Banquet Part 4

Leng Shuai lazily leans against the wall in the hallway watching Rui open the door to the banquet room smiling down at LiMei as his hand wraps around her thin waist. 

     Tightening his fist irritated by the way LiMei’s eyes are sparkling as she gazes up at him tenderly, little fool can’t you see I am the better choice! Wishing he hadn’t promised not to reveal himself in the cleaning supply room he narrows his eyes and smirks, just wait  you arrogant bastard you won’t be smiling for much longer. I will destroy you!

   When they walk into the lively atmosphere inside the banquet room LiMei stands behind Rui whispering, “I need to go get a tray of drinks.” She doesn’t want to mention she needs to try to clean up the mess she left behind the embroidered screen. Rui turns around then leans down his voice low as he reminds her , “Don’t forget what I said no talking to any other men especially Leng Shuai.”

   Lowering her head LiMei’s cheeks are red  thinking about how close she was to getting caught with the annoying man, “I won’t.”

   Satisfied by her obedient answer Rui points over to an area where only women are gathered off to the side of the musicians, “You should see if those ladies want some champagne.”

    Looking  the direction Rui is pointing that isn’t the section Chu Nancy assigned her when she came into the banquet room earlier, “Ah… Rui that isn’t my area.”

   “Where is your section?”

   LiMei  hesitates frowning looking over at the right side of the room, Chen Jianyu is talking to his brother Huan.  Anticipating Rui’s negative reaction she reluctantly admits, “I am responsible for that section.”

  Rui has black lines forming on his forehead, how did she get assigned the area with the most men! He notices Henri Armand is still standing there also. I didn’t like the way Henri Armand acted familiar around her obviously flirting in French at lunch with Xixin. “Well I am going over to talk to Jianyu.” So I can keep an eye on you.  He adjusts his demeanor realizing she had no control over where she was assigned, “Get your tray and come over.”

   “Okay.” LiMei sees Rui isn’t leaving, is he waiting for me? It will be awkward if we walk over there together. “Aren’t you going over there?”

   “I’m waiting for you.”

   “…” LiMei wants to tell him to go when Delun spots them, “Hey Rui.” He glances at LiMei then starts laughing, “Feng LiMei is that you under that mop of hair?”

   “Hi Delun,  this is what I wear when I work.” 

      Delun’s phoenix eyes crinkle as he smiles while patting her head, “Why? Your long black hair really is beautiful why wear a wig?”

    “Long story. I need to get to work.”

   Rui grimaced at his brother’s comment and his affectionate expression while touching LiMei’s head but knows he will sound petty if he says anything.  Suddenly the image of LiMei dancing in the bunny apron in front of Delun surfaces to his mind leaving him feeling irritable. Rui’s voice is tinged with annoyance as he questions  Delun, “ I thought you came with  Sheng Nuan. Where is she?”

    LiMei walks over to another server after she leaves Delun replies, “She went to the restroom, have you seen father yet?”

   “No, I haven’t.” I’m going to avoid him if he is here, I don’t need any confrontation with that old fart. “I’m going over to talk to Jianyu do you want to come with me?”

   “I will wait here for Nuan.” Delun wants to warn LiMei after she finishes her conversation with her coworker about Leng Xiaosi. He knows how jealous Rui can be and it wouldn’t be good to have a scene at this high profile event.

   “En.”  His pace slow Rui moves through the crowd towards Chen Jianyu turning to see if LiMei followed him, what is she still talking to that woman about anyway.

   LiMei is getting an earful from Chu Nancy whose eyes are popping out of her head displaying her anger, “Where did you disappear to I was looking for you! You came late..then disappeared… is this how you do your job in room service? Very unprofessional!”

   LiMei has no response what she said is true, embarrassed she tries to explain, “A guest spilled some champagne and I…”

   Chu Nancy doesn’t wait for her to finish talking,“Nevermind I don’t have time for your lame excuses, take this over to the man standing by the stage.”

   LiMei takes the drink from her outstretched hand, she glances over there are several men talking in a group,  that was vague“Which man?”

   “The short bald man in the blue suit closest to the stage, he requested this special wine. The banquet manager just called me, I need to check in the kitchen about the buffet, several items need to be replenished on the table. So hurry up and take it.”

   As LiMei walks past Delun he stops her, “LiMei try to avoid that man.” He points over to the group of men where she is headed.

   LiMei scrunches up her nose, dammit, this night really sucks so far.”Why?” Luckily he isn’t the man she needs to deliver the wine to according to Chu Nancy.

   “I overheard him ask which server is Feng LiMei.”

   “Do you know who is is?”

   Chu Nancy notices LiMei talking to Delun, furious she rushes over her voice is angry as she leans down towards LiMei’s ear. “I told you to hurry.” She doesn’t know who Delun is and doesn’t want to take the chance of insulting a guest, she will leave it to LiMei to excuse herself.

   After Chu Nancy leaves she says to Delun, “Quick who is he?”

   “He is Leng Xiaosi.”

“Thanks Delun I see Sheng Nuan looking for you I will talk to you later.” Dammit! Leng Shuai’s cousin? The CEO? Why does he want to know who I am? Did that bastard say something about me? Well whatever I will stay calm.

   LiMei walks over to the group of distinguished looking group she smiles at the middle aged man as she hands him the glass of wine, “Sir,  the Cabernet you requested.”

  Lau Zemin stops talking to Leng Xiaosi leering at LiMei as he brushes his hand across her fingers taking the glass of wine. “Honey,what is your name?”

   She quickly dismisses him as an old leecher stepping back out of his reach, politely asking, “  My name is Ding Li. Anything else?”

   LiMei glances around at the other men engaged in conversation, Leng Xiaosi has a devilish grin on his face, looks like Shuai’s little obsession is an interesting girl. “Bring me a Mojito.”

    “…” Why doesn’t he walk over to the bar and get one. “I will be right back.”

   Leng Xiaosi hasn’t been listening to the men surrounding him when Lau Zemin says, “What do you think CEO Leng of my proposition?”

   He has no idea what this so called proposition could be but he responds, “I will think about it, excuse me.” He takes a few long strides to catch up with LiMei then stops her right before she gets to the bar, “Miss Ding.” LiMei ignores him distracted by the scene in front of her, is that Kang Jin who is the stunning woman walking with him? Is he in a relationship? I haven’t had a chance to follow him with all that has been going on lately. After I take this drink I’m going to go say hello. Leng Xiaosi grins at her oblivious expression at hearing that name, “Feng LiMei?”

   “Huh?” LiMei gulps while gazing at his face up close he looks almost exactly like Leng Shuai, he definitely is Leng Shuai’s cousin the CEO. Why does he know my name, when he ordered the Mojito I said my name is Ding Li.  Did Leng Shuai tell him about me? She composes herself ordering the Mojito from the bartender, “ CEO Leng can I help you? I’m getting your cocktail now.”

   Curious about her relationship with his iceberg of a brother he calmly asks, “How do you know Shuai?”

   “Who?” She hands him the Mojito, her voice is emotionless,“I don’t know anyone named Shuai.”

   “Leng Shuai? Not familiar?”

   “No.”

   What game is Shuai playing with this girl. When I overheard Jason and him talking it sounded as though he was very familiar with this little girl. Ha ha… Right as he is about to ask her another question Leng Shuai walks up to the bar, “Xiaosi what are you doing?”

   “I was getting a drink from the bar”, he holds up his Mojito shaking the glass. Motioning towards LiMei he nonchallantly asks, “ Shuai do you know this girl?”

   “Feng LiMei?  Yes she has done some work for me.” Obviously you know I know her or you wouldn’t ask! I don’t need you prying into my personal business you are the biggest gossip in our family.

   LiMei kicks him in the leg. I just said I don’t know you, what an idiot! Quickly looking around for Rui she says, “Excuse me I need to get back to work.”

  “…” His calf stings from her kick, Dummy! It is better for me to casually admit it obviously he knows I know you or he wouldn’t ask! I don’t need him prying into my personal business he is the biggest gossip in our family.

   Leng Xiaosi responds to LiMei,“No you don’t. I would like you to accompany me for awhile.” He has a mischievous smile, “As the host I believe I can request that.”

   Leng Shuai wants to watch how she will get out of accompanying Xiaosi so he doesn’t say anything, knowing Xiaosi’s personality he is bored talking to these pretentious men about  business… he has no interest in their posturing trying to ingratiate themselves. By his expression right now he just wants to entertain himself by fucking with people.  The upside of this situation is if Qiao Rui sees the little girl with his brother, a well known playboy, it should be fun. 

   “CEO Leng, we are short staffed and they need me to serve drinks for the comfort of your guests.”

   Leng Shuai surveys the room as though he is checking for any problems, “Short staffed? I will have to reprimand the banquet manager for his incompetence and reconsider giving full payment.”

  Flustered knowing if the other servers don’t get a big tip they will blame her she stammers,“No… No…You can’t do that!” Fumbling to think of a feasible response she continues, ” Not exactly short staffed… but we have exactly the right number of servers if I don’t work we will be one short.”

   Leng Shuai can hardly stop himself from bursting out laughing she is so cute, her eyes are wide and she is squeezing her tiny fists at her side. He doesn’t want to explain his relationship with LiMei though and he can see his brother wants to know, looking at his watch he tries to distract him,“Cousin isn’t it almost time for your speech?”

  “I have some time. What are you drinking Shuai?”Cousin? What the hell game is he playing with the little beauty?

   LiMei’s face has a thin layer of sweat, Go..go..I can’t be walking around with you! Rui will not like that at all. I’m surprised he hasn’t rushed over here already since Leng Shuai arrived at the bar. LiMei’s eyes are darting around the room trying to find Rui he isn’t standing with Chen Jianyu where is he? Noticing her action he waves his hand in front of her tense face, “I will have a whiskey on the rocks.”

  Resisting the urge to say what is on her mind she knits her eyebrows ,“Alright.” Dammit Leng Shuai you are right in front of the damn bartender order it yourself! 

    While she leans over the bar to order Kang Jin approaches Leng Shuai, “CEO Leng.”

   LiMei hears her idol’s voice and quickly adjusts her mood turning around with Leng Shuai’s drink smiling brightly maybe I will accompany CEO Leng for awhile. Her voice dripping with sweetness, “Mr. Leng your drink.”

   Speechless at her change of face both Leng Shuai and his brother marvel at her acting ability in front of Kang Jin. Is this the same girl who had a dark aura surrounding her a moment ago now it has been replaced by a warm glow.

   Kang Jin flashes his signature smile he recognized LiMei’s voice, “Qin Daiy..” He quickly recovers remembering she doesn’t go by that name anymore, “Feng LiMei!”

   “Hi!” LiMei’s face lights up staring at him affectionately hoping no one caught his first words, “Can I get you two a drink?” Standing next to him is a dark haired exotic beauty holding a fluted crystal glass with champagne.

   “No I’m good for now, so you are working here tonight?” That  doesn’t explain the ridiculous wig and contacts but she must have her reason.

   “Yes, I usually work in room service but they needed extra help for this banquet tonight.”

   The woman’s flawless features are tense studying LiMei’s face, is that Qn Daiyu from the Black Sky? Why is she here tonight as a server. Is she on a mission? No that’s right I heard there is a big reward for her whereabouts. How does she know Kang Jin? I need to call Kuang Bo I could use that reward. “Jin I am going to the restroom I will be right back.”

   LiMei decides this would be a good time to get away from this situation as much as she loves Kang Jin the other two men could cause her big trouble. “Miss I can show you the way, it can be a little confusing.”

“ You are a friend of Kang Jin? Call me Luz, thank you I will be bothering you then.” Luz wants to call Kuang Bo but reconsiders maybe she should make sure the woman is Qin Daiyu before she informs him.

   When they leave Leng Xiaosi asks Kang Jin, “You know Feng LiMei?” Although she has a fairy like appearance  how does a little worker bee know both Shuai and Kang Jin?

   Kang Jin has an affectionate expression on his handsome face, “I knew Feng LiMei in High School.”

   Leng Shuai noticed he was about to call her by a different name than Feng LiMei, but knows Kang Jin won’t reveal anything. He and Feng LiMei seemed close when they were at his Shingu Island home. “You grew up in Bashu City didn’t you? Is that where you went to High School?” I can send an investigator to find out I think that little girl definitely is hiding her real identity from the skills i have seen, but all her paperwork is without a flaw.

   “No I went to school in a mountain village. If you recall my family was having quite a few internal conflicts at that time so they sent me away.” Walking over to the bar he says, “Can I have an orange juice?”

    “I’m curious what was LiMei like in High School?”

   Kang Jin’s handsome face has a gentle  expression, “I was a couple years ahead of Feng LiMei and didn’t know her very well. She was the school flower so the other girls were jealous of her beauty and she was at the top of her class academically. I saved her one afternoon from getting beat up by a group of girls after that she used to follow me around.”He remembers how she would hide behind pillars so he wouldn’t know she was following him Such a shy and cute girl…”She would help her grandmother in the village clinic and collect medicinal herbs in the mountains. If I had to use one word to describe her I would say gentle. ” He takes the orange juice from the bar, “I heard from Meng QiQi she had it rough after her grandmother and mother died she had to go live with her father in the city. I didn’t see her again until we met on the plane going to Shingu Island.

   Leng Shuai wants to laugh sweet is not the word he would use to describe Feng LiMei. “Who is Meng QiQi?”

   “She is  a newcomer, one of the rising stars at Hushang Entertainment since she appeared on their Fresh Faces Variety Show.” He glances around it seems like it is taking the women a long time to come back from  the bathroom. “She is Feng LiMei’s good childhood friend.”

   Leng Shuai takes note of the name Meng QiQi why does that name sound familiar?

   Rui has been outside the banquet room talking to Woo Xixin about Xinghe’s condition. When he comes back into the room he can’t see LiMei anywhere. He walks through the crowd then notices LiMei with a woman walking towards the bar. He makes his way through the crowd to where they are standing when he does his eyes narrow and a murderous light shines in them she is walking towards the Leng brothers and who is the other man? Fuck those bastards! He comes behind LiMei grabbing her possessively around her slender waist smiling at Leng Shuai. LiMei blushes at his sudden action trying to move out of his embrace he tightens his hold. She whispers, “ Rui…” He doesn’t lets her go provoking Leng Shuai with a smug expression on his face showing that LiMei belongs to him. 

   Leng Shuai flinches aware Rui is flaunting their relationship in his face, sarcastically he says,“Dr. Qiao or should I call you CEO Qiao?”

   Unfazed Rui replies,“Well I’m a doctor and a CEO so I guess either works.” He smiles at LiMei lovingly then takes her hand, “I need her to show me what is delicious at the buffet.”

    He drags LiMei away to the buffet table before she can protest, “LiMei what looks good? I heard your stomach grumbling, you should eat something.” Facing towards Leng Shuai with a faint smile looking at him Rui gently puts his hand on LiMei’s stomach then leans down  nibbling on her ear, “Baby, I can’t let you out of my sight for a minute can I?”

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