We Are Partners

   Zhen Sihao is sitting at the desk in his office staring at his phone. The little thing has guts blocking me again!  He takes a drink of coffee that has a bitter taste and reprimands his assistant, “This tastes like shit.” He barks, “Is it too much to ask for a decent cup of coffee?” He takes the last cigarette from a pack in his drawer. “Go to Spring Mist Cafe.” 

    The assistant has beads of sweat forming as rushes out of the office. Zhen Sihao’s secretary is walking towards the door to pick up the documents he signed when Assistant Su stops her, “CEO Zhen is in a very foul mood. Be careful.” She decides not to disturb him until Yan Jing asks for the documents and walks back to her desk.

    The atmosphere inside the CEO’s office is as cold as ice. Zhen Sihao lights the cigarette then walks to the floor to ceiling window and stares at the Zhou Building across the street. Thinking about the mole on the Blue team and the problem with the microchips he inhales deeply. You want to fuck with my business Old Man…I won’t leave you with one yuan to your name.

   The phone on his desk rings and he answers, “Is it done?”

   “Yes. The owner at first was reluctant but when I told him what ZSH was offering his eyes lit up. I assured the owner that if Jiang Weiming decides to sue, ZSH would provide their lawyers to assist. Since there was no deposit paid they only had an oral agreement.”

   “Very good.”

    “What are your plans for the Medicinal Farm?” Tang Shi knows not to question Zhen Sihao but he wonders why he would suddenly order him to purchase a farm. ZSH is a hidden company of Zhen Sihao’s that focuses on developing new weapons and defense systems for the military.

    “None at the moment.” He has a faint smile as he hangs up and his mood improves. I’m curious how Young Master Jiang will deal with this setback and explain his incompetence to the little girl. She was so excited about obtaining that Medicinal Farm, she will be very disappointed he didn’t put down a deposit to secure the purchase.

      Emmi ignores a group of girls whispering while staring at her by the stairs outside the Statistics lecture hall. She is distracted because when she turned in her homework she was reminded of Zhen Sihao carefully explaining each problem. Wang Hao is such a moody and strange man! She blushes, recalling his unruly behavior earlier, as she hurries past them to the stairs.

     One of the girls in the group smirks as she sticks her foot out. Emmi trips and closes her eyes expecting to fall but a strong arm grabs her around her waist. Liu Ling gazes down at Emmi then to the group of girls at the top of the stairs. Sensing Liu Ling’s anger the girls immediately scatter except for a girl with a malicious smile by the corner who takes a picture. She then casually walks past them on the stairs not expecting Liu Ling to stop her and quietly say, “Delete the picture now.”

    She can barely breathe from his oppressive aura and her hands are trembling so she immediately deletes the photo. He narrows his eyes behind his gold rimmed glasses, “Miss Shu is it? You should respect others’ privacy.” She shivers as she hurries down the stairs. I didn’t think Professor Liu  was such a scary man! He always looks so gentle and refined. I just wanted Jiang Weiming to see what a fox girl Chen Emmi is…

   Emmi sweetly smiles, “Brother LIng, thank you! Both for catching me and having Shu Xue delete the photo.”

   He picks up her backpack that is laying on the stair. “You should be more careful.” He doesn’t want to think of what would have happened if he wasn’t walking up the stairs to his office.

   “I will. I wasn’t paying attention.” She notices he looks very tired, there are black circles under his eyes and he has lost weight. “How are you?”

  “Good.”

  “Are you going to your office?”

  “Yes. I have a meeting with a student.”

  “Do you want to get lunch with me afterwards? I want to ask you some questions about how to extract the essence from the Diaphra Clyphis fowers. I have failed a few times and only have two plants left.”

  He looks at his watch, “Okay. I have a couple hours before my afternoon class.”

  Emmi smiles brightly and her beautiful green eyes sparkle, “ I will wait for you downstairs, I need to get a book from the library and I will be back.”

   He has a complicated expression as he watches Emmi down the stairs. What a difference between a clean and innocent girl like Chen Emmi and the bitch I am forced to marry. 

  Emmi can barely contain her excitement thinking about having lunch with Liu Ling. She happily exits the Business Building to go to the library. Yeah! While she is walking her phone rings, Jiang Weiming? I hope he doesn’t want to go now…I really want to eat lunch with Brother Ling. “Hello.”

   Jiang Weiming received a call from the owner of Springwinds Medicinal Farm and was shocked. “Chen Emmi where are you? I need to talk to you.” He doesn’t want to give her the bad news over the phone.

  “I am by the library, what’s up?”

  “Can you wait for me at the library? I will be right over.”

  “Sure.”

  Emmi wrinkles her forehead, Jiang Weiming didn’t sound like himself. Hmm..I wonder if it is about the pictures of us at the White Rabbit Cafe.

  She brushes the snow off of a wooden bench outside the library and sits down. She tightens the pink scarf around her neck, Brrr..I should have said I would wait inside for Jiang Weiming. She watches the students walking up the stairs, when she sees Chen Chloe followed by several girls she ducks her head down, putting her hair in front of her face while tightening the laces on her boot. Please don’t notice me! 

   When Jiang Weiming approaches he asks, “Did you hurt your foot?”

  She looks up, her eyes darting around to make sure Chen Chloe isn’t around. “No. I was tying my shoe.” She stands up, “Let’s go to the Student Lounge to talk.”

   He picks up her embroidered denim backpack and she grabs it back, “I don’t want anyone to misunderstand.”

   Jiang Weiming frowns but doesn’t say anything. When they get to the Student Lounge they find an inconspicuous spot towards the back and sit down. Jiang Weiming asks, “Do you want something to drink?”

   “No thanks, I have a bottle of water. What did you want to talk to me about.”

   “I don’t know how it happened but another company bought Springwinds this morning. The owner called to inform me. He said because I didn’t give him a deposit he wasn’t obligated to hold the property for us.”

   Emmi takes the bottle of water from her backpack, “Didn’t he tell you not to worry, he would hold it without the deposit?”

  “He did but without anything in writing..well..it was my fault to trust him.”

  “Jiang Weiming don’t blame yourself. You thought he would stand by his words because you are an honorable man and expected him to be the same. I certainly don’t blame you…he was unscrupulous…most likely they offered him more money.”

   He gazes at Emmi, his eyes full of undisguised affection thinking how beautiful she is not only her dazzling appearance but her inner beauty. Luckily she isn’t looking at him or she would easily be able to guess his thoughts. I am not that honorable. I didn’t think he would have another buyer. I wanted to go with you so I didn’t press the issue, I was negligent not having the promise in writing. 

   She sips the water, “Do you know who bought Springwinds? Do you think they are an established company or new? Will we be able to compete with them? I thought one of our selling points would be that we are local.”

  “That is what I found strange…he was very nervous when I inquired about the buyer. He wouldn’t say anything and then abruptly hung up.” I am going to have my assistant find out the identity of the buyer. I have the feeling I was targeted for some reason.

  Emmi laughs, “Well, it wasn’t meant to be..haha.. There are other farms we can consider, for instance, Happy Valley Farm.”

   Jiang Weiming responds, “I was worried you would be upset. I am glad you don’t blame me for not putting down the deposit.”

 She pats him on his hand resting on the table. “We are partners, how could I blame you. Lesson learned next time we have it in writing.”

   Jiang Weiming is relieved, “Do you want to have lunch?”

  “I can’t. I am having lunch with Dr. Liu. I need his help with a new formula I am working on for a burn ointment. I want to develop a formula that will be absorbed deep into the skin and regenerate the cells that have been affected.”

   “Wow. That would be amazing.”

   “Well, I have my grandfather’s notebook and I have been experimenting with different medicinal herbs. I was severely burnt  when I was young so I know how much a burn hurts.” 

   He has a concerned look on his face, “What happened?”

   Emmi stands up, “Long story. I need to go, but maybe tomorrow we could decide on another property.”

   “I will contact Happy Valley Farms.”

  “Okay. I think although it isn’t as large as Springwinds and doesn’t have any empty land it looks good. We would be spending less money to purchase the property so we could use the extra money to buy a few more rare plants to grow in the greenhouse.”

  ” Chen Emmi, I think that’s a very sound plan.” He has a serious expression,  “I was afraid you would be upset with me.”

   She chuckles, “Jiang Weiming, I am happy we are partners and I have the opportunity to work with you. Nothing ever goes perfectly according to plan…haha.”

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