First Published on Chaleuria
10.2 – Yao Yuan, Join The Su Group And Help Me
Zero Point was a western cafe by the school. The shop wasn’t big, but the pastry chef was very good and it was well-liked among F University girls. To Yao Yuan’s knowledge, only girls liked such sweet and cloying foods, so when he saw Su Mu eating a big slice of chocolate cake, he asked derisively, “Su Mu, are you a man or not?”
Right now, arranged in front of Su Mu were several different flavors of mousse. Quickly but elegantly, Su Mu gobbled them down. Yao Yuan kept drinking his coffee, still staring disdainfully at him. After a long pause, he said, “Go on. What’s this about?”
Su Mu finished a serving of milk-flavored mousse and wiped his hands with a napkin, then pulled out a folder from his bag. “Take a look.”
Yao Yuan suspiciously took the folder. When he looked closely at the document inside, he found that it was a contract: specifically, an employment contract for the Su Group. He immediately understood Su Mu’s intention and his expression shifted slightly. He pushed the contract back to Su Mu and said, “I thought you understood me.”
“Do you think I’m doing this to insult you? Yao Yuan, you’re right. I do understand you.” Su Mu gracefully stirred his coffee, still wearing the same gentle and charming smile.
“Then why?” Yao Yuan fixed his gaze firmly on Su Mu’s face.
“I know you’re headstrong and won’t accept help. But, Yao Yuan, I’m not being charitable. I’m…” He paused, looked into his eyes, and continued, “I value you, and I need you. So I’m begging you. Yao Yuan, join the Su Group and help me.”
Yao Yuan was stunned by his words, and it was a while before he spoke slowly. “Should I say I’m honored?”
“No, it’s my honor. It’s not easy to find someone I can trust, and I looked for a long time before I met you.” Su Mu’s gaze did not leave his face.
Yao Yuan’s face cycled through several expressions as he suddenly realized he had been duped. Since the very beginning, Su Mu had been acting with a different motive. Jiang Luo’s reminder rang out again by his ear. So this was how it is. He had known Su Mu’s true colors from the beginning, but had still fallen into his trap and sincerely tried to be his friend.
He stood up, leaning over the small table until he was right in Su Mu’s face, a dangerous glint in his eyes. “Tell me, how long have you been planning this?”
Su Mu did not avoid his gaze and told him the truth. “Since your negotiation with Vice Principal Hu. Or maybe earlier. When you yelled at Zhang Chen and the others to get lost and took on the whole P.E. department on your own.”
“So you think Yao Yuan is an idiot who’s loyal to his friends and likes to show off, so he will be a loyal subordinate. So you got close to me in order to test me, and not because you genuinely wanted to be friends with me.” Yao Yuan caught hold of Su Mu’s collar, fire burning in his chest. The brother he had treated with complete sincerity had been planning to use him since the beginning.
“Yao Yuan, you think too little of yourself. You’re not showing off. The negotiation went very well, and I believe that if it were a business negotiation…”
“Shut up!” Yao Yuan yelled. Their argument had already drawn many gazes but he didn’t plan on stopping. “I’m a goddamn idiot. I knew full well you were a bastard and still obliviously treated you as a friend. Now I understand. Rich people like you aren’t friend material.”
“Yao Yuan, be fair to me. I’m the future boss of the Su Group and I’m not wrong to look for good subordinates.” Even caught by the collar, Su Mu’s expression still remained mild.
Yao Yuan finally threw a punch without a second thought, landing on the face that drove countless girls crazy. A customer screamed out loud and the shop owner started walking up to them.
“Su Mu, you listen here. The Su Mu I know is my brother and not a goddamn boss. All this time, I, Yao Yuan, have been aiming too high. From now, you can be a boss, and I’ll be an ordinary person.”
With these words, Yao Yuan stood and swept off. The sunlight still shone on him, but it was no longer as warm as it was before, and his good mood had also vanished completely. Yao Yuan wanted to laugh out loud. He thought about Jiang Luo’s warning again. All this time he had thought that no matter how dangerous Su Mu was, he would have no reason to use it on him. But it turned out that Su Mu did have such intentions. Yao Yuan admitted that Su Mu was not wrong; from his standpoint, doing this was right and reasonable. If it had been someone else Su Mu tried to recruit today, that person might even have been honored and accepted happily. If Su Mu had told Yao Yuan his intentions from the beginning, Yao Yuan would have rejected him, but more politely. But he was Yao Yuan, and Su Mu had lied to him and made use of what he valued most—his feelings for others. He had no use for friendship containing other intentions. He hated the idea of using friendship to buy people’s hearts, and he felt that he had been betrayed. He suddenly remembered Yang Weiyu’s birthday banquet, when Su Mu had asked him, “If, and I mean if, someone makes trouble for me…” So that had been a test. Testing your place in my heart, and then calculating your next move, right?
Su Mu, you really are a goddamn bastard.
Yao Yuan pulled out a cigarette and was about to light it, but eventually tossed it to the floor and ground it to pieces.
Su Mu was still at Zero Point, elegantly eating mousse and drinking coffee. He had expected Yao Yuan to react this way, and in fact, it had been his last test. If Yao Yuan had accepted his invitation, then for the rest of his life, he would not have been able to enter the upper echelons of the Su Group. He had to have enough clout to control the people by his side, and Yao Yuan had given him an answer he was satisfied with. Caring too much about personal ties was Yao Yuan’s weakness, and because of that, he would not betray his friends or his superiors for any reason. This was the kind of person Su Mu needed. He was not worried he would lose Yao Yuan as a result. He could trap him by his side. Even without friendship, he had even stronger collateral.
Su Mu ate the last serving of mousse, drank the last mouthful of coffee, then got up and left the cafe. His pace was still leisurely, and he looked for a cigarette, but didn’t find any after searching through all his pockets. He had never had a smoking habit, but lately after spending time with Yao Yuan, he seemed to have picked up the habit. He grimaced and rubbed the side of his face which Yao Yuan had hit just now; it was probably swollen. That bastard had been merciless with that fist. He walked calmly to a deserted corner, then let out his frustration and punched the nearby tree. Yes, this was the answer he had wanted, but he was not happy, not at all. When he saw Yao Yuan leave in anger, all he had wanted to do was ask him to stay. He knew something was wrong with this feeling, but he could not control himself.