Chapter 36: Island Purchasing
Translated by Shiya of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
Two years ago, when Li Sui first went to America, he learned about the charity organization through his school, the organization specialized in matching patients in need of an organ transplant with suitable donors. Although Li Sui knew that Lu Shang had already been searching for years and that most likely included from foreign countries, he still decided to hand in a request form. Even if it had but a one in a millionth chance, Li Sui didn’t want to let it go.
Unfortunately, it had been three years already, and the miracle Li Sui was hoping for had yet to make an appearance.
Li Sui pulled his luggage out, he saw the company car parked outside right after he stepped foot out of the airport. Li Sui opened the car door to find a familiar face at the driver’s seat.
“I arrived just last week.” Xiao Zhao’s attitude didn’t change at all even with Li Sui’s new status in the company, he was still treating Li Sui like he was his friend, Li Sui was quite glad about that. Xiao Zhao said, “Lu Lao Ban was going to come here himself, but things got really busy at his end, so he said he was going to send someone over, and I was worrying who’d that be.”
“I might have to rely on you for the upcoming weeks.”
Xiao Zhao waved his hand, “Don’t sweat it.”
After two years, the island had new changes. Li Sui didn’t go straight to the hotel, instead, he went to the construction site first. He walked once around the site, inspecting it, everything was familiar as he had been here before with Lu Shang. The Golden Sands Coast’s neighboring regions were developing as well, it was slowly developing into a tourist shopping district. The empty beach they visited before were now packed with tourists, anyone could make out that this plot of land was getting more and more valuable. Li Sui couldn’t even imagine how bustling this place would get when the construction of the theme park was over.
All of these had a lot to do with Lu Shang’s plans, he dealt with the related policies, then placed profit as bait. With both policies and profits working side by side, even the fishermen there followed in on the action, turning their village into something like a cultural village for the tourists to visit, Li Sui could see a few seafood wet markets there from afar.
The news of Li Sui arriving for an inspection reached every worker’s ear in no time, most of them had seen Li Sui before, but Li Sui was just a normal teenager following behind Lu Shang back then. Now that two years had passed, Li Sui suddenly became their boss. Though Lu Shang didn’t clearly announce their relationship, the fact that Lu Shang and Li Sui were living together, sleeping together, and basically doing everything together did reach most of their ears. Even without confirmation, rumors did spread amongst the workers like wildfire, so almost every worker knew about them.
At the beginning, everyone thought nothing of Li Sui. The workers thought that Li Sui would at most just stroll around the site, just to show that he did something to the other board members and managers. As such, none of the workers cared much about the inspection at first, but soon, all of them realized, Li Sui wasn’t just here for a stroll, he was taking over the project completely.
From the finance team to the construction team, Li Sui didn’t let anyone related to the project go, he did everything on the to-do-list Lu Shang gave him, finishing the takeover efficiently. Lu Shang had made a great start for Li Sui, the incident two years ago was still affecting the construction. Most of the workers were afraid of slacking off because of that reordering, there were also less corruption, so it was easier for Li Sui to takeover the project.
Obviously, Lu Shang had set a sturdy foundation for Li Sui, as for how the project will turn out, that depended solely on Li Sui.
Once Li Sui began working, he found himself so engrossed in it that he forgot the time. At night, Li Sui finally snapped out of working, he then noticed a missed call on his mobile phone, it was from Lu Shang, so he immediately dialed back.
The call was picked up after just two beeps. Lu Shang sounded like he was sleeping, in his voice was slothfulness from someone who hadn’t woken up fully yet, “Are you still busy working?”
“I just got off work.” Li Sui turned his computer off, packing his things and getting ready to leave the company, “Were you sleeping?”
“Hmn. I got nothing else to do.” Lu Shang must had made a turn on the other end of the phone, Li Sui could hear the fabrics rustling through the speaker. He felt itchiness in his heart as he heard the sound, he could almost feel the warmth coming out from under the blanket when Lu Shang turned, as if he could just pull Lu Shang into his embrace right now.
“Lu Shang.” Li Sui walked out of the building. On the roads were cars passing by at high speed, and on the streets were pedestrians, some were chatting happily. Li Sui stopped walking as he looked up at the sky, giving a soft laugh, “I’m beginning to miss you.”
The person on the other end of the call laughed a little as well, a lovely voice reached Li Sui’s ear, “How are you missing me, can you be more specific?”
“I want to…… pull you into my arms, hugging you by the waist.” Li Sui whispered close to his phone, “Kissing your eyes, nose, and mouth……”
“Then, delving my hands into your clothes.” Li Sui continued with a smile, “Caressing your skin from your shoulders to your chest, inch by inch, then to your abdomen……”
Lu Shang’s low laughter came from the other end of the phone, “Hmn.”
“Then, holding it…… stroking it back and forth…… gently……”
The voice on the other end of the phone changed, his laughter wasn’t steady either, Li Sui could hear soft moans mixed in it.
“Press on the tip, then let go again.” Li Sui said with a slightly hoarse voice. Li Sui lifted his head to see a café, he went in without any hesitation.
“Did that feel good?”
“Hmn……” Lu Shang was panting a lot now, “Can… go a little faster.”
“Then with two hands…” Li Sui pushed open the Café door and went straight to the restroom, “Relax your body…… Don’t stop……”
The moans became a little more distant from the phone, Lu Shang must had put the phone down. Li Sui closed the bathroom door, he glanced at his lower body, feeling his disordered breaths.
“Lu Shang, give me your hand.” Li Sui said, “Shall we go together?”
“… Here you go.” Lu Shang said with difficulty.
Li Sui closed his eyes, trying to paint the image of Lu Shang in his mind as his hands began moving as well.
Some Jazz music was playing through the speaker above, today just happened to be in the middle of the month, so the moonlight outside the window was bright and round, there were no clouds. The moonlight sprinkled onto the floor without any hindrances, as if a layer of frost was covering the floor.
Li Sui was gasping as well. It turned silent on the other end of the phone after a light whimper. Li Sui asked, “Lu Shang, have you fallen asleep?”
There was only regular breathing at that end, the sound was really faint.
Li Sui kissed the speaker on his phone and said softly, “Good night.”
Li Sui hung up the phone, then looked below at his still hard bulge, he sighed a little.
After washing his hands, he walked out of the toilet, passing the bar. A waiter glanced at him, most likely thinking Li Sui was just here to use the toilet. Feeling a little bad for that, Li Sui walked over and bought a cup of American coffee. Li Sui packed the coffee away and headed back for OT.
Li Sui was pretty sure he couldn’t hold on for an entire month, so he must hurry, quickly finishing all his work here and head back as soon as possible.
Benefitted from his experiences of helping Lu Shang with his work documents before, Li Sui got on track with his work very quickly. Li Sui knew Lu Shang’s working habits very well, when people bring him documents Lu Shang wrote, it only took him a few glances and he’d understand them fully. That saved Li Sui a lot of trouble and time.
It was only after beginning work, did Li Sui understood the importance of going to school for education. A lot of problems could be hidden in the little details, it was only because he had learned about these already that he could discern the problems and avoid getting deceived. No wonder Lu Shang was so adamant about making him attend school, it was only after people learn could their eyes broaden. When a person had a broader view, he’d see things more clearly and see ahead more accurately. Apart from that, it was more convincing to manage his employees when Li Sui had a higher education qualification.
After two weeks, Li Sui was already accustomed to the environment on the island. Today, he went to inspect the construction site with other managers. On the way, Li Sui chatted with a designer of the park.
“The scenery here at the Golden Sands Shore is really good, but I’m thinking, how great would it be, if we could get that TaoYuan Island (i) too. I mean just the notion of going out to sea for a treasure hunt would attract so many tourists.”
T/N: (i) TaoYuan Island (桃源島). Literally, it means an island with peach blossoms everywhere. In tales, it refers to somewhat of a hidden paradise, kind of the western equivalent of utopia or Atlantis. TaoYuan usually refers to a more modest kind of paradise though, it was described in the literature as a place hidden amongst peach trees with friendly farmers who lead a simple life.
On a side note, remember poor Wong Wai? The poet, Wong Wai wrote a pretty famous poem about TaoYuan as well.
“TaoYuan Island?” Li Sui asked.
“Oh, I’m talking about the deserted island 30 km away from here, the island’s contract and management rights are up for sale. Some rich people bought it before, planning to build an experiment laboratory there, but before they finished everything, the company went bankrupt. After that the island went to a few other people’s hands but didn’t stay. So in short, it’s still up for grabs right now.”
Li Sui went silent, he remembered hearing Liu XingMing talk about the island with Lu Shang a few years back. Li Sui remembered that they were going to inspect the island, but at the end they didn’t go due to the storm. Now that the designer mentioned it, Li Sui found himself a little curious about the island, “Can we go there and have a look?”
“Sure. There will be ships going there tomorrow morning, I can go with you.”
The next day, Li Sui arrived on the island with a few examiners from the company. The island wasn’t big, but the environment was really good. In the middle of the island, there was a manmade river, and the riverbanks had rows of tropical trees planted. Beside those were the basic structures of two buildings, they were most likely the remains of the laboratory and a villa.
They looked around the island on their own for a bit before the land broker ran towards them, “Sorry, sorry, I was late. There was another client here to see the island earlier today, I am really sorry for the delay.”
“So, this place is a really heated item?” Li Sui said.
The broker wiped the sweat off his head, “I wish. There are a lot of visitors, but the people who can actually afford it……” The broker made a zero with his fingers, “This many.”
“Is it very expensive?” Li Sui asked.
The broker giggled a little, then he told Li Sui a price, Li Sui’s expression shifted a little, “Wow, this price is a little ludicrous, don’t you think?”
“No, no, no. This price isn’t just for the island, it includes the surrounding marine resources, the contract period is also very long, so it’s actually worth it. However, normal people really can’t afford it, while those who could afford it didn’t want to face the risks.”
Li Sui found it a shame, this place was really beautiful. The temperature on the island was nice too, there was no winter here, that would be perfect for Lu Shang who was bad with winter, Lu Shang also liked fishing. If Li Sui could buy the island, he’d build a villa here, maybe plant some flowers too. Then every day, Lu Shang and him could just take naps and go fishing together, when they had nothing to do, they could also go stroll beside the river and go out to look at the sea, how lovely would that be?
As Li Sui was dreaming about that, the broker got a phone call. The broker jumped up ecstatically after hearing something from the phone, he screamed, “What? He’s going to buy it!?”
Everyone was confused, the broker ended the call, then held Li Sui’s hand, “You are my lucky charm, sir! This island has been wasting here for more than two years already. Today, it’s finally sold.”
Li Sui asked, “Who is buying the island?”
The broker said, “It’s the Big Lao Ban who came on the island earlier. Come, come, I will bring you to him.”
Under the influence of curiosity, Li Sui followed the broker to the villa. The door opened, and Li Sui saw the “Big Lao Ban” the broker spoke of. The two stared at each other, then they basically said at the same time, “You again?”
SiMa JingRong’s brain froze a bit, then smiled, putting his hand on Li Sui’s shoulder. Introducing Li Sui to the broker, he said, “This is my bro, we’ve gone through life and death together!”
“What are you doing here?” Li Sui asked.
“To buy an island of course. My dad gave me some money, I didn’t know where to spend it, but I just want to buy something. So, I was here to do some snorkeling and I saw that there’s an island on sale here, so I thought, why not buy it?”
Seriously though, why were some people born with a silver spoon in their mouth? Li Sui sighed, then asked, “You are just spending money like this? Does your father know?”
“He doesn’t care about me, he only care about my little brother.”
Li Sui noticed, SiMa JingRong didn’t call SiMa Yan by his name anymore, he called him as his “little brother”.
“So, what are you going to use the island for?” Li Sui asked.
SiMa JingRong rubbed his hands together in thought, he said, “I don’t know, haven’t thought about it yet. Maybe renting it to someone?”
SiMa JingRong saw Li Sui’s complicated face, he asked, “What? Do you have any suggestions?”
“Yes.” Li Sui said, “I suggest you renting it to me.”
After hearing that, SiMa JingRong slapped Li Sui’s shoulders and said, “Great idea!”
“I will pay for it, you will do all the work. If you get a profit, we can share them, awesome!” The more SiMa JingRong thought about it, the better he felt about this whole idea, “I don’t have to worry about anything, and you don’t have to worry about money, this is two birds with one stone!”
Li Sui was just joking at first, he never thought SiMa JingRong would get so serious about it, he didn’t really know what to reply at that moment. SiMa JingRong stood beside Li Sui, then basically made a decision for him, not letting him off the hook. SiMa JingRong called the broker over, “So, it’s decided. Mr. broker, let’s sign the contract, it’d be easier for me to pay.”
SiMa JingRong’s excitedness still hadn’t gone down after they got off the island, he kept rambling on. The price was truly high, but to the SiMa family it wasn’t really all that much, but Li Sui just couldn’t shake off the feeling that SiMa JingRong bought the island because of his words. He felt a little guilty about that, so he said seriously, “I will rent it from you for now, paying you the rent annually. After two years, when the constructions are done, you can evaluate the price of the island again and I will buy it from you.”
“Don’t be a stranger.” SiMa JingRong said being confused, “You are Mu Sheng’s shareholder too, just your annual dividend last year should be more than this little bit of money.”
If it wasn’t for what SiMa JingRong said, he would have completely forgotten about the shares he had in Mu Sheng. Lu Shang bought those shares in Li Sui’s name two years ago, Lu Shang never told Li Sui about the dividend, but if that was what Lu Shang decided, then Li Sui won’t question it.
“Well, then thank you.” Li Sui said.
Since the two of them happened to run into each other, they went for hot pot together at the afternoon. SiMa JingRong ordered lamb meat, when the pot and the meat were brought in, Li Sui froze, he remembered that Lu Shang liked eating this a lot too.
“I’ve had too much seafood these days, I’m so fed up with them.” SiMa JingRong reached for the sauce plate, then said, “What are you spacing out for, how could you space out even when there’s food?”
Li Sui snapped back, he stared at the sauce plate SiMa JingRong was holding and asked, “How do you eat that? It’s all chili peppers.”
“What do you mean ‘how’. Food is only tasty with chili peppers, I’m not eating anything without chili peppers.” SiMa JingRong poured the lamb meat into the hotpot, then laughed, “Say, wasn’t our first fight about sauces too?”
Talking about the past, Li Sui sighed a little, “Back then, I thought Lu Shang didn’t like spicy food, but now I know that he just can’t eat them.”
“Oh?” Speaking of Lu Shang, SiMa JingRong remembered, “What happened to you guys after that? Did you do as I said?”
A smile surfaced on Li Sui’s face, he nodded, “I gave him a fishing rod, he likes it a lot, couldn’t even get him to let go of it.”
“Hehe, see, I’m right.” SiMa JingRong hit his own chest, boasting himself, “How about that. Your bro is great, right?”
Li Sui only smiled, only he knew that Lu Shang didn’t forgive him for a fishing rod, Lu Shang had never been angry at him in the first place.
While the two were eating, Li Sui got a call, it was from Uncle Yuen. Seeing the caller’s ID, Li Sui immediately had a very bad feeling.
“Uncle Yuen?” Li Sui walked to a quieter area, then asked, “Did something happen to Lu Shang?”
“No, not him.” Uncle Yuen continued, “It’s Zuo Chao.”
“Yes, today, Zuo Chao brought some men over to the port trading area to get a fixed car back. They happened to meet Liu XinTian’s people and they got into a fight. That side called the police, Zuo Chao was too angry and he refused to go peacefully into police custody. So, the police had to forcefully bring him in, he’s in holding right now.” Uncle Yuen continued after a short pause, “Mr. Lu should be taking a nap right now, I’ve just called him but he didn’t pick up. You are familiar with Zuo Chao as well, so I wanted to ask for your opinion first.”
“What did lawyer Xe said?” Li Sui asked.
“He went to negotiate immediately, but as they say, ‘even a strong dragon can’t deal with a snake that’s in its own turf’. This might be really hard to deal with, Liu XinTian is waiting for a chance like this for a long time already, there’s no way he’s going to let this go easily.” Uncle Yuen said.
“Wait, isn’t the port trading area one of the Lu family’s turf?”
Uncle Yuen froze for a bit, then said, “Emm, yes… It was our turf before, but Mr. Lu gave it to Liu XinTian.”
Li Sui could hear the changes in Uncle Yuen’s tone, what happened two years ago came to mind, it was the day when Li Sui went to find Li Yan. Li Sui remembered Lu Shang saying something about that, his heart shook, “It is… because of what I did.”
Li Sui didn’t use a questioning tone, and Uncle Yuen didn’t deny it either, he just said, “Zuo Chao was used to being the boss there, he naturally didn’t like the idea of it suddenly becoming someone else’s turf. The most important thing now is that he has a history of offenses, though he never did anything too serious, he did hurt a lot of people in his underground boxing days. If he goes under trial, then he will probably have to stay in jail for a long time.”
This problem was truly hard to deal with, Liu XinTian wouldn’t just lash out on Zuo Chao for no reason at all. This was obviously planned, as everyone knew that Zuo Chao was working for Lu Shang, Liu XinTian did this hoping to cut off Lu Shang’s claws. Liu XinTian was a powerhouse, not someone Li Sui could easily take on. Moreover, just like Lu Shang, Liu XinTian was Tong Yan’s shareholder, his family history was quite similar to the Lu family’s, so a lot of their acquaintances overlapped. In short, this whole incident was a tug-of-war between the two families’ strength.
Li Sui contemplated for a while, then said, “I will handle the loose ends here, then I’ll immediately fly back. I’ll be back at around nine tonight.”
“Do I need to tell Mr. Lu about this first?”
Li Sui thought for a bit, he probably couldn’t keep this under the rugs anyways. Moreover, with the human resources Li Sui had now, he just couldn’t win against Liu XinTian, at least not yet. At the end of the day, he needed the Lu family’s name if he wanted to deal with this.
“Tell him, but also tell him not to worry and that I’m dealing with it.” Li Sui said.