Chapter 1: Interview — I wish you a happy birthday!
Today, Tang Mi had an interview; she was applying for the pastry chef position at a new restaurant that opened recently.
She carried the fresh fruit she just purchased back to her apartment. Her roommate, Fu Xin, had just gotten out of bed.
In regards to Fu Xin, they have known each other since first-grade elementary school. At that time, Tang Mi and Fu Xin would walk hand-in-hand to school every single day. Although they were neighbors who lived right next to each other, because the two of them were so similar in every single way, they had never been taught by their families the concept of ‘what is the neighbor’s child like?’
The two of them were each other’s angel for over ten years. Even though they had graduated college and begun working, they had crossed a river in the same boat1 and squeezed into a small, run-down apartment.
It was worth mentioning that Fu Xin’s gender was female.
If Fu Xin’s parents were asked why they gave their daughter such a masculine name, they would reply to you with an expression saying ‘of course’2, ‘because the father’s surname was Fu, and the mother’s surname was Xin.’
Luckily, Fu Xin’s mind was broad. When she was teased by her classmates for having a guy’s name, she would always retort, “Fortunately, I’m a girl. A male being called ‘Fu Xin’ would never be able to find a girlfriend their entire life.”3
This fact was later proven, as even though she was a girl, she also couldn’t find a boyfriend.
Since she was a child, each and every boy she liked——she didn’t snag a single one of them. As Tang Mi would say, she had perfected the ‘100% Rejected-when-Confessing’ skill.
…Growing up was always painful.
Tang Mi placed the strawberries in a salt-water solution to soak. She was beginning to make the cake required for the interview later today. Fu Xin washed her face and rinsed her mouth in the bathroom before walking to the kitchen to help Tang Mi by cheering her on. “Xiao Mi! Succeed or die trying! You know rent day is coming up!”4
Tang Mi viciously glared at her. “As I have said for seven years, whoever calls me Xiao Mi, I will bite to death!”
“I believe this line has already passed its expiration date.” Fu Xin easily snatched a strawberry and slipped the berry in her mouth. Her eyes closed in satisfaction, creasing in delight. “Sure enough, seasonal fruit is the tastiest!”
Tang Mi grabbed the ready-made flour dough and preheated the oven. She slapped Fu Xin’s hand when she had reached out to grab another strawberry. “Didn’t we have to hand in rent? Why aren’t you quickly going to work?”
Fu Xin picked up the plate of sliced bread Tang Mi had prepared from the table and walked over to sit down on the sofa. “Our magazine publisher’s base salary is extremely low. I’m not very passionate about my work. If the pay doesn’t increase, I plan on quitting.”
Tang Mi’s eyes widened. If she truly resigned, this house would have two unemployed people! “You absolutely must not be impulsive. As Father Alfred has said, ‘Work like you do not need money at all!’”
Fu Xin deftly rolled her eyes. “He also said, ‘Love like you’re still a virgin.’”
Tang Mi: “…”
He had never said it like that!
Tang Mi decided to ignore Fu Xin and wholeheartedly threw herself into baking the cake.
10:30AM. She arrived on time and sat in the interview room.
The Human Resources director of the company perused her CV while the restaurant manager examined her cake.
“Very beautiful exterior.” The restaurant manager’s brows lightly rose, her eyes displaying slight surprise. “The color arrangements complement each other, and the strawberries are also very plump. I like your peppermint leaf decorations on top.”
Tang Mi breathed a slight sigh of relief. This restaurant manager, who had a picky temperament concerning beauty, was very satisfied with the appearance. There shouldn’t be any big problems, right?
“I hope its taste is as remarkable as the design.”
After she finished speaking to Tang Mi, the restaurant manager drew her bright red lips into a smile. She picked up a knife from a small cake box and began to cut the cake.
“Even after being cut, it still looks beautiful. The chiffon cake is very light, and the fruit and jam between the cake layers makes one’s appetite rise greatly.”
A rich and creamy aroma permeated the entire interview room. The restaurant manager raised a small piece of cake with a fork and placed it in her mouth.
Tang Mi held her breath as she watched the restaurant manager with rapt attention. The restaurant manager swallowed the cake completely and joyfully opened her mouth to say, “The strawberry is very fresh, and the creamy texture is exquisite. The sweetness is just perfect. The slightly tart strawberry joins with the fragrant and sweet cream in a lithe manner, like two butterflies dancing lightly and gracefully in the afternoon breeze. It’s extremely wonderful.”
Tang Mi almost wanted to begin dancing lightly and gracefully in the interview room. She seemed to already be able to see herself become a member of Yu Zhi. From now on, she would be heading towards the pinnacle of her life.
Just as Tang Mi became complacent, the silent Human Resources director suddenly spoke. “Tang Mi, I have read through your CV. You graduated from A City’s Technical College.” As he said this, he raised his eyes to look at Tang Mi. “In your college’s Great Baking Competition, because you had plagiarized another contestant’s cake, you were disqualified, right?”
Tang Mi’s brows suddenly furrowed.
Outside the restaurant, a shiny black Bentley parked outside. The car door opened, and exiting the car was a lithe male. Standing straight in a suit, his temperament became all the more graceful.
Ding-ling-ling. The restaurant door opened and closed. The lobby supervisor and two waiters smiled brightly from ear-to-ear as they welcomed him. “Good morning, CEO Yu!”
Following behind Yu Yi was his assistant, Luo Hao. The two of them scanned the restaurant with gazes similar to searchlights. Uneasy, the assistant raised his eyebrows high and said, “I hope you will greet guests in the future just as passionately.”
The supervisor’s smile stiffened for a moment. Yu Yi didn’t say anything and immediately walked past them.
“CEO Yu, the restaurant manager is in the middle of an interview. If you need anything, you can command me directly!” The supervisor had scuttled behind Yu Yi and Luo Hao, but these two men’s long legs were too long for her; she was practically jogging to keep pace with them.
“Exchange the dessert plates and teacup saucers for the new, custom Provence set. Change the tablecloths to a pale yellow set.” Yu Yi’s voice was ice-cold, his words coming out flat and emotionless as he spoke. He was simply bossing people around.
“Got it!” the supervisor replied somewhat frantically.
“Make the inner lighting slightly softer. This painting, change it.”
The supervisor glanced at the painting on the wall. Although she didn’t know what about it that made CEO Yu displeased, whatever CEO Yu said was no good, was no good!
Seeing Yu Yi turn the corner ahead of her, her footsteps flew across the ground to catch up. Her face was all smiles as she asked, “CEO Yu, the CEO office has already been set up. Do you want to look at it?”
Although he knew that the CEO office was already set up, CEO Yu might not even enter it twice in one year. She still, however, retained a bit of her childlike fantasy.
Yu Yi’s footsteps paused slightly. He stopped to ask her, “What position is being interviewed for today?”
The abrupt question made the supervisor somewhat overwhelmed by her superior’s favor. She looked at Yu Yi’s handsome, flawless face and nearly forgot to reply. “West, western-style pastry chef.”
Yu Yi seemingly reflected on this for a second before saying, “Take me to see.”
In the interview room, the tense atmosphere had not eased.
“I didn’t copy her.”
Tang Mi declared this statement.
But the director, in exchange, disdainfully laughed. “Your counterargument is very weak.”
Tang Mi’s brows rose. She took a deep breath before saying, “I didn’t copy her. I have never copied anyone. That cake was my design, and she plagiarized me! Her biggest advantage was that her number came before mine, which meant she was able to present her cake before the judging panel and audience ahead of me!”
The director snorted. “Do you expect me to believe that? In such an insignificant, school-level competition, and you plagiarized others to win? I can’t help but question your character.” As he said this, he glanced at the cream cake on the table. He sneered. “This cake wouldn’t happen to be another one of your plagiarisms, right? If a plagiarized dish is served on the dining table for guests to taste, do you know how much it would affect the restaurant’s reputation?”
Tang Mi moved her hand to pinch her knee. The urge to punch this man was rising within her.
If Fu Xin was here right now, she would definitely tell her to restrain herself. Unfortunately, Fu Xin wasn’t here.
Tang Mi swiftly rose from her seat and quickly stepped around the table. She picked up the cake. Pa-ji. She smashed it in the director’s face.
The restaurant manager was bowled over by her movements, which was as confident and agile as the moving clouds and flowing water.
“What are you doing?!” The director’s head was covered with cream. He suddenly slammed the table as he stood up.
Tang Mi gazed steadily at him before suddenly drawing back the corners of her mouth into a smile. “I wish you a happy birthday!”
Who told her that today was his birthday!
Not waiting for him to react, Tang Mi had already walked past the restaurant manager with lightning speed and grabbed her bag beside the chair. She hurriedly headed towards the door to escape.
Her agile figure had just disappeared down the hallway when Yu Yi walked down it from the other end.
Luo Hao walked ahead of Yu Yi towards the door. He knocked twice with two short and powerful raps.
Not waiting for anyone inside to respond, he pushed open the door. The restaurant manager and the director looked over at the entrance, the cream cake splashed on the director’s face especially eye-catching.
Although he was used to large spectacles, Luo Hao couldn’t help smiling slightly upon seeing this. Yu Yi’s steps didn’t pause as he straightforwardly entered the room.
“Hello, CEO Yu.” Upon seeing the great boss, the two of them deferentially greeted him. Yu Yi’s gaze swept across the director’s colorfully and vibrantly decorated face and indifferently asked, “What happened?”
The director, like a child tattling to his parent, complained with righteous indignation filling his chest. “That interview candidate just now——when I exposed her past plagiarism scandal, she immediately flew into a rage out of humiliation and smashed the cake into my face!”
Yu Yi listened to him finish before tilting his head to Luo Hao and giving him instructions. “Let them use a towel.”
“Understood.” Luo Hao nodded and turned around to leave. The door quickly closed, and hurried footsteps echoed from outside. The supervisor, holding a towel, made a fuss about nothing as she ran inside. “Good gracious! My pitiful director, who was so heartless to go as far as to mess with you like this?”
Yu Yi silently stood to the side. Luo Hao intuitively understood and said, “Supervisor Yu, you may leave.”
Supervisor Yu: “…”
She was actually commanded to leave again.
Supervisor Yu, heart filled with unwillingness, reluctantly left, taking the towel from the director’s hands. The director had wanted to follow her to go wash his face, but CEO Yu still hadn’t said anything. He didn’t dare to act blindly without thinking. Yu Yi stood in his original spot for a moment before he stepped towards the table.
As he got closer, the cake’s aroma became exceedingly stronger.
Everyone in the room attentively followed his every movement. Yu Yi glanced down and examined the plate with the small slice of cake. After looking at it for a spell, he held a spoon and scooped out a small mouthful, bringing it up to his mouth.
The director opened his mouth, seemingly wanting to say something, but he ultimately didn’t voice his thoughts.
The fragrant, sweet, rich flavor dispersed in his mouth. Yu Yi’s tongue licked a little bit of cream stuck on his lips. He set down the spoon and turned his body towards Luo Hao. He said, “Make the arrangements. I will personally interview her.”
Hello, everyone! A new novel has launched on schedule!
Today is 520.5 I don’t wish you all success in confessing, but I wish for you all to have someone to confess to. 🙂
If you currently don’t have one, I’m also here 🙂
I hope everyone can continue to support this new novel, which is still another light, sweet romance novella. Trust the author 🙂
Seeking little angels’ many bookmarks and scattering flowers~
- “Cross a river in the same boat” figuratively means ‘to have common interests/obliged to collaborate towards common goals.’ ↩
- English doesn’t have a better way of expressing this bit, it can mean “proper and to be expected as a matter of course/inevitable and right” ↩
- Fu Xin’s name is written with the characters (傅辛), which respectively translates as “tutor” and “laborious.” In Fu Xin’s retort, she used the characters (负心), which translates as “ungrateful/heartless/infidelious.” ↩
- (小) ‘Xiao,’ a term of endearment. It translates as “little,” so Little Honey in this case as the ‘Mi’ in ‘Tang Mi’ is (蜜) | honey |. ↩
- Abbreviation for “I Love You” in net and SMS use in Chinese speaking world. It is an example of extensive use of numerical digits for their similar pronunciation of daily expressions in Chinese. In this case, 5 means “I”, 2 means “love”, 0 means “you.” The 20th and 21st of May is Online Valentine’s Day in China. ↩
- (草莓) “cǎoméi” means “strawberry” as well as “hickey” in Taiwan and “love bite” ↩
- Do I really need to explain? To pop your ‘cherry?’ coughs ↩