“Have you been doing alright?”
After a moment of silence, the woman in the blue dress spoke.
Ye An turned to look at Xie Shuo. His expression did not change and remained calm.
He responded to her as he did with outsiders, saying in a low voice, “All right.”
The woman in the blue dress forced a smile. “I just came back from overseas last week. I wanted to come visit you but was afraid that it would be inconvenient for you.”
As she spoke she turned to Ye An before suddenly saying, “Is this… your wife?”
Xie Shuo responded with a light, “En.”
The woman smiled at Ye An. “Hello, I’m Zhang Muqing.”
Why did this name… sound so familiar?
Ye An smiled back politely. “Hello, I’m Ye An.”
Zhang Mu Qing observed her unwaveringly for a moment before reverting her gaze back to Xie Shuo. “I was abroad when you got married, and no one told me. When I finally heard about it, it was too late, so I can only make it up to you with the gift…”
Hearing this, Ye An finally remembered the wedding gift they had received not long after she and Xie Shuo got married. They had received a pair of high-end brooches, and the card was signed with the name “Muqing.”
It seems that the relationship between these two was deep.
Ye An looked at Xie Shuo and then at Zhang Muqing, who seemed to have come prepared.She suddenly felt a bit sorry for Zhang Muqing.
Had she come back to China with the intent of resuming their relationship?
Fortunately, Xie Shuo was aware of his boundaries as a married man. Zhang Muqing spoke for so long, yet his expression did not change. His replies were polite yet concise.
Zhang Muqing’s expression flashed with discomfort, and her smile became forced when she noticed his estranged attitude.
While they were stuck in awkward conversation, Xie Yuran suddenly walked over with a glass of wine, relieving them of the stiffness.
“Ge, Sao zi.” Xie Yuran paused and turned to Zhang Muqing, “Muqing jie.”
Seeing him, Zhang Muqing’s smile brightened again. “Yuran.”
Xie Shuo suddenly touched Ye An’s hand that was on his arm and whispered, “Let’s go.”
Ye An returned to her senses and guided Xie Shuo away, leaving Xie Yuran and Zhang Yuran to reminisce about the past.
After sitting down on the sofa in the corner, Ye An glanced back and whispered, “So she’s Muqing.” She poked Xie Shuo and leaned closer to him, asking, “Be honest, is that your ex-girlfriend?”
Xie Shuo seemed to not want to answer, but he still said impatiently, “No.”
Ye An tilted her head. “Then… a previous situationship?”
Xie Shuo: “…”
Xie Shuo leaned against the sofa and closed his eyes, ignoring her meaningless questions.
Ye An turned to look back again. Zhang Muqing and Xie Yuran were still talking, and they occasionally seemed to glance in their direction.
Ye An remembered something and poked Xie Shuo again. “Her last name is Zhang. Is she the daughter of your Vice Deputy Zhang?”
Xie Shuo opened his eyes reluctantly and replied lightly, “Adopted from their family’s relative.”
Ye An immediately turned back around. “You know her situation so well. Did you two grow up together as childhood sweethearts?”
Xie Shuo: “…She was a teenager when she was adopted.”
So not a childhood sweetheart.
But in Ye An’s book, Zhang Muqing’s situation counted. She thought about it and felt that it was a little strange. Since Zhang Muqing was Zhang Junfeng’s adopted daughter and was childhood friends with Xie Shuo–shouldn’t she be the best candidate for marriage in terms of family lineage and connections? How did they choose the Ye family out of everyone else?
Did the Zhang family look down on Xie Shuo for becoming blind and didn’t think he could hold any position of power in the company?
But in this case, Zhang Muqing would have had to agree with her family’s thought process, so why was she gazing at Xie Shuo like a long-lost lover? Was she regretting it?
Ye An couldn’t help but imagine them in a passionate and turbulent relationship. She leaned on Xie Shuo’s shoulder and asked quietly, “Isn’t the Xie family and Zhang family close? Why didn’t you marry Zhang Muqing?”
Xie Shuo looked up and sneered, saying sarcastically, “Would the Zhang family allow the marriage puppet they raised to be wasted on a blind man?”
So that was the reason… Ye An looked up at the cold face of the man under the lamp lighting. She reverted her gaze and asked, “So if the Zhang family gave their approval, you would have married her?”
She thought that he would have assented, but he unexpectedly answered with a curt, “No.”
When did this man become so good at answering questions?
“Why?” Ye An asked.
Xie Shuo didn’t say anything, obviously not wanting to answer.
Ye An stretched her index finger out to touch his jaw. “Why? Be honest; I won’t be mad.”
Afraid that she would keep pestering him, Xie Shuo finally said, “Yuran likes her.”
Ye An turned around in shock and observed the two talking figures in the distance. What kind of competing brothers’ love triangle was this?
Ye An was bewildered. She turned back around to look at Xie Shuo and wanted to ask if he liked Zhang Muqing too. However, she held back her words.
He definitely wouldn’t answer that question.
Ye An lowered her gaze and felt an unexplainably bitter feeling in her mouth. Her long eyelashes reflected the light, and his long and slender hands entered her line of sight.
She pursed her lips and stretched her hand out to lightly scratch the back of his hand.
Xie Shuo thought she was bored and took advantage of the situation to hold her soft hand. He wrapped it in his palms and began to play with it out of habit.
Ye An’s chest felt blocked: That’s all you ever do! My hand isn’t dough, yet you keep kneading it!
She looked up and caught a glimpse of his indifferent expression, which showed no ounce of care towards anything. She pulled her hand back in annoyance and got up and suddenly got up, saying, “I’m going to the bathroom.”
After speaking, she walked away in her high heels.
Xie Shuo’s hands were left empty. When he heard her speak, there seemed to be some displeasure in his unreadable expression.
After leaving, Ye An’s footsteps slowed down as she realized that losing her temper would be inappropriate at this banquet. The light shrouded her figure and outlined her slender figure. She had narrow shoulders and a slender waist, and her dress swayed like flowers in the trees when she walked.
Guests of the banquet were whispering not far away:
“Hey, is that the Xie family’s daughter-in-law?”
“Which family is she from? Why haven’t I seen her before?”
“I heard she’s surnamed, Ye. Is this the first time that she has come? She’s quite pretty…”
Zhang Muqing stood on the side, listening to their conversation. She couldn’t help but look over in that direction.
Ye An stood under the lights in a white dress and had delicate features.
Ye An kept her gaze fixed and walked out of the banquet hall into the bathroom.
After she exited the restroom stall, Ye An had calmed down a bit.
Forget it. Their marriage was a business relationship, to begin with. What was the point in getting annoyed by him? It wasn’t worth it.
Ye An washed her hands and looked into the mirror to make sure her makeup was still intact. After taking a deep breath, she turned to leave.
However, just as she reached the corner in the hall, she turned and accidentally bumped into someone who was holding a glass of wine.
The wine spilled with their collision, and a large red stain blossomed on the originally pure white dress.
Ye An: “…”
What kind of luck is this?
“I’m sorry…” The young woman who bumped into Ye An looked up. Her voice suddenly stopped when she faced Ye An, and a trace of scrutiny appeared in her eyes.
Ye An turned to look at her as well. It was already November, but the girl was still wearing a short dress, which revealed her slender legs. Her fair shoulders were half exposed.
The beautiful woman’s gaze was complicated. The outer corners of her eyes angled up, making her almost resemble a sly fox.
“Sorry, I didn’t see you just now.” She looked at Ye An and smiled. “Your dress got dirty; I can help you change your clothes.”
Ye An felt as if the girl knew her, but she didn’t recognize the girl at all. A waiter heard them speaking and asked, “Ma’am, are you alright?”
Ye An lifted the hem of her dress and shook her head. “I’m fine.”
Since this was the Xie family’s event, she already had extra clothes prepared. Seeing that the woman didn’t seem to have ill intentions, Ye An allowed her to go upstairs with her to change clothes.
The girl in the black dress followed her up, and as Ye An opened the door to the room, she suddenly asked, “Are you Xie Shuo’s wife?”
Ye An turned back to look at her. “And you are…?”
“Me?” The young woman blinked and smiled slyly. “Your husband’s ex-marriage partner, Xin Li.”