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Deepening the kiss, Chen Yushen tightly closed his eyes, he knows this is wrong, he knows he already need to stop but the moment his hands land on Peng He’s chest, his lips meeting those warm lips of the other, tasting the sweetness and bitterness all together, Chen Yushen can’t stop anymore, the affection, love, and pain that he always locked deep down his heart can’t be hidden at the moment anymore, so all he can do is to not let go of Peng He, not let the man ran away from his hand, right now, he will let go himself, just this once.

 

Chen Yushen is especially not afraid that Peng He will be disgusted, every since young, the two of them had always been in an ambiguous relationship, neither confessing nor rejecting each other, stolen kisses every night when the lights at the youth camp were turned off, their fingers latching at each other in attempt to hold each other’s hand after a victory game. Nothing can be more clear on what they are in each other’s heart than the two of them.

 

A groan escaped Chen Yushe’s lips when Peng He finally took the lead, biting his lips as moved down to his neck, probably not being able to hold back by being kissed stupidly by someone he had liked when he’s young, who knows? Chen Yushen moved his other hand in return, his fingers grabbing Peng He’s smooth hair and pushing him more at his neck as he tilted his head to the side.

 

“Chen Yushen.” Peng He whispered, like a plea, like a worship but Chen Yushen can’t answer.

 

That night the two of them shared a bed, a passionate night, marking each other, calling each other’s name, kissing all the time that they missed. That night they are once again Chen Yushen and Peng He from their youth, just two individuals from that dark and warm Youth Camp dormitory room, away from the people’s eyes, just like they are the only people in the world, like they don’t know anyone other than each other.

 

When Chen Yushen woke up the next morning, his face who had always been pale, become even more paler, his eyes bloodshot as a tear threatens to roll down on his cheeks, his body sore yet every pain in his body is like a reminder to him that after receiving Peng He’s email that year, deep down his heart he still believe to this man he used to admire and love so sincerely. 

 

With a lot of effort Chen Yushen silently left the hotel room, making his way to GH’s base to grab his few things and immediately booking a flight to Canada. Over the years of playing professionally at GH, Chen Yushen had learned to live and stay in a foreign few countries, especially at Canada where he even owns a condominium, there are times he would run off to that country and take a few silence from the world and e-sports circle. 

 

Chen Yushen doesn’t need to worry anymore about having a game in a few days, weeks or months. He finally retired, though he won’t leave GH and would just transfer behind-the-scene, being free from responsibility as of the moment, Chen Yushen ran away from Peng He once again.

 

Peng He already expected it the moment he already lost control last night. GH has always been supportive of their players, showing how much they value each of them and so when one of the pillars and first players of GH retired, they hosted a small farewell party. As one of the captains, Peng He was also invited, at first he thought that Chen Yushen would disagree but to his surprise he also received an invitation, whether to come or not depends on Peng He himself.

 

At first, Peng He doesn’t have any intention of going, after all, he knows who he is now in Chen Yushen’s life but under the advice of his club’s manager, Peng He changed his mind and still goes to the farewell party at the end. From the outside his reason is to not cost any issue and rumor that his team and club doesn’t have a good relationship with GH but he knows that the real reason is just to take a glimpse towards the young man he once dreamt of taking the stage with. Just a few glimpse and he will be satiated already just like before, after taking a look he will leave immediately.

 

But life truly wants to play with him, Chen Yushen himself got drunk and even Peng He was dizzy from all the toast for him from that other captains and few acquaintances inside the e-sport circle. The night seems a bit blurry in his memories but one scene has been vivid as if it keeps on reliving in his memories. 

 

Chen Yushen took the initiative to drink with him. Peng He can still remember the feeling of his heart beat racing, almost losing control from the dizziness of drinking alcohol and the slight smell of fresh fabric coming from Chen Yushen. It was so vivid and clear in his memories up until now that his lips seem able to still taste the sweetness of their passionate night together. He even cried last night, his tears dropping and rolling down at Chen Yushen’s cheeks as he moved above, Chen Yushen closing his eyes as he also cried silently but all of it was just a mere memory now that Peng He woke up alone at the cold bed inside the hotel room.

 

Peng He’s laughter soon erupted at the four walls of the hotel room, ringining on his ears as if to mock him more. He can’t even get angry knowing that it was Chen Yushen who provoked him first last night and initiated on embracing him, he can only laugh with tears in his eyes as if receiving a lifetime punishment from his sin years ago at the Youth Camp. It wasn’t even his fault in the first place but Peng He knows the weight of that friend of Chen Yushen at Youth Camp and it was him who blocked the justice that person deserved for years because he’s weak and he’a afraid of his parents and what other people will think of him.

 

It was his only regret in this lifetime, not being able to stand with Chen Yushen that day, not being able to protect him, and not being able to make him stay. What he did only hurt Chen Yushen, Peng He almost ruined his dreams. It was really a sin of him that cannot be washed off anymore, to think that he even promised Chen Yushen a championship cup and the chief jungler at his team, when he didn’t even do anything to fulfill any of it.

 

Closing his eyes, Peng He calmed himself down and started recalling everything that happened last night. He can’t continue blaming himself and recalling the past, Chen Yushen ran away again after something so intimate happened to the two of them. Even if Peng He still feel guilt and blames himself he’s also just a human, a person who had loved Chen Yushen all these years, he at least needs to hear a few words from him. Just a few words, he will already be content.

 

Determined to finally have a good talk with Chen Yushen now that they are not young anymore and need to take responsibility for their actions, Peng He finally left the bed and prepared to leave the hotel room.

 

If the first thing he needs to do is to find Chen Yushen, the people he needs to ask would be the old players and members of GH Club. Peng He immediately drove his car to the said club and called Lin Yan, asking for an appointment. Lin Yan had already known that Chen Yushen ran away to Canada this morning and he also had a few guesses about what happened so he immediately agreed on meeting Peng He.

 

Sitting inside Lin Yan’s office, Peng He took a breath and looked straight at Lin Yan’s eyes, “If it’s convenient, can I ask where Chen Yushen is, right now? If it isn’t then his contact number would do. Just anything that can help me to contact him.”

 

Lin Yan didn’t answer immediately, making Peng He anxious but his eyes never left Lin Yan’s, firm and stubborn.

 

“Why would I tell you?” Lin Yan finally opened his mouth, a tiny hope relieved Peng He.

 

“I just need to have a word with him. If he wants me to leave and don’t see him anymore then I will do so but I need to have a few words with him first, I deserve just a little bit of confirmation, right?” Peng He replied, a helpless smile plastered on his face, making the black circle under his eyes and his wrinkles became more evident.

 

Lin Yan had always cared about Chen Yushen, after years of being in the same club, using their own strength to build the GH Club now, Chen Yushen also became an important person in his life and so he also continued being distressed for the little guy. Lin Yan had already heard as well that Peng He doesn’t really have anything to do with the incident at the Youth Camp aside from being protected by his parents from rumors and issue, Lin Yan only wish for the little guy to have his happiness now that he was able to give his friend justice after years of shouldering the burden alone.

 

And so that night at the same day Peng He asked Lin Yan about Chen Yushen’s whereabouts, Peng He immediately booked a flight to Canada, not bringing anything except himself. If Chen Yushen really doesn’t want to see him and asked for him to leave then he will immediately leave so he doesn’t really need to bring anything, he just want to see Chen Yushen for the last time.

 

The next morning, Chen Yushen woke up then to a Peng He wearing a black long coat partnered with white sleeved underneath and a black trouser outside, ringing the bell of his condo. He looks neat and clean except for the clear exhaustion on his face that made Chen Yushen froze as his hold at the doorknob tightens.

 

Peng He eyed his hand and immediately understood, making him smile helplessly as he broke the silence first, “I just need to have a few words with you, we can do it here at the door if you’re not comfortable having me inside your house.”

 

Hearing the gentle voice of Peng He, Chen Yushen finally regained himself again, asking, “What do you want to say?”

 

“Why,” Peng He stopped as his voice seemed to crack, “Why did you let something happen that night?”

 

The two of them looked at each other, Peng He’s eyes were already glistening, still maintaining a helpless smile while Chen Yushen’s grip at the doorknob seemed to tightened again, his teeth biting hard on his lower lip.

 

It was Peng He who broke down first, squatting in front of the door as he lowered his head, his choked sobs ringing at Chen Yushen’s ears.

 

“I just want to see you for the last time, to hear you say a few words but now that i’m here,” Peng He took a breathe, still not daring to lift himself nor his head, “I still don’t want to let go, I’m sorry, I still want you, I’m sorry, I still love you.”

 

Chen Yushen didn’t answer but he also started crying, supporting himself using the door as he covered his eyes using his other hand. Hearing his choked sobs, Peng He finally stood up again, striding towards Chen Yushen and embracing the man in his arms, Chen Yushen cried on his chest while gripping his coat, Peng He only tightened his hold as he looked up, tears continue flowing down on his pale cheeks.

 

“Chen Yushen, let’s start again okay?”

 

“En.”

 

“Don’t run away again.”

 

“En.”

 

“I love you.”

 

Chen Yushen didn’t answer but he moved away slightly from Peng He’s embrace, raising his head as he guided Peng He down to kiss him. There’s still a lot of things they need to talk about, a lot of things they need to work on and build again but right at this moment they just want to hold the person they long for and yearn for. It wasn’t an easy journey and it will still not be easy in the future but they will now walk firmly together.

 

Let’s start again, together.