Yang Chen furrowed his brows. What has suddenly made her so happy again? Is that Hui Lin on the phone? he thought.
All he heard was Lin Ruoxi asking gently, “Chris, have you arrived in Zhonghai?”
Chris? Yang Chen was taken aback. It’s a foreigner? And a male at that?!
What kind of man can make Lin Ruoxi who hasn’t even smiled much for the whole day so happy upon receiving his call?
“Oh… you’re still such a foodie. But since you’re in Japan, you should be able to reach Zhonghai by tomorrow. I’ll pick you up at the airport. What time are you reaching?” Lin Ruoxi asked eagerly.
Yang Chen’s eyeballs were almost falling out of their sockets. She’s completely ignoring me, her husband. Why then is she showing such eagerness towards a foreign man?
“So early?” Lin Ruoxi was still in her conversation. “Hmm, I guess it’s a good thing too. I’ll pick you up in my car. See you tomorrow morning.”
She hung up the phone and looked like she was reminiscing the past. Then she put her phone back into her pocket and went back to peeling potato skins.
“Erm… Ruoxi, who is it that called? Why do you need to pick them up at the airport so early in the morning?” Yang Chen couldn’t help but ask.
Still, Lin Ruoxi said nothing. She focused on the peeling.
Yang Chen felt extremely uncomfortable in his heart, as though he was being held down by a rock. But there was nothing he could do for he didn’t wish to provoke Lin Ruoxi.
He looked at Guo Xuehua and Wang Ma, but they obviously had no clue as well, neither did they pay much attention to it.
Yang Chen trudged back to the living room and started pacing up and down. He mulled over it for a long time. The more he thought about it, the more he felt that something was off…
Actually, he had considered before that given Lin Ruoxi’s looks and status, she definitely had many suitors. Whether it was that Xu Zhihong, or that Zeng Xinlin, or even the current Ning Guodong. They were all very good examples.
But there wasn’t any man who was really close to Lin Ruoxi. Although it might be because she didn’t like those men, no one could truly guarantee that she had no male friends whom she was close to. After all, Lin Ruoxi had attended high school and even university. She had spent many years integrated with society after all.
On top of that, Lin Ruoxi was now utterly dissatisfied with Yang Chen. So it might drive her into the presence of another man. Whether it was to spite Yang Chen or whether it reflected her disappointment at Yang Chen, it was a serious matter.
Yang Chen believed this was not the time to pretend to be magnanimous. This concerned the happiness of his family.
Who exactly was Chris? Yang Chen’s head started to spin from the possibilities. In the end, he clenched his teeth and decided, Since Ruoxi is going to pick up that guy at the airport tomorrow morning, I might as well follow her and have a look for myself.
Zhenxiu who had just come back from school saw Yang Chen gnashing his teeth in rage the moment she entered the house. She asked worriedly, “Brother Yang, are you alright?”
Her question made Yang Chen realize that he was letting his agitation slip through. It wasn’t as if he had no reason to. If not for the fact that he was at fault, he would have grabbed Lin Ruoxi by her collar and demanded an explanation from her. But now, all he could do was to face it without a word.
Yang Chen waved his hand and said, “It’s nothing. I was too engrossed in my thoughts.”
Zhenxiu didn’t quite buy what he was saying. Then she remembered something and said happily, “By the way, my classmates in school played Sister Hui Lin’s songs using their phones today. We were so engrossed into it we forgot about our revision. When is Sister Hui Lin coming back to Zhonghai to hold her concert?”
Yang Chen caressed this young girl’s head and said smilingly, “She will hold it. I have already got someone to contact the stadium. Focus on your revision. When your exams are over, I’ll let you go on stage to present flowers to Hui Lin.”
“I don’t want to.” Zhenxiu was shaking her head so violently as though she was playing a drum. She giggled and said, “I just want a VIP seat.”
Yang Chen’s mood finally turned better after talking to Zhenxiu. Unfortunately, when dinnertime came, Lin Ruoxi still showed no intention of melting the ice. Guo Xuehua and Wang Ma didn’t interfere too much in the couple’s matters either. They feigned ignorance as usual.
After eating, Lin Ruoxi helped Wang Ma do the dishes. Given her practice all this while, Lin Ruoxi had indeed improved greatly in her ability to do household chores. It delighted Wang Ma a great deal, not to mention Guo Xuehua.
After tidying up everything, Lin Ruoxi went upstairs into her study, still not saying a word.
Yang Chen was still frustrated that he couldn’t get a word in. Seeing that Guo Xuehua and Wang Ma were busy watching Korean drama, he just went upstairs as he didn’t want to disturb them. He then went to bed early after taking a cold shower.
As he was too occupied with thoughts about the phone call that Lin Ruoxi had received and about that mysterious Chris, Yang Chen barely slept for the entire night.
When the first light shone and the night had finally passed, Yang Chen knew that Lin Ruoxi would be leaving for the airport. So he pricked up his ears, listening for any motion from the floor above him.
He waited until it was time for breakfast and heard the footsteps of Lin Ruoxi going down the stairs. Yang Chen was in no hurry to follow her downstairs. He waited till Lin Ruoxi started the car and left before he silently jumped down from the balcony. He ran to the garage, started his car, and tailed Lin Ruoxi all the way to the airport.
When it came to tailing people covertly, Yang Chen required no practice at all. He could follow closely behind Lin Ruoxi’s Bentley without her noticing him in her rearview mirror.
Yang Chen was feeling very uneasy. He was pondering, If it’s really a man who is very intimate with Lin Ruoxi, what should I do? I can’t possibly kill him right away. His headache worsened the more he thought about it.
Yang Chen wound down the car windows to let the cold morning air flow in. He took in a deep breath and finally managed to suppress his agitation.
More than half an hour later, both cars pulled into the airport.
As it was still early and very few cars were around, Lin Ruoxi parked her car by the roadside near the international arrivals exit.
Alighting from her red Bentley, Lin Ruoxi who was wearing a grey dress with a blue blazer looked especially energetic. Her Korean-style outfit coupled with her gorgeous looks attracted numerous gazes from passersby outside the airport.
Lin Ruoxi was used to such attention. Unaffected by the gazes, she just looked at her wristwatch and waited patiently for the man that she was picking up to walk out from that exit.
Yang Chen parked his car a few hundred meters away from her and observed from afar. If that guy called Chris didn’t do anything intimate with Lin Ruoxi, he would leave quietly and no one would be the wiser.
After a few minutes, the automatic gate at the exit opened and a group of tourists walked out.
A mature man in checkered shirt who looked like he was in his forties walked out, pulling a black suitcase in his hand. He had curly hair and a tall, burly physique, and he was rather good-looking. When Lin Ruoxi saw him, she smiled and walked up to him eagerly.
Yang Chen who was sitting in the car tensed up instantaneously. That’s Chris? He doesn’t look like a foreigner, more like a Chinese. But he seems to be rather old.
But the next scene became unbearable for Yang Chen.
Yang Chen saw Chris put down his suitcase. Then he walked forward and hugged Lin Ruoxi with a big smile on his face. He even went so far as to pat Lin Ruoxi on her back.
Yang Chen felt the hot blood rushing to his brain, and even his teeth were grinding so loud they sounded like the grinding of gear wheels. He immediately started his car and pressed his foot on the accelerator hard.
The generator of the BMW M3 roared aloud like a rocket bomb, and it frightened the passersby and workers nearby. Some even thought that they were under a terrorist attack!
All they saw was a car with white body dashing in the direction of that exit, as if at the speed of light.
Yang Chen reached in just a few seconds for it was merely a few hundreds meters away. He hit the brakes very hard and almost drifted.
Lin Ruoxi and Chris also got a big shock. Chris had let go of Lin Ruoxi and was staring at the car frantically with his eyes wide open.
But Lin Ruoxi could tell that it was Yang Chen. A mix of shock and confusion filled her eyes.
Yang Chen got down from the car and slammed the door close. Completely blue in the face, he strode towards the two. He first gave a cold stare at Lin Ruoxi, then he glared at Chris furiously.
Chris gulped and forced a smile to ask him in English, “Hi, do I know you?”
Yang Chen sneered without the slightest change in his emotion. He replied with a similar US accent, “So you are Chris?”
Chris nodded his head stiffly. This man before him was obviously very young, but the stressful atmosphere that he carried with him made Chris so afraid that he didn't dare to speak loudly.
“How does it feel to hug another man’s wife?” Yang Chen asked with a slowly growing smile.
Chris was stunned. “Wife?” He turned to look at Lin Ruoxi and asked in shock, “Lin, you’re married? Why didn’t you tell me? Is this your husband?”
Lin Ruoxi’s gorgeous face was ghastly pale right now. Her eyes were glowing with tears. She just looked straight at Yang Chen and said nothing.
Yang Chen looked at his woman coldly and sneered, “Why, didn’t you tell this man that you’re married? Looks like you were already prepared for this. Although I know that I have let you down in many aspects, you have truly impressed me. Lin Ruoxi, if you wanted to make me jealous by getting yourself such an old man, there’s no need for that. Also, you don’t have to be so secretive. Isn’t just opening it up for the public to know a lot better?”
Many people had surrounded them now, wanting to find out what was going on.
A traffic police in uniform pushed through the crowd and stopped next to Yang Chen. He pulled out a stack of tickets and said solemnly, “Sir, I’m afraid that your driving earlier had broken several road rules. You’re not allowed to drive so dangerously at the airport. Please take note of this next time. I’m issuing you a fine of four hundred…”
Looking at the traffic police take down his car plate number, Yang Chen mocked, “Officer, you don’t seem to comprehend the current situation. I’m settling some issues between my wife and another man. If you have a little conscience, it would be best if you leave me alone first.”
The traffic police looked like he had been put on the spot, “ Sir, I know that you’re in a bad mood, but I too have to do my job. I am required by the law to give you a ticket.”
“Enough with the ticket!” Yang Chen was engulfed by his anger. He snatched the stack of tickets from the police and threw it aside right away.
Lin Ruoxi was trembling like she had suffered from a terrible shock. She bit her lips and looked almost on the verge of a breakdown.
Chris finally understood what was going on and he spoke hurriedly, “Lin’s husband, I believe we have some misunderstanding…”
“Misunderstanding?” Yang Chen let out a disparaging smile, “I don’t think that this woman here would simply hug a normal friend. Lin Ruoxi—”
The tears in Lin Ruoxi’s eyes finally started dropping. She was clenching her fists so tightly she seemed as though she was going to push her nails right into her flesh.
Yang Chen felt that he was about to go crazy. He endured the heartbreaking pain and said, “It’s fine that you don’t speak to me. I can understand that you’re angry at me. Even if you were to beat me up or give me a scolding, I can accept it too. But you refused to listen to any of my explanations and just rushed to the airport to meet this Chris. Lin Ruoxi, I truly never thought tha—”
Lin Ruoxi suddenly raised her hand and shoved a slap straight into Yang Chen’s face.
The crisp, loud voice of the slap made everyone around them exclaim in shock.
Yang Chen did not dodge; he didn’t want to do so. Touching where he had just been slapped, he snorted, “Why, you dare to do it but don’t dare to hear others’ comments?”
“Sir you’ve really misunderstood,” Chris started yelling anxiously. “I am Lin’s university mentor, I’m no—not the kind of person you think I am.”
Upon hearing his words, Yang Chen felt as though something in his heart had snapped apart…
He was stupefied for quite a while before he finally recollected himself. He turned over stiffly to look at Chris, asking in a hoarse voice, “What did you just say?”
Chris said with a bitter smile, “Sir, you have really misunderstood Lin. My name is Chris Vanderloo Auerbach. I was Lin’s teacher in university and also her research mentor. My main field of research is in human resources management. Although I am half Chinese, I am an American. And I am already married. My wife Jennifer is coming to Zhonghai in a few days’ time to meet me.
“Two years ago, I went back to the US to teach. I have received Lin’s invitation recently to take up some managerial roles at Yu Lei International. Lin is the student that I’m the proudest of. Although she discontinued her studies halfway and didn’t graduate, we have been on good terms and have always been in contact. And I can foresee prosperous future developments for Yu Lei International. That is why I rushed over specially.
“I never expected that my hug would make Lin’s husband, you, to misunderstand. God bless, I truly had no idea that Lin is already married, and that you have come together with her. Sir, you have really misunderstood Lin this time.”
Yang Chen didn’t even know how to put his current feelings into words. That was because rather than a sudden delight, it was more accurate to say that it was a sudden disaster.
He finally understood everything now.
Because her mentor from university had come to China to help her out with company matters, Lin Ruoxi was so happy about his arrival.
Because he was an American professor, she identified him by name. That was why she called him Chris instead of his family name.
Because he was an American, and he hadn’t seen her, his student, in years, they hugged each other according to Western customs.
Yang Chen was afraid of facing Lin Ruoxi right now, for he looked so grim in her devastated eyes.
The people around them were pointing fingers at them discussing. Although many of them didn’t know what exactly was going on, they could tell that it was Yang Chen who had misunderstood Lin Ruoxi.
Yang Chen knew that he had not only embarrassed himself, but he had even made a fool out of Lin Ruoxi publicly…
What exactly have I done? I actually doubted her loyalty to me, and I even drove my car to secretly follow my wife. I even reproached her publicly… thought Yang Chen.
If he could, Yang Chen wanted to snap his own head. But that would change nothing.
Even though Yang Chen’s brain was capable of improving his cultivation level by leaps and bounds, and understanding stages that others might never be able to understand even if they spent a few lifetimes, he was still utterly dumbfounded by this dead end that he faced.
“Ruoxi… I…” Yang Chen’s mind was as messy as glue. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t think of a single word to console her. He pressed his brows together tightly and was almost going mad.
Lin Ruoxi shut her eyes tight and wiped away her tears with her hands. Within her bright and beautiful body, her soul seemed to appear dim and dark.
After a long while, Lin Ruoxi finally tried her best to maintain her calmness as she said to Chris who was standing beside her, “Chris, I’m sorry that you had to bump into something like this the moment you arrived. Let’s go. I’ll bring you to meet some of the important leaders in the company.”
Chris nodded. He looked at Yang Chen hesitatingly. But he probably figured that there was nothing else that he could say, so he just sighed and got into the car after Lin Ruoxi.
Only Yang Chen was left standing at the same spot. He looked like a rooster that had been defeated. All the colors had been drained from his face.
The traffic police whose tickets had been thrown aside stomped forward at this moment. He finished writing a ticket aggressively and just stuffed it into Yang Chen’s hand.
“Sir, your ticket. Make sure you pay attention to the traffic rules next time. Hmph.” As though he was still not appeased after saying these words, the traffic police pointed his finger at Yang Chen’s nose and reprimanded, “It’s one thing to break the law. It’s another to be a man as terrible as you are. Hmph.”
Yang Chen was just like a wooden figure, standing stiffly as though he hadn’t heard a word. He held on tightly to the ticket in his hands, his eyes staring at the floor, looking like he had completely lost his soul.