An airy sigh mixed with the soft rustling of fabric rubbing against fabric as Gui Wen shifted his legs slightly. Tilting his head to one side on the pillow, a few strands of his hair tickled his ear and he swatted them away clumsily. Turning over with a low groan, he burrowed further into his thick pile of blankets until he was little more than a large lump on one side of the bed. He scrunched up his eyebrows at the room’s temperature—too cold for his taste even with as many blankets as he could get his hands on piled atop himself—and tried to go back to sleep. His main source of warmth wasn’t in the bed with him, and the lonely absence made him shiver more than the chill.
He was beginning to drift off once more when the smooth noise of his bedroom door being opened made his eyes crack open slightly. Quiet, familiar footsteps padded across the wood floor and approached the bed, stopping near his nightstand. He held his breath as his heartbeat sped up in anticipation.
Something prodded the outside of his blankets, but he didn’t uncover his head to see what it was. Without answering, he stifled a chuckle that was threatening to bubble out.
He closed his eyes again and pretended to snore.
Suddenly the blankets were removed and his cheek was hit hard by something flat, cold, and sticky. He could almost feel the skin begin to turn red from the sharp impact. He let his eyes open and blinked into the morning light coming through the window. The shadowy silhouette of his young wife stood over him, holding a spatula threateningly in one hand, and throwing the blankets unceremoniously onto the floor with the other.
When he didn’t move, the front of his pajama top was grabbed and the upper half of his body was dragged off the bed. He gave Lan an upside-down smile as he hung limply off the edge. She tapped his forehead with the messy cooking utensil in her hand as her face contorted into a horrific grin one would usually find gracing the features of an insane serial killer. He’d already seen it countless times, but he felt new goosebumps form on his skin that had nothing to do with the chilly air. He often wondered just how she managed to get her pretty face to look like that.
“Breakfast is almost ready. Get up. Now.”
“Okay,” he said with a nod, and watched in amusement as Lan nearly tripped while she waded through the mountain of blankets. She disappeared around the corner of the bed as she left the room, muttering something about how impossible he was. He yawned widely and reluctantly rolled off the bed, landing with a thump on the crumpled heap of blankets. Rising unsteadily to his feet, he threw the blankets back on the bed and shuffled into the bathroom. Peering into the mirror as he began to unbutton his top, he smirked as he saw the majority of his face was covered in what looked like runny eggs and bread crumbs from the spatula attack.
After a quick shower and a change of clothes, he hurried to the kitchen and stepped inside. The air was full of the warm smell of the breakfast Lan had neatly laid out on the table. She briefly looked over her shoulder at him as he entered, and then returned her focus to the tea pot on the cupboard in front of her.
“Why are you always so difficult in the mornings?” she huffed, pouring boiling water into the pot. A thick cloud of steam twisted through the circular opening until she carefully placed the lid on and returned the kettle to the stove.
Gui Wen walked across the small room and slipped his arms around her thin body. He closed his eyes and happily buried his face in her hair, breathing in her flowery scent. A smile automatically stretched across his face as she leaned against him. He pressed a kiss to the side of her face as she awkwardly tried to reach around his arms to pick up the tea pot.
“You said you would let me sleep in today,” he grumbled into her ear as she slowly turned and made her way to the table, pot in hand and Gui Wen still clinging resolutely to her back.
“I did, it’s already past 8!” she said as she set the tea pot down on the table.
Gui Wen glanced at the clock hanging beside the door. “…Yeah, three minutes past. I was thinking of something more along the lines of getting up at noon.” As Lan made to sit down, he pulled her backward and re-tightened his grip around her middle. Resting his chin on her shoulder, he chuckled, “Or not at all?”
Lan’s eyes widened and her cheeks flushed at his implications. She began to squirm and pulled at his arms, but couldn’t pry him off. He knew he’d pay for it later in-game, but sometimes Gui Wen loved being stronger than she was.
After several minutes of fruitless wriggling and pleading, she finally managed to twist around to face Gui Wen and gave him a slightly angry look. “The food is getting cold!”
Gui Wen inwardly rolled his eyes, more annoyed at himself for feeling jealous of the food than at Lan’s stubbornness. Before she could resume her escape attempts, he put one hand on the back of her head, carefully wrapping his fingers in her long, brown hair, and planted a kiss on her lips. She relaxed, sighed in a resigned way, and slowly placed her small hands on his chest, lightly gripping the front of his sweater and smiling against his mouth. After a moment, Gui Wen leaned back and looked down at the top of her head contentedly as she wrapped her arms around him, and hugged him tightly. He was about to let go and allow her to finally eat her beloved food when she tilted her head back and stared up at him with a small, teasing smile.
“Breakfast, first. And then…”