Chapter 271: He’s Not a Scumbag
“Xiao Luo is the boss of Luo’s Workshop?!”
Everyone gasped, it was unbelievable, and they were all in awe of what Xiao Luo had achieved. They, on the other hand, were merely employees and working for somebody else. Going through the daily grind of checking in and out from work every day and living a mundane and monotonous life. Occasionally, they would be overwhelmed by their work, which made them feel like giving up. They desired to change their lives, but they were helpless to do so. Sometimes they felt like a small fish in a drying pond, fighting for what little opportunities that came along and with no hope of a decent future in their sight.
Only they knew what plights they faced in their own lives. No one else could guess the suffering and depression they each had to go through.
No one could imagine how they felt at this very moment. Seeing a former classmate who never stood out in class, who was considered a mediocre, suddenly becoming the head of a successful company. So sudden was his rise that even luminaries like Chu Yunxiong, a titan in the business world, would befriend him. How was it possible to accept such a thing?
Without saying another word, Tang Wangtian quickly headed downstairs. She wasn’t concerned about Xiao Luo’s good fortune, she was only going after her story about Luo’s Workshop’s boss, ‘San Qian Luo Shui,’ and now, that person was right there. What made it even more interesting was that he was her old classmate. She wanted to get herself right in front of Xiao Luo that very instant. What providence!
Qin Guiyue blushed. She had earlier boasted that her boyfriend’s annual salary was 300 thousand dollars, but when compared with Xiao Luo’s, it was really insignificant, like an average man in the presence of a giant, and she, nothing more than a frog at the bottom of a well. She had thought so highly of herself, comparing her lot with her colleagues, but now she had been made to look arrogant and conceited.
She couldn’t accept it and refused to let up on her condemnation of Xiao Luo. She cried spitefully, “So what if he succeeded?! That only shows that he got lucky, but he can never change the fact that he’s a scumbag. He played with Mengqi’s feelings and cheated on her with another girl. He is a jerk through and through!”
She had been persistent from the very beginning and was bent on finding anything bad that she could lay on Xiao Luo, even exaggerating them to suit her purpose.
But this time around, the crowd wasn’t swayed by her words anymore. No matter what she said, the truth was that Xiao Luo was now successful, and his achievements were higher than any of them. They were not worthy to judge such a person.
Zhao Mengqi couldn’t take it any longer. She yelled at Qin Guiyue to stop, and her eyes were red, welling up in tears. She said, “Please, stop it! Xiao Luo didn’t play with my feelings. We broke up because I couldn’t resist the temptation of money. I fell for a rich guy, and I was the one that abandoned him. He isn’t a scumbag, not in the least.” She choked when she said that, the memories were too much to bear. She then continued saying, “Even when I got hospitalized and underwent surgery, Xiao Luo overlooked the fact that I dumped him, and he paid for my hefty medical expenses. It is all my fault that things have ended up this way, okay?!”
She screamed the last part of what she said, the hurt was unbearable. She was lost in endless pain and regret.
Zhao Mengqi wept in deep anguish. She had kept this dark secret, too ashamed to let anyone else know. And she had endured in silence all this while, but Qian Guiyue’s constant ranting about Xiao Luo had been eating at her, pushing her to speak out the truth, and finally forcing her to reveal her ugly side to everyone. She couldn’t bear to see Xiao Luo being judged so maliciously any longer.
That’s the truth behind their breakup?!
The crowd was dumbfounded, and they had horrified looks on their faces. No one expected such a sudden turnaround.
Qin Guiyue was shocked, she just stood there staring at her friend in a stupor. Then she quickly collected herself, and with a reassuring smile, she asked in a somewhat protective manner, “Mengqi, you… you are lying to me, right? You are speaking up Xiao Luo because of your old feelings for him, right?”
If what Zhao Mengqi had just said was true, what had she done to her friend tonight?
She always claimed she and Zhao Mengqi were sisters, but on this very night, she had done nothing but tear down the veil of her sister’s modesty. Every word that she had said to criticize Xiao Luo had returned like flying daggers, stabbing deep into her sister’s heart. Why else would Zhao Mengqi have blurted out the truth, and shed such bitter tears, even willing to destroy her own image in front of everyone?
Zhang Mengqi glared at Qin Guiyue, her teary eyes filled with hurt and anger, “You want to know the truth? Although you used such harsh language to describe Xiao Luo, he doesn’t even pay any attention to all of you. No, it’s not because he’s arrogant, it’s because you are nothing in his eyes.”
She kept shaking her head and said tearfully, “But I understand him. The reason he left was that he was disappointed with us all. Maybe he had high expectations before he came. He was looking forward to seeing us and rekindle the sincere friendship we once had as classmates. But what he saw was this – only people talking about others and looking down at others with judgmental eyes.”
Her words penetrated deep into everyone’s heart.
Every one of them had mixed feelings. And when they thought about it, they realized that it was true, the three years since they graduated had changed them all. They were all in a rat race trying to get ahead in society. They had at first been looking forward to seeing their former classmates and reestablishing the old friendships they once had between them. They were so fed up with the daily grind of work, of pressure from their managers, and of office politics with all the devious plotting going on among their colleagues. They thought that a classmate’s reunion may have been a nice getaway from all the stresses of daily life. It would almost be a temporary paradise they could run to, just to escape from their hell, but now the very paradise they sought had been contaminated by them themselves.
It should’ve been full of laughter and reminiscing the good times that they had in college, but in the end, it became a gathering to show off and brag about their careers, salaries, and rich partners.
So, were they truly happy at this gathering?
No, not at all. On the contrary, as former classmates, they all felt exhausted, because it had become an effort to really connect with each other, as they tried to put on airs and thought of how to seem better than what they actually were. None of those heart-to-heart talks they used to have in the past happened, but instead, it was all about exploitation, wealth, and power.
Guo Qinghe responded to Zhang Mengqi, speaking out in defense of his classmates, “Society is like a large dyeing tank. It has been three years now, and you’d expect people to change, to adapt to new conditions, and evolve to fit into the environment they live in. If Xiao Luo thinks that everybody should remain as simple and innocent as they were in college, then he’s a fool. If we don’t change ourselves, how can we survive and keep a foothold in this society? So, we are not wrong. I think he has a problem.” Xiao Luo’s success had made Guo Qinghe completely stand on the opposing side of Xiao Luo.
The crowd fell into dead silence…
[At the ground floor of the Maple Leaf Hotel]
Xiao Luo and Chu Yunxiong were still chattering away in an animated conversation. They had been at it from the moment they met earlier, and they seemed to be discussing many matters close to their hearts.
Xiao Luo was well aware that he wouldn’t have achieved success so quickly without the support of Chu Yunxiong, and it was something that he would always be grateful for. Chu Yunxiong, on the other hand, had expressed his eternal gratitude to Xiao Luo for saving his daughter’s life. She was the most precious thing in his life, and he cared for her dearly. And Chu Yunxiong’s gratitude was not something that could be measured in terms of money.
At one point, Chu Yunxiong even succinctly played the matchmaker for his daughter. As a father, he was very aware of what was going on in Chu Yue’s mind. Besides, he also had great admiration for Xiao Luo, and if Xiao Luo were to become his son-in-law, he felt his life would be complete.
Xiao Luo respectfully turned him down with the excuse that Chu Yue was still young, and it was too early for her to commit to love. He thought that her feelings for him were more of infatuation, and he believed she should be given time to explore her emotions and find true happiness. But although Chu Yue was devastatingly beautiful, she was definitely not his cup of tea.
Most certainly, the two ended their conversation in good spirits as they laughed with their heads thrown back. It was a telling tribute to their friendship despite their disparity in age.