When Shu Jingyi returned, he arranged to meet with Renzi. Renzi told him that he was eating at a restaurant called Prosperous Garden. The location they arranged to meet at was not any of the floors in the restaurant, not was it in any of the private rooms. Instead, it was at the backyard of Prosperous Garden, and it had been done up and turned into a BBQ area, he could just come directly. However, after arriving, he had not expected to find so many people there. In the country, Shu Jingyi had quite a wide social circle, and everyone he knew was there.
And they had all arrived earlier than him and started grilling already.
Old Goo walked over, grinning. “Old Shu, have you eaten?”
Shu Jingyi smiled back, “Am I here not to eat?”
Old Goo studied Shu Jingyi. “Wow, you’re dressed up so nicely, going on another blind date?”
Shu Jingyi replied with a laugh, “Don’t I always dress like this?”
“Yes, yes, yes, a beast in human clothing,” Old Goo pulled at Shu Jingyi as he greeted others. “Hey, you’re still grilling? Today’s lead is here, quick, get him a drink!”
This BBQ was arranged by Gu Xiaoshan, in the name of welcoming Shu Jingyi back. Everyone knew that Gu Xiaoshan and Shu Jingyi were partnering up to open a casino in Country C, some were jealous, but even more wanted to gain some benefits from it, anxious to get in on it. So, the number of people who attended this party was fairly large, and upon seeing Shu Jingyi’s arrival, they all swarmed up to him, laughing and joking.
Shu Jingyi chatted with them, “How am I today’s lead? Shouldn’t it be Gu Xiaoshan? He was the one who arranged this party, where is he hiding? Shouldn’t he be welcoming me?”
Everyone laughed. “He only cares about spending time with his darling, how would he have time to bother about you?”
Now that this topic was mentioned, everyone could not help but start discussing. “I really can’t believe that in the end, they would end up together!”
Shu Jingyi smiled, “How do you know that it’ll be ‘the end’?”
Old Goo laughed, “Others are all fake. If the two of them are together, it must be real!”
Everyone too laughed in response, “Yes, yes, Old Goo has said it, Renzi is Gu Xiaoshan’s most beloved! This love has even earned Old Goo quite a bit of money! What a ‘priceless love’!”
Old Goo cupped his hands with a smile, “If not, let’s have another bet? Shall we bet if they would break up?”
Someone joked, “Such a passionate couple, and yet you want to bet if they could break up, how immoral! I like it! Let’s have a bet!”
Old Goo started taking bets there and then. As he turned to ask Shu Jingyi if he was going to place a bet, he discovered that Shu Jingyi had walked away already.
The backyard of Prosperous Garden was designed in the style of a chinese garden. There were quite a lot of plants and flowers, and they had to be careful with the grills. All the grills were placed on the cement ground, and people leaned on the rockery as they enjoyed the food. It was not warm today, and with the man made lake next to them, it was quite cooling.
Renzi and Gu Xiaoshan were not by the lake, but in the pavilion behind the rockery grilling. Next to them were some gooseberries, laughing at Renzi for grilling the delicacies into some inedible cuisine instead. It was a complete, reckless waste of food. Renzi was teased to the point of getting upset, and he let go of everything. “I’m not grilling anymore, I’m too bad at it! I’m only wasting food!”
Gu Xiaoshan smiled, “It doesn’t seem that bad to me.” He picked up a hotdog whose skin was already charred, and critiqued, “This colour is pretty good. It looks just like a sea cucumber, very high class.”
Renzi could neither laugh or cry. “I can’t tell if you’re trying to make me happy, or mocking me!”
“Isn’t it easy?” Shu Jingyi suddenly appeared from behind the rockery, leisurely walking towards them. “If he is willing to eat it, then he’s serious. If he’s not, then he’s lying.”
“Since President Shu has said it like this, then I’ll have to eat it.” This seemed directed at Shu Jingyi, but Gu Xiaoshan’s smiling face was looking at Renzi.
Renzi hurriedly tossed the hotdog in the trash. “Don’t eat it, don’t eat it. It’s so burnt, it’s carcinogenic!”
Gu Xiaoshan then wrapped his arms around Renzi, kissing his forehead. Renzi no longer felt shy with such actions, but still pushed Gu Xiaoshan away with a red face. “Don’t do that, it’s very hot here, I’m already sweating.”
Shu Jingyi pulled a stool over. “You guys are really very intimate. Forgive me for being blind to not have seen it!”
“See what?” Gu Xiaoshan laughed. “It seems to me that it’s not that President Shu couldn’t see it, but was just being polite, and didn’t say anything about it.”
“What sort of words are these?” Shu Jingyi smiled.
“Is it not? Renzi said that you were the one who suggested for him to make his own wine for a love confession.”
Shu Jingyi’s eyelid twitched. He laughed awkwardly, “There’s something like this? I really didn’t know!”
“Whether you do or not, you can also be considered our matchmaker.” Gu Xiaoshan poured a glass of wine. “Here, this is to you.”
Shu Jingyi tossed it back, feeling that the taste of this wine was a little crude. “What wine is this?”
Renzi smiled, “I made it!”
Shu Jingyi was astonished. “It… It tastes pretty good.”
“Right? Right? This time I did pay a lot of attention when brewing it.”
Gu Xiaoshan eyed his assistant. The assistant then served them a plate of meat that was not very appetising looking. Shu Jingyi looked at the plate, and asked laughingly, “Don’t tell me this was prepared by Renzi as well?”
“Yes!” Renzi nodded, extremely proud. “I grilled for very very long before I managed to get a plate of rather decent rabbit meat. Don’t scorn it!”
“How can I ever scorn it?” Shu Jingyi smiled as he spread his hands, then started eating. Renzi did not remember that he had not season the meat at all, and Gu Xiaoshan also did not remind him about it. Shu Jingyi took a bite, his mouth filled with a sour, gamey taste. However, he endured it and continued chewing. It had been grilled for too long, and all the juices had already dripped out, the meat extremely dry. It was fortunate that Shu Jingyi was a man who could eat a plain, dry baguette by itself, and now he was eating the meat quite contentedly. He also had wine to accompany his meal, and was not afraid of food like this. So, without a change in expression, he quickly finished up this spread that Renzi had personally prepared.
When Gu Xiaoshan watched Shu Jingyi, he nearly could not resist praising him for being a man! His competitive spirit was nearly aroused, and he almost wanted to pick that hotdog up from the trash and have a showdown with him.
But thinking about it, he gave up the idea. Even if his mouth could endure it, his stomach might not be able to do so.
Not long after, Shu Jingyi had to go to the hospital.
His symptoms was rather similar to Gu Xiaoshan’s when he drank the wine, having both diarrhoea and vomiting, it was acute gastroenteritis. Shu Jingyi was in the hospital alone with an IV drip, and Old Goo came to visit him with a bunch of bananas, asking him if he would like some.
Shu Jingyi replied in resignation. “I’m on a drip, I can’t eat anything.”
“Sure.” Old Goo then started peeling the banana and eating it himself. “You were just fine, how did you get gastroenteritis? Everyone else was fine, or are you just that delicate?”
Shu Jingyi smiled. “It might be because I ate the food Renzi cooked.”
“Hahaha!” Old Goo laughed loudly. “You dare to eat the food Renzi cooks?! What a man!”
“No, not really.” Shu Jingyi smiled in response.
“Those things look so dubious, and yet you even ate them? Are you trying to chase after him?”
Shu Jingyi was taken aback. “How did you know?”
Shocked, Old Goo could barely hold on to his banana steadily. “I… I was joking…”
Shu Jingyi then smiled, and did not say a word.
Old Goo was anxious. “Are you serious… Why?”
“There’s no reason for it.” Shu Jingyi answered. “I want it, so I’ll do it. I’ve always been like this, haven’t I?”
“But he’s already attached, and you still want to continue? You’ll be striked by lightning for trying to seduce your brother-in-law!”
“It’s not like Gu Xiaoshan is my brother! Where would I get this brother-in-law?” Shu Jingyi objected.
“This isn’t right, I, I can’t help you!”
Shu Jingyi smiled. “That bet you took today… If they break up, you’ll win quite a bit, won’t you?”
Old Goo was stunned. “But still we shouldn’t joke around with this! It’ll be blood money…”
Shu Jingyi cut in. “Then, what do you think about the Country C casino project?”
Hearing “Country C casino”, Old Goo’s eyes shone with greed.
Shu Jingyi spoke leisurely, “Actually, you’re right, we shouldn’t seduce a brother-in-law. However, there’s no marriage, what brother and brother-in-law are we talking about here? If we count like this, how many brothers and brothers or sisters-in-law do you have? You never know what might happen in a relationship. Gu Xiaoshan and Yu Yunren have always led a wild life. Haven’t they always broke up with the other person, even if they were a god-like beauty? Can these all be blamed on the other party? It’s just fate.”
Old Goo listened, and nodded along. In his head was still the thoughts about Country C’s casino.
Shu Jingyi then smiled faintly, “What were you saying just now? I seemed to have interrupted you. You were talking about blood money… What about it?”
“Blood money,” Old Goo said. “It’s a huge amount!”
Gu Xiaoshan and those people who often gathered at Jichan Estate were all fairweathered friends. They all hung out with each other because of business. Their usual friendliness, when it came to things that had “a rather huge amount”, it was basically non-existent.
Old Goo carefully did his calculations. The more he thought about it, the more he felt it made sense. There was nothing immoral about this. The relationship between Gu Xiaoshan and Yu Yunren, what did it have to do with him? Also, if this couple broke up so easily because of an outsider’s interference, then they would not have lasted long in the first place. They could only blame their own lack of determination, how could they ever lay the blame at his feet? Furthermore, the one interfering was not him, it was Shu Jingyi! By that time, if Gu Xiaoshan were to hate anyone, he should hate Shu Jingyi. The best situation would be for Gu Xiaoshan to hate Shu Jingyi to the bones for his interference, and the two of them break up their partnership unhappily. Like this, he would be able to replace Gu Xiaoshan as Shu Jingyi’s partner in the Country C project, how amazing would that be?