Luo Yang brought a dozen small bottles of beer, and he mostly finished them himself.
Xiang Mo wasn’t much of a drinker and had a low tolerance, so he only took one bottle of beer, which was now also empty.

In this mildly intoxicated state, that part of the mind driven by primal desires, easily breaks free from its cage, surpassing the ego and the superego, compelling people to pursue their most primitive urges.

Curiosity finally triumphed over inhibition.
Xiang Mo set down the empty beer bottle in his hand and looked at Du Chi, saying, “Okay, I’ll go.”

When he first rented this old house, Xiang Mo had visited the third-floor room before.
It had a layout similar to the second floor, with a wardrobe and a desk.
However, the previous owner cherished the marriage bed used by the couple, so they took it when they sold the house.
Therefore, compared to the second floor, the third-floor room looked much emptier.

Now, Du Chi had placed a simple iron bed in the room, and he adjusted the placement of all the furniture.
The rest area and workspace were clearly separated.
The relaxation area had a small fridge and a lazy sofa, while the workspace was filled with a computer and design tools.

“Do I need to take off my shoes?”

As soon as he entered the room, Xiang Mo noticed the carpet that covered almost the entire floor.
It wasn’t the soft, long-pile type of carpet but the kind used in hotels for noise reduction.
The elegant beige tone softened the coldness of the iron bed and gave the room a gentle atmosphere.

“No need,” Du Chi replied nonchalantly, stepping on the carpet with his slippers, “I had it laid down for you.”

In other words, Du Chi didn’t really care whether it was there or not.
He simply didn’t want any noise to disturb Xiang Mo.

From this perspective alone, Du Chi was indeed a rare and considerate neighbor.

“Are these fonts you designed?”

Xiang Mo’s gaze moved from the carpet to the desk.
The wall next to the desk was covered with large hand-drawn characters.
At first glance, all the characters seemed to be of similar size and shape, but upon closer inspection, the strokes and penmanship of each character differed.

Somehow, they looked more like drawings than letters.

Du Chi came to Xiang Mo’s side, picked up a sheet with only the outline of a character, and said, “The first step is always to draw the outlines.”

“It still looks a bit different,” Xiang Mo said while looking at the various sheets of similar outlines.
“When you draw, you redo it instead of making adjustments.”

“Yes,” Du Chi put down the sheet in his hand.
“I need to understand the feel of writing; I can’t afford to make repeated corrections.”

Until now, Xiang Mo thought that Du Chi designed fonts like creating graphic posters.
However, after seeing Du Chi’s desk, he had a rough idea of the process.
Still, he was curious and subconsciously asked Du Chi beside him, “What do you do after the drawing?”

Before he could finish his sentence, it suddenly faded away.

When he had lowered his head earlier, he didn’t notice, but now their gazes suddenly met.
Xiang Mo realized that he and Du Chi were very close, their shoulders touching each other, and they could even see each other’s eyelashes when they locked eyes.

Unpredictably, the sensation of their lips touching surfaced in his mind without warning, evoking the memory of that night in the corridor.

Dangerous thoughts arose without explanation, and Xiang Mo quickly averted his gaze, continuing his question, “How do you proceed with the design?”

He split the sentence into two, and Du Chi was obviously aware of Xiang Mo’s discomfort.
Adjusting his posture to lean against the desk, Du Chi and Xiang Mo now faced different directions, avoiding any awkward eye contact.

“After sketching hundreds of characters, I can break down their strokes and adjust them to the style and state I want.
The later steps are completed by scanning them into the computer, similar to what you saw at the Eight Jins restaurant that day.”

“Do you mean scanning the finished pieces?” Xiang Mo asked, pointing to the pile of smooth sketches and asked, “Why are some colored, and others are not?”

“Those without color are directly colored on the computer,” Du Chi explained, “As for the ones colored by hand, it’s because the coloring process is very therapeutic.”

“Therapeutic?” Xiang Mo raised his head to look at Du Chi, feeling more comfortable with this perspective.

“You can try it,” Du Chi turned to face Xiang Mo and handed him a black marker, “Just color the interior of the lines.”

That seemed interesting.

Accepting the pen from Du Chi, Xiang Mo randomly picked a sketch and started coloring inside the characters by moving the pen up and down.

Seemingly not liking this casual approach, Du Chi directly held Xiang Mo’s hand, guiding him to follow the outlines and color from top to bottom: “This is not drawing a sketch; you need to trace along the edges.”

As the characters gradually filled up with color, it did indeed provide a sense of release.

But Xiang Mo’s focus was no longer on that.

To steady his right hand and wrist, Du Chi turned around, placing his left hand on the desk beside Xiang Mo’s waist, encompassing him in the space in front of him.

An inexplicable sense of oppression suddenly enveloped Xiang Mo, and he subconsciously turned his head, looking at his own hand by his waist.
At the same time, Du Chi’s guiding hand stopped abruptly.

It seemed that Du Chi also noticed that the position wasn’t quite right.

With only one brushstroke left on the sketch, under normal circumstances, Du Chi should have let go and let Xiang Mo finish it on his own.

At least that was what Xiang Mo thought.

However, what actually happened was that Du Chi withdrew his left hand from the desk and then… placed it on Xiang Mo’s waist.

Xiang Mo, who was already on edge, reacted like a startled cat.
He quickly turned around and used his hand to support Du Chi’s chest, “What are you doing?”

Defensively positioning himself actually worked in Du Chi’s favor.
He placed his hands on Xiang Mo’s waist, slightly leaning forward, and said, “I’ll teach you how to relax.”

If one ignored the mischievous glint in his eyes and the slightly aggressive posture, they might mistake him for someone offering a helpful gesture.

Xiang Mo had to lean back, warning him with a slightly stern tone, “Du Chi.”

Despite his words, Xiang Mo’s gaze involuntarily drifted toward Du Chi’s lips.

The forgotten sensation seemed to grow clearer, and the breath of the moment when Du Chi kissed him echoed in Xiang Mo’s ears.

The face so close to him suddenly enlarged, and Xiang Mo panicked, meeting Du Chi’s eyes.
He couldn’t help but pick up a message that was as obvious as it could be.

Du Chi wanted to sleep with him.
He had anticipated that things might get out of hand after they entered the room, but his mind was in a state of chaos.
Xiang Mo hadn’t even had time to consider whether he should become intimate with his neighbor or not, when Du Chi’s lips were already close to his.

Unlike the previous time, Du Chi stopped on his own this time, evidently giving Xiang Mo time to think.

And Xiang Mo didn’t move.

He could have pushed Du Chi away, he had the opportunity to do so, but he silently consented to Du Chi’s actions.

Sometimes, reaching a mutual understanding didn’t require verbal agreements; a simple action could make both parties tacitly comprehend each other.

However, Xiang Mo’s thoughts were chaotic, and he thought maybe he should tell Du Chi that he didn’t like kissing.

But the expected kiss didn’t happen.
Du Chi chuckled softly instead, and his nose brushed against Xiang Mo’s cheek as his lips moved close to his ear.
He whispered, “What bad things are you thinking about, artist?”

The unexpected move quickly sobered Xiang Mo up.
He knew that Du Chi wasn’t teasing him but was indicating that both of them had already accepted what would happen next.
So, Du Chi started to get into the mood, teasing him with suggestive remarks.

By moving his lips away, Du Chi was also playing hard to get.

But the problem was, Xiang Mo didn’t like to be dominated in bed.

For him, sex was merely a way to relieve stress, and he’d rather not do it at all than be controlled by Du Chi.

Xiang Mo tilted his head slightly, looking at Du Chi with a puzzled expression, and asked, “What are you thinking?”

“In… I was thinking maybe we should find another place,” Du Chi paused, “Perhaps we can move to the bed.”

He meant that they should continue on the bed.

“I also want to find another place,” Xiang Mo replied as he swiftly got off the desk.
With ease, he pushed Du Chi away and walked toward the direction of the room’s door.
“See you tomorrow.”

By “finding another place,” he simply meant leaving the desk.

Du Chi was taken aback, “Xiang Mo?”

Opening the door, Xiang Mo turned his head back, looking at Du Chi’s disbelieving face, and nonchalantly said, “Goodnight.”

Du Chi: “Why are you like this?”

Xiang Mo: “Silly dog.”

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