Quality Check: Kai
First Published on Chaleuria
Chapter One Hundred and Eleven: New Year’s Worries
After the Lunar New Year celebration, students went back to school and adults went back to work, resuming their typical busy lifestyles.
For the design industry, the grandest thing after the Lunar New Year was no doubt the annual Star Designers Cup Competition.
Design competitions happened throughout the year. The large-scale ones were like the Autumn Release Conference, whereas the smaller-scaled ones were like the Year-End Designers’ Party. However, many of those competitions were not as meaningful as the Star Designers Cup. In this era where most of the official competitions were related to some companies behind the scenes, the Star Designers Cup Competition was one that focused on individual competitions with no award categories for team designs.
So long as the designer had been in the industry for more than a year, even a nameless nobody or a famous designer could sign up for the competition. The Star Designers Cup was recognized for having world-class standards. A designer who received an award from this competition had high chances of becoming the target to fight for within the industry. There were many designers who became well-known through this competition.
According to the original plan, Xiao Yu should be using his identity as the mystery designer to surprise the audience. However, this time, the situation was a little different.
The main reason was the fear that Xiao Yu felt as his memory started to worsen.
When a person was facing death, they would never waste any attention to money or fame.
In simpler terms, Xiao Yu had been worrying about dying every day. He simply had no energy to care about the Star Designers Cup.
At the start of the Lunar New Year, Nannan had messaged him to look at his drawings. But Xiao Yu had rejected him, saying that he was going to be busy with the Star Designers Cup and asked him to look for him after the event.
Naturally, Nannan did not make things difficult for Xiao Yu and even wished him the best of luck.
In a way, Xiao Yu was not lying. Human Xiao Yu was indeed busy with the Star Designers Cup during this period.
And that was the second reason – in his previous life, he had won the grand award at the competition.
It was him, Xiao Yu, FISH, and not that mystery designer.
During his previous life, the mystery designer did not participate in the competition and that left everyone puzzled.
Back then, Xiao Yu felt curious as well. However, compared to his curiosity, the feeling of a new lease of life was greater.
Xiao Yu had no fears about having fair competitions, but the strategy that the mystery designer rendered him speechless and helpless. It was as disgusting as swallowing a mosquito.
After being oppressed by the mystery designer for more than half a year, he finally felt like he had room to breathe. The joyous emotion overrode his thoughts on why the mystery designer had not participated in the Star Designers Cup as his mind was focused on holding onto this rare opportunity to raise his head high again.
Fortunately, he succeeded.
After being in a slump for more than half a year, Xiao Yu’s sudden achievement was like a slap to many people.
At this point, Xiao Yu was no longer as naïve as he was previously. Even without the mystery designer stealing his drafts, he obviously did not think that he would smoothly win the awards.
Of course, the mystery designer was one of the reasons. However, the biggest problem was still Lin Zhou.
The reason why Lin Zhou had not interfered with this event was worth investigating.
It was impossible for him to have found his conscience again. The most logical reason was that Lin Zhou had realized that all his efforts were wasted and simply decided that he need not waste his time.
During this time, Xiao Yu observed and felt that Lin Zhou’s motive of job-hopping to YL was perhaps because he wanted to put pressure on Xiao Yu. But Xiao Yu couldn’t figure out why. He felt that he had never done anything worth apologizing to Lin Zhou. If he still had a chance, he would surely look for his senior for an answer.
In his previous life, Xiao Yu definitely consulted Lin Zhou about how his work had been stolen after the Heart Lock incident. Regardless of whether the latter believed him or not, at least Xiao Yu knew that it was impossible to win this “argument” over his stolen work.
Under those circumstances, if Lin Zhou’s main motive was to join YL, then he should have given up on his plan to continue stealing Xiao Yu’s work for other alternatives since he knew for sure that he could not have outdone the mystery designer. However, if Lin Zhou’s motive was to simply hold him down, then he would surely give up on that idea as without even doing anything, it would be hard for Xiao Yu to turn his circumstances around.
If it was really what Xiao Yu thought it was, then with the mystery designer not participating in the Star Designers Cup, it would end up as the best way to refute Lin Zhou’s idea.
The submission period had started before the Lunar New Year. The fact that the mystery designer would not be entering the competition was not announced officially either. People would have to wait till the submission period was over before someone would point it out. Even if Lin Zhou figured out that something was amiss by then, it would be too late.
Lin Zhou probably never imagined that a design competition without the mystery designer would be the grand stage for Xiao Yu.
Yan Jin had noticed Xiao Yu’s recent listless appearance for a long time.
During the start of the new year, Yan Jin realized that although Xiao Yu claimed that he was playing his game, his mind was not completely on it. It was obvious just by seeing those tragic victory scores.
Lately, Yan Jin had been objectively considering the probable causes, such as how animals would hibernate when it was winter. However, he later discovered that if the hamster was a house pet, they would not hibernate in normal circumstances. Pseudo-hibernation would be triggered only when the surrounding temperature got too low.
To prevent that, Chairman Yan purposely bought an electric blanket for his villa so that it was like spring all year round because of the constantly operating central heating system. That electric blanket was placed underneath Xiao Yu’s cage.
Then, that night, the little fellow woke up in the middle of the night due to the heat. Yan Jin was reprimanded with a finger pointing in his face. He also spent the later half of the night constantly apologizing and did not sleep a wink.
Almost cooked alive by the electric blanket, Xiao Yu ended up biting Yan Jin to vent his anger.
He bit his lips.
When Chairman Yan arrived at his office the next day with a mask, he received countless greetings filled with concern. They had all asked him to take care of his health and not overwork. If it was necessary, he could take more days off just like last year.
In the afternoon, Yan Jin took off the mask and Secretary Fang accidentally saw him. The mature and earnest secretary whom Yan Jin thought always handled all matters appropriately shrieked on the spot as she ran out of the office with her seven-inch heels.
That day, all of YL was surrounded in an eerie atmosphere.
From a certain perspective, if it wasn’t for the lack of “concrete evidence”, scandals about Yan Jin would have spread like wildfire within the industry and his ascetic character image would have been ruined long ago.
However, it was exactly because of the lack of evidence, which was literally close to none. Just words alone made things hard to believe. If there were no videos, surely there would be a photo or two? Not to mention photos of him entering a motel, even a snapshot of Yan Jin opening a door for an actress or a handshake was an impossible task for the paparazzi. Gossip that involved Yan Jin was without a doubt, priceless in their circle because of how difficult and impossible it was to attain them.
In conclusion, the man, Yan Jin, who paid the heaviest price, had at least confirmed that Xiao Yu’s behavior was not because of the weather.
As for the real reason, Yan Jin could not grasp the idea at all. It was a question that had been bothering him since the start of the new year.
Putting aside the fact that Yan Jin had been more sensitive than an average person when it came to picking up the emotions of others, Xiao Yu’s behavior had been too abnormal that anyone could have noticed it.
For example, when he woke Xiao Yu up in the morning, the hamster would usually cover his mouth with his paw as he yawned and then greet him for the morning. However, the current Xiao Yu would say his good morning straightaway. Another example was how Xiao Yu would wave his paw three times to welcome the chairman home from work, but now he would only wave twice. Adding on to that example was how Xiao Yu would usually get MVP in at least seven out of ten matches when he played Toxic. But now, he could only achieve three matches at best. No matter how Yan Jin saw it, something was amiss.
Chu Ge, who listened to the whole development, felt that he was a confession tree, but he decided to be a fighter among all confession trees.
Chu Ge: “I think that’s not the reason why you abducted me for coffee.”
“Aren’t you a self-proclaimed expert in psychology?” Yan Jin answered with a question.
“I learned fake psychology. I’m a fake person. I can’t see anything wrong with it.”
Chu Ge held his cup and sipped on his coffee. The pathetic feeling he had was indescribable.
Why he wasted his precious time to listen to an idiot talk – was a question he pondered about for the past twenty years.
However, if he could not understand why for the past twenty years, he probably would never figure it out for life.
On the same topic, although the doctor did have his license as a psychologist, compared to those experts out in the field, Chu Ge felt that none of those overseas big shots could be on par with Yan Jin.
After all, that man was on the same level as a superhero. Compared to normal human beings who studied psychology as a livelihood, it was on a completely different scale.
“I think there’s a problem.” Yan Jin stirred his cup of coffee as if he had transformed into Sherlock Holmes: “There’s also problems on many other details. Fishy has something on his mind.”
“Hm.” Chu Ge answered coldly.
“Why don’t you help me analyze what Fishy might have on his mind?”
“Dafug, I’m not some deity. If he has something on his mind, then ask him directly. He’s not even a real hamster.”
Yan Jin paused.
“Sometimes I wonder if he was a human.” Yan Jin fiddled the fountain pen in his hand: “Do you believe in the theory of the hamster demon?”
Chu Ge: “I think you’re really sick. You are already so busy. Why are you still thinking about all these things?”
“You mean these?” Yan Jin lowered his head and glanced at the pile of documents on his table. He shrugged: “The office is kind of noisy. I did plan on bringing them out to settle them.”
“Hm. Didn’t I just tell you?” Yan Jin pointed at his own lips.
Chu Ge paused for three seconds before he laughed till he hugged his stomach and went under the table.
“Oh my, I haven’t seen you in such a state before. Haven’t you had pets like a dog or a cat in the past?” After a short while, the doctor finally relaxed and teased, “Or perhaps only Fishy was an exception?”
Yan Jin pondered for a moment and agreed with the doctor.
“Wow, if Fishy really turned into a human, how wonderful would it be. It would perfectly compliment a demon like yourself.”
“Seriously though, don’t you think Fishy’s behavior is very much akin to that of a human being?”
“What are you talking about. Do you seriously want to know what kind of behavior is akin to how a demon should behave?” Chu Ge rolled his eyes: “This is nonscientific to begin with, why must you look for a scientific explanation? Does that even make sense?”
Yan Jin resentfully ended that topic that went astray and returned to his original topic: “Fishy has been too depressed lately. He has been in low spirits and is even starting to lose his fur.”
Chu Ge rubbed his chin. Although he still couldn’t understand the whole point of Yan Jin’s worries, as a professional, he was still able to give some sound advice.
For example –
“It’s normal to be in a bad mood after staying at a place for too long. Bring him on a trip then.”
Chairman Yan felt like he had taken a critical hit.
Hi all! The next few chapters might have some obvious grammatical errors as RIAH is in the midst of changing editor. I shall use this chance to highlight that we need more translators and editors to join us! RIAH is also reaching its turning point of the story soon! Hang in there! I feel your pain too! TT-TT -iamfeiii