Screen Partner Chapter 21
The four-person bed scene was finished, and that also represented the end of the first GV.
The staff members quickly set to work and cleaned up in anticipation of going out for a celebratory meal. They made a huge racket requesting the director to provide a meal for everyone. Fortunately, the director was prepared for this, and indicated with a wave that it was fine. The crew all piled into their vehicles and drove out, and they all arrived shortly at a street in town well known for its many restaurants. For this reason, although it was already 11 at night, the street was still noisy, and fairly busy.
The crew found a clean looking stir-fry shop to sit down in. They quickly began to throw away money by the handful, ordering many expensive dishes and sake. The director shot everyone a fierce look, but in the end silently accepted his defeat.
Soon enough, the director did not seem to mind, and to everyone’s surprise, he was the first to open two bottles of sake. He poured a generous round for the entire crew, and then called over Ruka—whom he both loved and hated—to drink with him.
Ruka had gone through significant difficulties to ensure that he could sit next to Xu Zheyi, so of course, he was not willing to easily let someone else take his place. Unfortunately, the director did not care about that kind of thing, and sent two strong assistants who basically dragged him over.
No sooner had Ruka left, and Ah Li was hot on his heels to take the open place. He sat down, holding his drink in his hand.
“Thank you for the medicine,” he made a toast to Xu Zheyi and whispered his thanks.
Xu Zheyi glanced over at the sake, and then asked him, “Do you really feel like it was useful?”
Ah Li thought for a moment, and then spoke, “I didn’t feel anything at first, but then the effect hit me all at once, and I was completely…” He did not know what to think or say, and his face was suddenly flushed.
Xu Zheyi was not interested in studying his psychological state, so he nodded hastily.
At this time the waiter brought out their food. The crew seated around the table held their chopsticks like they were weapons, ready to wage war for the meal that lay before them. Xu Zheyi was also quick to join the battle. Although there was still a communication barrier stemming from the fact that the film crew was mostly Japanese, after a few cups of sake, everyone was getting along far better, and without concern.
Everyone there kept going strong until the restaurant closed, and then they were clamoring to go somewhere else to continue the celebration.
At this time Xu Zheyi deeply realized the pain of his older body. The intense sex was just too burdensome for him. When they had just finished he could not really feel it, but after a satiating meal, a bone-deep tiredness washed over him. He was overcome with an exhausted and lazy feeling, and although he did not necessarily want to sleep, he still wanted to find a quiet place to sit down and rest for a while.
He ended up taking a seat on a bench on the sidewalk.
The majority of the staff members had swarmed a nearby convenience store, and they were like locusts sweeping the shelves clean of all kinds of alcohol and snacks. They made excited plans to take it all back to the hotel to eat and drink. A few people had gathered outside the shop door to smoke, and chatted amongst themselves while they waited.
Ruka was one of the few who had remained outside, and stood by himself.
At that moment he was not too far away. He did not say a word, but motioned for Xu Zheyi to come over with a crook of his index finger.
Xu Zheyi was not completely confident that motion was meant for him, and wanted to confirm whether the other party was calling him. Ruka did not speak, and just accelerated the motions with his index finger. Xu Zheyi complied, and started moving toward Ruka.
The other party was obviously satisfied with his obedient behaviour. A silly little smile lit up his face; his sharp, tiger teeth just visible. When Xu Zheyi saw his smile, it actually made his heartbeat accelerate a bit, and he could not help trying to take a second glance. When he looked closer, he found Ruka staring straight ahead, eyes lax, and obviously completely drunk.
“Hey, are you all right?” He recalled that Ruka had been called over by the director, and ruthlessly made to drink. He could not help being a little worried.
Ruka paid his concern no heed, grabbed his wrist, and pulled him forward. The two men crossed the alley, turned left and then right, and came to a row of bikes1. Just as Xu Zheyi felt his head fill with question marks, he saw Ruka try the one of the locks, and his question mark immediately turned into a cold sweat.
“Come on up, it was hard to find an unlocked bike,” drawled the drunken guy, and he quickly quickly stepped up and patted the back cushion, and then smiled at him.
…What the hell are you doing?
For Xu Zheyi, who had no resistance towards Ruka’s smile, he immediately hated iron for not becoming steel2.
The two men rode the stolen bike, and began their somewhat crooked journey off towards the unknown. The back seat was not comfortable at all, especially when they rode over a bumpy section of road. Xu Zheyi was in so much pain, he thought perhaps it was caused by a hemorrhoid flaring up.
Just as he planned to jump off the bike, Ruka finally stopped and announced, “Here it is.”
Xu Zheyi climbed down from the back seat, and followed Ruka for a few steps. That was when he heard the sound of the waves. It was the sea at night.
The two men casually took off their shoes and put them near the side of the road, and and then walked onto the beach. The sand still bore some of the warmth from the day’s sun, but the sea breeze was chilly.
Once they were exposed to the cold wind, the two men who had been feeling so hot because of all the liquor immediately sobered up.
“How do you know my full name?” After sitting shoulder to shoulder with Ruka on the beach for a while, Xu Zheyi eventually raised this question out of curiosity.
Ruka, of course, would not admit him that he had googled him, and answered, “It was written in the script.”
…Utter nonsense. Xu Zheyi was confident that answer was bullshit, but he did not want to push it by asking again. He lay down and stared at the stars in the night sky, and Ruka joined him.
Perhaps it was due to the influence of alcohol, but he was able to relax completeley. It was rare that he did not feel awkward, even though Ruka was right at his side. The two of them prattled on with some meaningless conversation, when suddenly Xu Zheyi asked, “Hey, why did you want to shoot AV, ah?”
“I lost a bet,” Ruka answered indifferently.
Xu Zheyi suddenly had a strange premonition, so continued that line of questioning, “Then you took a role in the GV because…”
“I lost another bet.”
…What kind of person was this? Xu Zheyi was speechless. After a while, he asked, “What kind of gambling?”
Ruka was probably sleepy, and childishly rubbed his eyes. He tried his best to think, and then guessed, “It seemed like we were playing cards. I was drunk and I didn’t remember it, but my friend told me the next morning.”
This was a fraud, right? Xu Zheyi was speechless, and could not help asking, “Have you ever considered the possibility that your friend was cheating you?”
“Why would he lie to me?” Ruka asked in a puzzled voice.
Judging clearly, Xu Zheyi suddenly felt his mind fill with complex thoughts, and immediately changed the topic by asking, “Is he a good friend?”
“We have known each other since childhood. Although he is an asshole, his filming skills are excellent.” In a flash, Xu Zheyi thought of the owner of the online album who had photographed Ruka’s cheerful smile.
Without examining his state of mind, he pretended to be indifferent and inquired, “What kind of work has he done?”
Ruka thought a moment, and then answered, “I didn’t ask him that, but all of my AVs were filmed by him.”
Xu Zheyi frowned, and felt that this story was growing more and more strange. Ruka didn’t seem to think anything of it. He dug into his pocket and pulled out a few fireworks, and handed one to Xu Zheyi, “Shall we?”
Xu Zheyi had no good reason to say no. The two people sat up and cooperated to push part of the firework’s tube into the sand, then lit the fuse. They watched as colourful flowers were painted across the sky, and then sunk down to the ground.
Xu Zheyi still felt that two big men in the middle of the night on the seaside setting off fireworks was almost sissy. Despite that, occasionally sneaking out to do something like this actually felt a bit good.
“It would be even more perfect if we had some beer right now,” he lamented, unable to stop from sighing after speaking.
Ruka heard his words, and then the corners of his mouth slowly rose up. Xu Zheyi was still thinking about it when he saw him slowly pull a bottle of beer from the inside of his coat.
“…May I check your pockets?” Xu Zheyi requested, surprised.
Ruka tried to endure, but he could not help laughing, and he revealed his two tiger-like fangs. His appearance was quite manly, and when his face was expressionless he appeared to be much more mature. However, as soon as he saw those tiger teeth, his aura of indifferent distance dropped, and his remaining childishness was quite lovely.
Xu Zheyi looked at his smile for two seconds, and clearly felt that this man had the charm to win over men and women alike.
Unfortunately, Ruka misunderstood his slow response. His smile waned, and then frowned all of a sudden and asked, “Is it ugly?”
Xu Zheyi had no clue what he was saying all of a sudden. Ruka brushed his fingers across the corner of his mouth, and was a little embarrassed, “My friend said when I smile or laugh it’s hard to look at.”
…How could he say that?
Xu Zheyi could not understand why his friend would say such a thing, and he even began to doubt his own aesthetic. “I don’t know, laugh and smile for me again,” he said.
Ruka must really be very drunk; he became completely obedient and well spoken. He immediately acquiesced to the audience’s request and smiled. Even his eyes were crinkled, and the look was very innocent—as well as tempting.
Xu Zheyi felt his heart pounding wildly, but the thought that maybe someone else had seen this expression did not sit well with him. “Well,” he said, smiling wryly at his own hypocrisy, “It’s not very good-looking.”
Ruka instantly put away his smile, and his face was once more impassive, “I already told you it was like that.”
Xu Zheyi looked at Ruka. He was not sure why he could tell, but he could unexpectedly feel that underneath that cold face was a feeling of being depressed, and his heart softened. “I don’t mind you smiling at me like this, but in front of others, I think it’s best to control yourself a little bit,” he said. Xu Zheyi felt more and more guilty as he spoke. As he was talking though, he immediately noticed something was wrong. “Hold on, could it be that the same friend who told you not to smile in front of others also said that the same words as me?”
Ruka frowned as he thought back, “He did say that I should not laugh around others, lest I frighten the people around me.”
Xu Zheyi paused and thought that his friend’s mouth was too cruel, and then continued to cautiously say his deductions, “Is it possible that this was said by your photographer friend?”
“How do you know?” Ruka asked confusedly.
Bingo! Xu Zheyi could not help but admire his own detective ability. He roughly put together the clues provided by Ruka. When he thought about it, Ruka’s friend was very strange. Not only did he set him up to film AVs exclusively shot by himself, but it was also clear that he desired to have Ruka’s smiles all to himself…
Just as he intended to imply to that Ruka that his photographer friend obviously had some deeper feelings for him, he noticed that the other man’s ears were red. Ruka softly insisted, “He is only an ordinary friend, you don’t need to be unhappy.”
It took Xu Zheyi three seconds to understand what Ruka was getting at. He hurried to try and explain that it was not what he thought, but as soon as he saw the gentle look in Ruka’s eyes, the words that he had intended to blurt out were withdrawn, and he simply uttered, “En.”
The atmosphere immediately became strangely ambiguous. The two men who had just been laughing and chatting fell silent. After a moment, they leaned forward and lit the final firework together, as if they had a tacit understanding.
“Do you want to kiss?” In in front of the colourful fireworks, Ruka’s inquiry came off a bit unnaturally.
Xu Zheyi did not even have time to refuse, and Ruka’s lips had already found their mark.
It was a very light kiss, without even a bit of tongue; soft and sweet as a first kiss. They had obviously done far more obscene things together, but Xu Zheyi felt that this kiss inexplicably caused his heart to race, and a blush spread across his face.
For this novel, this was a long chapter! I found it to be extra sweet, and we got a little more background on Ruka. Also, if you like this novel and want more good smutty reading with a sweet story, I suggest Picked Up a Strange Knight. It’s a similar total length to this one. You certainly will not regret reading it!! You can find it on novelupdates or https://blfor.me/picked-up-a-strange-knight/!
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