Mo Fang took a moment, sipping his drink in deep thought, and then turned back to Li Ming, ingratiating himself with a sweet smile. “Then what about your private life? Or am I asking too much there?”
Li Ming visibly looked a little uncomfortable when he heard the question. To be honest, he normally didn’t talk too much about it. He didn’t have any problem with doing so but he was just more of a private person so he didn’t bring it up on his own. But he could also understand why Mo Fang would do so. While he did know a few of the people from the railroad station, they might not be that close. He probably just wanted to have somebody he could rely on a bit. That wasn’t too strange.
“Well, there isn’t much to be said about that either. I’m not in a relationship currently and … Well, my relationship with my family is a little strained. I came out rather early on. They didn’t throw me out but they weren’t too happy.”
“I’m sorry to hear that.” Mo Fang really meant that. He had seen from some of his boyfriends just how bad those relationships with the family could get. Thinking about it, he couldn’t help but feel a bit lucky. “I guess my parents never doubted that I’m gay so it didn’t really change anything when I had my first boyfriend.”
Li Ming once again raised his brows at that. “You … Just brought a boyfriend home?” That was definitely one way to do it but he himself had been terrified enough to just say that he was gay. To actually bring another guy home … He couldn’t even imagine doing that. Mo Fang was much braver than he would have thought. But maybe that was just his misconception. It wasn’t a wonder. After all, they didn’t really know each other well.
Mo Fang looked a little embarrassed when Li Ming said that. “Well, something like that.”
Unfortunately for him, Li Ming was intrigued by that. “What do you mean ‘something like that’? So that wasn’t it? Then … How did they find out?”
Mo Fang looked away, covering half his face with his hand while the red tips of his ears still showed. “You can’t laugh if I tell you.”
“Of course not.” Li Ming raised his hands in a defensive gesture but he did feel like he might have trouble keeping that promise. At the very least, if Mo Fang had to say this, then it would probably be quite the unusual story.
Mo Fang seemed like he could see that Li Ming might react differently from what he said but he still spoke up in the end. Even though he normally wouldn’t want to share that story to make sure he didn’t ruin his image, he also felt that getting to know each other and having a good laugh about some silly old stories was a good idea. And it probably was hilarious? “Well, back then, I had my first boyfriend. He was a bit older than me and had just gotten his driver’s license.”
Li Ming listened on, having no idea where this was going.
Seeing his crush’s full attention on him, Mo Fang felt emboldened. He took another gulp from his drink, pushing the empty glass back to Yao Chen before he turned to Li Ming again, continuing his story. “Well, I needed to do some project for school that day so I stayed out a while longer. I didn’t want to bother my parents and since he had learned to drive and he was pretty proud of it, I asked him to just bring me home that day.”
Li Ming didn’t feel like laughing but at least he couldn’t help a smile from spreading on his face. “So your first boyfriend brought you home and your parents found out?”
“… Yes. Yes, it was like that.” Mo Fang gave a cheeky grin. His whole expression screamed ‘ask me for more details!’
Li Ming looked at him, feeling a bit doubtful. “It seems like there’s a bit more to this story. What exactly happened?”
Mo Fang raised his brows and picked up the glass again, taking a few sips. “Well, I guess it’s embarrassing to say it now but … We might have celebrated him getting his license for a bit. And while we were getting it on in the car, my father headed out because he was worried about me and wanted to come to school and pick me up. And then he might have seen.” Mo Fang laughed as if he had just told a good joke.
On the other hand, Li Ming gaped. Obviously more than just a little disturbed by that mental image. “And Boss Mo … I mean, your father, he was alright with that?”
Mo Fang pursed his lips and put the glass back down, giving Li Ming a look. “Well … He certainly wasn’t happy. But I guess he was not that shocked. Well, at least he wasn’t that shocked about me being gay.”
“You mean he was shocked at you having a boyfriend more than that?” Li Ming narrowed his eyes. While this wasn’t completely impossible, something about this story seemed fishy. He took a moment and finally, his eyes widened. “Wait. How old were you?”
Mo Fang pondered for a moment as if he had to think about it.
Li Ming just raised his brows. “Well?”
“I guess I was fourteen?” Mo Fang continued to drink, deep in thought. Yeah, he should have been fourteen at that time. If he had been any younger, his father definitely would have raised more of a fuss about it.
Li Ming scratched his head, trying to wrap his head around this. Even though Mo Fang sounded a bit unsure, he somehow felt that he hadn’t been any older than that as unbelievable as that might be. Especially since … “Then, your boyfriend … He was eighteen, right? I mean if he had his driver’s license … Or could it be …?”
Mo Fang gave him a look as if he was shocked. “What are you thinking about? He wasn’t that old. He really was just nineteen.”
Li Ming was not quite sure what he should say to that. But, looking at the story, he could understand now why Boss Mo would’ve more of a problem with that specific relationship than with his son being gay in general. There really was a lot to unpack there.
Also … He glanced at Mo Fang, quietly pondering. If that was his first relationship and then there was that Si Tao he had just met and that Lan Heng, then his relationships might be quite … varied. But it could be that Mo Fang had rather questionable taste in men.
Short background info since I feel like it’s relevant here: The age of consent in China is 14 with no differences being made for the age of the partner. So while Mo Fang’s story might seem strange from a western perspective, it’s legal in China.
Earlier this year, there was a huge uproar about raising the age of consent after the story of the lawyer Bao Yuming and a girl known as Xingxing became public. Nothing has happened so far though and I honestly doubt it will. In fact, I’ve heard that people who speak out against this type of thing will often been silenced or face intensive backlash.