The Complete Guide to the Use and Care of a Personal Assistant
First Published on Chaleuria
“If you’re asking me to sound out Ling Miao’s feelings for Su Yuyang, I’m telling you now—forget it!” Ji Linxi smiled faintly as he looked at Feng Ji, ridicule plain on his face. Feng Ji froze. He guessed Ji Linxi’s thoughts and grimaced: “You’re right. Xiao Li and I care about Yuyang because we’re close friends, and you and Ling Miao are also close friends. Everything Yan Li and I do, we do hoping that Yuyang can escape from these emotions which are about to make him snap at any time. What you do, you do to protect Ling Miao. It’s only natural that you’re not willing to help me.”
Ji Linxi narrowed his eyes at Feng Ji. Feng Ji was speaking casually but Ji Linxi could tell he was hiding unease and frustration. Ji Linxi patted Feng Ji’s shoulder and consoled: “It’s best to let them solve their own problems. Even if Ling Miao’s interested in Su Yuyang in that way, what can you do? Encourage Su Yuyang to pursue Ling Miao? Looking at Su Yuyang, he’s confused. If you forcibly open a way for him not knowing if it’s right or wrong, what happens next will be beyond your control. If the end result isn’t one you want, who’ll you go crying to?”
Feng Ji lay down spread-eagle on his bed and said helplessly: “Only Su Yuyang knows how he feels about Ling Miao, but… Su Yuyang doesn’t know, either. Xiao Li and I guessed he likes Ling Miao, but he’s a blockhead, and if you don’t tap him a little and provoke him a little he might go a lifetime not understanding. By the time he gets it, Ling Miao might have already gotten married and had kids.”
“Honestly, I did suspect before that Ling Miao had feelings for Su Yuyang,” Ji Linxi suddenly tossed out. This seemed to energize Feng Ji, who cried out excitedly: “Surely not? Then you…”
“Then I quickly decided otherwise.” Ji Linxi followed up by pouring cold water over Feng Ji, thoroughly cooling Feng Ji’s heart. Feng Ji sat up on the bed, glaring at Ji Linxi who laughed: “I remember one day when Ling Miao came back early from Su Yuyang’s place. He was very angry, like he wanted to skin Su Yuyang and use his skin to make clothing, but the moment he got a text from Su Yuyang he went running straight back. He said he was worried Su Yuyang would die from low blood sugar. After that, a few other things happened that made me think ‘Ling Miao likes Su Yuyang like that.’ Then Ling Miao moved out of Su Yuyang’s house and I got the message loud and clear: Ling Miao’s concern for Su Yuyang is that of a fan for his idol, and an employee for his boss.”
Feng Ji completely gave up the notion of asking Ji Linxi to probe Ling Miao’s feelings on the matter. Now, he even considered telling Yan Li to put a stop to the plan, which was very likely to fail. But knowing Yan Li, she’d only end the plan once Ling Miao had returned to Su Yuyang’s side.
Ji Linxi saw Feng Ji go silent for a long time and also noticed the hesitation in his eyes. He suddenly asked: “Feng Ji, did you ask Su Yuyang before what he thinks of Ling Miao?”
“About Ling Miao… Su Yuyang’s talked to me twice about him. I told him both directly and indirectly that he might’ve fallen for Ling Miao, but he didn’t take it to heart at all.” Feng Ji’s smile grew even more helpless. “Maybe Yan Li and I really got it wrong. But then how do you explain everything he does to Ling Miao? For someone to pester someone else like Su Yuyang is doing—they have to either hate the person, be interested in the person, or have made a bet with someone. Thinking about these three scenarios, the only possible one is that Su Yuyang’s interested.”
“I…” Ji Linxi was cut off by Ling Miao’s terrible scream from downstairs.
“Su Yuyang? Su Yuyang?” Ling Miao frantically called Su Yuyang’s name as if his beloved was about to die in his arms.
Feng Ji and Ji Linxi exchanged a look and rushed downstairs.
Su Yuyang was lying in Ling Miao’s lap as Ling Miao looked on helplessly, frantically called his name. Feng Ji and Ji Linxi exchanged a look in tacit understanding. Feng Ji’s eyes were delighted while Ji Linxi wore a despondent smile.
Feng Ji was the boss and Su Yuyang’s good friend, so he rushed over as quickly as he could. He sent away the onlookers and looked at Su Yuyang’s pale face. He picked Su Yuyang up, then walked toward the second floor.
Feng Ji’s steps were steady, but there was worry in his calm too. Ji Linxi stood aside and let Feng Ji carry Su Yuyang upstairs, and Ling Miao watched them go. Only after most of Feng Ji’s body had disappeared from view did Ling Miao stand up and walk unsteadily toward the stairs.
Ji Linxi watched Ling Miao’s unsteady, tottering steps thoughtfully. He wondered: He’s so worried about Su Yuyang. Is this a fan’s concern for his idol or concern for his beloved?
Ling Miao had already walked up to Ji Linxi, who didn’t stand aside. Ling Miao gave Ji Linxi a look, but Ji Linxi’s eyes were resolute. Ling Miao reflexively turned to walk around Ji Linxi, but Ji Linxi nimbly blocked his way again.
“Stand aside!” Ling Miao bellowed.
Ji Linxi gave a start as if Ling Miao’s powerful energy had physically impacted him, but he quickly recovered.
He stood stoically like an upright pillar in front of Ling Miao.
“I want to see him.” Like an eggplant touched by frost, tears shone in Ling Miao’s eyes, and his pleading expression almost made Ji Linxi give in.
“Don’t you hate him?” Ji Linxi asked.
Ling Miao explained: “He’s my idol. If he’s sick, who’s gonna write for me to read?”
“His books are the only ones you read?” One line from Ji Linxi rendered Ling Miao’s argument useless.
Ling Miao’s hands balled into fists at his side, veins rising on the back of his hands in anger. Ji Linxi pretended he hadn’t seen it and continued: “Ling Miao, if you want to go, I’m not going to stop you, but I hope you’ll think one thing through. Why are you this concerned for Su Yuyang? Do you like him, and if so, what’s the nature of your liking for him? If you can’t figure those two things out, I advise you to stay here. If you go up, you’ll just bring him even more trouble.”
Hearing Ji Linxi’s words, all the strength left Ling Miao’s body and he fell to the ground like a terminally ill patient. Ji Linxi helped him up, called for a glass of warm water, and put it in front of him.
“Think about it. I’m going upstairs to check on the situation.” Ji Linxi patted Ling Miao’s shoulder.
Su Yuyang lay on the bed, his pallor much better than before but still terrifyingly pale.
Ji Linxi asked in a low voice, “How is he?”
Feng Ji said sarcastically: “It’s the same old issue. He won’t die. At most, he’ll be weak for a few days.” Seeing that Ji Linxi had come up alone, he asked in disappointment: “Where’s Ling Miao?”
“I asked him to stay downstairs to think a few things over. Once he’s thought it through, he’ll come up. If he can’t figure it out, what’s the use of him seeing Su Yuyang?” The corner of Ji Linxi’s mouth twitched. “Actually, Ling Miao’s pretty concerned about Su Yuyang.”
“Seeing how frantic he was just now, I agree with you.” Feng Ji thought about how Ling Miao had looked just now and couldn’t help smiling. A pity Su Yuyang hadn’t seen it.
“If Su Yuyang could have seen Ling Miao earlier, he’d surely have laughed at Ling Miao,” Feng Ji guessed.
Ji Linxi didn’t respond.
Time passed, minute by minute. Yan Li called to check on the situation and Feng Ji reported it to her as-is, then Ji Linxi heard an exasperated voice: “What the fuck are these two doing? If they get their affairs in a muddle, that’s fine, but they make us worry along with them? Damn it!”
Ji Linxi laughed coldly: “You were the one who poked your nose in, right?”
Hey, worrying for a good friend is poking my nose in, now? What about when you worried about Ling Miao?
Feng Ji glanced at Ji Linxi’s expression and put the phone on speaker, intending to make trouble.
“Feng-zi, I’ll ask you. What’s Ji Linxi doing?”
Hearing his own name, Ji Linxi gave a start and almost fell down the stairs.
“Ji Linxi? You’re suddenly concerned about him, do you have a secret you can’t tell?” Feng Ji teased.
Yan Li suddenly lowered her voice: “Yeah, I like him like that. Bite me?” As her pleased voice reached Ji Linxi’s ears, he couldn’t keep his balance any more. He uncrossed his legs so he was standing straight and unfolded his arms. Thankfully, having learned his lesson from before, he was standing inside the room with his back to the wall.
“Bite you? I’m not a dog.” Feng Ji let out a ‘tcheh’ but he was looking at Ji Linxi. Feeling Feng Ji’s eyes on him, Ji Linxi slowly walked over. Feng Ji put his finger to his lips indicating to Ji Linxi to stay silent.
“Hey, Feng-zi, I’m at the stadium. Rehearsal’s about to start. If there’s anything, I’ll call you tonight.” Yan Li was still speaking when Feng Ji heard Yang Lin hurrying her in the background. Yan Li quickly exchanged a few more words then hung up the phone.
“How do you feel?” Feng Ji quirked an eyebrow and asked.
Ji Linxi said expressionlessly in a calm tone: “She’s free to like whoever she wants, and I’ll also choose who I like.” Ji Linxi didn’t want the conversation to linger on him so he looked at Su Yuyang and asked: “How long will he sleep?”
“Half a day, maybe a day. It depends. The longest he slept was three days.” Feng Ji shrugged. “Ling Miao’s still not here. Looks like he was stumped by your question. What exactly did you ask him?”
“Just to think through a few things.” Ji Linxi’s smile was mysterious.
Feng Ji shuddered and said haltingly: “If you’re smiling like that, I think he won’t figure out the answer in this lifetime.”
“You’ll keep him here?”
Feng Ji didn’t know where Ji Linxi’s thoughts had leaped. A second ago he’d just been talking about Ling Miao, and now he’d turned the conversation to Su Yuyang. Feng Ji shook his head: “If I keep him here, where will I sleep?”
“Let Ling Miao take him home,” Ji Linxi suggested.
Comprehension dawning, Feng Ji looked at Ji Linxi. He nodded, and his lips curved slowly into a smile.