Chapter 11 — Plots and Schemes
Edited by Planetes
Along the way, Yun Jinshu was still holding onto the hope that Han Jiang was not going to actually bring him to meet that desperate lover of his who was threatening to kill himself. However, the truth proved that he had underestimated Han Jiang’s viciousness. When the two of them stood outside the door of Xisi cafe, Yun Jinshu’s headache worsened.
Although he was well aware of the situation, Yun Jinshu still had to pretend as though he did not know what was going on. “Didn’t you say you had to deal with work? Why are we here at a cafe?”
Han Jiang did not answer his question, but instead wrapped an arm around his shoulders. “Later on, when we go in, just sit by the side and wait for me. When things are settled, we’ll go for a meal.”
Chills ran through Yun Jinshu’s body. He really did not want to be involved in this vexing matter at all. Anxiously extricating himself from Han Jiang, he swept his eyes around the surroundings. In one glance, he saw a cake shop at the corner of the street, and it was as though he had seen his saviour.
“Since I have nothing to do while you deal with your ‘work’, why don’t I go to that cake shop there and wait for you? I suddenly recall that their tiramisu is very tasty, and I’ll help you get a slice too.”
The corners of Han Jiang’s lips tilted up in a smile. “If you want cake, they’re available in this cafe. Xisi’s tiramisu is one of the best ones in S City.”
Yun Jinshu had fallen into a pit of his own digging. It was a good excuse, but was easily dismissed by Han Jiang. Now, with no way of retreat, he could only grit his teeth and force a smile out. “Oh… is that so? Then I should try it.”
Han Jiang smiled and ruffled his hair. Again wrapping his arm around his shoulders, he walked forward. Yun Jinshu had no other choice, and so braced himself and followed him into the cafe.
Xisi Cafe was truly one of the top leisure spots of S City. Its interior finishing was posh and dignified, and a waiter too led them with great politeness. When they were less than ten metres from the main hall, Yun Jinshu immediately noticed that thin man wearing sunglasses. Against the light from the enormous chandelier, his paper-white face stood out in sharp relief. When he turned his head towards them, Yun Jinshu’s heart pounded, instantly guessing that the person who called Han Jiang was him.
As expected, when the man saw Han Jiang walking over, his entire being seemed to become livelier. However, before his smile could fix upon his face, he saw Yun Jinshu, who had Han Jiang’s arm around him. His face paled further, and his body swayed uncontrollably.
In truth, Yun Jinshu was a little sorrowful when looking at this scene. That sort of feeling, personally witnessing how the person he loved retaliating unjustly against him, that feeling of not getting what he wished for, Yun Jinshu understood these feelings more than anyone else did. It was just that this man was too foolish, despite knowing that Han Jiang’s heart was a piece of metal that could never be warmed, he still dashed ahead regardless of his own safety.
Thinking about this, Yun Jinshu could not help but mock himself. On what basis was he pitying another person? In foolishness, and in baseness, there was probably no one who could compete with him. He was well aware of what sort of person Han Jiang was, but he still did not give up hope on him. Even until now, although having already guessed that Han Jiang had brought him here to make the man give up hope, he still followed him passively.
Mn, with regards to a degree of a person’s shamelessness, I’m definitely ranked somewhere within the top.
Han Jiang slowly walked over, stopping across the man and sitting down. Before doing so, he even graciously pulled the chair out for Yun Jinshu. “Just wait a moment, I’ll say a few words and we can leave.”
Yun Jinshu stood there, awkward and embarrassed. If he could, he really wanted to give Han Jiang a good, tight slap, then toss a “I’m done with this shit” and turn around to leave. However, under the eyes of so many people, even if he had no regard for himself, he still had to consider the reputation of Starbright. After all, he was an artiste under them.
After mustering up his courage and sitting down, Yun Jinshu tried his best to keep a distance from Han Jiang. He fixed his eyes on the view outside the window, trying his best to reduce his presence.
In Han Jiang’s eyes, all his little actions were rather entertaining. Han Jiang suppressed the amusement within him, turning and speaking to the man courteously, “I thought that I had already made things very clear, there’s no longer a need for us to meet.”
Hearing this, the man’s lips trembled. With a hoarse voice, he spoke, “Mr. Han, if there’s something I didn’t do well, which made you unhappy, I… I can change, I only ask that you give me another chance.”
Han Jiang cocked a brow, his voice amused. “I’ve already given you a chance, by meeting you. What more would you like? Right, I still have things to do, so you best speak faster.”
“Mr. Han, I’m serious!” The man opened his mouth anxiously. His fingers were about to grab onto Han Jiang’s hand that was lying on the table, but shrunk back timidly. “I don’t ask for anything else, I just wish to stay by your side. I really can’t live without you!”
The corners of Yun Jinshu’s mouth quirked. Holding onto his forehead, he looked outside the window, and without a sense of brotherhood, there was a small desire in him to… laugh.
Actually, he could not be blamed for it. The scene in front of him was too Chiung Yao1, too melodramatic. In those stupid idol dramas he used to act in the past, he had recited these sort of lines countless times. With the development of this plot, it was likely that there would be a scene where the line “do you love me or him” was uttered.
Maybe his twisted expression of sorrow and repressed laughter was too bizarre. Han Jiang who had been sitting by the side, secretly watching him, was unable to repress himself, and laughed out loud.
This laugh had completely enraged the man across them. He was suddenly a little hysterical, pointing right at Yun Jinshu’s nose and interrogating Han Jiang, “When you answered my call just now, were you together with him? For you, I’m even willing to kill myself! But now you’re actually parading this little bitch in front of me? Han Jiang, are you still human?”
These words were too loud, loud enough to cause the entire cafe to quieten down. Everyone’s attention was pulled over to them. It was a melodramatic love triangle, and even an exciting boys’ love version. No one could resist watching this show.
In this situation, Han Jiang still exuded graciousness. With no anxiety, he spoke, “Shen Nian, you’ve lost control of yourself. We originally only have a ‘business relationship’ between the two of us, while Jinshu is my ‘lover’. Slandering him like this, I can sue you for defamation.”
Yun Jinshu nearly vomited blood when he heard this. In his past life, he must have owed Han Jiang too much. Why else would he turn into his shield again and again?
If the term “lover” was so cheap, he would rather not have it.
Also, the name Shen Nian sounded rather familiar. He seemed to have heard it years ago, but when thinking back upon it, Yun Jinshu could no longer remember it clearly. With the current situation, it did not allow his thoughts to drift off as well, as Shen Nian had broken down entirely.
He wrenched his sunglasses off, revealing a pair of reddened eyes. Tears were even clinging onto the corner of his lids. “If he’s your lover, then what about me?! I deserve to be kicked away whenever you want? The five million you agreed to give me has yet to even reach my account, on what basis can you just dismiss our relationship like this?!”
Han Jiang’s face darkened completely. He sneered, “You’ve finally spoken the truth. Your uncontent has led to your greed. You only want money to buy drugs, but I, Han Jiang, am not a fool to be played by you. I don’t want to say anything more, I just hope that we’ll never see each other again. Take care of yourself, Mr. Shen.”
Han Jiang tugged Yun Jinshu’s hand. “Let’s go.”
“Stop there!” Shen Nian had already lost his mind. His complexion was awful, as though he had contracted some sort of serious, debilitating illness. There seemed to be an issue with his intelligence as well. He stared fixedly at Han Jiang’s hand that was holding onto Yun Jinshu’s hand, and in a swell of anger, he actually pushed Han Jiang away, raising his hand and giving Yun Jinshu a slap.
Pa! The resounding slap gave everyone a fright.
It was at this moment when a large crowd of reporters somehow swarmed in through the doors of the cafe. Carrying their cameras, they aimed them at Shen Nian and snapped away wildly. The flashes turned everyone’s visions white, and next, the paparazzi raised their microphones and recorders, surrounding and trapping them.
“Shen Nian, deliberately hurting another in a public area, how do you explain this?”
“Mr. Shen, do you have anything to say about the news of your previous drug-taking incident? Does it have any direct correlation to you hurting another person today?”
“That slap just now, does it have anything to do with any mental issues caused from your drug abuse?”
“Does this have anything to do with the rumours of you sleeping with various powerful figures in the industry? Please explain.”
Like a machine gun, one question came after another. It made Shen Nian panic momentarily. These reporters seemed to have already expected that things would happen like this, and they appeared out of nowhere. They behaved like house flies attracted to rotten meat, and with greed in their gazes, they forced him into a corner. Shen Nian’s original sickly appearance now looked even worse.
Collateral damage Yun Jinshu who got slapped now suddenly remembered why he found Shen Nian’s name so familiar. It turned out he was the acclaimed actor Shen Nian who had been hauled to jail due to being a drug abuser.
With his arm around Yun Jinshu’s shoulders, Han Jiang led him out of the crowd. Getting a bottle of cold mineral water from a server, he placed it on Yun Jinshu’s face. Han Jiang’s expression was very ugly, and when looking at Yun Jinshu’s red and swollen cheek, he abruptly started feeling regretful about his decision today.
A while later, he spoke quietly, “I’m… very sorry.”
Yun Jinshu did not speak, only covering his cheek and glanced at him calmly. Next, he gave a small smile. “It’s fine, it was only an accident.”
“I’ve been thoughtless, and didn’t consider Shen Nian’s mental state. At first, I…”
Yun Jinshu waved his hand, cutting him off. There was still a smile on his face, as though he really viewed this matter as nothing. “I understand, you were only using me to shield you from Mr. Shen’s harassment. This is very normal. If I were you, and I knew he is dealing with drugs, I would also definitely try my best to distance myself from him. Han-laoban, you don’t have to feel remorseful.”
The more understanding Yun Jinshu was, the more guilty Han Jiang felt. Although his original intentions of getting Yun Jinshu involved was not like this, the other party had found him a perfect excuse, and a way to step back.
Looking at how calm and unbothered he looked, Yun Jinshu did not seem at all like a newbie in the entertainment industry who had just weathered a huge commotion. He also did not seem like an immature child who had just graduated from school. From the start until the end, his performance was flawless and perfect, but Han Jiang, for the first time ever, felt his heart hurt.
Han Jiang was aware that he himself was a very cold and unfeeling person, and would never put in too much feelings towards any of his kept lovers. However, Yun Jinshu had actually exceeded this limitation. Yun Jinshu was too calm, so calm that he made Han Jiang’s heart squeeze unconsciously.
Holding onto Yun Jinshu’s arm, Han Jiang kissed him on the forehead and led him out of the cafe by the hand. There were a few younger reporters surrounding them who wanted to come forward and ask about Shen Nian’s relationship with them, but the senior reporters all pulled them back, warning and advising them, “Remember that you cannot provoke this Young Master Han. This person’s background is too powerful, and the matter of Shen Nian today was also revealed to the media by him. We cannot afford to offend him.”
The mutterings of the reporters happened to be heard clearly by Yun Jinshu. A mocking smile appeared on his face, and he once again admired himself for really practicing the meaning of tolerance.
The instant the reporters appeared, Yun Jinshu had already guessed what Han Jiang was planning. No wonder Han Jiang’s expression had a look so scheming when they were in the garden, it turned out that he had already calculated everything.
Han Jiang was not planning a “battle of the current and ex-lover”, but because of the reputation of the Han family in the public was really too publicised, they were all very concerned about seeming “clean and uncorrupted”. As Han Jiang’s previous lover, Shen Nian had actually gotten addicted to drugs, and continuously harassed him. If this was to be revealed to the public, the Han family would definitely be affected.
As such, Han Jiang decided to go all in. He first notified the reporters, then brought along his “shield” to meet Shen Nian, forcing him to explode and resort to physical violence. Like this, not only was this superstar a drug addict, he would be forever tainted with the label of being a homosexual who hit and hurt someone.
And with such an explosive insider gossip being revealed, all the various media outlets would definitely give Han Jiang this whistleblower some face. Not only would they not relate the matter to the Han family, they might even repay this fortune by using the halo of Shen Nian’s acclaimed actor status and increase the popularity of this entertainment industry’s newcomer. Killing three birds with a stone, this efficacy was so good it could scare people.
In the winter’s wind, Yun Jinshu was so cold that he shuddered a few times. Han Jiang removed his wool coat and wrapped it around Yun Jinshu, embracing him tightly. “You’re shivering so hard, I’ll prepare a bowl of ginger soup when we’re home to chase the chills away.”
Yun Jinshu smiled slightly, and only giving him a small acknowledgment. However he knew that it was not his body that was cold, but his heart that was trembling.