Chapter 16 — A Game of Cat and Mouse
Edited by Planetes
With regards to the movie, Yun Jinshu was in no hurry to reply Wen Zeyun, saying that he would take a look at the script before deciding. Wen Zeyun also did not insist, smiling as he started chatting with him, as though he had completely forgotten about the matter of signing the contract.
Yun Jinshu was very good at telling jokes, and he soon had Wen Zeyun rolling about in laughter. If one was not aware of the thousand and one entanglements they had between them, they would definitely think that these two people were very close, old friends.
However, Zhao Hanchuan, who knew the truth, did not feel much at ease. He kept observing Yun Jinshu secretly, and when he saw how calm and relaxed the man was, he could not help but exclaim internally that he did not misread this person. This acting ability, outside of a set, was truly astounding.
Things finally dragged onto lunchtime. Wen Zeyun raised his hand, looking at his watch, then smacked his head. “Aiyah, I’ve been so engrossed in chatting that I’ve forgotten about the time. It’s already past one. Rather than trying to find a day to fit us all, why don’t we have lunch together? Jiang-zi has invited me to lunch, anyway!”
Yun Jinshu thought that it was exhausting enough just dealing with him alone. If Han Jiang came as well, would he not end up dead with disgust?
Shaking his head, he smiled as he replied, “Let’s just forget it, I have another meeting this afternoon, and there’s not enough time. Even if I joined you for lunch, I’ll end up being a downer.”
Wen Zeyun’s brows creased faintly, a slight unwillingness appearing on his round face. He turned his head towards Zhao Hanchuan, “Zhao-laoshi, your company is really very exploitative. Can’t you guys give him an afternoon break? I’ve finally met Jinshu after so long, can you be kind and let him off?”
Zhao Hanchuan hesitated, and Yun Jinshu turned, shooting him a look, his eyes glimmering with a profound plea. Zhao Hanchuan immediately understood, raising a brow as he spoke, “Xiao Wen, this is not my place to decide. Jinshu’s a newbie, and the company has decided that he needs to participate in some activities. If he doesn’t attend them, things would turn troublesome.”
“Oh…” Wen Zeyun deflated, pouting. “If I knew earlier, I would have given Jiang-zi a call long ago and gotten him to warn Li Ke that fellow to not exploit you like this. What an evil capitalist.”
Yun Jinshu automatically ignored the intimacy in Wen Zeyun’s words as he spoke about Han Jiang. Putting his teacup down, he gave Wen Zeyun a friendly pat on his shoulder, “Alright, I promise you that I’ll definitely come look for you to offer my apologies next time, OK?”
Only then was Wen Zeyun satisfied, a smile appearing on his baby face.
Once seated in Zhao Hanchuan’s car, Yun Jinshu leaned on his seat tiredly. His baseball cap concealed half his face, and his expression could not be read. It was only until the car had driven a fair distance away did he speak softly. “Zhao-dage, thank you for today.”
Zhao Hanchuan’s fingers on the steering wheel stiffened. Smiling wryly, he said, “Why are you thanking me? It’s me who lacked consideration today, and I didn’t think that you and Xiao Wen… are related in this manner.”
Understanding the whole situation, Yun Jinshu played dumb, laughing out loud. “What are you saying? How am I related to him, isn’t he just a friend of a friend? I must thank you, as you helped me support my lie that I had a meeting this afternoon.”
Watching Yun Jinshu steer clear of the main point, Zhao Hanchuan could only go along with him. “There’s nothing to thank for. As your manager, I should be concerned over you. Furthermore… Your complexion looks really bad. Shall I take you out for something to eat?”
“No need, I don’t have much of an appetite, and I probably just had too much tea. You can just send me straight home.” Yun Jinshu quirked his lips up in a smile, taking his phone and looking at it.
There were no missed calls, no messages. The phone battery was full, and it was clear that Han Jiang had yet to reply to his message even now.
Stuffing his phone back into his pocket without a care, Yun Jinshu wanted to pull up the zip on his jacket. However, his fingers could not obey his thoughts, and after trying a few times, he still failed. At this moment, Zhao Hanchuan grabbed his hand.
“There’s no need to force yourself to be strong. If it hurts, just say so.”
His gaze was too serious, even containing a trace of pity that was not easily detected. The thing Yun Jinshu wanted the least was the pity of others, and even more so, he did not want to show any weakness in front of people he knew. Pulling his hand back, he continued smiling as though unbothered. “Aiyah, Zhao-dage, I’m really fine. You’re thinking too much. I only have a loss of appetite, not lying at death’s door. Don’t look at me with eyes like that, alright?”
“Previously, I really didn’t think too much of it. I saw Wen Zeyun’s short film. Feeling that he was pretty talented, I thought you could try acting in his movie. However, since everyone is unhappy together, let’s just not take part in this film.”
Zhao Hanchuan would rarely explain his actions like this. However, looking at the current state of Yun Jinshu, he could not help but speak a little more.
As a person, Zhao Hanchuan was very odd. His personality was peculiar, and he liked to throw random tantrums. The entire day, his expression would always be very dark, as though everyone owed him a great debt. However, only people who were familiar with him knew that this person was actually very loyal, and he was someone who often… shielded the shortcomings of friends.
As long as he took that person as his friend, he would support him unconditionally. Whether that person was in the wrong or right, Zhao Hanchuan would definitely side with him all the way.
Evidently, Yun Jinshu was now experiencing this part of his character. He laughed, rolling in his seat, even wiping the tears of laughter from the corner of his eyes. “Alright, alright, Big-shot Zhao. How did I never realise that you had the potential to be an attendant? Don’t be too concerned about me, be careful, I might just fall in love with you.”
The corner of Zhao Hanchuan’s lips cramped up. He rolled his eyes, his expression immediately turning dark. Pressing down hard on the accelerator, his car shot forward, leaving behind Yun Jinshu’s irrepressible laughter.
Back in Jade Villa, Yun Jinshu opened the door and immediately smelled the aroma of food. He wondered, didn’t Auntie Zhang request for leave for a visit home? Did she return again?
“Auntie Zhang, you’re back? What are you cooking, it smells delicious.”
His voice echoed in the empty living room. No reply came, and even the shadow of the always conscientious old butler could not be seen.
Feeling even more suspicious, Yun Jinshu followed the fragrance into the kitchen. When he saw Han Jiang, who was bent over adjusting the intensity of the flames, his feet froze.
Hearing some sounds, Han Jiang turned his head around. He saw Yun Jinshu, and immediately gave a gentle smile. “You’re back? Just wait a moment, the food will be done soon.”
Yun Jinshu remained frozen. He stared at the table laden with dishes, only finding his voice after some time, “Why are you here?”
Han Jiang laughed, wiping his hands on his apron. A tall, fit man in a white shirt, his sleeves rolled up exposing his firm, strong arms, yet he had a checkered apron tied around his neck and waist. No matter how you looked at it, it was a comical sight.
“This is my home, if I’m not here, where can I go?”
“But weren’t you…” Meeting Wen Zeyun?
Yun Jinshu did not say the last half of the sentence out. It felt as though he had swallowed a big ball of flames, and it was currently stuck in his chest, neither able to go down nor come up, extremely scorching.
Han Jiang raised a brow in incomprehension. “What?”
Yun Jinshu stood where he was, not knowing how he should react. He had thought that he was returning to a cold and empty house, and had even started to imagine when Wen Zeyun was eating with Han Jiang, how they would mock and ridicule him, this despondent third party in their relationship. However, Han Jiang had actually come home, and without any signs, he… came back?!
“I sent you a text just now. Seeing that you didn’t reply, I thought that you had something on in the afternoon.”
Han Jiang paused, then smacked his head with a sudden frown. “Just look at me, I was thinking that I had forgotten something! Just now, I saw that you said Auntie Zhang wasn’t home, and so thought of coming home earlier to cook for you. In the end, once I went to the supermarket, I forgot about it.”
With an expression of chagrin, his handsome face had a rare look of sincerity. Perhaps Yun Jinshu had seen too often his insincere smile, and so instead became a little unused to Han Jiang’s openness.
Unwilling to find out if it was Wen Zeyun who was lying, or if it was Han Jiang, Yun Jinshu walked forward and undid the knot around Han Jiang’s waist. “Don’t busy yourself over this anymore. I’ll take over, go out and have a break.”
Han Jiang caught his hand from behind, pulling Yun Jinshu to his chest. Smiling lightly, he said, “I’m already done, and only a soup is left. The last time I prepared the ginger soup, it had already cooled down for some time already. Today, I must show off my skills to you.”
Yun Jinshu barely managed to pull his lips upward, giving a perfunctory smile and not saying a word.
Han Jiang could see that there was an issue with Yun Jinshu, and he coaxed, “Did something happen? Why does your complexion look this bad? You left without a word today as well, did someone make my Jinshu unhappy?”
Yun Jinshu smiled as he shook his head. “No, nothing of that sort. It was just Big-shot Zhao dragging me to meet a director early in the morning, and I didn’t manage to get enough rest.”
Han Jiang chuckled, hugging him tightly. “Which director did you meet? Do you need my help?”
Yun Jinshu paused. He had originally thought of just revealing everything, but thinking about it from another angle, if he exposed everything so simply, he would instead become an embarrassing clown filled with unwarranted jealousy. In this case, before he had even started the battle, he had already lost in his bearing.
Furthermore, right now, he had yet to own Han Jiang’s heart. What position did he have to criticise the official spouse? He understood very well that his chance for success was not high, while his risk for failure was definitely so.
Shaking his head, he slipped his arms around Han Jiang’s waist, pressing himself even closer. “Han-laoban, if I can’t even deal with a director, what right do I have to stay in this Jade Villa?”
There was an implied meaning in this statement, but Han Jiang clearly did not think too much about it. He only quirked his lips a little wickedly, leaning into Yun Jinshu’s ear as he spoke in a low voice, “How do you plan on dealing with him? Just like how you deal with me?”
Han Jiang reached out, pushing Yun Jinshu’s top up. Caressing his smooth back with both hands, the poor Doraemon t-shirt was only rolled up further, revealing a fair, slender waist.
At the appropriate moment, Yun Jinshu pushed him away. He wondered, what sort of expression would Han Jiang have if he knew the director he mentioned was Wen Zeyun? The more he thought about it, the more amused he became, and his expression too turned happier.
“If he’s willing to be on the bottom, I can consider it. However, if Han-laoban is willing to let me fuck you, then it’s an entirely different matter.”
Han Jiang laughed huffily, pinching Yun Jinshu’s buttocks. Exerting some force, he pressed Yun Jinshu against the counter opposite. “If you dare, repeat that again. Between the two of us, who is fucking who?”
Yun Jinshu gave him a light kick, then with his toes, he half-seriously started caressing Han Jiang’s lower body, his laughter quite seductive. “Oh? Han-laoban, why are you getting hard? If that thing causes the apron to tent up, it’s going to look so ugly.”
Having used to seeing Yun Jinshu unbothered over everything, to suddenly see him be this seductive made Han Jiang’s mouth dry up. Curving his lips, he gave a few chuckles, pressing himself closer to Yun Jinshu step by step. He caught hold of Yun Jinshu’s ankle, bending down, his voice a little husky, “You haven’t eaten yet, yet you’re behaving as though you’re satiated and now lusty. Thinking of playing hard to get?”
Yun Jinshu laughed, grabbing Han Jiang’s tie and pulling him closer. Leaning up, he pressed a light kiss on his slightly plump lips, and even did not forget to lick at them. “The key point isn’t what I’m thinking, but whether Han-laoban likes it or not.”
Han Jiang was pulled in by Yun Jinshu’s challenging eyes. He yanked his tie loose. “… It’s acceptable.”
Yun Jinshu’s laughter was quite profound. He lifted his arms, clasping Han Jiang’s neck and nibbling at the knot of his throat. On the stove was a pot of soup brewing, gurgling and bubbling away, and the entire kitchen was filled with the fragrance of food.
Han Jiang’s desires had completely been stirred up. He pressed Yun Jinshu down by the clean sink, pulling his legs apart…