Perhaps Shen Xi’s words in front of the reporters that day pleased his father. Two days later a large amount of money was transferred to Shen Xi’s account.
When Shen Xi received the SMS notification from the bank, he was looking for a place to live, so he casually scanned the SMS and tossed it aside.
Since he was planning to stay in Zhongjing, he naturally could not stay in a hotel all the time. He didn’t want to go back to the Shen family’s house, so it was only logical to buy something.
In just one morning, Shen Xi had finalised the purchase of the place he was interested in, a one-bedroom apartment of over 70 square metres. After paying the deposit and making an appointment for the closing, Shen Xi gave Lao K a call and asked him to get some people to clean up the apartment.
Lao K was furious at this, saying he was a private detective, not Shen Xi’s personal butler. But in response to Shen Xi’s rascal look, Lao K could only agree reluctantly.
After settling the housing issue, Shen Xi headed straight for the nearest 4S shop. The incident at the cemetery last time made Shen Xi realise the inconvenience of not having a car, and since he was planning to settle down, a car was essential for him.
Before he left the country, one of Shen Xi’s favourite activities was car racing, a hobby that no one in his family had ever questioned. On the contrary, Shen Dehan specially bought him a top-of-the-line sports car for this purpose.
Shen Xi couldn’t get enough of that car; he would sometimes rejoice in his heart that his father still remembered him, so he looked at that car as if it were a jewel in his eye. In his previous life, he sat in that car, guarding the entrance to Shutu for hours before finally driving in. In this life, even though the car was well maintained and parked in the Shen family’s garage waiting for his return, he did not even want to look at it again.
Without the pursuit of speed, Shen Xi chose a luxuriously equipped Mercedes-Benz of the latest model. However, because it was imported, the car could not be picked up at the moment and he had to wait for some time.
The sales lady looked at Shen Xi with apprehension, afraid that Shen Xi would change his mind because of this.
Although Shen Xi felt inconvenienced by this, he still decided to pay the deposit.
“Xiao Xi?” An unexpected voice sounded from behind.
Shen Xi frowned imperceptibly and turned around with due surprise on his face, “Cousin?”
The man standing behind Shen Xi was none other than Li Mingxuan.
Li Mingxuan’s eyes fell on the documents in front of Shen Xi, “Xiao Xi wants to buy a car?”
Shen Xi nodded.
Li Mingxuan smiled in understanding, thinking of the last time Shen Xi got wet in the rain at the cemetery. Seeing that Shen Xi seemed to have finished the formalities, Li Mingxuan said naturally, “Let’s have lunch together at noon?” Although it was a proposal, his tone was indisputable.
Shen Xi did not know when his relationship with Li Mingxuan had become so good that they could have lunch together. Even though Li Mingxuan had always shown him kindness since his return to China, and the last time he was sick, Li Mingxuan had also taken good care of him, but the more Li Mingxuan was like this, the more wary Shen Xi became.
The thought was fleeting, and in an instant Shen Xi already agreed with a smile.
The two of them chatted idly as they got into the car, and Shen Xi naturally sat next to Li Mingxuan. For a moment, a strange expression flashed across Li Mingxuan’s face as he remembered the last time Shen Xi changed his clothes in the car.
Feeling Xiao Mingxuan’s ready to move, Li Mingxuan looked out of the car in embarrassment, concealing the abnormality on his face.
With a silent, bitter laugh in his heart, Li Mingxuan felt that the self-control he had always prided himself on was now a joke.
After not seeing Shen Xi for several days, Li Mingxuan deliberately tried to forget the last time he was at the hotel. He kept trying to convince himself that it was just a man’s instinct. After repeating it many times, Li Mingxuan himself believed in this rhetoric. What he could not have imagined was that his body would react so honestly. It was just a memory, and he almost lost his restraint in front of Shen Xi.
Shen Xi naturally didn’t know the tangle in Li Mingxuan’s heart. After fastening his seat belt, Shen Xi looked at Li Mingxuan, “What are we eating?”
After the momentary abnormality just now, Li Mingxuan had already adjusted his expression and answered Shen Xi’s question as consciously as possible, “Sichuan cuisine.”
Shen Xi gave Li Mingxuan a strange look. He remembered that Li Mingxuan’s taste had always been very light. On the contrary, it was he himself who liked hot and spicy food. Of course, Shen Xi didn’t bother to ask why, just nodded casually and said yes.
The Sichuan restaurant the two chose was situated in a very isolated alleyway. Faced with Shen Xi’s obvious confusion, Li Mingxuan smiled and explained, “This is a very famous private restaurant that only receives regular customers. Very few people know about it, but the food is delicious.”
Unlike the humble surroundings outside, the interior of the Sichuan restaurant was very elegant. There were quite a few customers inside, but without the hustle and bustle of an ordinary restaurant it seemed very quiet.
Li Mingxuan took Shen Xi directly to the private room, pointed to the signature dishes on the menu and ordered one of each.
Shen Xi adhered to the idea of the guest following the host and let Li Mingxuan make the arrangements. Along the way, Shen Xi kept guessing Li Mingxuan’s intentions, but Li Mingxuan didn’t say anything. Instead, he was unusually silent, so Shen Xi could only keep his doubts to himself.
Finally, perhaps because he didn’t have to be distracted by driving anymore, Li Mingxuan talked a little.
While Shen Xi was drinking tea with his head lowered, Li Mingxuan stared at him with complicated eyes for a long time before finally letting out a silent sigh.
“Xiao Xi, what are your next plans?” Li Mingxuan said as if unintentionally.
Shen Xi’s movement of drinking tea stalled, and suddenly there was a feeling of dust settling in his heart. He had thought of many reasons for Li Mingxuan to approach him, and all of them were invariably related to Shen Ji. Hearing Li Mingxuan ask a seemingly casual question, Shen Xi sneered in his heart. Was it all about helping Shen Ji to test him? He had already stated in front of the press that he was not interested in Shen Group. Why did the Shen family still refuse to believe it?
Suppressed anger rose from his heart. Shen Xi smiled as he raised his head, “What does Cousin mean?”
Li Mingxuan felt that Shen Xi must have misunderstood something and said in a deep voice, “Xiao Xi, don’t think too much, I’m just concerned about you.”
“Concerned?” Shen Xi felt that this was really naked irony and asked rhetorically, “What kind of concern is it?”
Without waiting for Li Mingxuan to speak, Shen Xi had already looked down coldly, “If Cousin is asking on behalf of Big Brother, then please tell Big Brother that since I said I have no interest in Shen Group, I naturally won’t go back on my word, so there is really no need for Big Brother to keep worrying.
“Of course if Father also shares Big Brother’s concern, Cousin may as well relay this to him.” Shen Xi added with a sneer.
Li Mingxuan looked at Shen Xi in silence and whispered, “It has nothing to do with Shen Ji, it’s just that I’m worried about you.” When he said the word ‘you’, Li Mingxuan’s voice was already inaudibly low.
Shen Xi’s face was full of ridicule. He obviously didn’t hear the last word ‘you’.
“What do my plans have to do with Cousin? Cousin is thinking too much. Or is it that my cousin, like my aunt, takes it as his mission to protect the interests of the Shen family, for fear that I will enter Shen Group and divide it?
“Don’t worry, you guys think too highly of me, I know nothing but eating, drinking and having fun. What else are you worried about, Cousin?” A hint of self-deprecation flashed across Shen Xi’s face.
This was not the first time Li Mingxuan had seen Shen Xi’s self-deprecation. The time they met on the plane, the time at the hospital, Li Mingxuan could not remember the total number of times, but this time Shen Xi’s expression really stung his eyes.
Li Mingxuan wanted to explain but couldn’t find the right words, so he could only say feebly, “Actually, we all care about you.”
Shen Xi looked at Li Mingxuan in amazement, wondering how Li Mingxuan could suddenly say this. A moment later, Shen Xi finally couldn’t help but snort.
“Care about me?
“Then where were you all when I was bullied by Shen Cheng? Where were you all when I was treated coldly by my father? Where were you all when I was living like a transparent person in the Shen family? Where were you when I was ridiculed by that illegitimate son Shen Rong? Even when I was rejected by everyone in the Shen family and guarded against like a thief, where were you?”
Shen Xi sneered, looking at Li Mingxuan. He had not intended to say this. It was just a few words from Li Mingxuan; what had he not endured in prison back then?
But the concern Li Mingxuan talked about really irritated him.
Concerned? Shen Xi thought to himself, where were you all when I was in prison in my previous life? Where were you when I was begging for help? Where were you when I finally died?
These words were swirling around in Shen Xi’s mind, but he tried hard to keep them from coming out.
Li Mingxuan looked at Shen Xi helplessly. He didn’t know what he should say.
The words that Shen Xi said slammed into his heart and he actually felt sad. Li Mingxuan thought to himself, when did this start? It was not that he hadn’t heard about Shen Xi’s situation before; but each time he heard about it, he would forget about it, without it leaving a single ripple in his heart. However, this time, looking at Shen Xi’s angry expression, a word “distress” flashed through Li Mingxuan’s mind.
But what reason did he have to be distressed? Wasn’t he also responsible for everything that Shen Xi had faced? Hadn’t his indifference also made Shen Xi’s situation worse?
“Sorry.” Li Mingxuan could only say this word to Shen Xi with difficulty in the end.
Shen Xi smiled coolly, “What is there to be sorry for, everyone is just acting in their own interests. Who is to blame that I was destined to be the outcast of the Shen family from the beginning.
“Now that all of you have achieved your goals, I am already like this, I have neither the will nor the ability to compete with my elder brothers for anything, and they and Father should be relieved.” Shen Xi gave Li Mingxuan a cold look, “Cousin, you don’t need to bother appearing in front of me in the future either.”
When Shen Xi finished speaking, he got up and left. As he opened the door of the private room, a strange young man was leaning against the opposite wall looking at him with an odd expression.
Shen Xi didn’t even bother to look at him and left downstairs without hesitation.
Behind Shen Xi, the strange man entered the private room with a smile on his face, “Yo, did I just see you get defeated and unable to say a word?”
Li Mingxuan’s face was unsightly, “Why are you here?”
The man laughed, “I heard you were here, so I had to see you anyway. Who knew it would be a good show to listen to!”
Li Mingxuan’s brow furrowed.
The man did not care about Li Mingxuan’s dark face, “Is this your little cousin Shen Xi? Not as lawless and arrogant as the rumours have it.”
Li Mingxuan was now quite unhappy with these few adjectives and gave the man a warning glance.
The man smiled, “I told you a long time ago, leave a line in your life, see you in the future (don’t be too ruthless and leave a retreat for yourself). Don’t treat people like fools like the Shen family does. By the way, you’re not really here to test the waters for Shen Ji, are you?”
Li Mingxuan shook his head, “I’m just worried about him. What can he do if he doesn’t enter Shen Group? Will he be wasting his time and drinking again as before?”
“Isn’t that what you wanted to see? If Shen Xi really wants to enter Shen Group, you guys are the ones who will have a headache, right?”
Li Mingxuan didn’t say anything, just smiled bitterly.
This was such a contradictory premise, ah!