Chapter 20 – Part 1

Translator: Kotoni

Editor: Isalee

First Published on Chaleuria


Thursday evening, ten minutes to six. Fang Chi sent off his last patient for the day and began packing up in exhaustion. Five minutes later, he opened the door with his bag in hand, and was surprised to find Gao Zhun sitting on the bench in the waiting area. He was dressed in a gray British suit, with his hair neatly combed back from his face. “Dr. Fang,” he greeted with a quiver in his voice, “I’m sorry I came without any notice.”

They had just met the day before for a therapy session that lasted over an hour – over an hour of aggressive, relentless questioning, and confession without any reservation. “You may go first,” Fang Chi said to secretary Li.

“It’s alright,” she replied, dutifully taking out the visitor’s log book. “Since you’re making an exception for an unscheduled client, I don’t mind staying for a while longer.”

“That won’t be necessary.” Fang Chi switched on the lights in his office again and ushered Gao Zhun into the room. “He’s my friend.”

Gao Zhun entered. Trembling in apprehension, he followed every one of Fang Chi’s movements with a nervous eye. Under his watchful gaze, Fang Chi put down his bag, took out some documents and his glasses case before shrugging off his suit jacket and hanging it on the rack. Then, after giving his neck a stretch, he looked over at Gao Zhun. “What happened, Mr. Gao?”

“I…” Evasiveness crept into his eyes. “Nothing happened. I just wanted to see you…” he faltered, bashful and self-conscious. After giving it some thought, he finally asked, “Have you freed up your schedule yet? We… can we meet twice a week instead?”

Fang Chi gazed at him in silence, pondering with a cautious glint in his eyes. Gao Zhun panicked, terrified that he might have displeased Fang Chi. “It… it’s alright if you can’t…”

“Will you be free every day around this time?” Fang Chi cut in, “Is this a convenient time for you, from five thirty to six thirty?”

Gao Zhun’s eyes widened. “Yes!” he blurted out, clumsy in his attempt to hide the euphoria raging within him. “Yes, it’s very convenient for me!”

“I’d like to increase the frequency of our treatment, from weekly appointments to daily sessions.” Fang Chi picked up his notebook and pen. Then, he began approaching Gao Zhun with a smile. “Is this arrangement okay for you?”

Gao Zhun did not even need to articulate his answer. The lifted corners of his eyes, the pink tint in his cheeks, and the pressure in his tightly pressed lips all spoke of his absolute willingness: of course it was okay – it was all he could have ever wanted. “Dr. Fang, you know that Linlin has left for her trip. I’m all alone at home now, and I’ve been terrified…”

He was trying to rationalize his abnormal dependency. Fang Chi nodded. “How did you feel after you went home yesterday?”

Gao Zhun took a deep breath. “I felt that I was no longer on my own. I’m very glad that I was able to talk about it…” He ran his fingers over and over the embroidery along the bottom of his jacket. “I used to think that I would kill myself if anyone found out. But now – now that you know about it – I feel as if I’ve come alive again.”

As he spoke, a scorching heat pervaded his entire being – a heat so intense that it almost set Fang Chi on fire as well. But Fang Chi kept up his pretense of cool indifference. “Mr. Gao,” he said, “let’s talk about your dreams today.”

Gao Zhun’s face froze at the mention of ‘dreams’, but Fang Chi was not going to give him the opportunity to refuse the suggestion. “They are the cause of your severe sleeping problems, and you called me that night because of your nightmare as well,” he explained. “I want to know about those dreams of yours.”

“They’re just… dreams about the incident…” Gao Zhun prevaricated, deliberately vague with his answer.

Fang Chi uncapped his pen. “Details, please.”

An injured expression came over Gao Zhun’s features. “He yanked my pants off, ground against me with his hardness… and entered me!”

“Did the dreams differ from reality?”

This was not a question that Gao Zhun expected at all. Taken by surprise, he was stunned for a while before withering in resignation. “In some dreams, we weren’t in the car…”

“Where were you?”

“In…” Gao Zhun clenched his fists, then he released them. “In bed.”

Even Fang Chi was unable to contain his surprise at the revelation. “You and him, in bed together?”

“It’s as if I was drunk,” Gao Zhun gazed up at him imploringly, “in those dreams, I lay in bed as if I’d lost all my strength. He stood opposite me, stark naked… and I could see his thing standing upright, straining against his belly, fully erect.”

Something strange began to stir within Fang Chi; unconscious of his own actions, he pulled his notebook over his crotch. Failing to notice the oddness that had come over Fang Chi, Gao Zhun continued, “The room was very dark, but the walls were mirrored. In the mirrors, I could see him climbing into bed. Then he lowered himself onto me and whispered in my ear…”

“What did he say?”

“He said…” Gao Zhun began shaking, “he said that he was going to use me like a whore.”

Without realizing what he was doing, Fang Chi stopped writing altogether. He listened wholeheartedly, hanging on to every single word from Gao Zhun’s lips. “He played with my body as if I were a toy and tormented me like I was his bitch. Even in the dreams, it still hurt so much. He was so thick, so big… I couldn’t take it at all…”

“How else did you react?”

“I screamed. And moaned out loud.” Gao Zhun’s face reddened. “Because we were in a room, I didn’t need to hold back anymore. I cried out all I wanted.”

“Did you climax in those dreams?”

Gao Zhun nodded piteously. “He wouldn’t stop toying with me,” he said, “I couldn’t help myself.”

Fang Chi was burning now; he felt the fires within himself – one blazing between his legs with desire while the other roared with rage in his chest. “Have you dreamed of anyone else besides him?” he asked. Then, his tone sharpened as he added, “Except for me, that is.”

Gao Zhun hesitated before replying, “No.”

At last, Fang Chi found an outlet for the flames in his chest. He slammed his pen down on his notebook. His voice was harsh and severe as he barked at Gao Zhun, “Do you think that I can’t tell when you’re lying?”

Gao Zhun immediately gave in. He leaned forward in his seat, anxious to explain himself. “Only once!”

To Fang Chi’s dismay, Gao Zhun’s submission only seemed to add fuel to his fury. “Who was it?”

“It’s…” Gao Zhun was still trying to hold back, but Fang Chi’s expression told him that his efforts were futile. “It’s Justin.”

Fang Chi was right in his guess. “Why him?”

“Because he frightens me.” Seeming to have lost himself in a flashback, Gao Zhun began, “Once, I took him to an auction in Macau. He had too much to drink at the dinner. On our way back to our rooms, he pinned me against the wall along the hotel walkway. He pressed himself against me… I think he was hard, but I’m not sure. It could have been his phone…”

“Was this a one-off incident?”

“There was one other time, during an Expressionist traveling exhibition. One of the works depicted… homosexual sex,” Gao Zhun replied, furtively observing Fang Chi’s expression. “As we were studying the artwork, he asked me if I had ever watched Spring Fever before. I did, but I told him no.”

“What’s Spring Fever?” Fang Chi asked.

“It’s a gay film.” Gao Zhun tightened his fingers in nervousness. “One of the scenes is shot in the bathroom, and it’s very… intense.”

Fang Chi frowned. “Why would you watch something like that?”

“I like Lou Ye. I’ve watched every film he directed.” Afraid that Fang Chi might misunderstand him, Gao Zhun added in explanation, “He’s very popular among the people in my profession. His scenes are beautifully shot.”

Fang Chi did not want to fuss over such minor details anymore. “Tell me about your dream involving Justin.”

Gao Zhun responded with silence, unwilling to talk about it. Fang Chi waited. After a while, he glanced at his watch and remarked, “Why don’t we end here for today?”