Ming Yu never imagined that he would meet Xi Ze downstairs from the Must artists’ apartments.
This coincidence was like a comet crashing into the earth, Zhao Rui being shrewd and cunning, Luo Ru not forcing him to drink the medicinal soup… It was a ‘miracle’ where the probability was less than one in a million.
Ming Yu wasn’t stupid, so he naturally couldn’t think that this was a coincidence. He didn’t believe Xi Ze’s words. However, the other person was a senior and the one Ming Yu was bound to defeat. Therefore, Ming Yu smiled and spoke politely. “It is a good coincidence, Mr. Xi. Do you live in the artist apartments?”
This sentence was nonsense.
Ming Yu had heard it from Zhao Rui in his first week of being in this world. The artist apartments were for second and third-tier models like Ming Yu, and even some famous second-tier models wouldn’t live here.
Th security from the company was good, but as long as a person had money and status, they didn’t want to ‘squeeze’ in such a small room, even if it meant renting a house in the capital with the highest land prices.
But under the bright and dazzling lights, the handsome and elegant man calmly nodded and straightforwardly changed topics. “You actually live here. There is a good cafe nearby. Since we met so coincidentally, isn’t it better to sit and talk?”
Ming Yu raised an eyebrow at this invitation.
In his last life, other people had also straightforwardly sent an invitation to him. A cafe was a relatively open place, while most people invited him to KTV or private clubs. As for the purpose of these people…
They naturally wanted to do the unspoken rules with him.
But to the disappointment of these people, while Ming Yu didn’t consider himself a good boy who loved labour and wanted to reverse the core values of socialism, he didn’t have to use such means. Thus, he declined the opportunities to leap forward and spent two years in the industry before emerging at the top.
Now Xi Ze unexpectedly invited him?
These thoughts were completed in a flash. But as Ming Yu looked at the man in front of him, it felt like his thoughts had been seen through. There was a faint smile in the deep, dark eyes, as if he was in control of everything and also aware of Ming Yu’s next reaction.
Ming Yu’s mouth slightly tilted upwards as he nodded. “Good, Mr. Xi. If you don’t mind, can I go upstairs to get a scarf?”
Next, Ming Yu didn’t go upstairs to get a scarf, because he was directly given one by Xi Ze. Then the two of them walked out of the Muse apartments. The cafe was diagonally across the street from the apartment. The waitress standing in the doorway exclaimed when Ming Yu and Xi Ze entered the store, she apparently recognized them.
Xi Ze chose a table and they sat down.
Ming Yu still felt a bit uncomfortable at the soft woolen scarf wrapped around him. This was a camel-coloured wool scarf, with lattice decorations that were similar to a rope-like shape. The hem of the scarf was embroidered with a simple ‘XZ.’ Needless to say, Ming Yu completely understood what these initials meant.
Within three seconds of his request to go upstairs to get a scarf, Ming Yu watched as Xi Ze smoothly took off the scarf around his neck, naturally arranged it on Ming Yu.
Even Zhao Rui wouldn’t do this type of action to him!
This man did it so easily!
…He was as calm as Ming Yu, but it felt like something was wrong.
Ming Yu quickly rejected his overly intimate act and intended to remove the scarf. Then Xi Ze looked at him and spoke calmly, “I have an obsession with cleanliness.” He paused and added, “It is a very serious, very serious obsession with cleanliness.”
Ming Yu, “…”
So why did he give Ming Yu this scarf…
“What would you like to drink?”
Ming Yu woke up at the man’s pleasant, low voice and calmly answered, “Lemonade.”
Xi Ze heard it and gently nodded. He spoke to the blushing waitress, “Two glasses of lemonade. Thank you.”
In the next five minutes, Ming Yu witnessed Xi Ze’s ‘very serious obsession with cleanliness.’ In the end, how serious was it?
Before sitting down, the man wiped the stool with a paper towel.
This was understandable. After all, he was obsessed with cleanliness.
Then after ordering the two glasses of lemonade, the man started to wipe the table in front of him.
—Not bad. Wiping the table was something that even those not obsessed with cleanliness would do.
However, in the five minutes they talked, he had rubbed it for all of the five minutes!!
“I attended the fashion show tonight.” After five minutes, Xi Ze finally let go of the poor, wiped clean table. Then he smiled lightly at Ming Yu and continued, “Your performance is very good. The first set of clothing was very smart and well done. It is suitable for your style.”
Ming Yu smiled and nodded. “Thank you for the compliment, Mr. Xi. I heard from Sister Xin and Old Fei that you were present. I was busy with the catwalk and didn’t notice. Sister Xin will be very happy if she knew that you rated her so highly.”
At this time, two glasses of lemonade arrived at the table.
Ming Yu raised the cup and took a sip, but Xi Ze was still wiping at the glass with a paper towel
Ming Yu, “…”
[This man is really boring.]
—From MIng Xiaoyu’s first impression of Xi Ze.
As if aware of Miing Yu’s silent gaze, Xi Ze put down the paper towel and looked at him. “Do you think that I am boring?”
Ming Yu stared blankly and subconsciously shook his head.
Xi Ze gave a low laugh. “Your eyes are filled with ‘this person’s obsession with cleanliness is really terrible’.”
Ming Yu slightly clenched his fingers and stayed silent for a moment. Then he laughed. “Mr. Xi, you are thinking too much.”
“Call me Xi Ze.” The handsome man paused before adding, “I am eight years older than yo. There is no need for honorifics.”
Ming Yu smiled and nodded in agreement.
Xi Ze continued. “My cleanliness is not very serious, but there are different manifestations depending on the people. In front of the people I have decided to treat seriously, I way to behave better, but at the same time, I become more paranoid.”
Ming Yu heard the words ‘treat seriously’ and straightened. He looked very seriously at the person on the other side. “I don’t quite understand what you mean.”
Xi Ze only smiled gently and drank the lemonade. Then he said, “Once again, you don’t have to use honorifics with me. My point is very simple. Ming Yu, your performance is very tempting. From your appearance, photos and catwalk, they all shine, making me feel inspired.”
Ming Yu’s eyes slightly opened at these words, as if he understood the other person’s meaning.
The pair of deep and dark bottomless eyes stared straight at Ming Yu, as if seeing into his heart.
There was silence around the table for a moment. No one spoke and there was just the faint sound of breathing. The two people looked at each other for a long time, before Xi Ze let out a deep sigh. “Ming Yu, do you want to work with me?”
Ming Yu never had a deep exchange with Xi Ze before, so he never thought that this man would have such a character.
When talking to him, the atmosphere would be completely controlled by him. He was in charge of the topics and manipulated the atmosphere. He knew what Ming Yu wanted to say and saw the the worries in his heart. Xi Ze seemed easy-going, but in fact…
This man’s smile never came from the heart.
Yes, even when he asked “Do you want to work with me?”, Ming Yu didn’t see much concern for a friend from the other person. However, this couldn’t be blamed on him. After all, the two people had only seen each other three or four times. Ming Yu didn’t regard the other person as a friend.
Ming Yu asked why Xi Ze wanted to cooperate with him and the answer was, “You are the person I am looking for.”
Other people might not understand Xi Ze’s meaning, or their thoughts might go in a crooked direction, but Ming Yu felt sudden enlightenment. He had seen too many designers in his last life and had many world-renowned designers as his friend. For these designers, having a source of inspiration was something they pursued all their lives.
Therefore, Xi Ze’s uncharacteristic actions today and his good attitude was because he wanted to invite Ming Yu to join his studio as his exclusive model.
This type of thing would be great news for any model. They would be so thrilled that they couldn’t sleep for three days and three nights, thanking God for winning Xi Ze’s favour.
However, after understanding Xi Ze’s meaning, Ming Yu smiled and refused the other person’s invitation.
It was the first time Xi Ze showed surprise tonight, and he also lost control of the topic.
The handsome youth looked at him calmly. There was a faint smile on his face as he said, “I’m sorry, but I don’t think we are suitable to work together for the moment.”
At this moment, Xi Ze saw the teenager who controlled the runway with his momentum.
Just like now, Ming Yu mastered the atmosphere between the two, and also mastered his own emotions.
After a moment of silence, Xi Ze solemnly gazed into the boy’s eyes and repeated, “I really want to work with you, Ming Yu. I can give you the highest contract and let you rocket forward. You will become the hottest supermodel in the next five years. There is even the great possibility that you will surpass me.”
Under the bright crystal chandelier, the youth smiled, like a spring flower blooming. Xi Ze suddenly became startled. The scene wasn’t removed from Xi Ze’s mind until the two people were saying goodbye at the door of the cafe.
“Mr. Xi, I will return this scarf to you. It is too intimate and I can’t accept it.”
Ming Yu loosened the scarf as he spoke, intended to return it to Xi Ze. In the next second, his hand was held by Xi Ze. Ming Yu looked up at the other person in surprise, only to see Xi Ze laugh with lowered eyes. “I will give this to you. You have already refused to work with me, so don’t turn down this little gift.”
Ming Yu was slightly stunned for a moment and couldn’t help asking, “…Your obsession with cleanliness?”
Xi Ze’s lips curved. “To my muse, I will never worry about cleanliness.”
Did Xi Ze think that because people called him Ming Xiaoyu, he would lose his heart after hearing such seductive words and agree to the other person’s request?
Then he was very wrong!
Ming Yu calmly nodded. “It is a pleasure to be your Muse.”
What shyness? What discomfort because of fear? This was nothing!
Xi Ze slightly narrowed his eyes and stretched out his right hand. “Let us start again. Ming Yu, I am Xi Ze. If you want, I think we can start by being friends.”
Ming Yu raised an eyebrow in a provocative manner at the words, “Start by being friends?”
Xi Ze agreed. “Ah, we will temporarily start with friendship. Afterwards… it will end with the most intimate partnership.”
Ming Yu couldn’t help laughing as he heard these words. By this time, he had a strange impression of this man. It was probably similar to ‘This man is actually quite interesting.’ It was a good impression.
Thus, Ming Yu reached out to the other person and said, “Hello Xi Ze. I am Ming Yu.”
The two people left the cafe and snow fell down from the sky. Staring at the youth’s back, Xi Ze saw a few snowflakes fall on the youth’s scarf, just like crystals.
“Your reason for rejecting me… is it because you think you will surpass me?”
Ming Yu, “…”
The man’s eyes gradually darkened and the smile slowly faded away A complicated expression appeared on his face as he looked at the other person’s back. Xi Ze watched the youth completely disappear around the corner and closed his eyes, before turning away.