Assistant Architect by Xi He Qing Ling
Chapter 147: Chess
Why is it complicated? Is she the daughter of the mayor!? Waiting for his explanation, Zhang Siyi stared at Gu Yu intently.
After walking into the kitchen, Gu Yu opened the refrigerator and rummage through the shelves for ingredients for dinner. As he removed them from the refrigerator, Gu Yu explained: “The Chief’s wife’s brother is Yanyan’s cousin’s father. He is one of the Chief Directors from X Firm and he is one of the major shareholders of Borderless.
Zhang Siyi dumbly said: “So her father’s status is higher than our Chief Director?”
Tearing a head of cabbage, Gu Yu plainly stated: “Yes”
The Chief Director in a company is either elected or appointed by the board of directors. As the design director, Gu Yu is only the head of the design department. The hierarchy in the food chain is very obvious. Yanyan’s cousin’s father has the power to decide which candidates to appoint and thus, the career path of Gu Yu.
Yes, it would be the way to secure his professional future. Academic, professional, and work experience are earned on their own, but positions do not necessarily rise as their abilities improve.
In China’s environment, in addition to the academic qualifications in the construction industry, titles are given based on the depth of seniority by the number of years working in the industry. Even if a person has a higher academic background and is talented, there is a limit to the position they could obtain based on the number of years worked.
Although Gu Yu’s qualifications are sufficient, it is extremely rare to be able to sit in the position of a design director at his age. Therefore, his connections are the leading factor for Gu Yu current position.
As the title design director is the limit for a technical worker, Gu Yu has already reached the top. The privilege that Yanyan’s cousin’s father could give Gu Yu is limitless. He could pave the way for Gu Yu to directly break through the limitations of his degree and move into the direction of management which would lead him towards a higher social status.
Obviously, the appearance of Yanyan’s cousin provides an opportunity for Gu Yu to move forward.
So, why is there trouble? Was Gu Yu aiming for a future in management? Does he find the opportunity too tempting to reject? Or, is there a swing in his heart?
Zhang Siyi asked awkwardly: “What do you think?”
Finishing with the cabbage preparations, Gu Yu grabbed a slab of pork and chucked: “I am neither interested in her or in a position of management. What is there to think about?”
Zhang Siyi breathed a sigh of relief and said: “Then, what “trouble” were you talking about earlier?”
After cutting up the meat, Gu Yu was slicing a large onion and gave Zhang Siyi garlic to peel when he replied: “I can tell the director wanted to introduce me as a marriageable prospect. In the past, I might have gone to his home for a casual family dinner. When I saw the extended family present, I knew it was something more as outsiders aren’t normally present for family banquets. It was clear that the Chief wanted me to get acquainted with Yanyan’s cousin. There is no way I was invited there to befriend the chairman, right? I said it was troublesome because I could have refused outright if the invitation was given in the name of a blind date, but he used the guise of a family dinner to go to his house. Although his intentions were clear, nothing was said.”
Gu Yu frowned when he spoke. In addition, even if the opportunity was presented to him and he rashly refused, there was nothing he could show or prove outwardly that he was already in a relationship. As a result, it would have been very embarrassing for both himself and the Chief. Gu Yu felt really depressed.
Listening to Gu Yu, Zhang Siyi was also feeling depressed. He wasn’t displeased with Gu Yu’s honesty and in fact, he was rather relieved by his frankness. It was because his lover was so blatantly coveted by other people!
….. Damn it! If he bumps into the Chief, he isn’t going to greet him anymore!
Zhang Siyi handed the peeled garlic to Gu, and asked: “What did you do this afternoon?”
Thinking how uninteresting the afternoon was, Gu Yu plainly stated what he did: “Drink tea, watch financial news, and play chess.”
Zhang Siyi: “……” Why does it sound like an afternoon activity plan for the elderly?” (=_=)
Zhang Siyi: “Who were you with? Yanyan’s cousin?”
Thinking outloud, Gu Yu voiced a ‘hmm’ then proceeded to put oil in the pan. After he explained: “The elders left to play cards in the afternoon so myself and the two girls remained. We made some small-talk for a little while. Since Yanyan was an art major, there were some common points and professional things to talk about. Later, her boyfriend called to have a video chat so she left the room leaving me alone with her cousin.”
As he poured the sliced pork and cabbage into the hot pan, a loud ‘sizzle’ could be heard. Gu Yu immediately started mixing the food in the pan and when the sound was a little less noisy, he continued: “The girl was very quiet. For most of the day she remained silent.”
Recalling the afternoon scene, Gu Yu scowled. The girl didn’t speak and in fear of giving her false impressions, he couldn’t find any suitable topics to discuss. Given the situation, he didn’t want her to misunderstand his intentions. As a result, they sat in the living room together watching the financial news while drinking tea in silence.
Fortunately, the chess board on the table helped break the ice. She asked him if he would like to play.
Gu Yu looked down at the pan: “I played with her while listening to the financial news for a few hours. She never won.” Since he was too distressed about the situation he was placed in, he didn’t give her an inch. In one game, he beat her in less than ten moves.
As he heard Gu Yu speak, Zhang Siyi saw a flash of pleasure at being able to bully her. Zhang Siyi laughed at Gu Yu’s childish expression and the moment was no longer uncomfortable: “So, you must be good at playing chess.”
Gu Yu put on the lid on the pan to make the cabbage steam and said: “Clearly, her level is too low.”
Zhang Siyi saw the chess board that was upstairs but he never saw Gu Yu play. “When did you learn how to play chess?”
Gu Yu: “When I was in college, I learned from Lao Jiang. He can really play chess, both speed chess and regular chess. When he was in elementary school, he won many amateur stages and developed an Elo score which is equivalent to the first stage of going Pro. The real child prodigy.”
Zhang Siyi: “I only play backgammon……” Why is the gap between people so large?
Gu Yu: “Do you want to learn? I can teach you.”
At the prospect of learning with Gu Yu, Zhang Siyi joyously responded: “Ok!”
Watching Gu Yu gently pour the cooked pork and cabbage into a serving dish, he asked: “What’s next? Will the Chief Director ask you to go to dinner again?”
Gu Yu grinned knowingly and said: “Yanyan’s cousin added my WeChat and what photo did I post there? When she sees it, she will understand the difficulty and retreat.”
Zhang Siyi was finally happy. When the girl saw the photo, she definitely wouldn’t continue dwelling on Gu Yu. Suddenly feeling nervous over whom might be looking at the photo, he asked: “Hey, did you add my parents to WeChat?”
Gu Yu: “No, why?”
Zhang Siyi sighed with relief: “Nothing. If you had, they will see that photo. Even though my mother isn’t the sharpest tack, I’m afraid if she saw the photo, she would guess the truth.”
In fact, Zhang Siyi feelings about the matter are somewhat contradictory. In the end, is he hoping his mother finds out or not? With her hobby of reading those-kinds-of-books, Zhang Siyi felt that she would more or less pick up on the facts, but his mother’s attitude towards Gu Yu was completely out of his expectations. From a practical standpoint, maybe all mothers do not think about the possibility that they have a gay son.
After Gu Yu took out the eggs from the fridge and handed them to Zhang Siyi to crack open, he grabbed a few more ingredients to make another dish. He continued: “Well, we will keep it hidden for now and when things stabilize, we can slowly open up. By the way, what do you think is the reason they are coming to visit for?”
Zhang Siyi quickly relayed what he said on the phone in the afternoon with his mother to Gu Yu.
Gu Yu: “You have been back to China for a year now. Haven’t they come to Haicheng to visit the city? Come on, I will take them around.”
Zhang Siyi: “You will show them around?”
Gu Yu: “Since you live with me now, I am sure to entertain them when they come over. What’s more, I’m your boyfriend and can’t pass up this opportunity to make a good, lasting impression for their future son-in-law.”
Zhang Siyi vomited: “My parents’ impression of you is already high enough. You don’t know it, but they are always boasting about you in front of me. When I think about, it seems like they rather have you as their own son!”
Zhang Siyi saw Gu Yu’s raised eyebrows and broad smile… feeling like he missed a detail. Wait, he suddenly reacted: “Why are you the son-in-law?”
Gu Yu turned his head sideways to glance at him: “Are you not with my surname, Gu Siyi?”
Zhang Siyi: “……”
Gu Yu swayed his head: “Didn’t you agree to follow me and take my name? So, Gu Siyi, since you are married, I am your parent’s son-in-law. Am I not? Hmm? “
With another mouthful of ‘Gu Siyi’, Zhang Siyi anxiously jumped on his foot and shouted: “That doesn’t count!”
With the last dish fully cooked, Gu Yu finally stopped teasing Zhang Siyi. He tenderly rubbed his lower back and commanded: “Okay, don’t make trouble. Bring the chopsticks and let’s eat.”
Zhang Siyi: “……” I am waiting for you, sir, from today forward, we must practice eloquence!
Before eating, Gu Yu suddenly took out his cell phone: “Wait, I want to take a picture.”
Since today’s dishes were quite common, Zhang Siyi thought it was a little strange for Gu Yu to take photos. Not only did he take a few pictures, but he also uploaded them to his circle of friends.
When Gu Yu finished, Zhang Siyi eagerly opened his mobile phone to see them: “What did you post? Is my network broken? Why can’t I see the pictures you posted?”
Gu Yu: “They aren’t visible to you.”
Caught by surprised, Zhang Siyi suddenly felt anxious and his tone reflected his hurt feelings: “What? Why?” Does Gu Yu still have a private WeChat that he isn’t privy too!?
From one corner of Gu Yu’s mouth, he smirked: “It is visible to Yanyan’s cousin.”
Immediately putting down his chopsticks, Zhang Siyi reached over and said: “Let me see!”
It took a bit of pestering before Gu Yu would unlock his phone and hand it to Zhang Siyi.
Zhang Siyi only saw the last visible message that Gu Yu posted to another group: “The happiest moment of the day: Eating a meal prepared by my wife.”
“Pfft…….!” Zhang Siyi couldn’t hold back the rice in his mouth.
“Well, now you saw it. Give it back to me.” With an expression of connivance on Gu Yu face, Zhang Siyi watched him turn pink, revealing a trace of school-girl like shyness.