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ISTIL Chapter 42

For a Long Time

Don’t want to sleep.

Also reluctant to sleep.

A second before his consciousness was about to be completely blank, Shi An came to his senses again with a jolt, and the weightlessness of his feet made him feel a sense of disorientation.

He sat up and leaned against the headboard of the bed.

The door was ajar, and the hallway between the room and the living room was lit by a wall lamp. The light was dim and flat in a small area by the door.

It was Yan Liang’s habit to leave a slit of orange at the door so that those who woke up would not fall into another infinite darkness as soon as they opened their eyes.

The living room was dark and the kitchen was lit by a small night light. Shi An walked to the door, where Yan Liang was putting a fried egg with the edges rolled and burnt into the steaming noodle soup.

He pinched a pair of black lacquered wooden chopsticks and carefully placed the eggs. Probably because he wanted to put the chopsticks under the faucet to wash, Yan Liang hummed a song in his mouth as he turned his body slightly.

He met Shi An’s amber eyes.

“Holy shit,” Yan Liang’s chopsticks twitched violently, “Why are you walking without a sound?”

“Are you asleep? Are you hungry?” Yan Liang put his chopsticks under the tap, “I cooked noodles, want to eat?”

Shi An said nothing.

The atmosphere was a little subtle. Yan Liang realized something afterwards and his movement paused.

An hour earlier, he had picked Shi An up at the bridge at sunset.

He played “The Sun” for Shi An.

He also…

Well these were not the point.

The point was that his childhood friend had become his boyfriend.

They both are all boys, why is Shi An’s waist so thin?

Why are his eyelashes curled and curved, and the tip of his eyelashes could stir up the setting sun.

Why does he look so easy to bully when his eyes are wide in panic?


Yan Liang’s head was full of thoughts, and his ears burned hot.

Shi An probably didn’t fall asleep just now; he looked a little tired, and his expression was very pale.

He rarely stood up straight, leaning against the door, and tilting his face slightly. The soft hair on the back of his head was stacked on the wall in a slightly messy way. The cold white night light softly traced the edge of him.

Most of the time, he was almost always calm and composed, unperturbed by changes.

Yan Liang felt the burning sensation behind his ear, and suddenly felt a subtle sense of loss.

Shi An carried the noodles to the dining table, and the creamy soup licked the edge of the enamel bowl wet.

“You’re not eating?” Shi An asked him, staring into the kitchen.

“I’m not hungry, I ate before I picked you up,” Yan Liang pulled out a chair and sat down across from Shi An, “You eat.”

Shi An’s grip on the chopsticks was very standard, with a loose flick of his wrist and the noodles hanging from the wooden chopsticks. He ate slowly, looking down at the bowl, occasionally raising his eyes at a disorderly frequency to look at Yan Liang who was sitting across from him.

The vapor winded upward in a dense stream, making his light-colored eyes look soft as if they were dipped in clouds.

Shi An lowered his head to eat noodles, and raised his eyes just at this moment. This movement looked a bit awkward. He had to tilt his head slightly, but his eyes still looked at Yan Liang stubbornly.

Yan Liang didn’t know how many times he met Shi An’s gaze, his head buzzed, and only then did he regain his senses a little.

Shi An seemed to be in fear that he would suddenly disappear.

The corners of Yan Liang’s heart collapsed softly. He raised his hand and patted the top of Shi An’s hair: “I’m here, you eat properly. What are you always looking at me for.”


Shi An, who was caught in the act, quickly looked away. The noodles he hadn’t swallowed were still in his mouth, and half of his cheeks puffed out slightly against Yan Liang.

He swallowed the noodle soup, his fingertips pinching and playing with the wooden chopsticks, “Sorry, I’m a little out of it.”

Yan Liang was stunned, and the subtle loss instantly turned into heartache. He leaned over the table, flicking Shi An’s forehead: “Are you stupid?”

Shi An’s head tilted back defenselessly, his eyes still looking away, but the knuckles holding the chopsticks were getting tighter and tighter.


Yan Liang’s voice was tinged with laughter.

The boy’s trailing voice was somewhat low, with a magnetic grainy texture that tickled people’s ears.

“…Finished eating.” Shi An put his chopsticks down. The cool night light in the kitchen reflected the light red of his ear tips through the glass window.

“I’ll wash, you go back to sleep.” Yan Liang drank the rest of the soup with the bowl.

After washing the bowl, Yan Liang put the bowl back in the cupboard. Shi An was still sitting in front of the dining table, seemingly in a daze.

Shi An had always had poor sleep quality and poor adaptability. With so much going on in the past and a recent trip, he looks tired.

The long, curly eyelashes casted a light shadow on his cheeks, and Shi An blinked slowly, as if even blinking was a form of weariness.

“Go to sleep.” Yan Liang curled his fingers and tapped the top of Shi An’s head.

Shi An didn’t move.

Yan Liang closed the cabinet door behind him, and was suddenly enlightened.

“Ah, do you…”

Shi An tilted his head back to look at him.

“…Want to sleep with me?”



Shi An rose to his feet and said, “No.”

The top of his head almost hit the tip of Yan Liang’s nose, and the tips of his hair carried a nice smell that belonged exclusively to Shi An, tickling Yan Liang’s heart.

“Together,” Yan Liang endured the unnatural heat behind his ears, braced himself, and put his arm around Shi An’s shoulders, “Take me in for the night, okay?”

Shi An didn’t turn his head, he could imagine Yan Liang slightly wrinkling his nose..

“…No.” Shi An gently pushed Yan Liang away with very slow movements, “You go back.”

“Why?!” Yan Liang was dumbfounded

“You…” Shi An pursed his lips and pushed Yan Liang further away, “You haven’t showered yet. Don’t get into my bed.”


Yan Liang raised his hand and wiped his face.

“Wait, I’ll come over after showering, leave the door open for me.”

“I said no!”

Shi An’s speech was unconsciously twice as fast, but not as fast as the hem of the teenager’s shirt that flashed around the corner.

With a sudden swing of its tail like a fish, it filled the pool with water, shimmering, and disappeared.

Like a fish snapping its tail, peddling a pool full of water light, sparkling a shimmer, then it was gone.


Yan Liang jumped out of the bathroom with his hair dripping with water.

“…” Xie Fei leaned on the sofa and gave him an oblique glance, “The floor is slippery, you don’t die from falling.”

“Mom, where did the other hair dryer go?” Yan Liang picked up a hair dryer and turned it to the highest level, blowing his hair while saying: “Hurry up, I want two to blow together.”

Xie Fei pulled out an old hair dryer that hadn’t been used for a long time from the drawer, and threw it to him: “Handsome man, do you know your hairstyle is wild?”

“I don’t know,” Yan Liang plugged in the hair dryer and opened it left and right. The whine and buzzing noise made his scalp tingle, “I’m in a hurry.”

“Have you ever used a hairdryer? Strange,” Xie Fei leaned back on the couch to look at him, “Where are you going?”

“Xiao An is back, I’ll go to his place to play tonight.” Yan Liang put down the hair dryer and his fingers pressed the strands of hair “Then, I’m not coming back tonight?”

“Did Xiao An finish the Olympiad? Why didn’t this kid tell us anything…Eh, wait,” Xie Fei leaned over and grabbed Yan Liang’s hem, “What are you doing over there? He’s tired. Don’t disturb his rest.”

“…” Yan Liang slowly pulled the corner of his shirt out of Xie Fei’s hand, “We haven’t seen each other for a long time.”

It has been a long time since we have seen each other.

Xie Fei took her hand back and nodded thoughtfully, “I don’t know why, but it does feel like a really long time.”

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