Surprise Resignation of Female Substitute Secretary

Chapter 47

"I didn't say you were stalking me." Su Tao was a little helpless at his now cautious and careful appearance. She looked at the time, fastened her seat belt, and asked, "Can you take me somewhere? Then I'll treat you to a meal."

Xie Jin's spirits rose immediately. He didn't waste another second but immediately started the car. The Mercedes shot out like a wild horse slipping its reins, sending up a spray of water.

Even though Xie Jin was driving like he was about to take off, they were still late.

She had originally intended to arrive ten minutes early to make a good impression, but was delayed, so when the car came to a smooth stop, Su Tao hurried out without even having time to say another word to Xie Jin.

When she entered the restaurant and walked to the reserved seat, there was a man in his forties with a small goatee on his chin.

He seemed to have run out of patience and was angrily calling Liao Dan in authentic North City dialect, wielding his verbal dagger: "Miss Liao, no matter how great your friend's connections are, she still needs to respect people, right? If it wasn't for her, I wouldn't have..."

Su Tao hurriedly came over with an apologetic smile and sincerely apologized, "Are you Teacher Cui Ming? I'm Su Tao. I'm late, I'm really sorry."

Hearing this, Cui Ming immediately looked up. The slim, fair, pretty and well-behaved young lady in front of him made him lift his chin so that his little goatee was pointing at Su Tao. He softened his tone, waved his hand generously, seemingly magnanimously,

"Oh, never mind, we're all here through connections of connections. Without Liao Dan's connection, we two would never have formed a connection. The connections you have may just be the connections I need. Isn't this industry all about connections?"

Su Tao was confused by Cui Ming's bunch of "connections" and didn't know what he was trying to say.

"Order whatever you want to eat, this meal is on me, here's the menu." Cui Ming followed his big stick with a sweet date, successfully bewildering Su Tao.

"Teacher Cui, I should be the one treating you. Please order." Su Tao turned the menu back to him again.

"Hey, let's not stand on ceremony. You order, I'll chat with you here." Cui Ming held down the menu so Su Tao couldn't turn it back. His face bore a peddler's smile as he shook his head, "I can see your agency is on the road to success. Teacher Su, your artists are all very outstanding. Jiang Qi and Xue Xinzi have great strength. I also highly recognize Xue Xinzi's songwriting skills."

When her artists were praised, Su Tao beamed with a mother's pride, instantly sweeping away her previous confusion and discomfort. "Teacher Cui flatters me, but they really do work very hard."

"You're too modest, Teacher Su. They are only so outstanding thanks to your guidance." Cui Ming even obligingly poured tea for Su Tao, watching her and observing her expressions as he slowly said, "Teacher Su, when do you and President Xie have time? How about I treat you two to another meal?"

Su Tao's hand holding the teacup stopped. Her smile froze on her face. She finally understood what Cui Ming's bunch of "connections" meant.

"Teacher Cui, President Xie and I were just for show on the program, edited by the production team. They piece together sentences said at different times into a story line. As someone in variety shows, you understand this."

Cui Ming's smile also froze. Still not quite believing, he probed, "But you two even trended on social media. President Xie even confessed to you, didn't he?"

"It was all hype. And now we have no contact. I'm afraid I can't get him to meet up."

Su Tao knew that in this industry, it was all voluntary exchange of connections for connections. If she had Xie Jin's connections, many things would be much easier.

In fact, him wanting to get to know Xie Jin through her was no different in essence than her getting to know Cui Ming through Liao Dan.

But she just couldn't get over this hurdle herself.

"Ah, you two..." Cui Ming didn't say the word "broken up", but he understood in his heart now.

Come to think of it, it made sense. A man of Xie Jin's status could only have taken interest in Su Tao as a fleeting fancy. Those good looking and well-connected men would lose interest after the novelty of a month wore off. It was impossible for them to still associate with women they had played with.

He had overestimated Su Tao.

Thinking this, Cui Ming dropped his ingratiating smile and revealed his peddler's true colors and arrogance. He shook his head as he lectured,

"That lofty mountain Xie Jin is indeed hard to climb, but little girl, you still don't cut it yet, can't keep ahold of a man! Enjoying the shade under the big tree is nice, but you're still too young. Train a few more years."

Su Tao's expression had already soured when he mentioned Xie Jin. Now with these words, he had provoked her reverse scales.

Su Tao looked at him solemnly and seriously, "Thank you for your guidance, Teacher Cui, but I don't need to rely on Xie Jin to survive, do I? Although I haven't been in the industry long, I do my best in everything. I think I fulfill my duties as a competent manager. You don't need to show me two faces."

After she said this, Su Tao didn't feel the catharsis she had imagined. On the contrary, she felt even more restless and full of regret.

She was usually so good at controlling her emotions, so why did she lose control whenever anything related to Xie Jin came up?

Last time it was because of Qin Xuexi's appearance that made her lash out at Jiang Qi. This time it was because of Xie Jin that she forgot her purpose for coming.

She closed her eyes briefly, trying to calm her emotions. Feeling controlled by emotions really felt awful.

"Fine, you're so capable you don't need to talk to me anymore. I've also fulfilled my obligation to Liao Dan. Let's part ways." Cui Ming stood up, too lazy to even make polite small talk. He glanced contemptuously at Su Tao, preparing to leave.

When Cui Ming looked up, he saw a dignified, tall and noble man entering the restaurant from the doorway, holding a file bag.

He halted in his steps.

The newcomer was Xie Jin. With his long legs he crossed the distance in a few strides and stopped right in front of Cui Ming. Meeting Cui Ming's gaze head-on, he stared coldly at him for a few moments before his gaze finally settled on Su Tao.

He placed the file bag in front of Su Tao and leaned down slightly, steadying himself with one hand on the chair back as he drew near her. His tone was calm but with hints of gentleness, "You left the file in the car."

Su Tao looked up and only then realized she had left the file in her hurry to get out of the car.

Cui Ming blinked in astonishment. Looking at the cold and aloof man before him, he tentatively asked, "You're President Xie?"

Xie Jin instinctively rejected all male creatures appearing around Su Tao. He glanced coldly at Cui Ming without answering.

"I'm Cui Ming from North City TV Station. President Xie, I scheduled a meeting with you before but we never met up, about investing in my new variety show..."

"Contact my secretary." Xie Jin had no interest in engaging and coldly cut him off mid-sentence. His gaze remained fixed on Su Tao's face and he switched to a gentle tone, "I'll be waiting in the parking lot. Call me after you finish your business."

Su Tao withdrew her gaze from Xie Jin. Her expression was unhappy but she handed the file to Cui Ming as a conciliatory gesture, "Teacher Cui, this is Xue Xinzi's information, including some song demos she wrote herself..."

"Oh, I know Xue Xinzi! A talented lady. I wanted to invite her long ago. I'll keep the information. I'll call you after I draft up a contract."

Cui Ming did a 180 degree turn in his attitude. As if Xue Xinzi was some unparalleled genius and he was blind not to have seen it.

This sudden change of attitude didn't delight Su Tao. On the contrary, it dampened her mood even more.

After bidding Cui Ming farewell, Su Tao sat silently in the passenger seat of the Mercedes. Xie Jin was the most apprehensive. Not knowing where he had done wrong again to upset her.

"You didn't eat just now right? What do you want to eat? Let's go eat, okay?"

Xie Jin tentatively asked. It was a long time before he got a response from Su Tao. Her tone was indifferent and she didn't sound enthusiastic, but her words made Xie Jin feel incredibly favored.

"What do you want to eat? I can also cook for you."

Xie Jin suddenly felt greedy. His eyes as dark as black pearls shone brightly. He tentatively asked again, "Then, can you cook for me at home?"


Xie Jin stood in the kitchen doorway in casual home clothes, holding his phone to record video.

Today was the happiest day for him. His little peach had come home.

The sizzling sounds of stir frying in the kitchen, the wisps of steam escaping when the pot lid was lifted, the rich fish fragrance, and that charming figure shuttling around the kitchen in an apron, composed a scene he couldn't even dream of.

Turning off the heat, lifting the pot, plating the food, Su Tao almost bumped into Xie Jin blocking the doorway as she carried the finished boiled fish.

"What are you doing?" she asked in surprise.

"Keeping it to watch before falling asleep."

Xie Jin's voice was very soft. If they didn't listen carefully, they couldn't even make out what he said. But Su Tao heard it clearly. She couldn't help but lift her eyes to look at him.

When Su Tao saw the faint smile on Xie Jin's lips but his eyes were slightly red, she was stunned for two seconds. She took off her apron and sat down to eat.

Xie Jin picked up the red wine that had been decanted long ago and poured two glasses, handing one to Su Tao.

In the house she hadn't been to for over a year, Su Tao ate in silence. When she was almost done, she put down her chopsticks and raised her wine glass.

"I'll drink to you with this one."

The two glasses clinked, making a crisp sound of glass hitting glass. Su Tao tilted her head back and drank a sip of wine.

Xie Jin looked up, his jet-black pupils reflecting her serene face.

Although her face was expressionless, Xie Jin felt her mood didn't seem too good.

"From the beginning of the recording of Sea Wave 2, to Guo Yanyan's TV series afterwards, then Jiang Qi's news and voting, and even Chui Ming just now, you've helped me a lot in all kinds of big and small things, thank you very much."

After speaking, Su Tao tilted her head back and drank a large gulp.

Xie Jin's expression gradually became solemn. His long fingers were wrapped around the glass but he hesitated to pick it up. His brows furrowed slightly with latent worry.

"Little Taozi, why are you suddenly thanking me?"

Su Tao put down her wine glass. Her clear eyes were slightly blurred. Her eyelids and cheeks were both flushed like a peach.

"Because I feel like I'm very lame." Su Tao pursed her lips and pouted, looking like she was about to cry but forcing herself not to. She tilted her head back and drank another sip, emptying the glass.

She went to get the wine decanter, but Xie Jin already had the other end in his hand. He looked at her intently but eventually let go.

Su Tao poured over half a glass and drank a third of it in one go.

"I was repelling you because I always feel like I'm back to how I felt a year ago, needing to rely on you for everything. Without you, I'm nothing. My efforts and excellence are not recognized at all. The purpose of those who flatter and praise me is also only because of you. I don't want to be labeled as Xie Jin's woman again."

"I understand, it's all my fault." Xie Jin grabbed Su Tao's hand and gently coaxed her.

Although she was cute when slightly drunk, she liked to drink when upset. It was best not to let her develop this habit.

"You don't understand!" Su Tao heavily put down the wine glass. There was still a drop of light red at the corner of her mouth. Her eyes brimmed with tears. "But I did rely on you. I enjoyed the convenience you brought me. Yet I was repelling you at the same time. Am I not shameless?"

Xie Jin relaxed his brows and pressed his lips together, holding back his smile, and continued coaxing her, "No, it's my fault. You're so outstanding. You would have done just as well without me. I've caused you so much trouble too."

Su Tao shook her head vigorously. "No, it's my fault. I don't have the ability yet I'm still unwilling. Just a couple words from others about needing to rely on you makes me angry. Why should I be angry? I am indeed relying on you."

Xie Jin grabbed Su Tao's hand tightly. He trembled slightly and his eyes instantly filled with tears. He looked at her steadily and said, "You still want me not to be able to find you?"

Su Tao's drunken eyes were blurred. She could hear Xie Jin's words clearly but her brain couldn't process the information anymore. She kept repeating, "Mm, can't find me..."

Xie Jin stood up and half-squatted in front of Su Tao. He held her face in both hands, blinking away the tears in his eyes, and repeated word for word, "Don't let me not be able to find you."

Su Tao's eyelids drooped as she mechanically repeated, "Can't find me, can't find me..."

"You're not allowed to..."

Xie Jin looked at her eyes that could no longer stay open, her head that kept lolling to the sides, almost hitting the table. He wiped away a tear, not knowing what he was competing with this drunken little wine lover for.

He picked her up and headed upstairs to the bedroom.

The familiar room, the familiar person in his arms, filled Xie Jin with endless satisfaction.

He slowly planted a kiss on her lips, murmuring softly, "It's my fault for not spoiling you into a willful little princess yet."

He poked her nose with his finger, looking at her flushed and deeply asleep little red face. His low voice was infinitely doting. "And you still say you're green tea, where's your sense of morality? I'm willing to let you be green... Bleh! I'm willing to let you be tea."

Xie Jin talked to himself for a long time, but his mood was more open than ever before.

He finally understood why little Taozi was sometimes enthusiastic towards him and sometimes cold.

It turned out he was the one overthinking things.

Now that he knew the reason, he knew what to do and was no longer confused.

The next day when Su Tao woke up, she felt exceptionally clear-headed and well-rested.

She reached up and didn't find her phone, but found a hand instead. It was warm and gave her a sense of familiarity.

She opened her eyes wide and looked up. Xie Jin was half-naked, propping his head up with one hand, lying by her side and looking at her with deep eyes.

The pose, styling, and gaze were all very familiar.

It was exactly the same as last time at the tropical rainforest hotel.

Su Tao subconsciously looked down at herself again. Her clothes were neat and her memories came flooding back. Last night she was in a bit of a bad mood and wanted to drink some wine, as well as properly thank Xie Jin.

Later, how did it evolve into mutually apologizing?

Heavens, what kind of random nonsense had she said last night?

All those petty thoughts, how did she just blurt them all out?

For the first time, Su Tao developed an aversion to drinking.

She covered her face, wanting to disappear from Xie Jin's sight like a thief, but forgot her hand was still holding his. She stole a glance at him through her fingers, embarrassedly retracting her hand.

Xie Jin's lips quirked up in a crooked smile and he silently laughed for a moment before his expression reverted to being blank.

After getting up, Su Tao also regained her composure. She tidied up in the guest room, gathered her things, and prepared to leave.

Xie Jin had also packed up. He put on his watch as he followed her footsteps.

Su Tao thought about tactfully rejecting him from continuing to tag along. She was still figuring out how to phrase it, "I'm done with work here in Beicheng, so I'm returning to Jiangcheng today..."

Before she could finish, Xie Jin simply nodded and headed outside, "Mm, let's go."

Su Tao looked at him in confusion but followed behind him out the door.

Xie Jin unlocked the car with a remote key fob and looked back at Su Tao, magnanimously saying, "In light of what you said last night, I've decided that for any effort I make for you in the future, I will collect a certain amount of compensation."

Su Tao: "?"

He sat in the driver's seat and rolled down the window, saying coldly, "It's not easy to get a taxi here. It would take at least an hour to wait for one. You can also choose to pay me for gas if you want me to drive you to the airport."

Su Tao: "..."

There was really no need to split things so clearly.