“So, what is this about your stalker?”, the beautiful man asked, sitting on the huge office table and looking through the documents. His boss was, as always, quickly finished with everything and didn’t require any help from him at all, giving him enough time to catch up on some gossip he had heard from the ladies outside.
“So, what’s this about your old childhood crush?”, his boss countered. He looked handsome in the black suit with his bright, violet eyes. Those and his silvery white hair hinted at a genetic mutation, but rather than fearing him, women wear swooning in his presennce. The beautiful phoenix eyes captured their hearts instantly.
Besides, his boss was very kind and comfortable to be around - if only he didn’t tease him.
Xue Hua flushed bright red and whipped his head back to look down at the documents. “I don’t know what you are talking about!”
Shi Yue set down the pen after signing an elegant name, then smiled dotingly at his assistant. “Ooh, you know. Dark skin. Blue-green eyes. Black and gray hair, a bit messy. Muscular and handsome… Should I continue?”
Flustered, Xue Hua nearly crushed the papers. “Tha-That does indeed sound like someone I know, but he is not my crush.”
“So going to the cafe together was not a date?”
“Not at all!”
“Where he ordered your favourites without needing to ask you? Took off your jacket? Pulled out the chair? Listened to you complain for three hours with a silly smile and then paid for everything before accompanying you home?” Gosh, this was funny.
The papers slipped out of Xue Hua’s hands as he stared back at Shi Yue, his mouth agape. “H-H-H-How do-do you k-know?!”
“As if I’d let just anyone go out with you”, Shi Yue humpfed with a raised eyebrow. “The moment you so happily talked about the time of your date with him on the phone, I got someone to follow you. Just to be safe.”
Xue Hua held back from screaming. This was way too embarrassing! Did that mean Yue had photos and everything?! Even if he wouldn’t admit it out loud, he had spent those hours like a lovestruck fool, constantly talking to distract himself, otherwise he would have just stared at Mingtian all starry eyed and started to stutter!
It couldn’t be helped, he hadn’t seen him since several years and he had just grown more attractive! How was that fair!
Shi Yue laughed, then let his assistant off. “Alright, alright. I’ll stop. Don’t cry, okay? I just wanted to tease you a bit.”
“You have your own matters to focus on! Don’t just follow me”, Xue Hua awkwardly grumbled, then got off the table to gather up the papers.
The office was lavish and beautiful, the table made from dark wood and the expensive chair behind it the heart of it all. It was to be expected that the CEO of a huge security company that worked for all kinds of stars and politicians would have such an office.
Carefully, Xue Hua stacked the papers and placed them on the side before walking around the table. He didn’t look as good as Shi Yue in a suit, but it was expected of him to wear one. Since he had a rather soft face and fluffy, bright coloured hair, though, he hardly looked intimidating. Well, that was why he was Shi Yue’s assistant and not a bodyguard (even though he was incredibly good at fighting). Besides, they both had rather unusual looks.
Shi Yue chuckled, then opened his drawer and pulled out a single page of paper before handing it to Xue Hua who looked over it.
There was a single good photo attached, contrary to the usual times when Shi Yue investigated someone. Usually, there’d be a whole stack of information and dozens of photos, so this was already suspicious enough.
Xue Hua took off the photo and looked at it first.
The man in the picture looked right into the camera despite the surroundings and angle suggesting that it was shot in secret. His gaze was curious and non-hostile. Generally, the young man looked quite sexy with a pair of tight pants and a very simple, white shirt.
“Is this your stalker or are you going to stalk him? Because honestly, I can’t imagine someone who looks like this needing to stalk anyone else”, Xue Hua said a bit doubtfully. If this one rang at your door, you at least wouldn’t reject befriending him. He had that aura even through a photo.
Shi Yue didn't answer, so Xue Hua laid down the photo and placed his attention on the single piece of paper before growing rigid.
“I’’m not. This is the info I got”, Shi Yue sighed, fully understand the other's confusion.
Somehow, the cute man was… a contract killer that worked even with the police. It was to the point that the police had to absolve him of a number of smaller crimes just because he kept on getting rid off their heaviest bounties. No one had any idea how he did it, but even the greatest crime syndicates would go down if he put his eyes on them. He travelled all over the world, but for the past three months, he had been in A City… Following Shi Yue.
He had gotten the info only due to his connections and failed to find any reason as to why the young man would stalk him. It couldn’t be a mission or he would long be dead - someone had definitely entered his room while he was sleeping, several times.
“Is he just… an actual stalker, maybe?”, Xue Hua suggested, scrunching his thin eyebrows. There was near to no information at all. Just a description of his looks as well as a short list of exemplary targets he had successfully killed. There was also a note on his character, stating that he was near unreadable and had unstable moods.
“What do you plan on doing about him?”
“I have no idea at all.” How could he work against someone if he didn't even know their intention?
One block farther away, in a very common apartment, a young man was dazedly staring at the magazine in his hands.
On the double page, a man in a black suit was shown along with an interview and a description of his business. It was too bad that the image wasn’t a poster. The man was brushing his white hair out of his face as he walked somewhere, distracted by something to his side and thus slightly tilting his head to his left.
A man stepped into the room, knocking against the door in passing and looking around wryly. Four legal posters, fifteen cutouts from magazines, around forty screenshots from videos and another thirty photos that were absolutely not legal, enhanced to be in the size of photos depending on their motive. Meaning, the more stunning the photo, the larger the print.
“Wasn’t he supposed to be your, I dunno, target? For killing?”, Mingtian asked with a twitching smile and tried to tug the magazine out of the youth’s hand - and failing.
“Hmm”, the other hummed, still staring at the page and debating if he should cut out the photo and hang it up and then put the interview into the folder with other facts, or put the interview along with the photo into the folder. Or hang both up?
“...And what happened to the guy who put up the bounty?”
“Kind of dead”, he replied simply, gently fiddling the page out of the magazine.
“Oh”, Mingtian said, dragging the sound. “Kind of. What a coincidence.”
“What a coincidence indeed.”
A hand descended on his black hair, ruffling it up violently. Squeaking, the youth shielded the magazine.
“Xie Yi, you stalker!”
“Who is stalking anyone?”, Xie Yi complained and placed the magazine into safety before pulling over a plushie… In the form of a white-haired man. Pouting, he placed it under his chin. Mingtian groaned and rubbed his face. “I am merely making use of skills to get a few photos that are nicer than what the usual paparazzi get.”
Mingtian pointed at the wall with both hands, exasperated.
“They’re nice photos. Nothing wrong with hanging them up.”
He waved his arms over, pointing at the plushie.
“Coincidentally looks alike.”
Pointed at the folder full with information.
“Had that gathered for the job.”
Growled, then opened the laptop violently, typing in a string of numbers - and pointing -
- “It’s a nice number.”
- “That’s a fucking birthday!”
-before showing the game that had appeared on the display. A visual novel, a dating sim. The capture-target stood leisurely leaning against a wall, his long white hair loosely tied up.
Xie Yi shrugged and busied himself with brushing through the hair of the doll in his arms. “Juxian made a game and I wanted to play it. And?”
“Xie Yi, are you in denial or are you lying because you know exactly that I’ll get mad?”, Mingtian growled, turning around to stare deep into Xie Yi’s eyes.
The red orbs quivered, then moved to the sound.
Growling, Mingtian reached out his large hands and pulled at Xie Yi’s cheeks while coming close enough for their noses to touch. “Kiiiid. Stop stalking him.”
Xie Yi freed himself, then blew up his cheeks. “Don’t wanna! He’s handsome and cool and nice! I like following him, it makes me happy!”
“You’re probably scaring the poor guy to death”, Mingtian cursed. “He’s got a killer following him around!”
“No way”, Xie Yi rejected instantly. “I gave him a present before and he’s using it. He’s definitely not scared.”
(Elsewhere, Shi Yue wrote into his notebook with a slightly awkward face. It was a really nice notebook from overseas and he liked it a lot, he would just feel better if he knew why in the world a contract killer would leave a notebook behind for him. It had been wrapped in a cute bow, though, so he guessed that it must be a present, and he wasn't dead yet, so there was that.)
“Oh my god”, Mingtian cried out. “Kid, why.”
Xie Yi ignored him and threw himself back onto his bed, turning on his stomach and waving his legs around like a little girl in a movie. “It’s fine, I’m not hurting anyone.”
"You really are head over heels."
"I don't wear heels?"
“I feel bad for the guy”, Mingtian muttered, looking at his little brother. Xie Yi wasn’t a bad person at all, he was just… complicated.
“I think this is unfair”, Xie Yi complained and pushed the frozen Mingtian farther into the seat so he could sit down as well. “You’re telling me I have to give up, but here you are, running after your childhood friend. Hi, by the way.”
Xue Hua was frozen, his face depicting something between disbelief and surprise.
Mingtian cursed mentally, then pulled Xie Yi under his arm and laughing awkwardly. “Sorry, he’s my, uh, little brother, I guess. He’s a bit cranky recently, he doesn’t mean to be rude.”
Xie Yi pursed his lips and glared up, fighting free and then looking over Xue Hua before smiling brightly. “He looks like a good person. Great!”
Mingtian flushed slightly, as did Xue Hua. While the other was fidgeting and flapping his mouth open and close, Mingtian was still trying to get Xie Yi out of the seat on the bench. Thankfully, no one in the cafe cared to watch their antics, or Xue Hua would have run off.
“Don’t be stingy, introduce me”, Xie Yi whispered, tugging at Mingtian’s sleeve. The older man sighed and rolled his eyes up, then gave in.
“Uh, Xue Hua, this is Xie Yi. He’s pretty much my little brother, just not by blood. Xie Yi, this is Xue Hua, my childhood friend.”
“Crush”, Xie Yi corrected and earned an instant hit on the head for it. “Ow! What?!”
Thankfully, the relationship between him and Xue Hua was at a point where their feelings were pretty much confirmed. They were too awkward to actually act out on them, but it was obvious enough that they existed.
Xue Hua showed a shaky smile and his cheeks flushed red. “It’s… nice to meet you.”
He had to alert his boss. Urgently.
Xie Yi tilted his head at Xue Hua when the other did a weird movement, but then decided to ignore it and focused on stealing food from Mingtian instead. “Hey, hey, Are you gonna stay in A City with Xue Hua? Then I’ll stay, too. You can’t leave me all alone, ‘kay? I'll keep staying at your place.”
The other man twitched up, his eyes widening and turning to Mingtian who rubbed his neck.
“Well... That was the plan”, he coughed and averted his eyes. “And I didn’t intend to leave you behind. You can just stay here in A City as well. And find another job.”
He whispered the last sentence. He understood that Xie Yi was used to killing people. They both had lived in the lawless Z City for years and met there, so both of their hands were stained with blood. Xue Hua knew of that but didn’t mind, to Mingtian’s relief. As he had said; it wasn’t like he and his boss hadn’t killed people during their work, either.
While they were conversing surprisingly amicably, someone else was rushing over to the shop.
With wide steps, Shi Yue half ran into the store, not sure what to expect. The button that sent him a signal couldn’t transmit any information except for the danger level. It wasnn’t overly high, but high enough to call him over directly.
He spotted Xue Hua easily enough and moved over, scanning over the two heads before him. One should be that Mingtian, the other was… who?
Xue Hua looked up and saw his boss, then smiled with a very uncomfortable look. “Uh, Boss Yue, hi! ...Let me introduce you: These are Mingtian and… Xie Yi.”
Shi Yue stopped dead in his tracks, just far enough that he could look at the beautiful young man who had turned to look up at him with wide eyes.
“He’s… a nice guy”, Xue Hua added. Xie Yi was quite cute, really not like a killer at all, so that just made him more confusing.
Xie Yi jumped from his seat, prompting Shi Yue to jolt back warily, but suddenly his hands were grasped in smaller ones. The wide, amazed eyes were right in front of him, sparkling like the setting sun.
“Wow! It’s Shi Yue! Mingtian, look! It’s actual Shi Yue! Look, I told you he is handsome!” With an overly delighted tone, Xie Yi looked back and forth between Mingtian and Shi Yue, obviously excited. Shi Yue, on the other hand, stood stunned and looked at the attractive little face that was beaming at him. His cheeks felt a bit hot.
“He looks nicer when he’s awake”, Xie Yi giggled and Mingtian freaked out.
“Ah, Shi Yue, that new suit looks great on you! As expected from tailor-made work! It’s the new synthetic fibre, right? Great quality. But anything looks great on you. Hey, why don’t you sit down as well? Although you can probably make better coffee than the people here-”, Xie Yi chirped on and on. His eyes were forming two slit moons from smiling and his black hair moved up and down with every over his overjoyed fidgets.
He could hardly hold his excitement, the white cheeks beginning to flush adorably, prompting the people in the cafe who had glanced over to let their eyes linger.
Mingtian was pulling at his hair in a panic, already jumped up, Xue Hua was watching with a conflicted gaze and Shi Yue…
Was just seriously doubting his previous missing interest in men. Maybe he should overthink that attitude.