Si Qi slowly nodded. Yes, maybe this would indeed be for the best. In any case, after the show was over and their master hopefully won, he would already have his date with Xiao Ming. Then at that time, there wouldn’t be much for them to do. Things would be completely up to their master and Xiao Ming to figure out.
The only one who might be able to render some more help would be Si Yi. Well, maybe Si Er or Si Shi Qi would be able to support them here and there. As for the others of them, he didn’t think that there was much of a chance to get involved. So at that time, he would be able to take a vacation without inconveniencing the clan.
Maybe if he was away for a longer time, he would indeed be able to get over this matter with Si Yi. He didn’t think that it was likely but it was at least worth a try. In any case, he also didn’t want to be in this situation. It was just that he couldn’t get over his feelings so easily. If there was a way to just turn them off, he would have done that long ago.
Anyway, who knew? If things turned out well, his future would look much brighter. Maybe he would be able to find somebody that he wanted to be with. Somebody to like him back. It would be so nice to have a relationship where he and his partner could mutually support each other. That was the kind of thing he was longing for.
When he imagined that, his lips curved on their own and his gaze softened when he turned his attention back to Xiao Ming. “You know, you’re right. I’ll give it a try. In any case, I probably won’t be able to make it too far in the show but I’ll still try my best. Since I started it, I’ll try to go as far as I can.”
Xiao Ming nodded. To be honest, he was quite curious about whether that man that Shi Ru Qiu had mentioned was also a contestant or maybe a cook or something but he didn’t want to bring up anything that would make him sad again. Right now, he looked slightly more optimistic than he had before. He didn’t want to destroy that.
On the other hand, Si Qi couldn’t help but think that if he wanted to go on a vacation, he should work even harder before that. And the best way to do that was to help his master. He thought for a moment and then cleared his throat. “Is there somebody that you like?”
Xiao Ming was stunned when he was suddenly asked this question but he still shook his head straightforwardly. “Not at the moment, no.”
Si Qi nodded, feeling that this was good news to bring back. Well, their master probably would’ve preferred if there would’ve been some kind of spark already but things couldn’t be rushed when it came to relationships. And to know that there was nobody else currently occupying Xiao Ming’s heart was already better than nothing. Also, there were definitely some opportunities there.
He smiled a little cheekily and then grabbed the cup of tea that the waiter had brought in-between. Leaning back and looking at the steam wafting into the air, he gave a faint chuckle. “You know, the person I like happens to be Si Jin’s assistant.”
Xiao Ming needed a moment to realize that the Si Jin that Shi Ru Qiu was talking about had to be the one he knew as well. Somehow, there were quite a few people who knew Si Jin around him recently. First Mister Ai, now even Mister Shi. To be honest, he was a little astounded. “There really are a lot of people that he knows, aren’t there?”
Si Qi continued to smile. “Ah, I guess that comes with his work. Anyway, for Si Yi — his assistant I mean — work is really the only thing in his life that counts. He is completely focused on his role as Si Jin’s assistant. He’s had some short-lived relationships before but there was never anything long-term.
“I guess most people wouldn’t be able to take it that he dedicates his own life to another man. I’m alright with it if I’m honest. Just having a very small corner of his heart would already be enough for me.
“In any case, since his work means so much to Si Yi, I’ve paid a lot of attention to his Si Jin as his boss. You know, he really likes you.”
Xiao Ming raised his brows, not quite sure which part of all this he felt to be more astounding. It seemed that Shi Ru Qiu had really put a lot of effort into pursuing that man. But if he was that kind of workaholic, it was no wonder that he didn’t requite his feelings. He probably really wasn’t open to anything rather than just not to Mister Shi in particular as he thought.
On the other hand … “How do you know that Si Jin likes me?” He had always had the feeling that it might be true but he had also thought that maybe this was just the feelings of a fan rather than an admirer. That kind of thing could be difficult to distinguish. But Shi Ru Qiu sounded rather sure.
Si Qi didn’t answer immediately. He thought about it, not wanting to give an answer that was too much on the surface. “Well, as I know Si Jin, he is very … serious. When you look at him, he always has this non-expression. It can honestly freak people out.”
Xiao Ming chuckled at that. “Yes, I witnessed that at the casting. When he walked in, everybody couldn’t help but stare. The way he looks at you is honestly a bit creepy.”
Si Qi also chuckled. He probably shouldn’t find this funny considering that meant that his master’s chances were probably not as high as they had hoped but it was just true.
He hurriedly cleared his throat and then tried to give an explanation. “Si Jin is actually one of the people I mentioned before, the ones I grew up with. His family was rather strict at that time. Emotions weren’t really something that was encouraged. So I guess this is just the way he grew up.
“It doesn’t mean that he doesn’t feel them inside, just that he doesn’t express them very openly. In fact, he doesn’t express much. To get a word out of him, that is already quite the feat. As somebody who loves words, it’s infuriating.”
Xiao Ming nodded even though he hadn’t noticed this before. “He leaves a lot of comments on our channel.”
Si Qi smiled at that. “And that is how I’m completely sure that he adores you. You see, even people close to him will barely get a full sentence from him. But for you, he will actually take the time to sit down and write whole sentences, sometimes several in a row. That counts as quite verbose in his case.
“Also, if you take a closer look, you’ll realize that he is actually answering you whenever you ask a question. And when he feels that you are down, he will try to cheer you up. That’s the most emotional response I’ve ever seen from him. It’s downright cute to watch even though he still looks at the screen without an expression.
“But anyway, to say that he doesn’t like you … you would really have to look for a good explanation in that case. I personally can’t come up with any and I do this kind of thing for a living.” He raised his brows and then took a sip of his tea before putting the cup down again.
“I’ll be honest with you: Si Jin is a lot like his assistant in some ways. They are both focused on their work. And I don’t think that Si Jin has a single hobby outside of watching your stream.
“I’m not even sure how this all started. I just know that it was probably shortly after your channel had been created. He should’ve seen one of the first few live streams. And one of the first things he did afterward was to go around and show it to other people. That’s also how I knew you about you.”
Xiao Ming was a little taken aback. He had known that Nin Sha had been around since the very beginning. But he hadn’t known that he had actually gone around to tell people about them. That was … Ah, well, he actually wasn’t sure what to make of that. He was somewhat flattered but also a bit befuddled. What had Si Jin liked about them so much?
Si Qi saw his expression and smiled. “I can’t tell you what exactly it was that he liked if that’s what you’re wondering. That’s the kind of thing that I definitely wouldn’t be able to get out of him. Maybe he would tell you if you asked but certainly not anybody else.
“But I can still guess that it was something like love at first sight. It’s actually quite beautiful. Also, you can bet that you’re the first person Si Jin fell in love with. He didn’t have much contact outside of the people that I know as well and look at what has happened.
“Actually, in that regard, Si Jin and I are rather similar. When there is a person we like, we are incredibly obstinate. Holding onto that for half a decade or even a full one is not that strange I guess.” He sighed and then pulled his plate closer, starting to eat a few bites.
Xiao Ming actually wasn’t hungry. He definitely wasn’t right now. There was way too much to chew on regarding what Shi Ru Qiu had told him. He just didn’t know what to make of this.
Nin Sha had actually been a reassuring presence to him. In these years, knowing that there had been somebody there from the very start to the point where they had gotten now had always been something that made him hold on when things had been difficult. He definitely had a lot of good feelings about him.
But … he was also somebody who needed to get to know somebody for real before he could develop feelings. And since he had only met him face-to-face once, that was something that he just couldn’t say had happened. He didn’t know if there was a chance for them. In any case … “Well, no matter Si Jin’s feelings, right now, with ‘Golden Spoon’ being made, I shouldn’t get too close.”
Si Qi’s gaze turned careful at that. Right, this was something that they hadn’t thought of too much. Xiao Ming was in a difficult situation right now. He couldn’t allow himself even a single misstep. If he started to get too close to one of the contestants and then that contestant coincidentally won, then there would be a lot of trouble for him. That definitely wasn’t what they wanted.
He hurriedly shook his head and then raised a hand to wave. “No, no, I’m not trying to talk you into anything. But it’s just that while I don’t necessarily consider him a friend of mine, he is still somebody that I know.
“And … I think because I know how it is to be in love with somebody for a long time while that person may not know about or just not requite your feelings, and I would love to see at least one of us succeed. And I think that Si Jin has a better chance than I.
“In any case, I felt like it couldn’t hurt to tell you. I’m not trying to convince you to date him right away. You’re definitely right in regard to the show. It would be better to wait until after even if you are interested. Well, on the bright side, that also means you’ll have some more time to keep an eye on him. Nobody can keep you from doing that, right?”
Xiao Ming nodded in a daze, not quite sure how they had suddenly gotten to discussing his love life. But then again, it seemed that Shi Ru Qiu had been cheered up quite a bit by this. Thinking of that, he figured that he might as well divert his attention a bit with this. “So, Si Jin, how is he … privately? Would you mind telling me a bit more?”
Si Qi smiled, his eyes curving up into little crescents. “Of course not. In any case, there isn’t that much to say but I guess everything helps when it comes to him. As I said, he really isn’t that much of an outgoing person.”