183 Charmingly Dark
While Anthony played with the fireworks, he kept turning his innocent baby face toward Ye Shuang. Other people thought this golden retriever was acting cute, but Ye Shuang knew the man actually wanted to find out if she had heard anything.
She pouted and glared at Anthony. She had no intention of putting the headphones on. Everyone was having fun playing with the fireworks, so if she put on the big headphones, didn't that mean that she found them annoying‽ She would definitely be the talk of the party.
Anthony was a foreigner, so he had his own ways of doing things. Even if he acted strangely at times, other people would understand that as a cultural difference. However, the same thing could not be said of Ye Shuang if she tried to follow Anthony. In any case, with Ye Shuang's hearing, even when the headphones were just left around her neck, she could still hear it clearly.
Therefore, the headphones continued to hang around her neck, and Ye Shuang ignored Anthony and smiled at the people who waved at her. Then she walked away, playing with her fireworks like nothing had happened, as the voices from the headphones drifted into her ears.
"Done?" A male voice appeared from the headphones. It sounded like he was inside a building. Based on the sound of fireworks in the background, he should be a guest at this spring party.
The voice that answered was also male, but the background was a night breeze at an empty field.
"Done, Lin A12345…" Then he hesitated before continuing with a cautious tone. "Are you sure no accident will happen‽"
"Why didn't you worry about that when you accepted the money‽" The guest scoffed and added, "I'm not an idiot. Do you think it'll be easy for me if a human life is lost? Furthermore, you know what you're doing; I'm just trying to scare him."
By then, Ye Shuang had a brief idea what was happening. The rest of the conversation was nothing new. It was A buying out B to do something to C's car. The plate number Lin A12345 was rather familiar like it belonged to one of Yao Zhixing's racer friends. Ye Shuang had some memory of this plate; she knew generally the group that it belonged it, but she could not remember the actual driver.
After they hung up, Ye Shuang twirled the fireworks in her hands and paid attention to the hall. Not long after that, a man rushed out from the nearby hall. The man had a white bathrobe on, and his hand that was stuck in a pocket seemed to be holding a phone. His other hand held a towel to dry his hair. His body did not look like he visit the gym often; he appeared like a quintessential young master.
Ye Shuang glanced at the man twice before moving naturally toward Yao Zhixing's group. The group of racers winked and nudged among themselves, clearing a spot next to Yao Zhixing. Ye Shuang took the space and squatted down. The firework that she was holding was almost finished, so she tossed it away. Yao Zhixing saw that, grabbed another from his lackey, and passed it to her. He thought Ye Shuang was there to ask for more fireworks.
Ye Shuang accepted the new fireworks and used her elbow to poke Yao Zhixing. Then she lifted her chin to point at the man. "Who is that man?"
Yao Zhixing raised his eyes to look, and after a surprised gasp, he turned to ask the others, "Who invited the kid?"
The racers kept quiet; none of them seemed to want to admit anything. After some pushing and shoving, one of them came forth to say, "Not us, he came with another guest. It would have been rude for us to just chase him away."
Ye Shuang soon understood what was happening. The man's father was in the transportation business. He had once bet on his whole family's savings to buy two large trucks, and that was how the business started. Today, his company had connections with all the large cities in the country, one of few success stories that started from nothing. Yao Zhixing's family was in the eatery business, so due to transportation of ingredients, his family had constant cooperation with the man's family.
However, a good father might not breed an equally good son. The man in the bathrobe was not on the same level as his father. Probably because his father came from a life of poverty, he naturally believed that, since he had resources, he needed to give his son a better life. Therefore, he had given his son everything since he was a babe. Even his allowance during primary school was several times the salary of a normal white collar.
Raised by the love and pampering of everyone around him, it would have been a miracle if the son did not grow up to be a cocky young master. Since he was young, the man had been involved in many incidents like assaulting his teacher and truancy. The school would not do anything to him because his father was one of the school's top donors. The boy would do anything he wanted, and that only got worse after he grew up. Since he had the impression that everything could be settled with his father's money, he only grew unrulier and mixed with a bunch of friends that shared his views or just made use of his money.
Innocence meant fearless. Yao Zhixing was famed in San Lin City and came from the powerful family. Normally, people would not purposely step on his toes. However, there was one thing good about Yao Zhixing; if you did not provoke him, he would leave you alone. As long as you did not touch him or his friends, Yao Zhixing was quite a generous person.
But this bathrobe man could not stand that someone else's name was louder than his, and his arrogance meant that he had been taught a few lessons by Yao Zhixing several times in the past. He kept trying to annoy Yao Zhixing when he had time. The latest conflict was when Yao Zhixing went after one of his so-called 'friends'. He undressed the man and dropped him at the city center, causing the man to run home naked.
"The boy's friends are all troublemakers," the racers explained. "The man who was taught a lesson was a bastard son, the kind that only knows how to flatter others. Brother Yao didn't have the intention to do anything to him, but the man thought he had the right to talk conditions with Brother Yao. He thought he was the cleverest, and everyone else was dumb—serves him right."
What Yao Zhixing said with the man, either the racers did not know or they did not want to say. In any case, Ye Shuang did not ask. She understood what they were trying to say; this was the result of a long period of resentment, with Yao Zhixing reaching out to that bastard son as the fuse. The bathrobe man probably thought Yao Zhixing purposely wanted to punish his friend, so he wanted to take a revenge.
"Sounds like it's still related to me‽" Ye Shuang frowned. "But the boy is so dumb. Why is it his business when other people are bullied‽"
Furthermore, if this was just a prank, it would be fine, but this was messing with someone's car. One wrong step and people would have died.
"This is not the first time he has acted so dumb." Yao Zhixing shrugged with condescension. Yao Zhixing had many enemies, so adding this one was no biggie for him.
Ye Shuang sighed. "It's not that… By the way, whose car is Lin A12345?"
A man waved his man with a happy smile. "Mine! Sister Shuang, do you like it?"
"It's okay, but something is wrong with your car," Ye Shuang said vaguely. The racers knew Ye Shuang had a talent at car modification. They might not notice the problems with their cars, but Ye Shuang could pinpoint it by listening to the exhaust. A few months ago, Ye Shuang had even fixed Yao Zhixing's car engine, so everyone believed her implicitly.
"That's impossible!" The man scratched his head and hesitated. "I just bought it last month. What is the problem, Sister Shuang?"
Before Ye Shuang said anything, Yao Zhixing reached out his arm to smash the back of the man's head. "You dare to drive a problematic car?"
"But I didn't do anything. When I bought it, it was fine. When I sent it to the garage to fix the accessories, everything was fine. Brother Yao, I'm innocent!"
Ye Shuang sighed. "If you're not afraid of death, then continue to drive it, but this is my advice: take a ride from a friend tonight and call someone to come tow your car." Then she pulled on Yao Zhixing, signaling that she wanted to talk to him alone.
Everyone trusted Ye Shuang. The owner's face fell, and his expression turned serious.
Yao Zhixing gave his lackey a side-eye before he stood up. He was about to walk away with Ye Shuang when a large golden retriever collapsed on Ye Shuang's back, and a pleading voice came from behind her. "Xiao Shuang, you're too cold. I've been trying to talk to you, but you've been ignoring me."
"…Talk to you later?" Yao Zhixing said.
Ye Shuang shook her head and dragged Anthony to stand beside her. She pointed at the headphones around her neck. "These are his, and I want him to let you hear something."
Yao Zhixing frowned as he watched Anthony accept the headphones with an unwilling pout. He tweaked with the headphones before passing them back.
After accepting the headphones, Yao Zhixing looked at Ye Shuang and followed the girl's command to put them on. Anthony came over to press on a button, and the conversation earlier was repeated.
Anthony blinked at Yao Zhixing, curious about the content of the conversation. Then he saw the man's expression changing. With the brilliant fireworks in the background, Yao Zhixing's face turned charmingly dark.