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 Season 7

Episode 16

(I'm screwed)

Sue walked out of the bathroom after she spruced herself up. She hugged Sheryl tightly and kissed her cheek hard. "If I were a man, I would marry you without a second thought. You are going to be a perfect wife and mother, something of a rarity."    

"Quit it,"  Sheryl stated shyly. She felt quite lucky to have Sue in her life. Sheryl smiled and informed her, "Amy made these stuffed steamed buns. I just reheated them. Come and eat some while they're warm. Hurry up. It's nearly time for work."    

"I'll be right there,"  replied Sue excitedly. As soon as Sue finished breakfast, Sheryl straightened up her room. Then they got ready to leave. Sue had a lot on her mind that day. She couldn't stop complaining while they were waiting for a taxi. "It's quite an inconvenience not having a car. I could handle it while I was abroad, but now I can't anymore. How about you join me in looking for a car this week?"  

"You really want to buy a car? Just like that?" Sheryl asked in surprise. She didn't think Sue had given it enough thought. Buying a car was not an overnight decision.     

"Yeah, why? Do you find it strange that I want a car?" Sue was a bit confused. "No..." said Sheryl while slightly shaking her head.     

Sue felt the hesitation in her voice. So, with an inquisitive look, Sue encouraged her to elaborate. Sheryl got her hint and continued, "I just think the decision comes out of the blue. That's all."    

"Oh, actually I didn't decide on a whim at all,"  Sue began explaining. She glanced at Sheryl to confirm she was following her, and then went on explaining, "I really felt out of my element abroad all the time. Dependable transportation would have made my life a lot easier. But it didn't make sense to buy a car there. 

However, now... well, now I have a house which gives me a sense of stability in some way. So, I feel like this is the right moment to buy a car. Also in the future, if everything goes well for me, I want to bring my parents to live with me."  

Sue then hugged Sheryl with a smile and added, "Unlike you, I have no children to raise. Hence, I have fewer mouths to feed and fewer things to worry about. I haven't worked out all the details yet, but I did manage to put aside a sum of money over the last few years. And by the way, after I buy a car, I'll drive you to work every day. You can count on me." 

Sue finished her words with a wink.     "Oh, thanks! That sounds great. I can't wait." Sheryl expressed her excitement while smiling ear to ear. After a good while, they eventually hailed a taxi, which they jumped into right away and rushed to work.     

Once they arrived at their destination, they found that everyone else was there already. The rehearsal hall was massive, identical to a runway.     

They had hosted few fashion shows there recently, so it was all ready for practice. Also, the models came to practice their stage walk frequently, lest they become rusty.   

Holley had invited Todd, who was a well-known Chinese photographer, to take pictures of the models that day. They needed the photographs for their portfolios and business cards. Thus, the ladies got there early with their brightest smiles on.     

The makeup room was large. Everyone was getting dressed up. Sue had Type A personalities. She began multitasking, looking into her big plan while getting ready. She googled various car models to figure out which one was the best, while the other models were applying their makeup. Every time she caught sight of a car which tickled her fancy, she passed the phone over to Sheryl to ask for her feedback.    

 No sooner had Sheryl taken the phone from Sue than she heard a knock coming from the makeup room's door. Sue hurriedly went over to open it, only to find an unfamiliar woman standing there. "Excuse me,"  said the young woman, "who is Sheryl Xia?"    

"I am,"  Sheryl answered. She rose to her feet and saw what looked like a florist at the door. The unfamiliar lady wore an apron, and was carrying a large bouquet of roses that almost covered up her whole face.   

At sight of the flowers, Sheryl turned to stone. She immediately regretted identifying herself. Flowers had never been her cup of tea. Anthony had sent her flowers before, and even though she appreciated the gesture, she made it clear to him that she'd rather see them grow in a garden, far away from her. 

Thus, Anthony stopped sending them eventually.     

So she knew these roses had nothing to do with him. If anything, they had everything to do with Charles. As she kept thinking more about that, her jaw clenched.     

"Miss Xia, please sign for these flowers. Here you are,"  said the young florist, interrupting her thoughts. She then walked over to Sheryl and handed her the paper and pen to sign.    

 Sheryl hesitated, pondering on how to best handle the situation. 'Should I sign for them or just reject them?'    

While she was weighing up the two options, a nearby model named Kiki snatched away the card from the flowers. She sneered at Sheryl and commented, "Woohoo, Sheryl is truly sought after. She found someone within just a few days. Spill the beans Sheryl. Who's the new admirer?"  

"Perhaps she sent those roses herself,"  another model yelled out. "Kiki, What's on the card? Come on! Read it out loud."  

  "Dear..." Kiki began complying. Sheryl strained against her, frantically trying to grab the card back, but Kiki kept her out the card's reach. She clicked her tongue in exasperation and teased Sheryl, "What's the rush? I'll give it back to you after I am done with it."    

"Dear Miss Xia, I couldn't take my eyes off you from the first moment I saw you. You stole my heart and now, I can't get you out of my mind. Would you give me a chance to court you? Charles Lu." Once she finished, Kiki made sure to express her dismay loud and clear. "This is unbelievable! Sheryl secretly hooked up with another man. I wonder if her boyfriend knows about this."  

  "Of course not,"  added another model in an antagonizing tone. "She's got a kid. Of course she needs to keep it on the low. She has such a good boyfriend, but still she is not content and makes passes at other men. So appalling!"  

"Don't jump to conclusions,"  intervened one of the girls in the back of the room. "There may be more to the story. The man is asking to court her, right? So maybe it's just him who's trying to hit on her. You don't know for sure."    

"No one will go through all this trouble if they don't expect anything in return. No man makes a move unless the woman bats her eyes or throws herself at him,"  Kiki argued on an accusative note.   

  "Enough is enough!" shouted Sheryl. She had gotten fed up of sitting on the sidelines watching them smear her. She didn't care enough to stop them at first, but their remarks had gotten way below the belt. Enraged beyond measure, she revolted, "Why so mean at such a young age? It is none of your damn business what I do with my private life! Just watch your mouths. You have already gone too far."    

But neither her loud, furious voice nor her fiery glances were enough to stop the models. Kiki continued to stir up her anger. "Have I really gone too far? I was just telling the truth. You're the one who disgraces yourself by doing this. Then, don't blame us for being mean."  

Sheryl had to put an end to all of that. She quickly snagged the bouquet from the florist and flung it right into a nearby trash can, without any hesitation. She then addressed the florist, "Please pass on a message to the man who sent the roses: Don't send me any more flowers, or you'll suffer the consequences."    

The crowd around her started dispersing as the fight came to an end. Sheryl sat down in a rage, propping her body against Sue. Sue asked her with a slight frown, "Sher, why did Charles send you flowers?"    

"I don't know,"  commented Sheryl angrily. "Uh! If I see him again, I'll definitely kill him."   

 The more she thought of the words on the card, the more sick she felt.    

 Upon returning to her store, the florist called David and related to him what had happened at BM Corporation. David broke out in a cold sweat as he heard the whole story. Compressing his lips into a line, he kept silent for a while and then managed to ask, "She really said that?" 

 After getting an affirmative answer, he politely hung up and turned to face Alice with a frightened expression. Almost in a whisper, he informed her, "Honey, I'm screwed. I messed things up so badly."    'Charles will bite my head off when he finds out,' he kept thinking.     

"What happened?" Alice approached David closer after a double take. Insistently, she inquired about it until David finally related the whole story to her.     

He gave Alice a blow-by-blow account of everything, from Charles asking him for help with courting Sheryl to the failed attempt of sending her roses. He even mentioned the exact words written on that uninspired card.

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