Thousands of Heartbeats

Chapter 2

The venue was spacious, with the overhead lights shining brightly, creating a dazzling atmosphere.

Given the environment, there was still some quiet chatter around, faintly audible.

Yan Qiuzhi didn't pay much attention to the chatter. She sat back down, crossed her legs, propped her chin, and gazed into the distance, seemingly watching the excitement as if the man surrounded by women in the center was not her husband, but just another person in the crowd.

Shen Muqing stared at her for a moment and then shifted her gaze to the front row where Chen Lunan was sitting. The more she looked, the more nervous she became.

She had a strange feeling that the impending conflict might involve her.

She didn’t know if it was an illusion, but Shen Muqing noticed that when Guan He approached Chen Lunan, he seemed to glance in their direction.

"Teacher Chen."

Just as Chen Lunan was about to stand up, an unfamiliar woman approached him.

He subconsciously furrowed his brows.

A friend on the side explained, "This is Guan He."

Chen Lunan nodded slightly and suddenly remembered something. He asked, "Guan He?"

Guan He's eyes lit up as she said slowly, "Long time no see, Teacher Chen. I didn't expect—"

Before she could finish her sentence, Chen Lunan calmly interjected, "Do we know each other?"

A hint of awkwardness crossed Guan He's face. She hurriedly replied, "Teacher Chen, important people like you tend to forget. We worked together in a movie before. At that time, you were the lead, and I played a small supporting role."

It was this very role that had earned Guan He quite a bit of envy from others. Although she played a minor role, she had the opportunity to work with Chen Lunan.

Chen Lunan's expression remained calm. He glanced at her briefly and then looked away.

"I apologize."

Guan He smiled and didn't mind that Chen Lunan had forgotten about her. When she was about to step closer to continue the conversation, Chen Lunan softly said, "Excuse me."

Guan He happened to be blocking Chen Lunan's way.

She was stunned, her face filled with embarrassment, seemingly unable to believe it.

Suddenly, her face turned red as she opened her mouth to say something.

One of the bodyguards who had been standing on the side stepped forward and completely blocked her view.

Chen Lunan, escorted by the bodyguard, walked out of the encirclement.

He walked leisurely among the crowd but didn't exit directly. Instead, he walked in the direction Yan Qiuzhi was leaving.

Guan He couldn't believe her eyes and had a thousand questions she wanted to ask, but she realized that no one around her was paying any attention.

Yan Qiuzhi and Chen Lunan?

Do they know each other?

What's their relationship?!

The night was thick with darkness, and the cold wind outside sent shivers down the spine.

The light rain that had paused when they entered the venue had started again, drizzling gently, creating a sense of irritation.

Yan Qiuzhi had just reached the entrance when a staff member handed her a coat.

"Sister Yan, please put this on quickly."

Yan Qiuzhi complied, not willing to push her body too far, especially in this freezing temperature.

Shen Muqing took the opportunity to turn around and glanced at Chen Lunan. He was still walking at his own pace, showing no signs of hurry.

When someone greeted him, he’d stop and chat for a moment.

Shen Muqing sighed in her heart. Chen Lunan probably wasn't afraid of making his dear wife angry.

After Yan Qiuzhi finished putting on her coat, she headed straight toward the exit.

The nanny car was already waiting at the exit. As soon Yan Qiuzhi came out, she got in, followed by her assistant.

Shen Muqing watched her, struggling to find the right words to say.

Yan Qiuzhi turned to her and asked, "Should I have the driver take you home too?"

Shen Muqing shook her head, "No."

Yan Qiuzhi inquired, "Where are you going tonight?"

"Back to my apartment."

Shen Muqing looked at her and whispered, "Alright, then. I'll come visit you tomorrow."

Yan Qiuzhi smiled and agreed, "Okay."

Inside the car, it was particularly quiet. The assistant, Zhu Zhu, knew Chen Lunan, but she had no idea that he was Yan Qiuzhi's husband.

Yan Qiuzhi and Chen Lunan had a business marriage. Since they were both public figures, their wedding had been extremely low-key, with only close family and a few friends in the know. Others were completely unaware.

Zhu Zhu hadn't witnessed the scene earlier. She only noticed that Yan Qiuzhi seemed to be in a terrible mood.

"Sister Yan," Zhu Zhu spoke up.

"En?" Yan Qiuzhi looked at her.

Zhu Zhu gazed at her and tried to console her, "It's just a brand endorsement. We have plenty of others. Don't be upset."

Yan Qiuzhi, amused, raised an eyebrow and closed her eyes. "Do you believe your Sister Yan is someone who would upset over this?"

Zhu Zhu gasped, "Ah, then why are you in such a bad mood?"

Yan Qiuzhi smirked and said with her eyes closed, "I'm just really tired."

She had been very busy lately, and the jobs that Sister Meng had arranged for her had kept her constantly on the move. The lack of sleep had naturally worsened her temper.

Zhu Zhu understood her situation but was just about to speak when the driver suddenly exclaimed, "Miss Yan, there's a car following us closely from behind."

Yan Qiuzhi was taken aback and instinctively turned around. After seeing the familiar license plate, she squinted and said, "Oh, it's just a paparazzo. Ignore him."

Zhu Zhu: "..."

A paparazzo driving a Bentley?!

Upon arriving at the apartment building, Yan Qiuzhi briefly instructed the driver and Zhu Zhu and then walked straight inside.

The night air was cold, and she adjusted her coat, maintaining a bit of her dignity as a female celebrity by not rushing into the elevator.

Just as she reached the elevator area, her phone rang.

She took it out and glanced at it but pretended not to hear it, allowing the ringtone to play and then stop.

The moment her phone stopped ringing, the elevator arrived. Yan Qiuzhi pressed the button to go upstairs.

She lived on the 22nd floor. In this building, each apartment occupied an entire floor, offering a spacious and luxurious living space.

After entering her apartment, the annoying ringtone sounded again.

Yan Qiuzhi weighed her options and decided to answer before the caller hung up.

"What is it?"

Her voice was cold and indifferent.

Chen Lunan stood by his car, loosening his tie as he looked at the apartment building in the distance. His voice was deep and low as he said, "I'm at the entrance."

Yan Qiuzhi choked for a moment, feeling annoyed by Chen Lunan's attitude.

"Who are you?"

Chen Lunan, unperturbed by her arrogant tone, replied, "I just got off the plane today."

"Oh," Yan Qiuzhi responded coldly. "You just got off the plane and had time to get dressed and attend an event. Teacher Chen, you must have excellent stamina."

Chen Lunan sensed the sarcasm in her voice. Lowering his gaze, he remaining quiet for a moment before saying in a deliberate manner, "You should know best about my stamina."

"You—" Yan Qiuzhi was left speechless by his retort.

Could there really be such a shameless old rogue in this world?!

Seemingly impatient, Chen Lunan calmly added, "Never mind. You should rest early."

He wasn't insistent on entering the residential complex.

Yan Qiuzhi was speechless and closed her eyes, suppressing her anger, "Wait a moment."

She pursed her lips, "I'll make a call to the security."

She was willing to give him a way out, as she wasn't entirely unreasonable.

Chen Lunan smiled and didn't dwell on the fact that she had removed his name from the access list when he was abroad, preventing him from entering the complex.


Ten minutes later, Chen Lunan entered the apartment.

He glanced at her back, then averted his gaze elsewhere. Yan Qiuzhi hadn't put much effort into their marital home, but she had taken great care in decorating this apartment.

It looked warm and comfortable.

As soon as Yan Qiuzhi turned around, she saw him standing at the door. Her gaze was icy, "Teacher Chen, do you plan to announce our relationship to the whole world?"

Chen Lunan closed the door.

Yan Qiuzhi wasn't satisfied with his self-righteous attitude. She tidied up the messy clothes on the sofa and went straight to her room.

She had no intention of dealing with Chen Lunan. After entering her room, she picked out some pajamas and entered the bathroom.

The weather was too cold; only a bath could save her.

Surrounded by the steam, Yan Qiuzhi lay in the bathtub with her eyes closed. She felt like she was coming back to life.

She thought to herself that if Chen Lunan hadn't suddenly returned, there would have been a tall glass and a bottle of red wine by the bathtub right now.

As she was thinking, someone lightly knocked on the bathroom door.

Yan Qiuzhi suddenly opened her eyes, coming back to her senses, "What is it?"

A man's voice came from outside the door, "Do you want to eat something?"

Yan Qiuzhi was about to refuse when she suddenly remembered that she hadn't eaten dinner because she had dressed up for the event. She pursed her lips, letting go of her arrogance a bit, "I want a full-course meal."

Chen Lunan didn't respond and just left a remark, "Come out within half an hour."

Yan Qiuzhi was utterly exasperated. She felt that she and Chen Lunan were fundamentally incompatible. Why was it that every time she got angry, he acted so nonchalantly, as if everything she did was unreasonable?

When Yan Qiuzhi finally emerged after dawdling for another forty minutes, Chen Lunan's full-course meal was just being served on the table.

Looking at the two bowls of noodles on the table, Yan Qiuzhi turned to him and raised an eyebrow, "Did you go bankrupt?"

Chen Lunan glanced at her and said, "There's nothing in the fridge."

Yan Qiuzhi didn't feel guilty at all. "Oh, as a fairy, I don't need to eat, so of course, there's no food. Didn't you think of having someone deliver it?"

Ignoring her nonsense, Chen Lunan quietly ate his meal.

While eating, something under the table reached over from the other side.

Chen Lunan paused, lifting his eyelids to look at her.

Yan Qiuzhi seemed oblivious to the warning in his gaze. She continued her actions, using her toes to playfully hook onto his pant leg, slowly moving upwards...

Until she reached a point where his suit pants became too tight. Then she stopped.

At that very moment, Chen Lunan put down his chopsticks, placing them neatly beside his bowl. He calmly looked at her without revealing any emotions.

"Why did you stop?" he asked.

Yan Qiuzhi glared at him, quickly withdrew her foot, and sat cross-legged on the chair. Her demeanor was casual, devoid of any semblance of a wealthy heiress.

Chen Lunan had always known her true nature. In the beginning, when they first got married, Yan Qiuzhi was still quite gentle and virtuous, but over time, her true self had gradually emerged.

Yan Qiuzhi was someone who couldn't hold back her words. Although her marriage to Chen Lunan was devoid of any affection, she still felt obligated to adhere to the norms of marriage. While she didn't interfere with Chen Lunan's friendships and social life, she was quite annoyed by today's events.

"What did Guan He say to you?" Yan Qiuzhi asked bluntly.

Chen Lunan raised an eyebrow, finally understanding where her series of tantrums tonight had originated from.

"She said we acted in a movie together," he replied.

Upon hearing this, Yan Qiuzhi let out a sarcastic chuckle, "Is that all she said? What did you say?"

"I told her I didn't know her," Chen Lunan replied.

Yan Qiuzhi choked back her words and glared at him, "It's better that way. If you dare—"

"Dare what?" Chen Lunan interrupted her, lifting his eyelids to meet her gaze. His gaze was shallow and his amber eyes seemed to hold an intimidating presence.

Most people would be frightened, but not Yan Qiuzhi.

She hesitated for a moment, then continued, "If you dare to—"

Chen Lunan suddenly chuckled.

He looked at the person sitting across from him. Just now, she had just removed her makeup and washed her face. Her facial features were exquisite, her large almond-shaped eyes both innocent and enchanting. Her facial proportions made her appear both pure and seductive.

If she didn't put on makeup, she looked like a cute little white rabbit. With makeup, she can transform into a sly little fox. Yan Qiuzhi had always portrayed both sides exceptionally well.

If it weren't for her talent at switching between these personas, Chen Lunan wouldn't have discovered this other side of her only today.

Yan Qiuzhi was unsettled by Chen Lunan's laughter and gave him a sidelong glance, "What are you laughing at?"

Chen Lunan paused for a moment and then whispered, "Nothing."

Yan Qiuzhi decided that, since he was being honest, she wouldn't press him further about not informing her of his sudden return to the country.

After finishing the noodles, Yan Qiuzhi brushed her teeth, did her skincare routine, and went to bed.

When Chen Lunan emerged from the bathroom, Yan Qiuzhi was curled up in the blanket, holding her phone. She had a smile on her face, her lips curved, and her eyes seemed particularly enchanting.

Chen Lunan's gaze narrowed slightly, but he didn't show any reaction. He lifted the blanket and lay down. Yan Qiuzhi didn't seem to notice anything unusual as she continued chatting on her phone.

Suddenly, her hand trembled, and a man's voice came from her phone.

"Yan Yan, your look today was amazing, but unfortunately, I couldn't—"

Before the man could finish his sentence, Yan Qiuzhi hurriedly turned off her phone.

As soon as she turned it off, she met the dark, profound gaze of the man.

She instinctively tried to explain, but as soon as she opened her mouth, the man leaned over. Yan Qiuzhi's words were swallowed back, leaving her unable to utter a complete sentence.

Late into the night, in a drowsy state, she heard the man's hoarse voice asking her, "Did you have fun?"

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