don’t know either.

(T/N: the above seems to be an author’s note)

Ling Miao typed frustratedly. The patter of the keyboard would have seemed especially spirited if Su Yuyang hadn’t been yawning to one side.

“Hey, next paragraph!” Ling Miao bellowed.

Su Yuyang felt a burst of energy. He sniffled and continued dictating: “Three days later, Yan Luo and…”

Ling Miao’s typing speed couldn’t keep up with Su Yuyang’s dictation speed, so Su Yuyang would say one sentence and Ling Miao would finish typing it, and the time dragged on.

Mm. The problem here was still that Ling Miao typed slowly.

“I say…” Su Yuyang suddenly walked behind Ling Miao and said slowly and quietly, the breath from his nose tickling the back of Ling Miao’s neck.

“Su… Su…” Ling Miao stuttered a few times without managing to say anything more. Su Yuyang sat down at Ling Miao’s side and said thoughtfully: “Su-su? This form of address is quite intimate. Not even my previous boyfriends called me that intimately.”

“I… “ Ling Miao’s face reddened in an instant. He let out a chilly ‘hmph’ and said coldly: “Su Yuyang, I’m only your assistant. If you need to relieve your biological needs, go to the appropriate place.”

Su Yuyang froze. He had only intended to mess with Ling Miao, but Ling Miao’s thoughts had exceeded his expectations.

Su Yuyang was frozen to the spot, and Ling Miao rose and prepared to leave.

“You’re thinking too much,” Su Yuyang said frustratedly.

Ling Miao didn’t move. Su Yuyang sighed: “I only wanted to say that you wrote these two phrases backwards.”

“Mm?”

Ling Miao looked at Su Yuyang with puzzlement. Su Yuyang pointed at two phrases on the monitor. Ling Miao focused—indeed, they were backwards.

“That… Su-ge, I…” Ling Miao rubbed the back of his head, his expression perturbed. “Sorry, I misunderstood,” Ling Miao admitted to Su Yuyang.

“Ling Miao, what’re you so worried about?” Su Yuyang suddenly changed the topic.

Ling Miao said “Ah” and looked at Su Yuyang with wide eyes.

Su Yuyang propped his chin on one hand and a chill flashed through his eyes: “I like men, and you’re a man.”

Ling Miao understood Su Yuyang’s meaning, and he took a deep breath and said seriously: “Your attitude towards me scares me.”

“Before, you used to tease me and mock me and take every chance you could to treat me like garbage. Now? The day I came back, you were so caring that I genuinely panicked. Su Yuyang, your attitude change towards me… it’s very sudden, and I… I can’t get used to it.”

Ling Miao had finally spoken all the words he had been keeping buried. The weight pressing down on his heart instantly lifted and he felt it become easier to breathe.

Su Yuyang had been wearing a faint smile, but now it gradually stiffened.

“Xiao Miao.” Su Yuyang raised his injured hand and waved it in front of Ling Miao. “My hand’s injured and you’re the only one who can help me. If I don’t treat you well and you abandon me and leave, where’ll I go to cry?”

Su Yuyang spoke teasingly, and doubt flashed in Ling Miao’s eyes. Su Yuyang stood up as if he had decided something. Ling Miao watched Su Yuyang leave the study, and then… then he didn’t know what he should do next.

It was as if… his words had hurt Su Yuyang’s feelings?

 


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Translation notes:

[1] Five Strokes: a keyboard mapping method that lets you type Chinese characters easily, using keys to indicate radicals. The default typing method is using pinyin (typing out the word phonetically using QWERTY then picking your word from the list)