Chapter 40 — I said sleeping, other services not included.
He Xiu really did drive Jian Yan back home with due haste. Jian Yan had a slight headache, so her car remained parked at Starlight General Merchandise. And yet, when could she come pick it up?
He Xiu said, “Leave it there for now; you can drive it home the next time you come to Starlight General Merchandise.”
“What if I want to go out?”
“I can chauffeur you.”
Jian Yan blinked. Since Eldest Master He was so enthusiastic about playing the role of a chauffeur, she wouldn’t be impolite and refuse. “Oh right, just now in the elevator I heard Xu Ying say that you spoiled her when you were children, and you would even sing for her.”
He Xiu near imperceptibly frowned. “She really had the nerve to say that.”
“Oh, then in the end did you or did you not spoil her and even serenade her?”
“Of course not, but there was this one time where He Chen grabbed a caterpillar to scare her. She was so scared, she began to cry. The little girl was crying endlessly, and it annoyed me, so I sang a song for her to hear.”
“Then…when I feel upset in the future, will you sing for me?”
He Xiu glanced at her and replied, “Singing is nothing; whatever you want me to do is all okay.”
Jian Yan: “…”
She coughed drily and then said, “I think Xu Ying regrets it.”
“Regrets not choosing you back then.”
He Xiu wrinkled his brows and faintly responded, “Oh, what does that have to do with me?”
Jian Yan laughed and didn’t say anything.
Xu Ying truly was regretful. After she returned home, she complained to her mother, “Mom, I don’t want to marry He Chen.”
Upon hearing this sentence, Xu Ying’s mother’s complexion darkened. “You two have been together since you were children. Now after holding an engagement reception with such great fanfare, you say you don’t want to marry him. Are you not just making trouble?”
Xu Ying also felt extremely wronged in her heart. Pursing her lips, she looked at her mother. “Can’t I regret it? You know quite clearly that the one I liked as a child was He Xiu.”
Xu Ying’s mother’s complexion became even more unsightly. “Xu Ying, speak less nonsense here. Do you realize how things will play out with the He Family if they heard these words?”
“In my childhood, it was precisely you who told me that He Xiu was not Auntie Zhao’s child and ordered me not to interact with him anymore.”
“So? At that time, the person who was with He Chen was you; the person who is engaged to him is also you. These were all things you yourself did; not one person pressed you into this, right? You now say you regret this, well, too late!”
Xu Ying felt even more wronged at her rant, her eyes reddening a shade darker. Feeling that she couldn’t use force against her mother, she instead utilized a spoiled, child-like tone. “Mommy, I understand your intentions. When I was young, you all didn’t think highly of He Xiu, so you didn’t allow me to interact with him. Now, however, it’s different. Uncle He handed over the management of Starlight General Merchandise to him. These past several years, Starlight General Merchandise’s turnover has been rising steadily in his hands. Quite a lot of nearby uncles and aunts are becoming increasingly in favor of him.”
“That’s useless. You’re already engaged to He Chen—is it possible that you’re thinking of breaking off the engagement? Even if you break it off, did you think He Xiu would just be together with you? Don’t be foolish.” Xu Ying’s mother softened her tone when she said this. Grasping her daughter’s hand, she said, “Ying Ying ah, everything father and mother have done are all for you. Even though He Xiu is regarded as valuable now, he has always been… He Chen is your Auntie Zhao’s only son. Behind him is the support of the He Family and Zhao Family. How can he be compared as inferior to He Xiu.”
Once she finished speaking, she saw Xu Ying purse her lips silently. Patting the back of Xu Ying’s hand, she continued, “Mother knows it was only because you were provoked by him at the engagement reception that made you say such nonsense. There is no need for you to be like this, okay? The woman he brought is only a manhua artist—how can she possibly be compared with you? He is also only suited for that sort of woman.”
Xu Ying recalled the bank card balance she had briefly glanced at and went upstairs without a word of reply. After she left, her mother was left alone in the drawing room, her brows creased in deep thought.
Earlier, she had also received news of how He Xiu had recently been acting uncharacteristically. It began with his purchase of some small shareholder stocks in He Zhi. She could tell that He Jing Long had the intention of handing Starlight General Merchandise to He Xiu, but Zhao Ying Fang surely wouldn’t allow him to have his wish fulfilled so easily.
Although, He Chen had been spoiled by the family these past years. In this regard, his capability was indeed inferior to He Xiu. She also couldn’t understand Ying Ying falling even more in love with He Xiu. But they had stood on He Chen’s side at the beginning; wanting to renege now was impossible.
It seemed like she still needed to give He Chen a wake-up call.
He Xiu and Jian Yan arrived at her home at last, where he actually began to cook. Jian Yan, happily relaxed, ran to her studio to grab her sketchbook and and a pencil. She sat down at the dinner table across from the kitchen and immediately began drawing. Having not drawn for quite a while after her manuscript, she needed to practice a lot more to maintain her touch.
He Xiu saw her sitting to the side and drawing. Although curiosity plagued his heart, he didn’t go up to question her. Only when dinner was ready and to be served on the table did he ask her, “What are you drawing? Bring it to the living room; don’t get grease on it.”
“Oh.” Jian Yan put away her pen and handed over the drawing for his purview. “How’s the drawing?”
He Xiu glanced at it. The drawing was of a man with tall stature dressed in a white dress shirt, dress pants, and a black vest. His black coat fluttered slightly in the breeze, his lips imperceptibly curving up.
“Very handsome ah, why does it feel like it resembles me somewhat?”
Jian Yan giggled lightly. “Stop being smug. This is the preliminary design for my new project’s male lead. He…is a large-scale general merchandise department store’s purchase specialist. He has vicious insight and is known as Sniper Eye.”
He Xiu laughed and said, “Sniper Eye, have you played too many games?”
“Otherwise, Falcon Eye is also okay. It’s only a nickname anyway; it’s meant to be eye-catching.”
“Mn, then what about the female lead?”
“The female lead is naturally a sales person. She’s exceptionally eloquent and deeply versed in the Way of Fashion—the legendary undefeated sales representative in the department store. When the most popular and most fashionable clothes enter the department store, she always sells a couple of these clothing—perfection.”
“Sounds like The Return of the Condor Heroes in a department store, pfft.”
“…” How will readers be able to read this because of this description of yours!
Jian Yan curled her lips into a frown and put away the rough sketch, returning to the dining room to eat afterwards. He Xiu had made three dishes and a soup. She reckoned that they wouldn’t be able to finish eating it all, so she could probably do without cooking tomorrow.
“Oh, that’s right, I still have a few things stashed away here.” Jian Yan scampered to the kitchen once she said this and returned soon after with a plate of pickled vegetables. “These pickled vegetables were personally made by my mom. It’s very delicious; taste some.”
He Xiu tried a bite. It truly was more delicious than the pickled vegetables served in restaurants. “Your mother’s cooking skills are definitely sublime.”
“That’s only natural. My culinary talent is passed on from her.”
He Xiu smiled and seemed to carelessly ask her, “Then when do you intend to introduce me to your mother? I have already taken you to see my family head.”
Jian Yan teased him by pretending to think. She then said to him with a helpless tone, “I got it~ I got it~ I’ll take you to see her once Chinese New Year comes. I’ll definitely let you have that right.”
He Xiu restrained himself from laughing as he said, “Then we’ve come to an agreement. After all, I know where your mother lives. When the moment comes and you don’t take me, then I’ll go on my own to meet her.”
Jian Yan threw him a ‘really-can’t-do-anything-about-you’ expression. Then, she couldn’t help but crack first and begin laughing. Once the meal was over, she ran off to do the dishes in the kitchen on her own accord. He Xiu studied her drawing again for a while before later sitting together with her in the living room to watch TV.
He Xiu watched as the color of the sky grew darker and darker, but he did not have the slightest intention of leaving. Jian Yan had no choice but to softly remind him, “It’s not early anymore. Driving home too late at night isn’t safe.”
He Xiu suddenly dragged her into his arms and nestled his head into the hollow of her neck, rubbing against her skin. “I don’t want to go home.”
Jian Yan laughed in spite of herself. “Why are you such a child.”
“That place is not my home.” He Xiu raised his head to look at her, the emotion in his eyes making Jian Yan’s heart melt into a puddle. “Can you keep me here tonight?”
The atmosphere quietened. In He Xiu’s embrace, the world narrowed until it seemed like they were the only two people left. Her heart thudded, pu-tong pu-tong. He Xiu’s heart appeared to be doing the same.
“Okay then…” Ultimately, Jian Yan succumbed. Getting a positive answer, the corners of He Xiu’s lips seemed to lightly quirk up.
In her heart, Jian Yan sighed. She really couldn’t refuse. When He Xiu went to the bathroom to shower, she listened to the sound of running water—hua hua—and deeply reflected upon herself.
How could I allow him to stay! This is leading the wolf into the house, Jian Yan! He definitely just used a honey trap to stump her, forcing her to make such an unwise decision.
Ka-cha— The sound of the bathroom door unlocking rang out, and Jian Yan’s whole body trembled in response. He Xiu walked out while drying his hair, and upon seeing her standing there rigidly, he couldn’t help but laugh and say, “What are you doing here, standing still as punishment?”
“…” Jian Yan didn’t know how she should reply to him. Because He Xiu didn’t bring night clothes, he was currently only wearing a large bath towel. Jian Yan was quite worried that he hadn’t wrapped it tight enough and that when he began walking, the towel would fall to the floor.
“You, you’re wearing clothes inside, right?” Jian Yan asked with difficulty.
He Xiu’s eyelashes fluttered twice before he walked up to her side and said, “No, I can sleep naked.”
“……” Even if you are willing to be so frank, you must still ask others if they are willing!
She took a deep breath and handed the pillow in her arms over to him. “I also have guest rooms here. There are quite a few rooms, so you can choose any one as you please.”
He Xiu carried the pillow up to a large bed and sat down. “I’ll just choose this room.”
“…” Jian Yan remained silent for a while and then carried another pillow, walking outside. “Then I’ll go sleep in the guest room.”
Her wrist was grabbed before she could take a step outside the door. He Xiu used a bit of strength and tugged her into his embrace. He nimbly turned her over so that she was lying beneath his body.
Jian Yan immediately tensed up and pressed her hands against He Xiu’s chest. She stammered, “You, you shouldn’t make such substantial movements; be careful of your bath, bath towel falling.”
He Xiu lowered his head, laughing as he laid next to her body.
The feeling of oppression coming from him lightened significantly. Jian Yan once more pushed him away, wanting to get up from the bed. She didn’t expect He Xiu’s arms to immediately tighten.
“Don’t leave. Sleep with me.” He gazed at her, his warm breath lightly caressing her cheek. Jian Yan’s heartbeat accelerated, almost bewitched by his voice. She nodded.
“How can you be so shameless.” She finally captured a trace of rationality and looked at him with a frown on her face.
He Xiu chuckled and pressed close to her as he breathed out, “Don’t misunderstand. I said sleeping, other services not included.”
“…” With rosy cheeks, Jian Yan thought for quite a while. In the end, she nodded. “Okay, I’ll believe you this time. If you’re deceiving me, then I will never sleep with you in the future.”
This threat was somewhat serious, so He Xiu nodded with a smile. “I got it.”
Jian Yan struggled free of his embrace and wrapped the quilt tightly around her as she lay beside him. “Good night then.”
He Xiu lightly chuckled and went to the bathroom to blow dry his hair. He laid beside her when he returned.
Jian Yan kept her eyes closed the entire time, afraid that he really wore nothing and would make her see a few bits she shouldn’t see. After He Xiu laid down, she stared at him for a while. Reaching out, she drew herself into his embrace.
Jian Yan’s heart throbbed as she reminded him, “Don’t forget what you said.”
“I won’t forget.” He Xiu replied against her nape. Dropping his voice, he whispered, “Good night, darling.”
Flag — this thing is best not messed with. 『smile-cry』
In the future, I want to write a long chapter, but I will not notify you all first; can’t say for sure if it’s achievable. 🙂
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