When Qi Mu returned backstage, he saw his mentor talking to someone with a serious expression.
The person talking to Akkad had his back to Qi Mu. He could only see their slightly gray hair and a straight posture, so Qi Mu didn’t recognize him.
Once Qi Mu saw them clearly, he was stunned. Smiling, he called out, “Mr. Leonid, it’s been a while.”
Leonid turned around, observing Qi Mu before nodding. “Qi Mu, right? I haven’t seen you for a while. I’ve just talked about you with your teacher. You’ve improved so much in such a short time, it’s excellent!”
Qi Mu thanked him modestly and went to pack up with the members of the orchestra.
However, as he walked with Dylan after he finished packing up, he had just passed by them when he heard Leonid complaining, “Mr. Akkad, I really won’t bet with that guy Auston ever again in my life! He’s a terrible man! You don’t know, just under the stage…”
“Mr. Leonid?!” Qi Mu stopped, carefully looking over the music critic. Hurriedly, he asked, “That Auston you said just now… Is it Min Chen?!”
Seeing him so anxious, Leonid couldn’t respond for a moment. He just nodded. “Yes, it’s Min…”
“Where is he?!”
“He was seated with me in the audience, but he’s probably at the airport now. He needed to catch a flight. There aren’t many flights to Berlin, as you know. It looks like he has to participate in the orchestra’s rehearsal tomorrow…”
“Dylan! Help me with my violin!!!”
Without even waiting for Leonid to finish, Qi Mu quickly handed over his violin case to Dylan. And under Dylan’s and Leonid’s confused expression, he rushed out from the backstage and ran at full speed. A moment later, it was as if the soft-spoken young man hadn’t been there at all.
After a beat, Dylan touched his head and said, “… Eh…? This is…”
Leonid also frowned. “What’s going on? I thought Little Seven was already familiar with Auston. How unexpected, he’s also one of Auston’s fans? And quite the passionate one at that?” He turned back to Akkad. “Oh, Mr. Akkad. I didn’t expect your student to be this crazy about Auston.”
Akkad heaved out a heavy sigh, not one of blame or joy, but of sadness and displeasure. “Leonid, if you had told me you were sitting with Auston, I don’t think I would have spoken with you here. But, this isn’t a bad thing… It’s good for them to see each other, this is fine… Not seeing each other is a source of encouragement. But maybe… this will have a better and splendid chemical reaction.”
This remark perplexed Leonid, and when he asked Akkad about it, the older man was too lazy to explain.
Dylan, on the other hand, was still wearing a bewildered expression on his face as he held the two violin cases. He only reacted after handing Qi Mu’s violin case over to Akkad, “… Wait?! Mr. Bertram was listening to our performance just now?!!!”
There was a hint of chill in the evening wind of the autumn night. The ground was damp, waiting to turn to frosted dew by the time the sun showed its first rays of daylight.
Qi Mu ran out of the concert hall then hailed a cab. On his way to the Charles de Gaulle airport, he took out his phone and hurriedly sent a text message. There wasn’t a reply, and it made him nervous.
After sending a few more text messages, he made a call, but it wasn’t connected. Qi Mu anxiously asked the driver to speed up. The man replied, “Who are you going after, little friend?”
After a moment of stupor, Qi Mu unexpectedly told him
The romantic French driver gave Qi Mu an encouraging look then stepped on the gas, speeding up within the speed limit. Even so, Qi Mu still held his phone tightly and repeatedly dialed the number.
When the taxi arrived at the airport, Qi Mu hurriedly paid the driver but was refused. “Young man, hurry and chase your lover. Back then… I missed mine at this airport. Don’t be like me.”
Qi Mu nodded and ran into the airport. Once he stepped inside, the huge airport left him in a daze. It was only then, he remembered… he had no way to find Min Chen.
Maybe the plane had already taken off, maybe Min Chen had already passed the security check…
As long as Min Chen didn’t answer the phone, Qi Mu had no way to find him.
After a few frantic seconds, Qi Mu made a bet that Min Chen might not have gone to the security check yet, so he rushed there. But after running for a while, Qi Mu realized——
Wait a minute, would that guy… really treat himself poorly?
After calming down, Qi Mu went straight to the staff and got the number of the VIP lounge with their help. After giving the staff a reasonable explanation, Qi Mu was soon taken to a tall, mahogany door.
The young man clenched his fist tightly and knocked.
After hearing a calm “Please come in,” Qi Mu pushed down the metal handle. As the door opened, little by little, the two men finally saw each other face to face. And they froze.
After a while, Min Chen’s dark eyes widened. He whispered, “… Qi Mu?”
The young man clenched his fist. Moving forward, he raised his fist, ready to punch him. “You bastard, why didn’t you tell me you were in Paris?!”
Instinctively, Min Chen caught the fist in the air. Just as he was about to open his mouth, the young man raised his hand again and threw a light punch to his chest.
The gentle touch made Min Chen’s throat turned dry. The young man buried his face in his chest and whispered, “I miss you so much, every day… Why didn’t you want to meet me when you came here?”
The words of reproach spoken so softly put Min Chen at a loss for words. A tinge of regret shaded his face but was quickly replaced by deep love and longing. He curled his arms tightly around Qi Mu’s waist. Lowering his head, he whispered, “I’m sorry…”
Qi Mu hasn’t seen him for more than a month.
Text messages could only let them share a conversation, and phone calls could only let them share their voices. Even with video calls, they were separated by a cold screen. He can’t touch the man’s warm body and listen to his fluttering heartbeat.
He missed him, awfully so… Sometimes, he even thought of going to Berlin and developing his career there after his graduation. He believed in his own strength. Even though he might encounter many difficulties in Berlin, he was not afraid.
As his thoughts accumulated, they became Qi Mu’s motivation to work even harder. He wanted to graduate early, he wanted to improve quickly and go on the stage with him. No longer needing to…
Hide their relationship.
Burying his face in Min Chen’s shoulder, Qi Mu whined, “You came to Paris and didn’t tell me.”
The man who had always been skilled in arguments didn’t know what to say. “I… No.”
“You came to Paris and didn’t tell me.”
“You are in Paris, and you didn’t even tell me!”
“You came to Paris, and you hid it from me!!!”
“… … …”
After a while, Min Chen asked, “Who told you I’m in Paris?”
Without thinking too much about it, Qi Mu murmured, “Mr. Leonid.”
Min Chen’s eyes narrowed dangerously. Leonid…
“You went to my concert so why didn’t you… tell me?!”
In addition to great joy and excitement, there’s also a sliver of anger in Qi Mu’s heart. He was really annoyed. Although Akkad told them not to meet each other much before he graduated, it doesn’t mean they weren’t allowed to meet at all. But this guy, coming all the way to Paris to listen to his concert, and he didn’t even breathe a word to him!
How could he not be angry?!
Min Chen frowned. “Qi Mu, actually, I…”
“You didn’t come to me!”
“I don’t want to…”
“But you didn’t come to me!”
“I don’t want to disturb…”
“You just don’t want to see me, do you… Humph…”
Warm lips stopped Qi Mu’s crazy chatter. After more than a month, Min Chen released all his suppressed feelings with his kiss.
Min Chen kissed his beloved earnestly, and they didn’t even part to breathe. The friction between their lips and teeth gradually calmed them both, and they held onto each other tightly, as if they could merge as one in flesh and blood.
When the young man instinctively opened his mouth, Min Chen’s tongue slipped in. Sucking away the youth’s breath, he explored the long-awaited warmth. The exchange of fluids made their lover’s presence even more real for both of them.
When the kiss ended, Qi Mu’s unfocused eyes were glued to the man in front of him. He could only listen as he panted. Finally, Min Chen whispered, “Qi Mu, I don’t want you to change your pace because of me. Your third assessment is starting soon. We still have a lot of time, but now… You will be distracted.”
Qi Mu reluctantly nodded. He couldn’t help but murmur, “But… I miss you so much. You can see me, but I can’t see you. Min Chen… Has anyone ever told you that your behavior is quite——Outrageous?”
The youth’s awkward seriousness turned Min Chen’s already dark eyes even darker. The next moment, he pressed him down onto the sofa, kissing him passionately.
He kept the young man captive in his arms. He couldn’t understand how he had lived for more than a month without Qi Mu. He didn’t know how he was willing to just see him from afar and leave without saying a word.
The temperature in the room gradually increased as Min Chen’s warm lips gently kissed Qi Mu’s eyebrows and his eyelids. Then, he kissed from the tip of his nose all the way to his beautiful jawline. Finally, his lips fell on Qi Mu’s, softly pulling them apart.
Why did he feel guilty?
Because… He loved him.
He loved him.