Money on Card

   Fang Chao drops Qiqi at her apartment after lunch. Despondent over the situation with her Webtoon she wasn’t in the mood to go to the High School.

   “Qiqu ,if you change your mind and want to tell me what happened with that bastard, call me.”

   “I will. I’m going to rest before the auction and try to get into a better mood. Drive safe.”

   Qiqi drags herself into the apartment building depressed because she needs to tell Kang Xue what happened. She is surprised that she hasn’t called. The elevator door opens and she sees Grandma Zheng, “Grandma, where are you going?”

  “Shen Qiqi, I haven’t seen you in awhile. How are you?”

  “I’m good. Brother Si is taking me to the Jade Auction tonight.” She wrinkles her forehead, but I don’t know if I can buy the beautiful jade bracelet now. She silently curses Sun Zerong, damn Capitalist! My five million..gone!

   The old lady holds Qiqi’s hands, “Si told me he is taking you. He mentioned you want a white mutton jade bracelet. I have quite a few jade bracelets and necklaces, come by my apartment you can pick a few.”

  “Grandma, you are too kind. Save them for Brother Si’s future wife. I want this particular bracelet because of the legend attached to it.” Qiqi fixes the old lady’s wool scarf. “It is freezing today. Where are you going? Do you want me to accompany you?  It is still snowing and the sidewalks are very slippery from the ice.”

  “My grandson sent a car for me. I have a doctor’s appointment at the hospital.” 

  Qiqi has a worried expression, “Is there something?”

  “No, don’t worry it is only a routine checkup.” She laughs, “You know that kid worries about me too much.”

   “He loves you Grandma. It is good to have regular checkups when you get older. She knows that she had a heart attack last year. I almost forgot I have some nutritional pills that are good for blood circulation and the heart. I got some for my Grandpa and you. She reaches into her backpack and takes out a small porcelain bottle. Take one a day and you will open up your meridians that tend to get a little clogged as you age. Grandpa swears by them.”

  Grandma Zheng pushes them back. “I can’t take them. What if your Grandfather needs more.”

  “I got these for you. He has plenty. Also, I have an Uncle who runs a TCM clinic. You should make an appointment with him, he studied acupuncture under a famous Master. I don’t trust those big hospitals.”

  A muscular man dressed in black comes into the lobby, “Mrs. Zheng, I am Zheng Si’s driver.”

  Qiqi takes the old woman’s arm, “I will walk out with you. It is slippery.”

   Qiqi helps Grandma Zheng to the car and the driver opens the door of the black Bentley. Qiqi makes sure the old woman is securely buckled in the seatbelt. “If you are unsure about the pills show the doctor first.”

  “Thank you Little Qiqi, don’t forget to come by my apartment.”

   Qiqi giggles and has a pleading look in her sparkling brown eyes,“Umm..Will you make braised pork ribs?”

   “Haha, you and my grandson both love that dish.”

  Qiqi smiles and puts a blanket that is on the backseat over the old lady’s legs. “Because it is so delicious! Take care Grandma Zheng.” 

   She closes the door then walks to the driver’s window. “Hi.” She smiles brightly, “ Make sure you hold Mrs. Zheng steadily when she gets out of the car. Have them bring a wheelchair so she doesn’t need to walk and put the blanket over her legs. I noticed her pulse is a little erratic and she was wheezing as she was walking. Please mention that to the doctor. Thank you for your hard work.”

  She doesn’t notice the handsome taciturn young man in the passenger seat who is looking at a laptop. Qiqi waves goodbye to Mrs. Zheng as she gingerly steps back onto the sidewalk. She rubs her ankle then walks towards the apartment building.

  The man in the passenger seat narrows his amber eyes as he watches Qiqi limp back into the building. He looks over at the driver, “Who is that woman?”

  “I don’t know Sir, maybe a neighbor.”

  What kind of pills did the young girl give the Old Madam? I need to check before the  old woman takes any of them.

  When Qiqi enters her apartment after she removes her coat she picks up Fat Cat who is lazily lounging on the couch. He barely opens one eye then closes it again. She teases as she pets his warm fuzzy head, “Am I disturbing you?” then puts him back on the couch and goes to fill the bathtub. Maybe I will feel better after a nice soak. She takes a pouch from the drawer and dumps medicinal herbs into the bathwater then sprinkles the fresh plum blossoms.

  Qiqi sinks down into the warm bath water and closes her eyes. The Petty Man wouldn’t fire Xue would he?

   Zheng Yingxuan in a VIP room at the hospital waiting for the doctor. Zheng Si’s assistant asks, “Old Madam, may I check the pills the girl gave you.”

  “ Fan Wenjie, why do you look suspicious? Shen Qiqi  has no ill intentions. She is like my granddaughter.”

 “ Old Madam,CEO Zheng entrusted you to me this afternoon. It is merely precautionary, nothing more.”

  “Very well.” She takes the green porcelain bottle from her purse. “You will find they are only nutritional supplements for the elderly.”

 He takes the bottle and opens it, a blue pill in the shape of a bird falls out. He raises an eyebrow holding the unusual looking pill in his hand then makes a call.

  Not long after he hangs up a man comes into the room and he hands him the pill bottle, “ I want the analysis as soon as possible.”

  Zheng Yingxuan puts down the magazine in her hand when the doctor comes into the room.

 “How are you feeling Mrs. Zheng?”

  She removes her reading glasses,“The same as always…old.”

  The doctor laughs, “ Mrs. Zheng,you are still a very beautiful woman.” He takes out his stethoscope. “I am going to take your vitals then a nurse will be in to wheel you down the hallway for a few tests.”

   He finishes and the nurse comes in to take Zheng Yinxuan for tests. After they leave he closes her chart and walks over to Fan Wenjie. “Long time no see. How long has it been?”

   “A year.”

   “WeiWei will be very happy to hear you returned.”

  “Don’t mention it. I won’t be in Bashu City for long.”

   Dr. Lin lifts his rimless glasses and rubs the bridge of his nose, “Then make it clear to WeWei. How long do you expect her to wait for you?”

  “I told WeiWei before I left that I had no intention of complying with the old bastard’s order.” He has a faint smile, “Isn’t that what you have always wanted?”

   “Wenjie, I only want WeiWei to be happy. She cries everytime your name comes up in a conversation. She has been waiting for you to come back.”

  “Brother, you think I don’t know?”

  Dr. Lin pushes him, “Bastard! You need to stop blaming WeiWei. It wasn’t her fault! She wasn’t the one who drugged you!”

   Fan Wenjie smirks, “Don’t let yourself be blinded by your obsessive love for that woman. She doesn’t deserve it. WeiWei is not the gentle innocent girl we grew up with in the Courtyard. How long will the tests take?”

  “You don’t know the anguish and depression she suffered after you left. You weren’t the only victim.”

“Isn’t she always the helpless victim?” What a joke.. he has no idea I wasn’t only drugged I was poisoned…and still have not solved it completely. Although I will never let you people know. If Zheng Si didn’t save me that night I would have been a hollowed out corpse.

“You would rather be Zheng Si’s assistant than go to the company?”

   “I’m quite satisfied with my job.”

  “Mother’s birthday party is on Saturday. Since you are back the least you could do is come, she was very hurt when you left without saying goodbye.”

 “ Lin An is your mother not mine so …no. Don’t you have rounds to make or something?”

 Dr. Lin’s knuckles turn white as he tightly grips the chart in his hand “Wenjie, you are still the same selfish bastard you always were. I won’t mention I saw you.” He leaves and uncharacteristically slams his fist into the wall., it would  have been best if he had stayed away.

  Fan Wenjie sits on the couch and opens his laptop to continue working on the report about Zheng Chu . Idiot! He has no idea the two women he holds most dear are both scheming snakes.  Women…particularly beautiful women are not to be trusted. I wonder what that little beauty wants who was being overly attentive to the Old Madam? To get close to Zheng Si?

   Qiqi  finishes her bath then looks in the mirror and lets out a big sigh touching the dark circles under her eyes. I wish I had one of those  amazing masks from France, I look so tired. She takes out a mask from a drawer that she got online from South Korea. After she applies it on her face she lays down on the bed. Should I call Xue or wait until she calls me? Wait..

   She closes her eyes and the phone rings, must be Xue..well I need to tell her what happened. She reaches for her phone and sees the caller is ‘Mom’ “Hey Mom, I was just thinking of you earlier.”

  “Haha, I know your Cousin Chao called me.”

  “What?”

  “That boy…he has spoiled you since you were little! How much free time does he have! Isn’t he the CEO of some game company? Anyway, he called to complain because his precious baby cousin didn’t get any of the face masks I got when your Dad and I were in France.”

  “I didn’t say anything.”

  “Don’t lie! He said you were crying, saying that I don’t love you. Qiqi baby, the only reason I didn’t send you any is because you are allergic to glycolic acid. That is one of the main ingredients, if you put it on your face you would blow up like a pufferfish. I put extra money on your card, buy whatever you want. Angelique is a good French brand, you can order online, it is all natural., or you could ask your Uncle Kai to make you one also.”

   Qiqi bolts up in bed,  She kicks her legs in the air and makes kissing sounds into the phone. She then excitedly says, “Mom, I know you love me the best!” 

   “Sweetie, your dad and I will be home next week. I need to meet personally with the new CEO of Night Sky Entertainment about a cooperation.”

   “Oh great! I miss you so much!”

  “Why don’t you consider transferring to Oxford? You enjoyed England when you came to visit.”

  “I can’t. I like my classes and of course I have my job with Uncle Lu. I can’t let him down.”  I also just found my dream guy! How could I pursue him from so far away!

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