Translator: O(n^n) oh baby
Quality Check: Kai
First Published on Chaleuria
Chapter One Hundred and Fifty-Two: The Ups and Downs of the Past Two Months
Although Yan Jin personally appeared at the funeral, something which defied others’ expectations that he wouldn’t recover from his grief, YL’s panic wasn’t entirely dispelled.
At the funeral that obviously had some other hidden meaning, many employees wanted to give some words of comfort to Yan Jin but were blocked outside the security zone. After returning from the funeral, instead of feeling relief that Yan Jin escaped uninjured, many felt even more anxious.
It was probably the first time they had seen Yan Jin in such a state.
It wasn’t the first time they’d been doused by Yan Jin’s ice-cold personality. Many of them had actually been won over precisely because Yan Jin wasn’t distracted by anything unrelated to work. They had chased after Yan Jin’s single-minded drive for success.
But this time, in the midst of Yan Jin’s strong presence, they felt a certain indifference.
He didn’t seem to care about enemies, friends, people, or work.
It was as if he didn’t care about anything anymore, including the jewelry corporation he’d raised.
Normally, Shao Yue slacked off however much he pleased. But this time, if it weren’t for his heroic efforts, YL would have collapsed in the short month and a half.
In the marketing department alone, two employees applied for medical leave, citing excessive anxiety, insomnia, loss of appetite, and other psychological illnesses. Shao Yue, who had only just finished up with Yan Jin’s leftover tasks, then had to deal with this internal crisis.
On March 12th, Yan Jin vanished from the public’s eye. Even his closest friends didn’t have the faintest idea of his whereabouts.
In response, Interim Chairman Shao Yue raised base salaries by twenty percent and doubled overtime pay. The pay increase helped to temporarily stabilize the shaky company. For those who hadn’t been convinced by the pay raise, Shao Yue could only rely on his strong rhetoric to trick and brainwash them. He told them that the Chairman would definitely return, that the Chairman definitely wouldn’t abandon the corporation, and that they should work hard to keep things functional in the meantime.
After he had returned from overseas, it had been a long time since Shao Yue needed to work hard with his talent for speaking. Every week, people kept asking him where the Chairman was. He felt it was like those years when he’d had debt collectors hunting him for his debt of several hundred million.
As one of the few people that were able to guess Yan Jin’s next moves, Shao Yue comforted himself that these days wouldn’t last very long.
After all, no matter what, Yan Jin had to return. He only needed to survive until then. But perhaps by that time, YL might be entirely gone.
Shao Yue recognized himself that he was quite a heartless thing. After he’d lost all his property and owed the casinos several hundred million, he hadn’t felt bad even when his old man had kicked him out of the house. But now that his words carried the hope of all the employees in the company, he felt uncomfortable deceiving them when they asked time and time again where Yan Jin was.
*Sigh*, you really had to feel for these true employees. They wanted only Yan Jin.
Who was Yan Jin? According to his own standards, Shao Yue himself was a heartless thing. Then Yan Jin—
Yan Jin couldn’t even be considered a “thing”.
Shao Yue could practically see the moment when his lies would be exposed. He’d be hounded by the employees to no end.
But maybe by that point, they wouldn’t even have the energy to hound him anymore.
Fortunately for Shao Yue, that day never came.
From the start of March to mid-April, YL’s atmosphere had become deadened in that month and a half. Almost everyone was stuck in a negative feedback loop: because there wasn’t any news of Yan Jin, they didn’t feel motivated to work. Because they didn’t feel motivated to work, they spent more time pining for the Chairman. Then they would feel even less motivated since the Chairman was still missing.
To make matters worse, Mr. Mystery had also disappeared along with Yan Jin. They didn’t have the bandwidth for new works since they hadn’t even been able to complete their previously contracted work. At the end of the last year, the design department had hired mostly talented junior designers without much experience. Since they hadn’t yet been accustomed to YL’s general workflow, with the senior designers collectively on strike, survival was difficult.
With YL in a pickle, the neighboring SI had seized the opportunity to snatch several of YL’s contracts. For a moment, it seemed like SI was about to rebound to their peak momentum. Some people that were discontent with YL started spreading rumors of YL’s incoming disaster. The scary thing was that even YL’s own employees were unable to refute the fearmongering.
Between early March and early April, nine employees had tendered their resignations despite Shao Yue’s best efforts to stop them. Just as these disillusioned employees were dejectedly finishing their final tasks and passing their duties to others, some spectacular news was released.
Yan Jin announces his return. Exact date to be decided.
Shao Yue didn’t feel like he was one to exaggerate, but when they received this news, he felt that the entire company celebrated more than when they had received their year-end bonus. There was even someone who wanted to test their luck with the law and launch firecrackers in the business district. Luckily, others prevented him from doing so.
On the day Yan Jin had returned, YL awakened like a newborn butterfly emerging from its chrysalis. In a single night, the entire dysfunctional system returned to normal as if nothing had changed.
Two days later, YL entirely corrected its course. Yan Jin hadn’t come back any different than when he’d left. Like always, he—
Sorry, that’s not correct.
It didn’t need the observational skills of Yan Jin’s die-hard followers like Secretary Fang who were always up-to-date with the latest about Yan Jin to realize that Yan Jin was acting unusual. Anybody who had interacted before with Yan Jin had felt the same way.
On work related matters, Yan Jin wasn’t as careful and focused as before. Not only did he frequently show up late, leave early, give the wrong documents, forget meeting times, and make other mistakes he previously never would, he had even laughed during the company weekly meeting.
At that moment, Shao Yue almost toppled over from where he’d been presenting. The people sitting next to Yan Jin were scared motionless like statues. After a long time, they gathered the courage to look at Yan Jin and—
They saw an unforgettable sight.
Yan Jin, who had never even given a smile during any news interview, was smiling.
It wasn’t a sarcastically cold smile. Neither was it a smile that foretold trouble for someone else. It was a silly bubbly pink smile.
At the podium, Shao Yue had unconsciously stopped speaking.
No one rushed him.
Yan Jin hadn’t realized that the rest of the company had been staring at him for a full minute. Without regard for others, he awakened from his romantic daydreams and returned back to his normal ice-cold personality as if nothing had happened. Everyone had simply been hallucinating.
But this sight had been engraved in the hearts of everyone present. Even those who weren’t present quickly heard through the grapevine.
By the second day, people finally began to gossip about what Yan Jin had been up to for the past two months. The topic of the car accident that had caused them nightmares resurfaced.
The higher-ups that had originally kept silent could no longer resist the allure of gossip. One after another, they started to contribute their own knowledge of the incident. During a meeting that was kept secret from the Chairman, YL’s employees were stunned to discover that the accident had had no effect on his physical well-being. Yan Jin hadn’t been dealing with the aftermath of the accident at all. What was most surprising to them was that Yan Jin hadn’t pursued the matter with the offending driver.
Speaking of the offending driver, no matter how others thought of it, most of YL believed that SI’s chief designer had purposely tried to kill Yan Jin after suffering defeat after defeat. Their strongest proof was that SI’s chief designer had come knocking and had accused YL’s Mr. Mystery of plagiarizing his work.
During the confusion of the month and a half, many of YL’s employees were unable to suppress their anger and bombarded FISH’s Weibo, WeChat, and all the rest of his social media with threatening messages. Almost all of them had hoped to see him harshly punished by law.
Despite Yan Jin’s joyous return for the past week, they still continued following all the latest news about FISH. After Xiao Yu had finally sorted everything out by chance, Xiao Yu logged back onto his social media to post happy pictures of himself. Those that had been looking forward to Xiao Yu’s misfortune felt like eating shit when they saw those pictures.
Those that were more curious such as Shao Yue discreetly inquired of Yan Jin about how he had handled the matter of the offending driver. Unexpectedly, they received a heart-shaking response.
How heart-shaking? For example:
In the marketing department, there was a young lady getting some water from the dispenser. It was hard to tell whether he was joyful or horrified, but Shao Yue announced:
“Everyone, FISH is Mr. Mystery. Yan Jin has finally found a suitable person. Yan Jin has requested that we immediately draft a generous contract.”
The young lady didn’t merely drop her cup. She swayed and tumbled down along with the water dispenser.
The heaven-shaking news didn’t immediately spread to the rest of the company because the rest of the listeners reacted similarly.
Who was Mr. Mystery?
To amateurs, he was without a doubt the super-genius that came along once every hundred years. Whoever roped him in commanded the jewelry industry. To industry professionals, he was an ownerless treasure of the ages. Whoever got the treasure first would steadily hold the advantage in the industry for the next ten years.
Right, most didn’t believe that Mr. Mystery was part of YL. The industry insiders weren’t stupid. Even if YL had managed to fool them through first few times, attentive people could tell because YL still wasn’t willing to reveal Mr. Mystery’s identity. From YL’s recent struggles, most industry insiders could guess that YL still hadn’t signed a contract with Mr. Mystery.
SI was just one of many companies that had become restless. In March, SI had unofficially leaked that they wanted to recruit Mr. Mystery. Since this had been in the midst of YL’s darkest times, they had accidentally made a serious error in not responding immediately. Not only had SI’s ego swelled greatly, but it had also essentially admitted that YL hadn’t signed a contract with Mr. Mystery.
To both amateurs and industry professionals alike, everyone had to admit that Mr. Mystery was the biggest name in the industry, the most valuable person, and the most popular person.
And to YL, Mr. Mystery was a god.
One year ago, Mr. Mystery had rescued YL, which had been long suppressed by SI, from their miserable suffering. In the following competitions, he had continually helped YL out. Every time others had brought up the name Mr. Mystery, YL’s employees had felt a streak of pride. Even if Mr. Mystery hadn’t signed a contract yet, most of YL’s employees had already decided that Mr. Mystery was part of YL.
If one were to conduct an informal survey, at least eighty percent of YL would say they were fans of Mr. Mystery. This was almost the same number as the percentage of fans of Yan Jin.
And now, Yan Jin had announced that Mr. Mystery was FISH.
Originally, this shouldn’t have been considered so strange. Many had recognized Mr. Mystery’s abilities and the number of people with this level of skill had been easily countable. A long time ago, a big-shot in the forum had come up with a list of people who could be Mr. Mystery, and FISH had naturally been on that list.
Even though it seemed extremely inexplicable that SI’s chief designer would defect to YL, there were plenty of things that were hard to understand for many in the world. If Yan Jin hadn’t had the car accident, YL’s employees wouldn’t have felt it was that far-fetched that FISH was Mr. Mystery.
But the problem now was that—didn’t that make FISH the—
The offending driver!?
P.S. Do check out our latest original work, Rest in a Demon’s Embrace written by Tinalynge & Blue Jay!