"This is it," Ten said as he pulled the old book from his backpack. He placed it on the library table and Yuta needed to lean forward to get a look at it. He recognised a few characters but not enough to understand full text. He recognised the character for "healing" in the title.
"What's it say?"
"I don't know," Ten said. "It's all in old Chinese so I can't read it, but Dad told me this was the book his grandmother used."
"And it contains healing spells?"
"Yep, it sure does. But don't ask me what they say."
"Well thanks, but you do realise I can't read old Chinese either?"
Ten shrugged. "Just get someone to translate for you."
Yuta felt uneasy. He already couldn't believe he was at this stage of desperation, consulting an old magic book for a healing spell. The doctors could do nothing more for him, so they said. He was advised to make the best of his situation. After all, at least he was still alive, and still a little mobile. But ever since the accident he needed a cane to walk, and most days he was in pain. The old things that he loved were lost to him - running, soccer, dancing. Even the old friends he used to have had grown thinner, only Ten visited him periodically out of obligation and they had not even been that close before.
He wondered if perhaps Sicheng or Yukhei could translate the spell, but he was reluctant to ask them, since he didn't want to admit he was looking at spells and he hadn't seen either of them recently anyway.
"I know who could help," Ten said. "Qian Kun."
"Who the hell is that?"
"You know, that guy from music class last year. Always sat at the front. Remember him?"
Yuta vaguely remembered a Chinese boy from that class, but he was sure he'd never spoken to him.
"Do you know him?"
"Sure I know Kun. I hang out with him from time to time. People say he's weird, but he's alright when you get to know him."
"What's weird about him?"
"He's a magician. He used to do those magic tricks in the library at lunchtimes."
Suddenly Yuta remembered. "Oh that guy! He is a bit weird."
"But he's a magician, which is basically just what you need, right?"
"Well, magic tricks aren't the same as magic spells."
"But you gotta admit, he's the guy."
"Sure, he's the guy."
They reconvened in the library a few days later, this time with Qian Kun smiling politely as Ten brought out the book again. Something about the way he smiled was annoying to Yuta. He was always so overbearing in his earnestness, Yuta thought that was the reason he wasn't popular.
His smile fell when he saw the book. "Spell book?"
"There's a healing spell in here my great grandmother used to use," Ten told him.
Kun gazed at Yuta. "You want a healing spell for your leg pain?"
Kun poured over the book with a frown on his face. "There's a full healing spell," he said at last. "It will restore your body back to normal."
"Can you perform it?" Yuta asked him. "I'll pay you for it, if it's any trouble."
Kun still frowned. "It needs another participant," he said. Pointing to the words, he read, "a male virgin between the ages of 20 and 25."
Yuta looked at Ten.
"Don't look at me, I'm not a virgin."
"Do you know any?"
"I could ask, but I don't expect many volunteers. It doesn't involve ritual sacrifice, does it?"
Kun shook his head. "It's a sex ritual."
Ten chuckled. "My great grandmother was wild."
"Is it okay if I keep the book?" Kun asked Ten. "Just a couple more days. I might be able to find something else that could help."
Kun requested a meeting with Yuta two days later.
Please meet me in the library at 10am. QK.
Yuta hoped this would be good news, but something about Kun's message annoyed him. It was awkwardly formal, like a professor might send a student. Couldn't Kun use emojis like a normal person?
They met in the library again. Kun looked down shyly when Yuta sat down, and went straight into the book.
"There's a couple others you can use. This one might help with the pain, but not mobility. This one will give you more energy, but it's only temporary."
"The only full healing spell is the sex ritual?"
"I don't suppose you know any virgins that would be willing to help?"
Kun looked away awkwardly. Yuta supposed he wasn't one for banter.
Finally he cleared his throat and said, "I'm 24."
"And... you're a virgin?"
They sat in silence for a few moments. This time Yuta cleared his throat. "Like I said, I'd be willing to pay..."
Kun smiled, with a sort of pious sympathy. "I understand you are in a lot of pain. I will try to help you."
"You know, I dunno if it's a good idea to play around with black magic."
Ten's voice sounded grainy and distant on the phone. Yuta had put it on speaker and left it on the bench as he reached down to tie his shoelaces. Even this small action was uncomfortable and painful. He winced as he sat up, and replied to Ten with an annoyed tone.
"Black magic? I thought we were talking about your great grandma's helpful healing spells."
"Right, I don't mean black magic - but you know what I mean. That old magic is all about balance in the universe; when you receive something you have to give something too. And you might not yet realise what you have to give up until it's too late."
Yuta thanked Ten then hung up the phone. By this stage a vague argument like that would not dissuade him. He was so tired of living with his injury; it had completely destroyed his life. Besides, a big part of him did not even think the spell would work. It would probably be nothing more than a night of bad sex with the awkward and weird Kun.
Kun invited Yuta to his apartment to perform the spell a week later (he told Yuta he needed time to prepare). Kun lived in an apartment in a nice neighbourhood. The building even had a security and concierge. Kun's place was on the 11th floor.
He was brought in with a beep from the intercom and walked down a long hallway to get to the room. Kun opened the door, wearing a dressing gown, and Yuta could detect the scents of herbs and incense coming from the room. He tried not to laugh when Kun beckoned him in. The whole thing was really ridiculous.
He stopped biting back his smile when he stepped inside and saw Kun's place. It was an open plan apartment with high ceilings and a large window facing north. It looked like somewhere a wealthy bachelor might live, not some university student.
Kun must have read Yuta's expression. "My parents bought this apartment years ago when they had business here. Now I'm living here alone." He paused. "I'll show you the bedroom. We can start straight away if you like."
Yuta wanted to make a joke about Kun making him dinner first, but he thought Kun wouldn't get it and he also wanted them to get it over with quickly.
The bedroom had the same North facing window but Kun had drawn the curtains. A bedside lamp filled the room with a soft orange light.
Yuta could definitely smell some herbs, although he couldn't put his finger on what they were. The strength of the smells made him dizzy. He was about to sit down, when he felt Kun's hand on his back. He didn't like being treated like a poor cripple, but the support was needed in this case, and he was able to get into a lying position without much pain.
Kun hovered over him, with his hands lifted in hesitation. "Would you like me to help you take your pants off?"
"You might as well."
Kun unbuttoned his trousers and carefully rolled them down, then gently placed a pillow under Yuta's knees. He also added a little blanket to give Yuta some privacy, which he thought was kind of sweet. Kun disappeared out of the room for a minute and came back holding the magic book. He was reading from the open page and frowning. He seemed to be speaking to himself.
Finally he grabbed a candle and lit it. He placed it on the bedside table, then retrieved a few things from the drawer.
"I'm sorry," he said softly. "I think you will have to remove your shirt too."
Kun helped to roll Yuta's t-shirt over his head. Yuta hated being shirtless around people after the accident, since his scars were quite frightening to look at, but Kun did not take much time to look at them. He returned with some stones and placed them on various places on Yuta's chest.
After he had placed the stones, he lifted up a bowl. "This may smell a bit strong," he said. "And you may feel a little uncomfortable." The bowl contained a creamy mixture, and Kun scooped some out on his fingers. He carefully lifted the blanket, just enough so he could reach in between Yuta's legs. Yuta hissed when the cold mixture touched his sensitive areas, but soon enough it warmed up from Kun's rubbing and even felt nice. It had been a long time since anyone had played with Yuta's butt, and he hated to admit it, but it was a good feeling.
Kun seemed to be lathering the mixture all around his insides, and he was pushing deeper and deeper. Just when he had touched Yuta's most sensitive spot, he pulled back and Yuta almost whimpered from the loss of his fingers.
Kun disappeared into the bathroom, and came back, shaking his hands dry. He picked up the book again and studied it carefully. At last he came to stand at the edge of the bed, facing Yuta dead on. He untied his robe, and it fell off his shoulders, revealing his naked body. Yuta suppressed a gasp when he saw that Kun was pretty large. He now had mixed feelings about having that thing inside of him.
Kun picked up the bowl and scooped out more of the mixture. This time he lathered it onto his own cock and massaged it until he was erect. He pulled back the blanket and held himself over Yuta, in suspended motion. Before he moved he started to recite some words in Chinese, a magic incantation. This probably would have been hilarious to someone who was watching, but to Yuta, it was suddenly frightening. Kun no longer seemed like a shy and awkward virgin, but a powerful wizard.
The incantation had left Yuta hypnotised, and he hardly noticed when Kun had entered him. He suddenly found that Kun was very close to him, their faces almost touching, and that Kun had completely submerged himself into Yuta's body. Yuta realised that the mixture Kun had treated him with may have created a numbing sensation, and he was surprised he felt no pain.
Then suddenly he felt it. Kun pulled back, until he was almost completely out, and pushed into him again. It was not painful to Yuta, but overwhelming, and he felt hyper aware of just how much he was being filled and stretched. Then at last it was pleasurable.
A peculiar sensation built up inside of Yuta. The back pain that was almost near constant for him began to fade, and it was replaced by a strange vibration, like his whole body was shaking. Kun was thrusting into him faster and faster, and his face had changed: he looked totally possessed. Yuta threw his head back and gasped. He could feel his whole body convulse with the most rapturous orgasm he had ever experienced. What happened next, he couldn't remember. He passed out unconscious.
Yuta woke the next day, and saw warm yellow light streaming in through the curtains. He was still in Kun's bed, and Kun was still beside him. He shifted slightly, not sure if Kun was sleeping and was surprised to find that Kun's eyes were open and looking at him.
Yuta felt suddenly repulsed by their intimacy. It felt wrong to wake up next to Kun like an old lover, when they were not even friends normally. He quickly slid to the side, and tried to pull himself out of the bed.
It wasn't until he had stood up and was looking around for his clothes that he realised that he hadn't needed any help getting up, and he was not in pain. He looked back at Kun with surprise.
"Do you feel better?" Kun asked him.
"I do. I feel... normal."
"That's great. You can use the bathroom if you like. It's the first door on your left."
Yuta had one last look around for his clothes and then saw that Kun had folded them and placed them in a neat pile on his dresser. He took them sheepishly as well as the towel Kun had placed for him, and headed into the bathroom.
In the bathroom Yuta met his next surprise. He saw himself in the mirror and noticed that his chest was back to normal: his scars had all vanished. He stood examining himself for a whole two minutes in awe, turning around and double checking. When he got into the shower, he was reminded of the strange ritual he had participated in the previous night: the residue of the strange mixture Kun had spread over him, as well as what was probably Kun's own fluid were still all over his body and coating his insides. He thoroughly washed himself for a long while.
He got dressed in the bathroom, and then exited discreetly. After being so intimate with Kun it seemed awkward to have to talk to him, even though he felt Kun was probably owed a thank you. Yuta would thank him later. Maybe send him flowers.
He quickly made sure he had all his things and headed for the door.
Yuta's life returned to its former glory in no time at all. He was playing soccer again, going dancing, and all the people he had lost touch with came back into his life. Even his old girlfriends started to hang around again, and he was popular at the club.
The only person who seemed a bit cynical about Yuta's recovery was Ten. He, along with Kun, was the only person who knew what had really happened.
"Are you sure it was the right thing to do?" Ten asked him one day when they bumped into each other on campus.
"Of course. It totally worked. I'm great now."
"But what have you given up?"
Yuta started to feel frustrated. "I haven't given up anything. Stop being a downer."
Ten shrugged. "I don't know. It just seems too perfect to me. Have you spoken to Kun since?"
Yuta had not actually seen Kun since the night they had spent together. He had meant to send him something as a thank you, but then other stuff came up and he forgot about it, and then it seemed too late. He was annoyed at Ten for bringing him up, since hadn't even thought about Kun recently.
After a while, Yuta began to feel unhappy. The shine of having his old life back had worn off, and he started to wonder if he had really missed it. It seemed so fake to him now, all these friends that suddenly appeared when he was healthy but had forgotten him when he was sick.
He started to turn down social invitations. He still went to the club, but whenever he went home with someone, male or female, it felt unsatisfying to him. He eventually realised that no orgasm he had experienced since that night had really measured up to the one Kun had given him. But surely Kun had the aid of magic? Kun had been an awkward virgin, there was no other explanation for him being so good at sex.
After a while Yuta found himself thinking about Kun. Was he still doing his magic tricks? Had he moved on to doing more real magic? Now that he had proved himself to be a great healer, maybe he would try some more of it.
On a whim, Yuta went to the library where he had had his first meeting with Kun and Ten. Somehow he knew he would find Kun there, and he did see him by the music books. Kun was flicking through some sheet music, when he looked up and smiled at Yuta.
"How have you been?" he asked, very formally.
Because Kun had addressed him formally, Yuta responded formally and he felt awkward for doing so. "I am well thank you." He paused. "You know, I realised that I never got around to thanking you for helping me. I wasn't sure if it would really work - but it did."
Kun nodded. "That's okay. It was good to help you." He looked down into his papers with embarrassment. "I wanted to thank you too."
Yuta was surprised. "Thank me? What for?"
Kun cleared his throat. "It was my first time. Before you, I had never been with anyone before."
Yuta had known this already - Kun had to be a virgin for the spell to work - but he had never considered the ramifications of that before. He had taken Kun's V-card.
"Ah, don't mention it. It's no big deal."
"But it is, kind of..." Kun said and trailed off. "I mean, not for you, but I had always sort of liked you. I mean, just from seeing you in class and that. So I was happy to help you."
"Oh... oh." Yuta felt a bit guilty now. He had gone through with the experiment and taken Kun's virginity without much thought of Kun's feelings.
"You know what," he said at last. "How about I thank you properly? Let's go to dinner, I'll buy for you."
Kun smiled warmly. "That would be nice."
Yuta took Kun to dinner and a movie. He thought it would probably be awkward, but the time passed pleasantly enough. During dinner they were mostly focused on eating, and they did not have to talk during the movie.
"Would you like to come to my apartment?" Kun asked him as they walked out of the cinema.
Yuta remembered the high ceilings, piano and orange light. He felt a strange longing to see the apartment again, so he agreed. When they arrived at the apartment, Yuta immediately walked over to the window to look out at the city and Kun joined him by his side.
"Forgive me for sounding straightforward," he began, "but did you enjoy that night?"
Yuta was a little surprised by the question, but not embarrassed. "It was weird, but it was okay." He remembered the rapturous orgasm, how his body had trembled. He supposed Kun might have wanted to have some feedback on his technique. "The sex was amazing."
Kun nodded. "I enjoyed it too." He paused. "Since that time I haven't done it again with anyone else."
Yuta's throat felt dry. "Would you like to... try it again?"
Kun didn't seem too confident. "On that night, something came over me. It was very strong and I wasn't totally in control of my actions. I think if I try again, it won't be the same."
"That's okay." Yuta had already resigned himself to the fact that he was going to have sex with Kun again. Why else had he really come to the apartment? "I'm sure it will be fine if you just do it as your normal self."
This cheered Kun up and he invited Yuta to the bedroom. Yuta undressed himself with some pleasure, since now he was no longer embarrassed about his body. And he owed that to Kun - surely Kun was the person most deserving of this show. He toyed with his shirt and pulled it over his head, before sliding down his pants and showing Kun his firm and tight buttocks.
Kun seemed a little distracted. He also started to get undressed, but he seemed a bit nervous so Yuta came down next to him and began to kiss his lips, while they both fumbled at his buttons. Yuta enjoyed the kiss. He broke away to help Kun undress fully and then he went straight back to it, tasting and playing with Kun's tongue. Kun's eagerness and shyness made it more fun.
He eventually felt for Kun's big dick. "This is massive, you realise," he said teasingly and Kun only blushed.
"I didn't realise..."
"Do you want to put it in me again?" Yuta whispered in his ear, "I'd like to feel it again."
The cock jumped in his grip. Yuta helped Kun to lather it up and got himself ready to be taken. He resumed the same missionary position he and Kun had used the first time, to make it easier for Kun to follow. Kun leaned over him, the same as he had done on that night, and Yuta felt deja vu. Kun's face had resumed that serious and hard look, (like a wizard) and when he entered Yuta he did it with force and confidence.
Yuta threw his head back again as he welcomed the intrusion. He felt the overwhelming sense of being filled, the building pleasure. He lamely reached to play with his own dick and Kun continued to push him to his maximum pleasure. He felt the shaking again and then he came, just as powerfully as the first time.
This time Yuta woke up with Kun's arm lovingly around his side. He didn't feel the same awkwardness as before and he was actually quite impressed with Kun. Kun had fucked him with the exact same power as before, without the magic spell. Maybe it had been Kun in the first place too.
"You're amazing," Yuta said, as he playfully toyed with Kun's morning wood.
Kun was embarrassed. "I'm glad you liked it. I... I really like you too."
Kun fumbled his hand to reach for Yuta's dick and they began to rub each other lazily.
He was glad that since he could move without pain he could enjoy an active sex life, but until this point he had not really enjoyed any of the sex he had with the people he met in clubs. He found himself losing interesting in the clubbing scene and he suddenly liked the thought of settling down. Now, with his dick in Kun's hand, he suddenly thought it would be a perfectly good idea to stay with Kun. After all, Kun liked him and the sex was good. He groaned softly as he released his come, and Kun came just a second after, as if triggered by Yuta. They both lay back on the bed, panting and happy.
Yuta soon found himself spending many nights, and days, at Kun's apartment. He loved to walk to around the apartment naked, since it was only ever the two of them, and he would sit on one of the kitchen benches as Kun played violin for him. He had not previously liked listening to classical music, but now he always begged Kun to play for him, since it felt like a special serenade. He loved seeing Kun concentrating so carefully on his music, so deep in his head space; he almost seemed like a different person when he played. Sometimes Kun would also perform magic tricks.
Yuta didn't perform any music or tricks, but he loved to suck Kun's cock at any chance he could get and he sometimes showed off his body for Kun. Over time Kun became less and less shy around him, and eventually he gained the confidence to take a dominant role in the relationship.
After a while Yuta had more or less moved in with him, and they did almost everything together: ate meals, showered, slept together. They even spent time together at university, and Yuta studied diligently with Kun in the library every day.
One day Ten saw Yuta in the library and he called him over for a chat. He had a serious look on his face. "Yuta, what's gotten into you?"
"What do you mean?"
"I don't remember seeing you in the library much before, but now you're always here."
Yuta held up his textbook. "I've decided to take my study more seriously. I want to be able to graduate with good grades."
"Yeah sure." Ten narrowed his eyes. "But what's up with you and Kun?"
"We're dating, is what's up."
"Dating?" Ten raised his eyebrows. "I just noticed you've been studying with him. I thought you might be after some more magic spells."
Yuta shrugged. "No. I just decided I like being with him."
"Is that so?" Ten seemed suspicious. "Sorry for being nosy, but I didn't think he was your type."
"What's my type?"
"Party girls. He's not even a girl."
"Look, I've always been bi. Do you think I would have gone through with the whole sex ritual thing if I wasn't? And you know what, people change. I've decided I want to settle down."
Ten smiled slightly. "Are you sure he hasn't put another spell on you?"
"A love spell."
Yuta dismissed it angrily. "When would he have done that? Anyway, what does it matter? I'm happy now. I'm studying well, I'm healthy, and I get laid on the regular. He may seem awkward but he's good in bed." He looked over his shoulder. "Excuse me, but I better get back to my boyfriend."
"Sure," Ten said. "I'll see you around. But remember - I told you the old magic has balance. You can receive, but you must also give. When you regained your health you had to give something away."
"What have I had to give?"
"Your heart, it would seem..." Ten slung his bag over his shoulder. "Your fate is to be madly in love with Kun."
Yuta watched him leave. For a second he wondered if it was true, but then he turned and saw Kun patiently waiting for him by the desk. He walked back to join him.
Kun took his hand and rubbed it. "Darling, are you okay?" he asked.
"Sure, I'm fine. But I think I'd like to go home now. I'm a bit tired."
"Of course. We can go now."
Kun packed up his things and Yuta watched him with an immense feeling of gratitude. "I love you," he said suddenly, and Kun smiled at him.
"I love you too."
He thought about it again that night, as Kun was making love to him. Was it a spell? The side effect of the magic they had played with? He shivered at the feeling of Kun's tongue on his lips. Even when Kun was being sweet and playful, there was always a moment just as they were about to fuck, when Kun would become serious and different. It was the same expression he made while playing the violin, and the same expression he made on the first time, when they were under the spell. In that brief second Yuta would feel frightened, but then he always ended up feeling satisfied and wonderful when it was over.
Kun cried out when he reached his climax, then fell down beside Yuta on the mattress. He panted while Yuta stroked and kissed his face. Yuta thought he couldn't be happier.