Chapter 12: Caramel Popcorn
Translated by Kollumceti of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
The business of XiQin Restaurant was as good as ever even after Old man Yang went on his trip, so much so that there were even more people than ever. Although this could not all be credited to Lin ShuYi and Shen Fu, at least half could be credited to them. In the past, there were many girls patronizing the store when Lin ShuYi was alone in the XiQin Restaurant. Now there were even more people coming when Lin ShuYi and Shen Fu were both in the XiQin Restaurant, and many of them were girls who always said strange things.
They would burst into excited chatter as long as Lin ShuYi and Shen Fu approached each other.
After quite some time, even Lin ShuYi felt that something was wrong.
“A bowl of beef noodles, and a bowl of noodles in tomato sauce.”
Shen Fu poked his head through the the service hatch and smiled as he placed the order. Lin ShuYi nodded and was nimble-handed and fleet-footed as he cooked the noodles before placing the bowls at the service hatch. When Shen Fu reached out to pick them up, his hand touched Lin ShuYi’s hand. A girl sitting in near the front saw it and immediately patted the shoulder of her friend. “Look, look quickly.”
The other girl immediately turned her head and saw the hands of the two people touching each other. It just so happened that the corners of Shen Fu’s mouth had lifted and he was still smiling gently and without restraint at this time.
The girl immediately seethed with excitement and clasped her hands together like a maiden in love. “Ai yo, it’s really candy for the eyes. My heart’s about to melt.”
“Yes, yes. Unfortunately that man doesn’t allow photographs. Otherwise, I would really want people to see it.”
Lin ShuYi cocked his head and looked out, “What are they talking about?”
The corner of Shen Fu’s mouth twitched, “Nothing. It’s nonsense. Don’t pay attention to her.”
Lin ShuYi eyed him suspiciously. Was it really nothing? Why would he be so guilty then?
Lin ShuYi did not ask about anything regarding Shen Fu’s affairs, after all, Shen Fu had never asked about his own. In any case, he had nothing and was not afraid of Shen Fu scheming against him. Contrary to his expectations, Shen Fu taught him a lot. So Lin ShuYi would listen to what Shen Fu was willing to say, and for things that Shen Fu was unwilling to tell, Lin ShuYi would never ask.
However, what Lin ShuYi wanted to know the most was how he got the wounds on his body. Although it was much better now, it seemed that the ones who inflicted the wounds on him were heavy handed. Their time was basically devoted to the store in the absence of Old man Yang, and they almost did not have any personal time.
Shen Fu threw himself down onto the sofa after returning home and and lay on it, unwilling to get up. “I’m exhausted after standing for the whole day.” As he spoke, he moved to the side to give Lin ShuYi enough space to sit down.
“What shall we eat the tonight?”
The two had a busy day in the shop and made do with some noodles for lunch. They had not eaten anything for dinner yet. Since Old man Yang was not here, they also did not want to cook anything to avoid re-washing the bowls and chopsticks that had just been washed and put away.
Lin ShuYi did not like to wash the dishes and it was clear that Shen Fu disliked it too.
“I don’t know.” Lin ShuYi’s eyes would light up when food was mentioned. However, he really did not know what to have for dinner if he was asked about what he wanted to eat. This was because he still wanted to eat everything he had eaten before. Only Shen Fu knew about what food he had never eaten, and he wanted to eat them even more when thinking about this.
Shen Fu thought for a moment. They had closed a little late today so they would not be able to go anywhere far. Yet, there was not much delicious places to eat at nearby. If they did not want to cook, they could only go to a fast casual restaurant. “Shall we go eat fast food?”
Shen Fu nodded, “Although I feel there’s nothing delicious to eat at a fast casual restaurant, I don’t want to eat noodles. It’s also so late now, so we can only eat fast food.”
Lin ShuYi did not have any opinion. Although he did not know what fast food was, he could try it as long as it was edible. Though the fast casual restaurants usually closed late at night, it was quite late when they had reached the stall. Though it had not closed, most of the dishes had been finished.
Lin ShuYi had never eaten this sort of cuisine where you would take a couple of small plates of different dishes by yourself. He chose one of each type that was somewhat fresh and looked good to eat. However, the taste was rather mediocre. It could not be considered as unpalatable, yet it was also not very delicious.
Lin ShuYi wanted to go back after filling himself up. Shen Fu put his hands in his pockets, “You’re going to sleep again? Your work and rest habits are too disciplined.”
Lin ShuYi raised an eyebrow, “Otherwise?” He was already full. Was there still something fun to do?
Shen Fu turned as he looked around. He finally fixed his gaze at the Su Yi cinema on the third floor opposite them. He pointed, “Let’s go watch a movie.” Although it did not seem like a good idea for two grown men to go to the movies, Shen Fu really felt that Lin ShuYi’s lifestyle was too boring.
Lin ShuYi often watched the television at home. He was also very fond of this thing where he could watch the different stories of different people. He thought that movies and television dramas were similar, so he consented for the very first time.
Thus, the ticket seller of the cinema was met with this scene.
A tall and handsome man was walking in front. He had a slender figure and deep-set facial features, with eyes that appeared to be enticing the one who locked gazes with him. When the corners of his mouth lifted, the person who was enticed would become limp and numb. The ticket seller was about to carefully hit on such an excellent and handsome guy that was walking up to her and get close to him, when she saw another one following behind.
He was a little shorter than the man in front. Wearing a simple and clean T-shirt with jeans, he looked very thin yet he fit into his clothes nicely. Fine black hair hung over his forehead, and he had somewhat misty eyes like an innocent deer which immediately softened his aura that warded strangers off. He seemed quite young.
The ticket seller swallowed and looked up at the calendar as she thought, ‘What kind of good day is it today? Two handsome guys appeared at once, and they are both rare gems.’
“Hello, may I ask…”
Shen Fu looked back and wrapped his arm around Lin ShuYi’s shoulder, “Today is the premiere of The Carnage. I’d nearly forgotten about it. Let’s watch this.” He seemed to have just heard the ticket seller’s voice after he finished speaking. Turning around, he beamed, “Sorry, what did you say? I didn’t hear it.”
The ticket seller looked at Shen Fu’s hand on Lin ShuYi’s shoulder, and at Lin ShuYi’s accustomed conduct. She immediately felt grief and indignation, “Nothing. Would you two like to watch The Carnage?”
All the handsome guys were gay! It was no wonder that she could not find a boyfriend!
Shen Fu was always slinging his arm around Lin ShuYi’s shoulder. At first, Lin ShuYi disliked it. Despite emphasizing his dislike many times, Shen Fu did not change and he became accustomed to it after that. Anyway, they were both guys. (It’s because they’re both men that there’s a problem ah, oi! Eh, did something get mixed inside?)
“It is nice to watch?”
The ticket seller was about to speak when someone else gave him a brief summary.
“There’s been a lot of publicity for this movie. The main actor in it is a famous film emperor. His works have always been guaranteed to be nice to watch. Do you want to watch it?”
Lin ShuYi nodded.
“Two tickets for The Carnage.”
Even the chance to speak was gone. The ticket seller felt even more sad. From beginning to end, that boy did not spare her a single glance! No wonder she could not find a boyfriend!
The two men went into Hall 5 together after a while. Since it was the premiere of The Carnage, the cinema was very crowded, even now at 9 p.m. After sitting at their seats, Shen Fu pulled out a bucket of popcorn and two glasses from some place. The Carnage was a 3D movie. Before they entered, the girl standing at the door was full of smiles as she gave Lin ShuYi 3D glasses, but she was unconsciously ignored by Lin ShuYi. The corners of the girl’s mouth became stiff.
Lin ShuYi continued to ignore the glasses and fixed his attention on the popcorn. “Is it tasty?”
Shen Fu: …
He finally discovered that the question that Lin ShuYi asked him the most was: Is it tasty? Which is more delicious?
“This flavor is caramel butter. Since you like sweet foods so much, I think you should like it too.”
Lin ShuYi picked one up and looked at it. Was this corn? He seemed to recall that there were some people selling this kind of food on the streets of Da Yan’s capital city, but it felt more unrefined and the color was not so beautiful. It was a snack bought by the children of poor families. He wanted to eat it before, but Song Yan always said that it was only something for children to eat.
Then he put it in his mouth. It was very sweet and there was even a crisp outside shell that melted after being bitten into. The pleasantly sweet taste permeated his entire mouth, but the popcorn had already completely melted by that time.
“Why do I feel like you haven’t even eaten popcorn before?” Shen Fu was suspicious.
Lin ShuYi was too lazy to pay attention to him and he kept eating one popcorn after another.
Shen Fu leaned over and raised his hand, putting the glasses on Lin ShuYi’s nose bridge.
“What are you doing?” Lin ShuYi did not notice the glasses that Shen Fu was holding at all. Since he did not know what Shen Fu was going to do, he shrank back.
“Don’t move.” Shen Fu reached out and held Lin ShuYi down. Then he put the glasses properly on him.
Whispers came from behind them. Shen Fu listened to the whispers and the corner of his mouth twitched as he acted like he didn’t hear it.
The lights all around them suddenly darkened at this time. The film had began. Lin ShuYi, whose line of sight had suddenly darkened, was unused to this and started blinking.
Then a bloody head popped out on the screen. It and looked as if it had rolled into Lin ShuYi’s face. The eyes in the head were wide open and staring at him, like it had died with a remaining grievance. Lin ShuYi almost cried out in terror, and in the next moment, then he suddenly clutched Shen Fu’s hand.
Shen Fu forgot to tell him that The Carnage was a horror movie.
In fact, Lin ShuYi would not be afraid if such a scene was displayed in front of him normally. Although a high official of the Ministry of Appointments was a civil official, it did not mean that he had never seen a dead person. Lin ShuYi was unprepared and had not seen such a scene for a long time. What’s more, it was clearly a movie, yet he did not know why the head had rolled in front of him and was so real that he could reach out his hand for a touch.
It seemed that everyone did not expect such a frightening scene at the beginning. The screams in the cinema echoed one after another and the whispers from behind had turned into screams. Shen Fu narrowed his eyes. He was not frightened and quickly turned to look at Lin ShuYi. As a result, Lin ShuYi clutched at his arm and it was so painful that he grimaced.
“I say, don’t pinch me.”
Lin ShuYi turned to look at him and was spitting in anger, “What the hell did you do?!”
Shen Fu did not understand this situation.
“That head seemed like it was rolling in front of me!”
Shen Fu, “It can’t be that you also don’t know about 3D?”
Shen Fu was fully convinced that Lin ShuYi must have migrated from where the cavemen at the top of the mountain were living.
Besides that horrific scene in the beginning which caught him off guard, the bloody scenes in the after did not scare Lin ShuYi anymore. The plot was very fascinating and even Shen Fu seemed to be enchanted. However, other people could not handle it. For example, the girl behind Lin ShuYi screamed throughout the whole movie. She also kept screaming even when the handsome detective, who was the protagonist, came out.
“There’s nothing frightening about this. Why are you screaming?” The other girl sitting next her asked helplessly as she face-palmed.
The girl rolled her eyes exhilaratingly, “This time it’s because he’s handsome!”
“But speaking of it, the two in front of us are also very handsome! They’re even sitting together, and just now, that one helped put the glasses on him, so cute! The handsome guys should get together and be gay. It’s so meng/moe that it’s killing me.
Her bestie, “Can you lower your voice? Everyone can hear what you’re saying.”
Shen Fu: …
The girl behind had screamed herself hoarse by the end of the movie. Yet she was still squealing, “Ah ah ah ah! ! It’s really deserves to be called a box office champion! It’s so good!”
Did she really think that it was so good even after being frightened like that?
“Zhou XunLiang is so handsome!” That should be the key point. “And the two who were sitting in front of us were so cute! Close gay buddies ah, close gay buddies! This trip was really not in vain! I took pictures secretly, but unfortunately it’s all blurry. Otherwise, I’d have sent it out to my circle of friends!”
Her bestie, “…They haven’t left yet and are just behind you.”
The girl looked back and saw Shen Fu’s chilly smile and the seemingly elegant and indifferent Lin ShuYi, who was actually just rather baffled.
“What does gay buddies mean?” Lin ShuYi cocked his head. He had heard this phrase too many times. Moreover, he had the feeling that it did not have a very normal meaning.
Shen Fu and the bestie: …
“Gay buddies are… Mhm mhm mhm…”
The girl’s bestie came up and covered the mouth which was about to release evil through her wagging tongue. She gave a forced laugh as she nodded to Lin ShuYi, “I’m sorry, she’s just shooting her mouth off. It’s nothing but nonsense.” Then she dragged the girl away.
Lin ShuYi was even more baffled. He looked at Shen Fu. Shen Fu grimaced, “It just means that we have a good relationship.”
Was that so? Lin ShuYi thought for a moment and said after quite a while, “Then we can be considered as gay buddies.”
Shen Fu had not been paying attention and was so stimulated by Lin ShuYi’s sentence that he nearly choked to death. Seeing Lin ShuYi look over, he hurriedly acceded, “Yes, we are gay buddies, close gay buddies.”
Shen Fu, Why do I have that guilty feeling like I’m taking advantage of him ah…