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(Consensus (3)

When Qi Lei mentioned that, Mu Yuchen immediately remembered what he had told Li Si that morning.

“That’s fine. The samples you sent over are here too. We’ll look at them later,” said Mu Yuchen, and then put the plate of food that Su Chen handed him aside. After he unbuttoned his sleeves to roll them up, he began to help Su Chen chop the ingredients while some chicken soup was brewing on the stove on the side.

Qi Lei stood aside since he was not needed and watched the two buddies worked together skillfully. He could not help but sigh to himself. He did not expect that these two men would be so skilled at cooking. When he first found out that Mu Yuchen could cook, he was very shocked, and now seeing Su Chen just as talented, even though he was a steadfast man on the outside…

Qi Lei watched them for quite a while. In the end, he just shrugged, and quietly left the kitchen.

In the living room, Xi Xiaye was watching the TV on the sofa. When she saw Qi Lei come over, she looked at him, and pondered for a moment, but did not say anything. Then, she turned to the TV screen again.

Qi Lei lowered his gaze and fell silent for a while before saying softly, “I’m sorry about what happened to Miss Su Nan.”

While he was saying this, he did not look up at her. Instead, he just quietly accepted the water that Sis Wang handed him and took a sip.

“Those incidents had nothing to do with you. Someone is responsible for every grievance. You don’t have to apologize to me. The ones who hurt are Su Nan and Ruan Heng… I hope that you can tell Miss Gu to think before she speaks to avoid implicating others.”

As Xi Xiaye said this, she turned to look at him. She thought about it, then continued, “I know that you’ve been worrying about Ruan Heng these past few days too. Thank you.”

Qi Lei suddenly smiled as his grip on the glass tightened. “When have you become so courteous? Besides, this is all I can do.”

He suddenly looked up and met Xi Xiaye’s calm gaze with a sigh. “What? Aren’t you curious about my relationship with Shasha?”

Upon hearing this, Xi Xiaye raised her brows, puzzled. “What relationship? Isn’t she the person you like?”

Qi Lei lowered his head to take a sip. There was dullness in between his brows, and his gaze suddenly became a little vague as if he was trying to chase a very distant memory. He sighed softly, “You girls like flowers, don’t you? Especially girls who’re eight or nine years old…”

“Hmm?” Xi Xiaye looked at Qi Lei in confusion. She did not quite understand what he meant.

“When I was 10, a boy accidentally ruined some violets that a little girl wanted to give her mother. The little girl cried very sadly, but she did not blame the little boy. She even apologized to the little boy for the violet petals that had stained his white shirt. After that, they became friends. They studied together and grew up together. The little boy said he would protect that little girl forever, but it was only when they grew up that he understood how could they have known the meaning of forever?”

Qi Lei smiled a little bitterly as his expression started to turn dazed. “We always thought that tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, or even the day after that, forever would take a long time. I longed for us to be childhood sweethearts, yet I never took the leading role. I always thought that those memories I kept deep in my heart would be pure and unadulterated, yet I forgot that many things change with time. I don’t want to go into this too deep. I’m worried that I won’t be able to hold on to even the slightest sliver of beautiful memory in the end.”

Xi Xiaye could see the sorrow that could not be hidden between his brows. She thought about it, then said calmly, “My memory’s very messed up too, but the past is now just the past. How are you sure that you wouldn’t live a fuller life in the future? Just like I am right now, I think that the past is actually not that important anymore. Mr. Mu has said some things to me, and I’m willing to share it with you.”

When Qi Lei heard her say that, he fixed his eyes on her. Upon seeing the faint smile that surfaced on her face, he could not help but feel deeply affected. His handsome face relaxed while a faint curve appeared in the corner of his lips as he waited for her to continue.

“We can’t control the past and the future. The only thing we can control is the present, this day and this age.” Xi Xiaye’s calm tone slowly reached his ears. Upon hearing that, Qi Lei could not help but be stunned.

He fell silent for a moment, then laughed. “Why do I feel like you’ve made Mu Yuchen into someone to admire? Are those words for mutual encouragement?”

When she saw the overflowing interest in Qi Lei’s eyes, Xi Xiaye’s lips suddenly curled up as she softly asked, “He does have the qualities for me to admire him. Think about it, Master Qi. As husband and wife, apart from the so-called mutual respect and mutual assistance in humble circumstances, what’s more important?”

Qi Lei raised his handsome brows and pondered about it quite seriously for a while before he shrugged and gestured at Xi Xiaye. “May Missus Mu bestow her knowledge upon us!”

Xi Xiaye bent over to pour herself a glass of water. However, Qi Lei was quicker. He swiftly poured her a glass and then handed it to her very chivalrously. Unlike his frivolousness from before, right now he displayed the manner of a graceful son of a prestigious family.

“Thank you,” Xi Xiaye said courteously as she accepted it and took a sip before continuing, “Many women hope for their future husband to be a good friend, a mentor, like a father and an older brother. He could, at the same time, be many characters. This is probably what most women seek, and vice versa, yet how do meet such a person? Regardless of whether we do, the first thing we should do is to break our own complacency.”

“Break our own complacency?” Qi Lei muttered softly.

Xi Xiaye nodded gently. Her gaze toward Qi Lei was clear and bright, yet her tone held poignance. “Mu Yuchen did once tell me that he could see shadows of himself from the past. He and I have very similar headspace, yet as I think about it, I also see my past self in you. Master Qi, do you realize that we actually have very similar experiences?”

When Xi Xiaye said this, Qi Lei was suddenly a little stunned. He looked up quietly at her, and suddenly did not know what to say. Meanwhile, Xi Xiaye continued, “Mu Yuchen and I feel the same about you. We reached a consensus. It is because of that that we can sympathize. He and I share the same thoughts. He said that he actually admires you. I’m very happy that we can have the same opinions, and we hope that apart from being business partners, you can be very good friends with us.”

Her calm and peaceful tone was filled with sincerity. Qi Lei could not help but feel touched and warm.




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