There happened to be an open exhibit at an art museum in the city center, so Ye An had the housekeeper buy tickets and persuaded the reluctant Xia Jin to go.
The lighting was clear and bright, and the visitors spoke in hushed whispers and walked with light footsteps.
As Xia Jin looked at the vibrant colors on the paintings against the snow-white walls, her expression gradually softened, and there was a youthful vigor in her gaze.
She stood in front of one of the paintings for a while. Ye An took a mental note and asked quietly, “Do you like this one?”
Xia Jin gave a small nod. “The color scheme is nice.”
Ye An turned around and asked for the staff’s help, but the staff member smiled only politely and said that the painting was going to be auctioned off. Therefore, it wasn’t for sale for the time being.
Ye An wanted to ask for more details, but Xia Jin stopped her. “Forget it, I wasn’t serious.”
Ye An could only let it go.
After visiting the gallery, Xia Jin’s mood was evidently better than before. She knew that her actions would not change anything, so she didn’t try to convince Ye An to get a divorce like yesterday.
Xia Jin had remained strong for most of her life and never bowed her head or showed any signs of weakness. In the past, she had decisively divorced Ye Yuan Nian as a result of their quarrels. Xia Jin never thought that she would be so easily persuaded when it came time for her daughter’s marriage.
She glanced at Ye An, recalled the argument they had yesterday and sighed. Had she really made the wrong choice then?
“Why isn’t he here with you today?”
Ye An was stunned upon hearing Xia Jin’s sudden question, but she then realized that she was asking about Xie Shuo. Ye An smiled, saying, “He originally wanted to come but had work affairs to deal with. Also, his eyes make it more inconvenient for him to come since someone would have to take care of him, so I told him not to come. He is coming to dine with us tonight, though, and the restaurant has already been booked.”
After seeing the smile on her face, Xia Jin couldn’t help but ask, “You really like him?”
Ye An’s head hurt. “Mom, can you not be so biased against him? He was already in a rough period in his life, and his eyes were injured in a car accident. It wasn’t even his fault.” She paused before adding, “Also, he’s saved me before.”
Xia Jin was taken aback. “When did that happen?”
Ye An replied, “Don’t ask; you can just treat this marriage as me repaying the favor. He really is a good person…”
As she spoke, the employee suddenly stepped forward from behind them and asked, “Madam, where should this painting be delivered?”
Ye An turned to see a staff member behind them with a painting, the one that Xia Jin had taken a liking to earlier.
Ye An was puzzled. “Didn’t you say the painting wasn’t for sale earlier?”
The employee smiled and said, “I contacted the person in charge of the exhibition, and we settled it.”
Ye An understood the situation and turned to Xia Jin, saying, “Let’s just send it to your home, so it’ll be more convenient for you.”
Xia Jin didn’t expect such a turn in events, and she had mixed feelings.
The two walked out of the museum and stepped into the car to head to the restaurant that Xie Shuo had booked.
In the study of the Xie residence.
“Vice Deputy Zhang did have private correspondence with two other companies during negotiations of the Ju development cooperation, but there has been no concrete evidence.”
Zhong Fu stood in the room and reported his findings.
Xie Shuo leaned against the sofa. His gaze was cold, and his long and slender fingers twitched. “Continue to investigate him and his finances. Do it in secret; don’t let him know yet.”
Zhong Fu nodded.
“Also, show me all of the projects that he handles in the future. If I’m not there, give it to the chairman.”
After speaking, Xie Shuo suddenly asked, “What time is it?”
Zhong Fu glanced at his watch and said, “Five twenty.”
Xie Shuo stood and said, “That’ll be all for now. Call my wife and ask if they’ve left the art exhibition.”
Zhong Fu quickly dialed a phone call to ask before turning around to say, “Madam said that they are already are on the way to the restaurant.”
Xie Shuo had just taken a step after standing up when flashes of light appeared circling before his eyes. His head began to hurt, and his body swayed, almost causing him to fall.
Zhong Fu hurried over to support him. “President Xie?”
Xie Shuo stood firm with Zhong Fu’s support, and he pressed his hand against his head.
Ever since coming back from the honeymoon, the flashing had not returned. He thought that the two incidences of flashes at Qianyue Mountain were just accidents and was not expecting it to happen today.
“Would you like me to call the doctor for you?” Zhong Fu asked worriedly.
A few moments later, Xie Shuo felt better, but his vision went completely dark again. He let go of Zhong Fu’s arm and said lightly, “No, let’s go.”
Zhong Fu could only support him on their way out.
The days in fall and winter were short. By the time they arrived at the restaurant, it was twilight, and the street lights were on.
Before finding a restaurant, Xie Shuo asked about Xia Jin’s tastes and preferences. In the end, he chose a Chinese restaurant with light dishes.
The restaurant was elegant and had traditional aesthetics. The chef was at the national level.
Two minutes after Ye An and Xia Jin entered, they saw Xie Shuo come in. Ye An stood up to go support him. She smiled, saying, “Darling.”
It was rare for Xie Shuo to have any expression other than a cold one. He asked gently, “Have you been waiting?”
Ye An held his arm and replied sweetly, “No, we just got here.”
Xie Shuo’s assistant followed them and stepped forward to passed a delicately packaged gift box to Xia Jin. He spoke courteously in their approximate direction, “You came very soon, so please forgive me for my hasty preparations. I’m sorry if anything has inconvenienced you.”
He gifted a painting in the afternoon and gave another gift in the evening. Even if Xia Jin didn’t like him, she could not say anything.
Ye An slid her hand down to grasp his palm. She intertwined their fingers and asked coquettishly, “What about me? There’s no present for me?”
Xie Shuo smiled cooperatively, “I’ll take you out another day, and you can pick out whatever you want. ”
The lighting inside the room was soft and warm, and it cast a faint glow around his eyebrows, adding a hint of fondness. Even his indifferent tone held a trace of emotion that she had never heard before.
Ye An almost believed his actions to be true and shook her head to rid herself of the fantasy.
Fortunately, she was able to come back to her senses. She helped Xie Shuo sit down and said sweetly, “That’s what I like to hear.”
Xia Jin watched the two of them displaying affection, and her words were stuck in her throat, making her unable to do anything.
Although they were putting on a show, Ye An didn’t dare go overboard in case it was too exaggerated. She let go of Xie Shuo and smiled at Xia Jin. “Mom, what do you want to eat? Order anything you want.”
Xia Jin’s expression softened, and she responded with a light, “En.”
Hearing her affirming response, Ye An breathed a sigh of relief and finally felt like her task had been somewhat accomplished.
The soft lighting accompanied their peaceful meal.
After dinner, the three of them walked out of the room together. Ye An asked, “Mom, where do you want to go visit tomorrow?”
Xia Jin said, “There’s no need; I’m planning on going back tomorrow.”
Ye An was stunned. “Why so soon?”
Xia Jin looked at her. Ye An’s fair skin was dewy, her eyes were clear, and she didn’t seem to have suffered much since getting married.
“I hurried over here and didn’t tell anyone that I was coming. The house is messy, so I have to go back and clean.” Xia Jin glanced at Xie Shuo again and said, compromising, “I’ll come to visit when I’m free.”
Ye An could only respond, “Then I’ll send you off tomorrow.”
After sending Xia Jin back to the hotel, Ye An and Xie Shuo returned to the Xie residence.
Because of the autumn chill and the post-rain mist, Ye An shivered after getting off the car and subconsciously hugged Xie Shuo’s arm tightly. She only felt a bit warmer after entering the house.
Xie Shuo touched the exposed part of her arm and asked, “Why didn’t you wear more clothes if it was cold?”
Ye An leaned into him and said, “How else would I wear this dress?”
The two of them hadn’t seemed to exit their acting stupor and walked up the stairs intimately.
After they entered the bedroom, Ye An let go, looked at Xie Shuo, and said with a smile, “You did so well tonight!”
He wore formal clothes tonight with a white dress shirt and a black suit jacket. He was handsome, calm, and gentle when speaking tonight. He really seemed like the perfect husband.
Xie Shuo ignored her teasing and took off his jacket before sitting down on the sofa. He unbuttoned the top button of his neckline with his slender fingers. His movements were languid and relaxed.
He recalled something and suddenly said, “Help me call Professor Cen tomorrow and schedule an appointment with him. Tell him I’m doing a check-up.”
Ye An was confused since this was his first time asking for a doctor’s appointment. Was he finally warming up to the idea of continuing to pursue treatment?
“What’s wrong? Are you not feeling well?”
Xie Shuo raised his hand to prop up his forehead. He responded with a low “En.”
Ye An sat down beside him and remembered that he had left the house early in the morning. “Did you remember to take your medicine?”
Xie Shuo put his hand down and said, “Yes.”
“Do you want me to rub your temples?”
Xie Shuo didn’t refuse her and laid down.
His head lay in her lap, and he closed his eyes upon smelling her familiar scent. He gradually fell asleep.
Ye An massaged his temples for a long time and finally stopped when her fingers were sore.
She looked down at him, her long lashes fluttering.
The man laid there quietly, and his expression was much gentler and calmer than usual. His nose bridge formed the peak of his features and cast a faint shadow on his face.
Ye An was moved by his appearance and couldn’t help but stretch her fingertips out to gently stroke the bridge of his nose.
As soon as her fingertips touched his nose, her hand was caught.
Xie Shuo opened his eyes seemed to be somewhat tired. He didn’t ask what she was doing and sat up, still holding her hand.
“What time is your mother leaving tomorrow?”
Ye An straightened her wrinkled dress and said, “If you’re not feeling well, then you don’t have to come with me tomorrow.”
Xie Shuo held her hand and noticed how slender and soft it was. He began to knead it unconsciously.
Ye An was confused: just say what you want to say; why are you kneading my hand?
However, her fingers were sore and felt better as they were being massaged, so she continued to let him do it and remained silent.
The next day, Xie Shuo continued to be a model son-in-law and accompanied Ye An to visit Xia Jin.
Xia Jin had obviously accepted reality. She seemed calm and was not as agitated as when she first arrived. Before she left, she nagged Ye An to let her know if ever needed to return home for any reason.
When Xia Jin finally left, there was a large weight lifted off of Ye An’s shoulders. It probably would have been better if she were to be honest earlier so she wouldn’t have to hide her marriage.
When they got home, Ye An called Cen Qingyan and made an appointment for Xie Shuo to see him again.
The constant wind and rain for the past two days had finally stopped. The sky appeared as a blue wash, and bright rays filtered through the windows and shone brightly inside.
Author’s Note: Xiao Xie rubbed Xiao Ye’s hands~