Chapter 28 — So, she didn’t have feet in two boats?
At 11:00PM, Starlight Plaza was still brightly lit. The crowd celebrating Christmas in the plaza were still explosively cheering, repeatedly causing the security guards on duty and the local law enforcement to raise eyebrows.
Walking beside him, Jian Yan put her coat on and asked He Xiu, “What did Director He want to talk with me about?”
He Xiu smiled upon hearing her words. Handing over the paper bag he had been carrying the entire time, he said, “Merry Christmas.”
Jian Yan hesitantly took the offered paper bag and looked inside. “This is the dessert store’s red velvet cake!”
“Mn, last time, didn’t you say you wanted to eat Yu Zhi’s cake?”
“Yes!” Jian Yan carefully held the cake, her eyes shining. “Very beautiful. This is the limited edition Christmas red velvet from the UK store. I heard that it’s very difficult to get!”
He Xiu said, “I had their pastry chef help save me one. I just went to go get it.”
“Thank you, Director He.” Jian Yan was extremely excited, but she didn’t forget to ask him the price. “This cake wasn’t cheap, right? I’ll pay you back.”
He Xiu couldn’t help but chuckle. “This is my Christmas gift to you. Why must you repay?”
Jian Yan was immediately embarrassed. “But, I didn’t prepare a Christmas gift for you…”
“No need.” He Xiu softly smiled and said, “Today, you all have worked hard on my behalf. How can I be so shameless and accept a gift from you?”
Jian Yan blinked rapidly. “So, all the employees received this?” Then Director He truly did spend money.
He Xiu looked at her and said, “This is specifically gifted to you. Their pay got increased.”
Jian Yan: “…”
She originally wanted to smile, but with He Xiu’s gaze on her, her heart once again began to incessantly throb. Pu-tong. Pu-tong. It was as if Father Christmas’ little deers had dashed into her heart.
Suddenly, something ice-cold fell onto her cheek. She raised her head to look and realized that it was actually snowing.
“It’s snowing.” Jian Yan extended her left hand. A sparkling, translucent snowflake floated onto her palm. The snowy Christmas night seemed magical, momentarily causing the young people in the plaza to burst with enthusiasm. Joyous shouts rose and fell in succession as lovers came together and kissed as though there were nobody else present, wildly showering dog food.
Afterwards, they were separated by the security guards on duty who braved the wind and snow.
Under the work of the civil police, the plaza was not considered too disorderly. Jian Yan turned her head back and just happened to meet He Xiu’s gaze. His figure had become slightly fuzzy because of the delicate snow, but the look in his eyes seemed to have become affectionate.
Jian Yan was indescribably nervous. According to the several years she had spent drawing shoujo manhua, this setting and mood was simply the first choice to confessing.
The two of them stared at each other like this for a while. He Xiu’s thin lips slightly opened as he finally began to speak. “I…”
Jian Yan’s ringtone suddenly began playing, interrupting his next words. She quickly took out her cell phone from her bag and awkwardly smiled at He Xiu. “E-excuse me.”
At first, she wanted to hang up right away, but she saw that it was Lin Zhen who called. Afraid that something had gone wrong, she said, “I need to take this call, please wait a moment.”
He Xiu smiled at her and indicated for her to do as she wished. Jian Yan walked two steps to the side and accepted the call. Without giving her time to speak, Lin Zhen rapidly began speaking into her ear. “JIAN YAN! DID YOU KNOW HE XIU IS NAN SI?!?!?!”
Jian Yan was stunned. She lightly furrowed her brows and asked her, “What?”
“He Xiu is Nan Si! Tang Zheng just told me himself!”
The event happened like this.
Because Tang Zheng didn’t like sitting at the dining table with his parents and older sister, he had once again dragged Lin Zhen to go drink. Everything was a repeat of history, just with a different location. This time, Tang Zheng began roasting He Xiu as he drank.
“Hmph, my older sister is just like other women. They all don’t have eyes and are being deceived by He Xiu’s outward appearance!” He once again poured himself another glass of wine, only to smash the wine cup against the table. “They just look down on my studio! What’s all that great about He Xiu? Is he not also just singing in my studio?! Hmph!” 1
Lin Zhen nearly spewed the drink in her mouth. She coughed violently before turning her head to look at Tang Zheng, who was already giddy after drinking a few cups. “What did you say? Master He is also a member of VOICE?”
“Yesh~” Tang Zheng happily smiled and said, “You also don’t know, right? His pseudonym is Nan Si~”
Lin Zhen: “!!!”
Without a single delay, she called Jian Yan.
After Jian Yan heard her recount what had happened, she was silent for three seconds before serenely replying, “I got it.”
“…” Lin Zhen couldn’t help but frown. “How can you be so calm!?”
“Or what? Rush up and knock him unconscious?”
“…” No, Jian Yan, did you just accidentally speak your mind??
“If you don’t have anything else, I’ll hang up first.” After Jian Yan said this, she hung up with a pass like thunder and a move like the wind.2 She sorted out her emotions and tried her best to calm her rapidly beating heart.
He Xiu and Nan Si were the same person. The two voices that had captivated her were one and the same.
She was very shocked, but what she cared more about was… So, she didn’t have feet in two boats?
“Did something happen?” He Xiu asked her, slightly anxious as he saw that something was amiss from her complexion after she ended the phone call.
For a while, Jian Yan didn’t know how she should confront him. She could understand He Xiu being unwilling to reveal his online identity, but what should she do? Should she continue to pretend to not know?
“That… it’s nothing. Lin Zhen called me.” She forced a smile and very slowly returned her phone to her bag. “Mn…Director He!”
She suddenly called him, causing He Xiu to lower his head slightly to look at her. He asked, “What is it?”
Jian Yan took a deep breath. She had thought about it. Since she already knew that He Xiu was Nan Si, then she could also tell him her identity. This way, they could both know each other’s real identity.
“Just now, Lin Zhen called me. She said that Tang Zheng told her that you are Nan Si of VOICE?”
He Xiu was stunned. He absolutely did not expect that his mask would be unveiled by someone else. He mentally panicked and hurriedly explained to Jian Yan, “I didn’t deliberately want to keep you in the dark. I was worried that you would be anxious while you work, so I planned to wait for you to finish collecting material before telling you.”
After Jian Yan heard his explanation, her brows creased together instead. “What do you mean? How do you know that I’m collecting material?” She paused for a moment and then stared hard at him. “You know I am Tang Zhi?”
He Xiu: “…”
Did this count as him making a confession without duress?
Reacting as if she had been deceived, Jian Yan said, “You knew early on that I am Tang Zhi, yet you still put on a play before me. Oh, that’s right. You even chatted with me online!”
He Xiu: “…”
“I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I truly, simply didn’t want you to feel uneasy at work, so I pretended not to know.”
Although He Xiu was incessantly apologizing, Jian Yan was still extremely incensed, so much so that she didn’t even want the cake anymore. “You can take it back!” She shoved the cake into He Xiu’s chest and quickly walked away, her high heels clacking against the floor.
He Xiu held the cake to his chest as he stared after her departing figure. He took out his phone and called Tang Zheng. Tang Zheng didn’t answer. He Xiu could only bitterly smile and hang up. He sent him a message on WeChat.
「This time, our friendship has truly reached its end. I will never see you again. :)」
After he sent the message, he deleted him as a friend without the slightest hesitation.
Jian Yan drove home, arriving when it was nearly midnight. She kicked off her high heels and flopped onto the sofa.
How could He Xiu do this? Two-faced, three knives. 3 Oh, that’s right, he even pretended to be tone deaf when we went to sing at the KTV! It really was hard on him!
So annoying! Jian Yan didn’t want to keep smiling.
She allowed herself to sulk for a while before recalling that the first audiobook episode of 《 Satisfactory 》 was being released that day. She took out her cell phone and opened Weibo to look.
The topmost post on her Weibo was still the Christmas Celebration illustration she had posted this morning. Very nice, Lin Zhen had actually forgotten to help her reblog the Weibo update. She easily found the first episode release via the @ tab and immediately reblogged it.
Tang Zhi 【V】: 「 Merry Christmas, everyone ^_^ Congratulations to the production team for their release. The Great Gods’ voices in the cast are all ultra-super. Everyone needs to remember to listen~ Remember~」
After she posted the message, she released a slight sigh of relief. Fortunately, she had reblogged it before Christmas was over. Perhaps because she had relinquished the stone in her heart, she suddenly felt a bit hungry.
She had been very busy today at the store and hadn’t been able to eat many bites of food, so lasting until now could be considered to be pretty good. Wearily walking to the kitchen, Jian Yan opened her refrigerator to peek inside. There were many ingredients, but she didn’t have the strength to cook at the moment. She just wanted to eat something ready-made.
Ai, if I had known earlier, I wouldn’t have been so impulsive and returned the cake back to He Xiu…
Jian Yan spent a moment pondering before grabbing a container of instant noodles. She normally didn’t eat instant noodles much, but this instant noodle brand had been strongly recommended by You You last time. She had bought three small cases to give it a try, but she had never found an opportunity to eat it.
Following the instructions on the instant noodles container, Jian Yan patiently waited for three minutes before piously removing the lid. The aroma was very weak, but perhaps the flavor was decent. She reacquainted herself with the noodles as she twirled them up with her chopsticks, bringing them up to her mouth.
The instant she placed it in her mouth, Jian Yan’s brows knitted together. These instant noodles… What a truly, uniquely unpalatable taste..
Jian Yan tried to eat half with great difficulty, but she honestly couldn’t bear it anymore. She wanted to go on Weibo and kill You You!
Tang Zhi 【V】: 『image』Last time when Great God @Zhen Guo_You You recommended these noodles saying that it was very delicious, I intentionally went out and bought three containers. I waited for a month before it was delivered. Today, I finally had the chance to try it. I simply want to say that I have never eaten such unpalatable instant noodles before, even more unpalatable than Chief Lin’s noodles. 『goodbye』『goodbye』『goodbye』」
Frantically drawing throughout the night, You You slacked off midway for a moment and saw this message on Weibo. She felt wronged and posted a reply. 「I really felt that these were very delicious 『sweatdrop』 How can you say it is more unpalatable than Chief Lin’s noodles…I refuse to accept that this world has something more unpalatable than Chief Lin’s noodles…」
One after another, fans began commenting, many of them curious about how unpalatable Chief Lin’s noodles actually were.
Yet, this conversation didn’t end here. Several minutes later, Great God Nan Si, who had not updated his Weibo in ten thousand years, posted on Tang Zhi’s Weibo.
Nan Si 【 V】: 「I know how to cook noodles. My noodles are very delicious 『pitiful』『pitiful』『pitiful』」
Jian Yan: “…”
She didn’t reply to him, but Nan Si’s fans had already exploded.
「I’m sorry, hubby. Incidentally, I consider your noodle to be very delicious… 『dirty』」
「Hubby, what do you mean by this? Are you trying to say that you want to boil noodles for her to eat?」
「… Dirty comments have no eyes.」
「Hubby in love situation???」
「Although I am very happy hubby updated Weibo, I will not agree to a divorce!」
「!! Last time, hubby gave Tang Zhi a like, I knew that major events are far from good!」
「Hubby, did you have a change of affection, a shift of love? qwq We already agreed that you’ll only boil noodles for me to eat qwq」
「@Tang Zhi, Teacher, are you and Great God Nan Si together??」
Jian Yan: “……”
She honestly only wanted to roast these noodles!
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