Milady's Fine Gentleman Chapter 221: KICKASS, SMARTASS 2
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"What did you call me out for?" Zhu Li Qiang asked grumpily while getting settled on one of the bean bags.
Chen Linyun raised his brows. It was the first time he saw Zhu Li Qiang in such a foul mood. "To brag about my success to you. What else?" He said smugly while pouring an empty glass with the whiskey he initially ordered and offered it to the man who just arrived.
"Tss, you braggart. Is that it? I thought we're gonna talk about business."
"This is business. Xue Shipping knocking off Zhu Shipping Lines from the top rank. Finally." Chen Linyun was fanning the flames. He must be crazy.
Zhu Li Qiang raised his two arms in the air in surrender and said without any care, "Alright, you win. Congratulations. I'm not in the mood to bicker."
"You're no fun." Chen Linyun chided some more. While studying him inconspicuously.
At the time when he was at his lowest – rock bottom – stage in his life, Zhu Li Qiang was the one who accompanied him. It was him who helped him take revenge for their lamentable loss. It was Zhu Li Qiang who undoubtedly believed in his plans without asking too much or being privy with the details. Zhu Li Qiang trusted him and helped him despite their history.
Now, it was his turn to return the favor.
Sharp as he was, Zhu Li Qiang sensed what Chen Linyun was doing. "Thanks, Bro." Was his answer to everything that Chen Linyun had been throwing at him – good or bad. He wasn't that insensitive either. He knew very well that the wife was still at the hospital, unconscious, yet Chen Linyun went out of his usual way of life and routine just to 'cheer him up' through his banters.
Three weeks had passed after the incident. The missus was sleeping soundly.
The family was getting worried again because the doctors said that she was only conditioning her body and regaining enough strength in order to function fully again. Yet, she still hadn't opened her eyes…
It wasn't too difficult to find out that Teng Man Rui and Zhu Li Qiang had some sort of a 'fall out' if one might call it that.
After their intensified talk, the lady went back towards Xue Jinxu's room ashen pale, and almost devoid of life. She stayed at Xue Jinxu's bedside almost all the time while staring out into space. Somehow she exhaled deeply, randomly.
Teng Man Rui and Chen Linyun were not considered close friends. They were only connected through and by the sleeping beauty. Therefore, even if Chen Linyun could see the obvious, he did not pry and ask about the lady's problems. He could only surmise that it also involved Zhu Li Qiang, after following closely yet unintentionally the series of events he had witnessed so far.
And so, although he's as busy as a bee, he took a night off to 'unwind' with Zhu Li Qiang, his friend, and brother.
Setting his own worries aside, Chen Linyun focused on the friend beside him who was in such a state of devastation.
"If you want to let it out, you can just let it all out on me. I'm your punching bag for tonight, although I hope we won't get physical." He threw him a sideglance.
The ticking of the clock continued. The two buddies drank in silence.
'It hurts so much here." Zhu Li Qiang looked at Chen Linyun with such puppy misty eyes and contorted face while hitting his chest hard. "No joke." With the same hand that hit his chest, he rubbed his face and rubbed his eyes some more. He appeared to be crying. He exhaled deeply, apparently trying to dissolve the lump that was quickly forming in his throat. He chugged his alcohol down.
"Any word is such an understatement. I love her too much."
'Okay. He's starting. Good. He'll feel better afterward.' Chen Linyun kept quiet while the devastated man started bawling. Good thing he had reserved the entire activity corner of their favorite hangout bar for themselves. The downside was that other guests could not play at the pool because it was on their side of the place.
Zhu Li Qiang was really crying his heart out. "It's okay, buddy. It's okay." Brows furrowed, he did not expect to comfort a crying grown-up man when he thought of 'cheering up' his friend that night.
"Maybe you should consider moving on?" Chen Linyun said while tolerantly tapping his friend at the back.
"If I can I would have done that already." He gulped another shot.
"Easy on the alcohol." Chen Linyun reminded him. 'Maybe this isn't a good idea after all.' Chen
Linyun grabbed the alcohol bottle and tried to hide it down under the table.
Chen Linyun comforted him while tapping him at the back rather roughly. Better fight pain with equal pain. "Zhu Li Qiang, don't get too wound up in the present. Who knows? The next second, you'll be thrown into such astronomical ecstasy. That's how life works."
At this point, his phone rang…
"Hey, Man Rui…" Chen Linyun instantly took a sideglance at the man who was still busy drinking his sorrows away. "Why did you call, is something the matter at the hospital?"
"Yes… Wait, Is… Is that Zhu Li Qiang?" She could probably hear his noisy rumblings.
"Yeah. I'm with him... He's literally inhaling alcohol." He scowled at him in annoyance. Returning to the pressing concern of the lady, he inquired suspiciously, anxiously. "Why did you call, Man Rui? How's Jinxu?" Worry was creeping slowly in his façade.
Teng Man Rui was keeping Xue Jinxu company and had been looking after her almost twenty-four-seven, especially when the family members were all occupied at the moment. She's the least engaged and had the freest time to spare. Like a good sister that she was, she made sure that Jinxu always had someone close to her, with her, to aid her recovery.
Going back at present, Teng Man Rui's voice turned shaky with built up emotions.
"Jinxu…" A little sob escaped.
"What?!" Chen Linyun could not wait any longer. If Teng Man Rui was within reach, he would have shaken the news out of the lady.
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