Dong Xuebing was humming a song excitedly as he returned to Heping North street. He had just returned from Han Hai Auctions. He was late because he wanted to give Aunt Xuan a surprise. That Wei Nan had paid for the necklace with a credit card in the afternoon. By right, Dong Xuebing would get the money one week later. But he went to Han Hai Auctions to wait for them to transfer 1.32 million RMB into his account.
Qu Yunxuan’s unit.
Qu Yunxuan and her mother had brought out the dishes from the kitchen.
Dong Xuebing, who had just entered the apartment, laughed: “Aunt Xuan, Aunty, I am here for dinner.”
“Xiao Bing, you are back at the right time. I did not see you for some time, and you look brighter. Are you dating someone now?” Qu Yunxuan’s mother said.
Dong Xuebing secretly looked at Qu Yunxuan and cleared his throat. “No. Who would want to date someone like me?”
Qu Yunxuan set the chopsticks and bowls on the table and knocked Dong Xuebing’s head. “Can’t you give other replies? What’s wrong with you? Although your salary is not high, at least you are getting the benefits of a Deputy Section Chief. You are still very young. I had the farewell dinner with my colleagues yesterday, and an older sister of mine kept asking me about you. She says she wants to introduce her niece to you.”
Qu Yunxuan’s mother laughed. “Good. Yunxuan, you must help Xiao Bing keep a lookout.”
Qu Yunxuan laughed: “I must see what Xiao Bing thinks. If he is interested, I will introduce someone to him.”
“Errr…… Never mind. I am not in a hurry.” Dong Xuebing rolled his eyes and thought to himself. Aunt Xuan is good at pretending.
During dinner, Qu Yunxuan’s mother kept adding food to Dong Xuebing’s bowl. “Xiao Bing, I have heard what happened at the news agency. I really want to thank you. You have saved Yunxuan’s life before, and you have helped her again this time. Here…… eat more……” Qu Yunxuan’s mother kept saying beautiful things to Dong Xuebing and suddenly asked: “Xiao Bing, I heard that you know a leader at the Central Publicity department?”
Dong Xuebing swallowed his food and replied: “Yes. I know her, but we are not very close.”
Qu Yunxuan’s mother looked at Dong Xuebing and put down her chopsticks. “Can you ask that leader if she can help your Aunt Xuan get a job?”
“Mum!” Qu Yunxuan frowned. “Xiao Bing had helped me a lot. We cannot bother him anymore.”
Dong Xuebing smiled and rubbed his nose. “This…… should not be a problem. Aunt Xuan, you still want to work in the media industry? If you want, I can ask for you. But I thought you want to set up a company and be a general manager?”
Qu Yunxuan’s mother smiled when he heard Dong Xuebing was willing to help. “Come, try this braised pork. Hahaha. Don’t listen to your Aunt Xuan. Who would want her to be a General Manager? Didn’t the stock market crash recently? All her savings are trapped inside. It will take at least 1 year before she can take out her savings. How can she set up a company without money? She can’t even afford the rent of a roadside stall.”
Dong Xuebing was stunned. “Ah? You lost money in the stock market? Why didn’t you tell me?”
Qu Yunxuan smiled wearily. “It’s not a lot of money.”
“Aiyo…… if you need money, I can give you some.” Qu Yunxuan should be feeling the strain after losing her savings and job.
Qu Yunxuan rolled her eyes. “Save it. Your salary is not high too. I can manage on my own.”
Dong Xuebing noticed that Qu Yunxuan might have bathed when he was out. Her dressing and makeup were not the same as the morning. She was now wearing a white knitted sweater and a pair of tight black pants. He could see the outlines of her shapely legs. Dong Xuebing continued eating and secretly took off his slippers under the table. He used his feet and toes to rub against Aunt Xuan’s legs.
Qu Yunxuan immediately blushed and avoided looking at Dong Xuebing. She just lowered her head and continue eating.
Qu Yunxuan’s mother did not notice anything wrong and was still talking. “Among the few youngsters in the neighborhood, only Xiao Bing stand out. I was chatting with some neighbors in the afternoon, and they were still talking about that Section Chief Xu incident. Sigh…… Just look at our Yunxuan. She tried to set up a company with her friends after graduation, but the company failed. Now? She lost her job and savings. If this carries on, when will I get to carry a grandson? Xiao Bing, you must help me persuade your Aunt Xuan. It is not practical to set up a company and do business. She should just get a husband…….”
Dong Xuebing smiled embarrassedly. “Ok. I will try to talk to her.” As he was replying, he raised his feet upwards to caress Aunt Xuan’s thighs under the table.
Qu Yunxuan was fidgeting, and she lowered one hand to stop Dong Xuebing’s feet in between her legs. “Don’t try to persuade me. I will stop dreaming about owning a business. I also did not say I need a partner to set up a business. But now, even I want to set up a business or get into a partnership with someone else, is also impossible.”
Qu Yunxuan was pressing down on Dong Xuebing’s ankle to stop his leg from moving, but he could still move his toes. His toes were moving up and down, feeling her thighs through the smooth fabric of her pants.
Qu Yunxuan’s mother was oblivious to what was happening under the table. She smiled when she heard what her daughter said. “That’s right. You should get a husband as soon as possible and have a grandson for me to take care.”
Qu Yunxuan’s breathing was getting faster and then said: “Let me…… get a job first. I can get a job myself and don’t need Xiao Bing’s help.”
Qu Yunxuan’s mother grumbled. “It is better to work for the government. What job can you get? Private companies? Foreign companies?”
“Just let me handle this.” Qu Yunxuan closed her legs tightly and was trying to push Dong Xuebing’s leg away under the table.
“Eh, why is your face red?” Qu Yunxuan’s mother frowned. “Are you having a fever? Come over and let me take a look.”
“Nothing. I just feel a bit warm.”
Dong Xuebing stopped teasing her and retract his leg and wear back his slippers. He continued with his dinner heartily. Tight pants feel the best. It was smooth, elastic, and feel like he was touching her legs directly.
After dinner, Qu Yunxuan said: “Mum, you go back and rest early. I will wash the dishes.”
Qu Yunxuan’s mother nodded: “You better get a job soon. Xiao Bing, I will go back now. Come over to my place when you are free.”
Dong Xuebing and Qu Yunxuan walked Qu Yunxuan’s mother to the door and watch her walked down the stairs. After Qu Yunxuan closed the door, she immediately hit Dong Xuebing a few times on his arm. “You pervert. My mother is around, and you still dare to touch me? Are you itching for a beating?” Slap, slap, slap. “Do you still dare to touch me again?”
Dong Xuebing heard the word ‘touch’ and got excited. “Xuan Xuan, then can I touch you now?”
“What are you talking about?” Qu Yunxuan immediately takes one step back. “Shameless. You cannot touch me today.”
Dong Xuebing selectively choose to not hear that, and move forward and pinned both of her hands against the door.
Qu Yunxuan was against the door and could not move away. “You hooligan! Stop disturbing me. I still have not wash the dishes…… Ah…. Don’t touch there…… No…… it is still daylight now. Let’s wait until night…… Ah…… Noooo…… We cannot do this in the day…… stop taking off my clothes…… you…… stop! You will be the death of me…… you…… go to the room! If we do it here, the neighbors will hear us.”
Dong Xuebing stopped kissing her neck and then carried her up.
Qu Yunxuan blushed and hugged him around his neck. Her face was all red as she stares at him. “I should not let you do it last night. I should have known after the first time, you will keep wanting it…… Why did I have to get involved with you? You are a hooligan, pervert!”
Dong Xuebing carried her and walked quickly into her room and threw her onto the bed. “Am I really that bad?”
“What do you think?” Qu Yunxuan immediately pulled up her pants, which was around her knees. “Other than bullying me, what else can you do? You are just a hooligan.” Although Qu Yunxuan was scolding Dong Xuebing, she was still looking very feminine and sexy.
“Then I will show you what is bad!” Dong Xuebing took off all his clothes in a few seconds and jumped onto the bed. “What’s wrong?”
Qu Yunxuan was staring at him angrily for a few seconds, and then she slowly pulled up her sweater. “Switch off the lights and pull up the curtains.” After she stripped, she moved over and opened the bottom drawer of her bedside drawers. She took out a small box and threw it at Dong Xuebing. “Wear this!”
Dong Xuebing picked up that small box. Everything on the box was written in English. “What is this?”
Qu Yunxuan blushed. “I also don’t know.”
“Huh? You don’t know what this is, and you want me to wear it?” Dong Xuebing looked at the back of the box and realized what this item was. It was a box of condoms. “You bought this during the day?”
Qu Yunxuan seems to remember something and hit him. “You still dare to mention this? I am so embarrassed today. That look from the cashier is so……”
Dong Xuebing laughed. “You are just feeling guilty, and that’s the reason why you feel other people are giving you weird looks.”
“You are the guilty one. It’s all your fault!”
“Fine, fine, fine…… Everything is my fault.” Dong Xuebing opened the box and took out everything from the box. He then tears open one and examines it. “Errr…… Aunt Xuan, this……. How do I use this? Do you know?”
“How would I know? You are asking for a beating?!”
“I also don’t know how to use it. Huh, there are instructions. Wait a while.”
5 minutes passed……
10 minutes passed……
After experimenting and wasting two condoms, Dong Xuebing finally knew how to wear it. He saw Qu Yunxuan looking at him and felt he was belittled. “The instructions are not clear. It’s too vague. I…… “Qu Yunxuan rolled her eyes, and Dong Xuebing stopped explaining. He jumped on top of her and start their ‘wrestling’ session.
The skies had turned dark, and the curtains had blocked most of the moonlight. The room was very dark.
Both their breathing slowly calmed down. After a while, Qu Yunxuan said in the darkness. She sounded tired. “You got what you want now. You are not allowed to ask for more tonight. I whole body is aching.”
“Hmmm…… Let’s talk about it later at night.”
Slap! Dong Xuebing got a slap on his arm. “I still have not agreed to be your girlfriend. What is this?” Dong Xuebing felt Qu Yunxuan hugging him around his waist. “If your mother and my mother find out about our relationship, there will be an uproar.”
Dong Xuebing held her hand, which was hugging him. “Stop being so negative. What uproar? My mother would be overjoyed to have a daughter-in-law like you. Your mother also likes me a lot. I think they will not mind.”
“My mother is……” Aunt Xuan stopped halfway.
Dong Xuebing knew what she wanted to say. Her mother does not speak her mind and thinks different from the way she acts. “Let’s stop thinking about these. Xuan Xuan, I want to ask you something.”
“Call me, Aunt Xuan!”
“Aunt Xuan, I want to ask you something.”
“Do you really want to start your own business?”
Dong Xuebing laughed. “I thought I can surprise with a gift. Never mind. Seems like my gift is useless now.”
“Surprise? What surprise?”
“Never mind. Just pretend I never say anything.”
Dong Xuebing felt a pinch on his tummy. “You cannot do this. Quick tell me about this surprise.”
“Call me ‘Dear hubby’ and I will tell you.”
“You…… you are making fun of me. I will not call you that.”
“Then forget it.”
One minute later. “…… Can I just call you, dear?”
“You…… It’s fine even if you do not want to tell me. You must have bought some cosmetics for me, right?” After a while, Qu Yunxuan asked. “Xiao Bing, is it cosmetics? Or……. Perfume? It must be perfume. What brand is it?” Qu Yunxuan was a bit mad when she saw Dong Xuebing ignoring her. She hit him twice on his back and hesitated for a long time. Finally, she moved closer to Dong Xuebing’s ear and bit it lightly. She said softly into his ears: “Dear hubby, dear Xiao Bing Xiao Bing Gege.…… are you satisfy now?”
Dong Xuebing could feel his body melting. “Yes…… yes…… Xiao Bing Gege sounds nice. You will call me this in the future.”
“Why don’t you go to hell?” Qu Yunxuan felt embarrassing to call someone much younger than her as an older brother. Her face was already as red as a tomato. “Hurry up and tell me. What surprises do you have for me? Did you spend money on some expensive items again? If you do that, I will hit you with a feather duster.”
Dong Xuebing cleared his throat and got up from the bed. He put on his slippers and switch on the lights. Qu Yunxuan immediately covers herself up with the blankets. Dong Xuebing laughed and walked naked to his clothes on the chair. He took out a bank book from his pocket. It was an ICBC bank book. This saving account is linked to an ATM card in his wallet. A few years ago, ICBC bank had issued ATM cards which were linked directly to savings accounts. But this was stopped because of security issues. Now, not a lot of people owns ATM cards with full access to their savings account.
“Bank book?” Qu Yunxuan’s eyes opened wide. She was older than Dong Xuebing and had more pride. “Didn’t I say I still have enough money? I don’t need to use your money.”
Dong Xuebing passed the bank book to her: “Eh, I did not say I am lending you money. Take a look at first.”
Qu Yunxuan snatched the bank book from and threw it on the bed. “I am not looking, and I don’t need your money.”
“Just one look.” Dong Xuebing opened up the bank book and showed it to Qu Yunxuan. “Here. Look here.”
Qu Yunxuan gave him a stare and then took a glance at the bank book. “Ok. I have seen it. What do you want?” Qu Yunxuan finished saying and then froze suddenly. She looked at the bank book again. “1… 2… 3… 4… 5… 6… 7… 7 zeros? 1.32 million?”
Dong Xuebing nodded and was waiting for Qu Yunxuan to praise him. How many people can raise 1 million in 3 months? Dong Xuebing felt proud of this achievement.
But Qu Yunxuan did not praise him. Instead, her face turned black with anger and pointed at him in his face. She then grabbed a pillow and start hitting him. “You brat! What did I tell you before you enter the government service? You must not accept any money from others. Why you did not listen to me? 1 million? Are you crazy?”
Dong Xuebing quickly raised his hand to shield himself. “Aunt Xuan, Xuan Xuan, wait. Listen to me first.”
“What do you want to say? Hurry and return the money. Do you want to go to jail?”
“Huh? This is my hard-earned money and is not from bribes.” Dong Xuebing was speechless. He grabbed Qu Yunxuan and explained: “Just think about it. I am only a deputy Chief of a General Affairs Office. What authority do I have? Who is willing to spend so much money to bribe me? Are they idiots?” Qu Yunxuan stopped, and Dong Xuebing continued. “I got this money legally. I traded shares once, found an ancient coin once, stone and pearl gambling. Here, I still have a contract with me. This morning, I sold a golden pearl necklace at Han Hai Auctions and got 1.32 million RMB.”
Qu Yunxuan asked: “Really?”
“Of course. I will not lie to you.”
Qu Yunxuan opened the bank book and looked at all the transactions. “What about all these transactions? Explain all these transactions to me.”
Dong Xuebing briefly explained to her, and he claims it was all due to his luck.
After hearing Dong Xuebing’s explanations, Qu Yunxuan took a deep breath. “Wow…… you got 1.3 million just like this?” Qu Yunxuan was happy for Dong Xuebing and gave him a playful pinched on his nose. “You are really capable. Now, you do not need to rent an apartment here. Hurry and buy a two-bedroom unit. You should not be renting apartment forever. Hmmmm…… 1.3 million should be able to get a small 2-bedrooms apartment outside of the fourth ring. When are you going to view houses? I can help to give you some suggestions.”
Dong Xuebing laughed and put the bank book into Qu Yunxuan’s hand.
Qu Yunxuan was stunned. “What are you going to?”
“What am I doing?” Dong Xuebing laughed and said: “This is for you to set up your own business.”
Qu Yunxuan laughed and gave him a stare: “Stop joking, or I will really take this bank book away.”
Dong Xuebing replied. “I am serious. This money if for you. Didn’t I say I am giving you a surprise? Here. This is a surprise.”
“For me?” Qu Yunxuan paused for a while, before throwing the bank book back at him. “I cannot accept your money.”
Dong Xuebing pushed the bank book back to her. “Why not? Don’t you want to start your own business? 1.3 million should be enough.”
Qu Yunxuan’s eyes were teary and said: “How can I use your money? No.”
“Eh, is there still a need to differentiate what’s mine and yours? I have thought about this before. Buying a house can wait. When the company can make money, we will be able to afford a new house easily. Let’s split this money equally. The company will be registered under your name, and you will manage it. I will just get 50% of shares of the company and wait for my share of the profits. Ok?”
“Of course not. The money belongs to you, why are you only getting 50%?”
“Then I get 60% shares.”
Qu Yunxuan thought for a while and said. “Xiao Bing…… Thank you. Thank you so much. It has been my dream to set up my own business, but I cannot use your many. If you really care for me and wants to set up a business, then I can register the company under my name. But you own all the shares of the company. I will only help you manage the company. Just give me some salary after the company is set up. If the business fails, then…… Forget it. Let’s forget it. I do not have confidence to make this work. I am afraid of your money……”
“It’s our money.”
Dong Xuebing continued: “Stop thinking about the profits and losses. What matter most is you are happy. Just do whatever business you like and don’t give yourself too much pressure. It’s fine even if you lose money.” Dong Xuebing hugged her and planted a kiss on her chest. “I am happy when you are happy.”
Qu Yunxuan’s tears were able to fall. She hugged Dong Xuebing and asked: “Why do you treat me so well?”
“Because I like you.”
“This is more than 1 million, and you are just leaving so much money with me? You don’t even care about what business I will be doing, and don’t care about the profits and losses?”
“Hahaha, I just care about you. Since you want to start your own business, then we will start it.”
Qu Yunxuan tightens her hug: “Thank you…… Thank you very much. This is really a surprise. I……”
Dong Xuebing interrupted her: “To be honest, you are the one who had given me a bigger surprise. I never expected to be able to sleep with you.”
“You are talking nonsense.” Qu Yunxuan rolled her eyes. “I am very touched, and you just blurt out such vulgar words. You want me to hit you?”
Dong Xuebing exclaimed: “Sleeping with you is vulgar?”
“Then let’s talk about something which is not vulgar.”
Dong Xuebing and Qu Yunxuan held hands and sat on the bed. They were discussing happily and while holding on to the bank book. They were looking forward to the future and feels like a married couple. In the end, Qu Yunxuan decided to look around first before deciding what business to go into. She was considering the industry of their business and whether if they should set up the business in Beijing. These were all not decided. She also refused to own any shares of this company, despite Dong Xuebing persuasions. Dong Xuebing also gave up. Anyway, both of them were already in a relationship, and it doesn’t matter who owns more shares. They just want to work hard together and make this company a success.
Translator’s notes: Ge Ge (哥哥) = older brother. In China, some women would call their boyfriends Ge Ge.
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