Mai Ding prepared a delicious meal to reward An Ziyan. His standards in giving rewards to An Ziyan was always very low. Such as, if he did not throw his clothes that day or if he gave up the remote control that day, Mai Ding would always be able to find a reason. He was busy cooking in the kitchen, while An Ziyan, who considered everything, made a move and entered the kitchen.
“Is it not ready yet?” This was his move. He went into the kitchen to ask.
“Don’t just stand there, come help.”
“It also takes energy to just stand.”
“You really are working hard!” Can’t you help me?” Mai Ding did not look back. He paid his attention on the dish in the pot all along. In a little while, it should be the time to add salt. MSG would be put in later. He did not know when An Ziyan had moved close, but the distance between them was so close that if Mai Ding moved just a bit, his back would touch An Ziyan’s chest. He remembered a lovey dovey scene where one was cooking and being gently held and hugged from behind by his husband or boyfriend. Because of this, Mai Ding suddenly completely forgot when to add salt and when to add MSG. However, in the end, there was no other movement from An Ziyan. He was just looking from behind and made a remark to spoil the fun: “Is it not ready yet?”
“You have nothing else to say? You see some couples in the movies would have a very intimate interaction in the kitchen. I—shall we give it a try?” Mai Ding suppressed his inner feelings and blushed as he spoke. He wanted to see if it would have the same effect as it had in the movies.
“You want to do it in the kitchen? Okay.” An Ziyan reached out and wound his hands to Mai Ding’s front to undo his shirt. Mai Ding grabbed his shirt and looked back. The expression on his face was like that of a virgin young girl that was being ravished by a hooligan, “I didn’t mean that kind of film, it’s a decent movie!” Just after he finished saying that, An Ziyan looked disgusted, “I’m not in the mood.”
“But you’re in the mood to do dirty things.”
“You’re a fool, what I did is to let our bodies…” his last words were interrupted by Mai Ding. “I don’t want to hear it, I don’t want to hear it.”
“How long are you going to pretend to be prudish?”
“Decency has always been my virtue!”
“Disappointing.” An Ziyan walked out of the kitchen. He did not even consider helping him even for a bit. He used words to mortify An Ziyan but it ended up becoming his own mistake. Mai Ding tossed and turned the dish in the pot with all his might to vent his anger.
The weekend, like any other previous weekends, passed by without doing much.
Work was still boring and repetitive, expect that the gossip about the manager’s wife became more and more intense and had various versions. This matter had even reached the manager’s ears. Every now and then, when he come back from somewhere else, the people who were chatting would suddenly stop talking, so he felt that everyone was talking about it. Embarrassment, anger, and suspicion became more and more evident on his fat face and it finally broke out.
Today, Mai Ding was on his computer looking up some information when he heard a loud cry in the office: “Do you dare to say you didn’t do it? Then why did they say that?” The manager’s wife raised her voice and it was almost like screaming: “I didn’t do it. How should I know why those bitches talk nonsense and slander me, they’re just jealous of me.”
“I’m going to look for someone to investigate this.”
“If you want to investigate it, do as you please. Since you don’t believe me, go ahead and divorce me for good!” When the manager heard this, he hurriedly switched to a gentler tone and said: “I didn’t mean I don’t believe you. What I was going to investigate is the person who started the rumor. There must be someone behind this.” He wanted to take a step forward and soothe his pretty young wife, but she was not fooled by this trick: “Don’t touch me!” After saying this, she pulled the office door open. Everyone retracted their eyes in a hurry and pretended to be busy.
After the manager’s wife left, several colleagues in the office, who spread the rumors to others, were worried. They were afraid that the investigation would lead to them. Only Gao Guo, who acted as if nothing had happened, continued working. Mai Ding’s phone suddenly rang—it was Li Ming.
“You’ve found a job and didn’t invite us to dinner?” Li Ming ignored his greeting.
“Don’t you have An Ziyan?” This was the most frequent sentence that Li Ming said. No matter what happened and no matter what Mai Ding’s situation was, as long as he said it to Li Ming, Li Ming would only say this sentence: Don’t you have An Ziyan?
“How many times do I have to tell you, I‘m an independent living body, not an appendage.” He and Li Ming made an agreement to meet up during lunch break. Of course, he had to ask Gao Guo first. If Gao Guo suddenly gave him something to do, then he would not be able to go out for lunch and would have to settle for takeaways. Mai Ding turned over to and cautiously asked Gao Guo. He could almost guess that he would disagree with him or put on a sour face.
“Is there anything I need to do during lunch?”
“No, you can go.”
Mai Ding was quite surprised by Gao Guo’s straightforwardness. Gao Guo might have heard him talking with Li Ming over the phone, and because of this, Mai Ding’s impression of Gao Guo improved. He thought Gao Guo might be a man with a sharp tongue but a soft heart. He would usually enforce strictly Mai Ding to make his work better. Mai Ding, himself, was a person who would easily believe in others. He was easily deceived by Grandpa An, Bai Xiaosi, and also by Su Xiaomi, let alone by An Ziyan.
During lunch break, he and Li Ming sat in a cafeteria. Mai Ding asked, “Don’t you have to go to class?”
“I just need to deal with my off-campus internship.”
“Did you find a job?”
“No, I asked my friend to stamp on my application form.”
“So what are you planning to do?”
“Me?” Li Ming snorted and laughed complacently: “Of course, I’ll stay at home and concentrate on my online games.” His attitude was exactly the same as Zhou Ge when he said he was a rich second generation. Mai Ding could not help but shake his head and sigh. Whether it was An Ziyan’s friend or his own friend, how could all of them behave so shamelessly? After lunch, Li Ming followed Mai Ding back to the company. Downstairs at the company, Li Ming looked at Mai Ding with puzzled eyes: “I really don’t understand why you came out for an internship, and even work on shift.”
“I don’t understand what you mean.”
Li Ming placed his hand on Mai Ding’s shoulder and whispered, “Don’t you have An Ziyan?”
“What does that have to do with my work?”
“I really envy you. Obviously, if you take off your clothes and lie on the bed, someone will support you. Why do you need to work? Just go back to bed and it’ll be okay. Why don’t I have such benefits.” Hearing what he said, Mai Ding blushed and pushed Li Ming away. He grumbled and swore at him. Li Ming suddenly said, “The person on the third floor has been looking at us, is he your colleague?” Mai Ding looked up and saw Gao Guo standing by the third-floor window, while looking down at him and Li Ming. When Gao Guo realized that Mai Ding saw him, he disappeared from the window.
“It must be an illusion. I should go back to work, and let me tell you this, we must work hard to seize our youth while we’re still young…why are you in a hurry to leave? Listen to me!” Each and everyone ignored him!
Back at the office, Mai Ding took a deep breath and continued to burry his head with work. He did not realize how long it had been until his phone vibrated because a text message, pulling him away from the dreary files. The message was from An Ziyan, and it only contained a few words: [Get off work now]
What kind of tone is this! Is he my boss?! Mai Ding thought about this and looked up, only to find that the office was already empty, leaving only Gao Guo and him. He looked at the time and did not expect that work time had been over an hour ago. Just when he stood up, Gao Guo’s cold voice resonated within the office, “You saw it, right?”