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In my greetings for you

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"So... you guys wanted to produce a new series which told a love story in niche ways á la ‘500 days of summer’ with nostalgic elements and oldies songs like that K-Drama ‘Reply’ series? Won’t it be sounds like, I don’t know ‘50 First Dates’ or ‘Begin Again’?”

“Right, Khun Phi, but we will make it in our own ways, with local nostalgic songs...”

“Forget it already, our competitors already made it that way with ‘Secret Seven’.”

“However, I don’t think that it’s good enough, Khun Phi—,”

“Who are you to judge, N’Gulf?” The middle age executive producer to Gulf’s previous series slide his rough script on top of the low table in the middle of them. “It was produced by one of the most renowned director nowadays. It was one of his debut work, so no matter how imperfect it was, people will still deemed his work as the original one.”

The meeting room’s air was pretty intense so that the leader of the project, Mew Suppasit Jongcheveevat, just had to cough lightly to lightened up the room. When every eyes turned to him, he just put his best smile to the investor and asked him, “Therefore Khun Phi... do you have any suggestion for us to improve our project to be an acceptable one for you?”

The middle age man just leaned back to his sofa seat and hummed, “You see, guys, I only give this input just because I knew the result of your team’s work as we previously already working together and I would deemed that it was pretty successful.”

Gulf’s mood just went slightly better before the investor continue, “However, realistically speaking, it would be much safer for both of us if you just join the second season our our previous project. First, our first season already have a settled fanbase, therefore we don’t need to start from zero again. Second one, I’m sorry N’Gulf, but I trusted more on Mame’s script rather than yours. Moreover, Mame herself already have her own huge following behind her works. It would be much riskier if we go with your ideas. Why don’t you think it over, regarding our offer that you already rejected to develop the second season of 'How to Secretly'? I seriously think that it's the best options for both of us right now.”

Mew take a look slightly on his left side, knowing that the younger film director would be in rage because of what the investors were saying. However, before he could hold the other one to put his stupid, reckless outrage, of course Gulf Kanawut just had to defend his own pride by practically threw a sarcastic response to the investor’s face, “Sir, with my utmost respect, I have to apologize that I have to reject that project once again. I want to educate the younger generation with my works. Well, yes, Y-series indeed help on filled up my savings as well as boosting up my fame as a director. However, I wanted to be known as someone that put a high quality and critically acclaimed works upon me. Not just being known as a famous Y-series’ director.”

“High quality according to whom, N’Gulf?” The middle age investor snorted darkly at Gulf and move his gaze to Mew instead, “Here, as the older one, and clearly the wiser one in the room, I would like to give both of you time to think it over for the last time. Well, we will move on with or without you guys, regardless of what your decision is. However, I’m sure that N’Mew would realize as the producer of the project that there’s so much of being idealistic in this industry. And it certainly wouldn’t making as much money rather than continuing our previous project.”

Before Mew could put his wisest reply, of course Gulf already reached his boiling point and went outside by slamming the door until the sound of it filled the entire room. Mew just smiled apologetically at the respected investor and wai him before he followed the younger one outside.

 

“Ai’Gulf..... why don’t you just tell him the truth...”

Gulf just frowned at his childhood friend, brushed off his hand, and sighed deeply as he move forward and walk even faster, as if he didn't want to stepped on this particular office any longer.

The young film director was just so goddamn tired of explaining himself. Well, despite his own ego, his friend for years only a few people that knew that his own idealistic for creating a critically acclaimed movie wasn’t his only reason to rejected the offer to direct the second season of ‘How to Secretly’, which called ‘How to Change’. He honestly never expected that he would ended up directing a Y-series. However, since P’Mew offered him this project because apparently the writer of the novel impressed by his final project in college, he thought that, eh, it wouldn’t be bad to try since he was a broke fresh graduate — well not that he was a well off one now, but still — and it's not everyone that would have the privilege to direct a commercial work right away after they were graduated. Usually for director, he initially had to settle with assisting the director or other minor production roles for the first few years. But alas, maybe the fortune goddess apparently really turned to him back then.

However, despite the commercial success, honestly he had a few personal conflict with the series. Particularly, with the problematic storyline itself. He never realized how problematic the storyline was until a few weeks after he signed the contract. He never have a problem with the gay relationship to begin with, however it irked him with the way Kengkla pursuing Techno. No matter how at the ending he could prove how his love for Techno was real and sincere, should the story happened in real life, there is no way that people would approving their relationship, since their relationship was started of off without consent and lies upon lies.

When he got offered to direct the second season which focusing on Techno’s little brother Technic... he downright rejecting it because he already knew how the second book was even more problematic, with the way they romanticized stalking. No matter how naive teenage girls that read it see it as a romantic thing, Gulf wouldn’t be sold with the idea, especially when he personally already had a few experiences when it comes to being stalked. No matter how 'good looking', ‘sweet’ or ‘nice’ the person that stalked you, it was never a nice feeling to be stalked. Not until you personally had an experience on it, you wouldn’t know how scary it was to be stalked at. It is disturbing in any way.

He never had a personal issue with P’Mame herself, and he understand that maybe she wanted to wrote different and unique storyline with other BL novel out there in the market that mostly only wrote about puppy love. He also didn’t have personal issue with the whole cast, but to Gulf himself, it would be better if he stay away with from the story that he personally disagree to begin with, and let other people work for it. Especially when he also ended up having minor issues with the intern production staff... that he decided to let it go because he thought that it would be better if he himself that quits, since he could find a better job whileast he didn’t know if the intern staff would find a better job or find a job at all should he decided that he’s the one that stays. Well, all in all, for Gulf personally, it will be better if he moved on from this project to a new project which suited himself more.

 

Phi—, you know how I feel about this,” Gulf leaned back at the car seat and sighed.

“I know — but you could’ve just told P’Mame? Regarding the script, it’s already controversial between the fans itself, so she must be realized that she had to makes a few alteration here and there if she wanted the public to receieved it well in the second season. And regarding your problem with the intern — you know you are the priority in all of this, Ai’Nong...”

Gulf just stayed silent and played with his own fingers stubbornly, which only makes the older one sighed in defeat.

“All right, all right, you don’t want to make him get blacklisted from the industry. But you have to realized by yourself, Gulf, most likely those kind of people will get outed by themselves. You do realized that sometimes giving a second chance to those kind of people are not even worth it, right?”

“Phi, where are you headed to?” The younger one suddenly talk about a whole different matters, confused Mew that currently on his steering wheel, driving ahead somewhere.

“To Mai’s office, what’s wrong? She just texted me that her campaign photoshoot was done already and she wanted to have lunch with us.”

Upon the mention of Mew’s long time girlfriend, Gulf trying hard not to sigh outwardly and instead trying to stay calm and asked the older one, “Could you just drop me at the next BTS station, Phi? I think I needed some time to calm myself down by walking on my own. I guess my head always been in a mess lately.”

Mew wanted to insisted that Gulf should just join him and his girlfriend on having lunch together, but he knew that the younger one will keep making excuses to bailed on the plan, and he just sighed in defeat because he also think that the younger boy also need a time for himself, “Fine... just be careful, okay? I’m just one call away if you needed me.”

“I’m not a freaking child, Phi.”

Mew just raised his left eyebrows, thinking to himself, ‘Well, but you surely acted like one.’

 

 

 

Instead of taking the next train right away, Gulf just leaned back as he took a seat at one of the bench inside the BTS station. Sigh. He really didn’t need to meet P’Mai in person with his current chaotic mood. Without meeting her in person, wherever Gulf could see, be it billboard to LED ads inside the station, TV, internet, oh really, it was literally everywhere, all he could see was her face. Really, who doesn’t know about her? The ever so pretty Mai Davika Hoorne — the top model and actress across the Southeast Asia, not just in Thailand. Gulf personally always love to see her bubbly and quirky personality whenever they talk to each other, it was just unfortunate that she was also a girlfriend to his unrequited first love.

P’Mew met her during his earliest work as a producer, right after he graduated from bachelor degree, which coincidently also her debut work as an actress. Given their suitable age that were not far from each other, the way they both were highly ambitious with their work, and their God-sent visual that maybe will beat the nation’s couple Nadech and Yaya, everyone in the country always adore both of them. Well, they never really made their relationship a secret, though they never confirmed it to the media either. However, everyone in entertainment industry knew that they were a thing, even before they made it in the industry itself.

Gulf himself never really quite understand regarding his own feelings. The days where he had a girlfriend himself, he never really give much a thought regarding his childhood friend’s relationship, he even befriended the adorable P’Mai. However there were also a day where he could only stare at her with full of envy because at the end of the day, she would be P’Mew’s priority. He was trying hard not to think about it, anyway, and deep inside, he just think that, maybe those sayings were true. A person could never really get over from their unrequited first love no matter how hard they tried.

 

 

 

 

 

The next day at their humble and small production house office, he feels fortunate that at least some of his trusted partner like P’Mew and P’Tong joined him and most importantly, they always believe in his crazy ideas. P’Tong, as a novel writer and scriptwriter himself, could only frowned at him when Gulf was trying hard to explained his crazy ideas from scratch, hoping that the older one would help him to develop his scratch of ideas and turned it into a well written script.

“So... you want to create a story regarding a long lost childhood sweetheart that suddenly meet each other, and by the time they meet each other, all of their memories were coming through, which all includes all of the nostalgic songs from their childhood...,” P’Tong put his chin on top of his left palm whilst he wrote the scratch of ideas on his notes.

“How do you want the character development turning out to be in the middle of series? I mean — wouldn’t be super cliché if we write that the both of characters already in love with each other from the start? Moreover it would be painstakingly slow burn if we want to make it as a series, 2 hours movie would be enough for this kind of story to be developed,” The older scriptwriter continue, not even bothered to fixed his glasses.

Gulf nodded slightly, “Phi, I know it’s pretty hard to wrapped it out without being cliché, that’s the point of ‘mutual pining’ on our prior keywords. They unknowingly liking each other but both of them never realized their own feelings, but fate ended up making them meet each other again after years. Something like 'Love, Rosie', I guess, but more in twisted way?” The younger one pouted slightly as he thinks deeply.

“For God sake, Ai’Gulf... interpreting your story is much harder rather than writing original story by my own,” P’Tong released a long sigh.

The younger one chuckled slightly, “You love my ideas, anyway, Phi. That’s why we always ended up working with each other.” Which only replied by a raised of eyebrows from the older one.

“Honestly speaking...,” Mew said as he turned his sight from his laptop, “As a producer point of view, there’s always a spot for romantic comedy, despite the trend forecast. Especially when everyone always love any kind of stories regarding childhood sweetheart after all.”

“Of course I already knew about that, Phi. That’s why I really want to go with this idea,” Gulf rolled his eyes.

“However... it’s one of the common story in the market. Therefore, we definitely have to wrapped it up with something different. There are thousands of titles out there. What make us any different than any other romcoms out there?”

“That’s my point, Phi. That was the reason why I really want us to focusing on developing the vibes and the chemistry from the old song itself. I want to make it that each of every episode in the story have an oldies song in the title, and if possible, that song would be the focus on each episodes.”

“You really are serious with that idea aren’t you? Gulf, while I always put my 100% trust with your work, you guys have to make sure to have a proper research will you guys? While everyone have soft spot for nostalgic songs... it’s also a sensitive content. Should we pick a specific song and interpret it differently with public’s views... we are totally screwed, we could get a backlash.”

“I know, Phi. Yesterday I have the guts to give just a scratch idea to P’Golf because he was the investor to our previous work. Now that we should search for another investor... I really have to tidy up and develop the script really well beforehand. I think we even had to make a short pilot episode first or something like short teaser trailer so that our future investor would get sure with our work.”

Mew chuckled as he stands up from his seat and ruffled through Gulf’s soft hair, “I’m sure you can do it, Nong.” He smiles gently at the younger one. “Your work together with Tong always comes out as the best. I’ll always believe in you, guys.”

He takes his bag and laptop with him and said, “I will go for first, okay?”

“Where are you going, Phi?” Gulf asked him curiously.

“P’Mame asked to meet me. I don’t know... perhaps she will be asking us if we want to work with them for the second season...,” He sighed. “Let me go on my own, okay? I’m afraid that you will be feeling uneasy again and ended up exploded again like with P’Golf yesterday. I will find excuse for her, okay? See you, guys.” He closed the door without even giving a time for Gulf to reply.

Gulf keep silently staring at the wooden door before suddenly he heard P’Tong speak, “Sometimes I wonder, for someone like P’Mew that basically already have a settle job in this industry with or without us, why he insisted on joining our team? I wonder if your friendship with him is that strong, even to the point where you guys really had to work with each other?" He raised both of his eyebrows,"I mean... if it’s about making money, P’Mew must be prefer to go with P’Mame as the second season already have an investor and it already have a huge fanbase following.”

Gulf was just staying silent as he continue to writing the draft of the script trying not to giving any care to P’Tong’s words, though in fact it keeps repeated in his head over and over again. Not that P’Tong was wrong, though. If P’Mew wanted to join P’Mame’s project, he really couldn’t forbid him. It won’t be risking their long-time friendship, though, even if the older one decided to leave their small production house. The fact that honestly P’Mew already have a lot of projects outside their production house... the truth is, it was Gulf that couldn’t live without him. It hurts him that both in professional life and his personal life, he would be nothing without the older one, and no matter how he needed him in his life... Gulf basically couldn’t call out for him once he already way out of his reach. He didn’t realize that all of these thinkings makes his eyes burned. Especially when he saw that in P’Mew recent Instagram updates, he took a picture together with P’Mame. He gulped down his emotions as he turned off his phone.

 

 

 

“Gulf... you do know that you could come back anytime, right...” Mild asking him with pleading voice through his lunch.

Mild was originally the assistant director to Gulf on the first season. Being his friend from high school, he practically one of his best friend aside of P’Mew. Gulf understand that he need to stay on the project since he had to support his family financially and couldn’t afford to living a start up life together with Gulf and P’Mew. Therefore, they had no hard feelings when they had to parted ways, and still remained a good friend.

“We still haven’t casted the new cast, let alone having workshop or filming, you literally still have time to think it over...” The slightly older one still trying hard to coaxed the younger one.

“It’s okay, Phi. Thank you for your concern, but I’m not that desperate to make money.” Gulf still haven't look up from his lunch.

“I’m not saying that you’re desperate to make money. You do realize that you’re the priority on this project rather than that messed up staff, you know? If only you said it to the others aside of me and P’Mew...” He insisted.

“P'Mild...” Gulf sighed and he stopped chewing his lunch. He lost all of his appetite by this time.

“Ok, ok, I know that you don’t want to ruined somebody’s future, yadda, yadda, but when will you be prioritizing your own life rather than thinking about others, even the most disgusting one, Gulf?” He keep pusing Gulf. “Sooner or later you have to think about yourself rather than keeping it all to yourself, Ai’Gulf.”

 

 

 

Gulf keep thinking over P'Mild and P’Tong’s words over and over again as he mindlessly walking to his house, not realizing that a familiar person already waiting for him in front of his gate. Sometimes he forgot that all of these problems were starting from the fact that he was neighbors with the handsome man that coincidently were his first love, the friend that practically know almost everything about him except for his true feelings, as well as his colleagues. Sometimes, Gulf wondered why he didn’t expand his circle of friends so that he would stop meeting this particular guy over and over again.

“Phi... what are you doing here?” Gulf asked tiredly as he was trying to search for his key on his duffle bag.

“I really need your help, Nong,” The older one pouted at him. “Help me, pretty, please?”

“What help, Phi?” He asked confusedly, his eyebrow furrowed. “You do realize that most of the time I’m the one who needed your help, right?”

“But, right now I freaking need your help, please accompany me tomorrow, nong? Please?”

“What?” Gulf furrows went even deeper. “What are you asking actually, Phi? I really don’t understand?”

“Actually,” He licked his lips and bite it nervously. “I’m thinking of asking Mai to take the next step?”

“Huh?” Gulf stunned. Please don’t be.

“I’m thinking of asking her to marry me?” He raised one of his eyebrows, unsurely. In the long years of their friendship, this was the first time that he saw the older one to be this nervous. Usually he never hesitated with something, even with big decision such as taking a risky projects, or when he decided to took different major than the one that his parents asked him to take back in the college years. To see him in his purest and his most raw emotion breaks the younger’s heart even before he could hear what are the next question that P’Mew asking to him. “Please help me to find a ring for my proposal?”

Gulf could feel his eyes burned and he was trying hard not to avoid P’Mew’s eyes even though he desperately wanted to do it. Not trusting his own voice because chances are, it would be totally break, he just nodded slightly and suddenly the older one put him into his warm embrace and kissed his crown of head as if it was totally normal between childhood friends.

“Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I really don’t know who else I could trust enough to help me with this,” Mew’s voice sounds way too excited for his own liking.

God, is it possible to mend a broken heart that already breaks over and over again?

Gulf was trying hard to pull the best smile that he could pulled off though it was apparent that it was really forced, and pushed the older one softly, “See you tomorrow, Phi. I’m sorry but I really need to sleep early tonight.”

“Ah! I’m sorry for keeping you!” He smiled apologetically. “Sleep well, okay? You don’t have to drive or taking bus tomorrow, I will pick you up with my car, since we will be also coming home together, anyway.”

Gulf just nodded tiredly and he quickly unlocked his family house’s padlock, “See you tomorrow, Phi.”

 

 

He released a long breath that he didn’t realize that he hold the moment he arrived at his room. God, do he really need to cry helplessly under the shower like those drama character heroines? Sometimes he was asking himself, what did he expected from his unrequited feelings, anyway? Maybe because before P’Mai, P’Mew’s relationship never been that serious, since most of his relationship usually only lasted for a couple of years at maximum, and at least he never really serious enough with his relationship to the point where he wanted to tie a knot with his girlfriend.

He should have seen all the signs. The fact that they were in fact already going through the 6th years of their relationship, the fact that P’Mai already befriended all of P’Mew’s family and closest friends, the fact that they already really comfortable with each other to the point where they already attending each other’s family gatherings and trying to make time for each other no matter how busy they were, the fact that aunty Jongcheveevat herself is really fond of her super-pretty-and-talented-in-everything future daughter-in-law that seems like never lacked at something...

Should he just completely give up with his own feelings? Gulf took a deep sighed and burying his head on his folded arms. If it was that easy, he already ended it more than a decade ago. He knows it better than anyone else since he already trying hard to do this over and over again without any success. He took another deep sigh. The burned in his eyes maybe already gone, and he might be didn’t feel like crying all that much, but there were enough of unshed dried up tears, cracked voice, and tiredness from the past years that already making up for his broken pieces tonight. Maybe somewhere in the corner of his brain, he already seen it coming. It’s just hard to admit about unspoken truth because he didn’t want his heart to be broken in pieces over and over again.

 

 

 

 

“P’Tong, it seems like lately the dystopian theme is really trending, should we just change our main theme to that instead? I don’t feel like developing a love story this time around...” Gulf rambled through his plastic cup of ice tea.

The older scriptwriter that was busy typing on his laptop, while also writing a jumbled of things on his notes suddenly looked up at him and frowned slightly, “Nong... what are you saying this time around....?”

“I said... we should just stopped to develop this non-sense and hard-to-work-with romcoms,” He slurped his ice tea lightly as it was nothing.

Tong tear off a few papers from his notebook, crumbled it into ball with his hand and quickly throw it to the younger one’s head, “It is you who was freaking hard to work with!!!”

The younger one dared to feel as if the papers was hurting him, which only makes the older scriptwriter rolled his eyes even further. “P’Mew!!!! P’Tong is hurting me!!!”

“Your P'Mew was still receiving calls with one of his clients outside, he couldn’t hear you, you know!” P’Tong leaned back and sighed at the younger one’s odd act and shakes his head tiredly, “N’Gulf... you know that I’m usually, like, super chill and calm, right? Now that you see me this irked by your act... Don’t you think that it is you that’s been testing out my patience?” Which only replied by exaggerate pout by the younger one.

“What’s wrong, Ai’Gulf?” The older one closed his laptop this time and sighed heavily at the younger one. “I may not that close to you as a friend, but you know that you could tell me everything, right?”

“I just didn’t feel like continuing this stupid romcoms, Phi...” Gulf avoid P’Tong’s stare and instead playing with his plastic straws.

“Not this again—,” The older one sighed again. “What’s wrong? Are you messing up with your love life or something?” Tong tried again. When he see the younger one keep avoiding his stare, he just snorted darkly, “Gulf... you shouldn’t make your personal problem ruined your professionalism at work...”

“I’m just tired, Phi,” This time, the younger one that sighed tiredly.

“So what if your love life a mess? You could make a better ending by yourself with this series,” The older one shrugged his shoulder. “More often than not, a masterpiece work comes from a brokenhearted mind and soul. Just check it on the internet. Most of legendary songs and movies were like that, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind was one of them. It’s not impossible to create something from a broken mind and soul, it won’t be easy, but it would be certainly worth it, Nong.” P’Tong pushed his glasses slightly, “Maybe it won’t receive any awards... or any public’s recognition... but at least it would help you forget about the bitter reality.”

“What if it’s impossible to forget about the bitter reality, Phi?”

“Well, as a human, we might be could never avoid being hurted, but the wound wouldn’t be staying forever, isn’t it? It will heal with time.” He smiled at the younger one with reassurance. “You’re not the only one that went through a broken heart, Nong. It is probably not your first time, either. I’ve been there, too. Most of people in the planet also been there, too. While they could coping up with their life, and instead levelled up their life and find someone better, why couldn’t you?”

“What if no matter how pretty, kind, and perfect a person that would come long after, no one could never replace that someone, Phi?”

“You’re definitely deeply in love with this someone, aren’t you?” P’Tong was smiling sadly at him. “Well... since I knew that somewhere in your absurd idea of a story for our series was partly inspired by your personal life...” When Gulf wanted to protest, the older one just put him into silence with his glare. “I’m not stupid, Nong, I could read through someone’s emotions and sometimes, with their minds as well — which is why I always enjoy writing myself... Well, anyway, why don’t we just put your broken heart story into the script? Won’t it be more interesting? Since no one would love to watch a series without any conflicts.” The older one that was wearing a black cotton shirt over ripped jeans today said it like a matter of factly.

“Phi— are you crazy...,” Gulf staring at Tong as if he was out of his mind.

“Well...,” P’Tong shrugged his shoulder lightly. “It could ended up as a silent confession from you for that ‘someone’.”

Suddenly, the door creaks and the tall producer peaking through it, “Guys, I will be away first to have meetings with our future sponsors, okay?” After Gulf and Tong nodded understandingly, he moves his gaze to Gulf’s, “I will picked you up later after working hours, okay? Don’t forget with our appointment together!” The older one winked and closed the wooden door, which stared by the youngest one in the room with an exasperated, longing look.

Of course this wouldn’t go out of the Tong Thanayut’s sharp eyes. The older scriptwriter just shakes his head slightly at the younger one and asked him one more time. “So? What do you think of my idea? Do you want to make this script as a platform to mend your broken heart or not?”

The younger one just sighed heavily at him and nodded his head tiredly, "Fine, whatever you say, Phi."

Chapter Text

“P’Mew!! P’Mew!! P’Mew!!!” 5 years old Gulf was running excitedly across the huge garden where his aunty’s private and intimate wedding being held.

“Gulf, please be careful and watch your steps,” 11 years old Mew laughed amusedly at his cute little neighbour that just went into the kindergarten.

“Do you already see Aunty Alex??? She’s berrrry berryyyy beautiful, P’Mew!!!”

“Yeah, yeah, I know, right, nong? She’s super pretty.”

“Her dress is pretty, too, P’Mew!!! Her flower crown as well!! And, and, and!!! The ring!!!! It’s so shinyyyyyyyy!!!!” Gulf’s wide eyes glittered with excitement.

“I know, I know, sooo shiny!” Mew smiled at the younger one.

“I really want to have the same ring for my wedding when I’m already a grown up, Phi!!!” Small Gulf then tugged into the taller one’s tuxedo so that Mew would leaned down and he could wishper at him, “I heard Khun Mae said that the ring is berrrry expensive, Phi!!”

“Really???” Mew faked an expression at the younger one, make him giggled with excitement, and then the toddler suddenly pouted, which confused the older one. “What’s wrong, Gulf?”

“Wh—what if I couldn’t afford it, Phi... I really want the same ring as Aunty Alex, but Khun Mae said it’s expensive....”

“I’m sure you definitely can, Nong," He ruffled his fluffy hair with fondness and smiling softly. “That’s why you have to study hard at school so that you could make a loooot of money in the future.”

“But, P’Mew, the ring cost a looooot looooooooot looooooot of money,” He makes a gesture of a huge circle, to give an image of an awful lot of money to his Phi. “What if I still couldn’t afford it, Phi??? Will you help me to buy it????”

Elementary school Mew laughed again at his Nong’s antics. “You should’ve ask your future fiancée to buy the ring, Gulf, not me....” He ruffled the younger one’s hair once again.

“Then so be it!!! Why don’t you just marry me, Phi???” Toddler Gulf insisted, eyebrows furrowed in all seriousness, which only make the older one laughed even harder. “P’Mew!!!! I’m serious!!!”

“Fine, fine, fine...” He squatted down and smiling at Gulf’s adorable angry face. “Whatever you say, Nong.”

 

 

 

 

 

It’s been 18 years since that happened yet the present Gulf still remember it as clearly as yesterday. Sometimes he hated how he always remember all the small details regarding P’Mew. He also hated the way the older one probably won’t have a single trace of memories about that. Sighed. He hated himself more, though, when sometimes his younger self was much braver at confessing his own feelings at his first love, though Gulf himself probably didn’t realize when he started to develop feelings for his handsome Phi. Probably not as young as 5 years old, but somewhere in between, he unknowingly started to be more and more dependent and clingy towards the older one.

Well, look at him now. What a turned of events. He could see all of the dreams of 5 years old Gulf shattered within one night. As he went in and out several jewellery shops to accompany P’Mew, Gulf was trying hard not to show his real emotions to the older one. As P’Mew pondered between three engagement rings in Cartier and the signature one carat diamond ring from Tiffany & Co., he suddenly asking for Gulf’s opinion.

“Well... I personally think the Tiffany one is much more timeless, Phi. I mean — look at Aunty Alex’s. It’s still as good as new even after 18 years, right?” Wow he’s such a masochist and just love to see his own heart shattered over and over again, didn’t he?

The older one hummed, “But the Cartier d’Amour have a great philosophy as well, as it’s symbolize eternal love.”

Oh my God, can he just go home right now?

“And also, do you remember about the Cartier Love engagement ring earlier? It’s the symbol of love that transgresses convention.... Well, somehow I always prefer Cartier’s deep philosophy...”

Gulf just shrugged his shoulders lightly, “Well, your call, Phi,” Khun Mae, take me back home, please... “I’m sure everything would look good on P’Mai.”

“But, I want to choose the absolute best for her, Gulf.”

Back in the day, Gulf never thought that there would be a point where he would internally crying whilst he plastered the best sympathetic smile that he could pulled off just like those actress at soap opera show.

 

 

 

 

 

“So, what kind of development of your heartbreak story that probably could help with our script, Gulf?”

Hearing the annoying question by P’Tong the first thing in the morning just ruined Gulf’s mood even further. He kicked the older’s feet under the table after he placed his duffle bag at the back of his seat.

“What kind of development that you were hoping for, anyway,” Gulf said as he rolled his eyes.

“Well... maybe regarding the fact that you helped your unrequited love to choose for his girlfriend’s engagement ring....”

“How—,” Gulf glared at the older scriptwriter.

“You never really make your own feelings as a secret, anyway,” P’Tong just shrugged lightly. When he could see the younger one started to glared at him even more, he continue, “Well, that, and I just testing out the water. Yesterday, I saw you with P’Mew at shopping mall at Siam, walking through several jewellery shops... So, I just trying to connected the dots.”

Gulf just sighed dejectedly and ruffled his own hair frustratingly, “Not that you’re wrong, though...” He sighed.

The older one just raised his left eyebrows knowingly.

“Am I being that apparent, Phi?”

“Not really, honestly, I never realized that back in the filming set with P’Mame, but ever since we just working mainly with the three of us in this office... It’s not hard to guess it, though.” He raised his eyebrows again while he put his chin on top of his palm. “So? Any ideas for the script?”

Gulf just sighed dejectedly and trying to think of some ideas, “Maybe we should casted a few child actors for their childhood flashback, Phi.”

“Duh, it’s obviously needed to be done, Gulf. You keep saying that they are childhood friends, anyway,” P’Tong rolled his eyes.

“I think...” The older one continue after a short beat. “Wouldn’t it be interesting that when they met each other again, the bitter truth was, the guy already in relationship? And the girl just went through from a rather harsh heartbreak. At first, though they definitely realized that there are sparks between them, the girl mostly just wanted to talk to him because she’s already went through, like, a lot.”

Gulf just hummed with interest, but frowned a bit, “Won’t it be considered cheating, Phi?”

“Of course not, we would make that the guy and his girlfriend would break up first before we create further development between them. We could also talking about the girl’s jerk ex first... something like that... would it be too problematic if we wrote her to be a victim of domestic violence..?” Tong tapped his pen on his chin repeatedly.

“That’s too much, Phi. We still had to wrote stories from the nostalgic song.”

“Oh, right, well, why don’t we research for potential nostalgic song that we could include in the story first?” He typed into his laptop again. “Oh, anyway, Gulf.”

“Yeah, Phi?” Gulf asked lightly as he reach for his own laptop from his bag.

“Do you know P’Ter, right?”

“Huh, yeah, what about him, Phi?”

“He asked me if I want to assist him as his assistant scriptwriter for a short movie for a campaign for a notable insurance company. He also asked me if I had any recommendation for someone to help for the assistant director job. Do you want to try it?”

Gulf hummed and think for a sec, “Who will be acting on the project, Phi?”

“They said they still had to make a several meeting before they make an agreement with the actors and actresses...” He then turned his gaze to Gulf, “I just want to let you know that this is a big opportunity that you won’t get every single day, Gulf. You know that it will be good for your portfolio.”

Gulf still trying to think further before P’Tong rolled his eyes, “What are you thinking for? You know it’s a big deal. Also, it’s a high budget project. Don’t look at me as if you don’t want to have extra cash. I know that you’ve been wanting to rent condo and live outside your family’s house.”

The younger one only sighed, “Fine...”

“That’s the spirit!” P’Tong chuckled and continue typing on his laptop. “We will be having meeting at the company’s building next week, okay? Please prepare yourself.”

 

 

 

 

 

Every Sunday at the fourth week of the month, it was usual that there will be a small gatherings between neighbours at their housing complex. This month, the event taken place in the Jongcheveevat family’s house. Everyone, mostly the aunties and the uncles, was talking with each other, catching up about their life. While Gulf just silently staring at the foods without even trying to reach out for anything because he didn’t have any appetite at all.

The only daughter of the family plopped down beside him after she helped her mother prepare for the food and nudged him, “Go eat something. Do you not trust my cooking or something?”

Gulf just rolled his eyes at her, “I’m not hungry, P’Jom.”

“Mama cooked your favorite khra paow because she knew you will be coming. At least eat that food, Nong.”

“Ugh, Aunty— you know that you don’t have to do this.”

“But, you know my mom, right? Before she scolded you for not eat anything, or worse, you disappointed her — you better eat something, Nong.” Jom narrowed her eyes at him.

“Fine—,” Gulf sighed as he stand up and took an empty plate so he could took his food.

“Why are you being weird today, anyway?” Jom keep being nosy and following him around. “Are you heartbroken or something? P’Mew didn’t told me that you already have a new girlfriend?”

“Nah,” Gulf shrugged easily, put a bit of rice, khra paow, and some stir fry vegetables into his plate. “It’s been a hassle week at work.”

“Really?” She raised her eyebrows skeptically. “So, why don’t you just accept that second season offer? P’Mew said that you rejected it.”

Gulf took his earlier seat, “I have my own reasons.”

“But, it’s certainly easier rather than to develop your own project from scratch.”

“P’Jom... I’m freaking tired because literally every single person told me that thing. Just let me live, please.”

“Well,” P’Jom pouted.

“Why don’t you talk with the guest like usual, anyway, there are literally a lot of people other than me, Phi.”

“P’Mew is better at socializing than me. I will wait for him first before I talk with the guest,” She shrugged.

“Where is him, anyway? I haven’t seen him since early morning.”

“He was at P’Mai’s place since last night. He told us that he will come to the gathering, though, even if it was a bit late. The aunty neighbors would probably forgive him if he bring P’Mai with him.”

Gulf just hummed uninterestedly. If it was not for Aunty Jongcheveevat, he wouldn’t even bother to finish his food even though it’s his childhood favorite.

“Anyway, do you know that P’Mew probably wanted to propose to P’Mai?” She asked out of nowhere. “I haven’t told my mom yet, but I think my brother bought something from a famous jewellery brand for wedding rings... My brother usually someone that would buy accessories in designer brand shops... so it must be something if he specifically bought something from that jewellery brand.”

The younger one just nodded silently as he ate his food that was taste a bit bland even though he knew that it’s supposed to be delicious since Aunty Jongcheveevat was such a good cook and her khra praow was always been his favorite.

“Did he not telling you anything, Nong?” Jom nudged his sides again. “You’re his best friend, anyway.”

“Even if he did told me something, it’s not my place to tell you anything, Phi.”

The pretty girl tsked him and flapped her hands, “Fine if you guys being secretive with me. However, knowing that my brother is such a romantic person, I’m sure that the proposal would be totally grandeur — full with flowers, balloons, and all.” Her eyes shining as she was imagining it.

“Are you imagining their proposal or your own dream proposal, Phi?” Gulf raised his left eyebrow teasingly, which only make the older one nudged him at his ribcage.

“Of course my brother! Though I also wouldn’t hate it if my boyfriend do the same thing as well.” She then turned to Gulf. “How about you, Gulf? How you will propose to your future wife?”

“Uhhhhhh,” Gulf then avoided the question by taking the last bite of the crispy pork and stand up to put the dirty plate and search for a glass of water.

It’s not that he wanted to entirely avoid the proposal question. It’s just that — he never imagine that there would be a point where he would settle down with someone. Well, yeah, he did have his dream wedding — his dream wedding ring even, that he already dreamed of ever since he’s five years old. However, the moment he realized that there are no way that he would ended up being with the one that he ever truly love — he just gave up with those ideas.

In his younger years, he would be questioning why would anyone didn’t want to get married even if it’s one of the most beautiful thing in the world? Later in life, he realized that, it was not that they didn’t want the commitment. Maybe those people just giving up to have a picturesque reality, because at the end of the day, the bitter truth is, how many people ended up marrying the one that they truly love? Will it be worth it to spend forever with someone that you’re not deeply in love with?

Therefore, even if Gulf date around, he never actually seeing that he will have a future with his girlfriends. Maybe there will be a point where he probably want to live together with his future girlfriend, raised a pet together with her... However he never wanted to signed up with something with a heavy commitment for both sides like marriage and having children. Call him a coward that don’t want to have a well-planned future. However, for him, it’s better to save both sides from disappointment and hurt, rather than the other side expecting something that Gulf could never be able to fulfilled.

As he sighed and he took another glass of cold water, suddenly there are a lot of surprise noise outside. Huh, here comes the future bride and groom — Gulf think dejectedly, another day where he took a pity at himself. Maybe he should try that dating app that Mild recommending to him later so he wouldn’t feel that lonely.

Wearing a fresh white shirt over a navy denim, he wai all the guest with his tussled hair bouncing as he nodded to them with his charming smile, answering questions of what-nots from the neighbours easily. P’Jom was right — he's such a people’s charmer. Who wouldn’t love him? An exemplary son in the neighborhood — never fail to get straight As ever since in elementary school, good manners, doing great at his job, finished his PhD studies already, have a great fashion sense without being too much, and apparently God also took his time to sculpted his face — every mother in the neighborhood literally wanted to have a son like him.

 

“P’Mew, where’s P’Mai?” Jom asked directly to her brother when he walked to their direction.

“She had to attend merits with her family in their hometown... did you guys already eaten yet? Where is Chopper, Jom?” He plopped to the sofa beside them.

“Too bad, I wanted to see her,” Jom pouted and continue, “Chopper’s inside... yeah, we’re already ate, Phi... Well, I think I have to talk with the guest then, while you’re eating. There’s also salmon right there, Phi, from P’Tul’s place.” She nodded to the outer side of the buffet table.

Mew just nodded before he turned to Gulf. “What? Your sister already forced me to eat Aunty’s khra paow, Phi, I’m full already.”

“You could have some dessert, come on, I don’t want to eat alone...” Mew nudged him, “Come on, Gulf? Nonggg?” He nagged the younger one.

Gulf shakes his head tiredly, “Nah, Phi, I will just accompany you to talk with you while you eaten, if that’s what you want. Just take that food and eat here.” He leaned down further into the cushy sofa while the older one picked up his food.

Sometimes he get jealous with his sister that could have excuse to go with her boyfriend’s family instead of attending this kind of event. Gulf never really like to talk with too many people even though they already know him since he was a baby, but he definitely prefer to sleep the day away because it’s freaking Sunday. He just thanked the God because their family already hosting the monthly gathering a couple of months ago, so he didn’t have to waking up early in the morning to help his mom prepare for the event. Not everybody have the privilege of having a lot of maids like Jongcheveevat family, so if possible, he would avoid these kind of events hosted at his family’s house at all cost.

“Were you sleep deprived or something? You’re looking extremely sleepy,” Mew asked him in worry after he came back with his food.

“Well... I suddenly have a lot of inspiration for the storyline last night... so I scrambling through the draft that I’ve been writing with P’Tong last night until... 3am, I guess?” He ruffled through his own hair, hoping that it would get the sleepiness away. “Hopefully we could finish the first draft by Tuesday,” He sighed tiredly.

“Ai’Nong...,” Mew patted his head in concern. “Just sneaked out to my room later to sleep, I won’t tell my mom nor your mom.”

“Yeah, later, maybe,” He shrugged. “I thought you want me to accompany you to eat?”

“Let me eat for a while, okay?” He give the younger one his sheepish gummy smile which just replied by his scrunched face.

“Anyway, I think I will book that restaurant that I’ve told you yesterday for Mai, Nong,” Mew said after he finish chewing first piece of salmon.

Gulf just nodded sleepily, though he more like prefer not to hear it rather than he was actually feeling sleepy.

“Do you think that my earlier plan would be too much, Gulf? I really want to make it special but I’m afraid if Mai wouldn’t like it if it's too much.”

“Well, both of you were pretty private with your personal life, I guess,” Gulf raised his eyebrows and he leaned back to the sofa, trying hard not to close his eyes in tiredness. “You guys never really confirmed your relationship publicly, and by making your proposal to be big, you practically making it public.”

“That makes sense...” The older one pondered.

“Anyway, haven’t you tell P’Jom about this, Phi? She was pushing me to tell about it earlier. She found out that you bought ring, you know.”

“Nah, she will fussing around it too much, and probably will tell my mom as well,” Mew shrugged.

“I thought you will be asking for their blessings before you ask her?” Gulf frowned, “Also, wouldn’t it better to ask if you’re asking for Aunty and P’Jom’s suggestion rather than me? They are women, Phi, they definitely have better judgement at these aspects than mine,”

The older one took the few last bite of his salmon and chewing it slowly as he took Gulf's words silently, “I will think about it later, as for now I will rely on you, Yai Nong,” He smiled sheepishly to the younger one. Gulf just sighed as he closed his eyes and faking that he went into a short slumber.

 

 

 

 

 

It was already rainy season in the city, and the slightly tanned guy glad that he and P’Tong already in the building because by the time they stepped in the insurance company building where the meeting would be held, the rain suddenly pouring hard outside.

“Come on, Gulf, P’Ter told me to meet him upstairs at 16th floor,” P’Tong told him as he took the guest card pass from the receptionist.

Gulf followed P’Tong closely and he just realized that his instinct was true. He saw a big, big advertisement poster at the wall inside the building when they walking down to the elevator, and P’Mai’s beautiful smiling face plastered allover the wall. He forgot that she’s the brand ambassador of this insurance company as well. Therefore, most likely he would be working together with her in this project as well. Well, of course, it’s just Gulf with his luck. At first he only think that there’s a possibility that he will be working together with her because the one that offering P’Tong the job was her childhood friend — Ter Chantavit, a senior scriptwriter in the nation’s film industry. He actually forget that this company also choose her as their brand ambassador not too long ago.

“Tong, here, here, take a seat beside me,” He greeted the younger scriptwriter while the two who just arrived wai the senior scriptwriter and a few of filming crew that was already arrived. “N’Gulf, how are you? It’s been a long time.”

Sawatdee, Phi,” He smiled at him politely.

“Actually, Mai will also joining this project. She texted me that she already arrived at the parking lot earlier, maybe she will be arrived in a little bit,” The handsome scriptwriter said kindly. Gulf just nodded politely as he took his seat.

The meeting started right after P’Mai and her manager arrived. Actually, Gulf was really glad that he decided to take this project because it turned out that the main director that he will be assisting was one of the director that he highly respected. The director explaining the storyboard to the stake holder and the filming crew with a highly detailed scene per scene explanation, because they wanted to make a heartwarming story that could moved everyone’s heart within 10-15 minutes max. They will also make a shorter version for the television ads, whilst they mostly will release the full version online and in the advertisement slot at the cinema while people waiting for their movie to be aired. It was definitely a high budget project since the company casted both Mai Davika and Sunny Suwanmethanont, one of the hottest on-screen couple in the market after probably Nadech and Yaya. The plus side of getting them in the same project was the fact that they already have a settled fanbase, everybody practically know about them, they have a good public image, they could sold practically everything, and also, it was also good for the filming because it won’t be such a hard work for them to build their chemistry since they already working with each other in several projects already.

The filming would start in one month since the script needed to be revised again. After the meeting ended, Gulf was thoroughly glad because by the time P’Mai asked him to have lunch together with P’Ter and P’Tong, the director asked for him because they needed to talk with each other first since they haven’t worked together before.

Nevertheless, he never thought that the meeting would be that long, since suddenly it was already dark and he already told P’Tong to left earlier and he would be taking bus or BTS by himself. He took the last bus to his house from the BTS station when suddenly his phone buzzed. He just sighed tiredly when he saw his phone screen.

“Yeah, P’Mew?”

“Where are you, Gulf?”

“Just went back from meeting from the side project that I took with P’Tong, Phi...” He purposely left out the information regarding P’Mai and P’Ter involvement in this project because he just didn’t want to talk about it. P’Tong would probably told him later, anyway. Or maybe P’Mai herself.

“Ah, yes, Mai texted me earlier, she was surprised that you involved in her project as well.”

 

Right?

 

“Yup,” Gulf leaned his head on the bus window, mindlessly watching the lights outside. “That one.”

“Ah, anyway, Gulf. I was thinking about your suggestion the other day...”

“Yeah, Phi?”

“You were probably, right,” Gulf could hear P’Mew sighed from the other side of the phone. “Maybe it will be better if I make it private. It won’t make it any less romantic, I guess.”

Gulf just hummed through the phone. At this point his heart already went numb. It was no longer bleeding, though it didn’t make it any less hurt.

“And maybe... I will told my family tomorrow... asking for their blessings... I should probably also making my merits beforehand...”

“Sure, Phi.”

“Why don’t you accompany me to make my merits, Nong?”

Gulf licked his lips and give it a short thought. He could’ve reject him this time...

“Yeah, Nong? Please...? It won’t be long... It will be at the usual temple at Ayuthayya. Please, Nong? Please....?” He could hear the older one put his pleading voice again, knowing fully that his Yai Nong wouldn’t reject him with that tone.

“Fine...,” Gulf sighed before he realized that the bus arrived at his bus stop already.

“Wait a second, Phi, I have to take off from the bus first,”

He tapped his bus card and went down to the familiar road that leads to his housing complex.

“The last stop already? Do you want me to pick you up?”

“Do you think I’m a little girl or what?” Gulf rolled his eyes which replied by amused chuckle on the other side.

 

When Gulf took a narrow path which was one of the shortcut to his place, he was surprised that suddenly he was grabbed from behind and tackled down within a few second.

 

 

Bang!

 

 

“Long time no see, P’Gulf...”

 

 

Fuck.

 

 

Gulf was horrified, desperately trying hard to released himself from the other person that he was trying hard to avoid from the last few months already. However, suddenly the other guy was quicker and knocked him out with stun gun.

 

 

 

 

 

"Nong?"

 

"Nong?"

 

"Are you still there?"

Chapter Text

“Nong?”

“Nong?”

“Are you still there?”

“Gulf?!?!?!”

 

Mew bite his lips in worry because suddenly the phone went off. Sensing that something must probably went wrong, he hurriedly put on his shoes and running out to the bus stop. It was usually a 15 minutes walk, however he didn’t freaking realized at how fast he would arrived at the said place, without even found the younger one. Knowing Gulf, he was searching for him at the small alley where the younger one usually walk to shorten the path. Right. Of course he knew who would’ve behind this.

The culprit freaking smirked while he saw Mew’s face, which the older one only replied coldly, “You want to be dead physically or blacklisted from any kind of job that you want to apply? You know I have the power for both of it.”

However, at this point the older one practically didn’t care at how the younger one would probably be mad at him later. It has been a while since he become the hot headed Mew Suppasit that anyone rarely encountered before.

 

 

 

 

 

Gulf tiredly open his eyes and it's stings. His head was badly hurt, and the sudden light didn’t help either. He grumbled as he trying to sit down, and he was surprised because he was not at his own room.

“I knew that you don’t want to make your mother worry, hence the reason why I bring you here. Don’t worry, Jom and my mom didn’t saw you either earlier,” Mew nonchalantly said as he carefully treat Gulf’s wounds with dampened towel to clean it off, and put some alcohol and band aid carefully.

Gulf sighed as he leaned at the older one’s side table, “It’s him again, right?”

“Yup,” Mew raised his eyebrows at him, “and I don’t care at how you probably would be mad at me because I give him enough wounds so we wouldn’t be able to walk for a week — maybe I should just send him to the police, but I couldn’t left you out.”

“P’Mew... you know I don’t want to make a big deal out of it...”

“Enough is enough, Ai’Gulf,” The older one raised his voice at him, which put Gulf into silence. “He’s not harmless. I don’t know what he would do to you if I wasn’t coming for you earlier.”

“But, Phi—,” Gulf tried again, which get cut by the older one immediately.

“I don’t want to hear you making another excuse for his abnormal obsession, I will definitely report him to the police and I would totally told everyone in the industry to freaking blacklist him.”

“Phi— Please, stop—,”

“You’re the one that needed to stop, Ai’Gulf!!”

Gulf was this close to finally break down — all of the problems that he’s been holding on deepest in his heart — he put his index finger and his thumb up in the bridge of his nose, right between his eyes, trying hard to prevent any tear to drop because he didn’t want to show any sign of weakness even at this state. He took a deep breath, in and out, in and out, before he speak, “I want to go home, Phi.”

“Ai’Gulf, don’t be stupid, you’re still like this.”

“My wounds are very minor, Phi, I could totally manage it by myself,” He stood up from the bed, reach out for his own bag, and walking out from the room without care of the older one’s nagging.

He honestly freaking tired of everything. Why everyone pushed him from any kind of direction like he didn’t have enough problems already? He knew that sometimes people couldn’t see through him very well because of his introverted and private self, however it tiring him that the person that supposed to know him the most also being the cause of his major headache, and to have him screaming at him earlier — sigh. He hated P’Mew’s raised voice the most, and the older one know about it better than himself. As he washed his face, he thinks that, he will once again trying forget all of his problems by sleep it away. Hoping that by the next day all of these were just a part of a dream.

 

 

 

 

“You know, Gulf, it’s our final revision of the draft already — don’t you think that this should be stopped already?” P'Tong raised his left eyebrow at him.

“What do you mean, Phi?”

“Don’t act dumb, you stupid kid, with the small rented office that only consist the three of us, don’t you think that you should stop having silent treatment with your Phi?” He narrowed his eyes on Gulf and shakes his head, “I had enough of the tension, I want to work peacefully, as if our daily work weren’t hard already...”

“I’m not doing anything,”

“You stubborn kid—,” P’Tong rolled his eyes.

“I don’t care of what you guys have to do to make up, but by next week we would probably need to open the application for the audition already, so pleaseboth of you, just freaking grow up already and pick up the the whole mess.”

Gulf still stubbornly typing through his laptop’s keyboard although he knew that P’Tong was right. Sooner or later he and P’Mew should stop all of these non-sense. However both of them were really stubborn. They never fight much, however once they do, it's always been a long one since both of them didn’t like to lose, let alone saying sorry to each other.

 

 

 

“Both of you — really why are you guys being so stupid with each other?!” Of course, by the time he arrived at his home, there he was — Mild Suttinut, already folding his hand, ready to nagged him like the mom friend that he was.

“What are you doing here, Phi?”

“Oh, of course, because I am freaking tired because of your P’Mew nagged me about your stupidity.”

“If you’re here just to nagged me, please, I had enough, Phi, just get out already.”

You dare to freaking said 'get out already' — you freaking dumb kid,” Mild knock his head with his right knuckle. “You know P’Mew did that for your own good, Gulf.”

Gulf just nonchalantly put his bag on top of his table and he sit down on his own bed, playing with his phone without care, that of course being snatched by the older one.

“Yah!!!! Listen to me!!!”

That got Gulf looking at him albeit hesitantly.

“You know what? With or without your consent, P’Mew already reported that staff that stalked you ever since the first season. He has been following you without any care, Gulf, and he attacked you several times already, but you still being stupidly kind and forgive him and said that you don’t want him to be blacklisted from the industry?! Even if he never really put you into a major accident, you’d never really know until the time is come, Ai’Gulfor worse, even if he stopped being obsessed with you, we’d never know should he turned to other people and put them into danger as well. That kind of person should be jailed, Gulf. There’s a line between a kind person and a naive person, you stupid kid.” The older one knocked his head for the second time, trying hard to put some sense to the younger one’s head.

Gulf was just silently staring up at the older one with much grimace, though Mild know that it didn’t mean any harm. The older one back to took a seat on the only chair in the room and sighed.

“Just make up with P’Mew already, you don’t have to admit that you’re wrong at him, justtalk to him already, I had enough of hearing him yelling at me about you.”

Gulf just hesitantly bite his lips when he heard it.

“Also, why didn’t you tell me that P’Mew will propose to P’Mai?”

Ah, that again.

“I don’t know,” He shrugged and avoided Mild’s eyes. “I thought P’Mew wanted to make it a secret.”

Mild darted his eyes to Gulf and then sighed. “I might never talk about this, but Gulf... you know that I’m not that stupid, right? I might not being friends with you as long as P’Mew... but.... you definitely could tell me everything, you know?”

The younger one locked his eyes with the older one. He realized that P’Mild probably knew about his feelings for P’Mew for years already, but he didn’t want to talk about it right now. As he breaks the eye contact first, he mumbled, “I don’t want to talk about it right now, Phi, thinking about it already make my head hurt already. Just.... I want to take a nap, I’m sorry I couldn’t send you away.”

The older one just sighed as he raised from his seat and give Gulf a pat on his head. “I’m going back home, okay? Just a heads up — he told me that he will propose to her tomorrow night... Well, call me if you need me, okay, Nong?” He gave Gulf a one last pat on his shoulder before he finally leave his room.

As he leaned his back on his bed and staring up at the lamp, he sighed. Tomorrow night, huh?

As much as he glad that he didn’t have to put more headache upon his head for not fulfilling his promise to accompanying P’Mew to make his merits, he was still worrying for him. Would everything come smoothly by tomorrow night?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was 11pm when suddenly Gulf phone buzzed. He was just having shower because he went to play soccer with his high school friends earlier, and he frowned when the phone stopped buzzing.

 

Khun Phi 🐼  (15 Missed Calls)

 

Huh.

 

When the phone buzzed again, he unknowingly pick it up out of reflex.

 

“Where are you, Gulf?”

 

“......”

 

“I— Mai told me that she’s not ready yet, Gulf...”

 

“.....”

 

“.....”

 

“Where are you, Phi?” Gulf said after he released a deep sigh. 

 

 

 

 

Gulf’s heart shattered when he saw his Khun Phi’s state at the pub where they usually vented up all of their problems in the side-skirt of the city. He would never imagine that his heart would be as broken when he saw him get rejected. Mew was a heavy drinker, therefore he couldn’t imagine of how much he drank already given he looked like he was at his worst drunkenness state. He was more than sure that the bartender probably already cleaned up some of his glasses of scotch and vodka — what the older one usually choose when he was stressed out — and bottles of beers already.

“Phi—“

“Gulf, finally,” He slurred as he saw through Gulf’s shadow. When the younger one took a seat beside him, he leaned down his head on his shoulder weakly. “Am I that worthless as a human being, Gulf?”

“.....”

“I am, aren’t I?” He then hooked his chin on Gulf’s shoulder and stare up to his face with puppy eyes, “You even get mad at me the other day.”

“......”

“Let’s just go home, Phi.”

“No, I don’t want to answer all of my family’s question regarding her,” He moved to bang his head at the table in front of the table repeatedly, which only made the younger one grimaced at how badly hurt it must be.

“Phi... stop, Phi,” Gulf stand up and try to pull the older one’s arm so that he would stand up as well.

“Sit down, Nong, join me to have a few drinks first.” He pulled Gulf forward, making the younger one reluctantly took a seat beside the older one. He already promised himself earlier that he wouldn’t took a single drink tonight because he needed to drive P’Mew’s car back later, because finding a taxi in the middle of the night would be a total hassle.

“Listen,” He slurred again. “Am I being overly confident? Am I reading all the signs wrong?”

When Gulf just kept his silence, the older one continue his blabbering, “We’ve been together for years, Gulf, more than 5 years. I thought — it’s already the time to took further steps? I’m not getting any younger, and so does she. And it’s seems like we’ve found each other already?”

Gulf didn’t know what to answer, he mindlessly took the older one’s right hand and draw some random path on his palm while also playing with his fingers. But suddenly Mew close his palm and said, “Look at me, Nong, and answer me. Am I really worthless as a human being? Am I not worth enough to be in someone’s future? Why everyone seems like always giving me an empty hope while deep inside they never really took a liking on me?”

Mew’s desperate eyes was really close to Gulf’s own eyes, he didn’t realized that he mirrored the same gaze as the older one — the desperation — the sadness — the inner conflict and scream of ‘why everything needed to be happening?’

“I—,” Gulf gulped down, didn’t really know of what to say to make the older one better, because he’s not at the right mental state either.

“Why I didn’t ended up with you instead, Nong? Everything would be much easier, right? There’s no need to feel this hurt, everything would be much more simpler, right?”

That, left a bad taste on Gulf’s mouth. The younger one didn’t realized that he unknowingly dropped a single tear while he ironically snorted darkly at the older one’s implication, until P’Mew swipe his cheeks. “Why you also shed a tear for me, Yai Nong? Me being at this hopeless state is enough. You don’t need to join me as well.”

Upon hearing that, all of the defense that he put through on himself was breaking down. He cried, and cried helplessly, didn’t realized that the older one put him into a warm, comforting hug, trying to make the younger one stopped crying.

“You crybaby, why you’re the one that cry when I was the one that get rejected?” Gulf just cried even harder.

He didn’t know what's wrong with himself, either. Maybe he just so damn tired to put all of this guard upon himself. Tired to act all strong outside when in fact he was already broken through and through. When the entire world seems like pushed him harder with all kind of conditions and he didn’t really have someone to rely on. Especially when that someone that he usually rely on was one of the major cause of his problems lately. He just took a deep breath of the older one’s cologne that he loves the most, albeit it already mixed with his sweat and alcohol. He didn’t know when he would have the privilege to be in this position any time sooner. As his crying slowing down, he just think to himself just to silently basking upon the older one’s warmth. Especially when he knew that his Phi would never remember a single trace of memories when he was drunk.

 

 

 

 

The tall, slightly tanned guy honestly didn’t know what to expect when the next Monday arrived. He will have another meeting with the insurance company, and it was the last coordination meeting before they were having a table reading where the whole cast will read the script before they shoot the advertisement movie. As one of the assistant director, he just glad that the one that mainly will direct the actors and actresses would be the main director, where he would be working more with the videographer and the director of photographer himself. Therefore, if possible, he would try to avoid the main actress at all cost when the break time come.

Gulf was more of a social smoker than a heavy smoker himself, therefore when the production staff smoke at the rooftop, he followed them closely, leaving P’Tong with the rest of the staff and cast that prefer to have a coffee break instead. He never really join the other’s conversation regarding this and that when they smoke, only occasionally nodded when he deemed fitting. Even when at ten minutes before the break ends and everyone threw their cigarette butts away and freshen their breath before they went back into the inside of the building, Gulf decided to stay longer because he needed the fresh air himself, albeit it ironically polluted by the cigarette’s smoke. He never really realized that someone decided to join him until he heard a familiar yet a strange voice that might be he always tend to avoid.

“Hey.”

Gulf took a glance at his left side, and of course, there she was, the ever so pretty Mai Davika, the source of everybody’s roller coaster mood lately.

“I never knew that you smoke?” She questioned him without much judgement. Well, it was a common thing that someone''s smoke in this industry, so it surely never come to much of a surprise to anyone’s eyes.

Gulf just chuckled lightly, “Occasionally, when I need it. P’Mew never really like the fact that I smoke, though.” He shrugged as if it was nothing.

He could see the girl with bob hair nodded understandingly and hummed, “You surely put a lot of P’Mew’s consideration in your life, aren’t you?”

Gulf snorted and blew another smoke, “Well, if you put it that way...”

It was a long beat of silence before finally the older one talk again as they both leaned into the rooftop’s railing and seeing through the city’s skyline. “He already told you, right?”

Gulf just hummed lowly.

“Why it feels like I have to explain this to you, Gulf...” She chuckled tiredly in a small voice that making Gulf turned to her in concern.

“I— In my head, wedding, and marriage is a huge, huge commitment, Gulf,” She took a deep sighed before she continue. “As much as I knew that he’s a great guy, perfect guy, nonetheless I just never think that we are each other’s priority.”

Gulf turned to her in confusion, his eyebrows frowned deeply. “What do you mean by that, P’Mai?”

She smiled at him with sadness on her eyes, “I’m not stupid, Gulf, and neither do you.”

“As much as I want to turned my feelings solely to P’Mew and P’Mew only, I realized that I couldn’t that. You, out of all people, must’ve understand my feelings the most.”

“Uh—,” Gulf hesitantly searching into the actress’ eyes before she nodded.

“I knew. Of course I knew about your feelings far long before he proposed to me. Maybe early in our relationship, even?” She was staring faraway at the skyline.

“I’m sorry, Phi—“

“No, it’s not your fault,” She laughed sadly. “I understand you a lot, more because I also feel the same? Because I’ve been through more or less the same path with yours?”

Gulf suddenly realized in a flash of what P’Mai was actually meant, “Uh— so, P’Ter—“

“I am a hopeless one, aren’t I?” She chuckled sadly again. “Hoping for something that's very uncertain when I get offered a settled future right in front my plate.”

“Why are we humans are the odd one, Gulf? Wanting for something impossible? Something unreachable that we ourselves never sure if it’s possible for us to reach it or not?”

She released a long sigh as she continue to stare at the faraway.

“That was why I rejected him. I don’t think it’s fair for both of us should I accepted him....”

“So... what will you do, Phi?”

“I don’t know. Started from zero and being honest with myself more, I guess?” She shrugged. “Don’t you think it will feel liberating once we let out our real feelings, Gulf? The outcome might be not something that we’re hoping for, but at least... Maybe it will be another starting point for us?”

The younger one was staring down at her eyes that was sharing the same mutual desperation. Though maybe Gulf’s eyes were lacking the determination to reach for his hopeless dream.

“What if the feelings won’t stop even if we got rejected, Phi?”

“Well— maybe I will rest myself as monk for the rest of my life?” She chuckled, making the younger one followed her laughter.

“We’ll never know the result if we never asked, right? It wouldn’t be easy, that’s for sure. However, whatever the result that will turned out to be, I’m sure it won’t be as worse as we thought it would be. After all these time, we’re more like family with them right? The situation wouldn’t be the same like it used to be, but I’m sure it they would never stopped being friends with us.”

Gulf took a deep sigh and pushed down his cigarette butts and throw it into the trash can.

“You’re saying that as if it was as easy as flipping a hand, Phi.”

“I know right?” She ironically chuckled again. “However, I think it’s better for my peace of mind to just practically confess rather than hiding my own feelings for all my life.”

She then offered her hand for Gulf to shake it. “To uncertainties?”

Gulf chuckled and shook her hand, “To uncertainties.”

As they walking down back to the meeting room, Gulf watching the back of the most wanted actress in the nation silently. Someone as beautiful as P’Mai also had her own insecurities. While all of these times he thought that she was practically living the life that Gulf dreaming of, it turned out that the reality wasn’t always the ideal one, even for someone like her. When she turned into her usual cheerful self and greet everyone in the room as if nothing was happening, and patted P’Ter’s back lightly, he wondered why he never saw through her eyes before? It was pretty apparent that she was desperately wanted to show something to her childhood friend. Well, maybe the sayings were right. People only seeing through their own tinted glasses, they only see what they wanted to see, instead of seeing the whole picture and judge it rather calmly from a far. Will he be able to look as strong in front of his own first love? He himself never trust his own ability to do that.

 

 

 

 

The sounds of paper being flipped every minutes or so were being heard at the small rented office where the young and emerging producer, scriptwriter, and director were currently took a seat. They finally managed to finished their final draft of script for the pilot episode that they wanted to develop first to attract investors, and the young director was basically nervous because it has been a while since he wrote his own script, though it was co-written with P’Tong. However in his previous work, he basically relied on P’Mame’s novel and she provided the script by herself whilst this was basically his own scratch of ideas that still hold his own idealism which consist stories that might be won’t make any sense to the viewers nor stakeholders.

The young producer that currently wearing a laidback black oversized shirt and ripped grey jeans continue to read through the script that they wrote for more or less a month. He frowned at marked a few pages and lines with his highlighter and finally after a full fifteen minutes that feels like forever, he finally finished reading and tapped the bunch of clipped papers on top of the glass table.

“Why I’ve never heard that there’s a change of ideas and concept before?” P’Mew finally spoke while he tilting his head curiously.

“Well, we think that it’s better that way, Phi. Therefore, instead of having to tell a single expected love story for the whole series, we think that it will be much more refreshing if we tell a different story for every single episodes. It will be pretty short but sweet and witty, reflected the love song that we wanted to portray, and hopefully it won’t be as expected,” Gulf tried to explain, though he was showing his nervous habit to unknowingly shake his right leg nervously as he licked his dried lips.

“Also, I think it will be better with that concept given that the younger audience were pretty bored with the long and slow burn love story, Phi. This way, we could offer them a fresh ideas every single week, and they don't need to watch from the first episode because the story won’t be the same,” P’Tong supported Gulf’s argument, showing his full serious mode by putting on his prescribed glasses and wearing a preppy white shirt today.

“However, we also have a silver lining for every stories, therefore for everyone that watching from the start to the end, they would find it more interesting,” Gulf continue, still tapping his legs to the floor continuously.

It took a beat of silence when Mew silently took their words while tilting his head, before he nodded in agreement. “Interesting. So, for the pilot episode... I thought you will be putting a much oldies song, Gulf. Why Stamp Apiwat’s It Might Be Love?” He frowned curiously.

“Because, I think for the pilot episode, it will be better if we brought something more relatable to the younger audience as well as older audience, Phi. Something that would be more acceptable for any kind of generation, I guess?” Gulf bite his lips nervously before he continue. “And I deemed that Stamp’s It Might Be Love was a major hit 9 years ago, everyone know about it, and it’s very suitable for our very first episode. While being an ear catchy one, something that must already stuck on people's head, the song tell so many stories that’s very suitable with the main characters’ situation — a childhood friend that meeting each other after a long time, unknowingly that they still have feelings for each other, and desperately wanted to make it happen.”

The older one nodded while he looked like he considered some things on his head. Then, he nodded his head more surely, “Pretty interesting, the whole idea is much more clearer right now, and the pilot has pretty simple yet interesting story that I’m sure will attract everyone upon the first sight, because first, it’s regarding a childhood friend, everyone definitely have a soft spot for that kind of story, and two, you could see the whole idea of the story once you realized what is the lyrics of the song that being brought up, and third, the story not a slow paced one, so everyone will be attracted to it more because they will know the ending by the end of each episode....” He nodded again, more surely this time. “Well, I like that. It’s pretty fresh, I guess, like a longer version of 'Love, Actually.'”

“About the silver lining, we might be wanted to make the second episode’s main character to be someone’s relatives, classmates or friends — yeah, something like that,” P’Tong tried to suggest his idea. “We definitely could develop it further in the future, along with time.”

“Yeah, well, for the second episode, it might be pretty okay, but for the further episodes afterwards, we needed to think of more unexpected silver linings, so the viewers would be more excited when they see it. Perhaps... we could make it like a hidden easter eggs for each episode or something? We could totally develop more ideas along the time,” Mew tapped his highlighter into the top of the script.

“So, when is the right time for open call for casting application?”

“As the budget was pretty tight, I guess for the time being we should just open the audition for the cast for the first episode, Phi.”

“Yeah, we needed to find fresh face, because as much as we had the privilege to work with P’Mai easily, we certainly couldn’t afford to pay her.” P’Tong said nonchalantly, making the whole room stay silent for a long beat.

It had been several days, almost a week since the incident was happening, however Gulf knew the wound haven’t fully recovered yet on the older producer. He hesitantly looked up at him, while the older one choose to look down and be a bigger person as he took a deep sighed and continue the conversation regarding the audition for the cast as if nothing was happening, as if everything was fine, because he knew that Tong didn't knew about it yet, and he didn't want to announce to the whole world that she broke the things off with him.

Gulf silently wondered if this keep happening to everyone, to bury their own feelings and personal problems deep inside their heart for the sake of professionalism, or maybe just for the sake of staying sane. Because, in life, there would not be a smooth path. He might never heard from P’Tong much, but he knew that there was no way that his life was easy. He must facing over several difficulties in life, something that he never told Gulf before. Maybe even upon accepting Gulf’s offer to join his office, he sacrificed something that he never told Gulf before. Upon seeing the bigger things, especially after his short but an eye opening conversation with P’Mai, Gulf realized that, he was certainly not alone at this. Each and everyone in this world facing problems that only themselves knows the most. And everyone struggled a lot to face it, making a lot effort to finish the difficulties in life. Maybe in someone’s eyes, Gulf’s problems was a small yet simple one, he never knew about that. Nevertheless, the fact is, his problem was a hard one according to him, and he certainly not the first one to face it. Someone in the other side of the world might also facing it, someone from the generation of his mother might also facing it back in the years, it was a classic, yet not so simple one when you were facing it by yourself. A classic problem about loving your own childhood friend.

P’Mai was right, they probably never knew if their story would end in a happy ending or not, however, once they actually make a move for it, at least they won’t regret for not trying to make things actually happen.

As he looking up at his first love that seriously discussing the fitting time and place for the open audition, he silently think that the reason why he wanted to brought Stamp Apiwat’s It Might Be Love was more than the main reason — to attract any generation because it was a song that everyone could relate to. It was simply because he knew that it was his Khun Phi’s favorite song. Also, ironically enough, the song was fitting for his situation right now.

 

I think it’s love that makes me standing right here.
It’s love that makes my heart want to keep holding on.
Although there are only a little chance.
Even I have to stumble again.
Love would still ask me to do this.
To give it to you until you take it.
To tell you I love you until you give in.
You are my happiness.
Even if you don’t take my love now, I don’t mind starting it allover again.
If in the end you haven’t changed your mind.
It’s okay because my heart will never change.
If you want to wait until my heart stops beating for you, you might have to wait until the world stop spinning.

 

The wait is worth it because it is you who is at the destination.

Chapter Text

“Next.”

 

“Next.”

 

“Next—“

 

 

 

Mild flipped his script of papers angrily at the table. Narrowing his eyes at the younger scriptwriter who just challenging his looks as well.

“I swear to God, Kanawut Traipipattanapong—“

“What? It’s not my fault that the people that actually come for the casting aren’t really suitable with the description of the characters,” The younger one snapped back.

The shorter guy slapped his best friend's head with the script to put some sense upon his head. Gulf never asked him to join his team, but being the best friend that he was, he voluntary joined them when they told him that they already finish the script and will be open the casting audition soon. “How to Change won’t start filming anytime sooner, anyway, as they deemed that the perfect airtime for the second season would be at the end of the year,” He shrugged easily. “Also, you won’t find a better Director of Photography than me, Ai’Gulf. You know that I have the perfect eyes for it.” Well, Gulf never rejected a good deal and offer given with his tight budget, so here they were now. Currently in the middle of a small open audition where they were stuck because apparently the owner of the said project was very unrealistically demanding.

“It will takes forever until you find the perfect match, you dumbass. Who the hell that would be suitable enough with this exact description? Someone with 183cm height, have a light skin, looked like a person with mixed race, sculpted jaw—“ He rolled his eyes and look Gulf’s eyes as if he was joking.

“Well, now that I think about it — it definitely sounds like P’Mew, right?” P’Tong said nonchalantly while he still flipping through the paper applications.

Wow, Gulf didn’t know if the scriptwriter basically mocking him or not — he must be — however, before he could put a sour mood and pierced his eyes to the older one, P’Mew that was previously focusing on his papers looked up at them confusedly.

“Huh?”

“Why don’t you try to act, Phi? It’s a short project, you will only act in a 40 minutes long single episode, anyway. You used to acted in small roles early in your job. It shouldn’t be hard, right?” Tong tried again.

Mild leaned forward, interested to see how the oldest one in the room would reacted. He silently pondered and considering some things while Gulf low-key panicking and bumped Mild’s feet while giving signal to him with his eyeballs, trying to make his friend to shut up.

“...I don’t think that I would make the cut.... It’s been a really long time since I acted...”

“Oh, it’s totally okay, Phi, there will be workshop and reading later right? Before the actual filming? I’m sure that you could work on your acting performance,” Mild nodded his head excitedly.

“Well...,” Mew continue to pondered.

“Okay, then, it settled!” Tong clapped his hands loudly, surprising everyone in the room. “Now we just had to find the female lead and child actors!”

“Well, yeah for a few cameos I could ask for help from my connections, I guess,” Mew tapped his pen into the papers under him. “I think I could ask P’Um and P’Mam to help for the mother roles, as it will be only minor supporting roles.”

Mild clapped excitedly, “Okay, then, shall we call for the female lead candidates?”

Gulf just nodded awkwardly because he was confused because everything was happening pretty fast, without even asking for his considerations.

 

 

 

 

After a tiring day, they finally managed to choose eight possible candidates for the female lead role and child roles. They will call it a day and call the selected participant by tomorrow.

“I think it will be better if you tried to act with the selected participant for the female lead tomorrow, Phi,” Tong rammed his fingers upon the table as he thinks deeply. “It will be better to find for someone that you will be comfortable the most, and possibly someone that you could build chemistry with.”

Uhhhhh. Okay. This was something that Gulf never thought before. Should he realized it earlier that by making P’Mew the male lead, he would ended up watching and directing P’Mew with other actress — God bless his poor heart and soul — he would’ve rejected all of P’Tong’s and P’Mild’s stupid suggestions. It would be better if he settled with someone that didn’t meet the criteria and requirements enough for the character rather than having to suffer through this. But, hey, it was only a mere acting, right? Right? He took a deep sigh as he chanted it into his own head as if it will make it more believable. Because how big was the possibility of someone fall in love with their on screen couple, right?

He suddenly remembered something as a loud sound being heard in the entire room while everyone cleaning and tidying up their things before going home.

 

Snap!

 

“Gulf? Why you break the pencil?”

“Are you hurting your hand?”

“Are you okay, nong? What’s wrong with you?”

He shook his head silently with a flat face. Nah. He just remembered that one of P’Mew’s ex was his on screen couple faraway, back then when Gulf still on high school.

 

Sigh.

 

May God give him all of the patience for him for the time being.

 

 

 

 

“Ai’Gulf, I think she’s quite okay?” P’Tong whispered to him. Gulf frowned through his bangs, not even bothering to raise his head to see the said candidate.

Well, P’Tong was right, she was pretty okay. Physically, she had the right height, and a classic Chinese ancestry face where they could dressed her up with vintage dresses to modern clothing depends on the concept. Gulf saw her close up no-makeup com-card and her face definitely a versatile one. Well, if she could act as well...

Gulf silently watching her reenacting one of the scene from the script, where the female lead mindlessly did people watching on a train station. It was a simple yet difficult scene. Because she needed to imagine the whole scene since they were only at a basic four walls room right now. Also, she needed to portray the empty stares, the tiredness, the hopelessness because in her eyes, everyone doing well except for herself. Why she always facing failures over failures in life? Why it seems like everything never went well in her life? And it quite amazed Gulf how this candidate could portray it pretty well even if she only had small roles here and there before, never a major one. Gulf tilted his head and decided to give note to her application paper while they asking for the next candidate to go inside. While there are several candidates that did pretty well, Gulf still pretty keen with the first one that P’Tong mentioned. Gulf could tell that she could deliver the character really well. When they decided to have P’Mew acted with all of the female lead candidates, somehow it also irked him how P’Mew had pretty well chemistry with the said candidate. The slightly tanned director silently staring back and forth to her applications and to the scene reenactment in front of him and the other judges. He smiled politely, albeit a bit forced to her after she finished her audition with P’Mew and bowing her head politely to the other judges.

“How do you think, Phi? Who is the best one according to you?” Mild asked him curiously.

“Well, I guess it was apparent that the last candidate was pretty good? I also feel like I could work on my chemistry with her.”

Gulf only nodded silently, and P’Tong took it as an agreement. “Okay, then it settled, right? We will choose her as the female lead? Who is her name again?”

“Janistar,” Mild read through her paper application. “Okay, then, everyone agreed with her, right? I will call her agent tomorrow morning. When we will start to have workshop and table reading again?”

“We could start it in two weeks if everyone agrees, just make sure that we will have the first technical meeting sometime next week so that we could getting to know them more,” Tong said as he taking notes on his own copy of script.

 

 

 

“Do you think that I could act well, Gulf?” Mew asked him suddenly when his car stopped in front of traffic lights.

The younger one raised his head to the older one confusedly because he was focusing on his phone, the senior director from his other job was asking him about something important for the next meeting. “Well, uhh...”

“You’re not sure with me, aren’t you? Should we call for some of the potential candidates yesterday?”

“Well, you’re the one that perfectly fit for the male lead candidates, though, Phi.”

“Really? You also agree with Mild and Tong about that?”

“Well, I can’t deny about that,” Gulf just shrugged. “What’s wrong, anyway, Phi? Don’t you want to do it?”

“I don’t know, honestly,” He pushed the steering wheel because the lights turned green. “More than I am afraid of my own performance, perhaps I am more scared towards the public’s judgement later? Will they only seeing me as a has-been that never make it in this industry? Or will they judge me just another person who took another potential actors’ chance to took this role just because I have the connection for it?”

“Phi— enough,” He sighed and frowned at the older one. “If anything, it’s us that have the privilege to work with you. If I’m not your closest friend, I don’t know if I had the budget to hire you as an actor.”

The older one just took a deep sighed as he continue to drove his car, “I don’t know. Maybe I’m just afraid of another failures. Another rejection... Maybe.”

“Phi—,” He stared at the older one with concern. He bite his lips to think of other topics that he could brought up so that Mew could stop overthink about things, especially about that incident that broke his Khun Phi’s heart.

“Do you want to know something, Phi?” Gulf suddenly think of something that probably could lead him into one thing or another — and he don’t give a damn about it. He could’ve deal with it later. “Honestly, the pilot episode from the script was might be or might not be inspired by my own story.”

“Huh, really?” P’Mew took a side glance at him while trying to keep focusing on the road. “Why you haven’t told me about this? I thought I knew all about your past exes? Which one this is all about?”

“Well, not all of my crushes ended up in relationship. I also experience things like unrequited love, you see.”

“Seriously, who is this about? Why you haven’t told me before?”

Gulf just staring at the older one longingly and then snorted sadly. “Well, do I have to tell every single things in my life to you? Can’t I keep some secrets from you?”

“Why you have to do that, anyway? You know we always told each other everything. Nothing should be ashamed from both of us, right? I’ve never kept anything from you.”

If only you know, Phi...

“Well, my point is, do you know how broken the characters from the pilot episode, right? Aside of the love stories itself, it feels like they had enough of life.” Gulf pondered as he watched to the blurred lights outside, “Well, I might not told you much, though maybe you’re also aware of it. But, I’m also facing it. The hardship, the difficulties, the feelings of rejection, all of the insecurities as well as the fear — what if I could never make it in life?”

“Nong...”

“Well, what I meant is, you are not alone in this, Phi, “ He turned to look at the older one while smiling sadly. “Everyone, I repeat — everyone suffering through this just all the same. It’s everyone’s first time to live their life in this world, right? Nobody would make it within the first try. Everyone make their own mistakes, laugh it off, crying over it, pondered about it, sleep it away, and start it all over again.”

As they arrived at the familiar roads of their neighbourhood, P’Mew pulled over his car and turned to him with amused smile, “When did the young cry baby Kana turned to this wise young talisman?”

“I’ve always been here, it’s just you that never look it closely,” The younger one smiled smugly. “Stop overthink, okay, Phi? Thank you for the ride, see you tomorrow.” He get out of the car and saying good bye to the older one and sighed to himself when he unlocked his house’s gate.

Of course, Gulf Kanawut. Just when you just had the opportunity to casted another male lead — of course you never have the heart to break your first love’s heart even further.

 

 

 

It was finally the table reading for the insurance advertisement job, while watching all of the actresses and actors read the script from start to finish while being corrected by the director and the scriptwriter for several details, Gulf silently taking notes on the script of everything that being pointed out by the filming crews. When it finally noon and they could take a break, they decided to continue it later after everyone having lunch, where of course P’Mai just had to steal him over to have lunch together at the café nearby.

“So, so, so? How’s the progress?”

“Seriously? What progress, Phi?”

“Don’t take me as a fool, Ai’Gulf! Of course I’m asking about your progress with P’Mew,”

“Phiseriously, I swear to God,” The younger one rolled his eyes as he drink through his iced mineral water. “He still haven’t get over you, you know.”

“Really?” The pretty actress pouted, then took a sip of his sweetened ice latte. “I don’t think that he was that into me.”

Gulf staring at the actress in disbelief, “Phi, your relationship with him was a long one, it’s been more than 5 years, you guys already knew each others’ parents and family really well. It’s not that easy to erase those feelings you know.”

“It’s already been weeks.”

“It was only been two weeks, Phi.”

She then folded her hand and leaned her body backwards childishly, “Okay, then, fine.” She looked not satisfied. “But, until when, Gulf? Until when you would think it over? When will you make an actual move?”

“For someone that actually never have a proper and deep conversation with me until a few weeks ago, you surely such a nosey person, Phi. What a bold question.”

“Nahhh, don’t try to divert from the actual question,”

“What about you, P’Mai?” Gulf questioned her back

“Well,” Her mood turned sour in a flash. “Sometimes, I think if P’Ter is that dumb for not recognizing my feelings or what? He often didn’t take me seriously. When I try to make a move, he said that I’m still stressed out because I just went out from a long-term relationship and rejected someone’s proposal.”

“What if he didn’t want you to consider him as your rebound, Phi?” Gulf laid out the truth. “That’s why I told you that timing is important. There’s no need to be in rush. A good romance and relationship never, ever build in a hurry.”

“Wow, said someone that’s also been through unrequited love with his first love,” She shook her head amusedly at the younger one.

“Excuse me, here’s your order,” The waitress politely placed their food. “Here’s you aglio e olio, ma’am.” She placed it in front of the famous actress. “And here’s your fettuccini carbonara, sir.”

P’Mai thanked her with her dazzling smile and it’s seems like the waitress trying to held her squeal because!!! A famous actress!!! Just smiling brightly at her!!! Gulf wondered if she would be asking for P’Mai’s signature after they paid their bills later.

“So, so, so? What will you do? When are you will be confessing?” She continue to pushed the younger one after she make sure that the waitress could no longer hear them.

Gulf stare at her in disbelief as he stopped to twirl his fettuccini with his fork, “One thing for sure, it won’t be anytime soon????”

“Why not???”

“Because we still had an actual project together. I don’t want to ruined it just because of my stupid feelings.”

She gasped at Gulf, “Okay, wait, wait, wait.” She put down her fork and spoon. “You guys were literally working at the same office together. Like, every. single. day, right?”

“Well, not every single day, but certainly most of the days,” The younger one shrugged his shoulder.

“My point is, Nong, you will literally won’t stopped having project together. Until when will you wait for the right moment? After this project will be done, then there will be another one, and then another work upon work. Are you freaking kidding me?!”

“Well, if you put it like that...”

“The right moment won’t come Ai’Gulf, and before you realized it, he would probably fall for someone else right before your eyes,” She reached for Gulf’s hands and squeeze it. “You are fortunate enough that I rejected him, in fact, I’m supporting for you to pursue him. What if I am that bitch that will snatched P’Mew from you forever and accepted his proposal?”

“Well, I have to say that at some point you were that kind of person, Phi.”

“Ai’ you ungrateful brat,” She slapped Gulf hands that she squeezed beforehand.

They laughed lightly whilst they took a bite or two of their pasta dish, and then the famous actress staring at her with deep concern. “Just— don’t let this opportunity passed by, Nong,” She was smiling sadly. “Perhaps I also give assurance to myself when I talk to you this way, but, well, yeah, just don’t make another regrettable decision, I guess.”

Gulf just nodded in agreement at her as they silently took their food. Life was just so funny, wasn’t it? He never imagine that at some point of his life, he would have this kind of friendship with the bubbly actress. It was funny how life circumstances put them into the similar situation that put them into a much closer relationship even though they already know each other years and years ago.

 

 

 

 

It was a bright morning early in a day and Gulf leaned back at one of the bench inside the studio that they were rented for a week of workshop for the pilot episode. He was the first one to arrived so he tried to catch some sleep while waiting for the others because he spent his weekend by playing online games with his friends from uni. He was startled when suddenly someone knocked and a high and soft voice greeted him good morning politely. Oh, the female lead was the one that arrived first after him. Okay, it was still a few minutes before the actual schedule — but for God’s sake, where the hell were everybody else???

“Sawatdee, P’Gulf...” She wai him politely

“Sawatdee...,” Gulf nodded to her. It was pretty confusing for him how to address her because while actually she was older than him, in fact he held the higher status here since he was the director of the project. Well, then, he just let her address him as she wish though since it was only a short project after all.

She awkwardly took a seat near the mirror wall while suddenly a bark being heard and a little jumble of fluff ran excitedly at the young director. Gulf was confused because while he was very familiar with him, why Chopper was here? The fluffy dog jumped excitedly at his feet and Gulf put him up to his lap, petting him while asking the said small dog. “Why were you here, Ai’Chopper? Where is P’Mew na khaa~?” He asked the small dog in a baby voice that rarely being heard from him.

“My family went to the outskirts of the city to meet my grandma. Nobody was home so I took Chopper here,” The handsome producer went inside the studio and close the door before suddenly Mild’s loud voice being heard from outside, trying to stop Mew to close the door.

“What’s wrong with your grandma, Phi?” Gulf asked in concern because it’s been a while since he met her. However, the small dog in his lap won’t stopped to trying to catch his attention.

“My aunty called me last night, told me that grandma was pretty unwell. Maybe if she’s not getting any better, I will visit her soon.”

“I will join you, Phi. It’s been a while since I visit her as well.”

Mew nodded while Mild excitedly took Chopper from Gulf’s lap.

“Chopper, how are youuuu?” Mild sing song to the fluffy dog while he barked cutely.

“Where are the others, P’Mild?”

“The child actors already arrived with their parents outside, they just parked their car. As for Tong, he told me that he will be late for about 30 minutes since he needed to meet his professor first at the campus. Oh, right. Sometimes Gulf forget that the scriptwriter currently took his master studies as well.

“Ah, Nong Jane, you’re already here~,” Mild greet her kindly and she replied with wai. “Chopper, here’s N’Jane, N’Jane, here’s our cutest baby Chopper,” Mild squatted down to let the actress greet Chopper, however suddenly the small dog barked loudly at her and tried to bite her, which got Gulf trying hard to held his snorted. Good boy, Ai’Chopper!!!

Still trying to control his expression, Gulf coughed and politely greeted the parents of the child actors since they will be supervising the workshop as well as the whole filming process. As the workshop happening, Gulf was relatively impressed because it wasn’t really hard to direct the whole cast. Perhaps because all of the cast already acted in small roles in other dramas previously. After the workshop and the table reading, they directly filming the whole episode for a whole week and Gulf just glad at his own decision not to wrote a lot of skin ship scene, and even if it did appeared, it only up to small touches, they didn’t even had a kissing scene because the pilot episode will only ended with a confession scene.

 

 

“Apparently, researchers said according to the study carried out by Helen Fisher in 2005 on the fMRI of couples in love, romantic love is primarily a motivation system, rather than an emotion, that can be similar to what we experience during addiction.”

“Since there are multiple studies that confirmed that our brains experience ‘addiction’ when we’re in love, falling in love for the very first time is important because it is the foundation and most of the time, we experience this kind of love during adolescence when our brain was still developing.”

“Cognitive scientists at MIT explain that we experience peak processing and memory power at around age 18 and this is the time when we experience a lot of firsts, including our first love. These memories leave hormonal imprints that cause the life-long effects we all experience. The hormonal interactions are imprinted in the sensory areas of the brain at a time when the neurological developments we are experiencing are forming who we are as individuals. Thus triggering us to recall our first love whenever we see them in social media, or whenever a certain song plays in your playlist that makes you remember them.”

“Okay, so what’s with this long and scientific explanation about first love? Do you want to take psychology for your master studies or what?”

“What if I say that you’re my first love, Phi?”

The tall guy stunned upon hearing his childhood’s friend words and they were staring at each other deeply. As if they both recalling all of the things that they had been through all these times. The feelings that both of them know but pretended that they didn’t know because some things or another, because simply life just happened.

“I—,”

“Yeah, Phi?”

“I—, uh,”

Right at this part, the train suddenly passed behind their building, being seen by the huge window in the middle of them, making the guy’s answered not being heard, while they just continue to stare at each other deeply as if did not know what to do next.

 

 

 

“Cut!”

“Well, that was one of the most cheesiest, geekiest, and the longest shit out of explanation just to convey your feelings,” Mild shuddered when they finally had the final take of the scene. “Who wrote the actual conversation? You or Gulf, Ai’Tong?”

“Of course, our young and emerging director wrote it. If it was up to me, I will wrote it short and simple,” Tong shrugged easily and snorted.

“I knew it. That hopeless romantic bastard. Also, our viewers will be totally mad when they knew that this was the ending. Especially when Gulf purposely wanted that the male lead’s answer not being heard because of train passed by. Wow, what a move.”

“But it’s intriguing at the same time, right? People would be interested to watch the next episode because the ending is a shitty one. An unexpected, intriguing, open ending, that left everyone confused as hell,” Tong nodded proudly.

“Oh My God, you sick weirdo, you must be the one that decided on the freaking weird ending,” Mild looking at his same age friend with a disgusted look.

“Of course I am. And I’m fucking proud of it to break through the normal standard in lakorn and television drama,” Tong said, he proudly patted his own shoulder while Mild continue to scrunching up his nose in disgust.

“Is everything went well?” Gulf moved to their side to watch the camera preview from their camera, which focusing on Mew’s side of view.

“Yeah, I guess it’s quite okay, given that we already took it for two days straight just because you deemed that we have to shoot it with the perfect sunlight during sunset,” Mild nodded tiredly. “I couldn’t afford to have another extra day to retake it. Gulf, please, even P’Mame wasn’t this perfectionist when it comes to shoot, because realistically it would be hard to achieve something out of your imagination.”

“However, P’Mild, I wrote the script quite realistically, I know that every single set in my story are achievable,” Gulf rolled his eyes while checking the last take’s previews.

“What kind of real life that had the perfect sunset and perfect set like this? It’s all only happening in movies,” Mild retorted to the younger one while Gulf only continue to mocked Mild’s face out of his views.

“If the second season of How to Change' is bad, I knew that it’s because of your fault, then," Gulf mumbled in quietly, thinking that the older one wouldn’t heard it.

“Ai’, you ungrateful kid!” Mild slapped his head which causing the younger one scrunching up his face, didn’t realized that the main actor was walking to their direction.

“Is everything okay? Do we need to retake it tomorrow or what?” Mew that currently styled his hair down and wear simple casual oversized khaki cashmere cardigan over white t-shirt to look younger suddenly standing behind Gulf, so close that he couldn’t help but to held his breath out of reflex.

“Uh, uh— no, Phi. I think everything went well,” Gulf stuttered a bit, which of course could not be missed by Mild and Tong’s knowing eyes.

Mild snickered and coughed out a bit, “Well, we should wrapped it up shortly.” The shorter of them all then clapped his hands loudly and shouted to everyone in the set and call them to make a short last meeting today before the four of them had dinner nearby together afterwards at a small stall that offered local humble food.

It was a default thing for Gulf to order khra paow in these kind of stalls, so while everyone order different foods like shrimp wonton noodle or pad thai, he ordered the stir fry basil crispy pork as it was always been his comfort food without even looking at the menu.

“Well, Gulf, what do you think of N’Jane? I think she’s quite interested with you?” Mew suddenly asked him while they were waiting for their food.

“What?????” Everyone in the table asked Mew confusedly because honestly it was one of the most absurd thing that they had ever heard in a while.

“How could you assumed that, P’Mew?” Mild asked him with total confuse, blinking his eyes rapidly.

“Well, I just realized that she likes to look at Gulf sometimes?”

“Maybe it was just because Gulf actually is the director and she needed to hear his direction, Phi?” Tong offered his own theory.

“Aow, I’m not that insensitive, you see? Of course I could read the signs,” Mew replied lightly which only confused the others even further. Mild and Tong put their face in disbelief, particularly Mild with his grimaced and a silent ‘what???’ to Gulf, which only make the younger one kicked him under the table.

“If anything, I think you’re the one that she had the crush for, Phi. You guys were the on screen couple, after all,” Gulf replied easily as if he didn’t feel anything. Wow, the masochist that he was.

Mew just laughed heartily, “Of course not, well, anyway, it’s been a while since you date anyone, so I think it will be a good thing if you try dating her. She’s quite pretty and smart.”

Gulf couldn’t control his own expression at this point, his mouth went agape, looking at his Phi with disbelief as well. Not insensitive, my ass.

“I mean— rather than you’re waiting for the first love that you’ve been saying before? Why would you wait for someone that wouldn’t give you any chances?” Mew asked with a very serious expression which only makes the three other guys left dumbfounded.

“Oh my God, I really can’t with this,” Mild raised both of his hands. “I have to take a fresh air for a bit outside.” He was standing up and had a dramatic walk out while Tong excuse himself to take an urgent call.

 

These bastards.

 

Gulf was saved by the waitress that arrived to bring their food. He choose not to answered his Khun Phi’s stupid question just because.

 

May God bless his poor heart.

Chapter Text

“Hi, everyone, my name is Mew.”

“Hi, Mew.” The crowd that comes in the form of circles greeted Mew that was standing up and introduce himself to the small group of people.

“So... it’s my second visits here, I hope you guys remember me.... Well, as for my progress... I think I’ve made such a big move. In order to forget my ex, I deactivated all of my social media platforms so that I couldn’t see her updates...”

“Why don’t you just simply block her, Mew?” One of the pretty short guy with healthy tan skin asked him.

He took a deep breath hesitantly before he replied, “Well, I feel like I still could see her updates everywhere, be it in explore, twitter retweets, replies... I don’t think that either blocking or muting her accounts were enough. Therefore I opted to deactivate my accounts all together...”

“Thank you for your story Mew, you’re indeed makes such a big decision. Now in modern age, it’s not easy to deactivate your accounts like that...” The therapist nodded at him understandingly. “Do you have anything else to be shared with the others?” She smiled kindly.

“I think it’s enough, Phi,” He nodded politely and took a seat back.

 

It has been a week since he took this Heart Break Anonymous class that he never realized actually exist in the city. He thought this kind of class only exist for alcoholic or addicts. It turned out that it also exist for everyone that have been through a rough heartbreaks— divorced people, marriage failures, rejected people, and apparently he’s not the only one in the class that had been through a proposal rejection. Well, maybe it’s pretty weird in Asia, but Mew knew that these kind of classes were a thing in the western side of the world. People might judge him for taking this kind of anonymous class but he couldn’t care less. As long as he could stay sane, as long as he felt like he’s not alone in this and apparently everyone been through similar things to him, he simply would do anything.

Since he was also a religious person, he was coming to the temple more often to pray. Well, as his therapist and the monk said, he had to achieve his zen state — the fact that he should accepted the fact that things happened for a reason, that he should accepted that he was not a failure, that every single person was far from perfect, that he should make a peace with himself. The monk also told him that in this world, we human should be realized that we were not the center of the world. We should put our egoistic side aside and to think of other people as well. Universe didn’t give a problem solely to only one selves. He should think of himself less and think about others more. He was not the only one that been through such hardships in this world.

Mew never realized that all this time, he was always been full of himself, thinking of himself like the center of the world. His ambitious side also always thought that everything that he wanted; everything that he has been dreaming for — really needed to be happened. He might never been through a rough rejection before. And if something failed, he always had Option B to Z so that he wouldn’t be in a limbo state whenever he failed. However, with this proposal — he always think that it would be happened quite smoothly. Never in his life he would think that he would actually get rejected with his longtime girlfriend, especially when they never really had a problem with each other and both of their families already getting to know each other really well.

After weeks of thinking that he himself was such a failure and not worth to be loved deep in his heart, he finally at his zen state when he took those therapy session and prayers at the temple. Therefore, he decided to put more attention in others and not to think of his own personal life. A few of the examples were to work even harder professionally so that he wouldn’t be such a burden to everybody else, and to put more attention to his childhood friend that always been helping him through his ups and downs. It has been a while since his Yai Nong date anyone, therefore he think that it would be nice if he could help him to reach for the younger one’s happiness. Enough about his own problems and failures on his own love story, let’s just help his Nong’s love life! Especially when he saw that his co-star in their on-going series was such a good person. It would be nice if they could ended up to be together.

After he took yoga and pilates class early in the morning before he worked, he bring his sister’s cookies for everyone in the office, hoping that Gulf, Mild, and Tong would be delighted with it and worked with a happy mood. He was surprised because by the time he went through the small rented office, they looked frustrated, all with darkened under-eyes and the same clothes as yesterday, busy typing to the installed PCs and iMacs with very large monitors.

“Guys... have you been put an all nighter here?”

Gulf just simply replied it with a low grumbled, with a non-prescribed blue light blocking glasses sitting on top of the bridge of his nose. His hair at a worst state, he must be ruffled it frustratingly at some point last night.

“Please took a short break? Have you guys eaten breakfast yet? I’ve brought Jom’s cookies here...”

“Huh,” Mild nodded in acknowledgement, blaring eyes still not moving from the monitors in front of him. “Thank you, P’Mew.”

Looking at Tong that been sipping through a cup of Iced Americano that obviously already went lukewarm, given that all the ice already melted, he deemed that all of them already ate a bit even though it must be without a proper meal. Mew silently think that he would treat all of them lunch later. Probably, getting something delivered to the office or take aways since there was no way that they would be moving from their seat soon because it was the editing week, and deadlines were getting closer and closer.

It had always been like this during editing state, especially that they now short of staffs and crews. At their previous work, they had a few of actual editor crews provided by P'Mame, whilst at their own start up production house, they literally had to do almost everything by their own, from pre-production to post-production. Since his own work were mainly to prepared all of the facilities, finding funds, as well as the marketing side of the project, he didn’t do the technical things. However, he tried to help to give all of them all of the facilities that he could managed and to keep the team alive by giving them food and asked them to took a rest sometime or another.

He silently opened his own laptop to try worked on the sponsorship proposal after he put her sister’s cookies in the middle of the table so that they could take it when they were hungry. However, even after a few hours afterwards, only Mild and Tong that took the cookies occasionally whilst the youngest director was the only one that never took it, and Mew tried to asked him in worry, “Gulf... why don’t you take the cookies? Are you not hungry?”

“Uh, no, thanks, Phi. You know I don’t really fancy sweets.” His eyes never moved from the monitors whilst he continue to type to the keyboards and clicked the mouse endlessly.

Mew pondered a bit and tried again, “Okay, then, what do you want to eat? I will buy it for you.”

However the younger one remained silent, and Mew asked again, “Gulf...?”

“Uh, no thanks, Phi, you don’t have to,”

“But you haven’t eat anything, Nong,”

“I will buy it by own later, Phi,”

“But it’s already nearing lunch, Gulf—,”

The younger one suddenly snapped through the keyboard in annoyance and raised his voice at the older one, “I say— I will buy it on my own, Phi.” He rolled his eyes at the older one, put off his glasses and pinched on the bridge of his nose with scrunched eyes frustratingly.

Okay, then, a hot headed Gulf was someone that he would not trying to be pushed. He knew that the younger one would be calm on his own later after he pushed his own limit, either that he worked himself tirelessly until he unknowingly sleep in front of the computer, nor by the time he couldn’t deny that he was that hungry and desperately need to be fed. In the mean time, Mew decided just to get their lunch delivered from the nearest food stall from the office.

He totally not surprised when by the time lunch arrived, the younger one slept in front of the computer. When Tong and Mild moved to the empty table to have their lunch, trying to desperately open their eyes, Mew asked them quietly, “So, he haven’t sleep all night?” He nodded his chin to Gulf’s direction.

Tong just shook his head while took his own rice box and Mild added, “I think we’ve slept about 4-5 hours through the night, but we didn’t think that Gulf actually closed his eyes even for a second.”

“Ai’Gulf...” Mew tsk-ed worriedly and looking at the direction of the younger one in concern. “I guess it would be better if both of you finishes off earlier today, guys. At 3pm tops if both of you insisted to continue to work. You wouldn’t be able to work properly without a proper rest, anyway.” Mew said as he took a bite of his Hokkien Mee.

Tong nodded tiredly, “I would probably went home right after I finished this food and continue my work at home, though, since the deadline couldn’t pushed any longer.”

“I’m sorry that we had to fulfilled our duty to the sponsor that already booked the screening slot by next week, guys...” Mew set down his chopsticks and smiled apologetically to his teammates.

Mild just shook his head after he gulping down his Char Kway Teow. “It’s okay, Phi. Not that it’s not doable, anyway. If anything, we’re the one that should feel really grateful that you managed to get sponsor for the screening venue and all given with our tight budget.”

Mew just nodded, still looking at his childhood friend with concern, “Just followed Tong to go home after lunch, Ai’Mild, I will be taking care of Gulf later.”

The younger one looked like he was calculating something and then he decided to nodded in between of munching through his lunch. “Just be careful, Phi. You know how his mood will be a roller coaster one when he sleep deprived.” Mew just chuckled when he took another bite of his lunch. Of course, he knew his best friend the most, anyway.

 

 

 

 

The boy with slightly tanned skin opened his eyes slowly, trying to digesting all of the surroundings around him. When he realized that the sun outside the window of the office already set, he went panicking and raised his body immediately in hurry to checked the wall clock. Damn. It’s already 7pm. Fuck, he literally wasted about 7 hours just to freaking sleep while his own work was nowhere to be finished. When he realized that the office was pretty much empty except for himself and P’Mew that just went inside the office after making a call, he asked the older one with a deep frown on his face. “Where are the others, Phi? Why you didn’t wake me up and letting me sleep through my work?”

Mew was slightly surprised because he thought Gulf was still sleeping. “Ai’Gulf, Tong and Mild decided to work from home since lunch time, they also needed to catch up with their rest. They also told me that you haven’t sleep at all last night, so I guess it will be better if I let you just sleep. You could hardly concentrate to edit anything if you were sleep deprived, anyway.”

“But, Phi— the deadline is literally next week.” He ruffled through his own hair frustratedly. “What if I couldn’t get all of these finished on time?!?! You should just wake me up after 2-3 hours tops.”

“Ai’Nong... It’s not good for your health... You also needed to rest properly. I’m sure you haven’t eat anything yet all day. Here’s your favorite khra paow. Or do you want another one? We could buy it on our way home—“

“Phi,” The younger one snapped with piercing eyes. “I’m serious. We literally have no time to be relaxed.”

“Ai’Gulf... It’s totally okay... You definitely should take your time to rest... my yoga mentor said—,”

“That,” Gulf pointed his finger at Mew with rage. “I had enough of your so called ‘zen life’, Phi.”

“Nong...” Mew tried again patiently.

“The hell with the life advice from your therapist or yoga mentor, Phi,” He snapped again. “Apparently not all of us were having enough privileges to have the luxury of having a peaceful and well-balanced life—“

“Gulf—“

“I had enough with your advices to take a proper rest... to eat healthily... yadda, yadda, yadda,” Gulf rolled his eyes tiredly. “Like you have a well-managed life all these times.”

“Gulf, enough.”

“You’re the one that should be stopping to talk about these things, Phi. The work burdens ain’t going to finish on its own.”

“GULF—,“ Mew finally raised his voice, cracking through all of his zen persona that he’s been trying to cover himself with ever since several weeks ago.

“What? Do you want to hit me?” Gulf only smirked and snorted ironically. He cleaned up his own things and put his laptop on his backpack and went outside the office without even care to looked upon his childhood friend. He was just way too tired to taking care of a minor problem that comes in a form of his Khun Phi.

 

 

 

 

Have Gulf announced it to the world yet that he practically despised the neighbourhood family gathering that always been held at the end of the month? He grumbled to his Khun Mae that still insisted him to join the event even if he already told her that he had deadline to be worked on. She didn’t even care about his son’s work and instead, asked him to bring his laptop to the gathering because his mom didn’t want to go to the gathering on her own. He was questioning why his dad and older sister could escaped from such events with lame excuses while he couldn’t — while in fact he’s the one that got a huge deadline upon his eyes.

He was typing on his laptop without even care to put his attention to the gatherings or even to take some foods from the buffet. He didn’t even realized when someone took a seat beside him in the sofa and apparently took a peek of his work.

“Got a huge deadlines, N’Gulf?” The pretty little sister of his Khun Phi asked in a teasing voice.

“If your older brother haven’t told you anything about it, we will be having our screening and press conference by next Thursday,” The younger one said nonchalantly. Still struggling to edit some parts because the parts that he edited and the one that P’Tong worked on couldn’t be synchronized with each other. Damn, this was why he prefer all of them to worked together in the office, instead.

“Huh— P’Mew still busy with his therapist class, yoga class, as well as praying in the temple... He haven’t told me a thing about your work...” She pondered silently. “Okay, I will booked on your event. Next Thursday is it, right?”

“Seriously, P’Jom—“ Gulf sighed heavily. “When he will be stopping about this? It’s getting frustrating to hear him talk about all of those wise life advice from his mentors and therapist.”

“Actually, we don’t know either, Gulf,” She leaned backwards and pondered. “Just last night at dinner he told the entire family that he’s considering to ordained pretty soon....”

“What????? Ordained????” This news actually could make Gulf moved his gaze from the monitors.

“I know right? I mean, we’re as a family always been thought to be a religious one since the day that we were born, and my parents must be hoping that my brother would ordained at some stage of his life. However, to have him give this news to us in dinner table, this sudden nonetheless, of course surprised us. I mean— all of his works... surely couldn’t be left right away, right? Of course he needed to hand over it with his co-workers, or finished his projects first....” P’Jom sighed heavily. “We didn’t even know when and how long that he would be ordained as monk....”

Gulf literally went out of words this time. He knew that he’s been avoiding and didn’t put any attention to his Khun Phi ever since they fought at the office. However, to be hearing about this news from P’Jom instead of P’Mew himself....

Gulf trying to control his own emotion while he closed down his laptop. “So, he’s still at the temple? Or is it at the therapist session?”

“Today is Sunday, right? He told us earlier that he will be going to the Heart Break Anonymous until noon.”

Gulf could only sighed and decided to have a serious talk with Khun Phi this time. He could put an all nighter to finish his own work later. “Tell me the address to this place, please, P’Jom.”

 

 

 

 

Gulf arrived at the modern building near the center of the city where all of the shopping malls were built. He didn’t know that such place exist in the central business district. He decided to wait outside near where his Khun Phi parked at, because he already know his car and plate number by heart. When about 10 minutes later suddenly there’s a small crowd went out from the building, Gulf noticing a certain familiar tall person walking to his direction, probably not even realized that the younger one waited for him with a folded hand and a judging face.

“Phi, we really needed to talk.”

Mew was slightly surprised because he certainly didn’t expecting the younger one to be here. Especially when he never told him about this place before. “Gulf, why are you here?”

“We really needed to talk, Phi,” Gulf repeated.

Mew just frowned, silently unlocked his car and went inside. The younger one following him to went inside the car in the passenger seat.

“Okay, so. Now you’re decided that you wanted to talk to me.”

“Well, apparently there’s a lot of things that certainly needed to be talked about.”

“Okay, what do you want to talk about this time?”

“I’ve heard that you considering to ordained pretty soon earlier from P’Jom,”

“Well, I think it’s such a personal decision that I could make on my own not asking for your permission nor consideration.”

Gulf felt offended and at this point he only could snorted darkly at him, “Okay, so, you don’t think that you should be asking for my opinion?”

Mew just raised his eyebrows as if it was very obvious, which only irked the younger one more.

“Fine, if that’s what you’re trying to say,” Gulf snorted. “However, as your coworkers point of view, I just wanted to tell you that you apparently needed to fulfill your own duty at our project. Don’t you think that you had to finish our work first before you actually ordained? It literally could last one month at minimal. And I don’t know— with your state, I think you literally could ordained for a couple of years, no one could read your mind right now, Phi. You’re not the P’Mew that I used to know.”

“Okay, so now you claimed that you know me well. Then, why you’ve been ignoring my advice for the last few days?”

“For God’s sake, Phi, not this again.”

“Gulf, the ‘new’ me right now, the one that apparently claiming haven’t get to know about, only solely focusing on things that I haven’t thought before.”

“Phi—“

“At this point I’ve realized that in order to stop focusing on my problems, I need to get reminded over and over again that I’m not the center of the universe. Us humans is not the center of universe, Gulf.”

“Phi, please—“

“And I think... It will be better if I surrender myself as a monk to live in the temple for months.... for the mother earth’s sake as well as my own sake...”

“P’Mew, please.”

“So, you’ve been questioning my religious choices?”

“It’s not that, Phi. If anything, my family also wanted me to ordained sometime later. However, you shouldn’t ordained this sudden, Phi. Don’t you think that you need to finish your work first? Your duties? Haven’t you thought what would be happening if you left your works — abandoning our project — abandoning our team — haven’t you think properly about those things, Phi?” Gulf asked him tiredly. “As far as I know our beliefs thought us to put a lot of considerations for others, Phi. To put yourself in their shoes. Not abandoning them.”

“However, I also believe that a mundane thing in our mortal life could be found afterwards, Gulf. Right now I feel like my soul already find its right place — and it is the fact that I should be surrender myself to be an ordained monk as soon as possible.”

Gulf’s mouth went agape and he literally lost words for his Khun Phi. “Fine, if that’s what you think,” He went out of the car and slamming the luxury car’s door. “May you have a peaceful life that you wished for.”

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday come so fast they didn’t even realized how they could managed to finished the first episode on time, even though they could barely sleep for the past week. That’s actually not the problem, though. The main problem was the fact that even during the important day, during the screening day and press conference, the director and the producer as well as the main lead of the series still had a very high tension between them. Even Mild that usually could put some senses upon his head right now just staring at both of his friends with uncertainty. He didn’t know if today could passed by smoothly. Even the fact that both of them acted to the other cast, crews, and visitors as if nothing was actually happening made him shuddered in fear. He even tiptoeing whenever he had to talk between each of them because he scared that they would actually fighting with each other in public.

He just glad that Mew was such a good public speaker and he could answer all of the questions to the media and promoting the series just fine. Mew told the public that the series that they decided to called 'If we have set apart by time' have a pilot episode that would be telling a story about a guy who just went out of a relationship and decided to took a social media detox all together and took a trip by train somewhere random, without even care where would be the destination ended up to be. Along the way, he then met with his childhood friend that he haven’t met for a long time, and they decided to took a trip together, telling all of their hardships that they have been through without each other, and by the end of the trip, the girl ended up confessing her feelings to him, and the pilot episode closed by an ambiguous answer from the guy, which only made the audience to put more curiosity for the next episode. Tong was certainly looked smug because his decision to make ambiguous ending catching the attention from the media and general audience from the press conferences and screenings.

“Each of the episodes in the series would be having an interesting and well developed storyline that will depicted a lot of relatable sliced of life love stories. It would also offered interesting silver linings in between of the episodes,” The handsome screenwriter talk calmly, wearing a preppy navy cardigan over a simple white shirt and black jeans today. “Which is why, if you are curious wether both of our leads here in the first episode will ended up having a happy ending or not, you have to tuning in for the following episodes that we hoped would be airing by the end of the year.”

“We also welcoming all of the investors and the sponsors that would interested for working with our project. We are open for discussion wether you want to put product placement or anything else in our series, and we will be trying hard to make it as natural as possible and blended well in our storyline, not to make it an obvious advertisement,” Mew explained with his wise public persona.

Nearing the end of the event, where the media and invited guests that mostly consisted with potential sponsors and investors had interview or a small talk with the casts and crews, suddenly some women with a dark brown bob hair, with average height of women in Thailand, wearing a very preppy suit pants asked to talk with the director. Thinking that it was probably one of the possible investor, he politely talked with her without many expectation, since it was just the first screening after all. The sponsors and investors probably would be calling them within the next week or so should they interested in investing their project.

“Hello, nice to meet you, Khun Gulf,” She offered her hand to Gulf, which gladly Gulf shook back with a charming smile.

“So, this is your second big project, and if I’m not mistaken, you worked as director, co-scriptwriter, and co-editor as well?” She asked him with genuine interest.

Gulf nodded his head politely. “Well, our pilot episode more or less were a humble produced one, I think... we are really shorted in staff, hence the reason that we had to work on our own in many aspects.”

“Even as a small team, I still think that it’s a very interesting project, and with your small team, you could managed to make it with such a well developed production. It’s pretty impressive, really.”

“Thank you, seriously. It’s such an honour for our team to hear about this compliment from you,” Gulf showing his genuine smile, completely happy that his work that basically were such a gambling for his career apparently well accepted by the invited audience. She went through her printed brochure and proposal of the movie that were given for the invited guest and pondered on a few pages, before she put her gaze back to Gulf that was much taller than her.

“Say, Khun Gulf, what if you had to postponed this work?” She asked him with serious tone.

“Huh?” Gulf was taken a back by her question.

“I’m sorry that I forgot to introduce myself earlier.” She took out her name card. “My name is Zorzo Natharuetai, and I am one of South East Asia representative for London Film Academy...”

“Uh, okay.”

“Khun Gulf Kanawut, are you interested in joining our university to continue your Post-graduate Studies?”

“What, sorry?” Gulf was asking her in disbelief, clearly didn’t expect that this would be coming

“We’ve already watching through your works for a while now, and I think for your young age, you’re showing such a huge potential in filmmaking, hence the reason why we think that we could offered you a place in our university with full scholarship, for the next term.” She explaining to him patiently.

“Are you.... not joking right now?” He asked hesitently.

The pretty women chuckled and give him the brochure to her university. “If you’re not aware of it, actually our university is one of the best in the UK — and probably in the world. A lot of famous filmmakers graduated from our school. Here’s a brochure from our school,” She give him several pages of folded glossy papers.

“Actually, our next term would be held two months later, and I think it would be best if you made a quick decision because it would took a while to taking care of your visa application, plane tickets, searching for your rented place for living, and everything else. I would say that it would better if you could fly to London next month at maximum, because you have a lot of things to be settled down before the school started.”

“I’m sorry— I'm just— this is way too sudden—,“ Gulf still couldn’t believe on what was currently happening, and the women smiled at him understandingly.

“I understand that you have to make a big decision, given that you had a lot of works to be handled here...” She tilted her head, looking at the troubled looking younger one. “However, I just want to tell you that it’s such a huge opportunity that you couldn’t get everyday. If I had to tell you, we only offered scholarship spot for 10 potential students each year in Asia. You’re apparently the one from that 10 students this year, Khun Gulf.”

Gulf’s face still stunned, he still wasn’t able to let out any replies, and the women continue patiently. “Maybe we couldn’t guarantee you a bright and shining future in filmmaking after you graduated from our university. However, we promise you that we could give you one of the best mentors and education in filmmaking in the world, and you could definitely sharpened and developed your skills here, as well as making world wide connections in filmmaking, since our graduates also worked internationally in renowned production house.”

“I, uh...” Gulf frowned his eyebrows so deep that the women afraid that it would be stayed as wrinkle.

“I understand your confusion, Khun Gulf,” She smiled understandingly once again. “I will give you time to think, one month at maximum, and you can call me here later.” She pointed at her phone number in her name card.

“Th-Thank you for your offer...,” Was the only words that he could managed to speak out as for now.

“Really, it’s my honour if you could join our university.” She smiled and offered her right hand again to be shaken with Gulf’s. “I hope to hear a good news from you, Khun Gulf.”

The young director left dumbfounded when the pretty women that suddenly offered him a scholarship in a renowned film school left the room. In a room filled with a lot of invited guests, media, potential investors, and sponsors that was genuinely interested with his work, he clearly confused at what was currently happening.

Chapter Text

It has been a week after their screening and press conference event, and it bummed them that most of the investors and sponsors said that currently the lakorn and series market was very saturated, especially when they targeting that they want to released the series by the end of the year. They had to faced the harsh truth that without a well-known actress and actors, or well-known director or writers, it will be hard for them to put their project at the time slot where most of the high budget and star studded lakorn and series would be airing.

“Except you want to settled down by writing a Y-series,” said one of the most prominent investor. Not that Gulf didn’t know about this. Of course he know that most of newcomers would be highlighted more in Y-series rather than in straight series or lakorn, given that BL fans had their own market, and they always curious to see new good looking actors paired up with each other. “Well, that’s all what I could say, no matter how promising your series would be, it will be better to pushed the air time until the end next year. It’s the safest option for both of us. Also, maybe you could cast big name actors along the way, so that people would be more interested in your project. I understand that you want to push fresh faces and their hidden talent. However, you simply can’t deny that the public would be attracted to well-known actors first.”

The young director sighed at their small rented office that finally not as messy as last week. Given with their situation and work when they had to meet important people that was interested enough to fund their project, he had to faked things up with the older producer that was also his childhood friend as if everything went fine between them. While in fact, at this point Gulf couldn’t care less with the handsome producer and his non-sense act. They rarely fought with each other, and even if one of them sulked, they knew that they could settled it within 2-3 days at maximum because they couldn’t help but wanting to find each other’s presence, because after all, they were best friends — right.

However, this time around all of the stressful work and their emotional turbulence because apparently life didn’t happened the way they wanted it to be, and apparently at some point both of them poked their most sensitive side, be it their religious beliefs, or their personal love life, things that all of this times they thought they already understand like the back of their hands. Sometimes it comes to Gulf’s minds — was there any expiration date when it comes to friendship? He would live just fine without this particular frustrating person, won’t he? Should he just finally gave up with his long term unrequited feelings? Just how can a person could survived with this useless feelings of not being wanted, Ai’Kanawut?

He thought of these things more often these days, especially after he got offered scholarship spot for his post-grad studies. So far, he only told his family, P’Mild, and P’Tong about this because he still in cold war with his hot-headed childhood friend.

“Well, if I were you, I would definitely go to continue my study, Gulf,” P’Tong said as soon as Mew went out from their office to worked on his side project. “You would be crazy not to — I mean, it’s one of the most prominent film school, and they paid literally everything for you... You wouldn’t get another chance like this once you decline it, Ai’Nong,” He shook his head. “Even I had to pay for my own master studies. And it’s certainly not cheap, even in local university like Chula.”

“Yeah, especially with our condition that most of the investors asking to hold back the series to next year if we want them to fund us... I think it would be the best of you just take this opportunity and comeback during your summer break or something next year for filming the series. We wouldn’t know if you probably got another connection or investor there during your study to help with our project...” Mild pondered quietly.

“Well even if you think it would be impossible to get what Tee Mild was saying, at least you would get the knowledge to be a better filmmaker. I would say that it’s a one of a lifetime opportunity, Gulf. You would probably better think it over again if you wanted to rejected it.” Tong added to him with a calm voice.

“Yeah, Tong was right, Gulf. If I were you, I wouldn’t reject it, either. Especially it’s UK!!! London!!!! Don’t you always been dreaming to watch Chelsea vs Arsenal live at their stadium???” The shortest male suddenly insisted to Gulf.

Tong rolled his eyes and slapped Mild’s head, “Well, that was beside the point. Most important of all, you can definitely sharpened your knowledge there, Nong. And maybe, maybe you would also grow to be a better person there. Given the fact that you have to survive on your own. Far from your family, far from your friends, far from us, far from P’Mew...”

P’Tong last words lingered heavily in the room, made all of them pondered silently. Sometimes the youngest person didn’t know. Did he want to end all of the useless feelings that he’s been harboring to his childhood friend? The thing that might or might not be the center of all of his life problems for all this times? Is worth it to stay? Why he had to hang up with the older one so much when in fact he never considered his feelings for all these times? Will it be affecting him as much as it would be affecting Gulf himself once he decided to leave all of the things that they’ve been through together and decided to study in a country that he’d never been before?

 

 

 

Sigh.

 

 

 

“Okay, let me put this straight —,” The pretty actress raised her body and sit in a straight position. “So — you wanted to give up on your feelings and leave P’Mew?” The Mai Davika Hoorne put her rarely seen serious face. They finally at their last day of filming the insurance company advertisement. Everything went quite well, since all of the cast and crews here were all professionals, and they managed to end the project filming quite smoothly, without any drama. Gulf was glad enough that he wouldn’t be working as much in the post-production, since he mainly do his job at the pre-production and during the filming days.

“Well,” Gulf looked restless because of the actress’s piercing eyes. “If you put it that way. Yeah. Maybe.”

“Don’t you think it’s way too fast, Gulf, my dear?” She held Gulf’s hand tightly with concern.

“I— sometimes I think of my own sanity, Phi,” He bite his lower lip. “Would be worth it to stay? If staying just ended up making me putting myself in much crazier situation— I think I’d rather not...”

“Ai’Nong...” She sighed and pat Gulf’s hand softly.

“Sometimes, I’m asking myself. Is he that dense, P’Mai? I mean, no matter how I hide my feelings. People ended up knowing about it. You, P’Tong, P’Mild — I couldn’t escape all of your piercing eyes.”

Well, knowing him for more or less 7 years.... what can I say...” She looked faraway, as if trying to think something over. “It’s not that he dense, I think, Nong. It’s just... even before me, he already went through a lot. I guess he just didn’t want to expect things from people? Because the lesser the expectation, would be better from him, I guess? He just want to stop feeling disappointed once people didn’t live up to his own expectation...”

Gulf looked at her with tight, tired smile. Of course, he always knew about this side of P’Mew, however, sometimes it was just way too frustrating to handle things with him.

“I don’t know, P’Mai.... Maybe... we just had to parted with each other for the time being... sometimes, being too close with your loved ones put a fake sense of security, the way that we feel like things won’t be changed forever, the way we took things for granted...” He leaned back and sighed. “Maybe we need to be apart to be able to see things with much clearer point of views.”

“So, you are sure about it?” P’Mai locked her eyes with him with a huge concern with the younger one.

“Well, as for now. I am,” He said this things more to himself, to put more confidence with his own decision. “We’re not getting any younger, right? Sometimes we could be more levelled up in life when we took another unexpected challenges in our life.”

“Ai’Nong...” She reached for Gulf across the table and move to hug him more comfortably, giving the reassurance that he needed and comforted him by patting his back. “You can do this, you definitely can go through it.” She leaned back and patted both of his cheeks softly. “Call me anytime when you need me, okay? When are you will be going to London, again?”

“Well, I haven’t give confirmation to the university yet, but probably 2 weeks from now, Phi.”

“Text me your flight schedule later, okay?”

Gulf nodded quietly. “P’Mai... I want to ask you something. If you happened to talk to P’Mew later for some reason.... Just... don’t tell him that I will be going far, won’t you?”

 

 

 

 

If there was anything that Gulf wanted to avoid, was to overcomplicated things. He could only imagine that given the current draining fight between him and his Khun Phi, if the older one knew that he considering to accepted he scholarship offer, it would be a total ticking time bomb until everything exploded. His life was not a soap opera, and he had enough problem as it is, so Gulf asked to all of his closest friends not to tell P’Mew a thing about his decision. He especially told his mom not to tell Aunty Jong a thing about this. He knew how a blabbermouth his mom was. When she asked why, he just said that he would be told them by himself (he probably would tell Aunty, Uncle, and P’Jom at the very last minute, but still, not a thing to their only son. Just because.)

Therefore he only snorted darkly when apparently the older producer will still be going through his agenda to ordained at the temple that he usually went to in Ayutthaya. He received his paper invitation of the older one’s Ordination Ceremony during his hectic weeks when he was taking care of his own student visa, immigration papers, and a lot of other important documents.

“Nong Mew told me to give it to you earlier, son,” Khun Mae told him when he reading the thick card of paper thoroughly. Embossed with gold letterings and all, of course, Suppasit Jongcheveevat would be so freaking extra when it comes to these tiny details. If possible, he would probably bringing Chopper and asked the cute dog to ordained together with him.

Nevertheless, no matter how he currently on a silent treatment with the older one, his heart dropped when he realized that the date of P’Mew’s Ordination Ceremony would be at the exact same date with his flight. Funny how the world and universe works, isn’t it? When he always been saying to everyone that he didn’t want to make it more drama by not letting the older one a single thing about his decision to continuing his study, the date of his flight... he didn’t expect that they wouldn’t even get to meet each other — for real — for probably the one last time.

 

 

 

 

He could only sighed heavily when he heard P’Mild blabbering while he helping him to packed, while P’Tong just mindlessly hanging around without much purpose in his room. When he picked through his thick jacket that he barely owned because he never went to a four season country before, he just glad that he will be there in Fall time, therefore he could buy clothes there. It will be simpler that way, and he could packed lighter from Bangkok. He wouldn’t have much help in his destination, anyway, therefore it would be best if he could packed his things into a one big suitcase.

“How could you managed to packed your entire 2 years into a single large suitcase again, Ai’Gulf?” Mild asked him and raised himself to checking through the younger one’s closet.

“He’s not much of a fashionista, Ai’Mild... Our Gulf only owned simple, basic clothings,” Tong rolled his eyes as he scrolling through his cellphone. “If it’s P’Mew, it would be a totally different story.”

Mild closed his closet and nodded in agreement. “Well, I guess that was true. If it’s P’Mew he would probably already arranged a special clothes for a special time that would probably not going to happened — like that one time when he went to Seoul and dressed up so freaking extra because he thought he would meet one of Twice's members near the JYP office.”

Gulf just snorted when he heard that. That was one of the most hilarious moment of his Khun Phi. He would be totally extra with everything that might or might not be happening. If he was here and helping him to packed things for the younger one, he would probably just packed everything in Gulf’s room and paid to sent it to the London by himself. He would probably taking things further and bought ticket to London to accompanying him, afraid that his Yai Nong would be lost in a country that he never stepped into, as if he was still a child that barely could do anything. That was how extra his Khun Phi. And Gulf silently thought of what will be happening when they actually get separated with each other. He didn’t realized that he went through his own reverie and stopped at his tracks when he rechecked his folded clothes and amenities for one last time, both of his friends looked at him with concern.

“Are you sure, Gulf? It’s still 2 days away before your flight. If you want to make last minute decision, this is probably your last chance,” Mild patted his shoulder gently.

Gulf nodded weakly and Tong that usually barely showing emotional affection to anyone stood up and patted the younger one’s head, giving all of the assurance that he would probably needed. “It won’t be easy, Nong. It would be probably one of the hardest thing that you have to do. Even harder than your final project for your thesis, even harder than to find someone that want to invest for our series.... However, I’m sure it would be worth it. The ending would probably not something that you expected to be, but I’m sure that it would make you stronger, no matter what the outcome turned out to be...” Gulf give another weak nod to the both of them while his mind went elsewhere.

Would it be worth it? His decisions to left everything behind and went to another step that he’d never thought that he would be taking?

 

 

 

 

The tall slightly tanned guy peeking through the tall gate, walking back and forth a day before his flight in front of the Jongcheveevat’s family house. He knew that he had to tell Aunty, Uncle, and P’Jom that he will be departing early in the morning the next day, and he couldn’t pushed it any longer. However he didn’t know how to tell them without actually letting their only son to know about this news. When he realized that their son’s car haven’t arrived yet at their home, he decided to make a quick and quite farewell with the entire family, of course not with surprised gasped and shouted why the younger one never told them earlier, he just answered that he didn’t want to be the center of the attention since they were probably busy with the preparation of P’Mew’s Ordination Ceremony tomorrow. He just could put a weak smile when Aunty Jong asked him confusedly, “Why on earth Mew never told us about this before?” while hugged Chopper on her lap. Gulf then make a quick goodbye, and said his sorry that he couldn’t make it for tomorrow’s Ordination Ceremony, whilst Aunty Jong and P’Jom said that it was totally okay, and wished him well and tons of good luck for his studies in London.

When Gulf finally wai all of them politely and they also told him sorry that they couldn’t send him tomorrow in the airport because of the ceremony, they hugged each other before Gulf making his final quits, never expecting that the older one’s car would be arrived right at the time when he walking back to the gate’s direction. When the older one parked his car and locked it away, Gulf knew that it would be childish of him just to running away from the entire situation since they already aware of each other’s presence earlier, anyway.

“Gulf, it’s been a while.”

“P’Mew, likewise,” He nodded weakly.

They were staring at each other awkwardly, didn’t know what to expect. It was probably the longest time they fought with each other, and sometimes Gulf regretting why those things needed to be happening.

“Tomorrow I will be ordained, Nong.”

“I know, Phi.”

“Will you be coming?”

Gulf bite his lips hesitantly, not really sure of what to replied to the older one. At one side he didn’t want to lie for their one last meeting before he went far from the city, but at the same time he didn’t want to make any more drama between them.

“So, you’re still mad at my decision, and decided not to come tomorrow?”

“It’s not that, Phi... It’s just...”

“Why are you being cruel to me, Nong? I thought we were best friends?”

Why are you being cruel to me for all these times, Phi?

“Are you seriously won’t be coming tomorrow?”

“I just—“ He sighed heavily.

As the older one searching through Gulf’s eyes, the younger one was trying hard to held all of the overwhelming feelings from coming through. He then decided to fuck things off, didn’t care of what will probably going to happened next as he reaching through the older one’s face softly, tilted his face, and let himself answer all of his desperation, hopelessness, and feelings through a deepened kiss that surely never expected by the older one since he just left stunned until the time where Gulf parted their lips with blurry eyes.

“I’m sorry, Phi. I’m sorry for the fact that I couldn’t come tomorrow, I’m sorry that I’m not someone that you would probably think for all these times, I’m sorry that I could no longer be by your side... I’m sorry that I’ve never told you things clearly....” The younger one gulped down, didn’t realize that all of the tears that he held all these years dropped along his face without any resistance, the tears that the older one haven’t seen in years, even when the younger one breakup with his girlfriends, the tears that Gulf himself probably didn’t realize that he dropped without knowing.

“I’m sorry that I held all of these feelings for you...,” His voice started to cracked and he took a heavy breath. “Good bye, Phi. Good luck on your ordination tomorrow.” He smiled sadly as he staring at the older one’s brown orbs longingly for the last time before the younger one finally left him alone outside of his family house.

 

 

 

 

It comes to no surprise that the wise and reserved Mew Suppasit Jongcheveevat’s head was on a definite mess by the next day. During the time where he should reserved his body, mind, and soul to the monkhood, he couldn’t help but to have his mind wander elsewhere. He couldn’t help but to think of the most trivial things during his monkhood life that should be started with living a rigorous lifestyle of the daily collection of alms from the local community in the early morning hours and hours of prayers and meditation and of course doing chores around the temple for all month was such a hard chores to be done. Nevertheless, even though his mind went to an absolute whirlwind for the whole month he ordained at the temple, he reached some point that he wished he reached for. He realized that he already thoroughly accepting the fact that his past hardships, his rejection, and all were meant to be happened, not just making it an excuse to be a total ass to everyone — right, he admitted his wrong-doings, and also be accepted the fact that he was went through an emotional turbulence and apparently it made the people around him had enough of him — most probably his best friend; wrong — especially Gulf.

Though he might be already find all of the answers of the cause of his emotional turmoil by the end of his monkhood, he still questioning some things that left unanswered. Particularly something that revolved around the younger one that he haven’t met for all month. All of his friends and family could visit him at the temple time to time, though he never expected them to be. However, it irked him how his childhood friend never visited him at least once during the time where he was ordained.

After he coming back from the temple and trying to put things back to normal and settled down his work schedule, he stunned when his mom asked him lightly when she was preparing for his family’s lunch, “Have you call N’Gulf that you already finished your Ordination?”

“Huh?” Mew asked her confusedly.

“I miss him so much, how is he doing in London? Is he doing well there?”

“London?”

“Well, yeah, he's continuing his study there, right? Or am I mistaken? Is it in other city in UK?” His mom asked him without even realizing that his son were definitely confused with the whole thing.

 

 

 

 

“Okay, let me try to digest all of the sudden informations...,” Mew still had confused expression whilst both Tong and Mild just nodded at him patiently.

“...So, Gulf got offered a scholarship in London. And he left right at the time when my Ordination Ceremony happened...”

Mild nodded at him, trying to encouraged him.

“Why he haven’t told me a thing before?”

“Well, he asked us not to tell you,” Tong raised his eyebrows nonchalantly.

“But why....”

“Phi, you’re fighting with him back then, he probably don’t want to make you exploded, especially when you wished to be ordained.”

“But I’m his best friend...” He said with confusion.

Before Mild trying to give him assurance words, Tong asked the cold hard truth with a flat face, “Seriously, P’Mew? Just how dense you are?”

“Tong....”

“Do you... seriously not noticing that Gulf been pinning for you for all his life?” Tong tilted his head, heavily judged the older one, still with no emotion in his voice and expression, which only made Mild even scared.

Mew just gulped unsurely, and something in his face told the both of Tong and Mild that apparently the older one already realized that actually Gulf been harboring feelings for him all these times. Tong just snorted darkly, “Until when do you want to ignoring and deny the fact that he actually liked you, Phi?”

“Tong—“

“Just, let him be, he must needed his alone time there, to think over things further — far from his family, far from us, and particularly far from you.”

When Mew still closed his eyes and took a deep sigh, the scriptwriter continue, “If you actually cared about him — no, I’m not even asking you to reciprocate his feelings— If you actually care for his well-being, I beg to you, Phi. Just let him live peacefully there.”

“I— I just want to say sorry to him, for the things that happened.”

“If you’re actually feeling sorry for him, it would be best if you let him reached out to you first, Phi. In fact, you probably would need to wait until he come back here, since he asked us not to give you his new contacts at all.” Tong rolled his eyes at him as if it was an obvious fact that he didn’t need to explain any further while Mild just smile apologetically at Mew.

 

 

 

 

 

Mew mindlessly walking through a big park in the center of the city, pondering silently as he taking a walk with Chopper. Was he that bad of a human being? The small dog running excitedly here and there in the grassy land, and Mew didn’t realized that Chopper was running to the direction of the women that being the caused of his emotional turmoil these past few months until to the point where he had to reserved himself in the monkhood. She was walking with P’Ter that Mew also already familiar with, and he calmly wai both of them while Mai ruffled through Chopper’s short fur. Seeing the sign, P’Ter decided to walk far from them, giving the time to the ex-es to talk things through.

“How are you, P’Mew?” She smiled at him apologetically, still petting at Chopper’s head quite fondly.

Mew just sighed as they both took a seat at one of the wooden bench in the park. “I’ve been through a lot. But now— probably not really fine, but now I’m able to accepting things that already happened.”

She nodded understandingly. “You know... I’ve told Gulf the reason why I rejected you.”

Mew looked mildly surprised with this news. “Really? You talked to Gulf?”

“Well, apparently we had to work together not long ago for an advertisement...” She smiled fondly when she thinks of those times when she talk a lot with Gulf. “I missed him already. It was sad that we just becoming closer with each other not long before when he had to go that far....”

Mew looked at the pretty actress curiously. Okay, even during the time where they dated each other, he never think that both Gulf and Mai talk a lot with each other. What’s with sudden news of their closeness?

“He probably haven’t told you, right?” She chuckled lightly at Mew. “The reason why I rejected you?”

Mew just shook his head weakly.

“Well, I’m sure that it would be difficult for him to tell it to you. And also, he’d probably had to tell another things if he had to explain it to you.”

Mew just tilted his head in question when she told him such an ambiguous sentence.

“Well... the thing is... I’ve been went through the same thing as Gulf. We both were helplessly in love with our first love... that turned to be our childhood friend...” She smiled fondly at P’Ter’s way that already walking faraway across the other side of the park.

“So, you and P’Ter....”

“No, no, we haven’t date each other yet.” She smiled sadly. “Well, maybe Gulf was right. I was such a pushover. If I pushed him with my feelings way too fast right after I break things off with you... he must’ve think that I was joking. Or probably he thought that he was just a rebound for me, while in fact it was far from that.”

Mew just staring at her clear eyes that she used to be fond of as she continue to speak.

“Then, Gulf told me to take things slowly, because according to him, apparently a good relationship is not something that should be rushed off. Well, I guess the little kid’s saying were true.” She chuckled again when Chopper turned to her and licked her hand gently.

Mew just let his gaze swept through the green park as he thought of someone that he already haven’t seen for so long. Those things that he said to Mai, indeed sounds like the Gulf that he knew.

“That Nong is such a good kid, P’Mew.”

“I know,” Mew sighed again.

“Don’t hurt him, won’t you?”

Mew then looked at her eyes confusedly.

“I don’t know about your feelings, you might never realized about his feelings as long as you're being friends with him. And most probably you didn’t realized that you hurt him along the way.” She then stopped smiling, and sighed quietly. “We—,” she licked her lips before she continue as she staring faraway. “We never feared of rejection, P’Mew. Maybe, we already expected it most of the times when we realized that we already had feelings for our closest friends...”

“We are more scared by losing your presence.” Her eyes went glassy a bit before she blinked it over and it turned to be normal. “Just— don’t left him, don’t hurt him, even if you couldn’t reciprocate his feelings. He needs you. Even if he was gone right now, it was such a hard decision for him. He probably think that he needed to be parted from you to move forward because he think that he didn’t have a chance with you.”

Mew gulped when Mai was searching through his eyes. “Say, P’Mew, do you seriously, never, ever, think of Gulf romantically?”

“I, uh—,” He licked his lips hesitantly.

“Even though Gulf told me not to tell you a thing about his new phone number, about where he was studying and live in London, I might could help you,” She was staring to Mew’s eyes in all seriousness.

“However, I want you to make sure of your own feelings, I don’t want you to hurt him even further, because I knew how hurt it would be to be given false hopes. You’d probably also knew about that, right?” She gave him a one last apologetic smile.

“I will give you time to think it over, P’Mew, before I give you a chance to meet him once again.” She pierced her clear eyes to Mew’s. “Do you actually needed him in your life? Do you actually couldn’t live without him? Do you actually always see him as a part of your future? Do you actually seeing yourself just a Phi-Nong to each other?”

“Call me when you already think it over, P’Mew, I could help you to settled some things for you.” She locked his eyes with Mew and staring at his eyes quite fiercely, “Only if you are already sure with your own feelings.”

Chapter Text

“Do you actually needed him in your life?”

 

Isn’t it obvious? Even through every ups and downs, Gulf was always be there for him. He was there through his hardships, even when everyone turned their back from him, the younger boy would still believe in him. On the other hand, Mew did the same exact thing to him. Especially when he knew that his Nong was downright introverted to the point where he didn’t care about his own image because he would prefer to stay silent even if he was not in the wrong light.

 

“Do you actually couldn’t live without him?”

 

More than answering by a definite ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. It’s more like — he never actually imagining a life without his childhood friend. They were literally growing up together, only missing the 6 years of his life where Gulf haven’t got born yet. And even with their age gap, they never been awkward with each other. At some point he thought that Gulf was like a little brother that he’d never have and vice versa. However, no matter how he was that close to the younger one, he’d never considered himself to be that attached with Grace, like Gulf never been that attached to Jom. He’d always think that it was because their mother were best friends. Nevertheless, come to think of it he’d never knew about Grace’s private life as well as he knew Gulf’s. Or is it because both of them boys were boys and share similar interest to each other? Well, their sisters never been that close with each other even with the whole circumstance, so....

 

“Do you actually always see him as a part of your future?”

 

Well, the same answer like before? If he could ask, he would ask another question as to why should they be apart from each other? He’d never think about the possibility of being apart from his Nong, especially when they basically always been attached on the hip. Well — the question itself was that kind of question that he would be asking himself when he met his partner, not his Nong. For him, it’s always been something that guaranteed to be happening with them. Their togetherness, that is. However —

 

Was he always took everything for granted?

 

“Do you actually seeing yourself just a Phi-Nong to each other?”

 

A deep sigh were being heard in the large household far from the city. Mew’s eyes were focusing on the cream coloured ceiling as he leaned down on the dark brown coloured sofa bed. His small dog’s snores being heard as he snuggled on top of his owner’s. The old yet well maintained family house filled with classic oriental furnitures and chinaware was very peaceful as usual. It has been a while since he visited his Ahma’s house, and it was always nice to be here, especially when his grandparent’s house had larger yard that Chopper loved to run through with other family dogs and puppies that his Ahma and his father owned.

“N’Mew, what's with this endless sigh that you let out continuously?” Aunty Alex chuckled at him while she entered the living room with Ahma. As she helped Ahma to sit down on one of the couch, Mew raised himself to sit properly and put sleeping Chopper on his lap.

“Ahma, I thought you were still resting at your room,” Mew softly touched his grandma’s hand when she pulled for his grandson’s hand and pat it gently.

“Aow, it’s been a while since my grandson coming here. Why should I keep sleeping in my room?” She smiled softly to her grandson as Mew staring at her eyes that still pretty even with her deepened fine lines.

“Where is N’Gulf, Mew? I thought you said that you will bringing him here in the telephone a while ago?” His aunty asked him lightly as she plopped down to one of the couch across him.

“N’Gulf currently continuing his study in London, Alex...” His Mom’s voice being heard as she went inside the living room.

“Huh? So suddenly? When he went to the UK, Mew? Why he haven’t told us yet before?”

Mew gulped down when he heard his aunty asked the question. He himself never knew, Gulf also never told him that he would go that far.....

As he keep starring at nothing, his mom answered it for him, “It was so sudden, he received a scholarship right at the time when Mew ordained, he also just told us right at the night before his flight.”

“Too bad, I really miss him, it’s really been long since I saw Gulf...” Ahma tapped Mew’s hand, showing a disappointed face, which only Mew replied with a tight smile.

“He’s so cute, N’Gulf,” Aunty Alex poured the tea pot to all of the tea cups in the table center. “Yesterday was my wedding anniversary with my husband, and I suddenly remember that he used to be obsessed with my wedding ring back then.” His aunty chuckled as she plopped down again in the couch.

“Oh, yes, yes, yes,” His mon also laughed. “It was so cute, little Gulf was keep telling his mom that he wanted to have the same wedding ring as yours at your wedding.”

That when Mew’s heart dropped. He looked at Aunty Alex’s wedding band, and that when he remembered that time at Aunty Alex’s wedding. Also, he remembered that Gulf just keep smiling at him when he asked him to choose the wedding ring for Mai.

Mew closed his eyes as he took another deep sigh. Had he always been that cruel to his Nong?

The fact that he always need him to help him in every significant step in his life, he even freaking begged him to accompanying him to choose the ring, asking for the proposal ideas, listened to him for the time when got rejected... Even before Mai, Gulf always been the one that he turned to when he ended his relationship in messy break-ups. At some point he realized the fact that the younger one always give him more than any of his ex-es. Sigh. Was he even able to went through the messed up part of his life without the younger one?

 

 

 

 

 

“P’Mew, the sponsor from that snack company called earlier before you come,” Tong told him lightly as he went inside the rented office, without even moving his gaze from his laptop screen.

“Uh? Okay, I will call them back later,” Mew said, put his bag on the table, opening his laptop as well.

“They told us that they were interested to sponsoring the series, however they want to see the full script first. Well, yesterday Gulf called me that he had a few ideas to develop the script.... maybe I will be calling him again later to talk about it since a few sponsors asked for it already...” The younger scriptwriter said as he continue typing at his keyboard.

“Uh, Tong—“ Mew startled a bit, confusing the younger one.

“Huh? What’s wrong, Phi?”

There was a long beat before Mew decided to dropped it and shook his head, “Uh, no, never mind.”

Tong just staring at him in question and continue typing at his keyboard, probably either working on some scratch ideas for the series, his thesis, or maybe his side projects. Mew just sighed as he put on his prescribed glasses and staring at his email tabs. This was probably the longest time since he heard Gulf’s voice. He wondered silently was he Nong doing okay at the foreign country? He never liked to be in cold air to begin with, could he survived at the ever so gloomy and cold London? The sun was barely shone when he was there taking a vacation with his family. And the fact that his childhood friend will be living there for a couple of years worried him. The fact that he desperately wanted to make sure that Gulf will be living just fine there...

However, he also questioning himself.

He repeatedly questioning himself the questions that Mai asked him if he wanted her to help him with Gulf’s condition.

Nevertheless, he couldn’t answer the one last question that Mai asked him.

 

 

“Do you actually seeing yourself just a Phi-Nong to each other?”

 

 

“Say, Mai, how could you actually differentiate the feelings of the need to taking care of your good friends, or even your brother or sisters, to the person that you romantically interested with?”

It was their second meet at the city park, and somehow Mew feels like it could be a routine. The fact that people would probably staring at them thinking that they were still a thing while in fact the current condition was far from that didn’t even bother him in the slightest. For Mew himself, it was just rather odd because he will be discussing about this while they were in a serious relationship back then. Well, just how could you remove someone that already knew about your personal life so much for the past 7 years from your life, right?

“Well...” The pretty actress leaned back as she pondered with her chin on top of his palm. “When I was first realized that I was falling for P’Ter.... Maybe it was when I’m at Junior High?” She was pinching her eyes, trying to remember it slightly. “I was totally clueless. It was the first time where P’Ter went through a serious relationship, and at that time — I was so jealous yet I ironically didn’t want to admit it and I avoided him with all my might and instead searching for my own boyfriend. I know that was very childish of me, and I couldn’t help but feel sorry for my ex at that time. Maybe at first I think that I didn’t want to feel left out? That feeling of competitiveness that I need to overcome his achievement?” She pondered again. “However... along the time, I realized that it was just my defense mechanism. I simply didn’t want to lose him. I want him for myself, and I don’t like him to be with everyone else but me.” She nodded, trying to ensure her own words.

“However, P’Mew...” She stared at the older producer. “I knew that you’re not that kind of person. You're always thinking of others, and always put other people’s considerations ahead of your own.”

She patted his ex’s hand and continue, “Before this, you’re probably never realized that Gulf had any interest in you, and if anything went wrong with you and him, you simply just give him time instead of over-analyzing things. What could I say... you’re probably always being selfless with him? The fact that you always been taking care of him since he was a baby, the fact that you thought you knew everything about him and you didn’t want to make it all about ‘you’ when both of you were together?”

“Well... I’m not totally that saint, either, if anything I deemed myself as a clueless person? Like, how could I missed it when I’m practically with him almost 24/7? Did I took things for granted?”

“That was my point, Phi. You were way too selfless when it come to him, so that you never got the sign. When he was in trouble, you never make it about you. You always thought that it was all because something else.”

“Well...”

“And that’s also making you way too dense, too stupid, so that you always missed the sign. Say, Phi, do you need Gulf to pushed himself to you and to announce it to the world that he likes you until you realized it?”

“Ai’Mai—,”

“No, no, no, you would probably laughed it off and thinking that he’s joking if he did that, that’s exactly what P’Ter did to me,” Mai rolled her eyes, clearly looked annoyed.

The pretty actress turned to him before Mew could reply, “Nevertheless, Phi, do you need to lose him first before you realized that he actually like you?”

“......I—uh,”

“As a normal person, if I never shared similar feeling with N’Gulf, I would probably answer your former question as how to differentiate the brotherly love to romantic love by a simple ‘Do you ever have the urgency to touch him? To hold his hand? To do something more than a brotherly love would?’ However, since I was also there, at the exact same place and situation with Gulf, I couldn’t answer it that way, because it wasn’t that simple. I loved P’Ter in platonic way far before in my teenagers days, even though I wouldn’t deny that along the way, I would like to have skinship with him as I grow older. However, even without the touches, I am emotionally invested in him. Well, you have Jom as your sister, right? Just think about it by yourself. Do you see Gulf in the same light as Jom?”

Mew’s face went into a series of very difficult expressions that never been seen before, which only made the pretty girl chuckled amusedly.

“Do you remember that you actually cancelled a few of our plans before because of you need to take care of Gulf’s problems?”

The older producer staring at his former girlfriend confusedly.

“It was because Gulf stalked by that staff, if I’m not wrong?” She pondered slightly. “Well, that’s one of the reason. There’s several reasons as well, but you were almost never cancelling our plans because of Jom, or your family at that matter. Perhaps only because of your job or Gulf, come to think about it.”

“I—”

Mai just staring at him with a sad but knowing smile. “It’s okay, I understand. I also understand that you’re probably still confused and feel overwhelmed with your own feelings.” She raised her eyebrows.

“...I’m sorry that I was being totally cruel to both of you and Gulf...”

Mai just laughed heartily, “I said, it’s okay, Phi. If anything, I was also being totally cruel to you as well. So, we’re even, right?”

Mew just chuckled seeing the actress forced to high five him.

“Actually, Phi. I know that you would probably still need time to figuring out your feelings, however...”

“What is it?”

“I have this international awarding award... In London.... 2 weeks from now....”

“..........”

“..........”

They were staring at each other skeptically, both testing the waters, until the older one broke out.

“.....Okay, what are you trying to say.”

“Do you want the chance to meet him or not?”

“..........”

“I'm only giving this chance because I could see that you were probably leaning towards the right side.”

“I....”

“Do you actually want to back out?”

“Of course, I want to meet him,” Mew looked restless and still confused with the whole thing, which only made the younger one smiling at him knowingly.

“Ai’Gulf.... you’re such a lucky boy,” She tsk-ed and shook her head amusedly.

“Ai’Mai—”

“Well, I could dropped you at the very last minutes before my departure if I ever saw the possibility of you would breaking my dearest Nong’s heart,” She raised her eyebrows, challenging the older producer.

“Fine, whatever you say,” Mew gave up and leaned back in defeat while hearing his ex laughed amusedly.

 

 

 

It was gloomy as always in London — seriously, though, ever since the day where he arrived at the city, he never seem to encounter even the slightest clear sky and bright sun, really. As he leaned forward on the bridge at the park near his campus, staring at the lake with its ripple of waters, he just sighed. He never thought how continuing to study at one of the dream college of any filmmakers, to living abroad, living such a freedom life could be lonely. Very, devastatingly, lonely. Especially when he was an introverted person himself. He just glad that he could be friends with fellow Asians in his class, so that he wouldn’t be clueless once the professors give them group project. However, after the class, he never felt like he could hanging out and socialize with them, since they were already come from similar social circles that he oddly feel like he couldn’t get into. Gulf sighed heavily, he knew that most of people would be dreaming to be at his place, but he just couldn’t help but admit that despite the lack of facilities, despite the seemingly less modern and lacking-in-everything the developing country that he was born into, he missed everything in Bangkok. And it’s just the very first month he settled into the city. Could he actually surviving 2 years here? He missed the all year summer in Bangkok, he missed his family, he missed all of the humble food stalls that would not sell an overpriced and far from authentic Khra Paow, he missed his friends, and most importantly.....

 

How are his Khun Phi’s doing? Was he okay? Was he taking a good care of himself?

 

He remembered that Mild told him in the passing during one of a few video calls that they made that he already done with his ordination. He always avoided and move to other topics whenever he started to talk about what P’Mew’s thinking when he knew that Gulf already went out of Bangkok. He just... haven’t ready yet to hear another rejection.

As he took another sip of his Hot Earl Grey Tea — lol, just how much he was trying to fit in with the local tea culture when he barely drink Cha Yen back in his home? — he startled when his phone vibrated. He was staring at the incoming video call confusedly before he received it.

“P’Mai, what’s wrong?”

“Ai’Gulf, no proper greetings of ‘Hello’ or ‘Good afternoon’ for me?”

Gulf just chuckled at her, “Seriously, P’Mai, you just called me, like, yesterday. Even my mom didn’t call me that often.”

“Ai’ you poor Nong,” She pouted at him, which only made him chuckled once again.

“Seriously, what is it?”

“Actually, Gulf do you know of that film international awarding event that would be held soon in London?”

“Uh, yes, I think I heard my friend here mentioned it in a passing, Phi.”

“Actually, I was invited for the event because the movie that I was acted on was nominated for the Foreign Movie Category.”

“Really, Phi?? Congrats!!!!”

“Thank you. But really, my point is, I need a Thai-speaking Liaison Officer for the event to guide me through.”

“Do you already asked the event promoter yet, Phi? They definitely would find one for you.”

“No, I want you to be the one who guide me.”

“Uh? Is it doable, Phi? The event must have their appointed staff and something like that...”

“I could give you my recommendation to the event promotor, Nong.”

“Are you sure, Phi? Because all of the administration and stuff would definitely complicated. I didn’t think that they would let a stranger like me, a mere student, nonetheless—“

“—I will recommending you to be my personal Liaison Officer for the event, Gulf,” She cutted him off immediately before he finished voiced out his mind.

“....Okay, if you insisted, Phi,” Gulf gave up even if he didn’t sure that the event promoter would let him to be her guide or not.

“I’m sure that you would appreciate some extra cash because your monthly allowance from the scholarship barely covered everything, right?”

“Actually, that was quite enough, Phi.”

“You needed it.”

“....Okay, Phi.”

“I will be arriving in two weeks, and I will make sure to the event promoter to take you, all right? I will be texting you later regarding their contacts and my detailed schedule so that you could fit in through your own schedule, all right?”

“...Okay, Phi.”

“The event would be at weekend, I’m sure that you wouldn’t have to missed your class.”

“...Okay, Phi.”

“Okay! It’s settled then! See you next week, Gulf darling!”

“See you, Phi.”

Whew. Right. No one could literally say no to the current top actress of Thailand, the ever so beautiful Mai Davikah Hoorne. Gulf just shook his head amusedly.

 

Well, at least he wouldn’t be so lonely for the next 2 weeks, right?

 

 

 

.....Except for the fact that he was regretting his life choices and he wanted to turned back right after he saw who was coming with the pretty actress at the airport. For Godness’ sake.

“Ai’Gulf!!!! Where are you going?” The pretty actress snatched his arm right away during his lame attempt of getting away.

“P’Mai... sorry, I didn’t see you, I thought you will be coming out from the other gate,” He pulled a tight smile at her, totally, and definitely avoiding a certain person.

“Ai’Gulf, how are you????” The shorter actress pulled him down in an embrace. “I miss you so much, Ai’Nong!! She kissed both of his cheeks excitedly, Gulf just wished not one trace of lipstick would be left on his cheeks.

“How are you?? How are you?? Are you doing fine here?” She patted Gulf’s cheeks adoringly and keep repeating the same question that she always asked whenever they had video calls. Have Gulf said that she called him more often than his own mother before?

“I’m fine, Phi,” Gulf pulled the best smile that he could do at the present time.

“Well, this is my team, I only bring 4 people here together with me,” She introduced him to her team. “These two were my managers, my stylist—,” She then raised her eyes playfully,” and actually the movie that get nominated was co-produced by P’Mew, hence the reason why he’s here, representing the film as well,” She winked at Gulf.

Gulf just wai everyone politely and put a tight smile — still freaking hard to avoid a certain person. Why he freaking took this job again...? Okay, calm down, Gulf. It would only be 4 days, right? Calm down... First thing first, call the booked chauffeur from event because they needed to moved to the hotel as soon as possible because there will be a welcoming dinner later at night... Then waiting for P’Mai and her team to get prepared for the welcome dinner, while he needed to dressed up as well, and then he needed to have a short meeting with fellow staffs before the welcome dinner....

He blinked tiredly as he was waiting for the Chairman of the British Film Institute making his welcome speech. Really, though, he knew that working here, in a part of the whole renowned International Critics Award, even though he was only just a mere Liaison Officer, was a part of his dream. However, he couldn’t help but feeling tired since he barely had any sleep this week — because apparently the whole Film Festival was held for the whole 2 weeks and they also needed him to work in other aspects too before he finally do his main job at the awarding night — which ironically didn’t only consist for just a night, because there was also a packed of 4 days schedule ahead. Also, he needed to work on top of his assignments at the campus, which consist endless papers and research. Seriously, though, just how could P’Tong managed to study for his master while also working with a lot of side projects aside of their series?

As the Chairman officially opened the event by cheering through a glass of champaign, alongside with the whole guest, Gulf raised to walk to the other side of the room when the other Liaison Officer from other guest calling for him. He unknowingly stumbled at bumped into other seat and he startled a bit when he felt someone tried to help him and held the small of his back. He initially wanted to say sorry, but he only stunned when he realized who that was. He gulped down his embarrassment as he quickly nodded in silent thank you and move to the other side of the room.

 

 

 

 

“Say, P’Mild, do you know that he will be coming here????”

“What do you mean by ‘he’?”

“Don’t acted stupid, please, Phi????”

“....Fine. If it’s about P’Mew.... I only know that he will be attending awards in London, but I didn’t know that you will be working for the same event as well? I thought you told me that you will be working at the Film Festival not awarding event?”

“Well, the awarding night is a part of the Film Festival as well, but that’s not my point—“

“If you want to put blame on me, I really don’t know??? I mean— London is a huge city, right? I wouldn’t know if you could met, hence the reason why I didn’t warn you.”

“I swear to God, this is must be P’Mai’s doing...”

“Wait, wait, I didn’t know that you’re actually close with P’Mai?”

Gulf could only sighed over the phone. Sometimes Gulf hated how he differentiate his social circles and not told Mild that they actually pretty close because of their similar concern with their love life.

“Well, Gulf, given the whole situation.... well, don’t you think that it’s time that you finally settled things down with P’Mew?”

“P’Mild....”

“Just how long do you want to avoided him? He always asked for you, you know.”

“........”

“You know he’s been worrying for you a lot.”

“.....Just. I don’t know, Phi. I guess I’m still afraid.”

“What are afraid for?”

Rejection? 

Hearing the younger one staying silent from the other line, Mild continue to speak. “You know, Gulf. Maybe things wouldn’t be as bad as you’re imagined.”

“........”

“You should definitely talk to P’Mew and settled everything down, will you?”

“.........”

“You know you couldn’t avoid it any longer, Gulf...”

“Phi.....” The younger one pleaded to him.

“Well, at the very least, you would have P’Mew back at your life, Gulf. It doesn’t sound very bad, right?”

“........”

“If anything, he also wanted you back in his life, you know.”

 

 

 

 

Gulf didn’t realize that apparently, avoiding the older one would be put so much tiredness emotionally, physically and mentally for him more than the actual work itself. At the second day where they needed to accompanying the guests to watch several screenings for the movies were nominated in the Film Festival, Gulf was trying hard to put his calm while he actually did his work. Even though P’Mai was totally, definitely, and undeniably trying to pushed him to sit closer with the older producer and Gulf just calmly making a thousands of excuses to avoided it. Okay, then. He really needed to talk with P’Mai about this later. Even though yesterday he didn’t even have a single chance where he could be talking in private with the pretty actress because either other guests would be greeting her and having a quick chit-chats with her, or her staffs would never left her side even for a second.

He just glad that he could at least made a friend here, with a fellow Liaison Officer as well, that turned to be his one of his fellow classmates at the university. At least he could have other conversation that would making him forget about a certain producer for a bit. First, that also turned to be a Thai, was sitting beside him and they were talking about the assignment that would due on the next Monday. Apparently they needed to wrote papers about other principle studies that they were interested in because they will be required to wrote a script which consist other disciplinary studies for their thesis, and they needed to make a movie out of it. Gulf already talked to P’Tong that he would be interested to wrote script which revolves around psychological trauma, before he realized that psychological studies was a very complicated and difficult studies, with many, many aspects to be considered. The terms for it also very wide. It stressed him out how he could put such a theme to his script without losing his own touches, as he always preferred to wrote things that would be relatable to the public and audience without too much complication and confusing medical terms.

“Excuse me,” Suddenly a voice being heard when Gulf and First seriously discussing each of their project and papers. They both raised their head confusedly, “I’m sorry, but I think that was my seat.”

“Uh, I’m sorry but, actually this is my seat,” First smiled politely to the person who asked.

“I think you must’ve been mistaken, I’m sure that this is my seat,” The person smiling intimidatingly to First, and he just raised his eyebrows confusedly and move to search for another empty seat as the taller one took a seat beside Gulf, who gulped down awkwardly. He just wished that the movie would be starting soon, so that he wouldn’t need to make conversation with this man, please, please, please—

“How are you, Gulf?”

“Uh, fine, Phi,” He put a tight smile.

“How is school? Do you have fun?”

“Uh... yes. Pretty much.”

“Do you actually meet a famous lecturer there?”

“Well... only once so far. They only taught us occasionally during a general seminar class...”

“Ah, I see”

“.....”

"....."

Okay, when will the movie started to air again?

“I thought you’re still ordained, Phi?”

Wow, asking as if you haven't heard it from P'Mild, Ai'Gulf.

“Uh, yeah, I’m already done with my ordination a month ago.”

Gulf nodded in acknowledgment silently.

“Actually — Ahma and Aunty Alex asked for you, you know... They've been missing you,”

“Ah, yes. Please say sorry to Ahma and Aunty that I literally didn’t have a time to meet them to say my farewell...”

“It’s okay, my mom already made some excuses, for you. She also missed you, by the way,”

“.....”

“Chopper also missed you, you know...”

Gulf chuckled lightly. Of course. He also missed the little bundle of fluff. When was the last time he was actually petting him again? Playing with Chopper was actually one of his favorite thing to do. He could forget all of his problems while being with him. Should he considered to have a pet here so he wouldn’t feel so lonely? Would the dormitories allowed him to? Well, he will try to checked on his dorm’s written regulation later.

“Gulf.”

The younger one raised his head confusedly because he was focusing on the pet thing before the older one calling for his name. He was regretting his decision because he didn’t expect to see his Khun Phi this close. He unconsciously held his breath when they staring at each other’s eyes — Gulf didn’t realized how much he missed that dark brown orbs. How much he actually missed the older one’s voice.... And suddenly he felt the older producer touched his hand.

 

“I've also been missing you, you know.”

 

Gulf was stunned, not knowing what to do or what to say. This time around, he thanked the heavens that actually finally heard his prayer. The lights were turned off and the screening finally started.

Chapter Text

Knock

 

Knock, knock

 

Knock, knock, knock, knock, knock

 

 

 

 

“Aishhhhhh, I’ve already requested that I don’t need a morning call at this early in the morning!!!!” The pretty actress shouted annoyedly, removing her sleeping eye mask blindfolds and walking to the door. She already preparing a set of curses to anyone that dared to wake her up this early, didn’t even care to be seen only with her bare face and messy bed hair. Upon the time she opened the door and ready to shout even more, she stunned at the tall figure in front of her and close the door immediately, which get blocked by the person from outside. They were only separated by the lock chain that the pretty actress glad that she put.

“P’Mai.... Open the door.”

“Ai’Nong.... It’s still 6am... I still need my beauty sleep so that I wouldn’t have a puffy eyes later at the event...”

“Phi, open the door.”

“Ai’Gulf....” She pleaded and put on her puppy eyes.

“P’Mai—“

She initially wanted to put another pleading eyes until the younger one said that he wouldn’t help her with P’Ter later if she need him.

“Fine,” She huffed annoyedly, opened the chain lock and stumped over the couch, childishly pretending to continue her sleep.

As the sound of someone plopped down into the couch across of her, Gulf sighed heavily, “Seriously, na P’Mai...”

“What, what, what, do you want to hit me or something for bringing P’Mew here????” She finally raised herself into a sitting position and challenged the younger one, albeit she was still reluctantly eyeing him.

“Why didn’t you tell me???? So that I could’ve prepared myself???”

“You would definitely rejected my offer.”

“Well, I’m not denying it. I would definitely reject your offer.”

“Seriously, Gulf, stop being childish and face P’Mew.”

“You stop being childish, Phi.”

They were both having an intense staring contest until the pretty actress gave up.

“You should’ve being grateful, Gulf. I’m not even sure if P’Ter would look out for me should I pulled your stun and went somewhere far. He maybe still confused with his own feelings, but at least he couldn’t deny that he missed you, am I right?” The pretty actress folded her arms and eyeing Gulf.

Gulf just sighed, “Phi, seeing him is the last thing that I wanted right now. Why would I take this scholarship if I ended up seeing him again this early?”

P’Mai raised her eyebrow skeptically, “Are you sure you can make it by not seeing him at all until you graduated here?” She then leaned forward and tapped Gulf’s chin playfully and smirked. “Are you even sure that you’re not missing him at all during this past month?”

“Ai’Phi....” He annoyedly remove Mai’s hand lightly, which only make her smirked turned into an evil grin.

“Then, I’m just giving a warning to you right now. Just prepare yourself because I’m sure that he won’t gave up and going back home until you give in to him.”

The younger one’s sighed tiredly, “Phi—“

“At least I’m telling you to prepare yourself right now. Just make yourself pretty and make him regret to ever being a jerk to you, my son.”

“My son...,” Gulf rolled his eyes at how P'Mai addressed him.

“You know how P’Mew loved surprises, right? Well, I’m telling you to prepare yourself later, and don’t coming at me again except for two things: Either P’Mew being jerk again or you want to report some progress to me,” She winked at Gulf teasingly.

“P’Mai...”

“Oh, Gulf, darling, you will be thankful to me later,” She leaned forward and patted his head in adoration. “Now, out, out, a girl need her beauty sleep. We will be having free time later right? Don’t call me before 3pm, I want to sleep all day.” Despite her small figure, she could forced Gulf to stand up and make him exited her room.

“Bye bye, na, Nong~”

“See you, Phi,” Gulf huffed annoyedly as the door being closed at his face.

Gulf grumpily walking towards the elevator, and just how his luck not on his side right now, he realized that the certain person that he’s been avoiding was waiting for the elevator as well. The younger one then decided to move backwards and childishly hiding from him until he went off with the elevator. After he made sure that the older one already gone, he then walking to the elevator and press the down button, never expecting that once the elevator door opened, it will be showing the same person that he’s been avoiding in his tank top glory. Fuck.

“Huh, Gulf? What are you doing this early?”

“Umm, I was meeting P’Mai earlier, reminding her about her schedule...”

“Oh, earlier I want to go to the gym, but I forgot my water bottle in my room...”

Gulf just nodded politely, whilst the older one stepped out from the elevator, and he immediately went inside the elevator.

“Uh, Nong?”

Gulf frowned confusedly whilst he pressed the lobby floor.

“Uh— later, at the free time,” The older one licked his lips hesitantly. “I will call for you, okay? Please make time for me.”

Then the elevator door closed immediately, didn’t even give time for Gulf to rejected him. The younger one just sighed as his devastating fate.

 

 

 

 

Gulf was entirely grateful that the Awarding and Film Festival committee booked all of the staff and guest involved at this even a hotel room for each of them, so that they wouldn't need to spent more time for transportation to the place, and it would be easier for all of the staffs to worked and for the employer to oversee the coordination of the various departments. After the whole team getting the last brief about today’s schedule, especially regarding the Awarding Night that would be held later at the evening, they talked about the detail of the rundown, seating part, when the invited guests should be finished their makeup and dressing, the list of media that would be coming to interview them and expected question from them... As they took notes carefully, they were having breakfast at the hotel buffet afterwards, in which First get to took a seat across of him again after he picked up his dish.

“Uh, Gulf,” The same age friend called him carefully.

“Huh? What’s wrong?” Gulf asked him confusedly as he took another bite of his breakfast.

“Hmm... the man last night, was that your boyfriend or something?”

Gulf suddenly choked on his food and First immediately gave him water in hurry.

When Gulf finally breathing way more evenly, First smile apologetically at him.

Gulf just shook his head in answer, “Nah. He’s just my workmate in the office back then.”

The shorter one just staring at him skeptically, “Are you sure...? The stare that he gave to me last night definitely could kill me.” He then shuddered.

Gulf just rolled his eyes, “As if. No, no, no. We’re just acquaintances.”

“Really?”

“Why are you keep peering into my private life?”

“Just be grateful that I want to be your friend both in campus and in here,” He smiled smugly.

Gulf just sighed and choose to ignore him, continue to finish his own breakfast until someone tapped him from the back. Thinking that it was probably another fellow Liaison Officer, he turned around and regret it entirely when it turned to be P’Mew again. Before they could say anything, First suddenly hurriedly stood up and said, “Uh, Phi. You can take a seat here, I’m already done with my breakfast.” He then walking fast into the other side of the room. Damn, Ai’First, that liar. Why he had to run into this particular person over and over again? He sighed tiredly as the older one took a seat in front of him.

“I can seat here, right?” The older one dare to asked him, as if he know that Gulf couldn’t say no. As they both took each of their own breakfast silently for several minutes, the older one then decided to talk to him again, “I’m glad that we’re running towards each other again, therefore I wouldn’t have to call you.”

Gulf was practically tired with this hide and seek game, then he decided to asked once and for all, “What is it that you want you to ask me over the phone, Phi?”

The older one then just pondered a bit and leaned forward over the table, “Say Gulf, now that it’s currently the Premier League season, have you watch Chelsea yet?”

Gulf just blinked his eyes confusedly, “Phi? Look at me right now? I literally have no time for Premier League because I’m busy with this Film Festival and Awarding work....”

“But, it’s always been your dream to watch them live right? Why not watch them while you’re here? I heard that today is the final match?”

“I literally have no time, Phi. Also, it’s hard to get their ticket, especially for public. It needs special membership to buy it, also, you need to buy it weeks before the actual match. Not to mention when it’s the high demand match like the final match.... There is no way that I could watch them at the very last minute,” He shrugged. “It doesn’t really matter, really, I have a couple of years here. I would’ve tried it for the next season or next year, perhaps.”

The older one just nodded understandingly, he then took another bite of his omelette before he take out two tickets, “Well, I guess you don’t want these, then?”

Gulf’s eyes bulged out in shock, “How.....?!”

“I have my ways,” Mew just smiled playfully before he turned to look a bit disappointed and freaking pouted. “But, I guess, I should just sell it or something right? Since you barely have time?”

That when Gulf’s brain worked very fast to consider and weighed things down. First, he freaking want to watch his favorite team’s match — Goddamn it’s freaking Chelsea vs Liverpool!! — however the match would start at noon, and they to be prepared to dressed up for the event at the very least at 3pm, and they had to be finished by 5pm because they needed to be at the venue at 6pm. It’s definitely doable — however the timing was pretty tight — also, he suddenly remembered what was P’Mai’s saying.... He didn’t want to be lured down by his Khun Phi.

“So?” The older one asked, with his eyebrows raised curiously.

“Uh, the timing would be pretty tight, Phi.”

“But, it’s not impossible.”

“Well... you’ve never interested in soccer match before, Phi. Why would you this? I know it’s freaking expensive to get tickets at the very last minutes, especially when it’s high demand and you’re obviously not a part of membership.”

“Well, is it wrong if I want to see my Nong happy?” He tilted his head playfully. “Or you still insisting that you don’t want it?”

“I had to take care of P’Mai—“

“I’ve talk to Mai’s manager that she didn’t want to be disturbed until 3pm,” He leaned forward, challenging Gulf.

The younger one gulped nervously. “But... the timing...”

“But it’s doable, right?” His Khun Phi leaned even further, which only made Gulf’s breath hitched.

When the younger one couldn’t retorted back even more, he was standing up and reached for Gulf’s arm and took him away to the entrance door after the older one asked for taxi from the receptionist. Gulf regretting why he couldn’t find more excuse to rejected him. But it’s Chelsea!!!! — But, but... He sighed dejectedly inside the taxi after P’Mew give the taxi driver the address of the stadium where the match would be held. He didn’t realized that all these time, the older one never let his hand go. When he wanted to take his hand back, Mew insisted to keep their hands entwined, which only made the younger one flustered and reddened up to his ears. The problem is, no matter how they were being close as friends for his entire life, and never shy from touches, it feels different. It was so different to the point where he was scared that he would’ve get false hopes.

It was a 30 minutes ride to the stadium, and in all honesty, Gulf just wanted to sleep because he woke up at 5.30am earlier to barge down into P’Mai’s room. Also, the endless meetings before he actually had breakfast making his head even dizzier. When he couldn’t hold his yawn any longer, the older one asked softly, “Sleepy? Just take a short nap, I will wake you up once we’re arrived.”

Gulf was questioning himself wether he should put his guard on or just to gave up because he was afraid that he couldn’t focusing on the match or the event later. He just nodded tiredly and leaned into the window to take a short nap. He was an easy sleeper, he could sleep literally everywhere, and it wouldn’t take a minutes before he was put into a slumber. He was having a lucid dream where he was walking mindlessly at a huge white room and he didn’t realized that he would stumbled upon an unseen cliff where he ended up falling and falling and falling and falling—

 

“Nong? We already arrived.”

 

Gulf weakly opened his eyes to a sudden brightness, and he wanted to throw up because he still feels like his heart and the pit of stomach dropped because of the odd falling dream.

“Are you okay?” He leaned forward and softly touch Gulf’s head with the back of his hand.

Gulf nodded silently, opened the taxi door immediately as he wait for his Khun Phi to pay for the taxi and went out as well. It’s still 1,5 hours before the actual match, but it was already packed up with people lining up to buy merchandise, souvenir, and snacks. The younger one just realized suddenly that he didn’t brought anything to the match of his dreams because it was practically an impromptu thing, since he never expected that he would be watching it today.

“Do you want to buy the merch first?” Mew asked to him, which only make his internal battle grew even further. First, he didn’t want his colleagues to know that he went out to watch Premier League during his duty time, they must’ve seen him as an unprofessional. And by bringing merchandise back to the hotel.... people would’ve think that he practically bailed out of his job. But... it was his dream match.... He didn’t want to let this match of a lifetime slipped away without him decorating himself with all of the merchandises that was being sold.

As if reading through the younger’s mind Mew caressed his hair softly, “Don’t think too much, okay? Just say that you’re accompanying me here if people asked later.” He smiled fondly and took Gulf’s hand and bring him to the last line of the merchandise.

Sometimes he hates it that his Khun Phi know him way too much. He knew his favorite soccer team, he knew his preferred way to spent his time, he know what younger one loves to eat, to drink, to play, to listen, to watch... almost every single thing about him at this point so that he would knew how to acted around him naturally, even if he had been avoiding the older one for more than a month. As much as he missed his appearance... but it also scared him by the fact that he practically knew everything about him at this point, given that he laid down his feelings right before his departure last month. It scared him that everything that he’s been afraid of would be true — the rejection, the ‘let’s just stay being friends’ part, the apologize because his Khun Phi couldn’t return his feelings... Don’t get him wrong, he also wanted him back in his life as friends, but he thought he would be given at least 2 years of healing and prospect before he return to see him in a better light, with a lighter heart.

And it both amused and made him saddened by how the older one would be trying hard to pleased him by bought him all of the merchandises available, insisted to buy him corn dogs and cola even if he already told him that he was full already, taking him endless pictures of him with all of the merchandises that he bought, to be cheering endlessly and shouting random Chelsea players — Gulf trying hard not to rolled his eyes and snorted when he seriously shouted ‘Drogba!!' 'Mourinho!!' 'Lampard!!!' randomly. Please Phi, they were either already retired or practically were the managers of the team — that he must’ve remembered that Gulf’s like to mentioned.... It pained him that his Khun Phi showing this much of effort to get him back to his life — even though he still didn’t understand why.

He even dazed out when his favorite soccer player kicked a goal at the very last minute, and ended up making his favorite team of all time winning the Premier League. As his Khun Phi hugged him excitedly and keep telling him how awesome that last goal, as the Closing Ceremony happened afterwards.... He just laughed lightly when the producer excitedly reminiscing what happened at the match when he knew that he barely understand or even interested in anything about it.

“Enough, Phi...” He chuckled lightly. “Thank you, anyway, for making so much effort for me,” He smiled sadly at the older one.

“Why you’re making that expression? Am I making mistakes again?” The older one frowned and making a dejected expression.

“No, no, no. It’s just— I don’t know. Maybe I just confused as to why you would do this much for me...” He sighed. “First, it certainly costed a lot... and it wouldn’t be very easy to be purchased either, since you had to call for local ticket reseller or something... and... I just knew that you’ve never been interested with my own personal interest, Phi... Just... Why...?”

“Is it very hard to get you back into my life?”

“No, no, you just need to give me time. I would be back to being your best friend, maybe once I finished my study here...”

“Is it had to be that long? Do you really only want to see me after 2 years?”

Gulf licked his lips hesitantly and slowly nodded, which only makes the older one’s expression turned even sour.

“Do you seriously think that we could be back being as best friend as we used to be?”

“Phi...”

“Gulf.... hear,” The older one took a deep breath before he continue. “I... I might be stupid and always focusing on myself, even didn’t realized on how you feel after all these years... I... might be still feeling unsure with my own feelings right now,” He reach out to caressed Gulf’s hair softly again. “I... might still doing more stupid things in the future... but I just knew that at this point maybe I was totally lost without you. Those whole month with you keep avoiding me and telling everyone not to give your contact to me... killing me inside. Dare I say, I don’t think that even being rejected by Mai making me this empty?”

“Phi... don’t pushed yourself, really. I’m fine with us back being friends.”

“Gulf, seriously, what should I do to make you believe what I say?”

They locked their eyes for a far too long minutes, still with Mew’s hand on the back of his nape. Gulf just gulped down nervously and finally let out of what he actually feels all this time. “I don’t know, Phi, I guess I’m just afraid that I would be given false hopes. Maybe it would even better just to have you laid out rejected me. It frustrating me out — these hide and seeks... the fact that I have to keep avoiding you...”

“So, what can I do to make you stop avoiding me? To actually believe me, really?”

“Phi— it’s already the time— we should get back to the hotel as soon as possible.”

“No, we’re not getting back until you answer me,” The older one insisted, locking his hand with the younger one so that he couldn’t escape, which only made him even more frustrated.

“I... I don’t know, Phi,” He practically pleaded to the older one to let him go.

“Nong....”

“Please, Phi, how would’ve I known?”

Mew leaned forward to touch both of their foreheads and chuckled sadly, “We’re just as hopeless and clueless, aren’t we?”

Gulf just keep staring at the older one’s brown orbs sadly.

“How about this,” Mew tried. “I will give you time until I went home tomorrow to answer me.”

“Phi...”

“Let’s just go back to hotel right now, we should get ready for the event,” He pulled for Gulf’s hand to the taxi stop’s direction, didn’t know that it would leave such a great effect on the younger one.

 

 

 

 

The Awarding Event went really hectic but relatively well. Especially since P’Mai was one of the most well known Asian actress given that she was a brand ambassador for international big beauty company for years already and recently she was doing a collaboration with big fashion retailers and the famous Barbie doll that was instantly went sold out everywhere; and it was no surprise that literally almost media wanted to interview her. Her pretty dark blue evening dress made by renowned Thai designer also made her stood out even more.

After all of the interview and red carpet photos finished and finally all of the guest went inside the venue and took a seat at the reserved seating. Gulf silently think that his Khun Phi, that handsomely styled with all black tuxedo and silk grey shirt underneath with nicely styled hair, was indeed looked like a match made by heaven with P’Mai. Well now that they were both being friends with him... maybe it wouldn’t hurt him as much should they getting back together?

Especially when the Foreign Movie Awards were being announced and they actually won. Looking at them both giving a winning speech with all of the spotlights gleaming through and walking side by side... It was just making it way too real for him that his Phi was way out of his reach no matter how he didn’t wanted it to be.

As much as it saddened him with that fact, but he wasn’t as hurt with the fact since now he was also close with P’Mai and he didn’t know who would be better for his Khun Phi rather than her, right?

 

 

Right?

 

 

“What are you doing here?” The older one’s voice suddenly being heard as Gulf silently pondering at the side of swimming pool outside, putting off his shoes and playing with waters under the moonlight.

“Everyone was inside talking with each other, making connection.... getting to know each other...,” The older one continue as he leaned down and took a seat beside him.

“Socializing tiring me out,” He sighed. “I need time out with all of these two weeks having to encounter a lot of people, I guess.”

“You’re not really changing, aren’t you.”

“What can I do? I’m already doing the best that I could do for the past weeks.”

The older one just nodded understandingly. He knew his Nong really well, it’s just he couldn’t help but to tease him.

“Ah, anyway, congratulation once again, Phi,” He tried to smile genuinely. He knew P’Mew always put his best upon his works, seeing him getting the recognition for his works making him proud of him as well. It was maybe not the first award that he get, but he always appreciate each and all of them no matter how big and small the awards were. And since this International Awarding event was one of the biggest awards that he ever had, it would be really meant something for him.

“Thank you,” He smiled dazzlingly, Gulf just wish they wouldn’t be that close so P’Mew wouldn’t notice his breath hitches.

“The floor’s dirty anyway, Phi, you would get your tuxedo getting dirty and drenched with waters.”

“It’s okay.”

There were a long beat of silence, only a sounds of rippled water being heard under the moonlight, until finally the younger one speak again.

“Anyway, as I look it again when you making your speech with P’Mai at the stage earlier....,” He turned to look at the older producer, “I’ve realized that you both would have made such a good pair, Phi.”

“Huh?”

“Why don’t you just get back with her? I don’t think that everyone would reach up to P’Mai standard, Phi. She’s literally the best one for you.”

“Excuse me, what?”

“That was the reason why you come all the way down to London, right Phi? To get back with her? It’s okay, I would really support your relationship with her.”

“Are you freaking kidding me, Ai’Nong?” Mew asked him in disbelief.

“Well, both of you guys were practically the Nation’s couple back then, everyone really want to be like you guys, to have what you guys have, the pretty actress and the handsome multitalented producer, right? You guys were practically as famous as—“

Gulf’s blabbered down stopped once Mew leaned in to kissed him deeply, almost desperately, as if to waken the younger one up, to stop making him overthink and focus on what the present time offered to him. Gulf was in dazed when Mew leaned back and let him breath.

“Gulf, are you seriously asking me to get back with Mai?”

The younger one just stay stunned, wouldn’t be able to let out words to reply.

“You do know that she already rejected my proposal, right? The fact that she always been in love with P’Ter, you do know about that, right?”

Gulf nodded silently, gulped down nervously when the older one leaned forward again and continue, “What if I told you that I’m already get over her?”

The younger one didn’t really know on what to expect when the older one pulled him into another kiss. He just let older one to controlled the slow, deepened kiss, with tongue and all, that left him almost breathless when they break off.

“Please don’t break my heart tomorrow before I get back, okay, Nong?” He kissed the back of the younger’s one’s hand and stared at him longingly.

“As I said before, maybe I would be stupid again in the future for not noticing things... but I think, something between us,” He leaned forward to connect his forehead to Gulf’s. “Is not something that we couldn’t worked for.”

“But, Phi— you’re not someone that could do a long distance relationship.”

“Listen, for you.” He caressed both of Gulf’s cheeks softly. “For you. I could try.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Gulf, don’t be stupid,” The pretty actress scolded him over their late breakfast.

“I’m not stupid.”

“It’s literally our last day here.”

“I know,” He shrugged lightly.

“And you’re freaking not answering him.”

“He gave me time until I accompanying you guys at the airport.”

“What are you thinking, Nong? By answering him right now, I don’t know, you would probably would go in a short date at the very last minute or something.”

“Phi....”

“I mean— you’re being totally ridiculous at this point, Gulf.”

“...........”

“First, I heard from Mew that you told us to get back together, Ai’Gulf, what the hell was that?” She showed a disgusted face. “Second, I’m not pulling my effort to bring him here to meet you so that he could be back with me. Are you even understand what you were saying, Nong?”

“P’Mai... stop, please, everyone would heard you,”

“I mean... what the hell, Gulf? Stop making things even more complicated.”

“I’m not,” He insisted.

“Listen to me, Nong...” She softly held Gulf’s hand. “Do not ever make a regrettable choice for your life. Well, thinking over things over and over again is very wise, but, more often than not overthink kills you. Sometimes you have to go on with your instinct, you know.”

“I’ve told you that he’s such an over thinker, right, Mai?” Suddenly familiar voice being heard and his Khun Phi suddenly took a seat next to him, putting his plate full of his own breakfast.

“I know, it frustrates me,” P’Mai wailed her hands dramatically.

“What are you waiting for, Gulf?” He leaned forward to Gulf, which this time make the younger one leaned back nervously. “You said it yourself that I hate long distance relationship.”

“Come to think about it, it’s about right,” P’Mai added and nodded across of them.

“Now that I want to make such sacrifice for you, please just tear your wall of defense down for me and make some time for me before I went back?”

The younger one just bite his lips unsurely. “But I have a class this noon... It’s Monday, Phi...”

“Okay, then, I will accompany you to your university. I want to meet your friends and professor.”

“Phi...”

“Fine... I will just wait for you until you had to picked up Mai to go to the airport. I already packed up my things, so I literally had time to walk with you at the campus.”

“Thank God you’re such a pusher, P’Mew. Or else, I would be frustrated with the whole things going on...” P’Mai wailed her hands again and shook her head amusedly, when the youngest one went into an internal panic mode.

He certainly weren’t ready for this. Especially when he already agreeing to go to the campus together with First. He could already expect that First would be eyeing him from a far and mocking him because P’Mew keep following him around, which just confirmed his suspiciousness over things. When the other Liaison Officer wai P’Mew politely. He dared to introduce himself properly so that he would dig more information regarding this acquaintances of Gulf.

“Sawatdee, Phi. My name is First, I’m the Liaison Officer for Vietnam's delegates.”

“Sawatdee, just call me Mew. I’m delegates from Thailand,” P’Mew smiled politely.

“Ah, actually, First is my classmates, we would be having class together later, so initially we want to go together to the campus,” Gulf explained slightly, which only replied by nodded from the older one.

“...I’m sorry, but are you guys....?”

Ai’First this guy dared to tested the water!

“Oh, we’re just Phi Nong who loves each other,” Mew explained in a breeze, which makes the younger one flabbergasted.

“What the hell, Phi?!!” He asked furiously.

“You’re the one that haven’t give me an answer yet?!” He snapped back to Gulf.

First, the one that actually asked for it, never expected that he would get a (future) lover’s quarrel right in front of his face. Okay, I’m sorry, Ai’Gulf, but I'm really didn’t expected it.

“Well, we might get late, Gulf, let’s go to the campus?” He asked the other Liaison Officer hesitantly, not really sure if he would be hearing another shout or not.

Gulf just nodded annoyedly, “Right, let’s go.”

First just wished that he wouldn’t be the one that needed to explained to their classmates regarding the sudden appearance of a stranger — a foreigner, nonetheless — that insisted to followed Gulf around to the campus.

Chapter Text

Everyone questioned him why he would be delaying to answer his Khun Phi, right? The things is, it was pretty hard to believe, when the thing that — for your entire life — wouldn’t ended up to be happening, suddenly happened. It was like a midsummer dream, a dream that you’ve never woken up into — or wish you wouldn’t woken up into. A dream where by time you wake up, you had to faced the truth that it wasn’t going to be happened in real life.

The day where he realized for the first time that perhaps his feelings for the older one was something that would be consider for more than friends, was probably the time where the teenage Gulf was in high school, broke up over his second — or third? — girlfriend, but he really didn’t feel anything. The day was going on as per usual, until the grandmother from the family side of the Uncle Jongcheveevat passed away, and he never seen his Khun Phi was that broken. No, he weren’t in a crying mess like when he was rejected by P’Mai — to Gulf’s eyes, it was even worse. His eyes’ stares was empty. He didn’t even cry at the funeral. He just stayed silent, and smile when it needed to, when far families and friends coming to bid his grandma goodbye for the last time. When at the end of the day he finally released a heavy breath and borrowed Gulf’s shoulder to leaned down — that was when Gulf couldn’t help but cried for his Khun Phi. As if he knew what was exactly he was feelings, he emptiness, the feelings of lost that P’Mew couldn’t let out for some reason, Gulf cried it out for him.

Gulf never asked on how he wouldn’t cry, and neither did Mew. His Khun Phi only consoled him in silence, still being the good older brother that he was, even if he was the one who suffered the most. That, when Gulf thought that, no matter what, he had to protect him, to make him feeling safe and comfort from anything bad and harsh that could happened in real life — even if the older one ended up doing that the most for him, making the younger one ended up falling even harder for him by each day.

Therefore, when everyone literally pushed him and questioning him on why he always ended up pushing the older one away — it never felt real for him.

It still felt like a dream that he was here in London in a sudden.

It still felt like a dream that he was chasing for him so suddenly.

It still felt like a dream that he was taking him to the soccer match of his dream — regardless of how hard it was to purchased the tickets.

It still felt like a dream — those touches — those lingered hand — those kisses —

Was that even real?

Was that not just a spect of all of the wishes and dreams that he always thinking for upon his unconscious mind whenever he saw his Khun Phi?

Because it was never felt real, how could P’Mew suddenly standing right in front of his new campus that he himself barely familiar with?

 

As they arrived at the South West London, they were taking a short walk from Fulham Broadway tube station from London Victoria, they walking through the enclosing artisanal restaurants, bars, cinemas and green spaces; passing through the Stamford Bridge. In all honesty, even though his campus was relatively humble and not to grandeur and big, he was grateful that the location were pretty good and he could take a walk to various local attraction, even if he barely have time to discover them nowadays. There will be plenty time to do so, so he never hurried down to ticked up the list. Also, Gulf was pretty fond of the romanesque architectural of the relatively small but well equipped campus that was used to be a church.

“I heard that your school was located near Chelsea FC Stadium Tours and Museum,” Mew suddenly said as they walked into the gate of his campus.

“That was about right, we passed through Stamford Bridge earlier, it was where the stadium and museum was located,” Gulf replied lightly.

The older one nodded with pouted mouth, “I guess you haven’t take the tours yet?”

“Nope,” He shrugged. “Haven’t got the time to do so.”

“Should we go there later~” The older pondered, which made Gulf side eyeing him.

“Phi, seriously. We barely had enough time to go to the airport after my class, you see,” He scolded the older one.

“Uhhhhh, Gulf, the professor would be in the class within seconds,” First suddenly speak out and showing an apologetic smile to P’Mew.

Gulf nodded and warned the older one, “Phi, we’ll be in very small class and we’ll be having a 1 on 1 session with my professor since we have to submit our very first rough drafts.” He furrowed his eyebrows to the older one, “So. No. Sneaking. In. Okay? Don’t become such an embarrassment, I have to attend this school for the next 2 years, I don’t want to be the center of attention.”

“All right, I will be probably waiting at the library, okay?” He patted the younger one’s head with such fondness before bid them goodbye as they went to the class. “Good luck on your study!”

 

 

After he waived the students, Mew take a walk around the campus. It was quite nice, though, and Mew could understand why it considered to be one of the top Film School in the world. The classrooms and editing suites are equipped with the latest and well maintained audiovisual software and hardware, providing the student with the best learning environment for lessons ranging from screenwriting to producing and more.
 
The university also provided the latest and a very wide range of equipments, cameras, lens, grip gear, lighting, mounts, and sound such as Super 16mm ARRI SR3 and 416 camera kits including Zeiss Distagons; an ARRI Alexa kit with Zeiss CP2 Lenses and a Sony FS7. Not to mention, they also have cinema with a Sony 4K digital projector and Cambridge Audio 7.1 Surround Sound with Subwoofer, where student would screen their graduation film here, as well as attend regular film screenings and masterclasses with industry professionals. The student room, library, and cantine also clean and well maintained. The student would definitely hone their practical filmmaking skills here.

On top of that, the producer really liked the revitalized building. It may still maintaining its church architectural building from the outside, but it was pretty modern and sleek in the inside, even though they still maintaining the romanesque details here and there as the focal points. Mew then walked into the modern library, and searching through books or films that would be hard to be found home. He then decided to picked up a book regarding Francis Ford Coppola’s early works before The Godfather and a couple of other books. As he took a seat and read the books in the air conditioned room for probably a couple of hours, he was surprised because someone tapped him from behind.

“Excuse me, Sir, are you Mew Suppasit?”

“Uh, yes?” Mew confusedly looking at the Chinese ascendant girl with long sleek hair.

“Ah, I knew it!! Uh, could you perhaps sign here, sir?” She suddenly offered her phone case and permanent marker. “I—uh, never expected that I would be seeing you here, therefore I didn’t bring my copy of your movie.”

Mew nodded, and signed it silently, though he was still confused because he was never expecting that anyone would know him here. Well... not everyone would take a notice on who was behind a movie, except for maybe the director. Especially when he was a foreigner, when he realized that in Asia, people would only considered Japanese and Korean movie to be the leading in filmmaking...

“May I ask, how could you know me?” He gave the phone case and permanent marker back.

“Ah, I was always interested in Foreign Movie categories in every awarding events.... Also, I followed your girlfriend, the actress? Mai Davika? So, when I knew that you guys would be here in London to represented your movies, I was very excited because I rooted for your movie,” She smiled cutely.

“Ah, thank you so much for loving our movie,” Mew bowed a bit, since he never expect this encounter so suddenly.

“May I ask why are you here? I didn’t know that you would be at this college? Is Mai Davika also coming here?”

“Uh, actually... I’m here to see my friend...”

The library door was suddenly opened, showing his Nong that took a peek from outside and walked down to him, “Phi, I’m done, let’s go back to the hotel.”

Mew wai the girl politely and said that he should get back first, and the girl nodded and thanked him for his time, didn’t realized that Gulf eyeing the girl from head to toe.

“Who was that, Phi? You’re really good at making new friends, aren’t you?”

“Well, I never expected that I would be meeting a fan here, when I barely had any in Thai,” The older one chuckled lightly.

Gulf just nodded silently, still eyeing the girl from the corner of his eyes. Was this girl his junior or senior here?

After the older one put back the books before they get back, the younger one kept his silence along the way to the hotel. Only giving him occasional annoyed huffed when Mew told him that his school were great and all.

“Should I take another degree here~?” Mew pondered a bit.

“Seriously, Phi, just how much degree that you need in your entire life," The younger one replied with a rather harsh tone.

“Why shouldn’t I? Us humans never should stopped learning, you see.”

Gulf was still oddly annoyed and only rolled his eyes when he heard him saying that.

“Whatever, maybe you could gain more fans here...” The slightly tanned boy didn't realized that he snapped a bit at his Khun Phi.

As much as Mew being dense, he only chuckled when the younger one acted like this. He quickened his steps to match Gulf’s, and hooked his chin on his shoulder while he back hugged him, “Say, what did I do wrong this time?”

“Nothing,” The younger one insisted, still with a harsh tone.

“Are you sure?”

“I’m sure.”

“What if I told you that I want to take another degree here to be closer with you?”

“Don’t be ridiculous, Phi.”

“I’m not.”

“Whatever, you won’t listen to me, anyway,” The younger one huffed annoyedly.

“Why should I listen to you when you’re also being ridiculous?” He raised his eyebrows.

“What again, this time, Phi?”

“Just admit that you’re being jealous earlier, Nong.”

“Who’s being jealous?” Gulf was even more annoyed at the accusation.

“Are you being serious right now?” The older one chuckled and buried his head on the nook of Gulf’s shoulder from behind.

“It tickles, Phi.”

“It’s 4 hours before my flight, Gulf... and we will be separated once I checked in my baggage in 2 hours. Do you seriously don’t want to say anything to me right now?”

Gulf pondered a bit and replied, “I’ll be missing you, Phi.”

“That’s it?”

“What else do you want me to say?”

“I don’t know, don’t you want us to date?”

“You just want me to get me back to your life, right? Then, I’m here, not going anywhere.”

“Gulf.... here let’s take a seat here while we’re waiting for our train.”

The younger one nodded and took a seat at one of the bench in the underground station.

“Why you still being unsure and skeptical with my feelings?”

“I.... I don’t know, Phi," He took a sigh. "It’s still fees very sudden. I mean, who knows, right? Perhaps you only feel confused about your own feelings because I was suddenly gone? I don’t want to forced my feelings to you.”

“You didn’t forced anything to me.”

“Still. For me. It is. It feels like you would totally do anything, even accepting my feelings just to get me back into your life. It doesn't sound quite right.”

“You do know that you just couldn’t forced feelings into someone, right?”

“It’s still feels very unreal, Phi,” He insisted. “I’m already getting used to have unrequited feelings, and know suddenly you claimed that you’re feeling quite the same to me. Who knows if one day you would wake up so suddenly and all the feelings gone again?”

“Gulf...” Mew reached for the younger’s hand and kissed the back of his hand. “Couldn’t we at least try?”

“What if, we tried, and it didn’t worked out, Phi? We may never talk to each other again afterwards.”

“What if I would do anything to make sure that it would work out?”

“Phi, I’m being rational here—,”

“Do you actually being rational when you were falling for me?”

“I—,”

The older one cut through his word by kissing him softly this time, that was still made the younger one to feel dazed afterwards.

“Because I’m not,” Mew insisted, locking his eyes with the younger one to make sure that he actually get it this time. He leaned back into the bench and entwined their fingers together as the train was coming. Through all of the bickering, sulking, pushed and pulled game, deep inside they realized how much their time limits left, the long distance that would be separating them, and it would only increased their doubts and insecurities. Nevertheless, they also knew that they wouldn’t want to let go of each other’s hands again.

Through the blurry times of the times where they prepared to go to the airport, they still held each other’s hand unconsciously. Until the time when it was the final call of their flight, when Gulf had to hugged and bid farewell to each of the guest — P’Mai kissed both of his cheeks, Gulf afraid that her lipstick would stained his cheeks — his breath hitched when it was P’Mew’s time. He just buried down his head on the older one’s chest silently as the older one patted his hair in assurance. Like he was trying to say, ‘I’m not going way too far’.

“Let’s try from today onwards, okay?”

Gulf just nodded weakly in his embrace, unseen from anyone’s views, as the rest of them give them the space that they needed. Sometimes they forget that between them, silent understanding worked even better than actual words. As Gulf inhaled the last whiffed of Mew’s scent that he never knew that he would missed that much, he bid his farewell in a cracked voice, “Good bye, Phi. Have a safe flight. Call me when you landed, okay?”

The older one leaned down and kissed on top of his head, then moved to kissed his forehead softly, “I will be back before you realized, okay? Be careful on your way back, okay?” He caressed the younger one’s cheeks for one last time before he kissed his lips softly in farewell.

The younger one just nodded obediently, trying to soak in the last remain of warmth from their entwined hands as they let go of each other.

 

 

 

 

 

A loud sighed being heard in the filming set that would started within an hour. It was a bright morning near the Siam Center where P’Mame team would be taking shoots of a date scene from How to Change. It was pretty hard to get a regulation to shoot a film here, therefore they need to shoot it in weekdays, and most importantly not in peak hours, so it wouldn’t disturbed visitors of the shopping mall.

“What’s with that loud sigh again, P’Mew???” Mild snapped, he was so stressful because the shoot needed to be done within 3 hours.

“He haven’t replied my messages yet....” The older one pondered and took another sigh.

“I swear to God, P’Mew — if I knew that you would be this annoying once you already got Gulf, I wouldn’t even rooting for you,” He rolled his eyes annoyedly.

“Why you are being this cruel??”

“First of all, it’s still 2am in London, he would probably still asleep, you know ; and second—, “ Mild grumbled annoyedly and snapped again, “— you’re not even a part of our team, Phi — were you only coming here to makes me even more stressful????”

“Anyway, if you’re considering to come back to our team, we will be welcoming you anytime, Mew,” P’Mame chuckled while she inspecting the actors' makeup being brushed by the makeup artist.

“No, thank you, P’Mame... I’m just here to wait for a meeting near here within an hour...” Mew let out an polite laugh at the author.

“Don’t push him, P’Mame,” Mild huffed. “He wouldn’t even dare to take this project because of Gulf. The lovesick person that he is...” Mild shook his head.

“So, you’re now with Gulf...?”

Mew just let out a toothy smile to P’Mame without actually replying and continue to annoyed Mild.

“I know that he often call you more than to me, Ai’Mild, just told him to reply to me...”

“P’Mew, seriously, it’s still 2am there!!!” Mild nearly slapped him with the script because he was that stressful of his works. “If you weren’t going to help with the shoot, just go everywhere but here.”

The older one pouted and decided to stayed silent as he open his laptop to finish some of his left over paper work from yesterday. He also checked his phone once in a while and devastated when he realized that the notification from a certain Nong that he expected haven’t come yet. Well, Mild was right. He should act like his age. It’s still 2am there. But he knew Gulf would often take a sleep at 4am especially when the next day is his day off. Well, be reasonable, Suppasit Jongcheveevat, he might’ve have a morning class today.

 

Sigh.

 

The things is, he never ever been in long distance relationship and it really killed him inside. Especially when he was always been the clingy type to his partners. Like, if he had time he would’ve tried to picked up them on the way home, or accompany them to their office in the morning. Even if they were both busy, he always tried to make time for them. And a lack of time to meet each other wouldn’t be such a boundaries since his partners always been in a same city as him, and he would try to make it up once he was free. However, now.... not only his schedule barely matched with Gulf’s, they also in a great distance that he couldn’t passed through within just a couple of hours. It irked him that it’s seems like he couldn’t do more for the younger one.

Should he considered to take another degree again....

No, Mew. Gulf would be mad if you left your work just to run for him. Ok. Think calmly....

Now, that he remembered so suddenly... the younger one’s birthday would be in 2 months.....

“Should I just booked ticket there for his birthday?” He didn’t realized that he questioned himself out loud, making the young director heard of his words even if he currently checked the right angle and lighting with the director of photography.

“Seriously, P’Mew? When you’re just coming back from London 2 weeks ago?” Mild tsk-ed. “Okay, I had to pay my bet to Tong, then...”

The older one ignored him, focusing on browsing through Gulf’s winter break schedule and the plane tickets. Well, since his birthday will be in early December... he would still be busy with school as his winter break would be on late December.... Well, he would try to asked the younger one when will he be having his exam, as he also didn’t want to disturbed his exam week. If it happened during the exam preparation, he could’ve help him with his studies and tasks...

“P’Mew please do checked for your own work schedule also. Nong would be mad if you abandoned his work, you know.”

Right, okay. Mew chanted on his head as he opened his schedule calendar. Be an irresponsible adult that Gulf would’ve proud of, Mew Suppasit.

 

 

 

 

 

What he never expected, was the fact that virus outbreak suddenly happened. At first, everyone including himself thought that the virus would be ended within 1-2 months, however it worried him that the pandemic wouldn’t end anytime soon. How about his plan to surprise Gulf on his birthday????

“I know right, Phi? This COVID-19 virus is really dangerous, several soccer players infected already,” The younger one pouted as he worked on his written essay.

It was one of their routine to have video call when they both have time, and today was the day where he had to discussed several things with both Tong and Mild in the small rented office, therefore both of them mindlessly watching the love birds and giving an occasional replies when they wanted.

Mew just nodded and asked of how his essay was going while in fact this pandemic was killing him. The fact that Thai Government want to close international border immediately because the case keep rising everyday...

“The essay’s went pretty fine, I already made the outlined topic last week, so it went pretty well,” The younger one nodded through the touch screen.

“However, Phi, I didn’t expect that the government here also considering to have lockdown soon,” He frowned. “My professor said that there are probabilities that the class and exams for the next month would be in online format.”

That, when Mew gulped down the bitter taste of reality. If both of their country will be closed to each other, how could they meet in anytime sooner?

“Really, Gulf?” Mild asked in a passing as he wanted to take some papers near Mew, and suddenly he snorted. “I initially didn’t want to break the surprise — but— your Khun Phi already bought a plane ticket to surprising you on your birthday, you know. With this condition... then... will the airlines refunded your ticket, Phi?”

At this point Mew really wanted to smacked Mild’s head. However the sound of laughter from the screen made him put his focus back on the screen.

“It’s okay, Phi,” The younger one chuckled cutely. “You don’t have to make such an effort. It’s just my birthday. Just make sure to call the airlines asking for refund, okay? I will help you if you’re confused with the terms and condition.”

“Gulf... it’s not ‘just your birthday’...,” The older one sulked into the screen which only made Gulf chuckled more.

“It’s okay, really. I suppose that I could come back on your birthday? How about that?” He answered with a wide smile.

“Really? You could do that?”

“Well, I also wished that the virus would be gone by that time... but I suppose that I could go back because I have Thai passport, they still let Thai residence to go back to Thai. Also, I already discussed with my professor that I wanted to develop my thesis ideas to make it a part of our series. Therefore, I really had to back to Thailand because I want to worked on my thesis back at home with you guys,” He smiled at his Khun Phi and assure him that he will definitely be back by February.

“Really?” Mew started to have hope but didn’t want to feel hopeful enough. Well, if could be helpful, he would be hoping that his ticket wouldn’t get cancelled for December.

“I already discussed my thesis with P’Tong, and he agreed that it would be suitable for our series,” The younger one nodded excitedly. “The topic was pretty sensitive, but since it barely discussed in our local movie, I think it would be pretty interesting.”

“Yeah, we’re considering to write a couple of stories regarding ‘loss’. The loss of a person when she was left at the wedding isle... the loss of a person when they lost their babies that they always longed for...” Tong replied as he continue to typed on his own laptop.

“Right, since we had to make inter-disciplinary topics on our thesis, I decided to wrote psychological effect on ‘loss’ ; both me and P’Tong agreed that it would still be suitable with our series, so.... I think it’s only fitting that we could make it as a part of our series,” The younger one nodded again, making his fluffy hair bouncing cutely. Damn, how Mew wished that he could reached through the screen and ruffled through his Nong’s hair affectionally.

“Why you told Tong first and not me?” He faked a pout to the younger one.

“Phi— please. P’Tong is the main scriptwriter of the series,” The younger one rolled his eyes. “Also, you never asked.” He raised his eyebrows to his Khun Phi, challenged him. The older one only shrugged playfully.

“But, anyway... I never expect that the series would changed its path continuously,” Tong replied from the other side. “At first... it was focusing on the classic, nostalgic, love song. And then, it changed a bit when you decided to make it as a medium to tell your unrequited love to P’Mew, and then suddenly it focusing on the psychological effect of the failed romance and loss... Well, we still have to think of the classic songs for this episode to make a silver linings between each episodes, Gulf, so the viewers wouldn’t be confused as it went allover the place,” As the scriptwriter mindlessly babbling on his thoughts, he didn’t realized that he made both of the couple that currently having a video call freeze.

“I’m sorry, what?” Mew asked confusedly.

“P’Tong—,” The younger one trying to keep his calm.

“Is the first episode depicted your unrequited love for me, Gulf?”

“I’m sorry, what, Phi?” Gulf frowned and waived to the screen as if to make sure the signal were okay. “I think my connection went really bad so suddenly.”

“Really, Gulf, the first episode is practically about you and me?? And you’re freaking made me acted on it?!”

I think the landlord restarted the wi-fi modem or something... I’m sorry, Phi, I couldn’t hear you. We’ll talk later okay? Bye bye!” The younger one waived into the screen and suddenly the video call went off.

There was a long beat of silence in the room until Mild snorted and coughed lightly.

“What was that, again?” Mew tried to checked if his hearing was right to the scriptwriter.

The scriptwriter just look at him with a flat face, without any emotion and said calmly, “Just pretend that I’ve never said anything that you think I was saying earlier.” He give the older one a professional nod before he went back to his laptop.

 

 

 

Fuck.

 

Fuck, fuck, fuck, P’Tong, fuck.

 

Now he had to make endless excuses whenever P’Mew had to bring up that the first episode was all about him. Be smart, Ai’Gulf, just freaking make that 1001 excuses!!! He just sighed dejectedly because he knew that his Khun Phi would pushed him over and over again about this.

 

 

Sigh.

 

 

Well, how about their first month as a couple? Turned out, there was no any big difference when he was still being close friends with Khun Phi and now. Like, there are no big adjustments to be made. They were already comfortable with each other to begin with. Well, if you counted the endless sudden cheesy flirt that the older one made, that was maybe one of a few differences between their relationship as a childhood friend and as a couple.

However, the slightly tanned boy couldn’t deny that after their endless bantered and avoidance before their relationship, it really did feel nice to be back in the same rhythm again, to talk to his Khun Phi again every single day, to have him back again in his life — probably in even better state even though there was currently in a huge distance as for now. It made him chuckled when he remembered his Khun Phi’s flustered face when P’Mild outed his secret plan to surprised him on his birthday — well, that was so P’Mew. His Khun Phi loves surprises, loves special events and birthdays, and it made him giggled internally that now he would be making that effort for him. Things that he would never dare to dreaming of before. Well, as best friends they also love to surprised each other during birthdays, but not to this extent.

What amused him the most was the fact that the ever so clingy Mew Suppasit Jongcheveevat willing to have a long distance relationship. His Khun Phi never had one, and probably never thought to have one, because it will take a lot on effort on him. Therefore it surprised the younger one that he was willing to do so for him. Whenever he was with his lover, P’Mew was a man of skin-ship. Hell, he even could barely keep his hand on himself during his last couple of days here. And he couldn’t believe how his P’Mew would do a long distance relationship for him. As for Gulf Kanawut himself? He had a 22 years of pitiful unrequited love with his childhood friend on his résumé — please never doubt his perseverance when it come to love and relationship, especially when he practically just living a dream that he never thought would finally become a reality.

 

Suddenly his phone buzzed, giving a notification of new messages.

 

Khun Phi 🐼: Nong????
Khun Phi 🐼: Explanation, please????
Khun Phi 🐼: *sad panda stickers*

 

Okay, he knew that his P’Mew really hate it when he replied to him late when he knew the younger one currently wake up, but as he chuckled amusedly once again, he knew that this massage could wait to be replied later.

Chapter Text

“Chai, Phi, I already went through the immigration gate and I will wait for my baggage first, okay?”

As he ended the call, he took a breather at the familiar airport. Honestly, it really feels liberating now that the slightly tanned boy already arrived at his safe place. Well, London was great and all, but if he had to choose, he would definitely choose his hometown. His hometown will always be lovely in his eyes despite all of the flaws in every aspects. The most important thing for him, it was where everything he loves exist. Well, maybe except for his favorite soccer team. Nevertheless, still, he couldn’t wait to meet his mom, dad, sister, his Khun Phi, Chopper, all of his friends and to eat all of his favorite food...

Speaking of— damn, he forgot to call Khun Mae that he already arrived. Right after he found his baggage at the conveyor belt, he immediately called his Mom and after the third ring, he could hear her lovely voice.

“Yeah, Khun Mae, I already arrived. Yeah, yeah, P’Mew and P’Mild will picked me up.... I already picked up my baggage and currently walking to the arrival gate... Uh—,”

He suddenly felt that he was engulfed in warmth and familiar scent that he longed for. As the love of his life smiling endearingly at him, the younger one mouthed, “Wait, it’s Khun Mae.” The older one nodded understandingly and break the hug to picked up Gulf’s baggage.

“Umm, yeah, Khun Mae. It’s okay, I will see you later at home with Khun Phor and P’Grace, okay? Bye bye,” As he cutted off the phone, the older one immediately kissed him in the cheek and hug him tightly.

“Phi— I’ve been through 11 hours of flights. I must’ve been really smelly,” He tried to pushed away the older one.

“No, you’re not,” He snuggled into the crook of the younger one’s neck even further.

“Phi... it tickles,” The younger one chuckled.

The older one leaned back and trying to look up into his boyfriend’s face closely. “Oh my God, I couldn’t believe it’s already been 4 month,” Mew sighed heavily, and Gulf tiptoed a bit to give him a peck — just how tall was his Khun Phi's sole shoes today?

“Miss you, Phi,” He smiled until his doe eyes were gone on his curly hair that were styled down, and Mew died a little bit inside upon seeing this.

“Your hair already grow a little bit too longer, isn’t it?” Mew carefully inspecting the younger one’s hair that grow so long, nearly closing his eyes.

“The last time I cut it... maybe before my final term? I have no time afterwards,” He shrugged a bit. “Where is P’Mild, anyway?”

“He’s waiting in the car because we couldn’t found any empty lot earlier.”

“Let’s go, don’t make him wait any longer,” He held the older one’s hand to go to the entrance gate to search for P’Mild. As he seen the familiar car, he waved his hand to the older director.

“You guys, seriously, where have you been? The security been asking me to move the car because you guys taking so long inside,” He snapped annoyedly, but still helping the younger one to put his baggage inside the back of the car.

“I really miss your blabbering voice, Phi,” Gulf chuckled and hugged the older one.

“Hhhh, you stupid kid,” He might sound nagging but Gulf could hear his voice shaken a bit, anyway.

“Hurry, go inside the car, I don’t want to hear the security make a fuss with us again,” Mild pushed the younger one inside the car.

As all of them already went inside the car and Mild drove away from the airport, he never stopped to talk and spilling things to Gulf, “You know what, Nong, your Khun Phi right here, initially wanted to bring an entire parade to welcome you.”

“Ai’Mild—“

“But, Thank God the government still give us the regulation for not making a huge crowd during pandemic. Also, Thank God, Tong wouldn’t want to sacrifice his dignity to be a part of the parade.”

The youngest in the car snorted immediately and leaned forward to his Khun Phi who took a seat in front of him, “Really, Phi, you don’t have to do that.” He put his teasing smile at the older one who looked at him with annoyance.

“Guys, guys, guys, I’m still right here, let me live, please,” Mild reminded them. “Ah, anyway, Tong sent his sorry that he couldn’t picked up you, Gulf, he had to submit his last draft of thesis in the university.”

“Ah, okay. I will send him a message later, I guess.”

“Anyway, are you way too tired to have dinner with my family tonight? Or should we have it tomorrow?”

“Aow, so suddenly, Phi?”

“My mom already prepared your favorite food,” His Khun Phi already put his gummy smile.

“Uhhhh, maybe tomorrow, Phi. I think Khun Mae would want me to be at home all day today,” Gulf nodded after he took time to think a bit.

“Okay, I understand, I will tell my mom later,” He couldn’t resist to kissed the younger one’s cheek again, which of course made Mild let out a loud noise.

“Seriously, you guys? I’m already kind enough to drive you guys at home. Be kind to me, please.”

“Right, Mild, sorry,” Mew snickered apologetically.

As they arrived to his home, he immediately wai his mom politely and hugged her tightly. Her mom tenderly ruffled his hair affectionally. “Have you eaten yet? I’ve already prepared your favorites.”

Gulf nodded even if he already ate at the airplane. He wouldn’t missed his mom’s homemade cooking for the world. She also asked Mild and Mew to eat together with them, which they declined politely because they figure that the Traipipattanapong must have want to spend their private family time together.

 

 

 

“Chopper, Chopper, Chopper,” He patted the small dog softly and raised him to his embrace when he jumping over. “Aow, you’re still remember me, right, good boy? I’m already afraid that you will forget me.” Then the slightly tanned boy let the dog licked his face.

Though his boyfriend —boyfriend!— asked him to have dinner with family, of course he had to kidnapped him the moment both of them were free. His Khun Phi were currently busy reorganizing his action figures that were just bought recently since he haven’t got time to put it at home due to his work. He owned a condo right in the center of the city, and whenever he had a lot of deadlines, most likely he would just stay there because it was tiring to drive to his family’s home since it was much farther.

“What figures that you bought this time, Phi?” He asked lightly as Chopper playing with his treats on his lap.

“Well, yeah... this and that. They recently released new limited action figures for Attack on Titan... also the limited edition Funko Pop for One Piece...”

His Khun Phi always been crazy with anime and action figures since they were small. Although he always trying to make Gulf learned for it, it was miraculous enough that he could remember all of One Piece’s characters at this point. If the pandemic weren’t happening, he must be already gone to Tokyo this year to picked up a lot of new action figures for himself there.

“Nong Gulffffff!!!!!!!!” Suddenly Jom went inside and bring something like freshly baked cookies, probably another batch that she wanted them to try before selling it on her cookies shop. She put the plate of soft baked cookies carefully and hugged him. “How are you??? How was London??? P’Mew, how could you rearranging your toys when we had Nong here???”

“London was great, but it indeed feels great to be at home at last. I missed Khra Paow, Phi," Gulf smiled at her. 

“Only Khra Paow??? Not me??? Not even P’Mew??? You have no idea how he always let out a loud sigh whenever he’s been missing you, Gulf,” The pretty girl folded her hands with high judgement to her older brother. “Which was why I didn’t understand why he was being busy by himself when you’re finally here.”

Gulf let out a chuckled when he practically went through a storm inside. Did his Khun Phi already told his family that they were dating? Umm, or it could be just ‘missing’ his best friend right? The thing that P’Jom was assuming earlier? Right...

“I’m done, though. What’s wrong with wanting to have a tidy space with my figures collection?” The older one took a seat right beside Gulf, which immediately made Chopper jump into the owner’s lap instead.

“Well...” Jom raised her eyebrows when she saw Gulf avoiding her older brother’s stare. “Anyway, Mom said dinner would be done within an hour, just eat my cookies if you’re hungry, okay?” As she stood up and quitted the living room, she winked to them, “Anyway, it’s the newest flavour, cookies and cream and red velvet. Do give me feedback later at dinner okay, guys?”

“What’s with her again, why she went in and out really quickly...” Mew asked confusedly.

Gulf might know what she did that, therefore he was trying to search in his Khun Phi’s face.

“What’s wrong with you, Nong?”

“Phi... do you perhaps...” He was trying to ask, but somehow afraid to face it if his hunch were come out true. “Nah, nevermind.”

“What is it?” The older one leaned forward curiously, which made the younger one leaned back in defense.

“Phi, it’s your house, I don’t want to be seen by your family,” He tried to pushed the older one away.

“So what? Chopper’s here. He’s also a part of my family,” Instead, the older one leaned forward even further, challenging him.

“Ai’Phi...” Gulf tsk-ed and rolled his eyes annoyedly, which just considered as an opportunity for the producer to give him a short peck in the lips and give him a gummy smile afterwards.

“P'Mew...,” Gulf frowned and picked Chopper up to his face to help him put a rather useless defense from his Khun Phi. “What if P’Jom saw that???”

“So, what? Not that she didn’t have any boyfriend...”

“She knew? You told her? About us?”

“Huh?” Mew pondered a bit. “I haven’t though... also, she never asked,” He shrugged both of his shoulders.

Gulf let out a breath of relief that he didn’t realized that he held, “Thank God, I just thought...”

“What’s wrong? Do you want me to tell her?”

“No, no, no, just not at the moment, no.”

“Why not?” The older one pouted at him.

“You also haven’t told her or any of your own family members, right? Just let them be,” The younger one leaned forward to give him a short kiss which made the older one smile instantly.

“I can already imagine how both of our entire family would make a fuss around it, especially when the neighborhood aunties are very nosy,” Gulf huffed and rolled his eyes. “Just let me breath a moment.”

The older one chuckled when he heard his boyfriend’s reasoning, “Really? You thought we will be the talk of the town?”

“Who knows, right?”

Mew just laughed instantly and rest his head on top of his boyfriend’s shoulder, “Just let them be, they would probably only talk about it around 2 weeks at maximum.”

“Ai’Phi, really. I had enough, I don’t want to hear those aunties’ annoying voice buzzing through my ears,” Gulf shuddered.

“What if,” Mew leaned back and locked his eyes to him. “What if you just stay at my condo during those 2 weeks?”

The younger one gulped down and trying to ignore all of the implications because his Khun Phi’s words would meant a lot of different things in his head, which made him reddened up to his ears. Gulf immediately shook his head, “What are you thinking, Phi? They will talk about us even further.” He pouted and pushed the older one away, which made Mew laughed again. “Also. I had to be back again, perhaps, in 6 months, Phi. Let me breath a bit, will you? These thesis already made me frustrated enough as it is."

“Alright, I already signed the contracts with all of the investors and sponsors that would be interested in our work last week. I hope it would help you lessen the stress,” The older one hanging both of his arms on Gulf’s shoulders.

“Thank you, Phi, it was more than enough,” He’s smiling brightly and rest his head under his Khun Phi’s chin, basking into the scents that he missed the most, “I think I will meet P’Tong tomorrow to discussed the further development for the script.”

They were both startled when the sound of knocking was heard, and Gulf trying to pushed himself away from Mew awkwardly, which only made the older one laughed amusedly. It was the housemaid of the Jongcheveevat, giving them a notice that the dinner was ready.

 

 

 

“Nong Gulf, how have you been, my darling? Is London kind enough for you?” Aunty Jong kissed his cheeks in adoration, she was pretty busy in the kitchen before, hence the reason why Gulf just had the time to meet her right now. He also wai Uncle Jong politely as he and P’Jom took a seat.

“Yeah, Aunty, it was nice. P’Mew also took me to my favorite team’s soccer match back then,” He put a smile to his favorite Aunty Jong.

“Really? Why haven’t you told me before, Mew?”

“Well... you never asked, Mom,” Mew shrugged and took a seat in one of the seat in the dining table, beside her sister. “It was when I went to the Awarding Event with Mai.”

“Oh, I see. How I wished to be back to London, it’s been years since we were went there, right, Mew?” Aunty Jong pondered a bit and asked Gulf to took a seat as well across Mew.

“Yeah, Mom. But London is still in lockdown, they probably would only accept student like Gulf who still hold a student visa there,” Mew told her Mom.

“Right, Aunty. I also couldn’t get to back here if I’m not holding a Thai nationality passport.”

“Ah, really, it’s such an unfortunate thing, this pandemic,” Aunty Jong let out a sighed and asked them to took their favorite food afterwards. After they ate in silence for a couple of minutes, with Gulf gulping down his favorite Khra Paow, Aunty Jong asked him again, “Ah, anyway, have you found girlfriend there? It’s really been a while since you date anyone, right? Your Mom been worrying about this.”

This was when both of Mew and Gulf choked on their food and hurrying to reach for their water, both Aunty and Uncle Jong asked why they suddenly choked on their food confusedly, whilst Jom just snickered behind her spoon.

“I— uh, still need time to concentrate on my study, Aunty,” Gulf made a lame excuse, the only thing that he could think of after he choked on his food.

“Aow, before, you said that you want to concentrate on your work,” Aunty Jong frowned at him and asked him to take another food from the table. “But, anyway, I had this friend of mine that said that her daughter been looking for a serious boyfriend. Do you want me to introduce you to her, Nong?”

Jom snorted and cover it up with a light coughed as she avoided her Mom and Gulf’s stares.

“Mom—,” Her oldest son put a rather intimidating voice and stare, which scared Gulf.

“What’s wrong, Mew? Don’t you want him to live a happy life with a girlfriend?” Aunty Jong reached for Gulf’s hand and patted it with a huge concern.

“I—uh,” Gulf bite his lips unsurely, not knowing what to reply to his favorite Aunty.

“He already went out with someone, Mom,” Mew locked his eyes with Gulf when he said it, making him reddened up to his neck and ears again. “He just didn’t want to make a fuss, which was why he didn't tell you earlier.”

“Really? Who is it, Gulf? Is she pretty?”

“Uh...” Gulf squeaked and only nodded unsurely.

“Aow, she must be really pretty right? To make you become flustered and shy like this when talking about her,” She patted his hand affectionally. “Bring her here someday, okay? I would love to meet her.”

“And also, perhaps you could introduce my son to someone, Nong, I think it was time for Mew to moved on from Mai. It’s been what — more than half a year already, right?” Uncle Jong asked him with a serious expression, which only he could reply with an awkward smile.

"Uh, yeah, Uncle Jong..."

“It’s okay, my husband, just give him all the time he needed, it was fortunate enough that he already healed and become himself again nowadays... He would definitely date someone again if he already find the right one, I’m pretty sure of that. Right, Mew?” Aunty Jong give a encouraging smile to his son, and suddenly P’Jom excuses herself to the toilet.

 

 

 

 

“Phi, I’m sorry, okay, Phi? Please don’t sulk like this...,” The younger one hooked his chin to the older one’s shoulder and hugged him from behind.

Earlier, right after the dinner, Mew stomped into his room right away which made the rest of the family questioned him confusedly — well, except for maybe P’Jom. Gulf just sighed and excuse himself from Aunty and Uncle Jong and try to looked for their son. He himself would never knew that Aunty and Uncle Jong would acted like that in the dining room. It was miraculous enough that his Khun Phi didn’t flipped out at the dinner table. As he reached the older one’s room, apparently his Khun Phi already pretending to sleep whilst he hugged Chopper tightly. When he walked closer, the small dog that was being friendly and cute to him earlier suddenly jumped and barked at him, as if to protect his owner from a bad person.

“Ai’Chopper, let me talk to P’Mew,” Gulf sighed and try to leaned from above to see his Khun Phi’s face that was facing the wall. 

“Phi? Phiiii, I know you’re not sleeping,” The younger one tried to talk to him several times already, but his boyfriend still not moving, so he gave up and decided to hugged him from behind as he also leaned down on the bed.

“P’Mew..., I’m sorry, okay? I don’t know that Aunty and Uncle would suddenly popped out those random questions...”

He pouted when Chopper continuously barked at him, “Not you too, Chopper.”

“P’Mew...” Gulf tried again and kissed his Khun Phi repeatedly on his cheeks, forehead, and neck for a quite long time, the older one finally turned to his way and let out a loud sigh.

“Do you know that I was nearly flipped out earlier?”

Gulf nodded and linked their fingers softly.

“Do you know how hard it was not to show them that you’re practically mine?”

“I’m sorry, Phi...”

The older one sighed and rest his head on the younger one’s shoulder, hugged him on his waist, “I thought the long distance part were hard enough already, I don’t know that my own family would frustrate me as well.”

“I’m sorry, P’Mew. I will told them myself when I’m ready, okay?” Gulf tried again and leaned forward to kissed his Khun Phi softly. He was a bit nervous when the older one deepened the kiss and slipped his tongue, and it was been several minutes and his Khun Phi started to roamed his hands allover his body and it scared Gulf that he will let out all of the his frustration during their long distance relationship here, “Phi— we’re at your family's house.”

“So what?” Mew clearly looked annoyed.

“Phi....” Gulf pleaded and gave him the puppy eyes. 

The older one sighed at the younger boyfriend, “At least stay here until tomorrow morning.”

Gulf nodded with a cute smile and pecked the older one as they continue to snuggled with each other even if they haven’t cleaned up and changed to their pyjama yet. Oh, Mew silently think. The thing that he would do for his Yai Nong.

 

 

 

 

When Gulf arrived at the office that he quite missed — oh, he just wished that his Khun Phi could rented a bigger one while he was gone— he never expected that P’Tong would invite other people.

“P’Tong? I didn’t know that you would invite P’Ter, P’Boss, and P’Goy here?”

“Nong! You’re here! How are you, Ai’Gulf? How was London?” P’Tong stood up and hugged him.

“I’m fine, London was fine,” He chuckled and wai all of the guests that happened to be the director and scriptwriters that he adored in the nation’s film industry.

“Gulf, nice to meet you, it’s nice to see you again after our insurance project. Mai been talking a lot about you. I didn’t know that you were close?” P’Ter said as he shook Gulf’s hand.

“Well, a lot of things happened, Phi, then we suddenly become close,” Gulf laughed awkwardly at him. “I haven’t got the time to meet P’Mai ever since I was arrived.”

“Initially, she wanted to come, but I forbid her, I’m afraid that the conversation would be far off from scriptwriting if she were here,” The older scriptwriter laughed. “But anyway, I’ve brought the juniors that I’m proud of here... Boss and Goy... you must have already know them, right?”

“P’Boss, P’Goy, I’m a huge fan of your works... My Ambulance and I Told Sunset About You were amazing,” Gulf shook their hands politely.

“You see, since my work were mostly horror movies, and these days I rarely wrote sliced of life movies or series... most of them just for advertisement projects... I think it would be better if you could talk to them since they wrote better stories in sliced of life genre,” P’Ter explained, and Gulf looked back at P’Tong gratefully, he knew that Gulf was a fan of both of them, and it would mean a lot if he could help him on his thesis, even the slightest help and overview from them would meant so much for him.

They started to talked a lot regarding their own experience in scriptwriting, specifically how they wrote two of their latest series. How they keep getting inspired, how to reenact their favorite works, that keep inspire them without being way too similar with their inspiration, their consideration when choosing the right characters and actors, setting the right pace of time without being way too dragging and way too rushed.

“You see, if you’re interested in movie industry, like, you don’t really have to work inside the filmmaking nor the film industry itself, people would notice that our latest series were greatly inspired by Luca Guadagnino’s Call Me By Your Name, right? Though we kept saying that our stories were taken from the lead actors’ true story when they were a teenagers, but it was pretty obvious, with how we execute things, the colour grading that we took, the chosen angle from DOP... the unwritten and unsaid words from the character’s eyes... However, in terms of taking and soaking an inspiration, you have two options for yourself to took. To make it better, or make it even worse. And I chose the first one. Even if I knew that it would be such a challenge, and the results could be ended up reserved greatly and being the latter option... and everyone could bashed us because we’re being a rather worse copycat of the original one... However, if we do it right, if we keep our own soul and the moral of the story that we’re insisting to show the messages to the viewers, it could. There are literally millions of movies in the world, these days.. there are hardly a true original one. New stories were most likely were inspired by several good stories, right? Just never let go from your own signature and never stopped learning, I guess, Nong.”

“I was lucky enough that I was assisting a great director and scriptwriter back then during my first work when I worked for Hormones, a great mentor could lead you a long way for sure. Therefore, since you have the privilege to learn at one of the most top filmmaking school in the world... please learn as much as you can there... and help to raise our industry afterwards,” P’Boss nodded to him after a rather long talk about his experience. “Trial and error were definitely needed, I myself didn’t become the way I am today in a glimpse of time. It took a lot of time. Your first work as a director were pretty good. Now that you have the freedom to work with your own idea of stories, especially now that you’re currently studying in London, I’m sure it would be better from your first work.”

“Well, as for me, even if you only see me as a funny girl in series and varieties... you might notice that I’m interested in sliced of life stories, right?” P’Goy, who’s just 4 years older to Gulf told him. “Well, I also fortunate enough that P’Boss also helped me to co-written all of my works... But here’s the thing, Nong,” She leaned forward and locked his eyes with Gulf’s.

“People love a relatable conversation. Well, maybe most of people looking for entertainment when they browsing through television, cinema, and through their phone, right? However, once they saw something that would be highly relatable with their life — they will stopped and see your work. When depicting a romance in a sliced of life genre... especially when you want to write a psychological trauma from someone... you have to wrote the unspeakable truth, the raw truth that a lot of people would be avoid in real life, the harsh reality... because at the and of the day, no matter how you like it or not... that’s the reality of life. And it’s our work to depict it in the form of movies. Life, isn’t always about rainbow and sunshine, right? I even cried when I wrote I Told Sunset About You, perhaps because I could feel the raw emotion of the characters even if I’m the one who wrote it. Therefore, you have to also put a lot of that raw emotion in your work. Well, great research about theory was great, but it would be plain without any emotion, right? If I didn’t work together P’Boss who also wrote and directed it, it probably wouldn’t ended up to be as good, because P’Boss also give that raw emotion when he lead the project — when he direct the shoot. Everything matters.”

“Aow, Goy, I didn’t know that you could talk this serious,” P’Tong, who took a seat right beside Gulf chuckled.

“I’m just a good actress, Phi, I could literally pulled any persona that I wanted to show,” She played with her long hair smugly and hold her chuckle. “But, anyway, Gulf, what I’m trying to say is, there’s always a market for everything. Even if you considered your series to be a niche one, look at our work. I would say, it would be considered niche as well. Nevertheless, no matter how niche our works, even if our series didn’t have as much viewers as other mainstream, feel-good cliché lakorn, we were grateful enough that there are a lot of people that still loving our work... that get the messages that we want to send to them... because, at the end of the day, people had to admit that through the life, there’s a hardships that needed to be faced. While people tend to write a love story about someone that meet each other and fell in love and happily ever after, in My Ambulance, we depicted how a long term relationship was very draining, and the fact that both of the person involved in the relationship needed to have the endurance, reconciliation, compromise, and endless patience for a relationship to be lasted. It takes two to tango, right? There are no 'happily ever after' in real life. Everyone need to work hard in real life, even in relationship.”

Gulf nodded and took all of the words and encouragement from his seniors in filmmaking seriously. When he showed them their first episode and their rough drafts for the whole season, they also kindly give him notes that he didn’t have to follow the norm to go with 13-episodes like other series. He could cut it short if he didn’t want to make the whole story dragging and he could make it longer if it needed. They also give him notes that you have to find idea from an unseen angle before. It could be something familiar, and the stories that have been told, however, if Gulf and Tong could told the story in different angle, it would be pretty interesting. As they talked to each other a lot, he didn’t realized that the sun has goes down. After he was recharged from all of the much needed opinion and insights, he said goodbye and gave his endless gratitude to P’Tong, P’Ter, P’Boss, and P’Goy, he took a deep breath of the warm early February evening right outside his office. If it were in London, he would be needed at least 3 layers to beat out the cold. As he was seeing his Khun Phi waived for him from a far to picked him up, then it hit him, the words that P’Goy were saying earlier.

 

"There are no 'happily ever after' in real life, right? Everyone need to work hard in real life, even in relationship."

 

“What’s wrong?” P’Mew asked him softly when Gulf suddenly hugged him, because usually Gulf wouldn’t want to show much skin ships in public place.

The younger one just shook his head and said, “Nah, I’m just missing you, Phi.”

Chapter Text

When he said that the past two and a half weeks were mentally draining, it really does. They were probably didn’t do something physically tiring, however, at this point, the younger scriptwriter’s head were nearly exploded. It was started when he and Tong were ambitious enough to finished the script for their 8-episodes series within 2 weeks. It was doable, yes, however, not without the sleep deprived Gulf and Tong that literally annoyed by the sounds and creaks of chairs and tables in the office. Well, Tong was bearable enough with his don’t-give-a-fuck attitude. Though sometimes his over-consumed of caffeine made him jitters a lot, Mew just glad enough that at least he didn’t smoke. Or else, he literally could burned the whole building by accident.

The main problem was with his Yai Nong. Now that they were literally boyfriends, sometimes Mew confused on how to acted around him during his overworked phase. He would rejected him softly when Mew asked him to eat — and during time like this, he usually only lived off those Taiwanese crispy chicken snacks instead of proper food, which of course would worried the older one. However, the older producer also knew that they would ended up fighting with each other if he keep pushing him and nagged at him to eat properly.

He knew that it will be his long awaited birthday in several days, however, he didn’t care enough if the younger one would forget as long as he eat his food. The birthday celebration could be done after their deadline for the last draft of script were done already.

“You see, Phi,” Mild nonchalantly scribbling something to the script as he watching the editors to edit ‘How to Change’, “Why don’t you — I don’t know, forced him to eat in some kinky way or something.”

This got Mew and the editors coughed heavily because of Mild’s words. The director slapped his scripts to the editors to make them focused on their works instead of eavesdropping.

“What the hell, Ai’Mild?!” Mew nearly dropped his bottle of water.

The director just sighed heavily, “Don’t tell me you never thought of that, Phi.” He tsk-ed. “As if I haven’t heard enough from Gulf about your ventures in bed.”

The older producer spluttered his water that he was currently drink and the director annoyedly disgusted with the older ones’s act. He just rolled his eyes and slapped the editors that clearly didn’t do their job properly at the time being. “Well, anyway. I don’t know how you lovers usually do to nagged each other to eat properly and yadda yadda... Perhaps you could try to asked him to stay at your condo until the deadline. It was a rather realistic option rather than him had to sleepover in the office.”

Mew sighed. He knew that once his Nong already settled on something, it was hard to shake his resolved. And apparently he keep insisting that he only will go home when he want to take fresh clothes from his house, because their office, albeit small, still have sofa bed and a small shower because the reason why Mew considered to rent the office to begin with, was because he knew that they will often staying overnight to worked on their deadlines. Most of filmmakers ended up doing this no matter where they worked at, it was an unhealthy habit that they couldn’t avoided, so the least that he could do was at least to make sure that he gave the bare minimum of facilities so that his workmates would still live like a normal human being during the tight schedule.

“Maybe asked Khun Mae, Phi. Asked for her opinion. You were childhood friends to begin with.”

“Ai’Mild, even Khun Mae told me to reminded him not to make him skipped a meal,” Mew shook his hair frustratingly.

“You know how was him, right. He will eat once he’s hungry. At least he still stuffed himself with those Taiwanese crispy chicken even if it’s not really healthy...” Mild shrugged lightly like a good friend that he is. “But anyway, the audition would be at the fourth week of February, right, Phi? I will put it on my schedule, then, I’m afraid if it will clashed with P'Mame's promotional schedule.”

The older one nodded tiredly, keep trying to worked on his brain on how to nagged the younger one to eat properly without making them ended up fighting with each other.

“I heard P’Mai agreed to play as well?” Mild asked in between of checking the editors’ work. “Yah, don’t make the cut that harsh, give it a smoother transition!!”

“She insisted to acted as the character who got left at the altar.” Mew replied, ignoring Mild’s snapping around at the movie editors. “She said, it was a challenging character that she haven’t got the time to try yet. We already told her that we couldn’t pay her as high as she used to be paid, but she still insisted because she wanted to try that kind of character,” Mew shrugged.

“Wow, how lucky you are, Phi. Still got to have a good relationship with your ex, even made her to be the one who helped you to get Gulf, and even had her to be the actress on both of you guys’ series in discounted price,” Mild shook his head amusedly and listed all of the good deeds that the pretty actress already done for him.

“I know right? Sometimes I would laughed at the absurdity of the universe,” Mew chuckled tiredly. “But anyway, I had to go back to the office and buy the boys lunches, okay? Thank you for your time, Mild.” He patted the younger director’s shoulder gratefully.

“Thank you for serving a new topic of gossips for these boys, Phi,” Mild eyeing the editors tiredly. “You guys, if I happened to hear anything that we talked to each other earlier outside of this room, I will cut your payment.” He snapped and took a sip his coffee afterwards.

“Right, Phi,” The editors gulped down nervously as they went back to their monitors, which made Mew laughed amusedly.

When he got back at the office, he was confused because it was oddly silent and there was no Tong here. He quietly put their food that he bought at the Japanese bento food stalls nearby, and took a seat beside his boyfriend before he asked him, ”Where is Tong?”

“He had to go to the campus again because his professor asked him to make several revisions for his thesis, Phi.”

Mew nodded silently and opened his own lunch, “Are you still not hungry?”

“Uh, later, maybe, I already eat those crispy chicken briefly earlier,” He answered while he still busy typing to his keyboard.

“Seriously? You’re not getting bored of that food? What if it will make your throat sore later?” Mew pouted at his boyfriend worriedly.

“Why are you sounded like Khun Mae, Phi?” He tsked annoyedly.

“Gulf...”

The younger one looked at his boyfriend with annoyance, yet confused when his Khun Phi leaned forward as he offered him chicken katsu with his mouth. Still confused with the entire thing Gulf just obeyed and eat that chicken katsu confusedly. He didn’t stopped frowning and feeling confused even after he gulped down the entire thing, didn’t realized that his Khun Phi was a bit flustered.

“What was that again, Phi?” He asked as he drink his mineral water.

“Some stupid ideas from Mild to make you eat properly,” Mew oddly avoided Gulf’s eyes and it made the younger one snorted amusedly.

“You do aware that most of ‘food play’ were come in the form of dessert, right, Phi? Don’t you feel disgusted when it comes with salty food?” He laughed even harder when the older one choose not to hear any of that and pushed his food to his boyfriend.

“My Mom said not to play with your food, Phi," He keep teasing his boyfriend's act earlier.

“Just... eat,” He said as he try to reach for another box of food for himself and avoided the younger one’s eyes.

Gulf laughter slowing down into a giggle when the older one back into his seat. “Fine, I’ll eat,” He kissed his Khun Phi’s cheeks lightly. “Wouldn’t want to waste my faen’s enormous effort to make me eat properly,” He still giggled over his chicken katsu rice.

“But, anyway, Phi, I think I will be finishing this earlier than I thought it would be,” He said as he took another bite of his chicken. “Do you want something for your birthday?”

“Aow, don’t you know that I prefer surprises?” Mew plopped down his chin on top the palm of his hand.

“I know, but I just don’t want to spend something that I knew that you didn’t ended up use a lot,” He pouted.

“I don’t think anything from you would disappointed me,” The older one raised his eyebrows. “Surprise me.”

“Aow,” Gulf pouted over his food. “Another hard work to be done.”

“You bought me Chelsea vs Liverpool tickets even were not a boyfriend yet... you also bought me endless gifts for my birthday back in December.... Not to mention that you initially wanted to fly to London during my birthday... Just how could I repay you, Phi?” Mew just chuckled upon hearing the younger one’s ponders as he listed the things that he already give to his boyfriend.

“I’ve never hoping to get something back whenever I give those stuff to you, you know,” The older one smiled at the younger director who also a college student as for now. “However, if you’re still insisted... First thing first, just wake up early and go to the temple with me, okay? Accompany me to make my birthday merits,” He kissed his boyfriend’s cheeks lovingly.

 

 

 

 

Gulf always been more of a night owl rather than an early riser. Therefore, when he made an effort to woke up as early as 6am to accompany Mew to make merits for his birthday... It really took a great effort for him to wake up.

“Wake up, Nong~ wake up~”

They spent their night at P’Mew’s condo — well, let’s just count it as his first gift — because Gulf would never dare to let his boyfriend touched him on their family's house, and the younger one just grumbled tiredly and put the pillow on top of his head, didn’t even bother to open his eyes, “Phi— I’m still sleepy.”

“You’re the one that already promised to me,” The older one chuckled amusedly at his younger boyfriend’s childish act.

“Why you have to wake up this early? You promised your mom to meet her at the temple at 10am, right?” The slightly tanned boy stretched his arms lazily.

“We have a lot to be prepared, you see. Hurry up, wake up,” The birthday boy moved to take his towel and fresh clothes out of his closet and walking to he bathroom to take a shower.

“Just how much you have that much of an energy at this early morning, Phi....” The younger director sighed and choose to continue to sleep as he waiting for his boyfriend to take a shower.

After another 15 minutes of sleeps, a cold shower to wake himself up, and wearing a set of clothing that his Khun Phi prepared already, since he said that it was already suitable with today’s lucky colours — a set of crisp white shirts and black pants — he styled his hair a bit as he let his Khun Phi gave him a light make up to freshen his face. Sometimes Gulf think, his boyfriend taking care of him more often than his own mother these days. Well, he never let his mother to take care of his looks daily, though, because Gulf was definitely one of those boys who didn’t bother to checked on his looks and only take what he see first at his closet, which mostly only consisted of black and white jumpers and t-shirts. Just how much of a privilege and power that his Khun Phi had to make him letting the older one to took a great care of his looks.

“What’s wrong?” The older one asked him confusedly when the slightly tanned boy suddenly chuckled. He leaned back to check if Gulf’s hair were styled properly after he put some wax and hairspray it lightly.

“Nothing,” He leaned forward to kissed his boyfriend on the lips. “Just— happy birthday, Phi,” He smiled brightly, which mirrored by the older one, with his gummy smile.

“Let’s go to the temple, my family probably already waiting,” He tangled his fingers with the younger one as he make sure nothing was left in the condo before he went out to the parking lot.

The road was relatively empty given that it was an early morning in weekend. If it was weekdays, there were probably a lot of cars packed up because everyone would go to their office and to the school. However, even if the road was empty, the case wasn’t quite the same as the temple that the Jongcheveevat usually went to at Ayutthaya was pretty packed up, because people also queueing to do their prayer at weekends. It was fortunate enough that Aunty Jong already told the monk a few days earlier that his son want to make his birthday merit today. Also, this was where P’Mew was ordained as monk, and they already went to this temple ever since he was small, the monk already very familiar with the entire family at this point, especially when the Jongcheveevat often went to make their merits here.

Very often, merit-making is done as a group, and it is believed that such shared merit-making will cause people to be born together in next lives. This belief holds for families, friends, communities and even the country as a whole. In all honestly, most likely birthday merit was more of a private thing, since usually friends didn’t attend it except that they were a lovers, therefore, even if they already being friends for years, this was literally the first time they make their merits together at one another’s birthday, which make it quite special for both of them.

They started the ritual to get a set of Sankatana offerings then find a monk in a temple and informed their intention for the merits. As they ceremonially converse in Pali-Sankrit with the monk, he lead them all through the process. After the set is handed over, the monk must slowly pour a small jug of water into a bowl while he was praying for them and finally water a big tree near by.

After they made their prayer and being blessed by the monk, Gulf quietly taking out the cake that he already prepared secretly for his Khun Phi — it was strawberry shortcake, his favorites, Gulf had that talent to secretly hide those cakes and present even if he staying over at his Khun Phi’s place — The entire family were quite surprised when Gulf did this, but they sing the happy birthday song to their son nonetheless. After Mew made his wish and blew the candle on the cake with a really happy expression, Aunty Jong suddenly asked Gulf curiously with a long ponder, “Say, Nong Gulf, I think this this is the first time that you make quite an effort for Mew’s birthday... I don’t even remember that you ever come to his birthday merits before?”

Gulf went totally flustered whilst his Khun Phi just smile amusedly, waiting what the younger one would say to make excuses this time. He took his birthday cake from his boyfriend’s hands, afraid if the younger one would dropped it or something.

A loud sighed being heard from Jom’s way as he hugged Chopper on her chest, “Seriously, Mom, until when that you wouldn’t realized that they were practically date each other? Even Chopper knew because it was very apparent and obvious.” The pretty girl bounced the small dog on her chest, which made him barked softly, “Right, Chopper?”

“Are you guys not kidding me? What Jom said is actually true? Seriously?” Aunty Jong clapped her hands enthusiastically. “Why didn’t you told us before?”

“I, uh—,” Gulf went reddened up to his neck and ears, which made his boyfriend chuckled and caressed his nape to make him more calm, didn’t realized that such act would only confirmed their relationship upon his mother’s eyes.

“Too bad my husband were having a business trip at the Southern, if he were here, he must be really excited as well!” The mother of the Jongcheveevat keep clapping excitedly. “Ah, Gulf! I think we really have to make a short meeting with your Mom regarding all of this!”

“Wait, what?” The younger one went even more flustered, which makes his boyfriend held the small of his back, afraid that he would suddenly dropped or something.

“Mom, just give him a rest already,” Mew chuckled amusedly.

“My son, this is such a great news. The Traipipattanapong must’ve been really delighted as well.” She clapped again as if it was a great idea, “Wait— I have to call your Mom, Nong... We will be meeting at your house, okay? Jom, let’s go and drive the car already.”

“P’Mew....” Gulf let out a desperate voice when he saw Aunty Jong and P’Jom walking fast to their car already. He never knew that the ever so calm and wise Aunty Jong could acted this way.

“What’s the worst that could happened, Gulf?” He still laughed amusedly at his boyfriend’s devastated state. “I’m sure it wouldn't be that bad, right?” Mew kissed the crown of his head in assurance.

“Ai’Phi, you’re not helping, either,” Gulf huffed and folded his hand childishly.

“Well, at least you couldn’t blame me as I always shut my mouth. It’s Jom that figured it out by herself,” He ruffled through Gulf’s fluffy hair in amusement. “Come on, just prepared yourself in the car of what might come soon.”

 

 

 

It comes to no surprises that there would be a series of “What??”, Why???”, “How???”, “When???”, and “Where???” by the time they already reached the Traipipattanapong’s family house. Initially, Gulf asked the older one just to runaway and avoided this problem entirely whilst Mew only laughed it off and said that they had to faced it sooner or later, anyway. Postponing to talk to their mothers would only ended up making them fussing around things even more.

“When did all of these happened???”

“How could you never told us before???”

Both of their mothers hysterically asked their son, it was fortunate enough that his Khun Phor still at golf practice, so he didn’t need to be questioned by him as well. Having four women — their Moms, P’Jom, and P’Grace to interrogate them were enough already. Though the sisters were mostly just laughed silently at them and judged them heavily for not ever telling them earlier regarding this issue.

Mew, being the good boyfriend that he is, explained most of the important part and left out the drama that would've be best never known by their family — like, they didn’t to know the reason behind Gulf’s accepting the scholarship was mainly because of him — nevertheless, as for now, at least their family already knew that they already went out ever since that Awarding Event, and he went all the way to London to asked him to become his boyfriend.

“So... Mai? I thought you guys were back together already when both of you guys went together to London?” Aunt Jong asked confusedly.

“Well, oddly enough, in fact Mai was the one who helped us the most to get together with each other,” Mew snickered a bit.

“What kind of odd twist of story here...?” Khun Mae asked him confusedly.

“Were she rejected you because of that, Son?” His Mom pondered a bit. Well, she never mind on whoever of partners that her son choose at the end, however he just questioned his son’s life choices and odd timings sometimes.

“Well, one of the reason of it.... maybe yes,” He sighed a bit. “At some point me and Mai realized that we’re not for each other, and she knew that Gulf had a feelings for me for a long time, and I also always took a great care of him even though I’m probably stupid enough for not realizing his feelings before...” Mew held his boyfriend’s hand to give himself a reassurance. “Well, to cut things short, we have went through a lot to figured out our feelings with each other from that point and.... here we are now,” He gave a reassuring smile to Gulf’s, which he reciprocated as well.

“So... when will you guys taking the next step..?” Aunty Jong asked them with hopeful, glittered eyes.

“Aunty.... with all due respect, but, seriously, I still have a degree to be finished first,” Gulf let out a heavy sigh and smile apologetically.

“What’s wrong? There’s nothing wrong with a marriage while you took your master degree. We’re both marrying in much younger age than you, Gulf,” His Mom asked him, tilting her head slightly while she folded her arms.

“Khun Mae.... Oh My God, what did I signed up for...” He pleaded, which made his older boyfriend chuckled amusedly.

“Well, as for now, we could only told both of you mothers that we’re currently in a relationship. We don’t know when will elevated our relationship even further... however, as for now... we’re pretty content with what we already have,” The oldest son of Jongcheveevat told them wisely, entwining his fingers with his boyfriend's.

“Oh My God, how could you guys were being even sweeter than me and my boyfriend...” Grace shook her head in devastation.

“Me too, Grace, me too, I don’t think that my boyfriend ever did something as sweet to me, you’re not alone” Jom said as she let out a sad sighed, still hugging Chopper on her lap.

 

 

 

 

After they finally wai the entire family and excuses themselves to Mew’s condo — a loud “Use protection, guys!!” being heard from Aunty Jong as they went out to the car — while in truth, they just wanted to get out from their family’s peering eyes.

“What was that again?” The slightly tanned boy led out a heavy sighed the moment he went inside the car.

“One of the most interesting roller coaster ride, ever,” Mew chuckled and he reached to caressed Gulf’s cheek. “Are you fine?”

“Fine,” He let out another sighed. “Never expected that it would be coming this fast. But, relatively fine.” He leaned back to the car seat before he reminded of something and sit straighter.

“But anyway, Phi, before I forgot,” Gulf let out something from his pocket, which turned out a small boxes wrapped properly with ribbon and all, “Happy birthday, once again.” They mirroring each other’s smile, which comes in the form of cheesy, gummy smile to each other.

“What’s this?” Mew excitedly opened his present, which turned out to be a box of ring. “Do you want to propose to me or something?” He laughed jokingly.

“You should be the one that proposed to me, not the other way around.” Gulf huffed with a frown.

“Alright, wifey— oh”, Mew surprised when he knew that it was a ring from his favorite fashion brand.

“I knew it was probably still cost less than your Premier League tickets — or any of those gifts that you ever bought me — but since you wear rings often... And I knew that it’s one of your most favorite brands when it comes to everyday rings and accessories...” Gulf bite his lower lip unsurely, “I hope you wear it a lot, Phi.”

Mew let out one of his ring from the same brand and replaced it with the one that Gulf gifted to him and inspected the silver rings carved with the Italian brand’s logo with adoration, then leaned forward to kissed the younger one with a breathtaking kiss, “Thank you, my love.” He smiled as he leaned back and caressed the younger one’s cheek lovingly.

 

 

 

 

“Well, Gulf, I have to say, that I’m pretty impressed with your work,” P’Mai nodded interestedly as she flipped through her own copy of script. She insisted that she wanted to joined the screening of new actors at their second call, hence the reason why she ended up here right now with the rest of the team.

“It’s not only mine, Phi, I was helped a lot by P’Tong,” Gulf said as he scribbled through the actors’ application.

“I see, no wonder that you were one of P’Ter’s favorite junior, Tong,” The pretty actress give an acknowledgement nod to the scriptwriter.

“Thank you, P’Mai,” Tong said nonchalantly as he took care of his own papers. “Now, if you excuse me, Phi, please took a seat beside Gulf, since we already prepared it for you.”

“Right— no wonder that P’Ter loves you, both of you guys had that same cold attitude,” P’Mai tsked annoyedly, which only made Gulf laughed.

“Not cold, Phi, just being practical and straightforward,” The scriptwriter raised his left eyebrow.

After the rest of the team were complete, they did intense screening and auditions to find the right actors and actress for the rest of the episodes. They need more or less around 20 new fresh faces with a various role since they will need different actors on each episodes, since the series consisted of 8 short stories. P’Mai especially being totally critical with actors that would be acted alongside of her in her episode. There are several person that she interested in, however, his opinion and Gulf’s opinion were clashed with each other, and they ended up having a heated argument regarding this. Thank God Mew, Mild and Tong were cold headed enough during audition, so that they could made a middle ground to decided the potential cast that they will call for the final call.

“However, Nong, I think, this one would definitely better that the one that you and Tong decided,” The pretty actress still insisted over their lunch.

“P’Mai....” Gulf sighed lightly. “We’re not searching the most good looking one, we’re searching the one that could bring out the character the most similar way to the script, Phi,” He shook his head tiredly. “You’re trying to find boyfriend at this point or what?”

The younger one never thought that his light joke would ended up making the pretty actress huffed and rest her head in the table devastatingly. “Seriously, Gulf, how could you make P’Mew turned to you that fast?”

“That was the same questioned that I was asking to you back at London, Phi.”

“But, look at you now! You’re now happily ever after with him,” She flailed her hands desperately. “As for me?? No progress whatsoever.”

“Did he already found a new girlfriend?”

“Not yet.”

“Did he already seeing someone? Well, just in interested way, not dating way.”

“Not yet.”

“Well.... just confess to him, Phi.”

“I already did,” She huffed annoyedly.

“But it was back then right after you rejected P’Mew, right? It’s been nearly a year... just give it another shot, Phi.”

“But,” She huffed again, “What if he will rejected me again?”

“Nonsense,” Gulf said lightly as he took his meal and chewing it silently. “Just... make it special, Phi. Make it different than your usual encounters with him, so that he also could understand that you’re being totally serious with him.”

“Can I do that?” She pouted sadly.

“The rebound phase is already done. Just make sure that you make a heartfelt confession, the one that you practically pouring your heart into...” The younger one pondered a bit as he rest his fork in front of his mouth. “Just ask P’Mew to plotted out the confession scene for you,” He nodded surely.

“P’Mew?” She asked confusedly.

“He’s the best,” Gulf pulled out his thumbs up. “I would never guess that he would be giving me that Premier League tickets.”

“Well, you’re right, P’Mew were the best for planning out those surprises,” The pretty actress nodded. “But, what if P’Ter thought that I’m coming back to him??” She sighed dejectedly.

“Do you need me to talk to P’Ter or something, Phi?”

“No, no, no,” She shook his head tiredly. “I had to face him on my own.”

Gulf just chuckled as he watching the older actress went into an emotional turmoil.

“Everything will be fine, Phi, much better than you expected to be,” He gave a reassurance touch to the actress’s hand. “Who knows? You would probably getting married earlier than me.”

“You are getting married already????” She gasped hysterically.

“No, no, no, no, it was just theoretically speaking,” The younger one quickly waived her off.

“Well, what I’m trying to say is... remember what you said back then to me, Phi?” He nodded and hold her hand in a reassuring way. “What’s the worse that could happened, right? At least at this point P’Ter won’t going far from you no matter how he actually feel deep inside.”

The pretty actress just nodded at him softly and pleaded to him, “Pray for me, Nong?”

“Always,” Gulf give her a reassuring nod as well.

“What did P’Mew do in the past to deserve you, Nong? You’re too good for him.”

“What the hell was that, Mai?” P’Mew suddenly come and took a seat beside the slightly tanned boy.

“Where have you been, Phi? Your food is cold already,” Gulf chuckled at his boyfriend.

“The sponsors been calling me earlier to make some settlement,” He shrugged and took off his jacket.

“Aow, what’s wrong?” P’Mai asked him worriedly.

“Thanks to you, Mai, the sponsors were lining up already. The media apparently been reporting that you will be joining our series since they saw you appeared to screen the new actors as well at the audition,” Mew chuckled and took a bite of his food. “Ah, anyway, what was your talking about earlier?”

“Huh, this and that, Phi...,” Gulf silently cut off his beef brisket and eat it.

“What was that?” The older one stopped eating and put down his utensils. “Why you are being secretive with me?” He leaned forward and pouting at his boyfriend.

“Aow, guys, I know that you guys were practically a newlyweds, but give me a break, please,” The pretty actress huffed and folded her hands. “If you want to be all lovey dovey in front of me, at least wait until my love life went fine as well.”

“What’s wrong, Mai?” The producer asked with huge concern.

“That’s the thing, P’Mew, everything’s wrong,” She sighed heavily. “But, anyway, just pray for me, please. Gulf been giving me some advice earlier, and I hope it would turned out fine.”

“You’re not asking for my advice, instead?”

“You’re the one who messed up the most and asking for my advice when he left you, Phi,” Mai frowned at him.

“Right, thank you for reminding me, Mai,” He smiled apologetically.

After they finished their lunch and meet P’Tong and P’Mild in the different restaurants halfway through the audition venue, he just realized that his Khun Phi apparently wearing the Gucci silver ring that he bought for his birthday today. He smiled secretly and entwined their hands together as they walking down to the audition venue.

“What’s wrong?” His boyfriend asked him with a smile.

Gulf shook his head, “Nothing, Phi.”

The older one leaned down a bit to kissed his cheek sneakily as the rest of their friends walking in front of them, and share a knowing smile between them.

Chapter Text

If there were anyone that would irked him the most, amongst of his boyfriend’s exes, It would be this girl. The pretty and light skinned girl, cute and sexy at the same time, and apparently currently having a job that any man would turned their eyes into. The older producer knew that Gulf shared a lot of firsts with her — first french kiss and first sexual experiences to name a few, and apparently she was the longest girlfriend that he ever been with. It never really bugged him before as his best friend when they used to date for more than 3 years back in their college days, however, now that he realized that they apparently still in the same circle of friends irked him. A lot.

Mew was trying hard to look unbothered as he picked up his boyfriend from his college reunion. They always been respected each on their own circle of friends. Mew himself never liked to be restricted from any boundaries when it comes to social circles, since it was his main job to expanded his social circles, and even if he knew that his boyfriend was an introverted person to begin with, he relatively had a lot of friends, especially since he was the Moon of the campus, and practically everyone knew him. He also pushed the younger one to broaden his networking skills since he wanted him to evolved well in this industry as well. Nevertheless, no matter how much he tried to think clearly and wisely to suited his age, this particular girl still irked him.

“Phi!! You’re here,” Gulf raised from his seat and walked to the older boyfriend’s way. “Was the road jam-packed?” He asked innocently, didn’t realized that there were a thunderstorm inside his boyfriend’s head.

Mew only replied it with a short, “Yeah” with a brief nodded.

The younger one entwined their fingers together and the younger one pulled him into his friends’ way. “You still remember my college friends, right, Phi?” He introduced them again, which made them immediately wai Mew politely because he was a senior in the industry, anyway. Mew gave them a professional smile and nodded when the situation was fitting. In all honesty, for him, it would be better just to wait for the younger one on his car. He didn’t realized that his own decision to surprised the younger one to pick him up from his college reunion would just turned his mood sour in a glimpse. He decided to took a seat whilst he would give Gulf time to socialized with his friends for 30 minutes more, and he declined politely every time his friends offered him drink because he needed to drive safely back at home, and decided to have a conversation with several of Gulf’s friends that he happened to know as they worked with each other briefly before. He has a talent to be a social butterfly, and it was easy for him to camouflage his sour mood, since he was already in this industry for years already. However, sometimes it surprised him how it wouldn’t passed through his boyfriend’s eyes.

“Phi, did I do something wrong?” The slightly tanned boy asked him unsurely when he stopped the car at a traffic light on their way home.

He just give a confused look at the younger one and shook his head.

“So, I did something wrong,” The younger concluded by himself. It was seems like those years of them knowing each other made them could easily read each other as easy as flipping the back of their hands. But perhaps, not that easy at the same time.

“I already eat well these days, I also already rest enough, both of our works went relatively fine and smooth, our parents already know about us...” The younger one listed down several things that usually made his boyfriend nagged at him, “What else that usually makes you mad at me, Phi?” He pondered a bit. “Is it that we haven’t did it at all this week? You know that we barely had time, Phi...”

“Nah,” Mew shook his head again and continue to drive through the street lamps. “Not all problems could be solved in the bed, you know.”

The younger one stunned and looked at his boyfriend hesitantly. They never had a big problem with each other ever since they started to date. It scared him how the older one didn’t even nagged him this time around. It was seems like he wanted to shut down everything from him.

“You know we could talk it out, Phi...” He licked his lips and trying to figured out what was wrong with him. “Do you want me to stay over at your condo, Phi?”

“I’m just tired from the work,” The older one sighed heavily. “I have to go to meet Boom a bit after I dropped you home, okay?”

“But, you have work at Chiang Mai tomorrow morning, Phi..”

“Yeah, one of the reason why I should meet him now,” Mew said calmly, which only made the younger one disturbed and confused. He was afraid that if they didn’t resolved whatever problem that was currently happening right now — that turned his boyfriend’s mood into a totally different one from earlier this morning when they just meet at the office — he was afraid that it would blew up so suddenly, moreover when his boyfriend would be having a week of business trip at the Northern. However, it also pained him that P’Mew clearly didn’t want to discussed it right now, especially when he always acted like nothing was happening and avoiding to discussed the matter right at this moment.

 

 

 

“Aow, finally their lovey dovey honeymoon phase were gone, guys,” Mild said in a passing as he laid down some properties that would be used for the workshops of the series.

Gulf never liked to share his own personal problems even to his closest friends, because he figured that, it was a problem that he should solved on his own to begin with, especially given with his introverted nature. However, since he was apparently always seen as totally transparent to his friends, they always feels like they had the needs to taking care and babying him whenever he had problems. Back then, it was never him that laid down his own feelings, it was always been his friends who figured out first. And it comes to no surprised that they could also read him that something was apparently went wrong the moment he stepped in at the rented studio for the workshop.

“Enough, P’Mild, I don’t want to mixed my personal life into my work.”

“Gulf, you do realized that you literally wrote the pilot episode based on your personal feelings, right?” Tong said as he scribbled through his script and paste post its here and there.

“You’re the one who told me to do that, Phi,” Gulf sighed tiredly.

“But it’s your own story, anyway,” The older scriptwriter raised his eyebrows skeptically and snorted. “So much for being professional.”

The pretty actress tsk-ed at the scriptwriter who bugged her Nong and asked him as if she was babying him, “Tell me, tell me, what did you guys do yesterday before he suddenly turned like this?”

“I don’t know,” He huffed. “I already thinking it over and over again but I couldn’t find any clue...”

“You’re eating and sleeping just fine, you’re not overworked yourself lately, your thesis work at uni also went relatively well, we didn’t have much problems with our work...,” P’Mai listed down all of the things that probably caused the distortion of their relationship. “You guys already told your family, right? You also never really hide your relationship with your friends and acquaintances...”

Gulf nodded silently, and P’Mai that currently tying her long hair messily and wearing a casual everyday shirt but still looked breathtakingly beautiful anyway, suddenly stopped. “Is he perhaps jealous of someone?”

“Jealous of whom? I’m not seeing everyone other than him,” Gulf frowned at the older one.

“You see, Gulf, you probably never realized it...” P’Mild took a seat beside him as he checked for his camera. “Sometimes you’re forget on how good looking you are, and in your own elements... you could be a natural flirt. Well, you never really flirting with someone on purpose, maybe it’s just your own way to become friendly with other people... But, you know, your boyfriend sometimes is that possessive, maybe.”

“Not ‘maybe’, Mild, it’s 'definitely'. He’s such a possessive guy. Have you seen at how P’Mew seeing Gulf’s college mates as if he wanted to burned him down? They even haven’t date each other back then,” P’Mai clapped her hands.

“Really? At London?” Mild snorted as he change his lens into a wide lens one.

“But,” Gulf plopped down his chin on top of the palm of his hand. “He knew most of my college friends? He also talked to them last night... Why would he be jealous of them?”

“Perhaps.... did your ex joined at your small reunion last night?” Mild asked him carefully.

Gulf frowned at his older friend, “Well... Yeah? She's still one of my college friends, anyway. It’s odd not to invited her.” He sighed heavily. “I mean, if it’s about ex — you’re also still being friendly with P’Mew, Phi. Why would he being jealous of her? Nonsense.”

“Perhaps, because she’s your longest ex? Prettiest ex?” P’Mai tried again.

“So what if she was, it was a puppy love, anyway, I’ve never been serious enough with her,” Gulf retorted, definitely feeling offended.

“It’s not a puppy love if you already having sex with each other, Gulf,” Mild snorted, and sometimes he hated it how the older one knew too much regarding his personal life.

“So what, I mean, like, we knew that we’re both not saint from beginning — that both of us already experiences things before we date each other. But, what mattered the most that we already been with each other at the present time, right?” He huffed and folded his hands.

“But she was your first.... in almost everything....?” Mild definitely tested his patience this time around.

“So, what? P'Mew has always been my first love, anyway,” Gulf retorted back.

“Have you told him that?” Tong tried to be the wisest one this time, because he assumed that it would be best so that the younger one would fill his duty as a director really well later when the workshop begin. “Told him that he’s your first love?”

“I thought that he knew?” Gulf frowned immediately, trying to lower down his voice when he realized that the new actors already came one by one to the workshop studio. He didn’t need a whole audience to hear about his personal life.

“Maybe you just need to reminded him?” Tong tried again. “I don’t know... the thing about exes is definitely very sensitive to most couples... P’Mai and P’Mew’s case were probably only happening with one in a million ratio. Yes, exes could still be friendly with each other, I agree with that point of view, because, who knows if you will ended up meeting each other again for work or something, right? However, I think you should talk it with P’Mew about this. Because what you think on your head would probably differs with his own way of thinking. Especially when both of you were over-thinkers, just imagine if you were both overthinking but in totally opposite way, it would created another problem in the future.”

P’Tong maybe would rarely talk much especially when it regarding to involved with his personal life, however, the time when he decided to opened his mouth, most of his sayings were making sense. It also reminded him how P’Goy used to said that you have to worked hard in terms of maintaining a relationship. It has been a long time since he was in a relationship, and it was probably the first time he really feels that he wanted this to actually worked out. Sometimes he just forgot that couples didn’t have that telepathic ability to understand each others’ mind easily. Right. He just wished that his Khun Phi wouldn’t overthink again.

 

 

 

 

The long hours of shooting a promotional tourism commercial film tiring him. He knew that it would burnt him out the moment he arrived back at Bangkok, which was why he decided to put his car back at his condo because he didn’t want to drive back to home from the airport. After he said goodbye to all the staffs and crews that were involved in the project, he politely declining their offer to dropped him back to the center of Bangkok. Most of all, because he needed the silence. As much as he was a social butterfly, or at least good at his job, it burnt him out to be with a lot of people in a long period of time. Which was also the main reason why he decided to stay at his condo first for a couple of days before he went back to his family’s house. He would never get the silence that he needed with his family around. He loves his family still, with all of his heart, however he just need to recharged on his own. And probably to think a lot of things alone.

What he didn’t expect was the fact that his boyfriend would be waiting for him in his place the moment he unlocked his door. They both quietly inspecting each other’s act as Mew silently went inside and dropped his baggages from a week trip. There was no fantasy and film-like scenes like his boyfriend would be waiting for him in oversized shirt or an apron, just his usual day to day clothing, with comfortable hoodies, ripped jeans and tousled hair. And as much as they still tiptoeing around each other, he had to admit that he missed the younger one very, very much.

As if they could read each other’s mind, Gulf hesitantly walked to him and pulled the hem of his shirt, trying to coaxed the older one to laid his eyes on him, “Phi, I miss you.”

Mew just silently stroked his nape and kissed him softly and deepened the kiss, trying to engulfing their longingness towards each other. Breathing to each others’ scents, and the older one choose to stay hooked his chin to the younger one’s shoulders for quite a long time in silence. And he greatly appreciate the younger one who letting him do this. He also appreciate him not to pushed him around during his business trip, and decided to give him the time he needed to think. Most of people would probably think that what the younger one’s doing were barely making an effort to make their relationship stay. However, they also knew that giving the time for each other were their own’s love language and their way to compromise with each other. Not everything should be resolved within seconds. He knew that whatever his Khun Phi was thinking would probably be good for the both of them. As long as it will make him stay, he would be patient enough to wait him until he wanted to talk by himself.

The older producer finally leaned back and caressed his boyfriend’s cheeks softly, “Sorry, I just need to think on my own last week, okay? Sorry if I suddenly went all quiet.”

Gulf nodded understandingly and he held his Khun Phi’s hand that touched his face as he looked up to him with doe eyes, “Do you want to talk it out, Phi?”

“I—,”

“It’s okay, I mean — I would probably know what were you thinking about. It’s just... what can I say,” He bite his lips hesitantly. “To avoid future problems? Don’t you think that we should talk it out? So that we could have the same way of thinking?”

His Khun Phi only sighed tiredly as he pulled Gulf into another hug.

“Is it about Poom who attended the reunion dinner?” He tried again. When his Khun Phi just staying silent, he reached out to softly caressed his back in assurance. “You do remember that you’re literally my first love, right, Phi?”

He chuckled when his Khun Phi snuggled into the crook of his neck even further. “I might have a few ex girlfriends, but I never really date them seriously,” He said nonchalantly as he ruffled through his boyfriend’s hair softly that already grew longer.

“Aow, how cruel of you, Nong.”

“But, seriously. Do you remember when your grandmother passed away, Phi?” He keep caressing the older one’s hair lovingly as he remembering the past times. “I was brokened up with one of my ex girlfriend back then, at the same time. However, I literally didn’t feel anything — the only thing that I could remember was that I cried out for you that day, because I knew that you couldn’t cry at the funeral.”

Mew leaned back at looking at his boyfriend’s eyes, “Really? You already like me the moment Ah Ma passed away?”

“Probably, even longer than that, Phi. I’ve told you that you’re literally my first love, right?” He sighed softly. “Back then, I don’t think that I have the chance to date you. Which was why I think it would be better if I just date around — who knows, right? I would probably find my true love along the way, moved on from you... However years, after years, I just realized that I just keep hurting everyone, and I decided to stopped. It’s tiring to have a relationship that you never wanted to have to begin with, and it’s tiring to keep running away from my feelings from you,” Gulf silently watching their tangled hands, watching the ring that he gave to him on his birthday still sitting on his forefinger. “Perhaps, we’re not each other’s first kiss, first time in everything... I’m even okay for not being your first love, Phi. ”He looked back up to his Khun Phi. “But, it’s a fact that you’re my first love, Phi. And as much as cheesy and cliché it is, the thing that I’m going to say next — I really want us to work hard to be each other’s last, Phi.”

“Why does it sounds like you’re giving me a command?” His older boyfriend chuckled suddenly, which made him huffed tiredly.

“Phi...”

The younger one didn’t expected that he would get silenced by a kiss that took his breath away. As his boyfriend leaned back and showed the gummy smile that made his eyes turned into a moon shape — which he most definitely missed — he was melted a bit when P’Mew nodded and kissed the back of his hand, “Fine, my love.”

 

 

 

 

It was relatively a good day even though the rain pouring cats and dogs, well, it’s seems like the rainy season haven’t stopped yet in Bangkok. However, he was glad that their last workshop day went smoothly, and the next Monday would be the series’ reading day. They still have two days of weekend to rest away, and the young director couldn’t wait to sleep the weekend away, as they won’t stopped the filming process until it would finished afterwards. As he stretching his sore muscles and checking for the last time if anyone left something since he will give back the workshop studio’s key to the security today, he startled a bit when one of the child actor still took a seat obediently at the bench right outside the studio.

“Nong Phu? Where is your mom?” He asked to the child actor with light skin and reddened cheeks.

“My mom told me that she will come a little bit late, P’Gulf...” He nodded so surely, like an independent kid that he was.

Gulf mirrored his nod as he make sure that he locked the studio properly and gave it back to the security guard that were currently on shift, he then took a seat beside the small child. “Phi will wait with you until your Mom is coming, okay? Is it okay?”

“Are you not going back to home, P’Gulf?” The 5 year-old boy asked innocently.

“It’s okay, Phi want to play with you,” He told him nicely, which got the small boy nodded excitedly.

They both looked up when P’Mew walking down to them under the rain, “Gulf, here’s the umbrella...” Oh, right. He forgot that his boyfriend wanted to take his extra umbrella from the car. “Nong Phu? You haven’t go back home yet?” P’Mew asked confusedly.

“Not yet, P’Mew. Do you want to go back with P’Gulf? P’Gulf, it’s okay. I could wait here alone for my mom,” The young boy said so surely it made Gulf couldn’t help but worrying him.

“No, no, no, Phi will play with you until your Mom come, is that right, P’Mew?” He gave his boyfriend a puppy eyes.

He knew that his Khun Phi was eager to go back to try that new Japanese restaurant in town. However, there is no way that he would let this small child waiting here all alone under the rain. His boyfriend startled a bit but reluctantly nodded, anyway. Not many people know, but despite his large built and judgmental face upon the first met, Gulf always had a soft spot for little kids and animals. Well, more often than not, he preferred to talk to them instead of adult since it feels less complicated. On contrary, it was his boyfriend that always been awkward with little children. Therefore, sometimes it amused him to watched the older producer to converse with little kids.

He watched silently as his boyfriend put away both umbrella and took the only spare seat beside the small actor. The thing is, most of kids would attracted to P’Mew more than to him, and it made him even more amused when he saw his boyfriend confused on how to acted around small children.

“Is it really okay, P’Mew?” The small actor asked him with puppy eyes which made the older producer awkwardly let out his toothy smile and stroke Nong Phu’s hair, which made the small boy also smiling happily.

“Say, Nong Phu, what toys or games that you brought today?” Gulf decided to safe his boyfriend from all of the awkwardness even if it was very amusing for him to watch.

“Ah! I brought Nintendo Switch with me, P’Gulf!!” The small kid opened his backpack and let out the portable gadget with yellow and black colours with Pikachu detailed on the back.

“Oh, do you have the Pikachu edition? P’Mew also owned that Switch, Nong Phu,” Gulf replied with a smile, sneakingly looking at his boyfriend.

“Really, P’Mew?” He asked with hopeful eyes, as if something that they shared meant a lot, which made Gulf chuckled upon seeing his boyfriend’s confused but excited expression as he nodded and confirmed that he loved Pikachu and Pokémon as well to the 5 year-old kid.

As they conversed excitedly with each other regarding Pokémon, and P’Mew let down his guard a bit from the younger kid, Gulf watched them with amusement. Even though at some point he and P’Mew both still acted like a little boys, it was his Khun Phi that had the bigger interest towards’ children's hobbies like for example Japanese anime and games, being the otaku that he was ever since he was small. Gulf preferred to play much difficult online multiplayer survival games that usually only teenage boys started to play, whilst his Khun Phi preferred to play anything that mainly comes from anime. Though more often than not he forced Gulf to play it as well, like that One Piece game.

Gulf didn’t realized that the conversation already moved from Pokémon to other things. Now the young boy proudly showed his new Super Mario records and his island’s progress on Animal Crossing which made his Khun Phi’s impressed. Then, P’Mew suddenly let out his own Nintendo Switch — who knows when was the last time the older producer had the time to play it, probably last month, since he was very busy with his own work — and showed his favorite games to Nong Phu, which made the little boy nodded excitedly and said that he would asked his mom later to buy it for him.

Around 20 minutes later, when the rain already stopped and the smell of the fresh leaves started to dispersed right outside the studio, Nong Phu’s mom finally come and repeatedly apologize to both of them to caused them troubles. Gulf shrugged it off and said that they loved to play with the small boy, anyway. When they watching the mother and the child walking away to the parking lot, they still could hear how the small child asked his mother to buy him the game that P’Mew recommended before, who made Gulf chuckled amusedly.

He looked at his boyfriend’s way and elbowing him. P’Mew questioned him what was wrong, and he let out a snort, “Who knows that it took you a similar interest in games to be not awkward with little kids?”

“I’m not awkward with little kids,” The older one felt offended, which made the younger boyfriend raised his left eyebrows skeptically.

As the older one held his waist, and dragged him to go back as the sun nearly went down, bringing the umbrellas that they didn’t ended up using because the rain already stopped, his Khun Phi suddenly talk. “You know, if you ever remember it... we’re becoming closer to each other also because of games, you know.”

“Well, we’re both little kids, so that was making sense,” He tilted his head a bit.

“So you’re accusing that I’m still a little kid right now?” He still sounds so offended, which made Gulf laughed even harder.

“Aren’t we all?” He reached up to kiss his boyfriend on the cheek. “It’s okay, mentally, we’re both still like a little kids, who still refused to grow up.”

“I’m not,” The older one frowned so hard, it made Gulf softly smoothen his frown with his fingers and laughed again.

“Right, Phi,” He nodded with a smile as he steal another kiss from his boyfriend. Then, he went to the passenger side of the car as he waiting for the older one to unlocked it.

 

Right, they still had two days away before they will be busy with their project again. He want to soaked all of the peacefulness before the busy days comes ahead.

Chapter Text

The sounds of keyboard typing being heard in the modern furnished apartment. The young director couldn’t help but yawning because apparently juggling through your master studies and work at the same time weren’t easy. At all. How P’Tong and P’Mew could do it again? He was trying hard to opened his eyes through the advanced cinematography class as the professor showed them the latest camera trick that currently being on trend in the industry since the movie that won the best picture at the last Academy Awards and Golden Globe Awards used this. He never really like to use glasses since he had normal eyes, and it was hurting his ears and nose to put glasses for a long time. However since he always being in front of the screen lately, especially with his online classes that he still need to attend alongside his thesis project, his boyfriend insisted that he should be wearing blue light glasses to protected his eyes, even bought him a couple of new ones even if he already owned the one that he usually use when he edited his works.

“You’re still up?” A smell of fresh soap suddenly being spread through the living room where he took a seat with his laptop in the table in front of the sofa.

As his boyfriend that just freshly get showered hooked his chin on his shoulder, Gulf was glad that at least he turned off his camera and microphone when the professor was giving the class, so that anyone wouldn't need to watch his boyfriend being clingy to him. He just let out a sigh and grumbled, “This pandemic thingy killing me, Phi. I don’t know if I could survive to do this online classes with the whole time differences. Not to mention when I still had to catch the classes as the filming process already starting.”

“Don’t be such a baby, I could finished my master and PhD while I’m also working back then,” The older one ruffled through his boyfriend’s hair affectionally.

“But still, at least you’re not doing online classes and have the annoying time differences back then,” Gulf huffed and tsk-ed annoyedly, still scribbling through his notes, though, being the good student that he is.

“Well, at least there’s a good thing with these online classes during pandemic, right? At least you could be here instead of London?” The older one asked him playfully.

“You would probably the only one that could still be happy with this situation,” The younger one rolled his eyes tiredly.

“Don’t tell me that I’m the only one that are being happy with your existence here,” The older one nipped the crook of his neck playfully. “Long distance relationship are tiring. Admit it already.”

“Well,” He shrugged lightly. “At least I want my graduation to be held like normal graduation ceremony later, not that kind of online graduation ceremony.”

“Aow, you’re still working on your studies and your thesis are still halfway done, but you’re talking about graduation already,” The older one leaned back to properly drying his hair with towel.

“Because, I just found out that I could graduate early if I took extra classes this semester, Phi,” He sighed again. “Don’t you want me to finish my studies as soon as possible?”

“Well, not if it would tiring you out and make you sick. Seriously, though, just take enough classes that was still suitable with your working schedule, don’t pushed yourself too much,” His boyfriend tapped his shoulder in assurance, whilst the younger one pouting because he wanted to graduate as soon as possible.

“Also, don’t you think that it’s such a blessing that you could study from here? I heard that London went through a second lockdown already. At least our country solved through this pandemic time slightly better, right? Even if there are still a lot of political problems going on...”

“Well, if you put it that way...”

“Just graduate after the whole things better, okay? I will accompany you at your graduation ceremony later,” He kissed his boyfriend’s cheek before he raised up to go walk to the bedroom. “I will be sleeping first, okay? Don’t forget to turned off the lights later.”

“Yeah, Phi. Good night,” He sighed again as he typing through his keyboard.

“Night~ Study hard!” His Khun Phi winked and give him an air kiss before he went inside the room, which only made the younger one pouting in envy because he missing his bed so much.

 

 

 

“You see, Gulf, here’s the options of singers that would be interested to fill the soundtracks, they really are interested with your concept to focusing on the old song, and they are keen to joining to cover the old songs,” Mew dropped the list to the younger one when Gulf asked Mild to test the camera from different angles before they started filming. They currently in one of the set in far outskirts of the city, and the wind keep blowing and made the young director keep sneezing as he looked at the paper that his Khun Phi gave him.

“Ummm,” He hummed whilst he started to coughed as well, and held his head that started to turned heavy.

“Are you started to sick, Gulf?” His boyfriend asked him worriedly and tried to checked on Gulf’s temperature on his forehead and neck with the back of his head.

He just quietly shook his head and give the paper back to Mew, “You decide the singers, Phi. I know you have better knowledge and judgement for it.”

“Do you want me to buy you some medicine or vitamins? You’re a bit feverish,” Mew took a seat beside him and inspecting his boyfriend worriedly.

“Nah, it’s probably just because of the cold wind, Phi,” He sighed and talk to his walkie talkie, “P’Mild, ask the cameraman to move a little bit forward. Yeah, yeah, in that position. Thank you.” And he unknowingly coughed again in between of changing the channel of the walkie talkie, “Phi, are the actors and actresses ready? Please asked them to come to the set. Thank you.”

Mew sighed upon seeing his boyfriend. As much as he worrying the younger one, he knew that he couldn’t avoided his hectic schedule of filming and studying. Especially when they already set a packed up schedule and rented places as well as asking the permissions for the exact schedule, therefore, there was no way that they could moved the schedule. Also, they already set the schedule to suited the actor and actresses’ schedule as well, and it would be hard to matched it up again. The only solution to this matter, was only to forced the younger director to took his food, water, vitamins, and medicine properly before he become even more sick.

Therefore, even if the younger one insisting that he was okay, he quietly went to the nearest convenience store and bought some vitamins and cold medicines and make sure to ask the staff to bought him hot soups for lunch. The problem was, he had to be back to the center of the city soon because the recording company already booked him for meeting to discussed regarding the soundtrack singers. Though he knew that his boyfriend already a grown up, he also knew that he was such a stubborn boy who insisted that he didn’t need the medicine. He decided to told Mild to make sure that Gulf took the medicines later at lunch and dropped him off at his condo later, since the meeting would be went until evening. He quietly inspecting the whole filming set for the last time before he left for the meeting with his car.

The thing with this 8 episodes of short stories was, it definitely way more tiring rather than shooting a series based on one storyline. There would be a whole different set of actors and actresses, a whole different filming set, different set of characters, and a whole lot of different things on each episode. Moreover when they had to took extra days because the timing or the scenes were not quite good enough. Also, the filming set were using a lot of different places in Bangkok and its outskirts of city. Initially, they need to took scenes in the Northern because they need to shoot some scenes in the mountain, but Mew still discussed it with the sponsors because apparently sending the whole team to the Northern were very expensive.

After the long hours he discussed and deciding things with the recording company, he didn’t expect that he would found his apartment empty and the lamp were turned off. He took out his phone to called for his boyfriend to no avail even after the third tries. He then called Mild, asking where the young director was, and he told him that the younger one insisted that he want to go back to his home instead because he was running out of clean clothes at Mew’s apartment. He bite his lips hesitantly, and decided to called Khun Mae to make sure.

“Sawatdee, Khun Mae, I’m sorry to call you this late, I just want to make sure — is Gulf already home?”

“Sawatdee, Mew,” Mae’s voice being heard from the other line. “Yeah, he already at his room, just finishing his online class, I guess...”

Oh, that was probably why he didn’t take his call earlier.

“Ummm, Khun Mae, I don’t know if you notice it.... But Gulf’s catching a cold... I already bought him medicine earlier, you know how stubborn he is sometimes... I just want to make sure that he already took it...”

“That’s very thoughtful of you, Mew. Thank you. I will ask him later, alright?”

“Right, thank you so much Khun Mae, I’m sorry again, to call you this late.”

“It’s okay, Mew, thank you for telling me this, good bye.”

“Thank you, Khun Mae, have a good night.”

He sighed as he turned to his text messaging app to send message to his Yai Nong, afraid to disturb if he still busy studying or something.

Khun Phi 🐼: I heard from Khun Mae that u’re still busy studying?
Khun Phi 🐼: Rest well okay, don’t forget to eat and eat your medicine.
Khun Phi 🐼: I will pick up you tomorrow morning, okay?
Khun Phi 🐼: Good night, xx

 

 

 

“You know, Phi, you don’t need to babying me around,” Gulf sighed as he pulled the seat belt and put it properly. “See? I’m fine, it’s just because the wind yesterday,” The younger director showing off that he’s as healthy as a newborn. Still being skeptical, his boyfriend checked his temperature with the back of his hand on his neck and forehead and sighed in relief because the temperature already normal. He leaned back at his own seat to started the car afterwards.

“See? I’ve told you that I can take care of myself. I know that if I’m becoming sick, I would be such a burden to the whole team,” He raised his eyebrows because he was tired that his boyfriend always fussing around him. “You’re not the only one who realized the importance of taking my vitamins everyday, Phi.”

“Alright, I’m sorry if I think too much, okay, I’m just worrying about your health,” He reached out to caressed the younger’s face softly before he turning back to the road.

“P’Mew— wait,” The younger one held Mew’s hand and inspecting it by the time he want to put it back on the steering wheel, “Why are your hand warmer than usual?”

“Huh?” He frowned and pulled his hand to the steering wheel whilst the younger one leaned into him and checking his forehead.

“Oh my God, don’t tell me—,” Gulf let out a heavy sighed and heavily judged his boyfriend when he leaned back at the passenger seat. “That is soooo you, Phi. You’re keep fussing around other people, while you forget to taking care of yourself.”

“I’m not—“

“You might not skipping meals, but I bet you didn’t eat much, right, Phi?” Gulf frowned while he folding his arms.

“Well...”

“Especially when you’re keep staying at condo lately,” He tsk-ed at his boyfriend. “Could you at least stay home until you’re fit enough, Phi? At least Aunty Jong would checked on your meals whenever you’re staying at home.”

“I still have a lot of meeting that I had to attend until late at night until weekend, I don’t like to disturb my family,” He sighed. “And I don’t think that I’m that sick? I would bounce back in short time just like you.”

“Really? Why I never trust you to taking care on your own health?” Gulf eyeing him skeptically. “Do you want me to stay at your place until you’re fit enough, Phi?”

“Well... I won’t be complaining...,” He shrugged lightly.

“Were you purposely making yourself sick so that I would be staying at your place?” The younger one eyeing him suspiciously.

“Who the hell wanted to sick on purpose, Yai Nong??”

“I did, when I didn’t want to attended school back when I was small,”

“You've realized that now we’re an irresponsible adult, right?”

“Trying to be an irresponsible adult would be the right phrase, Phi,” He sighed when he realized that they already arrived at the filming set for today. “You have to attend meeting in other places, right? Call me when you’re free later. I still have the key, I will wait for you at your place after I’m done, okay?” He reached out to kissed his boyfriend’s forehead. He stopped the other one with his hand when he wanted to move to kiss his lips. “Nooo, you couldn’t infected me until your healthy enough. We still had a whole lot of filming schedule to be followed.”

His Khun Phi pouted when he heard it, which made the younger one chuckled as he went out from the car, “Good luck on your meeting, text me when you arrived safely.” The younger producer gave him an air kiss before he closed the car’s door.

 

 

 

What he didn’t expect — was the fact that his boyfriend would be back with a reeked of alcohol the moment he comeback to the apartment.

“Being an irresponsible adult, you say?” He sighed upon seeing his boyfriend’s state.

“I couldn’t declined the drinks that the investors offered to me....”

“You do realized that taking any alcoholic beverage when you’re sick would only worsen your condition, right, Phi?” He raised his left eyebrow in annoyance.

“I’m not that sick,” He grumbled as he took off his shoes and went inside the bathroom for whatever reason. Trying hard to be as patient as he can do, Gulf poured warm water into a glass and mixed it with honey whilst he also prepared a whole lot of medication for caution just in case his boyfriend’s sickness would be even more worse in the morning. He just glad that tomorrow will be Saturday, therefore at least he wouldn’t have to went to the filming set to take care of his Khun Phi, because he could already imagine that he would be in even worse state by tomorrow. He just pondering quietly on how to go to the hospital tomorrow if they needed to, since P’Mew must’ve left his car somewhere, because as much as the older one sometimes neglecting his responsibility, at least he always sober enough not to decided to drive under influence, no matter how much a heavy drinker that he is.

“Here, drink it, Phi,” Gulf gave the warm honey water to him as soon as he come out from the toilet. Well, he amazed at how his boyfriend conscious enough to brush his teeth and washed his face even through his drunkenness state. As his boyfriend took it obediently, Gulf started to questioning him again, “When was the last time you eaten? I don’t want to see you throwing up allover the place later.”

“Calm down, I’ve already eat my dinner before I drink,” His boyfriend felt offended because the younger one started to accused him for being not responsible.

“Fine, just finish that and drink this before you sleep,” Gulf let our a whole lot of medicine and vitamin on the palm of his hand and make sure to see his boyfriend gulped it down before he went to the bed.

As he put the comforter properly on top of his sleeping boyfriend, Gulf quietly think, who were the one that needed to be babied here. Aow, this big baby, he patted his boyfriend’s head before he snuggled into him, joining him into the deep slumber.

 

 

 

It took him the whole weekend until the older one finally fully recovered from his fever. Saturday Morning was a disaster one. His head went super heavy and he could barely stood up that morning, of course, not with a rolled of eyes from his boyfriend and his endless, “I told you so.”

However, he really hate to going to the hospital. Therefore, he took any medicines and vitamins that Gulf already prepared for him, wishing that it would lessen his headache and fever, gulping down mineral water and took any food that the younger one giving to him, so that he didn’t need to go to the hospital. By Sunday morning, he felt a whole lot better and he could breath in relief and discussed a lot of things with the younger one that didn’t involved his boyfriend’s nagging of ‘who told you not to take care of your own health?!’ and ‘who told you to still drink even if you’re having fever?!’.

He just remembered one of the dealing that he made last week was involved with the marketing for the series’ promotion, where they got offered to filled the editorial of several magazines. He talk it over a light stir fried beef black pepper and Hong Kong styled fried rice that they ordered from food delivery, because both of them couldn’t cook to safe their life.

“So, they told us to put the main actors and actresses that we wanted to pushed for promotion for editorials and the magazine cover,” Mew said in between of gulping down his lunch. He was glad that today he could taste his food properly. Yesterday, everything taste bland on his palate.

Gulf hummed over his lunch and gulped his water.

“So?” The older producer tried again.

“So...? What do you mean by ‘so’, Phi?” The younger director asked confusedly.

“The actress and actors that you wanted to pushed?”

“Well, we obviously had to make P’Mai as the cover of the magazine...” He pondered a bit and thinking over on the possibilities of actors and actresses that would be good looking enough to promote the series, or the key point of the stories, then it hits him.

“You. and Janistar, Phi...,”

“Me?”

“Are you forget that you actually acted on the first episode of our series?”

“Oh right, the one that you said based on your feelings—“

“Pushing that fact aside...,” He cut through his boyfriend’s nonsense that always love to bring that fact over and over again, “Well, yeah, you and Janistar also had to join the photoshoot, since both of you were one the key characters.”

“Are you okay with this?”

“Why wouldn’t I be okay?” He frowned at his boyfriend confusedly.

“You know, with this photoshoot... they often asked us to acted like a couple since we were acting like a couple in the series.”

“Nah, it’s just a mere photoshoot, right?”

“I don’t want to do something that you don’t like, Nong,”

“Phi,” Gulf put down his spoon and fork tiredly. “Seriously, though. I’m fine, it’s just for work, nothing more than that, I’m not a newbie in this industry, though, I know how the things works.”

“Really?” His boyfriend stared at him unsurely.

“Really,” He let a heavy sighed, practically begging his boyfriend to move to other topics already.

“You won’t be mad later?” His boyfriend tried again to make it sure.

“Why wouldn’t I?!”

 

 

 

 

Okay. Why did he said that he wouldn’t mind before?

 

No one told him that the photoshoot concept would be involved with his boyfriend had to become topless alongside the actress. Well — except that his Khun Phi told him the brief a week ago right after they finished filming. But since he didn’t care much about the photoshoot and decided to let it to the professional team to be done, he didn’t give much thought around it, since he’s not that big on fashion and editorial works in the first place. Except — now he really, really regretting why he didn’t take a look at the photoshoot concept and the styling mood boards, like — at all.

They didn’t have any nudity or provocative scenes in the series, why would they need to promote it this way???

“You know, for views, to make people more interested to watch it,” P’Mai said as if she could read through Gulf’s mind. She munched through some bite sized cookies that the team provided for the shoots.

“I want people to be attracted to our series because the quality is good, not because of gimmicks like this,” Gulf huffed as he inspecting Janistar nodded to the photographer to posed with his boyfriend in rather provocative way

“In investors and sponsors mind, they didn’t mind at how the people would started attracted to the series, as long as it sells well and making money,” The pretty actress raised her eyebrows, still munching to the cookies. “Also, they knew that P’Mew has great body, why not making it as another marketing gimmick to promote the series, right?”

Gulf just greeted his teeth upon seeing this. “I also heard that P’Mew keep asking you if you’re okay with this, so it’s not entirely his fault. You’re the one who keep saying that it was okay,” The actress continue, twirling his curly hair that just got styled for the shoot, waiting for her turn.

“You know— about this,” She continue when she heard Gulf’s small grunted. “It’s just a job for us. Well, some might fall in love in the set, but most of us are only acted for the sake of our job, you know. It’s hard to fall in love when you’re being watched by a lot of people. Especially when it’s just a short editorial photoshoot.”

“You know, Phi, sometimes I think that maybe P’Ter would have the same thinking as me. Maybe that was why he kept being skeptical with your feelings. Like — why you’re still being comfortable with your on-screen couple when you’re actually like him?”

“Nong— you crossed the boundaries here,” P’Mai snapped at him. “I know that you’re being restless now that you’re Khun Phi being touched by someone else, but really, we actors and actresses, really trying hard to differentiate our personal life and our work life. No matter how great our chemistry is.”

“Really? Then why some of P’Mew exes was his co-stars back then when he acted on small roles to help his friends?”

“That’s why I said ‘some might fall in love in the set, but most of us are only acted for the sake of our job’ earlier, Ai’Nong,” She knocked through Gulf’s head lightly, to knocked some sense upon the younger’s head. “Don’t overthink too much. He loves you too much to put his interest towards someone else right now.”

“But that doesn’t lessen the fact that he’s being touched by someone else right now.”

“If you’re being this jealous and possessive — why did you approve it in the first place, Ai’Gulf?” The pretty actress rolled her eyes tiredly.

“I didn’t know that it would be like this,” He sighed dejectedly.

The pretty actress just playfully flicked through his forehead as the photographer asked her to move to the set with the actor that acted as her partner on the series. When his boyfriend walking to his way, still with his shirtless glory that the make up artist put some shading and body oil to his abs to accentuate them, instead of being turned on, he just couldn’t help but despise his boyfriend. He blatantly ignored him when the older one asked him if the photoshoot went fine, and focusing on the set instead. Before his Khun Phi could asked him again, the stylist asked him and Janistar to changed for other set of clothings, which just made the younger one gave up and decided to take a break at the roof top.

As much as he was a social smoker, during his stressful days when he knew that he couldn’t take any alcohol yet since it was still a day time and it wouldn’t proper, he just resolved to smoking. Even though he knew that P’Mew never like it, and in fact, as far as he remembered, ever since they date each other, maybe it was his first time to smoke again. Sometimes he just glad that he still keeping that box of cigarettes that he forgot when was the last time he used on his bag. He let out a long blew of smoke as he breath in the air in the roof top. The air of city was never been the most clear as it highly polluted, and mixed with the smoke of cigarettes, it was like letting in a toxic air through his lungs. In one way or another, it was like alcohol to him. It was never been the healthiest, however, when he knew that it could burnt his pain away for a little bit, then he would take it.

He didn’t realized of how long he was smoking at the roof top and silently people watching from a far, watching those cars trapped in a traffic jam, watching people catching their busses — a small of dots with a purposes from a far — until he heard the rooftop’s door creaked. Of course, his boyfriend would know where he would running out, right? They already literally spent a lifetime together as a childhood friend, after all.

“You know that smoking isn’t healthy, right, my love?” He calmly said that as he hugged him from behind and hooked his chin on Gulf’s shoulder, that still leaning in to rooftop's railings as he smoke.

“I know,” He said nonchalantly.

“You also know that I’m never been a fan of cigarettes, right, my love?”

“I know,” He let out another blew of probably his third sticks of cigarettes already.

They were staying like that for a quite long time in silence before the older one continue, “This is why I asked you repeatedly before, you know.”

The younger director still purposely ignoring him, just letting out another blew of smoke as the older one speaking.

“I want to make sure, if you’re okay with this,” The older producer tried again.

“When I was only an actor, I didn’t have much choice but to approved on any concept that was prepared for me, but now that I actually also the producer of the project, I could make the decision on my own,” He tried to explained calmly to the younger one. “Which is why I asked you to make the decision for me.”

The slightly tanned boy quietly put out his cigarette butts and throw it away to the nearest trash can before he turned back to his Khun Phi that still hugged him. They just staring at one another until the younger one gave up and put his head on his boyfriend’s shoulder tiredly.

“I hate all of these — I even didn’t like myself — why I need to fussing around the smallest things...” He grumbled on the older one’s chest.

“I’m sorry, okay? I will tell the team that I wouldn’t be joining future photoshoots...”

“No, no,” Gulf sighed tiredly, frowning as he leaned back to watch their tangled hands. “I mean — It’s your job, and I highly respected any of the project that you decided to take.”

“So...?”

“But, it’s just hard to make some things clicked on my head. The way my brain keep overthink over the smallest things...” The younger one shook his head frustratingly. “I hate it, being my overthinking possessive self.”

“Well, if it makes you better, I am not much better than you,” Gulf looked up to his boyfriend when he heard this. “Maybe, I’m way more possessive than you.”

“Why do you make it such a competition? I’m certainly not proud of it, Phi,” Gulf chuckled tiredly.

“Well, I like it,” The older one caressed his cheek softly. “Because, if you’re being possessive with me, it shows that you’re still head over heels over me, right?”

“Aow, how confident that you are, Phi,” Gulf snorted upon hearing his boyfriend.

“Let me tell you a secret,” He leaned in to whisper at his Nong, “Janice was very, very, nervous when she had to pose with me earlier.”

“Really?”

“Your looks literally could burned down the entire studio, you know,” The handsome producer chuckled. It irked Gulf a bit that with his still styled hair and fully made-up face, he even look more handsome than his everyday looks.

“So, is it better if I turned down the photoshoots if I got offered again in the future?” His boyfriend asked him carefully. “I could giving recommendation to them to use other actors in the series...”

“No, no, it’s just... maybe I will checked on the concept and the styling first before I decided,” Gulf let out a heavy sigh and buried his head again on his boyfriend’s shoulder.

“I’m sorry, okay, Phi? For being childish, obsessive, and weird like this.”

The older one just patting his fluffy hair in reassuring way, “It’s okay, I understand. I would probably would do the same stupid things should the situation reversed.” He chuckled and put his fingers under the younger one’s chin to make Gulf looked up to him. “Let’s go back downstairs? People would probably waiting for us to wrapped up the shoot.”

“Right, okay, sorry,” The younger one chuckled. But they keep staying at that position for the next 5 minutes, which made the older one confused and asked his boyfriend.

“What are you waiting for?” He patted Gulf’s fluffy hair in confusion.

“No make-up kiss this time?” His younger boyfriend pouted and gave him a puppy eyes.

“Ai’Nong you reeked of the smell of cigarettes,” The older one kissed his cheeks and forehead instead, “Brush your teeth first. At least have some decency for me. I always brush my teeth whenever I eat seafood because you’re allergic to it.”

“Is that your revenge to me because I didn’t let you kissed me when you were sick?” The younger one felt offended because how could anyone rejected Gulf Kanawut’s kiss?!

“Aow, don’t be too full of yourself,” Mew chuckled and pulled him to the rooftop’s door. “Let’s go back, everyone already waiting for us.”

Chapter Text

“P’Mew khaaaa what are you doing???”

It was already the time where the neighbourhoods gathering taken place again. And as much as Gulf loves children, their voices in this early morning just simply made his head hurting. Today the gathering taken place at Gulf’s mom far cousin's place, which ended up made him couldn’t skipped it this time, even if he already insisted to his Khun Phi that he preferred to stay at his condo last night, but his boyfriend just had to pulled his good boy of the neighborhood trademark and told him that he had to be the good nephew to his aunty as well. In which ended up making him having to entertained his baby cousins and their friends in the neighborhood as early as 9am.

Well, true to his boyfriend’s nature that always attracted kids first, of course they were trying to catch P’Mew’s attention first, which made him low-key glad and just sneakily leaned back to sleep at the sofa and trying to buzzed out the children’s nosy voices. Though of course, in just mere minutes, he could felt his boyfriend elbowing him and helplessly asked him to wake up to entertained the kids. He simply stare his boyfriend tiredly and sighed heavily whilst the older producer just give him a weak awkward smile as if to say, “Help me!”

The younger director just rolled his eyes and leaned down to caressed one of his baby cousin’s head, “What are you guys playing, Nong?”

“P’Gulf wants to join??” His baby cousin stared at him with sparkly eyes.

“We currently talking about how to convinced our mom to buy us the new Playstation5, Phi!!!” His friend clapped excitedly.

“Ae already have it and it’s freaking cooool, Phi!!! We want to play it over at his house later, Phi!!!”

“Whoah, Nong Ae, you already bought Playstation5?” Gulf asked the tanned boy that also love to play soccer around the neighborhood.

“Yes, P’Gulf. Last week my mom bought it for me because it was my birthday,” He said with a toothy smile.

“How cool, Nong Ae!” Gulf nodded at him and gave him a thumbs up. “Can Phi borrowed it someday? Phi really want to try that new soccer game.”

“Uhhhhh,” He frowned a bit. “I don’t know if my mom would let me, P’Gulf... Why don’t you just play at my house, P’Gulf?”

“Well...” He plopped his chin on top of his palm and pondered a bit. “I don’t know if I would have the time to play at your house, Nong Ae..”

“Why don’t you just asked P’Mew buy it for you, P’Gulf?” His baby cousin asked him suddenly like it was the brightest idea.

“Huh?”

“I heard from mom that you guys are boyfriends? Boyfriends buy each other things, right?” He asked innocently, which left the two adults startled with this new fact that his cousin actually know about them.

“P’Mew, P’Mew, why don’t you buy P’Gulf PS5??”

“I, er...” His boyfriend startled and turned to him instead. “Do you want it, Nong?”

Before the younger director could reply, suddenly the boys shrieked, “You guys really date each other?!?!?!”

“Is it okay for a boy and a boy to date each other?!?!”

“Doesn’t my mom told me that boys should date girls???”

“What about the bird and the bees—?!?!“

Gulf went flabbergasted hearing the boys’ heated discussion, especially when the conversation suddenly went to here and there which only made his head even more dizzier. He just leaned back to his boyfriend’s shoulder tiredly, which just replied by a chuckled from him.

“Why couldn’t boys date each other?” Mew asked them amusedly.

“I don’t know, every fairytales went like that... the prince met the princess and they live happily ever after...”

“What if not every prince comes with a shining armor?” Suddenly, his boyfriend who usually really awkward with children enthusiastically filled their curiosity. “What if the prince with the shining armor and white horse suddenly meet with a helpless prince that need his help and love?”

Gulf slapped his knee annoyedly, “Are you saying that I’m a damsel in distress or what?!”

“Well, I don’t think that it’s wrong for boys to date each other,” Mew tilted his head playfully, which just made the little boys looking at him with awe, with their mouth hanging opened. “And they could live happily ever after, too, you know.”

“Really, Phi??? But, but, boys couldn’t get pregnant, right?! So you wouldn’t have any children?? P’Gulf, you wouldn’t give me baby nieces and nephews in the future??” His baby cousin asked him curiously.

“I swear to God—“ Gulf sighed in a small voice, not being heard the little boys, as he choose to hide his face on his boyfriend’s shoulder, which just made Mew chuckled even more.

“Aow, there are ways to have children, you know, we just have to meet doctor to do that,” He patted the little kid’s head affectionally. “You will learn that in the future. You could asked your biology teacher, maybe in high school...”

“Really? So we could date boys too?”

“Well, just follow your heart, even if it’s girls or boys, as long as you like each other, I think it would be okay,” Mew nodded surely, which also followed by nodded by the little children.

“Oooooh, I’m definitely will be telling my mom and my teacher about this!!!!” Ae clapped his hand excitedly, and run to called his mom, whose just having a tea time with other aunties in the neighborhood. “Mooooooooom!!!!!!”

“Oh my God,” Gulf said flatly, and turned to his boyfriend with a flat face. “What was just happened? You did it purposely, aren’t you?”

“What?” The older one just chuckled at him.

“You do that purposely so I would stay at your condo for 2 weeks, right?” The younger one raised his left eyebrows with a heavy judgement.

“Your baby cousin who asked that, you know, why didn’t you answered him instead?” The older producer who wore a casual white t-shirt and a beanie today challenged him back.

“Aow, stop making excuses,” He slapped his boyfriend’s knee again and leaned back into the sofa to close his eyes. His boyfriend just chuckled at him amusedly and kissed the younger one’s cheek, which made him slapped Mew again, “You want us to be the talked of the town for the entire month or what???” He shrieked before the aunties suddenly calling for them.

Damn, that Nong, Gulf was crying deep inside. He might have to reconsider his love towards little boys. Uh, probably just this one boy called Ae. But he owned Playstation 5 who might be he would borrow someday —

“Is it true that your son date Gulf?” One of the aunties asked Aunty Jong that happened to take a drink near them.

“Well, what can I say, isn’t he handsome? Who wouldn’t want to have a son-in-law as pretty as him?” She reached out to held Gulf’s shoulder and smiled at the younger one fondly, which made Gulf’s cheeks reddened.

“Why just now??”

“Both of you guys already know each other since the day you were born already???”

Gulf sighed deeply. This was one of the reason why he didn’t want to let these aunties knew about them.... even his mom weren't as nosy as them. He let his boyfriend and Aunty Jong answered it for him for every question that they asked, as his boyfriend tapped his knees, giving him reassurance that everything would be okay.

 

 

 

Even through his hectic schedules, Gulf was glad that at least this time around they could have enough budget to hire movie editors, which indefinitely lessen his work baggage. The filming process also went by pretty smoothly, and they will be releasing the marketing and advertisement content within a month, which includes soundtracks, teaser, and interviews of the cast. Sometime it scared him how everything went smoothly. It seems like there would be an obstacles waiting for them pretty soon, like a calm before storm.

“Don’t think too much,” His boyfriend kissed the crown of his head before he took a seat beside him in the office. They still need to settle some things and papers here before they will be coming to How to Change’s premiere at one of the cinema in Siam Shopping Complex.

“I don’t know, it’s just scares me,” The younger director pondered and took a heavy sigh as he staring blankly at his laptop. “What if—“

“Don’t jinx it,” Mew ruffled through his fluffy hair affectionally. “Bad thoughts would ended up with bad things. Which is one of the reason why I always wear auspicious colours everyday. At least I would have the confidence and reassurance that something would went well at that day.”

“So, now you just had to make me believe on it as well even after forcing me to wear them on most days....”

“Well, I’m not forcing you to put your belief on it,” He shrugged as he let out a stack of papers and his laptop from his bag. “Just... don’t jinx it. If anything good happened, then it’s a blessings. Maybe because you always do a good deeds back then... or because you often made your merits... or simply a good luck on your side....”

Gulf bite his lips worriedly and nodded silently.

“Don’t overthink things again, you know how bad it was to ourselves, right?” He reached out to caressed the younger one’s face softly.

“Now, tell me that you won’t bailing out from the premiere tonight?”

“Like I could? P’Mild been forcing me that I should attend it no matter how,” Gulf rolled his eyes as he put his focus on his laptop and pouted.

“Good boy,” He chuckled and patted the younger one’s head affectionally. “I already prepared your clothes on the closet, okay? Fresh from laundry.”

“I told you that I don’t need you to babying me around, Phi, I could just wear what I wear today to the premiere,” He tsk-ed as he typed to the keyboard.

“Please just trust your faen’s judgement when it comes to clothing for semi-formal events,” The older producer retorted back as he signed some papers.

“Fine... just do whatever that you want to do... with your auspicious belief....” The younger one mumbled silently as if he was mocking his boyfriend, which made the older one who still could hear it knocked him in his head lightly in annoyance.

“Aow, you naughty kid, just be obedient with the elders.”

“Chai, Khun Phi,” He mocked his boyfriend again with a teasing sound, which just made the older one chuckled and knocked his head again.

After working hours, the older one insisted that he would help Gulf prepared for the premiere, after he asked him to washed his face before. As put some light makeup and styled his hair again, which made him remembered that he let the older one did this on his birthday, Mew asked him about his thesis' development.

“Well.... you know how I found the thesis report part to be the most troublesome.... Still halfway on my 2nd draft maybe,” He pouted, letting his boyfriend styled his hair strand by strand.

“Just ask me if you need any help,” Mew replied as his eyes still focusing on Gulf’s bangs and the younger one looked up to his boyfriend and kissed his the mole near his left eyes fondly.

“As much as I would love to have you help me, Phi... you already help me a lot with the series... you, P’Tong, and P’Mild already went a mile for my thesis project. Therefore, no matter how troublesome it is, just let me do my duty as a student and finished the writing part on my own,”

“Aow, already a grown up, my Yai Nong, very wise of you, P’Gulf,” He tickled the under of Gulf’s chin affectionally.

“Stop treating me like I was Chopper.”

“I’m not.”

“You used to, at some point.”

“Well, both of you are cute in similar way, maybe I do it unconsciously.”

“So you admit that you treat your boyfriend like your beloved dog,” Gulf huffed at his boyfriend.

“Well...,” He leaned back and pondered a bit, thinking if he really did that. “Before we date each other, maybe. Like, I like treat you the similar way to Chopper because I really love to babying both of you guys as my baby brothers who I’d love to taking care so much. But now? I don’t think so?”

“Really?” The younger one pouted, heavily judged his boyfriend with his eyes.

“You’re really just have to comparing yourself with a dog, aren’t you,” Mew chuckled amusedly. “Why we discussed regarding this matter in a serious manner, anyway?”

“Well, I just couldn’t help but noticing it,” He folded his hand, still feeling annoyed.

Before Mew moved to give the younger one tinted lip balm, to freshen his face, because without one he would be looked so pale. He leaned forward to give his boyfriend a reeling kiss that left the younger one’s toe curling and breathless once Mew broke the kiss. The older one giving him a flat face afterwards, as if he didn’t realized that the kiss just affected the younger one so much, “If it will make you better, I never kissed Chopper this way before.” He raised his left eyebrows and continue to put makeup on his boyfriend’s face.

Trying to remove the fact that he was still affected by the reeling kiss, he gulped down and trying stay nonchalant, even if his ear still appear reddened. Gulf still pouting even when the older one put him a lip balm on his lips.

“Okay, okay, so, do you want me to treat you like a big boy that you are, P’Gulf?” His boyfriend chuckled at him amusedly. He always loved to teased him with adding ‘Phi’ to the obviously the 6 years younger boy whenever Gulf insisted that he no longer need to be babied around. Gulf just huffed annoyedly while his boyfriend asked him to stand up and style his clothes to look like an effortlessly looking good manner. Living as a koon chai for his entire life, his boyfriend always love to use this kind of styling, like for example french tucked a simple white shirt over dark jeans. He didn’t need to flaunt the brand logo since everything in his wardrobe was branded to begin with, but he just love to look effortlessly good, and it was usually only someone who have a good eyes on fashion that would be noticing that his head to toe outfit would probably cost more than their living cost per month.

Not that Gulf really cared about it, since he also fine with anything that his Mom bought him from generic retail store, but having the privileges to be the boyfriend of the first son of the Jongcheveevat family, he just let his boyfriend bought him things (he would still bought him things even if Gulf said that he didn’t need it, which made the younger one just gave up and let the older one do whatever he wanted to) or asked him to put his boyfriend’s clothings because they have similar size and height, anyway.

The thing with him and Chopper was, he always love and found him cute, still, no matter what. It was just... at some point, especially when his Khun Phi first got him 7 years ago, when Gulf was still at high school, he never expected that it would be like meeting another competitor that he never asked for. They had a rough start at the beginning, when the puppy Chopper always annoyingly bite and barked to him, especially when they both compete to get P’Mew’s attention. Not that he certainly proud of it though, the fact that he had to compete with a cute puppy like Chopper. The fact that at some point Gulf just wished that he could replace’s Chopper place or be him just to get closer to his Khun Phi, because he was that jealous of that dog’s privileges.... But no one had to know about this fact except for him.

Now in the present day, he already made peace with the small dog, even run to him when he need the comfort because his own cat, Ju, just treated him like a peasant most of the days, because Ju prefer his sister over him. He sulked at his mom to get him dog like Chopper at some point, but Khun Mae keep declining the idea, “Mew’s house is a few steps away, just go to the Jongcheveevat if you wanted to play with dog like Chopper.”

However, it irked him the moment that he realized that P’Mew treated him with a similar way when he was babying Chopper. Back in the day, Gulf thought that he actually had the chance with his Khun Phi because he loved to hugged him and let him seat on his lap. However, during his over-analyzing days, those rare days when his brain actually fully functioning without being sleepy even a little bit, he just realized when he inspecting P’Mew babying Chopper, that his Khun Phi basically treated him in similar way to Chopper. Even if P’Mew loved them and touched them a lot, it was an innocent act, like siblings love, or maybe parental love. There were no romantically feelings involved, especially when P’Mew still date other girls back in the day.

As he took another heavy sigh, P’Mew chuckled at him, “Stop frowning, it would leave you wrinkles.”

The younger one just huffed annoyedly, which made the older one asked again. “What again this time, my love? Still overthinking about Chopper?”

“Say, Phi. What if both me and Chopper drowned in the deepest sea? Who will you rescue first?”

“Don’t make me choose,” Mew let out a giggle this time while he shook his head, which made Gulf annoyed even more.

“What’s with your ridiculous jealousy toward Chopper this time?”

“Just answer it, Phi,” Gulf grumbled annoyedly.

“Of course Chopper, you could swim really well, my love,” Mew silence his giggle but it still apparent that he wanted to laugh at the younger one, which annoyed him even more.

“Don’t ‘my love’ or ‘thi rak’ me,” He snapped with a piercing eyes as he moved away from the older one.

“Aow, what’s with this sudden sulking and jealousy,” Mew finally let out an amused laugh. “With Chopper nonetheless.”

The older producer walking to his boyfriend’s way, hugged him from behind, and peppered kiss to his neck and shoulders, “What if.... I let you do the things that you wanted to do last week tonight?”

This got the younger one to turned at him skeptically. “Really? You would letting me do that?”

“What I wouldn’t do for you, my love,” He continue to peppered the tingling kisses up to the back of Gulf’s ears.

“Could we just skipped the premiere event again?”

“You know how Mild would ended up being overbearing and annoying for the entire week if we skipping that event, right?” The older boyfriend chuckled again.

The younger director tsk-ed loudly and quickly pulled his boyfriend’s to go to the entrance door, “Make it quick, we send our congratulations for P’Mild and P’Mame and then we will be sneaking out right the moment when the movie started. It would be dark in the cinema, they would probably already forget about us afterwards.”

The older one just let out another amused laugh at his boyfriend’s childish act.

 

 

 

 

 

When it was already the time for their own premiere several months later, which will be publicly showed, it made him nervous beyond words. Well, they might already showcased the pilot episode last year, however, public’s reception and critiques reception would be 180° different. It was even more nerve wrecking to hear public’s opinion, especially when the story that he brought up pretty sensitive. Well, the pilot episode might be have the most light topic, however, from second episode onwards, it would be depicting all of the sensitive and psychologic side to the topic of romance that anyone barely talk about. Critiques and media might like it, however, from public’s eyes, especially the one who barely touched festival movie genre, it might be hard to received.

“You already know the consequences when you decided to brought up this topic, right?” His co-scriptwriter patted his shoulder, “Calm down, we might already know how they would perceive it, it’s not like the public’s critiques would be unimaginable for us.”

“How could you be this calm, Phi?” Gulf gritted his teeth nervously, keep tapping his feet on the ground on his seat.

“Well, I’ve been in this industry 4 years longer than you, and I never give a fuck to what people’s saying to begin with,” He shrugged. “Constructive critiques are much needed to make us grow to be a better one, however there is no use to hear people’s opinion that would just plainly hate our work for ridiculous reasons. I would say that... they are simply not our target market. Just moved on from them, and focused on the constructive critiques, Ai’Nong.”

“I know what you’re saying is true... it’s just hard to apply within a short time, Phi. I still feel nervous no matter what,” The younger one sighed.

“It’s normal I would say. Well, any kind of works would received negative critiques no matter what. We human couldn’t create a perfect work regardless on how much effort that we put upon our work. Just focus on make it as a case study to make a better work in the future, okay?”

“What did he say, Tong?” The producer that earlier having a conversation with several investors and sponsors finally plopped down into his seat. “Are you having a nervous breakdown again?” He caressed the younger’s nape to make him calmer.

“Not so much until it would considered as a ‘breakdown’, still normal, I would say,” The older scriptwriter that currently dressed up with his specs and oversized shirt on a skinny jeans shrugged as he leaned back into his own seat.

“What are your professor been saying about your work?”

“They still reviewing it after I presenting the thesis project through online conference last week....”

“When will the result come out?” His thumb circling into the younger one’s hand to give him reassurance.

“Right before my birthday,” He sighed heavily. “It would be either the worst present or the best present of my life.”

“Really? My presents couldn’t compete?” His boyfriend raised his eyebrows playfully.

“Ai’Phi, please,” He tsk-ed annoyedly to his boyfriend, which just made the older one chuckled.

“Well, it’s all an experimental project to begin with,” He smile to the younger one. “I know it have some risks when I decided to help you to produced it, but you know that I always trust your work. If people said that it’s not good enough, repay them with even better work in the future.”

“I’m sorry if the public reception would be bad, or if it wouldn’t make any money, Phi...” He pouted sadly.

The older one just chuckled, “Should we say thank you to Mai who agreed to appear in 5 episodes of the series? Everything that she sell would be sold within seconds. People might be have mixed reviews towards our series, but at least they will be still tuning in? Any views, any receptions, wether it would be good or bad, would hopefully still making money as long as we received high ratings.”

“I’m sorry if I put so much burdened on your shoulder, Phi...”

“Yai Nong...”, He raised Gulf’s hand to kissed it softly. “Do you actually forget that this work made you got offered a scholarship last year? I know that it won’t be that bad.”

“Stop. Overthinking,” He playfully kissed the back of Gulf’s hand when he said it. “I’ve said it before, right? Bad thoughts would ended up with bad things.”

The lights on the cinema finally went darkened, giving a signal that the series would start within a few minutes. “Now, just focus on what’s happening in front of our eyes,” The older one linked their hands with each other whilst Gulf just gave up and leaned on the older’s shoulder.

 

 

 

They didn’t know if they should feel overwhelmed, glad, or nervous that up to the 5th episode, everyone been talking about their series in a rather positive manner. Especially when the public was surprised that they were not coming from a big production company like Nadao or GDH who usually came out with a high budget yet critically acclaimed works like Bad Genius and Hormones. They even surprised that the Mai Davika finally let out her true potential in acting where she picturing the raw and painful side of women who being heartbroken because she just got left at the altar, thinking that she won’t be worthy enough to still live in this world to the point where she want to commit suicide. She even let out her ‘pretty actress’ persona. She still pretty even without make up still, but people just amazed that she actually could acted that good, since they usually know her as a pretty, funny, and bubbly actress.

“Ai’Gulf, what just I’ve told you, right???” P’Mild has been chirping from early morning, that just made his head hurt.

“Don’t jinx it—“ Gulf snapped restlessly.

“But it’s happening??? We even get higher ratings from the previous episodes at last night??”

“Just give him a break, Ai’Mild,” Mew that earlier been typing through his keyboard to give report to the investors reached to his Nong’s head that been sitting beside him all day to rest his head on his shoulder. “It’s the announcement to his final score today.”

“Really????”

The younger one just staring at his annoying friends tiredly and let out a heavy sigh without saying any words.

“I’m sure it would be good, Gulf....”

“Don’t jinx it—"

His older friend just staring at him like he was highly offended, and he turned to the older producer instead, whispering as if they couldn’t hear each other, “When will the result come out?”

“3pm London time.... which means... it will be 10pm Bangkok time later...” P’Mew answered it for the younger director, joining his friend in a whispering activities.

“Ai’Gulf, su su na, you can do it!!!” P’Mild cheering for him, still in a whispering level which just made him wanted to snapped at the older one, but he just decided to buried his face on his boyfriend’s shoulder instead.

“You two— if you want to date around today, just go back home already!!!” Mild rolled his eyes annoyedly.

 

 

 

The day continue with a restless Kanawut Traipipattanapong and his boyfriend who just continue to be the good boyfriend that he is — giving him all of the reassurance that he needed, take him into his favorite restaurant for dinner, feed him with his favorite food, showered him with any gifts that he wanted even if his birthday would be tomorrow, and even let the younger one to make him wear some ridiculous couple pajamas in fleece materials, with a shape of a ridiculous chicken that he loves to wear when the younger one was feeling funny.

They even already at the bed from 9pm onwards, with the younger one just turning, and turning restlessly, waiting for the result to come out. Mew just silently hugged him from behind as they comfortably snuggled with each other, while the younger one watching his boyfriend keep refreshing through his browser tabs on his phone and move to other apps like Twitter and Instagram in between to entertained himself.

When the time finally ticking to 9.55pm, the younger boyfriend endlessly refreshing to his campus website portal, and Mew could feel that his heartbeat quickened in a fast speed, which just made him kiss the crown of his head to make him calmer. The younger director suddenly went stunned for a couple of second, threw his phone away and turning around to snuggled at his boyfriend instead.

“So?” The older one tried to asked him, since he didn’t see the screen of his mobile phone earlier.

“At least I passed,” He buried his head on the crook of his boyfriend’s neck. “I will be reading the details of the professors’ commentaries tomorrow, I just want to freaking sleep right now.”

“Congratulation, my love,” The older one reached out to pulled his boyfriend’s chin so that he could kissed him softly. “You don't want to wait for your birthday? It will be 2 hours to go.”

“Nah, let’s just sleep it away, what’s the fun of getting older, anyway,” He rolled his eyes, which just made the older one smiling amusedly at him.

“What do you want to eat tomorrow? Don’t forget that I still have a lot of surprises for you,” The older one reminded him. “Also, Khun Mae been saying that you should tell her when will you go to the temple for your birthday merits.”

“Could we just postponed it all tomorrow, Phi?” He pleaded to the older one with a puppy eyes. “I really, really, really need to sleep all day tomorrow.”

He knew that his boyfriend adore his quality sleep so much, but he never expected that he would specifically requesting that he want to have sleep as a birthday present, which just made him chuckled at the younger one.

“Seriously, Phi. All of this waiting and hearing people’s critiques were so nerve wrecking, it freaking tiring me out for all these months, just let me sleep all day, pretty please, Phi?” He pleaded again, as if he was knowing that his puppy eyes was one of his boyfriend’s weaknesses.

“Fine, I will be calling your mom tomorrow,” He gave up and settled into what his younger boyfriend’s wanted, which just successfully made the younger one smiling so brightly, it made his eyes turned into a moon shape.

“You’re the best boyfriend ever!!!” He snuggled to his boyfriend even further and started to close his eyes tiredly, which just made the older one reached to caressed his cheek fondly as he watching his boyfriend turned into slumber.

 

Well, as much as he loves surprises, especially during birthdays, birthday sleep didn’t sound that bad, isn’t it?

Chapter Text

It was already nearing 3pm after the young film director following his boyfriend to looking around for the nth apartments since early in the morning. The numbers of every few sq per meters, fully furnished or not fully furnished, which towers headed to whichever specific direction, if it was too high or too low, the security problems, the facilities, how big is the parking lot, the consideration if the area were strategic enough for his daily routine, the problems of 2 bed rooms or 3 bed rooms were been dizzying his head out. Especially when for all his life, the Traipipattanapong never moved from the house that he currently staying in, and even when he had to looked out for new places or dorm to live when he was in college, the scholarship team already provided for him, so he just simply had to put his stuff there. And it had been more than a month since he accompanying his boyfriend for an apartment tour every weekend or every time they simply free from their work to almost every apartment complex in center of the city, and it seems that his boyfriend still haven’t decided yet.

“Why do you need new places to live, anyway, Phi? I think your current condo already nice to begin with?” The younger one asked him in between of his boyfriend comparing the endless brochures from the apartment that they have been going to for the day.

“Well... the rent going to finished soon... I just want to buy one, since my dad said that it would be better for future investment...” He read through the specification without seeing to the younger one while he answering it, still focusing on the brochures while they were waiting for the agent to search for the lock for empty rooms that would be available for room tour. “You’ve been saying that you wanted to rent one, too, right? Look over for yourself too, then,” His boyfriend looked up to him.

The young director simply couldn’t relate. The thing was, no matter how his work going pretty well, it was just that he needed to help with his family financially in the mean time because his dad’s business didn’t go pretty well these days because of the pandemic. Therefore, he already put aside his own dream to live on his own, and been taking as much projects that he could do. It was a blessings that the series turned out to be well received, so that a lot of advertisement company, production house, and his colleagues from past projects been offering him to do a lot of interesting projects. He couldn’t be as idealistic for the time being though. He considered that had enough experiment in the series, and if he wanted to created another idealistic project, at least he would be waiting after his family’s condition to be better and until he had enough savings to produced it in the future.

His boyfriend, in another place, were privileges even from the day he was born. And given that he already been in the industry for years already, he had enough savings from the endless works that he took right after he graduated to buy for his own properties even without asking for help from his family. Well, it was also a blessings that his family never been that impacted with the whole crisis, aside of the fact that old money family probably already been through a lot of economical crisis from the past so they already knew how to deal with it in the present time, they also always made their merits whenever they had time, so it must be the good karma doings. He never really envying his boyfriend’s family and status, instead, he always looked up to them on how they managed their time, money, and education and put it into a good use.

“Nah, Phi, I would probably postponed that plan. It cost too much, especially the deposit money. My dad’s company still struggling at the moment, I don’t think it would be wise enough for me to be a selfish kid right now...” He pondered a bit. Not being particularly sad, just being realistic with the whole situation.

His boyfriend look at him fondly, full of understanding, “Let’s just wish that the situation would be better soon, okay?” He caressed Gulf’s cheek softly and held his hand, “Now, just please help me to look which one is the better one.”

 

 

 

 

“Aooow, my cutest Nong Gulf, how are you, my dear?”

“Ah Ma, how are you,” Gulf wai her politely before she reached to him for a warm hug and kissed both of his cheeks.

“Why are you becoming thinner, Nong Gulf??” The grandmother of the Jongcheveevat tapped his face in concern.

It has been a long time since he had time to visit P’Mew grandma from Aunty Jong side, and finally after he could take a breather a bit from work, and an impromptu “Let’s go to Ah Ma’s house since it’s near here!” after they sightseeing the apartment complex, he finally met the beautiful lady, despite the obvious wrinkles and the graying hair. Aunty Jong’s family blood line was pretty strong in terms of their looks, and it was obvious enough that his boyfriend and Aunty Jong looks shared from Ah Ma, with their rather sharp eyes and sculpted jawline.

“Mew kha, you’ve been telling me that you would Nong here, why just now??” His boyfriend’s grandma asked him in a nagging voice.

“Sorry, Ah Ma, it’s just that our work been holding us for a while...” He kneeling in front of her and wai her politely, which just made her tsk-ed loudly while still reaching for her grandson to kissed his cheeks as well, “Work, work, work, that’s all of the excuses that you’re trying to make.”

“I’m sorry Ah Ma, I will try to visit you more often in the future, okay?” The younger director smiling at her, which just made the grandmother smiling with concern at him, “Aow, it’s Mew’s fault, not yours, Nong Gulf,” She turned to nagged again at her grandson. “Here, here, took a seat beside me.” She tapped the free space beside her at the sofa and insisted that he should take a seat there.

“How was London, my dear? I heard that you’ve been continuing your study there...”

“Ah, yes, Ah Ma, actually I already got the result of my thesis project last month... And now I just had to finished some revision and leftover college papers and administration papers that I have yet to finish, and then hopefully I would be graduating next summer, Ah Ma...”

“Why summer? Isn’t it still like... 6 months away?”

“Well, my campus only held graduation twice a year, during summer and fall, therefore I have no choice but to join the closest one, which is the summer graduation, Ah Ma...” He tried to explained slowly and politely.

“Ah.... I see... will your family go to the London as well?” She tilting her head and asked him kindly.

“Ummm, I don’t think so, Ah Ma, since it would be pretty expensive if the four of us would be going to UK... Unfortunately, the scholarship would only covered my transportation....” Gulf held a heavy sigh.

“Aow, don’t be sad that you will be graduating alone, okay, Nong? My husband also graduate from his university all alone back then in Beijing, so I would understand how your family feels...” She put him into a comfortable hug to reassure him, and then turned to his grandson. “Ah, Mew, why don’t you accompanying him to his graduation?”

“Ah, actually...,” He let out an awkward smile.

“What other excuses that you would make, Mew? Why are you being so cruel to Nong and left him all alone at foreign place?” Ah Ma tapped Gulf’s back as if to protecting him.

“It’s just that... I would definitely accompanying him, Ah Ma,” He let out another awkward toothy smile.

“Really?” His grandma turned to him with a proud look. “That’s my boy. You have to make sure to protect him, okay? This precious Nong,” Ah Ma tapped his cheeks adoringly, which made her grandson smiled amusedly at them.

They continue the day as they forced to stay for dinner as the aunties already prepared it for them, and as Ah Ma insisted, “So that Nong wouldn’t turned even thinner.” With — of course — any kind of dishes with basil, particularly the khra paow because today was all about Nong Gulf according to Ah Ma. During the dinner, she and Aunty Alex keep telling them all of the cute and amusing stories from their childhood whenever Gulf had to visit her back in the day, which just made him either embarrassed or laughed loudly.

“Does she know about us, Phi?” The younger director pondered as they went back to both of their family house.

“I don’t know, I haven’t told her, though, maybe my mom did,” He shrugged while he was focusing on the road and turning to him a bit, “What’s wrong? Does it matter?”

“No... It’s just...,” Gulf leaned his head at the car’s window to think.

“What? As if she knew?” His boyfriend chuckled lightly.

The slightly tanned boy turned to his Khun Phi and nodded, while the older one pulled him into a side hug and ruffled his hair fondly when he stopped for a red light, “You know how the elders usually have sharper eyes than us, right? Maybe Ah Ma also knew that we will ended up together ever since we were both small? Who knows?”

Gulf just nodded while still pouting, whilst his boyfriend tapped his head lightly, “Don’t you love it? Being adored by all of my family members?”

“Overwhelmed, maybe, at some point, but they already babying me since forever, anyway, so it’s not like I’m not getting used to it,” He shrugged lightly as he leaned back because the traffic lights already turned green.

“But anyway, Phi. I think.... I have to comeback to London earlier than what I expected...”

“Huh?” He asked him confusedly.

“Yesterday the professors been telling me that I need to prepare for the administration papers on my own, like, a couple of months before I graduate,” He pouted sadly.

“Really?” He turned to his younger boyfriend sadly, “Will you be doing fine?”

“Will you be doing fine, Phi?” He sighed. “I have to tell all of my co-workers in my on going project regarding this, though, either I have finish the projects really fast, brought my work there, postponed it, or left the project...”

When his boyfriend just keep silent when he still focused on the road he turned to him again, “I’m sorry, okay, Phi? It’s not like I want to do this either...” He said apologetically.

The older one just shook his head softly, “No, no, no, I understand, really, and I always will be supporting your education no matter what... it’s just that— I need a moment to seep this new information upon my head...”

“I’m sorry, Phi...” He pouted at his boyfriend sadly. “Do you want me to stay at your place tonight?”

The older producer just staying silent while still focusing on his steering wheel and the road. After a long minutes, he finally replied, “No, I want to meet your parents tonight.”

The younger one snapped his head really fast he wished it wouldn’t break, “What, Phi??”

“Uh huh, I want to meet your parents tonight,” His boyfriend finally turned his head to him and nodded surely, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.

He didn’t know what will be going on, but this discussion certainly made the younger boy low-key nervous for some reason. He started to panic and opened his phone, texting P’Mai because he was confused on the seemingly like a sudden emergency situation.

goob⚽: p’mai???????
davikah🎀: what’s up, nong?

Thank God she was online, or else he had to ask for P’Mild that certainly won’t giving him any help.

goob⚽: please help me phi????
goob⚽: i think i’m in emergency situation?????
davikah🎀: what’s wrong????
goob⚽: i—
davikah🎀: yah, just explain it, why didn’t u just call me like usual anyway????
goob⚽: i couldn’t!!!
goob⚽: i wish i would, but i just can’t!!!
davikah🎀: just explain it or else i would turning off my phone bcs u keep telling me nonsense.
goob⚽: so earlier i told p’mew
goob⚽: that i had to be back to london like, 2 months before my graduation
goob⚽: i said sorry, right
davikah🎀: and then?
goob⚽: and then he become silent
goob⚽: and suddenly told me that he want to meet my parents tonight?????
goob⚽: wtf?????
davikah🎀: ????
davikah🎀: what’s wrong anyway?
davikah🎀: well, i mean u guys already used to meet each other’s parents to begin with?
davikah🎀: why r u panicking?
goob⚽: but it sounds so different rather than usual????
davikah🎀: explain ‘different’
goob⚽: ?????
goob⚽: i don’t really know bUT its def. making me nervous???

“Why you’re being busy with your phone, my love?”

He startled when he heard his boyfriend’s voice, he almost dropped his phone, “Uh work, Phi, P’Tong trying to make sure about something for the next day’s meeting.” He made lame excuses. He just wished that his voice didn't sound shaky, so that his boyfriend would ended up catching his lame lies. Fortunately, the older one bought it and nodded, and turning back into the road. He started to panic even more when he saw that they already becoming even closer to his house. He gulped nervously and turned back into his phone, which already full with P’Mai's messages.

davikah🎀: so?????
davikah🎀: wait—
davikah🎀: do u think the same thing that i think right now????
goob⚽: i think?????????
davikah🎀: what??????????
davikah🎀: well, i mean i knew that he’s a hopeless romantic..
davikah🎀: and love to do the unimaginable things....
davikah🎀: but i don’t think that he would be asking (((that))) in an impulse ?????
goob⚽: ikr, my thought exactly ?????

He gulped down and put down his phone nervously when the car stopped and his boyfriend already parked in front of his house. His boyfriend turned off the engine and put off his seat belt, then turned to him confusedly, “What are you waiting for? Let’s go?”

Which just he replied with a nervous nodded while he put off his seat belt as well and picked up his bag, then go outside to unlocked the gate, albeit with several tries since his hands were sweating and he nearly dropped his keys because the older one’s existence behind him making him even more nervous. After he successfully unlocked the gate, he didn’t expect that his mom would be opening the door.

“Is it you, Gulf? Why are you making such a loud sounds just to unlocked the gate?” His mom frowned at him.

“Khun Mae, I’m home,” He wai his mother politely, followed by his boyfriend.

“Nong Mew? What are you doing here?” His mother asked him confusedly because it was already pretty late at night.

“Actually, Khun Mae, I really want to ask something to you and Uncle....” P’Mew asked her politely.

“Huh?”

“I’m sorry if I disturb you late at night... but I think it’s pretty important... at least for me...”

“Uh, okay, come in..?” Khun Mae replied confusedly and finally let the boys in.

At the living room, the same one where they were being interrogate a while ago, the younger one seating beside his boyfriend restlessly and been tapping his foot nervously. His parents just stared at them in confusion, waiting for the son of the Jongcheveevat to talk.

“Okay, Nong Mew, what are you wanted to talk about?” His Khun Phor asked him kindly.

“The thing is, Uncle... both of you must be already knew that Gulf will be graduating this summer, right...”

Both of his parents nodded and asked him to continue.

“Well, since I knew that both of you wouldn’t be able to attend his graduation, I just wanted to tell you that I want to ask for your permission properly, Khun Mae, Uncle...”

The younger one just looked at his boyfriend nervously while biting his lips, while suddenly his boyfriend entwined their hands together.

“That I will be accompanying Nong Gulf for his graduation later,” He nodded surely. “I knew that he have to come back to London two months before his graduation... But I will be following him probably a week before his graduation, Khun Mae, Uncle, and I will make sure that he will be having a good time there, graduate happily, and will bring him back to Bangkok safely.”

They were all just staying silent upon hearing their son’s boyfriend and nodded understandingly afterwards. “Really, thank you so much, Nong Mew. You really don’t have to do this, but still, thank you for accompanying my son for his graduation,” Khun Mae smiled at him fondly.

“Just... thank you for not letting him graduate all alone, Nong Mew,” Gulf’s father nodded at him and reached to tapped his shoulders thankfully.

They were all having a light conversation about this and that afterwards, and Gulf just staring at his boyfriend confusedly. Did he actually expecting something more? His boyfriend turned to him and raised his eyebrows, as if wanted to ask him “What’s wrong?”

He wanted to asked to his boyfriend, like, “That’s it, Phi?” just to make sure, but he just shook his head and laughed it out. Gulf certainly wouldn’t be prepared enough should he suddenly asking him the question that he thought his boyfriend would be asking to his parents. They didn’t need to rushed it, right? Their relationship?

He just smiled to his boyfriend, entwined their hands together, and whispered, “Thank you for coming to London for me, Phi.”

 

 

 

 

The ticking sounds of clock being heard loudly in the room. It was oddly silent, because just several weeks ago, the boyfriend of the owner of the new sleek and modern furnished apartment still often coming over to his place. Now, they had to settled with another long distance again. He just glad enough that the pandemic already calming down from the end of last year, and almost all countries already opened their gate internationally, which made him able to accompanying his boyfriend for his graduation soon.

“Phi???? Phi???” The sound of the younger boyfriend nagging around being heard from the other side of the phone.

“Are you unconsciously sleeping at the sofa in the living room again???” He tsk-ed annoyedly to his boyfriend that already gone from the screen but still turning on his phone. “I told you that just take the phone from your bed, right? I knew it would ended up like this because it’s already past your sleeping time,” He nagged over the phone, because the matter of time differences made their communication pretty hard to be done again.

“Phiiiii, P’Mew, wake up!!! You will be catching cold again if you’re not sleeping properly in the bed, Phi!!!!” He tried again, certainly didn’t give up until his boyfriend woke up.

“Hhhhhh,” The said boyfriend grumbled and raised a bit with his prescribed glasses skewed on his face and he tried to moved his hair away from his face.

“Good, good, you’re waking up, right now,” He tsk-ed again. “Now, move to the bed properly, chai, Phi? And remove your glasses, or else you will be hurting your face again tomorrow morning.”

The younger one watching his boyfriend obediently following his instruction over the small screen, while obviously still 90% being sleepy. When he already see the older one tucked in with his comforter on her bed comfortably, he smiled amusedly, “Good boy, P’Mew khaa, now sleep properly, okay, Phi? I will be waiting for you on the airport tomorrow night, okay? See you, Khun Phi~” He blew an air kiss even if he knew his boyfriend already went into a deep sleep, which just made him chuckled afterwards before he cut off the call.

 

 

 

“Sawatdee krub na P'Gulf....”

Gulf shrieked and nearly wanted to jumped out and slapped anyone that standing behind him because it scared him out, the fact that suddenly someone blew a hot air on his nape when he trying to texted his boyfriend. Except, when he was turning around, it was obviously the said annoying boyfriend. “Ai’Phi, you scared me!!!” He lightly punched his boyfriend who currently wearing a laidback checkered flannel over a casual shirt.

“I miss you, too,” The older one chuckled, pulled his boyfriend into a hug, and kissed the top of his crown, which made the younger one engulfed into those familiar scents again.

“I thought you will be coming out from the other side, Phi,” He asked the older one, trying to help him to carry one of his luggages, but being declined by his boyfriend.

“I don’t understand either, I just followed the way like other passengers,” He shrugged.

The younger one just nodded, “What do you want for dinner, Phi? Or you already ate at the plane? Want to go directly to the hotel instead?”

“Let’s just order room service if we happened to be hungry later, I’m way too tired from the long flights,” The stretched his body so it would creaked.

“Fine, welcome back to London, my Khun Phi,” He kissed his boyfriend on the cheek before he pulled him to the taxi queue.

 

 

Since it was obviously not their first time on London, they tried to look for another options for interesting places which not includes generic touristy place, like say, Big Ben, London Eye, or Buckingham Palace. Upon their one week before the younger one’s graduation, they tried to discovered London’s newest trendy places by café hopping, trying several interesting coffee shops, and went to museum hopping as well. The nerdy side of his Khun Phi insisted that they should visited Sherlock Holmes Museum and Warner Bros. Studio Tour to see the Harry Potter Museum as well and took picture on some of the iconic places from both movies, which just made the younger one amused by his boyfriend’s childish act when they visited both places.

After having a cultural visit at Victoria & Albert Museum, they settled in for having a slow day at Soho while they just sightseeing and did a little bit shopping while enjoying some food afterwards because right after Gulf’s graduation tomorrow, they would be taking a flight back to Bangkok as soon as possible. Therefore, they wouldn’t have any time after the graduation to explore London.

 

 

“How do you feel this morning, Khun Kanawut Traipipattanapong, Master of Art, First Class of Honours,” The older one helped his boyfriend to put his preppy shirt and black dress suit for his graduation after finished styling his hair.

“Grateful that I finally could finished this study,” He chuckled while he let the older one make sure that his boyfriend would be dressed properly before he put his graduation gown. “And finally to go back to my hometown,” He let out a sighed of relieved.

“I’m proud of you, Yai Nong,” The older one smiled to the younger one fondly while he tapping both of his cheeks as they connected their forehead together for a while before smiling to each other.

Then, the graduation ceremony went as usual, it was begin with a procession of academics, wearing academic dress. This procession is accompanied by music, and a ceremonial mace was carried. Afterwards, an official reads out the names of the graduates one by one, organized by class of degree and/or by subject. When their names were being called, the graduates walk across the stage to shake hands with a senior official, often the university's Chancellor or the vice-chancellor. A speech by the chancellor towards the graduates was delivered at the start or towards the end of the ceremony.

After he took endless pictures with his friends that graduated together with him, the older boyfriend who unexpectedly suddenly carrying a big bouquet that Gulf never saw before, suddenly walking up to him after he deemed that the younger one already have enough time with his friends.

“Congratulation, my love,” The older one put him into a kiss, which gladly he took with a smile.

“When are you actually having time to buy the flowers, Phi? Where do you find a florist, anyway?” He laughed at his boyfriend amusedly.

“I always have my ways,” The older one smiling to him rather smugly, which just made the younger one smiling sheepishly and inspecting the pretty flowers. “Will they allowed us to take these flowers to the flight?”

“I don’t know?” The older one laughed as well.

“Let’s go, we have to go back as soon as possible to the hotel to picked up our baggages,” His Khun Phi dragged him to the taxi queue that already starting up to be filled with people as soon as they done taking pictures at the graduation venue. “Our flight would be within 3 hours, anyway.”

“Ah, anyway, Phi, I just notice it before, why you didn’t buy the direct flight like usual? I thought you never really like to take a transit flight?” Gulf tilted his head in confusion on his boyfriend.

“I just couldn’t hide anything from you, isn’t it?” The older one smiled at him.

“Huh?”

“Actually I want to tell you at our transit place, but I think it could work here as well...” He let out two pieces of colourful tickets from his inner pocket of his blazer.

“Shut. Up,” The younger director shrieked when he realized what the older one currently holding on his hand. He looked up at his boyfriend in this belief, “How could you get this, Phi????? Are you freaking kidding me????”

“Do you need another reminder that your faen have his ways to get things?” He smiled amusedly upon seeing the younger one’s shocked face.

“What the hell, Phi, but to get a ticket to an Opening Ceremony of World Cup at Qatar is..... Are you a magician or what????” He shrieked again, pinching his own cheeks, trying to make sure that it wasn’t a dream.

“Which explain my reason to take a one day transit flight at Qatar, right?” His boyfriend sounded so smugly again. “Ah also, before I could get you these tickets...” He let out a small box from his breast pocket, a box so familiar that he didn’t believe that would be seeing right now at his graduation. He gulped down when his boyfriend opened it for him, “Gulf Kanawut, the love of my life, I know that want to focused on your career first, and I would be waiting for you until you’re ready, whenever it would be, but please, at least give me the assurance that you would stay with me, like, forever?”

He didn’t realized that his eyes would turned into a glassy one, “You actually remember it?” He looked up to his boyfriend in disbelief. “Aunty Alex’s ring?”

His boyfriend just nodded at him in amusement, certainly proud of his own doings. 

“It’s not the one that you bought for P’Mai, right?” He retorted in suspicion.

“Yah, Ai’Nong, I’m not that low, have some decency for me,” His boyfriend was clearly feeling offended. “I didn’t even buy this kind of ring for her back then...”

“Oh my God, what was just happening,” Gulf hitting his head with the big bouquet from his P’Mew earlier in disbelief. “Is there any prank camera here?”

“Nong, just answer it already, we have flights to take...,” His boyfriend asked him tiredly.

“How would I know that this is real??” He shrieked again, as if what they were doing earlier didn’t just making people around put their attention upon them.

“Ah, while we’re on it,” His boyfriend let out another thing from his breast pocket. Gulf never know that his boyfriend borrowed a magic pocket from Doraemon or something. “Here’s the key to my new apartment — could we please just started to live together already? We already acted like an old married couple, anyway.”

“Phi, do you want to make me having an endless heart attack today or what???”

“Just answer it already, my love, or else we wouldn’t be able to catch our flight,” He put his left arm on hips and sigh. “Do you want to watch the Opening Ceremony or not?!?”

“Phi, couldn’t you be more romantic when you’re asking all of these to me???

“If I’m not being romantic, I wouldn’t be doing all of these in the first place, Nong...,” He let out a heavy sigh. "Ah, anyway I already gave the 19M dowry to Khun Mae before I'm coming here."

"What????"

“So, do you want to watch it or not??” He asked for the nth time desperately.

“Yes, okay, okay, okay,” Gulf gave up and finally answered even it still seems vague, which clearly didn’t make the older one satisfied.

“Yes to what? Okay to which questions?” He asked again annoyedly to make sure because his boyfriend weren’t being clear earlier.

“I swear to God—“ Gulf let out a heavy sigh and buried his head on the flowers before looked up again at his boyfriend. “To all of your questions, Phi!!!”

They didn’t realized that they were being watched from the entire graduation venue and attendees, which suddenly clapped and cheering for them, even if they sounded like a couple who having a massive fight earlier. They nodded awkwardly to all of the people, and suddenly the taxi driver coughed at them lightly, telling them that they have been waiting for a while and there are still a long queue behind them, asking if they still want to take the taxi or not.

They smile awkwardly to each other and laughed when they already at the car, whilst Mew been pointing out how Gulf being reddened up to his neck and ear the moment he realized that they were being the center of attention. The younger one just shook his head tiredly and leaned down to rest his head on his boyfriend’s head, which made the older one turned to caressed his hair fondly. Who would’ve thought that he would be getting his 5 year-old childhood dream in that previous chaotic situation, right?

He also never thought that he would be attending one of the events of his dreams that he never realized he also dream of before — he used to think that having to watch Premier League with Chelsea and Liverpool competing with each other was enough. But now, he would be attending the event that every soccer fan never dared to dream before. Live. Not just from television or on his laptop. He let out another heavy sighed while chuckled at the entire situation before he remember something.

“Phi, before I forget...” He looked up to P’Mew which just turned to look at him in question.

“Please don’t embarrass me later if you don’t know the soccer player names... just cheering and random ‘whoooo’ and ‘yaaaay’ are enough, Phi.”

“Yah, you ungrateful kid!” His boyfriend knocked his head lightly. “Just be grateful that I already spent my blood and tears to get it for you, Nong,” He ruffled the younger's boyfriend hair in amusement.

“Right,” He chuckled and reached out to kiss his boyfriend briefly on the lips and smile so brightly, it turned his eyes into a moon shape, “Thank you for always gifting me with all of the unimaginable things, Phi.”