Chapter 230: Suits are so expensive
The doorbell finally rang.
Xu Tingsheng opened the door.
Carrying an old backpack of Xu Tingsheng’s, Apple’s lips were pressed together as she stood outside the door in a pitiful manner, a teary mist seemingly rising atop her eyes as she looked uneasily at Xu Tingsheng.
“Left home?” Xu Tingsheng smiled as he asked, “Where were you intending to go originally?”
Apple awkwardly lowered her head, “Back to Libei to hide.”
As Apple spoke of hiding, she resembled a frightened hare, her gradually reddening eyes making this look all the more like an accurate depiction.
Xu Tingsheng stroked her head, smiling, “What then? Wait for me to come look for you?”
“I think that you wouldn’t come.”
“I wouldn’t come.”
“…I know that you’re tired of me, bothered by me,” Apple said resentfully.
Then, she started crying as she took off the backpack that she was carrying and retrieved Huang Yaming’s letter from within, handing it to Xu Tingsheng.
“I’m not going to America. I don’t need you to divert me away. I’ll go back to Libei myself.”
She turned to leave.
“The backpack is mine,” Xu Tingsheng said from behind her.
Apple stopped dead in her tracks, appearing incomparably hurt by those words. Her back to Xu Tingsheng, she put the bag down again, preparing to remove the things inside that belonged to her.
“You’re mine too.”
“You’re mine too.”
This sudden sentence broke through Apple’s final defences, taking down her final determination and resistance. Sometimes, gentleness was actually the sharpest sword. Apple broke into tears.
Xu Tingsheng hugged her from behind, lifting her up. He turned back, kicked the door shut and set her down on a chair.
“Just cry. Let it all out,” Xu Tingsheng said.
“Wah…I’m sick,” Apple continued crying even as she said.
“You’ve almost recovered already. Otherwise, do you think I could have left you on your own? Sometimes, if you don’t go thinking about it, just calming down a little, the problem actually won’t seem that serious anymore. So, you’re not allowed to go thinking like this again.”
“Wah…your mother doesn’t like me.”
“I’ve already explained this before. She was angry with me that day, and so she put on a cold face with everyone. It wasn’t any different for Lu Zhixin and Fang Chen, so how do you know that she doesn’t like you? That makes no sense at all!”
“Wah…there’s also…I don’t dare to say it.”
“Don’t say it then.”
“I’ll say it! I messed up, causing a lot of trouble for your company. Lu Zhixin got mad too. She says that she’s going to fire me.”
“You were never an employee of Hucheng in the first place, so how can you even be fired?” Xu Tingsheng spoke very calmly.
Apple was rather taken aback, curious as to why Xu Tingsheng was not even asking about it.
Barely holding back her tears, Apple raised her head to look at Xu Tingsheng, asking uneasily, “You already know everything?”
“Yeah, I called and asked about it. It’s just that it should actually have been you telling me about it yourself,” A frowning Xu Tingsheng said.
Apple said in a small voice, “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean it! I was just rather out of it these past two days, and then my mind drifted off. Then, I actually wanted to tell you about it in the morning, just that I didn’t dare to.”
Xu Tingsheng said gently, “I know. It’s okay, don’t worry about it. The matter’s already been taken care of.”
“What about Zhixin then?”
“Lu Zhixin is the sort of person who looks at the facts. She wasn’t targeting you here.”
“I know that.”
“Isn’t it fine then? You can just stop working there at most. What’s so good about doing free labour anyway?”
“Right. But what am I to do then? I’ll feel scared if I can’t do anything at all.”
“I’m also waiting for an answer to this question. There’s no one who can help you to come to a decision. You’ve got to consider it yourself. What exactly do you want to do that can make you live happily and fulfilled? Just think about it, and when you’re done, I’ll help you to actualise it.”
Apple thought for a moment before saying, “I can’t think of anything now. Still, was what you said just now true? If I’d gone back to Libei to hide, you really wouldn’t come to look for me?”
It seemed like what girls cared about the most was never ever the same as what boys did. Apple was still hung up on what Xu Tingsheng had said earlier.
Xu Tingsheng hesitated for a moment before asking, “Apple, do you feel that I treat you well?”
Apple nodded as she wiped off her tears.
“Then, if I’ve already done things to this extent and you still don’t trust me, not telling me when you’ve encountered something, not asking or telling me when you have queries, only thinking of running back alone to hide, I would actually feel sad as well. Afterwards, at the very least…it’d probably be several days later that I’d go to look for you.”
Hearing Xu Tingsheng’s words, a happy smile finally surfaced on Apple’s crying face. Xu Tingsheng had said that he would feel sad, that he would probably only go to look for her several days later. His feelings for her were thus evident from how he would ultimately go looking for her in the end, even despite his sadness.
“I’m sorry,” Apple sniffed, apologising awkwardly.
“I hope that you can trust me more, this included.”
Xu Tingsheng placed the letter that Apple had just pushed to him on the table beside her, asking, “Can I explain this to you tonight, after I’ve returned? We’ve got to leave for official matters very soon. Go eat your dinner at the hotel restaurant. After that, just obediently wait here for me to return.”
Apple nodded earnestly in response. Then, she stood up and retrieved Xu Tingsheng’s suit from the wooden rack over at the side, coming to stand beside him.
Xu Tingsheng reached out to take it from her.
Apple shook her head, opening the suit and walking behind Xu Tingsheng.
Xu Tingsheng could only be like a big boss for once as Apple assisted him in donning the outer coat of the suit.
Xu Tingsheng had not removed his shirt and tie at all. As Apple came in front of him and helped him to button up his coat, she saw that his tie was fastened extremely well.
She asked, “You tied it yourself? It’s even better than mine!”
“Oh…yeah. I probably just got lucky for once.”
It was Li Wan’er who had tied it for him. Xu Tingsheng dared not look at Apple as he replied her.
Apple moved back a couple of steps, tilting her head and carefully appraising Xu Tingsheng for a bit before finally being unable to stop herself from nodding excitedly, “Xu Tingsheng, I really didn’t like you because I found you to be handsome before. You’ve got to trust me on that.”
“And?” Xu Tingsheng asked.
“It will be like that in the future,” Apple smiled.
Huang Yaming and Tan Yao knocked on the door.
Xu Tingsheng spoke with Apple a bit more before leaving.
Huang Yaming and Tan Yao waved to Apple in greeting.
A while later, Huang Yaming asked, “Did you sweep the battlefield clean? Be careful, or she might be able to tell.”
A helpless Xu Tingsheng could only change the topic, pointing at their ties and asking, “Who did them for you?”
“Those two chicks we brought back just now.”
“They’re still there?”
“Chased ‘em away.”
“Who knows, we might just end up bringing two female artistes back tonight?”
“Oh, makes sense.”
The three navigated the roads in the G500.
Huang Yaming asked, “What do we do later?”
Xu Tingsheng said, “Eat when you should eat, drink when you should drink. If you want to pick up some chicks, go talk to them yourselves.”
“I’m talking about Apple’s matter. What if Jin Datang doesn’t give face?” Huang Yaming asked.
“I’m rather hoping that he won’t cooperate. Shi Zhongjun has some preparations ready. If Jin Datang doesn’t give face when the time comes, I’ll be able to nicely vent it out on him. As he hesitates, just hesitating for a moment, we’ll give him a punch, and hesitating for yet another moment, we’ll give him another punch. It’s just as simple as that,” Xu Tingsheng said.
Tan Yao suddenly brightened, asking excitedly, “We’re gonna beat him up?”
Xu Tingsheng tugged at his tie, exclaiming, “You’re joking! We’re dressed this gentlemanly, and our suits are so expensive.”
Apple went to the hotel restaurant to eat as Xu Tingsheng had told her to. Just having ordered her food and sat down, she saw some familiar faces. They were a few of Tianyi’s new artistes as well as their managers and assistants.
There was no way for them to directly attend the cocktail party that evening. The reason these girls had come was to find a chance to get acquainted with or perhaps even roll in the sheets with those at the party who had power and influence. They would be going over in a while.
To pave a path for themselves.
Apple wanted to up and leave, but it was already too late. These girls all crowded around her.
Most of them had entered showbiz at around the same time as Apple. Because Rebirth stood behind her, Apple had virtually been popular as soon as she had appeared, not having had to do many of those things that most new artistes had to do.
Therefore, the relationship between them was not that good. It was to the extent that seeing Apple’s route forcibly sealed off by the company, they even rather rejoiced at her misfortune.
“Oh, Apple, you’re here too? Could you be here to apologise to the boss? Or have you got acquainted with a new boss?” Someone asked.
“A pity that she still has four years left on her contract. Boss said that it won’t be any use whoever pleads for her,” Someone else said.
“I only just happened to be staying here,” Apple said.
“Woah, how stubborn! Still, this won’t be of much use at all in bed. If you want to find a good boss to stage a comeback, you can’t be acting like this!” A third-rate female artiste who was notorious for her promiscuity emphasised exaggeratedly.
Endless jeers resounded from amongst them.
Apple carried her plate of food, making a beeline for the door.
Her former agent, that leopard print man, entered from outside, blocking her way.