Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
It was almost eleven o’clock when she got home that night.
Shangguan Ning took a shower, dried her hair and lay down in bed.
The moonlight sprinkled all over the room through the clean floor-to-ceiling window together with the variegated silhouettes of trees. It was quiet and empty, exactly like Shangguan Ning’s inner heart.
This apartment was a graduation present from her uncle. Although the area was just 100 m2, the market price of this apartment had already reached approximately six million yuan with scope for further potential growth because of its perfect location and luxurious decoration. The sea was right in front of the apartment and Mount Yulan, a prestigious landscape site, was situated at the back.
Uncle’s wife, namely her aunt, had quarreled with him numerous times because of this matter. Aunt had been sour and displeased and even her own cousin showed little fondness towards her.
Shangguan Ning’s mother had passed away when Ning was little and Uncle had always regarded her as his own daughter. Ning got as many things as her cousin did and sometimes even more. Her cousin disliked her a great deal because of that.
There was one time, when Uncle was worried that Ning’s stepmother might have treated her badly, so he brought her home to live under his own roof, instead. Aunt was happy on the surface, but privately, she simply detested her and called her “the Black Sheep of the Family.”
For that, Uncle had a huge row with Aunt and they had almost reached the stage where they were about to request for a divorce.
Young as Shangguan Ning was, she understood everything. She claimed that she wasn’t used to living somewhere other than her own home, and returned to her old, cold house instead.
It was better to live in a cold family than to ruin her Uncle’s family.
She had no intention of taking this apartment, but she had nowhere to go after she just returned to China. This apartment had provided a temporary place for her to set in, for the time being.
Shangguan Ning was just thinking about the past, when the cell phone suddenly beeped. She had received a message.
“My beauty, don’t forget about the blind date with my brother tomorrow. Seven o’clock! Oh, I’m just too excited to fall asleep. What can I do?”
Shangguan Ning could not help but smile. It was a date for her, but what was Zhao Anan so excited for anyway?
Her heavy mood was somehow lifted. Zhao Anan was always able to bring her unexpected joy. She must be her happiness star.
She thought for a moment and replied, “I will certainly be there, but are you sure your brother will be there too?”
Shangguan Ning had expected that Anan’s brother could be the one that made Anan withdraw somehow.
“Don’t worry, I have my special trick for him to show up at Victorian punctually tomorrow night!”
Shangguan Ning shook her head. She was able to imagine the proud expression on Anan’s face.
Shangguan Ning clicked the close button for the curtain. The curtain closed down slowly, generating darkness inside the room. She shut her eyes, allowing herself to take a full break.
On the other hand, the excited, sleepless Anan dialed another number. She planned to play mischief upon one more person.
“Hey, Brother. This is Anan. I’m presenting a beauty to you tomorrow. Will text you the address later.”
“I am not available.”
“Sure. You don’t have to come. But the two old ladies at home aren’t as easy-going as I’m. They’ll catch you no matter where you try to hide yourself.”
It was a long silence on the other side of the cell phone. It seemed as if a difficult decision was being made.
Anan almost lost her patience. She was about to add something when a single word came out from the other side of the cell phone –”Okay.”
Anan didn’t care about her brother’s coldness. Nor did she care about how much trouble had been brought out for him. She just made a call to her mother instantly after hanging up.
“Mom, I set up a date for my brother... don’t worry! She is a teacher from our school, a straight-A student returning from abroad. Absolutely beautiful, great personality and excellent charisma. My brother has already agreed to meet her... so... hmm... can I get 100,000 yuan more in allowance this month?”
Early next morning, Shangguan Ning put on her NIKE sportswear and went out for her daily jogging. She had no idea that she had been sold for 100,000 yuan by her good friend on the previous night.
The compound that she lived in, was located in the west side of the city, a bit on the outskirts actually. Yet the afforesting work was pretty well done, so that the air was fresh enough for a morning run.
The moment she came to the ground floor, she spotted a sliver Aston Martin car parked in front of the building, with five trucks and two hoists following behind. All the staff of the compound management were outside, bending over and busy handling something.
A graceful man in a black suit was instructing everyone to move around things.
Shangguan Ning did not know much about cars. But she had a good knowledge about Aston Martin which was a luxurious sports car, rarely seen in public. She knew about it only because it was Xie Zhuojun’s dream to own a car like this one.
However, one Aston Martin car costed tens of millions of yuan. Xie Zhuojun was only a student back then and had not taken over his family’s business. So his parents didn’t approve of his request of buying such an expensive car. When he finally took over the business, he found out that his family was not as extravagant as he had imagined. Therefore, Aston Martin cars still remained a fantasy for him.
Seemed that someone was moving in, someone with an impressive economic background.
But, the things that could fill up five trucks could not possibly fit in these apartments. There were only two tall buildings in the compound and the biggest apartment was no more than 400 m2.
Or maybe these were things of several people?
Shangguan Ning was confused. But she wasn’t a nosy person, so whoever that was moving in, wouldn’t be her concern. She was moving away soon, anyway.
The man in suit seemed to have sensed that someone close-by was watching, so he turned around and glimpsed at Shangguan Ning. The man smiled at her with a slight nod – he was saying hello.
The man looked young. He was probably 24 or 25 years old. His skin was tanned, and his teeth were quite white. Tall and strong, he sported a well trimmed hairstyle and presented a seemingly good natured smile. All of that brought comfort to whomsoever was around.
Seeing that the man was polite, Shangguan Ning smiled and nodded at him as well before walking out of the compound and starting her jog along the seaside.
The place was already empty when she returned home. What incredible efficiency!
Later in the morning, Shangguan Ning drove to the supermarket where she bought some daily necessities and half-ready food packages like frozen dumplings. She was not a chef and she almost never cooked. In the afternoon, she bent over her desk preparing for the lessons. Evening touched down unexpectedly fast.
She showered and changed into a milky white dress, with a dark cyan coat over it. Her silk like black hair were spread over her shoulders in a casual way.
Shangguan Ning set off half an hour ahead of time. She had learnt her lesson from the previous date, where she had arrived late.
Zhao Anan called her the moment Shangguan Ning left home.
“My beauty, are you ready yet?”
“Yes, I’m already on the way.”
Zhao Anan gave out a clear sound of relief on the other side of the cell phone.
She said happily, “Okay, that’s great!”
Then Anan whispered in a stumbling tone, “Well, hmm, my brother is indeed a nice man. An extremely rare man, except that... hmm... he may seem a little cold towards people whom he is not familiar with. But don’t worry. You can melt him with your heat!”
Shangguan Ning automatically ignored the first and the last sentence. She was relishing the middle sentence attentively.
It was the first time for her to hear Anan talking about her brother’s flaw. That wouldn’t have come easily.
In that case, her brother must be someone who tended to be extremely, unusually cold to people.
It wasn’t a big deal. Coldness was anyhow a good thing, because in this way, she wouldn’t owe Anan anything if neither the brother nor she liked each other.
She cherished Anan as a friend a lot. She hoped that their friendship could last forever.
It didn’t take Shangguan Ning long to arrive at Victorian. She immediately noticed that very same silver Aston Martin was standing right at the door of the restaurant.
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