“Bring your son with you. It’s not safe for a child to be home alone.”
The next day, Madam Xie took Rong Heng to the Xie business.
Right now, the chairman was still Grandfather Xie, but he had already taken a step away from affairs and very rarely came to the company. He would only show up when there was a major policy decision that required discussion by the Board of Directors. But that didn’t mean that he didn’t have a say in the Xie business or the Xie family. In fact, he still firmly held the authority in his hands. There were rumors that he was dissatisfied with his son and wanted to wait until his grandson established himself before handing over the power.
Xie Yanjun was the president, and Madam Xie, after reaching some unknown agreement with him some years before, was a senior manager.
Xie Yanjun did not object when he saw his wife wanted to bring their son, whose vocal cords had not yet recovered, to the company.
That illegitimate son of his had already been tormented and incapacitated by his wife and his father. He had no objections; he only blamed himself for whetting the appetites of his lover and his youngest son. It was already good enough to be left with a thread of life, let alone think about other things.
When all was said and done, he only had A’Heng, this one son, now. Parents, regardless of who, hoped for their children to be well.
When some of the core staff of the Xie company found out that the Crown Prince was coming, they were both surprised and delighted.
When word came out that this Crown Prince might lose his life, don’t even mention the executives–even the ordinary employees were sweating. If something were to happen, it was sure to have a great impact on the company. Perhaps the stock market would become turbulent, and the company’s economic strength would be weakened for many years.
In actuality, Madam Xie also knew that Rong Heng wasn’t in the right condition to work. She simply said she would bring him to familiarize himself with the environment, as she feared that constantly staying at home would give rise to illness.
Madam Xie also told Rong Heng in private, “You are still young. Your father will not be retiring anytime soon; it will take at least ten years before the position is handed over to you. This is what I’m thinking: when you get better and your voice recovers, you can continue to study abroad. There’s no harm in studying more.”
Rong Heng just gave her a glance and nodded.
Madam Xie sighed in relief. She raised a hand and patted him on the shoulder. “Your father doesn’t dare to mess around anymore; Dad is keeping an eye on him. I wish for you to relax for two more years. Once you take the position, you’ll have to work hard.”
Although Grandfather Xie didn’t understand Madam Xie’s plan, he had still agreed.
He thought that his daughter-in-law wanted to send his grandson abroad to temporarily get away from all this commotion. Although he was a bit confused, he didn’t want to refuse this heart full of love for her son.
Xie Yanjun didn’t understand. “Hasn’t A’Heng studied enough? I was already working in the company when I was his age. He still has to gain more experience.”
Madam Xie just gave him a glance. Her eyes quickly turned red. “It’s because you wanted to call him back to work that he had that incident happen to him. I’d rather he didn’t inherit the company. In any case, I don’t agree. I want him to live comfortably for a few more years!”
Xie Yanjun knew that he had wronged his wife and his son in regards to his son’s incident. Seeing his wife giving him a hard time, he had no choice but to agree. But in private, he complained to his father, “I’m just speechless. Didn’t I do it for A’Heng’s sake? Very good–she’s treating the company like some lion’s den1, and she wants to let A’Heng recover before sending him abroad to study more. What is this, this is just holding back the child!”
His father glared at him. “Let her be. It’s not just her; even I’m still shocked just recalling what happened. A’Heng is still young, and he’s been through all that; let him rest.”
On Wednesday, after tidying up the house, Song Yuan got ready to take Rong Ting to B City via the high-speed rail.
Song Haiping was the one to send them off; Chen Linjing was on a business trip and currently wasn’t in the city. There was less than a month before New Year’s. Originally, Song Yuan had planned to visit B City after the New Year, but Song Haiping had found a master to calculate the date, and the master had said that it was better to go before New Year’s. Song Yuan wasn’t superstitious, but after having transmigrated through space and time, she was a bit uncertain. The master said to move before New Year’s, so move before New Year’s, then! In any case, she would bring Rong Ting back to this city for New Year’s.
Song Haiping had prepared a lot of food, and he repeatedly said along the way, “The high-speed rail’s box lunch isn’t tasty, so don’t buy them. I bought some fruits and snacks for you two.”
Song Yuan said helplessly, “It’s just two hours, not that long. We ate breakfast in the morning, and we’ll get to B City at around twelve.”
“The ride is boring, so eat something to pass the time.” Song Haiping had his own set of beliefs. “I’ll head to B City in a few days when I’m free. When your mom has time, she’ll find a suitable nanny. Your mom has a great eye for people. The auntie is someone she found.”
“En, okay.” Song Yuan didn’t have any complaints. She was now going to B City, and she wouldn’t be working at a company for a while, so she just so happened to have time to take care of Rong Ting.
“Call me if anything happens. I still have a few classmates and friends in B City who can give a hand.”
Hearing Song Haiping say this, Song Yuan suddenly thought of someone who seemed to have told her the same thing. He couldn’t have said it just to be polite–he’d brought it up several times, after all. But she couldn’t go to find him.
It was a workday, so there weren’t that many people at the high-speed rail station. They smoothly went through the security check and ticket inspection, and Rong Ting followed Song Yuan down the elevator. When he was face-to-face with the maglev, he stared blankly for a moment, amazed.
“This is a high-speed rail. I don’t remember the basic mechanics behind it; you can ask your physics teacher later when you go to school.” Holding their luggage in one hand and led Rong Ting onto the compartment with the other.
Actually, Rong Ting wasn’t taller than 1.2 meters, so they didn’t need to buy a ticket for him, but Song Yuan felt it inappropriate to have Rong Ting sit on her lap. So, she bought two tickets for adjacent seats, which was much more comfortable.
She had bought the tickets online. Luckily, she managed to snag a window seat.
Many people went to B City every day, so basically all the seats in the compartment were taken.
Song Yuan had Rong Ting sit in the window seat, and she sat in the middle. The aisle seat was taken by a middle-aged woman, who looked very nice and offered to help her lift her suitcase.
There was a couple sitting in front of them. When they saw Rong Ting, the young woman, despite thinking he was very cute and handsome, sat in her seat and muttered in her boyfriend’s ear, “What bad luck, there’s a kid here. He’ll definitely be super noisy. Aaahhh, I’m so upset!”
When taking outside transportation, the biggest fear was running into noisy children, who were sure to ruin the trip’s mood.
Originally thinking that the child would be very loud, the couple went as far as to take out headphones and earplugs. They didn’t expect that the child would be quiet the entire way, with no intention of making a racket.
Of course Rong Ting wouldn’t make a fuss. Song Yuan had already cautioned him about being noisy on the way to the compartment. Rong Ting had just given her an insipid look. “When has gu ever been noisy?”
…Song Yuan also felt it was unnecessary to remind him. Rong Ting was extremely mindful of his image and manners. Let alone outside–he didn’t even cause trouble at home.
After the train departed, Rong Ting continued to curiously stare outside.
It was probably that, while sitting in the compartment, he couldn’t feel the speed of the train. It was only when they passed through a tunnel that he could somewhat perceive it.
It was lunchtime at eleven to twelve. Even though they would be arriving soon, many people still bought lunch boxes and cup noodles. Everything was more convenient now, and there were also some people with self-cooking mini-hot pot.
The middle aged woman in their row placed on her table a self-cooking mini-hot pot, which was steaming and bubbling.
Rong Ting stared at the hot pot, finding it peculiar. Ten minutes later, the middle-aged woman lifted the lid, and a pungent aroma assailed his nostrils.
Perhaps Rong Ting’s gaze was too strong. The middle-aged woman looked over and smiled at him. “Little kid, want a taste? It’s actually not that spicy.”
“Won’t eat.” Rong Ting shook his head. He had now learned not to use “gu” in front of strangers.
He thought, looking at the woman’s benevolent countenance. After a moment of hesitation, he added, “Thank you.”
The lady laughed. “What a good little kid. So polite.”
Song Yuan was also surprised. She had taught Rong Ting to always say “thank you” to those who helped him and showed him goodwill, but he hadn’t been unwilling to do it. Unexpectedly, he took the initiative to say “thank you” to a stranger today!
Rong Ting glanced at Song Yuan with an appearance of asking for praise but also making a great effort to restrain himself.
Song Yuan was delighted. She reached out and poked his forehead. “Giving you a thumbs up. Gugu, you’re so great. Mom is so proud of you!”
Although he had constantly heard such words, he still revealed a happy and proud smile.
Song Yuan didn’t force Rong Ting to accept this era as soon as possible. She knew that the child wanted to go home, but he didn’t think that far ahead. Perhaps in his plans, he just wanted to stay here with her for a few years. The ancient time was his time, and the palace was his home. He had strong opinions, and if she forced him to accept that “he would never return home,” he would be extremely upset and might even break down. Even an adult couldn’t calmly and quickly accept that they couldn’t return home, let alone a child.
She just thought to have him slowly get used to life here. In that time, as he slowly grew up, perhaps he would grow to accept it.
He was still so young. There was plenty of time. She also had the financial means to protect his young mind.
Now he had learned to thank others on his own. Wasn’t that a huge improvement?
When they arrived at their terminal, Song Yuan took Rong Ting down to the underground parking lot’s taxi area and flagged down a taxi.
Song Haiping had two apartments in the third ring road under his name, and there were many restaurants near the community. Song Yuan found a restaurant and ordered a few dishes for lunch.
The place they were staying in was a three-bedroom house. A few days prior, Song Haiping had had people clean the house inside and out, so it was extremely clean. It had all the necessary household items, and even the beds were made.
Rong Ting was exhausted after today, but he still forced himself to practice calligraphy for two hours before returning to his room to sleep.
Just when Song Yuan was about to unpack their luggage, she got a call from Rong Heng.
She was a bit surprised when she saw the caller ID. She’d originally thought that the two of them wouldn’t have any contact or interactions. She didn’t expect that he would take the initiative to call.
The call connected, and the two of them exchanged greetings for a while before Rong Heng moved into the topic. “Miss Song, you mentioned before that your son enjoys and is skilled in calligraphy. I happen to know a calligrapher who is famous in his circle. If you have time, I can take you and your son to meet him. If they have fate, the best thing would be to become teacher and student. If they don’t, then it’s not bad to ask him for some pointers.”
Song Yuan was delighted to hear that. After all, the calligrapher he mentioned must be quite excellent. If they really did become teacher and student, it would be a good thing for Rong Ting. Just as she was about to agree, the words her father had said to her echoed in her mind again. How could she accept such a huge favor? It was fine to owe money to others; if she owed a favor, when would she be able to pay it back?
Seeing that Song Yuan didn’t answer, Rong Heng continued with a smile in his voice, “But you should discuss it with your son. Think it over. I’ll be waiting for your response.”
Song Yuan knew he did it out of good intentions. She assented and expressed her thanks.
“You’re in B City, right? Let’s have a meal sometime.”
When she heard Rong Heng’s words, Song Yuan suddenly recalled that day he had paid for her and her clubmates’ meal. Afterwards, she had transferred money to him via WeChat, but he hadn’t accepted it. Thinking about it again, she owed him a meal.
Song Yuan was inwardly embarrassed. “I should be the one treating you. I’ll treat you! You helped pay for our bill that day. When are you free?”
“How about tomorrow?”
After the two agreed on a time and place, Rong Heng said again, “Bring your son with you. It’s not safe for a child to be home alone.”
After hanging up, Song Yuan felt torn. Seriously, sometimes she felt like he was interested in her in that way, and sometimes not…
But after this meal, they wouldn’t have any more contact. Her dad was right: the waters of the elite in B City were too deep. She brought her son to B City to study, not to date! En!
 龙潭虎穴: lit. dragon pool, tiger’s cave; fig. a dangerous or sinister place
Cheese: next chapter – family reunion?
also i know i havent been responding to comments lately. its bc ive been busy with work and the side job tutoring kids. however, i cant express enough just how uplifting it is to hear from the readers. im happy to see that people are satisfied enough with the translation quality and are enjoying the story 🙂 its also amusing to see people mass commenting on a bunch of chapters bc it tells me that theyre new readers haha its cute! i love yall, both the vocal readers and the silent lurkers <3