“This office building is really impressive.” Standing under the office building with flashing lights, Li Zhao looked up at the windows.
“Of course, this is the headquarters of a world-renowned company. It is said that the people who can work here are all talented students of famous schools. Even the big sister who sweeps the floor is a hidden master.” Da Ke’s voice was filled with envy as he looked at the glittering company signboard, eyes full of undisguised admiration. “Your friend is very powerful.”
“The company is so big?” Li Zhao had lived in a small town and later followed Zhang Xiaoyuan. In order to make money, he entered big crews to act as a stand-in. He had no idea about the big companies.
“You don’t know…” Da Ke whispered in LI Zhao’s ears. “Stars in the entertainment circle might have unlimited regard but in front of this company, none of them would dare mess around. There is a female artist called Xu Xing who just won the Best Female Award. After hearing about the boss of this company surnamed Xu, she bought news that she was a relative of the Xu family, wanting to sell herself as a wealthy woman. Our company’s boss had to go to his door to apologize in person. Someone like our boss met Mr Xu’s cold shoulder several times before finally meeting him.”
“So terrible?” Li Zhao had been happy for Yan Ting but now he felt some concern. How hard would it be for the employees to follow such a boss?
“You don’t have to worry about your friend’s working environment. There are many employees at the company’s headquarters alone. Their boss’ behaviour might be strange but he is very good to his employees. Their benefits are well-known in the industry. Many people are proud to work for the company.” Da Ke pointed to employees coming out of the company. “See, look at the way they are walking.”
“Oh.” Li Zhao looked at the white-collar workers who came and went in a hurry. “They seem really energetic.” He took out his phone and sent a message to Yan Ting, telling Yan Ting that he had arrived downstairs.
Yan Ting soon replied to his message.
Yan Ting: [Wait for me.]
The elevator floor number continued to decrease. Once Yan Ting came out of the elevator, the executives whispering in the hall calmed down at the same time. The entire hall instantly fell silent.
Yan Ting moved through the silent hall and out the door. He saw the young man standing under the streetlights. This person’s body was wrapped in thick clothes, hat and scarf covering his entire face tightly and only his pair of eyes were exposed.
The moment he looked over, Yan Ting saw the exuberant vitality and smiling eyes. Li Zhao jumped in place, waving his hand while calling Yan Ting’s name. He was afraid that he would cause trouble to Yan Ting and quickly ran to him. “Ting Ting, I’m back.”
Yan Ting’s mouth moved. He didn’t know how to respond to such enthusiasm. He had never experienced a person coming to pick him up from work, regardless of interests.
“How did you come out in a suit without a coat?” Li Zhao took off his scarf and wrapped it around Yan Ting’s neck, reaching for his shoulder. “Walk and go to my car. The company has provided me with a car. It will be much more convenient for me to travel in the future.”
Li Zhao couldn’t wait to share his car with his friend. “Unfortunately, I haven’t got my driver’s license. I can only trouble my assistant or the driver arranged by the company.”
“Sir…” Assistant Qin held a coat and ran out. He saw Li Zhao, eyes sweeping over the hand Li Zhao placed on Yan Ting’s shoulder before smiling. “Hello.”
“Hello.” Li Zhao had a cap lowered over his head and he lifted it to show respect.
Assistant Qin noted Li Zhao’s action and handed his coat to Yan Ting. “You walked too quickly and forgot to take your coat.”
Yan Ting touched the scarf around his neck, ready to undo it and return it to Li Zhao.
“Don’t move.” Li Zhao looked at Yan Ting’s pale face and stopped his movements. “I am hot and not easily frozen. You should quickly wear the coat.”
He nagged until Yan Ting put on the coat. Then Li Zhao sighed. “You really can’t take care of yourself. Fortunately, a colleague helped you grab your coat.” He turned to Assistant Qin with a big smile. “Thank you.”
“You’re welcome. It is what I should do.” Assistant Qin saw Li Zhao naturally help Yan Ting with his coat like a good brother. Then he turned to look at Yan Ting. “Then I’ll go back to work first.”
Yan Ting nodded.
It’s so late. Let’s go for a late-night snack. I’ll treat you.” Li Zhao was worried that Yan Ting’s attitude was too cold and would affect the relationship between colleagues so he hastily opened his mouth. “More people will be livelier.”
Yan Ting raised his eyes and looked at Assistant Qin.
“Thank you but I still have some unfinished jobs.” Assistant Qin stared at Li Zhao before suddenly saying, “Your face looks somewhat familiar…”
“It is probably because I have that type of face.” Li Zhao laughed hollowly before taking out a bag of souvenirs and handing it to Assistant Qin. “Since you don’t have time then let’s get together next time. Yan Ting, his personality might be a bit stuffy but he is very good. Please take care of him at work.”
Assistant Qin looked at the bag in Li Zhao’s hand and smiled. “Please rest assured that Mr Yan’s work ability is very strong. All my colleagues in our department admire him very much.”
The smile on Li Zhao’s face suddenly became more brilliant, like a father hearing that his child received a full score.
“Zhao Zhao.” Da Ke drove to the parking lot and poked his head out the window. “Quickly get on the car. I can only stop here temporarily or my points will be deducted.”
“I’m coming right now.” Li Zhao said goodbye to Assistant Qin and pulled Yan Ting onto the car. Then Yan Ting saw the large box full of souvenirs.
“I wanted to give your colleagues a bag of souvenirs.” Li Zhao put the bag in his hand on the ground and scratched his head with some embarrassment. “However, your company is so good and the employees are talented students. Sending these things won’t help you get along with them and will only make your colleagues look down on you. I can’t give it to your colleague to bring back to the office.”
In Li Zhao’s imagination, the high level white-collar workers used a variety of brand name objects and ate delicacies. The things he bought were too rustic. Yan Ting bent over, picking up the bag of souvenirs and putting them at his feet. “I’ll give it to them tomorrow. They’ll like it.”
Li Zhao shook his head. “You have only been at work for a few days and you can’t let your other colleagues look down on you. Intrigue inside an office is so terrible that I’m afraid you’ll lose.”
The driving Da Ke heard Li Zhao’s rambling about office precautions and couldn’t help joking, “Zhao Zhao, you are thinking too much.”
“I don’t think so.” Yan Ting had no relatives and friends around him. If he was wronged by the company then he would have no one to share it with.
Yan Ting quietly watched Li Zhao. Li Zhao smiled at him, leaving his figure in Yan Ting’s eyes.
Then Li Zhao remembered that he was so busy worrying about Yan Ting’s work that he forgot to introduce Da Ke to him. “Ting Ting, this is Da Ke. He is the assistant the company arranged for me. He is very careful and takes care of me. Da Ke, this is Yan Ting, my good friend.”
Da Ke looked in the rearview mirror. Li Zhao’s friend was looking at him and he didn’t know if it was his illusion but Yan Ting’s eyes were dark and seemed to see through him. If he had to use exaggerated words to describe Li Zhao’s friend, it was the atmosphere of a legendary big shot. Sure enough, the rumours weren’t exaggerated. The people who could enter that company’s headquarters were all great people.
The three people ate together. Da Ke had originally planned to send Yan Ting and Li Zhao back but unexpectedly, Yan Ting arranged for a driver to come. Looking at the car that was the standard of expensive cars, Da Ke found the opportunity to pull LI Zhao to one side and whispered, “Zhao Zhao, your friend just started work. How can he buy such an expensive car?”
His mind was filled with various dog blood stories and he even became wary of Yan Ting.
“His family has two houses.”
Da Ke said, “It turns out that he is your friend you mentioned on the show…”
His alert heart disappeared instantaneously and admiration surged. There were two houses at home yet this person insisted on going to work. This was a fearless spirit that invested in social constructs! If he could own two houses then he wouldn’t need to do anything. He could eat, drink and play every day, living a life of indulgence and enjoyment.
“Zhao Zhao, get on the car.” Yan Ting stood by the car, Li Zhao’s scarf around his neck. He stood in the shadows of the street and Li Zhao couldn’t see his expression.
“I’m going.” Li Zhao waved to Da Ke and walked to Yan Ting. “Let’s go.”
“Wait a minute.” Yan Ting went to Da Ke’s car, bent over to pick up the souvenirs and put it in his car.
The car moved through the cold streets. Li Zhao sat in the warm car, holding a bag of beef jerky and eating it with relish.
“Zhao Zhao.” Yan Ting casually put his jacket on the seat and stacked them all together. “Have you selected a new accommodation?”
“Not yet, the company is still arranging it.”
The car was quiet for a moment. Yan Ting opened the lid of an insulation cup and handed the water to Li Zhao. “Stay with me for a period of time. There is a vacant place next to my house. I have been living alone all these years and don’t know what it is like to have someone accompany me.”
“Yes, then I’ll live there for a while.” Li Zhao’s heart softened when he saw Yan Ting like this. “I happen to be free for the next two days. Tomorrow I will move in. The rent…”
“No rent.” Yan Ting stared at Li Zhao. “Zhao Zhao, I’ve never made any friends and don’t know how to get along with friends. I only have these cold houses.”
“I was wrong.” Li Zhao felt extremely guilty. He wanted to use stinky money to tarnish this pure friendship. It was really abhorrent.
“Okay.” Yan Ting learned from Li Zhao and slowly reached out for Li Zhao’s shoulder. “I forgive you.”
“Tomorrow, I’ll have someone come and help you move.” The shoulder under his hand was warm and hot. He was reluctant to pull it back.
The author has something to say:
Ting Ting: I have a house.