The Shangri-La resort in Zhonghai was located next to an artificial lake. The night lights from the city reflected on the lake, creating a mythical ambiance that was mesmerizing to say the least.
Yang Chen drove his Aston Martin to the entrance of the resort and handed it off to the valet.
The experienced valet quickly realized that the guest was a significant one, as he humbly received the key and carefully steered it over to the garage.
Unlike those abroad, no tip was required for the valet parking. Being the cheapskate that he was, Yang Chen was naturally appreciative about it.
Yang Chen instinctively raised his arm for Lin Ruoxi to hold onto.
Lin Ruoxi barely hesitated as she followed suit. After all, it wasn’t the first time she had held onto his arm. “This is as far as you go, don’t test your luck.”
What she meant exactly was to warn Yang Chen from moving his perverted hands onto the parts that she was most sensitive about.
Yang Chen stoically replied, “I am yours to command.”
Lin Ruoxi nodded, satisfied with his answer.
Just when the two were about to enter the lobby, a metallic sports car with a canopy rolled up to them, preventing them from entering.
After taking a good look, it was none other than the British made Rolls-Royce Phantom. It was a seven-point displacement, limited-edition sports car costing its buyer north of seven to eight million yuan. It was a novelty car that money might not even be able to guarantee a purchase.
Yang Chen frowned, knowing for a fact that the owner of the car intentionally halted right in front of them.
Lin Ruoxi seemed to be reminded of a certain something, as her hand by Yang Chen’s biceps gripped slightly harder than she would usually have.
As the doors opened, a pair hopped out of the car.
The man with perfectly maned hair was dressed in a custom-made bespoke Armani suit and a pair of gold-framed glasses, which made for a suave look.
As for the lady, her hair was elegantly bundled. She wore huge crystal earrings which dangled from her lobes. It was paired with a white floral lace dress, clearly accentuating her cleavage in all its glory.
After the pair handed the keys over to the valet, they lined their arms signifying that they were a couple.
The couple did not proceed with entering the hotel lobby, but instead turned around and faced Lin Ruoxi.
“Ruoxi, long time no see.” The man broke the ice with his raspy voice.
Lin Ruoxi’s gaze fixated the gorgeous face of the man while her eyes shone with complex emotions. She then turned her focus towards the proud woman by his side. “Not long enough.”
The woman seductively combed through her hair by her ear. “Glad to see you’re still the same old stone-cold Ruoxi.”
Lin Ruoxi kept her silence as she held onto Yang Chen’s hand and went straight into the hotel.
Yang Chen was naturally frustrated because Lin Ruoxi had no intention of introducing them to him despite obviously having a history with them.
Back then, even the class monitor Zeng Xinlin’s appearance had hardly gathered such reaction from Lin Ruoxi, which meant something was behind her relationship with this man.
Right at that moment, the man asked, “Ruoxi, are you not going to introduce your husband? I heard from Chris that you got married. Yaxin and I weren’t too convinced at first, but I guess it’s true.”
Lin Ruoxi’s feet were glued to the ground. She avoided his gaze, as she mumbled, “You think you both are the only ones who can get married?”
“I’m sure that’s not what he meant.” Yaxin giggled as she replied, “Just that we wouldn’t have expected the ice queen from college to get married this early. Both of us were friends with you for a year in college, and as friends, we’re keen to know how you’ve been.”
The man shifted his gaze to Yang Chen, as he diminishingly proclaimed, “So this is Ruoxi’s husband. Mr Yang Chen, it’s my pleasure to meet you. My name’s Li Jianhe, or you can call me Hanson. I was the teaching associate during her university years. This here is my wife, Shen Yaxin. They were classmates.”
Lin Ruoxi didn’t even offer Yang Chen an opportunity to interact with his new acquaintances as she quickly said, “Now you guys know one another, let’s go in.”
Upon finishing, she quickly dragged Yang Chen and went straight into the building, leaving her husband in a daze.
As he watched Yang Chen and Lin Ruoxi leave for the lobby, Li Jianhe chuckled lightly.
Shen Yaxin coyly asked, “Babe, you miss that woman, don’t you?”
Li Jianhe smiled as he replied, “She’s even prettier than she was back in college. A beauty that has only grown, how can I not miss that?”
“Hmph, aren’t you worried that I’ll get jealous?”
Li Jianhe burst into laughter. “Back then when she rejected me, I completely disregarded her from my mind. A woman that dares to reject me, no matter her beauty is nothing but a pitiful insect.”
Shen Yaxin flirtatiously gave him a smooch on the lips as a reply. Twisting her hips, she once again latched herself onto her husband as they went into the hotel lobby hand in hand.
Yang Chen could visibly feel his woman shivering from the encounter. He felt like it was not his place but he just had to ask. “Ruoxi, what’s going on with you, who the hell are they?”
Lin Ruoxi took a deep breath, cleared her throat, and replied, “Li Jianhe was Chris’ handy assistant back when I was doing my master’s under his guidance. Shen Yaxin was my fellow coursemate.”
“Not bad, what’s he doing now?”
“Li Jianhe’s clan is a powerful international financial group. But since they mainly operate in Europe, they aren’t as well known in the country. I too only found out that they were heavily involved in automotive manufacturing after I graduated from university. They even have their own automotive parts manufacturing factories located all across the globe.
“Not to mention significant investments of their clan in the German BMW, Italian Fyatt and a few others. As for Shen Yaxin, her grandfather and parents were nobles in the Jiangsu province, undoubtedly the local kingpin.”
Yang Chen added, “So that’s why they came in a Rolls Royce. Chances are it was made in one of their factories.”
As both of them strolled through the lobby to the elevators, Lin Ruoxi pushed onto the ascending button. “I didn’t get to mention, but now I think it’s about time I should tell you about it. Chris may just be my mentor on the surface, but he is internationally well-accolated.
“He was once approached by the Morgan family in America to be their right-hand in banking management. He wasn’t a fan of the job though. He loathed the feeling of being pinned down, which was why he rejected it. Nonetheless, other notable companies have reached out to him too. He undoubtedly has a good reputation. Otherwise Li Jianhe and his wife wouldn’t have come tonight.”
Yang Chen sneered in bewilderment as he mentioned, “A person even the Morgans couldn’t recruit, yet here he is as my wife’s vice president. My babe is impressive indeed.”
Lin Ruoxi rolled her eyes at his half-hearted tease. “I’m not kidding here, the job within his responsibilities are fairly light, plus if it wasn’t for our intimate friendship and close ties, paired with his love for Chinese cuisine, I wasn’t even confident that I could get him here.”
“According to what you said, the couple’s background is clearly no second fiddle to yours. I wonder if we’re the worst among Chris’ guests,” Yang Chen joked with a grin on his face.
Yang Chen naturally noticed that Lin Ruoxi was not too enthusiastic about the turn of events. He decided to let it go with a joke and chose not to question her about it. He noticed that Lin Ruoxi was not eager to explain anyway, so he chose the safer bet to avoid further disputes with her.
Lin Ruoxi, however, took the joke to heart as she nodded. “I’ve been working so hard all these years just to make sure I’m on an equal speaking ground, but I guess regardless of how Yu Lei had grown, I’m just a businesswoman.
“People like Li Jianhe and Shen Yaxin have official authority backing them up. The people you’ll meet today are mostly leading entrepreneurs and business pioneers, the cream of the crop.
“Back in the days, because Chris was an internationally acclaimed business consultant, people like us got to learn by his side. Grandma thought to let me build my connections, which was why I attended his courses.
“This was the reason I had no choice but to attend this event. Upon my absence, not only will I offend the connections I took years to build, the people who are present today wouldn’t hesitate to swoop in and lure him over for their own benefit.”
Yang Chen didn’t think that a simple gathering would mean so many things to so many people. Nonetheless, the only thing he cared about was Li Jianhe and Lin Ruoxi’s undisclosed relationship. Power and wealth were mere trivial things to him.
Lin Ruoxi’s eyebrows wrinkled as her emotions were visibly unsettled. Li Jianhe and his wife’s return to China certainly had much to do with it.
Eventually, the elevator arrived at their designated floor. The pair left the elevator and glossed through an intricate hallway to an elite functional room with an exquisite lake view.
Upon entering, there were already a dozen couples chatting and mingling. Among those naturally included the host Mr Chris and his wife, as well as their coursemates and old timely friends whom Lin Ruoxi hadn’t met in years.
“Oh my beloved Lin, you’re finally here! So this is your husband Mr Yang I suppose?” A Caucasian woman with cherry red lips noticed Lin Ruoxi from a distance and came running to greet her!