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403 That annoying fellow... has a girlfriend?

"Mhm, I'll hang up now."

Ji Ziming rubbed his temple as he spoke to the person over the line.

Although his voice did not have that hint of lethargy, one could see that he was tired from the way he scrunched up his forehead.

Once he hung up, the corridor returned to its quietude, as if no one were there at all.

Tak, tak, tak! Soft footsteps could be heard.

It quickly stopped again, however.

"What are you doing here?" He stopped walking and narrowed his dark eyes at Pei Ge, who was standing at the bend.

When he saw her lost and confused look, an almost unnoticeable guilt permeated his face.

"I…" She regained her senses at the sound of his voice.

She glanced up at the man standing in front of her.

Noting his cold and indifferent expression, her heart involuntarily ached.

Was that gentle expression I just saw only my imagination?

"Hm?" He narrowed his eyes coldly at Pei Ge, who seemed to be conflicted and hesitating about something, as he continued to emit a chilly air.

"Were you eavesdropping on me?"

She quickly shook her head and explained, "No, I wasn't eavesdropping on you. I didn't hear anything."

She was not lying. She really did not hear anything, and that was due to her freezing up the moment she saw his gentle look.

"Is that so?" Watching her shake her head so earnestly and sincerely, he was relieved for reasons unknown.

"Yes, I didn't hear anything." I… only saw something.

"Let's go back, then," he lightly said as he studied her calm but slightly lost expression.

"Okay. My mom wants to thank you, too." She gave him a polite smile, but it did not reach her eyes. In fact, it was even tinged with sadness.

Once he confirmed that nothing was wrong with her, he nodded and followed her back to the VIP ward.

He received a barrage of heartfelt 'thank yous' from Zhang Manhua the moment he stepped into the ward.

Her passionate reaction was something he was actually not used to, so in the end, unable to withstand it any longer, he decided to take his leave early.

"Ge Ge, you should go send Xiao Ji off," her mother said with a light smile.

She took a peek at the man, and although she was unwilling to be with him, she still walked him out of the ward.

The elevator they were riding was for the VIPs' exclusive use, and with that being the case, except for the two of them, no one else got in it on their way down.

"Don't worry about your mother's condition; the hospital will perform another checkup tomorrow, and then she can have her operation."

He broke the awkward silence ensuing between them by saying these reassuring words.

At his reassurance, she had a notion. Is he doing this because he feels guilty?

When she put it that way and thought about it some more, she could not help but feel that she had guessed correctly.

Her mood plummeted further.

She really wanted to voice out her questions to the man. Who were you talking to on the phone earlier?

Is that the person you like? Your girlfriend?

If that is your girlfriend, why do you need me as a shield?

She did not dare to ask these questions out, however. They were merely in an employer-employee relationship. If not for that contract, there would be nothing between them.

What position did she have to question him?

She really hated herself right now. How could I let myself be the opposite of me just because of a man?

"Yes, I understand," she softly replied, pushing aside all her present emotions.

"Don't worry about the costs, either," he continued lightly, thinking that she was looking so lifeless and worn-down because she was very worried about her mother.

What he did not know was that saying these words was only making her suspect him more. Finally, it reached a point where she could no longer bear to face him.

She was afraid that she would lose control of her emotions.

"Are you—" Alright? The elevator doors split open before he could finish his question.

Ding! Her eyes shone when the doors parted open.

"CEO Ji, I can only send you till here. I'm worried about my mom, so I'll go back to her side now."

With that, she pushed him out of the elevator.

By the time he realized what had just happened, the elevator doors had already closed, bringing her up again.

"…" He stared at the elevator's metallic doors with coldness in his eyes.

I was reassuring her so much like that, yet that d*mn woman actually dared to push me out of the elevator and abandon me?!

While waves of rage were surging in a certain CEO's heart, the woman riding the elevator exhaled heavily in relief.

She listlessly leaned against the elevator wall.

"Sigh…" she sighed lightly, feeling her head pound because of the man.

"I knew it's a bad idea to get entangled with that annoying fellow…" Just look at how bad you feel now from the anxiety of losing something.

She was totally unlike her past self.

Her heart was in a mess as she cupped her face in her hands in frustration.

Don't think about it, Pei Ge. It's impossible between you and him. Have you not known this long ago? Since that's the case, why are you thinking so much and adding to your frustrations?

It's got nothing to do with you if he likes someone else or has a girlfriend. You're just a fake wife he employed. You're merely a shield – a façade. That is all.

You shouldn't think too highly of yourself and wish that the farce would become reality. That's just too ridiculous and absurd.

Sigh… You should focus on taking good care of your mother and on doing a proper job of earning money. Be yourself; nothing else is more important…

Ding! The elevator doors parted open again. This time, her face no longer had a trace of depression, nor was there any frustration or sadness in her eyes.

Instead, hope filled her eyes and a light smile was on her lips.

Pei Ge, you can do it! Everything will get better. Your mom, and even you, will get better. Everything in life will get better.