Perhaps it was to express gratitude for that delicious bowl of stir-fried noodles or because Yan Qiuzhi was enticed by Chen Lunan's face and physique, she didn't refuse him.
In this matter, the two of them unexpectedly had great chemistry, surprisingly fitting together.
Only at moments like this would Yan Qiuzhi have an illusion that they were a truly affectionate couple.
However, Yan Qiuzhi didn't expect that Chen Lunan was really going all out today, even remembering her words.
When she was exhausted from the life and death torment, the man leaned close to her ear, breathed into it, and hoarsely asked, "Who is more useful?"
Yan Qiuzhi felt his actions, her toes curled up, face blushing, like a rose waiting to bloom, charming and dripping with allure.
She bit her lip, raised her eyes, and stared at him.
Chen Lunan, more patient in such matters than usual, didn't rush. He waited for Yan Qiuzhi's response.
"En?" He raised his intonation at the end, especially enticing.
Unable to resist, Yan Qiuzhi could only admit defeat, "You... you are more useful... ah... you are more useful than the netizens..."
Whether it was Yan Qiuzhi's words that stimulated him or something else, on this night, Chen Lunan showcased his usefulness in various ways, earning Yan Qiuzhi's acknowledgement and appreciation.
Afterward, Yan Qiuzhi thought that her current arrangement with Chen Lunan wasn't bad.
Each taking what they needed; although there wasn't much emotion, there was someone to help when faced with difficulties. She wasn't alone, which was quite good.
The next day, waking up, Yan Qiuzhi was surprised that Chen Lunan was still there.
Turning her head to look at the man sleeping beside her, she was especially astonished. According to the normal routine, Chen Lunan was not someone who would linger in bed.
Staring for a couple of seconds, Yan Qiuzhi couldn't help but marvel at how Chen Lunan seemed to be blessed by heaven. Not only did he have good looks, but as a nearly thirty-year-old man, his skin was remarkably good, with pores not very noticeable, appearing exceptionally clean and delicate.
Just as she was gazing, Chen Lunan's eyelids moved.
Feeling guilty, Yan Qiuzhi was about to close her eyes, but the two pairs of eyes unexpectedly met.
Chen Lunan's pupils were shallow, lacking the turbulent passion in his eyes at the moment, looking much more normal and composed. This prevented Yan Qiuzhi from sinking in for a second.
She blinked her eyes, pre-emptively asking, "Do you have work today?"
Chen Lunan fixed his gaze on her for a moment and whispered, "Have to go to the company."
He pulled back the covers, turning to look at her, "We're going back to the Chen family home in the evening."
Just as Yan Qiuzhi was about to refuse, Chen Lunan had already entered the bathroom.
Feeling defeated, she scratched her head, took a deep breath, and thought about how to find a plausible reason later. While contemplating, her bedside phone vibrated.
Yan Qiuzhi picked it up and froze.
It was a message from Chen Lunan's mother, inquiring about their plans for dinner and showing a bit of concern. She was probably afraid that Chen Lunan might change his mind.
After contemplating for a while, she sent a confirmation message to Chen Lunan's mother.
Yan Qiuzhi: 【Mom, we'll be back tonight. Auntie can cook anything; Chen Lunan's taste hasn't changed.】
Mother Chen: 【What about you, Yan Yan? What do you want to eat tonight?】
Yan Qiuzhi smiled and typed: 【As long as it's made by Auntie, Yan Yan likes it.】
After putting down the phone, Yan Qiuzhi turned to look out the window. It had rained at some point last night, and the sky outside seemed to have been freshly washed, appearing exceptionally bright.
It looked particularly clean.
Yan Qiuzhi lazily lingered in bed for a while before getting up. By the time she came downstairs after freshening up, the elusive housekeeper had already prepared breakfast for the two and set it on the table.
Both she and Chen Lunan didn't like the feeling of having a servant around. Normally, when Chen Lunan instructed the housekeeper, she would come over to cook for the two and then leave.
The two silently ate breakfast, as if the romantic night before hadn't happened.
Yan Qiuzhi ate slowly. By the time she came back to her senses, Chen Lunan had finished eating and gone upstairs to change.
When he came down again, the man was dressed impeccably, exuding a restrained arrogance.
Unexpectedly, Yan Qiuzhi raised her eyes and asked, "Which company are you going to?"
Chen Lunan glanced at her and replied softly, "Chengsheng."
Yan Qiuzhi stared at him in surprise for a while, unable to utter a single word. In the end, she could only numbly nod, indicating her understanding.
Chengsheng Group was a place Chen Lunan rarely visited. He had no interest in inheriting the family business and even felt some aversion to it.
As for the reasons, Yan Qiuzhi was only partially aware, and the details remained unclear.
In any case, one thing she knew was that one of the conditions for Chen Lunan to marry her was to break away from inheriting the family business.
While she was thinking about it, Chen Lunan had already put on his shoes and gone out.
She took a glance and found that the car coming to pick him up wasn't the usual nanny car. It seemed like he had some important matters to attend to at the company.
Yan Qiuzhi was curious for a while but didn't dwell on it too much. Where Chen Lunan liked to go had little to do with her.
After breakfast, Yan Qiuzhi did a yoga routine at home and casually checked the online activity. The online feud between her and Guan He's fans was still ongoing, with neither side yielding to the other.
In the afternoon, she received a message from Zhu Zhu.
Zhu Zhu: 【Yan Yan, the situation on the set had almost been resolved. I received your script arrangement today.】
Yan Qiuzhi: 【When do we start?】
Zhu Zhu: 【How about tomorrow?】
Yan Qiuzhi pondered for a moment and readily agreed: 【Sure, come pick me up tomorrow.】
Zhu Zhu: 【Okay.】
With the filming schedule set, Yan Qiuzhi felt much happier. Facing Chen Lunan at home was making her feel suffocated.
Thinking about it, Yan Qiuzhi sent a message to Shen Muqing: 【Shopping?】
Shen Muqing: 【......】
Yan Qiuzhi: 【I'll be going to the set tomorrow. Are you coming or not?】
Shen Muqing: 【Sure.】
The two quickly agreed, and an hour later, they met at the mall.
Shen Muqing looked at Yan Qiuzhi in speechlessness, "Why do you always want to go shopping when you have free time? When did you develop this habit?"
Yan Qiuzhi adjusted her sunglasses, revealing a small nose bridge and bright red lips. She responded coolly, "Developed it after having money."
Shen Muqing: "......"
Yan Qiuzhi chuckled lightly and joked, "Mainly, I face too much mental pressure from Chen Lunan at home and need to vent through shopping."
Shen Muqing also chuckled, "You could just say you need to spend some of Chen Lunan's money to vent."
Yan Qiuzhi touched her nose and justified, "I'm his wife. Shouldn't I spend his money?"
Shen Muqing had no counterargument to that.
After wandering around for a while, the two also caught up on some gossip.
Shen Muqing nudged Yan Qiuzhi's arm and asked in a low voice, "Hasn't your manager found you better endorsements?"
Yan Qiuzhi glanced at her from behind her sunglasses, "Endorsements also depend on opportunities."
Shen Muqing agreed, "True."
"Don't mention this sad matter," Yan Qiuzhi said. "The endorsement fee couldn't even cover my day's entertainment. Don't worry about it."
In the end, Yan Qiuzhi not only bought things for herself but also brought gifts for Chen Lunan's parents.
She played the role of a considerate and understanding daughter-in-law to the extreme.
However, contrary to her wishes, right after Yan Qiuzhi and Shen Muqing finished shopping, Chen Lunan called and told her that plans to go back to the Chen family home had been canceled.
Shen Muqing looked at Yan Qiuzhi's expression and asked cautiously, "What's wrong?"
Yan Qiuzhi furrowed her brows and replied, "Chen Lunan said he has something urgent at work. So, we are not going back to the Chen family home."
The two looked at each other, and Shen Muqing asked softly, "What urgent matter is it?"
Yan Qiuzhi glanced at her and said, "He didn't say."
Shen Muqing choked, staring at her wide-eyed, "If he doesn't say, you don't ask?"
Yan Qiuzhi shrugged, "There's nothing worth asking."
Shen Muqing: "......"
The plastic husband-and-wife relationship between the two seemed to be unbreakable.
Yan Qiuzhi indeed didn't care much about not returning to the Chen family home tonight.
However, thinking about the pile of gifts she had just bought, Yan Qiuzhi contemplated for a moment and decided to call the driver to send them back. She also took the initiative to apologize to Mother Chen over the phone.
Being graceful, generous, and a thoughtful daughter-in-law, she had always played the role well.
That night, Chen Lunan didn't come back, but he sent Yan Qiuzhi his location through a message to let her know where he was.
Yan Qiuzhi glanced at it and then locked her phone. She wasn't particularly curious about Chen Lunan's itinerary.
Early the next morning, Yan Qiuzhi appeared at the airport. She was heading to City X.
The shooting of the TV drama she had been working on recently had been going smoothly. Although it was a TV drama, the script was good, and with a good director, everything was going well.
Yan Qiuzhi liked it very much.
As soon as she arrived, the other two actors on set greeted her warmly, "Qiuzhi is back."
Yan Qiuzhi curved her lips as she looked at the two, "Thank you."
Both actors smiled and said, "No trouble at all, we've been waiting for you."
Yan Qiuzhi raised her eyebrows, "Great."
The crew members were also familiar with her and welcomed Yan Qiuzhi after exchanging greetings.
As it was time for the lunch break, there was no formal filming taking place.
Yan Qiuzhi had Zhu Zhu distribute the gifts she had brought. Just after they finished distributing the gifts, a familiar voice came from the side.
"Don't I get one?"
Yan Qiuzhi raised her eyes and saw the director of this TV drama, Lin Jing, "Director Lin, what do you want?"
Lin Jing was wearing a wrinkled black down jacket, looking a bit disheveled but also exuding a unique charm.
He glanced at Yan Qiuzhi and casually said, "After taking a few days off, your complexion is looking pretty good."
Hearing this, Yan Qiuzhi felt that the words were somewhat familiar.
It seemed like someone had said something similar to her a couple of days ago. Thinking about it, she subconsciously touched her cheek, "Really?"
Lin Jing nodded slightly, "Have you read the modified script?"
Yan Qiuzhi smiled, "Of course."
The two faced each other in silence for a while, then Lin Jing suddenly asked, "What's going on between you and Guan He?"
Yan Qiuzhi raised an eyebrow, teasingly looking at him, "Director Lin also cares about this kind of gossip?"
Lin Jing replied in a calm tone, "Just a casual question."
Yan Qiuzhi understood and didn't say much. "It's just a normal competitive relationship between female artists."
She didn't want to elaborate, and Lin Jing didn't press for more information.
Lin Jing's gaze lingered on Yan Qiuzhi's face for a moment before slowly shifting away.
In the afternoon, Yan Qiuzhi started her filming for the TV drama.
She had a strong interest in acting. And she was especially fond of this role, which she had fought hard to secure.
Lin Jing, during the filming, was stricter than usual, demanding exceptionally high standards.
Coming back from a break after a few days, Yan Qiuzhi was feeling a bit out of sync and was scolded several times by Lin Jing before barely meeting the standards.
After shooting two scenes, Zhu Zhu brought a thermos and some clothes to Yan Qiuzhi. She couldn't help but mutter softly, "Why is Director Lin so harsh?"
Yan Qiuzhi smiled at her and whispered, "It's because of my poor performance."
Zhu Zhu was unconvinced, "Clearly, you did well. It's just that Director Lin has extremely high demands."
Yan Qiuzhi pinched her cheek, "A director has to take responsibility for his work. Just think of it that way."
Despite the explanation, Zhu Zhu still couldn't stand seeing her Sister Yan Yan scolded.
Watching Lin Jing, who was directing a scene not far away, Zhu Zhu muttered in her heart; with his temper, he probably wouldn't catch up with the person he likes in his entire life.
Over the next two days, Yan Qiuzhi and Chen Lunan had little contact. After learning that she had returned to the set for filming, Chen Lunan sent a Be safe message and hadn't contacted her since.
At eight o'clock that night, just as Yan Qiuzhi returned to the hotel, she was bombarded with messages from Shen Muqing and others, informing her that Guan He had secured the endorsement for the brand they had recently competed for.
For a while, Guan He's fans were delighted, and the first target for their attacks was Yan Qiuzhi.
There was too much competition among female celebrities, especially those in similar genres.
This time, Guan He's fans seemed to have gone crazy, subtly ridiculing Yan Qiuzhi on Weibo, exerting pressure on her.
Yan Qiuzhi looked at these online messages; to say that it didn't affect her would be untrue.
The key point was that Guan He posted a new Weibo with a subtle implication — with effort, there will be rewards, and in the future, she will be even more dedicated. She also thanked her fans for their support.
Yan Qiuzhi was staring blankly at the trending topics when her phone vibrated. It was a message from Guan He.
Yan Qiuzhi raised an eyebrow as she looked at Guan He's text for two seconds and wondered why she hadn't blocked Guan He yet. While contemplating this, her fingers acted automatically and directly added her to the blacklist.
Out of sight, out of mind.
After blocking her, Yan Qiuzhi still felt quite upset. When had she ever suffered such grievances? But asking Chen Lunan for help was not something she was willing to do; she had her own stubbornness and pride.
Speak of the devil, and the devil's call came in.
Yan Qiuzhi hesitated for a moment but decided to answer.
Listening to her somewhat sulky tone, Chen Lunan asked in a low voice, "Where are you staying?"
Chen Lunan repeated patiently, "Which hotel are you staying at?"
Yan Qiuzhi was stunned for a moment, then immediately got up from the bed, "Are you in City X?"
Yan Qiuzhi opened her mouth wide, it took a while before she managed to say, "If you're here, you're here. Why are you asking about where I'm staying? Do you want to stay with me?"
She muttered to herself, "It's not very appropriate."
Disregarding her refusal, Chen Lunan said indifferently, "Mom has something for me to give you."
"Give it to me tomorrow. I don't want to go down now."
Chen Lunan shifted his gaze to the window, looking at the passing unfamiliar scenery, and said in a low voice, "I'm going up then."