Wang Yibo was impatient.
His butt was numb from sitting all day in that chair, or else thrown on the couch, carrying the weight of Yibo’s regret. It had been hours since the last time his mother-in-law had texted, warning Xiao Zhan arrived in Beijing, certainly anxious to see him and apologize like he’s been rehearsing for three days, since he first stepped inside his mother’s house. Three days without him, in that dark house, with no one to talk to, or protect him from ghosts, or hug him during sleep.
On the first night, stubbornness put in his head that his ge was terrible for leaving him there alone. How dare he seek comfort with his mother during a disagreement? On the second night, Wang Yibo was already calling her to find out how he was doing and sending messages on his boyfriend’s number, who was determined not to answer. Fortunately, there was his amazing second mom, who sent news of his whereabouts, saying that Xiao Zhan’s condition was terrible: drinking and whining wherever, saying he didn’t know exactly how to apologize, that he had acted detestably, and all that shit. Bullshit, Wang Yibo was the wrong one.
Okay, he could admit now: he should have been more patient, and understand that his boyfriend was just as possessive as he was, so it was fine, it was fine. Instead, when Xiao Zhan arrived home the last time, complaining about how that actor he had recently befriended ━ just because they shared love for motorcycles! ━ was too close, touching his arm, calling him “Yibo-ge” , he got suddenly irritated.
Wang Yibo was great at regretting stuff. Awful at forgetting, by the way, to complete the disaster. He remembers saying:
“Well, it’s not like you care, is it?! When was the last time you saw any of my live performances?! What kind of boyfriend misses all the shows of the person he loves, and still complains that certain guy was acting strange, huh?”
And he remembers the hurt on Xiao Zhan’s eyes, who, on the other hand, shouted:
“I’m a boyfriend who cares about our safety! Who unfortunately cannot watch your performances live, but who struggles to watch the streamings. And you, who doesn't seem to care about us being discovered or not? Don’t you think it would affect us?! Do you think being negligent is something to be proud of?!”
And then the argument took a deeper turn. Unwanted words were released and it was a lost cause to try and switch back to the main focus. They poured out old resentments, from old occasions, that Wang Yibo didn’t wish to comment on. Maybe he was really inexperienced when it came to love ━ perhaps he was indeed selfish and annoying.
Now, the person he cared about most didn’t want to come home. His legs were restless, his hands were moving the phone all the time and he kept biting his lips. His heart was beating fast, afraid that Xiao Zhan would come back just to say he couldn’t take it any longer and that it would be better to end it all. What if he says he didn't love him anymore? Nothing in the world could break him as much; nothing seemed so terrible. If so, what could he say? It had been his fault. It wasn’t like he could argue his reasons.
His phone’s screen lights up with a message from his mother-in-law. Wang Yibo opens quickly.
A-Zhan hasn’t returned yet? He got on the plane by morning… maybe he’s out with friends. I’m sure he’ll be there soon!
Out with friends ━ who could guarantee that such friends didn’t put in his head that it was better to dump Yibo? He sighs and answers the message casually, trying not to imply that he has been waiting for hours, checking calls, walking around, dying to have him there again.
The boredom ends when the doorbell rings. Once, twice, then several times, incessantly.
If it was his boyfriend, why hadn’t he taken the key...? Wang Yibo approaches the peephole carefully, thinking that maybe it was a crazy fan, one of the worst kind. What he sees, however, makes his heart stop beating for a few seconds.
It was indeed Xiao Zhan. Or, at least, Xiao Zhan’s right eye, glued tightly to the peephole, knowing that Yibo was staring at it from the other side of the door.
“Hey, Bo-di…” his voice’s unusually slurred, “let me come in, this is preventing me from taking the key…”
This? This, what? Wang Yibo turns the doorknob with shaking hands, fearful of the consequences of letting him in. He didn’t want to hear anything that involved break-up; he was even afraid to think about the word. If Xiao Zhan had decided that he wasn’t worth fighting for during that short period apart... honestly, he’d cry like a baby.
Upon opening the, he quickly realizes that Xiao Zhan wasn’t exactly alone. His boyfriend was carrying, to his enormous shock, a huge life-size cardboard version of Wang Yibo, probably out of a store he was advertising.
A cardboard version of Wang Yibo alongside Xiao Zhan. A bandage on his cheek. Dark circles under his eyes. Loose clothes. No backpack. A... cardboard Wang Yibo. What was Xiao Zhan doing carrying that?!
“Huh?!” he opens his mouth to say something, yet lacks words. “What did you━”
“You like him?” Xiao Zhan asks, tripping over his clothes as he passes by the door. “He’s my new boyfriend. At least he doesn’t yell at me...”
Yibo is left speechless. He knew he should say something. That cardboard was simply out of place; it shouldn’t be carried by anyone, how did he get it done and at what cost?
Xiao Zhan enters, carrying that weight on his side as if it were nothing. “Actually, he doesn't speak much…” his boyfriend sighs, dragging Wang Yibo’s paper version into the room, looking at him with tired eyes. “I wanted him to talk to me a little.”
Wang Yibo comes close, very close, as he wanted since days ago, when Xiao Zhan left the house upset, carrying only his backpack, and definitely without a bandage on his face and life-size cardboard beside. He can smell the alcohol emanating from him.
“Zhan-ge…” he starts, heart jumping like a fool, “did you drink?”
Xiao Zhan glances at him, eyes swollen and distant, indicating that, yes, he was certainly drunk. “No,” he denies.
“Where did you get this cardboard from?”
“From a store nearby,” his boyfriend explains. “A girl was trying to take him away, but I didn’t let her. Then we fought ━ I stole him and left.”
“And what ━ my God, what happened to your cheek?”
Xiao Zhan touches the bandage. “She didn’t let me take him so easily…”
“She hit you?!” Wang Yibo gets immediately enraged and moves closer to touch Xiao Zhan, who backs away like a shy little cat.
“She didn’t hit me…” he says, “she just threw a can of soda at me.”
It only explained that one of his fans was despicable for treating his boyfriend that way. It didn’t explain anything more than that Xiao Zhan was completely drunk, since he’d never, in his right mind, assume that attitude so openly. When his mother-in-law said that perhaps he had gone out with friends, he didn’t expect that such friends would let him drown his sorrows drinking. As soon as Xiao Zhan was sober enough, he’d tell him to review his friendship list.
Seeing that bandage on his perfect face made him worried, angry and sad. At the same time, lost. So many emotions returned with him ━ strong emotions, perceptibly, because now there was the addition of another member in that apartment.
“No…” Wang Yibo doesn’t know how to express himself, then just stares at the cardboard his boyfriend had suffered to fetch. “We can’t leave this here.”
“Why not?” Xiao Zhan is instantly alarmed. “He’s mine! You don’t have the right!”
If they were on another occasion, this would be something worthy of laughter, and Wang Yibo would be content. At that moment, however, he felt his heart heavy. “Baobao, you’re not sober. We’ll solve this another time. Take a shower first.”
“I don’t want to take a shower,” Xiao Zhan pouts, suddenly throwing himself on the couch, his body limp from the drinks he was trying so hard to deny he hadn’t put in his belly. “I want to stay here... I want you to talk to me.”
His eyes continually come near closing, for his boyfriend soon opens them, focusing on that moment, as if he doesn’t want to lose it; however, too drunk to be stable.
Talk to him? Xiao Zhan had already ignored so many messages that Wang Yibo felt sad. “I’ll talk to you when you take a shower. I won’t answer ge while he’s so drunk.”
Xiao Zhan raises his head. “I’m not drunk!”
To prove the point that, yes, he was, Wang Yibo takes his hand thrown on the sofa and releases it on his body. Xiao Zhan’s hand bumps into his tummy as if it were insignificant; as if it weren’t even part of him. “...Why did you hit me?” his boyfriend asks, with a look of betrayal.
“I didn’t hit you. Your own hand hit you,” Wang Yibo replies sarcastically.
He closes his eyes for a moment, sighing in frustration, only to hear Xiao Zhan asking again, “Why did you hit me?”
When he opens his eyes to answer though, he realizes that his boyfriend is actually asking that question to his own hand, holding it in front of him with a frown.
His frustrations subside a little, and Yibo lets out a chuckle. The whole situation was atypical, to say the least. Xiao Zhan really didn’t drink often: just to socialize or when he felt stressed. Oh, and every time he did it, he never took a cardboard back home. God, Wang Yibo wasn’t good at dealing with drunk people ━ what should he do?
“Ge…” Wang Yibo puts his hand in his hair, “is this revenge for all the times you had to take care of me, drunk or not?”
Xiao Zhan doesn’t answer. He’s too busy talking with his hand. Yibo decides to take advantage of the moment he’s absorbed to carry the cardboard away and fit it, somehow, in the guest room.
When he returns to the living room a few minutes later, Xiao Zhan is already up in the kitchen, looking very much awake ━ in that unstable mood of someone who has had too much beer ━ and searching for something in the cupboard.
“Zhan-ge!” Wang Yibo’s startled by the thought of his boyfriend setting the kitchen on fire in that state, and runs to stop him from lighting up anything. “Zhan-ge, no, you ━ don’t do that, just lie there, okay? What did you intend to do with these eggs?”
Just a few minutes. Just a few minutes he had left him alone and Xiao Zhan had already managed to break two eggs, leaving the shells lying on the floor.
“I’m making cupcakes,” Xiao Zhan replies as if it’s no big deal.
“It’s almost four in the morning. Tomorrow I can order cupcakes for you, alright?”
“But I want cupcakes now,” his boyfriend says, matter-of-factly.
Yibo sighs again, taking the pot from his hand and picking up the eggshells to throw them in the trash right away. That version of Xiao Zhan was acting like a child, and, could he even complain, since he was the one who usually acted like a baby in the relationship? If his boyfriend wanted to switch personalities for a night, well, it’s only fair.
Xiao Zhan sets his eyes close to his and bites his lip, making an expression that was as cute as it was sexy. Yibo swallows dry. “Or I can eat something else…”
Oh, that version of Xiao Zhan couldn’t be horny either, or he’d be fucked. It wouldn’t work. In addition to technically still being a bit mad with each other, Xiao Zhan was intoxicated ━ drunk like he’s never been.
“Zhan-ge,” he takes two steps closer and holds his face in his hands. “Not now. You’re not sober and we didn’t… we haven’t talked properly.”
With those words, Xiao Zhan seems to be aware of the situation they were in. He moves away slowly, then stares for what seems like an eternity. For the first time since they had started the relationship, he doesn’t know where to put his hands, what to do, or what to say. Instead, Yibo watches his posture, the way his boyfriend’s eyes roams the room until he grimaces.
“Bo-di, I think... I think I need the bathroom.”
Nausea, yes. Wang Yibo consents, regaining control of himself, then runs with Xiao Zhan to the corridor’s bathroom, where he kneels and vomits for five minutes. And like the great boyfriend he was, he fetches water and massages his back to make him feel better, asking all the gods that existed that at least the person he loves would feel less pain afterwards. Seeing him that way makes Wang Yibo immensely displeased.
Right, Xiao Zhan was extremely cute in that state, but it didn’t matter, because it was his fault he got that drunk. He had travelled to his mother’s house, fought with a fan and brought a cardboard home, all because Wang Yibo didn’t know how to argue correctly.
The two states of Xiao Zhan that bothered him, after all: the first is when his boyfriend cries, and now his drunken state. Xiao Zhan is pretty when he cries ━ fuck that, he’s pretty anytime, yet, when he cries his nose gets reddish, his cheeks inflate, his mouth gets tempting, eyes get bigger, shiner, and it’s angelic. Even so, Wang Yibo prefers not to see him crying anyway.
Following that, beyond showing signals of horniness, Xiao Zhan was acting like a kid with that silly attitude. It wasn’t good for his heart, which since he had arrived hasn’t stopped dancing with hope.
“Yibo,” Xiao Zhan calls when he finally stops throwing up and looks at the toilet. “I think... I think this can only mean one thing.”
Wang Yibo, of course, knew that the only thing it could mean was that Xiao Zhan had drunk too much and now his body suffered from the effects of excessive alcohol. However, his curiosity speaks louder: “What does it mean?”
“That I’m pregnant,” his boyfriend replies, very seriously.
He lets out an incredulous huff. “You are not pregnant.”
How could he start stating how wrong that was? Firstly, Xiao Zhan used to be on top more often, and they used condoms constantly and ━ wait, no, the idea alone was already inconceivable.
“I just threw up,” he points at the toilet and the bathroom all over, hands making vague gestures. Then, he exposes his belly. “And I’m already a bit fat. Look!”
Yibo was already looking, internally deciding whether it was better to laugh or cry. “It’s because you drank too much,” he comments.
Xiao Zhan gets up from the floor. He still didn’t feel well, probably, even after taking everything out, because eventually his face is glazed over Wang Yibo’s and he says: “Yibo, you’re a father.”
“The father is the bottle of beer,” he replies scornfully. “Men cannot get pregnant, Zhan-ge. Come on, brush your teeth now, alright?”
Xiao Zhan obeys. Wang Yibo flushes when they leave the bathroom, holding the other’s arm to take the drunk man to sleep and rest his head long enough for them to talk in the morning. When they’re walking through the corridor, however, his boyfriend turns around and asks: “Why can’t men get pregnant?”
“You don’t understand right now.”
“Why can’t men get pregnant?” he repeats stubbornly.
Wang Yibo sighs and lets go of his arm for a second. “Two equals don’t make children. We have no uterus. How would a baby leave our body?”
“Through the butt.”
He looks at Xiao Zhan in shock. “The butt?”
“Mn,” his boyfriend nods energetically. “Biology. If you can’t leave through the South, you gotta leave through the North.”
Inside his boyfriend’s drunk, childish mind, directions were part of biology ━ how excellent. Wang Yibo might not have a degree, but he was quite sure this wasn’t how it worked.
“Zhan-ge,” he holds back a laugh, “only women can get pregnant, okay? Couples like us cannot spontaneously generate children, it’s impossible. The only thing we can try is insemination or adoption.”
“Oh,” Xiao Zhan yawns, pretending to understand what the other was talking about. He resists the temptation to kiss him. “So why... why do I feel so bad?”
“Because you drank a lot, I told you.”
“But I feel bad here too,” he points to his chest.
The gege-is-hurt-somewhere alarm beeps loudly in his head. “What? Why didn’t you tell me? Does it hurt badly? Do you want medicine?”
If that crazy fan did something else that his boyfriend wasn’t talking about, he’d definitely take part. Nobody could hurt his ge, nobody; not him, not anyone. Xiao Zhan was perfect, even with his butt full of alcohol.
“No, no medicine…” he makes a sweet little voice, suddenly caressing Yibo’s cheek. “I don’t want medicine.”
He’s very close; too close, too close. He can see there were tears almost falling from his eyes. It was awful to endure that distance, so if he takes Xiao Zhan’s hands in his and hugs the man, he’ll tell himself it’s just to keep him stable. “How does it hurt?” he asks quietly.
“It hurts every time you yell at me. It hurts whenever you slam the door in my face. It hurts when you don’t hear me out, and whenever… whenever you get upset or angry,” Xiao Zhan confesses, burying his face in his chest.
Wang Yibo feels his heart squeeze and the air is abruptly short. He finally embraces him. “It hurts here too, Zhan-ge. It hurts every time you do these things as well.”
“They say we always end up hurting the one we love, in one way or another, but I really… I really don’t want to hurt you,” his voice is muffled.
“I don't want to hurt you either,” I’d prefer to be hurt than to hurt you , he adds mentally.
His boyfriend finally shows his face. “So let’s try harder, alright? Whenever it hurts here,” he points to Wang Yibo's chest, “let me know. And whenever it hurts here too,” Xiao Zhan points to his own chest, “I’ll let you know. Instead of distancing ourselves, we’ll just let us know when we get hurt. When it hurts inside you, I’ll kiss you and wait until it passes. And when it hurts inside me… kiss me too, even if it hasn’t passed and wait for me. Okay?”
That was enough. They certainly need to talk to each other in the morning and it would be necessary to apologize when the other was sober, but at that moment, it was enough to know that his boyfriend didn’t want to break up. He had accepted him again. That time away didn’t change the intensity of his feelings. Wang Yibo’s heart swells with love and he feels like he’s going to cry at any moment. Finally, he kisses Xiao Zhan’s forehead, and agrees faithfully, “Wait with me... and kiss me... until it stops hurting.”
And the two stay embraced in the corridor, with that mutual agreement, until Xiao Zhan begins to snore in his chest. Wang Yibo laughs before waking him up so they can go to bed. “Ge, don’t sleep here! Let’s go.”
Xiao Zhan opens his eyes, then leaves Wang Yibo’s arms. “Good, good. Can we have sex now?”
Oh, then it wouldn’t be that simple, huh. For a second, he thought it would be. “Not today, only tomorrow,” he sighs, smiling apologetically, “you need to sleep.”
“No, I need to fuck you,” he replies indignantly, although with such a sleepy expression that it doesn’t sound as sexy as it should. “Come on, I missed you. Let’s fuck...”
Yibo giggles. “We need to talk when you’re not drunk, you know.”
“I’m not drunk!”
But when let’s go of him to argue, he stumbles and bangs his head on the guestroom’s door, not too hard, yet enough to prove he was wrong. Defeated, he turns to Wang Yibo and whispers, “Okay, maybe I’m a little drunk.”
He laughs at his boyfriend, holding his face to kiss the place he had just hit. “You’re unbelievable.”
Xiao Zhan looks at him charmingly and winks. “I’m also hot. Let me take you to bed and you’ll see.”
It was okay to have him like that, close, even if drunk, inside that house that was so empty before. It was good to have him there, because he belonged in that environment, in each other’s arms, and how could he not love him, and not forgive him, as many times as needed?
Wang Yibo smiles. “I love you.”
“I love you too,” his boyfriend replies, delighted. “I kept remembering you the whole time I was gone. My mother’s neighbour said that her son was learning to skate, and, damn! Remembered you. My father’s friend showed a picture of when he went to the zoo and saw a lion up close, and, boom! Remembered you. I kept avoiding turning on the TV because I knew you were there… I saw that life-size cardboard and thought… well, if I can’t have him otherwise…”
“It’s great to know your drunk version is even more in love with me than your usual self,” he notes.
“No!” Xiao Zhan denies. “I’m always in love with you, always very, very in love with you. When I drink, I just... I just can’t pretend I don’t. In love with you even when we’re away, or fighting, or anything,” he smiles and Wang Yibo’s heart melts like butter. “I’m serious when I say I couldn’t stop remembering you. Fuck, even if I saw the colour green! This is a lot because you know my parents’ neighbourhood is full of trees. Even when a cousin of mine complained that her boyfriend was three years older, I thought, ‘Oh, Yibo and I are six years apart, but that doesn’t change much…’, because it doesn’t, does it? We get along pretty well, don’t we?”
Wang Yibo endures that drunk talk, mainly because he knows that soon enough Xiao Zhan will get tired and fall asleep. He agrees, “Mn.”
“Then I suddenly remembered that I’ll be thirty soon. Thirty years old, Yibo!” his boyfriend hugs him with an unhappy expression. “You know what? When I turn thirty, I’ll have a huge party. I’ll buy cupcakes, and milkshakes, and hotpot, and I’ll forget the diet and just eat whatever I want for a whole day. When I turn forty, I’ll have a masquerade, what do you think? You’d have to wear a mask with me. You’d look so sexy…. we could make a roleplay. I just want… I just want to celebrate birthdays that end with zero, because I like the number zero. It’s fancy and it makes people look wiser, you know? I just want… well, I love party food, and gifts. Oh, I love gifts. What would you give me as a gift at forty? If I asked for a sexy dance, would you do it for me? I love how… how gifts show that someone remembered me. Do you know what else I love?”
At that point, Xiao Zhan had already closed his eyes, mumbling. Even so, Wang Yibo’s heart beats fast, because he was paying attention to every detail of his speech. He asks: “What?”
His boyfriend looks up, probably dizzy. “Cupcakes. Let’s make cupcakes.”
Wang Yibo frowns. “You, who always calls me the kid in the relationship, is acting exactly like one…”
“I'm not a kid!” he argues, giving the younger man a short slap on the shoulder. “I just want cupcakes... Yibo, give me cupcakes, be a good boyfriend and buy it for me!”
“I’ll buy as many as you want,” Wang Yibo sighs, then adds: “Tomorrow.”
Xiao Zhan isn’t satisfied. “But I want it now!”
“Ge, we can’t have cupcakes yet, there’s no store open and you could throw up again. Come rest with me and I promise I’ll buy you cupcakes tomorrow, okay?”
It was difficult to convince his boyfriend. And knowing he needed to deal with Wang Yibo practically every day, asking for coaxing, affection and attention all the time... must be complicated for Xiao Zhan, really. Respect!
He finally thinks about the proposal, whines a little, then gives up. “...Pinky promise?” he raises the last finger of his right hand, tiny, cute to see.
Wang Yibo raises his pinky also and crosses both, smiling. “Pinky promise.”
They knew well that pinky promises cannot be broken. The difficulties he’d have to face to find cupcakes on a Saturday morning would all be left for tomorrow. It seems that Xiao Zhan gets quiet, just muttering, “Okay, okay, I trust you.”
He hugs him tighter to subtly guide him to the end of the corridor, where their room was. “Can’t you love me instead of loving cupcakes?”
“I already love you,” Xiao Zhan replies after another yawn. “I wouldn’t trade you even for hundreds of cupcakes.”
“Not even for millions of cupcakes?”
That catches his boyfriend’s attention. “Oh, then I’ll have to think.”
Nothing faithful! Wang Yibo pats his arm lightly, smiling.
“You’d buy me millions of cupcakes if I wanted, so I wouldn’t trade you at all,” Xiao Zhan comments, laughing.
Quite self-serving, that boyfriend of his. Wang Yibo asks: “How are you so sure I’d buy you so many cupcakes?”
They were already by the bedroom’s door, the window was ajar and the curtain was thrown back and forth by the dawn wind. Soon, the sun would come to charge them a visit. The bath was forgotten, left for later, and Xiao Zhan doesn’t care about the fact that he should already be in bed, under the covers, comfortable. Instead, his boyfriend tells him near his ear, “It's because you love me. That’s why I know.”
The back of his neck prickles with that low, hoarse voice. Yibo struggles to regain control and thinks about non-sexy things, like cockroaches, ghosts, earthworms, anything that doesn’t make him hard. “I love you, so I wouldn’t let you get diabetic,” he replies, holding Xiao Zhan by the waist and gently putting him to bed.
“Shut up, don’t ruin it,” his boyfriend asks, settling between the blankets like a vulnerable animal.
Suddenly, he feels lucky to have someone so special by his side, willing to take care of who he was, to protect him, and someone he could protect in return. It was really a wonderful feeling to be able to trust someone with his whole being, and not to be afraid that he wasn’t getting the same affection in return. Because Xiao Zhan loved him; he could feel it overflowing.
“I’m going to be jealous if you like cupcakes more than me,” Wang Yibo pouts, arranging his boyfriend’s pillow so he’d be cosier.
Xiao Zhan opens his eyes quickly. “Don’t be mad again… even if you look cute when you’re jealous. I can share a cupcake with you, okay?”
Even so, Wang Yibo continues to maintain an expression of petty annoyment. His gege moves in the bed, kissing his neck, then his cheeks, running his perverted hands throughout his body, as he always liked to ━ as if he were drawing him, keeping the memory of Wang Yibo’s body in his.
“I dream about you.”
Wang Yibo looks him in the eye, taken aback by that sudden confession.
“What?” he questions, torn between planting a small kiss on his nose or pretending to be mad for a minute longer.
“I dream of you,” Xiao Zhan repeats, “almost every day. It’s good to see you ━ hey, you're not actually mad, are you?”
He decides to avoid the question after being caught with that lie. “What do you dream about me?”
The sky was clearing outside. The room is silent for some a moment, until Xiao Zhan buries his face in the pillow. “I think about you with me. Us getting married, adopting a dog, a cat and a kid. Us travelling, retired, happy, loving, not hiding from others. Us sometimes in ━ well, sometimes it’s erotic, but don’t dwell on it too much, okay? It’s just... the only thing you need to know is that I dream about you,” he hiccups, “quite often, to be sincere.”
Wang Yibo’s heart is beating fast. “Yeah?”
“Yeah. You’re always in my head. This is strange, Yibo.”
“What’s strange?” he asks.
“It’s strange that even when I close my eyes, you’re there,” he keeps talking, even though his voice is ragged. “You’re always there. I dream about you and I don’t want you... I don’t want you to be mad at me. So don’t be mad, you cannot be mad, because I love you and that’s your fault.”
“My fault?” Yibo smiles.
Xiao Zhan takes his face away from the pillow. “Yeah, it’s your fault! And stop asking me so many questions, it’s giving me a headache. It’s your fault for making me fall in love with you and kissing me with... this pouty mouth of yours.”
“But you like it.”
“I do. Damn, how I love your mouth. But it’s your fault, I shall never forget,” he mutters. “Now that you have me I can’t not dream about you! So yeah. You owe me, you don’t — fuck that, you cannot be mad at me. Because I love you.”
“I can’t be mad because you love me?”
Wang Yibo laughs, caressing his boyfriend’s hair. “Okay, Mr. Xiao, let your cheesy drunk butt rest. Just sleep.”
Instead of settling down to give him some peace, Xiao Zhan raises his head, staring with cheeks full of air. “I prefer you’d call my ass hot.”
“Shut up and go to sleep,” he tosses another pillow over his boyfriend.
“I prefer when I’m in bed for something else... like fucking you, or kissing, or cuddling...”
“What do you think about sleeping, huh?” Wang Yibo affectionately kisses his forehead.
“Sleep is boring,” Xiao Zhan complains. “Let’s ignore it. My butt isn’t drunk, by the way. My butt is nice ━ tell me my butt is nice. I always tell you that.”
“Oh, God,” Wang Yibo almost chokes on a laugh. “Xiao Zhan, aren’t you sleepy already?”
“Just a tiny, little, small ━ very small bit,” his boyfriend makes a minimal gesture with his hands.
It was good to have him back. It was so good to have him back, even as a spoiled child looking for cupcakes, fighting with people on the streets and bringing home insignificant cardboard that was nothing compared to the person itself ━ not bragging.
Wang Yibo settles close to him when he realizes Xiao Zhan is, fortunately, blinking slowly. “Sleep, baobao. I'll be here when you wake up.”
His boyfriend finally resigns, then clings like a koala and sighs with the tiredness he was denying all night. The morning was just beginning as they wrap themselves under blankets together. “You better be,” Xiao Zhan murmurs, and seconds later he’s snoring.
Wang Yibo giggles. It had been a night full of surprises, after all. He gently kisses his boyfriend’s mouth, part of a nightly ritual he had missed. “I better be,” he whispers, and falls asleep too.
When Xiao Zhan wakes up the next morning, he says he doesn’t remember anything. His head definitely doesn’t hurt and he definitely doesn’t regret all of his life choices. “Yibo…” he calls after Wang Yibo hands him a glass of water with a hangover pill, “never let me drink again. If I ever ask for a drink, slap me.”
“So never leave after we fight again, okay?” Wang Yibo asks.
They talk during breakfast about what they should’ve talked about four days ago before their nerves broke out and they said things that hurt each other.
After lunch, they have cupcakes. Pinky promises have to be fulfilled; damn right they have. In the afternoon, their clothes are lying on the floor and reconciliation is celebrated under the covers, in their bedroom.
And, when he decides to show Xiao Zhan the life-size cardboard he had brought home, his boyfriend explains that it’s all Jiacheng’s fault, who had taken him out to drink. He murmured a thousand curses to the so-called friend, who laughed at him when Xiao Zhan called to find out about the things left at his house.
“Yibo... never again, I repeat, never again allow me to drink. Not after quarrelling, not ever,” his boyfriend slaps his hands on his forehead miserably.
Wang Yibo laughs. Xiao Zhan was truly a danger to society after half a bottle of alcohol.
They keep the cardboard inside the backroom, where they rarely enter, yet decidedly doesn’t destroy it. After all, it was proof of the love he held for Yibo.
And if in the future he were to remember the episode, telling the story to close friends who’d laugh loudly, he’d keep the best parts to himself. And if Xiao Zhan would sulk for not remembering, Wang Yibo would smile and deny him any drink his boyfriend would try to order.