Quality Check: Kai
First Published on Chaleuria
Chapter One Hundred and Sixty-Three: At Every Step
Yan Jin who had landed himself in this sticky situation, took a glance at the clock as it struck midnight and slipped back into his blanket all alone.
How can this be possible?
Yan Jin thought as he naturally accompanied his lover in staying up late into the night with the bedside lamp switched on and a book in his hand. Then…
“It’s half past midnight.”
Right on the dot, and even more accurate than an alarm.
Xiao Yu’s hand movement stopped for a moment.
“Give me another thirty minutes. You can sleep first.”
Yan Jin did not reply.
Creativity is a lot about having the right chance. When one is without inspiration, he could end up with nothing on his papers even if he were to sit in front of the computer all day. But when there’s inspiration, he could easily complete an entire drawing in just four to five hours. Xiao Yu’s current situation was obviously the latter – he felt inspired to the fullest and had absolute confidence in finishing this particular drawing before sunrise.
Yep, before the sunrise.
In other words, Xiao Yu had no intention to sleep at all. He had been haggling with Yan Jin since ten p.m. and successfully got the chairman into bed at eleven in hopes that he would eventually tire himself out and fall asleep. When that happened, he could crawl back to bed in the morning, wake Yan Jin up and pretend like nothing had ever happened.
Xiao Yu did not think that there would be any problem with that plan. However, even with his planning, he did not expect Yan Jin to be such a pesterer and remain undeterred even with all the “insulting exchange”.
And so, he became the person who got deterred.
Xiao Yu finally sensed Yan Jin’s determined attitude from his last time report. The chairman was firm about waiting for him till they get into bed together.
If it was in the past, even if it was for a company that oppressed him until he became overworked, Xiao Yu would never waste such a rare spur of inspiration. Even if he did not have that tiny bit of inspiration, it was very common for him to burn the midnight oil for the sake of the company’s projects and the superior’s assignments. Xiao Yu was very familiar with how S City’s skyline looked from one a.m. to six in the morning.
Living alone in the empty apartment, the air was usually so still with loneliness during night time that every ounce of air he breathed was chilling.
Sometimes, he would work till midnight, get up with his sore, aching body and get himself into his cold bed all alone. Sometimes, when he looked up, it was already morning and no matter how hard it was to keep his eyes open, he would have no choice but to buck himself up and deal with the new day of work.
Xiao Yu got used to all that a long time ago.
Compared to working alone in desolation, exhaustion had become secondary. There would be times when Xiao Yu would feel thankful instead for the kind of high intensity work that could make him forget the fact that he was all alone.
In his previous apartment, Xiao Yu’s work desk had been just beside his window. Whenever he could not continue drawing anymore, he could look up from the table and watch the view outside. He could see the magnificent nightscape the lively night city had that even a star could not outshine.
It was beautiful. A beauty that one could only appreciate when he was alone.
It was probably the first time Xiao Yu had held his digital drawing board in such a place so far away from the dark night. Not for the sake of the company, but for the rare spur of passion and inspiration.
The windows were covered with thick curtains, blocking out all light. The air-conditioning was not switched on, but the temperature felt comfortable. He was in a thin knitted blouse and beside his hand was a cup of warm milk that had appeared an hour ago. Behind him was the bed with a dimly-lit lamp and a person that had been waiting for him since hours ago.
All these were things that Xiao Yu had never dared to dream of.
Xiao Yu had often been worried by unfinished work. In the past, it was a kind of desperation, the helpless and anxious feeling that left him with no choice. Yet this time round, the feeling he felt was a happiness that was filled with sweetness.
It would be troublesome to give in or to persist.
No choice then.
Xiao Yu looked at the drawing that was not even half-finished in his hands and felt strongly reluctant to let go.
It was a rare spur of inspiration that may not appear for a second time within the month…
He may not even remember it when he wakes up in the morning…
Just give him another half an hour…
“It’s one a.m,”
The voice announced behind him right on time.
If the voice that could be heard every half an hour before this had been half-hearted, the voice he heard this time felt extremely heavy o,n Xiao Yu’s heart, making the pen in his hand feel equally heavy.
On top of feeling helpless from having his thoughts cut off, it was the soft heartedness that he felt from being monitored and silently cared for by someone from the background.
No choice then…
“Ahhhhh I’m sleeping, I’m sleeping.”
Xiao Yu threw his digital drawing board onto the table and shut off his expensive notebook. He jumped onto bed while making threatening gestures. He did not look like a person going to bed but more like a person preparing to eat someone up.
Yan Jin let out a big sigh of relief.
Silent perseverance always came with reward. The light touch of concern had finally moved Xiao Yu’s not-so determined soft heartedness.
Yan Jin understood that it was not difficult to make someone feel moved. However, after so many years, Xiao Yu was the only one that he would go through those troubles at every step he took.
Thankfully, the results were not that bad after all.
Yan Jin happily caught his lover who threw himself into his arms. After messing around for a while, both quietly laid back on the bed.
Yan Jin was combing his hand through Xiao Yu’s curled locks as he pulled his lover closer into his embrace.
He was prepared to fight the war of resistance till two in the morning. He was glad that Xiao Yu gave in quicker than he originally thought.
“If I can’t finish the drawing, there won’t be anything to present at the meeting tomorrow.” Xiao Yu muffled his complaint as he buried his head into the chairman’s hug.
“You can draw it in the office.” Yan Jin pressed his lips to his lover’s hair.
“But, but maybe I’ll lose my memory of it tomorrow and forget all the ideas I had tonight?” Xiao Yu said worriedly. “If that really happens, you need to take three-quarter of the blame.”
Yan Jin laughed silently and quickly hid his amusement away before Xiao Yu noticed it.
When facing his unreasonable little lover, Chairman Yan always took the soft approach.
He lifted Xiao Yu’s head up from his chest, looked straight into his eyes, and planted a soft kiss on that worrisome gaze.
Xiao Yu’s cheeks turned red very quickly.
“Alright, I gave you a marking.” Yan Jin lightly tapped on Xiao Yu’s forehead and continued in a low voice, “When you remember this kiss tomorrow, you will remember all the inspiration you had tonight.”
“Wow, my goodness. Chairman Yan actually approved such a project?”
He Xinjia exclaimed as she looked at the latest work arrangement.
“It’s definitely because of the Chief no matter how you look at it. Where’s the rest?” Jing Mo asked.
“Speaking of the devil, they’re here.” He Xinjia waved in the direction of the office doors. “Over here.”
“Have you guys looked at the contents of the latest project?” Xiao Yu also arrived because of the project.
“We sure did. We were talking about it just now.” He Xinjia answered. “Beside the fact that there’s no benefit from this exhibition, it may even affect the collaboration with Master Andy. If I were the chairman, I’d be an idiot for approving this project.”
“Even the best man stumbles?” Jing Mo suggested.
“Hey, could you not insult our ancestor’s wisdom?” He Xinjia retorted unhappily. “It’s not about the best man stumbling, this project is a clear act of covering up for a hidden motive.”
Jing Mo subconsciously looked at Xiao Yu.
Xiao Yu responded calmly. “I also think that it’s not appropriate to approve this project. But since this is the company’s decision, I’d say we all go with it.”
He Xinjia and Jing Mo shared a gaze as they both looked puzzled.
“Say, this project has nothing to do with you?” He Xinjia asked bluntly, not even caring if it was inappropriate just because of her close relationship with Xiao Yu. “SI is going participate in this exhibition, right? It looks like a personal grudge no matter how I look at it.”
“It’s not me. I don’t have any personal grudges against SI. Yan Jin said that he had been planning on taking this exhibition for a long time and he even personally signed the contract,”
Xiao Yu answered very calmly.
Speaking of this incident, he too felt that it was all too coincidental. The exhibition project was the document that he had tampered with when Yan Jin was not around the other time. It was initially placed with the disapproved proposals but ended up placed together with the approved proposals after he had stamped it. It was only later that Yan Jin randomly mentioned the exhibition and said that he had accidentally categorized it wrongly and he was unsure if Secretary Fang had corrected it for him. He also mentioned the importance for YL to take on the project, that it would be troublesome if he had accidentally messed it up.
Back then, Xiao Yu had already confirmed the business meeting details and had already taken over all the work from Director Wang, all prepared for his attempt to deceive everyone in the process. When he heard Yan Jin talking about it, he quickly told the chairman that everything was on track, nothing was amiss, and they were about to sign the contracts. On the spot, Yan Jin decided to personally attend the business meeting to discuss the details, which resulted in both Xiao Yu and him attending the meeting together.
It was a pity that Xiao Yu’s wish to catch Lin Zhou on the spot did not happen. SI’s representatives were his ex-colleagues whom he had worked with before. Currently, Lin Zhou had taken over the post of the chief designer and the ex-colleague who was in close terms with Lin Zhou all along had naturally become SI’s newest director of the design department, representing SI to discuss on contract details.
Although it was a pity that he did not meet Lin Zhou, they did successfully agree on a satisfactory contract. With Yan Jin around, the entire process went incredibly smoothly and played a critical role in planning the event with YL taking the lead. When it came to the actual exhibition date, Xiao Yu was sure that Lin Zhou would definitely make an appearance.
“Hmmm, it seems…”
He Xinjia hesitated after hearing Xiao Yu’s explanation.
“Since it’s Chairman Yan’s decision then let’s work hard on it.” Jing Mo smiled understandingly, “Fortunately, this exhibition will be happening before the collaboration with Master Andy. If we settle this perfectly, it should make that grandmaster have a whole new level of respect for us.”