Back in the CEO’s office on the top floor of Yu Lei International, the newly appointed assistant, Zhao Hongyan, wore a black, round-collared blazer with a red skirt wrapped around her slim legs. Her black fishnet stockings contrasted well against her red skirt, giving her a seductive vibe.
Yu Lei International did not have a strict dress code policy towards their employees. They were allowed to dress however they as long as it was appropriate.
Zhao Hongyan seemed rather nervous, as she tried to be careful not to breathe too loudly. Holding the tray with one hand, she placed down the teacups on the coffee table next to the sofa, keeping a stiff smile as she completed her duty.
Lin Ruoxi was having a discussion with the higher-ups regarding their recent acquisition. Other than those involved, only an assistant like her would ever know the minutes of important meetings like this one.
Yu Lei International employed tens of thousands of employees, operating businesses in the fashion, luxury, and cosmetic industries. They were also involved in entertainment, travel, and real estate.
It was rare for a normal company to spend billions on a project but that sort of thing was common at Yu Lei International.
Zhao Hongyan was initially an ordinary office worker in the public relations department. Although she worked in the headquarters, the chances of her meeting the president were slim. She wasn’t privy to information and meetings like this one.
Ever since she got appointed as an assistant, she had never heard of one meeting which did not discuss matters in the hundreds of millions! She was most shaken when she had to photocopy documents for Lin Ruoxi. She would get nervous seeing how the few pieces of paper in her hands would change the company drastically in the near future.
No wonder the previous assistant Wu Yue was so cocky despite her lowly position. It must’ve been because she felt as though she was being trusted upon more than the management!
Zhao Hongyan was repeatedly impressed by her boss as the days went by. She could go an entire day speaking less than ten sentences, minus the meetings. How was a woman younger than herself, able to move billions with one signature?!
Zhao Hongyan thought to herself, If I was in her position, I might go crazy seeing so much money…
She left quietly after serving them tea, not daring to overstay her welcome. Even though Lin Ruoxi had explicitly mentioned that she did not mind, it was nerve-wracking being around people who were a different class from herself.
When the door closed, Liu Mingyu who was on Lin Ruoxi’s right said with a smile, “For the past few years, Wu Yue had always been the assistant. Now that Hongyan has filled that role, I still can’t quite wrap my head around that.”
Since the executives present were all female, their conversations were more relaxed than Zhao Hongyan had imagined.
The marketing department head nodded and smiled. “It’s because the public relations department always has talented employees. But, honestly, I didn’t expect Assistant Wu to marry Vice President Liu and move to the States. I too am not used to seeing Hongyan as the assistant.”
Lin Ruoxi looked exceptionally mesmerizing, wearing the latest Chanel S/S sequin coat with a matching plain-colored dress and a pearl belt wrapped around her waist.
She casually scribbled some circles on the paper with her Mont Blanc pen and said with a flat tone, “There’s no need for you to get used to her as my assistant.”
Upon hearing this, the others kept quiet naturally, unable to come up with a reply.
For the whole time, Mo Qianni who was seated on the left seemed distracted as she barely spoke. Her dark circles were obvious even though she tried to cover it up with makeup.
Lin Ruoxi paid no attention to her and announced the end of the meeting after giving them important things to work on.
One by one, they left the room but Mo Qianni intentionally slowed down her movement to stay behind.
Hugging the files, she looked at Lin Ruoxi with her pale face. She called her name softly, “Ruoxi…”
Lin Ruoxi raised her head and looked at her. “You don’t look well. If the workload is taking a toll on your body, you may rest. There’s not much work for you regarding the upcoming resort acquisition, so you don’t have to feel bad.”
Mo Qianni smiled and shook her head, “No, it’s not about that…”
Mo Qianni pursed her lips and looked down on the ground, lacking the courage to make eye contact with her old friend. “He... Why won’t my calls get through?”
“Who?” Lin Ruoxi probed on with a blank face.
Mo Qianni’s voice dropped even lower. “Yang Chen…”
“Vice President Mo, I do not think it is appropriate of you to ask personal questions about my husband during working hours,” replied Lin Ruoxi with a cold expression.
Mo Qianni’s eyes dimmed and her body trembled. She smiled forcefully, trying hard to hold back her tears. “It’s my mistake. Please forgive me and allow me to get back to work, Boss Lin.”
After apologizing, she turned around to head out the door.
Lin Ruoxi spoke up when she got near to the door.
“He’s in the States, at his friend Christen’s house.”
Mo Qianni stopped in her tracks, her eyes red as she thanked her.
She left straight and closed the doors immediately after.
Mo Qianni’s steps were quick as she walked towards the lift. A bitter smile appeared on her face while she rubbed her eyes hard. “Were you so afraid of dealing with me that you thought leaving the country was the best idea?”
But she snapped out of it fast when the lift arrived. She was back to normal as she entered the lift.
Mo Qianni, you came to this city when you were 13 and survived here. You suffered so much. You won’t be taken down easily by a man’s change in heart, she told herself.
What she didn’t know was, after her departure from the office, Lin Ruoxi dropped her act and laid down on the couch with a tired gaze.
She looked up aimlessly at the ceiling, mouthing to herself, “Lin Ruoxi, you can’t feel bad for them. You just can’t.”
… …
At the same time in Chicago, Yang Chen had no idea of the events that transpired back home as he had left his phone back there. An unimaginable misunderstanding had occurred which required his immediate attention.
“Sir, I’m going to have to see your ID,” a black cop said with a stern face as he made Yang Chen pull over.
Yang Chen shrugged and replied, “I’m sorry but I don’t have it with me now. I am only out for dinner.” The truth of the matter was, Yang Chen came to Chicago ‘illegally’ so he wouldn’t have his ID with him.
The cop looked at him suspiciously. “If that’s the case, I might have probable cause to escort you into the police station. We have reasons to believe that you stole this car. Please follow us to the police station.”
Yang Chen smiled bitterly. “Sir, what’s the point of being so committed to your job? It’s already dark out. Just go back and make love to your wife.”
“Please watch your language. I can charge you for verbal assault towards a police officer.” The cop glared at him and opened his car door, motioning Yang Chen to get into his police car.
Yang Chen sighed. How is that verbal assault in any way? he wondered. But all he could do was switch off the engine and follow the policeman albeit unwillingly.
Once he got into the car, the white cop on the driver seat silently started the car immediately before driving towards a fork road and turned west.
Yang Chen sat at the backseat with a bored face. “Officers, I haven’t eaten my dinner yet. Would you be so kind as to provide me with something to fill my stomach?”
No one answered him, as though he was invisible to them. Yang Chen thought it was a waste of time and decided to keep quiet.
They reached a small port after driving past a few roads. Nothing was there, save a few warehouses. There was not a police station in sight.
Yang Chen was confused and spoke up. “Hey officers, I think you might be headed in the wrong direction. This doesn’t look like a usual spot for a police station.”
This time, the white cop finally turned his head around and replied with a smirk, “Well, well. Who would have thought that the magnificent Pluto would come to a point where he did not recognize his own enemies…”